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Maken X – Review

In critiquing Maken X, I am surprised I went this long without blasting the game's overall look. Although the game is rendered with crisp, high-resolution graphics, it is ruined by the choice of character designs and models. Being the anime fan I am, I have no problem with Asmik Ace keeping the anime-look and porting it into a three-dimensional environment. After all Capcom and Square have done it wonderfully with Power Stone and Final Fantasy VIII respectively, and the games were the better for it. The one caveat is that the designs must be appealing to begin with.

Vanark – Consumer Guide

According to ESRB, this game contains: Animated Violence

Vanark – Review

Of all the games released that are based on hit titles in their respective genres, few escape the stigma of being a clone or rehash. Those that do usually do so because either there is such a dearth of that type of game on a system, or that the developer did such a great overall job that the similarities can be ignored. In the case of Vanark, it is such an underwhelming game, that as a whole it cannot shine.

Maken X – Second Opinion

I have incredible soft spot for games that take preexisting genres and really put their own spin on it. This was truly the case with Maken X. While it uses the first-person view to full effect; it plays nothing like the usual Quake-engine based shooter. Instead, Maken X fuse styles of gameplay (hand-to-hand combat, lock-on feature, charged attacks, blocks, computer AI patterns) more commonly found in console games with the first-person view.

Speed Devils – Second Opinion

To be perfectly frank, Speed Devils is one of the worst games I've played all year. This thing is ugly from top to bottom. It's not very original or cool (although it thinks it is), the gameplay is weak, the graphics are dull, the music sucks and most of all, it's boring—Speed Devils lacks any kind of excitement whatsoever. High energy is what carried games like Daytona USA and F-Zero X over the edge. High energy even saved San Francisco Rush from being a complete waste of time. Unfortunately, high energy is something Speed Devils doesn't have.

Vanark – Second Opinion

Within minutes of loading up Vanark, I can clearly see where the game draws most of its inspirations. Star Fox, Resident Evil, Wing Commander and Star Wars are just a few of the major themes that Vanark boldly borrows from. Unfortunately, in the process of co-opting all its ideas from other games, Vanark fails to define its own identity and pushes the term "generic" to all highs (or is it lows?).

Nerd Heroes: The Phenomenon of Loser Protagonists in Modern Japanese Games

In her book "Samurai From Outer Space", Japan historian/anime fan Antonia Levi coins a term she affectionately calls "the nerd hero." Anime, of course, is what the Japanese call their animation, and it often features insecure, dorky men in love stories where they are inexplicably pursued by well-meaning and sweet women.

NHL 2K – Second Opinion

Having not played a hockey game seriously with the exceptions of NHL Hockey and Konami's Blades Of Steel for the NES and Wayne Gretzky Hockey 64 on the Nintendo 64, about all I can add is that even a relative novice like myself found the computer's "defense" to be a bit on the easy side. Admittedly, I wasn't having my way with the computer the way Ben seems to have, but I could see that there were times when the opposing team didn't want to even show up (kind of like the Buffalo Sabres in this year's playoffs).

NHL 2K – Review

There's no doubting the amazing audio and visual advancements that NHL 2K so eagerly showcases. Combine those with easy-to-handle controls and solid gameplay and you have a strong case for the most enjoyable hockey simulation ever. This game gets back to the basics, whereas the most recent hockey games on PlayStation and Nintendo 64 have been following an ugly trend of overly complicated gameplay. NHL 2K is the most fun I've had playing hockey since EA Sports' glory days on the Sega Genesis.

NHL 2K – Consumer Guide

According to ESRB, this game contains: Animated Violence

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