Mega Man 3 (1990)

Mega Man 3 Review

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Mega Man 3 Review

Mega Man 3 is a 1990 platform video game by Capcom for Nintendo Entertainment System. It is a pretty good, but still inferior sequel.

I thought that Mega Man 3 was a very good, certainly competent game and I did give it a 4.45 rating. However, it still disappointed me a bit as it definitely was significantly weaker in comparison to the previous two games.

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Mega Man 3 Review

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First of all, the gameplay. It basically consists of different stages which are again playable by choice meaning that you could play stages in whichever order you like. That certainly made the game feel much more accessible and much better organized.

But this time, the boss parts of the levels are different in that you need to beat them by choosing their weaknesses. For example, if you play Needle Man and get to the boss, you can beat him best by using Gemini Laser which you previously got from Gemini Man. I liked that to an extent.

That definitely made the game more interesting, complex and diverse. However, it meant that you have to cheat as how else would you know what is the exact weakness for each and every opponent. That was honestly a bit frustrating and I wish that they did it differently, by leaving visual clues in a way. You can beat the boss with another weapon, but that way it becomes so extremely difficult that it is not worth it.

Mega Man 3 is difficult and sometimes even more difficult than its predecessors, but mostly it was easier to beat and quite shorter in terms of longevity. That means that it isn’t particularly replayable and although the game is very well made, it wasn’t as memorable as the previous entries were.

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Mega Man 3 Review

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But the graphics and especially the character designs and animation are excellent. The level design is mostly pretty terrific as most of the stages are so well conceived and imagined. The bosses are especially difficult to beat and rewarding when you actually manage to do it. The score and the sound design are once again excellent and the entire product is technically stupendous.

So in the end, Mega Man 3 is a very good game, but just not as great as the first two were. Its boss system was interesting, but still troublesome. But the level designs, the graphics and sound are all terrific leading to a satisfactory gaming experience, though a bit short one.

My Rating – 4.5

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Rayman Origins (2011)

Rayman Origins Review

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Rayman Origins Review

Rayman Origins is a 2011 platform video game developed by Ubisoft. It is the fourth installment in the Rayman series and one of the best platformers of the 2010s.

The gameplay in Rayman Origins is simply excellent and I had no complaints whatsoever. It is a great example of an excellent modern side-scrolling platformer that harkens back to all of those great 2D platformers of the 80s and 90s but still containing a lot of original and new ideas. The critics pinpoint the lack of more ideas and that it is repetitive at times, but I disagree as the film is very large in terms of its number of levels and it never bored me for an instance and it was always hugely entertaining and diverse to play.

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Rayman Origins Review

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What separates this game from a vast majority of other platformers is the fact that it’s so damn replayable. The replay factor is huge here which is evidenced by the presence of a lot of different gameplay aspects and varieties. You can race to get skull teeth in order to unlock The Land of the Livid Dead, you can race with the clock to finish all of the levels in a given time goal and of course you can try to collect all of the yellow lums to entirely finish off the level.

That made the game very difficult. It is actually pretty easy to finish without all of those additional goals, but with those goals added, it becomes a pretty demanding experience and I loved every second of it. The boss levels were a bit too easy, but still very well conceived and the level design is mostly superb here with a few weaker instances from time to time. But for the most part, they made the levels just hard enough to make it difficult and that you can finish it in an orderly manner when racing or win just enough lums to complete it.

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Rayman Origins Review

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The Snoring Tree did not present that many possibilities as those different playable characters just weren’t Rayman when it comes to their abilities, but the worlds themselves are all pretty superb. Let’s go through them quickly. Jibberish Jungle is a solid first world which is way too easy, but visually appealing and immensely charming. Land of the Livid Dead is so incredibly difficult and Ticklish Temples is very different and moody.

Sea of Serendipity was not my favorite as it was too difficult and the level design, though strong, was not as well constructed and some levels were just not as well revised or clear as the rest are. But the visuals and the music are so great here. Grumbling Grottos and Desert of Dijiridoos were interesting but again not as clear in design and Mystical Pique is intriguing in its look. Angsty Abyss is one of the most difficult worlds here and Moody Clouds is the most different and original when it comes to its gameplay. Luscious Lakes is a lot of fun and Gourmand Land is probably my favorite of them all as the score is so catchy and the cooking theme is put to such a wonderful use here.

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Rayman Origins Review

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Rayman Origins has very good difficulty level, but is not structured as well. Some level design was great, but some levels were not all that well conceived. The game’s plot is cute, but too difficult to follow and thoroughly unexplained which was annoying. But those flaws did not affect this game too much as it is still pretty great, though not as vast or as superb as its successor.

The character design is amazing and all of these crazy creatures look so cute and weird in a good way. The game is original in its look and wonderfully cartoony. I love these cartoon video games as a big fan of animation and it’s such a shame that not as many platformers employ this approach visually as it always yields charming results. The graphics is stellar, modern and beautiful and the colors are so pleasing to the eye and the worlds are beautifully conceived and diverse owing to excellent attention to detail and strong world building.

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Rayman Origins Review

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The score is simply phenomenal and one of the strongest aspects in a technically accomplished game as a whole. Catchy and always a lot of fun, it definitely added a lot of enjoyment to the game which also benefits from a strong sense of childlike humor. The controls are the best and easiest to get used to as they can possibly be and all of the different A.I.’s were excellent, interesting, diverse and memorable.

All in all, Rayman Origins isn’t a perfect game, but it comes pretty close as one of the best platformers of the decade. The visuals are mesmerizing, the score is fantastic, the game is funny and charming, it is always hugely entertaining and it has an amazing replay value owing to diverse worlds, mostly excellent level design and many different goals presented. It is certainly one of my favorites.

My Rating – 4.8

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Batman Arkham City (2011)

Batman Arkham City Review

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Batman Arkham City Review

Batman Arkham City is a 2011 action-adventure video game developed by Rocksteady Studios. It is the second installment in the Batman Arkham series.

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Nice of you to join us, Oracle

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Batman Arkham City Review

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I really liked this game and although I thought ‘Batman Arkham Asylum’ was slightly better as a whole, I still enjoyed this second entry a lot and it is a worthy successor to a great original. Now the plot is probably better this time around. It is well crafted and rich in themes and characters. I liked it quite a bit and the series continues its streak of strong writing, solid dialogue and excellent voice performances. The acting is truly terrific here, at least for video game standards. The same goes for the dialogue and also the humor as sometimes it could be quite funny with snarky one-liners from Bats being the highlights.
But let’s talk about the gameplay. Batman Arkham City is once again an action-adventure game that relies strongly on action, but it still follows a plot and has well developed characters. It also features stealth elements which were once again the major highlights to this player. Whenever I had to take down an entire army of brutes, I was having a blast and truly some of those levels were so intriguingly constructed with excellent designs and much smarter A.I. this time around.

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Batman Arkham City Review

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I also loved the combat. Yes, Batman is probably too strong here, but that is the point as, I agree with the critics, it almost makes you feel like Batman yourself and that is the point of playing video games, especially the superhero ones. I felt like a caped crusader and I definitely felt that I had power and that I could win in every situation.
The villains are again weaker as some of the boss fights such as Freeze were quite interesting in the tactics that you had to employ and really clever when you think about them, but others like Penguin and Hugo Strange were incredibly weak and disappointing. Them not fighting at all, but just waiting behind their guards was so unfortunate.
And that brings me to my next point – the overabundance of characters. Yes, there are just too many characters in Arkham City and most especially villains that all of them did not get as much to do as they deserved. That was certainly a problem although I still liked each one of them. Joker is as great as before and I liked how Alfred was utilized in a funny manner. Penguin was good, Strange is okay but weak in the end and of course Ra’s al Ghul is a memorable character and those levels were some of the most creative of the entire game. I also really liked the side quests with Catwoman who possessed some pretty interesting combat moves.

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Batman Arkham City Review

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Batman Arkham City features a solid score, good direction and it is pretty well paced. I loved almost all of the levels, fights and especially the designs of the stealth levels which were frequently even brilliant. All of the newly added gadgets were beautifully utilized and they helped add a lot of refreshing gameplay abilites to the game. Te world building is strong and crusing Arkham City was certainly a lot of fun. I like that it has side quests and that you can play it after you have finished the main story, but that main campaign still remains incredibly short and that was frustating.

In the end, I really liked Batman Arkham City despite it being filled with too many characters and being short in length. But those characters are well developed, the game is visually terrific, the plot is good and the gameplay is once again fantastic as it makes you think at times with its clever level designs plus being in Batman’s shoes was just a lot of fun from start to finish.

My Rating – 4.6

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Batman Arkham Asylum (2009)

Batman Arkham Asylum Game Review……………………………………………………………..

Batman Arkham Asylum Game Review

Batman Arkham Asylum is a 2009 action-adventure video game developed by Rocksteady Studios and published by Eidos Interactive. It is one of the finest video games of its decade.

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Tell me Bats. What are you really scared of?

Failing to save this cesspool of a city?

Not finding the Commissioner in time? Me, in a thong?

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Batman Arkham Asylum Game Review……………………………………………………………..

Joker manages to seize control of Arkham Asylum and its island and it is up to Batman to stop him. This is one of the rare video games where the story actually matters and it is so good and so well told that it can function as a movie of sorts. Not only is the storytelling excellent here, but the voice acting is top-notch as well and that’s even rarer for the medium. And I have to say that this mythos of the Batman universe is my favorite and the game features by far my favorite Joker with an excellent performance from Mark Hamill.

The gameplay is fantastic and so varied too. Action-adventure has always been my favorite genre, possibly even better than platformers. But unfortunately the genre took a major backseat during the 21s century and thankfully this game changed that and at least now we have one great action-adventure series for the PC in the new millennium.

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Batman Arkham Asylum Game Review……………………………………………………………..

It perfectly combines the elements of action-adventure, platforming and stealth in it. To me the stealth elements were the most entertaining here and those gargoyle areas where you have to eliminate the gunmen one by one without them noticing you were by far the highlights. Detective Vision was excellent and although those in-game additional playables and achievements were boring, the game is long enough that it doesn’t need them.

The gadgets are phenomenally utilized and the fight system is too easy, but comes progressively more difficult. Some of the fight moves that Batman has here were phenomenally entertaining to watch and it made the game such a great movie for those to watch as the player plays. All of the five or so gadgets were magnificently utilized and they made the game much more diverse to play.

As for the boss fights, here lies the big problem. Batman Arkham Asylum’s flaws are twofold – one is that the overall game isn’t as difficult to beat and could have been harder in some areas. I always like more difficult games and this one is only very hard from time to time. But the bigger problem are its boss fights as some of them were extremely disappointing. The last fight with Joker is ridiculously simple to beat and it is just pointless to have the last level of the game so easy when the rest was at least somewhat difficult to beat. And the fight with Killer Croc could have been shorter in length.

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Batman Arkham Asylum Game Review……………………………………………………………..

But other fights are solid and some are even great. All of those fights with the two physically enhanced prisoners were very well designed in a wonderfully old-fashioned platforming manner and were also quite demanding to finish off.

I loved the characters here with Harley Quinn being so memorable and of course Joker being fantastic. This is the Joker that the movie versions never created – strong and capable, but also very funny and maniacal. And I loved every villain here and I have to add that Poison Ivy is memorable and her fight was superb. Riddler was boring at times, but Scarecrow’s fights were superbly realized and were some of the most creative and imaginative levels in the game.

Batman Arkham Asylum has terrific graphics and it’s actually some of the most impressive looking games of its time with superbly done faces and characters and some very good imagery. The cut-scenes were all very well done and engaging to watch and the game looks polished from start to finish. The sound is also great and the score is pretty terrific and accompanies the atmosphere quite well.

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Batman Arkham Asylum Game Review……………………………………………………………..

The controls weren’t the best and I guess that it’s okay as it would have been too easy to beat with easier controls. The game has very good world building and it perfectly recreates the feel of the superhero comic-book and film. The level designs were mostly excellent and the game is very entertaining. It has fantastic replay values as I actually played it twice and both times I’ve had a blast. The game isn’t original, but it is authentic in its mix of familiar genre elements that it becomes a great gaming experience. It has its flaws, but is mostly terrific and easily one of the best modern games.

Batman Arkham Asylum has its problems such as some of the boss fights which were weak and the difficulty level which is at times too easy, but it is otherwise a superb video game with excellent graphics and score, strong plot, characters and acting, some very difficult and fun levels and a great gameplay with a terrific mix of platforming, action-adventure and stealth.

My Rating – 4.7

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Plants vs. Zombies 2 (2013)

Plants vs. Zombies 2 video game review………………………………………………………….

Plants vs. Zombies 2 Video Game Review

Plants vs. Zombies 2 is a 2013 tower defense video game developed and published by PopCap Games for Android devices. It is an improvement over its predecessor.

Yes, as a sequel to 2009’s ‘Plants vs. Zombies’, I have to say that it is definitely better in almost every regard. It is bigger, more diverse and much more interesting. Let’s first talk about the gameplay. The game was being released from 2013 to 2016 as they have been adding a new world from time to time, but it unfortunately ended eventually which is a shame as there was even more potential for new worlds.

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Plants vs. Zombies 2 Video Game Review………………………………………………………….

It has eleven worlds or areas in it which is much more than the five that the original had and that is the major reason why I loved this one more. And not only that, but the number of levels was even bumped from ten to 25 or even 32 in later worlds which makes this game incredibly long. In fact, it took my month to complete it which was awesome and I continue to play it after the campaign has been finished which just goes to show how much diverse content you have here and how much of a repeat/longevity value it truly has.

Ancient Egypt is the first world and it isn’t as good as the rest and is weaker in terms of difficulty. Pirate Seas is much more memorable, especially in level design which is terrific. Wild West is even better as it introduces a lot of cool new things in its gameplay such as moving platforms and many more new plants and new, tougher zombies.

Frostbite Caves is a bit annoying as it only has a couple of truly horrible to beat levels, way too difficult, but the rest is just too easy which makes it a bit uneven in the long run. Lost City is unique in design, but much too easy compared to the others. Far Future is also easy, but it features new and compelling additions such as those great tiles.

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Plants vs. Zombies 2 Video Game Review………………………………………………………….

Dark Ages is the similar to Caves as it has its difficult levels, but is otherwise pretty easy to beat. Neon Mixtape Tour I wasn’t such a big fan of as I do not like these fast levels and they don’t appeal to me as much as other more tactical and slower levels do. Jurassic Marsh is awesome in its superb use of dinosaurs that can either help you or become a nuisance.

Modern Day is solid and it benefits from a great level boss spread throughout three levels, but Big Wave Beach is easily the most difficult world here. Wow, is it insane! It literally took me days and even weeks to finish a couple of them as they were just so hard even with all of the power-ups. That is done for better and for worse as it was all the more rewarding when I’ve finished it, but it was frustrating that you had to use all of the powers and helping methods to do it as it is almost impossible to do in your own.

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Plants vs. Zombies 2 Video Game Review………………………………………………………….

The animation and graphics in Plants vs. Zombies 2 continue to be strong, but the score takes a backseat this time around as it is just never as iconic as was the score from the original. All of the different worlds had appropriately fitting tunes in tone, but they were either too forgettable or too low in volume.

The controls continue to be great and even the plot is solid and better than in the original. Crazy Dave is again such a character, but he is even more memorable and more present in this sequel and his sidekick robot Penny is awesome and her harsh, deadpan delivery was so funny at times. It is mostly pretty coherent and the difficulty level for the most part was well utilized. The designs of the levels were mostly excellent, all the worlds are memorable and the game is smooth with no bugs and it has great longevity which I mentioned before.

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Plants vs. Zombies 2 Video Game Review………………………………………………………….

It is also pretty original in terms of zombies and plants. Here you have much more plants at your disposal and the zombies are so great not only in terms of high difficulty but also of how well they are incorporated within their worlds and with the plants you have to use to defeat them. The only problem in terms of the arsenal is that most of the plants can only be bought with real money and that is something that really hurt this game. And even though Endless is a bit boring, Vasebreaker is just so awesome a mini-game (infectiously entertaining and wonderfully strategic) that it made PvZ2 much more playable after the main campaign is over.

In the end, even though most of the plants have to be bought by real money and the score is weaker, Plants vs. Zombies 2 is still better than its predecessor thanks to a much bigger world with a lot of new areas and with a huge number of levels plus the designs are great, the game is incredibly entertaining and at times even very difficult and it has such a great longevity factor to it that it is a real winner by all means.

My Rating – 4.5

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Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge (1994)

Mickey's Ultimate Challenge Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge Game Review

Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge is a 1994 puzzle video game. It’s an awfully short and easy, but still very charming experience.

Mickey is reading a book of fairy tales and is transported in a dream to a fairy tale land where he must help five people with their problems and then climb the beanstalk and wake up the giant. Now because the game is awfully short, I will describe each and every of its five games in detail.

Horace Horsecollar’s challenge is sorting books. Here you have to jump from one book to another searching for the books with letters. The goal is to jump on every lettered book in the correct order which is unknown. I liked this challenge quite a bit. In fact, it is one of the most difficult mini games here and one that is probably the most interesting.

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Mickey's Ultimate Challenge Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

Donald Duck presents you a board where you have to move the potion bottles into a magic mirror and of course there are usually only a couple of ways to do this. This is a typical logic game, but the one that isn’t particularly original or difficult.

Picture Matching is a card matching game where you have to match all of the cards with each one having one correspondent. It is a very well known game, but the one that was here well utilized and always fun to play.

The pipe challenge is a typical memory game where you have to repeat the correct combination of notes. I found this one to be the most boring challenge as I never really liked this game to begin with.

And naturally Goofy’s challenge is the most memorable and difficult one of all. You have several attempts to guess the correct tools in his toolbox and what is great here is that it contains three games in it with varying difficulty and the last one was pretty hard to beat.

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Mickey's Ultimate Challenge Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

Next, you have to exchange the items that you gathered from each of these people to the right owner. Then the beanstalk appears, you climb it and you have to wake up the sleeping giant by playing a puzzle game where you have to sort a ruined puzzle. I loved that game as it was somewhat difficult and very entertaining.

As I said before, the biggest problem in Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge is its difficulty level. It is just way too easy. It is great for children, but it would prove too easy for adults. And that is why I loved this game as a kid, but now I finished it too quickly. Not only is it easy, but it’s also way too short. It can be beaten in about fifteen minutes. Yes, it’s that short! Needless to say, it has zero repeat value and I think that it could have been a great game had it been at least thrice longer.

But it is still a very endearing experience, the one that is always entertaining in most of its games. The animation I loved as the graphics looked phenomenal, very polished and wonderfully cartoony which is a perfect fit for a Mickey Mouse video game. The scenery is great and the score is also pretty good with all of the sounds being solid. The controls are simple, but effective. The plot is typically simplistic for this type of game, but still sweet and solidly incorporated. I liked the level design and how the game progressed, but its short running time definitely hurt it in the long run.

Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge is definitely way too short and awfully easy, but it’s so charming, the games here are varying in their type and most of them are fun, the animation is pretty good and the entire experience is an endearing, albeit short one.

My Rating – 3.6

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Plants vs. Zombies (2009)

Plants vs. Zombies Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

Plants vs. Zombies Game Review

Plants vs. Zombies is a 2009 tower defense video game developed and published by PopCap Games for PC and Android devices. It is to me one of the most original games recently.

The gameplay here takes the tired tower defense trope and literally reinvigorates it with an entirely unique, yet simplistic concept to it. Zombies move on your lawn towards the house where they want to eat your brains and it is up to you to defend yourself with the help of the various types of plants. I loved that it has just five lanes as that was just enough in my opinion. Zombies are awesome here and the highlights are those dancing ones as well as of course the giant.

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Why’d I give you so much money for a taco? BECAUSE I’M CRAAAAZY!!!!

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Plants vs. Zombies Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

But the plants are just so well imagined. From the basics such as Sunflower and Wall-nut to the more complex like Kernel-pult and Torchwood. My favorites are Tall-nut, Melon-pult and Bonk Choy as those three are the most effective when combined together. The animation of the plants as well as their characteristics, all of it is just so admirable and meticulous in detail.

Plants vs. Zombies is in my opinion inferior to its successor mainly because the length is just too short. You can easily beat it in a couple of days. And it is too easy, but more on that later. Also, there isn’t really much to do after you complete the adventure mode and the big problem is that all of the mini games are too pricy and difficult to unlock. But I loved the almanac that contained some really funny and pleasantly childlike explanations for all the plants and zombies.

Yes, the game is, as I said, way too easy. ‘Plants vs. Zombies 2‘ is a much harder game and this first one is mostly incredibly easy with the exception of the last level which is quite hard. As for the worlds, there are just five, but they are all pretty good, if not great as they are too simplistic and easy. Day is boring, but Night is great with the use of the mushrooms, Fog is quite interesting as well, Pool I really liked and Roof was the highlight as it was the most difficult and the most entertaining one.

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Plants vs. Zombies Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

The controls are fantastic. It is great to play with the mouse on PC, but it is even better to play on Android with your fingers as it is so superbly incorporated into that system. Simplistic, yet highly effective as is the entire game.

I liked the plot here and I loved the characters. I loved how each and every plant and especially zombie has a personality clearly expressed in their movements and of course Crazy Dave is just awesome. You can’t help but love this guy who is super hilarious with his obsession with tacos and his clearly crazy behavior. The humor here is really phenomenal.

Plants vs. Zombies has amazing graphics, I just love its looks. I love it because I am a fan of animation and this is clearly animation and some of the best of its kind in gaming. It is so cute, but also quite dark with zombies and that mix is greatly conveyed and so authentic. The character design is absolutely magnificent and the detail is evident. It is again simplistic, but wonderfully so. And I liked how childlike it is.

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Plants vs. Zombies Game Review………………………………………………………………………………

The game is incredibly original and it is one of the most unique and groundbreaking games of the decade in my opinion, so influential. And it is great because everyone can like it and play it, even the non-genre fans such as myself. The level design is great, the worlds are well realized and the game is smooth in that there are no bugs to be had here whatsoever. It is so fun to play, but frustratingly short unfortunately. And I have to talk about the score. It is amazing and one of the best aspects of the entire game. It is catchy in its tunes, but also perfectly accompanying the action in screen as well as the atmosphere. So good.

Plants vs. Zombies is too short and easy, but still so original, so influential and so wonderfully effective in its simplicity and broad in its appeal. It also looks great, it sounds fantastic, it is so detailed in approach, it has a great concept as well as the execution and it is just such a charming and fun experience that is great for almost everyone.

My Rating – 4.5

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Grow Home (2015)

Grow Home Game Review……………………………………………………………………………

Grow Home Game Review

Grow Home is a 2015 adventure platform video game developed and published by Ubisoft. It is an authentic and overall satisfying, albeit frequently frustrating experience.

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Grow Home Game Review……………………………………………………………………………

The gameplay is pretty unique here. Yes, the goal is to climb to the highest point and that in and of itself is obviously an archetypal gameplay originated way back in the 80s platformers. But it takes that formula and does something entirely different with it. First, it adds an open world aspect to it which is great. Secondly, it contains gems and other collectibles suited for the needs of those who wish to complete one hundred percent of the game. And the last but not the least, it has such a unique gameplay style to it in terms of the climbing and jumping.

You climb the trees and when you find a bud, you grow it in a different direction towards the sky and you have to continue doing that until you reach one of the islands. When you get all of the islands, you can get to the ship and the game is over. Also, you get various other helping tools along the hiking trip such as a gliding leaf and of course the leafs can  bounce you higher and there are transportation points as well. Although I liked those tools, I still didn’t find them useful as most of them aren’t even that easy to unlock, let alone use. But the overall gameplay experience is awesome here and even though it can get difficult climbing 2000 kilometers, it was still a rewarding experience whenever you reach a higher, important point.

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Grow Home Game Review……………………………………………………………………………

Whereas Grow Home succeeds in terms of the gameplay, it mostly fails in terms of the control system which is so troublesome. It was at times even difficult to maneuver the character and the fact that the game lacks any tutorial whatsoever is even more problematic.

I liked the plot here which is simple, but works really well. The world building is absolutely magnificent. The designs are great, the world looks detailed, there is night and day etc. Not only is it original, but also entirely engrossing in its world and characters. It is also a really good mixture of adventure and platforming genres and it succeeds at both of those fronts.

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Grow Home Game Review……………………………………………………………………………

Let’s talk about the graphics. Grow Home has a very simplistic look to it, but that doesn’t mean that it is bad. Yes, its square look is at times distracting, but it is mostly visually appealing and I really enjoyed some of the sky shots that were so pleasing. For an indie game, it surely looks good.

The character design is where the game shines visually. B.U.D. is so incredibly endearing that you can’t help but love him. He is a perfect protagonist with a cute appearance as well as personality. Also, I have to talk about the physics. This game has possibly the best incorporated physics ever in a game, at least of those that I’ve played. Everything is so realistic as all movements are so natural and the meticulous approach that went into this product is evident.

The score is also absolutely magnificent. It is wonderfully atmospheric and fittingly otherworldly. It perfectly accompanies its well realized world and great visuals. The pacing is also pretty good and I don’t know why many argue that it’s short, but I found the game to be pretty long. At least it took me countless days to beat it.

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Grow Home Game Review……………………………………………………………………………

Which brings me to my next point – the game is too difficult. But not in a good way unfortunately. Because the controls are needlessly complicated and because the tutorials are lacking, it makes it more difficult to understand and play. And the major problem to me was the fact that in my opinion you can’t possibly finish Grow Home in its entirety without at least sometimes watching some walkthrough videos. I know I had to do that. Couple that with some rather unfortunate and annoying bugs and a pretty low repetitive value and you’ve got a very flawed game indeed. But because it is so original, cute and interesting, I found it satisfying nonetheless.

Grow Home is very problematic in terms of difficulty, controls and bugs, but it is visually pleasing, it has a great evocative soundtrack, it is so endearing with a cute protagonist and it has such greatly incorporated physics in it. But it is above all fun and unique enough in its gameplay that it mostly manages to transcend its many problems.

My Rating – 3.8

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Ice Climber (1985)

Ice Climber Game Review…………………………………………………….

Ice Climber Game Review

Ice Climber is a 1985 platform video game developed by Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment System. It is a flawed, yet mostly satisfying and admirable early platformer.

The gameplay consists of 32 levels that are basically mountains that you have to climb all the way up to recover stolen vegetables and get picked up by a giant condor. And of course there are various obstacles and enemies on the way up. I really liked the concept of this video game mostly for the fact that it is so original and very detailed and complex.

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Ice Climber Game Reveiw…………………………………………………….

Let’s talk about those enemies first. The short yeti is called Topi and he is such a fascinating creature that I absolutely loved here. Not only can he kill you, but he also has his own business and doesn’t notice you at all. That I loved and his ice repairing was without a doubt the most fascinating aspect of Ice Climber because it leads to many interesting moments during the game. He sometimes is on your way and you just want to stop him from repairing. However, sometimes that repairing can be very helpful and even necessary and those are the moments where you have to wait for the little guy to do his thing and then hit him in the head. That was so funny and authentic.

Nitpicker is this very annoying pink bird who is much more of an enemy than Topi is. Not only can he cross and go wherever he wants, but genuinely goes for the target and sometimes even at exactly the crucial moments making him somewhat difficult. And of course you have the Polar Bear whose task is to move the screen to the next height when time is up.

All of those creations are so well designed thanks to some strong character design at display here. I really liked the Eskimo protagonist as well as the aforementioned characters above as they all look great. Really, the graphics is absolutely fantastic, extraordinary even in the context of time. This looks magnificent for 1985 as it is quite polished with good designs and fine colors.

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Ice Climber Game Review…………………………………………………….

I also really liked the technical aspects in Ice Climber mainly the sound effects which are terrific and the score at the end of the levels which is so good and done in that great 80s arcade style. The level design is mostly great as some levels are so tough to get through and are perfectly constructed. I also adored the attention to detail that went into this game not only in its characters, but also in its surroundings as well as its technicalities.

But Ice Climber is far from a perfect platformer as it is plagued by some big problems. One of those problems is obvious and that is its uneven structure. Of course, you can’t expect that all of the levels get progressively harder with just the right amount of more difficult level design and tougher enemies. But again, this was ridiculous here as the levels are so clearly unconnected as you basically get one level that is super hard and then the next one is as easy as they come. That was so frustrating.

Another problem is the overall difficulty level which is not high. Yes, some levels were annoying and quite difficult, but not one of them was excruciating and too many of those levels were either too simplistic or way too easy to beat. And I have to say that the level designs were sometimes uninspired and that the overall mountains should have been higher. And yes, the longevity has to be taken into account and this game only has 32 levels and all are very short leading to a frustratingly short game and a very quick gaming experience. But despite those obvious flaws, I still liked Ice Climber, quite a bit actually because it was so fun and entertaining to play and it was charming in its humor, animation and detailed originality.

Ice Climber is a bit too easy to finish and of course uneven and short, but whereas it lacks in terms of difficulty, it more than compensates that with some great level designs, extraordinary graphics, superb humor and details, evident originality in its concept and obvious entertainment and replay values to it.

My Rating – 4.2

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Cloudberry Kingdom (2013)

Cloudberry Kingdom

Cloudberry Kingdom Game Review

Cloudberry Kingdom is a 2013 indie platform game that is one of the most difficult games I’ve played.

The gameplay here consists of various alterations of game physics from double jumping to changing size to changing shape. I liked that as it led to a lot of interesting scenarios and different gameplay methods. I liked how you have to constantly change your tactics due to changing physics. But what wasn’t so great is its variety which is lacking as the game is authentic and different early on, but it gets repetitive in its later stages which was troublesome. Plus those obstacles also became repetitive.

Cloudberry Kingdom is one of the toughest games that I have ever played! Every world here (despite the first one naturally) is just so incredibly difficult to beat and that was great. I loved how frustratingly hard those levels were and especially the various obstacles could get really problematic to get through. The last two worlds were just so difficult that it took me hours to beat them despite their short length.

Yes, the game is very short and that is its flaw. It can be beaten in a couple of days, if you are capable of such a task. It should have definitely been longer and more varied. But the level design is absolutely fantastic and the highlight of the entire game. It is not only well realized, but also so incredibly convenient as every level and obstacle here can be beaten, but most just by a margin due to some excellent designs and timing they put through. The timing is crucial for the game to the point of being too important as the overwhelming emphasis on that aspect instead of the skill itself was unfortunate.

Cloudberry Kingdom is a flawed game because it isn’t very creative or original, save for some interesting game mechanics from time to time. And the plot is typical with the characters being forgettable. The sound during those cut scenes is just too low as it isn’t synchronized with the rest of the game. And speaking of sound, the score is quite poor and easily the worst aspect of the game. It is basically angry, overloud club music which I was never a fan of and although some themes were okay, most were too loud and obnoxious and just put me at unease.

The character design is odd, but the graphics isn’t bad for an indie game and is perfectly passable, but you shouldn’t have high expectations for it. The game is mostly coherent and I loved the fact that it progressively got harder as these game usually don’t have a great balance of difficulty, but here it is mostly well handled. Because the game is so frustratingly difficult, its short running time can be said to be a positive thing.

The game is masochistic to the point of being too much at times, but I mostly liked that approach and I especially loved how short the levels were as that made the game all the more fast-paced and approachable.  Cloudberry Kingdom is too repetitive and predictable in its later levels, but I liked its traditional feel and its level design and difficulty level worked well for me. It is an infuriating, but still addictive and brief game.

Cloudberry Kingdom is a very flawed game. The graphics and score are mediocre and it can be too repetitive at times, but the gameplay is mostly fantastic due to incredibly difficult  but satisfying obstacles, superb level design and some finely incorporated game mechanics that enhance the experience wonderfully. It is repetitive and problematic, but addictive and short and one of the hardest games there is.

My Rating – 3.7

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