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Multiplatform Game Review:- Legend of the Skyfish from Mgaia Studio and Crescent Moon Games

Legend of the Skyfish is a beautiful level-based adventure puzzler with a unique weapon and tool – a fishing pole!

 

 

Friends, Romans, countrymen, I mean inmates and true believers! LEND me your ears! This is Darsch Pugs today with a review of Legend of the Skyfish developed by Mgaia studio and published by Crescent Moon Games. This is an interesting one folks! Legend of the Skyfish labels itself as a level based adventure puzzler,  but I prefer calling it a Zelda like lite if you would.

 

 

The game shares many similarities with some Zelda games, most notably the fishing pole that functions as a weapon and grappling hook ala the hook shot and master sword in the Zelda franchise and switch puzzles to open gates and doors. The grappling hook function can be used to solve puzzles, jump over gaps, and pull and stun enemies so you can then whack them with your fishing pole. there are various fishing polls, hooks, and hoods to get throughout the game hidden in chests. the chest themselves are hidden but when you get close to one your bee friend starts making noise and flashing a treasure chest in a chat bubble on the screen so you know to look around for them, they are not too well hidden as they tend to be along the path you have to take since the game is linear.

 

 

Speaking of linear, it’s a pretty clean cut single path you follow, with plenty of backtracking in some levels to hit all the switches to solve the puzzles, more on them later. The game really lacks in the exploration department and that is something I feel it needed. The levels are beautifully hand crafted and hand painted but short and too linear to the point the game can become boring.

 

 

The game claims to be a puzzler, but the only puzzles is hitting switches to open gates, require very little thought and are more like running an obstacle course to get to said switches to press them or push a giant statue on them. This was a pretty big let down as I had expected a bit more in the puzzle department considering the game has 45 levels and touts having various puzzles to solve, but they are not really puzzles. The difficulty though is perfect for very young fledgling gamers trying out their first adventure game.

 

 

The game’s mechanics are spot on and pretty self explanatory, it’s fun zipping across gaps and smashing enemies with your fishing pole, they are simple, sweet, and intuitive, perfectly balanced as all things should be. Thanos joke aside I had a blast playing the game the first few levels before it turned into tedium for me. The mechanics are great, the game play loop is spot on, but it quickly gets boring as you follow a single path doing the same thing over ad nauseam with no reward except the thrill of victory that feels hollow as you really did not accomplish anything as there was no challenge whatsoever.

 

 

The games art is all hand painted and reminds me of watercolor and oil paint paintings with a touch of Picasso influences in the way the curves of certain details and the faces are painted. The Animation is fluid, and at times I was reminded of classic Disney animated features.

 

 

Legend of the Skyfish is a great game for beginner gamers, but lacks any oomph to keep the more experienced satisfied. I feel it is worth the small $7 USD price tag it currently has on STEAM. It’s not a bad game, but it’s not a great either and is best for younger audiences until the grow into their big gamer controllers.

 

 

Legend of the Skyfish is available now on PC (STEAM), XBox One, Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch and mobile, for more info, head over to the games website for more info.

 

I rate it a 4 out of 10
~Darsch


November 14th, 2019 by Darsch
Posted in Game Review, Gaming, General, Multiplatform, Nintendo, PC, Playstation, Xbox | No Comments »

PC Game Review:- Spaceland by Tortuga Team

Incredibly dynamic turn-based strategy, reviving the traditions of the old school tactics. Lead a team of the most desperate fighters, destroy alien monsters and uncover the secrets of the lost planet.

 

 

Greetings inmates and true believers, this is Darsch again, and this time I bring you Spaceland. Spaceland is a turn-based tactical strategy game developed and published by Tortuga Team. The game is best described as baby’s first XCOM for it is a simpler version of classic titles like XCOM and Incubation. This does not make the game bad, it just lacks the depth of micromanagement other titles have.

 

 

The art in Spaceland is a delightful cartoony almost claymation style of art that is pleasing to the eye and fun to watch with amazing cartoony explosions and special visual effects, it at times is reminiscent of children’s cartoons with sound effects and music to match. I would love to see more games use this art style in the future as it’s just plain fun to interact with.

 

 

The writing on the other hand is some of the worst piss poor storytelling I have had the displeasure of reading. I felt like I was reading a terribly written toddler story book. Character interactions were forced and clunky, story elements were bland and the writing so simple it bordered on the side of insulting. I don’t expect Michael Crichton and R.A. Salvatore levels of writing in my games but I certainly don’t want it to be “Good Night Moon” levels of garbage either.

 

 

The gameplay is a simple balance of click where to move , click the enemy you want to shoot, manage your ammo and action points  which are used to move and shoot and use the limited special abilities like grenades to kill enemies in simple maps that take roughly ten minutes to beat. the gameplay loop is simple, solid, and entertaining. It is great for when you want to play something like xcom but with out all the hardcore in depth mechanics and micromanagement or story. The game has seven rangers to choose from to make your squad, each with their own unique play style and abilities, weapon upgrades and upgrade-able skills, and 20 different types of enemies to encounter and destroy.

 

 

Overall Spaceland is not bad, but its not great either, it suffers from a terribly written story that really holds back the game thus earning it a 3 out of 10 rating instead of a 5, the story and writing is just that terrible.

 

Spaceland is available on STEAM now, for more info, head over to https://store.steampowered.com/app/1021070/Spaceland/

 

 

~Darsch


November 7th, 2019 by Darsch
Posted in Gaming, General, PC, Real Time Strategy | No Comments »

Movie Review:- Joker

In Gotham City, mentally-troubled comedian Arthur Fleck is disregarded and mistreated by society. He then embarks on a downward spiral of revolution and bloody crime. This path brings him face-to-face with his alter-ego: “The Joker”.

 

 

Our last encounter with the Joker in a major release was back in 2016 with Jared Leto’s contemporary interpretation in Suicide Squad, dividing opinion during its release. I appreciate we’ve had Lego Batman (2017) since, but it doesn’t feel right to compare the latest performance in Joker (2019) with that of a plastic figurine (still an awesome Joker, though).

 

 

Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) is a victim of Gotham’s corrupt game, struggling to find purpose beyond caring for his sick mother. His dream of being a comedian drives him to seek a better life for them both. Crippling depression numbs him from the torment of strangers as he works during the day as a clown. His reality and imagination are blurred for a lot of the film as he pursues his dream life, soon realising that no one is laughing with him. His breaking point comes when yet another altercation goes too far. His brutal actions result in the birth of Joker and the beginning of a revolution in Gotham.

 

 

The vast majority of the film is focused on the gritty yet captivating Arthur/Joker with infrequent involvement with the rest of the stellar cast. His mother, played by Frances Conroy, is a defenceless woman with a troubled past and the only person Arthur truly loves. Robert de Niro plays late-night talk show host Murray Franklin, a beacon of hope for Arthur in his search for fame.

 

 

We’ve seen various interpretations of Joker in the past and one thing they all have in common is the total commitment to the character. Phoenix is no exception, particularly with his physical transformation; His thin, bruised body shows a vulnerable side to Joker that has never been experienced before. This isn’t necessarily shocking but definitely thought-provoking.

 

 

There’s no doubt that Joker has been a highly anticipated film, not only for the origin story of one of DC’s most popular villains but to see Joaquin Phoenix’s vision of such an iconic character. For me though, Heath Ledger‘s interpretation is the one to beat and I don’t think he’s been defeated yet.

 

 

The biggest win for Phoenix, however, is that he created a person with so much vulnerability mixed with volatility that left me feeling a bit unnerved throughout; he appears to be more human than ever before. The film as a whole reflects a lot of global issues: corrupt governments, public riots, domestic abuse and mental health to name a few. This is not a film to watch if you’re easily distressed by these topics, but a worthwhile watch to see Joker in a whole new light that I’m sure a lot of people had never considered. I rooted for him far more than I should have.

 

 

Is this a ground-breaking film? No. But it’s a decent film with a great cast and an excellent performance by Phoenix.

 

 

It’s 8/10 for me.


October 25th, 2019 by Gemma
Posted in General, Movie Review | No Comments »

Movie Review:- IT Chapter Two

Twenty-seven years after their first encounter with the terrifying Pennywise, the Losers Club have grown up and moved away, until a devastating phone call brings them back.

 

 

The last decade of cinema has been saturated with sequels; many have proven to be a waste of time, while a small minority have shone through and wowed audiences. IT Chapter Two is certainly one of those welcomed sequels that certainly doesn’t disappoint.

 

We left the first film with the Losers’ Club making a pact to return to their home town of Derry if Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård) ever returns. 27 years later and Mike (Isaiah Mustafa) is the only member of the Losers’ Club still in Derry. After hearing about a brutal murder in the town, Mike’s suspicions are triggered, so calls on the rest of the club to come back to help him follow his plan to bring down Pennywise for good.

 

 

The club return to Derry and after a drink-fuelled reunion, they soon witness the reality of Pennywise’s return as children are no longer his only target. While trying to unite their strengths, they all experience their own fears and demons both in life and in Pennywise’s mission to defeat them all.

 

At nearly 3 hours long, it’s a lot to take in, but it’s worth every minute. If you’ve read the Stephen King novel (or actually seen a physical copy of the 1,138-page monster), you’ll understand why both films are so long. You could argue that one or two sub-stories could have been cut such as the aftermath of Henry Bowers, who killed his father in the first chapter. Having said that, this story along with everything else still add to the suspense just as much as any other scene.

 

 

The biggest praise I have for Chapter 2 goes to the casting. I can’t recall a film that cast adult and child counterparts as successfully as this film does. James Ransone as adult Eddie is a particular highlight as he continues on from Jack Dylan Grazer’s younger portrayal as if they really were the same person. The similarity both in appearance and mannerisms is scarily accurate. In addition, casting Molly Atkinson as his wife was a genius choice as she also plays his overbearing mother in both films. It’s a Freudian slip that worked beautifully and is just one of many examples of the comedic quality the film demonstrates. This doesn’t take away from the rest of the adult cast who were excellent choices and gave fantastic performances (James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Bill Hader, Jay Ryan, Andy Bean and Ransone). Their own backstories of growing up and moving on tackled various real-life issues, from domestic violence to lost love.

 

 

Bill Skarsgard’s Pennywise was even more disturbing than the first. I’m not normally scared by horror films, but Chapter 2 completely unnerved me through most of the film thanks to his incredible performance and, frankly, Stephen King’s imagination. King’s appearance as the grouchy shopkeeper was a nice touch that held him with the same regard as the late Stan Lee’s iconic cameos.

 

 

My only complaint is that there were some poorly explained parts to the story, one being the origin of Pennywise as told by Mike. He has spent many years in Derry researching the source and purpose of the clown in their home town and how to defeat him. When the Losers’ Club become divided on whether to stick to their promise, Mike explains separately to Bill (McAvoy) what his research revealed. I may find rewatching the scene would clarify everything, but the deep explanation from Mike with flashbacks, intense CGI and Bill tripping balls on a spiked drink just left me feeling very distracted.

 

 

Despite the slight storyline issues, this was a fantastic sequel and finale with the perfect cast, a psychotic mix of terror and comedy, and the cinematic quality that horrors rarely get any more. I believe both films are the most iconic horrors we’ve had in a very, very long time, so go and see it!

 

 

A scary 9/10 from me.
~Gemma


October 24th, 2019 by Gemma
Posted in General, Movie Review | No Comments »

PC Early Access Preview:- Encased

Encased is a tribute to “Roadside Picnic” and the original Fallout games. Fight enemies, explore anomalous wasteland, level up your character, join one of the forces in the ruined world in this new apocalyptic turn-based RPG.

 

 

Greetings inmates and true believers, this is Darsch again, and this time I bring you Encased: A Sci-Fi Post-Apocalyptic RPG developed by Dark Crystal Games and published by Black Tower Entertainment and currently in early access on steam. Encased is a tribute to “Roadside Picnic” and the original Fallout games and it shows from the turn based combat system similar to  the original fallout to the abundant dialogue options with npcs and event dialogue choices, some of which can kill you.

 

 

The very first thing you will notice in Encased is the deep character creation from choosing your color coded faction, tag skills, attributes all the way to your appearance. It’s deep, robust, and a real treat if you liked the character creation and level up systems of Baldur’s Gate, Neverwinter Nights, Fallouts 1 through 3 and New Vegas. Make no mistake, this is a very customizable build heavy rpg and that is always a good thing. For my first play through I decided to join the white, a scientific faction and focus on high tech weapons like lasers, the tutorial if you go white gives you a laser pistol for your troubles that does decent damage.

 

 

I dumped my muscle to 3, which is physical strength which affects carry weight and melee damage, guts to a 2, which is your health, brains is a 9, which is, as you might guess intelligence, luck is a 6 and works like you would expect with a small effect on everything in the game, Perception is 9 which is your character’s awareness of their surroundings, charisma is a 2 and is pretty self explanatory, it’s how well people like you, deftness is 9, which is a measure of your dexterity and reaction time, and psyche is a 1 which is your ability with psionics and resistance to psionics which currently are not implemented in game. There are too many skills for me to list off the rest of the build but I focused on all the science and tech gun savvy stuff with The idea being a big brainy laser gun hero. What I got was that but he dies in one hit,  so my next build won’t skimp on the guts or the muscle to be sure.

 

 

The art lends itself well to a late 70’s era futuristic post apocalyptic setting, similar to how Fallout’s art was inspired by the 50’s and 60’s. The story is pretty interesting, it’s the late 70’s and a mysterious dome has showed up, and you are a member of cronus the group investigating the dome for scientific gain. your choice of white, black, silver, orange, or blue determines just where in the hierarchical ladder you sit within cronus. There are plenty of social interactions with npcs and events like an elevator breaking down for you to explore through well written dialogue choices.

 

 

Actual combat is a nice fun turn-based affair with you spending action points to move or attack or take cover, or you can bank them to save some for the next turn, its is satisfying and there are special abilities you can unlock through attribute point allocation, skillpoint allocation, and ability points based on your chosen weapon or play style.

 

 

Encased is going to be a title to watch, so far every second of it has been a blast, just the rpg i been hoping to get for sometime now and the game is still a good ways off from being finished, about half the abilities are not implemented yet but I expect great things, If I had to rate this I would give it an 8 out of 10.

 

Encased is available now on STEAM Early Access, available here


October 11th, 2019 by Darsch
Posted in Game Review, Gaming, General, Multiplatform, PC, Playstation, Real Time Strategy, Xbox | No Comments »

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