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https://youtu.be/v9CP2GXo3Ew I was reluctant about The Nioh Collection as it’s been established that I don’t like Souls-like games. I played Nioh as a demo back in 2017 and then was reminded of the bad aftertaste Demon’s Souls imparted, so I passed on it. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always been willing to try titles from this sub-genre. Bloodborne notably became an outlier where I actually accepted the challenge, only because of the cosmic horror elements present throughout its steampunk packaging. To give Nioh another shot is a tall order, but if I was able to love Control with a PS5 makeover, why not Nioh? It’s the season of love and I’m willing to give this game another shot. Maybe I can finally understand what makes this game such a draw for the fans of the sub-genre. A setting every next-gen game should have From Devil May Cry 5: Special Edition…

https://youtu.be/3Cg6XuvQlV0 Single people like myself either find Valentine’s Day dates or join our favorite couple as a third wheel to enjoy the festivities, if you’re into that kind of thing. For myself, I try to get a semblance of a social life. However, since it is the time of pandemic and doing anything on Zoom really isn’t my thing, I decided to hang out with this nice couple, Yu and Kay from the game Haven, an indie title from The Game Bakers. As for the general heteronormative public engaging in this co-dependent behavior of doing everything together, Haven has been marketed as an easily accessible title couples can enjoy on couch co-op. Was this third wheel outing memorable? I can’t really say much about the food, as they mostly consist of apple dews and boba nuts. The sights on the Planet Source is quite fantastic with hand painted flying rocks…

https://youtu.be/kC5Q-oBSlLY Valentine’s Day is coming and surely it’s the time to spend with someone that you love. In my case, I spent that time revisiting The Yakuza Remastered Collection. However, just like a childhood crush that you haven’t seen for years suddenly shows up on your social media outlet and you noticed that they didn’t really age so well. Did these remastered titles age well enough to garner another play through? We’ll see with each individual title on the list. Since these games haven’t been optimized for the Series X, expect the load times to be just a little better than Xbox One or the PS4, but only by about five to ten seconds. Graphics are given the same treatment as any backwards compatible game, but they’re definitely better than the PS4. Performance-wise, nothing much has changed save for reduction in frame rate dips thanks to the new hardware. Each…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BAkIIQLjPS0 I was both excited and dreading playing Little Nightmares II after going through Little Nightmares just recently. Excited because I was looking forward to the continued adventures of Mono and Six but dreading it because if the predecessor was any indication of the terrifying things I’ll be facing down in the sequel, I don’t know if I could take it. Recently, I’ve been playing quite a lot of horror games of varying degrees of content. There are the conceptually terrifying but aren’t terrifying on screen (Control), there’s the straight up scary because it’s designed to be scary (The Maiden), and there’s The Medium. However, there’s something fundamentally primal with how Little Nightmares presents their monstrosities, and I’d rather take Lady Dimitrescu stomping on my neck any day of the week. While our demo impressions colored us impressed with the game, there’s always this underlying doubt that this latest installment…

https://youtu.be/UISRDU_mzaw Control was way ahead of its time when it released in 2019. It’s a surreal shooter from the creators of Alan Wake that goes into the dark reaches of your psyche as you traverse The Oldest House. I tried it for a few hours in 2020 and quit because of the eyestrain due to the uneven brightness and color palette. If there’s a way to plainly describe Control, it would be perched comfortably in the middle where Oxenfree sits on one end and Kentucky Route Zero on another. While Oxenfree is easily understood and Kentucky Route Zero is an art installation, Control rewards your action with abstract visions that descends into a rabbit hole of trippy wonder. With Control Ultimate Edition being offered for free on PS Plus for February, there’s almost no excuse to not try it out at some point. (For those without a PS5 yet, you…

The Medium is the first real exclusive for the Xbox Series X|S from Bloober Team, the creators of Layers of Fear and Blair Witch. This ambitious horror title tells the story of Marianne, a medium tasked to solve a mystery regarding her past at a dilapidated resort where spirits haunt its ominous remains. What drew me to this game during the Xbox Showcase last year was its dual-world feature where the player could see both the corporeal and the spirit world simultaneously. While this feature really could drive curious gamers to pick up the game, would it sustain itself as a mainstay or is it merely a gimmick that fades once its novelty has run its course? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iJCE9umarQ0 The game starts off somber and slow, a death in the family halted protagonist Marianne’s somewhat tumultuous life. A curious call sends her to the much maligned Niwa (pronounced Nee-va) resort, a…

What year is it again? It’s 2021 and Cyber Shadow is definitely hearkening back to the Ninja Gaiden days of yore. Yet, it actually feels more like a modern day game that has adapted to our contemporary play style. Unlike games that I’ve played in the NES app for the Nintendo Switch, Cyber Shadow actually has been adjusted to our modern sensibilities. As one of my games to watch for January, it definitely lives up to what I’ve predicted the game to be. Despite its cheesy dialogue and really fire midi soundtrack, Cyber Shadow tells a story of an enhanced cyber ninja, Shadow, who died in a nuclear holocaust, brought back to life to aid their ninja clan one last time. Guided by your droid sidekick, L-Gion, Shadow traverses through the ruins of humanity vanquishing evil cyborgs, rogue AI, and renegade cyber ninjas to bring balance back to the planet.…

I completely missed out on the hidden gem that is Little Nightmares when it dropped back in 2017 and was unaware of its existence until the announcement and release of the demo of its sequel Little Nightmares 2. Playing the demo without any fanfare, I revisited the prequel as it is currently free on Xbox Live Gold until the end of January plus it recently went on sale on PSN for $5, around PHP250, for the base edition. Little Nightmares tell the tale of Six, a prisoner inside a strange ship filled with frightening denizens out to capture our protagonist. As Six attempts to escape and rescue other prisoners in her wake, she must elude the ship’s many horrors using only her wits and a trusty lighter. Take note that this review tackles merely the base game of Little Nightmares and none of the expansions. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eayBAZHjy-I What drew me to…

Maneater is a unique open world action/RPG or should we say a ShaRkPG? You take the role of a future mega-shark who was ripped from the womb of its mother by ruthless poacher Scaly Pete. As you rise up from the sewers, to the bayou, and finally to the open sea, you will have to eat and evolve to face off against your nemesis and get your vengeance. Sounds like a B movie script? https://youtu.be/HCRmiOqUgYQ This game is fun for what it is: an open world adventure in the form of a shark. While the game was jarring at first, getting used to the controls and the interface, it takes a lot of paradigm shifts to take control of a completely water-based character from the typical human character that moves on land. It’s not the first time where a game asks you to take control of an animal character, and…

To call Days Gone an overlooked title in 2019 is an understatement. Coming off a heavy month of big AAA releases such as Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, Devil May Cry 5, and Tom Clancy’s The Division 2, and with the last big PS4 exclusive being Spiderman, Days Gone has some pretty large shoes to fill. It didn’t help its launch that the game released with numerous bugs that would not be fixed until months down the line. With the Metacritic score being a 71, it further buries this IP into obscurity and doesn’t join the higher echelon of the “Sony exclusive” club enjoyed by games such as God of War, Spiderman, The Last of Us 2, and Ghost of Tsushima. Playing the game on the PS5 by way of the PS Plus Collection a year and a half later, I had a good first impression of Days Gone and wondered…

The Playstation 5 took center stage when it launched in the Philippines last month, but sadly not many hopefuls got their hands on one with all of the pre-order drama that happened. It’s been tough getting one, and even though it is by far the more preferred console locally, stocks have not been kind. Just to remind everybody, an equally impressive next-gen console is also out there and is by far relatively easy to obtain – the Xbox Series X, which launched stealthily early in December at a premium. Securing one console is hard enough, securing both without paying more than the SRP is just a flex at this point. Starting the year right, I literally unboxed the unit six hours into the new year. The Series X is no slouch despite its looks, but is it a must-buy system you gotta pick up right now? What would Uncle Phil…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=73FRi8W1oCM The Dragon Quest series is one that needs no introduction, especially to Japanese gamers. It’s immediately recognizable for its character designs by the legendary mangaka Akira Toriyama of Dragon Ball fame, very heavy fantasy elements like dragons (duh) and castles, the Slime monster which became the series’ mascot, and the legendary handed-down technique known as Puff-Puff (plus points if you know what it is). It’s an iconic RPG that has spawned numerous installments, which brings us to the latest in the series – Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age – Definitive Edition. So yes, if you’ve been wondering, this is actually a re-release of a Dragon Quest game which came out back in 2017. Its been quite normal to make a few tweaks and slap “insert-awesome-sounding-adjective-here” Edition on any old game and re-release it, so the thousand peso question has got to be whether or not…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qjZIw0VUezU Demon’s Souls launched on the Playstation 3 back in 2009, the cusp of the explosion of the seventh generation. From Software will take another couple years to release Dark Souls on 2011, which would ultimately become its own genre with a group of diehards touting it for its unforgiving difficulty and rich lore that’s discovered by osmosis rather than exposition. “Souls-like” is definitely not for everyone, and it takes a certain audience to really appreciate the genre. With the likes of Sekiro and many other similar games enjoying a cult status on various platforms, we can’t ignore the cultural significance of Demon’s Souls as this full remake makes its way into our homes, bringing with it all the technological advances from the years gone by. It’s been at least a decade since we last saw it on Playstation 3, and it’s return as a PlayStation 5 launch title could…

Devil May Cry 5 Special Edition is technically a new release at the launch of the new consoles. Yet, Devil May Cry 5 is now a year old and every fan’s either played it and beat it a few times over. With actual software on new consoles still slim pickings just in time for launch, it’s a good time for the super fans and those who haven’t tried the game to take a look at what’s new. https://youtu.be/uJw_dYGjdCY With four mainline games and a reboot, the title is no slouch in creating that fast paced action game that’s a bit of a break from the dark and brooding mainline titles of this year. Capcom has pulled out all the stops to give the game a second look, featuring fan favorite Vergil, the Legendary Knight Edition, and of course ray tracing to keep up with the times. From what I could…

https://youtu.be/UnA7tepsc7s Cyberpunk 2077’s marketing machine manufactured an almost immeasurable level of hype leading to the promised launch of their title first in April 2020, then to September, then to November 19th, and then with a final last minute delay to December 10th, 2020. Fans and eager enthusiasts alike reacted either violently or with nonchalance, but instead of slowing down, CDPR continued to double down on their efforts to keep the game relevant. Personally, my excitement for this game waned as the endless cycle of Night City Wire episodes ran out of content to keep us excited leading to the delayed November launch. Were there any surprises left to show for the massive first person futuristic RPG? By episode three of Night City Wire, they were already grasping at straws to show us something meaningful when all we really wanted was to see a final release. The premise of the game,…