It’s been a hearty ten years since the original release of Soul Calibur II back on the PS2, Xbox and GameCube. Often regarded as one of the best entries in the series by the fans, it’s a welcome return to see this game get the HD makeover many games of its generation have been receiving. But how well does this game hold up against the test of time?
Local multiplayer games are inherently cooperative experiences. Even the competitive ones! I like saying that everything’s better with friends, but that just isn’t universally true. A lot of it depends on just who those friends are and how much they’re on board with having a good time over all else. I happen to have some particularly great ones, and I’m thankful. Now I’d like to tell you why.
Two new consoles are here. The crew talks about the hardware, UI, launch games and more. Also: Super Mario 3D World, Tearaway and Into the Nexus!
Check out the show here, check us out on iTunes or use the RSS feed in your favorite podcast aggregator. Let us know what you think! Email podcast[at]snackbar-games.com.
Hosts: Jeff deSolla, Andrew Passafiume, Graham Russell, Henry Skey.
Music: Podcast theme by Tom Casper.
Digital distribution has opened up a far wider spectrum of games to be commercially released. In generations past, we could only ever see big-budget retail releases and freeware PC games on the other end of the spectrum, with little to fill the gap (other than, arguably, portable games). Jett Rocket II is a game that simply would not survive in a modern market under the old business model. It is a game with a very specific set of goals, meant to appeal to its own niche and do so with a reasonable price tag. Was developer Shin’en able to create a quality budget platformer for the still-burgeoning eShop? READ MORE
Resogun is this generation’s shooter with lots of colors and particles and other fun tech demo-y bells and whistles. It’s a follow-up to the Super Stardust games from developer Housemarque, but holds more of a comparison to Geometry Wars mostly because of timing and placement. While Resogun really exists to make PlayStation Plus viable at launch and show off the PS4’s tech, it’s actually also a great shooter with a unique hodgepodge of genre hooks that work together as a cohesive whole providing aesthetic thrills, challenge and ample depth. READ MORE
Few franchises approach the same level of destructibility and gunfire as the Battlefield games. This primarily PC-centric series has been one of the highlights of multiplayer gaming every year a new title is released, although those limited to consoles haven’t been able to enjoy the full Battlefield experience until now. Thanks to the release of two new, powerful consoles, Battlefield 4 is finally as fully-featured as it has been on PC for years, complete with some pleasant and unexpected improvements.
I just started playing Tales of Xillia, the latest entry in one of Namco’s longest-running series. It instantly hooked me with the lavish colors, the grand aspirations, the overly enthusiastic dialogue and an overabundance of exposition in the first few hours. The mechanics feel natural by now; menu systems, experience points, leveling up. Battle strategy and traversing an overworld map have become second nature to me, as I’ve played hundreds of games in this genre. I also get the benefit of playing games that emphasize beautiful worlds and incredible soundtracks. They’re an acquired taste, but I can’t get enough.
That doesn’t mean I always enjoy them. READ MORE
Rastan isn’t the sharpest knife in the drawer, but he’s not dumb. Barbarians don’t just charge into battle, hoping their muscles can get them through a hundred enemies unscathed; they train to be better than their enemies, to attack at the right moment, to back down when needed.
Of course, being strong helps! READ MORE
“Pac is back,” touts the back of the box, despite Pac-Man not actually having gone anywhere. It’s cool, though; I get the sentiment. Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures is a new cartoon for a new generation of Pac-Man fans, and this is the logical video game tie-in. It’s pretty inoffensive as far as platformers aimed squarely at children go, and has a bit of charm that ensures the game a full-page ad in this year’s GameStop Holiday Guide. As cynical a cash grab this may be, it isn’t without merit. READ MORE
It’s not often that I am embarrassed to play a game in public. As a man in his mid-30s, I can train pocket monsters and manage my animal-inhabited town without caring who knows about it. But Senran Kagura Burst will never get played outside of my own private home, despite its legitimately-earned (if barely) T rating. Which on one level is something of a shame, and yet on another level completely justified. READ MORE