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Profile for Matthew Coughlin > Reviews


Matthew Coughlin's Profile

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Helpful Votes: 1

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Matthew Coughlin RSS Feed (Milwaukee, WI USA)

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Castlevania: Lords of Shadow
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow
Offered by Galactics
Price: $13.64
176 used & new from $3.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The evolution of Castlevania starts here, January 4, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Castlevania is a series which has been stuck in a rut for the last decade or so. The concepts used in the Metroidvanias were all well and good, but the series needed a jolt of creativity. As a series, numerous reboots and attempts at modernization failed quite miserably. (See Castlevania 64 or the various PS2 titles) Castlevania: Lords of Shadow finally does it right.

Many will say that this game is cheapened by borrowing elements from other popular games; namely the God of War series and Shadow of the Colossus. It's certainly true that Mercurysteam gathered inspiration from these titles, but they did so with great success. The combos to be had within combat are numerous and there are even chances to use holy water and throwing knives, both staples of the series' heritage. Overall the combat, soundtrack, graphics, voiceovers, and artstyle come together to create a very worthwhile game. Also worth noting is the meaty game length that clocks in between 15-20+ hours, which manages to remain fresh thanks to all the various locales that Gabriel traverses. If you're a fan of action games you owe it to yourself to get this game.

The Strain: Book One of The Strain Trilogy
The Strain: Book One of The Strain Trilogy
by Chuck Hogan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.12
258 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Already a candidate for best fiction novel of the year, June 20, 2009
I went into "The Strain" without any kind of real expectation. I picked it up solely because of the involvement that Guillermo del Toro had in writing it, and I came away shell-shocked. The authors do a great job setting up the various characters all while building up towards the climax of the book. In a way, it reminded me of a very accented version of George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" books in that you get the point of view from several characters and how they interact with each other.

I sat down to read the book and finished it the very next day, something I usually don't do given commitments and other responsibilities. Its been a good while since a page turner crossed my path but I can safely say that "The Strain" is already on my mind for a second read through. The only downside? We have to wait another year till the next installment comes out.

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