Videogame Child Support

Here is another article lamenting of the poor sales of Zak and Wiki on the Wii, courtesy of Blend Games.

Since many here at Videolamer have also advocated everyone to buy the game, I appreciate Blend’s promotion, as well as their warning that the game is starting to vanish from some shelves already. But now I am here to tell you that I did not buy Zak and Wiki yet, and I do not feel very bad about it. Or rather, I am not sure if I should.

You see, supporting the best of the lesser known releases during a year is a responsibility I take a little too seriously, often buying a game just for the initial sales number regardless of how much I may like it. Last year alone I picked up Odin Sphere, The Red Star, King of Fighters XI, Neo Geo Battle Coliseum, and Persona 3, none of which sold nearly as well as they should have, but have all turned out to be very good games in their own ways. →  Read the rest

Odin Sphere: not drinking the kool-aid

Odin Sphere was released to a slew of rave reviews. Several called it the best PS2 RPG in years, and game forums everywhere were filled with topics full of praise.

A couple weeks ago I convinced myself I should try it out. And, in fact, for a while it was impressive. The graphics are quite nice, the voice options are great, and the story is enjoyable. The game is quite smooth, and controls pretty well.

You’ll notice I left out the actual system behind the game. It felt okay for the first couple hours. I figured I’d get used to it, and that soon enough I’d be planting Muggles and Napples in the heat of battle with the best of them.

Unfortunately, I am now another ten hours in and still don’t see the appeal of the system. →  Read the rest

Review – Steambot Chronicles

Have you ever played a game for hours on end and then realized what you played had unbalanced gameplay, a clunky battle system, and very slow character advancement but you loved it anyway?

This happened to me last week. On a whim, I bought Odin Sphere and Steambot Chronicles. Though I might argue both games are guilty of these faults, in this case I am talking about Steambot Chronicles because it kept my attention better.

My question – Wouldn’t a better name be Trotbots?

I still don’t completely understand why, but I loved this game. It has a cliched anime look with cliched anime-type characters named after spices (the main character is Vanilla Bean), standard music (with a few exceptions) and clunky gameplay. Though the voice acting was really good for English voiceovers (even in songs, though the lyrics are lacking), that usually isn’t a great motivator on its own. →  Read the rest