Showing posts from 2018

[Review] Devious Dungeon - Nintendo Switch

Devious Dungeon is the latest addition to the Nintendo Switch eShop library from Ratalaika Games. They've been known for their very prolific contributions to the ever-expanding library of quality of indie games for the platform, and Devious Dungeon is a fun 2D, pixel art rogue-like platforming dungeon crawler with light RPG elements.

In Devious Dungeon, you will fight your way through randomly generated levels, smashing stuff for coins, killing monsters for experience and coins, all the while trying to find the key that unlocks the portal to the next dungeon. After collecting enough experience, you will level up, and be given the choice between increasing one of three stats- strength for damage, dexterity for critical hits, and vitality for HP. Every three levels, and in between failures, you'll be given the option to use your coin to buy better weapons, armor, and accessories. Each of these is an incremental improvement over your last piece of gear, and to unlock the next mo…

[Review] The Long Reach - Nintendo Switch

The Long Reach for Nintendo Switch is a 2D, point and click adventure horror game with loads of atmosphere, but some frustrating quirks.

We are introduced into a world where a research project has gone horribly awry, and awaken as an amnesiac guinea pig that quickly discovers the horrors that have commenced while unconscious. This sentence could have been written to introduce a great many number of horror games, but outside of this very familiar premise, The Long Reach strays more towards building an atmosphere of unease and sanity-doubting occurrences than relying on cheap jump scares. There is still blood, bodies, and a homicidal maniac on the run, but The Long Reach leans much more heavily on finding items that you will need to solve the game's puzzles.
To avoid spoilers, I'll only be talking about one of the first pseudo-puzzles that you'll run across, and how the game's quirks play into that.
In your first encounter with the psycopathic maniac, you will need to r…

Weekly Roundup - April 8th, 2018

Time for another weekly round up and update. I've been busy planning new content for the YouTube channel (Soda's Fountain Arcade), including accessory reviews, my thoughts and hopes for Smash Bros. For Nintendo Switch, a first impressions vid, and a channel introduction video. I just recorded a guest spot on a podcast, and have joined The Gaming Boulevard to write reviews. 
Lode Runner Legacy at Gaming Boulevard Castle of Heart at The Switch Effect Hollow Metropolis Lux Obscura Tesla vs. Lovecraft

[Review] Hollow - Nintendo Switch

Hollow for Nintendo Switch is first person survival horror title with too much horror in the wrong aspects, and not enough where it counts. While it is understandable that some sacrifices had to be made to make the game playable on the Nintendo Switch's somewhat limited hardware when compared to the PC release, this doesn't go very far when you consider how well companies have done on the Nintendo Switch with more demanding games and richer storylines. This actually ended up being a bit of a painful experience for me because it has been one of my most anticipated games for the platform since it was announced, and I even considered that I might be a little more harsh based on that disappointment, but many of my complaints have been echoed elsewhere.

To start off, Hollow throws us into the world of Shakhter-One, a mining vessel that you're on for forgotten reasons with a protagonist that isn't very relatable. You board the ship and discover that it is apparently abandon…

[Review] Metropolis: Lux Obscura - Nintendo Switch

Metropolis Lux Obscura for Nintendo Switch is a mashup of visual novel style games with an interesting gray scale comic book style reminiscent of Sin City, matched up with a match three puzzle game for combat. It's an interesting idea for a game, and the core game itself is well executed...for the most part.

However, the most interesting content can be found in the gory violence found in the story, and the full-on nudity and other sexual situations on display. The premise is that you are a falsely accused cog in an organized crime family, and you're just getting out of jail for the murder of a man that was sleeping with your ex. Your goal in the game is to track down the real killer, and you take on jobs along the way to earn money and find clues. You reluctantly accept the jobs given to you by the local mob boss, and of course you end up in way over head. This type of gritty story telling full of adult themes is a strong indicator that we are dealing with a new Nintendo when…

[Review] Tesla vs. Lovecraft - Nintendo Switch

Over the last few months, 10tons has made a concerted effort to bring most of their games over to the Nintendo Switch. While not all of their games are for everyone, it is quite the solid mini library of games, and this is no different with their latest release, Tesla vs. Lovecraft for Nintendo Switch.  The only downside to this is that now we have to wait for them to develop a new game before getting to play such well-crafted games that are optimized well for the hardware.

Tesla vs. Lovecraft is another intense and extremely fun twin stick shooter from the same developers that brought us Crimsonland, Jydge, and Time Recoil. The premise here is that you play as Nikola Tesla in a battle to the death against H.P. Lovecraft's ancient and powerful old ones and their minions of the Cthulu mythos. Each location you visit will have some relationship to both real life and fictional locations related to each historical figure, and you will make your way across three planes of existence. I…

[Review] Dragon Sinker - Nintendo Switch

Have you been needing a simple RPG with pixel-art to satisfy your itch for an old-school style adventure? Look no further than KEMCO and Exe Create Inc.'s latest offering, Dragon Sinker for Nintendo Switch. I've previously covered their previous RPG offerings for the Nintendo Switch, Antiquia Lost and Revenant Saga. Dragon Sinker has quickly become my favorite of these three.

When I play a role playing game, the thing that I love most about them is the sense of working my way through an engaging story while customizing my interesting, and hopefully, relatable characters. I will often overlook gameplay mechanics that I don't enjoy for the sake of completing the story. Thankfully, I enjoy the streamlined gameplay mechanics present in Dragon Sinker. They are incredibly simple, but warmly familiar. The most innovative aspect of the game is the ability to swap between different parties during battle. Each party will be led by a different hero, and this is the only person in ea…

[Review] Clustertruck - Nintendo Switch

Clustertruck for Nintendo Switch is the latest release from publisher tiny build, and unsurprisingly, it is a very unique game. After having played The Final Station (The Final Station for Nintendo Switch at Miketendo 64), an now Clustertruck, I'm convinced that tiny build is on a mission to release as many niche and original style games as possible. As a result, I'm really looking forward to their future releases.

Clustertruck is hard to categorize, but I think that it's best to describe it as an action physics based puzzle platformer. Your goal is to navigate a series of speeding trucks from the start to the finish line while avoiding dropping to the ground. The premise is absolutely absurd, and the execution is amazing. You have a limited set of skills at your disposal, at first- you can sprint, jump, and little else. The key to success can be achieved through two different styles of play. You can choose to sprint and jump from one truck to the other, using the momentu…

[Review] Revenant Saga - Nintendo Switch (Archive)

Ricky J Hamilton
KEMCO has been around since the early days of the NES, and for the last couple of years, we've mainly associated them with streamlined, 16 bit style RPGs. Now, they're offering up their first game to Nintendo Switch, and they've chosen the intriguing Revenant Saga to be their standard bearer. This was a wise choice. Of the half dozen role playing games that I've played from KEMCO, this entry has the earliest “gotcha” moment yet, and that is a very important factor to have in a nostalgiac style of role playing game. What is a “gotcha” moment? It's the precise moment at which the game plants it's hooks firmly inside your brain and refuses to let go. We start off with a fairly standard trope- an antagonist orphaned by the deadly war/disease that has been spreading amongst the villages and leaving destruction in it's wake. In this case, we have a deadly plague. One that is so virulent, that those whom came in contact with the afflicted are aske…

[Review] Nightmare Boy - Nintendo Switch (Archive)

In lieu of the developer releasing a patch for pro controller support, I'm reprinting my review from Switch Score*, with an update** below for the patch addressing the issues that I experienced when reviewing the game.
Nightmare Boy is the latest Metroidvania released for the Nintendo Switch. It borrows a horror theme from the venerable Castlevania series, but presents this horrific nightmare world in a fairy tale manner. You begin the game as a sweet little boy named Billy. Upon going to bed, your pillow comes to life and attacks you, using its magic to transport you into a slumber you're unable to wake up from, and transforming you to Prince Rolok. This appears to be an effort by the pillow/wizard to gain the affections of the Queen?

(gameplay) Nightmare Boy is an action platformer where you traverse a labyrinthine world populated by cartoon monsters. Along the way, you will encounter obstacles which cannot be surpassed until you obtain the appropriate upgrade. You obtain thes…

[Review] Slayaway Camp: Butcher's Cut - Nintendo Switch

If you have always thought that puzzle games were fun, but too cheerful and kid friendly, then Slayaway Camp: Butcher's Cut for Nintendo Switch is exactly what you have been waiting for. An isometric slider puzzle boasting voxel- style graphics that pays tribute to eighties slasher movies, Slayaway Camp: Butcher's Cut is the most violently bloody puzzle game.

You play as the killer Skullface, and your objective is to slide around the isometric, grid based puzzle boards to slay your victim(s) while avoiding pitfalls and capture by police. When I say slide, I mean exactly that. When you select a cardinal direction to move to using your analog stick, Skullface will slide as far over in that direction as he can go before hitting an obstacle. I was reminded mainly of the ice sliding puzzles from Pokemon games while playing this, even though I know that generation 2 Pokemon games weren't the first to use this type of puzzle. So, despite your puzzle boards being on not ice, it h…

[Review] World Neverland: Elnea Kingdom (Nintendo Switch)

World Neverland: Elnea Kingdom for Nintendo Switch is the first English language entry in a popular Japanese series that has found some success on mobile platforms. It is an RPG/Life Simulation game that gives you a lot of opportunities to love out multiple generations of your family's life in ways such as adventuring with other NPCs, building friendships, marriages, having children, performing chores, and getting a job.

Unfortunately, none of these experiences are really given too much meaning or direction. While there have been many other life sims in the past that find a way to make doing chores and socializing with other townspeople enjoyable, World Neverland: Elnea Kingdom doesn't really follow through with it's promise. While it is ambitious in everything that it has to offer, nothing is fully fleshed out, and it suffers greatly from that.

Dialog options are extremely limited, and while combat is at least passable when venturing out into the world and through dungeo…

[Review] Gekido: Kintaro's Revenge - Nintendo Switch

Gekido: Kintaro's Revenge for Nintendo Switch is a modern remake of a gameboy advance brawler Gekido Advance: Kintaro's Revenge. It adds some nice polish to the game in the way of updated sprites that look pretty good on the Switch's screen, but doesn't look as good as it could on the big screen while docked. There are also some neat animated cutscenes added in that make it a bit more palatable in docked mode, and there is some updated music to make it more pleasant on the ears than the gameboy advance was capable of.

However, where docked mode shines is really in the new to Nintendo Switch co-op mode. Team up with a buddy to take on a horde of undead baddies and the ever-annoying swooping ravens. It is definitely the best way to play Gekido: Kintaro's Revenge. Nothing beats the feeling of jumping into an old school style beat em up with a buddy for mindless fun and unintelligible babbling trying to get them to come help you out that always breaks down into raucou…

[Review] Paper Wars: Cannon Fodder Devastated - Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch has become home to many interesting art styles and interesting games that bring a special flavor all of their own. Such it is with Paper Wars: Cannon Fodder Devastated, the latest release from ifun4all. While I've previously covered the publisher's other games, they seem to offer a variety of puzzle experiences for players to work their way through, and Paper Wars breaks that mold by being an arcade game that would feel right at home in the neon filled pits that populated our malls, pizza parlors and bowling alleys in the eighties and nineties.

You are in charge of defending a war-torn patch of land from oncoming invaders, and the only weapon at your disposal is a fixed tank in the lower left hand corner of the screen. You are able to rotate the turret to line up your shots against the advancing enemy, and this can be done using touchscreen controls or the analog stick. Once you've settled on a target, you can then begin charging up your shot with the …

[Weekly Roundup] March 12- 18, 2018

So, what have I been up to? Well, I've been focusing on getting caught up on my backlog of reviews for various sites, and am almost down to games that I will be covering on my blog. After this week, I'll be dedicating more time to creating content for my YouTube Channel (Soda's Fountain Arcade)
For now, here are the articles from other sites...

Quest 4 Pixels

Review - Bleed 2 - Nintendo Switch
Opinion - Super Smash Bros. on Switch

The Switch Effect

Review- Flinthook - Nintendo Switch
Review - Toki Tori 2 Plus - Nintendo Switch

...and reviews that I have posted here.

Review - Midnight Deluxe - Nintendo Switch
Review - Twin Robots Ultimate Edition - Nintendo Switch
Review - North - Nintendo Switch
Review - One Eyed Kutkh - Nintendo Switch

Please remember to follow me on Twitter, and please subscribe on YouTube.

[Review] Midnight Deluxe - Nintendo Switch

Midnight Deluxe is a golf like puzzle game ported over to the Nintendo Switch by Ratalaika Games. As some of my more observant readers will notice, it shares an art style and making convention with 36 Fragments of Midnight, and with good reason, as it is also developed by Petite Games. Now, the Deluxe in the name doesn't just mean that this is a port of Midnight, which debuted on Steam a fee years ago, but is also an enhanced port of both Midnight and it's sequel, Midnight 2. It incorporates the improved graphics found in the aforementioned 36 Fragments of Midnight, plus adds controller and touchscreen controls along with 14 additional levels as found in the previous two releases.

When all is said, there are 70 levels to complete, which is far more content than 36 Fragments of Midnight's one randomly generated level, and each of the 28 levels found in the previous two titles. So, are those 70 levels worth it for your couple of bucks?

The short answer is yes. The physics e…

[Review} Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition - Nintendo Switch

The Nintendo Switch has obviously become the go to console for cooperative and competitive multiplayer games, and we have yet another amazing cooperative puzzle platformer to yell at our friends about in Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition. Don't have any friends? Not to worry, the game is just as satisfying to play solo!

In Twin Robots: Ultimate Edition, you'll be controlling a pair of robots, as the title implies, and their names are Watt and Volt. You are two forgotten robots in an abandoned factory, and to prove your worthiness, must undergo a series of trials to avoid the scrap heap. Its a pretty flimsy premise, but it is a puzzle platformer, and so the story isn't really all that important. Each level begins with one robot trapped behind a door, and the free robot must make their way through the course to a button that frees the other one. You can then switch between the two. Each robot has their own energy bars that they expend as they make their way through each trial, …

[Review] Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe - Nintendo Switch (Archive)

Stikbold! A Dodgeball Adventure DeluxeDeveloper: Game Swing
Publisher: Reign Bros
Category: Party, Sports, Action, Arcade
Release Date: 01.04.2018
Stickbold! A Dodgeball Adventure Deluxe is an original party game that gives us a substantial single/double player campaign. You play as Bjorn and Jerome, whom are on a quest to find what has happened to Bjorn's rival love interest, Heidi Starbrow, on the eve of the big game. You'll fight your way through training(!!), honey-loving hippies, old pros, and more on your quest to find Heidi and prepare for the big game so you don't disappoint the coach a second year in a row.
At its core, this is a dodgeball game. The rules are simple - hit your opponent twice with the dodgeball. Once to stun them, a second time in a short period of time to eliminate them. If you get knocked out, you have the ability to revive your teammate by standing next to them for a few seconds to give them the opportunity to recover. Most matches are even, but s…

[Review] North (Nintendo Switch)

Among many other great developers and publishers (10tonsRatalaikaImage & Form) that are slowly porting their libraries over to the Nintendo Switch to bring their games to a whole new audience...Sometimes You has begun this quest as well. I recently talked about their game One Eyed Kutkh, and also reviewed Energy Balance on my birthday, of all days. They have a very interesting library of games to bring to the Nintendo Switch, and it is nice to see this kind of diversity, even if their games aren't always those that have the most depth.

Hot off my thirty minute play through of the aforementioned One Eyed Kutkh, I did a second play through of North, and it took me about 15 minutes less the second time around as it did the first. The first time through, I took about an hour. Second time through? Maybe 45 minutes. I didn't keep that close of an eye on the clock and had some distractions.

For lack of a better term, I believe that North is what people call a "walking s…

[Review] - One Eyed Kutkh (Nintendo Switch)

Recently, we have begun seeing more and more indie games released on the Nintendo Switch that draw on folklore and mythology to fashion their mechanics, art styles, and names. More often than not, these tales are used well to make a game's world seem alive, and to flavor it with a unique spice that will grab hold the interest of its player, and make it really stand out from the crowd. While this is a subject that I wish to expand on further at a later date, I just needed to present this as a slightly awkward introduction into a game that is a fine example of how not to call upon mythology or folklore for flavor. One Eyed Kutkh is that example.

Now, I'm not saying that One Eyed Kutkh is a bad game, because it isn't. I'll get to that in a short bit. No, One Eyed Kutkh failed in trying to communicate the flavor of its gameplay or art style by referencing an East Russian trickster god in it's title. A Kutkh, is similar to the Raven found in tribes of the Pacific North…

Weekly Roundup - 03/05-03/11

So, this was a busy week for me, and the upcoming week will be a bit more hectic. I got a few more reviews written and published, and got my YouTube channel up and running.
Links below

Damascus Gear: Operation Tokyo review for Miketendo64

Old Man's Journey review for The Switch Effect

Bridge Constructor Portal review for Quest4Pixels

Soda's Fountain Arcade on YouTube!

Please check out the links, and subscribe! Thanks again, everyone. Lots of reviews coming the next week. I need to get caught up. :)

Nintendo Direct 03.08.18 and the debut of my YouTube channel!

So, I had originally planned on debuting my YouTube channel on the sitess first year anniversary (coming up this month on the 17th), but the Nintendo Direct just contained too much to talk about, and so I got a quick take video on my thoughts concerning the 3DS, and a longer video covering all of the Nintendo Switch announcements. Strike while the iron is hot, they say.  So, below is a link to my channel. Make sure to subscribe, turn on notifications, and share it with your friends if you enjoy.

Soda's Fountain Arcade YouTube!

I apologize for the low quality of the first video especially, but I took it on my phone while on break at work, so I had low light conditions and not much time.
Further content will be of considerably better quality once I work out camera placement and figure out how to reduce the glare on my glasses.

Weekly Roundup

Again, I've been spending a lot more time working on reviews and content for other sites.
Below are links to all of the content I've produced for other websites.

The Switch Effect

 I have a pending review over there, as well.


The Final Station
Escape Trick: 35 Fateful Enigmas

Quest 4 Pixels

For now I'm just linking to my general author page because I've written a sales and deals post, and have so far only reprinted reviews that I had previously written.

Sodamancer Posts

Over the next week, I'll be providing more original content to the site. Make sure to go check them out.

Thanks for helping to support me, and please Like me on Facebook, and Follow me on Twitter