PS3

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The original Ragnarok Odyssey proved to be a great early hit for the Vita, finding success both in and outside Japan with its loot-driven hunting formula. With what is both an expansion pack and a revamped base game, Ragnarok Odyssey ACE refines its gameplay and adds content, along with making the move to the big screen with a PS3 release. READ MORE

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BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma is the third core game in the series. Considering not much changed between Calamity Trigger and Continuum Shift, does this game drive the series to progress or cause it to stagnate? Luckily for Arc System Works, working out the kinks in two remakes of Continuum Shift has allowed this series to move forward. READ MORE

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It’s been about 13 years since the release of Final Fantasy X. With two online games and two console entries since 2001, how well does it hold up? Is it worth revisiting the world of Spira again?

Absolutely. If you ever needed a reason to play either one of these games, this would be a great time to do it. READ MORE

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Ever since the humble beginnings of the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network, we’ve seen releases of large swaths of arcade-style games. These titles, from Geometry Wars to Super Stardust, have populated these services from day one. Vlambeer, the creative team behind Super Crate Box and Ridiculous Fishing, is back with Luftrausers, a 2D action game that feels like it’s a lost gem from a bygone era. It continues the unstoppable trend of arcade-style downloadable games in style.

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As a new game from the Disgaea team, The Witch and the Hundred Knight has a lot to live up to. Though it ventures into the realm of hack-and-slash action-RPG instead of the usual turn-based tactics, the team has retained its love of telling a story about the bad guys, complete with crazy plot twists. You play as the Hundred Knight, a creature summoned by Metallia, the Swamp Witch. As she is unable to leave the swamp, she sends you on missions for her, to spread the swamp further into the land of Madea. The main conflict: Metallia is locked in an endless struggle with her nemesis Malia, the forest witch. READ MORE

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One of the grandfathers of stealth, Metal Gear Solid, has seen a lot of changes over the years. You can almost track the slow evolution of the genre with each iteration, going from traditional stealth with the original title to a more streamlined, varied approach with Metal Gear Solid 4. The prologue to the upcoming Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, titled Ground Zeroes, pushes the series even more away from its roots, making it the most modern adaptation of the classic formula.

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The Atelier series has always been a little different from your traditional Japanese RPG. Keeping away from the typical world-ending plot, the series’ games often focus on one town or group of characters. Escha & Logy continues this trend, but adds a new wrinkle with a second protagonist. READ MORE

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Does a better game make for a better EDF? That was the question at hand with 2011′s Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon,  which took a more modern approach and serious tone courtesy Western developer Vicious Cycle. Many fans missed the distinct B-movie quality of the previous games, so with Earth Defense Force 2025, original team Sandlot returns to the helm. And while the game certainly makes some advancements over Sandlot’s last effort, EDF 2017, it is still — for better and worse — very much the 2007 budget game that preceded it.

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The original Castlevania: Lords of Shadow was a reinvention of the Castlevania formula and story, focusing on the very first Belmont, Gabriel, and his quest to resurrect his wife. It was a surprisingly fantastic game, managing to evolve the Castlevania series in a compelling way while also telling a worthwhile story. Lords of Shadow 2 sets out to complete Gabriel’s story and expand the original game’s formula, and does so with impressive results.

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There’s a growing trend in game remakes that has proven to be somewhat of a double-edged sword. A lot of games are being remastered in high definition, and released with a sequel or two on the same disc. While some HD remaster collections add new features or even bits of content to give the player more incentive to pick up the pack, there are many that offer nothing more than a resolution bump. This is fruitful for the interests of game preservation and keeping classics relevant and available, but it also sets a worrisome precedent for remakes as a whole. Most of these games remain fine as they are, but the fact that it has become so easy for publishers to repackage one or two old titles without giving them the careful and lavish presentation upgrade they deserve is disappointing. READ MORE