Monday, December 24, 2012

The BDVR 2012 Christmas Special!

Christmas came early, and now I don't have to speedrun Resident Evil for my Christmas Special!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

My favorite game series and why I like them:

#1: The Legend of Zelda:

With the graphics style one of the best it's been in years, HD graphics in the future and the Zelda series the best it's been in decades The Legend of Zelda is the quintessential action-adventure series and the first game of the type I played. I started with the first game on NES and went on to A Link to the Past and then to Ocarina of Time and Majoras Mask, the series has had a few black-sheep to it, but only Zelda 2 has received my wrath (in form of a worst game award) and all the rest of the games I liked.

#2: Metal Gear
It started on the MSX2, had some NES games, and finally had its breakout game on the PlayStation with Metal Gear: Solid, Metal Gear: Solid popularized the stealth-action genre, and it's one of my favorite games. MGS2, 3, Peace Walker, 4, all cool games, and definitely some of the coolest gameplay and best story-telling I've experienced on the original PlayStation, MGS was the first non Squaresoft/Square EA/Enix game on the PS1 I played that didn't make me want to snap the disk in half.

#3:Sonic The Hedgehog
This is the only platformer series I've played that hasn't bored me to death, Crash Bandicoot and Mario are too slow for me, and I have always preferred Sonic's storylines and characters even though I've been a Nintendo guy for most of my life. SEGA's mascot has had a lot more appeal to me than Nintendo's main mascot. Honestly I don't know why I like Sonic so much, but I'm guessing it's the speed and adventuring. It's never disappointed me yet.

#4:Final Fantasy
I've always liked RPGs, and Final Fantasy is one of the largest RPG series of all time, it's had its good times and its bad, but Final Fantasy will always have a place in my heart, Final Fantasy VI and III are two of my favorite games, I don't usually like turn-based RPGs, but if done right they can be astounding and amazing.

#5:Devil May Cry
A fantasy hack 'n slash made by Capcom for the PS2.
Yeah, nothing to dislike here. I get to run around the game world as Dante, kill demons with guns that never run out of bullets, and swords that never break, DMC2 was the second PS2 game I played and it is yet to be topped by anything else on the PS2 in quality of gameplay and fun. Devil May Cry is getting an unneeded reboot soon, with a much younger Dante who, honestly doesn't look so much like a half demon hero as Justin Bieber with a sword, but we'll see if it's any good soon.

This is just my top five, if anyone wants to see the rest, fire me an eMail or comment.

Photos from Wikipedia.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Kobalt 2-Pack Utility tool unboxing.

I'm sorry, I forgot to post this video here for a bit:

The pouch flops around on my hip a bit, and the knife it kind of hard to close. I'll get back to you when I have used it a bit more.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Battle: Los Angeles

This movie has been given generally negative reviews. It came out in 2011 and was one of many action movies at the time that handled alien invasions versus ragtag elite military forces.

I should start off saying that it's not that bad. I genuinely enjoyed watching it and I don't think I wasted my time on it. I didn't like the camera styling in the beginning, but after a while it wasn't noticeable.
One thing about this type of movie, is everyone compares it to Independence Day. One thing you have to realize is this is not ID4, it doesn't have Will Smith in it, it doesn't have a load of recognizable stars, and it doesn't have enough comedic relief to it.
That being said, it's a good movie. It comes up with an original plot, a somewhat original storyline, and an interesting way of telling the story. Aliens are invading and a small band of US Marines in LA is trying to stop them. Along the way they find out that the aliens are after the water and have established command centers around the world.

The plot is by no means complicated, I actually found it refreshing that it was so straight-forward.With everything trying to be complicated, deep and strung-out this movie is a refreshing change from, say, Harry Potter, which went downhill from about number three, or the Raimi Spider-Man movies, which tried to be deep and emotional, but came off as convoluted and unnecessary. This movie is enjoyable and straight-forward, don't expect infinite Batman gambits or endless twists, all this is is humans fighting for survival, and it's a damn good way of telling it.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Worst game awards part 3

Iron Man
I played the Wii version, and it was slow in the first stage and most of the missions are confusing and the enemies are over-powered. Also, most of the plotlines don't follow the movie. The good thing was that you could go fairly fast if you wanted to. The cut-scenes were cool (Better than Spider-Man 3), and the voice-actors are actually the cast of the Iron Man movie. At least it's better than Iron man 2 (Grrrr....) 2.4*

Ferrari Challenge: Trofeo Pirelli
I played the PS2 version of this game and I have to say, this game SUCKS. You try to steer and you fishtail, you try to turn and you lose control, you try to get it OUT of a fishtail or try to regain control and you fail epicly. This game might not be so bad on the DS, Wii, or PS3 but the PS2 version gets a 3.2* rating. This was one of the first PS2 games I played and I have to say, it's DEFINITELY one of the worst PS2 games you can find.

Sonic The Hedgehog: SEGA Game Gear series.
I have to say, this series is bad, bad graphics, bad sound, bad controls, and bad boxart.
The sprites hurt my eyes even more than sprites usually do, the music was annoying, the levels are tedious and the controls are unresponsive, and that's just the first game! Get into the others and you encounter confusing levels (Sonic 2) tedious gameplay (Sonic Labyrinth) stupid as all hell controls (Sonic Triple Trouble) an INSANE amount of oversteer (Sonic Drift), and a Dr. Mario ripoff! (Dr Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine). This series is bad, the only good thing I have to say about it is it's free if you get a copy of Sonic Adventure DX on the GameCube like I did.

Cya soon with more stuff! And sorry about the delay on the new feature, I'm having some technical difficulties.

(Image credits Wikipedia and Google Image Search)

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Wii U

Well, I tried the Wii U at Wal-Mart and I have to say, I like it! The uPad is nice and light, the sticks are PERFECTLY positioned for FPSs and the shoulder-buttons are the only ones I have used that don't give me finger cramps \/.\/

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Here's a video where I play Minecraft for 13 and a half minutes.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Most bone-headed moves in the videogame industry, part 1

Here is where I chronicle the worst business moves made by companies that produce and or publish videogames.

Atari refusing to give their employees credit for the games they made.

What happened here was Atari, one of the first videogame publishers and console manufacturers wanted their developers to remain anonymous (which wouldn't be stood for anytime after that) and thus Activision spawned from it, and caused the second generation North American videogame crash with the loads of unlicensed shovelware games. If Atari had inserted a credits sequence in their games then there wouldn't have been a crash in '83, they wouldn't have lost a ton of money, and they PROBABLY wouldn't have dropped out in the fifth generation and there might have been a sixth, seventh or even EIGHTH Generation Atari! (think on that for a bit).

Releasing the PSPgo.
This was probably the first (and hopefully only) console that doesn't use any kind of removable media and has no backwards compatibility with previously released PSP games. So you had a system that couldn't play the games you already had, you couldn't re-sell your games, nor could you easily hack it. Anyways, the PSPgo is infamous for many reasons, first being its download only game system, the second being its Wireless B internet, another one being the control layout, and finally the fact that the hardware has been boycotted and discontinued for the most part.

Region coding on the PSVita, 3DS, Wii, and whatever other consoles use it.

Seriously, in this day and age, with imports being the thing with hardcore gamers and some games being exclusive to certain regions (Especially with Chrono Trigger being JAP and NTSC only with no PAL entry until the DS remake) they might as well just stop. Honestly if they want to make more money and avoid unlicensed addons and piracy they should remove region-coding and work on the international scripts at the same time, if they did that there would be less fan demand and more revenue for the companies, and we wouldn't spend endless hours googling for fan translations of the Death Note DS trilogy.

This is the end of part 1, let me know if you have any suggestions or topics for this let me know.

Friday, November 9, 2012


Yeah, it's late. Shut up and read the review.

Skyfall starts off with a macguffin hard-drive being stolen and Bond falling off a train.

Okay, it's more than that, but that's the gist of the beginning. There was quite a lot of blur to it and sometimes you couldn't tell who was Bond in which scene (Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace suffered from the same thing). The hero is, of course, the famous Commander 007 James Bond, the villain is an old MI6 agent who feels M betrayed him and wants her dead. Bond of course won't allow that and is trying to stop him.

Daniel Craig is amazing as Bond, and is a lot better than I thought he would be before seeing Casino Royale, and topped the first two in the new series by far.

Javier Bardem is the villain, a disgraced and psychopathic MI6 agent who goes by the name of Raoul Silva, he was driven insane by months of torture and an attempt at suicide, he blamed M for not getting him out of wherever he was and wants her and whoever gets in his way dead.

Judi Dench is M, she reprised her role as M from the original series in Casino Royale and permanently leaves the role in this movie due to macular degeneration in both eyes. She did a good job and despite her eye-problems she looked and acted natural, only missing looking where she was supposed to be once early on.

Ralph Fiennes stars as Gareth Mallory, a former Lt. Colonel in the British Army and as of most of the movie chairman of the ISC, he did a good job and he'll be pretty good in the next movie.

Naomie Harris stars as Eve Moneypenny, a field agent who takes a desk job at the end after accidentally shooting Bond in the shoulder. She did a good job, and I hope she's better in the next one. Her role as Moneypenny was suspected throughout the entire production of the film and was only confirmed in the British showing of Skyfall.

Bérénice Lim Marlohe as stars Sévérine, the second Bond girl onscreen who gets shot about halfway through the movie by Silva. She's okay, like most of the soon-to-die Bond girls she serves for a sex-scene, fleeting eye-candy, and a bit of dialogue, only to be killed by the villain or the villains men. At least they broke the "First Bond girl to appear dies" trope.

                                        (Crappy photo, I know. It was the only one I could find)
Albert Finney plays Kincade, the gamekeeper at Bond's childhood home. Sean Connery was considered for the role (And he could have played it) but for some reason they chose Finney, and he did a good job. He had funny moments and it'd be cool if he was in the next one.

Rory Kinnear as Bill Tanner, M's Chief of Staff, who plays a very small role in the movie, he saved M's life and I don't know if he survived the courtroom scene.

Ben Whishaw as Q, head of Q branch. He's the youngest to play Q and the first in Q ten years. He does a good job and plays the part of a geek very well.

Anyways, the movie was very good, the only thing not explained was how Bond survived being shot twice and falling off a bridge into a river and then falling off a water-fall.

Then again, Bond IS Made of iron.......

Anyways he comes back (Shaken and a bit weaker), runs around the world, gets a few million euros because he got a poker-chip off an assassin (Who kills someone who is of no other relevance to the plot and then falls off a building), and gets voluntarily captured and tied to a chair by Silva.

Then weird stuff happens.

For the next three minutes the scene plays like any other hero-captured-by-villain scene, Silva gloats, tells Bond how M faked his records to get him back on active duty, and then it gets kind of homoerotic.

The theme is sung by Adele and I heard it on the radio a while before I knew it was the theme to Skyfall. It's good and fits the movie perfectly.
Anyways aside from that scene the movie has no flaws, I give it a 9.90*, there are several crowning moments of funny and it's a very good Bond movie, MUCH better than the late Roger Moore-era movie I saw on iON one night....

Images from Google Image Search.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

PlayStation 2 discontinued.

According to Sony announced VIA Twitter that they were discontinuing the PlayStation 2.

"Sony posted a note in Twitter, stating that the production of PlayStation 2 console has come to an end and they no longer produce new units. The PS2 was released on March 4, 2000 in Japan, and over 154 million units were sold worldwide."

Wonderful, Sony kept the PS1 going for over a decade even DURING the PS2's lifetime (I think Square Enix still sells Chrono Cross discs) then they released the PS3, I have a feeling there's a trend here, Sony's about to release a new console and drag the PS3 out for over a decade. Seeing as Sony ground SEGA into the dirt with the PS2 I can't say I'm entirely disappointed, although I'd be lying if I said I'd never touch the hardware since I play on my PS2 quite regularly. Anyways, I have to wonder how many cross-platform releases will still be published on the PS2 since the console has been discontinued. The PS2 had a good run, twelve years and still getting some decent games on it. The PlayStation 1 lasted I think fifteen years and who knows how long the PS3 will last.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Well, some Battlefield 4 info has been leaked:

Well, some Battlefield 4 info has been leaked:

Battlefield 4 is powered by Frostbite 2 Engine. The game will stress the engine at 80%.
Battlefield 4 has tentative release date of October 23. It will arrive on current as well as next generation console i.e PC, PS3, Xbox 360, PS3, PS4 and Xbox 720.
Battlefield 4 on current generation console will run at 30FPS, whereas next-generation will run at 60FPS
Battlefield 4 on Xbox 720, PS4 and PC will support 64 players on MP. No such feature for current generation console.
Battlefield 4 will support tessellation and dynamic lighting
A FPS Cap on Battelfield 4 PC version. A cap will be at 100FPS.
Battlefield 4 will have Voice Commands as well as Commander role in MP along with lots of new tools and abilities
Battelfield 4 will take place in modern-day scenarios and it will support video sharing, meaning that gamers will be able to watch videos directly via Battlelog.
Battlefield 4 will support female characters. A total of three factions will be available USA, Russia and China.

Sounds cool. Not gonna buy it if it's not on Wii U, PS3 or Xbox 360 though. Nothing's been confirmed about it yet so these may change.


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Artix Entertainment games.

There are a lot of you who've probably never heard of these guys, there are some who probably play their games.

Anyways, Artix Entertainment originally came out with a Free-to-play flash game called AdventureQuest in 2002, it was given an optional one-time upgrade fee in 2003 and a free-user server cap around the general time of release, back then it wasn't as popular but later on the free user count was restricted to those who stayed up for weeks on end continually attempting to log in. This was a major problem and caused a lot of negative criticism of the game and AE for the low capacity (between 2K and 4.5K) of the F2P server. Although it was removed around July 14, 2010 or July 14, 2011 (The wikipedia pages for AE and AQ have conflicting dates) it still made enough of an impression on the players that it caused more than a bit of bitterness towards the friendly folks over at AE. The gameplay is decent, although there's enough restrictions on free users (For instance, a good deal of the quests are tough, even for a level 40 fighter), the guardians (Paid users) are the only ones that can survive most of the storyline quests and the fact that most of the gear is expensive.... Micropayments are required for upgrades and most of the stuff is INSANELY stupid, some stuff is practically USELESS and yet they won't let you sell it to free up a space..................

With the popularity of AQ, AE released a prequel game on 9 June 2006, known as DragonFable.
DragonFable is everything AQ SHOULD have been, but wasn't. It took place from a third-person perspective most of the time, it used a 2.5D isometric view that I've NEVER seen used better, it had a better potion system, little to no micropayments needed for the best gear, more gear slots, more attacks, you didn't need to buy spells as new abilities were unlocked as you leveled up, and you could play through a LOT of the storyline without an upgrade.

And then it all fell apart.... They started requiring Dragon Amulets (The upgrades) for final bosses of quest-lines, making more and more "Fetch this" or "kill this many" quests required to proceed with wars, and on top of that I don't think the game's had a relevant update in a LONG time, it still uses Flash 8! In six years a good game went from awesome to pitiful. The early quests are still fun but most of the cool one-time events have passed, the rest are just filler to keep the players occupied whilst the Dragonlords (Paid users) get the real meat of the game. I do still recommend playing at least the first few quests, they're good.

Later, they came out with another game, yet again ANOTHER prequel to AQ, set 5,000 years before it and 4,995 before Dragonfable (And runs on the same engine, but tweaked a bit). The game has absolutely NOTHING wrong with it other than the fact that it's only got two or three people maintaining it, it's pretty much abandoned and doesn't have any decent limited-time sidequests to it any more. The Mecha-combat is cool and the storyline (If it has one) is nice for a Flash game, at least in the beginning. After a bit it becomes convoluted and contrived rather than coming to a decisive end (Sort of like comic-books VS manga) the gear is neat, you get to blow things up with giant robots and right aliens with light-saber clones (although the hand-to-hand combat is repetitive after a bit) The game just needs some competent people making sure they clean it up from the mess it's become and is given some interesting side-quests, the game has a LOT of potential to be cool (Just like DF does) if they put a bit more work into it.

AE's first game with a real-time system, simplified (More super-deformed than the typical anime style of the other games) graphics, and multiplayer. AdventureQuest Worlds started out terrible, got decent, got good, got REALLY good, went back to decent, and then dropped into the "meh" territory AEs first three ORPGs fell into, except this game's still got regular updates! The 13 Lords of Chaos saga was cool, the first few fights were neat and the storyline was fairly compelling.
Then it tried to be The Legend of Zelda, and EVERYTHING went down hill........
There's only one Legend of Zelda, it's made by Nintendo, anyone else who tries to make a game in the same genre has, so far, in the games I've played, failed. They started requiring puzzles to be solved to get to the area bosses, they scrapped the PvP format that everyone loved, they started showing ads when you died, and most recently they made the main town impossible to navigate! The game is okay, the first few quests are nice and SOME of the puzzles are fun to solve but most of them you can just warp to someone who's in the boss chamber. The episodic format is good, it's sort of like free DLC expansions, I stopped playing the game at about the Seventh Chaos Lord Saga (Around this time last year), so that's about the sixth episode of the main storyline (seeing as we have yet to see a Second Lord of Chaos fight). The game is okay as far as about the fourth or fifth Chaos Lord (Some of the best hard-to-get gear are from those two), but the side-quests are getting more and more tedious and some of the yearly events are repetitive, some of them aren't interesting and most of them would be considered filler if this were a console game.

Released on July 17, 2009, Warpforce is a split part of the Devourer saga (What passes for the main quest line of AQ) and is a VERY interesting concept, I don't think it's gone as far down-hill as the other AE games. In fact, it might not even be in decline (That'd be something). It's pretty cool, the gear is awesome and you can do all kinds of stuff that AQ limited, I think it's still a good game (although I'll have to check)

Later the same year, AE acquired Epic Inventions LLC and their one PVPMMO, EpicDuel. EpicDuel doesn't have a subscription base, rather it relies on microtransactions (In the form of a paid-for currency called Varium) I've been playing ED for a while now, and I still get on it occasionally, but around level 25 random matches become impossible. All kinds of people buying Varium and getting bonus weapons and armor and robots and buying all kinds of stuff and in the end it gets to the point of sheer insanity and you can't win. If they had more of a storyline and balanced the Varium-users out to at least give a GHOST of a chance to beat them, and made the bosses a little weaker so that free-users can beat them (Like in WoW where they give you the option to fight them nerfed or full power or higher than original) it could be a better game, it started out okay but after a while (When you get into the high levels) you can't go anywhere, and it takes a TON of XP to go past level 30.

Hero SMASH! is AEs second in-house developed MMO (Which uses the same basic engine as AQW), originally called Super-Hero Quest, AE was issued a joint letter of cease and desist from Marvel and DC (Essentially Walt-Disney and Time Warner) and had to rename the game HERO SMASH!. With a cool concept behind it and stylized graphics, you'd think it would have been a cool game, and it was for a bit, but like AQW it became repetitive (And this happened REAL early, I was an Alpha tester!) The game is worth playing if you've got a few minutes to waste.

The first game by the company's main artist, Milton Pool/Miltonius/Nulgath headed up the OverSoul project, making it in the theme of other AE games, but with a much darker undertone, and apparently is an MMO with PVP and PVE and Cardbattle elements to it, I'll be playing it soon.

AdventureQuest 3D: Legend of Lore

Little is known about the game aside from that pre-registration started a while ago and that the team behind it has changed the format several times. I personally think they should make it a client game and have the players download at least PART of it. I don't know why, but seeing as they like to keep things browser-based I have a feeling that keeping the games in the browser detracts from the quality somehow.

Well, that's all the games they've got, the people are helpful and quick to answer questions or respond to bug reports, the only thing that's wrong is they don't have decent phone support.

All in all certain limitations to their games seem like they're either necessity driven, or greed driven. If it's necessity I get it, but if it's greed driven then it's completely unacceptable and it makes them seem like EA.

The link to the company site:

All images from Google Image search.

Best Game Awards Part 1:

This is part of my ongoing series of best/worst game awards.

No, i'm not getting any more specific than that, I like all of them. To this day there has not been a truly BAD Zelda game (unless you count unofficial Flash ones and possibly CD-i ones), only frustrating ones. I'm giving the entire SERIES one of my Best Game Awards. A 10.1* for entertaining generations and challenging us with new puzzles for over 25 years!

Okay, anyone who's played this game (no matter what version) knows it's awesome. Could have done with a bit more scripting in certain Egg-Carrier stages though. 8.98*, the only thing wrong is the camera defaults to auto instead of free, and the talking animations are a bit odd.

Ahh, Goldeneye. Activision remade the classic FPS and it received almost universal praise. I myself have beaten it twice and I'm planning on an LP soon. It's the first FPS I played and I'm not sorry about that! It's the best and there's no denying it. It had four releases and three are the same game. I haven't played the DS version but hey, it's Goldeneye, it pretty much has to be good. Goldeneye 007 Reloaded gets 10.1*, it's probably the best FPS of all time, and I'm taking Perfect Dark into account!

Why you ask? I ask why you ask! This game may be over 21 years old, but it spawned one of the most successful multimedia franchises of all time, the longest running comic-book series based on a videogame, (I own the 200th issue!) the TV series that introduce me to anime (Gotta go fast!). and some awesome 3D as well as 2D games. Still going fast (Mario's just too slow!) after all these years and a transition from being a SEGA exclusive series to being on every console from the obscure to the prominent I can still say that I have never played a truly bad Sonic game, a few might be substandard (GameGear ones) but they're not "omigodiwannathrowthisaway" bad. 10.1*, Green Hill Zone theme brings me to tears!

To put it simply, F-Zero X is the only racing game I can stand to play, in all others I fishtail like mad or else something else is wrong with the game. I REALLY don't like other racing games, they're not as smooth. 8.77*, the music is so cool!

Well, that's it for the first edition of the Best Game Awards!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

About the ESRB....

When I got my Nintendo 64 it came with three games, two I won't mention here because they're irrelevant, but the third is, it was called Mace: The Dark Age and it was rated M For Mature, ages 17 and over.
Well because of the time period it was made in naturally I knew it couldn't be as realistic as it would have to be to earn its M rating, so I stuck it in and played it for a bit.
When I was done, I felt a little odd. The ratings board, which parents, stores, gamers and reviewers put so much stock in to keep certain content out of the hands of children had gotten something wrong, the game didn't deserve its M rating, it didn't even deserve a T rating, the pixels that made up the blood were the size of dimes, and the characters barely looked human in the combat arena (not counting the hell-knight, which doesn't look human at all) and the "heads on spikes" looked.... Like pictures that had been dropped in front of spikes and had red confetti thrown about. I cross-referenced the ESRB website to see if they had updated the rating for modern standards but they hadn't.
A few months later I got Rogue Squadron for my N64 because I had heard good things about it, I played it and found that I liked it. Again, the ESRB had gotten the rating wrong, it was rated T for ages 13 and up, but nowadays it'd probably be rated E or E10+, when I cross-referenced again with the ESRB site I found that they hadn't updated the rating for modern standards for it either.
Sometime after that I read about the "Hot coffee" patch for Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, and how the ESRB had upgraded it from an M rating to an AO18+ rating (which meant that almost all stores pulled it from the shelves), and then back to M when Rockstar removed the content from all future discs and made a patch that crashed the game if you tried to use the patch that was used to access the content and "Mini-game" I wondered how they had let that slip through, surely they must decompile the games to see if this exists right?
Fast forward two years, I had already played Goldeneye Reloaded on my Wii and wanted to see about an FPS I had read about in some old Nintendo Powers called Perfect Dark. At that time I had begun to not trust the ESRB ratings, but I checked out the website entry for it anyways, and found it was rated M. In Nintendo Power they said it had earned its M rating because it had swearing and blood in it. I convinced my parents that it wasn't that bad that the M rating was genuinely needed, and bought it. I played it for a bit and made a few comments on how unrealistic it was while I was playing it. Again, the blood was pixelated and the swearing was cleaner than you'd see on prime-time TV, nothing graphic, nothing that'd be censored on network television nowadays. At that point I figured out that in that time-period the ESRB must have either been on the take or completely and totally incompetent. Later on I played DooM, a game that has been given an M rating for nearly every release and re-release it's seen and I just....
It's even MORE unrealistic than Perfect Dark, it PALES in comparison in every way to modern FPS, which makes me wonder why they go by the original rating even with the datedness of it, DooM wouldn't scare a five year old, much less a teenager, so why don't they at least downgrade the rating to T?

It was at this point I found out that the ESRB doesn't play the games the rate, nor do they root around in the files to see what unused code and content is left from development that the devs were too lazy to delete, and therefore gets encoded into every copy of the game that is made from the master copy, they watch gameplay footage and cut-scenes from the game, and don't bother doing anything that might actually make for an accurate rating, more like one that hits in the general area. If they played it through, got people with experience to play them instead of a randomly assigned panel the five, and did a decompile to see what remnants are there from the development and maybe even play the beta/debug versions to see what was on there they might be able to get a more accurate rating on the games.

A while later I bought Devil May Cry 2 and by that time I was completely disregarding ratings on games. I played it a bit, saw the warning on the intro and found, that even though it warned of "Explicit scenes of blood and violence" that the blood was mostly blue (or purple, or pretty much nothing resembling red) and that that the blood and bodies vanished after the creatures were defeated. There was almost no level of realism to the game, for instance the guns have unlimited ammo, and Dante can leap off of buildings of any height and survive (which is more reminiscent of a Sonic game than anything ultra-real) and get hit square in the chest with almost anything and (as long the the vitality meter is fairly high) survive, and that he has gold orbs that can bring him back to life. They really don't have a good sense of the word "realism" do they?

At this point I consider ESRB ratings more of suggestions than rules, I don't know about the CERO, PEGI or other systems, but in my opinion the ESRB has absolutely no clue as to what they're doing, they over-rate some games and under-rate others (which is what led me to think they might have been on the take) but seeing as their process is so sloppy as to let things like the Hot-Coffee content through and to rate The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion T and then to re-rate it as M due to previously hidden content (with both sexual and overly bloody and violent content enabled by the aftermarket patch) Now, Bethesda didn't disclose the fact that the content was there but the ESRB didn't play the game to find out for themselves (nor did they re-re-rate the game as they did with GTA:SA when the anti-mod patch was released) which, although Bethesda should have come forth about the restricted content on the disc, does in no way excuse the ESRB for not putting more work into rating research, if they put more work into it, they might not get their accuracy questioned so much, and there would have been no fallout. Within that statement lies a question, should the ESRB put more work into rating the games they screen? In my opinion yeah, they need to at least put as much work into rating the games as the gamers put in playing. Some might bring up the Skyrim mods, or other user-generated content, but the ESRB has already said that it will only rate what is on the disc and in the expansions made by the company that made the game. Now, the ESRB isn't as dumb as it seems, they DID tighten their standards after both the Hot-Coffee and Oblivion incidents, but if they'd had a better system in the first place, they might have never lost face and I might still put stock in their ratings.
That's not to say you SHOULD disregard the ratings, like I said, they're usually right within one rating level, but that's not saying you should pay TOO close attention to what they rate games, especially ones older than ten years. Times and standards change, and so should the ratings, not just for games, but also for old movies and TV shows, the ratings should reflect modern standards, not the standards of the past. Most old movies would be rated G or PG but seeing as before a certain point they used an arbitrary system or no system at all the information to reflect against modern standards SHOULD exist. Perfect Dark and Goldeneye Reloaded should be rated the same by modern standards, and Rogue Squadron should be rated at maximum E10+. The ESRB may have its standards for rating new games, but they didn't bother updating the old ratings. DooM remains its old spritey self in every release it's had and that just seems lazy not to update the ratings. Seeing as open-source and community projects are coming to the fore-front it might be prudent to start a community ratings board based on the experience the players had with the game and what content the hacking and modding community found within the game.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

iPad mini

Not enough words in the world to describe how much fail this thing has in it.g vygvhjq

Sorry, the random letters are from me headdesking on my keyboard.dfrghc
Seriously, the original iPad was just a massive iPhone/iTouch, why make an in-between model?
y vg ftgvb  bb b
The only thing it has going for it is the price, $329 for the base WiFi model (Cheaper than the iPad2 or iPad3) but it's still more than the Nexus 7 model with the same amount of storage ($249), or the base Nexus 7 model($199) and the Nexus 7 runs an open-source OS and can have all kinds of cool homebrew on it easily, whereas Apple will release updates DETERMINED to circumvent homebrew.

I think you should go with the Nexus 7, I'll be looking into a tablet soon and the Nexus 7 is on my list.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Nintendo vs SEGA anime

Well, they turned World War II into an anthropomorphic anime series, why not the console wars?

 It's called Aoi Sekai no Chūshin de, or "In the center of the world blue" as translated by Google. It looks interesting and if I can find a place it's streaming I will watch it, but for now all you can say is it takes the console wars and the mascots of SEGA and Nintendo and turns them into....

Aw hell, unless you've been under a rock for the past decade and a half you know what's been going on.

Images from:


Yeah, I'm leading with that image. is reporting that EBGames is selling an SNES themed Wii U Pro controller around the 20th anniversary of the SNES, and launches on the same day in Australia as the Wii U.

Why didn't Nintendo make this to official controller instead of just a bland black or white one? It's a good thing I'm into modding and imports otherwise I'd probably never get my hands on one of these. I'm leaning towards making my own via paint and cosmetic changes to a third-party Pro controller, because I like to earn my cool.

You want one of these? Here's the link:

2012 Q&A

Well, after five days, a power-outage, and about three network errors I've finally gotten the video up AROUND the time I made my first post, I've got an interview coming up so keep your eyes peeled!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Various Reviews turns one year old!

Well, I just realized this, I started Various Reviews one year ago on the 19th. Yup, one year and 4,445 pageviews ago I was a fourteen year old kid with no idea what I was doing. Now I'm fifteen (still quite young) and I at least have a decent understanding of what to do and how to do it.

Well, on October 19th 2011 I founded so on that date I will do something special, a treat for having gotten me this far.

What is it? Well it's partially gonna be a surprise, partially going to be a Q&A, so submit your questions to:, I'll be awaiting your questions!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Skyfall theme

Well, the theme song for the new James Bond movie has bee released, following in the tradition of most (if not all) of the previous Bond films, it is named after the movie. Ladies and gentleman, feast your ears on Adele's Skyfall:

Sheer amazing, it's better than Goldeneye and Live and Let Die put together. As if I didn't want to see Skyfall enough, this is adding to my list of reasons to go see it!


I just watched Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace, so no the last two movies didn't have the themes named after them (in my defense, Casino Royale was my first full Bond movie)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Sonic Adventure 2 HD and NiGHTS Into Dreams HD are being released today on the PlayStation Network. Gee, thanks for the vagueness in the release date SEGA I thought I had a little more time to get a GC copy of SA2, oh well. Anyone who buys Sonic Adventure 2 HD for the PSN gets a free SA2 theme, and anyone who buys the PSN version of NiGHTS gets a free NiGHTS theme, nice addons, I'll be needing a PS3 soon so I can review these games and Sonic Generations. SA2 HD and NiGHTS Into Dreams HD are being released tomorrow in the UK on PSN, and will be available worldwide on PSN and Xbox LIVE Arcade by the fourth of October.

In other news, Nintendo is releasing DLC for New Super Mario Bros 2. Yup, the 3D remake of NSMB DS is getting DLC packs, released on the fourth as well. Quote from the press release:

“Nintendo fans have really enjoyed the fun and competition of Coin Rush Mode, recently surpassing more than 100 billion total coins collected worldwide,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of Sales & Marketing. “These new packs offer completely new levels that fit into the New Super Mario Bros. 2 world, but offer new challenges that will keep players coming back for more.”
The packs being released on Oct. 4 include:
Gold Rush Pack: Fun new courses that give novice players the best chance to collect lots of gold, and veterans the chance to set even higher Coin Rush records.
Coin Challenge Pack A: The New Super Mario Bros. 2 website will track the rankings based on the scores for this pack, enabling players to measure their scores against other tallies from around the world in these more open courses.
Nerve-Wrack Pack: Intense new courses designed for veteran players looking for new challenges.
These packs can be purchased with the following procedures: Players who are connected to a wireless Internet  connection must first activate SpotPass in the game and receive a notification from New Super Mario Bros. 2.* After receiving the notification, the next time the player enters Coin Rush Mode**, a Shop icon will appear in the game. Players who have accessed the shop can then read information about the packs, including descriptions, difficulty ratings and the required storage space. As long as players have enough funds in their Nintendo eShop balance, they can then tap and purchase the packs they want all within the game."

Well, I'm no fan of DLC unless it's legit, and this seems to be legit, unlike CERTAIN companies models,
*glares at EA*

So, will I be buying these DLC packs for NSMB2? Probably not, I'm probably not gonna buy the game either.Will I be buying SA2HD and NiGHTS HD? Maybe, depends on whether or not I get a PS3 in the near future.

Sorry about the white text.

Materiel referenced:

Monday, October 1, 2012

Thursday, September 27, 2012


First off: WOW. The sheer coolness of this show is amazing.

This show blows all of the previous contemporary adaptions of Sherlock Holmes out of the water, Johnny Lee Miller is Holmes, Lucy Liu is Doctor Joan Watson, and Aidan Quinn is Captain Tobias Gregson, the Lestrade character of the series. I think that even the original Conan Doyle series pales in comparison to this modern, slick and stylish version of them.

Sherlock Holmes is an ex Scotland Yard consultant, who moved to the states at some point and was checked into rehab by his father due to a drug addiction (no specifics, although as the original Holmes's vice was cocaine for a while, it is natural to assume that is what it was). An undetermined amount of time later ex-surgeon Joan Watson was hired by his father to be  Holmes's live-in watchdog to make sure he stays on the straight and narrow, a period of time that they state as six weeks. Holmes breaks out of rehab on the day he was supposed to be released because he was bored, has someone "over" before explaining to Watson that he's returning to his freelance detective work with the LAPD and is heading to a crime scene.

All in all that summarizes the plot of the pilot without giving away any spoilers (as usual). Apparently Tobias Gregson was a minor character in the original series and not the top-dog detective in-charge but that's just a fun fact.

Anyways, Elementary is a must-watch for mystery lovers and Homes fans alike, I give it a 10.1* rating, this is by far one of the best shows debuting this season and I have high hopes for it, they recreated Holmes perfectly and Watson is given a more modern and American tone to contrast to Holmes's distinct Britishness.

Do I recommend it? Yes, most definitely.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

New Blog

I created a new blog for the sole purpose of creating Longplays of videogames so they don't take up space on my main blog. Here is the link:

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sonic Adventure 2 and NiGHTS into dreams HD remakes

Well, SEGA released HD remakes of two favorites, NiGHTS into dreams and Sonic Adventure 2 for Xbox LIVE Arcade, priced at 800 Microsoft points (or about 8.00USD).

Thing is, even though the GameCube version of SA2 isn't HD, it still had the Battle Mode and ridiculous Chao Karate on the disc. The XBLA version costs $3 to add that on as DLC, bad SEGA bad!

Fortunately, instead of REMOVING content from NiGHTS into dreams, they ADDED some, the expansion Christmas NiGHTS which was previously only available through promotions and collectors editions or holiday bundles.

Now, I will not be reviewing the HD remakes just yet, I'll be reviewing the ORIGINAL versions! What a treat for the retro-gamers and SEGA fans alike right?

some gameplay shots from SEGA of SA2:

And for NiGHTS Into Dreams

They look nice in HD don't they? As soon as I get an Xbox 360 and some extra cash I'll be reviewing the HD versions.