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Some House of the Dead Overkill while waiting for baby

As we near the arrival date of our son (still in utero) we find that we are in kind of a holding pattern… since we've got all the baby stuff and reorganized the house several times over, there's not really a lot to do but wait. Helping us pass the time today was House of the Dead: Overkill on the Wii.

Although the game felt a little bit shallow (and took us about three hours to complete) I've got to say that I absolutely fell in love with the presentation—Headstrong Games pulled a really genius move in positioning the entire thing as a 70's exploitation film.

House of the Dead Overkill Screenshot

Some more Valkyria praise

Spent most of the weekend with Valkyria Chronicles.

Despite having a few misgivings at first, the gameplay quickly won me over and I'm now a complete convert. I've got to say, it's certainly one of the best reasons to own a PlayStation 3, and after having made it through a little less than half of the main campaign, I'm shocked that Sony didn't give it more of a push. It's far better than the majority of what's available for the PS3, it's a system exclusive, and it's got loads of both both style and substance.

Done with Drake, onto Valkyria

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune Screenshot

I finished Uncharted: Drake's Fortune last night, and although I took copious notes and intended to dress it down in a formal review, after a good night's sleep, I realized I just don't care enough to make the effort.

Overall, it was a shallow, trite game that brings absolutely nothing new to the table. Even worse, it swipes wholesale from other sources. The thin exploration and puzzle elements are reminiscent of Tomb Raider, although nowhere near the same level of intricacy or design. The gunplay feels a bit like a Gears of War lite, and there's far, far, far too much of it. The story and setting crib from Indiana Jones (or perhaps The Librarian instead), yet the generic white-guy main character doesn't have a tenth of Indy's charisma, not to mention the half-baked plot never comes together.

Still don't like Uncharted: Drake's Fortune

Playing Naughty Dog's Uncharted: Drake's Fortune on PlayStation 3 right now.

I played it for a bit when it first came out, but it rubbed me the wrong way and I tossed it aside. I was quite surprised to have that reaction, really. I was a big Crash Bandicoot fan when ND was still producing it, and had a very good time with the Jak & Daxter series. I expected great things from Uncharted, and at the time I felt like it really didn't deliver. Didn't even bother finishing it.

While skimming through Metacritic the other day I came across the Uncharted breakdown and was a bit surprised to see it that rocked an 88. Now, although I will be the first to admit that my taste doesn't always run parallel to the majority, that number seemed a little high to me, and being the Naughty Dog fan that I am, I felt like I should give it another shot. Maybe I just wasn't in the right frame of mind, or perhaps Saturn was out of alignment, or something. Who knows?

Quick looks at Astro Tripper and Crimson Sea 2

Astro Tripper Screenshot Spent a fun couple of hours playing PomPom's Astro Tripper on the PlayStation 3. A download available for $5, it's a colorful, slightly abstract shooter similar to one of my favorites on 360 Arcade, Mutant Storm Reloaded.

Interview with Terry Cavanagh, creator of Don't Look Back

Interview with Terry Cavanagh, creator of Don't Look Back

A few weeks ago, a Twitter acquaintance hipped me to a small indie game called Don't Look Back. Although I am a big fan of small titles, I’m also console to the core… this has historically been a bit of conflict, although less so now that we've got so many download services available. However, Don't Look Back came highly recommended, so I put up with using the arrow keys and space bar for a little while, and walked away quite impressed. Thankfully, the game's creator was willing to speak with me for a bit about himself and his work.

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Preview

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Preview Screenshot Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Preview Screenshot

I try not to whore myself out too much, but I'm a sucker for a good Atlus game in general, and doubly so for Shin Megami Tensei games in particular. In lieu of my regularly-scheduled blog content, instead nibble on this preview for the upcoming Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor coming to the Nintendo DS.

A batch of game talk...

Resident Evil 5 ScreenshotThe wife and I polished off Resident Evil 5 today. I've got to say that having co-op in more games these days is a fantastic option, and doubly so since players aren't required to go the splitscreen route if they've got the correct hardware.

Each player having their own screen in a game as visually rich as this one is a real treat. That's not to say the game itself is flawless, but I will leave further comment to the review. Turned it in this afternoon, so look for it soon.

Interview with Jay Watts, developer of Solar

If you've been reading this blog or following me on Twitter, you've probably picked up on the fact that Solar has been my latest Xbox Live Community addiction. An original, refreshing title that shows a great deal of creativity and craftsmanship, I wanted to know more. After doing a little clicking, I was able to convince Solar’s developer, Australian Jay Watts, to take a few minutes and speak with me.

Resident Evil 5, 'Splosion Man, Saints Row 2 DLC and Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor

Resident Evil 5 Art

The wife and I are doing co-op in Resident Evil 5 right now. Haven't finished it yet, but I'd say that we are at least halfway through, if not a little further.

Gotta say, it's fun enough and a good rental, but I think anyone who complains about the control system is justified and there are a number of other issues that just don't make any sense. For example, you can buy all sorts of guns and life-up items between missions, but not ammo? Instead, it's somehow better to have players breaking barrels (a truly fresh idea, indeed) to find boxes of ammunition scattered throughout tribal huts and swampland?

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