2506 Reviews liked by Speedy

I somehow managed to beat this game on Normal difficulty, despite it being just as difficult as the original in that regard. The fact that there are difficulty options is a blessing, I love it when games have difficulty options. All in all, this is a fantastic remake of the original Mega Man, with a boatload of new content, a new coat of paint, voice acting, etc. Definitely give this one a go rather than playing the original, unless you wanna play the original simply for the novelty of it.

It's just Panel De Pon. Not really my preferred kind of puzzle game to be honest, but this definitely gets the job done if you need a Panel De Pon fix. There's lots of levels and lots of different modes to choose from, something I prioritize when it comes to puzzle games such as this one.

A fantastic remake of games that sorely needed some. While there's been another Kanto remake that has released since this one, this is the only Kanto game I find myself enjoying to this day. I highly recommend playing this version over the others if you want a great Kanto experience with a hefty amount of post game content to experience.

"Nothing is true, everything is permitted."
I've been meaning to replay the AC series for a good while, given that these games are some of the most influential pieces of media for me that I experienced during my youth.
Like many others I went through a pretty violent disconnect towards the franchise after Syndicate came out. Origins was announced and its sheer premise served as the final nail in the coffin when it comes to my interest on the series.
It's been almost 5 years now tho and I missed my good old flawed but introspective adventures with the hoodie boys. Now that we have Odyssey and Valhalla sinking the franchise's bar even lower I have warmed up to the idea of trying Origins now which will be interesting since I did not follow that game's development cycle, thus am completely unspoiled.
Before we get there tho we gotta start from the beginning, with the father of it all.
AC1 is an aged game. I don't think that's a shocking revelation. However it is considerably less aged than I remembered.
This game introduces the skeleton of the series but lacks the added meat that its sequels introduced gameplay wise. The combat is extremely simple and the social stealth mechanics are really shallow. The parkour is definitely the only area I'd say aged decently even if it's still somewhat clunky compared to the likes of Unity or even III.
Visually tho this game still looks quite good, the scenarios and the eerie ambience in particular hold up remarkably well.
The highlight and the heart of this game is definitely Altair. The story acts as a character study of the man and his journey towards redemption and philosophical enlightment, growing from a selfish cold asshole acting with no ideals behind his blade to a caring and perceptive leader, challenging the ideals he was taught and reaching their true meaning. I particularly really like how the gameplay cycle of this game reflects that narrative, making Altair go through an extremely repetitive hitlist with pretty much 0 emotional attachment to any of his victims. The way its final missions become more dynamic and less mechanical and cold serves as a pretty cool storytelling for Altair's development. It's quite a fascinating story and a great spin on the tale of the old man of the mountain. The main issue during the past storyline is a lack of interesting side characters since only Al Mualim and Malik get character work outside of Altair (it's pretty crazy Abbas shows up in this game for literally 10 seconds and has 0 bearing on the story considering his role in Revelations), leaving the templars especially quite one dimensional in this entry, even with most of them sporting really good confession scenes.
Meanwhile on present day we follow Mr. Desmond and tbh this is easily the worst part of the game. Desmond doesn't do anything in this one and we only get an extremely brief introduction to him before the game locks his importance to a cycle of worldbuilding exposition dumps with absolutely no payoff until the next game (this game's ending is quite awkward since it just kinda ends with no conclusion to either of the main characters, something that is thankfully fixed in the next games).
Basically this game is not quite up there as a favorite but it's still an extremely respectable and unique game even inside its own series, setting out to be its own beast and not giving a shit about anything else that was out in the industry at the time. Really can't appreciate it enough.

Not as bad as some people say…was my first AC game. Some of the controls are crap, but the story is good and gives you a lot to think about. No subtitles though?!

the erasure of an era. whereas the original title thrives off of the glory of its 2000s commercialized suburbia, here we get…. yakuza 0’s kamurocho copied and pasted. even the gameplay is unfortunately a victim to this flagrant plagiarism. to give credit where credit is due, it’s still fun to play with the additions to 0’s combat, but sadly i can’t praise kiwami any more than that. bosses that were once quick and somewhat painless are now quadruple-health-bared damage tanks, with annoying health regeneration to boot. i would be more lenient if the special heat actions you can perform on the bosses were unique to each one, but nope. it’s the same moves every time. even more 0 pandering forces its way in with majima everywhere and the soundtrack. majima everywhere is a huge tonal disconnect from majima’s character narratively, because apparently we needed to cater to… actually i’m not even sure who would claim majima’s only defining characteristic to be his silliness. who is majima everywhere for exactly? also quite honestly him showing up at random times frequently ruined my pace, and it doesn’t help that you fight the same majima styles over and over. to add insult to injury i was flabbergasted that they locked an entire style behind this randomized time waster. last but not least is the soundtrack, which decided to inherit the techno-dubstep overlays of 0. the remixed tracks aren’t bad per se but they lack any distinctive personality that the original tracks had so much of.
what a strange game. kiwami is stuck between the crossroads of whether it wants to be its own thing, a sequel to 0, or retain the integrity of the original game. i don’t think there’s any malicious intent here, but what makes it worse is that this suppression of the original title was essentially done by accident. the laziness is rampant in how much is stolen from 0. i wouldn’t call it a bad game, however i would most certainly define it as a poor remake.

There's something charming about the original Luigi's Mansion. It's gushing with character and personality, it's pretty much where everything we associate with Luigi originated. It really says a lot about what kinds of games Nintendo was willing to make in the GameCube era. Yes, the 3DS port had to make some compromises in terms of controls and visuals, but it's still a lot of fun. Exploring the mansion, especially in October, creates such a strong atmosphere.

So, Spongebob is back with a new game, and despite having not watched the show in a long while, I still kept some tabs on it here and there and even preordered it. I mean, it's THE Millennial and Gen Z icon after all, how could I not! But wait, something's off here. A strictly linear structure, forgoing the open-ended ethos? Prominent utilizations of gimmicks and minigame segments? A downscaled focus on optional knick-knacks, usually centering the maguffins on one item? Why, this isn't quite the (spiritual) successor to BfBB as I was led to believe, instead this is taking cues from the far, far inferior descendants Movie Game and Creature From The Krusty Krab! Oh, the hu-manatee! I kid, it's not that bad, but it could stand to be a little better.
Spongebob's doing a solo venture this time around, and he controls pretty adequately thankfully. Jumping and attacking is just as good as ever, turning's a little heavier than before but I got used to it, and ground pounding has never felt more satisfying and cartoony, and he has a new dodge ability that's quick to pull off and covers decent distance. That said, however, some of his returning and new moves are a little odd. The karate kick is pretty slick, having a nice flow and feel to it... when activated properly. When you press its button a little too early or a little too close to something, he sorta slowly glides across the way to it, which while not awful can be pretty annoying. The swing though, sucks shit, it's automated and super exaggerated about it, and turning is sluggish as hell. I've never come to regret seeing when a section uses it, but I sigh anyway since it could've been much better. You can use the Reef Blower to suck things up and fire it back at objects and enemies, and it's certainly a thing that exists considering you unlock it right at the final level. Tangentially, there's an unusual centering of combat here, with enemies having health bars capping out at about four, even the Duplicatotron/Spawner equivalent having them, and it's just as tedious as you'd expect with a limited attacking pool at your disposal even compared to BfBB and Movie Game due to only having the pounds, circling attack, a bubble move that'll trap enemies and can stun them once it pops, and a karate kick for the smaller foes. Even with ways to mitigate the waiting periods, I groaned each time I got placed onto a combat room spontaneously appearing with jolted pacing between it and the platforming. What helps to alleviate some of these woes is that the core of it is indeed surprisingly pretty well done. I dunno, while these levels have some spotty pacing and attributes attached from all I've said, I can't deny I had some fun just going through them when all the pieces clicked in, due to the feel again being adequate all around and how they're established just being fun to explore and complete. I mean, this game's Kelp Forest level is actually the best one unlike in BfBB, that's insane!
I mentioned the gimmicks and minigames, and speaking seriously here I gotta give props for how they wanted to implement them. How it works is that each world showcases them as its own little slice, that then gets transferred over onto the Bikini Bottom hub for one reason or another, and perhaps even for a quick segment in a later world. In Western Jellyfish Fields you can use a seahorse once obtaining the license to do so, in Prehistoric Kelp Forest you roll around on a rock to traverse past the lava below, Pirate-riddled Goo Lagoon has you hoisting up flags and utilizing the swings in order to go around and attain rep, etc. etc. I guess I'm a bit of a weirdo and don't entirely bemoan these sorts of things in 3D Platformers - you can blame Sonic and Sly Cooper for that - but I'll still call them out if they're not handled properly, which is unfortunately a bit of a case here. Controlling the seahorse doesn't have the best sense of weight and momentum, some of these minigames amount to simple button mashing like the flag hoists mentioned earlier, and listen, I know this is a kid-centric game and all, but when puzzles can have the solution written either scarcely tucked away (I destroyed the tikis in front of this for instance) or in plain sight, I gotta question the level of trust and forethought put on display. To its credit, I don't think these slumps are that frequent, and there were legit some shakeups I found pretty interesting and cool, like in Downtown Bikini Bottom playing around with movie stardom and filmmaking or the more whimsical approaches found in Medieval Sulfur Fields.
There's also criticisms I can't quite articulate well here, cause they can easily be lobbied onto BfBB and Movie Game. The abundant uses of voice lines? I mean, that's bad, but I also grew up with Spongebob exclaiming how sometimes pushing a simple button is the most satisfying (push, push, push push) in BfBB or Patrick talking about pain trains in Movie Game, so yea. References? I mean, this whole game is supposed to be a throwback, so it makes sense, plus it isn't the first Spongebob game to do such a thing. Lackluster boss fights? Yea, cause Robo-Sandy, Robo-Patrick, Dennis, and Flying Dutchman were such exhilarating foes. I suppose one frame I can pitch, excluding bosses, is that the frequency of them can be a bit much. Simply doing a glide has a high chance of Spongebob doing the Krusty Krab Pizza line, falling off a ledge has him talking about what a great friend Patrick is ad nauseum, I got sick of this and I'd like to think my patience for these things is pretty high. BfBB had just under three seasons worth of material to work off of when it released on Oct. 29th 2003, something its Rehydrated remake mostly stuck with outside a couple of meme stuff in illustrations and idle animations, and more specific instances had manually triggered Easter Eggs like the Rock Bottom bus, which CS also does. Alongside this, it has triple the amount to work under, yet not only does it pull from that same set, it outright showcases them more like with Fred "My Leg" Fish, Tom The CHOCOLATE Enthusiast, or even one minigame instance where the whole point is doing The Popular Meme Animations numerous times in a button mashing minigame, five separate times. It's jarring cause they can indeed do more lowkey inferences to the source or even put them under a new spin, like reusing Prawn as a boss Flying Dutchman has to face to get his groove back, or plastering the set of DBB with Handsome Squidward and Master Udon on the walls. A better balancing of this sort of thing was in order for sure, but hey, I got some laughs.
The biggest issue though, is the visual oddities and quirks. BfBB Rehydrated got some flack for this as well, and much like that game, I haven't gotten anything too nasty but I still faced hiccups regardless. Spongebob's body and wand disappearing, cutscenes jarringly stopping all of a sudden without my input, tikis sometimes floating when they should be falling down, weird boundary detection causing me to get hit, cutscenes not having any sort of sound or music cue making them feel weirdly empty, frankly rather befuddled over what's happening here considering they had nowhere near the same predicament as Rehydrated, a game that suffered from being shoved out the door despite its planned movie tie-in deal not coming through from Sponge On The Run's delayed premiere. It's understandable this is a budgeted release, which is why the standard cutscene animation reuse and more compact feel doesn't bother me so much, but that line of reasoning can only underline a game's woes for so long. The DLC practice is also a legitimate scam, from preordering or now paying 10 additional bucks, you get seven additional costumes to wear despite the fact they have no real difference in utility, the world-specific one takes up all the showcasing, and one of them is just outright the same thing as something already available. Considering how easy it is to stack up on jellies and doubloons, I sincerely have no real clue as to why these are separated from the pack, especially since if I recall, these were shown in trailers!
Honestly, the only reason I'm not too bitter is because at the end of the day, I'm way past the age demographic this is appealing to, even in their attempts to try and do so considering BfBB's popularity, but more importantly its a case that can rarely be replicated in the modern age. That game's quality and sheen was, if I may be so bold, a bit of a lightning in a bottle; it's not at all the first good licensed game, hell it could be argued it wasn't the first good one in the 6th Gen line, but it was one of the more faithful outings due to its usage of the source material concocting for a great experience fan or otherwise, as well as its shockingly intact polish and physicality, which landed itself as a mainstay for speedrunning enthusiasts. While you can expect that sort of thing for more high-maintenance studios such as Insomniac, that's not quite the case for AA-tier calibers like Purple Lamp. Don't get me wrong, I am not excusing these technical issues and my confusing state over them still remain, I'm just saying that I wasn't expecting the same level that came before irregardless of the fact. If kids are gonna grow up with this game, I'm genuinely thankful its at least a commendable effort, and not the shlock I had to face following up such as Movie Game and CfKK to reiterate, Truth Or Square, and especially Atlantis Squarepantis. Funny how people got mad over an IGN employee giving it a 5/10 though, like come on lol there's other type of people to get mad over if you wanna do so.

Not too bad, kinda weird controls on Wii but solid

I think this is the first game since Simpsons Hit & Run which encourages you to hit all the NPCs to hear unique dialogue. I'm probably wrong so don't embarrass me in the comments. Thanks.
Going to be honest, I didn't even look at what this game was when I bought it, I just saw it had Nine Inch Nails and Number Girl. Wtf kinda game has Number Girl. All the licensed music was used perfectly, and the combat was shaping up to be something really special if it didn't turn into pure LT RT LT RT chaos. But that's the fun of proudly showing your rough edges. And that particular mechanic getting stronger over the course of the game was something something themes of the game yadda yadda ludonarrative etc
Though the writing did irritate me for a good chunk of the game, but I came back round to it in the final stretch which is done really well. It revels in some very predictable humour but the odd line still got me and it just feels like so much creativity was squeezed into this regardless, that I'd have to be trying not to enjoy this. Especially loved it committing to its rhythm thing so hard that a lot of the cutscenes were satisfyingly choreographed and the levels themselves pulsated and everything. I got another Necrodancer sequel in the weirdest way possible
It's fun. It's just a fun fucking game. Now to go back into my cave and await whatever indie stuff is slated for 2023 because we sure aren't seeing shit like this from AAA again any time soon. Call me if some shit like this gets dropped out of nowhere again like a headfirst bumbling Chai