Lovely. While I wasn’t enamored with Dragon Age II‘s overuse of environments and SUPER truncated finale, that first game was quite spectacular through and through. The third game looks pretty mighty to behold in these trailers, but I’m hoping we see more open environments that beg to be explored like a real world spot where you want to stop and smell the virtual roses (without getting jumped by a pack of monsters or highwaymen). We’ll see soon enough, but I’m going to go out on a limb and trust BioWare has learned from keeping an ear to the ground for fan feedback by now that more is always better thing when it comes to freedom in how one plays their RPGs…
I normally avoid reading other reviews until after I write my own, but the two I’ve seen for this game are pretty favorable and only knock the game for some bugs and technical issues that need patching up and some repetition in attack animations (a common complaint for RPGs for ages). This bodes well for developer Obsidian and publisher Ubisoft, who rescued the game from oblivion after original publisher THQ folded a few years back. Now, if only Obsidian could get a few more RPGs made using a similar combat engine (but a different visual style), I’d be even happier. Well, this goes on the buy list and in the “Play It!” queue (which has grown by a few too many titles as of late).
Okay, Tales of Symphonia Chronicles has been keeping me occupied today, so I haven’t posted much since that Godzilla trailer. This former GameCube exclusive to PS3 enhanced port is nice and old-school Tales action through and through, including the difficulty early on if you’re silly enough to run into fights unprepared or think that cuteness means the game will be easy. HA. Tales of Symphonia Chronicles laughs at your silly self as its monsters eat you senseless (they start at the head, and work their way down it seems).
Anyway, a review is forthcoming, but not ’til the weekend or so. I need to knock out more thoughtful Toy Fair wrap up posts, dink around with some games in my queue and otherwise stay out of trouble. The cold weather has returned (booo!) and I’m not too pleased about that nonsense. back in a bit…
Well, here’s a fine way to kick off a Monday, folks. Knowing that Tuesday will be better because Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 is arriving in stores and online here in the US (Europe and the UK get theirs a few days later). Well, tomorrow is a big launch day for a few titles, but I’m thinking this one will be the one many are looking forward to the most. With developer MercurySteam going out in style here, it’ll be interesting to see what new plans Konami has for the franchise in the future. As for the present (today) and near future (tomorrow), I’d say fans and new players should enjoy what’s here quite a lot.
Publisher: D3Publisher of America
# of Players: 1-2 (Online 1-4)
ESRB Rating: M (Mature)
Score: B+ (85%)
“The Bugs Are BACK!” and man, were they missed! As a longtime fan of the series since its 2003 debut on the Japanese PlayStation 2 (as part of D3Publisher’s Simple 2000 series of budget priced games), I’ll just go ahead and say that warts and all, Earth Defense Force 2025 is developer Sandlot’s best game to date. While the PS3 version still needs a wee bit more optimization (it’s developer Sandlot’s first game on the hardware) both it and the Xbox 360 version bring 85 offline solo or co-op missions, an additional 9 online missions, four classes (two new to the series) and well over 700 weapons split between the different classes.
There’s also paid DLC that adds some brutal offline/online missions with redesigned enemy types (but no new weapons as the main game has more than enough). The sheer amount of content and escalating challenge will test even the most hardcore shooter fan, but the game’s campy tone and solid yet not quite flawless visuals won’t be for every taste. On the other hand, if you’re a fan of old “B” sci-fi flicks from Japan and the US and games where you can blow the crap out of nearly everything on most maps, this one’s not only got your name on it, it’s going to make sure you’re not leaving home for a while once you fire this up… Continue reading
The fun is back, oh sweet revenge!
Your victims will soon feel
Humiliation and then death
From a banana peel!
Oh, yeah, I’m on a roll now, kids. Well, perhaps not. I wasn’t planning on writing a crappy poem today, but it just popped out when I saw that screen with the gal slipping on the banana peel. Yep, the deception series is back in a big way, goofy humor and bloody demises and all. Deception IV: Blood Ties slides into retail and onto PSN for the PS3 and Vita on March 25, 2014.
I’d say “it’s about time!” or something like that, but I knew developer Asceron was working on Sacred 3 and didn’t mind waiting at all. With publisher Deep Silver coming to the rescue and getting this out worldwide, this bodes well for fans of the franchise wanting more after the solid Sacred 2 and its expansion. For the uninitiated, the Sacred series is an open-world isometric action RPG that some compare to Blizzard’s Diablo series, but is actually a bit better in some respects. The freedom to go where you wish (at your own peril, as enemies can be quite brutal if you get in over your head) and variety of male and female human and non human character classes make this one an evergreen series with massive replay value.
The great thing is this one’s coming to PS3, Xbox 360 and PC this summer, so there’s no need to run out and buy a new console to play it on if you haven’t made the switch yet. I’m all for that, as it takes a while for these new systems to really get going and show what they can do. As for that multiplayer mode? I don’t need it at all as I play for the story and characters, but I’m glad it’s there for those who want to beat up on each other or how need help with the tougher bosses in the game…
Eeek. To add to this silly and busy week, Capcom has released an reboot of Strider, the classic arcade game many of my gaming dollars went into back in the day. This new version is from developer Double Helix and looks pretty nifty and quite challenging. I’ll probably not get to this until the weekend, but I think I’m ready to have my ass handed to me a few times before I get through this one. We’ll see. It’s too bad this can’t be played on the Vita OR Wii U , but oh well (I still say why aren’t these on MORE platforms? Both the Vita and Wii U could use a fun and tricky retro platformer like this) Hmmm… I also see Dustforce also came out and I missed that launch last week (oops!). I need to check my inbox for a review code, I guess. Hey, I’ve been a bit busy here, people!
Ha. On the way back from Toy Fair, I spied not one, but TWO different UPS trucks a few blocks from my place. That means ONE of them has my copy of Earth Defense Force 2025, but neither truck will arrive here for about an hour (booo!), meaning I’ll be sitting here waiting to pounce on the driver as soon as he rings the doorbell downstairs. I think I SHOULD just go down and wait for him, but that’s bad to do because it looks as if I’m stalking him or am some sort of addict lurking around waiting for the man (cue The Velvet Underground in the background). And if that game isn’t in today’s delivery? Well, I guess I’ll live… but the rest of that ice cream in the freezer is going to have a pretty bad evening… (Dun-Dun-DUNNNNN!)
Back in a bit…
Wow. Just as I was typing that “Back in a bit”, the doorbell DID ring and yes indeed, I got my bugs in a box! Okay, so much for productivity tonight, but I am going to set an alarm to let me know when I need to stop playing and get some sleep. I do have a few meetings tomorrow that I can’t be late for and nope, they won’t believe me when I say I was killing giant bugs all night!
A-ha. I was wondering just what developer Spiders was up to, as they last teamed up with Cyanide Studios for Of Orcs and Men and Cyanide is now busy with the follow-up, STYX: Master of Shadows. Spiders is working on BOUND BY FLAME, an upcoming fantasy action/RPG set to hit PC, PS4 and “last” gen consoles later this year (although there seems to be no Xbox One version? Hmmmm…). Casting such a wide SKU net usually means a drop in quality somewhere unless you have a developer who knows their stuff, and I think Spiders can pull this off if they’ve learned from proper criticism of previous games. I like the visual style here (although the faces on the characters look a bit… “off”) and the gameplay and mature time seems similar enough to CD Projekt RED’s The Witcher games that the game may find an audience among those who like European-style RPGs as much as they like the games made here and elsewhere. That crafting system looks pretty fun as well and I hope it’s as flexible as noted in the trailer above.
Like Focus Home Interactive other RPGs, I’ll be keeping an eyeball on this one. I still get use out of my PS3, so I may go that route for the final just because I don’t need to connect it online in order to play stuff. We shall see, as usual…