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Review Archives (Reader Reviews)

You are currently looking through reader reviews for games that are available on every platform the site currently covers. Below, you will find reviews written by all eligible authors 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
Number Munchers (Apple II)

Number Munchers review (APP2)

Reviewed on July 06, 2009

Number Munchers (NM) had six cut-scenes; Pac-Man had only three, and they weren't nearly as funny. It's more exciting than some lousy flash cards or even chalkboard problem solving races, and it has high score lists, with names, for each sub-game. And it's more ambitious than its better-known peers, the Oregon Trail and Carmen Sandiego series. The latter, after several plays through, become veiled, randomized multiple-choice exams a notch above vocabulary baseball and other didacti...
aschultz's avatar
Ninja Gaiden II: The Dark Sword of Chaos (NES)

Ninja Gaiden II: The Dark Sword of Chaos review (NES)

Reviewed on July 06, 2009

Reader, I have played “Ninja Gaiden II”, and now I’m here to warn you before it’s too late. Before writing this review, I commented that this game was better than its predecessor, the execrable “Ninja Gaiden I”. I was under much pressure, defending my review from people who said I didn’t devote enough sentences to that game’s story. This game has a story too, told through such dialogue as “What’s going?”, “Who are you?”, “What the…” and my personal favorite “You have to hurry!” The villain is a ...
joseph_valencia's avatar
BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger (PlayStation 3)

BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger review (PS3)

Reviewed on July 06, 2009

Ragna the Bloodedge has a problem. He’s just arrived in town, but they’re already after him. Everyone. Soldiers, vigilantes, and even a few heroes. You can’t really blame them, though. When you’re systematically wiping out the government - especially a dictatorship as corrupt as the Librarium - things aren’t going to be easy. Considering how much destruction and death he’s caused, it’s no wonder there’s such a huge bounty on him. He can handle the stares and terrified gasps from the common folk,...
disco's avatar
Ninja Gaiden (NES)

Ninja Gaiden review (NES)

Reviewed on July 04, 2009

You have to wonder why, in a game like “Ninja Gaiden”, a collision with a small bird can send a grown man flying. This is one of many considerations I made in the act of playing this game. Another one: if you’re fighting on the side of justice, why is everything out to get you? Your character, Ryu Hayabusa, is attacked from all sides, by all manner of creature, be it man or animal. I can understand man, but why the animals? I don’t think sparrows and hawks are that territorial. They can’t have a...
joseph_valencia's avatar
Back to the Future II & III (NES)

Back to the Future II & III review (NES)

Reviewed on July 04, 2009

I’ve been playing “Back to the Future II & III” for nearly two decades. The first time I played it was at the house of my mom’s friend, on her son’s Nintendo console. I couldn’t figure it out back then. Time passed, then came emulation. I was playing a lot of old games that I found were easier than I remembered, because I was older, smarter, more skilled. “Gee, why don’t I revisit that funky ‘Back to the Future’ game,” I thought. Into my computer the file was downloaded. I loaded up the emulator...
joseph_valencia's avatar
Back to the Future (NES)

Back to the Future review (NES)

Reviewed on July 03, 2009

Maybe I’m getting softer, nostalgic, crazier…I don’t know what, but “Back to the Future” for the NES isn’t as bad as I remember it. Perusing my old review from a few years ago, one would get the impression that this game is AIDS.
joseph_valencia's avatar
Power Soukoban (SNES)

Power Soukoban review (SNES)

Reviewed on July 03, 2009

Soukoban, though ported to many platforms, is really a better AI problem or programming exercise than a game. It's simple: push boxes in warehouse onto target squares, no diagonal moves please. For full game, repeat two hundred levels, expanding floor and number of boxes. Unfortunately, its faults are as simple: for nontrivial levels, the a-ha moment pales by the drudge work ahead. Ports that rehash levels with jazzier graphics or let you undo moves can't fully hide this. Power Soukoban t...
aschultz's avatar
Gremlins 2: The New Batch (NES)

Gremlins 2: The New Batch review (NES)

Reviewed on July 03, 2009

“Gremlins 2” isn’t exactly “Contra”, but it’s a fairly enjoyable video game, which is more than I can say about a lot of other movie-inspired games. On a scale of movie games, “Ghostbusters” for the NES being the worst and Sega’s “Aladdin” being the best, I’d say “Gremlins 2” ranks above Nintendo’s “Batman” but doesn’t quite stack up to “New Ghostbusters II”. It’s well above mediocrity but a few notches below genius, finding a comfortable niche in the realm of “just plain good”.
joseph_valencia's avatar
Mega Man 9 (Xbox 360)

Mega Man 9 review (X360)

Reviewed on July 02, 2009

The “Mega Man” franchise has had a lot of highlights. Among the best are the definitive trials of “Mega Man II”, the polished action of “Mega Man IV”, the secrets and Easter eggs of “Mega Man VII”, and the whimsical visuals of “Mega Man 8”. At worst the franchise has delivered disposable fun, as in the fifth and sixth installments, but at its very best “Mega Man” has demonstrated invention like no other game.
joseph_valencia's avatar
Knytt Stories (PC)

Knytt Stories review (PC)

Reviewed on July 02, 2009

Knytt Stories is a little hard to define because it's not technically a game. In actuality, it's a custom made level editor built by freeware genius Nifflas, the guy behind Within a Deep Forest and the original Knytt. He then used that level editor to build a simple story about a girl named Juni, prefacing it with the following:
dragoon_of_infinity's avatar
Metroid Fusion (Game Boy Advance)

Metroid Fusion review (GBA)

Reviewed on July 02, 2009

Ambivalent as I am about Metroid Fusion, Nintendo deserves credit for putting in something fresh. Designing the same old confusing labyrinths filled with hostile wildlife without changing a thing would have been a mistake, and even as the first new entry in the series for almost a decade, the game would have been an enjoyable letdown if it was just a retread. If all you want to do is emulate the Super Nintendo game, there are programs for that.
mardraum's avatar
Bujingai: The Forsaken City (PlayStation 2)

Bujingai: The Forsaken City review (PS2)

Reviewed on July 02, 2009

Bujingai is about Gackt, the androgynous Japanese pop star. But since this is a pre-Guitar Hero-era game, musician was not yet thought to be a viable game role, so instead you play as Gackt, the androgynous, immortal Chinese sword master. He has a different name in the game, but why bother with the pretense? This is Gackt merchandise, an arbitrary cash-in on his popularity in Japan. Some misguided individual in publishing must have been blown away by all the fancy, dancing swordpla...
radicaldreamer's avatar
Esper Dream (Famicom Disk System)

Esper Dream review (FDS)

Reviewed on July 02, 2009

Esper Dream is a top-down RPG almost as captivating as someone blabbering about last night's dream thinks he is, until it inexplicably tries to get gritty. You play an Esper, a child who can enter the books he reads. Apparently you're a prolific reader, as your quest for the vanished mayor's daughter spans five different worlds. The starting town, which connects to them via grey houses, offers the usual cryptic hints about special items and shops with unaffordable arms. It is conventional...
aschultz's avatar
LittleBigPlanet (PlayStation 3)

LittleBigPlanet review (PS3)

Reviewed on July 02, 2009

LittleBigPlanet’s appearance and demeanor, right down to its voiceover narration by Stephen Fry, are so friendly and inviting that you’d half expect the game to be a product of Pixar itself. The levels, seemingly constructed out of found materials and building blocks, look as though they’re set in the confines of a toy box, and the quirky, episodic nature of the plots accompanying them give the impression that the adventure is unfolding within a child’s imagination. It’s only appropriate ...
Suskie's avatar
Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi (Genesis)

Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi review (GEN)

Reviewed on July 01, 2009

This is “Shadow Dancer: The Secret of Shinobi”, and you’re probably wondering what Shinobi’s big secret is. I know it, so I’ll tell you: the secret of Shinobi is that “Shadow Dancer” for the Sega Genesis is better than “Revenge of Shinobi” and “Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master”. This is the best kept secret in Sega history. For years, agents both in and outside the company have created the illusion that “Revenge of Shinobi” is somehow a classic and “Shadow Dancer” isn’t. The conspiracy fa...
joseph_valencia's avatar
Chrono Cross (PlayStation)

Chrono Cross review (PSX)

Reviewed on July 01, 2009

Once upon a time, a goblin appeared in my home and told me if I did not unlock all of Chrono Cross' numerous endings via hours and hours of awful gameplay, he would infect me with AIDS. I suffered neither fate. Because goblins do not exist.
Pyro's avatar
Lutter (Famicom Disk System)

Lutter review (FDS)

Reviewed on July 01, 2009

For those of us disappointed we're at the end of the road with obscure NES titles to discover and love, Famicom Disk System games like Lutter give us one more chance to discover something new. Lutter features basic RPG, maze and puzzle elements without dedicating itself too much to any genre or bogging itself down in controls: combat is repeated collision, the A button chooses puzzle items, and B allows for save-game or surrender. It's not especially difficult, but it's hardly stupid. And...
aschultz's avatar
Batman (NES)

Batman review (NES)

Reviewed on July 01, 2009

“Batman” starts off as a fairly neat action-platformer. It’s inspired by the 1989 blockbuster of the same name, which in turn is based on the Batman comic books. Playing the game, you can see the impact of the movie’s gritty, gothic aesthetic. There are lots of dark colors, there are industrial influences in the environments, but for some reason Batman’s cape is blue. I think Sunsoft got that from the comics.
joseph_valencia's avatar
New Ghostbusters II (NES)

New Ghostbusters II review (NES)

Reviewed on July 01, 2009

A couple of years ago, I reviewed “New Ghostbusters II” and gave it either an eight or nine out of ten. Now it’s 2009, the 25th anniversary of the first “Ghostbusters” movie. A new game based on the franchise has been released for every major platform, which I haven’t played yet. Its guiding vision was to achieve what “New Ghostbusters II” already had nearly two decades ago: create the ultimate game to the “Ghostbusters” movies.
joseph_valencia's avatar
BioShock (PlayStation 3)

BioShock review (PS3)

Reviewed on June 30, 2009

First off, before I even begin this review, I want you to go into your game settings and select the “turn off Vita-chambers” option, also known as the “make game not broken” option. I’m serious. If you own a PS3 you’ve been given this great gift so don’t waste it. Vita-chambers are the worst idea to hit a first person shooter since X-Box live. The ability to respawn immediately after death with full life at first glance seems like a decent way to keep the flow of a game going, much in the sa...
zippdementia's avatar

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