A long overdue review: The World Ends With You

I have played video games for almost twenty years, and in that time I’ve played dozens of great video games. I have spent hours playing and replaying universally acclaimed games like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and at the same time given Quest 64 more chances to impress me than it deserves. The video game industry continues to impress me with well made games, but those same games often lack a uniqueness that makes them memorable after the game is over.

Despite all this, on rare occasion I play a truly unique video game that remains fresh in my mind for years. I consider these unique games to be among my favorites.

The World Ends With You is one of those games. Continue reading

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Advance Wars: Days of Ruin Review

When Advance Wars: Days of Ruin was released, I was not convinced that changing the setting and characters of the series was going to make a better game. I have played all the Advance Wars games that have been released in North America, and I became attached to the light-hearted characters and overall look of the series. Days of Ruin has replaced the setting with a more serious story and characters; a more war-like setting.

After playing through most of the game, I have actually been pleasantly surprised by the entire experience. Continue reading

Revisiting Trace Memory

When Trace Memory was released for the Nintendo DS in 2005, I had never played a game like it before. Trace Memory is a text-heavy point-and-click adventure game. The genre existed long before I began playing video games, but as the industry has moved forward the genre seems to have been mostly left behind.

The Nintendo DS is perfect for point-and-click adventure games because it is both portable and has a touch screen (which allows pointing and clicking). Often, playing Trace Memory is like reading a book, so it is nice to be able to stop reading and put down the “book” to do something else. It’s just as easy to pick it back up and start again.

I greatly enjoyed Trace Memory in 2005, and I played through the game multiple times. I was also very excited when the developer, Cing, released a similar game, Hotel Dusk: Room 215, in 2007.

Following the announcement that Xenoblade would finally be brought to North America, I began thinking about other games that were never localized and was reminded of the sequel to Trace Memory. Unfortunately, Cing filed for bankruptcy in 2010 and the sequels to both Trace Memory and Hotel Dusk: Room 215 were never released in North America.

I may never be able to play the sequel to Trace Memory, but I decided it was time to re-play the original. So, this past weekend I started and finished Trace Memory once again.

Continue reading

Chrono Trigger Review

After years of waiting, one of the most beloved RPGs from the Super Nintendo era is finally available on Nintendo’s Virtual Console. Of course, fans of Chrono Trigger are already used to waiting. After being released in 1995, fans waited five years for the game’s one and only sequel, Chrono Cross.

Despite being so revered by gaming enthusiasts, SquareEnix didn’t make it easy to find a copy of the game until recently. Chrono Trigger wasn’t re-released until 2001 on the Playstation. Unfortunately, the Playstation version of Chrono Trigger was plagued by horrific load times. Fans had to wait another seven years before it was re-released again for the Nintendo DS at the price of $40 (expensive for a Nintendo DS game, but still cheaper than the $100 the original Super Nintendo game often fetches).

Now fans of the original game and new generations of gamers can experience this masterpiece for a measly $8. Even so, over fifteen years later Chrono Trigger is still worth the $100 price tag. Continue reading