Saturday, July 27, 2013

Mario & Luigi: Dream Team (3DS) North American TV Spot

We let this one slip past us. It's the North American commercial for Mario & Luigi: Dream Team. The game releases here on August 11, a Sunday. Though this commercial posted on Nintendo's YouTube channel is only a few days old, that's about a few years in internet time.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Top Five Most Exciting Xbox One Games

Welcome to the conclusion of the work week here at SuperPhillip Central. On our most anticipated games for the rest of 2013 article, we got some criticism from fans of the Xbox brand and the Xbox One regarding how none of the eighteen games on our list were Xbox One exclusive. This list today is meant to show that we do have some interest in the games for the system. They simply didn't make the cut last week over the games we had listed. Regardless, these five titles are the ones that we are most excited to know and see more about in the Xbox One's lineup of coming games.

5) Forza Motorsport 5


We're not the biggest fans of sim racers, but even we have to admit to being excited for Turn 10 Studios' latest. Revealed at the Xbox One coming out party back in late May, Forza Motorsport 5 is the next game in Microsoft and Turn 10 Studios' racing simulator. It will be most interesting this holiday to see which racing simulator will come out on top in reviews, Forza Motorsport 5 or Gran Turismo 6. Regardless, Forza 5 is looking particularly jaw-dropping with all of its visual tricks, and if the same quality of the game's predecessors is kept intact, Xbox One owners will have something wonderful and special to play at the system's launch.

4) Crimson Dragon


When you have a game that is a spiritual sequel to the Panzer Dragoon series, because of many of the staff of that series is on board with this game, and the gameplay is so similar, there's no wonder why we're anticipating Crimson Dragon, a planned Xbox Live Arcade release. The creators promise six unique varieties of dragons to ride, three player online co-op, over 100 skills and RPG-like leveling through feeding your dragons food acquired mid-mission. Although its debut was marred by technical sound issues, you could tell that the audience watching was still enamored by the footage shown. We know we certainly were.

3) Sunset Overdrive


The callings of "betraylton!" and other obnoxious made-up words were written on message boards and gaming sites alike when it was revealed that Insomniac Games, a studio known for working on Sony platforms, was creating an exclusive for the Xbox One. We have no doubt that Sunset Overdrive, their first project with the Xbox brand, will surpass the quality and sales of Fuse. Then again, that's a low bar to set, isn't it. Nonetheless, Sunset Overdrive might have no release date as of yet, but we do know it's a colorful (more of this, please, in our next gen) open world shooter which incorporates wall-running and other acrobatic skills to make for a frenzied pace. You'll need those skills, too, in a world overrun with mutants. Despite the Dystopian world of the game, Insomniac promises the trademark humor many of their games have will not be omitted. Between Sunset Overdrive on Xbox One and Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus on PlayStation 3, perhaps Insomniac Games is finally getting its groove back, and we couldn't be any happier.

2) Killer Instinct


When it was revealed that Rare's long retired Killer Instinct franchise was being revived and put out of hiatus, we were incredibly excited. When it was revealed that Rare's long retired Killer Instinct franchise was being revived and put on hiatus, and developed by Double Helix, we became less thrilled. After all, Double Helix doesn't have much of a positive record with the quality of their past games. However, we must remember that before Batman: Arkham Asylum, Rocksteady Games wasn't known as a great developer either. Perhaps Killer Instinct's revival will be Double Helix's monumental moment to shine. The game looks absolutely awesome, not just in the obvious graphics department (one of the best looking games of gen 8 so far), but the gameplay looks to have been nailed as well. We have faith in you, Double Helix. Don't let us down!

1) Dead Rising 3


We saw the reveal of Dead Rising 3 at Microsoft's E3 press conference along with everyone else, and we were a bit unimpressed. There was an apparent lack of zaniness that past games in the Dead Rising series was known for. The game was also quite brown, another departure from DR3's predecessors. The former criticism of ours has been touched upon by Capcom, showing screens of the main character with a Servbot head, in a speedo, in a dress and wearing a bull mascot head. Okay, you've got us there, Capcom. Just when we get out, you pull us back in! Dead Rising is our favorite Xbox 360 exclusive, so saying that Dead Rising 3 is the game that excites us the most on Xbox One isn't that large of a stretch. We look forward to mauling our way through hordes of the undead and taking on psychopaths with anything and everything we can find.

===

Another top five is finished. You might have noticed we did not include Titanfall on our list. Well, that game isn't an exclusive, other than a console exclusive. The game can be seen on the PC, which is the version that appeals to us most. So not only is that the reason we didn't include it, but it also allowed us to place another game on the list in its place.

Next week we will be looking at the top five PlayStation 4 games that excite us most, as well as our most anticipated Wii U games. We hope you'll look forward to those.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Most Overlooked Nintendo 3DS Games - Part Four

While it'd be like shooting fish in a barrel to select Nintendo Wii U games that were overlooked (anything but New Super Mario Bros. U and Nintendo Land, we guess), we decided to once again spotlight our favorite platform of the year so far, the Nintendo 3DS, for Part Four of our Most Overlooked Nintendo 3DS Games series. These five games didn't sell to potential, didn't get much buzz, or they simply fell through the proverbial cracks. Regardless of their reason for not doing well in the market, we would like to highlight these games. Perhaps we'll get you interested enough to try a couple out!

For past Nintendo 3DS games that we felt were overlooked, check out these three links!


Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate


A followup to the Castlevania reboot, Lords of Shadow, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate attempted to bring back the Metroid-vania style gameplay to the series. The jury's still out on whether it succeeded or not. What we do know is that the game features some excellent combat, really impressive visuals and some vicious enemies to take down. While it isn't in the league of older Castlevania games like Symphony of the Night, Aria of Sorrow or Super Castlevania IV, Mirror of Fate should scratch the itch of those looking for a more traditional Castlevania title.

Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D


Pretty much doomed to failure when the announcement of the Metal Gear Solid HD Collection with a price that matched the 3DS game, Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D was initially shown off in prototype form with glorious graphics. The final product doesn't have the impressive visuals of that prototype, but Snake Eater 3D is still a looker. The end game is something that is worth playing for those without a Vita or an HD console and access to the HD collection. Snake Eater 3D contains some interesting additions, such as an over-the-shoulder third-person view, crouch-walking, Yoshi dolls replacing the hidden Kerotan frogs of the original game, as well as the ability to create your own camouflage. The game is imperfect, with sudden framerate drops, but those willing to put up with them will find a worthy addition to their 3DS library.

Project X Zone


An unprecedented crossover game, containing characters from three of Japan's big-time publishers, Namco Bandai, Capcom and SEGA, Project X Zone is a game that many believed would never reach the West. The stars must have all aligned or at least hell must have frozen over, as the game reached our side of the world. The primary focus of the game is a strategy RPG, with battles taking place in real time, similar to a very simple fighting game. Characters from series such as Street Fighter, Resident Evil, Gods Eater, Valkyria Chronicles, Mega Man X, Sakura Wars, Tekken and many more make up the roster of both allies and enemies. You can look forward to Phil's review of Project X Zone sometime in the near future, as it is quite a lengthy game!

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers


Goodness gracious, what lengthy titles some of these games have! Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers is an upgraded port of the original Soul Hackers game, which released in 1997 on the SEGA Saturn. With this 3DS port, it is the first time the game has been available in the West. With it, comes the series's usual occult-based story, a more relaxed difficulty to invite beginners to play, faster loading times, thirty new demons, voice acting for every scene and much more. A severely niche series in the West, Soul Hackers did not light sales charts on fire, and most stores did not carry the game. One would have to shop online or head to GameStop to pick up the game. That said, Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Sum-- you get the idea-- is a game that is deep, complex and ultimately really fun.

Style Savvy: Trendsetters


Up until now, we've focused on titles more befitting of a hardcore player. This final addition to the Most Overlooked Nintendo 3DS Games list is a game that we didn't think we'd enjoy. However, we gave Style Savvy: Trendsetters a try, and we absolutely adored it. Starting as an assistant at a fashion shop, and then making your way as the owner, being able to satisfy clients' clothing preferences, keep up with stock, as well as enter fashion contest made for a game that has a lot of content to it. No, it's not epic like the other games listed here today, but it's really worth looking into if you love customization and having a lot of options open to you. Unfortunately, the 3DS is currently not as appealing to the casual gamer as much as the Nintendo DS was, making the sales for this casual-oriented title less than desirable in the West. But don't get us wrong-- you can play through Style Savvy: Trendsetters and enjoy it even if you're hardcore gamers like us.

===

We have concluded another installment of Most Overlooked Games. Perhaps next time we will return to looking at one of the HD consoles. Until then, keep up to date with SuperPhillip Central by visiting us on a daily basis. Thanks for your continued readership!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

SuperPhillip Central's Top 100 Games of All Time (30-21)

On June 5, SuperPhillip Central turned five years old. We're celebrating big the only way we know how, with a list of our favorite 100 games of all time. SuperPhillip Central's staff has come together to come up with this list. These don't necessarily have to be the best, but they are indeed our favorites. Coming up with an order for these games has been an immense challenge. We're sure you won't agree with our order-- heck, we don't even agree with our order. That said, we hope you'll at least agree with our picks, and if you don't, at least you can read our rationale for our choices. Regardless, for ten weeks, we will be counting down our favorite games of all time. Please join us for this great undertaking.

If you missed a previous edition of our countdown, look no further than these links:

Games of All Time (100-91)
Games of All Time (90-81)
Games of All Time (80-71)
Games of All Time (70-61)
Games of All Time (60-51)
Games of All Time (50-41)
Games of All Time (40-31)

Let's return to the countdown!

30) God of War II (PS2)


God of War was featured last week on SPC's list of 100 games. This week we have its sequel, which took the combo-based combat, spectacular set pieces and brutal ultraviolence to new heights to create a bigger, better and bolder game. Betrayed by Zeus, stripped of his title as the God of War and ruthlessly murdered, Kratos seeked the Sisters of Fate to go back in time and thwart his betrayal. God of War II showcased the power of the PlayStation 2 and just how tough that little black box was. The game contained more challenging puzzles, as well as a healthy helping of bosses-- easily multiple times more bosses than the original game. All of this was coated in a fantastic fighting system that towed the line between casual and hardcore players beautifully. Case in point, God of War II is one of finest action games ever devised, and it's without a doubt one of the best offerings in the PlayStation 2's robust library of intriguing games.

29) Star Ocean: The Second Story (PS1)


While this is a game that probably wouldn't make it on most lists this far into a top 100 list, Star Ocean: The Second Story is a title that gives us great flashbacks of our days with the old PlayStation. However, it's not just nostalgia, as we recently played the PSP port Star Ocean: Second Evolution, and the combat was just as refined and hectic, the presentation (especially that music by Motoi Sakuraba) was brilliant and beautiful, and the dozens upon dozens of hours that could be lost to this game, regardless of which version, made for many sleepless nights. The Second Story already provided excellent replay value, but when you consider there's two main characters that can be chosen, as well as a wide cast of party members that can be recruited, you have a game that is one of the highest RPGs listed on our top 100 countdown.

28) Mega Man X4 (PS1, SAT)


The second Mega Man game to be released on a PlayStation platform, and the first Mega Man X game to enter the 32-bit era, Mega Man X4 took the series to new heights with two protagonists, each with their own characteristics, stories and cutscenes. X specialized in long range attacks and was the easier of the two playable characters to complete, while Zero focused on short range assaults with his sword. Though many classic series that moved into the PlayStation era jumped into 3D or used some kind of 3D visuals, Mega Man X4 stayed tried and true to its roots, and it looked absolutely glorious in 3D. The game contained flashy visuals, had plenty of replay value thanks to the aforementioned two heroes, and it was a game that was challenging for all the right reasons. Mega Man X4 is a shining example of a terrific 2D platformer in the 32-bit era.

27) Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando (PS2)


The first Ratchet & Clank was a fun, albeit forgetful and flawed game. However, Insomniac Games' second try with the franchise blew minds, including our own. Right away through viewing the game, you could see how incredibly improved the visuals of Going Commando were to its predecessor. Not only that, but the gameplay was much more refined, and the developers even included some role-playing elements in the mix. This came in the form of weapons that could be upgraded through repeated use. A small cluster bomb could turn into one that sent out dozens of bombs once the initial one exploded. By far the most fascinating aspect of Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando was its terrific level design. Each planet generally had two ways to go, each leading to a different destination, adding to the longevity of the game. Also adding to that was the challenge mode after completing the game. This mode delivered more bolts (the currency of the series) to players. Without a doubt our favorite in the Ratchet & Clank series, Going Commando still hasn't been beaten by any other PlayStation platformer yet.

26) Mario Kart DS (DS)


This might be a controversial choice for this list because of a little thing called snaking. However, if you found a like-minded friends who promised not to snake, you'd find much enjoyment in the online. Sure, the emblem creator made it so you could see the glorious, glorious drawings of crudely done wangs, but you could always stand to appreciate art as you see it. Regardless, Mario Kart DS was one of Nintendo's first attempts at an online game, and while the online part isn't even why we considered the game to be on our list, it was a nice feature to have. Mario Kart DS' most exciting part was its offline play, featuring something that needs to return desperately to the series, a mission mode. The game also featured some stunning and well designed tracks, including Airship Fortress, Luigi's Mansion and Delfino Square. Mario Kart DS really felt like the most complete Mario Kart that had been released as of yet, and in many regards it still does.

25) Donkey Kong Country Returns (Wii, 3DS)


Recently released on the Nintendo 3DS with eight new levels and the removal of waggle to perform actions, Donkey Kong Country Returns saw the revival of Rare's classic Super Nintendo series. This time the game was developed by a different Western developer, Austin, Texas' Retro Studios. Despite the long hiatus between games, Donkey Kong Country Returns really felt like the series had just picked up where it left off. Levels constantly introduced new concepts and gimmicks to make it so you never knew what was coming next. Puzzle pieces and bonus areas were hidden well to make players explore every crack and crevasse of a given level. Then you had the Kongs' interactions with each level. Sometimes being shot from the foreground to the background and vice versa. (This looked particularly impressive on the Nintendo 3DS.) It is for these reasons that we cannot wait to see what Retro Studios delivers next with Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze on Wii U this holiday season.

24) Mega Man X2 (SNES)


The second Mega Man X game to hit our list in the same week (and the second Mega Man X game overall) is Mega Man X2. The game introduced a trio of baddies known as the X-Hunters, looking to take down the reploid that brought down the leader of the Mavericks, Sigma. Each member of the X-Hunters had a piece of Zero that players could go after optionally to rebuild the pony-tailed Maverick Hunter and get the good ending of the game. Mega Man X2 had all of the features of its predecessor, such as eight initial levels to complete, Mavericks to defeat, special weapons to obtain, capsules to find, Energy and Heart Tanks to uncover, and all the shooting, wall climbing and dashing fans of the original Mega Man grew to love. Mega Man X2 might not have reinvented the wheel, but it didn't have to. It simply took what made Mega Man X great and attempted to improve upon it. Depending who you are, it might have been the better game.

23) Super Metroid (SNES)


The best in 2D Metroid-vania games, Super Metroid brought with it some of the greatest atmosphere in a 16-bit title. The game followed bounty hunter Samus Aran as she followed her nemesis Ridley to a new planet, after Ridley had murdered the scientists studying the Metroid infant Samus uncovered at the end of Metroid II: Return of Samus. The game was structured in a way that had Samus venturing around the many areas of the planet, uncovering new abilities from Chozo statues and left behind from bosses to reach new, previously inaccessible portions of the game world. At the start of the game, Samus' repertoire of moves wasn't that stellar. By the end of the game, however, Samus had the ability to freeze foes, spin attack right through them and unleash holy heck on any enemy that got in her way. The final battle with Mother Brain still stands as one of the most defining boss battles in Metroid history, as Super Metroid itself is one of the most defining, if not THE most defining, game in Metroid history.

22) Mega Man 3 (NES)


It's bizarre that we find Mega Man 3 to be the best game in the classic Mega Man series. We say so because series creator Keiji Inafune believed the development of the game was one of the most stressful times in his career. All artists much suffer, we guess, and Mr. Inafune's suffering gave gamers this delightful title. We find Mega Man 3 better than its much loved (we love it too) predecessor for several reasons. We enjoyed the levels, challenge, storytelling, and length better than Mega Man 2. There was also no Crash Bomb boss, which meant if you ran out of Crash Bombs during that boss, you had to commit robo-cide and refill your weapon energy in a boring grind-like fashion. The additions of Rush, Proto Man and Mega Man's sliding ability added even more charm to the series. Despite Capcom's best efforts to make Keiji Inafune's creation down and out, we'll always love you, Mega Man.

21) Super Mario 64 (N64)


One of the most influential and groundbreaking video games of all time, Super Mario 64 wasn't the first fully 3D game, but it was the first to show how a proper 3D game with proper 3D models should be done. Worlds were open-ended, offering immense amounts of exploration-- just mind-blowing at the time. Super Mario 64 shifted gameplay focus from completing linear platforming levels to completing multiple unique missions within each world of the game. In doing so, the developers still had mechanics from past Mario games so Super Mario 64 had a bit of familiarity in its brand-new bold package. The game worlds were fun to explore. Heck, even messing around in Peach's castle, the hub world of the game, was an absolute blast. Revolutionary is a not word to be used lightly, but Super Mario 64 represents that word sensationally well. Other 3D Mario titles would be evolutionary, including several that are higher on this list.

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There are only two weeks left for our Top 100 Games of All Time countdown. The next games are even better than the ones listed here! Is that even possible? Find out next Wednesday!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Last of Us (PS3) Review

We're approaching the end of July, but SuperPhillip Central still has some big games to review. One such is Naughty Dog's The Last of Us, much proclaimed as one of the greatest games of the generation, if not THE greatest. Let's find out what SuperPhillip Central has to say about it with our review.

Not Quite the Game of the Generation,
But It's Absolutely One of Naughty Dog's Best


I am always hesitant to play something that many herald as the "game of the generation." I feel that this title puts an almost impossible to overcome bar for the game in question to reach and leap over. Sometimes I might even feel some animosity towards the game after playing it, realizing that all of the overly emotional compliments and awards were undeserving of the game. The Last of Us is the type of game that falls into neither category of game of the generation or a title that I show ill will towards. No, it's a game that ranks right up there with Sony's finest first-party titles, one of Naughty Dog's greatest achievements, and one of the best games of the year-- nay-- of the generation. It's not without problems, but what is? It's Naughty Dog at their most sensational, it's The Last of Us.

The Last of Us begins with a bang, putting the player in the role of protagonist Joel's daughter Sarah. A mutant strain of a fungus known as cordyceps has infected large numbers of human beings, turning them into malevolent and highly violent beings. The city turns under into chaos, with thousands rushing to find safety amid the carnage. Joel and his daughter are stopped by an enemy soldier, who fatally wounds Sarah with a gunshot. The game fast forwards to twenty years later where major cities are under lockdown, sections of cities are quarantined by police, and a huge swath of humanity has been destroyed. Joel meets up with Ellie, who a friendly rebellion group known as the Fireflies, wishes to have "smuggled" across city limits for the reason that she might hold the key to curing humanity. Joel and Ellie start out not on the greatest of terms, but as their journey together takes each twist and turn, they understandably grow closer. It's a relationship that showcases a lovely transformation between the two, and a heartfelt, beautiful story that heavily contrasts with the hellish world the two must survive in.

The Last of Us is one of the most gorgeous
games to have a realistic take on things.
If I had to describe the game in one short and simple sentence, it would be that The Last of Us is an action-adventure game with some survival horror sensibilities to it, and then that wouldn't even be fair to the game. The Last of Us has you deciding the best way to tackle encounters. With limited ammo and the threat of being overwhelmed, it's not always the greatest idea to rush into rooms and areas like Rambo. Instead, stealth is key, which The Last of Us has plenty of. Joel can sneak behind enemies and strangle them to death, or, for a more quiet kill, use a shiv to stab right into their throats. Yes, that is pretty gnarly to see. However, sometimes your only choice is to fight fire with fire.

Sometimes Joel just has to get his hands dirty.
Alongside encounters is some simple environmental puzzles to break things up, as well as exploration, which The Last of Us contains a wide sampling of. One such environmental puzzle requires Ellie, who can't swim (join the club!), to cross over a flooded part of an underground passage. In order to do this, Joel must swim and find a plank of wood and set it by Ellie. She rides atop the wooden plank (after a little hesitation to do so), and Joel pushes it to get Ellie safely across. These aren't brain-busters like any means, but they offer a nice change of pace for the game.

As for exploration, a lot of The Last of Us takes place in rather linear areas, but most of time there are side rooms or areas to journey into to acquire goods for crafting, health kits, and supplements, which are used to boost Joel's overall health, healing time, etc.

Crafting is a major part of The Last of Us. At any time in the game, you can look through Joel's bag in real time. Just make sure there's no infected breathing down your neck beforehand! Through acquiring crafting goods from shelves, drawers and other places within the game world, Joel can craft things like health kits, Molotov cocktails, and upgrades to melee weapons, such as strengthening them so they don't break as quickly. In addition to crafting goods, Joel can visit workbenches placed throughout the game to upgrade his various weapons, increasing their reload speed, capacity, and so forth.

This brick could easily be replaced
by a launch Xbox 360.
The Last of Us is genuinely frightening in many regards. One part within the first half of the game has Joel's team in the darkened confines of a subway station. Unfortunately for them, the station has plenty of inhabitants in the form of one hit kill Clicker creatures. Clickers are unable to see, but they are super susceptible to sound, so Joel and the gang must quietly move through the labyrinth of benches, walls and columns as they make their way to the other side. When there, Joel must defeat one of the Clickers that stands in his way, and if he doesn't do it quietly enough, he'll alert the other handful of Clicker creatures to his location, possibly getting his throat torn out in the process!

But these tense and immersive moments are occasionally ruined by the AI. Generally your AI partners behave themselves, but sometimes when you're supposed to be silent, such as in the previous Clicker example, they will move around, even move right next to the Clicker threat. Thankfully, the AI can't alert the enemy to you, but it's still something that took me out of what was supposed to be an super-serious experience. Furthermore, I've had it where enemies would do erratic behaviors, almost as if the AI couldn't decide what it wanted to do.

And a "good day" to you, too!
That said, overall, the AI in The Last of Us is rather smart, despite the aforementioned issues. Enemies react differently depending on the situation. For instance, if they spot Joel in a vulnerable position or see him reloading, they will take that opportunity to go after him. They can surround Joel and try to take him down that way. Ellie can pretty much take care of herself, hiding in appropriate places, and even stabbing foes that have Joel in their grasp. It's a high level of intelligence that not many games can claim to have, but The Last of Us has it.

"I could use... a hand here...*choke*"
The Last of Us has four difficulties to play through for beginners and experts alike. After beating the game initially, players can start a New Game+ on their current difficulty for even more fun. Completing in-game challenges, some of which are related to trophies, unlocks cash that can be spent on character skins (such as unlockable Uncharted shirts and Jak and Daxter goggles), concept art and graphical filters, like sepia tone and black and white.

Additionally, if the massive single player campaign wasn't enough, Naughty Dog has a multiplayer component to The Last of Us. This mode is called Factions, and has players picking a side, either Hunters or Fireflies, and participating in matches to help their clan stay alive for 12 weeks. Each match serves as its own day. After surviving (or failing to survive) the 12 weeks, a player can choose their clan once again. It's an incredibly innovative take on multiplayer, currently only marred by the amount of lag in a wide number of matches. Note: That I'm saying this at the time of this review. It could be fixed by the time you read this.

Here's something to heat this match up!
The world of The Last of Us is absolutely breathtaking. Environments in the post-apocalyptic world of the game have plenty to see and admire. I personally love how there's so much vegetation covering the game's structures. It's almost serene, which is completely contradictory to the hell and horrors that exist in Joel and Ellie's world. Character models are by far the most impressive aspect of The Last of Us's presentation, using motion capture to create sophisticated and realistic looking human models-- from their look to the way they move. Simple things like Ellie running her fingers through her hair as she moves are what separates games like The Last of Us to the competition. The voice acting is some of the strongest I've heard in a long time, really punctuating the drama of the game. The minimalist music, composed by Gustavo Santaolalla, delivers a soft spoken score to The Last of Us that focuses less on bombastic horror themes and more on emotion, perfect for Naughty Dog's vision of the game.

I could stare at many of the areas
of The Last of Us for hours.
Perhaps what's most great about The Last of Us is that it is a roller coaster of emotions for the player. From fright to delight, from sorrow to happiness, The Last of Us offers a wide range of emotions that I, personally, went through while playing the game. It's rare for a video game to do that to me. I think that speaks volumes for Naughty Dog's latest. The Last of Us succeeds at creating a compelling story that is, at its heart, a heartwarming journey between two completely different individuals brought together through a harrowing adventure in a Dystopian future. I found myself caring about both Joel and Ellie, and really rooting for them to survive despite how hopeless their situation seemed. The game isn't perfect, as there are some AI and online multiplayer issues, but all in all, in a world where AAA become more and more soulless to me, The Last of Us is an example that moved me as a player. As an adventure, it can't have been for nothing, and as a game, Naughty Dog's work certainly wasn't for nothing either.

[SPC Says: 9.25/10]

Monday, July 22, 2013

Animal Crossing Journal - Cafe de Central Edition

Phil is back with a Monday edition of the Animal Crossing Journal. On today's edition we take a look at Central's new cafe. After donating a good share of fossils, fish, insects and art, Blathers finally requested a cafe for his old friend Brewster to be built. The citizens of Central pulled together and chipped in to build the town's newest watering hole.

Yee-haw!
A free round-- on me!
The mayor gets the ceremonial first sip.
Well what's stopping you?
Delicious!

Izo's birthday was this month.
For Izo? How sweet...
Some friends Izo has!
Ah... Izo's birthday wish.
Oh? How cordial!
Introducing the new Katie!

A happy song (?) to celebrate finishing off my debt!
A beautiful day after a rain storm...
I think Gigi understands loud and clear.

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