Saturday, May 19, 2018

Grim Legends 3: The Dark City

Grim Legends 3: The Dark City
Platforms: Steam and Xbox One
Developer: Artifex Mundi

In Grim Legends 3 you play as Sylvia a member of a secret Order put in place to stop Monsters and guarding a powerful Incarceri Stone.She must gain her memory back which she lost some time ago on a mission, while trying to recover the stone from a evil Wraith named Koshmaar. She must travel to Lichtenheim with her leader , and try to recover the stone, and save the world.
Artifex Mundi just delivers another solid ending to a trilogy here. everything is just spot on from the music, to the art, and it is just loaded with puzzles. This time around they even make you have time limits and go mistake free to get your achievements. I know a lot of achievement hunters might not like this because Artifex Mundi is known for being a easy 1000 points or trophy, but this time around you can miss a lot of them on your first play thru. I don't mind this so much, it gives it more replay value. I only missed one on my go, and I'll go back and get it later.
I think these may be some of the best puzzles, and most challenging in a Artifex Mundi game to date. I really enjoyed that. I think this may be one of the games with a better art style as well. It really made me want to see a animated movie based on this title. I enjoyed really everything about this one. It is one I really do look forward to going back to again soon. The Pirates one is still my favorite , but this is certainly in my top 5. Only thing missing was a companion like you usually get in your Artifex adventures.

Pros: Beautiful artstyle
Mesmerizing music
Challenging puzzles
Fun Achievements
Great ending to a story

Cons: No Little Companion
Ended to soon

Overall: 7.6 One of the best hidden object games to date, Artifex Mundi really brings another great series to a end with beautiful art, and a well written story.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

oOo: Ascension:

oOo: Ascension:
Reviewed By: Carless Yen
Platform: Xbox One
Developer: : Kenny Creanor
Publisher: EM Studios

As gamers we are always looking for something new. Something that we really haven't seen before, and something to renew our love for gaming. As a gamer everyone knows what I'm talking about, or for anyone who plays games for the purpose of reviewing them. You play so many games it starts to all feel the same, and the repetition starts to sit in.Some times it can even make you think about taking a break from it. Then something comes along totally different. Something so unique, and you find yourself glued to it. You find yourself so immersed into it, and unable to step away from it. oOo: Ascension is that type of game. Everything about it is unique, even the menu. You start it up, and there is no writing at all in any of the menus. Just shapes to guide you. Feels really futuristic and alien. When I first started it, I kind of thought this is what it would be like to wander onto a alien ship while trapped on another planet, and have to try and figure out how to fly it away for your escape. It just feels really fresh. I always try to make a comparison when doing a review so I can say hey you liked so and so title this might be fore you. How ever with this it is really hard. I would say it is kind of a blend of "Spectre" meets "Marble Madness" but that comparison is so far out in left field. It is so far more detailed, and advanced then those two titles.
In Ascension your objective is to get your ship from point A to point B in a certain amount of time. As long as you finish it you can advance though, so the time thing is mainly for Achievement purposes or bragging rights. I can understand why they do this, because a lot of the time just finishing a level is an accomplishment. Ascension is a really challenging game, that requires pinpoint accuracy at times. The controls are spot on, it really always feels fair, even if you want to blame the game for your failure like we all like to do at times. Make sure you have a good controller and there is now sway in the analog stick, because perfection is really required in this game a lot of the time. If you like a good challenge you will really enjoy this title. That being said it might not be for everyone. I hate saying this when talking about a great game like this. I really do believe everyone should try it, and this game should see a lot of success ,but as always there is reality and it won't appeal to every one. You have those casual gamers that like a stress free game that they can relax and enjoy, and I don't think this is it. This game is for the more hard core gamers that sit down controller in hand, focused and feeling like they want to feel some Accomplishment today. To those gamers this really will get your adrenaline flowing.
There is 90 levels broke down into sections of 10. Each one introduces a new obstacle, while also mixing in the previous ones as well. The last level really brings it though, I have spent over a hour trying to beat the final level of a stage dying many of times. It almost feels like a boss at times. Its ok to die though you can just restart it, and there are achievements for doing so. One for even dying 1000 times which I probably had by Area 6. There are no checkpoints so it is a lot of doing the same level over , and over until you conquer it. Then you will probably revisit it later trying to improve your time. It can be a grind which I love. I love being challenged in games, and that feeling when you accomplish your task. Sort of like in Dark Souls when you finally defeat Ornstein and Smough on your own. It really delivers that Dark Souls feel without a lot of the rewards though. Might be one of my only complaints. High risk with little reward. Like in Dark Souls when you win you rewarded with a totally different looking area, or a weapon that feels special to you. With Ascension the area changes very little, and you really don't unlock anything new. I'm not a developer by any means, just a player but I feel would have been cool to unlock some different looking or least colored ships, and maybe the levels changed a little more to where it felt totally different. Don't get me wrong, and take this as a big negative, because it isn't. Ascension is a one of a kind game, and maybe with no question one of the best games I played this year, and in my opinion a top 5 puzzler of all times. It is just a small critique even the Witcher 3 and God Of War there are small things I think could make it a little bit better. I mention those, because I believe oOo: Ascension ranks right up there with those in the puzzler game genre. It is really one of the greats. I find it hard to believe at times, that it is Indie, and a new developer it feels so perfect ,and polished.
I really think everyone should try this game, if you like Puzzle games. Or maze type quests with obstacles. I feel this is one of the best games of the year, and should be mentioned in the same sentence with other Indie Game of the Years. I know when I pick my winners this year it will be in mind. So do yourself a favor and if you own a Xbox One come May 25th pick it up, and let me know what you think.

Pros: A real challenge
Unique idea, and menu layout
Beautiful bright neon colored levels
Fun retro sounding music
Fresh feeling gameplay

Cons: Little reward for difficult challenges, besides the feeling of accomplishment

Overall: 9.7 One of the best and most unique puzzlers of our time, without a doubt a must play for puzzling fans. Kenny Creanor's first game on the Xbox One is one I feel cements it's place in the history of the puzzling genre for years to come.

Monday, May 14, 2018

"Emily Wants To Play Too"

"Emily Wants To Play Too"
Platforms: Xbox Box One/PC/PS4
Developer: Shawn Hitchcock
Didn't know what to expect going into this one. Had played and loved the first installment, but this one looked so different. After playing it it was different really different, but in a good way. Even though it had the completely heart attack worthy jump scares of the first game, it mixes the rest of the levels up quite nicely. Some levels have you playing hide and seek with the dolls. Some levels have you playing freeze tag. Some just have you running for your life. It is really a nice blend of different and fun activities. It changes every hour, and there are clues to let you know what you are doing that hour.
I really enjoyed my time with this one, I think even a lot more than I did the first one.I don't think this one is as difficult as the first, and the achievements are fun and easy to get. I remember wanting to break things the last hour of the first game, this one I really didn't struggle as bad. Really freeze tag might have been the hardest, but even that one I did it within the first 20 tries.
There are new dolls, and they are just as or maybe even creepier then the originals. The originals are still there though. here is a list of them, and what they do. We will start with the originals, and post their changes.
Kiki the Porcelain doll with the black dress: She is pretty much the same. if you spot her and look at her over time she will disappear. If you can't find her or have your back to her she advances. If you don't find her in time she of course attacks you .
Mr. Tatters the clown has changed though. This time around he plays green light red light with you. You can move towards him to tag him to make him go away as long as the light is green. Once it turns red you can not move. If you move while red he instantly gets you.
Chester the ventriloquist dummy is by far the worst in my opinion. When he shows up you see him , and hear him screaming. You have to run. You can't let him catch you or he gets you. He always shows up at the worst time it seems, but he will give up chasing you over time.
Max the Mannequin is without question the easiest to take care of you just put your flashlight on him and he goes away. I don't think he maybe got me the whole game, but like on the final hour.
Weasel is a pain if you don't find his box. He is a Jack in the box that plays music, and you have to click it before it stops or he jumps out of it ,and runs you down. he is really fast and near impossible to get away from.
I can't remember the name but there is also a burned baby that walks around saying MaMa she won't come after you unless you are running. If you run she does to so if you take your time so does she.
And of Course Emily the leader she really doesn't show up in attack parts, mostly she is worst in the freeze tag segments, because she unfreezes the people you have already tagged. There are a few sections where you just have to find her hiding as well.
The game is really fair, and fun. There are only a few spots where it was impossible to escape. Like where Chester showed up during a red light segment, and I had to move. The first game really was a lot worse with that especially the last hour. I really do recommend this game to streamers, and horror fans. It is really a blast. It is one of those games that will take up a decent stream of 2 to 3 hours and your fans will enjoy seeing you jump. I really look forward to another one soon.
Pros: Loaded with scary and hilarious jump scares
Cool doll creations
Plenty of different play styles
Fun Achievements, and hidden objectives
New Creepy setting, and dolls
Cons: Just wish it was longer, nothing bad to say really.
Overall: 8.0 Hours of jump scares, and creepy fun. A must try for all horror game fans.