“One of the great things about the Kirby series is that over the years, it has stuck to its adorable roots with such an upbeat vibe and familiar presentation while trying out new gameplay mechanics to keep things fresh. Kirby: Mass Attack continues that forward trend. This touch-only adventure stars not just one but a whole gaggle of the lovable pink puffs that must be herded through colorful stages in creative ways. Tight controls mingle with a steady stream of clever new ideas to make this one of Kirby’s best handheld outings.”
Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective was a pleasant surprise. Having heard very little about the game before I was assigned to review it, I didn’t know what to expect when I dug in. I was sucked into the story and wacky characters almost immediately, and the plot twists and turns the unfolded further along in the game kept me absorbed. Aside from being entirely charming and bizarre, the story is a touching one. This is one of the better DS games I’ve put my hands on in recent memory, which is why I wholly recommend it.
You can check out my full review here at EGMi and in the latest print edition of EGM on newstands.
Man, the characters in Golden Sun: Dark Dawn LOVE to hear themselves talk. They love to talk to other folks. And they LOVE to talk to themselves. Despite having to frantically mash through some excruciatingly long conversations, Dark Dawn is a pretty enjoyable game. The combat is satisfying and classic, while the puzzles really make the adventure shine. You can check out my full review of the game over here in last week’s at EGMi.
“Mario may have bigger adversaries to tussle with these days, but sometimes, age-old conflicts can’t be put to rest quite so easily. Aside from giving the mustachioed Italian plumber a shot at getting some payback and settling an old score with his original flaming-barrel-chucking ape nemesis, the Mario vs. Donkey Kong franchise provided an interesting break from the status quo for Mario and pals. Since it transitioned from the Game Boy Advance to the DS in 2006, the strategic puzzle-oriented gameplay revolving around safely guiding mini versions of Mario and his buds through obstacle-course levels hasn’t changed much from one entry to the next. The fourth game in the spin-off series, Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem, sticks to the formula its predecessors laid out pretty closely. A few minor changes woven into the puzzle mechanics and solid online extras are certainly additions that boost the core fun to be found here, and it’s just enough to entice players who’ve puzzled though previous rounds of mini-Mario babysitting to have another go.”
I’m a bit late on the updates today. Last week I tackled two reviews for EGMi. Shantae: Risky’s Revenge was a pleasant surprise on DSiWare, considering the volume of awesomeness being churned out on that platform is rather meager. It’s a nice mix of old school and new school that I found rather enjoyable. You can check out my full review in last week’s issue.
I also offered up a second take on Super Scribblenauts – a game I could barely pry out of my fingers once I started fiddling around with it. The wife and I both cracked out on this one big time, and I found the addition of adjectives and the other fun updates improve the gameplay.
Whoo boy, I’ve been slacking on posts. The busy seasion is firing up again, so I’ve neglected to update ye old workblog as often as I’d like. I’ll remedy that promptly. The October issue of Nintendo Power features a short Community piece I wrote about Kimberly Young’s far out Metroid batik. For a first try, it’s pretty incredible, and this groove-inspired wall hanging definitely fits the college dorm room decor vibe. That’s all I have in the October issue, but I should be ramping up my contributions in the near future.
Sadly, the November issue is the first in a long time that doesn’t have any Community pieces I’ve written in it, but I have more in the pipeline for future issues. Freelance comrade Andrew Hayward holds down the fort nicely with a write-up of some Nintendo-themed custom vinyl toys and a halloween themed piece. You can, however, find my review of Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals over on pg. 90. I was pleasantly surprised by that one, and I recommend it for action-RPG fans. I should have three different items appearing in the December 2010 issue, so stay tuned.
As painful as they may be to play at times, I really enjoyed the last two Etrian Odyssey games. They really scratch a certain itch that hearkens back to childhood days spent playing AD&D, rolling 20-sided die, and making custom maps of dungeon exploits using graph paper. The glut of new classes and fresh areas to explore in this third installment are among the big reasons to dive back in again, but I really found the seafaring portions to be a great addition. They change up the pace, and that’s a good thing.
The short-and-sweet version of my review is I highly recommend this dungeon crawling RPG to fans of the genre. Normal folks will want to rip their teeth out after playing through the first few dungeons, but it’s a good trip for those of us who are already well battle hardened.
Hop on over to Games Radar to read my full review here.
The wife and I have been cracking out on good ol’ Layton’s third puzzlerific installment, and while I’ve had to set it aside to keep from going insane, the missus is all about the 100 percent completion and is going back to scour everything she might have missed on her own playthrough. Needless to say, it’s an awesome game, particularly if you have the patience for mind-meltingly tough puzzle challenges. My full blown review write-up is now up in the latest EGMi here, so feel free to check it out.
“Summer has faded away, and school is back in session, but that hasn’t stopped the flow of great downloadable games. In this month’s exploration of downloadable gaming delights, we jump into high speed racing boats, corral strange monsters on a dangerous planet, pummel 8-bit baddies to win a girl’s affections, and explore a mirror-image kingdom.”
I have to say: I’m getting pretty pumped about the Nintendo 3DS. There’s a slick run-down of the system and a bunch of games in the works for in the September issues of Nintendo Power. You’ll also find a few pieces I wrote this issue: Page 95 has a Community features on Tyler Mann’s killer Kingdom Hearts cosplay, and on page 90 you’ll find my reviews of the DS and Wii versions of Despicable Me. Pro tip: if you’re going to shell out for that one, pick up the DS version. That’s all for this month, but I have more NP stuff in the works shortly.