Suicide Guy

Suicide Guy

Suicide Guy? So…   Ok let’s set this aside. The game could have been called a number of other, less uncomfortable names. Yes, you’re spending time killing yourself but the reason is you’re trying to wake up from a dream. This game is not enforcing, endorsing or encouraging suicide.     Oh… so I’m dreaming?   Yeah. Your character is a slob who fell asleep drinking a beer. As you began dreaming, your brain noticed the bottle dropping but you can’t get out of the ‘hub’ until you complete a number of other dreams. Each one has you figuring out how you’ll kill yourself to escape the dream, with 25 total dreams in all.     Ok that doesn’t sound so bad. Is it good?   It’s… imaginative. I’d argue it’s good, but as a game it’s not very replayable. The platforming has a weird jiggle when you climb (which you’ll do often), so I doubt people will target it for speed runs. But will you have fun over the 5-6 hours you’ll play? Absolutely.     So what does the game do well?   The game has lots of really great references. Jurassic Park, Mario, Portal, Moby Dick and plenty others. The graphics are well designed (although at first I though the game was an asset flip, due to wide variances in quality), and the sound/music is passable, never being annoying and never being something I could listen to outside this game.     And the bad?   The game has roughly 50% puzzles that have you figuring stuff out, and 50% platforming to a very obvious goal....
Rock of Ages 2: Bigger and Boulder

Rock of Ages 2: Bigger and Boulder

Earlier this year, I had the pleasure of playing a game called Rock of Ages. I had owned it for a very long time but had never played beyond a few levels because I had found it fun but I wanted to commit to it. When I did complete the game, which was very fun, I was surprised to find that a sequel was being released shortly. Fast forward to the end of August, and it’s finally here! If you’re familiar with the first game and looking for the short review here it is: go play this game. It’s everything the first one is, but better. For those wanting a bit more, read on!   Rock of Ages 2 (and the original) are games where you roll a giant boulder into the door of your opponents castle, trying to break it down. These rocks take time to carve, and so you’ll spend the time between by building structures to protect your door. Things like giant walls, cannons and hot air balloon bears. Yes, bears suspended from balloons are a thing and give a short glimpse into how weird the game can be. All the art assets are using classic works of art, cut into “paper dolls” so they can be animated. The levels are all inspired by various forms of artwork from Dali to Van Gogh and while you roll around classic pieces of music play along side. The entire thing feels like a Monty Python animation and it helps since the game has a very similar sense of humor.   To keep things fresh, the game also has...
Garshasp: Temple of the Dragon

Garshasp: Temple of the Dragon

Something that you might get by reading this blog is the idea that I love games developed by teams with a cultural perspective from outside North America. Contrast, Toren and Xenoclash are all fantastic games that are created by teams who have a viewpoint that you might not find in a traditional AAA developer team. Papo and Yo has a uniquely Brazilian take on an unfortunately universal evil. The Garshasp games are based on an Iranian/Persian hero that is developed by the Texan studio Dead Mage. Garshasp: Temple of the Dragon is a sequel to this game and while the first game wasn’t panned (nor praised) this game was rightly criticized. That is not to say the game is unplayable, but it’s something I cannot recommend.   The game is a third person action game, mostly consisting of hacking and slashing. The game has you exploring a “Temple” (although to put it more correctly, you explore three bridges, two lakes, a bit of forest and a tower) that feels all too small with no distinguishing features that would actually indicate it’s a temple. You’ll fight generic orc or demon looking enemies in a room, have a door open and generally solve a puzzle that either involves turning a wheel or dodging spikes, before going to fight more generic guys. Your character does gain new abilities but the game feels like there is no real need for using anything other than the basic attacks you start with. The game graphically is under-whelming, the designs of things are generally muddy and the voice acted notes you pick up don’t give you...
Brutal Legend

Brutal Legend

When Brutal Legend came out, one of my friends had rented it after we excitedly played the demo. The problem that a lot of people had, the demo didn’t represent the final product as there were these RTS portions that defined how the plot progressed and those (for most people) weren’t fun. It was then that we made a pact: I would play the game on their behalf because I didn’t mind the RTS section but I would only play with them around. The game came out in 2009 and it’s now 2017 and I can happily say I’ve finally beat it.   First, if you’re unaware, the game is a third person action game with a mediumish sized open world. I say mediumish because if you’re used to gloriously large Grand Theft Auto or Saint’s Row games, it’s gonna feel small. But that’s ok, because the world is BUSY, edge to edge filled with lots of content. A lush hand crafted world, stylized in the form of heavy metal iconography in a way that any screenshot is going to almost certainly look like an album cover. The story sees Eddie Riggs, a roadie, helping a rebellion rise up against demonic overlords, meeting a colourful cast of characters along the way. Characters, incidentally, voiced by legends of metal music like Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy Kilmister and Lars Ulrich.   Without question, I’ll recommend this game but play it on easy. The world creation myth is fantastic, the imagery is equally great and the voice acting is top notch. The aforementioned RTS sections aren’t as bad as everyone says but they...
Supercharged Robot VULKAISER

Supercharged Robot VULKAISER

Week 2 of my 52 week challenge and I’m finding it, well, a challenge. Mostly to find the time needed between all my other hobbies and being a dad! Still this week I was able to squeeze in a few hours with Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser. Done to ape the style of 80’s anime and specifically Voltron or Battle of the Planets, Vulkaiser is a shmup where you’re the forces of good (learning how to be a team) versus the forces of evil (and scary space monsters). You control one ship that can combine with your teammates, who have some really intentionally bad voice acting. Each combination changes how your weapon functions, giving you 5+ different weapons to use. As someone who enjoys a good challenge, Cave shmups and the genre in general, there is nothing to be found here beyond the visual/audio style that can be loved. If you’re not a fan of shmups, it’s not a great one and if you are a fan it’s not a great one. But it’s that bad acting, good music style that you should play it for. I grabbed the game for less than a buck and enjoyed it from start to finish. If you can grab it for a buck or two, you won’t be disappointed but if you’re looking for a good new shmup, I really can’t recommend Supercharged Robot Vulkaiser. Time spent: 6 hours, beat the game on easy and...