Day 6: Metroid: Other M

I consider myself to be a pretty big Metroid fan, I mean I named my cat Samus, and there was a time when I would get very excited whenever a new Metroid game was due to be released, but in 2010 when Other M came out I had totally lost interest in the Wii. This combined with some negative press the game got caused me to skip it entirely, although I did eventually pick it up on sale I never played it. Lately though my love of Nintendo games has been rekindled and I decided that this month long marathon was the perfect time to crack open the only Metroid game I've never played. I'm really glad I did because I really enjoyed my time with the game. It's a pretty big departure for other games in the series as there is a real focus on story, including Samus talking (this isn't the strong part of the game). I'll start with the good, the game is damn fun to play. I had a lot of questions about the single Wiimote control scheme but it totally works, and it feels really fresh. The game is in full 3D but they somehow make it really feel more like the classic 2D Metroid games than the Prime series. Also the game is pretty challenging, I ended up dying a few times on some tough fights. The second good thing is that it look pretty fantastic, I'd say it's the best looking Wii game I've played (not saying much but really it was pretty impressive). The bad part is the big focus on the story. I don't have a problem with them adding story to the game, and the story itself really isn't bad, but the dialogue is so cheesy. Like painfully cheesy. I've heard that it does have a pretty good payoff at the end, and it's certainly not bad enough that I didn't enjoy the game, but it is pretty annoying watching the long cut scenes. I think this has been the game I've enjoyed the most so far, with LA Noire being a close second (and basically for the opposite reasons) and I can't wait to get back to it next month.

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Day 5: Batman: Arkham City

I'm feeling lazy about writing this but I might come back and add more. Basically this was more of the same, which isn't bad because Arkham Asylum was good, but also not that exciting. Mark Hamill is awesome as Joker, to me he'll always be who I think of when I think about that character. Same goes for Kevin Conroy. The gameplay is the same Metroidvania style with great fluid combat, again good but more of the same. The story is a little nonsensical but it's a comic book character so I cant really say anything too bad about that. Enjoyed my time with it but I'm not sure I'll get back to this one.

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Day 4: Assassin's Creed 3

I decided to play Assassin's Creed 3 on Independence Day since it takes place during the American Revolution, but unknown to me it actually starts 20 years before it. I don't want to spoil too much but I'll say the first part of the game has you playing as a totally different character than seen in all the previews, and takes place in the 1750s. The game itself was pretty standard stuff for an AC game, the name may say AC3 but this is the fifth one I've played. This one did seem to be more tightly paced, at least the sections I played. Previous versions had you playing in an open world where you could take the missions as you wanted, as well as do all sorts of other activities. AC3 starts you out on a cramped boat ride to the new world investigating a possible crew mutiny, very different from previous games. Still, once you land in Boston the game opens up somewhat and you start taking missions, but the world doesn't seem as large as previous games. Still, what I played was entertaining in the way previous versions are, where you follow a narrative that's mostly accurate to actual history, but has the assassin's working in the shadows to cause everything. It was especially interesting because I know a lot more about this time and place than some of the previous versions. I think it's worth a play if you follow the series, but if you've never played any of them I still think AC2 is probably the peak of the series and worth a play by anyone. I played the first three sequences and they did manage to sneak in a pretty good twist that I didn't see coming (but probably should have).

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Day 3: Kirby games

I knew I wouldn't have a lot of time on Day 3 due to going to a baseball game, so decided to play a trio of Kirby games I had bought when they were on sale on the Wii U. I used to play the Kirby games on the Gameboy when I was a kid, but I'd never played these SNES Kirby games. I started with Kirby's Dream Course, a strange Kirby themed golf game. I have to say I wasn't grabbed by it right away. The game has you knocking Kirby around various courses, trying to defeat enemies and finally exit through a hole to the next course. The mechanics are pretty complex so maybe my brief time with the game wasn't enough to rally grasp them, but I didn't really enjoy the game. I played the first set of levels and decided to move on to the next game, Kirby Super Star. This is a collection of several Kirby mini games, and I went with the first one, Spring Breeze. It seemed to be a remake of the original Kirby's Dream Land, but with updated graphics and mechanics. It was pretty short but I did really enjoy it. I didn't have enough time to go to any of the other games but I think I'd like to go back and try them at some point. The final Kirby game was Kirby's Dream Land 3. I was immediately struck by the interesting art style of the game. It was the same characters as the other KDL games but it had a pastel look to it that I found very interesting. Unfortunately the gameplay felt slow and I wasn't really enjoying it. There were some interesting mechanics at work, each level has a specific goal to earn a heart at the end and you have to figure out the goal based on the character standing at the exit, but I didn't really feel compelled to keep playing. I didn't have enough time to really experience all these games correctly but that's going to happen when I try and play a new game every day.

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Day 2: L.A. Noire

For the second day of my July marathon I played L.A. Noire, another game I've had for a few years but never got around to playing. Much more than yesterday's game, this was one that I wish I had gotten to before. I didn't have a lot of time to play but what I did was very compelling. The voice acting is top notch, and combined with the amazing face technology I was really drawn into the game. I only got a couple missions in but this is one I plan to go back to after this month is over. Not everything was great, I thought the action scenes where you chase down suspects on foot were a little unnecessary, but not enough so that I didn't want to keep playing until the next interrogation. I think if they had gone all the way and just made it an adventure game where you look for clues and the crime scenes and interrogate the various witnesses and suspects it would have been fine, but they probably would have a tougher sell to most people. I might try and fit in some more of this game if I have extra time during the month as well.

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Day 1: 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand

I decided to kick off the month with a game I've been wanting to play for quite a while. After spending a few hours with it today I have to say it's a way better game than it has any right to be. It's a pretty blatant Gears of War clone, but because of that it has some pretty solid cover based shooting. Still, it wouldn't be enough to keep me interested except for the ridiculous 50 Cent flavor all over the game. The game has a designated swear button, a feature that I think all future game releases should include. I spent most of the time mashing that button, and the game even includes unlockable tiers of insults that are ranked on how explicit they are. There are also some really clunky looking melee kills which are unintentionally hilarious, my favorite one has 50 just repeatedly stabbing the dude in the gut as you mash the B button. I tried to finish the game in one day, but the shooting just got a little too tedious. I might go back after the month is over and finish the game as it doesn't seem to be too long and I just have to see if 50 and his crew get their diamond skull (really) back at the end. I think this was a pretty good start to the month, but I'm expecting tomorrow's game to be much better.

3 out of 5 Ninja stars...

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A Game a Day: July

Here's a list of all the games I own that I've never played. I'm going to try and play a different one of these each day of July.

50 Cent: Blood on the Sand

Alan Wake's American Nightmare

Alice: Madness Returns

Alpha Protocol

Anna

Assassin's Creed III

Assassin's Creed III: Liberation

Ballon Fight

Baroque

Batman: Arkham City

Bayonetta

Bejeweled Blitz

Beyond Good & Evil

Binary Domain

Bionic Commando Rearmed

Brütal Legend

Bulletstorm

Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2

Catherine

Child of Eden

Civilization Revolution

Closure

Comic Jumper

Commander Keen

Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements

Darksiders II

Dead Island

Dead Space 3

Devil May Cry 4

DiRT 2

DJ Hero 2

Double Dragon Neon

Dungeons & Dragons Daggerdale

Dust: An Elysian Tail

El Shaddai ASCENSION OF THE METATRON

Enslaved: Oddessy to the West

F-Zero: Maximum Velocity

Fallout: New Vegas

Far Cry

Far Cry 2

Fate of the World

Gatling Gears

Greed Corp

GRID

GoldenEye 007

Halo 4

Halo Wars

Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary

Hellboy: The Science of Evil

Hunted: The Demon's Forge

Hydrophobia

Infamous

Infamous 2

Joe Danger

Joe Danger 2: The Movie

Just Cause 2

Kairo

Kinect Party

Kirby & The Amazing Mirror

Kirby Super Star

Kirby's Dream course

Kirby's Dream Land 3

L.A. Noire

Labyrinth Legends

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

Liberation Maiden

Lollipop Chainsaw

Lone Survivor

Machinarium

Magic: The Gathering — Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012

Mass Effect 2

Max Payne 3

Mega Man 10

Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty

Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater

Metroid: Other M

Minecraft

Mirror's Edge

Monkey Island 2

Need for Speed: Most Wanted

NES Open

Nintendoland

No More Heroes

Overlord II

Penumbra: Black Plague

Penumbra: Overture

Penumbra: Requiem

PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale

Proteus

Puzzle Agent

Puzzle Agent 2

Quake 4

RAGE

Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time

Rayman Origins

Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale

Resident Evil 6

Resident Evil: Operation Racoon City

Resident Evil: Revelations

Retro City Rampage

Return to Castle Wolfenstein

Rogue Warrior

SCOTT PILGRIM THE GAME

Sequence

Shadows of the Damned

Shoot Many Robots

Singularity

Skullgirls

Sleeping Dogs

Spec Ops: The Line

Splatterhouse

Stacking

StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm

Super Laser Racer

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP

Syndicate

The Cave

The Darkness

The Darkness II

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap

The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings

Toy Soldiers: Cold War

Trine 2

TRON Evolution

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune

Uncharted: Golden Abyss

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

Universe Sandbox

Vanquish

Wreckateer

Wrecking Crew

X-COM: Apocalypse

X-COM: Enforcer

X-COM: Interceptor

X-COM: Terror from the Deep

X-COM: UFO Defense

Xotic

You Don't Know Jack

Zuma

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