Tag Archives: intelligent systems

Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia Review

Given Fire Emblem was created to match the strategy elements of Famicon Wars with the stats-focused and story-heavy nature of role-playing games, it is not surprising all games of the saga have lived and died based on how well they were able to balance those pieces. Shadows of Valentia, therefore, does not escape such judgment; and while, truth be told, the game does not excel in any of them, there are redeeming and intriguing portions in all of those areas.

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Posted in 3DS, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Advance Wars 2: Black Hole Rising Review

Advance Wars 2: Black Hole Rising is still a blast, though. It is a fun, engaging, and challenging game whose value is a sight to behold. It may feel far closer to an expansion pack than to a true sequel, but it is a must-buy to either those who greatly enjoyed the original and are looking for more missions of deep strategic values pained with a charming cartoonish look or those that want to get to know the franchise and feel like starting with its most complete and well-presented installment.

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Posted in Game Boy Advance, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Pokémon Sun and Moon Review

Those changes are overwhelmingly positive to the overall experience of Sun and Moon. This is still a Pokémon game like all others in terms of how addictive and engaging it is to travel this fantastic world with nothing but a backpack and a handful of pokéballs, and the joy of watching one’s team develop from that single starter of choice into a full-fledged combat machine ready for whatever obstacles can be found out there remains the same one that existed in the Blue and Red versions. However, more than the 81 new creatures – some of which have blatantly questionable designs – these morsels of change lend Sun and Moon an aura that is clearly unique and special. And – as usual, since Diamond and Pearl – the traditional set of online features, like battles and trading, give these titles endless value; they keep on giving and offering new challenges and goals for as long as players feel like finding them, be it filling up the Pokédex, grinding for EVs and IVs, breeding endlessly so that a Pokémon can be born with an ideal nature, looking for shiny or legendary monsters, or building an unstoppable team.

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Posted in 3DS, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door Review

With minor improvements, and powered by a wheel of creativity that puts Mario in a series of situations that are absurd, engaging, and intriguing, Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door is not only one of the Gamecube’s finest titles, but also one of Mario’s best adventures. It is a playable storybook that reveals outstanding characters, sharp writing, and fantastic humor with every page that is turned, and complements those elements with a great battle system and smart level design. It takes advantage of the fact it stands on ground that was firmly prepared by its predecessor, and uses it to fly towards an incredible set of ideas whose coexistence in the same tight package is the proof that lighting can indeed be captured by a bottle.

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Posted in Gamecube, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Paper Mario Review

By its curtain call, Paper Mario will have proved itself to be an improvement over its predecessor; certainly not an affirmation to be taken lightly given the classic status of Super Mario RPG. Supported by three strong pillars of unquestionable quality – its creative writing, its engaging exploration, and its simple yet deep RPG elements and battle system – the game shows that Nintendo and Intelligent Systems used the knowledge acquired from their partnership with Squaresoft to build a work that is utterly original, from its visuals to its gameplay, and that is not afraid to abandon the more traditional approach of Super Mario RPG for something that feels fresher and even more aligned with the aura of the Mario franchise. Legends are not easy to topple, but Paper Mario does it.

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Posted in Nintendo 64, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Advance Wars Review

Although it is technically simple, with its visual presentation lacking any considerable fireworks and its limited number of short songs quickly becoming repetitive, Advance Wars is a masterpiece of game design. It is a strategy title that absolutely excels in all areas that truly matter, offering gameplay that is astonishingly complex presented in a way that is accessible and charming. Given its sheer amount of missions, maps, units, and commanding officers, it is hard to fathom the degree of effort that Nintendo and Intelligent Systems put into making everything the title offers be as balanced as it is. However, even in the face of so many eye-popping victories, which are rarely found in such a cohesive conjunction in a single game, its greatest achievement is how it seamlessly brought a new franchise to new territory with so much quality and personality that the results could not have been different from absolute success and millions of enamored fans.

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Posted in Game Boy Advance, Reviews | Tagged , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Paper Mario: Color Splash Review

Where Sticker Star was the downfall, Color Splash is the fair shot at redemption: a game that tries to reconnect itself with what its prequel lost. However, it is visible its heart is not quite fully dedicated to that honorable quest. While it does, to an astounding degree, recover the spectacular funny writing over which the glory of Mario’s role-playing outings is constructed, it holds onto failed ideas that were introduced by Sticker Star and that ended up receiving the universal panning they deserved. Therefore, Color Splash is frustratingly ambivalent, as it shows Nintendo working at the peak of its creative powers, and at the lowest depths of its unshakable stubborn nature.

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Posted in Reviews, Wii U | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments