ZombiU: A Rare Victory for the Wii U GamePad and Survival Horror

Zombi U

The Wii U GamePad’s intended purpose, as a second screen experience for console gaming, is a failure. Aside from a few examples, Nintendo has largely floundered to find much of a reason to use the device. Because of this, I was drawn to ZombiU, a third party Wii U release that makes full use of the controller. However, I was cautiously optimistic.

Initially, I expected a more modern survival horror experience that empowers the player with a large arsenal of weapons. The genre’s evolution in this direction is something I’ve always disliked, although it did produce many enjoyable third person shooters. Surprisingly, I found ZombiU hearkens back to more traditional entries in the survival horror genre.

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Windy X Windam: Wasted Sprites

WXW_ds_esrb IGN

(Image Source: IGN)

The Wii and DS have huge libraries. With over 100 million hardware units sold for each, plenty of publishers and developers were pumping out titles in an attempt to grab even a fraction of the market. I was almost solely focused on these platforms during their life spans, but still some games slipped through my cracks.

I never even knew Windy X Windam existed until I found it in a bargain bin the other day.

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Aconcagua — Can You Survive the Language Barrier?

Aconcagua Box Art

(Image Source: ::: Morsh Borsh ::: )

Aconcagua, a PlayStation release from 2000 that’s often misreported as a survival horror game. It’s is a point-and-click adventure that pits five survivors against both environmental and military hazards.

This video is about the Argentinean market, Sony’s involvement in the region and Aconcagua itself.

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Bloodstained: Weighed Down by the Baggage of Castlevania

Bloodstained Title

Kickstarter has been great for developers launching spiritual successors to their dead franchises. While they may not be able to continue the beloved worlds and characters these series offered, they can at least keep working with the core design and bring the fans with them. It also acts a fresh start – letting developers experiment and create new elements without being tied down by franchise expectations.

In the case of Koji Igarashi’s Bloodstained, it’s unabashedly Castlevania to an extreme.

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Taking 70 Hours to Find the Fun in Xenoblade Chronicles X

Xenoblade Chronicles X title screen

I’ve had a rough experience with Xenoblade Chronicles X and, after clocking in 100 hours, my time with it ended prematurely. I overwrote my save with a new file. Whoops. Even before my stupidity ruined my playthrough, I had a lot of trouble coming to terms with my feelings about the game. It wasn’t until the last 30 hours that I really started to enjoy what the title had to offer.

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ESWAT: City Under Siege — Duke Oda Powered Up

E-SWAT - City Under Siege Box

(Image Source: The Old Computer)

I have a soft spot for everyday characters who play roles in extraordinary stories. Despite not being a super powered hero, chosen one or whatever excuse there is to overcome excruciating odds, they still contribute. Yet, not every person off the street who happens to do something important fills this role. To appreciate a character’s place, a broad enough perspective of the game’s world is required. There also needs to be a level of modesty in their actions and the influence they have.

ESWAT: City Under Siege for the Sega Genesis is quickly disqualified by featuring a character with a super-powered suit, but the game does give the player taste of his life before he gears up as an American Mega Man box art model.

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Finding Value in Rodea the Sky Soldier on Wii U

Rodea the Sky Soldier BOx Art Cut

I’m in the odd position of preferring Rodea the Sky Soldier on Wii U versus the generally agreed upon better release on Wii.

This video includes a quick look at developer Yuji Naka’s recent ventures, comparing the biggest changes between the two versions and how the Wii U version overcomes some of the challenges faced by the original.

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