Fangame Review: (Mario) The Music Box – ARC

(Mario) The Music Box - ARC | Title Screen

CW: Violence and Gore.

The (Mario) The Music Box series is just so insane and absurd that I can’t get enough of it. The first installment was a solid Corpse Party clone marred only by having button mashing prompts that will make your arms fall off before completing the game. I did have some other complaints about unresolved plot points and a lack of relevance to the Mario canon, and the sequel, (Mario) The Music Box – ARC, takes those criticisms into account… in the weirdest way possible.

The first (Mario) The Music Box was a fairly standard Corpse Party clone but the (Mario) The Music Box – ARC decides to abandon any semblance of sanity that remained in this series… if there was any to begin with. Read more

Quick Review: Mad Father (PC)

I’ve talked about Misao: Definitive Edition a couple weeks ago. I did find that there was at least a marginal amount of appeal to that game, but it fell apart under close scrutiny and it becomes hard to recommend. Mad Father was originally released in 2012 as a freeware title and was the second game developed by Sen after the original version of Misao. Despite this, Mad Father received a remake for Steam before Misao did. After having played both games it is quite obvious as to why; Mad Father is an immensely superior title.

The reason that Mad Father is so much better than Misao can be chalked up to a much more consistent story with much stronger writing. I do not consider Mad Father a perfect game by any stretch and it certainly has its fair share of issues, but I will say that I found this one have much stronger substance in its content and there were at least a few genuinely scary moments. Read more

Misao: Definitive Edition (PC): A Poor Man’s Corpse Party (Detailed Review)

Misao: Definitive Edition | logo

TW: References to Violence, Gore, and child abuse.

Lately I have had an interest in the “RPG Maker horror game” sub genre of sorts. The last one I covered was (Mario) The Music Box which I certainly enjoyed but my space bar did not. Prior to that the only other games I played of this type are Yume Nikki, LISA: The First, and Corpse Party Blood Covered (which wasn’t actually made in RPG Maker but probably could have been).

Games like Yume Nikki and LISA: The First are only tangentially connected to games like Corpse party, The Witch’s House, Ib, Ao Oni, Mad Father, and the subject of this review; Misao. The reason I say this is because those types of games aren’t explicit horror titles and are more so abstract walking sims with some very weird set pieces. I wasn’t crazy about Yume Nikki (although I can see why others are), I have quite liked the more straight up horror titles.

At the time of writing I have completed the Steam remakes of Mad Father and of its predecessor Misao. Despite the fact that Sen released their remake of Mad Father first, I decided to play Misao first because the original version was made before Mad Father. I am glad that I did so because it allows me to see how much was improved from one game to another. Read more

Fangame Review: Mother: Cognitive Dissonance

I have been a fan of the EarthBound series for many years at this point. I first became a fan from watching various lets plays of the game back around 2008 or 2009, because at the time I knew nothing about roms and emulators, and I clearly could not afford a copy of EarthBound. After having been moved by both EarthBound and Mother 3, I was enamored with the series for several months to the point of near obsession. As such, the series was very influential to my experiences as a gamer, despite me having experienced them over a decade after EarthBound’s release.

I didn’t end up playing EarthBound on my own until I bought a cart myself despite the huge price, and I’m still glad I have a physical copy seeing as how it’s my favorite game of all time, and I only played Earthbound Beginnings last year when it was released on the Wii U e-shop. Hell I still have not legitimately played Mother 3 and am waiting until its inevitable e-shop release to do so (although as I said, I have seen let’s plays of it and know enough to say that’s it’s pretty much a masterpiece) Read more

Steam Greenlight Landfill: Final Quest II

Final Quest II | loading screen save

Good fucking god why did I even bother to play this piece of shit? I was not thinking this game would turn out good after the first game was such a train wreck, but this one is not only worse, it is a FUCK LOAD worse! The first Final Quest is Mother 3 compared to this miscarriage of a game! Final Quest II is so bad that I now take back every positive thing I said about it’s developer. I take it back because a game as bad as Final Quest II CANNOT be released at retail without the developers noticing. A development team that would knowingly release a game as unplayable as Final Quest do NOT deserve your money or support.

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Meltys Quest (PC): Shameless, Trashy, and Oddly Compelling (Detailed Review) (NSFW)

Meltys Quest | title screen

CW: Mentions of and references to strong sexual content, rape, incest, pedophilia, homophobia, biphobia, and domestic abuse. Images are blurred but still sexual in nature.

Meltys Quest is a bit of an oddity to me. I can normally just place a game in the “good” or “bad” category and be done with it. I did enjoy Meltys Quest overall, but there were also a lot of issues that I had with it, and those issues are ones that prevent me from giving it a blanket recommendation across the board. One of the key reasons that I choose to do away with review scores is because some factors may be more or less important for some people than others. A review is merely one interpretation of the game in question, and one’s own interpretations will be based very heavily on their own backgrounds.

My own background as a radical feminist is one that makes me a lot more critical of certain aspects of this game than most of its target audience will care about. While I am far from sex negative, I do tend to hold a lot of disdain for porn, or at the very least mainstream pornography. I don’t believe that it is doing direct harm or needs to be banned like the stereotypical angry triggered feminazi stereotype does, but rather I think that most porn… kinda sucks, and I don’t mean in the sexy way (although it does that to). If anything, I actually have far more respect for the eroge genre than most do because I don’t think that being an eroge justifies shitty writing or immaturity. Yes, the intent of the game is kept in mind, but such a thing is just common sense when reviewing.

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Steam Greenlight Landfill: Vickinachi

Vickinachi | Title Screen

I got Vickinachi through a trade with someone on Indiegala for a spare code I had for a game I had no interest in playing. Going into this game, I knew it was going to be bad based on the Steam reviews, and I decided to go with it due to morbid curiosity and because it can usually be fun to tear into terrible games in reviews. I did not expect it to be THIS bad though. Steam Greenlight Landfill is a bit of a misnomer when applied to Vickinachi as the more accurate descriptor would be Steam Greenlight Septic Tank, along with the likes of The Interview, The Graveyard, Tokyo Hosto, and Pregnancy (and also technically because it was released in 2017, but Steam Direct Landfill just doesn’t sound the same).

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Final Quest (PC): The Problem With RPG Maker Games on Steam (Detailed Review)

Final Quest | Title Screen

It has been well established that Steam Greenlight was a disaster. Due to an absence of quality control aside from a fee, it allowed the service to become flooded with dozens of poorly made and amateurish titles ranging from buggy Minecraft clones, dull and substance-less walking simulators, Twine novels, horribly drawn and translated visual novels, and dozens of “retro throwbacks” that look like Atari 2600 titles and bare more similarities to the Shovelware published by LJN than any of the classics. There were even periods where games made to encourage violence towards gay and transgender people and games with literal snuff footage made it onto the service, and the latter is STILL UP!

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