I realised yesterday that I’ve been blindly purchasing Nintendo consoles on launch day for sixteen years now. More specifically this has been happening since the Nintendo GameCube came out back in May 2002. However the journey hasn’t always been smooth; I was flat-out disappointed with the Wii and the Wii U spend most of day one installing a system update. The newest addition is of course the Nintendo Switch, and the good news is that my initial impressions are really very positive. With that in mind I though I’d take a quick break from playing Zelda to write about why that is.
Christmas is almost here again, and what better way to celebrate it than with festive themed videogames? Last year I composed a small list of holiday favourites, which today returns bigger and better than before with five additional recommendations. Here’s my list of games that are perfect for getting into the Christmas spirit, 2014 edition.
Insomniac Games have tried to break away from the classic Ratchet & Clank formula on a number of occasions. They experimented on the PlayStation 2 with the combat focused Ratchet: Gladiator (or Deadlock), and tried out a number of strange ideas with the more recent entries on the PlayStation 3. This technically means it’s taken four years for Ratchet & Clank to return to form, and whilst Nexus might offer familiar gameplay, it’s the most fun I’ve had with the series in a long time.
Was I the only person who saw this fighting game crossover coming? I mean if we can have Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games then we can have Street Fighter X Tekken. Still, you’ll only be playing five minutes before realising that this Capcom developed game is essentially Street Fighter IV with Tekken characters, and we’ll have to wait until next year to see Namco’s take on the series.
In Dangan Ronpa a group of highschool students are forced to compete in an evil game where the only escape is murder. Sound familiar? Dangan Ronpa isn’t even the only ‘Battle Royale’ esque story I’ve reviewed this week, but it certainly has more than enough originality underneath it’s familiar surface. In fact, it’s borrowed elements are all executed perfectly, and Dangan Ronpa is so good that it largely exceeds that which it takes influence from.
I first played Gravity Rush when I imported it a few months before it’s Western release. Since then I’ve also familiarised myself with the English language version, and as a result have put quite a lot of hours into the game. This wasn’t time wasted, and there’s so much to love about Gravity Rush. Unfortunately there’s also a few things to hate, and the game’s levels of brilliance are at times matched by it’s levels of frustration.
These days you don’t hear very much about the Joytech TFT Monitor, but I remember when this item first came out back in around 2003. At the time Joytech made two different screens specifically designed for the Nintendo GameCube, but of the two this one was notably superior, as well as harder to find. In fact, the shop I ordered it from (I think it was Argos) originally sent me the STN Monitor, and once this error was finally resolved I saw for myself the vast improvement in picture quality that the TFT delivers. It’s as true today as it was ten years ago that this is hands down the best portable monitor available for the GameCube, and it’s now even more difficult to acquire than it was back then.