Children of Zodiarcs – Rebel With a Card

When I saw Children of Zodiarcs on Kickstarter, I was intrigued. Their descriptions brought to mind classic RPGs like Final Fantasy Tactics and Ogre Battle, evoking memories of the Strategy RPGs that so many of us loved as kids. They then mixed that with promises of incorporating the dice and deck style mechanics that board game aficionados are so familiar with, bringing together two seemingly disparate playstyles to create a happy family.

An ambitious goal. Not only in taking two completely different genres and tying them together, but also breaking into an already-niche genre dominated by well-established heavy hitters like Final Fantasy, Disgaea, and Fire Emblem as an indy game. Could a small studio pull this off? Could they live up to the Kickstarter promises or would this be just another example of a Kickstarter promising more than they could deliver?

[Read more…]

Muses: Highlights and Lowlights of E3

As E3 begins to wind down, it is time to take a moment to think about the best and worst moments of this year’s gaming media bonanza. Obviously, I’m not there in person, so coverage is based off of a combination of live streams, articles, and videos from other sources.

So I wanted to take some time here today to talk about some of what I saw following coverage of E3. We’re going to talk surprises, the best and worst, and where the companies hit their highs and lows. I also wanted to touch base about the Sony E3 Experience as this was its first year visiting Winnipeg.

[Read more…]

The Shadow’s Sixty Countdown – Rank 36-31

This has been a fascinating experience for me. Cataloging my favourite games of all time has required taking stock of ~25 years of time spent with various platforms. Weighing nostalgia and equating it to the reality of the situation… it’s really been a trip down memory lane.

But with this article, we’ll be reaching the halfway point of this amazing journey. In this entry, we’re visiting JRPGs both old and new, exploring the origins of one of gaming’s most notable series, and exploring a few repeats – games from series that have previously earned a spot on this list.

[Read more…]

Shadow’s Six – Best Games of 2015

It’s a bit late, I know… but Legend of Heroes games take a long time to complete, and deserve the time they take. Now that we’ve finished reviewing Trails in the Sky: Second Chapter, it’s time to wrap up 2015 by showing off the overall best games of the year.

This was actually one of the easiest lists I’ve ever created because, to be frank, there really were only 6 games that turned out well enough last year to rank from among those that I was interested in. I only played around a dozen new games last year, and of those, nearly half were pretty big disappointments. Now, this may make you wonder about the quality of the games on this list here… but have no fear, nearly all of these games are contenders for the Shadow’s Sixty so while we may be lacking in quantity, we were certainly not lacking in quality.

I know his story... I know all their stories

I know his story… I know all their stories

[Read more…]

Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance – Hell, Reimagined

The venerable Disgaea series has returned with its latest entry, subtitled Alliance of Vengeance. Disgaea 5 takes place in the Netherworlds, or essentially Hell, and features a cast of unlikely Demon Lords who bond together to overthrow the tyrannical Overlord Void Dark, who threatens to conquer, or possibly destroy, the entirety of the Netherworlds.


The game opens as the self-proclaimed ultimate temptress Seraphina is waging a war against Void Dark and his Lost army out of a desire to avoid being forced to marry him… she and her Prinny army are losing rapidly when a strange demon named Killia shows up and… sits down for a meal in the middle of the battlefield. After eating, he singlehandedly destroys the Lost battalion and Seraphina falls in lo… ahem, sorry… Seraphina decides to make him her servant.

And this is where our weird, wacky, and wonderful story begins. With Hell being not so bad a place… with Demons as varied as you could possibly imagine… and with a war on the horizon that threatens to destroy all.

[Read more…]