Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The Unpopular Opinion 2: Games We Liked That Many Did Not

The staff at SuperPhillip Central loves games. We live them, we breathe them, we bathe with them, etc. However, we sometimes go outside the norm with our reviews, bashing titles that many others enjoyed, and heralding other games that have received poor scores or negative feedback within the gaming community. This article focuses on the latter type of games. As the title suggests, this is our second go at representing the games that a sizable chunk of gamers and critics lambasted yet we still enjoy. To check out the first article, click this link. After you're done reading our choices, why not list some of your own?

The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass (DS)

Technically, both Nintendo DS Legend of Zelda games could be placed here, but we're choosing Phantom Hourglass. There were many issues players had with the game. The two biggest problems were the touch screen-based controls and the Temple of the Ocean King. The first we found rather enjoyable. It was a great change of pace and intuitive as well. Meanwhile, the Temple of the Ocean King had players returning to it multiple times, heading deeper and deeper into its depths upon each visit. No doubt maddening to many, but for us perhaps we can tolerate annoying gameplay better than some. For heaven's sake, one of us got all of the achievements on the Xbox 360 version of 2006's Sonic the Hedgehog!

Sonic: Lost World (Wii U)

That seems like a perfect segue into our next game. At first, we were playing through Sonic: Lost World, not knowing really what we were doing. Getting used to the new controls (i.e. using the triggers to run and spin dash) was a challenge. However, once we got through that, the only worry that we had to deal with was some questionable design choices. Exhibit A: A level that forces you to play a round of pinball. The table's physics are awful, and if you fall through the flippers, you lose a life. When we finally figured out some of Lost World's more obtuse design decisions, the game became much more fun in subsequent play-throughs. We definitely don't agree that Sonic: Lost World is anywhere near the lack of quality of Sonic and the Secret Rings. In fact, we'd put it as a higher-tier 3D Sonic game.

The Wonderful 101 (Wii U)

We understand that the mainstream media does not have a lot of time to play every game on the planet fully, but with The Wonderful 101 it seemed like many journalists did not properly take the time to learn the controls (and they do take a little time to learn) before shooting down Platinum Games' latest. The concepts of having 100 wonderful heroes to move about and each mission being crazier than the last made for a game that we had trouble putting down. The Wonderful 101 is a nowhere near a perfect game, but it's also nowhere near unplayable or broken either.

007: Quantum of Solace (PS3, 360, Wii)

Movie-based games are generally garbage, but we liked what Activision did with 007: Quantum of Solace. The game combined missions of the 21st and 22nd James Bond movies into one nice and neat package. It might just be the source material that makes us enjoy this game, or it might just be our lack of playing every shooter under the sun. Regardless, we spent a lot of time playing through the fun campaign, and then hopping online to mow down some randoms from around the world. 007: Quantum of Solace had a license to thrill.

The Amazing Spider-Man (Wii U, PS3, 360)

Another movie tie-in game, The Amazing Spider-Man released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 two summers ago. This past March it released on Nintendo's Wii U for whatever rationale Activision had. Nonetheless, we found ourselves enjoying the game, regardless of how fashionably late it was. The open world setting of New York returned, and while the mission variety was limited in its locale choices, Spider-Man controlled splendidly. Sure, the web-swinging didn't have the same amount of technicality in it as Spider-Man 2, but The Amazing Spider-Man entertained us despite that.

Mario Tennis Open (3DS)

There are plenty of people disappointed with the latest in the Mario Tennis series. Mario Tennis Open gave players more of a match of Simon Says than actual tennis. You see, different shots put colorful circles on the opposing player's court. When the player moved to that position, the colored circle denoted what kind of shot the player should hit for maximum efficiency. This didn't sit too well with a lot of players, but we at SuperPhillip Central managed to get over 25 hours of playtime with Mario Tennis Open regardless. We enjoyed the courts, the four mini-games (though we wished there were more), and dressing up our Miis in unlockable gear.

Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity (3DS)

To be fair, we don't do many roguelikes, so we're not the best to pass judgment on them. Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity is seen as a beginner's entry into the genre, and it shows. The challenge is rather light, after all. That said, there are plenty of positives to take from Gates to Infinity. For instance, the story is interesting, having Pokemon join your team shifts completionists into overdrive, and the gameplay is accessible to almost anybody. Issues like the game's difficulty, lack of much variety in dungeon design, and talkative Pokemon didn't really phase us, but they are important to note (which we did in our review).

White Knight Chronicles: International Edition (PS3)

A modern story of "Sorry, but your princess is in another castle", White Knight Chronicles: International Edition is an RPG that plays well enough. Some say the combat isn't deep enough to keep players interested for long, and yes, there is a lot of grinding for experience and levels to accomplish. However, playing both the offline campaign and going online with your custom character for some online quests is something that we enjoyed. Maybe our enjoyment came from the fact that at the time we were dying for something new to play on our PlayStation 3's that was a JRPG. Regardless of the reason, we enjoyed White Knight Chronicles when we took it a face value.

ZombiU (Wii U)

Some critics jumped into ZombiU thinking it was just some first-person shooter. They received severe disappointment due to their assumptions and then tore the game to pieces like a pack of zombies. No, ZombiU is pure survival-horror with a heavy emphasis on the survival part. It is such a rush having a feeling of true sense of fear as you run from the undead, never knowing if where you're going will lead you to your death. The usage of the Wii U GamePad is still some of the best that the console has seen. Few games have ever made us legitimately afraid, but ZombiU is one of those rare titles that absolutely did. ...Wait. Did you hear that? It sounded like it came from behind you...

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