Retro Round-up for May 22


posted 5/22/2009 by Cyril Lachel
other articles by Cyril Lachel
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The Great DSiWare Haiku
Not content with the Virtual Console and WiiWare, Nintendo has decided to offer up a THIRD avenue for downloading games. That's right, it's the DSiWare, and it's the best (and only) way to download games to your brand new Nintendo DSi. Each week we take a look at Nintendo's uploads through the form of poetry. Haiku, to be exact. Will these reviews help your purchase of DSiWare games? Nah, but they're a lot of fun to read. See for yourself when you read my haiku for Art Style: PiCTOBiTS.

Art Style: PiCTOBiTS (Nintendo/$5)
Yes, that's the game's name.
Lowercase "I" can suck it.
Stop that trend RIGHT NOW!


The Argument Over Xbox Live Arcade
Now that you've had your fill of the Virtual Console, maybe it's time to check out This Week in Xbox Live Arcade. This is the part of our show where we take a look at the brand new Xbox Live Arcade titles, and then review them using our unique POINT/COUNTERPOINT style. In these reviews I will make a solid point about a game, and then I will argue the other side just to confuse everything. What do I really think about this week's Xbox Live Arcade game? I guess you'll never know. Instead you get what has to be the single least useful review ever posted on this website. Join us as we take an inconclusive look at Rare's Banjo Tooie and Sega's long-awaited Virtual On port (as reviewed by Defunct Games's own Lee Miller).

Blazing Birds (Microsoft/$5)
It's a simple (and addictive) take on badminton. Shown from a 2D perspective, Blazing Birds is a fast-paced sport starring a couple of robots and a shuttlecock. This is a surprisingly simple (yet fun) look at outdoor sports, and is perfect for one on one multiplayer action. It's a little difficult to figure out right at first, but once you get the hang of it you'll be coming back to this simple game over and over again. The XNA crew strikes again with another solid effort at an affordable price.

I like the price point ($5) and the robot take on badminton, but I got bored of the game after only a few rounds. In fact, I was tired of the game BEFORE even playing my first game. Just to get to the actual game I had to sift through what felt like a dozen menus, all of which could have been condenced in a more manageable way. I also found the game's simplicity actually worked against it, as I found the game to be both simple AND shallow. Fun with a friend, but don't try this by yourself.

blazing birds

Gel: Set & Match (Gastronaut/$10)
What an interesting concept. The game has a real unique spin on the Puyo Puyo style of puzzle games. Instead of colored blocks falling from the sky, you are tasked with moving these blocks horizontally. But this is not a 2D puzzle game, instead it takes place on a psuedo-3D plane where a large truck is trying to make its way down a dusty road and you have to clear all of the objects in its way. You pick up these blocks and then throw them at similar blocks, trying to match up like colors. However, if you fail to match the colors and the truck runs over too many blocks, it will break down and your game will be over. It's simple, yet a lot of fun.

This game tries too hard to be different, yet at the end of the day it's nothing more than a different way to play the same old puzzle games. Why run around and move blocks when you can cut out the middleman and just play a traditional puzzler. I also don't think the gimmick holds up real well, I found myself getting bored after only a few short rounds. This is another unique concept, but unique does not translate to being good.


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