Dead Island: Definitive Edition PS4 [REVIEW] #deadislandretrospective

I started playing this mid-summer for kicks, but what do you know, in early september Dead Island 2 actually resurfaced after 8 years of radio silence, multiple developers change, and it’s coming out… in February 2023. Odd date, but i guess Deep Silver isn’t keen on waiting for a timely summer release, after the game overlong stay in development hell, so much that Techland spun another zombie series after basically being denied work on any Dead Island game after Riptide.

Perfect time for a retrospective of the series as a whole, so let’s start from the original Dead Island, in its Definitive Edition form (which on PS4 and X-Box One came packaged as a collection with the direct sequel Riptide and the spin-off Dead Island: Retro Revenge included).

We’re reviewing this version also because i’ve played Dead Island on PS3 when it was new… and this was indeed one of those games that could have used some enhancing and overhauling, etc.

I guess some history won’t go amiss, but if you happened to… not exist in 2012, you missed one of the most perfect example of misleading, bullshit hype trailers ever made, as originally we were fed a non-gameplay trailer that went for shock value (depicting a dead zombie child, among other things), trying to make you believe the game would treat the topic with some seriousness… only to find out Deep Silver were just being the deceitful liars they are, as we had a game where you combine shit to make fire-laden blades and battery-powered electrical pikes, with a slow-mo effect for when you decapite the plentiful undeads, or crush their rotten brains under your foot.

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A quick ramble about the Klonoa Phantom Reverie Series collection

Klonoa has been one of my favourite series since a decade or plus ago i discovered it… as a teen by playing the second game, Klonoa 2: Lunatea’s Veil, on the old “fat” PS2 model. Yep, this isn’t a childhood fascination, i just loved the frigging series since i stumbled upon it, so thanks to some handy “gift money” i pre-ordered this new collection… one that Namco Bandai just kinda put out there without much marketing and fanfare, aside from revealing it in a Nintendo Direct.

I got the PS4 version for performance’s sake, and because i wanted something good to keep on the shelf – alphabetically -before Knack, so let’s just give a quick overview of this collection after spending a couple hours or so with it.

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Touken Ranbu Warriors NSWITCH [DEMO] [HANDS-ON] | Bishounen Sword Boys VS History Revisionists

Well, that was kinda unexpected, i genuinely though that editorial-ramble earlier this month would be the last time i talk about Touken Ranbu Warriors, but a week before release they also put out a demo on the European (and i guess other territories) eShop, so let’s give it a try.

And say some words. I do mean “some”; because there’s actually very little to say, and actually the bigger news is that the game is also coming to PC in the west, as a Steam release (since the DMM platform isn’t available outside of Japan), with a demo also available for that version. And that version will run in 60 fps, unlike the 30 fps locked Switch release.

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Fate EXTELLA: The Umbral Star PS4 [REVIEW] #musoumay

Ah yes, the Fate musous. Yes, Plural.

One that took surprisingly long, despite being one of the more requested crossovers with the formula, according to many japanese surveys results.

And oddly wasn’t snapped up by Tecmo Koei, but by Marvelous, which is both a good and a bad thing, for reasons we’re gonna get into later. But regardless, it’s nice to be reminded that these kind of games aren’t actually a patented formula…. at least i don’t think anymore, but still, this game is another proof that you can attempt a similar formula and Koei won’t sue off the back of their old, very vague patent.

I mean, they did make a “sequel” after this, so i’d think it’s safe to say that at least you can make “musou-likes”, if you so desire. And if the company that owns Senran Kagura can have more than a crack at it, you know the “low budget” excuse doesn’t quite hold as you’d expect and/or hope.

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Jump Force PS4 [REVIEW- FUNERAL] | To The Digital Graveyard With You!

One might wonder why review Jump Force now, as it got “internet spanked” quite enough when it came out in 2019. Aside the fact i don’t need a reason to do so… Namco Bandai gave me a big one, by announcing they would remove the game from digital storefronts, alongside the 2 season passes, the DLCs characters and content by february 8th 2022, with online functionalities and features shutting down entirely by August 24th 2022, this on all platforms.

Now, i know this would be reason for joy to many, but i’m an archivist at heart, and while i won’t miss the microtransaction laden bullshit, i find it silly that they didn’t even managed to make a complete edition of it with all the content on disc, only the Deluxe Edition on Switch with the Season Pass 1 content baked in the cart.

So years in the future you won’t be able to play the Season Pass 2 characters at all, which isn’t exactly a loss given the game wasn’t good to begin with, but it’s even more soon-to-be legally lost content. The loss of the online functionalities was inevitable, to a point, but the rest not so much.

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Extinction PS4 [REVIEW] | Mockbust On Titan

Remember this one? Most likely not, i don’t blame you if you didn’t even out this was out when it released in 2018, at least until it entered – deservedly so – that year’s “Top 10 Worst Games” list, only to immediatly fade into the miasma of obscurity, where it should really remain.

But since i like raising the dead for a laugh and try to make people remember the lessons of old, in the hope there will be something to learn and so avoid wasting money on stuff that was launched on the market to no fanfare. And if it nothing else, it’s fun to reignite some old dumpster fires.

In the case of Extinction, the main takeaway is that you shouldn’t be afraid of anything you wanna put out on the market, not because you should dump whatever garbage you want, but because it’s hard to say you shouldn’t do what you want, as games like these somehow managed not only to get released, but to get the full boxed retail and “multiple tiers editions” treatment.

Be bold, ye children of the Yellow Turbans, i guess this is the takeway. Don’t be garbage.

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The Initial STEAM [REVIEW] | School Swords Gals Fight

Have been meaning to get around this one for a while, so much i eventually got a PC to run most games decently, in the meantime. As in, 3 years ago.

So, do you like games like Oneechanbara and Senran Kagura, are you into the niche of “anime ladies fighting with scanty clothes and swords”? Want more of them?

The Initial is borne of that mentality, and comes from a niche indeed, a chinese 5 people team called Restory Studio, who clearly know their audience, so much that one of the first paragraphs on the Steam store page says “THE INITIAL is a hyper action game about pretty schoolgirls battling against evil.”, which is a very apt and synthetic description.

Because you already know if you’re in or out after that.

You know where i stand on the matter.

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Drake Of The 99 Dragons STEAM [REVIEW] | Back catalogue horrors

Yeah, i don’t need to introduce this one, given his legendary bad game status as one of the worst ones ever on the original X-Box, etc.

I didn’t consider why i never heard of it here in “the Boot”, but i soon realized Majesco never bothered to even give this one an european release (same as the infamous Aquaman: Battle For Atlantis for Gamecube, we European were spared that one). At least on X-Box, it was released on PC in 2004 in Europe as well, i can attest because i found a PC physical copy of this on a flea market for a buck.

Eventually, in 2018, it was re-released on Steam for 6,99 € (or regional equivalent), with some improvements and bugs fixed in an attempt to “un-shit” the game a bit and tempt gaming masochists like me who never played the game themselves. It worked.

And it’s the season for horrors, so strap in, there’s a lot of rotten guts here to morbously examine and fiddle with.

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Alice: Madness Returns PS3 [REVIEW] | Swimming The Seas Of Sanity Lost

11 years later, American MacGee brought back his flawed cult game for a direct sequel with Alice: Madness Returns, and as EA (and other publishers) were big on fighting the used game market with the “online passes”, this time they wanted to discourage from buying the game used by inserting in new copies a code to redeem the original American McGee’s Alice, basically treated as DLC.

Thankfully now the older game is free DLC on both PSN and the X-Box store, you still need a copy of Madness Returns to access it, but still, better than on PC, now available only through Origin (it was on Steam as well but got delisted), it doesn’t seem to include the original American MacGee’s Alice game. At least not anymore. I’m not throwing cash away to find out for sure.

A re-release of both titles might be in order, i guess as soon as MacGee can buy back the rights from EA or when we’ll have some news about that hypotetical Alice: Asylum, who had a tentative date of 31 October 2021… but in 3 years we didn’t hear anything aside from the fact that the title is in pre-production, meaning clearly that release date is not gonna be final, so for the meantime these are the options to visit (or revisit) the series.

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American McGee’s Alice PS3 [REVIEW] | The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!

Oh yes, American Mc Gee’s most well known work, his take on Lewis Carrol’s Alice.

The story is not really that original in retrospect, it’s the usual “let’s give fairy tales an edgy reinterpretation with a grim, depressing tone” applied to Alice In Wonderland, so here Alice is Alice Lindell, a british orphan that by chance survived the house fire that took away her family at the age of 10 (or something), and was basically raised in an asylum, mostly likely treated to a Richard O’ Brian-less brand shock therapy as well.

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