This post is one chapter of a MegaFeature!
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We’ve already talked about how Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland marked something of a return to the “traditional” Atelier format in terms of its concept and structure. But its follow-up Atelier Totori: The Adventurer of Arland shows that this return to Atelier’s roots was more than just a one-off.
Specifically, Atelier Totori: The Adventurer of Arland re-establishes the early series’ formula of having several games unfold in the same (or at least a similar) geographical area and showing how that area changes over time — along with how the people who live there change, too. Atelier has, after all, always been a series about people at its heart.
Before we dive too deep into specific talk of mechanics and narrative, though, let’s take a first look at where this game came from — and one particularly interesting story surrounding one of its various releases over the years.
Continue reading Atelier Totori: The Adventurer of Arland – High Impact Sexual Violence?
This post is one chapter of a MegaFeature!
< Prev. | Contents | Next >
As our exploration of Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland comes to a close, it’s time to contemplate the game’s narrative component.
As we talked about when we looked at the game’s overall structure, Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland is somewhat more non-linear than previous installments in the series. There’s a core linear progression based around Rorona’s assignments, but the bulk of the narrative content comes from the wide variety of optional events you can enjoy with the ensemble cast.
Between all those events, you get a good sense of what sort of place Arland is — and who Rorona and her friends really are. So let’s take a closer look!
Continue reading Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland – Tradition, Modernity and Belief in Oneself
The mechanical genre that we refer to as “shoot ’em up” actually covers a number of different gameplay styles. And, as with everything else in this world, it displays distinct fashions and trends as the years go by.
Back in the early days of gaming, the fixed shooter was king. Then we moved into the beginning of the horizontally and vertically scrolling age, the former of which in particular flourished throughout the 16-bit home console age. The rise of polygons brought with it a shift to “2.5D”, where 3D graphics were combined with 2D gameplay for added spectacle. And today, many — though not all — shooters focus on the elaborate choreography of the “bullet hell” or danmaku subgenre.
This is an oversimplification, of course, but the fact remains that we see fewer shooters in the style of those from the late 16-bit and early 32-bit eras than we used to. Which is why Rigid Force Redux, a recent Nintendo Switch and Xbox One release from German developer com8com1 Software, was such a pleasure to explore.
Continue reading Rigid Force Redux: An R-Type By Any Other Name
Amplitude Studios first came to my attention a good few years back with the release of Endless Space, a 4X strategy game that I didn’t completely suck at.
Since that first game, they’ve expanded the Endless universe considerably with several other games. Probably my favourite of them all is Dungeon of the Endless, a curious hybrid of roguelike, board game, tower defense and all manner of other goodness. And it’s out now for Nintendo Switch! You can get it in a box and everything.
Having not actually played it for a while, I decided to see how I got on with my rusty skills. The answer is “not well”, but I hope at least you can see why this game is so enjoyable if you take the time to learn it!
If you enjoyed the video, don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!
The concept of “gaming” wasn’t always about immersing yourself in RPGs that last for several hundred hours, or about hurling abuse at random strangers online.
No; in the dim and distant past, before electronics dominated nearly every aspect of our lives, it was about gathering around a table with friends and doing various things with bits of wood, glass beads and playing cards that could, in most cases, be summarised as “tidying up”. And once the digital age first dawned for consumers in the late ’70s, it was about gathering around your family television to play digital recreations of those tabletop pursuits on your woodgrain Atari Video Computer System.
51 Worldwide Games, also known as Clubhouse Games: 51 Worldwide Classics, marks a delightful return to both of these bygone eras. And in the process, it becomes a true essential for anyone’s Nintendo Switch library.
Continue reading 51 Worldwide Games: The Good Old Days
I really like Lonely Mountains: Downhill, as you’ll know if you’ve read my writeup on it.
It’s a wonderfully chilled game in its early stages, but also offers some stiff dexterity challenges for those who want to push themselves on its later courses. The whole thing is held together with a delicious low-poly/papercraft-style aesthetic and some of the best ambient sounds I’ve ever heard.
If you wanted to see how it actually plays, well, I’ve got the video just for you right here! Don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more.
In today’s short;Play, we take a look at a Nintendo Switch-exclusive arcade puzzle game with a gorgeous ’80s-style aesthetic.
Cyber Protocol from RedDeerGames is a game where you’re attempting to save an android’s life. You do this by negotiating a series of perilous mazes, attempting to grab as many dots and bonus items as you can along the way.
If this all sounds a bit Pac-Man, you’d be right to an extent… but it’s the interesting additional twists on the formula — plus a rather different core movement mechanic — that make things truly interesting here.
Watch the video below, or subscribe on YouTube.
Sega’s G-LOC Air Battle is my favourite arcade game of all time — not that I had that many opportunities to play it as a child, sadly.
We don’t really “do” arcades here in the UK anywhere other than the seaside, you see, and thus, growing up in a small village that was a considerable distance from the nearest seaside resort, I only ever got to play a lot of arcade games when we went on holiday. This, naturally, led to me judging a lot of domestic holiday destinations based on what arcade machines were readily accessible.
G-LOC is a game that immediately caught my attention on a family trip to Newquay in Cornwall. I dropped a quid in it for three credits, sat down and prepared for action. And from that moment on, I was in love.
Continue reading Sega Ages G-LOC Air Battle: Wish Fulfilment
Welcome to a new video series! I give you short;Play, which, all being well, I will put out on Wednesdays.
The idea behind short;Play is similar to my Atari A to Z videos, only for more recent games and not on specific platforms. I’ll give you a brief rundown of the context and history of the game, then a guided tour of what to expect from the game. It’s not a full playthrough or a multi-episode Let’s Play — it’s just a quick look at what a typical session with the game is like.
We kick off with Level-5’s Snack World: The Dungeon Crawl Gold, and once I’m a bit deeper into this game the video will be complemented by a full writeup here on MoeGamer. For now, please enjoy the first episode of short;Play, and I hope you continue to enjoy what I have lined up for the next few Wednesdays!
Back in the early days of gaming, it wasn’t at all unusual to find games built around a single, static mechanic that simply required players to show increasing levels of mastery over it.
There was a certain degree of “make your own fun” to these games; you might try to think up challenges to impose on yourself, or keep track of your high scores, or perhaps compete against a friend to see who truly was best.
These days, there tends to be an expectation that even “arcadey” games have a certain amount of depth to them. But titles like Kawaii Deathu Desu, developed by Brazilian outfit Pippin Games, demonstrate that sometimes all you need are two buttons and some twitchy fingers — plus some cute girls never hurt, either. Let’s take a closer look.
Continue reading Kawaii Deathu Desu: The Art of Finger Dexterity