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TG AceoHearts

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About TG AceoHearts

  • Rank
    SEVENTEEEEE
  • Birthday 09/17/1972

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    TG_AceoHearts
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    TG AceoHearts
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    TG_AceoHearts
  1. SOMA

    I have been playing video games for about 30 years now, and every once in a while a game makes me say “What the hell is going on?” SOMA from Frictional Games is one of those titles. And this is not a bad thing. You play as Simon Jarrett, a young man who was recently in a car accident. As a result of the accident, your girlfriend passed away and you sustained a bad head injury. You have been trying to figure out the extent of your injuries when you are contacted by a doctor that believes he might be able to help. You agree to be a part of his study, and have a complete brain scan. This is when things go sideways. After your scan you wake up and realize that something is very wrong. The bright lights of the doctors are gone. The room is dark, the door is locked and you are surrounded by equipment that wasn’t there before. You must now explore your new surroundings and figure out how you got there, as well as where THERE is. I don’t want to give away any more of the story, but I can safely say that it is a sci-fi, horror, survival which will require stealth over brute force. You will have to unravel the mysteries of your past and try to solve the puzzles of your present so you can move forward. Of course, you have to do this all while not drawing the attention of those that are out to get you. The XB1 version of the game differs slightly from the original PC and Playstation 4 game that was released a few years ago. The XB1 version features SAFE mode, which allows all the horror of the original title, but with no chance of getting injured by any monsters. This makes for a slightly less stressful playthrough, while still being able to experience the entire story. The graphics are dark and gritty. You are pulled into this world almost immediately and held there with a death grip. The environments are varied and extremely well done. Game sound is used to envelop you into this creepy world. Strange mechanical sounds, water dripping in the background, metallic creaks and strange echoes abound. Using headphones really immerses you into the experience, but the sound design is such that you will still get lost in the environments using your TV speakers. Music is sparse throughout the game, and mostly used to emphasize mood. SOMA is out now for XB1 and can be slipped into your collection for $29.99. While the game has you questioning what is going on, the answers are well worth the play time. 10/10
  2. Your Toy

    What if toys had souls? It’s a deep question, that can have some troubling consequences if it is true. Think back to all those army men you melted, Barbie’s you beheaded, and those other toys you abused. The new game Your Toy by Viva Games explores what can happen when your once loved toy becomes abused and tossed away. You wake up in a locked bathroom stall with nothing but your cellphone. You receive a mysterious message that makes you realize that someone is after you. Your first priority is to get your bearings, collect what you can, and figure out how to escape from the stall. Your powers of observation and problem solving will be put to the test – time and again. The game is comprised of several areas, each with multiple puzzles to solve, and dangers to avoid. All of the answers can be found around you, but with something stalking you – will you be able to concentrate? The puzzles are randomly generated – which means each playthrough will be a bit different. The main puzzles remain the same, but the solutions change – so you will still have to search out the answers every time. This will make speed runs a bit difficult. This game is a psychological thriller to the core. From the thunder and lightning outside to the creepy interiors. Even though you have a cellphone, it only receives incoming calls and messages. And the incoming calls are far from reassuring. The visual style of the graphics plays right into the horror genre. Lights flicker, there is a grainy texture to some of the scenes, and random artifacts fly across the screen – making you wonder what you just saw. Sound design is important in any game, but it seems to stand out more in the horror genre. Bad effects can snap you out of the moment quicker than anything. The music and sound in Your Toy is the exact opposite. You are drawn into the nightmare and held hostage until you beat the game or decide to stop playing. Your Toy is available as a limited time exclusive on Xbox One. You can add it to your collection for $14.99. It will be available on other platforms, but no firm date has been set. ** I must say that I hand write all of my reviews first, then type them up the next day or when the embargo is lifted. I wrote this review then got sick, so it has sat for a few days. In the interim, I replayed the game to collect the last few achievements that I needed. In 3 of my 4 runs (that many are not normally needed) I encountered a glitch in one of the final areas. One of the items required to complete a puzzle failed to spawn. After a quick look on the internet – this was not an isolated issue. A glitch like this really effects game play and the overall rating. ** 6/10
  3. Spintires : Mudrunner

    Reviewing video games can be hard work. I’m not just talking about long hours playing games from every genre. Some titles are closer to on the job training than actual games. Spintires : Mudrunners from Focus Home Interactive is a perfect example of this. This is a simulation game like none out there. The main object of the game is to load your truck up with logs and carry them to the lumber mill. The main difference is that you have to travel on logging roads that are sometimes nothing more than mud covered ditches, ford rivers, and you can occasionally even drive on a real road to get the job done. You have a garage full of trucks to get the job done – once they are unlocked – but this game is far from play. This game is divided into two main sections – the campaign and challenges. Challenges are single levels that require you to complete a task with the vehicle the game chooses. The campaign will have you transporting logs from the lumber mill to the saw mill. You will get to pick your truck and route – provided the truck is in that level – but beware. Most levels will require you to make multiple trips, and each truck carries a different amount of cargo. You will also have to factor in fuel stops and of course, the mud. Picking the wrong truck can add extra miles to your job. The controls for the game are very good for a driving simulator. You can pick between an automatic or manual transmission depending on your preference. I will admit the manual takes a bit of getting used to (and I can drive a stick) but it is helpful when trying to get through the mud. Controlling your truck in the mud is where things get hairy, especially when you must try and park something with some precision. As good as the controls are, the view tends to be a bit lacking. You have an over the cab view and you can move the camera, but it tends to be a bit of an odd angle most of the time. The camera doesn’t swivel smoothly, so you can miss the angle you need. And face it, if you are playing a sim game you want a behind the wheel perspective. The game offers one, but you have limited side views and no views of your mirrors. This means that you are forced to switch to the other view when backing up, attaching trailers or attaching your winch. There is a lot to do in Spintires : Mudrunners, but you have to have the patience for long levels, iffy camera views, and lots of mud, this is a title for you. The simulation side is spot on, and even offers multiplayer if you have a few good buddies that want to form a convoy. 7/10
  4. The Inner World - The Last Wind Monk

    Earlier this year Headup Games brought the Studio Fizbin game – The Inner World to consoles from PC. This was done to prepare everyone for the release of the sequel – The Inner World : The Last Wind Monk. The wait is over, the game is now out and it returns to Asposia and follows the adventures of the original characters. The Last Wind Monk picks up about 3 years after the events in the 1st game. The world of Asposia is not as rosy as we might have wished. Robert, the rightful King, is missing and Laura has been captured by Emil. Emil is a Conroyalist that believes the flute noses summoned the Basylians, turned Conroy to stone, and are to blame for all the worlds woes. He has made it his mission to round them all up and throw them into the wind fountain. This dark tone emanates through most of the game. Citizens live in fear they will be discovered as flute noses while others blindly hunt them. Robert almost wallows in self-doubt, due to his upbringing by Conroy, and this taints his normally cheerful demeanor. Much of the fun and light heartedness of the 1st game is lost in the shadows of this new Dystopian World, but there are a few pillars of light to be found. As with the 1st title, this is a point and click adventure. You will have to talk to everyone you meet to get the clues needed to solve the puzzles for each chapter. It’s then up to you to collect the items needed, in some cases combine them, and complete the task at hand. Just like the previous game, the puzzles range from fairly simple to running in circles frustrating. There are a few puzzles that even when you get all the clues, you will be left guessing at the correct answers. There is one, which I would almost classify as a mini game, called Knock Knock, that seems to rely more on luck than anything. The music in the game works very well to capture the mood of the scenes. It easily transitions from the heavier story moments to some of the light-hearted moments. The voice acting is good, but occasionally you will notice that Laura has an accent that comes and goes. The graphics are just as crisp as inn the original. It is nice to see that they have brought back many of the supporting characters from the original, and that the quality is just as good. The Inner World : The Last Wind Monk is out now on XB1, PS4, and Steam. The puzzles are harder than the 1st installment, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The game is worth checking out – but I would recommend playing the 1st game so you can play through the entire story arc. 9/10
  5. Abyss : The Wraiths of Eden

    Artifex Mundi has opened up its catalogue and has released another one of their point and click games to consoles. Abyss : The Wraiths of Eden is a standalone adventure that is a nice intro to the genre if you have never played this type of game. You play as a woman looking for her husband, Robert, who disappeared scuba diving during a bad storm. You decide to go looking for him, and discover an underwater city named Eden. The city appears to be deserted, but was once a model of Utopian society. Among the rubble there are signs that Robert has been there, but he is now being held by the Legates – an almost spectral figure that seems to enforce the rules in Eden. It’s up to you to solve the mysteries of Eden, find Robert, and rescue anyone that might still be alive in the underwater city. This is done by searching the station, solving puzzles, and playing mini games. The further you get into the station, the more will be revealed about the History of Eden, the people that lived there, and the creatures patrolling the streets. Game play is similar to most of the other games from the developer. It is a standard point and click adventure. There are hidden object games in which you will have to find important inventory objects that you will have to use throughout the game. If you are not up to finding hidden objects, you can switch over to a domino game in which you will have to cover at least 1 of the 4 squares of the Eden logo for each of the objects. There are also mini games for you to conquer. These range from fairly easy to difficult. With enough manipulation, even the more difficult puzzles will work themselves out. Graphics in the game are as exceptional as ever. The artists excel at fine detail, especially in the hidden object scenes. The soundtrack is good and adds to the creepy vibe of the title. There are a few issues with the basic sound effects though. One that really stands out is when you use a hand drill but the sound is for a power drill. But this is a minor thing. Abyss : The Wraiths of Eden is out now on XB1, PS4 and Steam. It is a good addition to the collection – as it has a bit of everything in it. Action, suspense, comedy, horror and drama. This is also a good way to introduce casual gamers to console gaming. 8/10
  6. Slayaway Camp : Butchers Cut

    There are tons of puzzle games coming out for consoles. Blue Wizard Digital created a mix of a puzzle game and ‘80’s slashers flick in Slayaway Camp – Butchers Cut. Originally released on Steam, Digerati Distribution has brought it to XB1 and PS4. The object of the game is simple – kill all the innocent people then escape. This is done by sliding around the board until you run into them. You will have to use the walls and objects in the environment to block your movement, or else you might end up missing a victim. As the levels progress you will also have environmental hazards to help you off your victims – holes, fires, electric fences. But beware, these hazards can also kill you if you are not careful. But sometimes you have to sidle up next to a victim to scare them into a better position so that you can complete the level. When you first start up the game you will get to choose between the PG and R rated versions of the game. They both play the same, but they sport different music and the PG version has 0 blood, the victims are just knocked out, and the victims in the mini game are replaced with targets. This means that the game can be played by any aged member of the family. The game is divided into 13 “movies” each with at least 10 levels with over 200 total for the title. Once you complete each movie it will unlock deleted scenes and NC-17 levels. There is also a movie that is just a mini game that tests yours reflexes to see how many kills you can get in a row. The more you kill, the more skull coins you can earn. Skull coins are used to unlock more gruesome kills, and can help you in case you get stuck. If there is a level you are having trouble working out, you can buy a hint for 25 coins or a full video walkthrough for another 100 coins. On some of the later levels you may have to watch the video a few times – but luckily you only have to pay once. You can also use the coins to buy extra killers from the mystery box to complete your collection. The graphics in Slayaway Camp are a bit blocky, but work well with the game. When you play you can pick between either a ¾ top down view, which will allow you to better see the victims and environment or a straight top down view. Both work well, so it comes down to personal preference. If you play with full gore, you won’t be disappointed, as blood splatters everywhere, and skulls roll when you slide back over them. The soundtrack, especially in the R rated game play, is totally addictive. Think ‘80’s hard rock that would have inhabited the slasher movies that the game parodies. Slayaway Camp : Butchers Cut is out now on XB1 and PS4. You can get the original game on Steam or purchase a bundle with all the extra levels. There is even a version you can grab for your phone if you want to try your hand at mobile homicide. 9/10
  7. Decay - The Mare

    Anything can be transformed into a horror game, because if you think about it someone, somewhere is afraid of everything on the planet. But you would be creating a niche game if you made one about arachibutyrophobia. Let’s be honest, how many people would be scared by a game that focuses on the fear of having peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth? Games with wider appeal would have to deal with more general fears, or something more relatable. Shining Gate Software has hit on one of those in their latest release Decay – The Mare. You play as Sam, a young man that is trying to get his life back on track. You have checked into a drug rehab facility, Reaching Dreams, to finally kick your addiction. But, you wake up in the middle of your first night, and something is off. Are you hallucinating? Are you on a bad trip? This this a bad dream? Or have you stumbled into a real paranormal mystery? No matter what, there is something strange going on. And the only way to get it to stop is to get to the bottom of it. The game is divided into 3 episodes, each one delving deeper into the story. You will have to wander through facility solving puzzles to gain access to more parts of the building. Your powers of observation and memory will be tested as you try to decrypt some of the more interesting conundrums. All of the answers lie within the walls of Reaching Dreams, you may just have to take a few notes along the way. Decay – The Mare, gains most of it’s suspense from the dark environment and the uncertainty of what is going on. It was released in 2015 on PC, so the graphics are a little dated, but the grainy look does work for the most part. The only time it becomes an issue is when you have to find some of the in-game items. There are a few instances where the colors tend to blend together and you only realize they are there when your cursor changes. The soundtrack is subtle, macabre, and ominous. If you have the ability to play while listening through headphones – I recommend it, as this will increase the scare factor 10 fold. Decay – The Mare is out now on XB1 and Steam. You can add it to your collection for $9.99, which is less than the price of a horror flick, and will easily provide you with as many scares. 8/10
  8. Zombie Party

    There have been a lot of twin stick shooters popping up recently. Many follow the same formula, run around and shoot everything that moves. Black Shell Media has released Zombie Party by Peach Pie Productions – a twin stick shooter that has a side scrolling mode, a pet sanctuary, and more enemies that aren’t zombies than are. Zombie Party is an RPG with rogue like elements in pure retro rampage form. The game features 4 actual game modes for you to choose from – Adventure, Dungeon, Arcade and Death Match. Adventure sees you facing wave after wave of enemies interspersed with bosses until you die. Dungeon lets you explore an area, kill enemies and descend into the dungeon and kill the bosses. Arcade is the side scroller which sets you against zombie hordes. Death Match pits you against AI players or other local players to the end. Actually, all the modes are better with friends – unfortunately, you can only play local multiplayer. One of the cool things about the title is the sheer amount of weaponry that you can find and use. There is a wide range of melee weapons, firearms, grenades, bombs, runes, potions, and artifacts. You can even find and rescue pets that will help you in your fight against your enemies. Some will gather supplies for you while others will attack in your stead. The graphics are pure retro gold. Enemy design is fun and playful. Colors very depending on the area you are in, but are mostly bright. Things light up even more when you start firing weapons like the rainbow gun. The music is a chip tune concert for the heart. You will find yourself tapping your feet as you lay out your foes. Zombie Party is out now on XB1 and Steam. You can pick it up for $9.99 and get started slaying right away. As much fun as it is to play solo, grab a friend or three, gather around the tv and just blast away. 9/10
  9. JYDGE

    The longer you play games, the more titles you will see with sequels. Direct, indirect, spiritual, in name only and otherwise. 10 tons LTD has released JYDGE, a top down, twin stick shooter that takes place in the same city from Neon Chrome. JYDGE sets you up as a cybernetic law man in the mega city of Edenberg. It is up to you to wipe out the ever rampant crime problem. Crime comes in all forms, and you will find multiple ways to deal with it. Your only weapon, beside yourself that is, is your Gavel – a multiple fire mode gun, that is also customizable. The story consists of 4 acts, each with 5 missions. Each mission has 3 medals that you can earn for completing a specific objective. You need to earn these medals to unlock new missions and acts. If you don’t unlock 3 medals in each mission don’t fear, there are 4 different difficulty levels, and each has it’s own set of objectives and medals. This is not a twin stick shooter where you can just go around firing arbitrarily. Some missions require you to rescue hostages, so you have to be careful not to tag any civilians with stray bullets. You get to customize your jydge and gavel, and some of these will actually help keep the general public a bit safer. But others will blow up everything in your path, or just protect you from the destruction. The game sports a similar color palette to Neon Chrome. Dark streets with bright, vivid set pieces. Enemies with neon hair that sticks out from the bleak avenues and rooms. The wide range of colors becomes a feast for the eyes. The soundtrack is filled with thumping beats that will carry you through all the difficulty levels, no matter if you are trying to be precise with your shots or just blowing up the block. JYDGE is out now on XB1, PS4 and Steam. You can add it to your collection for $14.99, but some platforms will have it on sale for the first week of release, so check it out. If you are a fan on twin stick shooters or are looking for something that will challenge you to rethink the way you complete each level – 4 times. 8/10
  10. The Coma : Recut

    I have always been a fan of horror movies. I grew up watching Hitchcock movies, then transitioned into slasher flicks – but I really loved the movies that were more about suspense than just pure gore. It wasn’t until recently that I started to play horror games, because titles have started relying more on immersive storytelling and less on jump scares. Digeratti has released The Coma : Recut, a new, updated version of the Korean horror game that falls into the former category. You play as Youngho, a high school student in the midst of final exams. After an all-night study session you accidentally over sleep and have to rush to make you finals. As you arrive you notice an ambulance loading up the body of a fellow student. Talking to a few friends, you discover that there was an accident overnight and the student mysteriously died. Since not even death can stop finals, you go to class and prepare for your tests. As you start to take your exam you realize the folly of staying up all night, and the lack of sleep catches up to you and you start to drift off. You awaken in a darkened classroom, alone. But something is off, more than just being left in the school after hours and nobody bothering to wake you. As you walk through the dimly lit halls you come across your favorite teacher, Ms. Song, but realize she means to do you serious bodily harm. You quickly run and hide so that you have a few moments to gather your wits and formulate a plan. What follows is kind of like a supernatural game of cat and mouse with Ms. Song in the halls and class rooms of Sehwa High. You must gather clues to unravel the mystery of the building, what is happening, and try to escape. Along the way you will run into Seho, a fellow classmate, and a mysterious girl wearing a school uniform that you don’t recognize. Each will offer you help, in their own way, to try and help you survive and escape. The graphics in the game are perfectly eerie. The darkened, construction riddled hallways are very creepy with the majority of their light coming from your flash light. Unfortunately, if you use your light too long it may draw some unwanted attention. Your footsteps echo through the empty halls and the faster you move the louder the get. Too bad the more noise you make, the easier it is for the killer to find you – noticing a pattern here? The Coma : Recut is out now on XB1, PS4, and Steam and you can drop it into your collection for about $15. It is a chilling game that will keep you on the edge of your seat as you try to uncover the facts, stay alive, and escape. 8/10
  11. Transcripted

    No matter where you look, you will see fusion. Strawberry-kiwi lemon aid, Tex-Mex food, sports-utility vehicles, Frisbee golf, and of course Cat-Dog. The world of mash ups has come to video games with the Plug in Digital release of Transcripted – a twin stick shooter / match 3 game. In this game you control a nano probe that is used to combat disease. You can upgrade your probe and weapons to fight ever more powerful pathogens. You defeat the viruses by destroying their DNA-like strands by matching 3 like colors. You will have to do this while evading attacking from defensive cells. Game play is a mix of twin stick shooter, match 3 and it even has RPG elements thrown in. You pilot your probe through different organic samples and try to destroy their building blocks. This is done by grabbing blocks that drop once you destroy some of the defensive cells and trying to match enough pairs of 3. As you progress, you can use research to increase the stats of your nano probe. Boost your speed, fire power, shields, and even the handling. But, if the game is still too challenging, you can lower the difficulty of both the shooter and puzzle aspects independently. As you progress through the game you will meet new and more powerful enemies. Also the “DNA” strands will move faster, so you will either have to have to have quick aim, or shoot blocks into receptors to slow them down temporarily. There are other elements that get introduced that add twists to the completion of levels. The graphics in the game are a little less than optimal. While the colors in the DNA strands are bright, the individual blocks tend to blur. This doesn’t make the game unplayable, but it does detract from the look a bit. There is also a disconnect with the music. It seems like in spots when the game gets frantic the music will take a mellow turn and vice versa. Transcripted is out now and can be added to your collection for about $8. This is an interesting mash up of genres, and the independent difficulty adjustments will make sure that you will get some decent mileage from the title regardless of your skill level. 7/10
  12. Maize

    I have been playing games for over 3 decades and in that time I have seen puzzles games take many forms. Computerized Rubiks cubes, Tetris, MYST, Lemmings, and even games like Portal. But never in the thousands of titles I have played have I ever come across a game like Maize by Finish Line Games. Maize is a 1st person adventure puzzle game. I know what you are thinking – that doesn’t sound that different, that sounds like MYST. Well, MYST didn’t have sentient corn. Now you are thinking “that has to be a serious typo” but my keyboard is working fine and I am actually taking my meds. Corn that can walk, talk, and even help you figure out what you need to do next on your adventure. Oh, and don’t forget your Russian, robotic, bear companion that is along for the ride. Told you it was different. You wake up in a corn field with no idea how you got there or what you are supposed to be doing. After a bit of exploring, you find a large door that requires 3 keys to enter. A bit wandering reveals a farm house and starts you on your journey into the lab that lays behind the door. In the lab you will start to uncover answers to some of your lingering questions like how did the corn get this way, what is their fate, can corn dance? You will also learn the history of the lab and the two doctors, Ted and Bob, who ran its experiments. To progress through the facility, you will have to solve a series of puzzles. Most will require you to use objects that you have acquired from your surroundings. But not everything you grab is useful. There are 75 collectables that are stored in your folio that only count towards an achievement / trophy. Each of these items has an interesting description, so they do bear a once over. But there are at least that many with a purpose in the game. The graphics in Maize are spectacular. No matter if you are exploring the secret underground lab or wandering through the large corn field you will want to take a moment to admire the amount of detail that was included. Even the shadows on the induvial kernels of corn are almost mesmerizing. The audio is great. The voice acting is amazing. Face it, when you have a Russian, robotic bear insulting you and sentient corn leading you through a game what can go wrong? Maize is out now on XB1, PS4 and Steam. It is a great puzzle game that will keep you in stitches. There is also an achievement for completing the game in under 2 hours, so you can even speed run it if you have big enough cobs. Personally I am hoping for a stuffed Vladdy. 8/10
  13. Blood Bowl 2 : Legendary Edition

    I have never played any type of Warhammer game in my life. This may seem like a comment out of left field, but it does actually have a place here. The developers at Cyanide Studios have mashed together the characters and races from Warhammer and American football again with their release of Blood Bowl 2 : Legendary Edition. If you think this is just another football game, you are sorely mistaken. Blood Bowl 2 is a turn based strategy game that is just masquerading as a football game. But this twist separates it from the other games in the genre and adds new depth to the game. The addition of other vampires, dwarves, elves and more also adds for more fun and twists to your basic sports title. Blood Bowl 2 offers many different ways to play the game. There is a campaign, challenge mode, customizable leagues ( single and multiplayer ) , and friendly matches that can be played either online or locally. Each game consists of 2 halves of 8 turns each, in which you can move each of your players – unless you happen to have a turnover. And as I stated this is not your typical football game. You can bribe the refs, hire a wizard to cast a spell to help your team or even hire a mercenary. All of the modes play fairly the same. You must either score, or prevent the other team from scoring. What sets this game apart is that each move is given a percentage of successful completion and will roll dice to give you an outcome for encounters. Now, you are at the mercy of luck and the roll of the dice. And the fans are not just there to watch the game. If you get pushed out of bounds, the fans will pummel you senseless and toss the ball randomly onto the field. The Legendary Edition of the game includes the base title as well as all of the available races. Goblins, Halflings, Treeman, Amazons, Vampires, Ogres, and more. This edition allows you to grab all the content in one neat package. You also get star players, a new stadium, and more interesting matches with All-Star Teams and Mixed Teams. The graphics in the game are great. The plays are carried out through short videos. Each tackle, touch down, and other important play has a stunning, bone jarring visual. The sounds of the grid iron are there as well, but where the sounds really soar are in campaign mode. Campaign Mode features a couple of sports casters explaining the story and providing color commentary. This commentary will have you laughing out loud. Blood Bowl 2 : The Legendary Edition is out now on XB1, PS4 and PC and can be added to your collection for about $45. This is a fun twist on the turn based strategy genre and sports games. 7/10
  14. Don't Knock Twice

    There is a pretty long history of video games based on movies being pretty horrid. All one has to do is look up E.T. for the 2600 and they will see the beginnings. Games either have little to do with their celluloid partners, or they pale in comparison to all the hype. Often they seem like they have been rushed to market just to add a few extra dollars to the studios pockets. But every once in a while there is a game that holds its own. Don’t Knock Twice is a horror film in which a mother trying to re-connect with her daughter attracts the attention of a demonic witch. The game follows a similar plot line to the film. I must say that I have not seen the movie at this time, but the game does stand on its own merits, and doesn’t require any knowledge of the movie. You play as Jess, a woman that gave up her daughter at a young age, but it now trying to make amends. You begin the game in a darkened room, lit only by the fire in the fire place. Your cell phone rings and it is a text from your daughter, trying to figure out what is going on. You must investigate your house to piece together what is going on, as well as your history with your daughter. All the answers you seek can be found in your eerie home. Don’t Knock Twice does an amazing job at creating a very ominous atmosphere that you are stuck in. The graphics are fairly realistic, and the only light comes from the candle you are carrying, or your cell phone screen. There are a few scattered bolts of lightning that will also brighten your view, but they pass too quickly for you to really use their light. The sound effects are next level creepy. I grew up in an old Victorian house and spent hours wondering if the house was settling, the wind was blowing under the shutters, or if someone was walking across the creaky wide board wood floors. All of those sounds are perfectly replicated and slid into the soundtrack. There are really only 2 draw backs to this title. The first is the length of the game. It will only take you about an hour or so to complete your 1st playthrough. The game requires at least 2 playthroughs in order to grab all of the achievements. But this brings up the 2nd short fall, once you have played through the game once, you know what is going to happen and the tension is all but lost. There are enough little details to warrant 2 plays, but after that you can zip through the game too quick to be scared. Don’t Knock Twice is out now on XB1, PS4, PC and is even available on multiple VR platforms. If you are a fan of horror / suspense games, this game is definitely worth a look see. Ii would just recommend you leave the lights on. 8/10
  15. Eventide 2 : Sorcerer's Mirror

    If you have been following my reviews for a while you will have noticed that I have a fondness for hidden object / puzzle games. These titles allow me to slow down, focus on all the minute details of gameplay and story. They also remind me of the hours I would spend with those paper puzzle books before the release of the Atari. Artifex Mundi is the leading publisher of hidden object games and they have just released another title from their catalog to the XB1. Eventide 2 : Sorcerer’s Mirror continues to follow the adventures of botanist Mary as she explores the Slavic countryside. The game starts out with Mary rock climbing with her niece Jenny, and everything seems well. But soon you encounter an evil sorcerer who kidnaps Jenny and plunges you into another adventure. It is up to you to save your niece, discover the sorcerers plan, and save the country. This is done by solving puzzle mini games, using magic potions, and uncovering the secrets of the past. Gameplay is very similar to other games from the publisher. One new feature is a moral system. Throughout the game there are a total of 5 choices that you must make that will affect how the game plays out. The choices have a minimal effect on your playthrough, but you will have a few different conversations because of what you pick. If you want to get all the achievements, you must playthrough at least twice, so you will get a chance to see how everything plays out. The title also includes a fair amount of inventory crafting. This means that you will find a group of items and then need to assemble them in the inventory bar. This brings a little more thought into the game as you must figure out what is needed to craft the different items. The game also brings back collectables. There are 2 separate types of collectables that you have to search out while playing – cards with Imps on them and gleaming mirrors. While these are only required for achievements, it still adds a bit to the game play. Don’t worry if you don’t find them all on your 1st playthrough, when you play through again the items you have found will already be collected, so you just need to grab the few you missed. Graphics in the game are great as usual. The areas you visit are beautifully rendered, and the hidden object puzzles are challenging. The soundtrack helps create the tone for the game, be it a peaceful waterfall or sneaking around the sorcerer’s castle. The music and sound effects help to immerse you into this world of magic, where things are not always as they seem. Eventide 2 : Sorcerer’s Mirror is out now for the Xbox One. You can pick it up for around $10 or you can grab the bundle that includes both Eventide titles for $15. If you are a casual gamer that is looking for an interesting story I would recommend this title for you. There are some fun puzzles to solve and the game will keep you entertained for several hours. And if you are an achievement hunter, this is a title for you as well. 7/10
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