Reviews by PixalatedGhOst



PixalatedGhOst | Aug. 6, 2013 | Review of Grand Theft Auto IV Steam - PC

Criminals are an ugly, cowardly lot more worthy of pity and disdain than admiration. This is what you'll learn playing through the single-player campaign in Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto IV. The series cheered (and criticized) for glorifying violence has taken an unexpected turn: it's gone legit. Oh sure, you'll still blow up cop cars, run down innocent civilians, bang hookers, assist drug dealers and lowlifes and do many, many other bad deeds, but at a cost to main character Niko Bellic's very soul. GTA IV gives us characters and a world with a level of depth previously unseen in gaming and elevates its story from a mere shoot-em-up to an Oscar-caliber drama. Every facet of Rockstar's new masterpiece is worthy of applause. Without question, Grand Theft Auto IV is the best game since Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. You play as Niko Bellic, an Eastern European attempting to escape his past and the horrors of the Bosnian war. He arrives in Liberty City to experience the American dream, only to discover his cousin, Roman, may have fibbed a bit in his tales of success. Starting from nothing, Niko makes a living as a killer and enforcer, a bad-ass foreigner who appears to have no morals. The longer we stay with Niko, the more we see that there is a broken human being inside, one who would give anything to escape the person he once was.



PixalatedGhOst | Aug. 5, 2013 | Review of BioShock Infinite NA Post - PC

I'm ashamed to admit, but I was actually worried about Bioshock Infinite. Announced way back in 2008, and previously expected to release last year, disasters like Aliens: Colonial Marines taught us that time is often not kind to game development. Fundamental changes and tight lipped PR did nothing serve positive anticipation. But here we are, with one of the most prospected releases in years. Following the sky shooting standards of its proper predecessor, Infinite aims higher; much, much higher. Its ambition almost cannot be contained in a shooter, a very fine and creatively designed shooter at that. But what Bioshock excels at is mind warping storytelling, done in such a way that’s so exceptional from what we typically see while pushing joysticks and pressing buttons. With a nod-winking reference to 2007’s Bioshock, Booker Dewitt sits in a boat rowed by a bantering pair, one of which who hands him an oak finished lock box with a pistol, a sheet with symbol instructions, a key, and a picture of Elizabeth; the presumed girl whom he must find that would “wipe away the dept”. As the pair abandons Dewitt standing on the dock stranded as the night rain pours, you make your way to the beaconed lighthouse, and begin your ascent to Columbia. Your first impression will be this: Columbia glows. It's aggressively vibrant with popping colors, sun soaking god-rays and passing clouds saturating dancing buildings and floating zeppelins. The densely populated visual presentation makes for one of the most captivating settings this generation. This departure from Rapture almost seems as if it was a statement from Irrational looking to prove that this game, with a rooted yet completely different art direction, can still preserve an unequivocal Bioshock theme.


Hard, but still fun to play

PixalatedGhOst | Aug. 3, 2013 | Review of Super Meat Boy - PC

I'll keep it short and sweet. This game is a solid 10. I originally played the demo and thought no thanks on the purchase. I waited about a year and was feening for some old school 2D games... SMB I tried. This game has the best controls... some reviews say otherwise. I find that funny... because if you happen to beat this game and get good enough to pass some of the challenging levels you'll notice first and foremost how incredibly detailed the play mechanics are... as the moves needed are precise. I don't claim to be an elite gamer... I did beat the game... and when I got to play as BandAid Girl I never completed her world because it was too hard. I also was unable to beat the dark world for the final level. The only character that I gave up on trying to get was The Kid... I think "The Kid" levels, only playing the first level are beyond impossible.... and if you've gotten past this, you are a savant.I thought I was getting old because I lost interest in games... after discovery Team Meat and McMillen I have the same feeling I got when I played old school consoles. The unlockables are fanastic, and the old school throwbacks (i.e. Gameboy levels) are top notch. This game opened me up to a bunch of Indie Games I never heard of and I thank you SMB for doing so.


Fun game

PixalatedGhOst | Aug. 3, 2013 | Review of Magicka - PC

Magicka might just be the surprise hit of 2011. This $10 action-oriented role-playing game features catchy spellcasting and a lighthearted story that riffs on everything from Monty Python to Star Wars. Not all is rosy with the bargain game, however, as the laughs fall flat at times due to a ton of launch bugs and associated gameplay oddities that make some of the abracadabra stuff a little annoying. Publisher Paradox has at least admitted to the problems and is busily releasing patches to get everything up to snuff, but the many problems are impossible to overlook right now and prevent the game from receiving an unqualified recommendation. You play an unnamed wizard that is out to save the world and must do so by slaughtering thousands of creatures in the usual Acme brand fantasy realm. Magicka has a cartoonlike whimsy. Visuals are bright and colorful, with the outdoor scenery turned into the sort of lush green fantasyland that you might see painted on the walls of a kindergarten classroom. Mages in the game are also straight out of a Saturday morning cartoon, with deep hoods and big pointy hats obscuring their faces. Characters speak in a quirky language that sounds like The Muppets' Swedish Chef on 78 RPM. And the music is sufficiently bombastic, as if you're dealing with an epic that recounts the travails of a legendary hero.