Half Steam Ahead

Henry Fleming, from The Red Badge of Courage; Queequeb, from Moby Dick; Scarecrow and Lion, from The Wizard of Oz; Tiger Lily, from Peter Pan; and others come together on a steam-punk cell-shaded setting whose lines and motifs were clearly inspired by comic books. One cannot help but wonder what kind of creative oppression could possibly lead to such a sudden wild outburst, but the bottom line is that the final result is mixed.

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Inkaholics

Splatoon finds the impossibly tight intersection where the three mighty axis of the universally engaging multiplayer experience meet: accessibility, depth, and competitiveness. It is the shiny Eldorado every company attempts to strike, but that Nintendo – like a lucky, or highly competent, explorer that has come to posses a map that shows the position of whatever it is he wants the most – stumbles upon it all the time while competitors are sailing the other way across the Atlantic towards shores populated by hungry cannibals.

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Monstrous Grind

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate does precisely what is expected of a new installment in Capcom’s stellar franchise; it does not intend to change the minds of those who look at it as an overly demanding title centered around the incessant beating of gargantuan creatures. Instead, it adorns a well-established formula with new appendices that make it deeper, potentially more time-consuming, and – consequently – better.

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Musical Mementos

Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call for the Nintendo 3DS is to Square Enix what the Super Smash Bros is to Nintendo. It is an opportunity to sit down, analyze what has been done in the past, and mold everything that is evaluated as being of the utmost quality under the same gameplay umbrella. It is the celebration of an astonishing legacy.

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The Elegant Frankenstein

A handful of hours into Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright, one of the clear highlights on this year’s lineup of 3DS games, it is already possible to pin down how Capcom and Level-5 stitched up this crossover. Although the titular characters do bump into each other and work together intensely – sometimes even switching partners – each franchise’s signature gameplay do not fully merge into a single beast.

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Many Layers Of Kirby

Over three years after the 3DS launched, the 3-D effects finally find their vindication, and it comes in the form of Kirby: Triple Deluxe. The uncannily solid Hal Laboratory team crafted a game around the extra sense of depth provided by the system, and in turn they have made Kirby into a pioneer.

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Birdies And Bogeys

After playing a few hours of Mario Golf: World Tour, one thing is pretty clear: the game has much more content and value than any other Mario sports game that preceded it, and it does measure up to the high standards set by Toadstool Tour.

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Of Light And Darkness

It feels, by all means, like a huge game. However, it never loses sight of the little things that are important. It employs and implements a sensible level of delicacy in building little simple bricks that form a heart and a soul that are bound to make it an unforgettable trip down one dark, yet hopeful, rabbit hole.

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Going Bananas

Although its music and graphics are fantastic, the star here is the level design and tight controls, and if the game wants to be compared to Diddy Kong’s Quest down the line, that is exactly the direction it should take as it slips the knife in between its teeth to accept the challenge from Rare’s 1995 timeless masterpiece.

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