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3DS

Fantasy Life [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Level-5 has built a fairly typical cutesy RPG with a fun new twist - find your calling and take up a job, buy and decorate (and redecorate) your house and create your own goods-based trading system with your friends as you progress through an unfortunately non-interactive story with a talking butterfly by your side. The very same-y feeling of the more standard inclusions in this game are contrasted against what happens to be an excellent gameplay system where you can, if you so choose, beat the bad guy and save the world as a powerful Paladin or a humble Cook.  These aspects create a surprisingly addictive yet easy to put down portable RPG.

The Pros: 

+Surprisingly fun and addictive blue-collar job system
+No job limitations - pick up as many as you want
+Classically adorable Level 5 design
+Online multiplayer encourages turning your craft into an entrepreneurship
+Very detailed character customization when making your avatar

The Cons: 

-Story is very typical dialogue is fluffy
-Combat classes pointless at start of game
-Story missions almost non-interactive

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

Over the years, Level-5 has sat on the throne for a very niche concept - build an otherwise typical game and throw in just the right gimmick or twist to make you never want to put your controller down. From Dark Cloud 2's crafting system to Professor Layton's ...Layton-ness, to building a neat RPG concept and then having Studio-freaking-Ghibli animate your cutscenes, this studio has been aces at developing fun and unique games for all audiences.  Once in a while, a portion of the game has to suffer for innovation.

Super Smash Bros. 3DS [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Smash Bros. 3DS may not even ATTEMPT a reinvention of the wheel with the latest iteration of the fan-favourite... but it at least devotes a noticable amount of effort into shining everything up nice and pretty like for the 3DS debut of the ridiculously hype cross-brand fighter. That being said, avoid the 3D feature at all costs.

The Pros: 

+Massive cross-brand character roster
+Solid Play Controls
+Full featured game, with plenty of new modes/items
+Fantastic attention to detail

The Cons: 

-Insanely obnoxious 3D
-Inherent feel of missing something, due to the time-gap with the Wii U version
-Poor platform choice for a 'serious' fighter

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
7

Luigi's Mansion 2: Dark Moon

Overall Feeling: 

Luigi’s Mansion 2: Dark Moon is a “Summer Blockbuster” of a video game. While you don’t walk away with anything of substance or any real lasting effect from the game, the enjoyment you get out of it is worth the cost of admission. As long as you’re not expecting deep game play, character development, or a compelling story-line, you’re sure to be happy with this particular 3DS purchase.

The Pros: 

+Fun and interesting game play

+Unique combat mechanic that never really gets old

+Inventive boss battles beyond the “hit me three times in the weak-spot” tedium

The Cons: 

-3D doesn’t really add anything to the game

-Some progression of Luigi would have been nice (he’s still terrified of his own shadow after clearing multiple mansions?)

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

Luigi has been a character that’s lived in his brother, Mario’s shadow for nearly three decades now. Sure, he’s had the odd outing of his own, most notably Mario’s Missing and Luigi’s Mansion, but at the top of this year Shigeru Miyamoto promised us this would be Luigi’s year. The focus, for once, is on the perpetual “player 2” this year, and it begins with a sequel to what is (easily) the best game that Luigi has ever stared in: Luigi’s Mansion.

Paper Mario: Sticker Star [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

The sticker gimmick seems to run dry pretty quickly in this not-RPG follow up in the Paper Mario universe; however, it does have its good points, and would be a worthwhile purchase if not for its full-release $44.99 price tag.

The Pros: 

+Sticker gimmick is cool when using it to solve puzzles

+Graphically very nice-looking

The Cons: 

-Touch screen is very under-used

-3D gets boring for the style

-Sticker gimmick gets very old quickly for everything except puzzles

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
6

Paper Mario: Sticker Star for the 3DS is, in two words, vastly underwhelming. The core concept, which might have been very cool, was jumbled and confused in spite of its simplicity: it's not an RPG, but it retains a turn-based battle system; it's a platformer with a turn-based battle system, but it's also a puzzle-solving adventure game at its core; you paste stickers on everything but you don't even use the touch screen to do so, instead relying on the analog stick or D-pad.

Code of Princess [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Code of Princess tries very hard to recapture the spirit and charm of its spiritual predecessor, Guardian Heroes, but ultimately fails to provide the same fast-paced, tight experience that it tries to emulate. There are rumblings of a greater game underneath the sluggish, frustrating combat that Code of Princess provides, but these never quite resonate, and remain buried under poor design choices.

The Pros: 

+ Fun, quirky characters

+ Robust combat system with a lot of room for personalized combos

The Cons: 

- Action feels sluggish and unrewarding

- Grinding is necessary to come close to scratching the game’s harder encounters

- Visuals are stunning up close, but drop in quality drastically when more than three enemies appear on-screen

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
4

A legacy is a double-edged sword. For a game with a great legacy, there’s a good chance that gamers will be into your concept based solely on a name drop. Conversely, if your game isn’t a worthy successor to a beloved classic, chances are it’ll get more flak than a bomber flying over France circa WWII.

Mario Tennis Open [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Mario Tennis Open is one of those things that might be a hard sell to your friends, but for those that give it the chance, it will utterly consume you. The game play is some simple and addictive that it’s easy to lose days completing the game’s tournaments and mini-game challenges under the guise of short form gaming that continually has you bargaining for ‘just one more round’.  

The Pros: 

+Simple, addictive gaming.

+The bright, colourful cast of Mario characters that we’ve all come to know and love.

+Plenty of options for modifying your character, unlockables to collect/buy and challenges to pit yourself against.

The Cons: 

-The traditional character-specific ‘super shots’ have been removed in favour of reaction-based skill-shots.

-3D really doesn’t add much, and its generally better kept to off (if you want to make a real go of things in the later levels). 

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

 

Kid Icarus: Uprising [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

If someone had once asked me what franchise I’d like to see return (even if you were to go as specific as asking for Nintendo only) Kid Icarus is not a title I would have picked. It is not something I have a personal affinity for, but having played the newest iteration of the franchise, I’m glad that there were enough people out there crying for more Pit-centric action that this game got made. 

The Pros: 

+The control scheme works!

+There is a lot of fun to be had, both in the sky and on land.

+The voice acting is awesome, Pit is legitimately entertaining.

+There are so many additional features to the game that it's hard to even name them all.  

The Cons: 

-The multiplayer is lacking the polish of the single-player.

-The AR card integration feels like little more than a cash-grab.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

Honestly, Kid Icarus: Uprising wasn’t a title that I would have considered “on my radar” until about two weeks ago at GDC when I finally spent some time with it. The idea of another re-hash (as epic as that first teaser trailer at E3 was) didn’t really get its hooks into me from the jump. It took actually going hands-on with the completed version of the game to see why fans were excited to see a return to this ancient franchise that would have been all-but forgotten if not for Pit’s return in Smash Brothers.

Mario Kart 7 [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Mario Kart 7 is a lot more Mario Kart Wii and a whole lot less Mario Kart DS then I was hoping. The game has been watered down again to ensure that there is almost no challenge what-so-ever in winning ever single race in the game. The worst (best?) example of which is the fact that the game now plays 'clean-up,' removing banana peels left on the track after a single lap, removing the the age-old 'problem' of hitting your own traps. 

The Pros: 

+The addition of kart building means having a truly unique kart

The Cons: 

-The game is incredibly dumbed-down

-There is virtually no challenge to Mario Kart

-Tons of shoehorned features like 'The Lucky 7' and 'motion controlled first-person mode'

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
4

 

Nintendo has been on a roll with their Holiday line-up. Mario 3D Land was an awesome iteration of the series on the Nintendo 3DS that brought together all the best parts of the series into one game. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is the first true successor to the lofty throne of Ocarina of Time, and one of the best of the series long and tenured history. That’s why when Mario Kart 7 came across my desk I, as a major competitive fan of the series, got incredibly excited. It’s unfortunate however, that the game is as lazy as its title.

Super Mario 3D Land [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

The overall feel of Super Mario 3D Land is that of a "best of title." It combines the best elements of games from the franchise's history including Super Mario 64, Super Mario Bros. 3, The New Super Mario Bros. and others, and then focuses them all in a completely new adventure to take advantage of Nintendo's new hardware in the 3DS.

The Pros: 

+Classic Mario platforming action refined and polished to near perfection.

+The addition of the Tanooki suit, and Tanooki tails to characters throughout the game, give the game a ridiculous amount of adorable.

+The 3D features of the 3DS are utilized intelligently and don't feel shoe-horned in.

+Quite possibly the best example of a reason to own a 3DS this holiday season.

The Cons: 

-There should have been some multiplayer options, co-operative or competitive. 

-There are segements in the game that require the use of 3D, so those that want to play the game but don't like 3D are out of luck.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

With each new piece of Hardware offered by Nintendo, there are a few titles that you can be guaranteed will be making an appearance. Chief among those would be Mario. It's been a while since we watched the launch of the Nintendo 3DS come and go, but we finally have our 'staple series' making its debut on the system.

Tetris Axis [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Quite easily the worst port of the classic puzzle epic ever made. The 3D features of the game make no sense for a 2D puzzle game, and can hinder the over-all experience. The ARG features seem like they are nothing more than a technical demonstration of the 3DS hardware, and are pretty much unplayable. 

The Pros: 

+It's Tetris

The Cons: 

-The ARG implimentation is annoying at best and destructive at worst.

-3D doesn't really add anything.

-The game ignores the analog stick

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
3

In the grand debate on which is the greatest video game of all time, I've always put forward Tetris. It is gaming in its purist form, and better than that it's become modular. Tetris has adapted and evolved over the years to reinvent itself for each new generation, taking advantage of the hardware provided and supplying the same addictive qualities that it had since the start. It is puzzle-gaming at its finest and most pure... That's why Tetris Axis is potentially the most disappointing game that I've played this year.

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