Ten Characters I Want in Super Smash Bros. – Part 2

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for the following games:

Tekken 7
The Wonderful 101
Xenoblade Chronicles 2

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It’s been four years since my first “Ten Characters I Want in Super Smash Bros.” list and, boy, how things have changed since then. Back then, those choices were the whimsical wishes of a young dreamer, unlikely to ever come true. But now, thanks to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, it seems anything is possible. Hell, two of my picks have since been included, which is very vindicating, though one part of that list has aged horribly.

“… [Yu Narukami] does stand a better chance than Ridley.”

Oh, 21 year-old me, you were such a fool. But yes, between the likes of Ridley, King K. Rool, and Joker, I’ve found myself coming to accept that characters I would’ve initially scoffed at the mere suggestion of including could actually happen. Super Smash Bros. is no longer just a celebration of all things Nintendo, but of videogames as a whole.

So, with the current run of DLC nearing its conclusion and still more to come throughout 2020, how about I list off another ten characters I’d personally love to see get to join the roster, whether it be in Ultimate or in a possible sequel. Continue reading

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Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order – Marvellous Masterpiece or Boring Button-Masher?

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One game that I used to play the crap out of during my childhood was Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2. A loose adaptation of the Civil War comic story-line, it was a top-down action-RPG/beat ’em up featuring a tonne of famous and not so famous heroes and villains from across the Marvel universe, enjoyable and addictive gameplay, cool character interactions, and some great replayability that had me coming back again and again, just so I could keep making all manner of different teams to play through the game as.

That game came out ten years ago and it very much seemed like a series that wasn’t going to get revived any time soon, especially with Disney now holding Marvel’s reigns. So I was pleasantly surprised to see a new, third title get announced out of nowhere. And if that wasn’t enough, Activision and Vicarious Visions were out and Nintendo and Team Ninja were in. Suddenly, everybody was getting excited to see how this game would turn out. Aside from those big names, the roster looked great (the presence of the X-Men alone helped tremendously) and the presentation was delightfully stylish, but does the game have the substance to match it, or should this series have been left back in the late 2000s? Continue reading

Ten Things You Might’ve Not Known About Pokémon Red & Blue

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How about we try something new this week? You may not know this but I love me some trivia. Whether it be early concepts, connections between actors or just neat, little easter eggs, I get a weird thrill from learning and memorising this kind of stuff from all kinds of media (which did not help me during my school years when I should’ve been memorising maths). But one thing I love more than discovering trivia is sharing it with others, so I figured why not try my hand at actually writing up some fun articles all about that?

So let’s start things off with ten things you may not have known from a classic set of games that defined a lot of peoples’ childhoods – the first generation of Pokémon games, Red & Blue – courtesy of Bulbapedia and Serebii (just so you know I’m not making all this up). Continue reading

Steins;Gate 0 – No, Seriously, Don’t Invent Time Travel

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Steins;Gate

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When I finished playing Steins;Gate back in 2015, I found myself in that state of mind where, even though everything was neatly wrapped up, I was hungry for more from its world and characters. Even if it was an entire story just about the characters living their lives, I wasn’t quite ready to say goodbye yet. Fortunately, there was an anime adaptation to throw myself into and a movie that acted as an epilogue of sorts (both of which I loved). But then I found out that a full-on sequel was coming to Japan very soon and would be out in the West the following year… and I had no interest in playing it.

“But you just said you wanted more Steins;Gate!” you cry. True, but Steins;Gate 0 isn’t a sequel in the traditional sense, instead continuing the story in an alternate “bad” timeline. Considering how much I loved the first game’s ending, I was worried that the sequel could potentially undo how perfect it was. Plus, I didn’t want to see more bad things happen to the characters after they got their happy endings, so I skipped it.

Cut to 2018 and the anime adaptation began to air on Crunchyroll. I had an account at the time and when the first episode went up, I thought “Eh, why not? I’ll give it a shot.” And sure enough, I got completely sucked in. I’m not sure what it was but it did enough to make me see it through to the end, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. But even I could tell that certain elements had been changed or removed in order to fit the narrative in an anime format (I even saw some comments complaining about how certain scenes were cut). Curious, I decided to play the game myself and go through the full unaltered experience of Steins;Gate 0 myself. Continue reading

Team Sonic Racing – Does Teamwork Make the Dream Work?

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Back when Team Sonic Racing was first teased with an incredibly vague and short trailer, I wasn’t exactly impressed or excited. At the time, Sonic Forces had left me rather bitter about how Sega was handling the series, and I didn’t think they had earned enough goodwill to only hint at a new title and expect me to be invested. However, as time passed and more info was revealed, I was eventually coaxed back like a badger out of its sett. The fact that Sega had brought Sumo Digital on board to develop it was the primary reason since I really enjoyed their last two Sega-themed racing games, especially Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed.

But there was still some scepticism, and I wasn’t the only one. The focus was entirely on Sonic and friends this time and, rather than do what every other mascot kart racer did and just copy and paste Mario Kart, Sumo Digital were doing something very different and making a racing game where players would race in teams and have to work together in order to win. It was certainly a unique premise, but after being consistently disappointed by so many Sonic games over the last few years, there was this constant fear that I was setting myself up to be let down again.

So is Team Sonic Racing a worthy Mario Kart alternative? Is it even as good as Sumo Digital’s previous work? Or is it just a gimmicky failure? Continue reading

Pokémon: Detective Pikachu – An Amazing Adaptation or Shockingly Bad?

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When children hear the words “live-action Pokémon movie,” they get excited. When adults hear those words, however, they inwardly cringe. Live-action adaptations of videogames and animated properties both share notorious reputations for being pretty much always bad, so you can’t blame most of us, upon hearing that Hollywood were going to give Nintendo’s most prolific RPG series the same treatment, to place our faces in our hands and groan.

But then that very first trailer dropped and, suddenly, people started to say “Actually, this looks pretty good.” Early impressions indicated that Pokémon: Detective Pikachu would avoid every pitfall that other movies of its ilk had fallen into. Fans’ expectations went from nil to a hundred, but were we right to trust those trailers? Is it even a good adaptation of the game it’s based on? Is it something only the purest of Pokémon fans can enjoy? Continue reading

Nier: Automata – My First Yoko Taro Game

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“Everything that lives is designed to end. We are perpetually trapped in a never-ending spiral of life and death. Is this a curse? Or some kind of punishment? I often think about the god who blessed us with this cryptic puzzle…and wonder if we’ll ever get the chance to kill him.”

These are the first lines of dialogue you hear in Nier: Automata, and if this doesn’t immediately tell you what kind of game you’re about to experience, then you are in for one hell of a trip; one that could only have come from a director like Yoko Taro. Anyone familiar with his work kind of had an idea for what to expect but for a newcomer like myself, no amount of research into his previous games could prepare me for what this one had in store. I thought I knew after listening to those opening lines, but that was, appropriately and obviously, only the beginning. First, though, let’s get some backstory out of the way. Continue reading

Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle – The Best Crossover No One Wanted

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I remember when this game was first leaked. So many people refused to believe it was even remotely true. A strategy-RPG crossover game starring Nintendo’s beloved Super Mario and Ubisoft’s iconic Raving Rabbids? Admittedly, it did sound so ludicrous that it just had to be fake but cut to E3 2017 and Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle was officially announced. It was all real. But what was even more surprising was that it looked really good.

The Rabbids’ name had certainly got a bit of a bad rap over the years due to many finding them obnoxious and annoying (before the Minions came along and managed to somehow be worse), but even some of the loudest dissenters couldn’t help but admit to being intrigued by this bizarre union between Nintendo and Ubisoft.

The game went on to become the best selling title on the Switch that wasn’t published by Nintendo and, as of September 2018, has sold over 2 million copies. This surprise smash hit won a lot of peoples’ hearts and I’ve been meaning to write up a review of it since the DLC came out last year. So let’s not waste any more time and dive right into the wonderfully, weird world of Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle. Continue reading

Kingdom Hearts III – The End of an Era

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There was a time when Kingdom Hearts III was a punchline. Nothing more than vaporware; something that only existed as fan-fictions and fake box arts. It was synonymous with hell freezing over. And right now, the Devil himself is neck deep in snow. Even after it was announced back in 2013, it still didn’t feel real. But as the years went on, as we slowly saw more trailers and heard new details, myself and many others realised that this was, in fact, happening.

And now it’s out. You can go and buy Kingdom Hearts III and actually play it. But now that it exists, we must ask that dreaded question – was it worth the wait? This is a title that fans have been waiting for since 2005 when Kingdom Hearts II released, and acts as the finale to a story-line that’s been ongoing since the first game came out in 2002. Fans’ expectations have been ridiculously high so does it meet them? Is it the conclusion longtime fans deserved or is about as fun as going to an overcrowded Disneyland in the rain? Continue reading

Ten Characters I Want in Dragon Ball FighterZ

WARNING: This article contains spoilers for the following:

Dragon Ball FighterZ
Dragon Ball Super
Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
Dragon Ball Z

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I’m not the biggest Dragon Ball Z fan (in fact, I’ve never watched a single episode of any of the various anime series) but even I couldn’t help but look at Dragon Ball FighterZ – a fighting game developed by Arc System Works – and think “Damn, this game looks cool. I want it.” And so I got it, and while I’ll probably never be “good” at it, it’s still a lot of fun to play casually.

So with the recent announcement that ‘Season 2′ will begin this year, which will no doubt see more of this series’ eclectic cast of fighters join the fray (apparently starting with Jiren from Dragon Ball Super), here are ten characters that I personally would love to see make an appearance and fight against the likes of Goku, Vegeta and co. Continue reading