Ten Questions With… John Pickett (MangaGamer)

Ten Questions With… John Pickett (MangaGamer)

With titles such as eden*, Princess Evangile, Higurashi When They Cry and A Kiss For The Petals released on Steam along with many others on their own website, 2015 has been a bumper year for MangaGamer. They are showing no signs of slowing down either, so to get some more information about their upcoming releases as well as the visual novel market we had a chat with John Pickett

Ridge Racer DS

Ridge Racer DS

The Gameboy Advance had its fair share of lazy ports that dragged it down and now it would appear that the DS may be heading to a similar fate. The touch screen controls in this game is completely unnecessary and doesn’t add anything to the experience and while porting a N64 game to the DS might sound impressive but the gameplay and graphics definitely suffered.

Gameplay: It’s still Ridge Racer but the fun is spoiled by the shoddy controls.

Graphics: This is barely better than what a mobile phone can offer.

Sound: Not great but not terrible either

Guilty Gear X

Guilty Gear X

It is a pleasant surprise to see the Guilty Gear series appear on PC and with the right setup this game is a blast to play. Gameplay is solid although the last boss is one of the cheapest I’ve seen in a while. The lack of a story mode is also a downside but if you like your fighting games deep and don’t mind getting your ass kicked then this is the game for you. 2D fighting games doesn’t get much better than this on PC.

Gameplay: More accessible than the last game but also has a lot of depth if you stick with it.

Graphics: It would have been nice if the resolution could be increased but the game still looks good.

Sound: Good music but muddy sound effects

Eledees

Eledees

The storyline is rather childish but the gameplay is quite addictive in this non-violent shooter. Raising havoc is a lot of fun and chasing down all the little critters can be tricky but overall this game shouldn’t pose too much of a challenge. The controls work rather well bar a few instances and it is a good showcase for the Wii hardware.

Gameplay: Perfectly suited to the Wii controls.

Graphics: Not exactly cutting edge but does the job.

Sound: Good but not great

Final Fantasy

Final Fantasy

The fact that you have to buy both games separately is a bit of a kick in the teeth but playing Final Fantasy on PSP is as fun as it has always been. The game looks good on handheld wide screen and the simple gameplay makes it a fun title for long trips. Chances are if you are a fan you will already own a copy of this game in which case you might not want to shell out for this version.

Gameplay: Pure and simple fun.

Graphics: Nicely redrawn graphics.

Sound: Classic Final Fantasy fare

Depths of Fear :: Knossos

Depths of Fear :: Knossos

There are plenty of things that I can fault about Depths of Fear, but at the end of the day and I had a lot of fun playing the game and it kept me hooked right to the end which is all that matters. It is an impressive piece of work considering that it was made by only one person and definitely provides a unique and memorable challenge. The excellent atmosphere and addictive gameplay makes it worth the effort.

Gameplay: A nice atmospheric blend of stealth and action.

Graphics: A little rough, especially the animations, but this doesn’t detract too much from the experience.

Sound: Great creature sounds and a very nice synthesizer based soundtrack

Concursion

Concursion

Concursion is definitely a game that will defy expectations. It is not as straightforward as it first appears and the way that five different genres have been combined seamlessly is impressive to say the least. Individually none of the genres would really have stood out, but mixed together they offer gameplay experiences that are just not possible elsewhere. While the visuals are not that great the audio is superb and Concursion offers plenty of challenging content. This is not a game that you will be completing in a hurry.

Gameplay: A challenging, but addictive blend of five different genres and styles.

Graphics: Plenty of variety, but I’m not a big fan of the visual style.

Sound: The soundtrack is great and seamlessly changes along with the playing styles

Burnout Revenge

Burnout Revenge

There are some interesting new additions to the Burnout formula here and taking out rival cars is every bit as fun as it was in the last game. The traffic checking feature might upset some fans as it removes a bit of the tension from the races but its a lot of fun and overall Burnout Revenge is a worthy successor to Takedown.

Gameplay: Adds some new elements to the Burnout formula, some better than others.

Graphics: Gritty and destructive.

Sound: Solid sound effects and some nice music

Sound of Drop – fall into poison –

Sound of Drop – fall into poison –

Sound of Drop offers a captivating, horror-themed experience that is worlds away from the typical romance visual novels found on Steam. Although it contains some blood and gore most of the really gruesome scenes are left to the imagination instead of depicted visually. The multitude of endings adds to the replay value and there are even some great new additions compared to the original Japanese version of the game.

Gamplay: The story is absorbing and features plenty of choices.

Graphics: Nice character designs and beautiful backgrounds.

Sound: No speech, but the music and sound effects are great

Asphalt Urban GT

Asphalt Urban GT

I really wanted to like this game and be convinced that the DS is capable of an awesome 3D racing game but Asphalt Urban GT is a severe letdown. The graphics look downright low budget on certain levels and the bizarre collision detection makes the races more frustrating than fun. The audio is also a bit of a lost cause. Unless you can get it for very cheap and have nothing better I can’t recommend this.

Gameplay: Had potential but lots of technical glitches.

Graphics: A decent effort but suffers from being a N-Gage port.

Sound: Repetitive car sounds and lackluster music