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Podcasts Trophy Whores

Trophy Whores 354 – Tricky’s Favorite Beyonce Lyric

This week, with Stephen at the helm, the Trophy Whores (Alex, Yield and Tricky) cover the best PlayStation 4 games and discuss a PlayStation Vita game that openly entices buyers with easy trophies.  While trophies encourage and increase friendly competition between gamers and offer additional challenges to each game, we have always been faced with the question: Are trophies (and achievements) bad for video games?

We are happy and proud to share that Proven Gamer has partnered with the Humble Bundle! The Humble Bundle is a fantastic initiative and program that allows games to score a litany of games on the cheap — all while making charitable donations to various groups and organizations. You can click here for the details on Proven Gamer’s Humble Bundle partnership.

In a bit of big news that would make the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles proud, iHeartRadio and Spotify host episodes of Trophy Whores.  It’s a tremendous honor for the show to be part of two massive and respected entertainment communities, and Proven Gamer have only the fans to thank for pushing the podcast to soaring heights. The Trophy Whores work hard to put out a quality weekly show, but they owe so much love to their listeners, who keep the show strong and growing.

We appreciate your support (and your ears)!

Please subscribe to the Trophy Whores feed in iTunes, Google Play, TuneIn, IheartRadio, Stitcher, or RSS and please leave a review. We won’t give you cookies, but it will help us make the show better.

You can find us on Twitter: @TrophyWhores and @ProvenGamer

You can also email us at TrophyWhores.

If you wish, you can always download the show here – Trophy Whores 354 – Tricky’s Favorite Beyonce Lyric

Categories
Companies Consoles Playstation 4 Playstation 4 News Sony

Summon Night 6 Coming October 31st for PS4 and Vita

For those craving a JRPG, California-based Gaijinworks have announced a firm release date for their highly anticipated localized release of Summon Night 6.  The game arrives in the United States on October 31st for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita, with the game arriving shortly after in European territories.

The news comes after Summon Night 6 faced several delays in the localization process. Originally slated for release in September, there have been a variety of 11th hour production issues that have occurred.

For those unfamilair with the franchise, Summon Night is a fantasy JRPG franchise that has spanned 15 years across a multitude of systems, including the PlayStation and Nintendo DS. Taking place in the fictional land of Lyndbaum, players embark on a quest of love, action, and courage through a steampunk setting, featuring multiple kingdoms, species, and epic battles. Battles take place on a strategy grid and feature a variety of close-range and long-range weapons. Below, we share Gaijinworks’ full description of Summon Night 6.

From the website’s description .

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

“Released in Japan as a celebration of the series’ 15th anniversary, Summon Night 6: Lost Borders offers gorgeous widescreen graphics presented in high definition, a first for the series. The fully 3-D battle system allows Chain Attacks that happen automatically when an enemy is surrounded by two or more allies; in these situations, each ally can hit the enemy without risk of counterattack. In addition to the Summons that are a hallmark of the series, two allies can team up for a breathtaking “Summon Burst” attack that invokes a devastating magical strike from one of many giant fantastical creatures.

Combat is only one part of the Summon Night 6 experience. The series is well known for its “night conversations”—one-on-one encounters where various characters confide in one another, leading to a web of elaborate, emotional storytelling with many different branching paths. Lost Borders also includes several charming mini-games: One has you fishing for different types of aquatic creatures, while another involves cooking power-up meals using the bounty you’ve caught with your fishing pole.

The game features more than a dozen endings, many of which have sub-endings that can change depending on the player’s affinity level with a particular character. “Summon Night 6 is one of our biggest projects to date,” Ireland explains. “It has enough text to fill about five novels—over 50% more than the huge volume of text that Summon Night 5 had.” Adding to the enormity of the localization task is the fact that the English-language version of Summon Night 6 features voice acting: All key events are voiced, as in the original Japanese version, over 20,000 lines of dialogue in all.

Summon Night 6 also features Cross-Save. If you have the PlayStation®Vita andPlayStation®4 versions, you can move your save between them using the cloud, so the game can be played on the big screen at home, and on the small screen on-the-go!

Summon Night 6: Lost Borders is planned for North American digital and physical release on the PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®Vita on October 31st, 2017.  European and Australian PSN release will follow soon after.”

 

Categories
Handhelds Playstation 4 Playstation 4 News Playstation VIta Playstation Vita News

Sony Reveals Secret of Mana Remake for PS4 and Vita

Today Sony revealed a ground-up, 3D remake of Secret of Mana — something that I don’t think any of us expected.

To quote the Official PlayStation Blog:

One of the greatest RPGs of all time, Secret of Mana, is coming back to life in 3D! Secret of Mana will come to PS4 and PS Vita digitally, on February 15, 2018 worldwide.

Secret of Mana holds a special place in many hearts here in the office, so we could not be more excited for new fans to experience the time-honored classic for the first time, and for existing fans to dive back into the fun fantasy adventure that they know and love.

The remake boasts local multiplayer and a newly arranged soundtrack, as well as fully voiced characters.  If you pre-order Secret of Mana, then you get three exclusive suits when the game launches on February 15th, 2018.

I loved this game growing up but never had the patience to finish it.  I’m excited to dive back into Secret of Mana early next year!

You can watch the trailer below and head over to the PlayStation Blog to check out all the details.

 

Categories
Podcasts Trophy Whores

Trophy Whores 277 – Beyond Twitch and PSX Plus

This week, Alex, Yield, Troy and Frosty dish out news and opinions like there’s a Labor Day sale at the news-and-opinions store.  I’m sorry; Tricky’s atrocious segues have wreaked havoc on my intellect.  Tricky’s segues are as bad as the Cubs’ World Series title drought.

That’s better.

We’ve been hearing about Beyond Good and Evil 2 for almost a decade.  At this point, it’s hard to know what to believe.  For the sake of fans, we hope that Beyond Good and Evil 2 is real.  After all of the time, support and attention, we believe that the fans deserve a fitting sequel.

Join the Trophy Whores as they discuss, among other things, PlayStation Plus, Beyond Good and Evil 2, Twitch, and No Man’s Sky.

No Man’s Sky Watch has ended.  It seems soon after it began.  Our hands-on coverage and discussion of No Man’s Sky has been as good as a Snickers bar that has been dipped in expired milk.  Yield, who is the only Trophy Whore to play the game, hasn’t spent much more time with No Man’s Sky, so we can assume that Hello Games’ ambitious adventure has been shelved for the time.   The number of players for No Man’s Sky has dropped significantly, but we still hope that the game isn’t seen as a failure.

We appreciate your support (and your ears)!

Please subscribe to the Trophy Whores feed in iTunes or RSS and please leave a review. We won’t give you cookies, but it will help us make the show better.

You can find us on Twitter: @TrophyWhores  and @ProvenGamer

You can also email us at TrophyWhores.

If you wish, you can always download the show here – Trophy Whores 277 – Beyond Twitch and PSX Plus

Categories
PC News PC Previews Playstation 4 Playstation 4 News Playstation 4 Previews Playstation Vita News Playstation Vita Previews Podcasts

Square Enix Launches I Am Setsuna in the West on July 19th

Square Enix has formed a small development team of 10 dedicated and 20 freelance staff  called Tokyo RPG Factory, to bring us I Am Setsuna, the spiritual successor to Square’s 1995 epic classic Chrono Trigger, and it is releasing in the West on Tuesday, July 19th for the Playstation 4, The Playstation Vita, and PC.

Per a Blog post on Playstation.com:
“I Am Setsuna’s gameplay is reminiscent of an old school JRPG. The subtle way the characters move, the music, and the battles evoke the games some of us grew up playing, but with a splash of novelty once you pick up the controller.  I am Setsuna tells the tale of a land that has maintained peace with a fiend – once every decade, a sacrifice is offered to a fiend on the island. However, one year, the fiend grows violent before the next sacrifice is due. Those living on the island are afraid and try to calm the fiend by offering a sacrifice — Setsuna — chosen because of her powers of enchantment. Setsuna must leave with her safeguards for the farthest land, where the ceremony of sacrifice will be held.”
(The entire post “15 things to know about I Am Setsuna” can be found here: http://blog.us.playstation.com/2016/06/03/15-things-to-know-about-i-am-setsuna-out-july-19-on-ps4/ )

Everything shown for this game gives off a strong Chrono Trigger vibe, from scenes favoring the infamous  Mountain of Woe, to dual attacks similar to Crono and Frog’s iconic X Slash, and even soaring over mountaintops in an air ship, very reminiscent of the Epoch; The ship which was flown in Chrono Trigger.  Upon hiring the team for Tokyo RPG Factory, applicants were not told the studio would be part of Squre Enix.  Yosuke Matsuda (CEO of Square Enix) wanted to hire people who were passionate about RPGs, rather than people who wanted to work for Square Enix.
We will have to wait and see if that passion for RPG’s is displayed when the game releases next week.

Be sure to view the E3 2016 trailer below, and for more on I Am Setsuna, keep it locked right here at ProvenGamer.com!

 

 

Categories
Playstation 3 Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Gucamelee Review

Guacamelee is “Juan” heck of a game. Drinkbox has done it again, and brought another great PSN game on to the PlayStation consoles. Guacamelee! captures the humor, art, and musical style that all of their previous games have brought. The game also has wonderful platforming elements, a great combat system, and a really good story. It has all the elements a game needs to be a great game, but Guacamelee! has a lot more than just those.

The game starts off introducing you to the main character, Juan. He is a farm boy from Pueblucho, a town that greatly respects luchadors. Juan goes to help out a man when El Presidente’s daughter is caught in a fire. Juan rushes over, only to find a skeleton by the name of Calaca, has captured her. Juan tries to fight back, but sadly, Calaca kills Juan. In the world of the dead, Juan finds a mysterious luchador mask. He then progresses out of the world of the dead, and obviously, tries to save El Presidente’s daughter from Calaca. This makes for an interesting plot line throughout the game, and is not just a complement to the excellent gameplay that comes along with it.

guac2

Speaking of that gameplay, it is arguably one of the best platformers I have ever played. Why it is, is because it actually makes you think, and it can actually become quite difficult. At some points, I had to pull off crazy combos to get to the next platform, and after I had completed them, I felt like a luchador myself. The platforms are laid out perfectly, and I never had a problem with something being impossible or too hard to pass. As the great Goldilocks once said, “It was just right.”

Juan can also beat up baddies along the way. The excellent combat system makes that super fun. Juan can pull off awesome combos, in both the air, and on the ground. It’s fluid, and it just feels right in place with how everything else in the game works. Along with just his punches and kicks, Juan also learns some mystical attacks from a goat-man. These can be used to break objects in the environment or when battling enemies. These have great, funny names attached to them like the Rooster Uppercut, and my absolute favorite, The Dashing Derp-Derp. I just love how the combat works, and it just feels right for the game.

guac1

The enemies won’t cause you too many problems (in the normal mode that is), but the bosses will kick your butt over and over again. These bosses will take you many, many times to figure out. Their attack patterns are all so diverse, and finding out how to stop them is even harder. Eventually, when you do figure them out, it feels awesome, and like I said before, like a real luchador.

My only real problem was that the game was a bit too short. My first time through clocked in at 4 hours, and 4 minutes. I didn’t go out of my way for collectibles, or do any of the side-missions on that run-through. However, if you were to play on hard, the game lasts longer (you will have to re-do more parts), or if you did look for collectibles and do the side missions. If you did any of those things, the game could last you 10-20+ hours. Still, I wish there was a little more content to it, even though I really enjoyed what it had.

guac3

Humor is where Drinkbox excels the most. There are references to so many things you wouldn’t believe. On the billboards, there are ads for “Mega Hombre”, “Casa Crashers” and even an ad in Spanish for their last Vita title, Tales from Space Mutant Blobs Attack. There are also funny references to other things outside of games, like the meme, Grumpy Cat, or the movie Wreck it Ralph (they put “Bust it Bill”). All of these were hilarious, and the character dialogue and gameplay has even more references and jokes. Guacamelee! had me laughing the entire game.

The art and music are great as well, and fit with the overall aesthetic of the game. The art has a 2D beautiful surface in the front, and some kind of background that pertains to the kind of environment you are in. Like for example, the desert scene has sand dunes in the back. The game looks beautiful on both my TV, and my PlayStation Vita’s 5 inch display. The music is an upbeat, Mexican style. It fits wonderfully, and sounds especially nice when coming through headphones.

Guacamelee! is an all-around awesome game, and anyone with a Vita and/or a PlayStation 3 should pick it up. It’s one of the greatest platformers that I’ve played in a while, and it has all the elements a game needs to be great; awesome gameplay, great soundtrack, good graphics, and a fun story. Guacamelee’s got it all. It doesn’t matter if you’re broke, or don’t have any money, you need to buy Guacamelee. Believe the hype, it’s really that good.

PG9_10

Categories
Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Switch Galaxy Review

Switch Galaxy is a game by former Liverpool Studios developers, and you can tell in every aspect. Switch Galaxy captures the same sense of speed and beauty that Wipeout always shined in. The music is great, along with the designs of everything from the vehicles, down to the tracks and barriers. Even the price is great. The only real major problem I have with it is that it is a little too short. When that is your only complaint, you know you got a pretty good game on your hands.

The gameplay is simple, yet wonderful. You move from lane to lane, dodging enemies and barriers, and collecting credits as you go. There are power-ups to help you pass barriers; destroy barriers, and one to steal credits from enemies. They are all basic, but can get hard to see when flying across space at the break-neck speeds you can reach in this game. It can also be a little hard to see upcoming enemies, as they sometimes can blend in with the surroundings, but I think it just adds to the little difficulty in the game.

sg1

The “story” mode of the game lets you travel from galaxy to galaxy, imposed with a time limit. Hitting barriers and enemies will slow you down, but most of the time they are really easy to dodge. I only failed to make time once in a level in the latter half of the game. There are about 25 levels, which, if you take every path and do the challenges, equates to about a an hour or so of content. The challenges are really no challenge; they just require you to reach an easy distance on the track. I wish there was more to the story mode, it had lots of potential.

However, there is one mode that can become obsessive, and what I think is the real “meat” of the game. It is the survival mode, where it makes the game like an infinite runner. Once you get far enough, it really gets hard, and it always makes me want to try to beat my previous score. They set goals for you, but I wish there was some sort of leaderboard, so I could strive to beat other peoples’ scores. If you reach these preset goals, you get a ton of credits, which can definitely help you go farther.

sg3

The credits I speak of are the in-game currency. You can use them to buy upgrades, new ship skins, and one time shields and such. The ship upgrades are cool, and will definitely help you with that survival mode, but everything else is just okay. However, you cannot use the barrier passes in the survival mode, which stinks, because that’s where I really need them. The ship skins are okay looking (I prefer the original), and the barrier blocks just weren’t doing it for me. The ship upgrades are the only thing I really bought, and are the only things that really did any good for me in trying to make my performance in the game any better.

Everything else about the game is awesome. To the upbeat sort of dubstep-like music, from the beautiful graphics of all the ships and the tracks you travelled on, all the way down to the minute details of the game, like giving population numbers and race percentages for each galaxy. Even though it’s a Playstation Mobile title, you can really tell that Atomicom put a lot of time, detail, and effort into the game.

Switch Galaxy is a great Playstation Mobile game, with simple yet fluent gameplay, a good upgrade system, awesome graphics, and a great soundtrack. The game captured the great sense of speed, aesthetic, and style that Wipeout nailed for years, and it has worked out amazingly. The only thing that’s wrong is that there aren’t a lot of levels for the story mode. This is a great game, and I suggest you go pick it up right away.

PG8_10

Categories
Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Nun Attack Review

Nun Attack is one crazy game. In short, you take a group of nuns who happen to have shotguns and assault rifles to different graveyards to try to take down Mortana, the Fallen Nun. You go through 40 levels, spanning across four worlds. These levels have players running through them, destroying portals, and killing enemies at their flagged points. You can level up the nuns, and level up their guns with the in-game currency. Crazy, right?

The levels are all basically the same. You tap, drag, and release your finger to direct the nuns where to go. All the while, there are portals firing flying skulls at you. Each portal has a different skull, and a different way to destroy/block the projectiles. You destroy those portals by destroying the skull near it, which can be quite difficult and annoying in some levels. There are also flags in each level, each one starting a combat sequence. In these, the camera pans in, and you are given access to your weapons. You then move around every nun separately, the same way you do in the non-combat parts. To attack, you drag your nun’s cursor over to an enemy, and she will attack automatically. This was a problem at times, because the nuns would group up, and I wasn’t able to specify which enemies they were to attack. Some nuns would just stand there, and do nothing. After that, I would just keep swiping randomly, and lose the tactical feel of the game.

nun1

You can’t have a game this weird without powers and miracles, right? Each nun has a special power that can be used in the battles for support. They are all  important, as you must use them if you wish to succeed in battle. The other form of powers was the miracles. These could be used at any time in the level, and are activated by drawing out a symbol in the miracles screen. These could be used for attack and support. Even though I didn’t use these as much, both are cool features, and are necessary to battles, and the game as a whole.

The boss fights are easy for the most part, just a larger version of the most common enemy in the world you are in, with advanced attacks. But, the last boss made me want to throw my Vita across the room. Let me just tell you now, that I have EVERY nun up to level 15 (the highest) and the best guns for every nun upgraded to the max. Even still, I couldn’t get the last boss under half health. There is a serious balancing issue or something, and it needs to be patched. Badly.

Speaking of the upgrades, the system is actually pretty cool. You can upgrade the nuns just by defeating enemies, and finishing levels. But, each nun has four guns which are found in golden chests in some of the levels. Each gun has 4 upgrade levels, which improves their fire rate, damage rate, etc. It can also change a bonus effect the gun has, such as poison, or burning. The upgrades are all good, but they still won’t help you beat that dreadful final boss.

nun2

Everything else about the game is all pretty good as well. The menus are easy to navigate, and have a lot of color, making them nice to look at. The art styles along with the menus are pleasing, but in-game, everything seems to look flat. The music doesn’t play a huge role, but isn’t very good. It’s got kind of a jazzy soundtrack, and doesn’t seem to fit right with the game.

Overall, even with my gripes about the game, Nun Attack is pretty fun. It has a good combat system, cool powers, and a good way to upgrade you weapons. The games problems (such as the hard final boss fight) don’t completely ruin the good parts. I suggest you buy Nun Attack, you will have some fun with it.

PG7_10

Categories
Playstation 3 Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Germinator Review

Germinator is a cross-buy enabled puzzle game for PSN developed by Creat Studios. Their previous games were known for being fun little diversions from “heavier” games, and Germinator is no exception. Germinator is a simple puzzle game that follows the tried and true formula of pick-up-and-play accessibility. Above all else however, the game is quite simply fun.

 

In Germinator you are tasked with eliminating all germs within different environments. You do so by shooting germs at other germs. When you match germs of the same color, they absorb into each other and become a bigger gooey blob. When the germs get too big, they pop in a satisfying icky mess. The game feels very reminiscent of games such as Bubble Bobble, but Germinator does a great job of differentiating itself by introducing the absorbing and popping mechanics. This leads to some interesting light physics-based puzzle solving and a really cool visually satisfying build up of combos. Matching colors isn’t the only thing you’ll do in Germinator however, as there are also special power-ups available. After making a set number of matches, you’ll be able to super-charge a germ. A super-charged germ has special effects such as exploding all germs of the same color, or eating up all surrounding germs. Each colored germ has its own respective specialty when powered up.

germ1

The mechanics work very well, and it’s quite mesmerizing to watch a germ grow to a humongous and atrocious size only to pop into a multicolored gooey mess. The visuals are very colorful and vibrant, and the detail in the look of the germs is charming as each germ has its own facial expression. As the germs grow their eyes pop out of their head, the expression becomes more strained, and you can see veins popping in their face. That maniacal sense of humor is nicely contrasted by the overall tone of the game. The game is very silly and full of horribly chuckle-worthy puns and pop culture references.

 

There are many ways to play Germinator. There are four modes available: story, puzzle, duel, and arcade. Story mode takes you through various environments and in between environments there are small bits of text that serve little purpose other than throwing a few more puns your way. Puzzle mode ups the difficulty a bit by limiting the amount of germs you can shoot. Both story and puzzle mode have a three star rating system that grades your performance, so if you’re a completionist, you’ll have plenty of extra work ahead of you. Duel mode is a versus-mode that you can play either with a friend locally (on PS3 version) or an AI. Unfortunately, there’s no online functionality for the duel mode just yet, but if people demand it enough that’s something that may be added in through a patch at a later date. Arcade mode is an endless survival game in which you fight a never-ending wave of rising germs. There are leader boards for story, puzzle, and arcade mode available as well.

germ2

The variety doesn’t end there, though. Creat Studios did a wonderful job allowing players to play this game however they please. The game is available on both PS3 and PS Vita, and uses each system to its fullest. The PS Vita version allows you to use either the analog sticks or the touch pad to play. I found that using the touch pad was actually a bit more precise for the trickier shots. Similarly the PS3 version allows either Dualshock control or PS Move control. I was very pleasantly surprised by the accuracy and ease of use with the PS Move functionality, and that ended up being my preferred way to play on PS3. The only downside is that operating the menu screens is difficult with the move controller. (It’s treated in a similar fashion to the XMB move controls where you must hold the T button down and move the controller up or down.) The Playstation 3 version also boasts an additional option to record your gameplay and upload it directly to YouTube. The recording happens in the background, and uploading is quick and easy.

 

Germinator isn’t going to change puzzle gaming forever, but I don’t think that’s what it really sets out to do. Overall, Germinator is just pure silly fun! It’s very well crafted, the game play is fresh enough to remain interesting, and the plethora of options and modes will keep people coming back for more. The only downside is that there’s currently no online multiplayer functionality and the Vita version doesn’t have local multiplayer through Ad-Hoc. Other than that, it’s a great game to play while killing time on the bus or while hanging out and having a laugh with friends. If you’re looking for a profound and brain-bending puzzle game you won’t find it here. However, if you like colorful, simple puzzle games and a good laugh, you can’t go wrong with Germinator.

PG8_10

Categories
Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Rocketbirds: Hardboiled Chicken Review (Vita)

Rocketbirds is a cinematic puzzle platformer, that is definitely fun, but has plenty flaws too. Puzzles get repetitive, the story is pretty bad and often doesn’t make sense, the combat can be very frustrating, and the game is pretty short. Platforming is fun, and is the heart of the game, but the other aspects are not as good. If you are able to overlook the flaws, you can find an okay puzzle platformer in Rocketbirds. But those flaws are unfortunately very hard to ignore.

The gameplay is simple, being a platformer. The puzzles are for the most part easy, except for near the end of the game. The puzzles don’t provide the same sort of satisfaction given from games like Portal, where you feel intelligent for solving them. Instead, they hide things from you, things that often feel too hard to find. You can spend buckets of time just looking for things that blend in. The art style doesn’t help this at all. While the art style is aesthetically pleasing, it makes seeing where you have to maneuver difficult. Some of the puzzles are fun, but most are bland and repetitive.

RB2

Combat in Rocketbirds is okay, but can get quite annoying and frustrating. When it works, it is a good and fun system, but sometimes the enemies just overpower you. For example, with this combat system, the final boss is ridiculously difficult. It took me far too many tries. There were times it worked well, and those were some really fun times in the game, but when it doesn’t work, and the level is too hard, it can get really frustrating.

The story is confusing, and with the limited dialogue, it doesn’t really explain what is going on at all. What I got out of the story is that Hardboiled Chicken was recruited by the penguins, and didn’t like that they were taking over innocent towns and people, and then quit and became a renegade soldier. He then goes and tries to liberate the town that the penguins have most recently taken over, Albatropolis. The story really does matter much in the grand scheme of things, and it didn’t get in the way much.

RB3

The amount of content is kind of disappointing as well, as the game is really short. There are 15 missions, lasting at most about 20 minutes each. That turns out to be about 5 hours, which feels a bit short. There are 3 signs, or collectibles, in each mission, for a total of 45 signs in the game. Other than that, the only things that will keep you playing are the Co-op campaign, and that lovely platinum trophy.

Speaking of the trophies, they are mostly pretty easy. There are trophies for collectibles, doing specific things in the levels, and that one trophy that prevents you from a platinum trophy. You have to complete the Co-op campaign. That shouldn’t be very hard, except you can only play online via invite only.

As far as sound design goes, the voice-overs are not great, but few and far between. But a real plus is the music, which is pretty great. The music is done by New World Republic, and pairs up really nicely with the gameplay. It was a sort of rock-techno band, and their stuff in the game is great. Especially at the end of the game is when the music starts to kick in, and I was rockin’ out on my little Vita earbuds.

RB1

Rocketbirds Hardboiled Chicken is a mediocre platformer, with a few too many flaws. A confusing story that doesn’t really matter, bland puzzles, not so great combat, and a lack of replay value. There are some positives, however; some decent platforming, a good soundtrack and a pretty art style. For ten bucks, you could do a lot worse, but there are plenty of better times to be had on the Vita.

PG5_10

Categories
Playstation VIta Playstation Vita News

So What Happened At Last Night’s Vita Conference?

Sony held a conference early this morning on what was to come for the Playstation Vita. It was filmed in a Nintendo Direct style, with someone talking in front of the camera, then rolling game footage, or having an interview. However, it wasn’t really meant for a US audience. Even though it was prerecorded, and they had time to subtitle it, they didn’t. Most of the games were anime- based RPG’s, along with a lengthy demo of Phantasy Star Online running on the Vita.

To kick off the event, Sony announced a price cut for the Vita in Japan. The price has shifted to 19, 980 Yen, or about 215 dollars. It also seems that this is the price tag of both versions now, 3G and WiFi. It is unclear whether this price drop will also come to America.

PSO2 vita

Sony showed off several games, such as Phantasy Star Online 2 for Vita, Vallhalla Knights 3, and God Eater 2, and debuted new trailers for games such as Soul Sacrifice and Dragon’s Crown. Along with those, they announced two new Vita bundles, The Soul Sacrifice bundle, that includes some Vita skins, a case, and some other game bonuses. There is also a new Vita color with one of the bundles. The Phantasy Star Vita Bundle comes with a slick silver Vita, one that has not been shown before. We in North America have not even been given the red and blue Vitas yet, so I wouldn’t expect the silver one anytime soon.

They also touched on an update to PS Plus in Japan. It looks like PS Plus users in Japan will be getting Uncharted: Golden Abyss for free, along with Dokuro (a platformer with a cool art style), and several other games we couldn’t catch (but they looked like RPGs, surprise, surprise).

When Final Fantasy X HD was talked about, they did something similar to showing Call of Duty Black Ops Declassified at E3 last year. No screenshots, no footage, just a verbal update that it still exists.

Another thing I found interesting, is that they are running a Cross Buy/Cross Play thing in Japan, but with the PSP and Vita. If you buy God Eater Burst on PSP, you get God Eater 2 on Vita. You can also cross play–or cross something–between the games, because they showed footage running next to each other with arrows, similar to what SCEA does when they show Cross Save from Vita to PS3.

gundam

They also announced Gundam Breaker, which looks insane; it even slowed the stream on my computer. Soul Sacrifice looked great as always, and we know we are getting that game so I can at least be excited for that one. Those were the games that stood out to me, but what did you think? Post in the comments below, or send me an email at noah@provengamer.com.

Categories
Playstation 3 Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time Review

Sly Cooper Thieves in Time does not have the same developer or graphics, but it is still Sly, and that’s a really good thing. Sly Cooper Thieves in Time is a stealthy platforming game with tons of content, a good story, and humor that doesn’t get old. Sanzaru’s love for the franchise really shines through, as they were able to emulate it perfectly over to the PS3 and Vita. Even though this is Sanzaru’s first game, it is a pretty darn good one.

Sly has a single player campaign, but it is filled to the brim with content. There are about 8 missions to a chapter, and each mission lasts from 20 to 30 minutes. The main story lasts about a good 15 hours, and if you want all of the clue bottles, Sly masks, and treasures, prepare to spend a lot more time with Sly. The story of the game is that the book written by Sly’s ancestors, The Thevius Raccounus, is losing the information right off the pages. Sly needs to go back in time, and rewrite Cooper history, along with his friends, Murray, and Bentley. You meet plenty of interesting characters along the way with great senses of humor, including ancestors and bosses. You can’t go 2 minutes in this game without Sly making a wisecrack or another character cracking a joke or a pun or just a funny phrase. It really adds to the game, making it less serious and lots more fun.

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Ever since the first Sly game the boss missions have been my favorite. Bentley gives you an elaborate slideshow on what you will be doing and he sends you off. You play as every character during these: the original Cooper Gang, and sometimes special guests, each with their own little task. It adds an interesting dynamic and is super fun to play. At the end, you finally face a boss. The boss has cool attacks, but they can usually be easily timed, and dodged. There are huge set pieces jump around the level a lot which you must traverse to get to the boss. They take a while to beat, and at the end it transitions very nicely to the next time period, fitting in to the story perfectly.

Even though it is a platformer, there are plenty of other things to mix up the game and keep it fresh. There are dance minigames, shoot ‘em ups, and even a whack-a-mole type of game. These are things you would never expect in a Sly game, but they just feel right. They didn’t feel like a chore and they actually added some spice to the game. If you want some more of these types of games, there is a separate package with a ton more of these minigames in the Bentley’s Hackpack PSN game for $4 dollars.

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As much as I love this game, there are still some problems; old and new. Most of the regular enemies are quite dumb. I can stand literally a couple feet right in front of them and they usually will not see me. Also, the enemies are all the same! They all have the same attacks, and it seems like they just re-skinned the enemies over and over to fit the theme of the chapter. The one last problem I had with the game was the ridiculous load times. On both the PS3 and Vita, it takes very long to load levels, missions, and even the hideout. It really got annoying, but it’s a small price to pay for the game’s beauty.

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Speaking of the game’s beauty, it is very pretty. Running through the open areas in the Japan level, and staring down at it from the tallest building, you could see all the time and effort that went into creating this game. The Vita game is still stunning, but obviously not as pretty as its console twin. The Vita version doesn’t compromise on anything but that, so the games are the exact same thing. L2 and R2 controls are moved to the touchscreen, but nothing other than that.

The trophies are difficult, if you are bad at looking for collectibles. Other than that, the trophies are given for the story, and for acing dance minicamps, and such. Also, the Vita and PS3 have separate trophy lists, so if I earn 12 trophies on my Vita, when I sync it over, I will unlock 12 trophies on PS3. It is reminiscent of Sound Shapes, if you did the “cross” features in that game. So overall, the trophies in this game are difficult but fun, and will take you a long while to achieve.

Sanzaru did an excellent job emulating the PS2 classic on to the PS3 and Vita, in both the good, and the very minimal bad parts. The story is original, the humor is great, and the gameplay is just fun. With “cross” everything, you really can’t go wrong. Even with my tiny gripes, it was still a fun experience. I had a great time playing this game, and if anyone from Sanzaru is reading this, I promise you I will be first in line to buy Sly 5. Guaranteed.

PG9_10

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Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

Super Crate Box Review

Super Crate Box was and forever will be an excellent mobile game. The extremely short rounds make the game easy to play in short spurts, exactly what most people want in a mobile game. There was only one thing missing though: actual button and analog controls. That’s what the Playstation Mobile Vita version of this game brings.

The game is basically a 2D side-scroller, but enclosed. You play as a little guy running around the 4 different areas in the game. The main goals are to dodge the enemies and collect the boxes. Each box supplies you with a new gun, from pistols to miniguns to laser rifles. You must use these guns, because if an enemy reaches the bottom, he comes back red, angry, and twice as fast. All the while there are tons of enemies streaming out of the top of the stage. This results in very crazy, frenetic gameplay that makes the rounds only about thirty seconds long.

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There are 3 different stages all offering something new. The enemies go a different way. There are new characters and weapons to unlock, and new colors and stage layouts. The game is able to do all this, while still maintaining the fun gameplay that keeps us coming back for more.

 

I’ll admit it now. I’m obsessed with the stats screen. It gives me information on how long I’ve obsessed over this awesome game (too long), how many total crates I’ve collected, how many times I’ve killed and died from every enemy, and all of my unlocks. This is great for people like me who constantly like to check their stats.

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There is an exciting, upbeat 8-bit audio track for each stage that is exciting and fun at first, but after 30 seconds it seems like it is looping over and over. This sadly makes the audio go bland after couple minutes and then starts to become flat out annoying. I like the soundtrack I just wish there could be more, so that I’m not hearing the same thing over and over again every thirty seconds. Similarly, the gun noises sound very good at first, but after hearing that pistol blast 1,000 times, it will get annoying. The game’s art style is the wonderful pixel-art style we all know and love. The shape and polish to every detail in the game from the character models, to the bullet shapes, to the guns is superb. Even the extra character models you can collect have amazing and creative shapes and sizes.

 

This is an addictive, enjoyable game that you can pay for once and get on all your Android devices and your Vita. The Vita one is the one that improves it, adding button and analog controls. The soundtrack is good, but repetitive and the graphics are awesome. The game is only $3.49, making it almost impossible to pass up.

PG8_10

 

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Playstation VIta Playstation Vita Reviews

escapeVektor Review

EscapeVektor by itself is an excellent puzzle game. But the developers at Nnooo wanted to add a story, something to push you onward, and passed with flying colors. The story isn’t just to break up the levels, the story actually means something. The puzzles, and the way you pass them, are excellent too. There is so much great content in this 10 dollar package it’s astounding.

In escapeVektor you follow the story of a man named Vektor, who has been trapped inside a computer. He wants to escape, but is held in by the evil CPU. You play as Vektor, guiding yourself out of the computer. Throughout the story, Vektor “codes” new powers from completing nodes and recovering Vektor’s memories from before he entered the CPU. You upgrade these powers by scoring high on levels. Upgrades include a larger blast radius for your detonate attack, a larger boost capacity and so on. He also hacks you wild cards, which I’ll go into detail in later. This is very creative, and shows they definitely spent a while on the game.

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To help Vektor escape, you must guide him across lines in the computer. At first this is simple, but then, the CPU “adapts” and starts to throw enemies at you. The game has an easy learning curve, starting out rudimentary, but then slowly progressing to get harder across the 150 “nodes” or levels. It starts to get crazy with laser gates, enemies that eat your progress in the levels, and alarms that make the enemies go twice as fast. These made the levels hard, but not “OH MY GOODNESS! WHY CAN’T I PASS THIS LEVEL!!!” hard. I had to retry a few times, but after a while I finally figured it out.

There also is a scoring and medal system in the game, in which you get points for filling in the levels, killing enemies, and finishing within the time limit. But the catch is; to get a gold or platinum medal, you (usually) have to use a wild card. A wild card doubles your score for the level, but can only be used once. If you die on that attempt, it is gone forever. The only ways to get new wild cards are by setting a new personal best on a level, or sometimes Vektor hacks them for you at random times.

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There are bonus nodes too, but they’re different from the rest. You can use them to upgrade your powers, or just for playing the game more. They have different rules to them, like time mode and eraser mode. Time mode is just a timed level–you have to finish in the time limit. Eraser mode is extremely difficult; if you run over a line you have made already, it disappears. You really need to strategize on these, and definitely plan out patterns to pass the node.

Nnooo has never developed for the Vita before, but you could never tell. The game has a cool gyroscope feature, great trophies, beautiful graphics, and an awesome soundtrack. The gyroscope lets you see around the level, and is cool while you are stationary. If you are in a car, or anywhere moving, it doesn’t work, but it is easily turned off. But in the right circumstances, it works pretty well.

The trophies are good and fair, like leveling up Vektor all the way, or unlocking every zone. They’re all obtainable for sure, except for one that will really give you trouble. That trophy is for finishing every level without detonating. And once you’ve played this, you’ll understand why it’s nearly impossible.

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escapeVektor is beautiful, and looks very sharp on the Vita’s OLED screen. The camera angles really show off the vibrant levels and colors well. Even the menus look good, which is a plus. The soundtrack goes with the game well. Even my dad said “Is that that the music game? (referring to Sound Shapes)” and he really likes the music from that.

escapeVektor is a must buy, and probably the best puzzle game on the Vita yet. I enjoyed the game a ton and I am going to try for the platinum medal in every level (even though that’s unlikely). Plain and simple, you should buy this game, it is a great time.

PG9_10