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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
OutRun (Arcade)

OutRun review (ARC)

Reviewed on November 12, 2010

Accompanied by those all-important accessories of the '80s – a cool pair of shades and a hot beach bunny – you too can climb behind the wheel of a cherry-hued Ferrari Testarossa and experience the simple pleasures of tearing through picturesque countryside at nearly 200 miles per hour.
sho's avatar
Medal of Honor (Xbox 360)

Medal of Honor review (X360)

Reviewed on November 10, 2010

I won’t pretend that I’ll not sink hours and hours of my time into online play, but it doesn’t stop the title from being only half of what it should be. I’m not about to ignore that.
EmP's avatar
Rock Band 3 (Xbox 360)

Rock Band 3 review (X360)

Reviewed on November 08, 2010

One of the biggest complaints about simulated rock has been that jamming with plastic instruments just isn’t the same as playing a real instrument. For me, that’s missing the point; these sorts of games have always been more about having pure and utter fun. But Harmonix has spent the last two years addressing this, and while the basic premise of Rock Band 3 has a familiar feel to it--play a bunch of songs until you become a superstar--it's also the most innovative and complete rhythm game yet.
Ben's avatar
Mafia II (Xbox 360)

Mafia II review (X360)

Reviewed on November 08, 2010

Mafia II is to sandbox games what staple guns are to cosmetic surgery: there’s a link there if you search hard enough, but it’s tenuous at best. Empire City, the ten square mile playground for 2K’s new gangster game, is completely open for exploration very early on. The big problem with this is there’s nowhere really to go.
EmP's avatar
Super Sprint (Arcade)

Super Sprint review (ARC)

Reviewed on November 07, 2010

The top of an outdated genre isn't a bad place to be. Super Sprint will always have a place in any respectable classic arcade. Give it a shot to see what the cranky old-timers used to play; I bet you'll have trouble walking away.
zigfried's avatar
Knights in the Nightmare (PSP)

Knights in the Nightmare review (PSP)

Reviewed on November 06, 2010

Once Knights starts, it’s a non-stop struggle that requires constant action in order to win. You don’t simply move your units into range before you can attack. For the most part, your soldiers remain stationary unless their attack leads them forward, while the enemies stalk the battlefield in a regimented pattern. The only freedom in movement you’re allowed is via the wisp, controlled by the analog stick. He can move anywhere on the field, to any corner of the screen, to execute your strategy.
True's avatar
Eschalon Book II (PC)

Eschalon Book II review (PC)

Reviewed on November 04, 2010

Eschalon Book II picks up right where the first left off, explaining enough as you go along so that you don’t need to have any prior experience with the series to get your full enjoyment out of it. Furthermore, all the qualities that led to the first game’s fantastic reception are back. Open exploration and non-linear storytelling enable you to complete quests at your leisure. Customizable character creation enables you to assign attribute and skill points however you wish. And an innumerable list of strategies and methods of play lay at your fingertips.
wolfqueen001's avatar
The 7th Saga (SNES)

The 7th Saga review (SNES)

Reviewed on November 03, 2010

Even on a system renowned for its expansive library of RPGs, successfully completing The 7th Saga is an unforgettable experience. Unfortunately this is solely due to its patently unfair difficulty, because the generic dungeons, incomprehensible abbreviations, and skeletal excuse for a plot would likely put everyone to sleep if all the random encounters weren't straight out of their darkest nightmares.
sho's avatar
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (PlayStation)

Castlevania: Symphony of the Night review (PSX)

Reviewed on October 31, 2010

Whether as a loving tribute to the series' glorious past or a striking declaration of its subsequent revival, Symphony of the Night will make any 2D enthusiast shed bloody tears of joy. Thematically a sequel to the equally legendary Rondo of Blood, this nocturne in the moonlight takes its predecessor's newfound emphasis on nonlinearity to an entirely new level – a seemingly preordained marriage to Super Metroid, now laden with haunting gothic atmosphere and a ridiculous amount of character growth for protagonist Alucard, the outwardly delicate but incredibly potent dhampir prince first introduced in Akumajou Densetsu.
sho's avatar
Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines (PC)

Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines review (PC)

Reviewed on October 30, 2010

It's seemingly impossible to so much as turn over a rock in Bloodlines without encountering more pasty-faced neck biters that you can shake a sharpened stake at, but there's otherwise very little about this game that sucks. These aren't the sorts of vampires who constantly whine about their lost humanity or take annoying teenage princesses to the prom, either; we're talking about hard-drinking and even harder-dying undead anarchists packing UZIs who'd just as soon rip your head off and use it to shoot hoops in the dirty, haunted streets of downtown Los Angeles, except that kind of thing always gets the elders' velvety cloaks in a bunch. Keeping up appearances in front of the cattle and all that; they have nuclear missiles instead of holy water and boomerangs these days.
sho's avatar
Shin Megami Tensei (SNES)

Shin Megami Tensei review (SNES)

Reviewed on October 29, 2010

For Kazuya, a perfectly ordinary Japanese youth, it had been a perfectly ordinary beginning to a perfectly ordinary day: having roused himself from slightly sticky dreams of men that are hung (from crucifixes) and sapphire-haired devil ladies proclaiming their eternal love, our hero spends his morning downloading the hottest apps off the local BBS (look it up) before heading out on an adventuresome quest for fresh milk. Then his mom gets eviscerated by a demon from the rather similarly torn bowels of the underworld, he accidentally transmogrifies the faithful family hound into Cerberus, and the world ends. It's at around that point that the day really starts to go downhill.
sho's avatar
Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers (PC)

Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers review (PC)

Reviewed on October 28, 2010

Whether in the role of silver-tongued conman or paranormal investigator, Gabriel Knight is definitely someone you'll want to know; his career might have begun just as the entire adventure genre was taking those first, faltering steps on its slow descent into irrelevance, but Sins of the Fathers masterfully demonstrates why Sierra On-Line once drove the computer industry.
sho's avatar
Haunted Casino (Saturn)

Haunted Casino review (SAT)

Reviewed on October 27, 2010

A typical match with one of the seven available dealers is divided into three separate rounds wherein she starts out in corsets and colorful gowns before being reduced to filmy, silken underthings that leave nothing to the imagination until they too are cast aside to reveal naught but cold, creamy flesh for the final battle. These garments are handed over to the very approving imp in exchange for heaving stacks of chips nearly as abundant as those newly revealed pleasure globes until at last your bankrupt beauty goes down with a hilariously inept video of the poor lass being sucked into a black hole, presumably in search of some pants.
sho's avatar
Splatterhouse 2 (Genesis)

Splatterhouse 2 review (GEN)

Reviewed on October 26, 2010

The controls are stiffer than one of its endless supply of corpses, and the average level is a short, uninspired advance from left to right punching identical hordes of muck-encrusted undead while occasionally hopping over a hole in the floor. But since our hero can only withstand a few hits before collapsing in a lumpy heap, it's all but required that you perfectly memorize all the enemy patterns through painstaking repetition until reaching the boss with full health. There's only one reason this cartridge wasn't totally lost to the shadows of mediocrity – it has enough gore to fill a swimming pool.
sho's avatar
Vampire Killer (MSX)

Vampire Killer review (MSX)

Reviewed on October 25, 2010

Released only a month after the original Famicom Disk game and sharing the same Japanese title of Akumajou Dracula, this MSX2 cartridge features nearly identical (but noticeably sharper) graphics, monsters, and music as its iconic console sibling. At a cursory glance it might even resemble a simple port, but this impression couldn't be more incorrect – Vampire Killer immediately stands out as a dramatic departure from the rest of the franchise even as its influence can be felt in Simon's Quest, Dracula X, and Symphony of the Night.
sho's avatar
Blue Lacuna (Mac)

Blue Lacuna review (MAC)

Reviewed on October 24, 2010

Don’t think that Blue Lacuna works simply because it doesn’t have graphics or a bunch of explosions, though. Not all Interactive Fiction can claim to have achieved what Blue Lacuna does. This isn’t some throwback to sensibilities that have long gone out of style. This isn’t typing “east, west, and open chest” in a meaningless dungeon romp with some comedy thrown in. This is serious writing. This is next generation programming. This is gaming that is inspirational and lasting.
zippdementia's avatar
X-Men (Arcade)

X-Men review (ARC)

Reviewed on October 24, 2010

Witness earthen bridges over lava fields lined with flame throwing hazards and enormous wasps that spew out a skull carved into a jungle cliff. Shotgun-toting Bonebreaker miniatures rove the inside of Magneto’s lair while stone statues carrying massive scythes animate deep in a ruin. While the dialog detracts from the production value – Magneto’s famous “Welcome to Die!” as he blasts apart a waterfall-side ledge just one egregious example – it is just as likely you find it kitschy as a fault. From crackling lightning in the backdrops to memorable scenes battling a crazed Nimrod as Kitty cowers bound behind an electromagnetic force field, the details go a long way in establishing the comic’s atmosphere.
Leroux's avatar
Tasty Planet: Back for Seconds (PC)

Tasty Planet: Back for Seconds review (PC)

Reviewed on October 24, 2010

There’s a cleverness in the level design that helps extend the game’s brief lifespan, given a further boost by a few differing game modes and a medal system awarded to players who complete stages in a quick time. Without become too abstract and critical, if the simplest question possible was asked of me -- did I enjoy my time with Tasty Planet: Back for Seconds, the simple answer would be yes.
EmP's avatar
Samurai Shodown Sen (Xbox 360)

Samurai Shodown Sen review (X360)

Reviewed on October 23, 2010

Samurai Shodown Sen is not an awful game. The only way it could be considered "awful" would be to ignore the barely playable fighters that have come out over the last twenty years. The characters perform expected actions whenever I press the buttons, and -- aside from plastic doll faces -- the graphics are well beyond "PlayStation 2 quality". I can say this with confidence because I've actually played PS2 games.
zigfried's avatar
Vanquish (Xbox 360)

Vanquish review (X360)

Reviewed on October 19, 2010

Vanquish keeps the player too busy for him to stop and wonder if maybe he's seen this all before. The developers have invested fully in the concept of the cover shooter while somehow mixing it with run-and-gun action. There's no shortage of places to hide, which is a good thing because the constant explosions and the presence of the aforementioned battle cruisers mean that often you have to keep moving as a barrage of missiles renders multiple forms of shelter quite useless. The need to constantly move about prevents the game's pace from ever moving at a crawl.
honestgamer's avatar

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