September 29, 2010
Earlier tonight, my review for Samurai Warriors 3 on the Wii went up on GameSpot. As a freelance writer, you tend to work on a lot of games that full-time editors simply don’t have the resources to dedicate to. This can mean that freelancers often review a lot of games that require a bit more patience than other, higher profile titles.
I don’t really care how terrible a game is that I review. I still can’t believe people are willing to pay me to write about video games. Being able work for a site as amazing as GameSpot and going to medical school at the same time feels surreal. It’s like living two completely separate yet equally unbelievable dreams at once.
March 16, 2010
My reviews for the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of Dynasty Warriors: Strikeforce finally went up on GameSpot last night. Even though I played the original PSP version pretty extensively, I had a lot of trouble with this one. The console versions are essentially the same game as the portable version, so it’s difficult to come up with new things to say. I’m also not exactly a Dynasty Warriors expert. Mindless combat and level grinding just aren’t my thing unless they’re in old-school RPG form (Final Fantasy, Chrono Trigger, etc).
I’m not sure if I’ll be doing any more reviews for a little while. With my wedding and board exams coming up in May, my free time is really limited. Hopefully I’ll have more time on rotations when I’m not studying around the clock. Until then, if I see the sun outside it’s been a good day.
December 7, 2009
My reviews for the Wii and Xbox 360 versions of Scene It? Bright Lights! Big Screen! went up on GameSpot today. I asked for a family-friendly multiplayer game to try out over the Thanksgiving break, and in that sense, Scene It was a good choice. It was a difficult game to review, though. Until now, Scene It has been an Xbox 360 exclusive. To bring the game to multiple platforms, it’s obvious that this version was developed for the Wii and then half-heartedly ported to the 360 and the Wii. Unlike previous games in the series, this one lacks online play, leaderboards, and avatar support. It also has a streamlined visual style that makes the game move a bit faster, but also makes it look like the art design was given about 5 minutes of consideration. It’s still good family fun (and your only option on the Wii), but there are better versions of the same series available for less money.
November 13, 2009
My review for Rainbow Islands: Towering Adventure went up on GameSpot today. It’s a fairly standard update to a classic franchise with the obligatory audio and visual upgrades. Local cooperative play is a nice addition, and the game goes a long way toward correcting the problems of recent remake efforts like Rainbow Islands: Evolution (PSP) and Rainbow Islands: Revolution (Nintendo DS), but the lack of some important features make it feel stuck in the past. If you’re a fan of the series looking for some nostalgia (because, let’s face it, there are no new fans of Rainbow Islands), you’ll probably find something to like. Otherwise, stick with Bubble Bobble Neo.
July 20, 2009
Last week, my reviews for Mega Man Star Force 3: Red Joker and Black Ace went up on GameSpot. I had a difficult time writing them, because virtually nothing in the game has changed since last year’s version. I could have literally replaced every 2 in last year’s review with a 3, and everything I said would still apply.
That’s not to say that Star Force 3 is a bad game. On their own merits, Red Joker and Black Ace are decent role playing games. If you can get through the tedium of random battles and the inane storyline (which is typical of many RPGs), you’ll have a lot of fun with Star Force 3.
Unfortunately, when Capcom churns out what is essentially the ninth game in a series that has been running for just as many years (previously as Mega Man Battle Network on the Game Boy Advance), it’s hard to get excited about a formula that hasn’t changed since its inception. It’s a shame that Capcom puts so much effort behind shameless retreads like this when they could be making a sequel to the critically acclaimed yet commercially unsuccessful Mega Man Powered Up.