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This Week in Gaming: Feb 14-20
By Chris West

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Alright you caught me. I skipped a week. Stop complaining for three seconds and lookie what I got here! A brand new “TWIG” post! Hurray!

Quick list of games this week:
2.15.11 – Amnesia: The Dark Descent – PC – Valusoft
2.15.11 – Chronicles of Mystery: The Secret Tree of Life – DS – City Interactive
2.15.11 – Dance Paradise – 360 (Kinect) – THQ
2.14.11 – Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation – DS – Nintendo
2.15.11 – Gears of War Triple Pack – 360 – Microsoft
2.15.11 – Hyperdimension Neptunia – PS3 – KOEI Corp
2.15.11 – Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds – 360, PS3 – Capcom
2.15.11 – Pirate Blast – Wii – Zoo Games
2.15.11 – Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together – PSP – Square Enix

Amnesia: The Dark Descent
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): PC
Developer: Valusoft
Retail Price: $19.99
Description:
Amnesia: The Dark Descent, a first person survival horror. A game about immersion, discovery and living through a nightmare … an experience that will chill you to the core. The game puts you in the shoes of Daniel as he wakes up in a desolate castle, barely remembering anything about his past. Exploring the eerie pathways, you must also take part of Daniel’s troubled memories. The horror does not only come from the outside, but from the inside as well. A disturbing odyssey into the dark corners of the human mind awaits.
By using a fully physically simulated world, cutting edge 3D graphics and a dynamic sound system, Amnesia: The Dark Descent pulls no punches when trying to immerse you. Once the game starts, you will be in control from the beginning to the end. There are no cut-scenes or time-jumps, whatever happens will happen to you first hand. You will be thrown headfirst into a dangerous world where danger can lurk behind every corner. Your only means of defense are hiding, running or using your wits. Do you have what it takes to survive?
Summary:
Considered by many to be the scariest game ever made. If you enjoyed FEAR, or Doom, or any other game that just scares the crap out of you, GET THIS GAME. I’ve watched a few trailers and all I can say is WOW. The graphics are great, and the immersion is awesome. It seems like you can interact with almost everything. I definitely recommend this one, and since it’s only 20 bucks and being released for Windows, Mac, and Linux, it should be an easy game to pick up. Just don’t blame me if your screams of terror wake up your mom.
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Chronicles of Mystery: The Secret Tree of Life
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): DS
Developer: City Interactive
Retail Price: ~$19.96
Description:
Chronicles of Mystery: The Secret Tree of Life is a single player Adventure-Hidden Object game for Nintendo DS and DSi in which players find themselves pursuing one of the oldest and most alluring quests ever dreamt of, the search for immortality. The game utilizes point-and-click game mechanics, features the engaging heroine, Sylvie Leroux and requires first-rate puzzle-solving skills and critical thinking skills in order to solve a mystery set in exotic spots around the globe, as well as throughout time itself.
Summary:
So mysteriously enough, this game is kind-of a mystery. City Interactive’s website says this game’s release date is still TBA, several gaming websites say it get gets released on the 15th, IGN has a different title for it, and Gamestop has never heard of it. Despite the mystery, Amazon has it listed as available and the price is set at $19.96. Maybe it requires a true sleuth to even begin the game itself…
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Dance Paradise
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): 360 (Kinect)
Developer: THQ
Retail Price: $49.99
Description:
Using Kinect’s tracking detection and control-free technology, Dance Paradise gives players the chance to express themselves, move completely freely and dance without any restrictions. This is a dance game appealing to children, parents, fans of classic hits and even the most die-hard of clubbers. In fun, colorful settings including beaches, discos and casinos; dance floor kings and queens will be able to dance solo or challenge each other in different multiplayer modes. With the Kinect for Xbox 360 sensor technology, two dancers can play simultaneously and be scored individually.
Summary:
I’ve played a few of these dancing games on the Wii, and I’ve got to say, they can be quite fun. It works better if you have had a few, *ahem* beverages, but still fun nonetheless. I can only imagine that the entertainment value is increased greatly when a controller isn’t involved, and your dance moves are monitored a little more precisely. If you tried guitar hero and thought, “why can’t I just dance instead of play this sodding guitar?!?!?”, this game is for you.
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Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation
Release Date: 02/14/11
Platform(s): DS
Developer: Nintendo
Retail Price: $34.99
Description:
Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation for Nintendo DS brings the classic console title into the handheld scene. Explore two parallel worlds while distinguishing reality from illusion and seeking to discover the true meaning of your very existence.
Summary:
This game actually looks pretty fun. Its an RPG style game, but there seems to be a few improvements from games like it. Battle scenes are viewed from the front in first-person, not side-by-side. This way you can actually see the fighting happening instead of just being a spectator. I also like the fact that the game uses both the top and bottom screens to display the world around you. If you are walking on a long path to the north, you can see the path extend all the way up to the top screen. Definitely not a bad looking game.
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Gears of War Triple Pack
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): 360
Developer: Microsoft
Retail Price: $29.99
Description:
Gears of War Triple Pack contains the original Gears of War, Gears of War 2, and the Gears of War 2: All Fronts Collection, which includes the “Road to Ruin” campaign and 19 multiplayer maps.
Unlike other shooters, Gears of War is all about teamwork in a big way. All game modes, levels and scenarios are designed specifically to encourage co-operative play, whether it be with A.I. partners or human players (with A.I. teammates designed with specific strengths, weaknesses and personalities.) On top of that, voice recognition will be available for players, and obviously voice chat to discuss strategy with your friends. In addition to voice chat, gamers will be able to experience individualized matchmaking, view player statistics, earn player achievements, customize their games, and build and personalize their gamer profiles over Xbox Live.
Gears of War 2 continues the story of Marcus Fenix and Delta Squad, locked in an increasingly desperate battle against the nightmarish Locust Horde for the survival of humanity. The game promises to be an epic saga of survival, loss, and retribution. Just as Gears of War set the standard for high-definition visuals, Gears of War 2 raises the bar even further with the amazing technological advances of Unreal Engine 3, delivering a bigger, badder, and more intense experience as the story continues.
Gears of War 2: All Fronts Collection includes the “Road to Ruin” campaign and 19 multiplayer maps for additional gameplay action.
Summary:
GoW was definitely one of my favorite 360 games. This seems to be a great deal if you like the series, or want to jump in and try it for the first time. With Gears 2 GOTY edition costing $20, you might as well grab this triple pack and get Gears 1 for ten bucks. The two single-player campaigns will keep you occupied for a long time, and the multiplayer plus the 19 bonus maps will keep you coming back. Good deal if you ask me.
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Hyperdimension Neptunia
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): PS3
Developer: KOEI Corp
Retail Price: $59.99
Description:
Hyperdimension Neptunia is a unique RPG for PlayStation 3 that features game consoles personified as goddesses — CPUs (Console Patron Units) — who you can customize visually with equipment to enhance their stats. Players take the role of Neptune and follow her quest to save the captive Histoire. This leads her to face the corrupt monsters ravaging the world of Gamindustri unleashed by the evil Arfoire. Neptunia also features iconic characters from classic games as special summon skills.
Summary:
I don’t really know what’s going on here. The description is vague, and the video is, well, crappy. Basically I understand that this is a game about busty cartoon chicks wearing next to nothing, throwing old school SEGA characters at their enemies. Seems kinda…… dumb. Of course I could be wrong, this could be the greatest game ever. You just might want to rent it before you buy it to be sure…
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Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): 360, PS3
Developer: Capcom
Retail Price: $59.99
Description:
Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 is an explosive showdown between the heroes of the Capcom universe and the superheroes of the Marvel universe. After a decade of waiting, iconic Marvel and Capcom characters join forces again in team fighting action. Fill the shoes of legendary characters from both the Marvel and Capcom Universes — including massively popular characters such as Ryu, Wolverine, Iron Man, and Morrigan, as well as fan favorites such as Trish from Devil May Cry and the wise-cracking Deadpool. They all come to you battle in a living comic book art style powered by Capcom’s MT Framework, an advance version of the graphics engine used for Resident Evil 5.
Summary:
A slew of superheros with nothing to do but sit around and fight each other: seems cool. If DC Universe is a little too involved for you, maybe you want to pick this one up for some instant action. Graphics look nice, lots of power moves, fast-paced action, a bunch of characters to pick from, and many other features make this fighting game look pretty playable. If you were looking for a good fighting game, maybe try this one out.
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Pirate Blast
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): Wii
Developer: Zoo Games
Retail Price: $19.99
Description:
In Pirate Blast, players must defeat Captain Greasebeard and his evil robotic Henchbots who are determined to take over Vile Isle amusement park. To avoid walking the plank, players must destroy as many of the Captain’s Henchbots and defeat Greasebeard in time for the park’s grand opening.
The game features eight chapters based in various environments, including a village, jungle, pirate cove and pirate ships. Each chapter features new villains to defeat as players work their way towards the final battle against Greasebeard. Along the way, players can discover bonus rooms and collect booty stolen by the pirates, such as health kits and special keys to replenish health. The special edition blaster bundle brings even more excitement to battles against Greasebeard and his Henchbots as players target their enemies with rapid-fire precision.
Summary:
As much as it hurts me to say this, Pirate Blast looks a little bit entertaining. The graphics are terrible, the story-line is lacking, and killing pirate robots with a water cannon? Eh. However, it has that arcade-style shoot em up feel that is so addicting. Its basically a bunch of robots swarming you from all corners of the screen, and you use your Wiimote to try and hit them with various mediums of H20. There are better options for shooter games, but if your kid begs for it at least you can play it too.
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Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together
Release Date: 02/15/11
Platform(s): PSP
Developer: Square Enix
Retail Price: $39.99
Description:
Long ago, power was everything. It was a time called Xytegenia, where metal, and evil that was enshrouded in darkness was in control…
The classic 1995 Super Famicom epic Tactics Ogre: Let us Cling Together is remade for a new generation of fans with this PSP edition enhanced with new side stories, characters and graphic elements. The game includes new graphics, music, and gameplay, as well as a re-arranged soundtrack from the original composers including 15 new compositions.
Summary:
A remake of the original PSX game. Graphics are obviously a bit lacking, but it’s a classic. If you were a fan of the original, wanted to be a fan of the original, the younger sibling of a fan, the nurse of a fan who played while in the hospital, a bully who beat up a fan of the original, or just a gamer who thinks this game looks uber cool, you should probably buy it.
Sorry that I say next to nothing in most of these summaries…
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Well thats all for this week! Be sure to check out the podcast for updates, and come back next week for a whole new list of upcoming games!

 


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