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Kirby's Dream Collection: Special Edition
Kirby's Dream Collection: Special Edition
Offered by mostlymusic-biz
Price: $61.77
46 used & new from $38.75

5.0 out of 5 stars A great Kirby collection!, June 12, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Kirby's Dream collection, published in 2012 in celebration of 20 years for the pink-puff. It was the last title Nintendo published for the Wii console. You get a big colorful cover box which is mostly pink because of all the Kirby(s) that populate it. Inside you will find another box, the game case with a cover art that looks like someone took a plank of wood and seared the titles right on.. with what looks like two (psudo-)foil stickers highlighting "New challenge stages" and "Kirby's History". I also found inside a nice color 45 page art-book. Inside the game case you will find the game on a disc, a color manual, and a soundtrack CD featuring 45 tracks from various Kirby games.

The Kirby's History section of the disc allows you to control Kirby frantically running up and down a long hallway at a speed which rivals even Sonic the Hedgehog with no care of running into others. You get to see exhibits highlighting major events in Kirby and Nintendo history, including various trailers, gameplay videos, and 3 episodes from the TV show "Kirby: Right back at ya".

The six Kirby games featured are:
Kirby's Dreamland (1,2, & 3), Kirby's Adventure, Kirby Superstar (sadly the non-Ultra edition which was made for the DS), Kirby 64: The crystal shards. The Gameboy games are in B&W the rest are in color.They are all pretty much ports of the original games playing on your Wii/WiiU console. The early games feature the "Nintendo Hard" feel. The games I find myself returning to most are the last 3 games. Playing with a friend in co-op is a strong aspect in Kirby games. Kirby Superstar I think is the strongest game in this collection, I got quite a rush taking down Meta-Knight's Ship.

Also included are extra challenge levels for "Kirby's Return to Dreamland" (original game not required), but it is a friendly poke to go and buy the previous release.

I wished the collection included more Kirby games, like Kirby's "Nightmare in Dreamland", or "Kirby's Pinball Land". Overall this is a great collection for any Kirby fan, could have been even better but since there is so much content, and runs complementary to the previous game "Kirby's Return to Dreamland" it is hard not to love it. I would give it 4.5 "Warp-stars" but since I had such a blast with Kirby I would say it can easily be rounded up to 5. If you're excited for the next Kirby game for the Wii U but having a hard time waiting, consider this collection and the other fine Kirby Wii games.


Machinarium
Machinarium
Offered by MacSoftwareRus
Price: $29.99
2 used & new from $23.40

5.0 out of 5 stars An awesome indie game, truly a work of art!, April 10, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Machinarium (DVD-ROM)
Machinarium is an off-beat game, developed by Amanita Design in 2009 and was made for multiple platforms including Windows, Mac, Linux, PS3, and Android. It is a 2D point and click adventure game. What I find appealing in indie games such as this one is the sheer amount of creativity that went in. The collector's edition comes with some extra goodies such as a soundtrack.

You control a small Robot named Joseph and you solve puzzles in some form or another to solve as you travel through a highly stylized dystopian mechanical/robotic/steampunk world. The backgrounds and characters are very intricate in design and you may want to stop to soak it all in. The puzzles can get a little tricky sometimes but the game comes with a built in walk-through to help in case you get stuck (though you will have to earn that knowledge though a mini-game).

Not much to say about the audio other than it is simplistic but tasteful and the ambient music is easy to listen to and enhances the game's personality.

Machinarium has practically no dialogue and the story is conveyed via thought bubbles containing short animated sequences. You are given only small fragments of the story and as you progress you find more pieces that both answers some question while raising others, it is done in such a way that makes your mind engages the story and I found myself trying to put those pieces together which made for a deep and rewarding experience.

On a technical side, this game was made in Flash, meaning the code is a little wasteful and can run into some slowdowns on older computers. Strangely, saving the game relies on your web browser which means cleaning up may result in you losing your saves (unless you locate the files and back them up).

Overall Machinarium is a game that can be seen as both a videogame and a work of art. It makes you think in more than one way and offers a unique and enjoyable experience for those who wish to play and ponder about its various aspects such as the art, the story, and the philosophy and influences that went into making Machinarium. It has its technical flaws but if you are a gamer who loves adventure games, or a collector who is looking for a truly unique game for your collection, you won't be disappointed.


Terminal Velocity: Complete Version
Terminal Velocity: Complete Version
5 used & new from $2.82

5.0 out of 5 stars Terminally Awesome!, February 28, 2014
Terminal Velocity is a fast paced arcade-like spaceship shooter made by Terminal Reality and published by 3d Realms in 1995. Back in the day this game generated enough hype to get Microsoft to hire Terminal Reality for making two games which could be seen as the spiritual sequels to Terminal Velocity: Fury^3 and Hellbender.

The story is forgettable and is told via briefings (text) before starting your missions on each planet. I tend to skip this part and move straight to the action. Levels feel huge and open as you are free to explore for power ups as you complete your objectives (fly there, destroy this, kill that) all while enemies are almost constantly being thrown your way. Often you are instructed by your navigational computer to enter a tunnel, giving the game a slightly different feel. Boss fights are engaging as you are forced to not only fire at given boss but dodge his attacks as well.

Controls are easy to use, as I said it is arcade like in feel so controls are responsive and only loosely feel like a flight simulator but crashing into the ground or tunnel walls result in your shields take damage and your ship bounces off the surface. Enemy A.I could be considered stupid by today's standards but again not do fly around try to dodge your shots.

Graphics were amazing for its time and appeared to have aged gracefully, with open worlds (granted with some fog). It runs relatively smoothly in DosBox.

Sound effects are good and the music is alright if slightly repetitive though not annoyingly so as it gives a great feel to the levels.

In conclusion, Terminal Velocity is an excellent arcade-like shooter with plenty of action. Copies are hard to find so it is a collector's item. A word of caution there are `Shareware' CDs out there so make sure you find the complete version. Tip: type `Terminal' and `Reality' as your names to play the secret level!


Platinum 3D Action
Platinum 3D Action
Offered by You Name the Game
Price: $34.99
7 used & new from $1.95

5.0 out of 5 stars 3D action packed!!!, February 26, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Platinum 3D Action (CD-ROM)
This is a 3 game collection made by Wizard Works. It includes 3 FULL games:

1)Terminal Velocity: made by Terminal Reality and published by 3d Realms in 1995. Terminal Velocity is an arcade-like (i.e. easy controls) shooter where you pilot a space ship and attack various targets and enemies on distant planets. This game made quite a bit of excitement back in the day, enough to get Microsoft to hire Terminal Reality for making the spiritual sequels Fury^3 and Hellbender. Great Graphics for its time, decent music and sound (though a little repetitive). Easily the best game in this collection!

2)Rise of the Triad: made by Apogee in 1994, it is a fast pace FPS using a highly modified Wolfenstein 3D engine which later gave rise to the build engine (seen in Duke Nukem 3d). It introduced new features like different characters with different stats, various environmental hazards (traps!), moving platforms, online/LAN multiplayer, and some interesting interactions and power-ups (dog mode!). Rise of the Triad is fast paced, action packed, gory, and generally fun that will offer a nice challenge to hard core FPS player who want to play on the harder difficulties. Overall it is a great game.

3)Black Knight: a flight simulator made in 1994 by WizardWorks where you pilot a jet that looks like a F/A-18. Unfortunately most DOS based flight simulators suffer from lack of textures. The music and sound effects are nice though. I would recommend this game only to those who really love flight simulators.

Also included is printed manual and exclusive content:
1)"5 new planets" for Terminal Velocity- which is a little misleading, they use the exact same planets, same textures, same music, same enemies, same bosses. I think of it more as `alternate levels'.
2)1000 new levels for Rise of the triad - you can load those in via the game setup.exe where you pick the WAD you want to play (some are better than others).
3)50 new missions of Black Knight - more missions to fly and blast things.

Overall it is a great collection, with lots of extras, and probably cheaper than getting each game individually -especially if you are a collector of old videogames. I recommend using DosBox to get these games to work on a modern computer. If you are looking for just 2 of these 3 games you will still be getting a great deal!


DuckTales - Remastered - Wii U
DuckTales - Remastered - Wii U
Offered by Isomergames
Price: $17.99
27 used & new from $13.95

5.0 out of 5 stars THIS is how you do an HD remake!, February 24, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Capcom has been acting real strange over the last few years, making moves that range from awesome to downright boneheaded. I would classify Ducktales remastered under `Awesome'. Developed by wayforward and published by capcom & Disney. It is a remake of the classic NES game Ducktales developed and published by Capcom and Disney in 1989 for the NES.

Popping in the disc into the console you are greeted with a black screen with the title "Ducktales" and "press +" with 8-bit inspired tune that quickly forms a synergy with Synth: pure awesomeness. The background changes to a scrolling panoramic view of Duckberg, instantly raising my expectations for this game.

The story is straightforward; you play the duck who uses mountains of cash as slides and the piles of gold coins as his personal swimming pool. Yes you get to play the one and only Scrooge McDuck, who is on a quest to locate five treasures spread across various locations and increase his net wealth even further. The added (skippable) cutscenes spread liberally throughout the game are clearly based on episodes from the show. Ducktales remastered masterfully captures the very essence of the source material. Though it does artificially stretches the length of the game considerably the acting is top notch and it is a real treat hearing most of the voice cast of the show reprising their respective roles.
Gameplay is simple, you can run around, climbing ropes, jump, and use your pogo to attack enemies. Controls are easy to pickup and enjoy for all ages, though the difficulty ramps up significantly in the last level, it is not something that most cannot overcome (but it did remind me of another Disney platformer featuring a duck which was truly difficult to beat). Given the 8-bit roots controls do feel limited but that the intention is to recreate the feel of the original game and they did a spectacular job.

Graphics are crisp with cartoony a blend of 2D sprites and 3D objects. Generally looks great though there are some moments where the two appear to clash a bit. Also the character animation feels a little stiff at times, like it was made in flash. Though these imperfections do not ruin the general esthetics of the game though I would have appreciated hand-drawn animated sprites.

Music is another one of Ducktales's forte. Music comprises of remixes of the original tunes, and music from the TV show. There is even an alternative soundtrack featuring the music from the original 8-bit game (plus more tunes in the feel of 8-bit style) -very well done.

Overall, Ducktales remastered is a solid platformer with good replay value. I wish they included a playable ROM of the original game as well under bonus features but oh well... most would probably play it once and never again.
If you are a gamer in a need for some platforming action, a Ducktales fan, or both then I would highly recommend you buying this game!


Hocus Pocus Wizard Works
Hocus Pocus Wizard Works
9 used & new from $8.74

3.0 out of 5 stars With just a pinch of magic, February 22, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Hocus Pocus Wizard Works (CD-ROM)
Hocus Pocus is a platform game developed by Moonlite Software and published by Apogee for MS-DOS in 1994. So get DOSBOX to get this to work on a modern computer! The basic story is you play an apprentice wizard named Hocus Pocus who must travel to various locations to collect crystal balls of power to become a greater wizard and become a member on the council. The game spans a series of levels broken into four episodes and you must collect all the crystal balls spread across a level in order to advance to the next one.

Though the game showcases 256 colors, the graphics were considered dated even for their time. The background is sort of static, the levels are blocky and repetitive. I found some amusement in the ancient Egypt levels where the background had a building that was clearly Persian architecture. Though it was a step forward for Apogee games, it was far behind other games like the ones made by Epic Megagames.

Gameplay is amusing though a bit boring. Movement is stiff and blocky and animation is slightly choppy like most Apogee games at the time (like Duke Nukem 1). You run around zapping enemies that spawn a short distance as you try not to crash into them but at least Hocus Pocus has life meter (unlike Commander Keen). There are a few 'power ups' spread throughout the levels but they don't feel as powerful as they should. There are locked doors, keys, secret areas, and teleporters to help break the mundane but "It's not very effective".

The sound is somewhat bland and unspectacular, while the music sound cool (like the main theme) but a bit simplistic.

Bottom line Hocus Pocus is a cute game that was popular for a time but grew stale quickly when other better games showed up. Not to say Hocus Pocus is a bad game, rather it is a good game that uses the same old Apogee platform game formula with VGA graphics but it did not raise the bar much above that.

If you loves Apogee games, Hocus Pocus is a fine addition to the game collection. However if you are a gamer who expects something like 'Jazz Jackrabbit' then you will be sorely disappointed.


Shadows of Cairn
Shadows of Cairn
Offered by knightdiscounts
Price: $4.85
16 used & new from $0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars An awesome and obscure videogame, February 21, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Shadows of Cairn (CD-ROM)
Shadow of the Cairn is a platform game in the likeness of Prince of Persia. Developed in 1994 by Ant software, Shadow of the Cairn was made for both DOS and Windows 3.1. The basic story is you are an apprentice thief who needs to graduate from his guild but is framed for a plot to assassin the duke. This game was panned by reviewers for its punishing difficulty and boring and difficult room puzzles. I have to note however that the game does have four levels of difficulty with the ability to cheat on the `very easy' setting. It comes with an entire walkthrough to read when you get stuck.

The graphics are nice if not a little static; though the game features nice hand drawn cutscenes which were pretty sweet back in the day. The animation is alright, not as rotoscope good as Prince of Persia.

The sound is OK but the music is what draws you in with an eerie foreboding feel. You can choose between CD music tracks or music files, the two versions of music are different which is awesome because that means the game has an alternative soundtrack! Using the CD tracks comes with a performance issue (a slight pause) as the game tried to switch between tracks to accommodate what was happening on screen (the creepy ambiance changes to rocking electric guitar and drums when you enter your fighting stance). I generally played using the music files as there are no such performance issues when using them.

Gameplay can be summarized as running and jumping like in Prince of Persia with fighting like in Karateka. You are also allowed to roam around the city which would have been awesome if it weren't for many of the areas looking alike and with the occasional denizens skulking about (trying to collect the bounty on your head); thankfully there is a quick navigation button. When you reach an objective it is often a maze filled with traps and enemies. If you fall into a trap you are treated with a slightly amusing scene of your character getting impaled, sliced in two, falling to his doom, or mashed into a red gloppy pool.

On a technical note I was able to run the game in Windows XP 32 bit -and this game was made for Windows 3.1, it says to me someone did a good job. I even got to get the game to work under DOSBox. Overall this is a game that seems to have aged well, has some charm and if you are collector it is worth a look.


BRUTAL ABOVE THE CLAW (CD-ROM PC GAME)
BRUTAL ABOVE THE CLAW (CD-ROM PC GAME)
5 used & new from $1.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Brutal? yes, but not in a good way., February 19, 2014
'Brutal: above the claw', also known as 'Brutal: paws of fury'. (I know because after installing it on Dosbox I got greeted with the latter title). After publishing Super Street Fighter II Turbo on the PC, GameTek made this game in 1994; it was published on several platforms including DOS, Amiga, SNES, and Genesis. Alright so it one of those "Street Fighter II/ Mortal Kombat clones". Some clones were interesting and some pushed the boundaries of what fighters could be; such as 'One Must Fall 2097'.

This is NOT one of those great games. Everything about this game spells one word: -cheap.

-The music is basically 5-10 sec techno loops which quickly get repetitive. The sound effects are bland, and all the yelling and screaming the characters make are from the exact same voice file (even the one female character in the game).

-The graphics at first look passable with generic art design but it is the animation which is super cheesy: Same animation for characters walking forwards as well as backwards (giving some characters the ability to moonwalk).

-The fighting mechanics are derived from Street Fighter which was a good start but sadly that is where the good stuff ends... execution of special moves range from easy to downright serendipitous and there is a 'healing move' which initially was interesting but often made fights much more grueling as CPU opponent would block most of your attacks and refuses to lose by healing.

$3 at a thrift store, and amusingly I felt a little bit buyer's remorse. This game feels like it came in a kiddie meal at a fast food joint: burger fries and all. Though I've played games that came out of boxes of cereal that were far better (Chex Quest). The game was good for a few laughs - maybe Brutal has done at least one thing right... This is probably why the game is more entertaining with friends.

Bottom line, this an old game that has aged terribly so unless you are collector like me or 'Lazy Game Reviewer' (LGR) who love oddities in video-gaming history, best to steer clear!


Nintendo Wii U Console - 32GB Black Deluxe Set
Nintendo Wii U Console - 32GB Black Deluxe Set
Offered by UNI&CORE
Price: $334.75
159 used & new from $249.99

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nintendo, you surprise me!, September 17, 2013
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
I'm a hardcore gamer, playing many kinds of games (arcade, abandonware/old, retro, new, casual).
I skipped the original Wii console because I saw it as a temporal gimmick.

The shovelware games that appeared on the Wii only added to my dislike, and I never thought I would EVER give the Wii U a chance... but I did. A major plus for the Wii U is backwards compatibility with Wii games, I know some would say "Why would you buy a new console to play previous console titles?" As I said, I didn't buy the last console, and the ability to play original Wii games allows me to play all those good games I've missed (consolidating 2 consoles into one is a good thing). Yes there is much shovelware to sift through (outnumbering quality games about 15 to 1) but the gems hidden underneath are worth looking. Good games are what history has shown to sell consoles, and good games MUST be fun.

Here are a few noteworthy Wii games for the hardcore: Metal Slug Anthology, Bit Trip Complete, SSB:Brawl, Punchout, Xenoblade, Last story, and the Zelda and Metroid games.
I bought many Wii games for cheap ($10-$20).
Here are a few Wii U games that may interest hardcore players: Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, X (Xenoblade 2?), SSB:U, Pikmin 3, Sonic lost world, and Rayman Legends.

As far as the hardware is concerned, it is slightly more powerful than X360 and PS3, but not a big leap. However, what did impressive me is the low power consumption and the little heat the console generated. Are the graphics of Wii U games ugly? certainly not. Moreover as the law of diminishing return (as far as hardware is concerned) will become more apparent (X360 vs PS3 and XBoxOne vs PS4) it begs the question "do graphics matter?" I say yes but not so much anymore -look at Minecraft it has voxels making it look like they forgot to enable hardware acceleration in the game yet that didn't stop it from selling more copies than many AAA titles.

I wasn't so sure about the 'second screen' of the game pad, but after giving it a try, I now understand it better. It offers asymmetrical gameplay (players play the same game with different interfaces and roles but work together to achieve a common goal). The potential of future games supporting 2 game pads for a whopping 6 players could be interesting.

Overall, I am impressed with Nintendo's Wii U, and am eagerly awaiting for the one game that convinced me to buy a Wii U in the first place: X.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 18, 2013 10:01 AM PDT


XenoBlade Chronicles
XenoBlade Chronicles
Offered by King Beardo
Price: $97.99
61 used & new from $72.95

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Xenoblade chronicles- The Halo of RPGs!?, August 28, 2013
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: XenoBlade Chronicles (Video Game)
I originally skipped the Wii but I bought the Wii U, primarily to play the upcoming sequel 'X'. Xenoblade's released went under my radar, after hearing from people calling it one of the BEST RPG of this (7th) Console generation, I became intrigued.

Graphics: impressive for the Wii, huge environments, solid framerate. The facial expressions on the main characters (during real time cutscenes) is most impressive to me, may not be the 'micro-expressions' as in Halo4 or LA Noir but still one of the best I've seen rendered in real time. I wish this game was in HD!
On a technical note saving and loading is near instant when on the same map and loading a different maps take ~13s.

Sound: Music is phenomenal, English voice acting is good, (British accents are refreshing compared to the poochy squeaky voices I often hear in Japanese games and anime).

Gameplay: many compare it to FF-XII, I compare it to Star Wars:KOTOR, only you control the leader, there is (generally) no pause during combat and characters do regular attacks automatically but you can select special attacks and skills to use them. Easy to learn and addicting.

Story: In the begining two titans Bionis (the organic one) and Mechonis (the mechanical one) battled for eons until they eventually killed each other and life emerges ON their bodies... War rages between the robotic 'Mechon' and the human-like 'Homs'... You play Shulk, a young scientist who (thankfully is NOT a whiny brat and) is researching the sword (the Monado) that helped to Homs defeat the Mechon. Main story is very compelling feels like a watching a good anime, and you can easily get attached to the main characters. There is a scene near the beginning of the story that can be hard to watch (won't spoil it sorry -I will say I'm not one to cry but it got me teary) -it fills you with a strong desire to destroy the antagonist.

There is A LOT to explore and do, and completing the many side quests sometimes feels like you're making an impact on people. Monsters and items respawn, NPCs have daily routines, they wanted to mimicking an MMORPG and it sure feels like it.

In conclusion is this game great? YES! Is it the best RPG this gen? It is certainly not disappointing me; I would say it is on par with my favorite xbox360 JRPG Lost odyssey. It is a crying shame Xenoblade got only a limited release in NA. If 'X' for the Wii U is anything like this it could be a killer app.


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