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AVS › njskaguy33 › Reviews by njskaguy33

Reviews by: njskaguy33

The Best Just Gets Better

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Pros: Expansive world, great characters, tight controls, one of the best looking games on the PS3

Cons: The occasional game breaking bug, minor texture popping, questionable close quarter combat / control

To call Rockstar Games the kings of the open world is a massive understatement. Originating in 2001’s groundbreaking Grand Theft Auto III, the series introduced a generation of gamers to the joys of running around a virtual city sandbox, firing rocket launchers, eluding police copters and causing uninhibited mayhem. Thanks to sensationalist media coverage, most forget there are actual stories interwoven into the chaos. Every iteration of the Grand Theft Auto series improves upon the other and the latest effort continues to set the bar impossibly high. Combining the excellent storytelling of IV, the expansive open world of San Andreas and the tightest play mechanics to date, Grand...
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An Easy, Breezy 3D Adventure

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Pros: Everything you expect from a Mario adventure: great 3D implemenation, solid controls and colorful graphics

Cons: Very easy main campaign, little variety in challenges.

Back in 1990, Nintendo jumped into the world of handheld consoles with the green and black screened Game Boy. One of the first devices of its kind that had swappable games, Super Mario Land was one of the launch titles. Featuring strange Easer Island heads, tiny sprites and a couple of fun vehicle levels, the title introduced a generation of 90’s kids to the joys of gaming on the go. Road trips to an obscure Pennsylvania water park were finally tolerable. Super Mario Land 3D does the same trick as its 2D namesake, introducing the third dimension to the familiar modern Mario formula. The game is broken up as everyone expects: take eight separate worlds with five levels apiece, add a...
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The Game That Re-Started A Puzzle Revolution

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Pros: Easy to grasp, fantastic writing/voice acting, totally addictive, puzzles rarely feel overwhelming

Cons: Short but worth the price, late game levels can get frustrating

Valve has always been a touch mysterious. After the game changing first person shooter Half Life, a sequel was released in as part of the Orange Box in 2007. Included in the package was the co-op classic Team Fortress 2 and a silly little throw in game called Portal. With unique gameplay and a fantastically snarky vocal companion, Portal became a cult phenomenon. Portal drops you into the shoes of Chell, a test subject in the mysterious Aperture laboratories. After waking from what looks like a long hibernation, Chell finds herself immersed in a series of puzzles involving the gravitational Portal gun. The weapon fires blue and orange space gates. The premise is simple. Shoot one...
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Point and Click is Back With a Bloody Vengeance

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Pros: Striking comic book style art design, fantastic story, quality voice acting

Cons: Rarely challenging, certain combat mechanics are clunky

Growing up in the mid-nineties with a less than rocking computer meant one thing: point and click adventure games were front and center in my gaming library. From Tim Schafer’s fantastic Maniac Mansion and Day of the Tentacle series to Sierra’s King’s Quest, roaming a mouse around the screen to find something clickable was actually fun. But somewhere along the way, games grew up. Controlling characters in 3D environments replaced the simple charm of “click here to move” gameplay. The adventure game was dead. At least it was until Telltale Games performed a resurrection with The Walking Dead, a thrilling and emotional story that provides a new spin on the stale zombie genre. Based...
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Metriod Meets Dracula in this PS1 Classic

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Pros: Perfect gameplay, stunning PS1 era graphics, hilariously bad voice-overs

Cons: Infrequent save points, randomly escalating challenge.

A few months ago, I was watching one of my Internet stories, a show about classic games, good and bad. The topic of conversation was the classic Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, one of the defining titles of the Playstation library. Growing up as a Nintendo fanboy, I never had a PS1 and as a result, my memories of the Belmont clan began and ended with Super Castlevania for the SNES. Upon a modern playthrough, the hype is more than deserved. SOTN is not only the best game in the Castlevania canon, it’s one of the best 2D experiences ever made. In Symphony, you take the role of Alucard, son of the long dead Dracula (yeah, it’s just Dracula spelt backwards. Go figure). But when a...
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AVS › njskaguy33 › Reviews by njskaguy33