Top Tier

When we left off in part one, the turn of the century found the rhythm/music genre enjoying moderate success. The games were fun, fresh, and innovative; we were happy campers at this point. But who do I mean by “we”? At that given time, it would have been the explorers: the hardcore, the niche. With the exception of big-name games like Dance Dance Revolution and Parappa the Rapper, most rhythm/music games were still obscure. Gitaroo who? Bust a what? Casual players were still ignorant of the speeding freight train that was about to blindside them. READ MORE

So in case you haven’t noticed yet, a lot of Snackbar Games writers have had Rhythm Heaven Fever for the past two weeks or so. It’s a great experience, the visuals are charming, the gameplay is easy to pick up, and the music is spot on. It’s a rhythm game done right. Playing it brings me immense joy as I love both rhythm and music games.

But while playing it last week I had a bizarre epiphany: there wasn’t a single Rock Band or Guitar Hero game that launched last year. READ MORE

Welcome to Top Tier, an ode to the aesthetics and other small parts often left overlooked in video gaming. From costume design to sweeping symphonies and riveting stories to special features, this column aims to bring people together to appreciate the little things.

It was that fateful day in September 2010 when Ninja Theory’s DmC: Devil May Cry was unveiled. Shown at Capcom’s press event during the Tokyo Game Show, the highly stylized trailer had all the machinations of a Devil May Cry game: the slick attacks, the rock driven music and the menacing creatures. Only one question hung in the air as the trailer unfurled: where’s Dante? This poser has his guns, but he’s obviously a new character (like Nero before him). READ MORE