Monday, November 30, 2015

"Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5" Post-Patch Assessment

Activision, as a publisher has seemingly lost touch with the fan base it has amassed over the years. Whether it be through series like "Call of Duty", games like Destiny", or even the recently released "Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5" the development, and management direction they seem so intent on pushing is continuously so far out of touch with what the gamer wants that it's damn near heartbreaking. They seem to have forgotten what made the games, and series they have published so great. When it comes to THPS5 (Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 5) the same holds true. The once fun arcade style skateboarding experience has become, and still remains after the patch the most shallow, and heartless entry in the series. The music selection is atrocious. Long gone are the hard hitting popular songs of yesteryear. Now all we have is repetitive songs full of teenage angst, and dulled lyrics tied to an annoying set of instrumentals. Most of the songs in the soundtrack are ones that I don't even know as a middle-aged gamer. Along with the uncomplimentary song selection comes scaled down skate parks in which said parks look more true-to-life than they ever have before in the series. The skate parks are nowhere near as large as the parks of the previous THPS titles, and in contrast to the larger character models they actually look like a skate park you'd encounter somewhere in the real world if it weren't for the arcade power-ups, special effects, and more fantastical add-ons.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Gentleman Squid Announce Black Friday Holiday Release For Charity!!!

Recently I was contacted by 'Gentleman Squid Studio' about their latest PC game. and charity efforts. As it turns out this former XBLIG development team has gotten into the holiday spirit of giving, and have put together a limited time charity involving the holiday themed game that they have created. That game being, "Here Runs Santa Claus". The charity tied to said game will help benefit those in need at 'St. Jude's Children Research Hospital'. It will be released on Black Friday (November 27), and will only be available through December 26. The asking donation price is $5.00, but you can donate as much as you like with your purchase of the game. Just know that a percentage of each game purchase/donation will go to the previously mentioned charity.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

OtakuDante's Top Video Games Of 2015

I know I usually reserve this article for December, but seeing as everyone will be busy scrambling to get that perfect gaming gift for their loved ones early on I figure I'd go ahead and let you guys, and gals in on my top game picks for this year. For this year I'll be looking at specific deciding factors including that of replay value, the fun factor, the amount of content provided from the base game, and the overall quality. I know everyone wants more bang for their buck, euro, or whatever currency it is your country of origin uses. I will definitely keep this in mind going forward. As far as the games go I will be weeding through my list of reviews to pick the gems that are worth your time, and money. Some may be indie, and some may be retail. Just keep in mind that these are my picks based on my opinions, and facts gathered from having spent quality time with each game. Take my suggestions as you will.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Gaming Impressions - Black Ops 3 & Fallout 4

I know there's a lot of conflicting opinions going around social media in relation to "Black Ops 3", and "Fallout 4". Some people think they are the greatest games ever to grace the new-gen consoles while others think they are steaming piles of sh*t not worth the deflating US dollar. I tend to have an opinion somewhere in the middle though, and for my own gathered reasons. In this article I'll briefly go over the pro's, and con's I've found with each game with said opinions included. Keep in mind I've played them only on the PS4, so my opinions are strictly in regards to those versions. I've also spent several hours with each game sampling most of, if not all of what the games had to offer. Fallout 4 being the only exception since it is a massive RPG. One which I am still far from completing.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Kromaia Ω (PS4)

Mine eyes are ablaze with the aftermath of the light show spectacle that is "Kromaia Ω"! It burns! It burns!!! All joking aside do be aware that this shmup bares some intense lighting effects that are sometimes flashy. Those who are prone to having seizures, or who have a family history of seizures should probably avoid this game. Even those who can tolerate such loud, and vibrant displays should only play for short amounts of time at a time as it can definitely effect your vision afterwards ...

When it comes to "Kromaia Ω" I can't say I've really ever seen another 360 degree shoot 'em up like it. The first thing that comes to mind is that this revenge against the gods space shooter could easily be a VR game compatible with a virtual reality headset. It is visually immersive on the highest level, and definitely looks like new-gen material. Whether it warrants the $30 price tag will be subjective though. I think 'Kraken Empire', the developers behind this 'Rising Star Games' publication were trying to base their pricing on it's "WOW Factor", and I have to admit it is definitely impressive enough in those regards. As far as gameplay, and modes of play go it is a bit limited in what it offers, though the open universe you traverse is anything but small in scale. For those of you wondering 'Kromaia Ω' is, at heart a free roaming 360 degree shmup that takes in account simple objectives, and an ultimate goal which does not demand that you stay on a linear path. The objectives being the gathering of level advancing items, and the end goal being that of getting revenge for your father's/mother's death by shooting down four galaxy sized gods.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

If Her Flag Breaks (ANIME)



GENRE: Harem, Comedy, Sci-fi

DIRECTOR: Ayumu Watanbe / Shigeru Ueda

ARTIST/S: CUTEG (Original Illustrations) / Hoods Entertainment (Animation Production)

MSRP: $51.99 (Premium Edition w/Art Box, Guide Book & Bonus Item) (http://store.nisamerica.com/if-her-flag-breaks-complete-premium-bonus-set)

RATING: Teen

DATE OF PRODUCTION: 2015

LENGTH: 2 Blu-rays, 13 Episodes / 306 mins. + Bonus Openings & Endings

AUDIO/VIDEO: Original Japanese Voice Acting w/English Subtitles. Includes clean openings and endings, character trailers, commercial bumps, and Japanese commercials as stated in the website listing. From a more personal point of view I found the visuals to be exceptionally vibrant, crisp, and clean. It definitely benefits from the HD Blu-ray treatment. Even the sound, or rather voice acting comes out loudly, and clearly through an HDTV's speakers. The soundtrack that is included is as lighthearted, and fun loving as the majority of the anime series is. It's truly complimentary to the equally fun loving intros, and closing animations that come before, and after each episode.

CHARACTERS/VOICE ACTORS: Sota Hatate (Ryota Osaka), Nanami Knight Bladefield (Ibuki Kido), Akane Mahogasawa (Ai Kayano), Kikuno Shokanji (Kana Asumi), Megumu Tozokuyama (Kana Hanazawa), Rin Eiyuzaki (Yoko Hikasa), Ruri Ninjabayashi (Ayaka Suwa), Mimori Seiteikoji (Yukari Tamura), Tsumugi Ryukishibara (Aki Toyosaki), Mei Daimyozamurai (Sakura Tange), Kurumiko Daishikyogawa (Misaki Kuno), Hakua Berserker Bladefield (Ai Kakuma), Serika Ginyuin (Aoi Yuuki), Miyuki McKensie (Yuuka Nanri), Sakura/Sacrament (Rina Hidaka), No. 0 (Risa Taneda) ... Council of the Seven Virtues

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Edition (Xbox One)

Going into this review I'm going to approach it as a new game as I have no clue as to what the new additions are about. Bare with me, please ...

When I first began playing Larian Studios' "Divinity: Original Sin Enhanced Ed." I was truly overwhelmed by the attention to detail. So much so that I had to spend a little more time with it than normal to give it a fair chance. It had gorgeous landscapes, impressive character design, and tons of menu management options to boot. What you have to understand is that at first the immense amount of text based dialogue, accompanying voice-overs, and multi-layered menus had sort of left me lost without a proper grasp, or understanding. I thought all of it was too overbearing, and that it took away from the actual gameplay portion of the game.

Upon spending some quality time with it though the game grew on me. I became thankful that I didn't just quickly brush it off as some game not worth buying, and that I actually got to a point where I enjoyed it so much that I took to Twitter to boast about the find. I told my followers that it was a gem, and that it was very much worth the asking price. Both of which things I wholeheartedly believe. I also mentioned that it reminded me of a combination of other RPGs including Fable, Diablo, and D&D (Dungeons & Dragons) due to the implementation of things like a moral Q&A system, and Diablo-like perspectives/looting. It truly took me by surprise, and actually brightened the miserable week I was having through it's embedded sense of humor. The game definitely has an irresistible charm about it, and one that is so alluring it reminded me of so many wonderful fantasy films, and fantasy book adventures I partook of in my younger days. The movie, "The Neverending Story" comes to mind.

The Man Who Talked Sense (A PARABLE)


A moral story by Bradley Carver

Long ago in a busy village filled with idiots lived a hermit who had seen it all through the words of mankind. This man of a relatively young age, but elder wisdom lived at the edge of the village outpost in an overlooked, and long forgotten house on a clearing of land surrounded by forest. His humble home which was made of the most affordable materials at the time had an interior lined with shelves that were filled with a treasure trove worth of books, scrolls, and lost manuscripts. Day in, and day out the young lad buried his face in the pages of books. He knew about everything there was to know of the world around him without ever having stepped foot into the heart of the neighboring village, or even beyond it's boundaries.

One day while he was in the midst of his reading a knock came at his door. Curious, the young lad opened up the door to find an idiotic mob of villagers begging for his help. They clambered on about their crops not growing, and various other agriculture related issues. Having the knowledge to help, and excitement that comes with wanting to share his gained knowledge the man followed the village idiots to their farm lands, and one by one gave instructions to them on how to cultivate the land so that crops would grow. He even instructed them on how to raise livestock for the coming season's harvest. Once the deed was done the village idiots went back to minding their own business, and for countless years to come they once again left the young lad to himself with his tomes of knowledge.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Rodea the Sky Soldier (3DS)


Kadokawa's "Rodea the Sky Soldier" has an interesting history that began in 2011. It's one that started on a rocky road of development, and has only since came to fruition this year. Interestingly enough this sky oriented action game that takes hints from the "Sonic the Hedgehog" franchise, and "Nights Into Dreams" began as an ambitious Wii title. You heard me right. Rodea's adventures in the sky kingdom of Garuda was meant to be released only on the Wii. Through delays as well as development, and publishing issues though it ended up not only switching intended release dates, but also which consoles it was to be released on. Instead of being a Wii exclusive it became a WiiU, and 3DS exclusive for the sake of being console generation relevant. Though the time, and transition phase was geared towards making the game what it was meant to be on the newer consoles it did not seem to change all that much.

After having gotten my hands on a 3DS copy of the soon to be released game it was more than obvious that the game was dated both in the graphical, and functional sense. The animations definitely looked like Wii era visuals, and the controls just did not jive with the 3DS control layout. Despite the the 3DS including a console tilt/movement function similar to what you'd get using a Wii Mote, and accompanying nunchuck it failed to make the tedious tasks of objective fulfilling, and point "A" to point "B" traversing a manageable ordeal. If you strayed from the beaten, and often times unapologetic linear paths you'd struggle just to regain your bearings, and would have trouble getting back on track where you needed to be. This along with some targeting, and movement issues only served to hurt my opinion of the game as you will find out ...