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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
Cadash (Genesis)

Cadash review (GEN)

Reviewed on December 19, 2003

Beyond that, you may speak to dull-witted townspeople who offer obvious clues, do not learn after major storyline changes, and who manage their cliched constitutional within five stride limitations. They’ve got nothing to do, and nowhere to go, and as is often the case, there are not enough buildings to accommodate all the day walkers when night comes--which of course, it never does.
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Battletoads/Double Dragon: The Ultimate Team (Genesis)

Battletoads/Double Dragon: The Ultimate Team review (GEN)

Reviewed on December 19, 2003

I picked up Battletoads/Double Dragon: The Ultimate Team for peanuts at a pawn shop and yet… I still had great expectations because of the hype that surrounded the game in my neck of the woods. (Insofar as there can be hype for a 16-bit action-fighting game that's almost ten years old.) To say that B/DD was a disappointment would be an understatement. Playing it at length left me both dejected and incredulous. Surely there was more to the highly touted team up phenomenon than this?
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Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle (Genesis)

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle review (GEN)

Reviewed on December 19, 2003

Alex Kidd got a raw deal. He’s got huge ears -- but he managed to overcome them and retain some semblance of the cuteness that was necessary to keep his job as Sega Master System mascot. His first adventure, Alex Kidd in Miracle World, was brilliant, and solidified his role of superstar. But Alex quickly fell from grace as an overly simplistic, unrelated sequel followed his fledgling foray into 2D platformer cuteness. Things went from bad to worse for the Kidd faithful, when the horrid Alex Kidd in Hi-Tech World made its way to store shelves. And stayed there. A BMX spin-off racing game put the youngster to further shame, so it’s a wonder he escaped the pitfalls of drug abuse, alcoholism and clinical depression, all afflictions that embrace so many child stars in a tenacious grip of despair.
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Silent Debuggers (TurboGrafx-16)

Silent Debuggers review (TG16)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

Meet Leon. He’s your buddy, your leader, your home base. He’s also dead cool - he wears dark glasses indoors and rolls up his sleeves like a middle finger extended to the chilly corridors where he must do his tireless, one-handed work (no, typing on the computer!). Be just half the man Leon is, and play Silent Debuggers. Better still, be a smarter man, and don’t.
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Tiger Road (TurboGrafx-16)

Tiger Road review (TG16)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

Perhaps it's the simplicity of the gameplay that draws me in. You control a little bald man, Lee Wong (who bears no relation to Bonk, in case you're wondering). Never mind what the glossy, airbrushed cover depicts; you are not Fu Man Chu, and the Rogaine is not working. So just leave it alone it Costanza - there's no denying the complete, stark baldness.
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Super Mario Bros. (NES)

Super Mario Bros. review (NES)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

Super Mario Brothers is instantly memorable, and over time, its appeal only grows. It isn’t as goofy as its oddball sequel, nor is it as wondrous as the magical third game in the series to appear for the system. But it has a wholly old school personality that will please gamers who can find enjoyment in simplicity. If this isn’t you, stay away from this game; you'll likely faint at the madness of boss area loops and palette swapped environs.
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Street Fighter II' Hyper Fighting (Arcade)

Street Fighter II' Hyper Fighting review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

Pick Ryu. Try to duck and use rapid short kicks to set up a throw and find the blue beast, Blanka, eating your face a la Hannibal (only our mutant might not know to have a Chianti at the ready). Worse yet, the Japanese fireballer might find himself being slapped about by an obese countryman named Honda, fresh out of the bath complete with sagging towel and hairpins. The move is called the 100-hand slap, though I’m sure a dizzied, vulnerable Ryu would not have had a chance to count them all.
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Thunder Fox (Arcade)

Thunder Fox review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

Rend soldier-types with semi-automatics and melt massive vehicles with flamethrowers. As early as level one there’s opportunity to cruise about in an army jeep and literally run terrorists down, or pick them off mercilessly with the vehicle’s gun if you’re the delicate type.
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Street Fighter II: The World Warrior (Arcade)

Street Fighter II: The World Warrior review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

For a moment, forgive creator Capcom's penchant for watering down the viability of their own games by releasing sequel after sequel, and see SFII for the head-to-head combat, genre-blazing pioneer that it is. Similar titles had come before it, such as its own predecessor, but none of them were like this. From a relevance standpoint, Capcom's fighter is no less than Super Mario Brothers with uppercuts.
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Ninja Gaiden (Arcade)

Ninja Gaiden review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 17, 2003

Tecmo made a Double Dragon type game, where the screen scrolled sideways and you could walk up into the background, and added some interesting spices. The result is the arcade version of Ninja Gaiden. Fans of the NES series will find things dreadfully amiss here, (where's the wall climbing, the swordplay, the magic?) and no doubt immediately consider this much different coin-op to be inferior. It is, actually. But not by as much as you'd think.
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Double Dragon II: The Revenge (Arcade)

Double Dragon II: The Revenge review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 16, 2003

How wildly our imaginations distort the truth! How apt they are to bend and twist our so-so memories of games into more favourable aspects so that we may think dearly of these adventures from our past, and finally, triumphantly, gloriously, return to them. More often than not, we shouldn’t. With games like Double Dragon 2, we should leave it at, ''wasn’t that a blast?'' Because with revisitation comes the dark face of reality unadorned by the kindly mixture of time, and time away.
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Crime City (Arcade)

Crime City review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 16, 2003

Remember Miami Vice? Or, failing that, the Lethal Weapon series? Well, from the two-word titles, right down to the main characters - the cool ADD-afflicted Caucasian guy, and by-the-book clean cut black guy - Crime City isn’t ashamed to imitate.
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Violence Fight (Arcade)

Violence Fight review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 15, 2003

There’s no game that encompasses the smell of pizza quite like Violence Fight. The aroma twists my head and lures me in. I cannot escape it; it is all-consuming. The game itself -- well, the quality was never in question. At best Violence Fight was always a comical time-waster to me, to us, who spent our lunch times feeding it quarters. Sure, it wasn't deserving of our attention, but it was there, and it was a video game. Better that we should have stayed indoors, inside the school-cum-penitentiary, and eat our packed lunches humbly hunched over at long nondescript benches? HA! How much sweeter it was to play a game this loaded with kitsch, loading our own stomachs full of sloppy pepperoni pizza, and enjoy a sun-filled walk back to our cells and classrooms.
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Superman (Arcade)

Superman review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 15, 2003

Taito used to rule the corner stores with an iron fist. And as such, all we kids who cut class to go to the corner stores to play video games thought Taito was the shit. Superman was a big name cog in the mighty Taito wheel that included other beat-em-up notables like Thunder Fox and Crime City. I think the latter two were my absolute favourites, and what’s nice is that in revisiting them, I found that I still enjoyed myself quite a bit beyond the tingly feeling in your stomach that nostalgia brings. Unfortunately, Superman doesn’t do any tingly things anymore. It just makes me yawn.
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Street Fighter (Arcade)

Street Fighter review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 15, 2003

That guy in the first player slot with red hair, jerking about as if frames of animation are missing, is Ryu. You might recognize him; his hair has gotten darker with age and he has since doffed the ruby red slippers he wears in this incarnation. The blonde guy occupying the spot opposite his Japanese counterpart is the barefooted Ken. He seems to have gotten prettier with age, which is a good thing, because he’s ugly as sin in this game. (Perhaps the Masters Corporation was on the cusp of multibillion dollar success, allowing young Ken to later go under the knife.) These are the only two characters you can select from.
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Snow Bros. (Arcade)

Snow Bros. review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 15, 2003

Nick and Tom are snowmen. They wear little hats on the backs of their heads, and are dressed down, trailer park style in overalls, with no shirts. The two always smiling wonders have a daunting task on their plates - no less than 50 levels of one-screen-at-a-time action demands conquering, and the monsters patrolling each one-level screen or 'floor', have only one mission in life, and that's snowman homicide.
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R-Type Leo (Arcade)

R-Type Leo review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 15, 2003

When you play the first few levels, your hardened fan’s heart will melt with the realization that this is the sort of simple genius that makes for excellent shooting, and is deserving of its own sequel, or series. Under another moniker, Leo may have flourished, but it found itself in limbo during the shooter supply and demand pipeline between IREM and their fans. An excellent game they got - the game they wanted, they did not.
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Rezon (Arcade)

Rezon review (ARC)

Reviewed on December 15, 2003

The people at Alhummer were some evil, sadistic sons of bitches. I can’t stress this enough. They weren’t so creative, but they were cold and calculating. Consider this: they took Irem’s arcade, horizontal shooter hit, R-Type, and absolutely, positively ripped it off. But that was only the beginning. I mean, we’ve seen R-Type clones before. But Rezon takes the cloning process to a whole other level.
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Magician Lord (NeoGeo)

Magician Lord review (NEO)

Reviewed on December 14, 2003

Begin as blue-clad Elta in the Dale of Evil Gods, and descend the very rungs of the ladder of hell to recover the Eight Books of Wisdom from the God of Destruction, Az Atorse. Magician Lord is dead serious, and if you don't believe me, simply witness the names of places and enemies. Travel the Corridor Leading to Hell and wreak havoc on the parapets of the Castle of Devils, taking on guardians like Beautiful Assassin, and bosses like Hell's Creation (the guardians guard the bosses lairs) on the fiery eight-stage path to the final showdown.
Masters's avatar
Pulstar (NeoGeo)

Pulstar review (NEO)

Reviewed on December 14, 2003

The legend goes this way: a handful of surly IREM expatriates fled the unimaginative rut they were in to explore greener pastures. They were unhappy with the way R-Type II turned out - it was simply more of the same. They wanted to up the ante, and create their vision of a true follow up to the perennial quarter-muncher. A sort of Super R-Type, to borrow a name. That game is Pulstar.
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