All posts by Pete Davison

Former games journo (GamePro, USgamer) and expert on all those Japanese games and visual novels the mainstream press likes to go "ew, pretty girls" at. I write things at great length.

Waifu Wednesday: Lilysse

It may not have escaped your notice that I haven’t done any Blue Reflection-themed Waifu Wednesdays this month.

This is entirely deliberate; since the game as a whole is based around the interactions between the female characters, I’ll be talking about most if not all of the major characters when we come to explore its narrative, themes and characterisation in their entirety. So please look forward to that!

In the meantime, however, Gust definitely produces wonderful waifus, so let’s look back at a MoeGamer classic and main heroine of a Cover Game from last year.

Continue reading Waifu Wednesday: Lilysse

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Taito Essentials: Super Qix

Super Qix is an immensely irritating follow-up to an immensely irritating game.

And, like all the really good immensely irritating games of the world, there’s a magic ingredient in there that keeps you coming back for more.

Super Qix is also an interesting game from a historical perspective, in that it’s a game that Japanese developers decided to build on after an all-American original.

Continue reading Taito Essentials: Super Qix

What’s in the Box: Gal*Gun 2 “Free Hugs” Edition

Next month on MoeGamer is all about Gal*Gun 2, but in the meantime I couldn’t resist sneaking a peek in the shiny new limited edition box.

Publisher PQube and its partners at Rice Digital have put out some really nice (and affordable) limited editions over the last couple of years, so I was more than happy to stump up the extra cash for the “Free Hugs” edition of Gal*Gun 2.

Thankfully the new game doesn’t come in quite as obscenely large a box as its predecessor — that had a big wallscroll in it, so it was understandable — but still has a rather tasty set of goodies to enjoy.

Continue reading What’s in the Box: Gal*Gun 2 “Free Hugs” Edition

PSP Essentials: Dungeon Explorer

I enjoy beating games, particularly when they have a good story and especially when they have a dramatic finale.

But sometimes it’s nice to have a game on hand that you can just dip in and out of pretty much indefinitely. Arcade-style games fill this niche pretty nicely, but it’s also cool when you find something with a bit more in the way of “persistence” — something that you can continue playing over time and continue to discover new things about.

Recently, I fired up Dungeon Explorer by Hudson for the PSP, a spiritual successor (and, technically, prequel) to the company’s 1989 PC Engine/Turbografx classic of the same name. And… I think I’m going to be playing this game for a long time.

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Blue Reflection: Everyday Life with Magical Girls

Blue Reflection is an unusual game in terms of its overall tone and how it “feels” to play, and a big part of this is due to its mechanics and structure.

If you had to pigeon-hole it into a specific mechanical genre, most people would describe it as a “JRPG”. But in many ways this isn’t a particularly accurate description, since although it features a number of common elements of the genre, it draws just as many influences from other types of game such as adventures and visual novels.

Whatever you want to call it, it’s certainly a pretty intriguing game from a mechanical and structural perspective. So that’s what we’ll be focusing on today.

Continue reading Blue Reflection: Everyday Life with Magical Girls

Waifu Wednesday: The Hundred Honeys Project

With how much I’ve been enjoying the recent release of Honey Select Unlimited, I thought I’d do something a bit different for today’s Waifu Wednesday.

It’s a bit of a creative project, if you will, but also an opportunity to gradually, over time, test out what Honey Select Unlimited and its companion application Honey Unlimited Studio is actually capable of. I intend to create as many virtual women as I can and squeeze as many as possible into a single scene.

So far I’ve managed eight and my computer hasn’t exploded yet. Want to meet them? Thought so.

Mild lewd warning for after the jump.

Continue reading Waifu Wednesday: The Hundred Honeys Project

PS2 Essentials: Under the Skin

One aspect of gaming we’ve lost sight of a bit over the course of the last couple of console generations is the idea of a game that is “nothing but fun”.

I’m talking about mechanics-centric games where the aim is to just have a good time and challenge yourself; games that aren’t trying to “say something”; games that aren’t trying to be artistic in a narrative sense.

This kind of game hasn’t died out completely, of course, but at the time of writing they remain primarily confined to the independently developed, digital-only sector. Capcom’s Under the Skin for PS2, meanwhile, reminds us of a time not so long ago (2004) when this type of experience would get a full retail release and no-one would bat an eyelid.

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