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Recent reviews by Turbanator

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2 people found this review helpful
6.5 hrs on record
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tl;dr
Graphics/Art: 7
Sound/Voices: 8
Gameplay/Controls: 7
Story: 4
OVERALL: 7
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Total playtime is 3 hours, without card farming.

A relatively short puzzle game, which is pleasant enough to keep you entertained for the duration. You need to place pylons that transfer power (blue crystals) to homes, and oil to factories. This is easily shown with the power and liquid indicators above the buildings.

The pylons you place must be on one of these bits of land, you can’t place it on barren soil. The ‘board’ is a small 5x4 squares long, so you don’t have to worry about massive areas to think about.

As with all puzzles, they start off easily enough, by placing one pylon right next to a home, but soon grow to become more complicated, with pylons that only aim up, in 3 directions, or to distributors which power a whole row.

The game gets even more difficult when you can physically move an entire row left or right, or columns up or down, depending on the land you place it on. You even see the world ‘loop around’, so pylons can activate areas on the other side of the board. Thinking fourth-dimensionally is the key here.

Right clicking, or clicking the circular arrow will undo the last action, and you can do this as many times as you like.

There are 4 extra areas to play. Gathering enough strawberries will open up one, and then all of them will open up the latter. All you need to do is place a building on top of the berry and you ‘catch’ it. The ending after you collect all the strawberries appears at the end.

The monoliths can be activated when they are connected to two of any item, crystals or oil. Any building you place above it will activate the portal to another level. Undoing to get a building to place won’t cause an issue.

Getting all monoliths at the end of the game will get you to a secret area that requires you to activate Moai heads, which were scattered on earlier levels. You’ll know when they’re active when the eyes turn blue. Doing so will allow you to see a small scene.

There is a plotline of sorts, told via the game screen. The levels begin to corrupt in the late 30s, and then, the same infection returns later in the game. It’s kind of creepy to watch it overrun the world. The monolith levels have a different, eerie soundtrack, with enemies that eat crystals and oil, impeding your buildings.

The gameplay is simple; controls are just dragging and dropping with the mouse. The sounds are nice and appealing to the ears, though the monolith levels are filled with doom when you hear them. Graphics are just right for those who like pixelated worlds. The animations for the cutscenes and later levels (and monolith monsters) are rendered at a good framerate.

Once you complete the game, there isn’t any new game+, though you can erase your progress to start from scratch if you want.

A quick, simple game to pass the time, I enjoyed it personally, though it would have been nice to know more about the plotline begin what was happening in the world.
Posted November 22, 2020. Last edited November 22, 2020.
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56 people found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
37.3 hrs on record (34.9 hrs at review time)
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tl;dr
Graphics/Art: 10
Sound/Voices: 10
Gameplay/Controls: 5
Story: 9
OVERALL: 9
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FYI, this is the vanilla 'censored' version, essentially the standard game installed via Steam, no patches or any fan disks unlocked. I'll explain why later.

This is a visual novel whereby you, Aoi, an expert bike racer injures his knee and returns to his hometown to continue his schooling. There he learns about the Soaring Club and the glider, and wishes to go to the skies to visit a rare cloud formation known locally as the Morning Glory, which is a real phenomenon also (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morning_Glory_cloud).

Whilst getting involved with the Soaring club, he meets a wheelchair-bound Kotori, his childhood female friend Ageha, the eternally repeating (but brilliant) student running the Club Amane, and identical twins the childish Asa and genius Yoru. You'll also learn the history as to why the club fell on hard times due to an accident in its past.

Oh, and there's a pet duck wearing a top hat, and he's called Hat.

As with visual novels, if you are interested in a character, just follow the options, pick the right girl for you, and don't change. You'll end up on their route all the way to the end. The prologue is common to all routes, and the first route you need to do is Kotori, since it helps to unlock the Asa and Yoru routes. There are no full nudity scenes, nor sex, but you'll read about that later. Time to play is as follows:

Prologue (common route) – 7 hours
Kotori – 15 hours
Ageha – 5 hours
Amane – 3 hours
Asa – 3 hours
Yoru – 3 hours
Bad end – 1 hour (just trying to find it!)

I played the game to 100% completion and got all achievements, so the figure above is the approximate time needed to get them.

Not sure why Kotori took so long, I may have left the game running by accident for a while. You can cheat a little by saving the game at the main choices (of which there are about five) in separate slots, and select a different character, and follow on from there, which is why subsequent playthroughs are quicker, since you can choose to skip all read text to get to the next choice, and then eventually see the new scenes. Controls are basic; hence the low score, but visual novels don't exactly require dexterous fingers and 6000 DPI mice.

Voice acting is there for all characters and most secondary characters too, aside from the protagonist, who is silent, only having text for him. The voices are great, though it can get tiring to listen to them, you can easily continue clicking the text and the next voice will play for the next paragraph. Music (if you buy it in the DLC) is also peaceful, comical and exciting when the mood calls for it, pleasant listening for a 29 track soundtrack. There are two songs which are sung in Japanese, with instrumental versions included too.

Art is beautiful all throughout, from the sprites which are high quality even on my 1920x1080 screen to the backgrounds, with many desktop wallpaper-worthy images to see. There are even some movies showing the flight of the glider, windmills, and characters in the intro. You won't be disappointed.

The story is the catch though; you're intrigued by the characters and the concept of flying in a glider. Technical specs and terminology are mentioned on occasion, and it even helped alleviate me when it comes to flying, since any aircraft can glide provided there's enough lift and the wings are level. The routes are quite satisfying to play through.

Without spoilers, Kotori's route delves into her disability and getting to help her fly in the glider. Ageha route is the childhood friend learning to love him instead of seeing him as just that. Amane's route talks about the main mystery in the story, what happened to the previous Soaring Club members, and also her lack of common sense in most social situations. Asa focuses on her childishness and how she sees herself in the world. Yoru's is similar, her route detailing how her intelligence can be used to help others.

Spoilers follow in a moment. The only thing I really disliked with regards to the story was Yoru's route, the problem for me was that there was no 'Yoru route', instead going down the trap of a double-date where both twins are the girlfriends of the protagonist at the same time. This really put a dampener on the entire story for me, especially since you have to make a distinct choice to properly reject Yoru instead of getting to know her early on like the main three girls, or to choose both of them.

Other issues now; sadly, there are a large number of grammar and spelling errors. I expected at least one, but not this many. At points even character names are mixed up so you don't know who they are talking about, 'Quack' is sometimes translated as 'Kuaa', you get the picture. Quality varies from route to route, so it is possible that translators split the jobs up, leaving the less experienced ones to do a route, resulting in these errors. It is quite unfortunate, since it is very jarring to see this during a visual novel.

Censorship was another problem, for some people at least.

I chose not to apply the patch to restore the missing CGs (and yes, nude sex scenes too) with the text corrections as well for two reasons. First is that I wanted to read a story, not read a story and then skip the sex stuff for no reason. I feel it doesn't improve the story whatsoever, and from what I have read, there are a lot of scenes especially in Ageha's route. The writing in those scenes (based off other VNs) is cringe worthy, and I personally do not enjoy seeing images like that. Second reason is when you apply the patch, you lose chance to gain achievements since it messes with the games coding in Steam's eyes.

Some text was changed too to comply with censorship, though it doesn't make much sense, since it is only words! Things like 'she has great big eyes', when the Japanese voice mentions the word for breasts (something you sadly learn after watching lots of anime). One scene (no great spoiler here), where Amane is watching Titanic is actually about her watching porn, though I still found the censored text funny.

For me, the overall routes in terms of personal quality are ranked as follows: Amane > Kotori > Asa > Yoru > Ageha. The first two have a lot of drama in them, and the ladies really seem to change by the end for the better, and you get quite attached to them. The twins are fairly equal, against coming to terms with their own problems. Ageha to honest annoyed me, and never really seemed to be serious, though that will be up to you to read and decide. Even Yoru's route ranks higher than that for me. I have heard that the restoration patch helps improve Ageha's route since a lot was cut, but I'm not going to review that version.

Despite the text error and censorship problems, this is well worth a purchase. The art is gorgeous, music great, voices funny, story intriguing and leaves you wanting to read the next scene, and before you know it, the sun's gone down.

I could apply the patch now and see all the missed content, but seeing I'll need to play the game over again, it makes me a little sick, so I've had my fill of gliders for a long while to come…

(edit: grammar)
Posted September 15, 2015. Last edited October 7, 2015.
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2 people found this review helpful
28.2 hrs on record (27.8 hrs at review time)
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tl;dr
Graphics/Art: 7
Sound/Voices: 3
Gameplay/Controls: 8
Story: 0
OVERALL: 7
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Now, recently I've been reviewing games which I love and have a beautiful story, art, music etc. However, there are times when games don't necessarily have all these things and yet still catch your attention.

Lexica is one of those games; a casual game you can open and play a puzzle or two before closing it again. According to Steam, thus far, I have played 17.5 hours, and have completed the easy and medium levels. Each level has 8 packs, and each pack has 12 puzzles. I've only started the hard level. So in total, there are 288 puzzles to keep you busy.

I love to write so it has been helping stir the brain for new words. Thankfully the longest word possible is only going to be size letters, the shortest would be three letters, so you don't need to be a dictionary to get every word. As the puzzles go on, you need to use creative techniques to find the missing words. The tutorial helps explain this perfectly, by eliminating where letters go and slowly constructing words, which results in less remaining letters, and so on until you complete a puzzle.

Graphics, it isn't offensive to the eye, though it can only be run in windowed mode, it doesn't really need much more than that. I do recommend running it at the largest size, which is done through the options, to prevent eye strain, and it's nice to have giant blocks of letters to click. The interface is basic and quick to learn. Sounds are functional and appealing to the ear when you complete a puzzle, giving you a sense of achievement. Thankfully, there is no annoying music in the background, so you can happily put on your own MP3 playlist and just play the game.

The only thing that can be difficult is the words that come up, rarely, the same word will appear again in another puzzle, which is fine, but you will get some words that you have never heard of. I'm pretty knowledgeable in English, but even I didn't know of 'Jus', 'Fug', 'Larch', Lardon' and 'Hawse'. You will probably get frustrated at these words when they eventually come up in Medium difficulty, but by then you should be an expert in narrowing down what letter goes where.

A pleasant puzzler to keep your brain entertained, and easy to just close it and reopen whenever you have a spare moment or two.

[edit] Completed all games at 28 hours total. Hard puzzles were maddening, some words were just impossible to know if you weren't an expert in chemistry or obscure Turkish tents (I'm not kidding either!) Great challenge however.
Posted June 27, 2015. Last edited July 11, 2015.
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75 people found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
24.0 hrs on record
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tl;dr
Graphics/Art: 9
Sound/Voices: 9
Gameplay/Controls: 7
Story: 10
OVERALL: 10
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[edit] All 5 episodes completed, with 100% achievements.

I bought this game given it was made by the developers of Remember Me, and liked their trailer. I had no idea of the vitriol about the game before playing it.

You are Max Caulfield, a student with a photography scholarship at a college, a little shy and insecure of her talent, you have to survive school (and a giant tornado, but I'll get onto that later). There's also the case of a missing student which remains unsolved.

Standard WSAD for movement, shift to jog, the only thing that you need to get used to is how to interact with the surroundings, holding the left mouse button down and then moving the mouse to choose the option (usually Look, Open, Photo, etc.). Objects you can interact with are pointed out with white text and arrow, and hovering your mouse over them results in the items being 'sketched' over. Occasionally you can't see the interaction since your character is in front of it (namely in closed quarters), so you have to guess where to aim, though these are few and far between.

Gameplay is not that of a standard game. Comparisons have been made with 'Gone Home', and it does feel like that, you can look at posters and they pop up on the screen showing everything on it. There is even an option click read so all the text is simply written out to read without all the images getting in the way. This is more of an exploration point and click.

Episode 1 review:

If you were to just rush through and get to the end of the first episode, I wager it would take no longer than an hour, if you knew what you had to do.

However, this isn't what the developers had in mind, in my opinion. The world was made to be looked at, and I think I pretty much interacted with everything I could. Overall it took me 5 hours to see everything and test the time reversal power.

This isn't exactly a spoiler, since you see this in the very first scene of the game, but I have blocked it just in case.

You awake to find yourself in an area near a lighthouse (sound familiar?), you follow the path up to the building and then to your left, you see a gigantic tornado (think the F5 from the movie Twister) over the ocean, moving towards a small town. A boat destroys the lighthouse and a part of it lands on Max, who then wakes up in a lesson at her college, confused of what happened. She thinks she had a weird dream, and then you take part in the lesson, giving wrong answers and being teased by a fellow classmate.

Later, you walk through the corridors and head to the bathroom to get over that tornado image. Wanting to then take a nice picture of a butterfly, she sees a boy go into the girl's room with her, and another girl joins him while Max hides. A minute later, after a small argument, the boy shoots and kills the girl. Max holds her hand out and then rewinds time completely to the beginning of the lesson again.


This is a great introduction to the time rewind, since we know this event was happening now. A new aspect appears too. When Max doesn't know the answer to a question, and the rival student gives the correct answer, you can choose to rewind time and give the exact same answer!

Note that time rewind can be done by yourself whenever you want; there is no need to even do it once if you don't want to. The first time you really need to use it for the story to progress is to save the girl's life in the bathroom.

Using time rewind to give different answers is a subtle way, but another way you learn to use it is to cause events to happen by changing future events, such as gaining entry to a building and so on. You can even peek into private belongings and learn what there was in there, and then rewind time so the other person doesn't even know you have done so. The only restriction of the time control is that once you leave an area (i.e., school, dormitory etc.) you cannot rewind time to go back into the previous area, so important choices from there remain the same.

Onto the story itself, so far, it is mainly to do with learning about the different characters you can interact with, and also about your own self. It is a typical sleepy town and school, are has a very nostalgic feel to everything, and reminded me about school and university. There are several places you can just sit down and wonder about your life and new powers, leaning against a tree thinking about your choice to come back to the town, playing your guitar with a mellow tune, all lead me to like the character more since she is struggling to find her way in life, and if her choices are right in the end.

The game includes social media, memes (3.14 backwards equals PIE) and other throwbacks in the writing and artwork, references to Lord of the Rings, Twin Peaks, X-Files and other series are easy to find. A Facebook clone is seen in some screens, selfies, even Instagram style filters on certain scenes appear. The music is nothing pretentious and gives this feeling of relaxation overall, good voice acting, though lip syncing seemed to be off in most scenes, nothing game breaking though. Overall, it is quite a post-modernist game which pokes fun at this social media connected world, and quotes and integrates them in daily life. Even one great line appears in the game, which made me chuckle:

"Okay. I see you're a geek now with a great imagination, but this isn't an anime or a video game."

Which it obviously is, thus making me love the game more, since it realises that such things cannot be in reality, yet in that reality, it is true.

Episode 2 review:
Good continuation, and brings more depth to the powers showing them off further, ending in a breath-taking finale.

Episode 3 review:
One plotline is resolved, and we get a brand new power, which is admittedly used only once. Then, there is a horrid scene where you are completely unable to rewind time, which helps you realise how blase you can be without the ability. After this ending, you get an important new power, which changes the whole timelines, leaving you with an evil cliffhanger.

Episode 4 review:
The huge change you made at the end of Episode 3 ends quickly, with a terrible decision to make. As you delve into the mystery of the missing student, you eventually get to find out exactly who was the perpetrator of it all ina nail-biting cliffhanger.

Episode 5 review:
The finale. Using the time rewind power you got at the end of Episode 3, several times, you manage to escape, and then you have to come to terms with what your meddling with time has done.

The ending is a simple decision, and none of your previous choices will affect either one. I know this will upset most people who play the game, but think just how hard it is to actually code in several endings depending on your choices.

Overall, the game starts off like a university social life simulator 2015, later becoming more detective-like and uncovering the mystery. Max comments on big decisions, wondering if the other choice was better, and some choices which may seem obvious will have repercussions in future. Regardless, sometimes even she isn't sure which the better choice is.

The story is amazing, and grips you from beginning to end. Well worth playing!
Posted February 4, 2015. Last edited November 24, 2018.
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2 people found this review helpful
6.6 hrs on record
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tl;dr
Graphics/Art: 6
Sound/Voices: 4
Gameplay/Controls: 4
Story: 3
OVERALL: 4
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Shame really, the title Redshirts is playing on the Star Trek trope, that the security officers in the eponymous coloured top die on almost every mission.

Instead, we are treated to a very clinical view of the future, where your only real ability is to communicate exclusively via Spacebook (yes, Facebook, in space), and meeting up with people at your job. To speak with anybody, you literally have to message them on Spacebook (which doesn't get responses either), 'like' their statuses, or invite them to events. The interface is convoluted and hard to understand at first, but you get the hang of it. I do feel they made it overly complex though.

The story is non-existent, you are on a space station in a disputed region of space. Near the beginning of the game, there are rumours about something happening to the station in the future, and you then have a countdown to how many days are left. It is safe to assume that if you are still on the station, you're not going to live much longer.

Each interaction with people gets you either positive or negative friend points with them, the more positive you get, the more likely they'll accept your friend request. You can also request a relationship, and there are no boundaries here, male/male, female/female, gender neutral etc, though the characters there do have preferences.

Each action you do, from liking a post, going to eat, buying something from the shop, takes up 'action points', and you have so few per day it gets annoying very quickly. Generally you get one before work, then 3 after work. On weekends, you get 6 points to spend. Big events need more time as expected.

You can also level up your skills to get a better job, or change your primary interests, which will get you the friends you need. In order to progress up the career ladder, you need to have a certain level in specific skills, or you can be great friends with the boss. In the end, I managed to request relationships with the bosses, so they overlooked my missing skills, and even if you break it off with them, you don't lose your work!

You do go on away missions, and though I have yet to die (even when I had very poor health) almost certainly people you know will die, which makes you sadder.

You learn of the few ways to get off the station, and soon you strive towards that. I think I may have finished it a little early, since I was on the final career level and have already bought a shuttle ticket, though I wanted to buy a second for a friend, but there was over 90 days left.

The art is basic, and nothing worth mentioning. The sound effects and music are average, but dull, perhaps Steam Music may help to alleviate it? No voice acting as well.

Worst of all is the gameplay, there is none. Get friends, go to events, work, have a romance, all to get yourself away. It's all very cold and calculated, since you don't really feel closer to even your significant other in the end. Spacebook statuses are mostly duplicated dozens of times during the course of the game, ruining the immersion. While I understand having unique sentences for each of your friends to have through the numerous day is hard, it still annoys me reading the same thing.

Overall, not worth a buy, unless you're like me and bought it in the Bemine 11 bundle.
Posted February 10, 2014.
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7 people found this review helpful
14.0 hrs on record (12.5 hrs at review time)
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tl;dr
Graphics/Art: 10
Sound/Voices: 9
Gameplay/Controls: 8
Story: 10
OVERALL: 9
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This is going to be long, but I feel it really deserves it.

After playing the first chapter, which was a prologue, you immediately get hooked. The universe is hard to describe, but if I had to, then the closest I can put it is Assassin's Creed 2 for the ledges and scaling buildings with European construction, mixed in with Deus Ex: Human Revolution futuristic style and technology. The writers have created a beautiful and rich tapestry and history about the new world in the future.

Essentially, after the ice caps started to melt, the oceans rose, and the cities and countries that couldn't handle the changes began to collapse, governments etc. People started to move about on boats as climate migrants. Neo-Paris was one of the cities that did well.

At some point, a man created the Sensen, linking your memories to the cloud, allowing yourself to upload your memories, download others for a price (fancy a holiday? buy one! also sex movies as well with you as the star), and even delete memories that are too painful.

This and lots of little titbits can be seen in the numerous collectables which shed more light on the history of the world, the people, and the technology. These are all optional and aren't needed to further your abilities. There are two others which do help you though SAT patches, get five of them and your increase your maximum health by one, and the same with Focus boost, to increase a bar for your super powers.

The Sensen also acts as augmented reality, allowing you to see menus of nearby café's, bin collection time, and more usefully, ledges and pipes you can jump onto. The game subtly helps you with many of these prompts, like seeing a fire, and being helpfully told it's 972C, or the floor is electrocuted. This is why I love the universe, since it is nearly here, although it isn't built into our bodies yet.

And so, we start the game with Nilin, our female protagonist, currently undergoing a memory wipe. Why? We don't know, not yet. This is the same with most games where you don't know what you're doing at first, but in this case it is justified, and you need to help find your own memories as to what the hell is going on here.

The game handily walks you through the controls bit by bit. A third person game, you essentially fight using combos. Inside each combo, you put in a Pressen, basically, a normal attack with something else in it, each Pressen is either the X or Y button. Power, to give you that extra oomph to your punches and kicks; regeneration, restores a bit of your health each time it connects; cooldown, reduces the time it takes for your super powers to recharge; and finally chain, which increases the Pressen just before it greatly.

There are four combos in the game, which are unlocked normally during the game, the longer the combo the more powerful the effects of the Pressens towards the end. Just for your reference, I played with an Xbox 360 Windows gamepad, and it worked very well.

People have criticised the combat, yes, it is a little repetitive with little customisation to make your own combos, but it was fluid enough that the chaotic battles with eight enemies sometimes makes you think. Prompts show you when to dodge an attack and then continue the combo as if you never left it. The only annoyance is one flying enemy, which makes two sound when firing, and the second one is where you have to dodge, not the first, and I kept getting caught out by that.

Later you get the Spammer, a cannon on your arm which fires 'data' at people, then a more powerful version to break structures. Your five super moves are also handy and are unlocked at specific points in the game. I won't go into detail here, but they help in your ability to fight the enemy.

Now, the game itself, how does it play? As I said I used a gamepad, and it was fine for me. Camera issues were few and far between, like a column getting in the way of seeing who you're kicking or cramped locations. As you move through the game, the comparison to Assassin's Creed 2 vanishes, there is no freedom of movement throughout the city.

So what? With a city this large, it would take so long to visit everything, and the story doesn't need it anyway. You have set goals, and you go through the slums to the posh district, and then onwards to prison and so on. There are some nook and crannies that hide away those power-ups and the collectables. I thought I was good at finding them, but I missed a few in my first run. Linear as it is, it can get confusing, but the Sensen helpfully shows you the way to go with the ledges and jumps.

I played on hardest difficulty, and found myself dying, a lot. Boss fights are tough, and for good reason, and in some battles, the opponents can overwhelm you, but with good timing on the dodge button (which makes you invulnerable to any damage during the motion), you can beat them. It is highly satisfying when you beat back over a dozen foes with your combos.

Music is mostly techno, trance house, thumping beats and so on during combat, and the voice acting is well done, and not too hammy (except for one or two characters, who were in fact hammy themselves).

The story is, to be honest, gripping. You start off with no memories, then you find out you’re a memory hunter, who can even remix other people's memories. Yes, you do get to do this in the story, though only four times. These are like watching a video, then changing subtle things in them to get a different outcome. It's fun to play through them all to get the different endings and so on, and overall it is a lovely thing to watch.

However, to me, these were the major points when I felt very sad, because of the story. You are literally changing what they remembered, when in reality it was completely different. When you think about it more, that is horrifying. Each remix reveals more to the plot, and there are some great twists in the story, which overall I class as one of the top in any game I've played.

Overall, a great single player game, somewhat basic combat but still satisfying, platforming is great for its purposes, beautiful environments and a great world to visit.
Posted January 22, 2014.
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2 people found this review helpful
0.4 hrs on record
Think of all the times you eat alone in a fast food restaurant, moaning about your life and what it could have been if you or your circumstances were better.

This is just like that, except you can't stop the monologue, and you're waiting for a date to turn up.

On the plus side, you do have unlimited bread, dip and soup, so it's not all bad.
Posted January 8, 2014.
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No one has rated this review as helpful yet
5.7 hrs on record (1.1 hrs at review time)
Short story mode, meaning you can literally complete the game in 5 minutes if you're good. Endless mode I haven't tried yet but presumably it goes on for some time.

Despite the shortness, this is quite an action packed game. Purchased for 79p in the Steam Winter sale 2013, it's very addictive and meaty when you hit the enemies with your blasts. Similar to Bleed in regards to how powerful you are in comparison to the enemies, yet you really only have two weapons, a stadard energy blast, a huge blast which can take out harder foes. You collect pieces of CDs in order to upgrade your powers, which you can see in my gameplay video. Each CD gives you a new ability, and in story mode there are 4 of them, in Endless mode, you can get the last 2.

A very modern dubstep and some chiptunes in the soundtrack, of which the files are simply OGG files in the directory, meaning they can be copied away and played elsewhere.

Feel free to look at my video of my run through the game. Spoilers for the ending of course, but you'll catch the drift of it in no time.

http://youtu.be/rtyr63NZ2q0
Posted January 6, 2014.
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1 person found this review helpful
8.6 hrs on record (6.8 hrs at review time)
Government Admin Simulator 1982.

Or, that is how it would be if this game weren't addictive, engrossing and filled with misery everywhere you look.

You are a lowly citizen given the opportunity to admit people into the country. You need to be alert for any problems with their documents, a typo here, the height of the person, anything can be wrong, and you need a sharp eye.

Having worked in admin before make me realise it's easier when you've done this kind of focused examination of documents to ensure the people have everything they need.

Pre-scripted events like terrorism, bombs, a secret government organisation, bribes from applicants, favours from officials appear to make you question the orders you receive from above, along with potential opportunities to give your family a better home. And yes, you do have a family, though you don't see them, you need to inspect enough people each day to earn money for rent, food, heat, and medicine etc when needed.

Multiple endings, so plenty of chances to get it wrong or right. Overall, a very well made game which harkens back to the era of the fall of the Soviet union, East and West Germany and the breakup of Yugoslavia.
Posted November 25, 2013. Last edited November 25, 2013.
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3 people found this review helpful
14.8 hrs on record
Another great game from Rockstar. Max is back and miserable as ever. Graphics are lush, though you may get a bit of a headache with all the blurring in and out, and the dizzying CRT interlacing-style transitions (you'll know when you see them). Sometime we just want to stare at the visuals without all the fancy special effects!

The mechanics of the game are slightly better from Max Payne 2, namely in using cover. For people who like collectables, you can collect gun parts and make golden guns and act like a detective by finding hidden clues in the story.

However, one aspect of the game made me a little disappointed, though I imagine it was to keep it as realistic as possible when compared to the 'true game world' of Max Payne 2. Bullet time, not the dodge mode, is worse in this game, it runs out too fast and doesn't have the same bonus as 2 by killing people in Bullet time mode to slow time even further. Reloading here doesn't do a fancy twirl with instant replenishment either, a lost chance in my opinion.

Yet, the game makes up for it with last gasp shots to kill someone who felled you, gaining you a bit of life once more. The locations are varied and the story is long enough to get you involved, with plenty of twists and turns, as per the Payne series.

However I really didn't get as emotionally invested in the characters as with the first two games. In fact, I liked the few moments Max was in New Jersey more than other parts of the game. This was a shame, perhaps there were too many characters to like or hate, and not enough time given for them to develop further.

I haven't played the multiplayer yet but if you are interested in frantic gunplay, then this is for you.
Posted October 2, 2013. Last edited November 25, 2013.
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