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Found 7 results

  1. As we move into the new year after successfully surviving the end of the world (thanks again, Goku!), it“s time to look back on all the fun times we had in our virtual worlds. There were certainly lots of games released in 2012 – some good, some bad, and some so ugly only a blind prostitute is willing to look at it. Which ones are worth playing, though? With such a large slush pile of bad games that may or may not have something to do with Kinect or James Bond, there are plenty of gems for each game-playing platform that I find extraordinary. So let“s take a look at 2012 and pick out what I think are the most outstanding games of the year…from what I“ve played. Keep in mind that I haven“t played all gazillion games that came out in 2012, and this is just a list of the games I enjoyed the most out of what I played. PC Game of the Year: Guild Wars 2 I haven“t exactly played too many PC games recently (now, if you“d like to buy me a better computer, we“ll talk), but out of the ones I have played, as far as PC exclusives go, none have given me as grand an experience as Guild Wars 2. With such a gorgeous world to journey through, unique systems to play around with, and a vast array of nice character classes, this game is fun from the get-go. But throw in tons of imaginative quests, a brilliantly-designed PvP system, and a crapload of other content, and this is one helluva MMO. And ya wanna know the best part? All of this requires a subscription of only $0! PS3 Game of the Year: Journey Official GP Review It“s not a 2012 Game of the Year list without Journey in there somewhere. And there“s a reason thatgamecompany's newest game is finding its way onto so many of these lists. As far as video games go in general, few have immersed me into its world as much as Journey has this year. It's not only one of the most beautiful games I've seen, and not only does it have one of the best co-op modes I've ever played, but the soundtrack... oh, that soundtrack! And you know a video game soundtrack is amazing when it gets nominated for a friggin' Grammy. That doesn't happen often. Xbox 360 Game of the Year: Silent Hill: Downpour Official GP Review It“s pretty much unanimous that the first three Silent Hills were the best, and many considered the series to have been going downhill since. With that said, Silent Hill: Downpour is exactly what the series needed to get it going back uphill again. With the survival horror genre having shifted directions, it took a while for the series to truly find the path it needed to keep modern gamers happy while also giving hardcore fans a true Silent Hill experience. It has its share of flaws, sure, but as a hardcore Silent Hill fan myself, I really enjoyed it. Wii Game of the Year: Xenoblade Chronicles The Nintendo Wii didn't see much in 2012, but that didn't stop it from having one of the console“s greatest games arrive on American shores, thanks to the efforts of Operation: Rainfall. Sure, The Last Story could be considered the Wii“s swan song, but compared to Xenoblade Chronicles, that is merely a duckling chirping. Out of all Wii games released in 2012 (yes, all four of them), none can hold even a drip of candle wax to Xenoblade. I already knew it was a good game from all the praise it got, but once I was finally able to spend 70+ hours exploring the incredibly expansive world, I realized that Xenoblade is by far one of my favorite experiences I've ever had on the Wii, and definitely the best one to come out of 2012. Wii U Game of the Year: New Super Mario Bros. U Unfortunately, I still need to buy a Wii U. That said, my lack of owning the console hasn't stopped me from playing a few of its games (I have my ways). And out of what I“ve played, there“s no denying that New Super Mario Bros. U is my favorite thus far, so it gets my pick for Wii U Game of the Year. While I for one love every entry into the New Super Mario Bros. series, many of you have your share of problems regarding them. And I understand that because none of them has been able to match my love for Super Mario Bros. 3 or Super Mario World. But after playing NSMBU, I think one of them has finally come pretty close. Whether you play solo or with four others, New Super Mario Bros. U is a great game every Wii U owner should own. Now, back to saving up for my own Wii U! DS Game of the Year: Pokemon Black 2 / White 2 Official GP Review With the 3DS having picked up steam a while back, you“d think the DS would have been set aside long ago. Pokemon didn't think so, which is apparent by its love for the last-gen handheld throughout the year. One (or two, rather) such game is Pokemon Black 2/White 2. Of course, with what little the DS got in 2012, there really isn't much competition aside from Pokemon Conquest, but whatever. If you“ve played the first Black/White, you“ll pretty much know what to expect from this one. But that“s not to say it“s the same thing. I see it as Black/White after it took a few rare candies (oh there I go with the lame Pokemon jokes). If you're a Pokemon fan, this game is a no-brainer. 3DS Game of the Year: Kid Icarus: Uprising Official GP Review It took about 20 years for our favorite little angel warrior to show his face in a game of his own, but when he finally returned, I couldn't have been happier. Kid Icarus: Uprising is a lot of things, and a lot of things handled really well. To put it simply, Uprising is a fantastic revival to a classic gem, and has a lot going for it as a fantastic game all in itself. And of course, it is. I mean, what list do you think this is? Sure, the game does have a few flaws, but they were obviously no match for the awesomeness this game exudes. Of all the quality 3DS games released in 2012, Kid Icarus: Uprising is the one I enjoyed the most. PS Vita Game of the Year: Zero Escape: Virtue“s Last Reward First off, I actually haven“t played the Vita version of this game. I played the 3DS version, though, so at least I played it. As for why I named Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward my favorite Vita game of 2012…well, that“s pretty much because I haven“t exactly played anything else for Vita that isn“t also for the 3DS. So, uh...I guess take my word with a grain of salt (or sugar, if you prefer sweets). Second off, I did do my research before finalizing my decision, so there“s that too. As I understand it, the Vita version is just as good, if not slightly better than the one I played, so that“s something to consider if you own a Vita. Regardless of which version you play, though, Zero Escape in general is simply amazing. If I owned a Vita, I“d buy this version of the game just so I have an excuse to play it all over again… Mobile Game of the Year: Rayman Jungle Run If there“s one thing Rayman Origins did right, it“s everything. Well, as far as platformers go, anyway. Not only was it one of the greatest platformers this generation, but it even gives Mario a run for his money as one of the greatest platformers ever. Speaking of running, if you liked Rayman Origins and have an iPhone or Android, Rayman Jungle Run is a game you must own. In fact, even if you haven“t played Origins, Jungle Run is a game you must own. Seriously, while I don“t think mobile gaming will ever truly take over the handheld gaming market, it“s games like this that make that a compelling argument. It's basically a game where our favorite man-without-limbs runs continuously throughout each level, giving you the task of making him not kill himself by getting him to jump, punch, and fly his way to the finish. This game is such a delight to play and definitely my most enjoyed mobile game of 2012. And My Pick for Game of the Year... Xenoblade Chronicles No matter how much I love each and every other game on my list, none of them gave me quite the year-defining experience that Xenoblade Chronicles did. Operation: Rainfall was right in petitioning to bring this game over because it truly is an amazing game. Not only is it the best Wii game I“ve played in 2012, but it“s also the best RPG I“ve played in a long while. But most importantly, Xenoblade was the game to come out of 2012 (even if others did get it beforehand) that I enjoyed the most, which makes it my official pick for 2012's Game of the Year.
  2. gaiages

    New Super Luigi U

    So, you all might have heard news every once and a while about the DLC/expansion for New Super Mario Bros. U. New Super Luigi U sounds pretty neat, in my opinion; it has 82 (!!) new stages to play through as our favorite green plumber... and what's more, he controls differently than Mario, having the longer jump/slower stop that seems connected to the taller plumber. It's announced for this summer, though there aren't any price mentions yet... will anyone be picking this up? I think I will, but I kind have to beat New Super Mario Bros. U before I can justify buying an expansion. Anyways, thoughts, concerns, general comments?
  3. In today's Nintendo Direct presentation, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata mentioned that they are considering 2013 "The Year of Luigi" due to the release of the upcoming Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon and his appearance in other recently announced games coming this year. Due to this, Iwata mentioned that Nintendo is currently in development of a special DLC for New Super Mario Bros. U that they call "New Super Luigi." The DLC will affect every course in the main campaign and make them all-new levels for a Luigi-only run of the game. Iwata also said that due to the large-scale nature of adding all-new levels (like a brand new game, essentially), it will take some time to finish development, so it won't be out soon. This is no doubt great news for those who've played through New Super Mario Bros. U and want more to play as this will add a lot more value to the game. Though the pricing of the DLC and its availability is currently unknown, you can look forward to the New Super Luigi DLC later this year. Source: Nintendo Direct Are you interested in playing through all-new levels as Luigi in New Super Mario Bros. U?
  4. Jason Clement

    Review: New Super Mario Bros. U

    Developer: Nintendo Publisher: Nintendo Platform: Wii U Release Date: November 18, 2012 ESRB: E for Everyone Reflecting back on it, New Super Mario Bros. U came into being in a strange way. It launched at the height of a release period where three big Mario games all came out within four months of each other. Despite the plumber's pedigree and status as Nintendo's icon, many would say that that was almost way too much Mario at once. What's more, NSMBU was the second 2D side-scrolling Mario game last year after New Super Mario Bros. 2 came out in August for the 3DS, so the question here is an obvious one: Is this simply more of the same? If you read my review for New Super Mario Bros. 2, you would know that it was a solid game. I gave it a positive review, but much of it felt like it lacked any personality; really, any innovative level design, that is (and it's especially noticeable to those who have played most of Mario's past 2D platformers). So as a result, even though I liked it, at the same time it was one of the most disappointing Mario games in recent history since it just didn't reach those high standards that many of the other games had met. Going into NSMBU, I was afraid that Nintendo might have phoned this one in too (in a sense), considering that it was coming out just in time for the launch of the Wii U and only months after NSMB2 on 3DS. Good news: I was dead wrong. New Super Mario Bros. U starts out much the same like any other 2D side-scrolling Mario game from the past, with the end goal of rescuing Princess Peach still being your primary objective. And yet, Nintendo managed to change things up just a tiny bit this time around. The story starts out with Mario, Toad, and Luigi having tea with Peach at her castle when Bowser's airship arrives. Instead of kidnapping and whisking her away to a distant volcano-ish location where his castle is, Bowser decides to settle for kidnapping Peach... and taking her castle for his own. Thus a large mechanical koopa hand extends out from the airship and grabs Mario, Luigi, and both Toads, and with a mighty swing, throws them all the way over to the opposite end of the world map, leaving Bowser to take over Peach's castle in their absence. Riveting stuff. Meanwhile, Mario and company need to progress through 6 different worlds before he can make his way back to Peach's castle. While the main story still isn't much more than one dimensional and a simple set-up for the game, I did have to appreciate that they took the time to set up why Mario starts out where he is, for once (NSMB2's setup, on the other hand, is pretty ridiculous in comparison). Another interesting thing you'll notice when Mario's adventure begins is that the world map is all interconnected through one big world for the first time in a 2D Mario game since Super Mario World. Previous New Super Mario Bros. games had segregated the worlds into a generic menu-based map selection, so this was a welcome sight for sore eyes, especially for fans of the older games in the series. The worlds even have their own names, as do the levels (again, just like in Super Mario World), and there are even enemies roaming about each area which trigger a mini-boss event where you'll need to beat a few of said enemy (whether they be Goombas, Hammer Bros. etc.). There is only one new suit this time around, and that's the Flying Squirrel Suit. It does exactly what its namesake implies (that of allowing you to glide in the air over distances), but it also gives Mario the added ability of latching onto a wall and staying put (without sliding down as in a normal instance), which comes in handy many times. The lack of Penguin and Helicopter Suits from New Super Mario Bros. Wii is a bit disappointing (though the former does make an appearance in the Challenge Mode), as is the absence of the Raccoon Suit, which made its grand return in NSMB2, but at the same time, Nintendo likely wanted those to remain unique to each of those games, which I can understand. As for the Flying Squirrel Suit, I was skeptical that it wouldn't add that much to the game, but some of the levels use it extremely well, and many of the Star Coins require strategic use of it, making it one of the more interesting new Suits in recent Mario entries. The actual level design is quite interesting; Nintendo's theme for Mario recently has been to start players off small and easy, then up the difficulty along the way. NSMBU certainly follows that idea as the first few worlds are relatively tame difficulty-wise, but even then it's abundantly clear that Nintendo's A-team was on this game as the level design is a much more inspired and interesting this time around compared to NSMB2. Many of the Star Coins are actually pretty tough to get (some are even hidden and require exploring to find them) and are there to add that extra challenge to the game for players who want it. There are also a lot of throwbacks to many older levels from Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World, as well as returning enemies that haven't been seen in years. Many levels are also a lot more expansive and wide open, and there are also quite a few that are genuinely challenging to play through; not something I'm used to saying when talking about the New Super Mario Bros. series in general. Plenty of secrets abound in different levels as well, whether it be hidden coins, carefully obscured Star Coins, or even secret exits which lead to secret levels on the overworld map. I'd also be remiss if I didn't mention that Yoshi returns in this game, though he doesn't appear frequently, which makes his appearance all the more appreciated whenever he shows up. And of course, baby Yoshis make their grand return as well, offering a few new abilities for Mario to take advantage of. Another new thing that was added this time around is the Nabbit; a creature who will pop up on the world map every now and then only to steal a toad's possession and disappear into a certain level. Upon starting that level, the Nabbit will take off ahead of you, and it's your goal to catch him before the end of the level; if you do, the toad will reward you with an item at the end of the level. It can be an interesting little diversion for a little while, but depending on the complexity of the layout of the level the Nabbit is in, it can get old quick too. Outside of the main game there is an all-new Challenge mode comprised of four or five different modes within which offer challenges ranging from speed runs (beat the timer), collecting all of the coins under a certain time limit, earning as many 1-UPs as possible without hitting the ground, and more. Really, the content in this mode is astounding, as you could easily spend almost as much time trying to get a gold medal in each of the challenges as you spend playing through the main game. There's also a mode called Boost Rush, in which you'll play through a scrolling level that gradually gains in speed as you attempt to collect coins and finish the level as fast as possible. Multiplayer returns as well, giving you the option of playing with up to 4 friends (using Wii remotes), as well as adding a 5th person (should you want the option of it) in which the player with the Gamepad is capable of placing blocks around the screen to help the others over pits and the like. The only areas in which NSMBU disappoint slightly are the visuals and music. Don't get me wrong; it actually does look quite nice in HD, especially considering that this is the first game in the series to get that treatment, and there are a few levels that really make the colors pop (like in World 3) and even one that is stylistically beautiful as it mimics Van Gogh's Starry Night painting. However, it doesn't feel like they utilized the power of the Wii U as much as they could; at best, it looks like New Super Mario Bros. Wii brought into HD with slight enhancements (such as the multi-layered, detailed backgrounds). The music, however, is disappointing because only about 40% of it is new, while the remaining songs have been re-used from previous entries in the series. This wouldn't be a problem if those same songs were somehow remixed or given new arrangements, but they're literally the same songs; no changes whatsoever to them. The first four Super Mario games never got away with this, so why is it suddenly okay to keep putting the same songs in the New Super Mario Bros. games? But I digress. Minor disappointments aside, New Super Mario Bros. U is not only the best game in the NSMB series so far, but it also manages to bring back some of those nostalgia feelings from the older games while still keeping things fresh with new level designs. You'll really start to experience the amount of content the game has especially when you start to replay different levels and open up secrets on the map, not to mention playing the different challenges available outside of the main game itself. If you found yourself disappointed with New Super Mario Bros. 2 or you haven't played a Mario game in years or perhaps you just want a good game for the Wii U, I can gladly say that New Super Mario Bros. U doesn't disappoint. It's easily one of the best launch Wii U games, and it's hands-down the best 2D Mario game since Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island. So dive right in and enjoy; just don't forget to take your Flying Squirrel Suit with you. Pros + Level design is great, fun; hearkens back to Mario of yore + Lots of levels and secrets in the main game + Tons of content available in the Challenges mode Cons - Music is still largely being re-used from older NSMB games - Though still nice, the visuals aren't pushed quite to what they could be Overall Score: 8.5 (out of 10) Great New Super Mario Bros. U is the best 2D Mario platformer in quite some time. If you have a Wii U and love platformers, you owe it to yourself to pick this one up.
  5. Jordan Haygood

    New Super Mario Bros U

    From the album: Kaptain's Gallery

    © Nintendo

  6. gaiages

    Friends in the Water (Sorta)

    From the album: The Dusty Photo Album

    NSMBU was my console pick for GOTY 2012.
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