Title: Year in Review: 2009
Posted: February 01, 2010 (11:20 PM)
Why, may you ask, is someone who wrote only 8 reviews doing one of these now? The answer is 2 fold:
Firstly, my head hurts and I have nothing better to do for an hour before going to bed. It's too hard to focus on reading for school anyway, and I only managed to read one lousy chapter for one class. Oh well.
Secondly, let's just say Will inspired me, I guess. I wasn't going to bother this year since I only wrote eight, which is why I hadn't done it by now, but I figured, why the hell not.
With that said, I don't expect much from myself this year, either, with how busy I am, but if I can beat last year, I'll be happy.
God of War January 27
I'm quite pleased with how this turned out. It's probably one of my better reviews all year, which might not be saying much, but still. I believe I placed fifth in the individual line up of Challange IV with this, and it also helped lead my team to second place. Probably one of the best contest results I've ever had.
Zombies Ate My Neighbors March, 21
Entered this in the Magical Mystery Tournament that True and Felix conjured up. It was an awesome idea to say the least. Anyway, the review didn't turn out as well as I would have liked, especially considering I had pretty much free reign to review whatever I wanted. (Well, that technically isn't true; my color restricted me to retro stuff, but since I was in a retro mood at the time, that hardly mattered.) Anyway, it's not an awful review by any means, but it's not great, either, but that's alright. I think I placed around 9th in that tourney, which wasn't too surprising considering. The game was kind of hard to write about anyway.
Mother May, 04
I entered this in Lewis' Pretentious Bastards competition. Despite writing it fairly last minute and with finals and papers to worry about at that time, I'm very pleased with how well it turned out. In fact, I'd say it's probably my best "review" of the year despite not really being a review (as the point of the competition was to make an intellectual argument dealing with something in the gaming industry using the game as support... not necessarily reviewing the game itself). I placed second there, which was the best I've ever placed in any contest ever, and really makes me think that maybe I should just write reviews for contests like these from now on. hahaha.
Just kidding. The review turned out so well, I think, not only because the game lent itself well to to the argument I was trying to make, but also because the game was so... bizarre and out there that I could sort of "pseudo-review" it by illustrating some of the goofiest elements while at the same time backing up my thesis.
EmP also awarded this one RotW in what was probably the last week he ever did for the year. I'm glad I turned it in on time. =D
Kouryuu Densetsu Villgust Gaiden June, 13
Yeah... I'd almost rather not talk about this one at all. haha. Long story short, I wrote this with the last two hours I had left in Spain, so it was very rushed. As a result, it suffered terribly in MOTO2, where I was teamed up with EmP. The review did so poorly that I wound up tying for last place (I think), or, at the very least, wound up second-to-last, which was the worst I've ever performed in any contest since Alphas VI where I entered my Age of Empires review.
Basically, the review reads liked a rushed rehash of my Mother review only structured as a proper review instead of something pretentious. There's nothing else to say about it, really. I consider it to be the worst review I wrote all year, and I still feel ashamed for letting EmP down whether my failure really bothered him or not.
Psychonauts July, 28
Not the most flattering feedback... I think Zipp's the only one who really liked the thing, which is cool, but underwhelming as he's just one person. I don't mind, though, since I pretty much just forced this one out in an unsuccessful attempt to try and get myself to write more. I took a more academic approach to the review, which might explain the largely negative feedback, so it might've been better suited for something like Lewis' contest. Still, I wanted to try something a bit different, so I'm happy enough with it, and that's all that really matters.
Half-Life 2 September, 05
Probably one of my better reviews of the year, which again isn't really saying much since I didn't write that many, but still. It was a nice morale booster after I wrote it, since I legitimately felt it was actually pretty good, which was a feeling I really needed at that point as my last two efforts really didn't leave a good impression at all on me, and I was starting to wonder if I'd lost my touch somehow. Anyway, I'm happy with the review, and most people I spoke to said they either liked it or thought it was pretty awesome. Lewis begrudgingly gave it RotW but not before complaining about the sudden disappearance of a certain other review that almost no one else would have awarded a win to. Still, Lewis' opinions of the thing didn't really bother me as he was probably one of the few people who didn't like my review. And besides, I still won with it, so who cares, right?
Cutie Suzuki no Ringside Angel October, 09
A review I had to write for EmP & Boo's Because We Hate You contest. It's a game I ordinarily wouldn't write for, especially since it features female wrestling, which, Japanese or not, I find degrading. Therefore, I toyed with the idea of torturing EmP and Boo with a feminist critique of the genre as opposed to an actual review, but decided to spare them that hell for several reasons. The main reason I refrained from this was because I truly felt in my heart of hearts that EmP chose the game for me to push my boundaries more than anything else, and that kind of sentiment is really quite appreciated.
Anyway, the review didn't fair too well, but that didn't bother me this time (unlike last year) since you know, it's a review about a genesis wrestling game. For serious. What else should I expect? Hilariously enough, I received almost the exact same scores from the two judges as last year, the only difference being that EmP scored mine one point lower than my Musashi review last year. Bahaha.
Anyway, the contest turnout was rather depressing... and that makes me sad, especially since it seriously diminishes - if not eliminates - the chance of it being held again (unless someone else does it). But with what I've been seeing lately of contest turn outs, it's really amazing we manage to hold any at all anymore. =/
Vay December, 28
I wrote this for the alphas, and since this seemed to be the most interesting game starting with the letter V, I chose it. Of course, Suskie's review for the same contest two years ago inspired me to learn how to access Sega CDs so I could play this game. I didn't hold much hope for being able to write a better review than he did, but I at least tried to give a different perspective, since there were some things I felt he missed despite his fantastic writing. Anyway, I was having trouble writing this one as well... largely due to the writer's block and lack of motivation - or whatever it's been - that I've pretty much been experiencing since I wrote that Kouryuu review, although I honestly don't think that review's the cause of my problem - I'd sooner blame school for it. I just hope I can get back into things at some point or another. Maybe this summer will give me another chance.
Anyway, that's it for me. Took an hour to write this so now I'm tired. Headache feels a bit better for some inexplicable reason, though, so I guess I can't complain. Good night people.
Posted: February 02, 2010 (12:57 AM)
I'm grateful for the eight reviews that you wrote last year and I look forward to your output in 2010. If you improve on what you did in 2009, that's just great... though a repeat performance would also be welcome. I don't think that you had anything to be bashful about in 2009!
Posted: February 02, 2010 (06:18 PM)
haha. Thanks, Jason. I think it's only shaming in the sense that compared to 2008 where I wrote 27 reviews, last year was... pretty low. heh.
Posted: February 03, 2010 (11:27 AM)
Well, there are ups and downs. You have a lot of writing for school, which is more important. And you wrote some good reviews. Some need to sit. I think/hope a lot of what I'm writing now would've run into a wall a few years ago.
Oh, and thanks for between you and will giving me an excuse to post what I forgot.