coolbeans (User)

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coolbeans

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

- PS3

*NOTE #1: While this doesn’t affect the overall outcome of any score, I will be cataloguing the GOTY additions in Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception.* *NOTE #2: There are bigger story spoilers present in order to talk about certain qualities of the game I liked and disliked—more a mixture of both this time. Viewer discretion is advised.* Second opinions can be a great or terrible thing. It’s...

7.5

coolbeans

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

- PS3

*NOTE #1: While this doesn’t affect the overall outcome of any score, I will catalog a certain aspect of the Uncharted 2 GOTY Edition I’ve acquired: Siege Expansion Pack. There really hasn’t been anything else I recall that’s been added or tweaked to such a degree as when I first remember playing Uncharted 2 back in 2009 and 2010—though, it would be tough for me to remember that anyways.* *...

8.8

coolbeans

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune

- PS3

It’s certainly strange to come away from one of the PS3’s so-called “must-haves” of its time with a heightened sense of disappointment. During an era of over-blown squabbles over a certain game somehow saving a console—as if the library was completely bankrupt of solid exclusives until that happened, this was the one which seemed to hit the mark when it came to critics. Plus, the popular Naug...

6.5

coolbeans

Beyond: Two Souls

- PS3

*Note: You will be wading into some spoiler territory in this review. Given the complaints and praises—mostly complaints—I will be raising with the story, it’s impossible for me to avoid spoiling some details (not huge ones) while also trying to provide an exploration on the game. If you want a fresh experience on all the game has to offer, I suggest avoiding this review for now.* Ever si...

4.4

coolbeans

Papers, Please

- PC

True creative inspiration has a habit of leading to uncultivated territory. Not long ago, a wall was dashed asunder and a communist union was dissolved; now, that mark on history has been married with ex-Naughty Dog developer Lucas Pope’s tense experiences with international checkpoints and has given the gaming world Papers, Please. What makes this game feel so audacious is in how counterint...

9.5

coolbeans

Call of Duty: Ghosts

- Xbox 360

Ten years is a long time for any game franchise to be around. And with that achievement being reached for Call of Duty, I’m starting to feel old, having played each main entry in the series and noted its moments of evolution and nuance since its inception. And that term “evolution” is the sticking point for many detractors of the series as it remains the AAA-budget gaming equivalent of a mone...

6.0

coolbeans

Proteus

- PC

Times have changed since the last time I’ve bothered reviewing one of these exploration games/walking simulators. When first making a splash into this sea of gameplay-minimizing art games with Dear Esther, I honestly didn’t expect to ever bother jumping back into other titles similar to that art house ideal like Passage or Every Day The Same Dream. It’s strange to see just how influential one...

5.1

coolbeans

Contrast

- Xbox 360

“Thoughts are the shadows of our feelings – always darker, emptier and simpler.” – Friedrich Nietzsche Out of all the games I’ve played in 2013 I like to vaunt over for their artsy qualities while also having to recognize a sheer lack of polish and/or several design problems within them, Contrast is probably my favorite of those flawed few. It presents a problem from a scoring standpoint be...

7.4

coolbeans

Syndicate

- Xbox 360

“In a world where evil corporations continually attempt to strive higher in their next quarterly earnings at the sacrifice of their heart, goodwill, and decency towards others, we witness both Syndicate’s thematic material and a…really awkward parallel here with EA’s decision to reboot this beloved classic as a first person shooter.” Yeah, I wouldn’t put much stock in this one either. For t...

6.3

coolbeans

Ride to Hell: Retribution

- Xbox 360

*Warning: In order to pick apart certain story problems, I’m going to have to spoil some parts of it. Not that you’ll ultimately care about…well…anything in this story, but I just wanted to mention that.* If there’s one thing I can assuredly say about this mess of a game it’s that Ride to Hell: Retribution (RtH) is quite an experience. Not in the sense that the term “experience” is usually...

1.0

coolbeans

Machinarium

- PC

I wanted to love this game so much more. I truly did. After a recent escapade back to my old point-and-click adventure roots with The Night of the Rabbit, I’ve had a fervid desire to mix this genre back into my routine much more often: this title, the special editions of Monkey Island—plus other Lucasarts’ classics if Disney knows what they’re doing, and hopefully many more. It was rather...

6.8

coolbeans

Papo & Yo

- PC

“Such wonder the mind of a child is.” This phrase is obviously salvaged and only slightly changed thanks to Yoda’s ever-so-wise use of broken English, but the essence of the saying is still one that will always resonate with us. That maxim is what fuels Papo & Yo. With the opening by the writer/creative director, Vander Caballero, paying respects to his mother and siblings “with whom I [Ca...

5.5

coolbeans

Super Mario Galaxy

- Wii

Despite what impressive sales may have been seen thanks to its mini-game compilations, trying to sell this “gimmicky” console to the core gamer was something else entirely. While the admirable Legend of Zelda series graced the Wii at launch, its Gamecube counterpart disallowed the exclusive moniker—and left a sense of the new control scheme feeling tacked-on. Sure, one could pinpoint Metroid...

9.7

coolbeans

Vanquish

- Xbox 360

If there’s one inveterate species of this generation it would be the third-person shooter. Whether it’s the gritty gray aesthetic and chest-high walls commercialized by Gears of War or stylized action from Uncharted, there haven’t been any candidates to question why forward momentum should be limited to convenient cover placement. If there’s any developer who can change that way of thinking i...

8.5

coolbeans

Medal of Honor: Warfighter

- Xbox 360

As Call of Duty continues its annual releases, EA’s answer against their competitor’s tactic is by alternating between the Medal of Honor (MoH) and Battlefield series each year. After the sufficient critical and commercial reception of the 2010 MoH reboot, Danger Close heeded the call to make a sequel. Now having control over all aspects of the title and sporting the jaw-dropping Frostbite 2...

4.5

coolbeans

Quantum Conundrum

- Xbox 360

Portal comparisons with Quantum Conundrum are practically inextricable: both are first-person puzzle games with similar narrative structures, both employ an innovative idea for the genre, and both bear the involvement of Portal co-designer Kim Swift. The acquirement of a figurehead to one of the most beloved new series of this generation can even rouse one’s interest for a lesser studio like A...

7.0

coolbeans

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

- Xbox 360

And the cycle remains the same. For millions, this brings excitement when the biggest franchise of this generation’s history introduces another installment; for detractors, vitriolic resentment for it being a microcosm of an industry typically scared to unshackle itself from past innovations. Since this series would fundamentally alter the setting and multiplayer format for a plethora of late...

6.9

coolbeans

Rage

- Xbox 360

It has been a while since id Software created a new game and over a decade since we had seen a new intellectual property from them. To put it into perspective: before the eras of overabundant modern warfare/WWII first-person shooters, perks, and the two weapons limit id has not created a new franchise. After roughly six years in development by the team that made the fps genre what it is today...

8.7

coolbeans

The Orange Box

- Xbox 360

In today’s age of gaming, there’s rarely a time where players could be convinced a sixty-dollar product is worth twice of what they have paid for, doubly so when it comes to the FPS market. Valve, the most audacious “big-name” developer/publisher in the business, set to change that with this satiable collection of past and present titles that either innovate—or reinvigorate—storytelling, puzzl...

9.9

coolbeans

Enslaved: Odyssey to the West

- Xbox 360

Ninja Theory, ambitious developer behind the action game ‘Heavenly Sword,’ creates a post-apocalyptic world loosely based on the famous Chinese story “Journey to the West” with wonderful effervescence. Given the joy I found in their previous title, another new intellectual property from them excited me in two ways: the promise of overwhelming environments and a respectable story. While those...

6.7
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