lunes, 13 de agosto de 2012


A quick review before fully concentrating on school.

Publisher(s): Nintendo; iQue, Ltd. (CH)

Release Dates: 
*JP: November 25, 2009
*NA: February 15, 2010
*EU: February 26, 2010
*AU: February 26, 2010
*SK: September 30, 2010
*CH: April 21, 2011 (as iQue DSiWare)

*CERO: A (All Ages)
*ESRB: E (Everyone)
*PEGI: 3
*ACB: PG (Parental guidance recommended)
*GRB: All

Other Names:
*JP: ねらってスポっと!(Neratte Supotto!, lit. "Aim Spotto!")
*PAL: Bird & Bombs 
*KR: 던져서 쏙! 유령 퇴치 (Deonjyeoseo Ssog! Yulyeong Toechi, translated as "Throwing Ssok! Ghost Fight")
*CH: 瞄瞄~中中!(Miáo Miáo〜Zhōng Zhōng!, roughly translated as "Aim Aim〜In In!")

Number of Players: 1

*Also available on the Nintendo 3DS eShop.

Spotto! will offer you a blast of fun, just make sure the bomb doesn't blast you.

Story: A group of Ghosts abducted Chikkie Wowwow, the President's daughter, so he orders Spotto...the Bombirder, his best and most reliable bombirder, to rescue Chikkie Wowwow on a house full of Ghosts.

Gameplay: The gameplay of Spotto! is quite simple, your goal is to eliminate all the Ghost on the Stage, to do so, you must help Spotto aim his Bombs to the Ghost's mouths, you have to rotate a blue dial with the Stylus to adjust the trajectory of the Bombs, determined by a line of 28 points, once you have your trajectory set, tap Toss and Spotto will proceed to toss his Bomb; when you destroy a Ghost, Spotto gets an Extra Bomb; Spotto counts with Super Bombs as well, which are hidden weapons found in random enemies and objects, once equpped, the Bomb, which is normally blue, will turn red, and when Spotto successfully toss it into a Ghost's mouth, it will cause a lot of Super Bombs to be launched from the hit enemy, which if hit another enemy, will launch another round of Super Bombs, and so on.
There are 3 kinds of Ghost, Medium Ghost, Small Ghosts (which are a bit harder to get Bombs on their mouths) and Big Ghosts, which are fought each 10 Stages, and Spotto must get 3 Bombs on their mouths to defeat them.
The Game is Over when Spotto runs out of Bombs and wasn't able to destroy all the Ghosts. 

The game has initially Story Mode, which has 50 Stages full of Ghost waiting to be bombed, once a certain requierement is achieved, Challenge Mode is unlocked, this mode is meant to challenge your technique and see how many Stages you can get through before Spotto runs out of Bombs, to make things harder, there are no Super Bombs, all unused Bombs are carried over, so aim carefully or your game could end before you notice it. Once the 50 Stages of Story Mode are beaten, Story Mode Pro is unlocked, which is a harder version of Story Mode, where Spotto has orange Bombs and the line of points is limited to only 5 points, i.e. the ones in the Touch Screen, making it difficult to determine the Bomb's trajectory.

Difficulty: Overall the game mechanics are quite simple and easy to learn, but the real difficulty lies on Challenge Mode and Story Mode Pro, and beating the later Stages of Story Mode requiere some technique (and maybe patience).

Graphics: The graphics on this game are a nice mix between cartoon and 3D models, making them somewhat similar to the graphics of the Paper Mario series. This shouldn't be surprise, as both games were developed by INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS.

Sound: The music in the game was composed by Saki Kuata, while de Sound Director role was taken by Masanobu Matsunaga, and it's quite a nice fit for the game, sounding a bit like the 'happy', 'heroic' and 'concerning' songs in the Paper Mario series. And quite surprisingly, Spotto has voice clips, provided by an unknown actor, when Spotto succesfully gets a Bomb into a Ghost's mouth, he'll say 'Spotto!', and when you get a Game Over, he'll either say 'Yes, sir!' or 'Maybe later...'. And expect lots of chick sounds everytime you start a Stage.

Closing Comment: This game provides a great experience for those looking for a challenging game on DSiWare, as well as those looking for a fun game, and for 200 DSi Points/$1.99 on the eShop, Spotto! has more than enough on its little 22 Blocks to entertain for a long time.

sábado, 28 de julio de 2012


A new review in commemoration of the beggining of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Developer(s): SEGA Sports Japan
Publisher(s): SEGA; Nintendo (JP, SK)

Release Dates:
*JP: January 17, 2008
*NA: January 22, 2008
*AU: February 7, 2008
*EU: February 8, 2008
*SK: June 26, 2008

*CERO: A (All Ages)
*ESRB: E (Everyone)
*ACB: G (General)
*PEGI: 3+
*GRB: All

Other Names:
*JP: マリオ&ソニック AT 北京オリンピック™ (Mario ando Sonikku ATTO Pekin Orinpikku, lit. "Mario & Sonic AT Beijing Olympic")
*ES: MARIO & SONIC EN LOS JUEGOS OLÍMPICOS (literal tranlation of the English name)
*FR: MARIO & SONIC AUX JEUX OYMPIQUES (literal tranlation of the English name)
*IT: MARIO & SONIC AI GIOCHI OLIMPICI (literal tranlation of the English name)
*DE: MARIO & SONIC BEI DEN OLYMPISCHEN SPIELEN (literal tranlation of the English name)
*KR: 마리오와 소닉 베이징 올림픽™ (Maliowa Sonig Beijing Ollimpig, lit. "Mario & Sonic Beijing Olympic")

Number of Players: 2-4 (Via DS Wireless Play and DS Download Play)

*Available Languages: English, Español, Français, Italiano, Deutsch.
*Also available on Wii.
*First crossover between Nintendo's Mario and SEGA's Sonic the Hedgehog, the first Mario Sport title based on the Olympic Games, and the first game based on the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics.
*SEGA handled the development, publishing and marketing duties of the game for the Western releases, except for the development, Nintendo handled those roles in Japan and South Korea.
*Originally thought to be an April Fool's joke, since the announcement of this game was on March 28, 2007, it was later confirmed at E3 2007 that the game was, indeed, real.
*Originally started development as a Sonic game after SEGA got the license from the IOC, later SEGA requested Nintendo for permission to include in the game, Nintendo approved, and thus the Mario & Sonic series was born.
*SEGA also commissioned Eurocom to develop Beijing 2008 for Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and PC, which are also based on the Bejing 2008 Summer Olympics, but, unlike MARIO & SONIC AT THE OLYMPIC GAMES, which is more fantasy-based, Beijing 2008 is a realistic sports simulation game; SEGA also released a version of this game for mobile phones in June 2008 called SONIC AT THE OLYMPIC GAMES, which doesn't have Mario characters, only has Sonic, Tails, Knuckles and Amy as playable characters and uses sprites from the SONIC ADVANCE series.

Prepare for the Olympic Season with two of the most famous characters in Videogames history.

Gameplay: The game is designed as a pick-up-and-play game, it's simple, choose the event, select your character, and you're ready to go, there are 16 characters to choose from, 8 from each Team, and there are four types of characters: All-Around (It's stats are balanced), Technique (Have good ability, but lack in other areas, especially strenght), Speed (Faster than the others, but are prone to fatigue), Power (Incredible strenght and energy, but are slow and lack ability). The athletes include:

From Team Mario: Mario (All-Around), Luigi (All-Around), Peach (Technique), Daisy (Speed), Yoshi (Speed), Wario (Power), Waluigi (Technique) and Bowser (Koopa in Japanese and Korean versions) (Power).

And from Team Sonic: Sonic the Hedgehog (Speed), Shadow the Hedgehog (Speed), Amy Rose (All-Around), Blaze the Cat (All-Around), Miles 'Tails' Prower (Technique), Knuckles the Echidna (Power), Dr. Eggman (Eggman in Japanese and Korean versions) (Technique) and Vector the Crocodile (Power).

The game has an overall 24 events to choose from, 16 Olympic Events, that take place in different locattions where the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics would take place (at the time of the game's release), and 8 Dream Events, which are crazy versions of the Olympic Events with Items and Special Abilities and take place in different locations to Beijing, the events are:

Olympic Events: 100m, 400m, 400m Hurdles, Long Jump, Triple Jump, Javelin Throw, Hammer Throw, 100m Freestyle, 10m Platform (DS Exclusive), Trampoline, Vault, Archery, Table Tennis, Fencing, Shooting, Cycling (DS Exclusive).

While the Dream Events include: Dream Race (an on-foot version of Mario Kart), Dream Canoe (a Canoe version of Mario Kart's Coin Battle) (DS Exclusive), Dream Boxing (an exclusive event that plays a bit like Punch-Out!!) (DS Exclusive), Dream Long Jump (a special version of Long Jump with Items and Speed Rings) (DS Exclusive), Dream Table Tennis (a simplified version Mario Power Tennis), Dream Fencing (a special version of Fencing with Special Abilities), Dream Shooting (a special version of Shooting with Items) (DS Exclusive), Dream Basketball (an exclusive event featuring Special Balls) (DS Exclusive).

You can choose from 3 different game modes, Single Match, Circuit and Mission.

The controls for each Event varies, some use the Stylus exclusively, others use the system Buttons, and in some cases, a mix of both, The Stylus and some Buttons. The DS built-in Microphone is used as well. When played for the first time, an event has a tutorial of how to play the event, it can be later reviewed.

Difficulty: When playing Single Match, the COM LEVEL can be adjusted between Weak, Normal and Strong, in Circuit, the difficulty get progressively harder, as well as Mission, the Final Mission is a rival's competition. The game's real difficulty lies on the controls of some events, as some can be tricky, like Archery and Shooting.

Graphics: The game is presented in 3D, and shows almost exact recreations of the locations where the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympics would take place.
The graphical style of the Mario characters resembles a bit that of Mario Kart DS and Mario Hoops 3-on-3, while some of the Sonic characters have a new style, and others resemble their SONIC RUSH appearance, it should be noted though, most of the characters wear their normal clothes, while Peach and Daisy wear their typical sports clothes, and Amy and Blaze get a new sport outfit exclusive to these games. The characters have 2 different avatars, the original one for this game (also seen on the Wii version), and another one for  the events based on the characters' different artworks, like New Super Mario Bros., Mario Party 6, SONIC CHANNEL, and SONIC RUSH, just to name a few. 
The signature Mario font (seen in games like Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, Super Mario Sunshine, Mario Superstar Baseball or Super Mario Galaxy) is used as the game's main font.

Sound: The game features mostly original music not related to Mario or Sonic, composed by SEGA's Teruhiko Nakagawa, supervised by Nintendo's Koji Kondo and Taro Bando. On the Dream Events that have the Star as an Item, the Mario Kart DS Starman Theme plays when it's used, , additionally the sound effects when using an item are taken directly from Mario Kart DS, New Super Mario Bros. and SONIC THE HEDGEHOG, outside of that, the Gallery has some unlockable Mario and Sonic music, including:
*Mario Puzzle Mix (originally Mario Tetris), from Tetris DS.
*Mini-Games Coincentration, from Super Mario 64 DS.
*Bowser Battle, from Tetris DS.
*Mini-Games Bounce and Pounce, from Super Mario 64 DS.
*Mario Bros. Circuits (Mario Kart DS version), from Mario Kart: Double Dash!!.

*Green Hill Zone, from SONIC THE HEDGEHOG.
*Star Light Zone, from SONIC THE HEDGEHOG.
*Emerald Hill Zone, from SONIC THE HEDGEHOG 2.
*Right There, Ride On, from SONIC RUSH.
*New Venture (originally Hidden Island or A New Venture (Instrumental)), from SONIC RUSH ADVENTURE.

The voices of the characters are provided by their then current voice actors, i.e. the Mario cast have their voices from their actors during the Gamecube days, their voice clips are recycled mostly from Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, Mario Party 7, Mario Kart DS and Mario Superstar Baseball, some characters have new voice clips, and are heard in all the versions of the game, though; and the 4Kids cast from SONIC X provides their voices for the Sonic characters in the Western releases and the Korean version, and the original Japanese Sonic cast for the Japanese version. The Narrator's voice was provided by Christopher Pelligrini.

Extras: Besides just the Olympic Events, the game also features a Gallery, which has some interesting Trivia that needs to be unlocked in 5 different Mini-Games:
*Replay (for Olympic Trivia), tap the icons in the order they're shown.
*Shoot! (for Modern Olympic Games), shoot to the enemies to get enough points with 3 Green Shells.
*Matching (for Beijing 2008), match 2 similar cards and get enough pairs within the time limit.
*Airship (for Ancient Olympic Games), blow into the Microphone and move the Airship to get enough Rings while avoiding Bullet Bills and Flappers.
*Coveyor Belt (for About Athletes), use the Stylus to put the characters as the come from the conveyor belt on their respective area.
Completing a Mini-Game also unlocks Mario and Sonic music that can be played on the Gallery.

The game also features Versus Play, a multiplayer mode which allows up to 4 players to play together,either via DS Wireless Play or DS Download Play, although, if played with DS Download Play, the game is limited to only 100m, Long Jump, Trampoline, Archery, Dream Canoe and Dream Basketball, and only the host system gets to hear the characters' voices.

On the Records section, the players can also access to Nintendo WFC Rankings and compare their results with other players around the world using the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, the events available for this option are: 100m, 400m, 400m Hurdles, Long Jump, Triple Jump, Javelin Throw, Hammer Throw, 100m Freestyle, Archery, Shooting, Cycling, Dream Race, Dream Basketball and Dream Long Jump.

Closing Comment:While this game won't get a Gold Medal for "Best Game based on the Summer Olympics", it can get one for "Most Entertaining Olympic Videogame", but only while it lasts, but be careful, it can also get an award for "Best Touch Screen raping game", but really, you got nothing to lose with this one, just make sure to get some Gold Medals to home.

Now, go on and enjoy the London 2012 Summer Olympics.

domingo, 3 de junio de 2012

Elite Beat Agents

Developer(s): iNiS Corporation
Publisher(s): Nintendo

Release Dates:
*NA: November 6, 2006
*AU: May 3, 2007
*EU: July 13, 2007
*SK: October 11, 2007

*ESRB: E10+ (Everyone 10 and Up)
*OFCL: PG (Parental guidance recommended)
*PEGI: 12+
*GRB: All

Other Names:
*KR: 도와줘! 리듬 히어로 (Dowanjwo! Lideum Hieolo, lit "Help! Rhythm Hero")

Number of Players: 2-4 (Via DS Wireless Play and DS Download Play)

*Compatible with the DS Rumble Pak, except the South Korean version.
*Western localization of Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan.
*Labeled as part of the Touch! Generations brand in North America.

Trouble? Call the Elite Beat Agents and get your rhythm needs on the DS solved. Agents are...GO!!

Story: The story follow a group of goverment agents, lead by Commander Kahn, decided to help all the people that needs a cheer up on a situatio that goes from mundane tasks to complex goals (cheering a whole immunologic system).
The members are: Commander Kahn, Agent BA-2 "J", Agent BA-3 "Morris", Agent BA-4 "Derek", Agent BA-5 "Spin", Agent BA-1 "Chieftain", the Elite Beat Divas: Agent BD-3 "Missy", Agent BD-2 "Foxx" and Agent BD-1 "Starr", and a so-called Mr. X. 

Gameplay: If you played Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan before, then you most likely know how to play this, if you haven't, keep reading. Elite Beat Agents its an unique Rhythm game, you play this game entirely with the Stylus, the goal is to cheer up people with the power of music so they can overcome a hard situation, to do so, the player must keep a high level in the Elite-O-Meter by tapping at Hit Markers at the right time, heaping pace on the Phrase Markers by keeping the Style on the ball after this was tapped, and filling the background meter by spinning the Spin Markers either clockwise or counterclockwise, the outer circles help you to determine when to tap the Hit/Phrase Markers and when the Spin marker should be filled; how well the actions were performed is shown with stars showing 50, 100 or 300, or Beat 100, Beat 300 or Elite Beat 300 at the end of a colored chain.
The songs are usually split in parts that range from 2 to 4 sections by intermissions showing the progress of the person in need, represented by a O if the Elite-O-Meter is in the yellow section, shown by an icon with a "Yes" on it, or a X if the Elite-O-Meter is in the red zone, represented by either "No" or "!", dependeing on how bad you're performing. The outcome of the events depends on the O and X themselves. At the end of the song, you get a grade according to the performace. If the player fails a mission, there's an option to review the moments before the Elite-O-Meter depleted. 

Difficulty: The game has 4 difficulties:
*Breezin' (Easy): Featuring Agent BA-5 "Spin", the first songs in this difficulty feature a pointing hand that helps to recognize when to tap/keep the Stylus over the ball.
*Cruisin' (Normal): With Agent BA-2 "J".
*Sweatin' (Hard):Showing Agent BA-1 "Chieftain"
*Hard ROCK! (Intense): Starring the Elite Beat Divas.
The game is somewhat easier than Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan, but there are parts that requiere practice, like the last songs in Sweatin' and most (if not all) of the song in Hard ROCK!.

Graphics: Much like its predecessor, Elite Beat Agents features a style similar to those of comic books/mangas, in manners that are meant to be exaggerated, the game also features 3D models of the playable characters.

Sound: The game features 19 stages, each with a different song, all of the song are cover versions:
*Walkie Talike Man, by Steriogram, cover by Jason Paige.
*Makes No Difference, by Sum 41, cover by Vinn Lombardo.
*Sk8er Boi, by Avril Lavigne, cover by Angela Michael.
*I Was Born to Love You, by Freddie Mercury/Queen, cover by Paul Vician.
*Rock This Town, by Stray Cats, cover by Mark Latham.
*Highway Star, by Deep Purple, cover by Kaleb James.
*Y.M.C.A, by Village People, cover by TC Moses.
*September, by Earth, Wind and Fire, cover by TC Moses.
*Canned Heat, by Jamiroquai, cover by Jason Paige.
*Material Girl, by Madonna, cover by Melissa Garber.
*La La, by Ashlee Simpson, cover by Laura Jane.
*You're The Inspiration, by Chicago, cover by Julian Miranda.
*Let's Dance, by David Bowie, cover by Delaney Wolff.
*The Anthem, by Good Charlote, cover by Kevin Ridel.
*Without a Fight, by Hoobastank, cover by Kevin Ridel.
*Jumpin' Jack Flash, by The Rolling Stones, cover by Billy Fogarty.

The remaining 3 songs must be unlocked by reaching a certain rank in the game:
*Believe, by Cher, cover by Lynn Rose.
*ABC, by The Jackson 5, cover by TC Moses and Brittany Kertesz.
*Survivor, by Destiny's Child, cover by April Harmony.

Extras: The game features the option to save a Replay of each song, and receive an extra one via Broadcast, making up for a total of 20 Replays that can be saved. It also features a Multiplayer mode, featuring Vs. Player, where up to 4 players can compete to see who cheers up the best, using Fevers to mess up the other players, this mode can be played with just 1 Game Card, but the available characters and songs will be limited if just 1 Game Card is used; Vs. Ghost, here the player can play Vs. Player with one of its own Replays; and finally Co-op, a mode where up to 4 agents join and, taking turns, cheer up those in need, sometimes, all te players must perform the same moves at the same time, this mode can only be played if all players have a Game Card. The game also features Game Sharing, an option to broadcast Demos to other DS systems via DS Download Play, the player can send either Training or Demo Stage, a short version of the first stage of the game.

Closing Comment: The charm and unique gameplay style of Elite Beat Agents makes it a game every fan of Rhythm games must own, along with the Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan games. The songs selection isn't one of my favorites, but I can assure you will find yourself going back to them to beat your High Score. Just remember, if you ever have trouble, just yell "HEEEAAALP!"

lunes, 30 de abril de 2012

Art Style: PiCTOBiTS

Developer(s): skip Ltd.
Publisher(s): Nintendo

Release Dates:
*JP:January 28, 2009
*NA: May 18, 2009
*EU: May 22, 2009
*AU: May 22, 2009

*CERO: A (All Ages)
*ESRB: E (Everyone)
*PEGI: 3
*ACB: G (General)

Other Names:
*JP: Art Styleシリーズ: PiCOPiCT (lit., Art Style Series: PiCOPiCT)
*EU: Art Style: PiCOPiCT
*AU: Art Style: PiCTOPiCT
*PiCTOBiTS, PiCOPiCT, PiCTOPiCT (Offical names without the Art Style label)

Number of Players: 1

*Also available on the Nintendo 3DS eShop
*Announced on January 26, 2009. Released 2 days later along with Art Styleシリーズ: SOMNIUM in Japan.
*The game was available for 150 coins as a Club Nintendo reward in North America during May 2012.

Art Style: PiCTOBiTS is the way to go if you want a Tetris clone that pays tribute to past games.

Gameplay: The objective in Art Style: PiCTOBiTS is to reveal the hidden sprite based on characters from classic Famicom/NES games, to do so, you have a set of bits (also known as PiCTOs), which you use to eliminate megabits (a.k.a. Mega PiCTOs or Deca PiCTOs) that fall from above. You use the Stylus to put the bits, using your Pallete, on a way they can eliminate megabits by making group of 4 bits of the same color, be either in a row or at least a 2x2 sqaure, when a megabit part is removed, the remaining megabit will fall faster, if a megabit is eliminated before it hits the bottom of the screen, the player will be awarded with a Coin, if the megabit touches the bottom, it'll turn into a group of bits. Be careful, though, because sometimes the megabits have a permabit, bits with an X mark that if they're not eliminated, cannot be moved and they stay in their position, but if they're removed, they award Coins.
The game is over when a megabit cannot fall if its obstructed by bits and those aren't moved in time (in this instance, a DANGER! message appears), to prevent this, you can either move the blocks manually (your Pallete can hold up to 8 bits), or use the POW Block, which will remove the first 2 lines of bits from bottom to top, and will also make the bits fall to the bottom of the screen, but using the POW Block seals a Pallete square, but it can be restored with 5 Coins. Th sprite will be rebealed in the Top Screen as you remove megabits, when the sprite is revealed, this will show a brief animation, in some Stages, there will be more than one sprite.

Difficulty: The game starts very easy, but it gets progressively harder on later stages as the megabits fall faster and are removed faster, not to mention the fact that you get less time to plan where you'll put the bits, especially on Dark Stages. Most of the difficulty in this games comes from the often inaccuracy of the game on the detection of the Stylus, but as you get some practice on the game, this problem is quickly solved.

Graphics: The graphics in this game are made to resemble those of the Famicom, but the Menus' graphics are like those of the cover art of the Famicom 20th Anniversary Sondtracks.

Sound: The music in this game was composed by the Japanese chiptune band YMCK, and it features remixes of the classic Famicom games represented. The sound effects are also meant to be a tribute to that bygone age.

Extras: Besides recovering sealed Pallete squares, Coins can also be used to unlock Dark Stages (also knonw as Ura Stages (JP) or Remix Stages (PAL)), which are harder than normal Stages, and have different sets of sprites to be revealed. But not just that, Coins can be used to buy the music of the game in the Music section, when you purchase a song (a Stage song), there will be a more expensive "+" version (the Dark Stage extended version) available for purchase, additionally, as with other games like Kirby Mass Attack, SONIC RUSH ADVENTURE or Advance Wars: Days of Ruin (just to name a few), you can listen to the music if the DSi is closed while playing a song with a pair of headphones plugged, unlike other games, the music can also play through the DSi's speakers while the system is closed if there aren't headphones plugged.

Closing Comment: PiCTOBiTS is one of the best games on DSiWare, despite being a puzzle game, which DSiWare has a lot already, but this one is worth the 500 DSi Points, I just wish there were more stages, 'cause it only has 15 stages, I would have liked 30 normal stages, Nintendo has a lot of classics that could have easily made the cut for this game (like Duck Hunt, Wild Gunman, Metroid, Donkey Kong, Kid Icarus, Urban Champion, Stack-Up, Gyromite, Mach Rider, or Clu Clu Land), but the Dark Stages more than make for it. And finally, a list of the games represented:
*Super Mario Bros. (5 Parts/Stages)
*Balloon Fight
*Ice Climber (2 Parts/Stages)
*Wrecking Crew
*Baseball (2 Parts/Stages)
*Devil World (Referenced as "Devil World (Japan Only)" in the US version) (2 Parts/Stages)
*The Legend of Zelda (2 Parts/Stages)
*Super Mario Bros. 2/Super Mario USA (on the Credits only)
*The Early Famicom games sticker (seen in other games like Tetris DS and WarioWare: D.I.Y.) appears as well

And this review comes just in time, as it was published 1 day before Nintendo of America announced the May 2012 batch of free Club Nintendo games, which includes Art Style: PiCTOBiTS, coincidence? I don't think so.

martes, 10 de abril de 2012

Kirby Mass Attack

This is the first review I do in this newly opened blog, so I'm sorry if I did something wrong.

Developer(s): HAL Laboratory, Inc.
Publisher(s): Nintendo

Release Dates:
*JP: August 4, 2011
*NA: September 19, 2011
*AU: October 27, 2011
*EU: October 28, 2011
*SK: December 1, 2011

*CERO: A (All Ages)
*ESRB: E (Everyone)
*ACB: G (General)
*PEGI: 3
*GRB: All

Other Names:
*JP: あつめて!カービィ (Atsumete! Kābī, lit. "Gather! Kirby")
*KR: 모여라! 커비 (Moyeola! Keobi, lit. "Gather! Kirby")
*Kirby (From the initial announcement on September 2010 to April 2011)

Number of Players: 1

*Available Languages: English, Español, Français.
*Downloadable Demo Version available on the Wii's Nintendo Channel.
*Originally scheduled for a release on July 7, 2011 in Japan.

If you thought the DS was dead when the 3DS arrived, then, you're wrong, Kirby Mass Attack offers a new and unique experience to the DS, and one of the best Stylus-controlled games on the system.

Story: Kirby was visiting the Popopo Islands, located in the south of Pop Star, it was a peaceful day, and Kirby fell asleep, when suddenly, a mysterious character called Necrodeus, leader of the Skull Gang, appeared, and with his magic staff, he struck Kirby and split the poor pink warrior in 10 smaller Kirbys, he then proceeded and defeated all the Kirbys, expect for one, as the remaining Kirby looks up in despair, he notices a star, which turns out it's Kirby's heart, that tells him to follow it so they can defeat Necrodeus together, and so, Kirby's adventure to defeat this new threat to Pop Star and get back to normal begins.
It certainly is an interesting twist for a Kirby game, since it has a bit of a darker theme.

Gameplay: Like Kirby: Canvas Curse, this game is controlled entirely with the Stylus, unlike other Kirby games, this one isn't a platformer, it's more of a RTS, think of it as a 2D Pikmin. You control your Kirby horde with the Stylus, tapping a certain area will make the group go there, tapping an object will make the group interact with it (An enemy=They'll pummel it; A fruit=They'll go and eat it; A root, painting, etc.=They'll go and drop it), you can flick the Kirbys to make them jump or smash blocks. In each world, you start with just one Kirby, but you can add more simply by eating 100 fruits, and once you hace 10 Kirbys and eat 100 fruits, there's a bonus; hidden through the levels there are Medals, wich serve to unlock contents in the Extras section. When a Kirby is hit, it'll turn blue, if it's hit again it'll turn grey and fly away, but you can "save" him if you grab it, and it'll be a blue Kirby again, there are special rings that restore blue Kirbys' health, so they can be pink Kirbys again, the game is over when you lose all your Kirbys or fail to accomplish a mission in some levels; a certain number of Kirbys is necessary to enter some stages. The enemies in this game are mostly new, but we get to see classic faces like Waddle Dee, Gordo or King Dedede.

Difficulty: It can be easy at times, but if you don't realise it's an RTS, it can be hard at times, mostly if you think of playing it as a platformer. If you don't go for completition, then it can be either Easy or Normal, but if you go for a 100%, then it can easily get Hard, especially from latter Level 3 onwards.Things that can become a chore are pushing blocks and restatring a stage after you lost on it, stages don't have checkpoints.

Graphics: The graphics in this game are a bit like those in Yoshi's Island, so if you like the graphical style of that game, you will most likely enjoy the art style.

Sound: The music was composed by Shogo Sakai, and it features both, new songs and remixes of past tunes, the sound effects, provided by Masaaki Iwasaki, are a bit different than most Kirby games, since some of them sound as if they were from an NES game. This is one of only two games where Kirby uses "verbal" expressions, and as expected, Makiko Ohmoto lends her voice to Kirby, she's the only voice actress in the game. Some of the sound effects are reused from Kirby: Squeak Squad.

Extras: Finding Medals in the Main Game unlocks content in the Extras section, including Subgames and the Music Player. The subgames include Field Frenzy, a whack-a-mole style of game; Kirby Brawlball, a somewhat remake of Kirby's Pinball Land (You can play this game with either the Stylus or the L and R buttons); Kirby Curtain Call, a game where you have to count how many Kirbys are there on the screen; Dash Course (also known as ○△□けんけん), a hopscotch game to see how far you can get in a determined time; Strato Patrol EOS, Kirby's very first SHMUP; and Kirby Quest (also known as KIRBY MASTER), the closest that Kirby has to an RPG. The Subgames is where the classic characters are, and they make a lot of references to past Kirby games, other games and even Kirby: Right Back at Ya!, only Kirby fans will get some of those references (the name Popopo Islands is a reference itself). Additionally, the Music Player can be used as an MP3 Player by plugging some headphones and closing the DS, similar to other games like SONIC RUSH ADVENTURE or Art Style: PiCTOBiTS.
Kirby Mass Attack also includes some sort of Checklist list, that achieves different things like if you defeated a boss with just one Kirby.

Closing Comment: Kirby Mass Attack certainly is a good game, with some flaws here and there, but overall is a game that should be in your collection if you're looking for some Touch Screen action, you're looking for a portable RTS or if you're a Kirby fan in general, just remember, don't play it thinking that it's a platformer, and you'll be fine.

Well, that's it for my first review, I'm not going to include a number attached to the review (at least, not for now), so again, I'm sorry if I did it worng.