Archive for September, 2009

Review: Bubble Bobble Neo

Bubble Bobble has seen profuse commercial success throughout the years. It’s received several different spinoffs as well as addictive puzzlers that work given the franchise’s silliness and outright whimsy. The original game has been given a fresh coat of paint this year with Taito’s impressive revival, Bubble Bobble Neo. Even though it may look different on its exterior, it still retains the lighthearted charm that you’ll remember fondly from your childhood.

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Review: Section 8

Halo-killer. It’s a certainty you’ve heard this expression before. Halo, at the height of its popularity, and even now, continues to be one of the top contenders for multiplayer gamers and simply those who wish to experience an entertaining first-person shooter. Many titles have come and gone that have not quite “killed” Halo, at least not in a similar fashion. Though Section 8, an offering provided by SouthPeak Games has not been touted as the death of Halo multiplayer games, it certainly is simple to see where it has garnered its inspiration from. While you have certainly experience a more solid and engaging shooter before, Section 8 manages to captivate and enthrall with 32-player online skirmishes and a single-player campaign that, with a bit more polish, could have been something much more noteworthy than the final product turned out to be.

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Review: Defense Grid: The Awakening

Tower defense titles are a dime a dozen, from the sprightly, “is-it-really-tower-defense” types such as Crystal Defenders, to the universally-loved, such as Desktop Tower Defense, and even the criminally underappreciated games such as Lock’s Quest. At this point in time, however, it seems as though the genre may be beginning to stagnate, as there hasn’t been too many improvements by way of innovation over the years. With the release of Defense Grid, a very obvious tower defense title, thankfully we can breathe a sigh of relief with the fact that tower defense does have a chance to grow and evolve.

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Review: Raven Squad

When you take all the zeniths that comprise one particular genre and infuse them with another , you usually have a title on your hand that should enjoy moderate success. However, in order to create a premium sort of product, you must first ensure that the elements you are blending ensure the highest quality. In the case of Raven Squad, touted as a bizarre hybrid of FPS fragging and RTS decision-making, blurring the genre lines is a task best left to more skilled developers.

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Impressions: Shorts

How many passable movie tie-in video games have been released, exactly? If I had to wager, I’d say about five total. Five, in all of the history of gaming. With these impossible odds, still I endlessly trudge through the impossibly sadistic world of movie-inspired games. Most recently, I’ve played through Shorts, a DS tie-in from a movie I had not heard of prior to obtaining this game, so a little research was required. Shorts is actually a collection of (you guessed it) short films compiled into one feature-length movie suitable for all-ages, from the creator of Spy Kids, no less. Each yarn is spun around the fact that a mysterious rainbow-colored rock has appeared in one of your average Stepford-esque neighborhoods. Its MO? To grant any wish your heart desires.  The film features a rather motley crew whose experiences with the stone intertwine to create a cohesive narrative. Upon further investigation, the film did poorly in theaters and ratings, so right off the bat I was wary of what this strange little game could offer.