Pac-Pix

Pac-Pix

This game started out life as a tech-demo and while it has been fleshed out a bit it still loses its shine too soon. The gameplay is novel enough, but after a few hours of just drawing Pac-Men you might find yourself yearning for something with a bit more depth.

Gameplay: The novelty factor is high, but the concept soon becomes tiresome.

Graphics: About as good as you can draw Pac-Man.

Sound: The tunes trigger some nostalgia

Defender

Defender

Defender is a pretty basic castle defense game, but it is fun to play. With the same playing field and a rather limited selection of monsters it can become a bit boring the more you play. While the game is free there is also a cash shop where crystals and cash can be bought unless you prefer to grind for these valuable resources. A nice game to play every once in a while, but it soon grows tiring.

Gameplay: Addictive at first, but the lack of variety can make it a bit boring later on.

Graphics: Very polished, but could have used some more variety.

Sound: The sound effects are good

Mr. Driller Drill Spirits

Mr. Driller Drill Spirits

Mr. Driller is not a bad game and it certainly has some addictive qualities, but there’s just nothing here to justify buying it on the DS. Better puzzle games that make full use of the DS capabilities will soon come along so only get this if you are really a fan of the character and genre.

Gameplay: Arcade gaming with a puzzle twist.

Graphics: Bright and colorful but that’s about it.

Sound: Bad voice acting and annoying sound effects

Cubixx HD

Cubixx HD

Cubixx HD takes the addictive formula of the old arcade hit, Qix, and drags it into the modern era. The 3D playing field increases the challenge, but the basics can be mastered in no time. Putting up a decent highscore and completing the Challenge levels takes a bit more practice though, not to mention taking on the online leaderboards. Even when failing repeatedly, the addictive gameplay, stylish visuals and thumping soundtrack will keep you coming back for more.

Gameplay: Easy to learn, but tough to master just like a good arcade/puzzle game should be.

Graphics: Nothing too flashy, but very nice overall.

Sound: Definitely a game where you will want to crank the volume up loud

Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved

Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved

Geometry Wars is a throwback to the days of arcade games that gobbled up your coins as you desperately tried to beat the high-scores. It can be very frustrating and might feel like you have wasted your money initially, but the more you play it the more addictive it becomes.

Gameplay: Initially frustrating, but always addictive.

Graphics: Has a certain retro charm.

Sound: Could have done with some more variety

Facebreaker

Facebreaker

This game is really not worth it if you plan on playing the single player mode. Fights boil down to luck and button mashing more often than not. Multi-player is its sole redeeming feature, but even then it becomes boring quite fast. Definitely one to avoid.

Gameplay: Fast paced, but unfortunately not a lot of fun.

Graphics: The best part of the game.

Sound: Typical EA Trax

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™: Out of the Shadows

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™: Out of the Shadows

As a big fan of the ninja turtles it pains me to see how much unrealized potential this game has. With a bit more spit and polish it could have been great but as it is the game feels rushed and unfinished. The combat is enjoyable once you get the hang of it but can feel imprecise and sluggish initially. Wait for a sale and hopefully a few patches before diving in.

Gameplay: With a bit more polish it could have been great.

Graphics: Some nice detail but overall a bit uneven.

Sound: The voice acting is great and the tunes fit the game nicely

Every Extend Extra

Every Extend Extra

Every Extend Extra is a unique title, but it is not going to appeal to everyone. Fortunately, there is a free version available for computer which will give you a good indication of what to expect. If you like arcade shooters with a bit of a puzzle element, then you will appreciate what this game has to offer.

Gameplay: Fast and frantic, but won’t appeal to everyone.

Graphics: Very psychedelic.

Sound: Integrated well with the gameplay

Pulstar

Pulstar

Pulstar is a very straightforward arcade shooter so depending on your taste you will either find it a refreshing blast from the past or become frustrated after only a few minutes. It definitely packs quite a challenge and the difficulty ramps up very quickly, so quick reflexes and a bit of luck is required to make the most of it. If you enjoyed games like Geometry Wars and Beat Hazard you will have fun with Pulstar.

Gameplay: Straightforward and challenging arcade shooter.

Graphics: Nice, but it can be hard to distinguish the enemies from the background at times.

Sound: The sound effects lack punch, but the music is very catchy

METAL SLUG 3

METAL SLUG 3

I have to confess that I am a huge fan of the Metal Slug series and number three is one of my all time favorites. It has been fourteen years since the game was originally released in arcades, but it has lost none of its charm or playability. It once again hooked me right from the start and prompted quite a few playthroughs even though I am very familiar with the levels. Veteran players are in for a nostalgic blast from the past while newcomers have a chance to see why this game is so highly regarded by fans of the genre.

Gameplay: An action packed run and gun title with awesome vehicle and huge bosses.

Graphics: The 2D visuals looked excellent way back in 2000 and still hold up great to this day.

Sound: As chaotic as you would expect from an arcade title