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Review Archives (All Reviews)

You are currently looking through all reviews for games that are available on every platform the site currently covers. Below, you will find reviews written by honestgamer and sorted according to date of submission, with the newest content displaying first. As many as 20 results will display per page. If you would like to try a search with different parameters, specify them below and submit a new search.

Available Reviews
Cake Mania: In the Mix! (Wii)

Cake Mania: In the Mix! review (WII)

Reviewed on January 20, 2009

Momentum is important in Cake Mania: In the Mix, paramount even. If you can't maintain it along with a sense of working rhythm, the game will unapologetically eat you for lunch. It's quite humbling, really. On the face of things, this is a game about a hot little baker girl (or boy, or... grandpa?) dashing around to fill orders for cakes. Dig a little deeper, though, and it's a demanding time management sim that just doesn't quit.
Safecracker: The Ultimate Puzzle Adventure (Wii)

Safecracker: The Ultimate Puzzle Adventure review (WII)

Reviewed on January 19, 2009

Most of the time you play, you'll probably be thinking that you must have missed something. Sometimes the hero will muse about a possible solution and point you in the right direction, but typically that only happens once you've finally figured it out for yourself. Even then, he doesn't always have anything worthwhile to say. Suggesting that a safe looks like cipher puzzles from the Civil War is all well and good, but what if you have no idea what that even means? The game simply demands too much of the casual gamer that it is likely to attract.
Castlevania: Judgment (Wii)

Castlevania: Judgment review (WII)

Reviewed on January 15, 2009

Why would someone bother mastering the art of knocking someone into the air, canceling out of a ground-based combo to follow-up with an air attack and then come down with a crushing to finish things off when just waving the Wii Remote around in circles while holding the 'B' button proves equally effective? This game was made for old-fashioned button mashers.
Star Ocean: First Departure (PSP)

Star Ocean: First Departure review (PSP)

Reviewed on December 01, 2008

It's all quite basic and it works smoothly without any noteworthy hitches except the obvious one: it gets repetitive. By the time you reach the end of the game, you'll probably have faced more than 800 different enemy groups, with most battles won simply by spamming your basic sword strokes and perhaps the same projectile spell. You can experiment with numerous variations if you like, but there's no incentive to do so... especially since almost any rival can be overcome simply by level grinding (though frankly, that's seldom even necessary).
Bejeweled Twist (PC)

Bejeweled Twist review (PC)

Reviewed on November 26, 2008

As always, the basic goal is to clear three panels adjacent panels of a particular color: red, yellow, blue, green, white, orange or purple. Previously this was accomplished by moving a single piece through the grid, swapping out as you went. That mechanic is gone now. Instead, you move a circular patch over the field, position it wherever you think is best, then set a 'twist' into motion. This will cause the four pieces caught within that patch to turn clockwise a single quarter of a rotation. At that point, three or more connected panels will vanish and possibly even set a chain reaction in motion (if you were particularly clever).
Agatha Christie: Peril at End House (PC)

Agatha Christie: Peril at End House review (PC)

Reviewed on November 25, 2008

Peril at End House is another of those “search and find” experiences so reminiscent of the puzzles in old issues of Highlights for Children. You're presented with a list of objects, then must locate them by carefully poring over a cluttered photograph. Within the context of this particular game, that simple approach actually works fairly well. It's easy to imagine a stereotypical sleuth doing the same thing with a magnifying glass in hand.
Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe (PlayStation 3)

Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe review (PS3)

Reviewed on November 24, 2008

The result is something that feels more like an old-fashioned fighter and less like a grim SoulCalibur clone with too many characters. Instead of a cluttered roster, you'll be asked to choose from the distinct likes of Kano, Baraka, Sonya and Jax. Each utilizes vaguely familiar moves that haven't really been prominent in the series for quite some time. Seeing them executed regularly here is enough to bring a nostalgic tear to the eye. More importantly, it adds to the impact of seeing Sub-Zero square off against Batman. Such a conflict would feel like nothing more than a cosplay convention if they were hauling around generic swords, but instead you'll see them battle it out in exactly the manner you'd expect.
Cooking Mama: World Kitchen (Wii)

Cooking Mama: World Kitchen review (WII)

Reviewed on November 23, 2008

The real problem is a lack of consistency. A horizontal arrow might mean just a quick little shuffle for one task, while in another situation a huge sweep is mandatory. You just never know until you've tried a few times and gotten the hang of that individual process. The amount of trial-and-error here is staggering and each new complication is cause for trepidation rather than excitement. You can eventually overcome such obstacles, but the hassle involved isn't pleasant at all. This is supposed to be fun, not a chore!
Metal Slug 7 (DS)

Metal Slug 7 review (DS)

Reviewed on November 19, 2008

That's when you realize that something has changed. Somewhere between the first two dull stages and the end of the third frenetic round, you started having fun. Lots of it. Somewhere during that series of jumps and explosions and the escape from the steel ball and slimy worms, the pieces fell into place and Metal Slug 7 stopped feeling like a pale imitation of past glories. The “been there, done that” haze dissipated and suddenly you care.
Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure (DS)

Rhapsody: A Musical Adventure review (DS)

Reviewed on November 18, 2008

I'm all for that old school format where enemies attack you that you can't even see, but Rhapsody takes that to an irritating extreme. Dungeons are fairly straight-forward in their design (with a map in the top screen that lets you keep track of where you are), but there's still a lot of wandering that must be done if you want to gather assorted items and puppets. Every few steps, it seems like you'll face an attack. The result is that you won't want to explore. You'll wish you had a map that pointed the way to the absolute shortest route, just because every dead end you encounter means you fought two or three unnecessary battles.
The King of Fighters Collection: The Orochi Saga (PlayStation 2)

The King of Fighters Collection: The Orochi Saga review (PS2)

Reviewed on November 16, 2008

In short, The King of Fighters '98: The Slugfest really does feel like a complete game that could have stood alone—precisely as you see it here—and even fetched a similar price. It's the reason that you might feel good about reaching for your wallet. Unless you're a history buff, unless you care to learn more about each character featured in the series and his or her evolution over the years... you won't spend much time with any but this final selection.
Celebrity Sports Showdown (Wii)

Celebrity Sports Showdown review (WII)

Reviewed on November 12, 2008

As for the actual celebrity roster, it doesn't do the game any favors. About half of them are washed-up athletes that you may or may not recognize, while the other half are generally successful pop and country artists. You've seen better line-ups gathered for VH1 specials making fun of stupid criminals and the 80s. It's so underwhelming that to add some flair, the developers even threw in 'wannabe' celebrities such as Steve (he looks kind of like Elton John with a potbelly hanging out of an Elvis-style jumpsuit), Chad (goth all the way) and Kylie (some girl who runs around in a bunny suit).
Fable II (Xbox 360)

Fable II review (X360)

Reviewed on November 11, 2008

One of the most impressive evolutions in Fable II is the way it holds your hand in a non-intrusive manner. For years, games have been including mini-maps in the lower corner of the screen so that you can check at a glance where you are in your environment. Here, there's none of that... and the game is actually better because of it! No longer do you have to consult a semi-transparent overlay to see where the next exit lies. You can still pause the game and bring up a cumbersome—and sometimes useful—map if that's what you want, but often there's no reason.
The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon (Xbox 360)

The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon review (X360)

Reviewed on November 11, 2008

To make matters worse, sometimes you aren't provided with enough information to solve puzzles even when you're looking right at the various components of a given solution. Though each challenge you face is logical and you'll find yourself saying “Aha!” at several points throughout the game, the many situations where you just don't know what to do can be exasperating.
Namco Museum: Virtual Arcade (Xbox 360)

Namco Museum: Virtual Arcade review (X360)

Reviewed on November 10, 2008

Namco truly was at the top of its game when the selections here were originally produced. The result for today's retro gamer is a backlog that includes familiar classics such as Mappy, Pac-Mania, Xevious and Pole Position. Many of those have been offered numerous times in past compilations, so some extra treasures have been added to the mix. Rally-X, King & Balloon, Dragon Buster and The Tower of Druaga are all examples of quality games that you may have heard of but never tried for yourself. Now you can.
The Sims 2: Apartment Life (PC)

The Sims 2: Apartment Life review (PC)

Reviewed on November 05, 2008

Once you're happily—or unhappily, if art imitates life—dwelling within your humble abode, the differences don't necessarily stop. If you've moved into someone's apartment, they're not going to look kindly on you knocking down walls or making major renovations, so put such thoughts out of your head. Instead, you can focus on the usual things that have for so long been a staple of the series: interior decorating.
Tornado (DS)

Tornado review (DS)

Reviewed on October 31, 2008

Even when the game isn't tricking you with false level objectives, it can be a drag to play. Simply moving around the screen is frustrating. You have to start by scribbling in circles to build up your meter. Then you can just draw the general route you want to take, but as you heft the landscape into the air, you'll have to occasionally renew your energy lest you turn back into a harmless rodent. When you come up against enemies or large buildings, you actually need to navigate and recharge simultaneously. Furiously scribbling circles in an approximate direction of course means that accuracy is difficult, and you're likely to bounce off objects that are too large for you, making things even more frustrating.
NBA Live 09 (Xbox 360)

NBA Live 09 review (X360)

Reviewed on October 29, 2008

One thing I especially like about NBA Live 09 is that even without half-court jams and cries of “He's on fire!”, play seldom feels monotonous. Past basketball games tended to make me thankful for the option to limit the length of each quarter just so that my interest wouldn't subside. Here, I actually like 12-minute quarters (though shorter ones are available too, if that's preferred). Not only does it feel more like I'm attending and participating in an actual broadcast event, but it allows me to really care about every second of the game's progression.
BioShock (PlayStation 3)

BioShock review (PS3)

Reviewed on October 28, 2008

What once seemed perfect now more closely resembles a haunted amusement park. Water sprays through fissures in the transparent barrier encasing the city. Hallways are filled with rubble. Signs advertising a perfect future hang crookedly and flash sporadically as sparks shower the cracked asphalt below. The laughter of men, women and children has faded away, replaced by cheery classical music that blends oddly with the screams of the dying and the barely living. Vitality once formed the heart of the city. Now it's all but gone.
Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen (DS)

Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen review (DS)

Reviewed on October 22, 2008

Dragon Quest IV was always about those five stories and they were always interesting, but never to the current extent. Maybe the old translation job was handled poorly or perhaps I was too young at the time to appreciate such things. Perhaps the graphics just weren't up to the task of communicating the required subtleties. Whatever the case, I never cared enough to wonder how the scraps of narrative all fit together. Imagine my surprise, then, when Chapters of the Chosen showed me that the story behind the scenes is actually quite compelling.

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