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Posted on Jan 17th 2009 at 10:44:48 PM by (NES_Rules)
Posted under Random Review, Review, Dead Rising, Modern Gaming, Xbox 360, Microsoft

Random Review: Dead Rising


My last review was a Famicom game, this one is 20 years newer and a totally different experience, but still a blast. Dead Rising was released August 8th 2006 for the Xbox 360 and at the time, was an exclusive for that system. It has since been announced that it will be coming to the Wii as "Dead Rising: Chop 'til You Drop". This game is huge and as my reviewing skills are not top notch yet, I probably will be excluding portions, but I'm trying more for a overall experience review anyway.

The Plot:
The plot of the game is essentially: you (an independent photojournalist, Frank West) come to a small isolated town via helicopter and after the US military forces your pilot to drop you off on the roof of the mall, you soon realize the town is infested with zombies. All you know is that you want to cover the story and the helicopter will return in 3 days. Through the game, you will uncover the mystery of the zombie outbreak if you do everything correctly, but if you don't finish a mission in time, the facts will be lost to you (and the rest of the world) forever. But, you can still finish the game and get a sub-par ending that inevitably ends in the destruction of the world. In addition to the regular missions, you can embark on numerous "side quests" rescuing survivors and killing psychopaths.

Gameplay:
The gameplay is simple; finish the missions and kill as many of the seemingly infinite zombies as you can before your 72 hours is up. But, there are a few aspects of the game that make it unique. The first is the RPG elements the game uses. As you gain "Prestige Points" in the game (by killing zombies, taking photos, killing psychopaths, rescuing survivors, or the other numerous ways) you gain abilities like increased health capacity, increased storage capacity and new fighting moves. These gained abilities are kept once you finish the game and start again, so you can go through the 72 hour mode as many times as you need to get the abilities to finish with the best ending.
The second feature that sets Dead Rising apart, is the weapons. Of course, there is the standard handgun, rifle and shotgun of any good zombie game, but there are also items like Molotov cocktails, katanas, swords and battle axes. But, that's not all, basically anything you can pick up is a weapon, whether it's a trash can, potted plant, 2' x 4', lead pipe or one of the other 250 items in the mall. Using everyday items to kill zombies is a blast, there's nothing like slicing a zombie down the middle with one fell swoop of your Katana or using a hole digger to skewer and zombie and use his spinning body to kill more zombies. This is definitely the best part of the game for me, on my first playthrough I didn't bother with the missions, I was having too much fun slamming faucets into zombies and watching them bleed out through it and cutting up hoards of them with chainsaws and lawn mowers.

Sound and Graphics:
The sound effects of the game are top notch. Zombies groans and moans seem to be all around you and the screams of distant survivors make it seem more real. The weapons all have their own sounds and they all sound pretty realistic.

This was my first Xbox 360 game, so the graphics blew me away at first, but after playing more games on the system, the graphics are pretty standard. Nothing super awesome, but everything is smooth and I didn't notice any kind of glitches in the game. There are numerous zombies which is nice (especially if you compare it to a game like RE4 where it seems there are only 5 different "zombies") and at first you may think they are all unique, but after a few hours into the game you'll start recognizing zombies by their appearance.

In conclusion, this is a very, very fun game and is definitely worth a pick up. I got my copy for $20 and it was well worth it. For me, it got a little boring and redundant after my 2nd playthrough, but I can see myself coming back to the game after a while.
I'm giving this game a 95% as it really is worth the money and if you've got a 360, you really do need this game. It's not a game you'll devote your life to playing, but it's good for many hours of play time.



Posted on Dec 15th 2008 at 07:06:02 PM by (NES_Rules)
Posted under Review, NES, Famicom, Classic Gaming, Random Review

Reviewing is something completely new to me, so this will be a learning process for me, so feel free to critique my reviewing style. My reviews are based on what I like and dislike about the games, not what I think the general public will like or dislike about the game. Since I'm not a big gamer as most other reviewers, my reviews will be based on the first few levels of games instead of the entire game, so keep that in mind when reading. I'm going to try and start reviewing games that are a little less talked about and maybe even games that you've never heard of.  I'm going to start with some NES and Famicom games because I've got this really cool 76-in-1 pirate cart that is full of great (and not so great) NES and Famicom games.

B-Wings


The first game I'm going to review is B-Wings for the Nintendo Famicom. B-Wings was released in 1986 and is a Japan only game, so good luck finding it if you're in the US or Europe, there isn't even a copy of it on eBay right now, but there was one on GameGavel not too long ago, so they are out there, it just may be a bit pricey.

Gameplay: The game plays about the same as any generic vertical shooter, but it does have one thing that sets it apart from others that I have played. At the start of the game, you have your choice of weapons. There are ten different weapons for you to choose from. The cannon fires three shots that shoot straight in front of you, they are quite powerful, but lack any ability to shoot in other directions. "Wide" fires 5 shots that progressively spread further from each other, they are powerful and the path of destruction is great. "Multi" fires three shots, sometimes they all go straight ahead, other times one goes straight, one goes to the left and one goes to the right, and other times they fire at an angle so they all go forward, but progressively get further form each other.  "Van" fires six very powerful shots that go a very short distance, but spread around you in a fan shape. "Side" fires seven shots, one that goes straight ahead, and three on each side that fire to the sides in a fan shape. "Anti" fires two shots straight ahead and two shots straight behind. "Hammer" is my personal favorite weapon and fires two very powerful shots straight ahead and also has two "orbs" that circle your ship for extra protection. "Jump" is essentially the same as Cannon, but one of the shots explodes, but it doesn't really seem to help things much. "Dyna" is an extremely power single shot that is very wide and can destroy several smaller enemies in the one shot. "Fire" is the last weapon option and is a wave of energy that is quite powerful but has a small range, and it allows you to almost continuously fire.

Once you have selected your weapon, your ship attaches to it and you're sent into space to destroy anything that comes at you. There are several different types of flying enemies to destroy as well as stationary objects to destroy. If an enemy drives into you or hits you with a weapon, you lose your main weapon and have to rely on a very small, weak cannon. If you drive into one of the stationary objects, your ship explodes and you're dead.

Throughout the game, you have the option to pick up another weapon, you can pick it up by simply driving into it if you have already lost your main weapon or you drop your current weapon and then pick up the new one. The weapons all have a different shape, but with 8-bit graphics, it's quite hard trying to distinguish and memorize what each weapon looks like.

There is also the option for 2 players, which sadly isn't co-op, but you alternate turns when one person dies the other picks up where that person dies. It's better than no second player support, but co-op would have been even better.

Graphics & Sound:
The graphics aren't bad for 1986, but nothing spectacular either. I've only played through the first two levels, but the enemies all seem to be unique, so it's not as repetitive as some games in this genre are.

The sound effects and music are very nice. The sound effects are basically your average 8-bit sound effects, but the music is great. Though it is hard to hear when you're constantly blasting away.


In conclusion, this game is great, if you like vertical shooters at least. I could definitely see myself playing this game for hours on end if I had the time. If you're looking for a deep game to lose yourself in the story, well, this isn't for you then. It's more of a pick up play when you've got some spare time type game.
I gave this game a 90% because it is a blast to play, but there really isn't anything memorable about it.




                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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