It's rare when a game can juggle more than one genre and still end up as a quality product. Usually you end up with a so-so game that's trying to do too many things at once instead of mastering just one. Actraiser, an SNES launch title from (pre Square) Enix, managed to expertly combine a slashy-jumpy side scroller with laid back, SimCity-style village building to make one of the most unique and long-lasting games of the generation. And, as you might suspect, it also had a powerfully strong soundtrack.
Two songs embedded inside!
How noble, the human species! Once a year we selflessly take a break from wrapping products in toxic plastics and burning piles of old tires to appease this stupid, stupid planet we live on. How dare it demand more trees, breathable air and animals that don’t choke to death on our trash?
When new Wii U owners unbox their consoles for the first time, they'll be unwrapping more than just Nintendo's next hot ticket: the machine's Virtual Console also offers a window onto video games past. Here's our pick of the retro titles that Nintendo newbies ought to treat themselves to immediately...
What is the best Super Nintendo game ever made? Which Xbox 360 title is already the definitive classic? What Atari, Dreamcast and PlayStation experiences are most worth remembering? Growing tired of the internet’s countless, wishy-washy attempts to answer such questions, we decided to make the tough decisions ourselves. You’ll find no Top 5s, Top 7s, Top 15s or Top 100s here - just a single winner and runner up for each platform.
We're used to being the good guys. But did you ever stop to think about it from the enemy's point of view? Wouldn't our heroes look completely different?
Of course, just as in the real world, wartime imagery and alternative views of the enemy could undoubtedly be perpetuated with some propaganda posters… like these.
In real life, war is messy. Mistakes get made, civilians get hurt, families are shattered and once-thriving countries are bombed back to the Stone Age, often because of the misguided actions of their politicians. Wars in videogames, by contrast, are a hell of a lot more convenient and clean. Because they’re (usually) fictitious, the justifications are clear, the goals relatively simple and the opposing forces completely, irredeemably evil.
But that’s not always the case. Whether by design or through slapdash writing, some of gaming’s most notable conflicts – when examined objectively – are completely meaningless, stupid exercises in futility for all involved. Here are some of our favorites...
Thanks a bunch, Christopher Nolan. Ever since Batman Begins took the universally-reviled cinematic bastardization of a cool character and redrew it in the drab colors and long shadows of The Dark Knight Returns, the “gritty reboot” has been back in fashion. In Hollywood-speak, the term's a nice way of saying “we've screwed this up, can we have a do-over?” Of course, games being a forward-looking sort of medium, players have been wise to this trick for years now – and we're still suckers for it.
Whether it's a deeper-'n-darker sequel or restarting from scratch, rejigging your series with a darker palette and more distorted guitars is a great way to draw attention to what might otherwise be just more sequel-abuse. But how well does it work? From a player's perspective, a gray coat of paint is hardly going to turn gameplay upside down... but from a “cataloguing the tricks they'll pull to sell a new installment” standpoint, dark reboots are just gravy...
Jan 15, 2008
Final Fantasy IV
Lost your bearings? FFIV is the one that introduced the ‘Active Time Battle System - the same time-meter-based attack system thats been used in pretty much all Final Fantasy games since. You might have seen IV before on GBA or maybe even PSOne - but never like this. You get the same 3D refit as the recent FFIII remake. You get voices. You get animated cutscenes. And you get one of historys greatest traditional RPGs, playable on the
Has it really only been 12 months since the last avalanche of “Best Games of 200X” awards? Well, we all love a good list, and you won’t find a better barf bag of random praises than our own Platinum Chalice awards, the place to have someone else’s gaming opinions shoved upon you. How important are these awards? So important. Real important. What do the other guys have, gold trophies? Screw that.
From the stinging paper cuts delivered by their early Hanafuda cards, to their dual screen screammaker Contra 4, Nintendo have been responsible for a downpour of tricky titles to douse even the most resilient gamer's spirit. Join us as we descend Jacob's ladder through the circles of hell, into the belly of the Game Over beast.