The Video Game Reviews Thread

Volt 06-07-2004 01:24 PM
I noticed this forum is missing a place to recommend, anti-recommend, priase, and anti-praise video games. So, here we have The Video Game Reviews Thread. If you've never seen the format of a video game review befoire, most look something like this:

Game Name
ESRB rating if you want

Gameplay: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being the worst, 10 being the best)
A description of the gameplay, and what makes it good or bad.

Story: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being the worst, 10 being the best)
A description of the story, and what makes it good or bad.

Graphics: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being the worst, 10 being the best)
A description of the graphics, and what makes them good or bad.

Voice Overs: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being the worst, 10 being the best)
A description of the voice overs, and what makes them good or bad (if applicable).

Music: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being the worst, 10 being the best)
A description of the music, and what makes it good or bad.

Difficulty: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being very easy, 10 being near impossible)
A description of the difficulty of the game, why it's easy or hard, and if it's always that way or if the difficulty changes frequently.

Overall: (Rating from 1-10, 1 being the worst, 10 being the best)
Wrap up your review by giving a final verdict on how good the game is. Some people also say "Buy", "Rent", or "Don't Buy", depending on how good it is.

Now, this is just how some people would do it. You can do yours anyway you want, but keep this general format in mind. Don't write something like this:


Now that we have what to do, and, uh, what not to do covered. I'll post the first review.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City
PlayStation 2, XBox
Rated M

Gameplay: 9.5/10
Grand Theft Auto is probably the most well known game of all time for its car-jacking, shooting, and crime comitting gameplay. The basis of Vice City (as well as the other GTA games) is, as the name implies, car theft. Any car you see is yours for the taking---but don't forget the boats, helicopters, seaplanes, and tanks. Vice City is a huge place; it's not as big as a real city, say its relistic counterpart Miami, but it's about as big as the disc can hold. The size of the city gives you freedom to do whatever you want, however you want, and whenever you want. Say you're doing a mission where you have to storm up the stairs of a building with 40 guys sniping at you, just so you can retrieve a briefcase at the top; you're not limited to just that. Insead, why not take a helicopter, fly it onto the nearest building, take out a rocket launcher and blow the snipers into dust, then fly to the next building and take the suitcase? And, when not in a mission, you're free do to alot--- chop up civilians with a helicopter blade? Got it. Fight the army head to head with a tank? Got it. Flee from pursuing police in a speedboat? Got it. Get in a fight with an 80 year old golfer who will continually beat you with his gold club? Yes indeed. There is also a gigantic selection of weaponry in Vice City to suit your needs. Unlike GTA3, there is variation among every single type of gun; say that pistol isn't very good--go out and buy a one-hit-kill revolver. Maybe that Uzi takes too long to get the job done? There's always the more efiicient MP5K. Is that rocket launher too slow? How about a 30,000 shot gatling gun? The freedom to do anything and the means to do it with is the aspect that made Vice City one of my favorite games---and I'm sure 40 million others agree with me.

Story: 7/10
There isn't much to the storyline in Vice City. It goes somethign like this, though: Tommy Vercetti is a mobster who works for Sonny Forelli. After being caught killing 11 people for Forelli, he was thrown into prison for 15 years. Now that he's out, Forelli begins to worry about Tommy and if he'll screw up again and bring down the entire Forelli crime family, so he sends Tommy down to Vice City to establish Forelli control there. Upon arriving in Vice City, Tommy is supposed to make a drug deal, but everything goes wrong. Everyone but Tommy and his lawyer, Ken Rosenberg, is killed by low-life Cubans, who proceed to steal the money and drugs. Tommy manages to flee, then begins trying to get the drugs and money back, and eventually meets Ricardo Diaz, who he knows stole the merchandise.
spoiler (highlight to read):
When Diaz tries to kill Tommy's accomplice Lance, the two go in and kill Diaz and take over his mansion. Tommy begins establishing control of Vice City, buying businesses, and eventually a print works where counterfeit cash is made. Before he knows it, Forelli pays a visit to Vice City to collect the money. With 30 mil in fake cash in a briefcase, Tommy goes to meet Sonny. But again, the plan goes wrong. Lance ratted and told Forelli the cash was fake. "Did you think I'd just save face, and run away with my tail between my legs?!" Forelli asks Tommy. "No. I just wanted to piss you off before I kill you." Tommy chases Lance and eventually kills him on the rooftop of the mansion. Returning to his safe where the real cahs is stored, Tommy comes under heavy fire by Forelli and his men. Tommy kills him, and ultimately owns all of Vice City.
The reason I only consider the plot okay is because there isn't much going on besides greed. There weren't enough twists for my liking, i.e.
spoiler (highlight to read):
Lance's betrayal.

Graphics: 4/10
Hoo boy. This is the one major downfall of Vice City. The vehicle models are good, and some shine in the sun and have realistic reflecions, but the character modesl are BAD. The worst part of them is the lack of fingers; instead of 5 fingers, the models have a thumb and a block with 3 lines running rhough it. While this makes Tommy trying to flip someone off entertaining, it just looks bad. The faces are also pretty bad. They look close to nothing like the 2-D artwork, and have perpetually unblinking eyes. But, when you're having fun killing random people and cruising in the Vice City equivalent of a Firebird, it's hard to focus on these things.

Voice Overs: 9/10
The voice overs were really great. Each voice goes with the character remarkably well, from Sonny's crime-boss voice to Diaz' Cuban scum (not being racist... just saying he's scum... and is from Cuba) voice. I can't say much else, really.

Music: 8/10
The music is awesome! Instead of a song composed especially for the game like most games, you'll hear Michael Jackson, Flock of Seagulls, and Run DMC. While there's nothing cooler than facing off against police forces helicopter to helicopter while Billie Jean plays, nothing is more lame than crusing in a station wagon while you hear "Hear in my car, blah blah blah blah, bee blah blah, in cars." Along with the 80's classics comes the other 80's classics----the ones that are classic because they suck. But otherwise, the soundtrack and fake DJ's are extremely entertaining.

Difficulty: 7-9
The difficulty really varies alot. At the beginning, missions are a breeze, but then suddenly you're doing the mission Death Row for the 50th time. Usually the missions are very hard, but usually there is also an alternate way to completing them, so you won't pop a blood vessel. However, if you're known to punch your wall because you can't beat Ridley in Metroid Fusion, be prepared for frustration.

Overall: 9
I can't recommend this game enough. When you're really angry and want to rip that football jock's head off, go play some Vice City and rip a random beach goer's head off and I guarantee you'll fell a little bit better. Or maybe you just a challenging, yet rewarding game to play---you've found it.
I recommend everyone goes out and buys it. NOW! Or when you're 17. Sweatdrop
Sephiroth 06-09-2004 12:12 PM
Ok, here we go.

Samurai Warriors

Gameplay: 7/10
Koei has had great success with its Dynasty Warriors series, and they continue to rely on the old formula of "if it aint broke, don't fix it". If you have played any of the Dynasty Warriors games, you know exactly what to do. Basically, you run around and kill hundreds of nameless troops, occasionaly fighting a general. The only problem with this stlye of play is that it gets repetetive, very repetetive. In order to break up the repetetive nature of the game, Koei threw in castle missions. These are the worst part. You run around and sneak into castles filled with booby traps and insane numbers of troops with barely any power up items to be found. These wouldn't be so awful if they weren't so long. Each one takes at least 30 minutes to complete. Other than that, the game is fun and easy to get into.

Story: 9/10
Basically, you follow the stories of several key figures in Japanese history, like Nobunaga Oda and Ranmaru Mori. Each character has a different story, however, many of them fight the same battles, and all of them end up fighting each other at some point. The story is told through an opening movie, several text introductions to battles, and two alternate ending movies. The game tries to be as close to what really happened as it can, but several stories do divulge from historical fact. If you like history, or Japan, then the story in this game should really keep you interested.

Graphics: 4/10
The graphics in this game are pretty bad. The opening cutscene is alright, and the good ending for each character is pretty good to. However, in game graphics are awful. The battelfields look pretty bland and nothing tends to stand out. Character models are good, but they're nothing special.

Voice Overs: 2/10
These are AWFUL! They are so insanely corny! The voice over for the female characters are just otrocious. Okuni's voice is so bad I nearly tried to get her killed.

Music: 5/10
Its not bad, but you tend to overlook it when your in the heat of battle.

Difficulty: 1-9/10
Some missions are insanely easy, but later missions can become almost impossible, especially the castle levels.

Overall: 8/10
If you liked any of the Dynasty Warriors games, then you will definatly enjoy Samurai Warriors. Anyone looking for a fun action game should give this game a look. Its got tons of unlockables, and it will keep your interest for quite sometime. Plus, Samurai Warriors is a great way to releave stress. What better way can you think of to relax after a hard day than to annihilate an entire army.
Disturbed_1 06-13-2004 04:03 PM
ASRB Rating T

Graphics 10/10
For a fighting game the graphics are really impressive
The story fluxuates from character to character, but they are all persuing the ultimate weapon soul edge for one reason or another
Gameplay 9/10
The controls are setup to be a button mashing smash fest and can be confusing from time to time if you try to figure out your favorite combo.
Difficulty Jesus H. Christ/10
This has some insane challeges in its weapons master mode, its not so much the goal of the challenge but actually doing it that can make it impossible. in the arcade mode the only real difficulty arises when you set the difficulty to a higher setting.
Voice overs 7/10
Most voices in game sound pretty good, but some are cheesy or sound forced.
Music 8/10
the music is pretty good but you tend not hear over the mashing of human bone

overall score 9/10
A great game with few flaws, i would highly recommend this to anyone even if they don't like fighting games
Gummibear 06-15-2004 08:57 AM
Sim City 4

Graphics: 10/10
Most impressive and realistic(although I doubt thats a word for a Maxis game) visuals of any previous Sim City title. Depending on the settings you choose the graphics are stunning right down to the sims strolling along your streets.
Story: 6/10
Can't say there is any particular storyline other than you are mayor and god of the land! However the brillance of simulations lies in that you can create your own stories.
Gameplay: 9/10
Next to the sims its the most fun I've had playing a simulation game. The ability to now dispatch your own little sims into your little sick demented city is a joy. Now more buildings and options add to the fun of previous titles.
managing a small civiliazation on your computer is quite a daunting task at times. It isn't difficult to create a city but getting a good one is hard as hell, especailly on hard mode (obviously).
Voice Overs: 5/10
Mostly nothing here. Except when you use your microphone where you can hear your little citizens.
Music: 9/10
Mood music mostly. Very soothing.

Overall: 9.5
If you love simulations this is the game to buy (if you already have the sims). Or if you just need an ego boost what better way than being a god to a micro-civiliazation and the Mayor of a bustling metropolis. Best Sim City game period.
Patsai 06-16-2004 10:35 AM
Silent Hill 3
Playstation 2, PC
M for Mature

Gameplay: 8.5/10
Okay, this game will make you a little jumpy. While your actions in the game a limited to picking stuff up, killing monsters, and exploring, this game does not disappoint. This game is a combination of puzzles and action, and neither one disappoints. The control mechanics haven't changed from the previous Silent Hill games, it's still better than Resident Evil's controls. The game's purpose is pretty much to scare the crap out of you (and it does a very good job at it). I found myself pausing the game at times because I felt I wasn't prepared to see what was coming. If you're not a fan of backtracking through a bazillion doors, this game is probably not for you, because there is A LOT of doors, not to mention some of the loading times are unacceptably long.

Story: 10/10
This is one of the only games (series) I have ever played that would become a movie and be VERY SUCCESSFUL. Not only that, but after playing the game from beginning to end, you'll see that this game ties up especially well with the rest of the series. Rarely is the storyline predictable, and that's what keeps our adrenaline rushing.
The story begins with Heather, an average teenager who goes to the mall. Just when you thought she was an innocent bystander, peices will come together about her past, and you'll find out why she's caught up in all this.

Graphics: 10/10
This game features top-notch graphics. At first, the screenshots of the game fooled me with some obvious polygons, but when you see it all in motion, you'll forget it was ever a game. The character models are to die for, and shows of the best of Playstation's power. The creatures featured in this game are also great and are all horrifying in their own right. The enviorments also deserve a high grade. Because most of the game takes place indoors, the building details are much better. The effects in the game are rather minimal as, hey, you are using real world weapons. There are the small muzzle flashes from the submachine gun and blood squirts, but nothing overboard as you would expect from shooters. Monsters don’t blow up, blood doesn’t gush and paint the walls, things happen as they likely would happen if it all were real. Because of this much detail put into the graphics, I thought I was going to get nightmares.

Voice Overs: 9.5/10

The voice actors are superb and are fit exactly for their part, though at times parts they don't give it much flesh. It's still better than previous Silent Hill voice actiors, and rivals that to even the Kingdom Hearts VAs. This is also another reason why this game can be transfered from a video game to a movie easily.

Music: 10/10

The best part of this game is the music. While some of the music is really just industrial noise trying to scare you, it still is something you'd want to listen to long after you're done playing it. And Konami found out how themselves. In each copy of Silent Hill 3 comes with a soundtrack from the game, filled with over an 60 minutes of music. Whenever I go out for a bike ride, I always brought my Silent Hill 3 CD. The music plays a big part in the cutscenes as well, and are very well done to fit the mood of what events are currently happening. When Heather feels sad, the music is sad as well, and grasps you into the same feeling. During gameplay, music rarely is heard unless there is enemies to be found. Different mixes of music is played depending on who you are fighting, and each beat played gives you the feeling of hopelessness. This game can't walk away with more than a 10/10.

Overall (not average): 9.5/10

If you have a Playstation 2 or PC, your collection will not be complete without this game. Of course, I recommend that you at least play the first two games before trying this one out. If you don't, the story in this game will confuse you since many of the plotholes in here are connected to the previous games in many, many ways. Of course, you can go right ahead to this game.
THIS GAME IS NOT FOR THE WEAK-HEARTED. The intense blood and atmosphere of the game will make you very paranoid, and will give you BAD, BAD dreams. If you're up to this game, make sure to play in a dark, windowless room (if possible), crank up the volume (surround sound system works best), and get ready for some stress.
Volt 06-22-2004 04:04 PM
Do you think we could get this thread stickied/importantized? Like the Help thread or News thread. Thanks.
I'll be editing a review into this post later.

[Edit: No problem. --Krang]
Hienrich Ele 07-12-2004 12:12 AM
City Of Heroes
PC (because consoles are inferior)
ESRB: teen!!!

Gameplay: (9/10)
The gameplay is very simple. Kick bad guy ass. You find some dealing drugs, killing a citizen, or stealing, you find them, and beat the crap out of them. It's very fun, but can get repetitive.

Story: (10/10) (What can I say? I am a sucker for 1950's)
Set present time, but atmosphere being that of the 50's, Paragon City is recovering from the Rikiti invasion. These alieans have completely destroyed parts of the city, and due to debts from the war, crime is on the rise. It is up to you to stop it.

Graphics: (8/10)
While not being the best, it is well above average. The city looks gorgeous when flying around (or teleporting if you are like me). The characters look great, and the attack animations are very cool.

Music: (10/10)
When entering a different part of the city, music begins to play. Some of it is like Big-O sounds, so it is great. I like it.

Difficulty: (8/10)
While soloing, the difficulty varies from enemy to enemy. Most missions you receive can be done solo, but teams make it a hell of a lot easier. However, Task Force Missions are friggin tough. I died twice from one, it was 5 heroes against 15 zombies. Yikes!

Overall: (9/10)
If you are a casual gamer, City Of Heroes is for you. You don't have to be 'uber' to be in teams or find others to play with. If you are the power gamer, you may want to think twice on getting it. If you play it 8 hours a day, you will get bored.
Ace of Spades 07-12-2004 12:56 AM

Gameplay: (8/10)
Very simple. Fight the legion's of Hell with your Boomstick, Stake Launcher, Merry Go Round, and your traditional Lightning Gun. Simple controls and supernatural settings, me likey.

Storyline: (9/10)
You play the roll of the deceased Daniel Garner. While driving out to dinner with your fiance you crash off the road during a violent storm and wake up somewhere between Heaven and Hell. Now you've been chosen by God to be Heaven's Hitman and stop Lucifer's hoardes from taking over Limbo and the Mortal world.

Graphics: (10/10)
The physics are unbelievable in this game! You shoot a demon in the eye with a stake it goes in the eye. You shoot a demon with the stake gun, they stay pinned to the wall! The worlds you travel to are also very realistic almost like you're looking out a window.

Music: (10/10)
The soundtrack to this game is very well done. With everything from the creepy symphonies you hear when walking around. To the unholy hard rock that starts playing when you fight. This is surely to remind us all of movies such as The Ghosts of Mars and House of 1,000 Courpses.

Difficulty: (7/10)
As much as I love blasting the minion's of Hell. This gets pretty repetative pretty fast. But it's your need to survive which will turn this game from Easy to Super Easy if you can handle taking on mass hoardes of the Unholy and using a Shotgun.

Overall: (10/10)
If you're looking for a temporary appetizer until Doom 3 or just love to lay down the Whumpy-Dumpy on some Decaying Demon Asp's. This game is surely the one for you.
Mugiwara Luffy 07-12-2004 01:30 AM
Well every review in this thread has been for a popular game or is a game that recieved a high rating. Therefore, I have decided to do a somewhat different review of a game that definitely does not deserve a 10/10. (and don't ask me why I rented this. I was just curious.)

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Gameplay: (5/10)
Very similar to a Zelda type adventure with item menus, maps, puzzles, and enemies. However, Harry and his friends don't live up to the adventures of Link. You spend most of your time running around Hogwarts trying to get to your next class or trying to collect some item for an unknown reason. The controls are very wonky and it is difficult to do a simple thing like push a block. 'Combat' is pretty much the same spell used over and over, although sometimes they throw an enemy at you which requires *gasp* two spells!

Storyline: (6/10)
It follows the storyline of the book and the movie to an extent, with lots of variations. Of course, this is to be expected since you have to have some gameplay other than what is shown in the movie (or book). But it seems like the main story was tacked on, with very little focus on plot development. And to many a fan's dissappointment, certain events do not occur where they are supposed to.

Graphics: (7/10)
Bearable, but not beautiful.

Music: (4/10)
Just horrible. None of John Williams' wonderful music from the movie is in the game at all. The music that is there is not memorable and often annoying at times.

Difficulty: (4/10)
It's a game made for kids so the difficulty is not going to be high. There are some parts where you might get stuck, but luckily you have Ron and Hermione shouting hints at you every 10 seconds.

Overall: (6/10)
This game is only for the hardcore Potter fans under the age of 12. It is slightly better than the previous two, but that's not saying much.
Big Money 07-12-2004 01:33 AM
Metroid Prime, for GameCube

Gameplay: (9/10) The gameplay in this game is fantastic, but not perfect. While Metroid offers several unique and interesting gadgets/functions, such as the morphball and grappling beam, it seems that many of these items are obtained close to the end of the game, when they could have been more spread out. Also, the controls take some getting used to, especially to veterans of the FPS genre.

Story: (8/10) I always have enjoyed the story and universe in which these games were set, and Prime is no exception. I thoroughly enjoyed the story in this game, and it certainly is involving, even if there is little to no character development... because, well, there is no dialogue.

Graphics: (11/10) The graphics in this game have got to be the best I've ever seen. Ever. Your visor fogs up when you pass through a beautifully animated waterfall, only to descover a complicated underworld of richly detailed infastructure that lies beneath the surface. The icy levels are fantastically rendered in blues and whites, the firey levels in oranges and browns... The title screen is even a flawlessly portrayed rendition of the inside of a metroid. Plus, there are little details that catch your attention when you least expect it. There are places where you can see your reflection in a thick, subterranean ice cave, and whenever something bright flashes nearby, you can catches glimpses of Samus' face, reflected in the Visor... To put it simply, this game is very well polished.

Music: (9/10) Crazy electronic renditions of past game music ebb and flow in the backround of this game, and really set the mood for the great majority of Metroid Prime.

Difficulty: (7/10) Not nearly as difficult as some of the other games *cough* Metroid Fusion Ridley *cough*, but it had its share of difficult places, in particular the boss of the ice level... ouch. Thsi game, however, is certainly longer than at least its GBA counterparts. My first time, I cleared at around 19 hours.

Overall: (10/10) Even though it is not the hardest game, it certainly is beautiful, and fun to play. While not my favorite metroid game (Super Metroid, if you must know), it certainly is one of the very best games Gamecube has to offer. Verdict: Go buy it now.
Sephiroth 07-17-2004 08:10 PM
Psi Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy
PS2 and XBOX

Gameplay: 10/10
Basically, Psi Ops takes what would be a generic third person action/stealth game and makes it one of the best games of the year. It would have been a fine game if it were just a shooter, but the addition of mental powers makes it awesome. All the powers work flawlessly, and none of the powers are forgotten later in the game. You can complete a level anyway way you want to, whether you want to go in guns a blazing, sneak your way through, or use any of your 6 mental powers like telekenisis and mind control to annihilate everything.

Story: 8/10
You play as a special operative named Nick Scryer. You were once a part of the government's special training program for those with mental powers. You have your memory and powers locked away so you can infiltrate a psi terrorist group called the Movement, made up of people with incredible mental powers. As the stroy progresses you learn about your past (which isn't exactly a nice romp down memory lane) and the connection between mentally gifted people and an ancient alien race.

Graphics: 9/10
Cinematics look awesome (especially the opening scene of when the movement attacks an oil refinary). In game graphics look great too and the addition of a rag doll physics engine was a great idea (especially when using telekenesis)

Music: 10/10
The game has great ambient noises, and background music. It really helps to set the mood. Plus it has its own music video performed by Cold (which is now one of my favorite songs).

Difficulty: 8/10
The game starts off pretty easy, and you won't have any trouble beating the first few levels. However, once you get past the second boss, the difficulty really ramps up and things can get pretty difficult at some points (especially the boss fight against marlena kessler). Still, theres is enough fun to be had in the game that it really doesn't feel that hard.

Overall: 9/10
Psi Ops is an awesome and innovative game that I would highly reccomend to anyone. Psi Ops may only have 8 levels, but its so fun it will have you coming back for more before you know it.
Asirt 09-12-2004 12:33 PM
Platform - Dreamcast

I felt I wanted to do this review so that people can have an idea of what imported games are like. I have tried this game on the DC, being the CCS fan that I am. However, does the game live up to the exceptations of other imported games?

[NOTE - All images are from and resized by Trisa]

Basically, the story is the television series. You are Tomoyo, and you want to have a really good video, so you decide to go out with your friend, Sakura, and take some good footage. However, the Clow Cards have been released, and it's up to Sakura to seal them.
The story sounds like the series, as the game takes place in 3 episodes of CCS. It sounds good at first, but then when you play it, it turns out that it becomes a really easy game.

The gameplay is simple; you move the camera with the analog stick, and take pictures with the A button. You move it until you get the right picture in the right moment. Kind of sounds like Pokemon Snap, huh? The only difference is that it is a very easy game. You only play three levels (one secret level included), and will most likely beat it on the first try. However, there are a lot of secrets to unlock; some VMU minigames, sound test, character info, etc. All in all, it's very easy, although I played it for a while, it starts to get boring later.

I really liked the graphics on this game. It seems to have pushed the DC's limit back when the DC was still alive. I like the cutsecnes, as they demostrate the best graphics throughout the game. It's not as great as say, Shenmue, but it's good.

Voice Overs:
All voices are in Japanese. The same voice actors from the series, are now in the game. They sound good, although some of the high pitched voices can be annoying.

The music is from the series, and this was the best thing about the game. I really like the orchestral music, and some the battle music that was used in this game.

Easist game I have ever played. The difficulty varies if you turn off the guide in the camera, but it's still easy. Nothing more to say about that.

Overall Thoughts:
Personally, it was fun for a little while, but then I got tired of it. Personally, not the best DC game I have ever played, but was enjoyable for a little while. You will most likely never see this game in the US (of course you won't, the DC is dead.), unless you bought the import. I wouldn't buy the game unless you are a fan of CCS, and want to get all the CCS stuff. Other than that, I would stay away from this game.

Overall Rating: 4/10
Asirt 09-18-2004 02:57 PM
Platform - Gamecube
ESRB - Everyone

I have talked to a few people who have a GCN, and didn't like this game a lot, even though they have never played it before. I was wondering what this game is really about when I got it as a gift for Christmas a couple years ago. I also heard this was originally a N64 game also.

You decide to move out of your parents' place in order to live the good life in the real world. There, you get on a train, and meet an animal. He asks you what your name is, your personality, etc. Then, he makes an offer on a house. You accept the offer, and enter the city. There, you interact with other creatures who make a living there. You are the only human there. Your goal is to make a big house, and to live the good life.

Basically, you have to work for the boss who gave you a house to live in. Eventually, you start to think of ways to earn more money, and obtain more items. The game acts like the real world. It's based on time. So, if it's Christmas time, you will see snow and people will celebrate. Mostly, though, your mission is to live life.

Not the best graphics in the world. It looks like it was ported from the N64. Although, I wished Nintendo would have improved the graphics a little bit. It's still pretty good, though.

Voice Overs:
There isn't a lot of voice overs. Most of the animal make these sounds when you talk to them. No real voices, though.

The music in this game is very smoothing and upbeat. It sounds a little childish sometimes, but it's pretty good.

It's easy, but as soon as you start playing for a few days, you'll want to play again and again. It's dangerously addicting...

Overall Thoughts:
At first, I thought this game was going to be a dumb one. I have heard many reviews and previews on it, and it sounded silly. Then, when I got the game, it's more fun than I thought it would be. Basically, you need to play it in order to like it. It's kind of like The Wind Waker where everyone thought the game was going to be bad because of the graphics. This is the same case, but with gameplay, and it can be a very addicting game. For those with a Gamecube, I would rent it first and see if it is the right game for you.

Overall Rating: 7/10
Volt 09-18-2004 11:59 PM
Unreal Tournament 2004
Platform: PC
Publisher: Atari
Developer: Epic Games
Rating: M (for Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, and Mild Language*)

Gameplay: 10/10
Unreal Tourament 2004 (hereafter referred to as UT2K4) is simply amazing. It makes games like Half-Life and Halo look like bags of crap someone stuffed in a CD case. The premise of UT2K4 is simple---beat the living bejesus out of anything that moves. Simple enough, right? Built around this simple premise are several game modes guaranteed to keep you satisfied. It adds several new modes to UT2K3/UChampionship's repetoire: you've got your basic Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag (which are familiar to most FPSes), Bombing Run (think basketball with bazookas), and Double Domination (ever played King of the Hill in Halo? Lilke that, but with two points), plus the new modes Assault (seen before in the original UT), the amazingly addictive Onslaught, Invasion (a cool mode that pits you and your teammates against invading monsters), plus a bunch of variations on the basic game modes. All the gamemodes have a different, interesting premise that equals insane replayability. Lemme tell you know though, Onslaught is the cream of the crop. The premise is complicated, but becomes simple after awhile: there are two bases on each map, which each have a PowerCore at their heart. Each base is connected by PoweNodes, which you want to activate and control in order to get to the other team's base (it's like connect the dots with insane alien lizards (peep the avatar) and miniguns). When you establish a link to the other team's base via the PowerNodes, you want to destroy their PowerCore to win the match. One element in particular makes this mode great, howvever: vehicles. Each vehicle has its own pros and cons, but all of them (except the HellBender, which must be Unreal-speak for "lemon") are fun to use. The Manta is a small hovercraft that can jump and descend to clip off heads; the Raptor is a compact aircraft that can speed around the arena while firing heat-seeking missiles; the Scorpion (my favorite) is a small jeep that can fire a "net" of energy that wraps around enemies or other vehicles, or deploy two long, sharp blades on its sides for making tall people short; the Goliath is a tank that shoots missiles ('nuff said); the HellBender, as mentioned before, is pretty bad---it's a big jeep that requires one person to drive, and additional people to man each of the turrets; the Leviathan is a behemoth (or is that a leviathan? Hmm...) of a vehicle that fires heat seeking missiles or a blackhole Red Face . In each of the gamemodes are a great variety of weapons--from cannons that shoot schrapnel grenades to nuclear-missile launchers, you won't be hardput to find one that suits you best. Ut2K4 can be played online (beware, however---noobies will get schooled, fast) or off---however, all modes are pretty much the same. The single player is a duplicate of the multiplayer, but with A.I. controlled bots instead of human opponents. I've found that both are equally fun.

Music: 8/10
The music is pretty good---each song blends with the environment magnificantly, but there'e one downfall: there are only a few songs. If there were a song for each level, you could bet I'd give this category a ten.

Story: 7/10
Nothin' much here. Bascially, the Liandri Corporation, a heavyweight in the buisness of weapons, holds a tournament in which the competitors kill eachother in order to win (actually, I guess they don't really kill eachother--after all, your enemies respawn every time you kill them, and defeated competitors have returned from previoud years...). This year's tournament is very highly anticipated, as former champions Malcolm (human), Gorge (human...on steroids!), and the long-absent Xan Kriegor (extremely powrful robot) are returning, and the alien race Skaarj (you can see one in my avatar), who were formerly enemies to the humans, are competing for the first time. There isn't much story, but character biographies embellish the plot a bit.

Graphics: omgwtf?1?1!?/10
As any PC gamer can tell you, graphics vary a lot from machine to machine. In UT2004, the graphics can vary from fugly moving at % frames per second to amazing moving at 60+ FPS. But for the most part, the graphics look good on any machine---I myself run it on a nVidia Geforce 2 (the minimum requirement to display it, actually), and get abput 20 FPS on average, with mediocre textures. However, if you have a half-decent video card, you'll be just fine.
One complaint with the graphics, though: you never see your hands. This is especially annoying when you're holding a sniper rifle---it just looks so unsteady without a hand holding the front. It seems that the developers purposefully left the hands out of the first person view. That's probably reasonable, though---there are dozens of characters, so dozens of hand skins would be insane. The game already takes 5 discs to install, anyway!

Voice-Overs: 8/10
The voiceovers all suit the characters, but there are a few major downfalls: 1) there are only 8 classes of voiceovers---alien, human, robot, and weird goth vampire (with male and female for each); 2) there are only a few lines for each class (they range from "I've got your back," to "Douche bag!").

Difficulty: 1/10 to 10/10
The difficulty varies a lot here. There are quite a few difficulty levels, but all of them toughen out eventually. Novice starts off easy, but eventually picks up, and at the final battle you'll be crying---Godlike kicks your but throughout. Overall, being good at FPSes is a suggestion for UT2004. If you aren't too experienced, you might want to start off with a game like Halo.

Overall: 10/10
UT2004 must be bought. Once you get used to the fast pace, you'll never get tired of it.

*Mild Language is an understatement. Unless "whore", "douche bag", and, "bastard" are consudered mild, that is.
Hienrich Ele 09-26-2004 11:16 AM
Call Of Duty: United Offensive
P.C. (Because consoles are 'teh suck' Big Grin )
Rated T... for Teen

Gameplay: (9)
The Gameplay of this game is near perfect. You are in three campaigns in World War II (American, British, Russian). You start off as Cpl. Riley during the Battle Of The Bulge, where you race though German towns in Jeeps, defend your lines, and more in the Battle Of The Bulge. Then, once you are done with the American Campaign, become James Doyle of the RAF, aborad a B-17, then fight with the Dutch Resistance, and go on to the Invasion of Sicily. Then, you go on to Yuri of the Soviet Army. fight in Karkhov, Kursk, and more. All of these missions are incredible. It is not just "NAZI! SHOOT! WIN!", it take strategy, and a few Flak Guns... Though some of the AI could be better (Though I have not played on the hardest difficultty setting) it is pretty good.

Story: (Cool
The story varies with campaign, but it is pretty good. Each campaign, minus the American, has an introduction telling you what you are to do and why. Though more than not, you end up doing addititional objectives.

Graphics: (9)
Very good graphics, but you need at least a GB of memory to get perfect fram rates. My 700 something MB gram and two year old Radeon 9000 gets very good frame rates on the "Normal" setting.

Voice Overs: (10)
Voice Overs are great. They are in sync with the lips, and the voices are all different. Steve Blum even does the voice of Capt. Foley. Which was a complete surprice to me. In the Russian Campaign, hearing the Russian accents yelling at you to go forward while they shoot the deserters is amazing.

Music: (10+)
The music is perfect. It is all orcherstra (which I think I spelled wrong) and is amazing. Hearing that soviet music going while your forced to charge head-on to a MG-42 nest is so cool, or hearing the uplifting, heroic music while you and your fellow Americans defend the line from the Panzers and Nazi Army. When things get dangerous, the music will tell you.

Difficulty: (Cool
I died 12 times on the first level. It takes strategy. There are different settings, but I beat the game without any codes (I am a big boy!). Just remember to sprint when heading from cover to cover, and ambush at any available chance.

Overall: (10)
Buy this Expansion. It is perfect. The multiplayer is extremely fun. You haven't FPSed until you are hiddin in a burning Berlin building holding a Panzerfaust while through the smoke and gunfire, you hear a tank coming from somewhere in the night and praying your shot will hit. You can also use vehicles, like tanks and jeeps, and artillery strikes! It is 30 dollars, but I would have payed 40, because this is indeed worth it.
Big Fau 10-17-2004 04:20 PM
Dance Dance Revolution Extreme USA
E (for Extreme Tongue )

Gameplay: 6/10
Not much of a difference from any other DDR game, but there are a few flaws...most of which are MAJOR flaws
The biggest gripe players will have is the fact that they took out the Dance Play settings. The Dance Play settings were used to be able to turn off the corner buttons on a home pad since they can be accidentally pressed in mid-play. On a normal controller you can use the X, O, Triangle, and Square buttons instead of the D-Pad since you can't press left and right simultaneously. EVERY DDR home game has had Dance Play settings until now, and because of it, a mere miss step on an arrow, BAM, there goes your full combo. This is especially bad news for Cobalt Flux players, since the CF's surface is flat and the buttons are right next to each other.
Another "Whythehelldidtheydothat?!" problem is the removal of the speed settings in Training Mode, which will make your chances of being able to accomplish the hardest song on the game, The Legend of MAX, very slim.
The return of Oni Mode and Nonstop Mode is a plus, but Mission Mode is probably the climax of this game. Some of the missions it gives you are insanely hard, namely the last few, where they add modifiers such as Brake, Expand, or .5x. But others are funny or fun, such as one mission where you play Absolute while the music's speed continually goes up and down.
Party Mode is nothing special, except when you have a group of friends over. You'd also need the Eyetoy to play all of the other Party Games though.
Endless Mode is back, along with the 5th mix grading system. Yes, unfortunately, believe it or not, the 5th mix system is back. 5th Mix Grading System + No Dance Play Settings = BAD. With the return of the older grading system, you have to full combo a song in order to get a AA (And also get (I think it was...) a 93%). If you were to get ALL perfects and one almost due to the corner buttons triggering an arrow, wouldn't you be pissed off, would you?

Story: X/10
Er...Since when did a DDR game have a story? Neutral

Graphics: 8/10
A complete overhaul from MAX2. It has a brand new interface, which some will hate, some will like (I personally dislike the interface, it makes me feel like I'm playing a bootleg for some reason. Sweatdrop ). Other than that, the graphics are clean and smooth, but nothing too "OMFGly awesome".

Voice Overs: 5/10
The same voices from previous DDR games, along with the ever so infamous "You were doing alright until halfway." line. Sometimes I wonder what Konami was thinking when they made this game...

Music: 8/10
This is what makes a DDR game. With more songs than any other US mix, it has quite a good variety of music to choose from. But the downfall here is that this mix doesn't contain all of the songs new to DDR Extreme, rather a portion of them. No PSM, no Bag, no Cartoon Heroes.

Difficulty: 1-10/10
The difficulty varies from the easy beginner courses to the insanity of The Legend of Max song, where you have to press 500 arrows in 1:30 minutes, in which sometimes you find yourself faced with streams of 11 arrows per second.

Overall: 6/10
This game is NOT DDR Extreme. If you want DDR Extreme, import the Japan version. This game has far too many flaws to be considered a good mix by me, and I'm definitely importing. But if you can withstand the flaws of this game or just want all of the US mixes, go ahead and buy or rent it.
Gummibear 11-01-2004 07:50 AM
T ( mature themes)

Gameplay: 10/10

You can literally play this game for hours on end and not get bored. Like the first sims it shares the same idea...simulate life. Before the major part of gameplay was to make family friends to progress in life while that still remains a part of the gameplay "life goals" add a more human feel to the play. The game is fluid and easy to control and has a beautiful interface.

Story: 10/10

Of course there is no set story but this game gives you all the tools to make one of your own. Now with the new Neighborhood stories that add extra spice you can create all sorts of mischef.

Graphics: 9/10

This is cleary a ten...the graphics are flawless but the reason I gave it a nine is because on most computers ( unless you have the newest model equipted with the most wicked graphics card ever!) it's difficult to play this game on a high setting. It's really my only problem with this game.

Voice Overs: 10/10

Cute simmish talking sims...

Music: 10/10

One of the biggest improvements...that may become lost in all the other innovations is the music. I was surprised at the quality! The sims have some excellent songs along with some new salsa and R&B.

Difficulty 8/10

This game does present challenges but they don't overpower the gameplay, it just enough to keep you glued to your seat for days on end but enjoy doing it. Now your sims have a limited lifespan...from birth to death they only have one life to live. So it is up to the player to determine what kind of life they lead. It can be heartbreaking to watch a Sim grow and witness their passing. Challenges like actually rasing a child...teaching it to talk...walk and even potty training are enjoyable feats. The new challenges make this game all the more addictive.

Overall: 10/10

Life with all it's ups and down is what this game is all about. As addictive as it is it brings us a deeper message about our own lives and how we lead them ( that is if you haven't exchanged your life to play Sims 2).
Mike 02-19-2005 09:50 AM
Star Fox Assault
Rating: E

It's pretty good. Not as orgasmically awesome as Starfox 64, though. For a couple of reasons.

Gameplay: 10/10 (Flying missions) 7/10 (tank missions)
First of all, even though it's full of sci-fi cliches, I like the story. I don't want to spoil it so I won't say any more. Unfortunately, it's also pretty short. Controlling the Arwing is great, almost exactly like Starfox 64. The tank is harder to control. In fact, it's pretty frustrating at times. But the on-foot parts aren't as bad as I'd expected. The problem is, the default foot/tank controls are pretty hard to use, and when you change them to dual analog, they're WAY different than the Arwing controls. I end up hitting the wrong buttons for a few seconds after switching. Also, when you boost or brake, you don't get that feeling of massive speed like you used to. Although now you can use the brake to come to a complete stop for a few seconds. And get the crap pounded out of you.

Graphics: 9/10
The graphics are really great. Fox isn't as furry as he was in Adventures, but that's understandable because with all the crap trying to kill you at once, there's a lot more polys on screen than before. However, one thing that annoys me is in the design of the fighters. The engines just look...weird. Not like they did before.

Sound: 7/10
This is part that gets to me. The fighters don't sound like you would expect fighters to. Then whirr like a golf cart motor. The music is really good though, much of it is remixed SF64 music, although it seemed mismatched to a few later scenes.
spoiler (highlight to read):
like when Peppy crashes the Great Fox

Difficulty: 7/10
It's pretty easy, up until the last level, which gets crapping hard. But then again, I've only beaten it on the easiest level so far.

Overall: 8/10
Not perfect, but still pretty darn good, especially if you like Starfox.
cookie_dough_monster 08-27-2005 12:38 PM
Warcraft 3: The Frozen Throne
PC(Warcraft 3: Reign of Chaos needed)
Rated T for Teen for Violence and blood (though the language is consiterable and the "blood" is like people with their stomachs hanging open)
"What was before World of Warcraft."

Wow. This was the best strategy game that I have played in a while. It's even better than Rise of Nations. You can only controll 12 men at a time and the heros aren't exactly "uber". The strategy behind it is pretty big. You have to collect lumber and gold to build more things. There are an assload of upgrades.
In the expansion, there are a lot of new units. A LOT. Some units were just taken out for better ones. You get a wide variety of people. There are 4 races (Humans, Orcs, Nightelves, Undead) with a very big variety of characters. From dwarves riding griffins to troll witchdocters to girls riding giant birds(hypogriths) to giant, sewn together freaks with their stomachs dragging along their side, the gameplay is very wide spread. The playing part is also fun. You have a minimap so you know what is going on where ever your people or allies are. ONLINE IS TEH ROXXORS!!! The map editor is so easy that the custom games are sometimes better than the actual game! Tower Defences are where you build towers to kill enemies and prevent them from reaching a certain point. Those sound boring, but the strategy of the tower placement is so much fun that the complexity behind it is quite great(because you can't block). There a lot more mods out there, but I think that you get how much i like this game's playability. 9/10

Story mode... aka 1 player lame ass mode. The story is pretty weird. I have not quite gotten it down. You are trying to summon evil spirits with the dark prince Arthas... I think... you do get a lot of different characters in 1 player story mode, like the naga! Still, PLAY ONLINE! 6/10

Graphics- 10/10
Wow. The graphics are really good. The cinematics are out of this world. That is the only reason to play one player besides the naga race. The actual gameplay isn't like Half Life 2, but more of a Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas feel to it. It is good, just not incrediably real.The characters are pretty detailed for a strategy game. 10/10 (go on ebay and look for the collectors dvd with all of the cinematics for both ROC and TFT)

Voice Overs-9/10
Well, they have different voices for each character. Poke one of your characters enough and they will start making bad jokes, such as "Ugh! I asked for a bowstring, not a g... nevermind..." Some of them are funny. Some of them are so retarted that I'm not quite sure why they did that. They are the ones that are not meant to be funny, such as Arthas. He tells you his secret plans... but the voices are well done besides the cheesey jokes. The orcs are just plain funny to listen to. 9/10

Pretty good music. Not moving or heroic, but good. 9/10

This game is HARD for dumb people. There are difficulties, but you could be the pinball wizard and still lose in this. There is no mindless clicking. Only when moving do you do that (maybe that is only me), but that is just a result of impatience. When your base is stormed, you must have people ready to defend. If you don't, take your peasants and run to another gold mine if you can make it in time. You must be prepared for everything at all times. For people who know what they are doing, this will be very good for you. It has no f***ing puzzles and THANK GOD! I am sick of puzzles. They are annoying. It is just strategy, so that is all you have to worry about. But I should tell you to WORRY ABOUT IT WHILE PLAYING. This is a hard game, but in a good way. Not in a queer way where you can't beat the first level. 9/10

Overall- 9/10
Buy this game. It is very cheep now that WoW is out. $30 for WC3 and the expansion. The online is free. Buy this game. It's cheep and very fun. Money is not a problem here.
David Ryder 11-27-2005 02:46 AM
Time to dust off this thread.

Wild Arms Altered Code F
System: PS2
Rating: Teen

Gameplay 10/10: The battle system is been revamped but for the most part is the same as the first. Also the Migrant gauge from the 3rd one makes a return, letting you avoid battles.

Story 9/10: while it's the standard Save the world" story, it provides some good plot twists to keep things interesting.

Graphics 10/10: Excellent. but not the best on PS2. The water effects and lighting are quite nice I might add.

Sound 7/10: Well Agetec desided to take out the voice acting so that's gonna hurt the score, bad agetec also took out the bland jpop songs which seem outta place in a western themed RPG. Music wise it's excellent. Michiko Naruke is right up there with Hitoshi Sakamoto and Yasunori Mitsunade however Zed's new theam is a huge let down, it just doesn't have the zannyness that it use to.

Difficulty 8/10: meh not to tough but some of the hidden bosses are brutal ie Ragu o' Ragula and the demon king.

Overall 9/10: After countless delays and some silly choices ie taking out the voice acting, but it was worth the wait. now to wait on xcessed games to release WA's 4th detonator and Shadow Hearts: From the new world.