Thursday, February 27, 2014

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 (PS3/PSN)

Prior to the release of the "Lords of Shadow" saga, and the "Mirror of Fate" tie-in the history of the Belmont clan, and their eternal struggle against Dracula had never really been fleshed out. In fact Gabriel Belmont, the forefather of the Belmont clan had not entered the picture until the first "Lords of Shadow" game had been released. Previous 2D releases did much of nothing in the way of fully revealing Gabriel's story, or the Belmont family ties. The origins of Alucard, and even the origins of Dracula himself were kept in the shadows of gaming history like the dark characters themselves. The 2D games that were released before these definitive plot installments came into play were shared in such a haphazard sort of way that many questions were left unanswered for faithful fans of the series. The introductions of new characters later on, and the new stories that were added also made little to no sense in the ongoing saga.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

New Additions to the Inferno

If you've taken a look at this blog late last night, or this morning you'll likely have seen the four new page sections added to the top of it. There's "The Sh*t List", "Reader's Art of the Month", "Giveaways & Contests", and "Reader's Reviews". Out of all these new sections only "The Sh*t List" has any content though. That of course will change starting in March. While the "Sh*t List" is a fixture that will be managed only by me you will be able to contribute in two different ways on two of the other pages, and will even get the opportunity to win some giveaways/contests on occasion. The first way you can contribute is by emailing me some of your own game related art. This will be a monthly feature, so whoever I pick to represent that month will have their work on display until the following month arrives.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

SKH: Resurrection (XBLIG)

Holy Hell, and Mother of Metal!!! I did not see this one coming! It was like a left hook right out of the shadows. For those of you who have been with me for a while you might recall my review of a certain mathematical indie shmup by the name of "Super Killer Hornet". Well, it just so happens that that already impressive retro game has taken on an entirely new form that amplifies what the original experience had to offer. The premise is the basically still the same, but the gameplay will no doubt draw you in with it's new 80's arcade scene vibe, and it's killer soundtrack. I for one was thrown for a loop after playing the game, and I definitely think Flump Studios was out to impress this time around. In doing so they have proven their worth as an indie shump developer.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Zen Pinball 2 - "Super League Football" (PS3/PS4/PS VITA)

Over the years Zen Studios has done good to bring to us gamers a wide selection of quality pinball tables ranging from wholly unique designs to comic book themed experiences, video game oriented adventures, and even tribute tables based on classic movies. Each of these offered tables have carried with them Zen Studios' signature arcade style of design filled with super cool special effects, awesome audio soundtracks based on applied content, and an overall engaging experience that has drawn in the players time after time. In this latest 'Zen Pinball 2' debut you'll find that the team over at Zen studios has decided to tackle sports in a grand fashion not unlike their past releases. While soccer may not be that popular to some people out there there's no denying that it is a widely recognized sport that has taken many countries by storm. Europe, and the surrounding countries in particular have grown fond of it, and have spawned teams who have competed in such prestigious events as that of the Olympics. Let us not forget those in the United States, and other Spanish speaking countries who also take the sport seriously.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Weekend Wrap Up - 2/16/2014

I almost totally forgot about my plans to include this weekly post. As you can probably tell I've been swamped with work lately. That work load alone has thrown me off course from my regular routine. Between my work with Xcritic, Paradise Theater XxX, and OtakuDante's Gaming Inferno I've had little to no time to myself. People just don't realize how hectic a journalists' job can be. The fact that I put in more time, and effort than most journalists definitely speaks of my dedication to my work though. Despite my one man army approach I'm still doing good to get reviews out to my readers. At the current time though my adult readers are getting more attention due to the consistent flow of review material. Games on the other hand are a slow go this year, and have not been as plentiful as last year. With the new consoles released one would think that the library for next-gen would be growing steadily. Instead PS4 owners, and Xbox One owners are getting short handed with remakes, upgrades, and a pitiful selection of new releases.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Skullgirls Encore (PS3): "The Good, The Bad & The Sugar Coated"

If you missed it a couple of years back a developer by the name 'Autumn Games" co-produced a fighter titled, "Skullgirls" with another development team known as 'Lab Zero Games'. Together these two studios got on board with 'Konami' to bring to the fighting game community what was suppsoed to be a fresh, and innovative take on the 2D fighting game genre. The teams working on the game incorporated impressive hand drawn character animations with a somewhat mature theme, and a fighting system that mirrored that of previous MvC (Marvel vs Capcom) offerings. While there were definitely nods to other fighting games via color palettes, and fighting styles the game did one important thing differently. That thing of course was a way to fight back against spammers. This innovative mechanic allowed spam assaulted players to break free of a combo if the player dishing out the attacks repeated the same combo twice. In essence it did work out properly, but in an unfortunate turn of events exploiters found a way to perform infinites despite the applied mechanic, and in turn ruined the game's intended experience.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Toukiden: The Age of Demons (PS VITA)

The factual, and mythological history of Japan is a rich one. It is filled with fantastical tales of honor, tradition, and the brave warriors of the past who held quick to their beliefs. Just as real Japan carries with it a vastly expansive past rich with it's own time honored traditions so too does Tecmo Koei's latest multiplayer RPG experience. This latest ancient Japanese tribute titled "Toukiden: The Age of Demons" comes complete with a cast of interesting ancient Japanese characters, a mythology all it's own, and a threat that mirrors the real ancient Japan's own mythology. In this tale of bravery, and survival we find a select group of samurai warriors known as "Slayers" who are each standing their ground, and protecting their homelands from the threat of otherworldly soul devouring Oni. Eight years ago during an event called "The Awakening" a portal to the other world opened up releasing upon the land, and it's citizens a hellbent wrath. Oni swarmed the lands for seven days, and seven nights. It wasn't until that last night though that the slayers, the "Bearers of the Eye of Truth" finally made progress, and were able to save a piece of their fading history for the time being.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc (PS VITA)

Hope's Peak Academy, a school for the most ultimate of ultimate. No matter what you do in life if it's ultimate then you'll likely be invited to this most prestigious of places. Not only does it offer the best schooling possible, but as a student you are also guaranteed success in life after graduation. This of course is what the unfortunate 15 invited pupils thought as they approached the seemingly normal building. Upon arrival though their world was turned topsy turvy in a truly disturbing, and unexpected manner. Like a twisted horror story ripped from the script of some Twilight Zone episode their lives on the outside world came to an abrupt end as their days of freedom turned into a fight for survival. Motives, murder, and mayhem were only the start to the trials that these unlucky souls would endure.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Dustforce (PS3)

Retro gaming FTW!!! Any time a game developer (particularly an indie studio) takes an old idea, or ideas and makes it their own in a successful manner I become ecstatic as a gaming enthusiast. While it's often times hard not to come off seeming like someone ripping off another idea I think "HitBox" did good with "Dustforce". This indie-like title which contains elements of the classic "Prince of Persia", and "Sonic the Hedgehog" did good to stray away from any blatant misuse of such clone worthy material. In the end what they created was an offline, and online experience that caters not only to the gamer who is looking for something new, but also an experience that caters to the more competitive gamer. Through simple controls, and challenging arcade style gameplay HitBox, and their publisher Capcom aim to capture your attention with one of the more noteworthy gaming experiences of early 2014.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

"INJUSTICE: Gods Among Us" - Fighting GotY My @$$

In the world of gaming journalism you will find opinions based on truth, biased opinions, and bought out lies. I think of myself as a man of opinions based on truth. I do not sugarcoat BS, and do not accept bribes in exchanged for a biased opinion. I'm what you'd call a freelance journalist with no official ties to anyone. I strive to bring to you news, and reviews on the latest industry offerings, and try to keep you in tune with what is going on with various products. I consider that part of my job, and obligation. This of course brings me to the point of this particular article. It seems that someone (I'm not going to call out names) took it upon themselves to crown a particular fighting game as the official "Fighting Game of the Year" for 2013. Having played the game on two different consoles prior to the claim I could tell you without hesitation that the game in question was rubbish in some very significant ways.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Let's Talk - "Game & Console Sales Statistics"

Ever since the next-gen consoles have come into play the gaming industry, and those who are supporting it's various offerings have been throwing out huge numbers like nobody's business. Microsoft sold so many millions of Xbone consoles, Sony sold so many millions of PS4 consoles, and now "Killzone: Shadow Fall" has sold 2,500,000 copies!!! Wow folks, just wow. I'm here tonight to tell you that while numbers mean a lot in this world of ours they don't always speak the truth. Sure Microsoft, and Sony did good for themselves in selling millions of units, and sure Guerrilla Games sold a lot of copies of the latest Killzone entry. It doesn't mean jack sh*t to us gamers though. You have to take a look at certain underlying factors to really see how these companies did with their sales, and how well they did in impressing their audience. Sony, and Microsoft for example want you to forget that some of their freshly shipped, and consumer bought consoles met an early demise due to hardware failures. They also want you to overlook the fact that both consoles, while new are currently lacking in the game department, and that gamers are often times ditching the "Next-Gen" experience for some retro gaming as a result. Not everyone is happy in next-gen wonderland as it may seem, and I can guarantee you a lot of gamers aren't satisfied with the latest offerings regardless of their purchases. The question in the end is how good are these products, really.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Dream (2/1/2014) - "The Illuminati, The President & The Garden of Eden"

In my lifetime I've experienced a vast assortment of vivid dreams, and nightmares. Some have been pleasant, and others have been rather unpleasant in nature. The genres of my dreams, as I'm going to refer to them come in three different categories. One genre is purely sexual (which I will not be sharing), the other is horror related, and the last is biblical in theme. Last night's dream fell into the biblical category, and was interesting in that I'd never seen anything in my life that would influence such a well thought out, and portrayed cinematic representation of seemingly real world events. While the dream bordered on a mixture of Atlantis, and biblical origins it also incorporated the goings on of a secret society (I assume the "Illuminati") as well as the current president himself. I will try my best to explain all that I saw in my dream, but keep in mind that as solid, and fluid as this dream was to me it was still shown to me in a fragmented, and haphazard sort of way.