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Fire Emblem: M/Str8 > F/LGBT

Fire Emblem: Awakening Art

Fire Emblem: Awakening is easily one of my favorite games of the year so far, from a design perspective. No question. However, after rolling credits I noticed a couple of things which made me raise an eyebrow, and those were already on top of a problem I had with the game even earlier on—essentially, Awakening has quite a bit to say about female characters and LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) issues, while never overtly saying anything at all.

I Am (Still) Alive, Mirror of Fate and damsels in distress

I Am Alive Screenshot

In a nutshell, I Am Alive's a post-apocalyptic story about a father who was trapped far from home when disaster struck, and is only just now returning to find his wife and daughter. There are a number of things that make this title unique, such as the extremely stark visuals, the dark, mature subject matter and the interesting combination of environmental traversal and highly non-standard combat which is more like lethal puzzle-solving than it is about punching dudes out.

Playing catch-up

DmC: Devil May Cry—Vergil's Downfall Screenshot

The last week or so has been off-the-charts crazy here at GameCritics.com West—tons of stuff going on and all of it equally important, capped off with the left front tire of my car literally falling off as I was in the middle of a busy intersection in Seattle. I don't like to go so long between updates, but there you go.

Generation why

Killzone: Shadow Fall Screenshot

With buzz building around "inevitable" new console announcements, I started thinking about it and came to a realization: For the first time in over thirty years of playing games, I'm honestly not excited about or even looking forward to the next generation of hardware.

The Nintendo 3DS is red effing hot

Fire Emblem: Awakening Art

If you're into strategy games or old-school role-playing games, the Nintendo 3DS is where the action is right now.

Interview with Mommy's Best Games' Nathan Fouts

Serious Sam: Double D—XXL Screenshot

Indie developer and fighter of good fights Mommy's Best Games recently released Serious Sam: Double D—XXL on Xbox Live Arcade (XBLA). The big cheese of Mommy's Best Games, Nathan Fouts, explains everything anyone needs to know about XXL, and a few other topics came up, to boot. Apart from the noogie he gave me (it still smarts!) the interview went rather well.

TouchTalk, Volume Six

Ravenmark: Scourge of Estellion Screenshot

Welcome back to a semi-regular feature here at GameCritics.com: TouchTalk. In every installment we'll be reviewing a handful of mobile games and apps that you might want to check out… and maybe some that you'll want to avoid. This time we cover Ravenmark: Scourge of Estellion, Hungry Giraffe, Blood Roofs, Sushi Mushi, Noble Nutlings and Paper Galaxy.

Invisible indies: David Cage is right

Beyond: Two Souls Screenshot

At the recent DICE conference which just took place in Las Vegas, David Cage gave a speech which outlined nine points supporting his message that "the industry needs to grow up." Predictably, his comments angered many people and I've been seeing comments across the gaming spectrum disagreeing with him or trying to prove him wrong in various ways.

Ascend: New Gods Preview

Ascend: New Gods Screenshot

Today I had the chance to visit Signal Studios located in Kirkland, Washington, and I spent about three hours talking with the good people hard at work on the upcoming free-to-play Ascend: New Gods coming to XBLA and other platforms to be announced.

Backloggery 2013

Fire Emblem: Awakening Screenshot

It's not a backlog title, but I managed to get a copy of Fire Emblem: Awakening for Nintendo 3DS, and I've been putting some time into it… it's not title I was eagerly anticipating, but I needed a portable title and word of mouth from people that I trust was almost universally positive.

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