Darksiders Review

When I first heard about Darksiders, I was glad to hear that there was another game following in the footsteps of The Legend of Zelda’s item-based exploration. While other popular games are often copied endlessly by their competition The Legend of Zelda series seems to have avoided this problem entirely. The Legend of Zelda series has always introduced new ideas that have influenced the industry, but the the basics of the gameplay are rarely copied outright. Unfortunately, this causes a different problem that fans of other video game genres do not have: there are no similar games to play between Legend of Zelda releases.

Darksiders builds on the basic gameplay of The Legend of Zelda series and outperforms its predecessor in some ways. The result is a game that feels similar enough to The Legend of Zelda to make fans feel at home but offers enough differences to feel like something entirely new. Continue reading

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Soul Calibur 5 Review

Soul Calibur 5 was released at the end of January and I have spent the last several weeks playing the game regularly. At first I was disappointed that many of the characters From previous Soul Calibur games had been removed but I quickly became attached to some of the characters. I feel confident saying that Soul Calibur 5 is my favorite game in the series and I expect to spend many fun-filled evenings with the game over the next few years.

Since I began playing Soul Calibur the basics of the game have remained about the same. Soul Calibur 4 introduced finishing moves but to this day I have never successfully performed a finishing move (though I have rarely tried). The finishing moves seemed like a nice new feature when it was announced but in the end the moves didn’t change the gameplay at all. Soul Calibur 5 has finally taken the series in a new direction and made real chances to the way the game is played.

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Trine 2 Review

I have a strange relationship with the Trine series.

My first experience with the original Trine was on the Playstation 3 while playing with a friend. I enjoyed the first hour of Trine enough that, after learning that the game was not released for the Xbox 360, I purchased the PC version for myself. I played through the entire game alone, and once I had finished the game I never played it again.

Even so, I enjoyed playing Trine and the game was a memorable experience for me. I’ve been looking forward to Trine 2 since the day I finished the original game, so I purchased Trine 2 as soon as the game became available. Unfortunately, I’m not sure it was worth the wait. Continue reading

Bastion Review

As promised, I purchased Bastion shortly after Christmas and have been slowly playing through the game for the past month. Earlier this week, I finally completed the game, and I was left very impressed.

In a word, Bastion is fun. It’s not a groundbreaking video game, but it is extremely well made and memorable. Bastion is no stranger to praise, and there isn’t much to be said that hasn’t already been said by someone else. Nevertheless, I have a few high points I’d like to share about this magnificent game. Continue reading

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword Review

I love the Legend of Zelda series, so it should be no surprise that I arrived at my local GameStop at midnight November 20th to pick up my limited edition copy of The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. I spent the next week playing through the game, and logged about fifty hours before I completed it. When I completed the game, I created a new file and began playing through the game again.

Needless to say, I found a lot to enjoy in Skyward Sword, and the game has quickly become one of my favorite Legend of Zelda games. I’m not sure that I’m ready to say that Skyward Sword surpasses Ocarina of Time or A Link to the Past as the best games in the series, but Skyward Sword is, without a doubt, the best Legend of Zelda game released in the last ten years.

Skyward Sword is the climax of Nintendo’s celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Legend of Zelda series. The game itself celebrates the series as a whole. Not only does Skyward Sword serve as a sort of origin story for the series, but there are regular references to other games in the series and the game refines the elements that make the series great. Continue reading

Review: The Legend of Zelda Four Swords Anniversary Edition

Earlier this week, Nintendo released a special version of The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords as part of their on-going celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of The Legend of Zelda.

Four Swords was originally included as a bonus game in the Gameboy Advance remake of  The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, but Four Swords required two or more players and was largely ignored due to the requirements (each player needed their own Gameboy Advance and their own copy of A Link to the Past).

Almost ten years later, Nintendo has taken this opportunity to improve the game. The most important change is the addition of a single player mode. Nintendo has also added new stages based on some of the oldest Legend of Zelda games. The best part: the game is a free download for all Nintendo DSi and Nintendo 3DS owners (for a limited time). 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