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Review Archives (Staff Reviews)

You are currently looking through staff 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
Verytex (Genesis)

Verytex review (GEN)

Reviewed on February 10, 2004

Area three takes us back 'outdoors', over Earth perhaps, high enough to skip through the clouds, but low enough to witness clearly the wake of alien conquest. Surely this 'ravaged metropolis' scene is shooter cliché, but decent execution of it never ceases to bring some degree of profound humanity to any blastathon. Regrettably, the crumbling buildings here are nondescript and repetitive, like the houses that whiz by seen through Fred Flintstones' windows as he runs through his own home.
Masters's avatar
XDR: X-Dazedly-Ray (Genesis)

XDR: X-Dazedly-Ray review (GEN)

Reviewed on February 02, 2004

XDR stands for X-Dazedly-Ray. I couldn't have made that up if I tried. I mean, dazedly? What the hell is that all about? And I love how designers Unipac hyphenated the parts, as if that makes the whole somehow make sense. They would have done better to allow the three letters to keep their mystery! That would have afforded us the opportunity to discuss the possibility of the name's origin in clandestine instant messenger chatrooms, or else on shadowy, cultish internet boards dedicated to talking up bad shooters based solely on their obscurity! But Unipac ruined it for us.
Masters's avatar
Activision Anthology (PlayStation 2)

Activision Anthology review (PS2)

Reviewed on January 31, 2004

Activision was kind enough to include scans of original instruction manuals, and it's fun to see the lame covers that decorated these early classics, if you're not lucky enough to own them yourself. Not only that, but I guess back in the day there were patches you could earn for good gameplay. Those are included here, too, and you can unlock them the same as always: by kicking butt and taking names.
honestgamer's avatar
WarioWare, Inc: Mega Microgame$! (Game Boy Advance)

WarioWare, Inc: Mega Microgame$! review (GBA)

Reviewed on January 30, 2004

If there's one flaw in the whole presentation, it's that sometimes the games begin so quickly, you don't really have time to react to your surroundings. You'll start to mess up more than you would if you had time to get your bearings. Of course, the frantic pace throughout is the reward for putting up with this apparent lack of polish, and it overwhelms any general objections one might have to the game as a whole.
honestgamer's avatar
Bushido Blade (PlayStation)

Bushido Blade review (PSX)

Reviewed on January 30, 2004

Imagine two swordsmen facing each other across the moonlit pagoda courtyard. The older man holds his blade steady in a frontal kendo stance, and the younger brandishes a sabre above his head. As the silence of the night punctuates the tension, the brash youngster charges headfirst at the wizened master. A single strike, a single clatter of steel, and both men fall face-first to the ground, dead.
zigfried's avatar
Akumajou Dracula X: Chi no Rondo (Turbografx-CD)

Akumajou Dracula X: Chi no Rondo review (TGCD)

Reviewed on January 24, 2004

Just watching someone play through a level, PC-Engine Dracula X looks damned good, as any Castlevania would, but might not appear to be the holy grail of gaming as some have hyped it. Spend one night with Dracula X — one night exploring and re-visiting old friends, and the whole Castlevania world changes.
zigfried's avatar
Dead or Alive 3 (Xbox)

Dead or Alive 3 review (XBX)

Reviewed on January 22, 2004

It's true that only a superhuman could endure brainbusters, dragon's palms, and ten-story drops from skyscraping towers (breaking a few neon signs in the process, no less). But, beyond the beastly stamina, this game sets a benchmark for realistic — even impeccable — attention to form, timing, and improvisation. And that's what real fighting is about.
zigfried's avatar
Tetris (Game Boy)

Tetris review (GB)

Reviewed on January 21, 2004

To summarize the Tetris experience is to quote Maynard James Keenan of the great rock band Tool -- as I am often wont to do: I know the pieces fit!
Masters's avatar
Sexy Parodius (Saturn)

Sexy Parodius review (SAT)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

The "bad" endings for each level are very bad. While a good ending might reveal a picture of sexy women in suggestive poses, the "YOU SUCK!" ending might show your character crying or, even worse, a 70-year-old hag in the nude. GROSS! That's certainly powerful motivation to practice hard and improve your character's techniques.
zigfried's avatar
Earnest Evans (Sega CD)

Earnest Evans review (SCD)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

Vampire bats EXPLODE in waves of blue. Giant naked earthworms stroke the hero to death. Priests hurl Kris daggers across the screen, ceremonial knives whose length put even Shaq to shame. The designers even incorporated the best part of Gradius — that's right, there are MOAI HEADS in this game!
zigfried's avatar
Lords of Thunder (Sega CD)

Lords of Thunder review (SCD)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

With stylish (if less-than-stellar) graphics, solid and smooth gameplay, variety within each level, and throngs of demonic enemies, Lords of Thunder stands tall as one of The Great Shooters. Definitely worth owning.
zigfried's avatar
Super Castlevania IV (SNES)

Super Castlevania IV review (SNES)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

The game exhibits useless imagination from the very beginning, with two-tiered levels (walk through a gate and traverse the background — pass back through the gate and you're in the foreground again) and new enemies such as a skeletal knight riding atop a skeletal horse. This cart's got some serious style. Too bad it's so damn ugly.
zigfried's avatar
Final Zone II (Turbografx-CD)

Final Zone II review (TGCD)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

The hilariously incomprehensible cinematics and the ill-fitting CD music bring the game down. Yes, thanks to the extra space afforded by the CD medium, this game is actually worse than if it had been a TurboChip! Pulling off such a feat is truly revolutionary.
zigfried's avatar
Gate of Thunder (Turbografx-CD)

Gate of Thunder review (TGCD)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

From the beginning assault upon a planet-hovering dreadnought to the final encounter in the depths of the beautiful Dark City, Gate of Thunder exhibits stylish intensity, intelligence of design, and a well-rounded sense of quality.
zigfried's avatar
Blazing Lazers (TurboGrafx-16)

Blazing Lazers review (TG16)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

This particular game falls firmly into the "overhead space shooter" genre, and smooth control combined with a fairly intriguing powerup system set it firmly at the top of the heap. It was the fastest shooter — vertical or horizontal — that the world had seen to that point, trouncing even Thunder Force 2 on the "superior" Genesis system.
zigfried's avatar
The Legendary Axe (TurboGrafx-16)

The Legendary Axe review (TG16)

Reviewed on January 16, 2004

Since just walking through a jungle, cavern, or castle wouldn't be nearly exciting enough, Gogan found himself an axe. A REALLY BIG axe. He can't throw it like Simon Belmont, he can't use it as a boomerang (Lycos of Shape Shifter), and he can't summon magical thunderstorms from it (Gilius of Golden Axe). But Gogan can SWING that axe!
zigfried's avatar
Golden Axe (Genesis)

Golden Axe review (GEN)

Reviewed on January 14, 2004

It seems as if some nefarious evildoing knave by the name of Death Adder (how corny is THAT name) has stolen a Golden Axe. The Golden Axe isn't a weapon you get to use or anything, it's just the sacred artifact that needs rescuing, in place of your girlfriend or sensei. As such, it's rather difficult to care about your quest. I mean, if my girl was kidnapped, I'd be quite riled up and ready to choke a few throats, but the disappearance of a kitchen knife or toolshed mainstay doesn't get me going.
Masters's avatar
Gaiares (Genesis)

Gaiares review (GEN)

Reviewed on January 14, 2004

I have seen evidence of reviews, ‘professional’ or otherwise, where the reviewer seems not to have been able to get into the belly of the game, and writes of early passages in an attempt to skirt the issue of his superficial foray. It probably works, because many fans who own the game haven’t seen the horizons beyond level four either.
Masters's avatar
Alone in the Dark 2 (PC)

Alone in the Dark 2 review (PC)

Reviewed on January 14, 2004

AITD2’s Carnby is the hardest individual you’ll come across. He’ll fight off ghouls, ghosts, and pirates dressed as gangsters (stop hunting for a typo, it’s true) with Tommy guns, a derringer, a sword stick, frying pan, battledore or his bare hands. Consider his attitude: he knows going in that there will be thugs everywhere on the property, to thwart his rescue attempt. But he still chooses to bring only his trusty six-shot revolver, and nothing else! No ammunition for it, save what is in the chamber. Yes indeed, Edward Carnby is as tough as they come, and that means you had better be as well.
Masters's avatar
Alone in the Dark (PC)

Alone in the Dark review (PC)

Reviewed on January 14, 2004

AITD is far more fun to play than the flashy and fleshy games it has spawned over the years. The Resident Evils, the Silent Hills, and even the new incarnation of Carnby's adventures, all fall short of the fun and fear factors that the original manages to evoke.
Masters's avatar

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