Video Game Reviews

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"Prepare to press X YET AGAIN!!!!!!!!"

Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 3
Reviewed on: Xbox 360
Also on: PlayStation 3
Street: 06.28
This game is made for two types of people: die hard fans of Dynasty Warriors and folks who have watched Gundam religiously. If you are not a member of the previously mentioned groups, then you, like myself, will not get this game. What you will get from this golden nugget is the following: a generic hack-and-slash combat system, overdramatic voiceovers about the heart of the universe, the same six combat animations over and over again, and a pained sense after finishing this game that you have just wasted a lot of time. I am by no means saying fans of the series are bad people, losers, or anything of the sort—I’m simply stating that from a gaming perspective, this game has a long way to go. The game is based on combat tactics … and by combat tactics, I mean capturing different rooms on a map in a specific order by rapidly pushing the “x” button while waves of enemy robot thingies fall over again and again. Blend that up with a solid Gundam story and your recipe puts forth mediocrity. The game adds very little to the Dynasty Warriors universe aside from online play, which means you can discuss how bored you are with someone else stuck at home on a Saturday night regretting his or her purchase. Save yourself a $60 headache and buy a Gundam DVD instead—you’ll get the full story and won’t have to tire your thumbs by jamming on the “x” button. –Thomas Winkley

MotorStorm: Apocalypse
Evolution Studios/Sony
Reviewed on: PlayStation 3 (Exclusive)
Street: 05.03
The fact that the Japanese tsunami forced a game about natural disasters to be delayed makes me wonder why I’ve never had to stop shooting polygon terrorists in Afghanistan for even a moment. Sensitivity is weirdly subjective. Anyway, MotorStorm: Apocalypse finally did get released back in May, and it’s awesome. I generally steer clear of racing games (ha!), but the MotorStorm franchise is one huge exception. The arcade-y boost-based gameplay and beautifully treacherous environments combine to create this sense of barely-controlled chaos that is really a thrill. Apocalypse is just as good as its predecessors, and manages to crank up the chaotic redneck intensity a few big notches without sacrificing playability. Each of Apocalypse’s courses is currently being ravaged by one or more natural disasters as you travel through it. Each lap changes the course layout, sometimes significantly, and all the crashing and exploding madness going on around you makes an already difficult racing game even harder. But it’s not a perfect package. The inter-mission cut scenes are a crap sandwich, and you can’t choose your own car during the lengthy story mode––they stick you with a bland grey one every time. Furthermore, I’m really pissed they took out the mud. Where the fuck did all the mud go? Racing through mud was fun. Racing through an earthquake-torn city as planes crash in your path, tornadoes blind you with stinging rain and military helicopters shoot RPGs at your face is fun too, but … ah, what the fuck am I complaining about. This game is great, go play it. As for me, I’m off to grad school. It’s been a pleasure and an honor being a little videogame paragraph in the back of SLUG Mag these three years. Keep reading. –Jesse Hawlish