Do You Still Care About Achievements/Trophies?

It’s no secret that a huge amount of gamers love obtaining achievements and trophies. Since their introduction during the last console generation, entire communities and websites have appeared, devoted to helping achievement hunters hear that satisfying ping noise on their TV screen. For a long time, I belonged to this group of people. Continue reading Do You Still Care About Achievements/Trophies?

Rated “M” for “Might Not Matter?”

Image by Flickr user  Darryl Chan (CC)
Image by Flickr user Darryl Chan (CC)

A couple days ago, an announcement hit the airwaves that the highly-anticipated Batman: Arkham Knight is going to be rated “M” for mature. (Rocksteady’s previous Batman games, Arkham Asylum and Arkham City, as well as WB Games Montreal’s Arkham Origins, were all rated “T” for teen.) In an interview with IGN, Rocksteady’s founder and Arkham Knight Director Sefton Hill noted some surprise about the rating. But he also pointed out that though Arkham Knight is “dark” and contains “bad stuff,” it will be the game the company wants to deliver to players. Responses to this seem to have mostly ranged from “Way to go Rocksteady for sticking to your principles!” to “So?” As for me, I’m just looking forward to playing it.

Continue reading Rated “M” for “Might Not Matter?”

Overlooked: The Red Gems of Illusion of Gaia

Image from Flickr User: Shawn S
Image from Flickr User: Shawn S

One video game I absolutely love, that it seems no one has actually heard of, is “Illusion of Gaia” for the SNES. I adore this game, and it gives me no shortage of distress that it’s not available for download on the new Nintendo consoles. ‘Tis a huge shame. Good thing my SNES still works…. Well, in addition to having an interesting story and being a lot of fun to play, this game has its own secret, an extra level that is only unlocked once you collect all fifty red gems.

I have played this game countless times, but for many years, I was never able to get all the gems, and frankly, there was no excuse, considering the game actually came with a mini-guide that gave you tips on completing the game, not to mention the location of every red gem. Yes, some gems are impossible to obtain once you progress far enough into the game, but once again, if you just stick to the guide, you should have no trouble finding them. Continue reading Overlooked: The Red Gems of Illusion of Gaia

Duration and Value

Image By Flickr user: Leon Terra (cc)

At the time of this writing, details on “The Order: 1886” have just been leaked on YouTube, and most of the discussion going on about the game is centered around its length; currently rumored to be between 3 and 5.5 hours. By posting time (Sunday), the reviews will have been out for a couple of days and plenty of eager player will have gotten to experience the game first hand. Until then, we’ll be talking about the supposed shortness of the game and will be resisting the urge to judge the game based on it’s length. Should we though? Continue reading Duration and Value

Deleting the Fluff; Playing with Passion

Image by Flickr user Steve Paine (CC)
Image by Flickr user Steve Paine (CC)

If I was placed under duress to name one amazing aspect of modern gaming, (because there are many) it would be accessibility. Simply put, one need not stray far from common technologies to access video games. They are available through consoles, desktops, laptops, streaming devices (i.e. Roku), tablets, and phones. And perhaps most importantly, a good many available games are FREE. Well…make that “free,” at least in some cases.

When I first got a phone that was capable for playing games, I loaded it to the brim with free fodder like Angry Birds and Cut the Rope. Same thing happened when I got my first tablet. Only with the tablet, I expanded my game gobbling to include paid titles as well as freemium games like The Simpsons: Tapped Out and Family Guy: The Quest for Stuff. And I was happy. I was happy to have nothing less than a plethora of quick and easy games right at my fingertips for any occasion: my morning commute, waiting for an Xbox One game to load, or trying to ignore a “fun” family conversation. If you had seen my tablet just a couple weeks ago, you would have seen a full page of game icons. Because even if I didn’t really like one of the free games I had shamelessly installed, I still liked having it around just in case I changed my mind or got really, really, really bored.

I said “a couple weeks ago” because as of today, that home screen looks completely different.

Continue reading Deleting the Fluff; Playing with Passion

Where Have All The Arcade Sports Games Gone?

A couple of months ago I repurchased a GameCube, a console that I previously had access to as a child/young teen and loved playing. Strangely even though I hadn’t touched the system for over 10 years, my mum had still stored away some of my old GameCube games (mum you are a legend!). Although most of the games she had held on to were sadly not very good, I found one game amongst the others that I had a lot of fun with many years ago. The game is question is Midway Games’ arcade soccer game, RedCard (known as RedCard 20-03 outside of Europe). Continue reading Where Have All The Arcade Sports Games Gone?

What Makes a Game a Sequel?

Image from Flickr User: hugo
Image from Flickr User: hugo

I recently played and beat Chrono Cross, and let me tell you, it was quite a struggle. Due to a leveling up system where you really only level up when you beat a boss or when you fight the first few enemies after a boss, I had lots of frustration trying to defeat enemies that were just too tough for me, which was helped when I got the Mastermune, but still. I nearly quit the game several times due to this, and while I can now say that I did enjoy it, I still have mixed feelings about it. I loved the battle system, even though I didn’t like that most battles were pointless due to your stats never going up. I thought the story was interesting, while at the same time, I just couldn’t get attached to any of the characters. Continue reading What Makes a Game a Sequel?