In the days when GameHacking.org was still called GSHI, we started a small Reviews section. It was entertaining, and took off to a great start, but it was eventually left dormant as those reviewing shifted their focus to other tasks. Still, rather than let such great literary art disappear, we've decided to archive the Reviews collection here. Enjoy!
- 1 Summoner (PC)
- 2 Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance II (Playstation 2)
- 3 Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance (Playstation 2)
- 4 Natural City (DVD)
- 5 Final Fantasy VII: Dirge of Cerberus (Playstation 2)
- 6 Gladiator (Movie) (DVD)
- 7 Resident Evil 4 (Nintendo Gamecube)
- 8 Freedom Fighters (Playstation 2)
- 9 Xbox Controller (non-wireless) (Xbox)
- 10 Mortal Kombat Deception (Xbox)
- 11 Gourmet Sentai - Bara Yarou (or Birume Sentai Barayarou) (Super Nintendo)
- 12 Jim Power : The Arcade Game (Genesis)
- 13 Aidyn Chronicles (N64)
- 14 Blaster Master: Blasting Again (PSOne)
- 15 MediEvil II (PSOne)
- 16 Treasure of the Rudra (SNES)
- 17 Stealth (SNES)
- 18 Jim Lee's Wildcats (SNES)
- 19 Jim Power (SNES)
- 20 Delta Force: Urban Warfare (PSOne)
- 21 Silent Hill 3 (PS2)
- 22 Der Langrisser (SNES)
- 23 Silent Hill 2 (PS2)
- 24 Silent Hill (PSOne)
- 25 Medal Of Honor (PSOne)
- 26 The Sims (PC)
- 27 Beyond Good & Evil (GameCube)
- 28 The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (PC)
- 29 Spec Ops: Stealth Patrol (PSOne)
- 30 Legend Of Dragoon (PSOne)
Review by LiquidManZero on 2007-05-27
This is going to be a very short review, due to one really really massive problem with the game. Installing it and running the game went quite well. Even the opening of the game was good. But then, it came down to when you finally take control of the unwilling summoner himself. The little tutorial mentioned something of camera controls, so I tried them. This is where it all went wrong. Little did I know a few minutes later I'd be stopping the game due to feeling physically sick.
The problem was... The camera has a bit of an issue with spinning around or shaking violently. Almost to the point that it'd be accurate to say, that's all the camera does. Very soon after tweaking the camera controls (the direction keys), I was starting to feel vaguely hung over. I mean, it was spinning around like mad and I was trying to stumble carefully towards anything I could get to. Ugh, even remembering it isn't pleasant.
Some time later, I finally got near an NPC. At which point I tried adjusting the camera again, including switching between Auto, High, and Low modes (all of which had the same effect). Very disturbing, as trying to fix the camera only made it worse. At this point I realized if I kept playing, I'd probably get sick. So I killed the game, and uninstalled it. Maybe I'll try again later on, after I don't remember the spinning anymore...
Overall, I really didn't get much of an impression of the game. I suspect it's at least decent if not actually rather interesting. But, the camera problem just totally blew it for me, and eventually spawned this quarter-assed review.
If any game developers out there are reading this... Remember, make sure the camera works good, or I'll personally force you to stare at this game's spinning until you puke.
Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance II (Playstation 2)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2006-12-22
By some bizarre stroke of economic horror, this title was exceedingly hard to find, and at the same time, heralded as a great game by everyone I encountered who'd played it. As I loved the first one, I hunted diligently until I found a copy.
I'm lazy, so this review will be presented in the tense that you're playing it. That way, I can refer to the theoretical player as "you". Heh.
I can't say much about this story without giving away details about the first one, but suffice it to say, you're no longer using your original characters. And in a way, that's a good thing. Not only are you getting something new, but also the game doesn't have to make some convenient excuse for you losing all of the ridiculously powerful equipment you used to have.
Just as before, when you equip a new item, you can see it on your character in-game, a feature I've always liked. Also as before, there are a good many ways to level up your characters and boost certain attributes, as alongside experience points from killing enemies (which rack up until you gain a level), you receive ability points, to "spend" as you wish.
A new aspect is the ability to add gems to weapons and armor, and modify your equipment in various ways, something I'm not sure if I like or dislike. On the one hand, it adds more complication and possibly needless tinkering to the game, but on the other, it allows for much more customization. Anyway, if you ever manage to lay your hands on a copy of BG: DA II, you can decide for yourself.
Just as the first Dark Alliance, the game starts off a little slow, but gets going rather nicely. The voice acting is quite good, and although you can save time and read the dialogue instead, you'll probably find yourself listening anyway.
Music, as usual, is great, and keeps you on your toes if you have it at a decent volume. Sound effects are superb as well. Sorry for the pathetically small paragraph on the audible ;)
All this said, I'm only about 33.33333(repeating)% finished with the game, so it could take a turn for the worst, though I doubt it. If there's no addendum to this trifle of a review in the next few weeks, assume the game was a blast, and get a copy at all costs. Later.
Lazy Bastard starts off a bit slow, but gets going rather nicely.
Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance (Playstation 2)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2006-12-15
I'll try to start this off by typing some words, and end it in much the same fashion. Heh. Anyway, BG: DA is one of the best multiplayer games I've ever played. At that, it's an RPG in the subgenre of such games as Diablo. A friend of mine (Reeben) and I probably threw a good...certain amount of hours into it. The action starts...er, adventure...hmm...role playing, actually...anyway, it all starts when your party (either just you, or you and your friend if you're playing in two-player mode) is ambushed by thieves, beaten, and robbed. You end up in a bar called The Elfsong, in the city of Baldur's Gate. It's here that you learn more about the state of the city, and the new thieves guild that robbed you, and decide to strike back at this insidious group.
You choose your one to two characters from three possible...er, characters: a human warrior, a dwarf, and an Elven archer. They each have their own strengths and weaknesses, and can equip overlapping groups of weapon types.
The weapons, armor, accessories, and items in this game are great. When you equip something, your character's appearance changes accordingly, which allows you to appreciate just how good or bad your new gear looks. Each time you gain a level, you receive (in addition to normal augmentation of abilities and skills) a few points to use as you will in improving your character's attributes, whether it be adding a special ability, increasing accuracy with projectile weapons, incrementing speed, adding some hit points, or boosting one of many other things.
Dark Alliance's music and sound is great, gripping the player during times of fear, despair, and utter impossibility...well, at least in hard mode. On that note, hard mode is no trivial matter; you'll actually have to try to survive, conserving healing potions and such.
A really great aspect of this game is that every enemy you kill, along with every item you drop, remains exactly where you killed it (or dropped it). It's awesome.
The game lasts just long enough: longer than other games of its type (Diablo is a notable example), but not long enough for it to be evident that the creators got tired near the end ;)
If you have the cash on hand, grab this title immediately. It's somewhere in my top ten list, and it takes something special to make that one. This is LB, signing off, out, up, and away.
Lazy Bastard lasts just long enough: longer than other bastards of his type, but not long enough for it to be evident that he got tired near the end.
Natural City (DVD)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2006-12-14
Natural City is a Japanese flick (subtitled in English, if you like), set in the near future. In this time, we've created a new kind of android. They're nearly perfect; one can hardly tell the difference between one and a human. As such, they're used as workers and *cough, cough* personal servants. Our protagonist is a police officer, (military police, it would seem), who's a member of a group tasked with putting down androids who've turned against humanity. The problem: he's fallen in love with an android (or "doll", as females are called), and needs electronic components to save her from normal expiration. Despite the more-than-sufficient special effects, adequate acting ability of the stars, and intriguing story, one seems to get a B-Grade feeling from Natural City. However, with three or four additional plot twists and thickenings, it's definitely worth a watch. Out of five stars, I give it three triangles. Heh.
Lazy Bastard doesn't have a personal servant, but if he did, it might be an android.
Final Fantasy VII: Dirge of Cerberus (Playstation 2)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2006-12-14
DoC was expected to be a giant hit. When it finally arrived, a good many people didn't think too highly of it. As I had plenty of other things to do, I took their respective words for it, and didn't bother checking it out. However, as a fan of the FF series (particularly FFVII), I was always tempted...and when I finally caved (heh), I wasn't disappointed.
If nothing else, Dirge of Cerberus is worth playing for the CG scenes and storyline continuation. It's sort of half action, half RPG, like something you could half-play at an arcade. If you were hoping for FFVII 2, you're SOL, but otherwise, you should be at least slightly happy.
The strong character development via CG scenes, and the ability to modify your weapons, collect ammo, and equip items gives this game that RPG feeling, amidst running around like crazy and trying to wipe out enemies before they wipe you and everyone else out. That, and set to the proper difficulty level, DoC is anything but easy.
Music is great, and, as half-noted twice already, the CG is awesome. To be fair, I'm a busy guy, and I'm only about a quarter of the way through the game (and may never finish it, heh), but thus far, I'm pleased. If you have a few bucks and some time to spare, pick this up, or at least rent it.
As half-noted twice already, Lazy Bastard is awesome.
Gladiator (Movie) (DVD)
Review by acarzt on 2006-12-12
You are standing in a cramped, poorly lit hallway staring at two massive doors with a slight beam of light breaking through. The dust glows in what little light streams through the cracks, and the tension builds due to the unknown fate on the other side of the door. The fans are screaming and stomping their feet anxiously as they await the battle that is about to ensue. You see nothing, but you can sense the jitters of the lesser men around you. You can hear a screeching chain as a man, who to some would appear as if he was a giant, swings a flail over his head ready to bring your life to an end. The doors swing open and a blinding light bursts into the room and the gladiators run out into the arena met by the enemy as they exit. It’s kill or be killed now, and the audience loves it.
Gladiator, directed by Ridley Scott was released in November 2000. This compelling masterpiece has an amazing story that will please the tastes of movie fanatics, and the occasional movie viewer just the same. It is more than just non-stop action, and senseless violence. The story draws you through such emotions of joy, anger, despair, and grievance.
The creators of this movie did an outstanding job of portraying Rome, Italy in the time of the great Roman Empire at its peak. The depictions of the city of Rome are superb, to say the least, the buildings are truly dazzling. The art and graphics department was able to capture the impressively massive size of the Coliseum that is the centerpiece in the great city of Rome. The close attention to detail in recreating the late 100’s AD Rome was able to bring the beautiful architecture of this Italian city screaming back to life. You don’t have to be a fan of art to be touched by the magnificent scenes that can be viewed in this movie.
With a very well written script, and a long list of talented actors, this movie stands out from the crowd and sets a new standard of excellence that all movies should live up to. To call this movie “entertaining” would be an insult, because it is far more than that. Russell Crowe was simply amazing, playing the role of Maximus; he made us feel his pain for the loss of his loved ones. We felt his anger and frustrations as he tried to overcome the newly appointed and unfit emperor of Rome. Joaquin Phoenix played the role of Commodus, the villain we love to hate. After killing his father, Marcus Aurelius the emperor of Rome, played by Richard Harris; he appoints himself the new emperor of Rome, and his first act as emperor will be the one he regrets most. But I wont spoil the story for you, the movie Gladiator is a piece of art that must be experienced first hand in order to receive the full effect.
“Splendid”, one of the many words that comes to mind when speaking of the musical composition for this movie; who could forget the enlivening song that plays in background during the battle in the opening of the movie. It does a tremendous job of drawing you into the excitement of the battle. The sound effects are nothing to shake a stick at. If you are fortunate enough to be able to experience this masterpiece in surround sound, you will be able to enjoy the sounds of arrows whizzing past your head, and the cheers of the crowds all around you. You would feel as if you are inside the movie.
“The general who became a slave. The slave who became a gladiator. The gladiator who defied an empire.” Gladiator, an epic tale that, without a doubt in my mind, does indeed deserve to be preserved for the future generations to be able to enjoy and embrace this movie in all it’s glory. Truly a masterpiece for the masses; this movie will be remembered by all who have the chance to see it.
Resident Evil 4 (Nintendo Gamecube)
Review by Reeben on 2006-10-23
So this has been the latest installment of the Resident Evil series and by far it is the best. This game was going to be a Gamecube exclusive but the masterminds at Capcom decided to cash in and released it also on the PS2. But I got it first on the GC so thats the one I'm going to tell you about. And plus I hear that the graphics are not as smooth and the load times are alittle slower then the GC version even though the PS2 edition does sport a new gun, a new storyline with the sexy Ada Wong, and well I think that was it. So with all that out of the way lets get on with this.
In the game you reprise the role of Leon S. Kennedy, that lucky bastard who survived the horror that was Raccoon City. Apparently the U.S. Government noticed that he was a strong dude for getting out of that city alive and offered him a job as an agent. Thats pretty much the gist of the background story you get. But thats not really that important. Now apparently the president's daughter has been kidnapped by some horriable ninjas and you need to see if your a bad enough... wait wrong game. She's kidnapped by a mysterious group while on her way back to her dorm in college. She was last spotted in a village in Europe. Leon is sent in to find the girl and get her out alive. Leon starts his search on the outskirts of a village and thats where the game starts you off.
Of course this game supported the best kind of graphics there were. And the little discs show off their might with this game. The series takes a left turn and decides to cut away from the prerendered backgrounds and moves the camera to behind the back of Leon to his right sholder. This makes for an intresting turn of events because now it's not so easy to see badies coming from behind. You must physically turn the character around (or use the cool 180 turn that was in Resident Evil 3) and make sure you are aware of the things around you which makes the game a lot more fun and scary. And this new camera angle also effects combat in a significant way. Aiming, moving, and combat itself is all turned around but is not very difficult to get used to. A cool feature with the new aiming technique is the ability to aim and shoot specific body parts like the legs or the arm or maybe even a weapon if your good enough. Heh. For example if a zombie has, oh I don't know, a piece of tnt in his hand and you time it right you can shoot and distroy him and anyone around him in one shot. Guy running at you, no problem, just shoot out his leg and he'll fall like a fat turd into a pile of vomit. Then you can be an ass and shoot him in the ass or wherever you feel like. But I recommend killing him or her quickly so aim for the head.
There are so many more great features about this game so I'll try and make the list short and sweet. The awsome chests are now gone and is replaced with an attache case. Everything you want to carry needs to fit inside the case so theres a lot more item management involved. Gone are the days where you could pretty much pick up any and all ammo, weapons, and health. Combining herbs is also now a key to saving space. Also new to the game is the Merchant. He sells and buys items to help you on your quest. Throughout the game you will find gold coins or "pesetas" and treasure which you can sell to the Merchant to buy new weapons and health or upgrade the weapons you have as well as upgrading the size of your attache case which is a very welcome one.
So in all its the best Resident Evil game there is. Even gamers who really wouldn't give the series a second look will enjoy the smart gameplay and great graphics of this installment. Theres probably a whole bunch of stuff I missed but hell just play the game for yourself and you'll see. Plus it's on the PS2 now and from what I hear it will also make an apparence on the PC so no one has an excuse not to play it.
Freedom Fighters (Playstation 2)
Review by Reeben on 2006-10-23
From the makers of Hitman 2 comes one of the coolest games I've played on the PS2. But then again I haven't played many PS2 games because of lack of cash but it's still on my favorites list. The story goes like this. The Soviet Army develops the hydrogen bomb first and is able to use it to end World War 2. They go on to take over Europe and even sections of the Middle East. Over the years the Soviets put missles in Cuba with Castro's invitation and the Mexican Communist Party takes the election down south. The Cold War definiately is a lot worse then the one we actually went through. America is slowly encircled by the commies and there is only one real outcome. You play the part of Christopher Stone. A New York plumber who lives a pretty normal life. Well as normal as it can be when suddenly the sound of war comes crashing through the window of a customer...literally. Helicopters and soldiers fill the sky and streets respectfully and all hell breaks loose. Soviet flags go up all over the place and it's Red Dawn all over again. Your job is to make it to safety and plan some kind of resistence to fight back the foreign invaders with whatever weapons can be found or stolen. Like the game box says "They've taken away our freedom... now it's time to take it back."
The first thing you might notice about this game when you first start playing is the controls. Not the typical setup for a third-person type game. The left stick is used for moving forward and back as well as side to side. The right is used for turning and looking up and down. I found it a little weird but nothing I, REEBEN, could not get used to. Aiming was another thing. In order to aim you need to depress the left analog stick which is kind of weird. So moving and aiming is pretty tricky. I feel the best feature of the game is the use of rag-doll physics. Many a funny moment was enjoyed when shooting the bad guys witht the shotgun which did the most damage aside from the RPG or the gernade. Bodies flying over baracades and colliding with walls makes for an enjoyable time. As you complete missions and save your fellow man from death you gain charisma points which, when you get enough, go towards a total and when the charisma bar fills up you get a circle which indicates that you can now recruit another freedom fighter to help you along you missions. But don't worry if he does something stupid like stand in front of an armored car as it travels down the street and gets hit and killed. Just find another unlucky sap and recruit him or her and carry on. The most you can have at one time is 12 which is pretty bad ass when it gets that high because you'll look like a fuckin gang leader. Walkin down the street with a possey of 12 hard ass dudes with fuckin guns and shit killing anything thats right in the imediate area. You control them with simple commands like attack and defend an area or call them back to you. Unlike some games with NPCs these guys will actually do the job right when it comes to killin mofos. Nothing is funnier then sending all 12 guys and/or gals into a small room and all of them firing on like 2 Soviets. Fun times...fun times.
Each mission is broken up into 4 or 5 smaller places that need to be captured. Along with capturing key buildings there are secondary objectives like blowing up helipads and taking out troop replacements. Going into another section without destroying the helipad, for example, and you'll have a Hind to harrase you until you go to that place and take it out. So some stratagy is involved when planning where you want to attack first.
There is also room for multiplayer. Though only 2 players it still makes for a fun time. I feel they could have added more to it but still is enjoyable. You get to choose from 4 levels and also whos the Soviets and whos the Americans. What you do is move to the avaiable Command Posts throughout the level and claim them. Once that happens men will appear out of thin air and man the various gun turrits as well as just stand there waiting for your orders. The whole objective is to capture the flag until your timer counts to zero. It's pretty funny if you capture all 4 of the CPs and just out number the other guy. Play it with a friend and you'll see.
The one problem with the game is the replayablity factor. Once you beat the main game theres really no reason to go back. But I found myself playing it again after a good amount of time had passed. But then again theres always 2 player mode.
Not an indepth game but a damn fun one.
Xbox Controller (non-wireless) (Xbox)
Review by LiquidManZero on 2006-04-02
This is one of those cheap third party controllers often sold at various stores that also sell games. They tend to be cheaper, and this is a good example of why you shouldn't go and get a cheap knock-off.
When this specific controller was new, it happened to be $25. At the time, an actual Microsoft brand one was $30. Problem here is, by saving $5, you're getting a real piece of junk. There are worse replacement xbox controllers, but this one's only second worst. But, enough of that, this should be about the controller...
Being a basic 3rd party controller, it's trying to be really close to the original as it can. In this case, it's extremely similar in appearance to the Xbox S controller. Most of the differences are in the rubber padding on the sides of the handle area and the two extra features this thing's got. The "Macro" button, and a switch to shut off the vibration.
Now for extra features, this thing's got hardly anything. Trying to use the Macro function is really difficult and not worth the effort. Fortunately, because of the rather strong vibration capabilities, having a switch to disable it is very nice.
The overall appearance is that of it being a cheap knock-off. Which, is exactly what it is. But it's not too ugly, so looking cheap isn't a major issue. Only thing is, it gets worse from there.
Being an xbox controller, it's rather on the big and heavy side (kind of like the console itself...) It does without pressing the buttons feel decently made. It's reasonably solid, so dropping it won't make the thing shatter. Once having pressed the buttons, this is where there starts to be a very noticable problem. The buttons are rather stiff and unresponsive. Unlike a better made Xbox controller, none of the buttons on this thing are analog. Not that many games use that functionality at least... The analog sticks are decent, but still not as good as they should be. The direction pad is a really bad part of this thing. It's not pleasant to use for any length of time from the not well thought out design and that the part where your finger is on it happens to be about half an inch above the actual contacts. You have to press fairly hard to get the directions to respond, which is very annoying.
Actually, all the buttons have that problem. But the direction pad is by far the worst about it. The A, B, X, & Y buttons also feel rather bad. Instead of having a smooth surface, the letter for that button is as an indentation. Not a good thing for a controller.
One problem I've had quite a few times, is with the rubber bits under each button getting jammed. It's annoying for me, even though I'm willing to fix it myself. But for somebody who either can't or won't open the controller up, this is a serious thing. Having one of the buttons jam like that makes the thing effectively trashed.
Pretty much, it comes down to this thing being a horrible controller. In fact, it's the second worst controller I've ever used. If you're going to get an Xbox controller, either get an actual Microsoft one or even better, a Logitech if you're willing to spend the money.
Mortal Kombat Deception (Xbox)
Review by LiquidManZero on 2005-06-04
This is the newest of the rather long running Mortal Kombat series, and I'll tell you right now, it's not the best one. Fortunately, it's not the worst either... There's two (well, 3, but there wasn't any chance of using the online features, so I won't even mention them after this) main modes to play with. The normal arcade-like one common to most of the previous games, and 'Konquest', which is completely one player. There is also 'The Krypt' where you use 'Koins' to 'buy' everything from new characters and arenas, to rather boring pictures of the development team. There's also some random movies thrown in, such as short clips commenting on various styles of martial arts, and some demo pieces. Most of the stuff to unlock is bought with different kinds of Koins, but some are opened with keys found in the Konquest. Konquest is something, where you run around as a young version of the character Shujinko, who when you can use him, turns out to be an old man. If he was a pervert, you'd mistake him for TruWizdom... After awhile, you'll meet up with a glowing ball of light, who ends up getting you to follow the will of the Elder Gods, whom you never get to meet. At this point, your entire 'Konquest' ends up being to run around collecting rare items. That you have to go through combat training with different characters along the way, is just a trick to make you think you're not really just on a fetch quest. I'd just tell you the ending, but that'd just give the ending away... Not that it'll take too long to get there, maybe 10-20 hours. Of course you'll probably miss some things on your first way through. Between running around, performing tasks for the Elder Gods, or being forced to do the basic moves for the default characters, you can do little side quests. Most of these are pretty simple matters of talking to somebody and doing what they tell you to. But, if you've been beating up the wrong people, some of the side quests can't be completed. Though admittedly, some involve beating the crap out of the locals. Scattered around are lots of Koins and some chests. The chests usually are simply filled with Koins, or rarely Krypt keys. Damn, now I've forgotten what I was going to say...
Gourmet Sentai - Bara Yarou (or Birume Sentai Barayarou) (Super Nintendo)
Review by Iamstillhiro1112 on 2005-05-03
A strange game made for Super Nintendo. It's a sidescrolling Beat em Up much like Final Fight but a few quirky twists. It actually feels like Final Fight on PCP. The enemies seem to just get wackier and wackier as you go along. The reason for the gourmet in the title is that you pick up food items along the way and at the end of the level you choose which foods you want to eat. They give you some kinda stat boost. If your like me you will probably wind up playing this game right up to the end. Few games can hold my attention like this one did. It is a short game yes. But it's pretty damn fun while it lasts. So I say get to it, either find the game at a import shop or find a copy of the English Translated rom.
Jim Power : The Arcade Game (Genesis)
Review by Iamstillhiro1112 on 2005-04-30
I played the Super Nes Incarnation of this (Jim Power 3d) and I have to say this is much better. The music is better, the graphics aren't nearly so disturbing and dizzying. Everything just seems better. It's odd, the people behind the Jim Power SNES Port just couldn't seem to make good use of the hardware. Um, Play the Super Nintendo version and then play this. It will show you that Jim Power was actually meant to be a good game.
Aidyn Chronicles (N64)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2005-04-06
Well, welcome to another crap review. Heheh. So where to start...
OK, so the world map works like this...in three dimensions (four, if you count time ;) ) you walk around, and sooner or later (if you're out in the wild somewhere), you come upon an enemy of some kind. You see them, but they may not see you quite yet...or they may see you before you see them, heh. Either way, if you get close enough to each other, you'll go into battle - the screen'll fade to black, and you'll enter a little battle world, like in a Final Fantasy title. Inside, you (and your enemies) can run around wherever you want, within a certain range each turn (no blocked increments; just ranges of motion), and attack each other...and I guess the cat's already outta the bag that it's turn-based, heh. But the twist is that it's not all of you, then all of them, or visa-versa...it's kinda back and forth, and depends on speed attributes of the characters on each side...bleh, you'll see when you play. It's pretty cool, I think.
The environments are really lush in this game...and you've gotta love a game with seasons of the year, dictated by days about four times as long as a Zelda 64 day...we've got snow, rain...umm...no snow or rain...and that's it, I think. But still. Heh.
Characters are unique, and the plot is pretty entertaining as far as I'm concerned (and that's all that matters, right? Heh...). There are little sub-plots, and you can lead the game around in several directions - to include choosing who to allow into your party of four, and who to drop at certain times - that all effect the plot itself. This title seems very much like a precursor to games like Fable.
The sound in Aidyn Chronicles is deadly vivid...it gets kinda scary at times...about an hour ago there was an eerie whispering sound that made me sit up and look around the room, heh. Well...I've got surround sound ;)
The amount of choices in the game is nearly innumerable...you can choose what people to bring with you on your quest, what weapons to train them on, what attributes to augment as you gain experience (although you also gain levels at the same time), what skills you'd like each person to learn, and the list keeps going. Of course you have the standard RPG-ish qualities of multiple pieces of equipment to...yeah, equip...as you please, the ability to go wherever the hell you want (and you can really roam in this game...you get the feeling that there's really an entire world out there), to buy items from merchants (and sometimes you can learn skills from them), to read things that explain the history, and secrets, of the world you're in...and so on.
Be sure to save often...if one of your characters dies in battle, they're really dead. No revive spells in this baby.
And if one of your review-writers gets tired in mid-sentence, they're really tired. No caffeine pills in this room...for some reason. Check out Aidyn Chronicles. Out.
Lazy Bastard needs your clothes, your boots, and your motorcycle...
Blaster Master: Blasting Again (PSOne)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2005-04-06
Hey, come on in. I was just about to tell myself about Blaster Master. So...
One of the first things I checked for - and was glad to find - was that you can exit your vehicle and run around as a person, something I was worried we'd lose from the original NES version.
Whoa, dude. Whoa. The voice acting in this game is actually good. And to top it off, it sports classic, drive around and shoot stuff music. The combination of that, and the rather entertaining (and useful, of course) strafe jump would rock my socks off, if I was wearing any.
The physics in Blaster Master seem pretty accurate (as far as I can tell from my numerous real-life rides in a 30-ton, jumping, track-based vehicle, heh), and the explosions are notably impressive, particularly for this style of game. And there are little lizards and stuff that run up the walls.Yeah.
The menu system, in which your sister gives you status reports and other info, umm...is pretty cool.
The enemies are fresh (and not like Bel-Air royalty; I mean their design is nice and new), and although the always-on radar system can block a little of the bottom right corner and piss you off at times, it's useful, without making the game too easy. Things get hectic in this game; let's just lay that out. Speaking of laying out, I'm going to go do that to my self. If it's cheap or free, play Blaster Master sometime. Later.
According to Lazy Bastard, after a triple all-nighter is another time when little lizards and stuff run up the walls. Yeah.
MediEvil II (PSOne)
Review by LiquidManZero on 2005-01-07
Having played the demo of the first game, I figured this one might be at least decent. Seems I was mistaken about that... MediEvil II (and oddly enough, MediEvil, heh) is a sort of 3D adventure game. Pretty much you run around killing things, getting past 'puzzles', and wandering around various platforms. And in this case, you get to play as an undead knight somewhere in England. The first thing I noticed, was that the controls are a bit jumpy. With the analog, it's even worse. So bad, there shouldn't even be analog support. I've dealt with worse, but there's also the dreaded bad 3D camera angles... Together, those two problems make the game a more difficult than it should be. This is a real problem with combat. To kill something requires getting near it, hitting it, running away, and repeating. But with the controls and the camera angles, doing so can get really annoying. The only good thing about this, is even if you're running around with your head off, it's still as dull and annoying as before. Yes, this game is both dull and annoying. If it weren't for the bad controls and camera movement, it'd be an easy game. Hell, even with the problems, it's still pretty easy. It could probably be finished in no more than about 5 hours. MediEvil II has good graphics, and the sound is decent. Unfortunately music can be repetitive, considering there isn't much of it. If you've got this game, try using your head from inventory when it's not attached. The result, is something that at least one of the 17 testers should've noticed. Try to use your head, and the game will crash. All in all, I'd guess that this sequel was just made to squeeze out a few dozen more dollars from anybody that buys it. The whole thing seems to have been a bit rushed. If you've got neither game, and are interested in one, stay away from the sequel. It kinda sucks.
Treasure of the Rudra (SNES)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-12-12
[*Thanks go out to AGTP for translation*]
Hey, everyone. As per usual, I'm going to write this as I play, so if I change my mind about things along the way, whatever. Anyway...
Known to the Japanese community (the only community it was released to, heh) as Rudra No Hihou, Treasure of the Rudra is a Squaresoft title about a young warrior (didn't see that one coming) who is pretty much next in line to be the king's "Chief of Soldiers". I actually think I'm going to enjoy this game, so I won't go into much more detail concerning the story (I don't want to give anything away) if I can avoid it.
OK, the fighting engine is your basic, run of the mill Final Fantasy style battle system, and it's well done - and graphically pleasing...the whole game has pretty much top-level graphics for an RPG on the SNES.
One thing that really gets me steamed (heheh) though is the fact that at the beginning of the game, the order of attack is always the same. There's no possibility for pre-emptive attacks, or for being surprise attacked - every battle starts with the enemy attacking you, then you attacking them. That's a bit boring...
OK, I finally experienced an attack first scenario. They're still pretty damn rare though, or at least at this point they are. [It turns out that later, there're all kinds of battle scenarios, and who the hell knows what's gonna happen next]
Heh, it's always funny (and perhaps moreso in these translation team hacks)...the way the hero just trusts people right after he meets them...and you wonder if it made more sense in Japanese. Without giving an inch of storyline, it's hard to elaborate, but you'll see if you ever play the game.
Hey, cool...if a character falls in battle, you can resurrect them with an Alarum (the equivalent of, say, a Phoenix Down). However, if said character dies, and you win the battle without'em, you don't have to use an item - they're back, with 1 HP. Nice.
Another useful option - equipping items in shop subscreens. Now you can see an item that's superior to the one you have equipped, unequip your old one and sell it, and buy the new one and equip it, all in one screen. Hassle reduction therapy.
Be forewarned - some things are done on a much smaller scale than usual in this game, which could be strange for a die-hard Final Fantasy fan. At max, you can hold 9 of any item, and by the amount of room in the text box, it looks as if we're gonna be constrained to 999 HP...
A possibly extremely awesome part of this game is the naming of magics. The idea (from the storyline side) is that different words have different powers, and when used by the right person, can be used to cast different spells. You can just create spells out of midair, and keep tweaking things until they're incredibly powerful (and usually incredibly MP-expensive, heh). It's really gratifying...you'll dig it, probably. You can also learn magic by talking to the Mantra Keeper in town. You don't pay for them, you don't run errands...you really don't even earn these mantras. You just come back every once in a while, and get one for free, which is kinda weird. I can't decide whether I think that all this sucks, or that I really like it.
Another thing of note is that the game's incredibly long...especially since there are three people to play as, each with his/her own group of allies and storyline, all of which are interconnected with each other...it's magically delicious.
All in all, this game's pretty damn good. I dunno why the hell they'd not translate this, when there's so much they did translate that absolutely sucked ultra. Go play it sometime; it's worth an attempt at least. I'm damn tired...but tell you something new, right? I'm gonna go enjoy lack of discomfort by sleeping. Later.
Lazy Bastard gained a level! Learned "Lack of discomfort by sleeping"!
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-10-30
Well, now...damn, I really can't think of a good way to start this one. Although I guess by the time anyone reads this, I must have, so the...aforetyped sentence is kinda pointless, heh. Whatever. Oh, I know - I'll do it like a generic book report from A Reading Rainbow...
Stealth, a turn-based strategy game only released in Japan, takes you on a magical journey in which you - a group of American soldiers, it seems - are tasked with the job of defeating the enemy, and if you have time, flagrantly gunning down unarmed civilians, as they tend to the land in what I'm assuming is Vietnam (it's 1968). With all the heavy machine gun fire and grenades exploding in well-populated villages, it's not hard to see why they named the game Stealth. Hmm...
What's really unique about this title...OK, another thing that's really unique...is the way the enemy ambushes you. I mean, somewhat similar things have been done in other games, but it's particular effective - and impressive - in this one, especially as you advance in stages.
Graphics are of about the caliber of Advance Wars for the GBA. Sound is adequately done, and music (while it couldn't hold a candle to the average RPG soundtrack) is pretty good. A few actions are carried out slowly for some reason, so if you endeavor to try this non-import, you may want to use an emulator that supports toggled, turbo frame skipping, such as ZSNES or SNESGT, but by no means does this challenge the game's overall quality...so long as you are emulating.
When one of your soldiers is killed, a sort of...preview of his epitaph is shown, with his age, the year he died, and some random Kanji symbols (heheh); and some depressing music is played...so you actually have to think about the dude that's just died, if only for a moment, rather than just being irritated that one of your guys died, and now you only have four.
To be honest, I started with the intent of writing a negative (and comical, if possible ;) ) review, but by the time I put any...time into it, I just couldn't. Stealth is just not that bad. Later.
Lazy Bastard is pretty sure he could beat Levar Burton in arm wrestling...
Jim Lee's Wildcats (SNES)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-10-09
Yes, Jim Lee is (at worst) a demi-god, but his Wildcats game is still not impervious to a good GSHI scrutinizing...so let's get this thing started...
Well, the controls aren't really lacking - although they're simple - since the game doesn't really require any more of you than dishing out some bodily injury here and there.
In the first level, much like in Chuck Norris's real life, enemies wait patiently while you slap their friends around unconscious, and then attack you. Occasionally, they'll awkwardly tiptoe in for a cheap shot...much like in Chuck Norris's real life. And reminiscent of all the classic platformers that involve legions of relatively identical enemies, the bad guys make really gratifying sounds when whomped..."Ooaughh!"
Gotta give your character (Spartan) credit, though...rather than pussy-footing around like every other superhero, he just told the first boss he was gonna kill him. You know, that way he doesn't beg not to go to jail...
One undesirable quality is the cutoff effect, a la Super Mario Bros 1 (otherwise known as Super Mario Bros)...but I guess to balance that off is the fact that you can punch someone up to four times a second...much like in Chuck Norris's real life.
Well, to my slight disappointment, after the first boss, Attica, treated me like a female character in a hentai at least three times, I finally beat him and decided not to kill him afterall, in exchange for some information. And right after I'd just promised to get the info and kill him. Spartan is such an Indian-giver of death...
It seems the enemies of level 2 try more dilligently to attack me, even hitting me at the same time as their friends...but in return, I punch them up to four times a second, so it pans out in my favor once again.
After that second level, you get to choose between Spartan, Maul, and Warblade...this could be entertaining. And yet another possibility - it could really suck. You'll have to find out for yourselves, because I'm just too damn lazy to write a walkthrough review for this whole game, or even any more of it.
As far as I'm concerned, it's pretty good, especially for a side-scrolling beat-em up. Rock on, Jim Lee.
Lazy Bastard can most often be found eating the concentrated salt at the bottom of a bag of pretzels...
Jim Power (SNES)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-10-09
Jim Power is, I think, what happens when you mix Speed and LSD, and hold your breath for a really long time. It's a really disturbing game that moves way too fast, and just freaks me out.
Whenever your character runs into a...weird Native American guy, or a dragon, or some spikes, he's incinerated alive, at which point he screams with more animation than the victim of a Mortal Kombat fatality. It makes you really not want to die.
So far, I still recommend you try this game, but only for the "Eww, this yogurt is nasty...try it." effect. Trust me, folks...this yogurt is nasty.
You know, the fact that it only takes one touch to kill you really makes you into a pussy when it comes to enemies running after you. I feel...I feel like a 4-year-old girl playing paintball wars with special operatives.
And another thing I really don't like...there are a few spots in this little trifle where, if you don't get a key earlier, you'll be stuck there, and have to reset or eagerly await your time to run out...this is known as the Retarded Effect. Damn it.
You guys've gotta try this game out at least once. If a game's gonna suck, it should at least suck like this game.
Lazy Bastard probably isn't coming to a yogurt factory near you, but if he is, keep your distance...
Delta Force: Urban Warfare (PSOne)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-08-29
After Reeben mentioned Delta Force for the PC with a good tone of voice, I figured I'd check out its PSX counterpart, Urban Warfare. Little did I know that the roller coaster ride I was about to embark on would change my gaming life forever.
Actually, it was more like a sailboat ride, with no sails, on land, drunk, while people are beating the hell out of you. This game really sucks...and Novalogic/Rebellion don't make adult toys, so that's a negative thing. Now I'm not saying I could do better; I'm just saying that if not for a few minor pieces of interest, I could walk outside and find far more entertaining kinds of grass. And yes, I actually meant grass.
For starters, the controls on this game are more than a little unwieldy, mostly because you're forced to use the analog sticks to move, as the D-Pad changes weapons (left or right) and eyewear (up or down). The firing button is R1, which, I suppose, you could get used to, but by the time you get to press it with any chance of hitting something, you've probably already been shot several times...PSX sticks are just too damn much of a hassle.
The voice acting is terrible, whereas the lines are actually not bad, which leads me to believe that if they just got some better actors, the cinematics would be pretty cool. The story is unique enough to keep my attention, and although things sometimes get a bit far-fetched, they never go past the limit of reality, something many games fail in.
As far as those few pieces of interest, open your mouth and I'll spit them at you. I know, I know...eww.
The eyewear is pretty nice. There's only regular, night vision, and thermal, but they're all well done, and thermal appears to totally 0wn me, heh...I wish this game was less sub-par (pro-par, or even par itself, would be great), just for the thermal goggles.
And running around, trying to stab enemies with a knife while I'm being shot with automatic weapons, for some reason, is hilarious in this game. I never get bored of it, even though I only kill about two terrorists before I'm swatted down like a fly with a proverbial hail of 7.62 rounds.
Also, I really have to say I like the weapons. Explosions are impressive, muzzle flash is accurate, and the weapon models are at least acceptable.
To be honest, this game's almost not even crappy. If you find it like I did, for $4.99, it's probably worth it just to go thermal and run around stabbing people, heh. Whatever.
Lazy Bastard was born in a log cabin, which he built with his own hands...
Silent Hill 3 (PS2)
Review by Reeben on 2004-08-24
Yeah I know what you're thinking, another Silent Hill game. Well shut the hell up; you don’t even know what I’m going to say. To be honest this is the best game of the series so far.
You play a girl named Heather Morris. Yeah that’s right, it’s a chick this time. On the back of the box it even says “All-new, terrifying adventure featuring a new female lead character.” (Must be a giant leap for these people.) She is just a carefree teenager with no real ties with the evil crap found in this genre of games but that doesn’t stop the evil shit from not leaving her alone. The action starts right away in some weird amusement park. Evil demons lurk about the area and all you have is a knife. But trust me, it’s not the kind you would use to hack leaves or cut off the head of an undead. But it's all you got. Anyway, after you survive that nightmare, which it turns out to be, you awaken in the mall of all places. Like all teens do is go to the mall. That’s where the game really begins and that’s where I’ll stop. Don't want to give away the entire game, just the beginning.
This game plays pretty much like the first two installments of the series. The controls are the same as well which is really good because what the hell is the need to change the controls if there fine the way they are. There is a case of this happening but I’ll get into that in another review. The graphics are great. The people at Konami have really gotten down how to display blood and gore at their most bloodiest and goriest. I commend them in this field of game making. The monsters in this edition are also top of the line. They all have a unique look to them. And all of them have a different way of killing you which I guess you could say is a good thing.
The menu system has gotten an upgrade. No longer will you have to shuffle through all the items in one continuous string. All the items you collect will be filed into three different categories: items, weapons, and supply making it much easier to get what you need and get right back into the fray. A new addition to the killing arsenal is the sub-machine gun which has to be the best ass kicking weapon of all. But you have to watch the ammo cause it will run out quick and there really isn’t much ammo for it lying around.
Surviving the sequels are all the extra goodies you get from beating the game which I won’t get too much into. But I can tell you there are the standard new weapons and the like but there are several other things to obtain which I won’t tell you either. If you really like spoiling yourself then by all means go to a code website and look it up there. But there good rewards for all the nightmares you might get. This game is a great catch if you’re a fan of the series but newcomers will feel just as horrified so there’s something for everyone. Oh and one more thing. If you do pick up a copy ( this doesn’t go for you rental wussies) you will also get a CD of the soundtrack which is actually pretty cool cause the music is not that gut wrenching.
Der Langrisser (SNES)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-08-18
A complete revamp of Langrisser II for the Sega Genesis, Der Langrisser is one part strategy, one part RPG, like the offspring of Advance Wars and Final Fantasy VI. Before you go running off to find a copy at your local pawnshop, I should mention that it was never released in the US. And I guess I just did, heh. Anyway, if you want to enjoy this masterpiece in English, you'll need to download an SNES emulator, such as SNES9x, ZSNES, or SNESGT, the Der Langrisser ROM, and the translation patch by No Life, HERE. Unfortunately, the patch only covers the light path; if you decide to become evil later on, you'll just have to be evil in Japanese. On with the show...
Upon starting a new game, you're asked a few questions describing your personality; your answers to these will be used to determine your character traits. After the Goddess of Light Lushiris finishes psychoanalyzing you, she'll offer to brief you on the battle system. You'll then be told a little about the land of El Sallia and its current predicament, and filled in on the story thusfar.
The action starts when imperial knights of the Rayguard Empire invade the village your character, Elwin, and his friend Hein have been staying in (Hein's hometown, by the way), looking for a girl named Riana. Well, Riana is a childhood friend of Hein's, and there's no way some asshole named 'Baldo' and a bunch of goons in armor are running off with her, unless that's just the way she parties. And it isn't. So you, Hein, and a few dudes you hire to fight with you go whomp ass on them, and the game begins. Play it for yourself if you want to know the rest. Or, get me really drunk and ask me about it.
Now let's get down to nuts and bolts. The gameplay in Der Langrisser is spectacular. It's downright addictive. I've made late nights into all-nighters, pausing the game only to run out the door and go to work. I've held back bodily functions until I couldn't concentrate on the game anymore. I've even told women who've called that I'm busy with some really important stuff, and that I'll call back later. You're lucky I don't just go play it right now, heheh.
The storyline is great. Admittedly, direct translation seems to have made a few lines a bit simplistic, but if the dialogue is anything like No Life translated it to be, I'd definitely watch an anime of this. Sounds are cool, and the music, although not quite at the classically artistic level of Uematsu's work in the Final Fantasy series, is catchy. I find myself humming Der Langrisser tunes days after playing the game.
As far as artwork goes, the game's environment and character design are rich in detail and surprisingly original. I never get bored of seeing new places and meeting new enemies and allies.
Even without the relative option of being evil (which I think would be really interesting), this game easily makes my top five. I recommend it for almost anyone, as it crosses two genres, and manages to do something seriously unique with this mix. Bleh, I'm getting too tired to hold my eyes open; I'm going to sleep. If you ever sample Der Langrisser, let me know what you thought. 'Night.
Lazy Bastard willing, it only takes one Lazy Bastard to change a light bulb...
Silent Hill 2 (PS2)
Review by Reeben on 2004-08-17
As you can see this is the sequel to the PSone version. I was really surprised when I heard about this because I always thought that Silent Hill was one of those cool games no one really played. Silent Hill 2 has you taking on the role of James Sunderland. Apparently his wife, Mary, is also dead (what a coincidence). Three years after her death he gets a letter from her (spooky!). The letter beckons him to return to their sanctuary of memories in the dark realm of Silent Hill. I wonder where this is leading to? Of course he goes there to see if he can find her. And that brings up the question, what the hell does he expect to find once he gets there? Well that’s pretty much where the game starts.
The story doesn’t connect at all to the last game as much as the third game does but that’s ok. The controls are the same as the previous game which is a good thing because the controls work just fine. The game is also much scarier then the last one because of the graphics. The PS2 is just a power house compared to the PSone; blood has never looked so good along with all the new crazy creatures which look cool too.
As the game progresses, you’ll find that the weird things you see in the game start to get even weirder. One of the bad guys that I found interesting was the so called “Pyramid Head”. You see him in the first part of the game in the apartment building. He wears what looks like a loin cloth with a giant pyramid for a head that’s stained with blood. He also carries around a giant spear to go along with the head. Another weird guy is the mannequin thing. It appears to be two lower halves of a mannequin put together. It just kinda walks around hitting you with its upper/lower half. There are others but I won’t mention them. Too weird. The puzzles in this game are also top notch. But only if you play it with the puzzle difficulty on hard. Otherwise you're just a wussy who let a game get to you and make you feel dumb. You loser. You disgust me. I don’t think you should read the rest of the review because it might be too hard for you. I’m just kidding. You're not a loser. Anyway, back to the game.
There’s this chick you’ll meet about 5-10 minutes into the game. I forget what her name is but this lady is really fucked up in the head. I mean she’s a total nut job. Apparently she’s looking for her “mommy” in Silent Hill but as you see her around town you wonder if she’s actually looking for someone or is just smoking a lot of crap. You have to play the game to know what I’m talking about.
I’ll say the same thing I said about the last Silent Hill and I’ll probably say this about Silent Hill 3, you need to play this in the dark to really feel the horror of these games. Otherwise it’s not as fun.
Silent Hill (PSOne)
Review by Reeben on 2004-08-17
Silent Hill for the Playstation is one of my favorite games. I have to say that this is the only game that really scared the crap out of me.
You play a character named Harry Mason. An ordinary guy with an ordinary life. Until he gets to the town of Silent Hill. The story goes like this: Harry and his daughter Cheryl live a pretty normal life. Well as normal as one could live after losing their wife/mother to a terrible disease. One day they decide to take a vacation in Silent Hill. Harry likes to take vacations late apparently. As they're driving down the road Harry sees a bike cop ride past. A few moments later they pass the bike but it’s dumped on the side of the road. Suddenly, a shadow appears in front of the car so Harry turns the wheel in panic crashing the car on the side of the road in a ditch. When he finally comes to, Cheryl is nowhere to be seen and snow is falling out of season. He sees a town in the distance and decides to go there.
That’s where the game starts where weird creatures start coming out of the wood works. The graphics are good. Weapons are also very rare in this town. Don’t count on getting guns you would find in similar games like Resident Evil. The creatures are also not as impressive but that doesn’t take away from the fun of the game cause they're still just as deadly.
The controls are good and responsive and are also easy to learn. Nothing really complicated like holding two buttons and pressing a shoulder button at the same time just to point your weapon.
Puzzles in the game are pretty cool too. Nothing too difficult but enough to make you think hard for a few minutes.
The only thing bad is that it’s very linear. But that might be a good thing for people who can’t grasp the idea to go to the school when an entire piece of paper says “to school” in giant letters.
One of the best aspects of the game is the atmosphere. This is truly a scary game. Way more scary than (since I’ve already mentioned it once.) Resident Evil. Resident Evil is more surprising then anything else. Something happening in the game that you didn’t expect is all you can really count on being scary. In Silent Hill, the fact that you're in an evil school with killer babies that have knives and are trying to kill you and never knowing what is going to be around the next corner is scary. To really experience the game to its fullest, you need to play at night, by yourself, with the lights off, and the door to your gaming room closed. I guarantee that you will feel at least a little scared. More so then if you played any of the Resident Evil games. I think that is the main draw in this series of games for people who have actually played any of them. This game has pretty good replay value as well. There are multiple endings as well as multiple secret weapons to be claimed. The funniest being the alien ending. Play it and you’ll know what I’m talking about. On a scale of 1-28.3, I would give it a 25.6.
Medal Of Honor (PSOne)
Review by Reeben on 2004-05-19
Medal Of Honor is a fun first person shooter taking place in World War II. You play a man named Jimmy Patterson who was a glider pilot in the Army Aircore. He does so well in a mission he was involved in that the OSS (Office of Strategic Services) decides to recruit him for some really dangerous missions. So that's the story pretty much in a nutshell. The game has pretty good controls for a first person shooter on a console. The weapons in the game stay true to there real life counter-parts. The only problem I had with the weapons was with the sniper rifle. There really wasn't a zoom for it. When you pressed the aim button, it would zoom to a set distance and that's it. But that's really the only problem I had with the game. The enemy AI is good even though they sometimes just stand there shooting at you with out taking cover. I really liked it when the German soldier would dive on top of the grenade to save his friends and get blown up. They would take cover around a corner and shoot from that position. The enemy AI really suprised me the first time I played it. It also supported a multiplayer so two people could play against each other in head-to-head action. Compared to the multiplayer of Goldeneye or Perfect Dark it is really crappy but still fun to play. Having good graphics for the time and fun gameplay Medal Of Honor was a hit for the PSone. Anyone who owns a PSone and likes first person shooters should really check this one out.
The Sims (PC)
Review by Reeben on 2004-05-19
The Sims is a really cool game in my opinion. There is actually more then meets the eye when you first look at this game. For one thing there isn't really a plot or main characters.
First you decide what your name is going to be. Then you create what kind of person you want from a selection of many different kinds of faces and clothing. After that you use attribute points to create what kind of person your sim will be. Will he be outgoing, will he be neat or messy, or will your sim be playful or just a loser who just hangs around with himself being lonely and depressed. Its all up to you.
The next part deals with your plot of land and the building of a house. Actually you don't have to build your own house. You could choose from a few houses that have been already built. Of course none of them have any furniture so you are going to have to take care of that part yourself. I think this part of the game takes the longest.
When you first move your family or that lonely bachelor you only start out with $20,000 in your pocket. That might seem like a lot of money but it won't when you look at the prices of the items. Most of the items start out in the hundreds and just keep climbing after that. Of course if you have the money code then you're all set. Like I said before this is probably the longest part of the game but it's also the coolest. You have the ability to create your dream house (of course with the things the game provides but it's still really cool).
Since this game is on the PC you can go to the Sims website and register and once you do you, have the chance to download news skins for the sims' clothes, houses people have built, and new objects for your house. My personal favorites are the McDonald's food stand and the soda machines.
Once your house is built and furnished, you can start living there lives. I suggest getting them a job so they can start bringing home that cash so you can buy bigger and better things to help you out. Because your sims have needs and these needs need to be met. For example hunger. If you don't give them any fuckin food, then they will die and it will be all your fault. You won't be able to blame anybody but yourself. But it doesn't stop at hunger. You also have to satisfy comfort (greedy ass sims), hygiene, room, energy (a big one), social, bladder, and fun. Taking care of energy is really a bitch at times. Especially when they need to take care of there other needs and there energy is really low.
I think it's a really great game and has a huge replay value. With all the different expansion packs and things that can be done, I can assure you, you won't be bored with this one for at least a week. For more information check out there website at www.thesims.com.
Beyond Good & Evil (GameCube)
Review by Reeben on 2004-05-19
I had read that this game was good, but never as good as I found it to be. The game is Beyond Good & Evil which you should already know. It takes place on the planet Hillys in the year 2435 where you control the main character Jade. She lives with Pey'j, a half pig half human thing. He may be a pig thing, but he sure can fix things. He is also the adoptive uncle of Jade and has brought her up since she was a child. Apparently the planet has been attacked by an alien race for centuries. The Alpha Sections, a government group, has vowed to put an end to the reign of terror caused by the DomZ who are abducting people never to be seen again. But Jade is sceptic about the government's plans and is recruited by a resistance group called the IRIS network. They want her to uncover the truth about what's really going on.
The game sports good graphics and fairly good controls. The camera is controllable so there isn't really a problem with it. The game is also presented in widescreen format which is my first time seeing it. If it's been in any other game I have played then I must not have seen it. But any way, this game is really fun. It's easy enough for the average gamer. The boss fights are easy if you know the pattern the boss uses to attack. The only one that really pissed me off was the last boss. It took me a long time to figure out how he attacks because he changes it up a lot. Man I wanted to break my controller over someones head. Or at least damage the game itself for being so hard. But I couldn't do that. It would cost too much to replace. The story is really good. After you have played it for a number of hours you really start to care for the characters and what they're trying to accomplish. The only problem I had with this is once you really get into the story and the characters, it ends. The game is just too short. When I finally finished it I said to myself, "It can't be over already.....wait.....yes it is, son of a bitch." This game is really good and the original story is awesome. I really suggest anyone who has a GameCube to go out and play this game. It's really cool.
The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind (PC)
Review by Reeben on 2004-05-19
This is a third/first person game for the PC. It's an RPG that is completely open ended. Meaning you can go anywhere, do anything, and kill anyone.
You start out first making what kind of character you want to have. Then you decide what kind of skills your person will have. Will he be a warrior guy like Conan, or will he be a thief like the little bastard children of old New York. Will your character be a hero like He-man, or a fuck face asshole like Liquid Snake. It's totally up to you. From then on you can either follow the main story or you can side track and do one of a hundred other side-quests. Don't get me wrong, you can still do the main quest, then when you get bored with that, you can go and do some other stuff like kill random people with cool armor so you can have it or go to any one of the many dungeons and explore them, if you can find them.
The one thing I had problems with was the many load times between areas on the map. Every so often when you're walking down the road to some town it will pause and load the next area. I know it's supposed to do that but not as much as it does. But other than that it's pretty good.
There are a lot of different kinds of armors and weapons. I've been playing this game for many hours and I still find things I've never seen before and new things to do. Just make sure that you save once and a while because in your many random killings, you might kill someone who is important to the plot of the story. It will then ask you if you want to continue with the game or load a previous game. If all you want to do is kill everybody then by all means continue but if you still want to have the main story intact then I suggest you save often or just don't kill so many random people. A really cool game for PC gamers.
Spec Ops: Stealth Patrol (PSOne)
Review by Reeben on 2004-05-19
What can I say about this game? I really don't know how this game crossed my path but I do know this, it should have just kept on walkin because this is a terrible game. You are in command of a Ranger unit sent in to do whatever the hell they tell you to do. You choose from a Machine Gunner, a Grenadier, a Recon/Sniper, a Close Quarter man, or a Rifleman. Personally I like the Machine Gunner. After you choose who you want to try to be you play the game.
Let me tell you now that this game doesn't reflect what combat is at all. First you have guys that can shoot you when they are off screen which is not fair at all. Then when you do find out where the little bastard is you have to try and aim at him which I found really hard to do. With all the flaws in the game that I found, it was a surprise that I could actually beat a level. Even on the easiest level I found it to be really tough.
There's also something else I wanted to point out. If you happen to actually pick up a copy of this shit excuse of a game, then look inside the manual. Look at the section of the book that shows you the weapons found in the game. They're supposed to have a picture of the weapon and a brief description. When you look at the picture you see a crudely cut picture of something that is supposed to look like a rifle. Some of them are actual renderings of the weapons just made for the manual and others look like they took the picture from the game and tried to cut out the outlining areas of them to look like the others but were so badly done that you really can't tell if you're looking at a rifle or a machine gun. You have to squint to see but even that doesn't work some of the times.
Ok so those are the bad things about the game, let's look at some of the good things. For one thing it has a 2 player mode where you and a friend or just someone you found on the street can play the game in its entirety co-op style so both of you can complain to each other how much this game sucks. And that's about it when it comes to the good things about this game.
If you happen to come across this game at your local gaming store and you get the sudden urge to massacre hundreds of random game bots military style, pick up something like Medal Of Honor or Delta Force or just anything else that's not a Spec Ops game. Period.
Legend Of Dragoon (PSOne)
Review by Lazy Bastard on 2004-05-19
I'm going to write this review as I play, so as to keep things in order and go into more detail. (actually, I only wrote a little of an FAQ...I don't think I'll ever finish it, because I'm just too damn lazy to ever play this game again...but who knows)
Well, I saw this game for only ten bucks, so I decided to gamble. And, as usual, "the house" won. So now that you already know the ending, let's start with the middle, skip the beginning, and digress a thousandfold...
OK, the game starts out great; music is satisfactory, graphics are quite good for a PSX game, and even the voice actors don't suck. But once the cinematics are over and the game begins, eveything takes a turn for the much crappier. The plot is mediocre, but I won't say terrible; I've seen worse in acceptable games. But the lines are ridiculous - they were either really badly translated and never even read by an English-speaking person, or I don't even need to say the writer can't write his way out of a paper bag...he probably couldn't write a story about himself getting out of a paper bag. There are lines like (from a random villager in the beginning of the game), "Dart, you shamelessly came back! Because you weren't here, I, damn! What are you gonna do about my feelings towards Shana!", which isn't Engrish by any measure, but sounds as flat as a five-year-old's orating and seriously leaves you wondering. I'm guessing the "...I, damn!" piece is intended as a self-interruption caused by overwhelming emotion, but "...feelings towards Shana!" is just an intellectually monotone way of saying "Go save that girl, because I have an emotional attachment to her..." This is said right after an old man tells you the story of what happened, adding "It's about Shana, too." and going on to talk about her, by which I suppose he either means that Shana was the reason for the attack (which she was), or that he's about to talk about Shana, because she too is something he needs to discuss, heh. Bleh, I guess I'm just picky when it comes to lines; the FF series has plenty worse if we're talking typos.
Now let's continue. The text auto-streams at about three characters a second (very slowly), but you can speed it up by pressing X, so you end up constantly either holding X or pressing and releasing it just in time to avoid skipping the text altogether, in an endless cycle that pretty much makes you not want to talk to anybody. That, and occasionally the speaker isn't indicated at all, so that you and another character will sit there talking and you won't have any idea who the hell is saying what. The battle initiation animation is pretty cool, yet seems to take up a lot of time, but I guess loading can't be helped. The graphics of sprites are sub-par to FF7, although the backgrounds and menus are very well done.
When you attack, a large box spirals in and lines up with a smaller box, and your goal is to press X at that very moment in order to inflict maximum damage, and continue with a sort of combo which has you repeatedly timing the box thingies (if you ignore the boxes, you'll still attack, but only once and not as powerfully). However, should an enemy be capable of counterattacking, the second spiralling box system will be red, and you'll have to press O just at the right time, or you'll be hit and your turn will end. As far as I'm concerned, using fighting-game-style attack systems in RPGs is inane, which is one of the various reasons Legend of Legaia performed oral sex on farm animals, right up there with the main reason: it was a big pool of cliches and generic ideas, probably written by someone who doesn't even like RPGs.
All right, I've finally come to the conclusion that there may be enough stupid things said in this game for me to just start listing them as I go along. So I'll start with the next one I found, and just intertwine them with the rest of my review.
"I wonder how Shana is doing?" That's not really a question?
"Those of you who do not grasp the value should just do what the order says." So...if I 'grasp the value', I can do whatever I want? And if I don't understand the value of what you are saying to the address of my ear, will I be assimilated? What the hell is the value? If "the order" is some group, they really should capitalize for those of us that don't grasp the overused plot idea.
OK...never mind, the other guy replied "I'm not taking your orders!", so I guess there is no Order, just terrible sentences.
Your journey is literally linear; your character can only move on a sort of track (much like Breath of Fire IV) from place to place. If I was keeping points, this would definitely deduct some (or add some, if I was feeling golfy).
Heheh, I suppose I'm childish, but I just encountered an enemy called "Assassin Cock"...
You know, this game really does look and sound great. It would've been really good if it had been written or translated better (whichever it wasn't). I'm even starting to accept the stupid combo attack system.
Lazy Bastard may cause mild drowsiness...
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