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  • That’s it, I am officially a noob magnet in Mod...
    By on February 20th, 2010 | No Comments Comments

    I guess my previous whining didn’t help much, I am more annoyed than ever. I now always end up on the losing team, always stuck with a bunch of noobs that do not seem to have an idea of how to play this game properly. All they do is rush out and get shot from all directions. Why do I deserve this? My winning ration was 1.35 yesterday and now I am struggling with a 1.31 because I have lost basically every game today, be it a real lost with noobs on my team or one of those annoying disconnects.

    But what annoys me the most is the fact that I am always the only one with a decent score, well most of the time. The rest of my team would just contribute points to the other team by dying. It really felt like its me against the other 13 players instead of 6 on 6. If my team was able to contribute a bit more towards winning I would have no problem losing, at least we tried and the game was fair. In my case it was just pure slaughter by the opposing team.

    Maybe I should just take a break and stop playing Modern Warfare 2 for a while. Let myself cool down a bit. Then again, what difference does that make? I will still be the only one, most of the time, with a positive kill / death ratio. What’s the point?

    I have never been so upset in my life over a game, never happened with the original Modern Warfare.

  • Bayonetta did not disappoint me. Worth the buy!
    By on January 9th, 2010 | 1 Comment1 Comment Comments

    Bayonetta
    Bayonetta, a pretty hyped up Devil May Cry style action game was released on Jan 5th. Unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to buy it on that day because I went to watch Avatar with my girlfriend, boy was that one of the best movies of 2009.

    Anyway, I went to EB Games the next day but they were sold out, that was a bit surprising because I didn’t expect Bayonetta to be THAT demanding. I went to Best Buy and the PS3 version was sold out and no luck at EB Games again. I finally did get my copy at Futureshop the next day though, phew!

    Bayonetta
    The game hasn’t let me down so far, I still haven’t got bored of the the ultra fast paced battles plus button mashing. I guess that was kind of expected from the beginning (button mashing). I’m not sure if its my lack of skills and patience or is the game hard at some of the sections. I am still having trouble with some of the quicktime events where you have to click the button at that particular moment, not earlier, not later, it has to be exact. I died a couple of times as a result. Some of the battles are pretty hard as well, maybe I need to get better with the dodge.

    Boss battles are pretty epic, one of the reasons why I bought this game. I just love looking at oversized monsters that take up more than half the TV screen. I find them easier to deal with then those in Devil May Cry. Another reason, the Torture Attacks, never cease to entertain me with different violent and bloody damaging moves.

    The graphics are very impressive though I have noticed a few areas with frame rate issues but they are not enough to put me off this game. Buildings give you the impression of their massiveness. The music is pretty good as well, instead of using rock and heavy metal from Devil May Cry, Bayonetta uses Jazz + piano which give this game a feeling of elegance and style.

    Bayonetta

    Aside from the frame rate issue, one major problem with Bayonetta is the amount of loading and the length of each load. I think the developers could have done a better job at the loading aspect. Other than that, there is nothing really to pick on about this game.

    For Devil May Cry fans, this should be a must buy. If you are into ultra fast paced action games, you should give this a try, at least rent it. This game isn’t for those who doesn’t enjoy some button mashing and/or controlling a stylish character. To me, Bayonetta was definitely a worthy game to buy.
    Bayonetta

  • Afro Samurai – PlayStation 3 demo review
    By on February 21st, 2009 | No Comments Comments


    What game do you get when you combine African and Japanese? Afro Samurai. I downloaded the demo for Afro Samurai for the PlayStation 3 last night and I must say this demo is one of the shortest demo I have ever played. The demo allows you to slice about 20 or so enemies and just when you are about to meet the boss of the level, the demo ends there (bad teaser!). Since the demo is short, my demo review will reflect on that as well.

    Let me talk about the positive things about about Afro Samurai first. I love that artsy cell shaded graphics and the fact Afro Samurai is voiced by one of my favorite actor Samuel L Jackson makes this Afro even more live and real. Aside from the cell shaded graphics, it was also real fun to see your enemies (samurai’s and ninjas) get decapitated and body parts fly out as a result.

    The controls are pretty straight forward, typical first/third person shooter style. You get a few basic attacks initially and you will be chaining your attacks similar to Heavenly Sword. You get a light, heavy and a kick attack as well as two focus moves which I personally think makes the game much less challenging, at least in normal mode. As you progress you will unlock more moves.

    Although too powerful in my opinion, these focus moves are pretty fun, again during the short game play. You have to hold and press either L1 or L2 to execute each of them and will be able to refill them by doing normal attacks so its pretty easy to execute them. The L1 focus move, when held down, you will also have to hold down one of the attack buttons (light, heavy and the kick) and release the attack button when the sparkle is at the tip of the sword to execute. The focus + light attack combo will execute an area attack (in circle actually) that slices everyone in the area and pretty much all your enemies in range will be in half. While the L2 combo will perform a strong vertical slice from top to bottom so this will split your enemies in half vertically. Finally the second Focus, again while holding down L2, will have Afro moving around and chopping up enemies while the Focus lasts.

    Now to the negative things, the characters use the F word a lot, even in this short demo, the F word was used more than a handful of times. While I found this funny at first, it started to lose the humor after the first 2-3 times. I can’t imagine how many times it will be referenced through the full game. My control related complain is the 360 degree camera using the right analog stick. Its inverted which means if you press right the camera will look to the left and vice versa. And finally while the slicing of body parts was fun, I have a feeling that I will get bored of this repetitive game play pretty soon.

    This game might be for the Afro fans and/or anyone that doesn’t mind repetitive hack and slash games. But even with its pretty cell shaded graphics, Ef-fing humor and the body chopping, I’m not sure if this game is worth $59.99+ tax but rather a rental. I also don’t see any reason to replay this unless you want to challenge yourself to a harder level. Then again to each his own. But I do suggest renting this game, try it out before you actually buy it.

  • Savage Moon – PlayStation 3 hands-on review
    By on February 14th, 2009 | No Comments Comments

    Took me more than a day to finally convince myself to get this game. The main reason is because the game consists of only 12 levels and second reason is I’m a cheap gamer. In the end its the combination of sci-fi theme plus the fact that I’m a semi-hardcore fan of tower defense strategy games that made me make the purchase. I was a bit skeptical at first but after playing the first 4 levels, I must say this game offers a lot of content for the price I paid.

    The goal of the game is simple, defend the mining operation from swamps of deadly alien insects called Insectocytes. The first 3 levels are basically tutorials, although you can switch off in the Options menu if you decide to replay those levels and I’m pretty sure you will. Just like any other tower defense strategy games, you will always start with the basic towers, just like PixelJunk Monsters, but instead of an arrow tower, your first tower will be a machine gun tower. By killing of waves and waves of enemies which gradually grow stronger than the previous waves, you will earn money to research new towers as well as upgrade your existing towers (up to level 5). You can als earn more money by advancing the enemy waves, if you feel that you can handle more without preparations.

    Unlike PixelJunk Monsters where different types of enemies only take away one life from the total (one villager), different enemies take away different amount of health in Savage Moon. The stronger the enemy the more health or damage it will deal to your mining operation’s overall health.

    As I mentioned before that this game offers more than what you are paying for, at least in my opinion. There are a couple of features that are not in PixelJunk Monsters – Command system, new types of towers that can be researched and you can rotate/zoom in and out of the map as well as camera mode from a particular tower.

    Another difference between this game and PixelJunk Monsters is that you can only build a limited number of towers based on the available drop pods, even if you have the resources to build more. This makes the game more challenging as you need to plan carefully where you want to place the towers. A very nice feature. But don’t worry, the number will refill itself after each wave.

    The command system has three aspects – more money per kill, stronger tower attacks and defense. At one time you can only have up to two of the three prioritized and sacrificing the third aspect. Or you can choose to have all three balanced. Early on you will pick more money per kill plus more fire power so that you can build up more, upgrade existing towers and research new ones.

    There are also new types of towers to defend your mining operation such as the Repair Tower that will constantly repair nearby towers and Amp Tower that will make your nearby towers stronger as well as the very useful Block Tower that will allow you to block a path (not all paths can be blocked) by building multiple of these towers beside each other. Other towers can also be built on top of these Block Towers. There are more powerful ones as you progress through the game, I haven’t finished the game yet but I know there are more just by looking at different loading screens. I can’t wait til I get my hands on the Orbital Tower!

    One negative comment I have for this game is the lack of multiplayer support (co-op) but I am sure a simple patch can change that?

    Overall this game isn’t easy, except for the first 3 levels. The 4th level on Duergar on Xipe took me a few tries before figuring out what’s the best to deal with those pain-in-the-ass giant Insectocytes. This level is the first challenging level that will sure frustrates a lot of people playing for the first time. For those that are stuck on this level, just build a lot of Mortar Towers and you should be fine, at first I thought the Laser Towers would take them out quicker but I was wrong. And don’t forget to upgrade them as much as possible.

    Most of the time you will use your money for researching, upgrading and building towers but occasionally you will want to use the Repair Base option to repair your damaged base.

    PixelJunk Monsters has a relaxing and cartoonish feel to it, on the other hand Savage Moon has a totally different theme that takes place in space. Graphics are obviously more realistic, I am not criticizing PixelJunk Monsters’ graphics though because it was meant to be cartoonish and unrealistic. While its not Metal Gear Solid or Call of Duty quality, the graphics are more than enough to justify the price you pay.

    I think the audio is what stands out the most besides the game play. When you kill waves after waves of enemies, you will constantly hear death screams which are very, very satisfying. I also love the sound each tower makes when it fires as well as when it upgrades and transforms into a stronger tower (great animation too!).

    I highly recommend this little downloadable game on PlayStation Network for 9.99+tax. Fans of the sci-fi Tower Defense genre will not be disappointed with its refreshing style of game play. If I was to pick between PixelJunk Monsters and Savage Moon, I think I will pick Savage Moon over Monsters because there are just more things to do and the battles are much more intensive. Let’s hope there will be add-ons for this game in the future.

    8.5/10

    [Update]: If you are looking for Savage Moon walkthrough, there isn’t any so far, not even in gamefaq.com. But I have found video walkthrough from PSU’s Savage Moon Walkthrough

    Image source: PlayStation.Blog @ Flickr

  • Super Stardust Portable – PSP review
    By on January 2nd, 2009 | 2 Comments2 Comments Comments

    I was going to get the Super Stardust HD for the PlayStation 3 on PSN but I didn’t because I had so many games to play and so little time at that moment. A month ago, PSN released the PSP version called Super Stardust Portable and I finally gave in. In my opinion this game is better than another shooter called Everyday Shooter where the object destruction is turned into part of the background music. Don’t get me wrong, Everyday Shooter is one great and innovative game but I just prefer Super Stardust Portable’s style of play.

    Game play
    The concept is pretty much the same as any other classic arcade shooter but Super Stardust Portable pushes a few notches up with extremely fast paced game and amazing graphics (I apologize for not having any of my own images because the game is just too fast paced I can’t take anything worth looking, you can check out the ones at IGN).

    Your objective for this game is simple, shoot everything in your sight. Mostly asteroids but there are also others like green worm looking enemies and red bombs that will chase you until they or you are destroyed. You are given three types of main weapons which you can gradually power up and cause even more destruction. The three main weapons are – Ice Splitter, Rock Crusher and Gold Melter. You can also spread out the shots by tapping the button but I hardly use it.

    Since this is a classic arcade shooter, it cannot be “classic” without the special bombs. These bombs will blow up everything surrounding you. Finally you also get to use the Impact Boost which is pretty much acts like a shield that will boost towards one direction and destroy anything in the way. The boost can be recharged in time and you should always have it ready because there will be a lot of times where there are just too many asteroids and other things on the screen you will have no time to shoot them all. The boost allows you to rush your way out of the mess while cleaning some of that mess. Occasionally you will also get to replenish your bombs as well as having a shield to protect you from one hit, if you have a shield already the shield item will act like a bomb, clearing the space surrounding you.

    The three weapons have their own advantages but you can pretty much clear every levels with using just one of them. The Ice Splitter is more powerful (at least that’s what I think) but its more concentrated while the Rock Crusher is slightly less powerful but more spread out. Finally the Gold Melter is basically a line of fire and if you press all 4 buttons it will create a circle of fire and you are pretty much protected from anything, well most of the time. I should also mention the 4 buttons correspond to each direction, so for example the triangle is shooting up and the triangle + square will shoot at the north west direction. I took me a while to get used to this shooting style though.

    This game is very fast paced, each level or “phase” as the game calls it, takes an average of two minutes to complete. There are 5 planets for your shooting needs, each planet has 4 phases plus a boss phase. I personally enjoy the non boss phases because they are much more engaging, there is really no time to rest. My right thumb was basically in pain after completing the first planet, it was a lot of work!

    Graphics and audio
    Graphics are again, nothing short of amazing, specially for the PSP. I can only imagine how much better the graphics will be for the PS3′s HD version. All the special effects, mainly the explosions for the astroids and how they break into smaller pieces is simply stunning. The audi department did a great job too though you will mostly likely be too busy shooting and blowing things up you will not pay too much attention to it.

    Final verdict
    Overall I highly recommend this game for anyone that likes classic arcade shooters, this is one addictive game with great game play and graphics. I also suggest getting the PSP version, if you have one, over the PS3 version because this is a perfect game to play on the subway or on a bus while communting to/from work.

    9/10

    Image source: PlayStation.blog

  • Dissidia: Final Fantasy – PSP review
    By on December 23rd, 2008 | 3 Comments3 Comments Comments
    Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    Finally I got my hands on a copy of this game, Dissidia: Final Fantasy is the newest Final Fantasy game released for the Sony PlayStation Portable or PSP. I have the Japanese version and the North American version will arrive sometime mid year in 2009. Honestly I thought this game wouldn’t suit me but I was wrong, very wrong!

    Story and game play
    After a quite long but very enjoyable opening cinematic of the good and evil, you will pretty much get the idea of what’s going on. Cosmo, the goddess of harmony (the good) and Chaos, the god of discord (the evil) have both summoned a few of the past Final Fantasy characters to fight for his/her side. Honestly I didn’t know any of those characters prior to Final Fantasy 6 until I played this game. I was in grade 6 when Final Fantasy 6 (3 in America) came out, so can’t blame me. :)

    Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    The heroes:

    -Warrior of Light – Final Fantasy
    - Firion – Final Fantasy II
    - Onion Knight – Final Fantasy III
    - Cecil Harvey – Final Fantasy IV
    - Bartz Klauser – Final Fantasy V
    - Terra Branford – Final Fantasy VI
    - Cloud Strife Final – Fantasy VII
    - Squall Leonhart – Final Fantasy VIII
    - Zidane Tribal – Final Fantasy IX
    - Tidus – Final Fantasy X
    - Shantotto – Final Fantasy XI (Ahh our beloved and adorable tarutaru!)

    Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    The Villains:

    - Garland – Final Fantasy
    - Emperor – Final Fantasy II
    - Cloud of Darkness – Final Fantasy III
    - Golbez – Final Fantasy IV
    - Exdeath – Final Fantasy V
    - Kefka Palazzo – Final Fantasy VI
    - Sephiroth – Final Fantasy VII
    - Ultimecia – Final Fantasy VIII
    - Kuja – Final Fantasy IX
    - Jecht – Final Fantasy X
    - Gabranth – Final Fantasy XII

    Initially you have to go through the Prologue which acts like a series of tutorials for the game. I really like this game because it is a combination of board game, action and RPG all in one! The Prologue will teach you how to navigate through the board, obtain items from treasure chests, fight monsters etc. At first you might feel overwhelmed, at least I did, with all the features and options. But since the menus are so elegantly designed it was easy to get used to and which button is for what option. Unlike the Macross Ace Frontier that I reviewed about two weeks ago. This is what I expect from Square Enix from all its games and so far I have not been disappointed.

    Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    There are two main modes – the story mode and 1 on 1. The story mode will let you pick which character you want to play the story with. The 1 on 1 to me is just a way to level grind your characters.

    As you fight through battles and completing stages, you will gain experience points as well as items and gils (money) which can be used to booster your character’s stats and purchase new weapons/items from the shop.

    There are quite a lot of things to cover in terms of the actual game play because its separated between the board game part as well as the actual battles. I will try and cover as much as I can.

    The board game part pretty much determines how many battles you will be fighting, on the board there will be treasure chests, healing item, monsters (for you to fight and gain experience and items) as well as a statue that you have to destroy in order to finish a particular stage (note you don’t necessary have to kill all enemies to finish the stage, destroying the statue is enough, at least this is what I’ve seen so far. During each stage, you will be given points called Destiny Points, its basically just points for you to navigate throughout the stage, if you manage to complete the stage without going to the negative, you earn more points after completing the stage, sometimes I find that you have to get to the negative in order to get to everything (or maybe I just suck). You can refill your DP by completing the DP Chance like defeating your enemy within 10 seconds or trigger your EX attack (the special move which I will talk about later) within 10 seconds (not all enemies have DP Chance so you have to plan the way you move throughout the board.

    Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    On the board, you don’t just move around though, you also have skills that you can use such as healing 30% of your HP or cast negative effects onto your enemy that is adjacent to where you are. Finally you can also press R to go into search mode and check on each enemy’s level as well as the the DP Chance ahead of time. I don’t find it that useful though.

    That should cover the basics of the board game part now onto the actual battle!

    Battles are very fast paced, the square and circle buttons are for attack, R is defend, L is toggling targeting on/off (sometimes you want to go somewhere else and not looking at your enemy all the time), triangle allows you to walk on walls or jump from one place to another (pretty handy when you fight in a stage where there is hardly anywhere for you to walk on, you will have to jump around) and cross is jump. EX attack or special move is triggered when the EX gauge is full and by pressing R+square. If you have esper equipped, you can call it out by pressing R+circle, again when the EX gauge is full. You will slowly fill up your EX gauge when you attack, being attacked or by obtaining the EX fill up item that appears randomly during battle.

    Once EX attack is triggered, a sequence of buttons will be displayed to you, you will have to get them correctly to get the maximum number of hits out of it and in the end, you will hit the button that will be displayed to you for the final blow as well. I haven’t mastered this attack yet though.

    Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    Upon leveling up, your character will not only gain stats, but he/she will also gain more skills that you can map to your keys. Pressing left and circle can have a different attack than pressing right/top/down and circle! So the combination is endless, well not literally but you get my idea. That goes for the square button attack as well. You can also pick a different EX attack from the EX Mode menu. This should give you at least some ideas of what this game has to offer. I’m PRETTY sure there are more features that I have not covered, like this mini game like option that requires PP that I’m still trying to figure out what its for, all I know is that I used up 30PP to do something related to “treasure hunting in a cave”. Sorry I can’t read too much Japanese.

    There is also a multiplayer mode but I haven’t had the opportunity to test it out.

    Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy Dissidia: Final Fantasy

    Graphics and audio
    The graphics are pretty impressive, and I’m not just talking about the CG intro but game play graphics as well. Character facial animations are one of the best I’ve seen on a PSP, you can really see detailed facial animations from each character. The way their eyes blink to how their mouths/lips move as they talk is so smooth its like watching an anime. This is pretty much the best feature I like about Dissidia: Final Fantasy in terms of graphics.

    Also worth a mention is the special/lighting effects of the game, be it whether you are moving on the board, scrolling through menus or battling enemies as well as the destructable objects and when you or your enemy gets pushed into a wall, the wall will break too. All these really enhance the game making it more realistic.

    Square Enix has been known for having some of the best music composed in the gaming industry if not the best. And Dissidia: Final Fantasy is no exception but then again the game basically uses music from all the Final Fantasy series.

    Final verdict
    If you are a Final Fantasy fan, I don’t see why you would want to miss this, of course unless you don’t have a PSP then I can’t blame you. But if you are a fan and own a PSP, I suggest you pick up the Japanese version if you can’t wait for the North American version on ebay or yesasia. The fact that this game has features from board games, action/fighting games and traditional RPG games should be more than enough to satisfy a wide range of gamers that are into different game genres. Finally, this game has so much features to offer that I think its worth more than what I’ve paid for, you don’t see a lot of games like that too often!

    9.0/10

  • Gundam vs Gundam – PSP review
    By on November 20th, 2008 | 9 Comments9 Comments Comments

    Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot

    Previous Gundam related games like Gundam Seed: Rengou vs. Z.A.F.T. Portable, Gundam Battle Royale and Gundam Battle Tactics were all great games, specially Gundam Seed: Rengou vs. Z.A.F.T. Portable that had, at the time, the latest mobile suits from the Gundam Seed series. Now, Gundam vs Gundam, the newest Gundam game has released for the PlayStation Portable in Japan (no date for North American release yet). Is this one worth buying at all? Read on…..

    For those that haven’t played the games or even heard of Gundams before, they are basically transformers but only look 100x better. The games mentioned above basically put you in one of the mobile suits, not necessary Gundams because there are different robots in the series. You will be controlling and fighting against one of the other sides, usually two sides each with different mobile suits and mobile armor (these are not necessary robots but can be fighter planes etc). Its really a third person shooter, just replace human/monsters with robots.

    Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot

    If I remember correctly, this game was originally from the arcade and it was ported over to the PlayStation 2, then to the PSP. Gundam Seed: Rengou vs. Z.A.F.T. Portable was a great game that offered hours of play time and great replay value because you can upgrade many of your mobile suits’ stats such as how fast the weapon can fire, more ammo, more fire power as well as more health, jump higher and more booster power etc. This is pretty much level grinding though, which I think was necessary in order to pass some of the harder levels.

    Game play
    Gundam vs Gundam is really just the arcade version ported over to the PSP. At first I thought there was a story mode just like Gundam Seed: Rengou vs. Z.A.F.T. Portable. I should have figured that out from the name of the game, stupid me. The controls are basically the same or really similar to the other games though – jump, boost, shoot, melee, shoot 2, special shot, special melee and special. The three specials are hard to execute because you have to hold triangle, plus either the shoot or melee. The special move is slightly easier and its executed by pressing triangle, square and cross (might as well press your right thumb onto all four buttons)
    I have yet to even execute any of them. How did I even figure out how to execute these hard to do moves? They are actually mentioned in one of the game options. I will update once I figure out how to execute them. I have never had such frustration over special moves from previous Gundam games.

    [Update: I have finally managed to execute the special attack (only when your special gauge is full) by pressing.....L and R together twice]

    Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot

    Aside from the standards, now you can assign orders to your computer teammate, commands like attack, dodge and surprise attack. You can also call in support where an additional mobile suit for a second and throw in a few more shots at your current target, as usual, the calls for support can be recharged with time just like recharging your gun’s ammo. I find the support useful because, if I remember correctly it was able to take the hits for me as well as acting as a decoy for a short time.

    Enough with the controls, the game has three game modes – “normal” mode (I call it the normal mode, was going to say story mode but its not a story) where you fight through 8 stages with the last stage as boss stage, quick play and multiplayer that supports 2 on 2 battles. I think the 2 on 2 is the selling point here, just like the arcade version, the fun is from shooting and slashing other human piloted mobile suits. Once you have selected a mobile suit from the list with 20+ of them and more can be unlocked by completing the “normal” mode. They range from the oldest 0079 series all the way to the newest ones from the Gundam 00 series. The objective of any of these game mode is the same, you and your enemies both have a life bar, you will lose if your side’s life bar reaches 0. When you and/or your teammate dies (same goes for enemies), the amount of life your team loses is based on the mobile suit you picked. The stronger the mobile suit, the higher points its worth, which means when it blows up, your team loses a bigger amount of life. So that means its not always better to pick the strongest from the list. I picked my favorite Freedom Gundam and its worth 3000GP, I lost one of the games once by dying only twice!

    Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot

    In “normal” mode, you will fight in random locations and you will have a random computer mobile suit to fight along side with you. There are a total of 8 stages with the last one being the boss stage. The boss is huge, relative to your mobile suit and it took me 2 tries to beat it, I was one hit away from losing the game for the second time! I guess I just need to practice more with the controls, a training mode would be a perfect game mode for this game.

    Quick play is no brainer, you pick your mobile suit and pick up to 3 other computer to fight with or against you. You can modify options like how long the match lasts for, how fast your special gauge fills up or different stages/music.

    Unfortunately I haven’t had a chance to try out the multiplayer.

    Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot Gundam vs Gundam screenshot

    So as you can see, there isn’t any level grinding here. Although you can still unlock more mobile suits, intro movies, endings and images for the multimedia galleries.

    Graphics and audio
    Graphics are again, PSP quality, the mobile suits are nicely detailed, environments are plain but the game is so fast paced you won’t have time to appreciate or pay attention to, not that there is anything to appreciate here. Music is actually real sound tracks from the Gundam series, so based on which Gundam series’ stage you are fighting in, you will be listening to that series’ soundtrack. The soundtracks bring back a lot of memories by the way.

    Gundam vs Gundam screenshot

    Final verdict
    Overall I think this game is OK. I still prefer Gundam Seed: Rengou vs. Z.A.F.T. Portable because it has a story mode and level grinding although you can still unlock more mobile suits, maybe its just me. For those that are looking for fast paced arcade style game play, Gundam vs Gundam should suit your needs. Skills really matter in this game since there’s no level grinding where you can easily overpower your enemies by powering up your mobile suits and weapons. If you have lots of Gundam loving friends with PSP, I suggest convincing them to get a copy so up to 4 of you and your friends can fight each other anytime without going to the arcade.

    7.0/10

  • Shaun White Snowboarding – PSP review
    By on November 13th, 2008 | 2 Comments2 Comments Comments

    shaun white snowboarding screenshot shaun white snowboarding screenshot shaun white snowboarding screenshot

    shaun-white-snowboarding-co

    I haven’t played another snowboarding game since the SSX 3 from the PlayStation 2, that was one addictive game…while it lasted. What a perfect time to release another snowboarding game during or I should say near Winter time. Shaun White Snowboarding, available for PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360, PC, Nintendo DS, PlayStation Portable. As a beginner snowboarder myself, its time for me to play another snowboarding game to get me warmed up…well at least mentally.

    Story and controls
    Well there isn’t really a story, you choose a character out of the initial 3 and there are 6 unlockable characters. Then you will be basically snowboarding your way through 5 different slopes with increasing difficulties, you unlock the next one by completing the current one’s objectives and challenges. Each slope has its own quests and the first slope’s quests are basically tutorials that teach you about 4 basic skills – Speed, Carving, Rail riding and Jump/Grabs. Speed is obvious, basically you collect more points by going as fast as you can, without crashing of course. Carving is, in car term, drifting, but in snow and you get more points by performing near misses such as carving really close to a tree. Rail riding is riding on rails or broken tree branches and performing tricks while keeping yourself balanced by tilting left and right. Finally Jump/Grabs is jumping over ramps and perform tricks. This last skill is the trickiest and hardest to master because it has TONS of combinations. While in the air, you can rotate in all 4 directions, you can grab your board with your left hand, right hand or even both hands. You can combine them and perform something complicated such as rotate left while grabbing the board with your right hand and then rotate back wards while grabbing your board with both hands etc. Of course the trickier stun you can execute, the more points you get.

    shaun white snowboarding screenshot shaun white snowboarding screenshot shaun white snowboarding screenshot

    After each quest, you gain XP, as experience for each skill you have executed, so if you executed Speed skill, you get XP for skill etc. You can then use these XP to either upgrade your current skill level or buy new boards that will boost your skill levels plus other positive or negative boost for other skills. Why negative? If your Carve skill is level 4, some boards will bring your Carve skill back to 3 for example. So choose your board wisely when tackling on a particular slope or quest.

    There is a main objective for each quest and 2 sub objectives which I highly suggest you complete as they unlock new boards with new boost bonuses and they aren’t really that much harder to do, at least for the first 2 slopes.

    The game also supports multiplayer which I have not had a chance to try out unfortunately. But basically there are two modes – Co-op and competitive and I’m sure I don’t have to explain too much here.

    Gameplay, Graphics
    Controls are very easy to get used to, at least in terms of executing basic moves and tricks. Like I said, it will take a bit to master or even get a hang of executing combo moves for LOTS Of POINTS, as the game’s tutorial explains. You can find your fingers pretty busy most of the time, even more so when you are attempting tricky tricks! Overall I think its pretty addictive since there are skills to level up and boards to purchase, collect them all anyone?

    shaun white snowboarding screenshot shaun white snowboarding screenshot shaun white snowboarding screenshot

    Graphics are your typical PSP quality, at least it looks or at least I think its better than Spider-man: Web of Shadows. The game uses “blur” effects to simulate the sense of speed but didn’t quite do as good of a job as Burnout. Burnout is the only game so far that can give me the great sense of speed that I crave for. Your character is very alive though on the other hand, very energetic.

    I wish I could take more in-game pictures but its just too blurry to take them while actually snowboarding. I apologize but you can check out the images for the PSP version at IGN.

    Sound
    Also your typical snowboarding music, some rock and some techno ones. Gotta love them and would be perfect in combination with the sense of speed if it was done better. Environmental sound is also nicely designed, with the board scratching sound to bird singing but the music is pretty loud so most of the time you will only hear the music and the occasional bumping sound or ice/snow scraping sound.

    shaun white snowboarding screenshot

    Final verdict
    If you are into games and snowboarding, I think Shaun White Snowboarding will not disappoint. With different boards with different attributes to unlock and character leveling, you will have hours upon hours of snowboarding fun…..on a PSP. You might also consider getting this game on PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360 for better graphics and other features, but if you are looking for on-the-go gaming fun like me, this game should be another worthy game to purchase for your PSP.

    8/10