PS4 Games Reviews

Shining Force Review! (Genesis)

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Shining Force Review! (Genesis)

In this post, I’d like to show some love to a special Square RPG game that doesn’t always get the appreciation it deserves, Final Fantasy Mystic Quest! What? No, not that crap. Review something good. Something, Sega. The Sega Genesis doesn’t tend to get much love, which is a real shame! The console isn’t usually the first thing people think of when talking about RPGs. But it’s actually a very competent system! I also haven’t given much love to Strategy RPGs either, which is another problem.

In ages long forgotten, Sega first party developer Sonic! Software Planning (who, despite the name, never actually software planned any Sonic titles) teamed up with Climax Entertainment to produce an almost Saturday morning cartoon take on the Wizardry school of Dungeon crawling RPGs. Shining in the Darkness was a success. They immediately followed it up with the similarly styled tactical RPG, Shining Force.

Thus the concept of the Shining series was born; a slew of RPGs with different mechanics united by a single universe and cohesive art style. However, the project fell apart during the production of the action RPG, Shining Rogue in which Climax essentially grabbed their developmental ball and went home. Shining Rogue was rebranded LandStalker and Sonic! Software Planning took complete creative control of the Shining series with Shining Force 2 and onwards.

Later they’d change their name to Camelot Software and develop five more Shining RPGs for the Sega Saturn before they ditched Sega for Nintendo and became “that company who makes those Mario sports games and oh. GoldenSun.” And Climax? They too left Sega to develop the Stalker series before disbanding and rebranding as Matrix Software and developing the best darn Zelda clone in existence, Alundra.

The Shining series died with the Saturn. I’m sure I read that Shining Force Resonance Refrain is coming out soon. In Shining Force, you take on the role of Max, a dashing heroic type who happens to be gifted in the use of a sword.

Unfortunately, the time comes when Max is forced to use it. While sent out on a mission to prevent Kain from opening the Shining Path, his home-town Guardian comes under siege! In order to prevent the resurrection of the ancient evil “Dark Dragon,” Max embarks on a journey with his posse to build an army, and defeat Dark Sol! What’s interesting about Shining Force that isn’t immediately apparent when you start it up, is that the game doesn’t take place in a typical fantasy setting.

With all of this talk of shining paths, dark dragons, swords and such, you could be forgiven for mistaking this as a typical medieval fantasy. In fact, at first, there’s very little to contradict this. There are centaurs out there, and skeletons and castles, and many tropes that feel right at home in a CS Lewis-inspired fantasy. But gradually you start to see these little oddities around.

Castles with rooms full of pipes, the occasional odd piece of technology, and then eventually entire rooms full of computer mainframes and terminals and robots, cyborg skeletons and eventually bright green laser-looking swords! It’s an odd yet charming mix of fantasy and science fantasy that feels very unique and welcome in a genre that seldom sees this sort of playfulness in its setting!

That said, the events within the plot don’t exude that same level of creativity. The overall story of the game feels very basic, at least on the Sega Genesis version that we received. I’ve heard that quite a bit of the actual plot of the game was lost in translation. The translation and story are expanded upon in the GameBoy Advance version of the game, and there are also some whole new scenarios added to that version, but I didn’t really get a chance to take a look at that release.

And despite the return of the series’ first character artist, Yoshitaka Tamaki, the character portraits lost a lot of their original charm. But the one thing I think the remake did very well was fleshing out the back stories of Max and his assorted companions. It’s definitely worth a play through for the expanded storyline. And seasoned Shining Force vets may appreciate the bonus character and collector card additions.

But otherwise, the game mechanics are pretty much the same between the two versions. They all play pretty similarly. Move your units around a grid, swap blows and magic with the enemy army. Win (hopefully), and watch a cutscene before restocking supplies at the nearest town menu.

Then do it all again like 30 more times. Cue credits. But Shining Force is different. Sure you still have the grid, and the blows, and the cut scenes, but that town menu? It’s a town. Like, a full town, filled with NPCs, and shops, and treasure chests, and Easter eggs! Basically, Shining Force is Fire Emblem meets Dragon Warrior, and it’s glorious. I mean I could understand wanting to expedite the chase to the next battle if the exploration was tedious.

But Shining Force makes the intermission just as much, if not more fun than the combat. There are loads of funny NPCs to talk with, and secrets to find, and skits to watch. It’s like going to the carnival before setting off for war – only without all the death because anyone actually slain in battle can be resurrected at the nearest church for the low-low price of 10 gold per experience level.

In fact, unlike other, much harder SRPGs Shining Force encogameurages grinding. Retreating characters keep all earned XP, and the patient player who holds off on promoting character classes until later levels are richly rewarded with the largest possible stat gains. Shining force, at least on the Sega Genesis, is pretty easy on the eyes. I really like the battle animations of each of the characters!

One of the really cool things is during these animations you can even tell if a character has a weapon equipped or not! Sure the animations are usually only a couple of frames, but these big beautiful pixel art attack scenes feel so satisfying and don’t really slow up the progress of battle all too much. Outside of battle, the character sprites are big, simple, and beautiful, compared to Final Fantasy games of the time.

The graphics have aged very well! Yoshitaka Tamaki’s character designs shine through strongly here and in those character portraits. Composer Masahiko Yoshimura lends his considerable talents to Shining Force, bringing to the table some of the best battle music that I’ve heard in ages! A lot of people don’t give the Sega Genesis the credit it deserves, and I used to be one of them not too long ago.

But Yoshimura’s compositions are proof that the Genesis is quite the capable machine if the composer has the skills and talent to really let it roar! One of the reasons that I love Shining Force so much (besides the whole Narnia meets Star Wars thing) is that it’s so accommodating to different play styles. You could completely steamroll the Runefaust army with your overpowered behemoths if you take the time to pump up your squad, or stick to a strict no-grind sanction and eek out an exhilarating win by the skin of your teeth.

This theme of absolute player control is reinforced even within roster building. By end game, you’ll have acquired 30 characters from which to build a small force of 12, and of those you have your pick from mages, healers, melee fighters, flyers, and ranged attackers.

The combinations are- well there’s a lot of possible armies you could build from those options. And then on top of that, there are unique weapons, stat boosting consumables, and special rings you can use to really put that personal touch on your MVPs. And even if you decided to play through the adventure, multiple times, reusing, say the same crew of gorgeous equine gladiators, your experience will never be the same twice.

Stat gains are randomized to a point; level ups can be as disappointing as no stats gains whatsoever or as thrilling as a surge of power that suddenly transforms your dedicated healer into the hardest hitting mother f***. With its pick-up and play mechanics, and lack of permadeath, Shining Force has been a really great gateway into the Strategy RPG genre for me. And it was also a great way to dust off that Sega Genesis that I’ve been ignoring for far too long! With such awesome visual and music, I’m surprised it didn’t catch my eye sooner!

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PS4 Games Reviews

The Silver Case Review (PS4)

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The Silver Case PS4 Review

Nobody makes games like Suda51 does. His creations are these bizarre, surreal, often deep complicated experiences that let you take a peek into his dark, comedic mind. The first game he ever made with Grasshopper Manufacture… is no different. The Silver Case is a visual crime novel that doesn’t give you much control over what happens. You click on things, you read long dialogue sequences and yet you can’t help but get sucked into its stories of violent crimes. It’s not for everyone. But here’s my thoughts on it.

1. World Building

As with most Suda51 games, The Silver Case has a complicated universe that may take a little while to get to grips with. There’s a lot of stuff going on, from politics, to philosophy, to new characters popping up every five minutes, all intricately connecting like one big spider web.

There always comes a point in his games when you say, OK, slow down a second- what was that? The CCO and TRO have teamed together to run the country. But then there’s another third party called the FSO that’s trying to stop them. Get to play as a character that you name yourself, although a lot of the time, the game just calls you “Big Dick”. You were “Chinchilla” for a while, but apparently, that wasn’t a good enough nickname, hence “Big Dick”.

You were at first a member of a Special Forces Unit but were hired into the Heinous Crimes Unit; a team dedicated to dealing with dangerous cases. A lot of the fun of this game comes from meeting up with all of the different characters that make up this team. They all have distinct personalities and plenty of flaws. Soon you start to learn about each individual’s dark history, which all contain their fair share of surprises.

And they’re not the most co-operative bunch either- they like nothing more than telling each other to fuck off. Seriously, the dialogue and some of the conversations they have, say, on a routine stakeout, turn in an instant from some random topic to a flurry of insults hurled at each other. It’s hilarious. But at the same time, the game knows when to switch gear and take things more seriously. After all, it deals with things like rape, torture, suicide, kidnapping, and death. Each of the 7 cases in the game deals with a new crime, but the thread that connects all of them is the ultimate serial killer himself, Uehara Kamui.

The Silver Case PS4 Review 2

2. Gameplay

This is one of the best games I’ve ever played, where you basically only tap one button. Most of the game here is reading- scrolling through long conversations between different characters. No topic is off the table. From fairy tales about a giant serpent, to whether or not you can buy cigarettes in heaven, to the latest leaked footage that you bought of a local pop star undressing, strictly to help the investigation, of course.

Now a lot of this could be called fat that could be trimmed without affecting the story. But the problem with that is, it’s all interesting. It helps create this unique experience, and I don’t know whether it’s just because it’s been translated from Japanese or not, but it’s got a funny way of saying things. Certain mannerisms and certain ideas are just structured in an entertaining way. It makes for some great storytelling, full of twists and turns and gives you just enough info at just the right time, to keep you playing on to see where things go next. It’s got a slow pace, that may take a while to settle into; especially with every scene starting with the date, the year, the location, the time.

Occasionally you do take control, where you get to walk around in the first person and interact with items and occasionally solve the odd puzzle. But these sections are brief; the puzzles can often be skipped entirely by clicking on a magnifying glass to reveal the answer. You’re more like a passenger to the story, rather than the driver. There’s no decision making, no way of dying and you’ll always get the same outcome, each time you play. The game’s split into two sections, “Transmitter”, which was written by Suda51, and “Placebo”.

The transmitter is the bulk of the game, focusing on the Police, whereas Placebo is all about a freelance reporter called Morishima Tokio. His adventures are much more text-based and serve as a way of providing more details to the main story. They see him investigating the same cases, to provide a different perspective on the same timeline. The gameplay here quickly falls into a routine of waking up; having a smoke, talking to your pet turtle, and then checking your emails. It lets you dive into his lifestyle, where a lot of the days, nothing interesting happens.

But then that one email you send can change everything and suddenly you find yourself caught up in a life or death situation.

The Silver Case PS4 Review 3

#3. Unique Style

Every case begins with an introduction that sets up;not only the crime that’s about to take place, but also the mood and the theme of the chapter ahead. And they all have a unique style and design to them. Some people may say that the sheer variety of styles, seems disjointed and as if they couldn’t decide what to settle on.

But I think it’s more a case of each different look, represents one of the many, many tones that the game is going for. As I said earlier, the game has happy, cartoonish moments. But more serious ones too, that may require something like a news report to convey them. The music is superb and incredibly catchy. Each area has its own theme, which is repeating so many times, in that very Japanese way, and yet, never gets old. Everything has some kind of creativity to it, from the backgrounds to the way that a chapter ends. Even things like Morishima writing an email, only to delete it before sending it, let’s us know what he’s thinking in an interesting way.

The Silver Case is a game that makes more sense on its second play through. Suddenly you have a better grasp of the world and so enjoy yourself more and have less head scratching. Plus things, fall more into place, once you know where things are going. But this is only half the story, because The Silver Case, has a sequel. So until then, thanks for reading.

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Android Games Reviews

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Android Game

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Grand Theft Auto San Andreas Android

Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas has been a hit game on many different gaming platforms. It has now found its way to the Android system with developments and improvements in its gameplay and features. We allow our viewers to have free access to the APK file of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. They can download and set up the game on their Android devices and have a unique gaming experience like never before.


Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is based on the storyline of a character known as Carl Johnson. Five years prior to the start of the story in the game, Carl moves out of Los Santos, San Andreas. He is trying to avoid the pressure present in his life and the city. He now has to return home as it is the early 90s and his mother has been killed.

Not only that, but he has also lost his family and has to watch his childhood friends go through terrible times and lifestyles. When he returns to his hometown, he has been blamed for the murder and has to clean his image through a series of missions, which take him across the state of San Andreas.


Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is part of a series of GTA games developed by Rockstar Games. While it used to be mostly based on dedicated gaming systems, Rockstar Games has now moved toward bringing one of its biggest projects to the Android platform. GTA San Andreas android contains over 70 hours of live gameplay covering three major cities, namely Los Santos, San Fierro, and Las Venturas. The Android version brings up a storyline that is highly developed with the addition of diverse missions, weaponry, and much more.

The game is home to high-definition video graphics and sound quality. With the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas graphics designed specifically for mobile platforms, the lighting and colors allow for a unique and exciting Android gameplay experience.

Moreover, the game puts the user through a series of missions for which they may be required to save their progress. The Android-based GTA game comes with a massive cloud support network which allows users to save their progress. In addition to that, users can also access their saved progress through different mobile platforms.

The user interface puts forward a dual analog stick for controls as well as a three-dimensional 360-degree camera. Both these features allow the user full control of their character. It makes movement and visuals much easier and convenient, resulting in much more fun while playing the game on an Android device.

Moreover, the Gta San Andreas Android version is compatible with different wireless controllers which can interface with the Android device through Bluetooth.

Furthermore, the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas game is available for users to download in different languages. One can select their language after the installation process has been completed. The available options are English, German, Spanish, Russian, Japanese, Italian, and French.

The game has also been integrated with tactile effects. It provides the users the option to adjust the graphics as per their needs. ItT allows each individual an experience tailored to their device and requirements.

How to Install the Game

The Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas game is compatible with the latest Android versions and can be downloaded for free on our website. If you have the Honeycomb, Ice Cream Sandwich, Jelly Bean, KitKat, Lollipop, or Marshmallow Android platform, you are eligible to download and install Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas on your device.

The APK mod file can be downloaded from our website for free. Once it is on your mobile device, you simply need to execute the instructions below in order to enjoy the GTA San Andreas game.

Prior to installing the game on your device, make sure your mobile data and Wi-Fi have been turned off. You need to have these features switched off during the entire process. They can only be turned on when the game is up and running.

Now, head over to the downloaded file and located the “obb” ZIP file. Extract this downloaded file into the “sdcard/Android/obb/” location. If the “obb” folder is non-existent, simply create a new folder with the name required. It is necessary that you get the file locations right for the installation.

Locate the game in the directory and launch it. This should result in the application being created on your phone which you can now open just like any other app. Run the game to check if the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas game works smoothly. If it does, you can now turn both Wi-Fi and mobile data on and start playing.

Given that the storyline and features of the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas game are extremely appealing, it has found its way to being one of the most popular games on the Rockstar list. It is high in demand on different platforms, and Android has definitely made the list. One can now enjoy the GTA San Andreas game for free on their Android device. There is no change in the level of graphics and gameplay experience. The game comes with various features and allows the users to have an experience that they might not have before with Android gaming.

The San Andreas game can be downloaded for free on our website. It is available for any Android user to install and enjoy as long as your phone meets the requirements of the game. All one needs are a few simple steps to follow and they will be able to play the popular game in no time!

PS4 Games Reviews

The Fall Part 2: Unbound Review (PS4)

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;In a sci-fi world with advanced technology, The Fall Part 2: Unbound is a point and click, action, adventure game. Things follow straight on from the events of the first game, with our hero, called A.R.I.D. an artificial intelligence, left to be decommissioned. And I’d say that even though there is a handy recap at the start, to remind you of the story up til now, it is probably best to play through part one first. Partly because it helps you to understand this world better and partly because it is a great game. So yeah check out part one first. So with her body left in ruins, A.R.I.D.

Only exists in this kind of digital universe. And this setting isn’t quite as fun to explore as the first game was, and almost all of the horror element’s gone now. Really, the only purpose of this world is to access nodes. And nodes let you enter the bodies of these three robots. There’s The Butler, The One and The Companion, who is basically a sex robot.


Now all three of these machines come with their own sets of logic. They have their own perspectives of the world and their own rules of how to behave. So a lot of the game is about manipulating these A.I’s logic to get you to do what you want them to do. For example, The Butler is on a loop of doing household chores over and over again, doing the same routine every day. To make him go where you want, you need to figure out a way to disrupt his routine in some way. To do this, you need to interact with your environment- talk to people, pick up items, click on things.

This all takes place in locations that are quite small, but they do compact a lot into them. You’re constantly going to be going back and forth between rooms, piecing together what you think needs to be done. The puzzles build up in difficulty pretty nicely and some of them do actually take a bit of time to work out. They had me scratching my head a few times and because it’s fairly linear, with most of the problems needed to be solved in a strict order. If you get stuck there’s not a lot of options other than to figure things out.


Eventually, A.R.I.D. starts to learn new ways of thinking, getting lessons from all three of these different machines. She then can use what she learns in the world of one of them, in the world of another. And here’s where things get the most interesting because for example say the solution to a puzzle in The Butler’s world, may not be clear until first, you progress further in The Companion’s. These three machines sort of become a… unlikely group of heroes, like the Tinman, the Scarecrow and the Lion from the Wizard of Oz. Separately, they have flaws, but together, they can… do anything. Once again there are some light combat elements. In the digital universe, A.R.I.D. will have to fight off against viruses; which requires good timing as you have to wait to dodge an attack before the virus leaves itself vulnerable for you to blast away at.

And there’s some hand to hand combat, mainly in The One’s world. It’s a pretty simple two-button control system. But it does a surprisingly good job of making you feel like this martial arts bad ass. And then it builds up in difficulty, with different types of enemy thrown at you, like red ones, which block for example. It reminded me of almost like a rhythm game, having to hit the correct buttons as they come onto the screen at just the right time. The game isn’t the best looking in the world, but I guess it does have a sort of, unique, creepy charm to it. And the voice acting is pretty good. Although, I guess playing an emotionless robot isn’t the hardest of roles.


But they do have some fun with it. As with a lot of adventure games, eventually, I did get stuck, which lead to me doing the classic thing of trying every item on every location and hoping to get lucky. If done flawlessly, the game isn’t going to take too long to complete, but if you do get stuck, it can take around 6 hours.

But The Fall’s biggest strength has got to be its dark sense of humor, and it’s intelligent storytelling. It once again manages to have its fair share of surprises and it builds up nicely for its conclusion in part 3. What will the machines have in store next? Who knows, but I look forward to finding out.