Ratchet & Clank PS4 Review

Ratchet & Clank PS4 Review

A revitalizing surge of energy to an old, but beloved franchise.

The Playstation 4 remake/reimagining of 2002’s Ratchet & Clank is an exceptionally gorgeous painting in motion which re-establishes the series’ initial quirky charm and personality. Not only is Ratchet & Clank arguably the best game in the series – I’d have to replay A Crack in Time to truly weigh in on the superior title – but it’s also my second favourite Playstation 4 exclusive, trailing right behind the impeccable Bloodborne. While the game may trail on the safe and familiar in some regards, it ultimately adds a wide array of new variations which weren’t present in the 2002 original, resulting in an engaging experience for both veterans and newcomers alike. What Ratchet & Clank on the PS4 ultimately does is reassure the gaming community that the dynamic duo are still relevant and not only justifying exist in the modern era of gaming, but stand its ground amongst the robust quality of the eighth generation as Ratchet & Clank is a stellar experience that is arguably the greatest game that Insomniac has ever dished out.

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Classic Corner Extravaganza!

Classic Corner Extravaganza!

Hello everyone! Remember me? Long-time no talk! Despite being MIA for the past four months, I’ve been squeezing in some quality gaming sessions in my spare time and thought I’d just share my impressions on each and every classic game that I’ve played thus far.

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Top 5 Disappointing Games of 2015

Top 5 Disappointing Games of 2015

Though some might disagree, I found 2015 to be an excellent year for gaming, as it managed to impress me upon every passing glance; you’d be hard pressed to find a better year that excellently adhered to tried and true formulas while occasionally implementing innovative risks with selective new IP’s. However every rose is not without its thorn, as each and every year will have its own fair share of disappointments and 2015 was no exception.  Understand that disappointing doesn’t necessarily equate to mediocrity, in fact some of these games are great, but they were just unable to live up to expectations and/or bit off more than they could chew. I made a conscious effort to avoid certain titles as their reception was nothing short of abysmal, and I don’t know about you, but I personally don’t find enjoyment in playing mediocre titles. So with that being said, titles such as Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 5 and Devil’s Third will not be included in this list. These are simply five games that had the potential to be amazing, but to due obtuse design choices, ended up being a lowlight of 2015.

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The WakuWafu and Starlight Blogger Awards

Honestly, 2016 is currently off to a rocky start as I was greeted to the new year by a death in the family; luckily, my good friend Luke at SpaceFuelledGaming has given me something to look forward to, a tiny glimmer of good news. This nomination may seem trivial or insignificant to some, but these fun little awards have always intrigued me and being nominated for one is simply a delight. So I’d like to say thank you Luke, for giving me a moment to breathe and escape the hectic trauma that has plagued my personal life.

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Top 10 Games of 2015

Top 10 Games of 2015

The year 2015, in relation to the massive gaming medium, was surprisingly spectacular; it of course had its fair share of disappointments, which will receive an elaborated post within the coming weeks, but managed to preserve a steady pace and exude a profound sense of unrivalled quality, possibly delivering one of the greatest years in gaming. Not only were we given a copious amount of phenomenally crafted additions to well-established franchises, but 2015 also introduced us to some new, breath-taking IP’s which acted as a palette cleanser to the ubiquitous sequel-itis. These nuanced experiences and pivotal continuations have undoubtedly left a significant imprint onto the colossal medium of gaming; the versatile and accessible nature of these next ten titles have undoubtedly captured the essence of their corresponding genres, catering to every, individual need beautifully. There will undoubtedly be a few omissions from this list, certain titles that you would’ve expected to see; one small little game called Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain will sadly not make this list. Its omission is in no way a representation of a negative opinion towards it, I simply have no opinion to evoke as I haven’t played it; I haven’t played a single Metal Gear Solid entry in my entire life. I’m sure The Phantom Pain is every bit as amazing as everyone unanimously claims it to be, but before I rectify its absence, I wish to complete every prior entry in the series and experience its masterful nature appropriately. If you don’t see one of your 2015 favourites on this list, it can mean one of two things: I either didn’t get the opportunity to play the game or I just didn’t enjoy it as much as you did. So without further ado, here are my top 10 games of 2015!

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My Most Anticipated Games of 2016

My Most Anticipated Games of 2016

Out with the old, in with the new…

2015 is coming to an end, and while a moment of reflection on the year’s highlights and disappointments are in order, I shall first gaze upon the horizon of the not so distant future. 2015 was an excellent year for gaming which not only satisfyingly delivered a plethora of phenomenal sequels, but also introduced a wide variety of new, innovative IP’s that arguably hogged the spotlight. Maintaining an optimistically framed mindset, hopefully 2016 is able to replicate this exquisitely balanced equilibrium. With many impressive 2015 titles being pushed into the new year, an unfortunate sign that history will always repeat itself, 2016 admittedly shows intriguing promise and hopefully will be able to deliver a wide array of quality experiences while ultimately living up to the hype. Here are 10 games that have peaked my excitement for the New Year, with each and every one of them emitting an alluring nature that has unquestionably captivated my attention. Aside from these intriguing works of art, I also look forward to The Division, No Man’s Sky, Final Fantasy XV, Final Fantasy VII Remake, For Honor, Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst, Unravel, Star Fox Zero, Street Fighter V, Mafia III, Yooka Laylee, Cuphead, Mighty No 9, Overwatch, Ratchet & Clank, Recore, Daganronpa 3, and Gravity Rush 2. I am also well aware that some of the ten selected games have not been given a definitive release date, let alone a 2016 release window, however their inclusion indicates that there is some margin of a possibility for a 2016 release date. These ten captivating titles, which are ordered alphabetically, have undoubtedly peaked my interest and have rendered me extremely impatient for the imminent New Year which is just around the corner. Which of these games will land on my Top Games of 2016 list? Only time will tell, but for now, let us celebrate the imaginative possibilities of these ten promising titles.

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How Persona 4 Golden Saved My Life

How Persona 4 Golden Saved My Life

A simple story of depression, weakness, solace, and hope…

For years I’ve thought of how to properly articulate this experience as it’s neither a pleasant nor heartfelt memory, but it’s an indispensable experience that I’m ready to share. I’ll do my utmost best to not spoil the beautiful nature of the masterpiece that is Persona 4 but in order to properly convey this experience, I’ll have to touch on certain thematic elements that ultimately reflect my own personal struggles. I do apologize in advanced if I drift off topic, as this is a relatively sensitive topic, and it’ll be in my nature to deviate from the beaten path, but hopefully by the end of this, you’ll have a better understanding of who I am, why gaming is so important to me, and why I believe this medium is an unparalleled, beautiful work of art.

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Classic Corner – Resident Evil

Classic Corner – Resident Evil

Happy Halloween everyone! In celebration of the synonymous date of imaginative malevolence, I thought it would be appropriate to delve into a classic horror title in hopes of developing a state of uncomfortable anxiety, securing my next quick fix of adrenaline pumping intensity. Resident Evil is an astounding experience that appropriately fits the stated criteria; inducing an abundance of atmospherically eerie goodness, boasting brilliantly crafted level design that is arguably unrivalled to this very day, and a surprising emphasis on non-linearity and intricate puzzle implementation that mirror the minutia of the renowned adventure genre. Although Resident Evil arguably fostered the Survival Horror genre, and has never been dethroned in terms of pure structure, Resident Evil is a conspicuous homage to the tried and true fundamentals of the adventure genre, cohering the structural puzzle format of adventure legends such as The Secret of Monkey Island or King’s Quest and the non-linear progression of the Zelda and Metroid series. However, given the true nature of Resident Evil as a horror title and the sheer fact that Halloween is upon us, none of this would be relevant, let alone bare any sort of legacy, if the title that single-handedly pioneered Survival Horror wasn’t able to evoke any form of fear in the modern era of gaming. Resident Evil emits an unsettling nature that is quite difficult to describe; it’s this ineffable nature, however, that sets RE apart from the rest of the herd, as there are many intricate variables within the minutia of Resident Evil, making it fairly difficult to identify the true culprit of your instilled fear. Crimson Heads are downright petrifying as they’re basic instinct and structure are completely alien to the strategies you’ve developed thus far, making their imminent rise all the more terrifying. Familiar locales may alleviate yourself to a point of ease, but RE will take advantage of that comfortability and twist the very paranoia that consumes you, throwing yourself into a state of danger when you least expect it. Brilliant sound design will constantly keep you on your toes as its minimalistic music still evokes an unsettling nature that’ll undoubtedly crank your anxiety up to eleven, while enemy noises will alert you on the imminent danger that lies ahead. Regardless of what you’ll find on your horrific adventure through the Spencer Mansion, there will always be something to fear, and cherish the moments of tranquility as these instances are few and far between.

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Why Uncharted 2 is a Flawed Masterpiece

Why Uncharted 2 is a Flawed Masterpiece

Obvious spoiler warning for Uncharted 2 and the series as a whole. You have been warned…

In honor of the successful reception and recent admiration of Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection, it felt appropriate to relay my thoughts on, what is easily, one of the greatest and my own personal favourite video game series of all time. More accurately, however, I’d like to dissect the unanimous favourite of the trilogy, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, which also happens to be my preferred entry and unsurprisingly, one of my favourite games of all time. Originally released back in 2009, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves arguably set a golden standard for action-adventure as its impeccable pacing, jaw-dropping set pieces, and exquisite character development were second to none, mirroring that pristine joy of a thrilling, quality summer blockbuster. The original’s under-performances and limitations are largely responsible for its sequel’s success as expectations regarding Uncharted 2 were manifested with the original being the standard. Naughty Dog desecrated its initial standard and unfathomably exceeded expectations, improving on every minute detail that the original Uncharted crafted, outclassing it in every way imaginable. Uncharted 2 is the renowned example of how to make a proper sequel; improving and expanding on the initial formula, catering to what exactly made the original so beloved, and never giving into the fear of working with the safe and familiar, upping the ante ten fold if needed. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves exceeded its brethren in terms of sheer scope, fantastic writing along with the exceptional development of their beloved characters, impeccable pacing that’s second to none, its gorgeously cinematic world that raised the bar for graphical possibilities, its bombastically iconic soundtrack, and riveting expedition that boasts a mirroring quality to some of Indiana Jones’ finest work. Even though Uncharted 2 is a masterpiece, it is by no means a perfect game; there are actually several inconsistencies that are notable to say the least, and although they never detract from the masterful experience that is Uncharted 2, they’re still prominent factors that ultimately make Uncharted 2 a flawed masterpiece.

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Super Mario Maker Review

Super Mario Maker Review

Building perfection, one question block at a time…

Legacy is a word that is seldom used nowadays; the word has never constructed itself into an oversaturated, pretentious connotation and the vast, vigorous world of gaming haven’t the shortage of premium, quality titles that embody the potential and sheer definition of a legacy. Legacy is a matter of quality and time. Very few series have the pristine ability to kickstart a brave new medium of entertainment, one that is not only presently relevant but also healthier than it has ever been, breathing new, imaginative life into this expansive world. The Super Mario series not only crafted the world of gaming that we know and love today, but it pioneered a beloved genre to perfection and also introduced iconic characters that’ve become synonymous with the entire gaming medium as a whole, with Mario himself becoming the public face of the Big N, which at one point was a renowned playing card and toy company. Thirty years later and Mario has undoubtedly seen his fair share of sequels, successors, spin-offs, and inspirations, arguably taking massive responsibility for the popularity and success of the 2D and 3D realm of gaming. With countless masterpieces under his belt such as Super Mario Galaxy 2, Super Mario Bros 1 & 3, Super Mario 64, and Super Mario World to name a few, Mario has unquestionably become an icon and staple in the gaming community due his unparalleled relevance and punctual ability to deliver a quality gaming experience. For Mario’s thirtieth anniversary, Nintendo have cooked up something special that marks an innovative step towards the series’ evolution; Super Mario Maker gives fans the necessary tools to create a minute, yet idiosyncratic piece of Mario’s very own legacy. Super Mario Maker is essentially two games in one beautiful package: an exquisitely precise 2D platformer that accentuates that iconic responsiveness that is synonymous with the Super Mario series, and a brilliantly intuitive design tool that incomparably outshines all of its respective ilk in nearly every way imaginable. Super Mario Maker somehow managed to find a superlative equilibrium so that fans and newcomers alike can enjoy the experience to its fullest. Fans will undoubtedly bask in all of its nostalgic glory while newcomers, like myself, can perceive the structural template of Super Mario Maker as a small slice of Mario’s history.

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