Why did I play this?Why did I play this?

Posted on Jul 24th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under Point and Click, adventure, pc, point and click


Primordia is a point and click adventure game developed by Wormwood Studios and published by Wadjet Eye Games. The game was released on PC in 2012 and received an iOS port in 2016. Point and click adventures really thinned out after roughly the year 2000, but came back quite strongly after a combination of mobile touch screen controls on Nintendo's DS helped developers reach a massive audience, and the rise of digital distribution on PC. The sparse and largely silent scene on PC started to revitalize with modern design sensibilities. The growth of Steam also helped with visibility as many stores were significantly downsizing their physical shelf space for PC games. Digital storefronts are largely immune from this problem.

Primordia is a post-apocalyptic game. But, it goes a bit further than most others and has gone post-human. After the extinction of mankind only robots walk the earth. Players control a humanoid robot named Horatio Nullbuilt and his hand built sidekick Crispin Horatiobuilt. The robots have a patronymic naming system, being given a first name by those who build them, and their last name tells the world who built them. Horatio has some amnesia, he's the fifth version of himself and cannot remember his previous versions. His internal data corruption has affected his name, so it remains partially undefined.


Continue reading Primordia



Posted on Jun 23rd 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under RPG, Squaresoft, playstation, action


By now the Mana series is one of the longest running, actively developed series in video gaming. This series has a few threads that bind each game together, but for the most part each game is its own, separate entity from the rest of them. However, like most works of media the series has had its ups, and then mostly downs. The first three games in the series, Sword of Mana, Secret of Mana, and Trials of Mana, all pushed the series further upwards in both quality and scope with each game release, with Trials adding multiple character points of view for a nonlinear narrative. In 1999 Squaresoft released the fourth game in the Mana series for the Playstation, Legend of Mana. A North American release would come the following year. Its not immediately obvious, but Legend of Mana is easily a candidate for the best game in this series, and it tends to be woefully overlooked.


Continue reading Legend of Mana



Posted on May 26th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under RPG, squaresoft, square enix, playstation, ps1


One aspect of criticizing artistic forms of media that is frequently brought up is the idea of recency bias. The main problem with recency bias is that when a work is new, the fresh coat of paint can sometimes successfully hide the pocks of rust hidden by the frame. This idea is true for all forms of media, books, movies, shows, and perhaps it's strongest for video games. Games are heavily reliant on the technology of the era, and as that technology advances, the inherent weaknesses of previous works comes to light even more powerfully than before. In other cases, it's simply a question of project scope.

Xenogears was once touted as one of the greatest Japanese role playing games ever created, but over time, that opinion has softened and any discussion about it inevitably leads to the game's biggest flaws. Pinpointing the source of this slowly decreasing opinion of this once highly touted classic relies on knowing what the game's major flaws truly are, an understanding of everything that happened during and after its development, and speculation on how the gaming public itself has shifted. Xenogears is over 20 years old by this point, having released on the first Playstation all the way back in 1998, so there has been plenty of time for reflection.


Continue reading Xenogears: A Tale of Two Discs



Posted on Apr 30th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under Who is the father, playstation 4, ps4, sega, action, beat em up, rpg


The Yakuza series has been around for quite some time. The first game dates back to the later years of the Playstation 2, and the 7th main game in the series recently released in Japan and is set to come to the West soon. All the regular releases, plus the spinoffs, prequel, and slowly releasing remakes and upcoming remasters make Yakuza one of the most actively developed video games series to date. [iYakuza 6[/i] was developed by Ryu Ga Gotoku Studio and published by Sega for Sony's Playstation 4. It was originally released in 2016 in Japan. A worldwide release followed two years later in 2018. This long running series has quickly been gaining popularity in the West, which has mostly been propelled by the prequel Yakuza 0. Sega's been spacing out the timing of their Yakuza releases, so the market does not become overwhelmed by constant releases as the West gets caught up with the main story on top of the remakes.


Continue reading Yakuza 6: The Song of Life



Posted on Mar 28th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under nintendo, gamecube, wii u, adventure, action


Nintendo is easily among the best when it comes to long support for some of their game series. Plenty of characters that got their start during the NES days, or even older, are still alive and kicking. The Legend of Zelda series is one such franchise, having seen continual development and new games released for every Nintendo console and handheld, except the Virtual Boy, since the original Famicom Disk System release of The Legend of Zelda in 1986.

The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker was first released on the Gamecube in 2002. It would spend most of the console's life as the only single player Zelda experience for the console, as the follow up, Twilight Princess, was released alongside the Wii's console launch. A Hi Definition remaster of the game was released in 2013 on the Wii U, which also got a similar HD re-release for Twilight Princess.


Continue reading The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker



Posted on Feb 27th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under South Park RPG, PS4, Xbox One, Xbone, Switch, PC, turn based


South Park is one of the longest running shows still being produced and aired in the United States. It's been an extremely popular show since it started in 1997. A few South Park video games were produced early on in the show's history, starting with the titular, first person shooter South Park in 1998, followed by the game show trivia game South Park: Chef's Luv Shack in 1999, and the kart racing South Park Rally in 2000. After these first three games, the creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, stopped allowing games to be made based on South Park. These early games were not of the highest quality and the pair wanted more creative control. This would not last forever, as 2007 saw the release of platformer South Park 10: The Game for mobile phones of the era, to celebrate the show's 10th anniversary. In 2009, another game was released, South Park: Let's Go Tower Defense Play! for Xbox Live Arcade on the Xbox 360. Another platformer would be released on Xbox Live Arcade in 2012, South Park: Tenorman's Revenge.

In 2014, a new South Park game was released, and it changed the way many future South Park games would be viewed. That first trio of South Park games is often lambasted for being sloppy, unpolished, uninspired license cash ins, and the second trio is basically forgotten and almost never mentioned. But, starting in 2014, any news of future South Park games would be viewed with delight, as South Park: The Stick of Truth would feel less like a South Park game, and more like an interactive season of the show.


Continue reading South Park: The Fractured But Whole



Posted on Jan 22nd 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under konami, nintendo ds, castlevania, handheld, action, platform, rpg


In 2008, Konami released the newest game in their long running Castlevania franchise, Order of Ecclesia, for the Nintendo DS. This series is one of the last remaining relics of the 8-bit era that is still receiving new entries in a similar style to its original games. Castlevania started as a 2D side scrolling action platformer, and with Order or Ecclesia that same bedrock foundation is still present.

Since the release of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night in 1997, the series has been adding elements borrowed from role playing games, such as experience, levels, equipment, enemy drops, and some form of a secondary progression system. This formula was wildly successful early on. After the release of Symphony of the Night, similar games would primarily release on Nintendo's handheld consoles, with three Castlevania games each releasing for the Game Boy Advance and DS. A couple of 3D experiments with the formula were tried on the Playstation 2, but these did not have the same level of polish or fun factor the handheld games had. Order of Ecclesia would be the penultimate game in this style from Konami, and the last of its fully single player games in this 2D style. All of this ends up making Order of Ecclesia the swan song for one of Castlevania's two major eras.


Continue reading Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia



Posted on Dec 29th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under Indie, pc


In 2010, one of the fastest rising games in terms of popularity on the planet was Minecraft. Ten years later and one of the biggest games on Earth is... still Minecraft. An insane number of people have bought and played this game since its days in early alpha, and now its had well over a decade of continuous development. Minecraft continues to get some major updates long after its official 1.0 release that brought it out of its beta. So, what are some of the changes that have come over the years? And how have these updates and continuous development kept both a large number of long time players interested, and continued to bring in new players?


Continue reading Minecraft in 2020



Posted on Nov 27th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under time travel, adventure, pc, point and click, fmv

The Journeyman Project: Turbo!


The Journeyman Project was developed by Presto Studios and released for Mac in 1993. The following year an enhanced version was released called The Journeyman Project: Turbo which was compatible with Mac and Windows. This Turbo release is the one being highlighted today. The original release was developed and published by Presto Studios, with the Turbo release being published by Sanctuary Woods. This version would also see a Japanese release published by Bandai. A few years later in 1997 a full blown remake of the game was released called The Journeyman Project: Pegasus Prime.


Continue reading The Journeyman Project 1 and 2 Dual Review



Posted on Oct 24th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under visual horror, playstation vita, playstation 4, nintendo switch, ps vita, ps4, switch, visual novel, horror


Death Mark is a horror visual novel released in June 2017 in Japan. It was released in the West on Halloween in 2018. This game was originally released on the Playstation Vita and had later released on the Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch in Japan. When the game came to the West, the game launched simultaneously on all three of those platforms, followed by a later PC release in April 2019. A few months after this PC release the title was rebranded and became Spirit Hunter: Death Mark. Due to the confusion this could cause, the original name is being used for this review.

Death Mark was developed by Experience Inc. an obscure Japanese developer that was founded after another obscure developer named Michaelsoft went bankrupt. Michaelsoft developed a couple of Wizardry dungeon crawling spinoffs in the mid-2000s on the Playstation 2 before they folded. Until Death Mark, Experience had also only made dungeon crawlers, with their most successful game being Demon Gaze for the Vita.


Continue reading Spooky Plays: Death Mark



Posted on Sep 28th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under horror rpg, ps2, playstation 2, rpg


The Playstation 2 is an absolute monster for horror games and all kinds of variations on the genre's central themes. On top of the popular action format of survival horror, there are plenty of horror-based role playing games for the console. Shadow Hearts is one such RPG, as it melds traditional and Lovecraftian horror designs and themes in an alternate timeline setting of Earth in 1913 and 1914. And it has a rather unique, turn-based combat system. The game released in 2001, making it one of the earliest RPGs for the Playstation 2. The game was developed by Sacnoth and published by Aruze in Japan, and Midway Games in North America and Europe.


Continue reading Spooky Plays: Shadow Hearts



Posted on Aug 29th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under PSP, action, strategy, stealth


The Metal Gear series is one of the most legendary in the entire realm of gaming. Rising from the obscurity of its roots on the mostly Japanese centered MSX computer platform, the reboot of the series with 1998's Metal Gear Solid for the PlayStation cemented the series as one of Konami's flagships. Its unique stealth centered action design gave the gameplay a one of a kind feel that would barely be replicated despite the game and series' runaway success.

Konami would follow the first Metal Gear Solid's success with a mission based spin-off Metal Gear Solid: VR Missions before the main series would continue on PlayStation 2. Both Metal Gear Solid 2 and 3 were some of the most successful games for the PS2. Sony had released a portable console in Japan in 2004, which released in the rest of the world in 2005, the PlayStation Portable. The next Metal Gear game would be Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops for the PSP in 2006, followed by Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots on the PlayStation 3. Meanwhile, the team that developed Portable Ops was developing the PSP's flagship Metal Gear Solid game, Peace Walker. During the late PS3/XBox 360 generation, Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes would be released; followed by its second part, The Phantom Pain. For long time fans of the Metal Gear Solid series, Portable Ops and Peace Walker feels like the definitive dividing line between the older PS1 and PS2 era games, and the HD PS3/PS4 and Xbox 360/Xbox One games.


Continue reading Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker



Posted on Jul 22nd 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under playstation, platformer, 2d, adventure


In 1996 a legendary game designer left Capcom to form his own game development company. Tokuro Fujiwara founded Whoopee Camp after an insane career as a video game director and producer that spanned over a decade at Capcom. Fujiwara's credits listings while working at Capcom easily rank him amongst the greatest game designers of the 8 and 16 bit arcade and console era. He is credited with creating Ghosts 'n Goblins, directing and producing multiple games including Sweet Home, Breath of Fire, DuckTales and many other Capcom licensed games from the era, Final Fight 2 and Final Fight 3, and multiple Mega Man games. What would be Fujiwara and Whoopee Camp's first game after Fujiwara left this legacy behind and forged his own path?



Continue reading Tomba!



Posted on Jun 26th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under Fishing in the Arcade, sega, dreamcast, fishing controller, motion control


When springtime rolls around a wide variety of outdoor activities becomes much more alluring. Getting outside and getting some sun is important to even the most hardcore of gamers. Fishing is a great hobby that can be enjoyed year round, but the comfortable temperatures of spring bring out the biggest crowds. It's such a large and popular hobby that Sega decided to make a fishing arcade game, Sega Bass Fishing.

The original arcade cabinet was developed by Sega AM 1 and released in 1997 as Get Bass in Japan. The game was successful enough in the arcade that Sega followed it up with Sega Marine Fishing in 1999. Both games would see console ports on the Sega Dreamcast, Sega Bass Fishing in 1999 and Sega Marine Fishing in 2000. Both games were among the more popular and successful Dreamcast games, as Sega released the Sega Fishing Controller to make the games feel more similar to both the arcade and real life, complete with motion controls.


Continue reading Sega Bass Fishing



Posted on May 20th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (SirPsycho)
Posted under Point and Click, adventure, nintendo ds, dual screen, visual novel


The Nintendo DS was a landmark handheld console. In hindsight Nintendo looks prophetic with its adoption of a touchscreen in the years just before the idea of the smartphone takes hold in the public consciousness. This touchscreen allowed many gameplay ideas that were once slow and clunky to become much smoother. Point and click adventure games are mostly known from the PC market, but there have been some ports and original point and clicks on older consoles and handhelds. The DS with its touchscreen allowed point and click adventure games to be played in the palm of everybody's hand, and there was an explosion of them. One of the early prominent developers of DS point and click adventures was the Japanese developer Cing. In 2005 they released Another Code: Two Memories, which was renamed Trace Memory for North America. In 2007 the company released Hotel Dusk: Room 215, both of these titles did quite well for the small developer. However, Cing was not able to keep this momentum rolling and went defunct in 2010.

Hotel Dusk was the first of a two part series, with its sequel being Last Window: The Secret of Cape West. Both games released on the DS, and Last Window was also Cing's final game before going bankrupt. Nintendo published all these DS titles, but part of Cing's problems may have been the seemingly random release regions of their games. Trace Memory and Hotel Dusk released in Japan, North America, and Europe and achieved some success. Last Window and Trace Memory's sequel, Another Code: R - A Journey into Lost Memories for the Wii, only released in Japan and Europe. Last Window released too late in Cing's life to likely come to North America, they were already dying when the game was releasing. What was strange about Hotel Dusk was that its first release region was in North America. So what made Hotel Dusk so special that many adventure game fans had to have it and play it? What gave it the crossover appeal to give it that little extra push?


Continue reading Hotel Dusk: Room 215


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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