My Revelation about Resident Evil

ChrisJill

While actually getting a lot of things right, Resident Evil: Revelations stands as a testament to a lot of what’s become wrong with the series. I recently completed the Nintendo 3DS version of the game, and mechanically it is quite well made. It follows the gameplay model of Resident Evil 4 and on the New Nintendo 3DS it feels even better thanks to the addition of the C-Stick. The game also does a decent job of injecting some survival horror back into the series, with interesting new creature designs, claustrophobic environments, and fairly limited resources.Read More »

A Mature Zelda Game Needs Balance

DeadHand

Dead Hand by Harangon

With E3 just around the corner and Nintendo dedicating its presence to the next Legend of Zelda game, I thought I’d talk about some thoughts I’ve been having on the series lately.

I’ve started playing The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword for the first time, a game that I’m late getting to, but remember a lot of the buzz around its release. It’s had me thinking about the various visual/tonal styles the Zelda series has had over the last several console iterations. Since the departure from the more realistic style in Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask to the cell-shaded cartoony visuals of Wind Waker, people have been clamouring for a “serious” or “mature” looking Zelda game. For some reason or another Twilight Princess came up a little short for people — some even feeling the game was underrated in its time — and the marriage of the cartoony style and this “mature” style in Skyward Sword did not seem beloved either.Read More »

Star Wars & Meaningful Side-Stories

At this point, there’s no denying how much we seem to love side-stories and prequels to series and franchises we know and love. Whether it is Better Call Saul spinning off from Breaking Bad, The Wind Through the Keyhole filling a gap between books in the Dark Tower series, or Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them giving us background on the world of Harry Potter, it would seem we can’t get enough.

I’m personally fine with them, for the same reasons as many others: we get to spend more time in these worlds with these characters. What does sometimes bother me though is a side-story that seems to exist for its own sake. The importance of a prequel or side-story to me is that it adds something. Most the time the main series works as a cohesive story all on its own, so a side-story had best add something that expands my understanding of what was going on and who these characters were, or explore a detail in the world that was a smaller piece of the big picture.Read More »

Artful Video Game Storytelling

I don’t get too specific, but this post has Spoilers for 999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors

999Zero

Anyone who plays enough video games knows how important storytelling has become for the medium. Though obviously not essential, as many great games have little to no story at all, both the big budget and independent scenes have a plethora of compelling, story-driven games. Video games are unique when it comes to storytelling because they require the direct action, and often skill, of the player to progress. This is unlike other mediums, where you’re never punished for doing a poor job of watching a movie or reading a book. How much you can understand may vary, but you progress regardless.

Over the past few years I’ve become increasingly aware of and fascinated with games that have core story elements that only work in the video game medium. Adaptation would be possible, but something crucial would be lost along the way.Read More »

The Overpowered Problem

Contains Minor Spoilers For One-Punch Man

Saitama

Growing up, I never had a strong affinity for Superman. I hadn’t read any of the comic books, and only had a passing experience with the cartoon, but my father’s dismissal of the character for being “too powerful” and therefore “boring” turned my interest away from him for a long time. Having become much better versed in Superman stories, however, I have turned this around.Read More »

What I want from Star Wars Episode VIII

SPOILER WARNING

Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens finally came out a couple weeks ago, and I’ve seen it twice since then. The honeymoon phase is over, I’ve heard a lot of praise and a fair share of criticism, and with that I’d like to run down some things I’d like to see from the next installment in this new trilogy. Some of these things I’m eagerly anticipating, while others are more in response to criticisms I have after digesting the content more thoroughly.Read More »

Destiny & The Importance of World-Building

DestinyCover

While I’m about a year late to the party I have recently started playing Destiny, an action role-playing first person shooter for last and current generation Microsoft and Sony consoles. The game is set in the far future after a “Golden Age” of colonization in the solar system by humanity, thanks to the technology granted to us by The Traveler, a gigantic sphere of extraterrestrial origin.

While there is a lot more explained about the circumstances of the world the game inhabits that I enjoy, and I am enjoying Destiny mechanically as well, I am continually dumbfounded by the lack of tangible world-building that was put into the game’s storyline and world. This was a criticism I’d heard before from friends and family as well as people in gaming media, but it’s been a whole other matter to experience it firsthand. The reason for this is the apparent fact that lore does actually exist, but you have to go out of your way to learn about it.Read More »

Which is Scarier?

While there are numerous ways to present the horror genre, I’ve found myself considering two distinct types of horror stories: those where the threat is paranormal, and those where the threat is mundane. When I say mundane, I mean something that we all acknowledge is within the realm of possibility. Stories that tell of gruesome killers and levels of cruelty only a twisted human imagination could conjure up and for all intents and purposes could actually happen.Read More »

Horror Movies & The Unexplained

Doot

The Halloween season is upon us once again, and for me that means I’m watching a lot more horror movies than I normally would. Over the last few days I watched Oculus and Sinister, in that order, both of which are rather recent releases. I enjoyed them both — especially the former — but watching them has got me particularly thinking a lot about explanations and the unknown in the horror genre.Read More »

Nostalgia, Remakes, and the Female Ghostbusters

NewGhostbusters

While by this time it is rather old news, a little while ago the all-female cast of the new Ghostbusters remake was announced. In the places I frequent online I noticed a very common response — a lot of people seem to absolutely hate it. Many called it pandering, doomed it to fail, or otherwise complained about the “damage” they were doing to a beloved nostalgic film. While the kind of hate it has drawn has a range of implications, I think a lot of it boils down to the simple fact that most people hate change.Read More »