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State of Decay and Animal Crossing: New Leaf

State of Decay Screenshot

Wow, it feels like forever since I've updated the blog, and now I've become one of those guys who starts off a blog with apologizing for not updating his blog.

GameCritics.com Podcast Episode 91: Most Overhyped/Underappreciated Games

It's the end of a generation, and the GC crew takes a look back at the era that was. We throw out our Most Overrated and Underappreciated games of the past gen, and somehow we were all still on speaking terms afterwards. Also, some bonus talk on the magic of Pokémon. With Sinan Kubba, Chi Kong Lui, Brad Gallaway, Mike "I Hate You All" Bracken, and Richard Naik.

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Corpse Party: Book of Shadows Review

You'll Wish This Was Just a Book

Corpse Party: Book of Shadows Screenshot

HIGH It's got some of the better writing out there.

LOW Replaying the same, long sequences after each bad ending.

WTF Only girls get extended torture scenes.

Soul Sacrifice Review

Can We Offer This Up for a Better Game?

Soul Sacrifice Screenshot

HIGH Great concept and wonderfully dark tone.

LOW Grinding, grinding, grinding, grinding.

WTF Why are so many weapons painfully laggy and slow?

State of Decay Hands-on Preview

State of Decay Screenshot

Several sites including GameCritics.com were invited to a preview event for the upcoming Xbox Live Arcade title State of Decay. The gathering took place at Undead Labs, located in Seattle Washington. I attended, and was able to spend about four hours with a near-final build of the game. In addition, several of the developers were nearby throughout the day to answer questions.

Dead Island: Riptide Review

Lifeless

Dead Island: Riptide Screenshot

HIGH The new character's hand-to-hand fighting style is a hoot.

LOW Watching zombies infinitely spawn, clown-car style out of a tiny wooden shack.

WTF It's got the jankiest menu system ever created. How was this approved?

Dark Preview #2

Dark Screenshot

Kalypso Media recently invited GameCritics to take a second look at the upcoming vampire-themed stealth game Dark, from Realmforge Studios. It was originally covered by Brandon Bales, but it's been a while and we were interested in seeing how it's progressed.

Extra Credits: More Than Exposition

Extra Credits talks about the "exposition dump." What is that, you ask? The "exposition dump" is one of the easiest ways with which a developer can tell a story, explain a game world or explain a game world's rules. Even lauded game designers like Hideo Kojima use this method to tell a story—and why not, if Metal Gear Solid's success is any indication, there are few repercussions for overusing it. Thankfully, there are examples of doing the opposite and being rewarded for it. The Half-Life series, Fallout 3 and Journey are examples of doing it right.

System Shock 2 Review

In Space, You Will Definitely Scream

System Shock 2 Screenshot

HIGH The first journey into the mind of your foe.

LOW Fumbling with my psi-amp while being peppered with gunfire.

WTF That midwife is just... yikes.

Dead Space 3 Review

In Space, No One Can Hear Me Yawn

Dead Space 3 Screenshot

HIGH Dismembering Necromorphs still offers some visceral thrills.

LOW Being forced to fight wave after wave of cannon fodder enemies in the game's multiple kill rooms.

WTF Ellie's romantic interests seem to change pretty easily.

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