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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Earth Defense Force: World Brothers PS4 [REVIEW] | BROTHERS EVERYWHERE-

While we wait for EDF 6 to come out this august in Japan, the previous spin-off finally went on proper sale on the PSN some time ago, so i finally got to play (bought the Deluxe Edition on sale, so complete of all Season Pass content, FIY) and review Earth Defense Force: World Brothers, another spin-off of D3 Publisher’s beloved cult series about space ants and giant robots, handled by Yuke’s, which did previously develop another EDF spin-off the year before, the quite solid EDF: Iron Rain.

The story it’s actually a more comedical take, with the aliens invaders from all previous EDF game scoming back (with a mothership each) under the guise of the new villain, just called Dark Tyrant, destroying “voxel earth” into many pieces in a single shot, so what’s left of the EDF has to find a way to put it back the pieces together and repel the invaders, one mothership at the time.

Instead of going for the serious faced ridiculousness played totally straight seen in the mainline titles and even the previous EDF Iron Rain, World Brothers just revels in the sea of clichès, deliberately having a voice acting that’s so ridiculous or “old fashioned cringe” for the also ridiculous as hell dialogues, here more on the zany side, which is further reinforced by the stylistical choice of going “voxel” in terms of graphics.

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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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Iridion 3D STEAM [REVIEW] | Advance To Steam

Time for some picks from my embarassingly big Steam library, and why not one of the last things you expect to see on Steam, like…ports of Game Boy Advance games?

Yep, sometimes Steam being the de facto more used platform/store doesn’t just lead to lots of unfunny simulator crap trying to meme their way into profit, there’s clearly enough space for it to be used as a cheap, affordable and easy way for publishers to make some money back from their older catalogue, and it’s not really surprising, since the publisher in case it’s Majesco, a surprisingly resilient small publisher that published a lot of crap over the years, and… re-sell it, since they also brought over to Steam the infamous Drake Of The 99 Dragons, reviewed last year.

Though this case…well, cases are still odd, since Majesco basically ported both Iridion 3D and Iridion II from the Game Boy Advance to the PC, with the obvious expectations that come with it, since both games were made to play on a very small screen.

At least Majesco priced these very cheap, which is quite sensible to do, and they end up often on sale, so it’s easy to get the “Iridion Collection” bundle for three bucks.

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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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Senran Kagura Burst Re:Newal PS4 [REVIEW] | Godfrey Hoppai

Expect to see more Senran Kagura reviews in the future, for now we’ll talk about the remake-port of the first game in the series, arriving in the west on 3DS alongside the extra campaign added in the “Burst” version, and later remade for PS4 and PC. I choose the PS4 version, but it’s also on Steam.

Having played the 3DS version throughly, i wasn’t opposed to a remake like this, unlike many fans that didn’t want to accept the fact the game was crap. It was. It had something to it, but like most of the Oneechanbara games (and overall a lot of Tamsoft’s output), too many flaws and a lot of repetition harmed the experience, and in the case of the first SK game, it didn’t help it tried to pull off a 3D style beat em up while having the set-up of a 2D beat em up. And being really long just to be long, without any variation and the 5/6 stages backdrops re-used again and again.

One thing that didn’t change is the story or it’s presentation, they just upscaled and used better polished assets, models and sprite from the more recent main Senran Kagura games, but even so most of the visual novel segments and illustrations are preserved, alongside the anime opening. Which is fine.

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Maneater PS4 [REVIEW] | Megalodon’s Revenge

As a “bonus” to this year’s Shark Month, let’s talk about Maneater, from Tripwire Interactive, of Killing Floor and Red Orchestra fame, as they basically try to make the spiritual sequel of Jaws Unleashed… i would guess, i haven’t played that one yet (strange, i know), but i really can’t think about anything else that would fit the bill for a single player, story focused console/pc release.

I wouldn’t exactly count the Hungry Shark games or Depth, you know, and it’s kinda surprising there haven’t been more attempt at an action game focused on exploration where you play as a shark, so Maneater does fill a very unexplored niche, the open world shark action rpg.

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Samurai Warriors 5 PS4 DEMO [HANDS-ON]

So, Samurai Warriors 5 it’s gonna be out in a week, and Koei Tecmo decided to release a demo for it, so might as well give it a hands-on, since i won’t be reviewing it at launch.

I did eventually pre-order the Treasure Edition for it (not the collector’s one since Koei basically wanted 70 more bucks just for 5 tiny acrylic stands, fuck off), so i will be playing it, but i won’t have a review out, as i would like to do a retrospective of the Dynasty Warriors series, and maybe the same for the sister series Samurai Warriors, and “do” the games in order.

MAYBE i will just do a quick EXPRESSO review, but for sure not an extensive one.

The demo offers two maps/scenarios from the first chapter of the game, and four playable characters to pick a team of 2 from Hideyoshi Hashiba, No, Eiyasu Tokugawa and Toshiee Maeda (with Nobunaga Oda playable in the story mode but not in Free Mode, at least in this demo offering), with the ability to carry over the save data to the full game when it releases.

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Do NOT buy the Kao The Kangaroo Trilogy on GOG

Yeah, this article isn’t timely, but i wanted to get around to it eventually, and eventually here we are.

Earlier this year, GOG re-released all the original Kao The Kangaroo games as bundle for 6 bucks, and since i was actually waiting for a re-release of the first and third games, as i’m a platformer buff and these are getting hard to find, i immediatly bought them, especially with a small discount to 5 bucks.

But sadly GOG really dropped the ball on this re-release of a niche and forgotten platformer series from polish developer Tate Interactive, especially as it wasn’t released before in its enterity. Kao 2 is basically the same as the enhanced Steam release, and it was also released on PS2, so there’s really not much to say.

The problems come with the other two games, the ones most people bought the collection to play because they didn’t before. The original Kao The Kangaroo game was released on both Dreamcast and PC at the time, so of course the GOG release ignored the version WITHOUT tank controls, and released the PC one.

Good idea for a 3D platformer game, good idea.

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