Hollow Knight Review: A Haunted Underground Classic

Real Talk By: Zombie Zac

Released originally on PC in 2017, Hollow Knight is a kickstarter-backed Metroidvania 2D action platformer that is as challenging as it is beautiful. Now available on Switch, Hollow Knight comes complete with all the free content packs released last year and a number of game updates. The first thing you’ll notice when you start your journey is how gorgeous Hollow Knight looks and how beautiful the piano based soundtrack is by Christopher Larkin. Continue reading “Hollow Knight Review: A Haunted Underground Classic”

PixelJunk Monsters 2 Review: Aaahh!!! Real Monsters

Real Talk By: Zombie Zac

PixelJunk Monsters, released 11 years ago, was one of first examples of a great digital download game on PS3. It was one of the finest tower defense games of that time, a genre that hadn’t been watered down and beat to death by mobile games. With the iPhone in its infancy, and with no App Store, it was a different world when PixelJunk Monsters was released. Continue reading “PixelJunk Monsters 2 Review: Aaahh!!! Real Monsters”

God of War PS4 Review: God Revolution

**Zero Story Spoilers in This Review**

Real Talk By: Zombie Zac

God of War is a masterclass example of how to revolutionize a franchise. Most developers take a “If it ain’t broken…” approach but what Santa Monica Studio has done here shows careful planning, inspired creativity and an artfulness that elevates the series to new heights.  Continue reading “God of War PS4 Review: God Revolution”

Call of Duty WWII Review: The Greatest Generation

Returning to your roots is the textbook way to reboot once things go a bit off the rails. While sales are still staggering for the COD franchise, the futuristic themes and gameplay has become a bit stagnant in the last few entries. Not that they’re bad games— the most recent entries still present explosive first person action with pinpoint accuracy— but they also have felt uninspired and dull in comparison to when the series had yet to become a yearly expectation. Call of Duty II was a breakout moment for the series and also helped boost the launch of the Xbox 360. While Modern Warfare became a blueprint for the series to come, many were wondering just how long it would take before things came back around to the Greatest Generation.

So here we are, it was bound to happen: We have Sledgehammer Games making a WWII Call of Duty with all the trappings the series is now known for. There’s score streaks, a progression system, a zombies mode, and of course a story campaign. But because its 2017 there are now loot boxes, and the ability to pay actual money for “COD Points” to open more loot boxes, and you run around in a social hub watching other players jump around and stand idle and… open loot boxes. It’s weird, on the one hand it makes looking at footage of that second COD game seem so dated and primitive. But, on the other hand it was just a video game back then, it didn’t exist as a platform created to generate reoccurring micro transactions and to profit off an annual release of DLC content for bottom-lined focused board members.

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Super Mario Odyssey Review: Pure Joy

What a year it has been for Nintendo! Not only do they turn the ship around with the Switch, but they also give us Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey in the same year? As a long time Nintendo fan, this year ranks up there as one of the best, if not the best year in their rich history. Mario has really come full circle now with Odyssey, a game that incorporates ideas from nearly all the Mario games while still pushing forward into new uncharted territory. It should come as no surprise to anyone that it is amazing. But just how amazing is it? Where does it fall along the pantheon of amazing Mario games? Is it game of the year over Zelda? These are the thoughts that kept bouncing around in my head as I played Mario’s latest adventure.

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SNES Classic Review: Pure Joy Preserved

Nintendo has done it again: they continue to shrink down my precious childhood memories and resell them to me. Perspectives will vary on this hardware, whether there’s justifiable value, what the point is when there’s a number of ways to play these games, and if the supply shortage is manufactured or just poorly planned. I am sure for every person out there that raves about this $79.99 bundle of 16-bit classics there’s somebody else who is jaded on the whole thing. Yes you can emulate these games, yes there are other systems out there that already do this but with more titles, and yes you can still buy working SNES systems and play the real deal. Instead of weighing too heavily into that, I’ll focus on what these games did for me when I first played them and why I believe they’re important to preserve— in whatever way you see fit.

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SteamWorld Dig 2 Review: Hollow Fun

Real Talk By: Zombie Zac

In SteamWorld Dig 2, developer Image & Form have managed to refine its unique blend of free-form mining and quirky rpg action while also walking back on some good design decisions from the first game. Right away we are reintroduced to Dorothy, a steampunk robot (who was an ally in the first game) and through boring text bubbles the goal of rescuing Rusty is explained. Yes, the characters talking back and forth are presented in little text bubbles and no I didn’t find it charming like most Nintendo games— I mashed through them trying to not lose my excitement. Rusty, the original protagonist (who went missing at the end of SteamWorld Dig), now looms large over the adventure. In fact, Rusty was a cooler character than Dorothy— not that it matters much— but right off the bat, I was kind of ‘meh’ about playing as her. Needless to say, I like the game but I have some issues with it. Let’s dig a little deeper (I’m sorry, but not sorry).

Continue reading “SteamWorld Dig 2 Review: Hollow Fun”