A.W. Esperanza is self-proclaimed coffee addict, with nothing but coffee, adrenaline, and the hope of a new, life-consuming MMORPG to keep him going. You'll frequently find him at his desk with a breakfast burrito and cup of lukewarm coffee within arms length. As a born again nerd, he enjoys competitive gaming, Magic the Gathering, and being immersed in the gaming community.
Welcome to the ARENA.... GODS, a title where you use anything and everything at your disposal to beat, slice, smash, stab, and pummel your way to victory. There are no fancy controls or tech skills you need to learn to be proficient at this game: you run, you attack, you roll. Sometimes you win; more often than not, you die. There is nothing keeping you playing in terms of story — because it does not have one — and while the gameplay is simple and fun, it is still simple, meaning that once you have played a few matches, you have experienced all that the Early Access title has to offer.
Isn't it great? Party Hard Tycoon, developed by Pinokle Games, allows you to create, decorate, plan, run, over-hype, and manage your own themed parties. The themes range across the board — really — from a Vodka party to a Zoo Party. They even have themes for gamers, too, complete with arcade cabinets to fill your venue.
Battlerite provides fast paced, beautiful combat with a litany of combos and movesets across its cast. You are given a great toolset to freely explore various playstyles to determine which you prefer the most — or with which you’re mostly successful.
The concept is great and the execution is far from bad, but there is room for improvement. The maps are rich and make each game feel incredibly singular and flustered in a different way. But, the weapons feel weak and movements feel awkward. There’s much potential and excitement to be had in Deceit, and even more screams and scares.
Overgrowth, while fun for a while, misses the mark for a captivating story or combat. The world feels uninviting and dead, giving off the feel of a game from the early 2000’s when the processing power of hardware was much more limiting. The combat is fast-paced and fun, but it lacks depth and eventually goes stale. The story that ties it all together feels loose and lacks impact, each character blends into another and consequently prevents the player from connecting at a deeper level. The title does shine for the first hour or two, but it quickly loses its flair.
Inmates grabs you right off the bat and starts yelling in your face: you are screaming and afraid, but at the end of it all, you’ll probably tell your friends that they need to come over and get yelled at, too. Besides the game world being well designed, and the sounds making you check over your shoulder every few minutes, the creativity, the puzzles, and the story offer an experience that is to die for.
The experience of The Norwood Suite is incredibly unique, each design choice, be it of the musical or visual arts, very much reflects Cosmo D's style. The world in which you play feels well developed and full, but not cluttered, keeping you on the path of the game, but not on rails. The Norwood Suite — along with their first release, Off-Peak — are two games worth the effort and confusion.
With many weapons, unlocks, and even co-op play, The Walking Vegetables has a high chance you will replay it over, and over... and over. It’s a great game all-around, especially if you are interested in a cheap alternative to therapy because your mom forced you to eat her vegetable casserole, even though you told her you hated carrots. The Walking Vegetables takes the best aspects of any top-down shooter, and gives it the 80s-cocaine-treatment that it needed.
Terroir has a lot of promise and can be fun at times, but the experience felt lacking in body. While there is some complexity to the different grapes, weather, and characteristics of each wine, it feels inaccessible due to the repetitive speeding through of the years, only to have your wine get three stars because it's acidity was too high. It was more frustrating than anything having to restart time and time again to adjust the wine I was making, only to survive a year or two more, each play through. And with a very dry, and un-interactive tutorial, it’s hard to stay motivated to read the entire thing, and absorb the knowledge to play this game. Terroir has a lot of potential, and getting your first five-star wine is incredibly rewarding, but even a couple hundred bottles of the five-star "Booty Juice Cabernet Sauvignon 2017" is not enough to keep a vineyard afloat.
Every gamer has her story of creation, his moment of revelation, the guidance of a universe-ordained path that lead to their own grand, epiphanous moment in which they became a gamer. Each one has their own unique testimony that lead to them pressing start for the first time. What is my story, I wonder?
The uniqueness of this title carries it to the end, and is ready to go for a couple episodes more, leaving you intrigued about the conspiracies and ground-breaking truths you have discovered: a solid couple hours invested in a protagonist you care about, wanting to see it to its end, and then twice over.
Your quest to quench your thirst while maintaining good relations with every other student is bigly entertaining, though occasionally you’ll speed through some of the more monotonous parts. On the surface, there is a lot to look at and dive into. Between the bunch of boys, to the mall at which you can shop, to the jobs you can work, it seems like there would be more variety to each choice, but each decision feels trivial; the repetitive nature of some of the conversations exacerbated this and, over time, XOXO Droplets lose its shine. However, the jerk characters of XOXO Droplets promises to entertain.