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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

Pikmin 3 [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Honestly, waiting 9 years for a sequel I just thought there would be more to Pikmin 3 in regards to new mechanics and features. Sure there are new Pikmin types and the WiiU GamePad gets it use (if you use that control scheme), but it’s still the same Pikmin game once again. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, as there’s nothing else out there quite like Pikmin, I just wish it felt newer since we had to wait this long. 

The Pros: 

+ Deep strategy elements when utilizing the WiiU GamePad

+ Multiple controls schemes and options to suit your preferred play method

+ Off-TV play support with WiiU GamePad

+ Challenging and rewarding boss fights

The Cons: 

- A 9 year wait and it’s still just Pikmin once again

- Only two new Pikmin types

- Short campaign with no co-op or online options

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

It’s been almost a full decade since we got to play a Pikmin game last. That’s quite a long wait for loyal Nintendo fans that have been clamoring for a sequel to the popular 2004 GameCube game. It was originally teased a few years back about being released on the Wii, but with the WiiU releasing, development was pushed back to launch on the new hardware instead. Now the wait is finally over, but has the long wait finally been worth it?

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.

[Review] WWE 13 - One of the Worst Games in Recent Memory.

Overall Feeling: 

The fact this game was released is astounding. Any positive points from WWE Attitude Mode or player creation are fully eclipsed by an absurd number of bugs and poor game design.

The Pros: 

+ Attitude Era Nostalgia Bomb.

+ Deep and impressive player content creation tools. 

The Cons: 

- Frequent game crashes.

- Unpolished and riddled with glitches and bugs.

- Online servers keep erasing data.

- 3GB save file on PS3 makes PS+ Cloud storage useless.

- Broken Universe mode design.

- Pay-Per-View matches have no purpose.

- Terrible game audio issues.

- David Otunga's Music. 

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
3

THQ's latest installment of their long lived World Wrestling Entertainment licence hit the shelves on October 30th 2012. While many publications, blog and fans rushed to get their reviews of WWE 13 up on day one, I waited. Patiently.  Now that we’re over a month since its release, I'm rather glad I sat on this and really took the time to explore this game. 

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

 

Xenoblade Chronicles [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Xenoblade has some big shoes to fill, and it does a fair enough job keeping pace with its popular predecessors. While some elements seemed a little too one-dimensional for me, overall it has some really interesting gameplay concepts and a fairly solid battle flow. The ways in which it attempts to incorporate MMO gameplay, however, are what left me feeling a little disenchanted with the title.

The Pros: 

+ Great combat use of "Arts"

+ For Wii-level, has great visuals

+ Has a pretty great storyline 

+ MMO-style fetch quests not tedious at all

The Cons: 

- Characters are very flat and cliché

- Map is a little hard to navigate sometimes around expansive areas

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
7

Xenoblade , as a successor to the venerable series for the Playstation 1 and 2, is a game that does not give the impression at all of trying to live up to its predecessors. Monolith did a commendable job at building an RPG that incorporates the series' popular themes while letting it stand on its own as a new title. I will have to admit that going into writing this review took a lot of reflection and a sizeable attempt to remain objective, and in the end the conclusion was reached that this really is a pretty great game.

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.

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