Mario & Luigi Dream Team Bros., a Retrospective Review

What a dreamy game! And you should play it!

So here we are. The first of the Retrospective Reviews, and since we’ve last played and reviewed a platformer, I thought we’d stick with the theme by playing one of the Grand Old Plumber’s games on the 3DS. Mario & Luigi Dream Team Bros. -or sometimes just known as Mario & Luigi Dream Team outside of Europe and Australia- is the fourth in the Mario & Luigi series, which melds traditional platforming with role-playing elements such as stats, equipment and turn-based combat. Sounds like it shouldn’t work, yet it does. Beautifully.  Continue reading “Mario & Luigi Dream Team Bros., a Retrospective Review”

Why Nostalgia can be Both a Good and Bad Thing for Games

One double-edged sword that needs proper care when swinging

Nostalgia. It’s a finicky, fickle mistress. It builds up good memories of games that you absolutely loved when you were growing up to the point that you end up forgetting some of its flaws, only to drag you back down again when a modern game tries to bring back the spirit of it and fail. Nostalgia is basically a distortion of your memories of anything that was good at the time, but if you tried to bring it back now to modernise it you’d probably only find that a select group of people would enjoy it for the old memories while newcomers might find bewildering.  Continue reading “Why Nostalgia can be Both a Good and Bad Thing for Games”

Why you may want to play … Yooka-Laylee

Keep your rose-tinted glasses on firmly with this retro-flavoured game

For me, while this is definitely not my first time playing a platformer, it is the first time I’ve played a platformer in the spirit of 90s stalwart Banjo-Kazooie. I’m considering this a chance to make up for the fact that I never got a chance to play Banjo-Kazooie, but as someone who hasn’t played the spiritual predecessor to Yooka-Laylee, I feel that I can review it without the nostalgia rose-tinted glasses on. Theoretically of course.  Continue reading “Why you may want to play … Yooka-Laylee”

Why Storytelling is Important in Gaming

A game is only good if a narrative keeps your attention…

When it comes to story, some of the best ones have come from the gaming industry. Now I’m not saying that we should expect the next Hemingway or Dickens to come from a gaming background, but what I am saying is that storytelling and narrative have improved dramatically over the years. From the 8-bit arcade heroes all the way to the modern triple A game, I believe that story has played its part in keeping the gamer hooked onto a game, even when the gameplay or the flaws of a game are beyond forgiveness.  Continue reading “Why Storytelling is Important in Gaming”