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ZombiU - Nintendo Wii U
ZombiU - Nintendo Wii U
Offered by FRONTIER HOBBY SHOP
Price: $12.15
119 used & new from $3.99

10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth buying the Wii U for this game alone, November 26, 2012
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
ZombiU left me somewhat skeptical but very hopeful after watching video previews some months ago. Ubisoft fumbled their launch of Red Steel for the Wii, and I was concerned that they might do the same with ZombiU. Fortunately, my fears were satisfactorily squelched. This is the ultimate survival horror game, period. If you like being scared, like zombies in general, or just like high-quality games, this will be right up your alley.

The campaign mode is simply unnerving. I've played Resident Evil 4 on the Wii, and it was an excellent game that kept you on the edge of your seat. ZombiU trounces RE4 in the fear department. You are so vulnerable, because unlike other zombie games you have almost no ammo which leaves you to defending yourself with a cricket bat. If there are several zombies approaching you in a tight corner, you either run or die. Zombies claw at you as they approach, but once they get really close they bite you and you are DEAD no matter how much health you had left. Then you start back at the Safe House as another random survivor. Any progress you made is carried over, unless you play Survival mode in which case you have ONE shot to make it through the game. If you die you start from scratch!

The Gamepad offers some awesome mechanics that really enhance the game. Looting corpses and cabinets leaves you vulnerable as you check the Gamepad screen for any items to place in your backpack. You have a Flashlight and other quick key items set for easy access at the tap of a finger. You can also use the controller as a scanner to examine the area around you or to accomplish specific missions. Most importantly it displays a map of the area at all times along with a radar button that you can tap to detect the location of moving organisms in the vicinity of your character (this can pick up zombies, crows, and rats, so you're not always sure what you're in store for!).

In addition to the campaign mode, their is a local multi-player option for two people that's really fun. One player is the King of Zombies and uses the Gamepad to place various zombies on the map to kill the Surivor. Obviously the second player is the Survivor who uses a Wii Remote and Nunchuk in typical first-person shooter fashion to kill the zombies. There is a Capture the Flag mode and a Survival mode with various maps for both. My wife isn't good at shooters, but she loves being the Zombie King. I never thought I could play a shooter game with my wife and both of us be happy!

Overall, I would definitely say this is a must-have game for the Wii U if you are into the genre at all. There are some negative reviews out there, but don't trust them. They don't know what a survival horror game is all about.

UPDATE: 12/6/12 After beating this game I believe 100% that this game is worth the asking price. This game delivered tons of fun along with plenty of fear. My wife enjoyed watching me play this game, being the fan of horror that she is. Now, I'm playing through it again to get the best ending, even though I'm not sure that it will have any different cinematic sequence if I succeed. The game feels very different playing through the second time, and in ways its even more fun. It's still scary, but now I know when to use my best items and weapons. This is a liberating feeling, because I almost never used good items unless I was totally desperate in my first playthrough. Now I get the pleasure of pulling out mines more liberally and watching my enemies go up in flames of failure!

UPDATE: 12/11/12 I finally beat the game with the good ending, which does offer a little bit more to the ending sequence. Nothing spectacular, but I'm definitely glad I achieved my goal. I suppose Survivor mode is next, and I'm really tempted to start it right now before moving on to any other games. ZombiU is definitely one of the best games I've ever played, and I hope that everybody else enjoys it as much as me!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 30, 2012 3:46 PM PST


Nintendo Wii U Console - 32GB Black Deluxe Set
Nintendo Wii U Console - 32GB Black Deluxe Set
Offered by Innovation Tech
Price: $340.00
108 used & new from $247.93

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing System, November 25, 2012
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
The Wii U is a must have system for Nintendo fans. Yes, it's not perfect, but no system is. Between the amazing Gamepad, updated graphics, and the novel game mechanics made possible by the screen on the Gamepad, I have been having a blast ever since I got this system.

The initial download/update did take a few hours with my DSL internet (the cheapest DSL available by the way). Once I got past this initial hurdle, the fun took off with no end in sight! I love the controller, graphics, games, etc. Any Nintendo fan should get this console. The Gamepad is more revolutionary than the Wii Remote in many ways. The opportunity for asymmetrical gameplay in local multiplayer is a huge advantage that Nintendoland, ZombiU, and New Super Mario Bros. U take full advantage of. And being able to use the Wii Remote controllers that you already own from the original Wii is a great money saver. We'll have to wait and see how successful the Wii U turns out to be, but based on my experiences it should be a smash hit.


A Game of Thrones: The Board Game Second†Edition
A Game of Thrones: The Board Game Second†Edition
Price: $46.24
51 used & new from $38.83

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent strategy game, March 28, 2012
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
A Game of Thrones is an amazing game . . . if you like war/area control board games that require lots of strategy and involve almost 0 luck. It's a challenging game to play, the rule book is extensive, but the rewards are worth it. You need at least 3-6 players, so it won't work as a couple's game. However, if you have some friends to play with this will be the perfect addition to your game collection.

Without going into too many details, here is the basic play of the game:

1) Turn up event cards that affect the game/round immediately.
2) Place "order tokens" face down next to your armies. All players reveal their orders simultaneously, and based upon turn order each player executes their actions.
3) Clean up and prepare for the next round.

One of my favorite parts of the game is the ability to forge alliances with other players. You can agree to support each other in battle, or plan strategies to outmaneuver players that are in a better position to win the game. Blind bidding is another aspect of this game that I absolutely love. There are three "Influence Tracks" that you can bid on at certain points throughout the game that can vastly affect how you play the game. there is also bidding against neutral "Wildlings" that can cause some tense situations.

One issue I do have with this game is that the six different families don't seem very balanced. Starting positions and their particular cards (which influence battle) seem to favor certain families over others. However, this is where the alliances come in. You have to make sacrifices and work with others if you want to make it through this game. At any given point you never know who's actually trying to help you.

Having never read the books or watched the HBO series, I'm coming to this game from a purely game loving background. As such, I find this game simply amazing. If you are playing with the right group of people you will be very pleased with the intensity this game offers.

Update: 2/6/13 Unfortunately, I haven't had any chances to play with more than 3 players since I got this game. IMO, 4 is the minimum to really make the game interesting, but 6 is definitely the optimum. However, I have played a "6 player" game with my brother where each of us controlled 3 armies each. Although not the perfect way to play, it demonstrated how amazing this game can be. If only I had 5 others who wanted to play with me . . . .

Also, there is an available expansion to this game (A Dance with Dragons is the title). It REQUIRES 6 people to play, and it shifts the power greatly. The expansion includes new character cards for each family (some of these cards have very interesting effects), and the army layout is completely different, leaving some armies spread thin with others relatively consolidated. It's definitely worth a look if you have 6 players that enjoy this game.


Citadels
Citadels
Offered by AMA INC
Price: $19.92
37 used & new from $17.00

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review from a newbie, March 22, 2012
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:2.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Citadels (Toy)
Admittedly, I have only entered the realm of card/board gaming within the past year. I grew up playing Monopoly, Risk, Stratego, Sorry!, and other similar games that are easily found in everyday stores. I never realized how big of a gaming world there was outside of my little box! Now that I know, I find myself constantly trying to find new and exciting games to add to my small collection. With that background info out of the way, here's what I think of Citadels.

Citadels is one of the first games I tried since my new craze started. It absolutely amazed me due to the unique and simple, yet surprisingly deep, game play. The goal in Citadels is to get the most points. Points are chiefly earned by building districts (represented by cards) with gold (sturdy plastic tokens). Once one player builds their 8th district and the current round is completed, everybody scores their points to find the winner. Here's how the game actually works. Players choose a role to play each round (there are 8 roles in all, unless you play with the included expansion cards that include 9). You choose your role secretly, and only reveal your choice when it is your turn. Turn order is decided by the role you choose. For example, the Assassin always goes first, and the Warlord always goes last. One role card is randomly dealt face down at the beginning of every round so that the second player to choose a role doesn't know what the first player chose.

The key to Citadels is choosing your roles wisely. Each character has their own unique skill that will help them in the game (e.g. The Assassin can attempt to murder other players, the Warlord can demolish other players' built districts, and the Merchant acquires extra gold). After everybody takes a turn, the current round is over and everybody chooses roles again. Therefore you will be able to use different characters throughout the game. Bluffing and using reverse psychology is one of the most important skills in this game. It's often better to pass on the character that you really want to use in a given turn. Why? Because if you consistently choose the optimum character for your current situation the Assassin is sure to assassinate that character. For example, if it would particularly benefit you to choose the Architect (one of the most commonly assassinated characters in my experience) then the player who chooses the Assassin could say "I choose to assassinate the Architect" in the hopes of making you lose your turn. However, if you anticipate this, you might choose a far less useful character to avoid being the target. The psychological mind play that goes on in this game makes for some hilarious moments. I've accidentally killed players that were losing handily just because I guessed wrong!

Another strategy is to simply pick a character that you know would help another player just to keep them from gaining a huge advantage. The strategies in Citadels are what really excite me about this game. Strategy plays a larger part in this game than luck, which is a huge plus. Making sacrifices, taking chances, bluffing, and using reverse psychology are the name of the game in Citadels. If you don't like being killed or stolen from, you probably won't like this game. But if you enjoy choosing secret roles and playing mind tricks, I highly recommend Citadels.


Castle Panic: The Wizard's Tower
Castle Panic: The Wizard's Tower
Price: $20.06
39 used & new from $19.30

54 of 55 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Invaluable expansion for a quality game, December 15, 2011
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:2.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I purchased Castle Panic a few weeks ago after doing some research on cooperative board games. Games that allow cooperative play (Castle Panic allows for cooperative or competitive) are very enjoyable to play with the majority of people, even poor losers (and I definitely know some poor losers). The base game that The Wizard's Tower compliments is already an excellent game for 1-6 players in which you play cards to protect your castle from an onslaught of goblins, orcs, and trolls who are moving in to destroy all of your towers. There are plenty of luck elements, but there is also a fair amount of strategy involved in deciding what cards to play, trade, or discard in a given turn.

The Wizard's Tower adds new (and more interesting) bosses as well as regular "minions." You also get a few extra cards for your main deck as well as an entirely new deck that you can tap into as long as your Wizard's tower is still in play. By discarding a card from your hand you can draw from his stack of very powerful cards. They might not always help your specific situation, but they are inevitably going to help you survive some dire situations.

This expansion adds the element of fire, which burns building and foes. There are also flying monsters that are not vulnerable to boulders, swordsmen, or knights. Many other new monsters included in this set really make it a must have for fans of the original game. There are just so many new enemies to make you "panic!" Don't pass up on this excellent expansion to an already fun game. Although the price is a little high for a new deck of cards, monster tokens, and a bag for mixing up your monster tokens (very handy, by the way), I still think it's worth the price for the fun factor this wonderful package offers.


Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Shadow Wars
Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Shadow Wars
Offered by gamedynasty
Price: $17.95
49 used & new from $4.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First 3DS game, definitely a winner!, November 20, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Well, my loving wife surprised me with a 3DS for my birthday along with this game, Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars. This is my first Ghost Recon game (which I understand that Shadow Wars is not a typical entry in the series), and I am completely impressed. Shadow Wars proves to be a user friendly, yet complex turn-based strategy game. One of my favorite game series of all time is definitely Advance Wars because it mastered the art of turn-based strategy games that involve unit production. In my opinion, this game does the same for turn-based strategy games that do NOT involve unit production.

Campaign mode presents you with 6 characters, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. Not all missions allow you to bring all 6, so you are forced to make critical choices that can completely change the way you play the mission. You can level up characters that you use in each mission to give them new weapons and skills. I find all 6 of the characters to be extremely useful in most circumstances. Your "ghosts" are as follows.

Duke (Commando) - Versatile unit that offers good movement and firing range with a shoulder mounted rocket launcher for area effect damage and vehicle destroying power.

Haze (Sniper) - Long range unit that can negate defensive bonuses and eventually wields rifles that can decimate vehicles. Can also use Grenades.

Saffron (Medic) - Heals friendly units, carries a pistol for personal defense, and can eventually offer extra bonuses to her comrades.

Richter (Gunner) - Slow to advance forward, but offers excellent power and maximum return fire. Can also use Grenades.

Mint (Engineer) - Handy with a machine gun (similar to Duke), but also has the option (eventually) to use a pistol that halts vehicles in their tracks. Furthermore he can plant a stationary turret or a mobile drone to add to your teams firepower.

Banshee (Recon) - Carries a low power machine gun and has the choice of a lethal knife or grenades as backup. Her main advantage is that she can't be targeted by enemy fire unless an enemy unit is next to her. She is easy to kill once she is spotted though . . . .

Shadow Wars uses the bottom screen to give you every amount of detail you could ask for. It serves as the map, terrain detail screen, and shows all the info on your characters. Anything you need to know is readily available from the skills that each character has to how much damage your unit will do at what range (range does change how much damage you deal). The game features obstacles that block line of fire and various elevations (more damage is dealt to enemies at lower elevations and less damage is dealt to enemies at higher elevations). To put it quite simply the game is heavy on strategy, but its user friendly interface makes the game very accessible. There are also three difficulty levels to choose from, so anybody can have fun with this game. And as you progress through the campaign mode you unlock skirmish missions for one player challenges and multi-player missions for pass-the-3DS style competitions.


Metroid: Other M
Metroid: Other M
Offered by Phonon Tech
Price: $21.89
130 used & new from $8.22

3 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Give it a chance, July 4, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Metroid: Other M (Video Game)
Ok, I know there's plenty of negative press on this game. Personally, I think people need to step back and take a fresh look at this game. Most people complain that Samus doesn't act according to what they conceive to be her typical persona. I disagree with this. No other Metroid title ever tried to convey a real personality or characterization like Other M does. And to think that Samus shouldn't show emotion throughout the game just doesn't make sense to me. She's a female, and she's human. And she still overcomes her fears of Ridley and kicks his butt. We never knew that she felt this way because no other Metroid title actually tried to convey her emotions, but now we get to see the introspective side of her. IMHO, this is a very refreshing approach to the series, and helps flesh out Samus' character in some great ways. it makes me care about her as a character more than I ever have before.

Characters in video games don't need to be emotionless robots that take on all challenges without so much as a frown. Emotions are what drives humans in everything they do, and it's great to see these all important aspects of humanity being explored in Other M. And she is NOT portrayed as a whiney wimp. Rather, she is portrayed as an individual overcoming her own personal challenges. Otherwise she wouldn't handle herself so well in the circumstances she faces in this game. But anyway, let me get to the actual review.

Controls/Gameplay -- Amazing. Even though you play with the Wii Remote only (held sideways most of the time), it feels natural and very classic. The mix of Third Person Side-Scrolling, Third Person Free-Roaming, and First Person (can't move, only aim) perspectives add lots of variety to the game. The auto-aiming isn't as cheap as I thought it would be. You only auto-aim when enemies are relatively close, and there's still plenty of challenge.

Graphics -- Excellent Wii graphics. I have nothing to complain about here. The cut scenes are spectacular, and the colors are vibrant. What else can you ask for?

Sound -- Wonderful as always. Great music, good voice acting (IMHO), and nice sound effects.

Overall -- Is it perfect? Of course not. But I must say that I enjoyed it as much as the Metroid Prime Trilogy, if not more. Definitely better than Metroid Prime 2, possibly better than Metroid Prime 3. Just give the game a chance and be open-minded. And if possible try not to have any preconceived notions about what kind of person she is. Otherwise it might shatter those preconceptions and make you hate the game.


Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym
Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym
Offered by TaseenProducts
Price: $911.21
12 used & new from $799.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Workout, July 4, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Bowflex PR3000 Home Gym (Sports)
I have been very impressed with this Bowflex Machine. It's been in my home for around a year and it's showing no signs of wear. My favorite part about this puppy is the convenience--you can do a large number of exercises without rearranging anything (from chest presses to leg lifts). Fortunately, it also takes up relatively little room (except vertically). You just need to make sure the rods won't hit anything when you actually do the exercises since they bend down and will extend father than the width of the actual machine.

My arms are noticeably stronger than before I purchased it, and that's without a regular and consistent workout routine. I'm very pleased with the overall performance of this model, and would advise it to anybody (although pros will probably need to purchase the additional resistance rods).


Monster Hunter Tri - Standard
Monster Hunter Tri - Standard
Offered by Awesome Fun Time
Price: $16.87
81 used & new from $4.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Favorite Wii game yet, May 17, 2010
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Monster Hunter Tri is my first venture into the series and I am very impressed with what I found. Everything in this game, from the combat to the environments, is simply amazing. There are a variety of weapons to choose from that offer unique advantages so you can be strong in offense, defense, speed, range or a combination of the four. The upgrade system for weapons and armor is excellent. You can change your appearance to your liking with different types of armor, weapons look cool, and there are tons of different upgrades to purchase. Hunting for materials is one of the biggest parts of the game. Maybe the next quest you want to go on is extremely difficult. Just go hunt for some materials to upgrade your weapon to something better. That can make all the difference in making your next monster a defeatable foe.

The monsters come to life and are extremely believable, which is a very important aspect of this game. Big or small, the creatures that inhabit this world are appropriately varied, interesting, and feel natural. The battles against the larger monsters are truly epic, leaving you with a huge sense of accomplishment when you actually emerge victorious. And the larger enemies have an impressive repertoire of ways to turn you into monster food. No battles in any video game have ever given me this much pleasure or satisfaction. Fighting Barroths and Rathians online with friends is beyond amazing.

Also important to this game genre (action RPG) is that battles actually require strategy. Not only does your choice of weapon affect your tactics, but each enemy requires a completely different approach. This keeps the battles fresh and interesting even after fighting the same monsters numerous times.

The graphics and music are excellent as well. Epic music with gorgeous scenery is a great combination, and when you combine that with monsters galore it just doesn't get any better. Get ready to pull out some big weapons and go for a hunt. 4 player online is very enjoyable, but playing alone is just as satisfying (at least for me). No matter how serious you want to get with this game, you will find it to be a truly remarkable experience.


Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes - Nintendo DS
Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes - Nintendo DS
Offered by WHOLESALE OUTLET
Price: $16.99
49 used & new from $6.50

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best RPG/Strategy/Puzzle hybrid I've played, April 8, 2010
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I have played Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords, Puzzle Kingdoms, and now Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes. Of the three, this one is definitely my favorite. Subrtract the bejeweled/match 3 gameplay of the first two and trade it for a completely different setup.

Although you do "match 3" in this game, it's nothing like what you might think. As you play through the campaign you acquire various units to use in battle (each having their own stats). You combine the same color/units vertically to create an attack formation that will unleash on the opponent in a set number of turns (depending on the unit type) to deal damage to their units and hopefully the enemy Hero's HP if you can get through everything else. Horizontal formations create walls for defense.

There are artifacts to wear, providing different effects, and each hero has a unique spell at his/her command after enough damage has been delt/taken. There are larger units that are more powerful, but if they are destroyed by your enemies you must buy more to keep from running out. There is no exploration in Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes, so it's very similar to Puzzle Quest in that you move from point to point (although you're moving through cities and dungeons rather than across the entire world map). There are random battles to encounter for leveling up/earning gold and there are sidequests to acquire new artifacts and treasure.

The graphics are beautiful and the story is actually pretty decent. The music is appropriate, but nothing special if you ask me. You play each hero separately (all part of the same story, though) as you progress through the game, and after finishing with 1 character and working on my second I have already played over 8 hours. Playtime seems pretty impressive so far. You can also play multiplayer locally, although there is no wireless play. There is also an option for a quick game just for some fun battling that doesn't impact the story. Nothing about Might and Magic leaves me with any complaints to speak of, so this is definitely one of my most recommended titles.

Overall: 9.5/10


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