Friday, March 8, 2013

Coaster Creator 3D (3DSWare) Review

The day that caps off the work week presents the first review of March, the 397th review on SuperPhillip Central to be exact. Coaster Creator 3D on the Nintendo 3DS's eShop is a game developed in part by Big John Games. If you recall, we had an interview with them. Now, we are reviewing one of their first 3DS projects with this review of Coaster Creator 3D. Let's get to it.

Worth the price of admission


As a tween and then later a teenager, I grew up on and adored the RollerCoaster Tycoon franchise. I loved designing my own park, situating rides, and of course building my own roller coasters. Big John Games' Coaster Creator 3D focuses heavily on the latter, as the name of the game pretty much clarifies immediately. The game is the type of ride that won't make you queasy afterwards. In fact, it's quite good. Like a well designed roller coaster, let's lay out the groundwork as to why.

Jumping right into coasting creation is an arduous task, so the designers of the game have a Career mode, built up of twenty or so challenges, and hosted by famed fictitious and retired roller coaster designer Gill McGee. Each challenge introduces you to core concepts concerning how to create coasters. Each challenge also has its own limitations on what you can do and what tools you can use. You are never building a coaster from scratch in the early stages; You are merely tweaking preexisting designs. Some challenges only allow you to twist the track, while others only allow you to add loops or corkscrews.

Everyone raise your hands in the air 
like you just don't care.
Depending on the challenge, there are different objectives to complete. Many challenges require you to make it so not only the carts reach the end of the track, but the carts pass through all of the targets (performed by tweaking the track to lead the carts to said targets). Other challenges have it so your cart reaches the required speeds, doesn't jerk its riders around, or have it where you need to have your cart's riders rise from their seats on various hills. After your work is done, you can test your tinkered with ride out. Thankfully, the game does not punish you for failure. You can try as many times as you like to get it right without penalty.

Those yellow spheres are the targets
your track must lead the carts into.
While you can jump straight into Coaster Creator 3D's Sandbox mode right when you begin the game for the first time, completing challenges in Career mode is the means to unlock new track styles, cart styles, and much more. This may turn off some players who just want to start designing their own coasters freely with all of the options available to them.

Nonetheless, making a coaster is very easy. You have an overhead view, and you place the start of the ride (the loading area) on the map. Then you draw the desired path of your coaster, making sure it connects back to the ride's start to make a complete circuit. You only have a limited amount of distance a coaster can be. Once you are satisfied with the drawing of your coaster, you get transported to the 3D creator where you can edit your placed track, making loops, corkscrews, twists, etc. and create hills. You can also place objects, whether themed or generic, that add some eye candy to your coaster's surroundings. Speaking of eye candy, you can customize the colors and design of your coaster and carts to make them visually attractive rather than just fun to ride.

Different camera views offer differing
perspectives on each coaster you create.
Editing coasters takes some getting used to. You select pieces of the track to edit that specific part. The bottom screen shows the layout of the track (you shift perspectives with the directional pad) while the top screen shows a 3D version of the track. With the bottom screen you use the stylus to move the track around. Depending on the viewpoint, you are either moving track pieces left to right or up and down. Learning to use both perspectives is paramount to understanding how to create coasters well.

Have your collection of Miis
join you on your wild ride.
Coasters, finished and unfinished, can be saved at any time. Unfortunately, you have a pithy amount of characters you can use when naming a coaster, which is confusing to me. Regardless, you can ride your own designs with multiple camera angles (e.g. first-person perspective, multi-angle, etc.), and you can use the Circle Pad or the gyroscope of the 3DS to look around. Additionally, you can share your coaster designs via QR codes. (You can scan two SuperPhillip Central designs at the end of this review.)

Coaster Creator 3D is a wild ride made by people you know are ardent roller coaster enthusiasts. While there are some issues with the game (for one, I've had the game crash on me, resulting my Nintendo 3DS needing to auto-restart), the package as a whole is well done. Sure, the game has its ups and downs like many roller coasters do, but the final product is definitely worth the price of admission.

[SPC Says: 8.0/10]

Coaster Creator Designs
QR Codes (Scan with Nintendo 3DS)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Fun With Miiverse, Or How It's Currently the Wii U's Killer App

If you have spent any time on SuperPhillip Central, then you know our personal opinion on Miiverse and how much fun we at the site have been having with it. There are very good reasons for that.

From this writer's point of view, I love being able to be playing a game, press the Home button, and post a screenshot of where I am stuck and a post asking for help, and within mere moments or minutes receive a helpful response. This is especially terrific for games that do not currently have any online guides, particularly new and/or more niche games. The community gets to assist one another. It doesn't even have to be for gameplay advice either. For example, I probably never would have been interested in getting Trine 2: Director's Cut or Mighty Switch Force: Hyper Drive Edition without the suggestions from the Miiverse community.  

Something else that makes Miiverse special is the ability for developers to have a new and much more direct avenue to keep in touch with their fans. Toki Tori 2 developer Two Tribes' Collin van Ginkel notes that he and his team will be able to contact fans via a home console setting, something that has never been done before. 

Miiverse is a bastion of creative users, and while some can say that Wii U owners/Miiverse participants are only doing great works of art and browse through Miiverse because they have no games to play (in my case that was true), the Miiverse community is still a bustling one. 

Right now I'd like to share the amazing artwork of various Miiverse denizens, including yours truly (though I would not classify my stuff as "amazing"). The skill that these artists show off is just simply insane.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon (3DS) Japanese Commercial

While North Americans like myself know the game to be Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon, everyone else in the world, including our friends across the Pacific in Japan, know the game as Luigi's Mansion 2. Nintendo is advertising the game as something spooky for Nintendo 3DS owners to enjoy. Regardless of which country you live in, most everyone will get to play Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon/Luigi's Mansion 2 when it arrives later this month.

20 Cheap Wii Games to Play On Your Wii U For $20 or Less

Currently, Wii U owners don't have a lot to play as of right now. However, the Wii U does feature something that makes it still worthy to own for those who missed out on the awesome Wii back catalog of games. A common criticism among those who are ignorant is that the Wii has few games worth playing. This assumption is most definitely false, as evident by our list of fifty of the best Wii games. That said, while you wait for some titles to finally launch on the Wii U, why not use the system's backwards compatibility to play some Wii titles that you may have missed out on? Better yet, how about you check out this list of twenty Wii games that are available for $20 or less? We could all use some financial assistance, especially in this economy, so why not be a bit frugal in our purchases? That is exactly what this list is for. If you missed out on the Wii for any reason, and you are looking for something to play on your Wii U, this list is for you!

Disclaimer: The games listed here and linked to other sites had prices that were $20.00 and under at the time of this article's publication. SuperPhillip Central cannot be held responsible for increased prices that make a given game over $20 after the fact.

Super Mario Galaxy (buy here)


It's a tough fight between Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Galaxy 2 if you ask which of the top-rated games of the generation is better. (Actually, SuperPhillip Central rated Super Mario Galaxy 2 higher with a perfect 10.) Regardless, if you own a Wii U and you missed out on this game, a true pinnacle of the platforming genre, then what are you waiting for, an engraved invitation? Games that are as great as Galaxy come out rarely, and rarely are they available for such a cheap price.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (buy here)


It makes sense that a launch title for the Wii would hit the $20 and under category, but then you are talking about Nintendo who seldom see the prices of their games drop often. With the Nintendo Selects lineup of games, you get terrific titles for a low price. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess might have an extended tutorial (but nowhere near the length of Skyward Sword), but once players get into a rhythm, the game is packed with awesome adventure, dazzling dungeons, and wicked weaponry.

Monster Hunter Tri (buy here)


When it was announced that this next game was canceled on the PlayStation 3 and had its development shifted to the Wii, the gaming world had yet another one of its many overreactions. Although an expanded version of the game is coming to both Wii U and Nintendo 3DS, and the servers for the game are being shut down, Monster Hunter Tri is still an incredibly lengthy and deep title to look into. It's also half the price of the 3DS version and $40 less of the price of the Wii U version. Whether you prefer swords or lances, hammers or switch axes, or whatever, Monster Hunter Tri is a worthy purchase.

Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition (buy here)


Another game that received a perfect score by SuperPhillip Central is Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition, without a doubt the definitive version of the game. Some argue that the sensational Wii Remote controls make aiming, and moreover the game, too easy. However, Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition offers Classic Controller support, so if you don't want motion controls, you don't need them. This version comes with all of the content of the GameCube and PlayStation 2 iterations. The only thing missing is HD.

Sonic Colors (buy here)


After a torrent of less-than-stellar Sonic games, Sonic Colors was like a fresh and crisp tonic on a warm summer's day. My point is that the game was refreshing. Although it featured what could be called a gimmick, Wisps, which give Sonic different powers, the game was a brilliant blend of 2D and 3D gameplay. It could be said that the foundation of Sonic Colors is what became Sonic Generations. It could be said, mind you, not it should be said. What should be said, however, is Sonic Colors is a gem of a game, and an absolutely splendid Sonic.

ExciteBots: Trick Racing (buy here)


Without any hesitation, I consider ExciteBots: Trick Racing to be two things: 1) One of the most overlooked games on the Wii, and 2) One of the best racers of the generation on any system. Yes, seriously. ExciteBots is simply put a creative and manic racer where mid-race one second you're swinging off a pole while the next you're kicking a field goal. This is all to earn more stars than your opponents to be the victor. Online play, multiple animal and insect-themed bots, and plenty of unlockables make for one game that is not only extremely cheap, but extremely fun.

The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces (buy here)


From the team behind the Ace Combat franchise comes a dog-fighting title that might scratch your itch to soar with the eagles... and then shoot them down. (We at SuperPhillip Central do not condone animal cruelty.) With The Sky Crawlers: Innocent Aces, you can choose to use motion controls for flight or opt for traditional Classic Controller play. Play through various missions with varying objectives as you follow along an animated story. Another particular item of interest with this game is the insanely good soundtrack. Find some videos on YouTube and you'll see what we mean!

Sin and Punishment: Star Successor  (buy here)


The original Sin and Punishment finally made it to the West in the form of a Virtual Console game on Wii. The sequel, one that many thought would never happen, released on Wii as a brand-new retail title. Suffice to say, the game bombed due to no marketing and little interest from the mainstream. That said, Sin and Punishment: Star Successor is still worth a look. It's an action game in 2D and 3D where getting multipliers is the way to boost your score to insane levels. Speaking of insane things, the gameplay is just absolutely crazy fun. You can get the game for dirt cheap, so what do you have to lose in trying it out?

Fishing Resort (buy here)


From the mind and creator behind Sonic the Hedgehog comes a fun and cheap fishing game for the Wii, Fishing Resort. Journey across multiple locales: jungles, beaches, icy areas, as your fully customized character expands his or her fishing credentials, gains new licenses, new lures, and new poles, and populates the local aquarium. It's a game that will tire your arms out at first, but the low price point and amount of content more than makes up for it. Note the game has two SKUs, one with a controller peripheral and one without. The one without is $20 while the one with the peripheral is $30.

De Blob (buy here)


Paint the town red... and blue.. and yellow... and green... and orange in De Blob! While the developer Blue Tongue may no longer be with us, their legacy lives on in this excellent platforming adventure. The game is all about giving color to stale gray buildings, washing pollution from the evil INKT corporation, and trying to survive during the process. An awesome jazz soundtrack backs this affordable platformer with lots of charm and lots of heart. Do yourself a favor and look into De Blob!

Blast Works: Build, Trade, Destroy (buy here)


Think of Blast Works: Build, Trade, Destroy as the LittleBigPlanet of shoot-em-ups. The game comes with its own levels, but you can create your own planes, objects (either background or elsewhere), and levels and share them with the Blast Works community. We at SuperPhillip Central cannot recommend this game enough. It even comes with the inspiration for Blast Works, Tumiki Fighters. Given how cheap Blast Works currently is and how much content it contains, you'd be foolish to miss out on this title.

Dewy's Adventure (buy here)


From the makers of Elebits, a clever near-launch title for the Wii, Dewy's Adventure has you in a platforming adventure starring Dewy, a water droplet that slides around levels, can turn into ice and a lightning cloud, and is tasked with saving his land from the evil that occupies it. This is all down with tilting the Wii Remote while holding it like a NES controller. The game is a charming one, and it has plenty of colorful lands to explore, puzzles to solve, and bosses to beat. For under $20, there's little to lose by trying it out.

The Munchables (buy here)


A mix between Katamari Damacy and Pac-man, The Munchables might have a sickeningly sweet exterior, but the gameplay is absolutely aces. By gobbling up enemies, your Munchable grows larger and larger, able to access new parts of each level. At the beginning of a level your Munchable might be as small as can be, but by the end, mountains that were once enormous can leaped over in a single hop. The Munchables is a title that released to no fanfare whatsoever, hardly any even by its own publisher, but it is definitely worth taking a look if you can get over the childish tone.

Fortune Street (buy here)


While it is nowhere near as crazy as Mario Party, Fortune Street is still a competent board game video game. It has hints of Monopoly, the stock market, and Mario Party all rolled up into one game. The casts of the Mushroom Kingdom and the worlds of Dragon Quest combine for some good old fashioned fun. While the Itadaki Street series (as it's known in Japan) has been around for a while, this is the first game published in the West. I found the game worth buying at full price, but at under $20 it is an absolute steal and a good deal.... and I know something about good deals since Fortune Street taught me some lessons in money!

We Love Golf! (buy here)


If you wish to play a motion-controlled golfing experience with colorful characters, then Capcom and Camelot's We Love Golf! is the game for you. Filled with eight unique regular length courses, three short courses, multiple characters, unlockable Capcom costumes for said characters, online play, a soundtrack by Motoi Sakuraba, and various other modes, We Love Golf! is absolutely packed with content and will take players dozens of hours to perfect and master. Its low entry price point makes it an easy choice to play for fans of taking it to the links.

Mario Strikers Charged (buy here)


One of the first online-enabled Wii games, Mario Strikers Charged brings with it an exciting take on soccer where items, craziness, and Mushroom Kingdom all-stars rule. Compete in solo and multi-player tournaments, face off against friends and family locally, and score that game-winning final-second goal! Mario Strikers Charged is an excellent addition to Mario's sports legacy, and besides, who doesn't love it when Waluigi scores and does his out-of-nowhere crotch chop animation? You'd have to be soulless not to love it!

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers (buy here)


A Final Fantasy game that the Wii can call its own (other than the fabulous Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon), Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers offers motion-controlled combat, various gameplay styles, and a superb soundtrack. While nowhere near a typical Final Fantasy game, The Crystal Bearer possesses plenty of things to do and see, which will give that New Game+ option a lot of use. See Square Enix's experiment with a new type of Final Fantasy game by trying The Crystal Bearers today.

No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle (buy here)


The original No More Heroes was put on the HD consoles, but the second game, No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle, is still exclusive to the Wii, and cheap to boot. Join Travis Touchdown as he aims to make it to the top of a list of assassins. This ultra violent (but stylishly so) game is one where the motion controls feel great for the game. Moving the Wii Remote in a given direction to finish off an enemy feels oh-so nice, even after the hundredth time doing so. For a gamer on a budget, No More Heroes 2 is certainly worth a look.

Red Steel 2 (buy here)


Red Steel 2 offers something similar to The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword-- that is, 1:1 swordplay. What Skyward Sword lacks, however, is some fun gun firing for added enjoyment. The two gameplay styles combine to create an overlooked but insanely fantastic first-person experience on Wii. No doubt the original Red Steel and its empty promises burned a lot of Wii owners, so it is to be expected Red Steel 2 would have done poorly, at least in hindsight. That said, the game is full of action, intense sword fights, gun battles, and plenty of cool missions to do. Note: The game requires the MotionPlus add on.

MadWorld (buy here


In a world where anything and everything can be used as a means to attack, Verrigan City is a fighter's dream. An M-rated offering, MadWorld was Platinum Games' sole Wii offering, delivering over-the-top violence, an awesome graphic novel-style aesthetic, and a good bit of humor thrown in for good measure. Early this year, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 owners were able to experience the follow-up to the game in the form of Anarchy Reigns. If you liked that title, then give MadWorld a try. It's cheap after all.

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So cheer up, Wii U owners. Things are bleak as ever with this drought of games for the system, but you can pass the time until LEGO City Undercover and other titles with some of the games listed here for you today. Not only are they competent, but they are also cheap and won't damage your wallet too terribly much. If you have other Wii games that are not one of these twenty that you believe should be listed, post your thoughts in the comments section. Because of this list, do you personally see any Wii games that you might be buying now?

Monday, March 4, 2013

Resident Evil: Revelations (Wii U, PS3, 360) Infernal Mode Trailer

Hell just got a lot hotter with Resident Evil: Revelations's Infernal Mode. This remake-exclusive mode features new enemy and item placement, and a brutally challenging difficulty. It's safe to say that I will be keeping it on Casual and Normal for my run-throughs of the game. Resident Evil: Revelations haunts HD platforms this May.

SPC's Favorite VGMs - March Madness Edition

The first week of March brings with it five new video game tracks for your ears to enjoy. If you're new to this, all we do here is post five video game themes that we (my brother, my friends, and I who post stories on SuperPhillip Central) like most. Well, your old friend SuperPhillip here does the brunt of the work, writing all the anecdotes tied to each game, but you won't see me get credit for that. Anyhow, on this week's edition of the VGMs we have music from Bomberman Hero, GoldenEye 007, and Perfect Dark. Let's get to groovin'!

v326. Bomberman Hero (N64) - Redial


We start off with what I consider to be the black sheep of the three Bomberman games released on the Nintendo 64. It was the one quite unlike the other two, which were related. That doesn't make this one, Bomberman Hero bad. The music, also unlike the other two, is very hit-or-miss. Redial is my favorite theme from the game. Quite catchy, no?

v327. Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 (PS2, GCN) - Wild Soul


Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 brought with it a story mode that took place on a board game. It was an interesting take to the story mode, but I still prefer the world map of later games. Regardless of which Budokai game is your favorite, no doubt you, too, love the music of the series like I do. It's really well done as Wild Soul shows.

v328. GoldenEye 007 (N64) - Dam


GoldenEye 007 is seen-- and rightfully so-- as one of the most important console games of all time. It made console first-person shooters popular, and it did so in style. Shaken, stirred, rough 'n tough, and oh-so good.  I did not play the game when it originally came out. Actually, I just played it recently, and it not only held up better than I thought it would, but it was pretty darn difficult!

v329. Perfect Dark (N64) - Air Base Espionage


Now this is the game that I prefer to GoldenEye, frame-rate issues be damned! Perfect Dark not only had a more appealing and cinematic single-player experience, but the multi-player was filled with awesome moments. Oh, and a little thing that more shooters need-- bots! The music is also superior to James Bond's offering. That said, GoldenEye and Perfect Dark were a one-two punch that made the N64 a great multi-player system.

v330. Go Vacation (Wii) - BGM 2


Go Vacation was actually nominated for the Best Original Soundtrack award at the SPC Best of 2011 Awards. I only wish the North American opening and main themes were available to listen to, as they are absolutely positively toe-tapping good. Alas, you can listen to these themes a Japanese YouTube user uploaded. It's really awesome, just like the game it comes from!

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Hey, you! Yeah! YOU! Why not scope out all SPC's favorite VGMs through our VGMs Database. It's there for you to browse and carouse 24/7, without any need to wait for Mondays. Until next Monday, we'll see you later!

LEGO City Undercover (Wii U) North American Commercial

LEGO City Undercover is a notable game this month for Wii U owners, and not just because it is one of the first retail releases in a long time for the system. No, the game actually looks wonderfully charming, full of content, and fun. LEGO City Undercover will arrive on the Wii U in two weeks! Except a full in-depth review right here on SuperPhillip Central.

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