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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
Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter (Xbox 360)

Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter review (X360)

Reviewed on February 10, 2010

Though Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter is an exemplary title for those looking to satisfy their craving for golden age shooters, the pace is not suited for everyone (especially newcomers). It's a hardcore offering in an unbelievably simple package. The recreation here is so faithful that it's difficult not to recommend the game to everyone in spite of that hardcore bent, especially given the achievements and multi-player support. If you've never partied with Sam before, now is the best time to start. If you're the sort who plays both PC and Xbox 360 games alike, deny the urge to use mouse-and-keyboard controls and go with this version instead. It trumps Steam's offering by far.
MolotovCupcake's avatar
Hello Kitty Party (DS)

Hello Kitty Party review (DS)

Reviewed on February 10, 2010

Hello Kitty Party is a collection of twenty five mini-games featuring the wide cast of Sanrio’s cute-troop. Whoever your favorite Sanrio character is, whether it’s green Keroppi or the titular Hello Kitty, there’s a game that features them. Unfortunately, in this case it’s like having your favorite childhood characters feature in a sweat shop. The games are mindless and repetitive and require little to no participation on the player’s part except the ability to briefly touch a stylus to a screen.
zippdementia's avatar
The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces (Wii)

The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces review (WII)

Reviewed on February 08, 2010

For anyone who has viewed the movie, the mere existence of the game may seem puzzling. There, the grand war was merely a backdrop, a meaningless cycle that only highlighted the Kildren's wasted existence. Nevertheless, Project Aces has moved these hollow encounters to the forefront in The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces. The team behind the well-received Ace Combat series has created another game full of satisfying flight action, but they've subverted the thrust of the film's message in the process.
woodhouse's avatar
Silent Hill: Shattered Memories (PSP)

Silent Hill: Shattered Memories review (PSP)

Reviewed on February 08, 2010

The major failing of Shattered Memories is its predictability. The whole point of a survival horror game is to keep a player on his toes. The formula that the game establishes early on never undergoes much change or deviation, allowing the player to become too comfortable. Not having weapons or a combat system keeps the focus on atmosphere but it is a misused concept. Had the designers broken up the monotonous exploration of the environment with a few well-timed scares they could’ve captured the full potential of their innovation and delivered a game that was truly unique in the genre, instead of just being a quirky diversion.
zippdementia's avatar
Our House: Party! (Wii)

Our House: Party! review (WII)

Reviewed on February 08, 2010

What makes things even worse is that they are sandwiched between several load screens that are disguised to trick you into believing that they contain useful or exciting information. You'll soon learn better. Pre-game tutorials explain how you're supposed to proceed through the challenge at hand, but the examples on-screen have little in common with the diversions that actually follow. The result is that you're never prepared for what comes next until you've played the game frequently enough to figure things out on your own. Your first experience with any mode feels like trying to kiss a porcupine's butt in the dark.
honestgamer's avatar
Moero!! Downhill Night (PC)

Moero!! Downhill Night review (PC)

Reviewed on February 07, 2010

Here you're not racing against testosterone-fueled gearheads; you're going against girls whose only thrill in life is speed. There's just one catch. You don't get to drive.
woodhouse's avatar
Shadow of the Beast (Turbografx-CD)

Shadow of the Beast review (TGCD)

Reviewed on February 06, 2010

When I borrowed a Turbo Duo back in 1993, I cycled through over a dozen games in the span of two days. While most of those 48 hours became a blur, a few moments stood out; Shadow of the Beast's conceptually simple title screen was one. Grass gorgeously scrolls underneath the beast's feet as clouds pass overhead, and the quiet soundtrack — initially a simple series of bells — gradually becomes an epic showcase of strong percussion, evocative wind pipes, and resounding chimes. It's simple but inspired.
zigfried's avatar
Nancy Drew: Warnings at Waverly Academy (PC)

Nancy Drew: Warnings at Waverly Academy review (PC)

Reviewed on February 05, 2010

Perhaps the biggest problem isn't the limited nature of the building, though; it's the backtracking. When you first arrive, you'll make the rounds as you get acquainted with your new classmates. That takes a lot of time, since at first it can be easy to head down the wrong hallway and find yourself at a dead end. Once you know your way around, which may not happen until you've played for a few hours, you'll still find yourself wearing holes in the hallway carpet because you're covering the same ground so frequently. Instead of a resourceful sleuth, you'll feel like an errand girl.
honestgamer's avatar
Modern Warfare 2 (PlayStation 3)

Modern Warfare 2 review (PS3)

Reviewed on February 05, 2010

When it’s not trying to congratulate itself on the supposed brilliance of its subtext, Modern Warfare 2 remains one of the tightest titles on the market.
EmP's avatar
Polar Panic (Xbox 360)

Polar Panic review (X360)

Reviewed on February 03, 2010

With his home destroyed and family captured, this Ursus maritimus snuffs out Globoco, one life at a time. Sounds like the setup for a gruesome action adventure, but Polar Panic is actually an adorable puzzler. Murder may be the main goal, but the animated adversaries make sure it isn't morbid.
woodhouse's avatar
FIFA Soccer 10 (Xbox 360)

FIFA Soccer 10 review (X360)

Reviewed on February 03, 2010

The referee will even miss fouls, be inconsistent with bookings and red cards, and make incorrect calls of offside from time to time and, while that annoys the hell out of me when it doesn’t go my way, I can’t help but hugely appreciate the way EA have shoehorned an element of human error into computer-controlled official.
EmP's avatar
NBA Live 10 (PlayStation 3)

NBA Live 10 review (PS3)

Reviewed on February 03, 2010

The characters in this year's game move with more faithfulness to their real-life counterparts. The difference isn't huge, but it's there and it's just one of many tweaks that I absolutely appreciate. Other upgrades have also been made to things like the pick-and-roll control, opponent AI, blocking, dribbling, foul mechanics, rebounding, character models, sweat shading (you know you love it when the players glisten credibly), arenas, lighting and everything in between. I can confidently say that if you were to pinpoint every minor change, type up a comprehensive list and print it out on paper, you'd fill several pages.
honestgamer's avatar
No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle (Wii)

No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle review (WII)

Reviewed on February 02, 2010

Some have said No More Heroes is like nothing you've seen before. Unfortunately, fans can't say the same for its sequel. It often feels like a budget-priced, sugar-free facsimile of the original; less of a time investment, but ultimately less satisfying. That being said, I enjoyed Desperate Struggle enough to know that newcomers will be floored by its action and insanity.
zigfried's avatar
Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles - The Crystal Bearers (Wii)

Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles - The Crystal Bearers review (WII)

Reviewed on February 01, 2010

The biggest flaw facing those who give The Crystal Bearers a chance is the way that the game requires so much tedious backtracking. Though the world that you'll explore throughout your adventure is beautiful, it's relatively small. That should mean that you almost never get lost, but it turns out that the available map is a lot like a blond airhead: fun to look at but useless in a jam. With that being the case, you'll need to rely on signposts that pepper the various roadways.
honestgamer's avatar
Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment (Xbox 360)

Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment review (X360)

Reviewed on January 30, 2010

On one level, Flames of Judgment proudly lives up to the original's standard. This Live Arcade release did bring me back down memory lane a few times. The problem is that it didn't do so for very long. The average turn-based strategy game I've played seems to have about 25-35 main quest battles. Here, there's about 15 or so.
overdrive's avatar
Half-Minute Hero (PSP)

Half-Minute Hero review (PSP)

Reviewed on January 29, 2010

Told in a generational sort of manner that's reminiscent of a more expanded Dragon Quest V, the plot in Half-Minute Hero won't win any awards for narrative originality. It obviously isn't trying to, either. Instead, it has fun rushing players through a laundry list of RPG cliches. The rapid-fire nature of plot twists prevents every 'surprise' from growing tiresome, even when you saw it coming whole seconds ahead of time, because you're constantly moving to a new location or task.
honestgamer's avatar
Mass Effect 2 (Xbox 360)

Mass Effect 2 review (X360)

Reviewed on January 29, 2010

Defending Mass Effect has never been easy, since the game’s unpolished mechanics, cumbersome driving segments and barren, repetitive environments form a strong case against it. The case against it is so strong, in fact, that I often have questioned my own enthusiastic evaluation of the game. So thank you, BioWare. Thank you for taking all of the criticism to heart, for fixing nearly everything that was wrong with the first game and for giving me a sequel for which I no longer need to make excuses. Mass Effect 2 is as extraordinary as its predecessor was, but it no longer needs justification. It really is that good.
Suskie's avatar
Torchlight (PC)

Torchlight review (PC)

Reviewed on January 27, 2010

To its credit, Torchlight is much more than just a cash-in on our nostalgia. As much as it is an homage to its diabolic predecessor, Torchlight easily stands on its own as a game. Rather than using those familiar Diablo elements as a crutch, it takes those elements and gives them just enough of a twist to make them fresh again.
WilltheGreat's avatar
Bayonetta (Xbox 360)

Bayonetta review (X360)

Reviewed on January 24, 2010

The nimble and unusual lead character perfectly matches the fast-paced, responsive combat. Bayonetta features a blend of third-person melee and gunplay similar to Devil May Cry; sword slices are followed by pistol shots, although you're free to personalize your fighting style by attaching different weapons to each appendage. If you don't care for the sword-and-pistol combination, then use the whip to toss angels into the air, and blow them away with the Kilgore cannon!
zigfried's avatar
Death By Cube (Xbox 360)

Death By Cube review (X360)

Reviewed on January 24, 2010

You might call it a post-apocalyptic battlefield simulator, or a Geometry Wars clone or perhaps you'd even call it art. Certainly, the minimalist approach makes a case for that last descriptor. There's something beautiful about the simple way that the beautiful red oil splays across the screen, blood-like in its consistency. There's a subdued grace, too, as your robot glides over the desolate grid that makes up his world's landscape. There's even a certain emotional element driving his quest to set things right in a world he finds so different from the one that he once knew.
honestgamer's avatar

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