By using this site, you agree to our Privacy Policy and our Terms of Use. Close

Forums - Nintendo Discussion - A Biased Review Reloaded - Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology - The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild in Review One Year Later

Whoa! I'm shocked to see RE7!

Pleasantly shocked, of course :)

I agree the first hour or so is the weakest but then when it moves away from the hide-and-seek gameplay it improves a lot. Thanks for reviewing!



Around the Network

Well well well. What convinced/persuaded you?



Horizon Zero Dawn (PlayStation 4)

Horizon Zero Dawn tells the story of Aloy, an outcast who overcomes the odds and rises to popularity, all while searching for her origins and battling a threat to a post-apocalyptic world where humans live in primitive tribes and machines are running around in the wild. It doesn't take a genius to figure that mankind bit off more than it can chew when it developed robots and then lost control over them, so that's how these things fit together. Ruins of the previous civilization can be found in various parts of this new world and there are plenty of audio logs and data to be found that explain how things played out hundreds of years ago.

The main weapons at your disposal are a spear and a bow that can fire a multitude of different arrows. The battles are fast and often get hectic when you fight against groups of machines. It's here where everything comes together to form the ultimate double-edged sword. On one hand it's exciting and spectacular what can happen, but on the other hand you have to deal with shortcomings. One of them is the controller design of the DualShock 4 where placement of the left analog stick and the d-pad (for item selection and activation, most importantly healing) don't allow it that you simply use your right thumb for the d-pad to do what you desperately need to do while you create some breathing room between yourself and a furious horde of enemies. The other problem that is repeatedly encountered are inconsistencies in the hit detection between Aloy and the environment. While she can automatically move over obstacles as high as her hips, small stones and fallen trees at ankle height can cause her to get stuck and force you to press a button.

The flaws in traversal extend to climbing where, for example, Aloy is unable to grab a two meter high ledge of a ruined house on one side, but can get up easily on the other side where a ledge is at the exact same height marked with a yellow bar. Getting out of the water also creates strange situations where seemingly flat rocks are too much of a problem, but moving half a meter to the side of the same surface gets the trick done. Horizon Zero Dawn is without a doubt a great game, but it's these irritating little things that made me decide to score it an 8 instead of a 9. Those, and the lack of growth over the course of the game. Make no mistake, there is some growth - and there is certainly a lot when it comes to Aloy's abilities in combat - but weapons and armor do not change much. I suppose that's one way to balance the difficulty for an open world game, but it takes away the absolute destruction of early foes with a late game save file. The spear in particular is disappointing because you keep the same one.

Aside from the beginning hours that force you to closely follow the story, there's a lot of freedom in how you explore the world and when you solve optional quests. There is also a variety of collectibles for which hints can be bought, so there's really no shortage of things to do. The side activities contribute to your character level, but that once again makes it disappointing that things are tied together so well in theory, but provide little reward. All a level up does is grant ten additional HP and one skill point to spend on new abilities. There are no such things as base strength and defense that increase over the course of the game. The only notable stat improvements come from modifications that can be added to weapons and armor, but those work in percentages that are negligible in the first half of the game and do not even impress later on.

Exploring the world of Horizon Zero Dawn was a lot of fun. Especially the ruins under the surface of the earth that gave me Tomb Raider vibes. Probably because Aloy is voiced by the German Lara Croft - at least as far as the Legend/Anniversary/Underworld trilogy is concerned.

Controls 10 A loaded control scheme that requires some practice.
Hard to keep moving and select items at the same time.
Gameplay   Open world game with a combat system that provides
one or the other spectacular moment.
Story   An interesting post-apocalyptic main story, well-written
sidequests and a likeable main character.
Single-player   The game opens up after several hours of playtime.
Only notable downside: Lacking feeling of growth.
Multiplayer   Not
available.
Graphics   Eye candy that almost always runs at 30 fps.
Oddly enough, most foliage doesn't react to the player.
Sound   Much like movie music, it sounds good while you listen
to it, but somehow nothing sticks with you.
Value   About 30 hours for the main story.
Double that for full completion.
Replay Value   New game+ options with several difficulty settings.
Cutscenes are skippable, dialogue can be pressed away.
Score 8 Horizon Zero Dawn is a stunning open world game
that commits a couple of frustrating mistakes.


Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments

Wait... Rol has a PS4? What is this madness!? :O



Great Horizon review Rol,  didn't see it mentioned in your review, but since I personally found it detracted from the games visuals I would inquire about your thoughts on all that in game icon clutter .

I like your critique  formula and so have  a request I would look forward to and greatly appreciate you doing a review on Persona 5 if possible.



Around the Network

Did you buy a PS4?
I like how the headline is the RE7 review, but the big story here is the HZD review.



Implosion: Never Lose Hope (Switch eShop)

There aren't many reviews for Implosion: Never Lose Hope for Nintendo Switch out there. It is a port of a mobile game that sits at a stunning 93 for iOS on Metacritic, but this didn't mean that I had high expectations. For one, indie games tend to be overrated, and two, that doubly goes for mobile games where being interesting for more than five minutes leads to skyrocketing scores from what I've observed. I was in the mood for this type of game to play on Switch, so I took a chance.

Implosion is on the cheaper side with its €12 price tag (presumably $12) and it comes with added story content right from the start. The regular campaign features 34 stages that are usually 3-10 minutes long, so that's fair enough. The short length of the individual levels is a plus point because the gameplay systems are rather monotonous. There's not much variety to the combos and Implosion makes Warriors games look sophisticated. Or rather, Warriors games do a much better job at covering up for their simplicity by offering a big cast of characters. Implosion has only two. Still, in the first few hours of gameplay it's all quite decent. The game is challenging, so by the time you reach the end of world 3 of 4, you probably have to do reruns of earlier stages to get strong enough for the final stretch despite the option to revive your character with full health up to five times on normal difficulty.

There are incentives to replay stages beyond plain grinding, namely medals for completing special conditions as well as a ranking system. While the latter seems to be only for bragging rights, the former unlocks upgrade parts for your mobile suit. It's a pity that the medal system is half-baked, because in the range of 100-140 medals you only unlock infinite ammo for the various guns, but activating these cheats removes your ability to earn medals. Worse, there are way more than 200 medals to gain in Implosion, but there are no rewards beyond the 140 mark. This drives the motivation into the ground, because the game gets increasingly more repetitive as time goes on.

Upgrades can be implemented in seven slots. The central part on your body adds up to three special abilities that can be activated if a gauge is filled, the other slots can provide you with various offensive, defensive and supportive perks. Upgrades require that you've reached a certain character level, so not everything that you find can be used right away. Unfortunately, none of these parts change that you get no invincibility frames during dodging and even temporary damage to your regenerating shield meter counts towards damage taken in the rankings screen, so that's another negative that hurts the motivation to continue playing.

Hard difficulty is a disappointment because of no changes to EXP gained; the enemies have a bit more health and hit harder, that's all. Extreme difficulty does things properly, so that's something positive. The additional content in Another Story is played with an exclusive character and features a tribute level to Hideo Kojima, going as far as naming a medal after him. Do not take clues from Kojima when it comes to gameplay, just don't! The individual stages in Another Story are a lot longer than in the main campaign, but there are only about half a dozen. Overall, you get a lot of game with Implosion: Never Lose Hope, but the subtitle eventually takes on a different meaning than the intended one.

Controls 10 Not much variety in the combo chains. The dodge move
has no invincibility frames, making life harder.
Gameplay   Hack and Slash in predominantly isometric view.
Seven upgrade slots allow for a lot of customization.
Story   A post-apocalyptic scenario with a cool presentation,
but who really cares in this type of game?
Single-player   The short length of the stages works well for reruns
for medals and better rankings, but overall it's repetitive.
Multiplayer   Not
available.
Graphics   A solid and unspectacular look that runs stable.
Nothing that stands out positively or negatively.
Sound   The title and menu theme is pretty cool, but other
than that the soundtrack is quite forgettable.
Value   34 stages in three difficulties in the campaign.
Another Story provides another couple of hours.
Replay Value   Can be played in short bursts and it should be done
this way. Too much repetition for longer sessions.
Score 5 Implosion is of consistent quality. Unfortunately, it doesn't
exceed mediocrity and instead embraces it.


Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments

mjk45 said:

Great Horizon review Rol,  didn't see it mentioned in your review, but since I personally found it detracted from the games visuals I would inquire about your thoughts on all that in game icon clutter .

I like your critique  formula and so have  a request I would look forward to and greatly appreciate you doing a review on Persona 5 if possible.

I thought the icon clutter was beneficial because the visuals don't highlight items you can interact with and otherwise they would blend in too much with the rest of the graphics.

There won't be a Persona 5 review.

morenoingrato said:
Did you buy a PS4?
I like how the headline is the RE7 review, but the big story here is the HZD review.

I am not a traitor.



Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments

RolStoppable said:
morenoingrato said:
Did you buy a PS4?
I like how the headline is the RE7 review, but the big story here is the HZD review.

I am not a traitor.

Reviews PS4 games... claims not to be a "traitor" when asked if bought one.... the only logical conclusion left is that you stole one? Bad Rol! :O



Pandora's Tower (Wii)

Pandora's Tower is a Wii title that comes in a black box, at least in Europe. This immediately indicates something special, but it might also oversell the game. Aeron and Elena are running from the Empire. Elena has also been cursed and is doomed to turn into a monster, unless she consumes the flesh of twelve masters who are located in a mysterious building that is held above a deep and wide canyon by a number of chains. At least according to the female merchant Mawda who leads the couple to the towers. These are already all characters in the game. The protagonist Aeron who tries to save his love interest Elena and the strange Mawda who provides him with goods and information. Despite so little on the surface and despite the only places you visit being an observatory and the towers, Pandora's Tower accomplishes a lot in the story and world-building department.

Elena's curse comes with a time limit that translates to roughly one hour of gameplay. If you don't manage to get the top of any of the twelve towers in time, you can fall back on flesh from lesser foes to buy yourself more time. Even the worst variant resets the time limit to about 45 minutes, so Pandora's Tower isn't a particularly stressful game. In the first half of the game you will have to play towers in a strict order - the difficulty goes along with that - but in the second half you get to choose from five different ones. Appropriate for the world's history, the second set of five towers represents the same elements as the first set, so they are essentially harder versions of things you've already seen. Of course, the bosses will be new. The final two towers come with a special feature that I won't spoil.

Pandora's Tower is divided into an urgent part and a relaxing one. Before I talk about the latter, I want to say a few more things about the former. You level up as you kill monsters, you can choose between four different main weapons eventually and each one of them can be forged to become more powerful and unlock new combos. The secondary weapon, the chain whip, can be used as projectile, to tie up a single enemy and to rip flesh and items out of monsters. It can also be used to tie two enemies together and then the damage of your main weapon is transfered from one enemy to the other by the chain to do damage to both of them at the same time. There are quite a few possibilities to consider.

In your base, the observatory, you don't have to worry about the time limit. You can spend as much time as you want with Elena to raise your bond with her which ultimately determines the ending you will get. You can talk to her and make her a wide variety of gifts. It's here where you can learn surprisingly much about Aeron and Elena's past, and can unlock about two dozens of special and mostly short cutscenes. You can change the in-game clock and learn that Elena has a daily schedule and that she does a good job at housekeeping, so she doesn't just sit in the observatory and twiddles her thumbs while you are out in the towers and risk your life to save hers. It is these interactions that give the whole game a lot more purpose.

Overall, Pandora's Tower is one of those odd games that tend to be written off quickly by most players. It simply doesn't look particulary good and playing it for a bit doesn't change that. But the more time you invest, the more the game returns. After you've finished the game with any ending, you get a chapter select to jump between different stages and you can buy a key from Mawda to explore the rooms that couldn't be accessed previously. One big oversight is that there's no in-game list for the cutscenes you've already seen, so 100% completion is very tricky without a guide. It can also be a bit tedious to play the towers again for the few things that couldn't be collected previously, but the focus on new game+ shifts to interactions with Elena, so it's not that bad.

Controls 10 The simple combat controls do a good job. The chain
whip comes with some irritating delays at times.
Gameplay   Climb towers to defeat bosses and retrieve their flesh.
Kill enemies and solve simple puzzles on your way up.
Story   The story of Aeron and Elena is quite average at first, but the
characters grow on you and the world is fleshed out with files.
Single-player   Pandora's Tower gears up after an only okay start
and the pieces begin to fit together.
Multiplayer   Not
available.
Graphics   Fixed camera angles for nice environments. Some
good special effects, but also occasional framerate drops.
Sound   A fitting soundtrack that also features compositions
from writers of classical music.
Value   About 15 hours to see the first of five endings. This variation
of new game+ comes with chapter select to obtain the rest.
Replay Value   Since you essentially play the game twice to fill out all blanks,
a proper new playthrough is going to be a while away.
Score 7 Pandora's Tower is greater than the sum of its parts. It seems
mediocre at first, but rewards you for the time you put into it.


Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments