Category Archives: Reviews

Poly Bridge Review (PC)

Poly-Bridge

Score: 5 out of 10

Poly Bridge a bridge building game from Dry Cactus. It is their first non mobile game, but it is not their first bridge builder. They released Paper Bridge for the iOS in April 2010. I wouldn’t call Poly Bridge a bridge building simulator because you some of the bridge that you make are pretty unrealistic.

download (1)In order to build your poly bridge, you start in the 2D side view with points to anchor your bridge to. Using multiple materials like road, wood, steel, cable, and hydraulics. Road is of course used in all bridges. Wood is your basic load bearing material used in your early bridges. Later on you start needing longer supports and needing to support more down force so steel and cable support are used. Hydraulics are needed when your bridge needs to be a drawbridge to allow a boat to pass/through your bridge.

Once you build the bridge and you are really to test it. Press the ‘Start Simulation’ button at the top of the screen and watch as a multitude of vehicles try and cross your bridge. The vehicles could be anything from a scooter to a monster truck. So bridge definitely needs to be build according to what is driving on it.

At the time of writing this review there are 36 levels. Some of the levels can be quite challenging. While youdownload can turn on the stress of each sometimes you have no idea why a section of the bridge fails. This game is very much trial and error. I personally don’t like that too much while other people do. There is also a sandbox mode where you can create your own bridge scenarios and share them with the community.

The best thing about the game is the community and seeing what crazy bridges that other people come up with that somehow get the vehicles across the gap. Dry Cactus was aware of this and allows you watch replays of other people replays.

Poly Bridge is still in early access on Steam for $11.99.

 

*Code Supplied by Publisher*

 

Review: Victor Vran (PC)

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Score: 8 out of 10

Victor Vran is an isometric, dungeon crawling, action RPG. Victor Vren was developed by Haemimont Games AD who are mostly known for the later Tropico games. It’s very similar to Diablo III and Dungeon Siege, with a hack-and-slash action combat and pretty good story. Victor Vran is just recently out of Early Access on Steam.

2015-07-24_00002Following the Van Helsing motif, Victor Vran is a monster hunter and part of the Hunter Order. Victor is a unique Hunter; he made a pact with a Demon and has Demon Powers. At the start of the game Victor arrives in a Victorian-era city looking for his friend and fellow Hunter Adrian. Right away Victor knew something was wrong because most of the city was on fire and there were monsters and demons flooding the streets. Everyone in the city was either dead or had run away; except for a small few at the castle. Adrian was not among them. Meaning he’s somewhere in the city fighting his way through the endless hordes of monsters. It becomes clear to Victor that this city is a trap for all Hunters. It’s up to Victor Vran and his new best friend, the “Voice” in his head to find Adrian and find out who is bringing all the worlds Hunters here and killing them.

Voice is the best character in the game. Voice is like a slice of banana (if you like bananas) on top of a milk shake. It’s something you don’t except from a game like this but it is welcomed. Voice’s sense of humor is great from calling Victor “Vicky” and going on and on about Victor’s hat and at one point calls him “Hat-Man” to singing “Bravely Bold Sir Victor” a slight take on a song in Monty Python and the Holy Grail [side note; I immediately had to pull out my copy of Monty Python and the Holy Grail of that], as well his best Stanly Parable impression. There are tons of pop culture references made by this lovely character. This is why the ending made me a little sad. If you want to know why that is, you’ll just have to play the game.

The combat in Victor Vran is pretty easy to understand but can be frustrating at the same time. There is controller support and is how I played the game2015-07-24_00005 99.9% of the time. The other .1% was trying the mouse and keyboard, while mouse and keyboard are the best way to manage your inventory; it feels like the game was meant to be played with the controller. Each category of weapon has three different attacks. You start out with only one weapon slot, one demon power slot, and one potion slot. As you gain levels you go up to two of said slots. There’s another kind of equipable that increases beyond two slots, Destiny Cards. Destiny Cards are modifiers that you can equip as long as you have enough slots and Destiny Points (DP). The amount of DP a card uses is on the card. The higher the DP points the higher the stats on the cards are. There are also Wicked and Divine Destiny Cards that add an additional stat.

There are seven different types of weapons; Hammer, Shotgun, Sword, Scythe, Rapier, Hand Motor, and Lightening Gun. Each weapon has a prefix and a suffix that determines what the extra stats on the weapons are.  There are 19 prefixes and 13 suffixes. Although they seem random I found a Spider Slayer hammer in an area with a lot of spiders, a Gargoyle Slayer scythe in an area with a bunch of gargoyles, and a Vampire Slayer rapier in an area with a lot of vampires. I’m not sure whether it was a coincidence or I was just lucky. At this time there are 40 legendary weapons. 2015-07-21_00002Each type has 5 Legendries except for swords which have 10. The stats on these weapons are not random and they level up with you as you play. Some of the legendries are quite serious and deadly like the Dervish scythe that I came across which increase the base and max damage by 22% and has a 25% chance of making the enemies vulnerable and when using the scythe’s Whirlwind attack it releases a second and third spinning scythe that circles you and does more damage. The stat says only a second but there was a third one in that death tornado. Some of the legendary weapons can have some silly stats as well. Like the Finger of Chaos rapier which unleashes balls of rainbows at the enemies. If one of those rainbow balls kills the enemies they turn into exploding chickens. There are couple different ways to obtain these legendary weapons. One is to buy them off the traveling trader that shows up every so often. I only encountered him twice in my playthrough and he sold one different legendary each time. He also had a legendary demon power and a legendary destiny card.

Co-op Mulitplayer is included in Victor Vran. You and three other Victor Vrans can fend off the evil horde. The enemy difficultly did seem to increase a2015-07-24_00004 bit when I played it with another reviewer. Loot is separate from each other, as it should be. We couldn’t find a way to trade items to each other. Difficultly did seem to increase but not enough so where it was just as hard as when you were solo. I ended up beating the last four bosses while in a party. When someone in the party dies, instead of spawning back at the checkpoint a 15 second countdown appears on screen until you can revive and spawn at the spot you died but only if at least one person in the party is still alive. If you all die then you all just spawn back at the checkpoint just in like in solo mode.

There is a PVP area of the game. You have to find in a certain area to unlock it on the map. I did not test this out but I have a pretty good idea what it is. You can only do it while in a group. I’m thinking that you and your friends walk into this area and just start swinging away at each other. I don’t find that very appealing in these types of games.

After you beat the last boss in the game a new location opens up on the map, Endless Dungeon. You then can fight waves of enemies on a small platform until you die. You can either do this solo or with friends. There are other places in the city to visit and kill monsters in besides the ones from the story. I personally still have at least a dozen or so place that I haven’t even been to yet. And with free DLC coming in the future you could easily spend more hours playing after you finish the story than you did actually playing the story.

Victor Vran is aviable on Steam for $19.99

 

*Code Supplied by Publisher*

Thief’s Magic Review (Book)

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To be honest I don’t remember buying Thief’s Magic. According to Amazon I bought right when it came out for $2.99 (the price now is $9.99). I looked at my Kindle books one day and it was there. I thought is was a trail or something, like it was only the first chapter or two. Nope. One day a two weeks ago I started reading and found it really interesting. I also bought the audio upgrade for less than $5, so I could listen on the way to work and then pick right back up and read when I could. This was the first time I have bought the upgrade so this will also be a review of that.

Score: 8 out of 10

Thief’s Magic is the first book in the newest trilogy, from Trudi Canavan, Millennium Rule. Trudi is known for writing other trilogies such as; Age of the Five Gods Trilogy, The Black Magician Trilogy, and The Traitor Spy Trilogy. Thief’s Magic was released in May 2014.

Thief’s Magic is split into two separate stories. The first is about a boy named Tyen Ironsmilter, an archaeology/sorcery student. Who finds a magic book named Vella, who was once a woman over a thousand years ago. Her purpose is to collect and share knowledge. Some of her knowledge is looked down upon as radical ideals about the professors at the Academy .

The other story is about a girl, Rielle. She is the daughter of the town’s dyer. The only thing her mother cares about is making sure the family image is upheld. It’s her goal to make sure that her daughter, Rielle, marries into a well respected family. Where Rielle grew believes that magic should only be used by the Angels and if a mortal uses magic then they are stealing from the Angels and are tainted and will, in a sense, burn in hell. Rielle has the ability to see Stain. That means she has the ability to use magic, if taught. After an unfortunate encounter with a tainted, Rielle’s life is changed forever. She falls in love with a painter (not the tainted). Artisans aren’t looked well upon, so her family would never approve. She also tries to think of a way to help the priests catch the person corrupting people into becoming tainted.

I found Tyen’s story the most compelling. While Rielle’s story did eventually get somewhat interesting halfway through, I kept reading/listening for when it went back to Tyen. If the book didn’t start with Tyen, I would have completely lost interest. I’m very picky when it comes to reading books. That’s why you don’t see a lot of book reviews on this site. I like action, and other than the encounter with the tainted, Rielle’s story had none.

The use of magic is way more common in Tyen’s story than in Reille’s because of the whole anti-magic religion that Reille is apart of. The way magic is described is interesting. Magic is in the air and people who use magic pulls it into themselves to “cast spells”. The absence of magic left behind is described as a black cloud. Tyen calls it Void and Rielle calls it Stain.

While both stories never intersect the stories are definite parallels of each other. Both deal with being betrayed by someone they trusted, that leading to being separated/estranged from family and friends. A;sp both learn that the places that they live aren’t as great as they once thought and are in fact deeply flawed and corrupt.

The biggest problem I had was, not with the book itself, but the audio upgrade. What I was expecting was the Audible version with some extra features. Features like, the audio starting on the page that was reading last, or highlighting the words as I both read and listened at the same time. Those it did. But the problem was the audio. It was sometimes skip half of words, or sentences, or even whole paragraphs. I only noticed it happening at the end of chapters. It would sound something like this, “Rielle walked ups——tper 15”. When I went back and tried to force the audio to read that last paragraph, an error would appear saying “Professional narration not available on this page.” So the only thing you can do is be quick on the pause button and hope that the next red light is long enough to quickly finish the paragraph. Not that I did that.

If I had to pick one flaw in the book itself it would be the transition between chapters. Well the issue wouldn’t exist if the audio didn’t skip like it did. When there’s a cliffhanger at the end a chapter and the next chapter doesn’t start right where it left off but instead going to do a flashback of what happened three paragraphs later. I don’t know if the audio skipped a whole page or what. I left me franticly pulling my phone out to pause and go back and read when I had the chance. Here is an example of what I mean, without spoilers;
“The room [pronoun] entered was not large, but made up for it in grandeur. Tall windows allowed in the afternoon light, currently a deep red from the setting sun. The colour reflecting off the gliding on the paintings and plasterwork made it look as if the room was on fire. It also cast the occupants of the room into russet-edged shadows, so [character name] had to squint to see their faces.


When [pronoun] did, [possessive adjective] blood froze.
“[Character name],” [Antagonist] said, “We’ve been looking for you everywhere.”
After this there’s a break and there are a couple chapter about the other character.
Chapter XX
[Character name] rubbed [possessive adjective] face, yawned and leaned back against the [spoiler]. It had been a gusty night and, with the wind making [spoiler] bob and jerk against the tether, [pronoun]’d not slept well…”

This is where I started to panic, and scramble for my phone to pause. Thinking that the audio had skipped again. Turned out that there was a flashback to what did happen a couple paragraphs later. Like I said not a issue with the book but with the flawed audio making me think there was a problem.

I really did end up enjoying the book and I’m looking forward to book two coming out this November. Whether I get the audio upgrade again or not I haven’t decided yet. I might just go straight audiobook. I’ve found I’m more likely to finish a book if I buy the audiobook.

 

Review: Schrodinger’s Cat and the Raiders of the Lost Quark (Xbox One)

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Score: 7 out of 10

Schrodinger’s Cat and the Raiders of the Lost Quark was developed by Italic Pig. It originally was released on the PC in September of 2015 but was later released for consoles (PS4, XBO) in May of 2015. Schrodinger’s Cat is a 2D puzzle platformer with some unique mechanics.

Schrödingers-Cat-and-the-Raiders-of-the-Lost-Quark-71Schrodinger’s Cat takes place inside a Particle Zoo of a Nucilus of a cell. It’s up to Schrodinger to capture all the escaped Leptons, Gluons and Bosons Particles. In order to capture them he has to use four of the six quarks.

The mechanic of using the quarks is the unique part of this game. Throughout the levels there are these red, blue, yellow, and green tiny critters hanging about. As you walk near them they gravitate toward you and start following you around. The red quarks are called Bottom Quarks, green are Top Quarks, blue Down Quarks, and yellow are Up Quarks. each one relates to either a trigger or a bumper button. You site_quarksuduse three quarks at site_quarkstba time to use the quarks’ abilities. For example; three Up Quarks, or yellow, create a temporary helicopter. One Top, one Up, and one Bottom make a net that carries the incapacitated particle away to wherever they belong. It doesn’t matter which order you call the quarks they make same thing. Yellow, Blue, Yellow still makes the same missile that Yellow, Yellow, Blue make or even Blue, Blue, Yellow. Doing the math, or counting the move list on screen, that leave you with 14 abilities that the four main quarks can do. That’s a lot better than the 50+ combinations it could have been.

One really nice thing is when you use a quark it’ll respawn where you picked it qc_flip_bup. The downside there is you have to backtrack. I found myself backtracking a lot anyway because I kept getting lost. The biggest complaint I have about the game would be the levels are a little too big. A map at the entrance of the area, next to the sign with the number of enemies, would have helped. Searching the levels for that last Gluton or Charm Quark for what seems like hours can really deter someone from continuing.

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Click image to enlarge

I like artstyle, very bright colors. The humor of the game is a little bit and miss 99% of the jokes where science jokes and since I wasn’t a science major in college, some went right over my head. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. I’m a fan of dad jokes and the jokes are very dad jokey, if you’re dad was a particle scientist. The voice acting reminded me of the old Sam & Max games. Not in really what was said but how it sounded. Again not a bad thing.

Overall Schrodinger’s Cat and the Raiders of the Lost Quark is a fun game. Unfortunately because of the large levels, it’s not a pick up and play for a few minutes that this style of game really needs to be. Schrodinger’s Cat is $9.99 on Xbox One, Playstation 4, and Steam.

 

*Code Supplied by Publisher*

 

Review: Mega Coin Squad (Xbox One)

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Score: 8 out of 10

The earliest game I can remember playing involved a Plumber trying to save a princess and collecting coins along the way. There is something satisfying about collecting coins, ring, or whatever the point based items are for the game. If you like the collecting aspect of these classic platforming games then Mega Coin Squad is for you.

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Mega Coin Squad is the first console game by developers Big Pixel Studios and Published by Adult Swim Games. Mega Coin Squad is a platforming coin collecting game that is fast paced. The world map is comparable to the Super Mario Bros world map. There are 4 worlds and 4 levels in each world. Grass, desert, ice, and lava are the different worlds.The first 3 levels are based on collecting a certain amount of coins. The 4th level is surviving rounds of enemies.

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The goal is to collect coins and deposit them in the giant piggy bank in the level. There are other objectives that allow you to get Power Ups at the end of the level. The three objectives are collecting under a certain time per level, collecting all the coins in one bank or deposit, and not losing any lives. Each objective completed gives you a chance to hit a rotating block of different Power Ups that will strengthen your character for future play.

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There are a variety of characters to choose from. They all have different stats. There are 5 characters to start off with and you can unlock a 6th that is Robot Unicorn. You unlock the Robot Unicorn by completing all levels with a character. There are achievements that focus on passing levels and completing the game with different characters. There are also a few revolved around total coins banked, time and objective based.

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Mega Coins Squad is a fun but challenging game. It is available on Xbox One for $14.99. It can get pretty touch and will take time to master. This game has a lot of replay-ability with the different character, attainable achievements, and level objectives. There is a 4-Player local co-op mode, but I was unable to try this out. Overall I would recommend checking this game out if you are looking for something to play in between AAA games or looking to increase your gamerscore.

Review: Chroma Squad (PC)

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Score: 9 out of 10

As someone who grew up in the 90s, one of my favorite and fondest memories was watching five teenagers with attitude transform into Japanese martial artists in full body costumes. Over the years, I’ve played many games based on these Rangers of Power. Which why when I heard about Behold Studio’s Kickstarter for Chroma Squad, a turn based strategy game inspired by Power Rangers, I was excited. Sadly I didn’t kickstart it because I wasn’t backing anything on there yet. Still have only backed four things. Anyway, as a someone who had recently started watching Super Sentai and Kamen Rider, the shows for the footage behind Power Rangers and Masked Rider, I was absolutely going to play this game. Luck for me we get a review code.

2015-05-06_00001Chroma Squad is about a group of stunt actors who got fed up with working for an incompetent director. In a fit of fed-up-withness (its a word now) they quit and decided to start their own studio. Luckily one of the actors’ uncle had an unused warehouse that’s perfect for a studio. Inside the warehouse also just happens to be an extremely large brain in a jar that is connected to a computer with a text to speech function. Strange. Now they have to raise money for better costumes, studio equipment, and prop weapons. You can only use buckets and pretend they are magically helmets for so long. The dialog is pretty funny. The actors constantly break character.  Just what is this giant brain in a jar? Where did it come from? Why do some of these monster have some amazing costumes on a low budget show?

After naming all five of the actors and choosing what color each role is going to to be you can start your show. That’s right you can choose the leader not to be red, and you can also have orange, purple, and brown “rangers”. Something that I’ve always wanted, and Orange Ranger. Or maybe you want an all female group. For each of the five actors there are five roles; Leader, Assist, Techie, Assault, and Scout. 2014-09-06_000131Each mission is an episode of the tv show. There’s only 5 or 6 episodes per season. After the season premiere you can choose which episode you want to play next. In the mission select you get a brief synopsis of the episode like you would any actual tv show. The mission select will also let you know if the episode features a special guest and/or a giant robot fight. Giant robots in this cause is made out of cardboard. The special guests I assume are named after either kickstarter backers or developers.  The only other episode you can’t choose from besides the first episode of the season is of course the season finale. Each mission has director instructions of special things that you need to do to get a fan boost. These instructions could be things like kill the minions before the boss or attack boss each turn or finish boss with finisher. Between missions you can also hire marketing companies to give you fan and income buffs. The marketing company buffs only last 1 or 3 episodes.

251130_screenshots_2015-04-30_00008-1024x576The combat is pretty simple. Each actor gets a turn to move a certain number of squares based off their movement stat. After they move they can either attack or move again or set up for a teamwork move, very similar to X-Com. Each role has a different ability. The Assist actor is your healer of the group, your Techie is the one to lower an enemy stats, and so on. There is somewhat of a skill tree but you don’t have to drop any skill points the next tier of abilities unlocks after each season. That means you can change which abilities are active whenever you’d like, as long as it’s not during a mission and it’s within the same tier. After using an ability there is a cooldown period.  Some weapons are role specific like the axe can only be used by the Assault role, while other weapons like your basic pistol or sword any one can use. Each person can only carry one weapon, so it’s best to have a role specific weapon on each character because it tends to have the stat boosted needed for that role.

2015-05-02_00001-noscaleCombat in the giant robot is even easier. There is no movement part of the turn. You click the basic attack button again and again until you either miss, choose to defend, or use a special attack. There is a accuracy percent of your next basic attack that you use to determine when to defend. Each consecutive attack raise your combo. The higher your combo the higher your defence will be when you do click defend or if you have a healing ability. If your health drops below 0 you start using the fans that you gained during the episode as a secondary health. When its the enemy’s turn to attack a bar appears at the bottom of the screen and you have to time your mouse click to maximize the guard.

FinisherThe teamwork moves that I mentioned earlier are pretty neat. If you are far from an enemy but the director says that you need to attack this turn you can place another character in the path and click teamwork and ends up launching the character that’s moving into range and you’re still able to attack. You can also team up on an enemy by surrounding them with your team and double, triple, or quadruple team them for more damage and fans like that. If you use all five that’s the finisher, but be warned, if you use the finisher and it doesn’t kill the boss that results in negative fans. Having a squad member go down is also negative fans.

There is a crafting system and a shop. Enemies drop items used to craft new equipment and upgrade your cardboard robot. I usually found that the materials needed to craft some of the items just didn’t drop often enough. Even though to can craft material into high end material, not enough drops to really be of use anyway. The shop always has better equipment anyway. The only thing that you can’t upgrade with just money from the shop is the robot. You have to use materials that you earn, craft, or just buy a box of materials that have a chance of having the items you want.

I had a lot of fun playing Chroma Squad. I would highly recommend this to any fan of Power Rangers and Super Sentai. Chroma Squad is $14.99 on Steam. Check out the archive of my live stream below. Also check out our YouTube channel for more videos.

 

*Code Supplied by Publisher*

Review: Color Guardians (PC)

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Score: 7 out of 10

Color Guardians is a fun little game where you play as this little colorful characters who is a Color Guardian. It is simple where you run left to right and back and forth from 3 different lanes collecting colored orbs to gain score. The initial feel of the game is simple and something that one might find in their mobile app store.

The story is fairly simple.  A dark bad guy comes and steals the color. Your job is to play through the game and collect color orbs. As you progress through the game you see color returning to the world via the world map. The world map is like most games where you select the level to play by moving your character forward or backwards. The individual levels start out colorless and as you collect color orbs the level gains color, but when you start to miss the orbs the world reverts back to its colorless look. The game literally is based around color and it looks really good as a result.

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The scoring system is pretty familiar. When you complete a level you see your score add up. Depending on how many color orbs you picked up depends on how high the score. The high score is  how many stars you get for that level. Three stars is the best you can get for a level. This is very similar to many mobile games that encourage replay-ability in order to gain three stars for every level. You can also see how many of each color orbs you collecting from that level as well as total possible orbs for the level.

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The game fully supports controllers or traditional keyboard. The Mouse isn’t used in the game. I kept finding myself wanting to use the mouse at the beginning of every level. If you are picking up a red orb you must click the button assigned to red. When you click one of the assigned buttons for the three different colors your character spins and that is how you get a perfect for the orb. You have to constantly click on the correct button for the correct color orb. This can get a little frustrating as the levels get tougher. Having to quickly switch between the different colors can be a bit challenging in the later levels.

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I would have to say overall the game is pretty fun. It does have challenging aspects to it, but it is a great game to play after marathoning a more intense game. I find myself playing a few levels before bed and a few levels in between other games. The music is upbeat and goes along with the colorful vibe of the game. I give it a 7 out of 10 because the game feels like it could have been a mobile game for a lot less. I did enjoy my time with Color Guardians and feel it is a solid game that many people will enjoy playing.

 

Review: GameLoading: Rise of the Indies

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Score: 8 of 10

GameLoading: Rise Of The Indies is an independent video game developer documentary from StudioBento. There have been a couple of these types of documentaries come out in the past couple years, Indie Game: The Movie comes to mind. But unlike Indies Game: The Movie, this isn’t about how Phil Fish is an asshole. This was more about how a lot of these indie developers are artist.

The filmmakers talks to developers who look at games in some completely different ways. They talked to the couple from Tale of Tales who think video games should be visual art, and not the shooting and killing that most games are today. They also talked to Robin Arnott, who’s game, SoundSelf, is all about sound and very little visual beyond a fancy audio visualizer.

While watching this documentary, I started to see comparisons between indie games and the first video games. Then once someone in the documentary also made the same comparison, it was even more clear. Back in the day, when you could find them in plastic bags tacked onto a cork board in a computer store (before my time obviously) and there wasn’t some big marketing campaign that costs millions by some multi-million dollar publisher. Back then, there were no game publishers the developers had to copy the disks themselves and take them to the stores. Once game consoles came onto the scene and names like Nintendo and Sega were introduced big money started going into making, publishing, and marketing these games. That kind of left the guy coding on his Commodore with no way to make a any headroom for himself with getting a job at one of these big game companies.

Once Steam and Xbox Arcade and Playstation introduced digital distribution and the need for smaller games came in demand. Small development teams could make games again they way that they wanted to and still reach the same large audience that the big boys were. Thus the “Rise of the Indies”.

That’s only a small portion of what this documentary covers. If someone one doesn’t think games as an artform, don’t show them Call of Duty or GTA. Instead show them an indie game like Papers Please or The Dragon Cancer. Cause while big companies do have have some great art and story the true artists of the video game world are the indie developers. And that’s what this documentary shows.

I scored this an 8 out of 10. the reason I knocked off two points was because it seemed to bash a little too hard on the triple A games. And it almost felt like it was bashing on it’s fans as well.  I thoroughly enjoyed this documentary and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys something other than the next Call of Duty from time to time.

*Code Supplied by Publisher*

Fruit Ninja Kinect 2 Review (Xbox One)

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Score: 7 out of 10

These are some Pro Moves

These are some Pro Moves

If you liked the regular Fruit Ninja modes those are still there. You have the mode of if you miss three fruit and/or slice three bombs you’ll lose. Another mode is just time based bombs are still there but you don’t lose, there’s just a delay in the fruit appearing. The third “Classic” mode is zen mode where again is time based but there are no bombs.

There are four new single player modes that you can choose from in the “Festival” menu. Each new mode has a new character to introduce the new mode. Katsuro’s Ninja Dodge Dodge is a mode where shurikens are being thrown at you while slicing as much fruit as you can. More and faster shurikens are thrown as you successfully dodge more and more. Mari’s Strawberry Stealth puts your Ninja skills to the test by slicing fruit while Gamemodesavoiding moving spotlights. Being spotted sounds the alarm and points are lost the longer you stay in the spotlight. So if your shoulder just seen for a split second, less points are lost than if you do your best deer in a headlight impression and just stand there. Nobu’s Bamboo Strike is a mode where you have to slice the bamboo seeds before they hit the ground. Miss one and bamboo will grow to block you from slicing fruit. Han’s Apple Range is probably my favorite new mode. You have to throw knives at fruit instead of slice them. There are targets that pop down that you have to hit with your knives.

Fruit Ninja 2 Screenshot 2015-03-24 20-22-22It is $14.99 on the Xbox Store. In my opinion that’s a little pricey for a game that doesn’t have too much content. You can unlock all the game-modes in the matter of 15 minutes. Just like many Kinect games you can work up a bit of a sweat.  If you liked the first Fruit Ninja on the Xbox 360 you’ll like the new Fruit Ninja Kinect 2.

*Code Supplied by Publisher*

 

Trapped Dead: Lockdown Review (PC)

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Score: 8.5 out of 10

I am always looking for a fun co-op game. I enjoying playing a game with a friend, and if I can play with 3 friends then it is even better. I was pleased to see that Bigmoon Studios had come out with Trapped Dead: Lockdown. Trapped Dead: Lockdown released on steam March 20, 2015 and is currently 15% off as of this review’s posting(March 26, 2015).

TrappeddeadTrapped Dead: Lockdown is a top down style action rpg zombie killer game. It supports up to 4 players It has partial controller support. It is good but not great. There are 5 characters to choose from, and they each have their own skills, powers, and weapons they can control. The skills are part of a skill tree system that increases with each level up. An issue with the UI is when you go to apply an experience or skill point you need to add to one ability and apply. This can be a little tedious especially when you are trying to quickly apply points and get back to the game. I hope in the future they add an apply all feature or just have it apply all assigned points instead of applying one at a time.

Trapped Dead SkillsThere is also a store system in the game that appears frequently enough. There is a mysterious looking vendor guy where you can buy items, sell items you pick up in game, and repair items. There are character specific weapons that any character can pick up and that is where selling comes into play. I played as the assassin and picked up a chainsaw, and since I was unable to use the chainsaw I sold it. Your weapons need repairing from the mystery guy as well if you plan to keep using the same weapon. It is simple enough and the loot drops frequently where I didn’t feel like I was ever short on cash in the game.

Trapped-Dead-Lockdown-10There is a story to the game, but it isn’t the games strongest feature by any means. You have to talk to characters to figure things out and sometimes to progress through the game. That wouldn’t normally be a problem, but it seems that only the host of the game can talk to the NPC in the game. This became a little frustrating when my friend was trying to talk to the NPC while I was in the menu applying skill points. This is by far no game breaker, but just an odd design choice.

nQ8QbwwI would have to say overall Trapped Dead: Lockdown is a fun game. It is especially fun playing co-op with friends. It is not too complex, but it has enough there to keep you interested while playing and chatting with friends. The controller support is good enough where this would be a fantastic console game, and the mouse/keyboard works well too. I would highly recommend people check this game out if they are looking for a fun game to play with a friend or three. The game is 15% off of its normal $19.99 price or $39.99 for a 4-Pack. The sale ends 3/27/2015 at Noon CST.