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Reviews

Xenoblade Chronicles X [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Xenoblade Chronicles X is complicated.

The Pros: 

+Cohesive design that rewards curiosity and exploration
+An amazing soundtrack that I need to own
+One of the most impressive looking games regardless of platform
+Sexy squid lady

The Cons: 

-Systems and menus that will be intimidating for even the hardest core players
-Anime clichés and designs that might turn some people off
-Sexy squid lady

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
10

Where do I even start? Xenoblade Chronicles X is positively massive in every sense of the word. The physical space of it’s world is massive, the depth of it’s systems is massive, the amount of content in general is massive. It’s no wonder that Nintendo has provided optional Installation Downloads to keep loading times moving at a steady clip for people playing using the physical disc.

Rise of the Tomb Raider [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Crystal Dynamics set a high bar of quality when they rebooted Tomb Raider in 2013, so naturally its sequel, Rise of the Tomb Raider, needed to up the bar once again; it's done that and more. Built on its solid foundations from the reboot, Lara takes part in an engaging adventure complete with beautiful landscapes, plenty of optional tombs, brain-wracking puzzles, and exciting new combat abilities for a memorable journey that should be had by everyone.

The Pros: 

+Graphically impressive
+Improved crafting system
+Numerous optional tombs and collectibles

The Cons: 

-Bigger focus on mandatory combat sections
-Predictable plot tropes
-Accidental deaths due to controls

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

I don't think many people were expecting Tomb Raider to make as big of a return that it did back in the 2013 reboot, save for Crystal Dynamics. I know it took me by surprise with its exciting traversing and combat coupled with an engaging story and believable voice acting. Tomb Raider was a success at becoming relevant once again and two years later we finally have the much anticipated follow-up to continue Lara's journey.

Halo 5 Guardians [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

There are a lot of changes in Guardians, mechanically and otherwise, most of which are for the better. While the campaign's narrative does have some major shortcomings, it still created some amazing Halo moments that I'll remember forever. The multiplayer has also been updated and refined also adding a completely new Warzone mode that is incredibly fun and will be for quite some time.

The Pros: 

+Legendary mode is quite challenging
+Warzone is fantastic and a great addition
+Some memorable set pieces

The Cons: 

-Squad AI is shoddy, at best
-Campaign heavily focuses on Osiris Team
-Short campaign with an unclimactic ending

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

As a massive Halo fan, I always become increasingly excited the closer the launch of a new Halo game nears. Halo 5: Guardians was no different. It's been 3 years since Halo 4, and we'll finally get to continue on with Master Chief's story and face a new world-ending threat that must be stopped. Being the first Halo on the Xbox One, Guardians has a lot to prove and 343 Industries has taken a lot of measures to ensure that this Halo is different in many ways.

Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

The Phantom Pain essentially takes all of the best features and mechanics from all of the previous games in the series and melds them into one incredibly impressive package while also introducing a slew of new features that also has the right amount of fan service for long time vets, and opens up the gameplay in new and exciting ways for newcomers to the franchise.

The Pros: 

+A Hideo Kojima Game
+Melds the best from previous MGS titles into one
+Mother Base expanding is excellent and worth the time

The Cons: 

-Kiefer Sutherland's voice sounds like Kiefer Sutherland
-Many story details are tucked away in cassettes
-Can only save via checkpoint system

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

I have to admit, I wasn't one of the ones that appreciated last year's Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes fully. The paid 'demo' stigma that it had clouded my judgement, while I did play it and complete it I didn't respect what it was trying to show us. Metal Gear Solid V is an almost complete departure from what we know a Metal Gear Solid game to be.

Metal Gear Solid V The Phantom Pain

Gears of War Ultimate Edition [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

You never know what to expect when you revisit an older game; especially one that's almost a decade old. Many games don't tend to age well, either because of its aged graphics or dated mechanics. Suffice it to say, the original Gears of War finally gets the remake treatment 9 years later and I'm quite surprised. Not only by how well the game has held up after all these years but with how fun it was to revisit Marcus and shoot some Locust; all with a new coat of paint to put it over the top.

The Pros: 

+60 FPS multiplayer

+The Cole Train credit song is intact

+A slew of small but important improvements

+Previously PC exclusive maps and campaign levels are included

+New multiplayer progression system

The Cons: 

-The odd glitch and bugs

-Some purists might not like all the 'improvements' and changes in multiplayer

-Only multiplayer is 60FPS, not campaign.

 

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

Gears

Rare Replay [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Rare is one of those iconic developers and no matter your gaming preferences you've most likely played one, or numerous, of their titles in the past three decades. Rare Replay takes some of the best of their work and bunches them together in a fantastic game collection that is not only worth your money (only $30!) but a fun trip down nostalgia lane.

The Pros: 

+30 games for 30 bucks

+A great selection of Rare games included in the package

+Charming presentation and easy to use menu system

+Battletoads!

The Cons: 

-360 emulation for the 360 titles

-Not all of Rare's classics are included

-Some games haven't aged well

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

Her Story [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Sam Barlow's latest deconstruction of narrative is a game by necessity. It expertly leaves just enough of the story and mechanics to player imagination while capitalizing on the best that the adventure-genre has to offer. It uses familiar visual vocabulary without falling into the trappings of contemporary game design. Her Story manipulates time and space as deftly as the best works in any medium and never overstays it's welcome. It is a must-play for mystery fans, adventure game fans, FMV fans, or people just looking for something fresh.

The Pros: 

+Excellently integrated interface design
+Wonderful FMV acting
+A compelling mystery
+Short and sweet

The Cons: 

-The story can be intimidating to parse
-It can be easy to get lost
-There aren't many others like it
-Silent Hill: Shattered Memories wasn't a huge success

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
10

People of a certain age or fondness for game history are familiar with the text parser - adventure games were built around them in the early days. Being thrown into a world where all you had was a rudimentary text input interface and your imagination is what made adventure games so compelling.

Batman: Arkham Knight [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Arkham Knight feels like an intelligent evolution of a franchise that is probably one chapter too long (looking at you Origins). Being The Batman has never been as deep or as interesting, thanks to the best story line in the franchise history. Unfortunately, the over-extension of the franchise means that Rocksteady has had to clutter the gameplay a little too much to keep things continuously fresh for the Dark Knight and at the end of the day a great story is weighed down with the clutter of too many attempts to iterate on their classic gameplay and fighting mechanics.

The Pros: 

+The best Batman story to date. 
+The Batmobile is a blast and makes getting around the expansive game map a breeze. 
+Rocksteady has the balls to pull the trigger on a bunch of major story changes.
+Gotham has never looked sexier.

The Cons: 

-Constant additions to the fight mechanics make brawls a little cluttered. 
-Overuse of the "Bat Tank" ruins what would have otherwise been one of the best evolutions of the franchise.
-Bat Tank fights feel out of place and constantly grind the story to a hault.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

One of the biggest issues that I’ve had with the gaming experience, especially within the last few years, is the fact that very few developers are willing to take risks. Rocksteady, with their latest installment of the Batman/Arkham franchise, has just proven that they have some of the biggest balls in the industry to date.

Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario Bros. Edition [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

There's no doubt that Puzzle & Dragons is addictive, but there's also a lot of substance behind it. Sometimes that substance is over-bearing and intimidating, but underneath is a very polished, very satisfying character-driven puzzle game that I can safely say has earned it's place on my 3DS next to other classics like Pokemon Puzzle Challenge. Some people will get more mileage out of it than others, even between the two different versions included in this package, but it's perfect for pick-up-and-play sessions at any time of day for any skill level.

The Pros: 

+Excellent foundational puzzle mechanics
+A mountain of content that will keep you busy for ages
+Charming localization that has a lot of fun
+A great transposition of a mobile game onto a dedicated system

The Cons: 

-A lot of bells and whistles that can get in the way for people who just want puzzles
-An unadventurous use of the Mario license
-Some unappealing animations and graphic designs
-Numbers everywhere all the time. So many stats. So many things -Everything explodes in a flurry of colour and light. Rainbows have lost all meaning to me.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

Originally designed as a mobile game by GungHo, the Puzzle and Dragons franchise has dominated a huge portion of the market share for fans of puzzles and also fans of dragons in Japan. It's free-to-play model and RPG mechanics have secured its place on the phones of millions of people. But far too often we're reminded that mobile and console game design don't always work on the same wavelengths. Can a fresh coat of Mario-themed paint and a 2-games-in-1 deal make this retail release worth diving into?

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

It's not without its minor issues, but you'll continually be impressed either by the writing, voice acting, setting, combat, or freedom that you'll forget the trivial issues and immerse yourself in one of the most captivating games to date. There's going to have to be something amazing to release this year to dethrone The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt from Game of the Year 2015 status in my opinion.

The Pros: 

+Top notch writing and voice acting
+Visuals are absolutely stunning
+Side quests have meaning and are written incredibly well
+Hundreds of hours of gameplay
+Gwent is an amazing distraction and very addictive

The Cons: 

-Movement can feel stiff and awkward
-Random smaller bugs
-Gwent isn't purchasable in physical for

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
10

The Witcher 2 was my Game of the Year for 2012, so to say that I had very high expectations for The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, would be putting it mildly. I'm happy to report that not only have they lived up to expectations, but vastly succeeded them and improved on many facets from Geralt's previous outing. New hardware has released since the last time we played with Geralt, so needless to say, CD Projeckt Red has made great use from the new hardware and is pushing them to the limits on console.

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