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6/28/2011

ANIME REVIEW: Toradora



One of the anime genres that I’ve always liked are the drama/comedy ones, since I was a teenager I’ve always felt great affection for series like Love Hina or Lovely Complex so when one of my best friends recommended me ToraDora I decided to give it a try immediately. Fortunately, the series is very good and though it is no different from other series of the genre I can say that it’s one of the best I’ve seen.

The series tells the story of how a short girl with a horribly bad temper called Taiga Aisaka slowly becomes really close with a really quiet guy named Ryuuji Takasu who has a bad reputation in school because he looks like a thug.

Taiga, who lives alone in an apartment next to Ryuuji’s small house, always invades the poor guy’s home in search of food and help to find courage to declare her love for one of their schoolmates, a guy named Kitamura who is a member of the student council.

At the same time, Ryuuji is in love with Taiga’s best friend, a red-head girl named Minorin Kushieda who a member of the softball club in school and always spends her free time working part-time in local stores.

At first, Taiga is severely feared in school because of her bad temper, which got her the nickname “mini tiger” since she always ends up punching and kicking people when she gets angry. But as her friendship with Ryuuji and the other characters starts to develop, her attitude gets better and people slowly start getting fond of her.

The same happens with Ryuuji who, at the beginning, is feared because he looks like a bully but the poor guy is always quiet and helpful with things, he has a strong obsession with cleaning and is an extremely good cook, this raises his fame in school until he and Taiga become two of the most popular students on it.

The series focuses a lot on developing the relationships between the characters keeping a good balance between drama and humor. There are a lot of things we’ve seen tons of times in anime series, like the typical school festival, the trip to a beach in summer and a school trip somewhere in Japan. Fortunately, the content is very balanced and never gets boring in any of its 25 episodes.

Unlike other series in the genre that focus entirely on the two main protagonists, ToraDora has several secondary characters who slowly get their own backstories explained and each one has at least a couple episodes to develop their personalities and characters.

 Besides Kitamura and Minorin, there is another girl who is a beautiful model named Ami Kawashima who ends up in the school because she wanted to get away from the modeling world for some time.

Ami is a really arrogant but funny character at first and she always pisses Taiga off on purpose which usually ends in Taiga punching and kicking someone in the scene, especially Ryuuji. The pretty girl starts as a secondary character but slowly becomes vital to the series’ events.

The art style is very good, unlike other series where it is very common to see that the drawings of the characters or environments were rushed to simply not done at all. ToraDora features very good animations, colors and drawings which is extremely important for these things.

The environments and locations are the typical ones found in these kinds of anime series. The vast majority of events will take place inside the school (who looks exactly like every other high school in a Japanese animation) or at Ryuuji’s house but we’ll usually see other locations like supermarkets, parks, streets and other character’s houses here and there.

The voice acting in the Japanese version is also great; the synchronization is very good and never sounds weird when a character is angry, happy or sad. The only character with an annoying voice is Minorin but it’s nothing unbearable fortunately. The series also features a few good music tracks for several scenes which fit perfectly into what’s happening in the series at the moment.
 
For closing comments, I can say that this is definitely one of the best drama/comedy anime series I’ve seen. It is very entertaining and the balance between the serious and funny moments is nearly perfect. The events in the story are surely to keep almost anyone at the edge of their seat and most importantly: interested in what’s happening on it. It’s not a long series fortunately, only featuring 25 episodes so it can be completed in a couple of weeks easily. 100% recommended.

Mortal Kombat 9 is slowly stealing my heart

I've got to admit that Dead or Alive Dimensions wasn't what I expected it to be, the game's defensive system was way too simplified and it is very easy to get hold by luck. I don't like that so I've been spending quite a bit of time in Mortal Kombat 9 for the PS3. 

My favorite character so far is definitely Noob Saibot, but since this game is inspired by my beloved Ultimate MK3, every character remind me of my childhood so I've been enjoying a lot of them. Kabal, Cyrax, Reptile, Cage, Kitana, Mileena and Liu-Kang are amazing. Tomorrow I'll try Jade who was one of my nemesis back in UMK3. 

The group of people I used to play the "klassic" game with had a guy who kicked real ass with Jade and since the poor guy died a few years ago, I want to honor his memory and try to main the green ninja girl (who now had huge breasts of course).

But I'm extremely disappointed because my favorite character from UMK3 is nowhere to be seen, Robot Smoke was the first fighting game character I learned to use effectively and I even won money in serious matches with him when I was a kid. But this time, because of a retarded change in the storyline, we end up with a lame version of Sub-Zero that nobody wanted while the extremely popular Robot Smoke is gone. I really hope he makes it into the game as a DLC, I'll definitely pay for him.

6/27/2011

REVIEW: Dead or Alive Dimensions (3DS)



Dead or Alive Dimensions is the 5th installment in the famous fighting-game series developed by Team Ninja, the team responsible for other series like Ninja Gaiden and Metroid Other M.  The game is the successor to Dead or Alive 4 for the Xbox 360, which came way back in 2005. Dimensions is a recompilation of everything that has happened in the series in the four previous games but with DOA4’s gameplay, meaning that the story mode will cover all the events from DOA1 to DOA4.

Starting with the graphics and visuals, I can say that they’re incredible. The textures in the characters and environments are excellent, some things even look better than the Xbox 360 counter-part which is incredible since Dimensions is a 3DS game and we are all used to portable games being lower in graphic quality. As incredible as it sounds, the game runs in full 60fps when played in 2D. I think this is the first 3DS game to achieve this, making the animations look extremely smooth and fluid, which is extremely important for a series as fast-paced as Dead or Alive. However, as soon as you turn the 3D effects on, the frames per second will get lower, 30fps to be exact, still, the game runs very good at 30fps and the 3D effects are so good that the game can be enjoyed perfectly in either way.

Continuing with the graphics, the 3D effects are great. When you turn them on, the characters seem to get out of the screen and fight each other like in a hologram. The stages also get an intense feeling of depth in 3D, especially the ones with things like breakable objects and water running through them. In short, the game takes full advantage of what the 3DS is capable of. Now, for real competitive gameplay, I recommend playing in 2D because the game is so fast-paced that many actions require quick reflexes and looking at the gameplay in 60fps like in DOA4.

As usual with fighting games and especially this series, Dead or Alive Dimensions features a lot of different game modes. The first one is Story Mode which, like said, covers all the events that happened from DOA1 to DOA4. You’ll take control of different characters of importance to the plot, mostly the ninjas and Helena and watch the events happening in the form of cutscenes. To be quite honest, the story is really uninteresting and quite silly at times but if you’re new to the series, it makes a great job at introducing the gameplay mechanics to you, teaching you what you can do and how to do it in the actual fights. This mode also allows you to unlock most of the characters in the game.

Besides the Story Mode, you’ll be able to play in Arcade, in which you choose one of several available “paths” with different opponents and difficulty level and just fight your way through it. There’s also Survival mode in which you choose a fighter and the AI just throws random opponents at you and you fight to break your own records. Then there’s Throwdown Challenges, where the game registers your friend list and depending on their rank, you’ll be able to fight your buddies’ favorite character with a set difficulty level, example, if you register a friend with a F- rank, the AI will be easy to beat, but if your friend’s rank is A+, the opponent in throwdown will be very hard.

Another old game mode makes a curious comeback, Tag Battle, where two characters team up to defeat a single opponent with a huge life-bar. If you play it alone, you’ll only take control of one of the fighters in the team while the AI plays as the other (and the opponent) but if you play it together with a friend, each of you will control their own fighter, like in DOA4’s online multiplayer. Training mode is also back with all the cool features it had back in the previous entries of the series, but in Dimensions, the game takes advantage of the touch screen and allows you to scroll through the entire move list of the character you choose to practice by either pressing the actual commands with the buttons or just touching the desired combo with the stylus. You can also make use of the bottom screen to see the frame data of what’s happening in training and all the other gameplay modes.

Finally, the most important game mode, Multiplayer, also comes back, which can be offline or online, like in DOA2 Ultimate and DOA4. This time, however, the online multiplayer will not have the funny lobbies with avatars we had in the Xbox 360 entry, the online mode now is very much like the ones found in other series where you find an opponent and once the fight is over you are forced to go back to the menu to find another one, meaning that repeating a fight or just turning the lobby into a private room will never happen in Dimensions but this is to be expected, we can’t forget that Dimensions is a portable game in a console much weaker than the Xbox 360 but at the same time I can’t help but compare the comfortable and even funny online lobbies in DOA4 with the annoying menus in this.

Besides the actual fights, the game will allow you to collect 3D figurines of each of the characters in the game every time you win a fight in pretty much every game mode; you can also buy them by spending the game coins you get while walking with the 3DS in sleep mode. You can take pictures of these figurines and saved them to be viewed later.

Gameplay-wise the game feels very much like DOA4, in fact, I could pretty much say that Dimensions is like an update to the Xbox 360 game’s gameplay. You still have one button for punch, kick, throws and blocking/countering. However, most of the characters got little changes to several of their mechanics, from the frame date of their moves to the commands you need to press to do something. The vast majority of these changes are minor but Team Ninja actually came and made a huge mistake by simplifying the counter-attack system from four directions to three. In DOA2U and DOA4, mid punches were countered by pressing “back” while mid kicks by pressing “forward”, this was logical given that most of the moves in every fighter’s repertoire were aimed to the middle. Dimensions goes back to the old countering system of DOA3 and the old versions of DOA2 which allow you to counter all the mid punches and kicks by pressing “back”. This damaged the online gameplay because now most of the players will just spam mid-counterattacks when trying to defend themselves and their chances of getting a successful one raised a whole lot, allowing them to win fights by luck instead of skill.

Another stupid gameplay change appeared in Dimensions, three of the characters now have access to fireballs and other ranged attacks which also make online users to play a lot as Hayabusa, Raidou and Genra and just stay away from their opponents spamming fireballs until they win. It is incredible that two simple changes in the gameplay mechanics of the series lowered the quality and enjoyment of the multiplayer mode so much. I can also say that the 3DS’s pad is way too small and uncomfortable for some of the inputs and it is very easy to make a lot of mistakes especially with the diagonal commands at first, but to be honest, it is just a matter of getting used to it.

The sound and music are very good. Many of the most memorable songs from the old entries in the series make a comeback in remixed form and most of them are excellent. The soundtrack, like the story, is a mix of the four previous games. The sound effects are also very good, every object in every stage makes sounds to create a good environment and the characters voices in Japanese sound as good as always, I can’t say the same for the English ones which make a comeback. DOA didn’t have English-voices since the PS2 version of DOA2. But anyway, all the characters have their old voice actors so there are no weird changes.

For closing-comments I can say that the game is very good. It feels and runs excellent on the 3DS, the graphics, 3D effects, music, and fights are top notch, but minor gameplay changes damaged the entire experience a lot, I feel that it’s not really the game’s fault but the casual gamers who play it online but the mistakes are there. Competitive players who like deep mechanics will still have a lot to learn and master in DOA Dimensions but if you really want the best DOA experience, stay with the Xbox 360 game which still has a lot of public six years after its release. The multiplayer is definitely not as good as in DOA2U and DOA4 but for a 3DS game, I can say that it is probably one of the best portable fighting games out there together with SSF4 3D and Dissidia 012. I truly recommend it to any 3DS owner, it is one of the best games in the console so far and when looking at the future 3DS catalog I can be sure it will stay like that for a long time.

Pros:

-         -     Fast and intense fights with tons of different things to do
-         -     Huge roster of characters with different fighting styles to choose from
-         -      The mechanics are deep and you will always find something new to try out and learn
-         -     The 3D effects are excellent and the graphics can compare to DOA4

Cons:
-     -     A simplified defensive systems allows casual gamers to win by getting lucky instead of getting good at the game
-        -     The story is silly and uninteresting
-        -     Online mode is quite uncomfortable to navigate through
-        -     Fireballs


Graphics and Visuals………….9
Music and Sound Effects……...9
Gameplay……………………..7
Replay Value………………….9 

Overall Score………………….8.5 / 10

6/20/2011

Ocarina of Time 3D first impressions and activities updates

Ok here goes, the past week was very busy in terms of pretty much everything but I'll just talk about the geeky activities. The most important thing that happened this week (gaming-wise) was that I got Ocarina of Time 3D on launch, that means, today Sunday. I'm extremely pleased with it so far. The game is basically the exact same thing but with remade graphics and 3D effects. You can also see some extra objects in the walls in some houses but the normal quest (remember the game has Master Quest on it) is basically the same thing we all played in the N64. I complete the Deku Tree dungeon and did a few things before going to Dodongo's Cavern like learn a few songs, get a couple of bottles and the Hylian Shield. The game is VERY good, I totally recommend it.

Here are a group of screenshots taken from different sites:




























One of the "negative" aspects I see in the game is that it forces you to use the stylus to make use of two of the items you equip (you can equip four items this time, two in the Y and X buttons and two available as icons in the touch screen, the ocarina has a reserved spot and is always there) so I believe that the best way to use those is to equip non-combat items there like the bottles or magic beans maybe, while you use X and Y to equip the Boomerang, Bow, Bombs and other combat-related items.

Now, changing subjects: I got a year of Xbox Live Gold Subscription from a change of two of my old games and started playing Halo Reach and DOA4 online. I am extremely pleased to see DOA4 still active and strong with different groups of good people playing it at almost any time in the day. Surprisingly, the game's matches have been running extremely well even in the early nights (around 7-10pm), five years ago I had to wait at least until 11pm to be able to play it without lag because the ISP in my country was always busy.

Halo Reach runs great as well and though I'm not very good at it, the game is tons of fun. I love playing team slayer and firefight matches using the DMR and Assault Rifle as well as other weapons. While we Halo fans must admit that they're probably releasing more Halo games than necessary, no one can't deny that all of them have incredible quality.


Besides the Xbox 360 games, I got Mortal Kombat for the PS3 which I bought from Amazon at 39.99$. I like the game a lot, probably more than MvsC3 but I'm a bit disappointed because Robot Smoke, my favorite character from Ultimate MK3 is not there because of a retarded change in the storyline where Raiden saves Smoke from turning into a Cyborg but fails to save Sub-Zero, so we end up with two shitty versions of the blue ninja. But anyway, the character I like the most as of today is Noob Saibot. That's incredible because I always tend to main a hot big-breasted girl in my fighting games but oh well, this is Mortal Kombat. 

N.Saibot has excellent combos, safe ranged attacks and a quick grab that works perfectly for punishing from a distance. I really really like him. I tried other characters that I liked, for example Reptile was great, he's fast and deadly with the correct use of his acid balls and combos, Jhonny Cage and Liu Kang were great as well though I only played as them in story mode and Kitana (hey! the big-titted girl!) who has an insane mobility and excellent use of her fans.

I'm also back into Pokemon because I got my interest back after my Pokedex 3D started to grow in numbers. I tried several different creatures with weird and uncommon types like Trubbish (poison-type) and Vanillite (Ice-type) but their stats and available moves made me vomit so I'm back into my old team of only four pokémon: Sawk (Fight-type), Emboar (Fire-type), Leavanny (Bug/Grass-type) and Unfeazant (Flying/Normal). I'm especially happy with Sawk and Leavanny on the team, they feel like my old combination of Hitmonchan + Scizor.

And finally, to start closing this post. I finished watching Tora Dora and I loved it. As I said in previous entries, it is a common drama/comedy series about a group of Japanese high-school students, but the plot and events are cool. It's only 25 episodes so I took one of these past nights to watch the second half completely, the equivalent to watching two movies in a row. I've also advanced slowly through the other series though I admit that I could simply stop with Rio Rainbow Gate, I'll just finish it during the week.

And as the last comment I can say that this week will get reviews for Dead or Alive Dimensions, Tora Dora. I'm having a more relaxed week this time (though I do have to study a lot of Japanese) so I'll make sure to write them. Also, If I finish Mortal Kombat's story and OoT 3D I'll try to get their reviews up as well.

6/19/2011

A quick update

I'm still here, just haven't posted because I was busy with university things and didn't really feel like writing anything. I'm playing Mortal Kombat and got a year of Xbox Live Gold to play DOA4 (which is still active) and Halo Reach. I'm also playing Uncharted 2 again.

Tomorrow Ocarina of Time 3DS comes out and I'm getting a copy as soon as the local store opens. I'll spend the day playing it and will post my opinions on it with a more elaborate update on the past week's activities. A lot of content is coming.

6/10/2011

Anime update 10/06/11

Since I went to that anime convention last weekend I've been really hooked to the DVDs I got, taking the opportunity to watch the series while I download the free games from the PlayStation Welcome Back Program (I got Infamous, Dead Nation, ModNation Racers PSP and Pursuit Force). I'm currently watching four different series. Little opinions about them:

- Rio Rainbow Gate: It's not very good to be honest, it's supposed to be an ecchi series but the ecchi is almost nowhere to be seen, the characters are retarded and the plot is boring and almost non-existent. I already watched six episodes which is half of the series so I'll just keep going at least one episode per day until it's over.

- Tora Dora: I already watched the first half of this one a few months ago and I really liked it, I'm going through it again to refresh everything, it's the typical comedy/drama plot about highschool students. I really like this genre and the series is actually pretty good. One of my friends is just like the protagonist (or at least she pretends to be).

- Code Geass: I've only watched about five episodes of this one and it's very good, the world on it is very cool and the plot is very interesting, I also like the art style. It seems like a long series, about 50 episodes maybe more but I'll take it easy with this one.

- Blue Dragon: It's the one I like the most, it really feels like I'm 8-years-old and I'm watching the original Dragon Ball again. The art style, humor, battles, plot and characters are amazing. I truly truly recommend this series. I've only watched six episodes and I'm already in love with it. Trust me, it is awesome.


So, besides all that I'm playing a huge mountain of games. If everything goes according to plan I should have DOA Dimensions' review up by Sunday night because I'm most likely going to spend the weekend on Halo, DKCR and Dead or Alive with my buddies.

6/09/2011

REVIEW: Muramasa: The Demon Blade (Wii)


Muramasa is a third-party game for the Nintendo Wii, developed and published by Marvelous Entertainment and Vanillaware. It is an extremely simple 2D sidescroller game which focuses heavily on combat and story-telling. The final result is a great game exclusive to the console. It is very enjoyable and entertaining but one can’t help but feel that it was release way too late.

The game tells two stories in one game. The first one is about a ninja boy named Kisuke who lost his memory and is being chased by several monsters and clans of ninjas, he travels around all Japan trying to figure out what happened to him and fighting his way through the hordes of enemies. The second story is about a girl named Momohime, whose body is being possessed by a demon who wants to find a legendary sword. Momohime is a princess in Japan so the demon uses her influences to easily get into places and betray his enemies.

Graphically, the game uses very beautiful sprites for the characters and enemies, they have great smooth animations when moving and they look very natural, but the best thing about the game’s visuals are the background environments, which include extremely pretty Japanese landscapes like mountains, plains, snow, lakes, seas and forests which look like actual paintings made by famous artists. But while they are indeed very pretty, the traveling system the game uses forces the player to run through those backgrounds way too many times which can results in them repeating over and over.

The gameplay is simple, since the game is a 2D sidescroller. The characters can move around quickly and freely running and jumping in a very cool way. Each time a group of enemies appear, Kisuke and Momohime will automatically pull their swords out and prepare for battle, during the fight is that the player will have the attacks available. It is possible to play with three different controllers: The Gamecube one, the classic one and the Wiimore + Nunchuk combo. Both fighters have the same gameplay style. They can use shorts swords which provide quick slashes and longer swords which are usually stronger but make the two characters move really slowly.

By fighting enemies and advancing through the story, Kisuke and Momohime will get new swords to fight and items that can be equipped for various effects like a boosts in attack and defense or extra HP points. Both characters will also level up which makes exploration and escaping from battles a key factor in the game, it is recommended to explore as many parts of the map as you can so you fight tons of enemies and level up a lot.

The truth is that besides running around the maps and slashing enemies, there’s nothing much to do in Muramasa. But one of the curious things is the forge system where, depending on the character’s level will allow Kisuke and Momohime to forge new swords with new abilities which can turn the tables in difficult fights, especially with the bosses that can be frustratingly difficult sometimes. You can also cook different foods to restore HP if you have the required ingredients but every time you eat, a “fullness” bar goes up and before eating again, the player needs to wait for it to be empty again.

The music is also great, the soundtrack has very pretty Japanese classical tunes that fit perfectly with the environments and fights with either normal enemies or bosses. But just like the backgrounds, there aren’t many songs which will result in them repeating several times through both campaigns. The entire game is also beautifully voiced in Japanese. Every character is voiced which is great because even though the gameplay style is very simple, the player will never encounter any mute text bubbles over the characters.

For closing comments, I can say the game is really worth it. It is a very simple 2D sidescroller but the fast combat style is very entertaining and while it can get repetitive, it provides around 20 hours of gameplay to complete both campaigns and extras. This game is one of the few good titles not made by Nintendo on the Wii. But any hardcore gamer with experience won’t help but feel that this game could have been much better on the PlayStation Network or Xbox Live Arcade with HD sprites and backgrounds but even as a simply Wii title, it is great and should not be missed by any owner of the console.

Pros:

-          -     A fast and intense fighting system that is challenging and entertaining
-          -     Beautiful background landscapes which look like paintings
-   
Cons:

-         -     The backgrounds, while pretty, can get very repetitive after a few hours of gameplay
-         -    Not much to do besides running and slashing enemies



Graphics and Visual Effects……….8
Music and Sound Effects………….8
Gameplay…………………….…...8
Replay Value…………………...…8
SCORE TOTAL…………………8/10

6/07/2011

New Nintendo console unveiled: Wii U

Like I said several times before, Nintendo has revealed the successor to the Wii in today's press conference at E3 Expo 2011. The system seems to be very peculiar, especially because of the controller which has all the common buttons we've been using for almost two decades but the new thing here is a 6.2 inches touch-screen in the middle which can display the game on it like a portable device, creating pretty much unlimited options when trying to innovate games while using both the HDTV (Yes, a Nintendo console with HD graphics FINALLY) and the controller's screen. It can scan the TV to do things like use the controller as a shield when an enemy in the TV is trying to fire arrows at you and things like that.

The system seems to be at least as powerful as the PS3 and according the Reggie, it already has tons of great third party developers working on it with games like Ninja Gaiden 3 and Battlefield 3. This is also great given the little support the original Wii has. It is very common to see tons of games making it to the PS3 and the Kinectbox 360 (ahem.. I mean Xbox) but not the Wii. It's definitely good to see Nintendo reaching out to the first party support again.

Take a look at some of the new console's pictures:


A look at the unusual new controller for the console. It features a 6.2 inches touchscreen, two analog sticks, four face buttons and a D-pad.


This is the back of the controller, it has two L and two R buttons.

The Wii U controller with a tech demo of Super Mario Bros Wii on it's screen.

And this is the console itself, it will read 12cm HD disc for the games and has backwards compatibility with the original Wii.

Test from the 3DS

I just got the system update on my 3DS and I'm testing the internet browser on it. Looks sweet!

6/06/2011

Caracas Fan Fest!

There was an anime convention this weekend in the city where I live (Caracas, Venezuela). I went there with my girlfriend and some buddies to pick burned anime dvds up and just check things out. I bought some series which I've been wanted to watch like Blue Dragon, Tales of Vesperia's OVA and Code Geass and picked up some stuff I just found like an ecchi series called Rio Rainbow Gate.

I watched the first episodes of Blue Dragon, which is about a boy with the power to summon a blue-colored dragon from his shadow adventuring with some friends and stuff like that. The series' characters look a lot like Dragon Ball's which is great. The story and the world are very interesting. I also tried Rio Rainbow Gate which is about a beautiful girl who works in a casino and has the power to bring luck to the place's visitors and players, the series seems very fun, with lots of humor and pretty girls.

The first episode of Code Geass was also amazing, I didn't know it was about mechas so that takes my interest to a new whole level and the last one I tried is Tora Dora which I never watched completely. This last one is a humor/drama mix about high-school students, I like this genre. I got some other stuff as well like the last episodes of Saint Seiya's Hades saga, Evangelion's remake and a movie called "The Girl Who Leap Through Time". 

I'll keep watching all this stuff and post my opinions on them in the near future.

6/01/2011

Gaming and article update

I’m really pissed off at my university right now because thanks to it’s stupid assignments I haven’t been able to write much for the blog. For example, I finished Muramasa about three weeks ago and I haven’t wrote the review yet. I also got DiRT 3 and DOAD and haven’t had much time to even play them like I want to. There are many articles I want to write for this site.

But, in an important update. I need to say that I decided to give up on Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light for the DS, which I bought with a lot of excitement. I simply lost interest in it after a few hours into it and I don’t want to finish it just for a feel of responsibility I’d rather play something else so, at least for now, there won’t be a review for that game and I won’t go back to it.

I’m also back into F1 2010 which I started playing a little because of DiRT 3. It feels great because though both games come from the same developer, their styles are so different that playing both of them feel even kind of magical. I also want to go back to Little Big Planet 2. I want to create a map on it but the tutorials are so long and vast that I feel like I need to give everything up just to get into it and that has stopped me a little.

I’m going to try to use my gaming time in a better way this two upcoming months, June and July will be full of university stuff as well but I’ll try to keep the articles and gaming activity as active as possible.

DiRT 3 first impressions!

I’ve been playing a bit of the DiRT Tour and the truth is that I’m more than satisfied. While I’ve always been an RPG and Fighting game player, DiRT has become one of my favorite series in this generation (Yes, I know DiRT is just another name for the old Collin McRae series).

One of the curious things in the game is that Codemasters went back to the old classic menu styles where you simply choose the options and the game mode from a list, instead of the simulation of a location like the menus in DiRT 2 and F1 2010. But that’s not a bad thing.  So far, the most impressive things are the visuals. I bought the game for the PS3 and in that console, the two most beautiful games for me are Final Fantasy XIII and Uncharted 2, but trust me, DiRT 3 definitely deserves a spot there. The visuals are excellent, much better than the second entry, and we didn’t even think that would be possible.

Most of the game modes from the previous games are back: Rally, Landrush, Trailblazer, Crossover, Rallycross and a couple new ones, Gymkana which is the freestyle mode where you just do whatever tricks you want for points and Drifting, where you have to drive around a track doing drift tricks for points as well. They’re all excellent. The tracks so far have been great, including the locations which now include Norway, Kenya and more.

I truly didn’t think Codemasters could top what they did in DiRT 2 but they have and the game is MUCH better than Gran Turismo 5.