Standard Review: Ghosts ‘n Goblins (Arcade/C64/ZX/NES/Amiga/GBC/WS/GBA/PC/IOS/Android)

Ghosts 'n Goblins | Level 1

Ghosts ‘n Goblins was always infamous for being one of the hardest games ever made. That statement is pretty much 100% accurate, Ghosts ‘n Goblins is so difficult that it is only on the border of how difficult a game can be while still being playable. One should note that I am using the word “difficult” and not “challenging.” The reason I say this is because being challenging is generally a good thing as it implies that a game brings you up to its own level by being demanding and through its design.

Ghosts ‘n Goblins, on the other hand, is just difficult in the sense that it is very patience trying and unfun. Before I hear the parade of apologists proclaiming “git gud” I should make it clear that I did beat this game twice, and yes I am counting it as twice regardless of that stunt they pulled the first time. Ghosts ‘n Goblins may be beatable, but it isn’t exactly an enjoyable game to play. Most players will be having far more frustration than fun and beating it serves no purpose other than bragging rights. Read more

Standard Review: Sonic Adventure (Dreamcast/Gamecube/PC/PS3/360)

Sonic Adventure | Box Art

Sonic Adventure was a game that I grew up with, and recently took the opportunity to replay through its steam port that I got on sale. Looking back on it, I always noticed that there were some flaws with it but still felt nostalgia for it anyway. After replaying it, my opinion is mostly reaffirmed except that I found them more emphasized. The flaws were more grating, but the good parts of it were more apparent and I still had quite a bit of fun with it.

The story in Sonic Adventure is mostly a mixed bag. The writing is very stiff and basic, oftentimes to the point of being laughable. Even as a kid I was able to understand the problems with the game’s writing and easily understood what others criticized it for. Despite this, the game held a unique charm to it that drew me to it. Read more

Top 5 Games Reviewed on Guardian Acorn in its First Year

Holy shit folks. I was too busy wallowing in guilt and depression that I didn’t notice that this dumb blog of mine has been going for over a year now. I have been thinking about how I would commemorate this and considered focusing on my favorite articles posted here… but that would be mostly political pieces and I want to have fun here. So I decided I will instead focus on the best & worst games reviewed on this site this year.

I’ve been a game reviewer longer than a political commentator anyway. I’ve been reviewing since early 2013 but it only occurred to me this year that I could actually make a name for myself with my writing talents… okay maybe not but I’ll have a better chance of doing so and not needing a real job if I just create my own blog. As a note though, I’m only counting games I reviewed between the start of 2017 and May 6th of 2018 so that I can count my Brash Games reviews. So this means no reviews that were written prior but re-edited and posted here, as I’d like to talk about stuff I actually played recently.

So, out of the 30 + titles reviewed in this time period, which ones did I enjoy the most? Read on to find out. Links to where the titles can be purchases are embedded in the parenthesis over their respective consoles. Read more

Amazing VGM: Believe in Myself (Sonic Adventure)

Sonic Adventure | Tornado

I’ve never been one to avoid connecting my personal life into my game related articles. After all, if someone is reading this blog then it’s because I have a unique style that no one else can replicate. I may as well not hide the fact that I am an individual person with her own experiences and feelings. It is those experiences that make me who I am and it is who I am that allows me to do what I do.

Fittingly enough, this week’s song is about learning to take care of and believe in yourself, and given what just happened I cannot think of a more appropriate time to cover it. The song is titled, appropriately enough, “Believe in Myself” and is the character theme of Tails from Sonic Adventure. Read more

Amazing VGM: Satellite (Phantasy Star III: Generations of Doom)

God Phantasy Star III was such a weird game. Its setting seemed to be this weird cross between medieval and futuristic yet never was really set on one, the plot was barely prevalent but what little prevalence it did have was of the “WTF” variety, the poor testing and rushed design ended up with a lot of exploitable bugs or just odd occurrences such as a random enemy that was given that absolute highest possible stats and was stronger than the final boss… but could still be beaten relatively quickly cause it has the same amount of health. The game is an absolute mess and I cannot help but find it fascinating even if the game itself is ungodly tedious.

The music is something that also contributes to the surreal nature of the game. The soundtrack obviously tried to go for a more orchestral approach but trying for symphonic on the Genesis sound chip ends similarly to trying to tell Razorfist he’s wrong; they both just kind of implode on themselves at the mere thought of the possibility.

The resulting soundtrack is one full of tracks that are in the realm of “sometimes work but sometimes don’t.” Some tracks such as “Laya’s World” are actually Read more

Splatterhouse Retrospective #5: Splatterhouse 2010 (Xbox 360/PS3)

Splatterhouse | Pal boxart

TW: Strong violence and gore.

So, this review has been in the works for quite some time. I actually played this game before any of the other Splatterhouse titles, but I finished it after I beat the original 4. I will just say, this game was an absolute blast to play. Yes, captain contrarian strikes one last time before the end of the year, and that this game is what I consider the best game in the series.

Yes, the first two games may be more refined gameplay and design wise, and are thus “objectively” better at succeeding at what they set out to do, but the simple truth of the matter is that Splatterhouse 2010 attempts A LOT more. Even if it doesn’t succeed at everything, the sum of its parts still offers much more than the original games.  Read more

Splatterhouse Retrospective #3 – Splatterhouse 2 (Genesis)

Splatterhouse 2 | Japanese Cover

Splatterhouse 2, known as Splatterhouse Part 2 in Japan, was a good game, a serious improvement over Wanpaku Graffiti if you even consider the games comparable. I would definitely consider it to be among the all time greats of the Sega Genesis, and would strongly recommend it to those whom are fans of Genesis library given that it is often overshadowed by… just about every Sega published title on the system. Whether I would consider it a better game than the first Splatterhouse though, I am undecided on.

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Splatterhouse Retrospective #1 Splatterhouse (Arcade/TurboGrafx-16/IOS)

Splatterhouse | international Cover

TW: Violence and… oh fuck it, I’ll let the cover of the Turbo-Grafx 16 version speak for you.

Splatterhouse | turbo grafx art
Challenge accepted!

This last October, I bit off a bit more than I can chew with the planned Halloween themed content. My initial plan was to review both Euphoria and Sweet Home within the month of October, but I kinda botched that when I tried to simultaneously juggle Read more

Detailed Review: South Park: The Stick of Truth (PS3/PS4/360/XONE/Switch/PC)

South Park: The Stick of Truth | Logo

Trigger Warning: This review contains references to racism, anti-semitism, and forced cross dressing. The game itself contains depictions of the above in addition to gore, nudity, scatology, sodomy, abortions (performed on a man), miscarriages, and Nazis (of the zombie variety).

Just looking at the creation process of South Park: The Stick of Truth, it is easy to see practically endless ways how this game could have been a colossal disappointment. First of all, there is the fact that it is indeed a licensed game, which sets the bar low seeing as how most licensed games tend to be average at best even when they have a significant amount of potential and hype. Even ignoring that this is a licensed game, this was the first time that Matt Stone and Trey Parker had any involvement in a game based off their license (they  have admitted in the past to being displeased with previous South Park

games, which is why they made sure to be more closely involved with this game). To add to this, the game went through development hell due to THQ going out of business and the publishing being transferred to Ubisoft. There were practically thousands of reasons to be skeptical that this game would turn out well, whether they be concerns about how South Park’s heavy emphasis on political and pop culture based writing would not transfer over well into a video game, or even looking at Obsidian Entertainment’s track record of having their games released plagued with bugs and glitches that would out due even Bethesda’s games.

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Amazing VGM: Hell Chaos (Splatterhouse)

Splatterhouse (1988) | Hell Chaos

Well, this is the final VGM of the month and I am feeling hella satisfied that I managed to get a Halloween/horror themed VGM up each week. Yes, “Appetite” counts since Starless IS one of the most horrifying games ever created (albeit for all the wrong reasons), and “The Eye Awakens a Jungle” is a pretty freaky track even if Earthbound isn’t a horror game (although mu training, brain surgery on children, and Giygas should be enough to qualify it). So, what better way to end off this month than with a final boss theme from Namco’s arcade horror classic, Splatterhouse?

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