Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes Review


This is one of those games where before even playing it, I knew it would be an elite. Beat em up games tend to be awesome and then the Nintendo titles take it a step further. Well, this one does not disappoint and it has to be one of the most expansive warrior titles to date. There are just so many different mechanics in there that it’s hard to know where to start when optimizing your team. Fortunately you can ignore the mechanics and still get to the end if that’s how you want to do it.

The game starts out by introducing us to a mercenary named Shez. Shez is fairly tough but one day his whole crew is murdered by a guy named Byleth. Byleth is one of the most powerful guys around and his abilities are absolutely crazy. A mysterious being from another dimension appears and lets Shez know that they can be partners and together even Byleth can’t stop them. Shez doesn’t have much of a choice in this to be honest but he’s a good sport about the whole thing and agrees to work together. Gradually Shez learns how to let go of his rage and how to press on normally. It’s a pretty emotional story and one that’s over 15 hours long so you can bet that there is a lot of character development here.

While I wouldn’t say the story is quite as dynamic as the first FE Warriors game, that one was a crossover so it had a lot of advantages built right into it. This one had to make do with the cast of the three houses game and I’d say that it did well with that. You choose a team to align yourself with early on and then the rest of the game is built around that. That’s part of the impressive nature of the game if you ask me because that means there’s over 45 hours of content here. Your playthroughs with the other two teams will be almost completely different.

Additionally, there is a lot of extra story content beyond the main campaigns. There are a bunch of paralogues which are effectively bonus story events, extra levels, side quests, and around 15-20 different activities you can do. Even just getting new weapons can turn into a big thing as you grab a lot of weapons you can level up, change your rank, class, etc. I barely scratched the tip of the iceberg in terms of content when going through this game. There was certainly a whole lot of other things to do and it’s the kind of game that would be extremely intimidating to try and 100%. Good luck with that!

It also means that you are getting an incredible amount of value for your purchase. This is well worth the $60 and then some. You could easily play this game for weeks and weeks. The graphics are top notch of course with Nintendo giving the game their A team. I had no complaints while playing through it and the action scenes are epic. Likewise the soundtrack is really good. The game even saved the best tunes for the end of the adventure which was great because then you get to end the whole thing off on a high note.

The final level was also difficult, it was the first time that I actually lost in the whole game. You have to win without letting Shez or Edelgard die but you can only control one so the A.I. was determined to take me down. I had to leave, level up, and regroup before going back in. The final level is rather long at over 20 minutes so that was quite the experience. Still, it’s good that the final level isn’t a cakewalk or anything like that. It probably would have been if I bothered to do any of the side content too so this was a fairly good compromise.

Naturally the gameplay is a blast here. It’s your typical 3D warriors gameplay, you blast through the levels and have to usually defeat hundreds of opponents before you get to the end. Your objectives will range from helping civilians to defeating bosses. You can also assign orders to the computers to help you out so you aren’t just fighting on your own out there. You have standard attacks, power moves, final smashes, and an awakening move. Switching between them is absolutely key if you aim to rise to the top and complete any challenge that gets in your way.

Personally what I found to be the most effective method was to have all of my allies converge on one spot. I felt like they produced much better results that way than having them spread out to do whatever they wanted. Even then you will beat 3 castles in the time it takes them to beat one but at least it’ll help you a bit. Send them to the farthest ones so you don’t have to worry about it. Sometimes you will have to change your orders depending on the situation.

Shez’s movement ability to turn intangible is extremely valuable too. For that reason I would rarely switch who I was controlling because nobody’s ability was nearly as good. This one was in a class completely on its own. There’s a decent amount of depth to the gameplay as well so be sure to learn as you’re going. Weapon types with advantages and disadvantages tend to play a rather big part here so you’ll want to keep that in mind as well. Defeating an opponent who has the advantage will naturally take longer.

Overall, Fire Emblem Warriors is a blast. I highly recommend this to any gamer out there. The action is nonstop and there’s just so much to process and think about here. It’s not a game that you’ll pick up and start dominating. At the very least you will want to have some kind of a plan while you’re in the level or you will just be setting yourself up for disaster. If you want a super challenge you can also set it up so if someone dies then they will be gone forever. That’s a very bold way to play and it’s not for me since losing out on all of those level ups sounds painful, but it definitely makes you think twice about all of your decisions. Hopefully they keep this up and get us a third fire emblem warriors game at some point. There’s still so much you can do with the premise. Of course the same will be true of any other Nintendo property as well.

Overall 9/10

Yu-Gi-Oh Nightmare Troubadour Review


Feels like quite a while since I completed a Yugioh game. They definitely tend to be on the long side so you always get a whole lot of content and satisfaction from them. This one even has a full story along with the usual duels. It has a day and night system that I don’t particularly care for but ultimately it’s still a great game. One that would be nearly impossible to complete without the internet though as everything is so secretive. I suppose eventually you could pull out the win but the play time would certainly skyrocket.

The story is sort of an adaption of Battle City but extremely loose along with minor adaptions of the Noah and Rebecca filler arcs. You play as a new character who I called Terry and you have to try and be the best duelist of all time. To do that you will need to become the World Champion and crush every opponent who tries to get near you. It won’t be easy but this wouldn’t be satisfying if it was a cakewalk right? Will Terry really be able to adapt and take out the villains or will he be wishing that he could just duel for fun?

Lets jump right into what works about the game. First off, there are a lot of cards here so you can customize your deck really well. Initially it’ll take time to build up enough funds to get the cards that you really want but gradually this won’t be an issue. Eventually you will have all that you need to make a deck. So far I have never made 2 decks that were really similar. My deck ends up being really different in every Yugioh game and I think I know why. See, the cards that you get at the beginning of the game are super important because subconsciously you start to build around them. For example, even after I had a lot of really good cards, I kept in a ton of my originals.

I’d already been dueling with them for so long so why remove the right? My deck was more trap oriented so I could block opponent moves and then win with my 5-6 star monsters. I always have a hard time condensing my deck to 40 cards though so I tend to have around 60 or so. It does mean that sometimes you won’t get one of your cards in time but it also means that you will never be timed out. That has happened in the past and sure enough in this game I did have to win at least one match that way. Always make sure that your deck is larger than your opponent’s to be ready for such an attack.

The duels themselves can be a bit long and to this day no game has optimized the speed more than World Championship 2007. Still, it’s way better than the older GBA games which just couldn’t load the screens as quickly. Some of the menus in this game aren’t great so deck construction can be long but the duels themselves are very polished and work well. Ultimately I don’t have any real issues there. The gameplay is solid and in general I like Yugioh a lot so it’s a blast to be able to play through the duels.

The soundtrack is also good. A little repetitive though to be honest. Given how long you’re going to be playing the game, I think they should try to have a larger soundtrack just to keep things fresh. Usually there are only a few themes and it works like in Tag Force when all of the themes are amazing, but when they’re fairly ordinary you just feel like you’d like to see something else. The graphics are okay but the series is not really known for its visuals and I would say this game is in line with that. There’s nothing that jumps out at you.

I already mentioned the game’s length before but don’t expect to beat this game in under 35 hours. It’s an extremely long game due in part to how many duels you have to go through. I played over 100 duels in the game and there are story events you have to go through to get to the ending. These events are dependent on your dueling various people so it really adds up. You also can’t see who you are dueling ahead of time until you beat them a bunch and become friends with them. Hypothetically if you didn’t know what to do, the way to get through the game would be to keep challenging everyone over and over until you registered everyone as a friend. Some seem quite resistant though, like I beat Rex over 20 times and he wouldn’t become my friend.

Now on the downsides to the game, the biggest one is how the story is presented. Without a guide I really would not have been able to figure out where to go next. The randomness of the story is not a strength but a liability. Additionally, I don’t like how duelists randomly attack you at night and if you lose then it’s a game over. At least make it take you back home but don’t threaten me with losing a bunch of save data. I had to save constantly when it was night time just in case. Same with all shadow duels, if you lose then it’s all over. So if a shadow duelist sneaks up on you then it’s really going to end up being messy.

My deck was great but not unbeatable. I would still lose from time to time and sometimes I would get a bad draw. Part of the fun in Yugioh is how many different variations of the same duel you can have based on what you draw. So in that sense I thought the game was a little too merciless with this. There’s also a leveling up system but it seems almost pointless to an extent. You unlock decks by leveling up but that just seems like a way to really keep you from getting good cards for a while. It takes a lot of duels to level up too so I think that could have been really reduced.

Overall, I had my issues with some of the mechanics like the day and night system which keep this from being an elite Yugioh title. The core gameplay still ensures that it is great though and I did appreciate that we got a full story mode. Some of the decisions may have been a bit odd and it certainly aims to be one of the loosest adaptions that I’ve seen but I’ll take that over not having a story mode. If you want to check out a Yugioh game with a lot of content then this is definitely one to check out. You’re not going to regret picking this one up even if it doesn’t quite beat the top tier Yugioh games.

Overall 8/10

Ninjala Review


It sure took me a while to play this game but it definitely lived up to the hype. This may be a hot take but pure gameplay wise I actually prefer this to Splatoon. Of course a big part of that is the fact that you’re on your own here and don’t need to fight as part of a team. Then you’ve also got the close combat gameplay which is even better than the ink shooting.

The game even looks a lot like Splatoon which I have to assume is intentional. The game has a lot of modes but naturally you’ll be most interested in jumping online to get right into the battle royale. There are around 8 players in a given match and you have to try and get the most points. You obtain points by grabbing orbs around the stage, more points by breaking these little sandbags all around, and a ton of points by knocking out other players. The gap in points is rather large: 20-100-400 so knocking out players is your best bet. They’ll be trying to get in your way regardless so it makes sense to try and take them out right off the bat.

The controls are fairly simple here. You can run along the ground and up the walls as well as jump. You have a dash attack which lets you get up close and from there you have your standard attacks and a super attack once your meter gets high enough. It seems like characters have different moves so you’ll want to learn them but your main method of attack will be with classic attacks. Land a good combo and you’ll take your opponent out in an instant. It’s definitely the way to go if you want to be the one wearing the championship belt.

The thing I don’t like about the gameplay is that it has a rock paper scissors mechanic going like in Pokken. So when you clash you both have to choose a direction and hope it’s the right one. I never cared for this kind of mechanic and don’t get why it tends to pop up every now and again. Why would you want to throw some random variables into a fighting game? That seems like the last genre to add such a thing since you want it to all be about your individual skill right? Seems to me like throwing this in just muddies the waters.

It’s also pretty much inevitable that you will have several clashes in every fight so get ready to see this mechanic a lot. Personally I’d say the game should drop it and then it would feel a lot more balanced. It would really make you have to focus on when you want to attack and try to stay cautious so nobody ambushes you. Yes that would definitely be the best way to do it and I think that would work out for everyone.

Well, even with that I did manage to win my first few rounds but I suspect the game threw in some bots. I can’t prove it, but I was fighting several opponents with very generic names like Paul and Chris. No extra letters or numbers so I find the odds of them getting those names to be rather slim. I was also dominating throughout and sure I’m great at picking up on a game’s mechanics right away but I was a little suspicious. It was almost too easy which started to tip me off. Maybe I’m overanalyzing this, it’s possible but I’m not buying it.

After a few wins then I started seeing a lot of fancy names and the games quickly grew harder. Ninjala is certainly a game that is easy to start but hard to master. Don’t expect that you can just walk in and start claiming wins. This game isn’t quite so easy as all of that. There are quite a few mechanics to master and that makes sense since the tutorial seemed really large. I quit out of it after the first lesson but you’d want to study it all if you intend on playing for a long while.

I should also mention that there are some bonus stars. You’re scored by total points at the end of the round but you then gain some for doing the most damage, most KOs, etc. So keep that in mind, just because you have the most points when entering the results screen doesn’t mean that you will win in the end. That actually bumped me down from 1st to 2nd once. It’s an interesting idea but I think the game should go by base points. If you win then you win, no worrying about extra factors or any of that.

The graphics are solid. This definitely looks like a very modern game and it’s also very colorful. There’s a lot to look at and the levels have a lot of detail to them. I definitely have no issues there and the soundtrack is good as well. This really is a solid all around title and if you ever threw in a big cinematic story mode then this could be a great game even without online. The gameplay is certainly polished enough to make it work.

Overall, Ninjala is a fun game. I don’t really see people talking about it anymore so its window of fame may have already ended but the fundamentals are sound. I like that you don’t have to enter in teams like a lot of the similar online titles. You can just jump in and take names. While the battle royale results being based on points does mean that you can lose even while playing super well, it won’t be too likely. Beating opponents gets you the most points so as long as you do that well then you should be in high spirits. I would definitely recommend checking this game out for a fun blast.

Overall 7/10

1943: The Battle of Midway Review


1943 is a rather basic airplane type game. There may be a plot but you wouldn’t really know it from playing the game. I don’t tend to count booklet plots all that much. So you have to enjoy the gameplay as that’s really the focus of this game. I wasn’t particularly impressed with any one element but the game itself is solid enough. It’s a game built on its fundamentals and there are quite a few weapons and mechanics to learn. Ultimately they may not stand out but this is a really difficult game so good luck trying to beat it without using any of the advanced features like rewinding and such. This one is going to take all of your abilities to get through to the end.

The main gameplay here is an overhead style as you watch your plane go forward and land major damage. You are attacked by all kinds of ships and other enemies as they overload the screen. Your task is to take them out as they come through and survive until the end. Typically there will be a boss at the end although not every level has one. Sometimes you will just keep on going until the level ends.

Now when I said the game was tough, I definitely meant it all the way. A few hits can take your plane down for the count. Additionally your plane keeps changing weapons when you touch the power ups. Some are better than others so avoid these when you have one that you like. On the other hand, you can shoot a power up to turn it into a health item but you have to do that carefully. Shoot too much and it’ll be a power up item again, shoot too little and the same thing could happen. It’s all a battle of reaction times and you have to make sure that you are on point the whole time.

You’ve also got some kind of bomb/thunderstrike ability. This is really handy as it affects the whole screen but surprisingly it won’t necessarily defeat all of the minions that it hits. It’s strong but not a one hit KO move the way that most of these attacks tend to be. I was certainly surprised when some of the villains endured the attack. I guess it helps as per game balance but I’m used to it being a one hit KO in all other games so it took me by surprise.

It’s not worth using anyway though as it cost your health to use this attack. It takes a solid chunk out of your health bar so even if you land a lot of hits with it, it’ll rarely be worth it. I’d say at best, use it if you’re completely surrounded and are about to be shot down. Then you have nothing to lose and may as well give it a shot. Moves that take up health are just rarely worth it to me in any game.

The graphics are decent here. Nothing too special but the game itself is clear and you always know what’s going on so that’s worth something. The soundtrack is more on the forgettable side but it’s not bad. In general the game just doesn’t have a whole lot of personality. From a screenshot you could easily mistake this for any other aerial fighter. I think they should have done a better job of standing out. Even if this is trying to be fairly realistic, you could still pull it off if you thought about it hard enough. It’s an old game so I’m not expecting anything out of this world but I think it could have done more.

There also just isn’t much of an ending or a sense of accomplishment when you make it to the end. It just starts looping as if this is a super old NES game. I would have liked there to have been some kind of end cutscene or something. That would have done a lot of good if you ask me. Well, it’s not a bad game either way but you probably won’t see me picking it up again. This is very much a one and done kind of game. You play it through and then move on to the net thing.

Overall, 1943 is a decent game to play for a little while. Blackhawk Striker/Shooter is a much better plane game though. If you want a game with a lot of personality and energy then that is the one to check out. Without a doubt that one tends to blow everything out of the water in the genre. This one feels more like a dime a dozen and hey, that’s still not a bad deal for 40 minutes of free fun. It’s just not enough to take it to the next level so I’d recommend giving this one a try and then looking for something more long term.

Overall 5/10

Congo’s Caper Review


Congo’s Caper is a fairly traditional platforming title. You get to travel through different lands as you jump and fight your way to the goal. You can swing at enemies with your club and duck under obstacles. It’s a fairly short title but a fun one all the same. If you like platformers then you’ll definitely enjoy this and you can’t go wrong since the game is free after all.

The main character was enjoying a nice peaceful day when the heroine gets kidnapped by the main villain. He now has to save her before all hope is lost. The characters are now monkeys but with an item he can turn into a human. It’s an interesting gimmick. Instead of shrinking like Mario when you’re hit, the player turns into a monkey. I can tell you that the gameplay is a lot smoother when you’re a human so I advise you not to get hit. Sure, that’s easier said than done but I recommend that all the same. It’s just way easier to land blows and fly through the stage when you’re a lot bigger.

Each level is fairly different so the game deserves a lot of credit for keeping things fresh. You never feel like the levels are recycled or anything like that. The stages are also at a good length where they don’t drag on or feel too short. It’s actually a rather well polished game considering that you’ve probably never heard of it before. The gameplay is smooth as well and some of the bosses can actually be rather difficult. You’re probably going to have to break out the rewind and access point features a whole lot here.

Now the story is rather basic and by the numbers so you’re definitely here for the gameplay. The heroine getting captured is extremely standard but at least the game has her getting captured more than once which is a little different. Clearly the heroes need some kind of security detail at the ready since the villains can just waltz in and do whatever they want otherwise.

The bosses have cool designs and the boss battles themselves are rather creative. For one boss you have to avoid all of his legs and wings as you try to hit the head in the center. This boss is particularly difficult because he can move so fast and making any kind of contact with him will damage your health. You really need an air tight reaction time and a good plan in order to take him out. Otherwise you’re just doomed.

Throughout the game there were several moments that seemed incredibly difficult. You had to run ahead of some spikes or the ground collapsing. I died so many times to that and had to keep rewinding until I cheesed it. It wasn’t until the final level that I realized what was going wrong..there actually is a run button. It explains why the character was moving so slowly. I was actually walking for the majority of the game. In my defense the game didn’t make that particularly clear. It was fun to finally have this at the ready though.

The graphics look pretty good. I’d say that the style they used is one that ages really well. The colorful animations and character models are still rather sharp and the same is true for the environments. It’s closer to the high end on the side. The soundtrack is more on the forgettable side. Some decent tunes and all but nothing that will keep you up at night. It could have used some more high energy tracks which would have taken this to the next level.

Overall, Caveman’s Congo is a solid game. I won’t overhype it and say that it’s great or anything but you’ll have a good time with it. The game lasts for about an hour so if you need something quick to play then you should just jump on this one. You’ll be glad you did and I think it could do really well with a modern remake someday. Caveman type stories aren’t really my thing but for a platformer the gameplay is the most important part and I think this game proved that it could make this work.

Overall 6/10

Fighting EX Layer Another Dash Review


Whenever there is a free fighting game to check out, it’s definitely worth a play. Fighting Ex Layer is much like Street Fighter X Tekken in that you can see the full game content right out of the gate in the menus but you just can’t interact with them unless you pay the full price. I went into this one with the freemium version of course so I stuck to my selection. The game’s modes aren’t too extensive anyhow.

The modes here are vs mode (Online and Offline), Arcade mode, and Training. There isn’t a story mode here and Arcade only has one block of text as a character ending of sorts. So this is really a game that is focused purely on the combat. For most that will probably be enough for them to spend money on the full version so they can play the online vs mode. Battling against people online really throws in the replay value after all. If you stay strong on that though then your best bet is playing through the Arcade mode.

You get 4 fighters to play with and each one has their own special techniques and attack options. Mastering each character is your best way to win. I was able to complete the Arcade mode on normal and easy and they were reasonably tough so I imagine going on hard mode would really be a tough ordeal. Definitely not something to do unless you’re really confident in your own abilities. You have to have absolute confidence in yourself or it’s all over. I recommend going for the leg sweep, they seem to have a hard time blocking that move.

Mix in a few aerials and just keep swinging buttons. I can’t say I had an easy time finding out which attack combo’s into another so just find a 2 hit combo and you’re set. You can at least launch a flying kick and then go for a sweep which should work for any character. Pull that off and then you’re in a really good spot. You can also use an unblockable attack by pressing the A and X buttons at the same time. It’s super slow but gets the job done in a pinch.

Another benefit to jumping a lot is that if the opponent counters you will be just out of range. A final tip I should mention is grabbing is really good here. Just throw the opponent all over the field and you won’t have a problem. It’s a great way to keep the momentum at all times. It also deals quite a bit of damage so the game reminded me of Street Fighter V in that sense. Man I used to throw all the time there and it would just work. That’s how good the throws were.

The graphics are definitely really solid here. The game looks new and has a fairly sci-fi kind of feel to it. You feel like it’s a modern title and I would like to see the characters show up in a game with a story mode someday. Now that would absolutely have a ton of potential behind it. The soundtrack is more on the forgettable side. No real bad tunes or anything but none that you’ll remember once you finish the game. It could really use one rock solid rock theme if you ask me.

In general the game is just lacking in content kind of like Super Mario Run’s free version. It would be good to have added some more things to do here or maybe we could get a story mode at some point. The best thing to do if you ask me would have been to have added some text before each opponent so the arcade mode feels like a story. I think that would have hit the best balance by far and it’s a relatively low impact way to enhance the game as a whole. I’m surprised more titles don’t quickly slap a little story together like that. Would be a perfect way to pull it off.

At the end of the day the game is still good because the gameplay is solid though. It may not be the fastest paced fighting title but the moves make sense and you always feel like you have a chance. It’s got a higher bar to really learn the controls than a lot of the other fighting games so you can’t expect to just pick it up and start landing combos. This is one of those games where actually learning the moves will be absolutely mandatory.

Overall, Fighting Ex Layer is a game that I’d recommend giving a download. After all, it’s free so there’s no reason not to. Way I see it, downloading a free game is always worth the effort. Even if it doesn’t light your world on fire, you’ll have still gotten to play a nice game and it won’t have cost you anything. I don’t think you’ll be playing this game for very long as there isn’t much to do on your own but you can enjoy the nice gameplay and characters. Slap on some more content for this without having to purchase it and you’ll definitely have a winner here. It just has to be done soon before people have forgotten about the game. Honestly the marketing wasn’t that intense so you very easily could have missed hearing about it even from the start.

Overall 5/10

Breath of Fire II Review


I was really satisfied with the first Breath of Fire and I can safely say that this one is a really good sequel as well. I wouldn’t quite say that it beats the first as it loses out on at least one big quality of life feature but it’s still a really solid game all around. To compensate for that it does have the better story here. Either way if you like RPGs then you will definitely like this game.

It actually starts off with some Undertale type vibes as the main character and his pal enter a dark cave and things get rather trippy. You have an evil eye that it always running around, a giant monster that murders them, and things like that happen. Finally, a few years pass by and Tery’s (That’s what I called the lead) best friend Bow decided to become a bit of a thief. He is going to help this one guy who was already stolen from so in a way it’s like payback but it backfires and now everybody thinks he is a thief. Tery must quickly come to his aid and prove Bow’s innocence. Additionally Tery must find out why nobody remembers him and why his whole family is gone. Does it have something to do with the main villain?

There are a ton of monsters in this world so naturally it is not quite the kind of place that you want to be when things get tough. Tery got to meet one of the more powerful creatures in the tutorial after all even if he isn’t sure whether it was a dream or not. There’s this whole emotional system too where talking to people will light up or darken your crystal but there didn’t seem to be much of a point to it. Perhaps it alters your ending but I would have liked it to have made a bigger difference throughout the game. I appreciated how the game would get rather spooky at some points but ultimately it’s more for show than anything else.

The game is fairly long and you can certainly expect to take many hours to conquer it. Unfortunately the game doesn’t track your play time but it has to at least be 25-30+ hours. There’s a whole lot to do here, villages to help and party members to recruit. Additionally there is no easy way to bypass minions. So in the first game you could buy an item that stopped them from appearing for about a minute or so. I would stock up on as many of those as possible and it was a great deal but that’s not the case here. There is an item that (barely) reduces how often they spawn but it can’t prevent it.

Half the time it feels like the item didn’t do anything to be honest so it was a bit of a waste. It’s too bad they didn’t bring the item from the first game back because it’s just so much more peaceful when you’re able to run around and don’t have to worry about minions attacking. You can explore to get treasure and all kinds of things like that. Trying to run is usually not going to work so you have to keep rewinding until it does or you could just fight every minion in your way.

It is good for grinding I suppose. Speaking of which, be prepared to grind a whole lot here because the final bosses suddenly jump up a bunch of levels. They were not playing around but I would expect nothing less from an RPG final boss. Those are the kind of opponents that you want to go all out. Show us why you are the demon king or whoever the final boss is. The final battles are really an endurance test so buy as many potions, revives, and MP items as possible. I had over 100 items when you add in the amounts for each and I still barely made it. That was definitely not easy in the slightest.

The game’s ending isn’t super satisfying though. You can’t help but feel that Tery made the wrong choice unless there is some kind of true ending here. He overthought things but it did work as an intense twist of sorts. The game always has that uneasy feeling thanks to the prologue which shows just how effective it was even if the rest of the game plays it straight for the most part. The story is really engaging so you should be having a blast from start to finish. Tery’s companions were definitely really good as well and if anything the toughest part is deciding who to keep home.

Each ally has their own special ability which you’ll need on the hub world. One can fly, one can swim, one can jump, etc. So there will be times when you have to switch companions and you just can’t worry about it. Additionally some characters have a 1 on 1 story fight that can’t be skipped so if they are at a low level then that’s game over. You obtain shamans to power up your fighters but one if missable which can be disappointing if you didn’t get him. So if you see a chance to donate some money later in the game, make sure you click donate 20 times. If you don’t do that then you won’t get him at the end.

That’s really my main tips here, you should be able to get through the game with no real issues. The graphics are real good here and some aspects of the game have aged extremely well with the visual style. For example there’s one boss fight where you’re falling off a tower and then there’s a scene where Tery is running through the flames. You don’t see a whole lot of cutscenes using the sprites like this outside of combat so I thought that was pretty cool. The soundtrack is also good although as far as RPGs go I wouldn’t say it stands out a ton.

This is the kind of game that just freezes once you beat it so that means there is no replay value. Fortunately the main campaign is so long that this really is not an issue in the slightest. You’ll get to have your full barrel of fun here. The cast is fairly solid and of course Tery steals the show even if he’s the silent kind of protagonist so you won’t really see him talk here. You just know that he has what it takes to win.

Overall, Breath of Fire II is a great follow up to the original. I would probably still learn towards the first game as a whole even though this one had the better story. Breath of Fire is certainly one of those games that could do well with a modern sequel or remake. After all stories about dragons are always cool and this one has plenty of them. It’s a very challenging game so you do need to keep your guard up but then making it to the ending is that much more satisfying.

Overall 8/10

Fall Guys Review


It’s great to finally have Fall Guys as a free to play game. I remember that one got a ton of hype along with Among Us and really broke out into the mainstream. Well, I can say that Fall Guys lives up to the hype and is definitely a fun title. There is a lot of downtime both between and during matches so you’ll want to have something with you to read or play in those moments but the actual gameplay is a lot of fun.

The controls are extremely simple here. You can move, jump, dive jump, and grab things. That’s it, the idea is to survive until the end and have everyone else be eliminated. This is done over the course of a few different events that will test your platforming skills. At the end of the day the big thing here is definitely being able to react quickly and get to the end. The really fun part of course is that you’re up against a bunch of fellow players who are presumably good at platformers too. So it’s not like you’re styling on a bunch of A.I. or anything like that. You’re going up against potential world champs.

It’s also not easy to win because the levels themselves are also reasonably challenging. So between that and the other players then you’ve got quite a lot to balance out. I managed to get 1 win during my first day of playing but it still did take quite a few rounds before I got there. Don’t expect to get a win right away. No matter how good you are at platforming, it’s still going to take a little bit to get used to exactly how this works. Also, there are quite a few different levels and they randomly alternate so eventually you just want to be really good at all of them. Otherwise all it takes is one tough minigame to knock you out of the event.

Once you lose you can choose to stay and watch the others or leave. I personally recommend leaving so you can start the next event a little sooner. On the flip side if you win a level early then you have to keep on watching until the rest of the players make it. This is the downtime I was talking about before and so you’ll probably want to have a plan for that. Otherwise it probably can drag a little which could hurt the experience for you. It is necessary as I don’t see how the game can get around this though. So just stay ready and then you go up against all the rest in the next minigame as well. Rinse and repeat until you are the single champion

Naturally the game does have a level up system and lots of quests so you can work on those as you play the game normally. It’s always fun to have some kind of progression system and I dare say that any free to play game which is lacking in this will probably end up having a rough time. You need some kind of way to keep people coming back after all and this is a very tried and true way of doing it. The replay value never ends that way and the devs will just need to hit that sweet spot of getting new levels from time to time without removing all of the classics too quickly. I feel like they will be able to pull this off though.

It’s a rather simple formula that is hard to mess up. Who doesn’t like platforming anyway right? So long as the rest of the levels are fun like this one then I think you should be in a really good position going forward. The graphics are nice and while the little characters themselves may not be super stylish yet, you’ll unlock different wardrobe items to fully customize them. I expect within a year or so you’ll have countless items with which to make them hit the next level.

How long you stay with this game will probably depend on wat else you’re playing at the moment. After all, picture playing a Mario level for a while. It’s a lot of fun but how long will you keep playing until you decide to call it quits? A progression system in and of itself is probably not enough to keep you on the title forever. That said, one of its strengths is certainly how easy it is to pick up and play at any time. You don’t need to actually remember the game at all to quickly remember how to jump and move around. So as long as you have it downloaded you can easily feel like just playing it on a whim at some point.

Overall, I had a good time with Fall Guys. The developers were really smart in deciding to make a game like this. It’s one of those things that feels obvious afterwards since this is just a really great gimmick to go with. Who wouldn’t want to just be playing a lot of platforming levels and having a blast like this? It was satisfying to get the 1st place that one time after all and no matter what happens you always feel like you won or lost by your own efforts. At least right you never feel like the level RNG elements override your abilities. That’s probably the main thing the game needs to watch out for. Keep on experimenting and bringing in new things but be careful not to go too crazy. I’m confident this game can pull off the balance though.

Overall 7/10

Knockout City Review


Knockout City is one of those free to play games that looks like a lot of fun but I wouldn’t say that it was marketed too heavily. It was certainly possible to just end up missing out on it. Well, I got to play it and it’s quite a bit of fun. Its main weakness is that it does rely on a team format meaning you can only do as well as your teammates. That is sure to get a little dicey for a while unless you can find a squad to join up with but it’s a solid all around title.

The games really follow the ole Dodgeball rules. It’s not instant elimination when you’re hit though and instead you respawn somewhere on the map. A typical match is a 3 vs 3 battle and the first team to 10 points wins. Getting hit by a car or falling off of the map will award the other team a point as well so you really have to stay vigilant at all times. Otherwise you could wind up giving the other team some instant points.

The controls are fairly easy to get the hang of. You can shoot the ball, pass, jump, double jump, and glide. The most important mechanic of course is catching a ball when someone throws it at you. You don’t actually knock them out by doing that but you prevent them from taking any points and can then fire your ball back at them right away. A good defense is a good offense right? This is the best chance to put that into practice and really dish out the damage. It take a little practice but before long you should be able to pull this off without too many issues.

There are different balls which all have different abilities so you’ll want to keep an eye out for them. The level has a little info section about the ball so you always have a heads up though. There’s only one kind of gimmick ball per level so you won’t be seeing a ton of them just show up. That said, it’s hard to beat the classic ball since it just feels really good when you’re able to secure the win there.

There are other modes too like a super hero one where everyone has powers and a 2 v 2 v 2 mode. Unfortunately there is no free for all or survival kind of mode. It would be nice to have at least one mode where you were on your own and I think the game should look into getting that mode available right away. There’s a whole lot of potential there right out of the gate and not using it just feels like a pretty big mistake.

So the game is fun but here are my brief issues with it. I already went into the lack of a solo mode. The other one is that the wait between matches can feel a little long. The announcer is trying to be very engaging with how he yells between the rounds but it’s more on the grating side. I would say you don’t need an announcer here and the game could just use that time in silence or putting you in a practice field like what Fortnite does. It would make the matches a little more seamless.

I also think the game could show where the dodgeballs are a little better. Sometimes it feels like you’re running around for a while trying to find them and I suspect this was not intentional. It just doesn’t seem to me like the game would want to make it hard for you to find the Dodgeballs so I suspect this wasn’t intentional. Perhaps there is a way to locate them easier and the game’s tutorial just didn’t cover it. That’s certainly possible so I don’t want to rule it out.

The graphics are solid here. They may not be cutting edge or anything as this is still a free to play game but it does well enough for itself. You should have a good time here. Then there is the soundtrack which is more on the forgettable side. You’re here for the gameplay either way though and that’s where the title excels. It does well with the Dodgeball mechanics and now we really know that the sport is possible to make into a video game. I’m surprised more titles don’t adapt this sport. I feel like there is a lot of potential here.

There’s naturally a ton of replay value as this game should go on for many years. You’ll have different modes popping in and out, new items, outfits, etc. As you progress through the levels you’ll unlock more things as well and one of the main advantages of a game like this is that the content never has to end. So if you like Dodgeball then this is a solid one to check out.

Overall, Knockout City does well in what it’s trying to accomplish. I had fun playing some rounds here and there. Ultimately it’s not quite as good as the big free to play title on the market in Fortnite though so it will be hard for this one to break out. It may end up getting a strong core fanbase but ultimately you need a lot of people if you want to become the next big thing and I’m not convinced that this one will make it in the long run. Guess we’ll see how it plays out.

Overall 7/10

New Super Lucky’s Tale Review


This is a platformer that got a whole lot of hype back in the day. It looked very polished but also retro in a sense as it would be a simple platformer filled with a lot of fun and no real gimmicks. I’d say it delivers on that too, you’ve got a solid amount of level variety. Each level is rather short but they all feel different and are very fast paced. You shouldn’t have any problems playing through it and there is also a good amount of replay value.

Lucky has to try and get the chapters of the legendary book back before it’s too late. There’s a dark overlord scheming to use this for evil and the whole world is pretty much in jeopardy. This is perhaps an oversimplification of the plot to be fair but it’s a classic story that will get you right into the mix to try and save the world. Most of the other characters can’t talk in English voice acting at least so it’s going to be up to you to confront the villains and save the day.

Lucky’s a fun lead. There isn’t a whole lot to his personality as I couldn’t tell you much beyond him being a nice guy but he gets the job done. He has two jumps and can do a spin in the air. I always like when platformers let you spin in the air because it really helps you work on your timing as you try to dodge enemy attacks. Every game that has this feature has really benefited from it. There is also some combat in the game as you can attack with a tail swipe but aside from one boss fight you won’t really need to use this very much. It’s nice to have but never feels super necessary. A lot of enemies you can just stomp on anyway.

There are also puzzles here but this is one of the rare games that actually gets them right. The puzzles tend to be about pushing statues into the right spots. It takes a bit of work but you’ll find out the right answer if you keep at it. It reminds me of something out of Professor Layton and has that very calm appeal to it. You can reset the puzzle at any point to try it again from the beginning as well.

Most of the levels are traditional style but then you also have a few auto runner type levels where you just start running and have to try and be at the right place at the right time. These levels fit in well with the normal ones I’d say. I tend to enjoy that kind of gameplay as well. There’s a good amount of variety here and each of the styles control rather well which is important too. I would say the strongest part of the game is just how smooth it is. I doubt you’ll encounter any true glitches or issues that make you do a double take. It’s as smooth as butte and that’s what you like to see in a platformer like this. It’s critically important you could say.

Now if the game has any issue it’s that it can be a bit short. Yes, platformers are often short but this one feels even shorter than usual. I believe it’s because of how the worlds are set up. In a lot of platformers you have to complete every level to get to the end but in this one you don’t have to do that. In fact, a ton of the levels are optional. The reason for this is each world has a boss level at the end and you have to get a certain number of leaves in order to access it. Typically this number is 10 while each world has about 22. Each level has 3-4 leaves in it. So for example if you get all 4 leaves in the level then you only need to complete 3 levels instead of completing more like 7 or so.

It puts you in the driver seat of how quickly you want to complete each of the worlds. I quickly got the hang of how to obtain all 4 in a level and once I did that was it. I was getting 4 on each one so I was blasting through the worlds. Typically you get one leaf for beating the level, 1 for 300 coins, 1 secret page somewhere in the level, and one for getting all 5 letter of the word Lucky. Getting the coins and the letters are real easy once you start paying attention to them so at the very least you should get 3 each time but eve the secret one’s usually not super hidden or anything. That’s your chance to grab it as soon as possible.

Of course the good part about this is even if you complete the game quickly, you can always go back to try and get the leaves that you didn’t get. It’ll certainly take a while to nab them all and to get the Platinum trophy for this game so that would be worth a shot. It definitely looks very achievable after all so you’ll just have to hunker down and try to knock it out. Pull that off and you’ll have another nice achievement to your name.

The graphics are really solid here. It all feels like true HD and goes hand in hand with how good the levels look. As for the soundtrack, that is a bit more forgettable. I wouldn’t say that it particularly stood out to me. It’s absolutely not bad in any way but there wasn’t a single tune that I found to be really catchy. This is something that I think they could improve upon in the sequel. Get some really fast paced tuned and maybe even a rock theme or two. You really can’t go wrong there.

Overall, New Super Lucky’s Tale is certainly a fun game to check out. It’s got the right balance of action, adventure, and puzzles. I definitely didn’t think I’d be complementing puzzles anytime soon but this game just pulls it off. Honestly if all of the games would handle it like this then I dare say we would be in a really good spot but unfortunately I know that this is more of a one time deal. For every game that gets puzzles right, 9 more show up with really annoying gimmicks that don’t make any sense. You definitely need to play this game if you want to see a platformer that’s solid around the board.

Overall 7/10