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Aug 26, 2013

Making a new entry into the fighting game genre must be a daunting task. Unless you’re DIvekick, which immediately won the hearts and minds of attendees when it debuted at PAX East 2013. Should you kick the door down and give Iron Galaxy your money, or dive out of the way?

Wreckateer Review

Jul 30, 2012

– Ed Acosta

Our Score: 4 / 5 – Awesome

Wreckateer is an excellent example of a game that is fun to play without a steep learning curve; the execution is simple creating something everyone can enjoy. You’ll hear it everywhere and I’ll mention it here, but this game is similar to Angry Birds. Unlike those birds, you’re looking through the point of view of the slingshot.  The game uses Kinect and the tracking works wonderfully, but watch yourself, Wreckateer is a great game but just drops off right before you get that itch to play again; that is if you overdo it.

There isn’t much of a story in Wreckateer, but you’re the new guy working under two veteran wreckateers. You’re learning their methods to the art of Wreckateering; aka ridding castles of goblin infestation by the most effective means, destruction. The end, that’s it; your back story into why you’re using this funny looking catapult. What I found the most enjoyable out of this game is the control over your shot. Even after you aim, you still get to nudge the shot into a better position.  Doing so gives you control right up until the last minute.  You’ll also be able to, detonate bombs, split a rock into four with  full control over them, and launch flying mechanical shots that you steer. Just imagine as if you were an airplane or like you were running around the yard as a wee lad pretending you were a fighter jet.   If you still don’t get what I mean, stand up and hold your arms out. Now make propeller sounds and run around your living room.  Don’t blame me if your family thinks your nuts after that, I gave you a pretty good description before hand.

Moving on; there’s a satisfaction to watching the castle you hit get demolished and seeing those points rack up. You’re thinking, will I or wont I be able to pass the bar onto gold? Will it be enough to beat my friend’s high score? Then BAM they hit you with that point multiplier. It was a feeling that made me want to play a stage again over and over if I didn’t pass a high score, like Scott’s high scores. Beware though, you can easily get burned out on a stage if you just can’t pass a score.  I suggest leaving the game before you get to that point and come back to it later. It’s too fun a game to just stop playing on that first day. By the way, I did end up smashing Scott’s scores and now I can dance circles around him teasing “nanny nanny boo boo”. I tell you, sometimes the power of leader boards does work and keep you coming back for more.

Like other launch and destroy style games you don’t get your choice of shots, they are predetermined for each stage.  This leads you to decide the best plan of attack and to use the shot in the best possible way.  Don’t get careless or you’ll end up with a sad looking score that your friends will laugh at.  Well maybe they won’t but you want to be able to gloat to them right? RIGHT? Don’t make me the only one here.

Also included is the new Avatar Famestar objectives that will eventually be rolled out into other games.  Basically it’s like a sub achievement system that adds points to your Avatar’s Fame score.  The score is universal and adds up game by game. By doing these goals though, you end up unlocking items for your avatars to wear or use, which to me sounds like a pretty swanky idea.  So now on top of getting achievement points, you have goals to accomplish to actually reward you with items.  I can’t wait to see how Avatar Famestar plays out in other games as well.

There are 60 levels in Wreckateer and you’ll want to play this game in short sessions to get through them.  Unless you’re a youngling, or my nephew, it’ll be easy to burn yourself out on this game, making you not want to come back.  I suggest a few stages in a level then put your left hand down to the side and return to the dashboard. Force yourself to quit and you’ll want to come back later.

Retails for: $10.00, recommended purchase price: $10.00

You Don’t Know Jack Review

Mar 24, 2011

– Scott Ellison

Our Score: 4 / 5 – Awesome

You don’t know jack, and neither do I – still, after all these years. That is of course, you’re the type who game the game until you remember all the answers to the questions. There is a hiccup with that idea though, there are 730 questions total in the game. Each episode has 10 questions and 73 episodes in total (excluding DLC that is now out). The humor-infused to the basic trivia game format is the bread and butter of this long-running, formerly PC-only series. The host this time is Cookie Masterson, asking you all the questions and getting himself side-tracked all along the way with anecdotes and cheesy jokes.

You start by giving yourself a name or letting the game come up with something for you. The latter’s results can be extremely amusing. Then you begin the game. Round 1 consists of 5 questions, then an intermission of Dis Or Dat, where you are in a lightning round to choose between two answers instead of the normal four. Then Round 2 starts with x2 multiplier bonus running for the final 5 questions. Then at the end is the Jack Attack, where you must match relating words for bonus money – either to catch up or fall further behind.

A new feature in the game, is the introduction of the “SCREW”. During a round if you’re confident you know an answer and a certain opponent does not. You can screw them and they have 5 seconds to answer the question, they get it wrong, and you get it right – you get bonus money. You misjudge and they get it right, you get screwed. It’s neat and beneficial to change the tides in your favor when the right question appears. There are bonus “Wrong Answer of the Game” where if you get a certain question in one game (episode) wrong, with the correct wrong answer – you unlock a commercial and bonus cash for finding it.

You Don’t Know Jack is a fantastic party game offline and on. Even in short, solo bursts. Answering all 730 questions and completing all 73 episodes will take time, there is great value there. However, the game’s shortcomings occur once you become familiar with the answers. It will either bore you or annoy you, especially if you’re on the receiving end of a know-it-all dominating the game. I send a mixed message here, but this is definitely something you shouldn’t pass up regardless of it’s replayability over time.

Retails for: $29.99, recommended purchase price: $17.99

*NOTE: The PC version of You Don’t Know Jack is $19.99 due to lack of online multiplayer.