Review: Falling Skies: The Game

Falling Skies The Game PS3Platform: PlayStation 3 (also on Xbox 360/Wii U/PC)

Developer: Torus Games

Publisher: Little Orbit

# of Players: 1

ESRB Rating: T (Teen)

Official Site

 

Score: C+ (70%)

You could say that there are two types of turn-based strategy game fans out there: those who’ve played XCOM and those who yet haven’t. Falling Skies: The Game works better for those in the latter category as well as those XCOM fans who won’t bash this too harshly for its intentional lifting of much of that game’s mechanics. While it’s a well-made game and plays just fine with only some pesky camera issues in tight spots, a few gameplay flaws knock it down from being a great entry in the genre. However, if you’re a big enough fan of the show, the game will probably warrant a buy right off the bat. Just don’t expect anything revelatory in the plot or handful of familiar characters you’ve come to know and love and you’ll more than likely have a fine time over a rainy weekend… Continue reading

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Sunday Gives Me Both Barrels, But I’ll Be Quite Alright…

(Thanks, John Thomas!)
 
And how was/is YOUR Sunday? Mine is pretty lousy at the moment, but pretty much everything’s fixable with some time and a bit of money. My home PC decided to flip out and not want to boot up properly, my backup solution isn;t working (thank goodness for the laptop), the connection today is super-slow, I accidentally broke the paper holder on one of the printers here (nothing a little glue can’t fix, but it was a total “DUH!” moment when it happened), my Logitech G15 finally died, I can’t find the driver CD for my gaming mouse, some of the plants I was growing decided to keel over thanks to the temperature changes this past week and I still need to get to that pile of laundry I was supposed to do last week, but kept putting off because of so many games coming in and me needing to get to them. Yaaaaah. There are a few other things going on as well, but those are for me to know and you to not find out.


(Thanks, DreamWorksTV!)
 
Eh, small world problems, but all happening around the same time makes for a REALLY annoying day. Eh, here’s a little laugh for you while I get back to trying to actually be something resembling “productive” today. Back in a bit…

Review: Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures 2

Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures 2 PS3 CAPlatform: PlayStation 3

Developer: Monkey Bar Games

Publisher: Bandai Namco Games

# of Players: 1

ESRB Rating: E10+ (Everyone 10+)

Official Site

Score: B (80%)

Pac-Man atGA2 banner If you’re one of those gamers who demands innovation in your sequels, Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures 2 isn’t going to be that game you’ll reach for in your library when you want to play something drastically different from the original. On the other hand, if you’re a kid (or have a kid) who’s a fan of the show or like me, someone who appreciates a solid entry in what could be a yearly or so series that’s fun where it needs to be, then this sequel gets the job done as it should. Of course, there’s room for improvement if this would-be franchise want to have a wider appeal outside the ages 5-8 set (don’t let that E10+ rating fool you one bit), but I’ll touch on what I think is required below…

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STL Ocarina Serves Up A Double Friendly (And Mildly Undead) Reminder…


 

AMC_TWD_Gallery__Daryl_Rick_1613_V2Ah, I knew I’d forgotten something was happening this weekend besides people getting sick at (from and of) Comic-Con. Season five of AMC’s The Walking Dead kicks off on Sunday, which means I get to camp out in front of the TV and probably see that premiere episode twice if it’s really good. Yeah, I’ll have to sit through Talking Dead if I do that (okay, it’s not a bad post-show watch, but it can be if the guests are nuts), but that’s a small price to pay.


 
Anyway, STL Ocarina made me chuckle with this pretty neat rendition of the show’s theme. That’s reminder one. Reminder two is yeah, you probably need a nice musical gift for someone this year for the holidays or some other occasion, so you should think of STL if you’re in need of a nicely quirky yet fully awesome surprise. And hey, if you DO decide to go the ocarina route and do so before October 12, 2014, feel free to get a little discount thanks to STL’s Fall Sale! Save 15% by entering this coupon code: fall2014. As noted, this deal is only valid through 10/12/2014. Okay, that’s my plug of the day (and I only plug stuff I like!) – go do some kind of impulse shopping!


 

The Twilight Zone: The 5th Dimension Box Set: Throwback Thursday Gets The Ultimate Gift!

Twilight Zone Box Set 

55 years ago to-day, The Twilight Zone premiered on CBS and while it only ran for five years (1959-1964), it’s still one of the most memorable anthology series to this day. There was a revival in the 80’s that ran from 1985-1989, and while it wasn’t as great as the original series, there were a number of excellent episodes in that reboot that come to mind as worth tracking down. According to USA Today, the fine folks at Image Entertainment have decided to collect every episode from both series along with a wealth of special features and is going to release a very limited edition 41 DVD set called The Twilight Zone: The 5th Dimension on November 11, 2014.

Only 7500 of these must-have sets will be made and while that $349.98 price tag may seem steep to some of you who think anything old and in black and white isn’t worth that kind of money, old fogeys like me who grew up in the Zone are breaking out our knives and are getting ready to fight it out with other fans and collectors just to get our grubby mitts on this collection. I’d imagine the chances of Image shooting one of these over for review are absolute zero, I’d trade one of Alicia’s robot arms (from The Lonely), a bar of gold (from The Rip Van Winkle Caper), a family-sized can of chicken (from Two) or a Kanamit cookbook (from To Serve Man) for one of those babies. Okay, all I REA::Y have is an old tin can here, but I hear it’s quite magical once kicked around a few times…

Falling Skies: The Game Lands at Retail for PS3/Xbox 360, Digital for PC, Wii U


 
This month went by WAY too quickly, ladies and gents! Anyway, one of the games I’m looking forward to playing has arrived, so I’m cracking my knuckles and getting ready for it (by whipping through a few recent titles and whipping out impressions over the next few days). Actually, you’ll probably be playing Falling Skies: The Game before I will, as review codes are going out later this week. You can zap yourself on down to any game retailer and get this for you PS3 or Xbox 360 or if you have a gaming PC or Wii U, hit up Steam or the Nintendo eShop respectively.

 
Oh, go on and buy it, already. You need a surprising tactical sleeper in the XCOM vein between the AAA blockbusters out now or waiting to drop in October and beyond and hey, those Espheni aren’t going to shoot themselves, right? I thought so! Get to it, pal!

Some Random GOTHAM Thoughts…

Hmmm. So, even though I’m not fond of their “news” division’s endlessly dreary antics in keeping people misinformed and angry and frightened half to death, I have to give it up for some of Fox’s TV lineup on the pure entertainment front. The new DC Comics-inspired drama GOTHAM is actually quite good, but I see some critics have no idea who’s who in the Bat-verse. Edward Nigma is NOT going to be the Joker unless he’s got a split personality and all those riddles he’s telling turn to worse jokes. I thought they introduced a wee bit too many characters from the comics in that pilot, but I guess they had to because it’s best to throw out as many cards onto the table as possible and get those arcs going. We got young versions of Catwoman, Batman, Poison Ivy, The Riddler, Penguin, the future Commissioner Gordon and an already dirty cop Harvey Bullock. I’d gather the guy who shot Thomas and Arthur Wayne may also be from one of the comic’s versions of the origin story, but we’ll see where that goes during this season. There’s more to say, but I’ll let a few episodes sink in before I make more noise.

Well, I do have one other goofball complaint – 8PM means I can’t see the show when it airs. I need to hit up the On Demand channel and catch this show the day after. Given the content, it should go on at 9, but the silliness that is Sleepy Hollow takes up that time slot. So, a day late and a dollar short is my way of experiencing this new take on an old classic comic story for the ages. Okay, back in a bit…

Mail’s In, I’m Out!

That's Entertainment Thanks to the mail deities delivering nearly everything at once yesterday evening because of a slight delay from a few states and faster than expected international shipping (hoo-ray!), I’m taking today off to tackle a couple of entertainment options. For the upcoming Fairy Tale Blogathon at Movies, Silently I had to import Ray Harryhausen The Early Years Collection from the UK, as it’s not available in a Region 1 format DVD (why?). I was deciding between writing that 2-disc set up when I came across the complete 2-disc set of Fractured Fairy Tales and snapped it up because it was dirt cheap and had free shipping. Of course, someone claimed that review, but I didn’t mind because I grew up watching The Bullwinkle Show reruns and those FFT segments were always hilarious.

For a crazed change of pace, I HAD to bug Clint over at MVD Visual about The Sex Pistols on TV, a DVD documentary of the band’s outrageous live interviews and other footage that I’ve wanted to see for some time. Yep, I have pretty varied musical tastes, folks. Finally, time to give the devil his due, as Diablo III Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition is in the house! While the PS4 is getting all the online ink, I’ve only seen two reviews of the PS3 version, so my review will let those of you curious about this who don’t yet own that new console know if it’s worth a buy. I did play a few hours last night and here’s a spoiler: It’s a buy for a ton of reasons. You get the original game with some BIG changes (as in your copy of plain DII is now obsolete to some extent) and the Reaper of Souls content that adds even more new stuff.

Hmmm… okay, enough procrastinating – I need to go dip myself into some diversions, people. Back in a bit…

Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures 2: More Of Lots And More Of That Lots…


Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures 2 producer extraordinaire Kunito Kimori has a great sense of humor and clearly enjoys his work. As he showed off a few levels of the upcoming game at a recent Bandai Namco event, he pointed out fun additions to the gameplay that weren’t in the original, checking with a glance between playing to see if I was grinning as much as he was. He needn’t have worried, as between the on-rails sky surfing shooting section and the intentionally silly boss battle between a skyscraper-sized Pac and an equally large missile shooting metal meanie, I was more than happy to see everyone’s favorite dot-munching pal back in action… Continue reading

Falling Skies: The Game Enemies Trailer: Tactical Advice (Or A Good Look At What’s Going To Do You In)…

fs_fam_x360_ps3_noa_bs_3dAnother Falling Skies: The Game update? Sure, I’ll take it. I really like the strong X-Com vibe the game gives off, the straightforward visual style and what looks to be solid and challenging gameplay in this latest video.

As I get what’s here and intend to play this one from beginning to end, there’s really not much else to say about this save for it’s coming to PS3 and Xbox 360 at retail or download, Wii U via the eShop and PC via Steam on September 30, 2014. If it’s as solid as the games it’s based on, Little Orbit will have a surefire sleeper hit that just needs a proper and appreciative audience playing it from day one.