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Reviews

Call of Duty: Black Ops - Escalation [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Escalation feels like a map pack. It’s nothing that stands out and yells “Hey you, yeah you with the face. Come play me.” Fans of the franchise will enjoy the maps, but if you’re not a hardcore Call of Duty player you might want to think twice when it comes to buying it.

The Pros: 

+ Graphically the map pack is beautiful.
+ Call of the Dead is a welcome addition to the zombie scene.
+ Voice acting in the game was spot on with the addition of Hollywood talent.
+ The audio score provides great detail to the surrounding environment.

The Cons: 

- The maps are pretty generic and are underutilized.
- Overall it felt as if it was rushed out to make bank.
- Gaming depth isn’t there for non-hardcore players.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
7

We are now into Treyarch’s second map pack for Call of Duty: Black Ops. The DLC was made available yesterday exclusively for the Xbox 360 thanks Activision being run by Satan... Can I even say that? I don’t want to upset the Dark Lord.

WWE All Stars BrawlStick [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

The WWE All Stars BrawlStick from Mad Catz may not allow gamers to customize their button layouts or insert new faceplates, but what it does offer is a well-rounded arcade stick that is comfortable and highly responsive.  Don’t let the obvious product tie-in fool you into thinking the BrawlStick is only good when playing WWE All Stars. While playing THQ’s new arcade wrestling game with the BrawlStick is fun and responsive, the BrawlStick manages to be as good with faster paced games like Mortal Kombat.  For the gamers out there looking for an arcade stick that’s affordable and shows your WWE pride, the BrawlStick is definitely the way to go.

The Pros: 

+ The price point is terrific given the build and overall quality of the arcade stick.
+ Both the joystick and the buttons feel really responsive and are perfect to smash upon during intense fights.
+ The WWE art featured on the stick looks good and is tastefully done.
+ Thankfully the USB chord for the BrawlStick is long so it’s easy to sit at a nice distance away from the TV/console.

The Cons: 

- I would’ve liked if there was a bit more spacing in between the buttons.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
10

A lot of you out there know by now that I’m a huge arcade gamer.  Not only do I love arcade style video games like the Burnout franchise, but I also love arcade gaming as a whole. A lot of my early years gaming were spent at local arcades around the Chicago land area and I guess playing games like Terminator 2, Virtua Fighter and Revolution X (yes, I will admit to playing that and loving the hell out of it) has influenced my gaming sensibilities today.

Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes HD [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes HD may seem like it could be a kid centric game with its lush visuals that includes elves, fairies and other such fantastical creatures, but the game is about as hardcore as you can get once you get into the strategy laden battle that it offers.  With a system that is easy to get a grasp of, Clash of Heroes HD is a simply an addicting game that got exceedingly better the more I played and the more I caught on to learning proper battle formations and received stat upgrades.  If you’re in need of a good strategy action game that often has a pace that is simply nail biting then Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes HD is definitely worth the investment.

The Pros: 

+ I was in near constant awe at the visuals and designs dished out in the game.
+ There may not be prominent movement during certain cutscenes, but the animation during battle scenarios is ridiculously good.
+ The single-player campaign may start off a bit slow, but it does pick up a lot after the first hour and thankfully there’s no grinding in order to progress or to become a suitable opponent to enemies.
+ The online modes and co-op play offer another addicting quality to the game.

The Cons: 

-    The enemy A.I. can sometimes come across as being too damn smart during certain battle scenarios.
-    Occasional loading screens may be annoying to those who want to get into battle A.S.A.P.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

When it comes to video games I tend to be the type of gamer who likes brute force or a nice amount of flash.  That statement may totally make me sound like I’m a member of the dudebro nation that has a poster of Marcus Fenix on their wall next to my Budweiser neon sign, but for every Ico or Killer 7 I just tend to like action games where I really don’t need to come up with an immediate strategy in order to win and can simply press the R1 or R2 button multiple times and kill a crapload of aliens or warlords in the process.  But something interesting has happened: I’ve found a strat

Portal 2 [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Portal 2 is like reliving your first kiss or watching a pig fly for the first time. It’s a gaming experience you would tell your kids about. Surpassing that of the original, Portal 2 delivers the perfect mix of puzzle solving gameplay, with a soundtrack I want to burn to a CD... people still do that right? The difficulty progression is set at the perfect rate, however the replay value might be missing.

The Pros: 

+ Co-op gameplay adds its own unique story and characters for players.

+ The voice acting is the best I’ve heard in a very long time.

+ New elements such as the Propulsion and Repulsion Gels, provide great new dynamics

+ The charm of Portal: Still Alive is maintained and not discarded.

The Cons: 

- The replay value could be a hit or miss depending on Valves plans for DLC.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

The history of sequels has shown us that sometimes it’s best to stay with the original. This can be taken even further when you look at games. Portal: Still Alive was a shining star in a sky filled with clouds and video game pollution. As a game that was released in the Orange Box, it wasn’t a standalone title.  Where am I going with this? Look at it like this, if Portal was a movie, it would have been straight to DVD. Garnering so much success a blockbuster sequel was made. For Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Steam users this head turning experience is called Portal 2.

Pokemon Black/White [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Pokémon Black and White are superb additions to the Pokémon franchise that bring upgrades to every major game play system, enhanced graphics and 150 brand-new Pokemon to catch and train. Unfortunately, it still has the exact same basic premise as every other Pokemon game leaving you with the feeling that you've done all this before.

The Pros: 

+150 new Pokemon to the series, bringing the grand total up to 649.

+All 649 have had their graphics redone and actually animated for once.

+The two new battle types create entirely different party dynamics new to the series thanks to the greater emphasis on party position and order.

+Plus, the story of Team Plasma trying to stop the "constant abuse" that Pokemon are put through by battling is more mature and interesting than any previous Pokemon game.

The Cons: 

-It's still the same ole Pokemon. Collect your starter Pokemon, explore the world and defeat the eight gym leaders to become the very best! There is nothing new to be found in the basic, underlying premise.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
7

Pokémon is an odd game to review. If you were to look at it in a vacuum, you'd find a surprisingly large world to explore that is full of colourful characters, interesting creatures and a near endless supply of things to do. All of this tied around a battle system that is painfully easy to grasp but has an incredible amount of depth to it once you really start to dig in.

Full House Poker [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Full House Poker is not only a great successor to Microsoft's previous experiment in social gaming, 1 vs. 100, but winds up being one of the best poker games out there. The added features like the ability to stare down opponents, modify the behavior of calls/raises, and a presistant levelling system take the classic game of poker and meld it into something entirely new.

The Pros: 

+Brand new social gaming experience for you and your friends

+One of the best poker games out there, bar-none.

+Persistant levelling system and rewards

The Cons: 

-Unfortunately, unlike the previous installment (1 vs. 100) this one isn't free... Which is really the only 'downside'.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

Two years ago Microsoft/Xbox unveiled one of the greatest gaming experiences in history. It was a community-based event held online in the form of a trivia game called 1 vs. 100. The idea was simple: get a bunch of gamers together online to enjoy a gaming session with a couple thousand of their peers, have a good time and potentially earn themselves some real prizes. It was rather important leap in gaming because of the scope and ambition of the project; more importantly though it was a whole hell of a lot of fun.

Marshall Headphones Deliver Big Sound, Style and Comfort. [S#!T YOU WANT]

Overall Feeling: 

Some of the Best Portable Headphones that can hold up to our everyday torture.

The Pros: 

+ Sexy simplistic style (with or without you attached)

+ Great sound, especially when cranked just like Marshall amps should be

+ Amazing price

+ Surprisingly little volume leakage (transit Dj's need not apply)

The Cons: 

- "On-ear" design can cause ear fatigue after extended use.

- Low input volumes cause the sound to flatten out.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

The number of headphones I have gone through in my years riding transit is ridiculous. In fact, it's a bit embarrassing. Weather it's ear buds, the overpriced studio headphones, or the Bose I saved up for (that broke in three weeks), Any headphone purchases I have made in recent years has had an element of anxiety attached to it.

Torchlight [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

Torchlight is an almost perfect port of the original PC version that will consume a mass quantity of time, hacking and slashing your way through a bottomless pit of dungeons.

The Pros: 

+Easy pick up and play control scheme

+Hours of endless dungeon exploring and looting galore

+Beautiful bright color dungeons filled with deadly menagerie of creatures

The Cons: 

-Big battles can lead to an occasional slow gameplay on screen

-Omission of co-op play

-Ho-hum story

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
9

When Torchlight was released back in 2009, the game wasn't exactly breaking new ground within the hack-and-slash RPG genre but it made up for it big time with its simplistic, addictive and fun formula. This is an RPG in its simplest and purest form with lots of loot to obtain and leveling of your character, while slaying a vast array of dungeon dwellers.

PlayStation Move Sharp Shooter [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

The PlayStation Move Sharp Shooter may not completely change the way we play games with the PS Move, but the device is a nice addition for those who like to play games with Sony’s motion controller.  While I may not have had the definitive experience when using the Sharp Shooter when playing Kllzone 3, Sony’s new peripheral isn’t just a cheap gimmick and actually has a lot of potential if the software out there is engaging.  With a reasonable price ($39), there isn’t a huge barrier of entry for the Sharp Shooter aside from the amount of worthy action centric PlayStation Move games currently available on the market.  If the amount of thrilling games increase, then the Sharp Shooter is definitely something you may want to look into if you’re an avid lover of motion gaming or want to recreate the vibe of playing arcade lightgun games.

The Pros: 

+ The design of the Sharp Shooter is brilliant and doesn’t feel like a cheap plastic shell.
+ There’s a nice weight to the gun, especially once the PlayStation Move and Nav Con are inserted.
+ Holding the gun and using the Nav Con feels entirely comfortable.
+ Using the Sharp Shooter for games like Time Crisis: Razing Storm or Dead Space: Extraction is really fun.

The Cons: 

- The Square and Triangle buttons are a bit small, at least for my massive fingers.
- When used with Killzone 3, I really didn’t find things to be amazing.
- I wish the secondary fire trigger had more of a click to it or more resistance, if only to prevent accidental firings during certain occasions.

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

A lot of things have changed over the years as we play games and the industry continues to evolve.  The games we play get bigger, better, more pleasing from a visual perspective and the way we play games has changed as well.  If you told anyone during the heyday of the PS2 era that one day we would have three different consoles that would all support motion gaming in various forms, I think someone would tell you to stop smoking whatever it was you decided to take a puff of.  But here we are, in the bright and always optimistic (ok, sometimes optimistic) year of 2011 and the v

Bulletstorm [Review]

Overall Feeling: 

While lacking a few features, the game campaign alone makes this game worth everything it costs.

The Pros: 

+ Skillshot system is awesome

+ great dialogue between characters

+ solid voice acting

+engaging story.

The Cons: 

-lack of multiplayer options

-game froze briefly on the PC

ShogunGamer.com Rating : 
8

I've never played a game that so encouraged shooting people in the balls. Bulletstorm not only encourages it, but rewards it. In fact, some of the hardest shots in the game require some serious punishment to the 'funzone.' A good thirty minutes of my time was spent with the sniper rifle, guiding bullets into testicles. The AI made sure it was hard too, because nutshots were more protected against than having their head blown off. Despite all that, Bulletstorm happens to be one of the highest quality FPS games to come out in the recent set of releases.

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