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Quantum Break Review (Xbox One)

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by Luke Brown April 1, 2016 @ 2:01 AM
Remedy
Time is broken and the world is going to end. Though Jack Joyce didn't exactly put the entire human race at risk himself, his being complicit in Paul Serene's unsanctioned plan to test a very big time machine gives him a bit of cause in trying to put things right. Since Jack happens to be in the immediate vicinity of the time explosion, he finds himself able to stand outside of time and occasionally control it. This comes in handy since Monarch, the shady corporation funding Serene's ambitious plans, is on the scene immediately to capture Jack to cover up their own fault in the dire situation. It's almost as if they knew something horrible was going to happen on this day.

Albino Lullaby: Episode 1 Review (PC)

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by T.J. Denzer March 31, 2016 @ 1:00 PM
Ape Law, LLC
When it comes to the horror genre in the gaming industry, it’s become somewhat standard at this point that the biggest and best titles sell themselves in horrific gore and/or jump scares. Classic series like Resident Evil established a formula and more recent games like the widely praised Until Dawn and the Five Nights at Freddy’s series have carried the torch fueled by brutal monsters and intense in-your-face frights. Ape Law set out to buck against the trend with Albino Lullaby: a first-person experience that takes players on a psychological horror adventure without gore or jump scares. While Albino Lullaby’s first episode doesn’t quite succeed in keeping tension or fear all the time, it is nonetheless an engrossing and unique take on the horror genre.

What Lurks Beneath the Mansion: Celebrating Resident Evil

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by T.J. Denzer March 30, 2016 @ 2:43 PM
Capcom
In 1996, survival horror existed, but it wasn’t exactly widely known that way. Games like Clock Tower, Alone in the Dark, and numerous other takes on the horror genre existed, but even the best-selling games of the type enjoyed a moderate to cult following. Capcom wanted something greater. The company wanted to reinvent the wheel in a way that would appeal broadly to horror fans everywhere. Little did they know how big they were about to hit it. Originally released and known in Japan as Bio Hazard, Resident Evil would hit shelves and turn heads around the world, single-handedly becoming arguably one of the first survival horror blockbusters and creating a franchise that now spans decades.

A Second Splash of Disney Magic and Final Fantasy: Celebrating Kingdom Hearts II

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by T.J. Denzer March 28, 2016 @ 11:01 AM
Square-Enix
When we talk about brand crossovers in any sort of media, it’s always a sketchy question of licensing issues, getting the material correct, and presenting it in a way that’s new and enjoyable. Disney hadn’t been any stranger to video games for better and for worse, but when Square-Enix Final Fantasy character Tetsuya Nomura and producer Shinji Hashimoto reached out to Disney to create an action RPG themed around Disney characters and worlds, Kingdom Hearts was born and it became a match made in heaven. The game came out to critical acclaim and had a great spinoff follow it with Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, but for the next core entry in the series, they needed to once again turn heads in a way that never had. Lucky for all of the series’ fans, they were up to the task. In 2006, the United States was about to fall in love all over again with Kingdom Hearts 2.

Adr1ft Review (PC)

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by Alex Langley March 28, 2016 @ 9:01 AM
Three One Zero
The infinite blackness of space wraps around you, apathetic to your suffering. A confetti of space debris threatens to slice what little remains of your space suit as you struggle to bound your way over the shattered hull of the space station. A beeping tone in your ear tries to inform you that you’re running out of air, but your tunnel vision and gasping breaths beat the beeps to it. If you can’t get this space station at least partially up and running, you’ll be dead in hours. The spatial adventure Adr1ft would be a hell of a thrill ride… if it weren’t so boring.

The Empire of Nintendo Handheld: A Celebration of the Nintendo 3DS

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by T.J. Denzer March 27, 2016 @ 8:45 AM
Nintendo
Across the last few decades, it’s nearly impossible to think of the handheld market without Nintendo. Since the Game Boy’s release in 1989, the company has practically dominated the market. Competition has come forth in the form of the Sega Game Gear, Nokia N-Gage, and more prominently, the Sony PSP, but throughout the years, and especially in a market where mobile phones take an increasing share each year, Nintendo has managed to maintain an edge in producing some of the best and most creative technology the handheld market has to offer. Today, in particular, marks the release of the original 3DS handheld system: A system that arguably changed the way players think about glasses-free 3D.

A Pioneer Flight Into The Souls of Sound: Celebrating Amplitude

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by T.J. Denzer March 24, 2016 @ 12:01 PM
Harmonix
These days, when we look at industry of music and rhythm games, it’s hard not to think of Harmonix. The development studio has been a master force and pioneer of the genre for over a decade with its work on the Guitar Hero, Rock Band and Dance Central franchises. However, there was time when Harmonix was still figuring it out and had a long ways to go. This initially led to the creation of a game called FreQuency and when the game garnered positive attention, but not commercial success, they attempted to fine tune it with better gameplay mechanics and a better soundtrack. The result would be Amplitude, and it hit shelves on this day back in 2003.

10 Best Games to Play if You Like Dark Souls

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by Danny Saya March 23, 2016 @ 2:01 PM
From Software
Dark Souls is supremely crafted, unique action RPG. Its difficulty, which is an amalgam of stamina and item management, patience during combat, and deciphering cryptic mechanics are things that are unique to this series of games. Playing through a Dark Souls game makes you feel like you accomplished something with your skill alone. Once you learn your move set with certain weapons or learn how to properly time your spells the game feels easy but not because you just mashed the correct attack button. It still feels satisfying because you learned how to beat those enemies. Boss fights in Dark Souls are an extension of that at a much larger scale though. Going up against a giant knight or Dragon and slaying them with just a sliver of health is exhilarating in a game that rewards skilled play and punishes impatience more than anything.

Killing Gods and Taking Revenge: A Celebration of God of War

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by T.J. Denzer March 22, 2016 @ 12:01 PM
Santa Monica Studio
Some of gaming’s heaviest icons arrived early and have stayed late into the current day. Other companies attempted to field icons in hope of catching on like the Marios, Sonics, or Master Chiefs only to fade into obscurity. Kratos is an icon that arrived late to the party and made his presence known, riding to fame on the backs of dead Olympian Gods and Titans in his bloodthirsty quest for revenge. Since its release, God of War has spawned numerous sequels, spin-offs and media outside of video games. The games are regular fixtures in Top 10 lists and Game of the Year conversations and all of it began with the original release of God of War back in 2005.

Into the Stars Review (PC)

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by T.J. Denzer March 21, 2016 @ 3:01 PM
Iceberg Interactive
When a player ventures into a rogue-like pilgrimage game, there are certainly things to be expected. The game should deliver an experience that provides a player with the tools to plan a successful journey tailored to their favored playstyles while providing them with a mass of random obstacles bent on stretching their every resource and leaving aforementioned success in critical jeopardy. Randomness is the name of the game and success or failure can be luck of the draw just as much as careful resource management. Into the Stars is the type of game that will push you on those very grounds and once you’re in it, the journey is great the first few times. Unfortunately, some glaring bugs and technical issues take luck of the draw to a level that quickly sucks the fun out of the experience.