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Top 10 Most Overlooked Games of 2009: The Hidden Gems

Little King’s Story

It happens every year. Hundreds of games are released, and only a handful go on to be blockbusters. There are numerous reasons that contribute to games being overlooked; everything from little to no marketing budgets, to coming out on the same day as a much bigger title. However, as we all should know, the size of a game’s marketing budget doesn’t directly correspond to the quality of the game, which means that every year there are good games out there that go unplayed. Here are some of this year’s best: [Continue Reading]

MX vs. ATV Reflex Review: Hitting The Dirt

MX vs. ATV Reflex

For over a decade, Rainbow Studios have been pumping off road racing games such as “Motocross Madness” for the PC almost annually, and the popularity of the franchise became so big that spin-offs were made such as “Monster Truck Madness” series. Fast forward to today and Rainbow Studios is still around with their latest entry into their current offroad series “MX vs. ATV,” which is a somewhat misleading title, as you also drive trucks and sports buggys in the games. “MX vs. ATV Reflex” is the third in the series, but does it break new ground for the off road genre or is it more of the same? [Continue Reading]

Stop Stress: A Day of Fury Review: Walk A Mile In Jack’s Shoes

Stop Stress: A Day of Fury

This console generation’s downloadable games were supposed usher in a whole new level of variety for gamers and developers alike. While Sony’s PSN and Microsoft’s Xbox Live Arcade have dabbled in introducing indie games to the larger gaming market, it’s becoming overwhelmingly apparent that, outside of XBLA’s dedicated indie games section, Nintendo’s WiiWare is the best way to go to discover new developers, and check out their latest work. Abylight is one of those young developers that has been using WiiWare to showcase their games, the latest of which is the ambitiously titled “Stop Stress: A Day of Fury.” [Continue Reading]

Alien vs Predator Story Trailer Bleeds Awesome

Alien vs Predator

The “Alien vs. Predator” games have done an amazing job of escaping my overall gaming conscious. However, this February, all that is about to change. Check out the trailer below to find out why; even though it highlights the game’s story, the multiplayer is going to be one of the standout features for the game. It wasn’t the alien that did it for me. It wasn’t the multiplayer that did it for me. It was playing as the alien… but more on that later. [Continue Reading]

Dev Box Interview: Abylight Studios’ Co-Founder Alberto González

Dev

It usually takes a small army to create the video games that we play, and, most of the time, all of the focus gets put on the game itself, and not on the people that came together to make it. Our Dev Box interview series takes a look at some of the unsung heroes that have committed their lives to entertaining all of us. In this week’s expanded Dev Box we are letting Abylight Studios’ Co-Founder and Design Director Alberto González provide us some insight into who he is as a gamer, and how he ended up working in the game’s industry.

Name: Alberto González
Title: Abylight co-founder and design manager
Company: Abylight Studios
Job Description: My job usually involves game conception, design and supervision. I’m also in charge of all sound related works, except for music composition which has been handled by another guy in our latest games.
First title worked on: “Hostages” for 8 bit computers
Most recent title worked on: “Stop Stress: A Day of Fury” (WiiWare)

What game has most influenced you, and why? [Continue Reading]

Dark Void Zero Trailer Surprises With Retro Jetpacks

Dark Void Zero

It’s funny, almost every game that comes out nowadays makes me think, “what would that be like 8-bit?” Well, once again, Capcom has answered that question for me by announcing “Dark Void Zero” for the Nintendo DSi. A new title, with a surprisingly deep history behind it, “Dark Void Zero” is a 2D side scroller that puts a whole different spin on the “Dark Void” universe. Check out the trailer, and see for yourself: [Continue Reading]

God of War Collection Review: Revisiting Old Times

God of War Collection

While there are a small handful of PlayStation 2 games still being released every few weeks, the console’s lifecycle is finally coming to a dwindling end. After nine years, and thousands of games, in the end there was only one franchise that stood out as Sony’s best first party offering for the platform, “God of War.” Coming along only within the last few years of the PS2’s life, Kratos’ epic first two games pushed the limits of what could be done in a video game, while presenting some of the most satisfying gameplay ever, making his two titles absolute must-haves for anyone that considered themselves a gamer. It has only been two and a half years since “God of War 2” was released, and we are only months away from “God of War 3” but Sony has gone and released yet another “G.o.W.” product that’s now a must-have for every PS3 owner in the “God of War Collection.” [Continue Reading]

Mega Man 10 Story Revealed In Latest Trailer

Mega Man 10

If “Mega Man 9″ wasn’t a big enough fan service, “Mega Man 10″ is looking like it’s going to be even more epic. The first trailer for the upcoming retro styled has been released by Capcom, and we get our first look at Roboenza, the virus that is infecting the robots of the world and making them turn on humanity. (Who knew robots could get sick?) It’s Mega Man and Proto Man to the rescue in the upcoming WiiWare, XBLA, and PSN game that should be out early next year. [Continue Reading]

Split/Second’s Gameplay Trailer Crashes … Then Explodes

Split/Second

What would happen if “Burnout” and “Stuntman” had a love child? Why, it would produce a racing game from Disney, of course. The trailer for “Split/Second” seems like it is the perfect blend of racing and action that should be able to do what “Stuntman” wasn’t able to accomplish – create something worth playing. Who would have thought that Disney would be behind something that looks as good as this? It’s a good thing that Blackrock Studio is behind it – that’s the same group that brought us “Pure,” which makes me feel a little bit better. “Split/Second” looks like a worthy follow up. [Continue Reading]

Top Ten Most Disappointing Games Of 2009

2009 is almost gone, and, looking back, there has been numerous key moments in the gaming industry: Capcom has managed to revive the fighting genre single handily with “Street Fighter 4.” The Wii has been receiving titles that are actually marketed towards gamers with doubledigit ages. And Star Wars fans have been drooling at the many developer walkthrough videos for the upcoming Star Wars MMO by Bioware. To say the least, in term of gaming, things are looking good.

With that being said, this doesn’t necessary the gaming industry did a perfect job this year. While sale records have been broken, there have been a few games released that received a ton of hype but failed to fufill their promises. The rules for this year’s list remain the same as last year: Any game that I was personally hyped about and didn’t meet my expectations is a candidate for this list. Because I only have a Wii, 360, and my PC, don’t expect anything from the handheld consoles or the Playstation 3.

10. Madworld
MadWorld

I know it’s very strange to label “Madworld” as disappointing game when I’ve given the game a favorable review, there’s a logically reason behind this.

“Madworld” was developed by Platinum Games, but they didn’t always go by that name. A few years ago, they were called Clover Studios and worked under Capcom, many artistically unique games were released by them, such as “Okami” and “Vietiful Joe.” It was one of their games in particular that had me hyped about “Madworld,” “God Hand.”

“God Hand” was a visually poor beat’em up that didn’t receive great reviews. It was released on the Playstation 2, and it was the last game created under the Clover Studios name. While the mainstream public didn’t bite, those of us who wanted to challenge ourselves and enjoyed punching people in the face got one hell of a game. I won’t list the features, but you can search on Youtube to see how the game works. It might be a good idea to do so, and then compare it to videos of “Madworld.” You might see a resemeblence.

And this is where the disappointment comes in. I liked “God Hand” and when I saw “Madworld,” I was hoping for a next-gen upgrade to the underrated game. Instead what we received was a dumbed down version of it. “Madworld” is still a great game, and you should try it if you haven’t done so, but considering this game from the same guys who made “God Hand,” I was disappointed with this one. [Continue Reading]

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