KOTOR (Android) Screenshots

I’m posting these screenshots mostly as a reference for those who want to know what the Android version of KOTOR looks and plays like. I won’t do a review for it since I’ve already posted one for the PC version, but I do want to mention a few things. First, the Android version of the game is flawless in the sense that nothing was removed. Everything from the PC game is right there where you’d expect, and the only changes are the different control scheme, dialogue being in bubbles instead of the lower black bar, larger icons to make things like force powers and the menu more accessible, and a screen that you can use to choose your attacks more carefully inside of combat (the screenshot of this is three pictures from the left, four from the top). Oh, and there’s also a quicksave button added to the menu.

The screenshots you’ll see in most places are terrible, blocky messes. That’s because the game downloads and defaults to low quality visuals. The second screenshot is an example of this low setting, while all others reflect the game with all of the pretty options turned on. As you can see, the game becomes much truer to the original game’s visuals (though there’s still some aliasing).

I experienced one crash and two instances of textures not loading properly, briefly turning characters into black shadows, but this was incredibly rare and I played through the entire game without encountering any other issues. That said, swoop racing and the space battles are incredibly awkward with touch controls and I wound up being grateful that they’re so rare, and while the movement controls are pretty solid (tap and drag up to run forward, down to move backward, left and right to turn), moments where you have to turn the camera 180 degrees can force you to perform multiple swipes. One final note: saves are compatible between the PC and Android versions, so you can manually transfer your file to and from each. Read more →

Broken Age Review

Note that this is a review for the completed game instead of the single, incomplete half of Broken Age that was first released. I’ll never understand why other sites are willing to review portions of a game before it’s complete, especially since they invariably run up against the problem of recommending a game that becomes loathsome in its later hours, or fails to deliver on its initial promise. Take Telltale’s The Wolf Among Us as an example: it begins well enough, only for the end to roll around and disregard all of your choices despite its initial claims of reactivity. Double Fine’s Broken Age falls into a similar trap, brimming with promise and potential early on (which caused many sites to write glowing reviews about it), only to drop the ball in its second half and become downright embarrassing. Read more →

Broken Age Screenshots

Broken Age has been the target of a great deal of criticism. Originally envisioned and pitched to potential Kickstarter backers as a “classic point-and-click adventure” assumed to be in the vein of such games as Day of the Tentacle (which is even pictured in the pitch), the project received over eight times the funding the studio was originally asking for. This led to an expansion of the game’s scope, and with it, delay after delay. Eventually the game was split into two halves, the first half being released to an equally split audience. One half of their fans enjoyed the game for what it was, while the other half felt betrayed at the end product, a partial casual adventure game that shared little to nothing in common with “classic” titles of the genre. The reason I bring all of this up is to give some context to people’s opinions and explain why some people feel the way they do, because there are a lot of different views out there as far as this game is concerned.

None of this matters to me, personally; I didn’t back the Kickstarter campaign, I didn’t follow the hype, and while their fans complained, I was waiting for the game to be released in its entirety before playing through it for myself. All that matters to me is the end result, and while the first part wasn’t perfect, it was actually surprisingly enjoyable and charming; I expected my review for Broken Age to be overwhelmingly positive based on how much I enjoyed the early game. The second half of the game, on the other hand, is an abominable slog that introduces terrible puzzles, butchers the story, and ultimately leads nowhere interesting. All the promise from the first half of the game ended up being utterly wasted, and this is a sad thing because of how much promise this game had. Read more →

Halfway Review

I don’t like doing negative reviews, not because of any guilt over hating on something someone put their time and effort into making, but because of the anywhere from 5-60 hours of boring, tedious gameplay that led me to that review in the first place. If I could, I’d only buy and play games that I enjoy. The problem with that is that it’s impossible to differentiate games with great ideas and great execution from those with great ideas and terrible execution. Halfway is definitely the latter, being full of promise, but delivering on none of it. Read more →

Halfway Screenshots

I find it incredibly depressing that I can’t recall the last tactical turn-based game that was actually enjoyable to me. Instead, all that comes to mind are the ugly slew of failed attempts: The Banner Saga, Blackguards, The War of Eustrath, and now Halfway. Is Halfway as bad as the rest of the titles on that list? Not really; it’s promising on the surface, with eight static characters who each have their own unique abilities in combat, but that’s ultimately undermined by the fact that much of the game is spent slowly shooting at enemies and watching them shoot back, no one hitting their mark because the accuracy for most attacks is so low. Beyond that, the inventory is a constant hassle and the story goes nowhere. The building blocks of a memorable turn-based strategy/tactical game are all here, and I have hopes that the devs come out with a sequel that builds on the game’s strengths while penning a more interesting story that takes place in more varied environments, but Halfway itself just isn’t put together in a particularly entertaining or fulfilling way. Read more →

Woolfe: The Red Hood Diaries Review

Woolfe is a 10-dollar game that features a great “fairy tale revenge story” concept and solid voice acting for the main character. Oh, and the music is pretty enjoyable, too. That’s all the good that can be said of this game, though, because everything else is a complete and utter disaster; from invisible walls to wonky hit detection and one of the floatiest, least precise combat systems I’ve seen in a game, the whole thing is a virtually unplayable mess. Then there are problems like the forced rhyming, awkward platforming, scripted boss fights, and checkpoint saves that leave you wishing you had spent your 10 dollars on something better. Read more →

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