Reviews

Super Exploding Zoo

Super Exploding Zoo, at first glance is a simple puzzle game with cute graphics. It looks like something you might find on Kongregate: fast, easy to explain and teeming with short enough levels to play four or five while waiting for something else to happen. The first few levels do nothing to dispel that notion. You’ll guide an animal through a simple level, collect some companion animals, blow some stuff up along the way, kill the monsters and win. READ MORE

Massive Chalice

Massive Chalice isn’t perfect. I could spend 30 minutes complaining about poor enemy placements, stupid house mottos and enemies that just aren’t fun to fight. But after finishing a campaign and failing to save the kingdom, what I’m left with is an appreciation for the terrifying enemies, the intricacies of arranging marriages and the strategy that goes into deciding whether I should force one of my fighters into the Sagewright Guild to aid in research instead of leaving him on the roster in case I need his battle expertise in a few years. READ MORE

Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy

Dungeon-crawlers have had a resurgence in popularity in recent years, led by the PC indie game scene and the Etrian Odyssey series. As a result, more and more niche titles have been getting a chance here, particularly on systems like the Vita. Operation Abyss: New Tokyo Legacy is the newest entry in the genre from Experience Inc. (the studio behind Demon Gaze), but it’s not necessarily a step forward for the company. READ MORE

Hyperdimension Neptunia Re;Birth2: Sisters Generation is the latest in the long line of JRPGs to land on Steam, a port of a Vita remake of what was originally Hyperdimension Neptunia MK2 on the PS3. As with the Vita release, it does little to sway anyone who wasn’t already a fan of the series, but it does make some pretty big improvements over the PS3 original. READ MORE

Chip's Challenge 2

If you grew up in the ’90s and you had a PC, then there’s a good chance that you played Chip’s Challenge at some point. If you enjoyed the dual challenges of figuring out the solution to each level and of avoiding all the enemies when executing it, then it was disappointing that Chip’s Challenge 2 was stuck in publishing purgatory. A purgatory that finally, after 25 years, has ended.  Now that it’s finally out, how does it hold up? READ MORE

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When you hear the phrase “online team-based shooter,” Nintendo is usually the last company you think is involved. The company best-known for colorful, cartoon-like platformers and family-friendly franchise party games has dabbled in competitive online play with recent Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. titles, but those modes were additional options to their respective games and never the main attractions. But at E3 last year, Nintendo unveiled Splatoon to the world, representing both a new IP and a new approach toward online play from the house that Mario built. READ MORE

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Magicka 2 is at its best in cooperative play. It plays better with two than with one, it plays better with three than with two, and it plays better with four than with three. Unfortunately, it doesn’t really shine with any number. It never becomes that game that I want it to be. All through the campaign, my prevailing thought was “I hope that the next enemies are more fun to fight,” and the only difference was that when I had friends in the room or over PSN, those thoughts were said out loud instead of internalized. READ MORE

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Puzzle & Dragons is an odd beast. The game taps into my love of puzzle games and an appreciation for awesome artwork. Still, the mobile original’s never-ending grind and constant prompting to spend to build a better team makes playing less of a delight and more of a chore. Without the pressure of stamina and with a definitive beginning and end, Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition avoids those pitfalls and plays into the concept’s strengths. Still, is it worth investing $30 in an experience so similar to a free-to-play phone game? READ MORE

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Despite not being as prolific or revered as Lord of the Rings or A Song of Ice and Fire, Andrzej Sapkowski’s Witcher novels have maintained a significant following in Europe since the early 1990s. Thanks to developer CD Projekt Red, The Witcher has begun to rise in popularity in the past decade, and with the release of the third game in the series, Wild Hunt, its ever-expanding audience continues to grow. Thanks to a healthy mix of BioWare’s conversation choices and Bethesda’s open-world sensibilities, The Witcher games have always managed to feel both familiar and distinct. Thankfully, Wild Hunt upholds this tradition.

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Why Am I Dead At Sea is a full-release follow up to the small-but-popular flash game Why Am I Dead. This game, like its predecessor, places you in the role of the spirit of someone recently dead. Your task is to possess others and use different abilities to investigate and deduce the answer to the game’s titular question: “why am I dead?” Why Am I Dead At Sea takes place entirely on a cruise ship with a diverse cast of nine characters, and while it is a little rough around the edges, the adventure has enough twists to continually pull the player forward in the quest for answers. READ MORE