A [second] year in review.
January 01, 2007

Beyond Good & Evil (Xbox) January 1st, 2006

This is how I started off the new year -- by finding a dusty intro lurking in the back of my hard-drive and finishing it off while still slightly hung-over. This forever stayed the way of things to come.

Alien Soldier (Genesis) January 20th, 2006

I regret how I did this because it let VM and her awesome FO2 review down in the pro/rookie tourney that we probably should have won. Numerous people warned me the intro was too long, but I was so convinced I had made it DAMN HILARIOUS! that I kept it, was scored poorly, and lost. It will remain forever unedited so people can point and laugh.

The rest is supposedly okay, but it's the bitterest review in my collection. Just like LH's Magna Carta, except this one remains readable.

Conflict: Desert Storm (Xbox) January 22nd, 2006

Just like Monsterseed (PSX) April 21st, 2005, Shining in the Darkness (Gen) May 5th, 2005, and Micro Machines (XBOX) October 16th, 2005, before it, this is a restored review from olden days, lovingly repaired and released back into the reviewing community. Look for infrequent Collector reviews to be released in the near future.

This was actually my first ever RotD feature that I saw (I'm sure I got mentions before but I never checked the RC board back then.) Sportsman gave it a second place before quitting his RotD spot and migrating fully over to HG.

Chrono Cross (PlayStation) Januray 30th, 2006

Upon forming Team EmP, a blood pact was made between the original five members; a pact that decreed that they would all write a CC review in their career. LH's backed out as soon as the word 'blood' was mentioned, complaining of feeling a little queasy, and DE was disqualified from this agreement for threatening to give CC a 4. 4 is far too high.

Anyway, this review did two things. First, it won a star-packed tourney over on FAQs by quite a margin and scored a career high of 97. Then it got a disappointing 75 in the KoR first round when I expected a high finish with it. 97, 75. That's not a bad split! I love this review and enjoyed writing it more than any in recent memory.

Monkey Puncher (Game Boy Color) February 16th, 2006

When I spied this game cheap on EBay, I envisioned a great reviewing platform. What I got was a dull, by-the-numbers tamagotchi game that is enjoyable in only short doses. But I wanted to write something for it anyway and forced this out. It's without voice, without personality and without depth -- like a Boo review. But it's serviceable enough, so it can stay. Besides, taking reviews down is lame.

Drakengard (PlayStation 2)

'Have you played Drakengard yet?" A volatile Ruder would demand every so often, and I would respond in the negative. Finally, I gave in and played the game while home sick from work and two days were instantly devoured by a mass murdering spree. I can't ever match the perfect review my nagging chum posted in the TT finals, but I can at least offer my own homage to a game that has revived a genre to me. The TT judges weren't so happy with it, and awarded it a lose while Ruder boasted "Not as good as mine!" Sod them; it easily won a 'Faqs tourney about M-rated games notching up a huge 98.

I'm very happy with this one. Props to Boo for his HTML assistance and VM on the nit-pickiest proof-read ever.

Arc the Lad: Twilight of Spirits (PlayStation 2) July 01, 2006

Long review standing at about 12k, but one that I remain pleased with. In a round of KoR, Lasty gave it something like a 91 even through the second review I put in for that week scored higher. Still, this review languishes at the very bottom of my hit counts, showing that no one really cares about Arc the Lad games.

Devilish (Genesis) July 01, 2006

Silly little review for an odd little game and the only one I've written on Gamespot which wasn;t deemed good enough for the Reviewespotting feature. Despite that, I remain happy with it. It was written for the section KoR where it placed respectably.

Legend of Dragoon (Playstation) July 09, 2006

This one id under the B-Side account for no other reaon than I already have an LoD review under the EmP one. Written for the section-based KoR, it didn't actually place that high, but it was one of those reviews that I just wanted to write for the sake of writing it more than anything else. It embodies a lot of the quesations and stupid thoeries I had to endure during my time on the GFaqs LoD board (which i still hang at now and then) over the years and gives me something to spam link to when such questions come up again.

Tony Hawk's Underground 2: World Destruction Tour (Xbox) July 27, 2006

Awful game, which got both barrels in this review. I have to admit, although I've always liked this review, it was more like a guilty pleasure than one I expected many other to enjoy, but I was proved wrong! genj picked this to take part in the second round of Lasty's war (the round we lost, but we'll ignore that for now) and it scored well. I believe it came second in the sports themed KoR, but who really remembers those things.

R-Type (Game Boy) August 03, 2006

It might very well be the case that I'm the only person happy with this review, and if so, so be it! It got slated across the board in the TT, lost a crazy amount of points for a misunderstood tagline over on 'spot but still managed to win my third consecutive tourney over on 'Faqs ['least OD liked it!] It's a very different style of writing than I usually employ, but one I think I pulled off. According to all other sources, I'm living in denail, though.

Silent Hill 4: The Room (Xbox) August 10, 2006

OD would tell you that he [by the slimist of margins!] beat this in the 'Faqs based bash tourney because he had the better review. The truth is, people where getting tired of my winning and corresponding gloating afterwards. Never the less, it did well on 'faqs then won an even bigger bash tourney on 'spot which netted me a tidy $50 (which I tried to spend through VM, who purchased a copy of KotOR that doesn't work and a few bits for me that she, as usual, still hasn;t sent through to me.) Thinking, with all that praise behind it, it would fare well in the TT, I entered it in and got a responce that I was becomeing very familiar with. "This review has been done better by someone previous -- you lose!" Bleugh.

Jade Empire (Xbox) August 17, 2006

This one won its TT round! Hurrah!

In the finals, no less, making this season a complete opposite of last season (where I won the majority of matches bar the final which cheatmonger Boo robbed me of!)This was the second attempt at this review after I felt the first was writtin in a more descriptive, serious tone that I used in reviuews like the few mentioned above and strayed away from the more light-hearted approuch, so I regressed my writing style and won. The straight-to-TV film of this touching tale will be available soon. EmP is played by Bruce Campbell.

Panzer Dragoon Orta (Xbox) August 25, 2006

Lillica rip-off of extenstion of new, descriptive writing style -- you decide. This one was rushed out to met a focus window deadline back when we bothered with changing the focus window.

Ys III - Wanderers From Ys (Genesis) August 27, 2006

Wrote this at silly o'clock on the deadline of the Alpha tourney because I'm too stubborn a review to pen a review without beating the game. So I sat up most of the night playing the game while complaining to Ruder and Zig that it wasn't much fun. With encoragment from my cornermen, and several pots of coffee, I managed to finish the review, post it up for the Alphas and gratefully sleep. My dedication was to be rewarded with the tourney win after a close tie-break with OD that saw this year's biggest foe relegated to second place. Go EmP!

Bone: Out from Boneville (PC) September 07, 2006

The second version of this review which I prefered to my earlier efforts. Rushed to finish this one before my birthday which was the next day over. Of the four Telltale games I've reviewed this is by far the mostr read at the time of this list.

Bone: Out from Boneville (PC) September 08, 2006

One day later (on the glorious day of my birth!) the first version of my Bone review is posted. This wasn't a bad review, I just felt it was a little too stuffy to lead with. The re-write (above) was an easier one to pen, but this still deserves a place on-site and that's wahts B-Side accounts are for, after all.

Bone: The Great Cow Race (PC) September 28, 2006

More Bone! Had to play these games back-to-back and throw reviews out quick and as such, this one feels a little rushed and cramped. Notice how much smaller the review explinations are getting as the end nears?

Amped 3 (Xbox 360) September 30, 2006

This wasn't supposed to be my entry into the first rounds of the war, but it was the only appicable review I had written, so it had to make do. Scored respectably (mid 80s, if I recal correctly) and gets my point across. However, Guts brought some interesting opinions into the mix via the talkback topics and now this review is subject to change after I play Amped 2, which I'm looking to pick up at some point. Watch this space!

Pippa Funnell: Stable Adventure (Game Boy Advance) October 09, 2006

Silly, short review on a broken, girly game that would probably appeal to no one. Competent review, but nothing else.

Gothic 3 (PC) October 17, 2006

Gothic 3 is a huge, huge game. And if I was to review it by the release date, as the publisher had hinted at, I needed to complete it within a week. The problem was, my computer wasn;t good enough to run it. In fact, you need a beast of a PC just to run it at minium specs.

So I hijacked someone else's PC and played this almost non-stop. The finished product beat every single website to the punch, shaming sites like Eurgamer, IGN, Gamespot and anyone else you can think of! It also produced numerious hate topics that I gleefully tracked and enjoyed. There was a parise-heavy one, but it was all in Russian. I have more hits for this review than my top ten of other reviews combined.

Sam & Max: Episode 1 - Culture Shock (PC) October 28, 2006

This game rocks. And the review has already converted a few people who had never heard of Sam & Max (heathens!) to purchase and enjoy the new games, which, as a reviewer, is as big a compliment as one could recieve.

Conflict: Desert Storm II - Back to Baghdad (PlayStation 2) November 08, 2006

This is an edit of the first ever review I submitted to HG and one I remain happy with overall. I deleted all the clumsy narrative of the first and linked things together a little more smoothly and, as a result, have a new game to languish at the bottom of mt hit-counter. Yay!

Blitzkrieg 2: Fall of the Reich (PC) November 12, 2006

Not sure I wrote this review right. I wrote about it like it was a stand-alone game (which is how I recieved it) when it's a add-on more than anything else. But it does offer a different voice from the other reviews written about it on other websites, so i judged it acceptable! Tough little game at parts, but a fun one. Stopped playing online after getting repeatedly destroyed.

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (Xbox) November 30, 2006

Wrote this reviews many months before I subbed it to HG. It underwent a tone change, several edits and a shot at a Reviewspotting issue. It came second. I held it back from submission here so it could fall into a focus window gap, which it did. It made no difference, the window remained frozen. Still, I like this review, it's briefier than a lot of the works on the same subject and gets to the heart of what I believe makes KotOR.

Master of Weapon (Genesis) December 03, 2006

Had been playing this on ROM on and off after finding it by accident and falling in love with the name, but had no intention of writing a review on it. Then one day after a night at the pub, I woke up the next morning and founf a poorly-typed review fo it sitting on word. A little perplexed on the subjet, I tidied it up a little and threw it up on site. Can;t waste moments of druken productivity, after all.

Gears of War (Xbox 360) December 08, 2006

Here's an idea of how much this game took over my life. Back when I lost interest in videoa games, a huge reason for this was because Wild Arms 4 didn;t ship over to PAL. Eventually it did, and it became the first game in eons I bought on release. I loved it and played it every chance I had. Then I got Gears of War, and WA4 was quickly forgotten about.

I wrote this in one big sitting after it was suggested we needed a Gears of War review for the focus window and, as I had been vocal on playing the game until my thimbs bled, all eyes turned to me. I shook my fist, hid away my wireless pad and got to work. Easy review to write, in fact, it wrote itself.

I've edited it since after it got mixed reactions for reviewspotting and after some sound advice from Zig and OD. The structured use of paragraph/one-liner has gone in order to make the one-liners that mattered all the more impactful and I've condensed some of the ideas a bit and I'm left with a review I'm really proud of. As a serious review, I rate among my best of the year.

The Great Waldo Search (Genesis) December 14, 2006

Quick review (spanning only 1k) on a complete farce of a non-game. Wrote it after discussing the game on AIM with Team EmP fledgling, Willthegreat. Modest chap.

Sam & Max Episode 2 - Situation: Comedy (PC) December 23, 2006

Although this feels a bit cramped and rushed, it says what I wanted to say without erroding the fun afctor this game has, so I'm pleased overall! I love the new Sam & Max games -- and so should you!

Eragon (Xbox 360) December 27, 2006

Eragon is awful in every single sense of the word. Only one kind of review can express this -- a mocking one!

The biggest complaint on my reviewing has long been that I lack the ability to technically disect the games I bash and instead ridicule them into submission. This isn't the kind of title in which to remedy this. I enjoyed ripping into to Eragon and people were polite enough to lie about say they enjoyed reading it. This or GoW might evry well be my entry in the this year's challange.

Also managed three previews, a handful of Faqs, some (correctly formated!) pics and the genesis cheats for all games A-C covered. Not to mention an ongoing fanfic for both Shadowrun and Doomsday.

Most recent blog posts from Gary Hartley...


No one has responded to this post yet.

eXTReMe Tracker
© 1998-2021 HonestGamers
None of the material contained within this site may be reproduced in any conceivable fashion without permission from the author(s) of said material. This site is not sponsored or endorsed by Nintendo, Sega, Sony, Microsoft, or any other such party. Opinions expressed on this site do not necessarily represent the opinion of site staff or sponsors.