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Rainier's Articles


PS3/XBLA/PC Preview - 'Trine'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: Puzzle/Platformer
Publisher: Nobilis
Developer: Frozenbyte
Release Date: July 2009

On the surface, Trine is not a difficult game to understand, as it is essentially a puzzle game in which you can switch on the fly between three varied characters. However, the basic puzzle mechanics and characters are mere underpinnings for the meat of the physics-based gameplay and cooperative play. The co-op was not present in our preview build, but the physics most definitely are, along with a surprisingly developed theme and production values for a puzzle title.

The three characters in Trine all have varied roles and

Wii Preview - 'New Super Mario Bros.'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: Platformer
Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Nintendo
Release: Q4 2009

Nintendo came out of E3 2009 much stronger than they did in 2008. They started off our booth tour with their big announcement of New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and I got to squeeze in some play time with the game.

If you've played the DS version of New Super Mario Bros., most everything is going to be familiar, including major elements of Super Mario Bros. 3 from the NES era, new and entertaining power-ups, and a fair supply of secrets to keep things interesting for a good, long

Wii Preview - 'Wii Sports Resort'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: Sports
Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Nintendo
Release: July 26, 2009

Before you read any further about Wii Sports Resort, go do a bit of bowling in Wii Sports. Notice the subtleties that are there in the simulation, and those that aren't. The Wii Remote, ultimately, is limited, and many of those limits have been removed with the recent introduction of the Wii MotionPlus, which links to Wiimotes to let you do more with them. While it is launching with two EA Sports titles for Wii, the MotionPlus clearly seems custom designed for the upcoming Wii Sports

Wii/PS3/X360 Preview - 'The Beatles: Rock Band'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: Rhythm/Music
Publisher: MTV Games
Developer: Harmonix
Release: September 9, 2009

How can a game be both so much more than its predecessors, and yet so much less at the same time? This conundrum defined what I saw of the upcoming Rock Band release, The Beatles: Rock Band. The game floored me as a Beatles release, but its heritage as a Rock Band game seems a bit tenuous.

The basics are all there; this is Rock Band, with one significant evolution and some major interface modifications that I'll get to in a bit. The big new idea

NDS Preview - 'Scribblenauts'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: Puzzle
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
Developer: 5TH Cell
Release Date: September 15, 2009

5TH Cell is perhaps the best DS game developer that no one has heard of. They've only developed a few games, but those games have been fun and innovative, making excellent use of the DS' various features to create games that would not be the same anywhere else. Drawn to Life was a platformer designed around creating your own character, while Lock's Quest was a combination tower defense and hack-and-slash game. Their upcoming game, Scribblenauts, is easily their most ambitious to date, and

PS3/X360/PC Preview - 'The Saboteur'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Pandemic Studios' Saboteur will feature an open-ended world. Mixing regular first-person action with stealth, you, as a member of the French La Resistance, have to free Nazi-controlled zones. Reminiscent of Schindler's List, these zones will be displayed in black and white, but once successfully liberated, become colorized.

Wii Preview - 'The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn's Quest'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: Action/Adventure
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer: Headstrong Games
Release Date: Q4 2009

With the exception of the poorly received The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, every modern LotR title has been based on Peter Jackson's very popular set of movies. This has caused most of the games to have a very similar, distinctive look: dark, grim, gritty and realistic; featuring the likenesses of the movie actors; and monster and enemy designs similar to those in the film. Lord of the Rings: Aragorn's Quest is still based on the movie, and you'll

PS3/X360/PC Preview - 'Aliens vs. Predator'

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under E3 - Post - E3 2009

Genre: First-Person Shooter
Publisher: Sega
Developer: Rebellion
Release Date: January 19, 2010

Defying all laws of God and man, the Alien vs. Predator video games are actually really good. The Jaguar AvP is one of maybe two titles that justify the platform's existence, and the PC version has a devoted fan base even now, 10 years after its release.

The team at Rebellion that' responsible for making those original games has, for the most part, reunited, and they're working on a new, current-generation Alien vs. Predator title. As with the original games, you have the option to play

'Mobile Ops: The One Year War' (X360) - Screens

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under Tokyo Game Show - Tokyo Game Show 2007

In the future, Rebel space colonies launch a brutal war for independence with a series of orbital strikes against the Earth. War is reinvented as advanced ECM renders long range sensors and communications virtually useless. In this chaos, a frightening new weapon, the mobile suit, is born. Agile, heavily armed and armored and optimized for short range combat with melee attacks and a wide array of weapons, the Mobile Suit is the ultimate instrument in this new age of warfare. Rediscover the thrill of mechanized warfare as you are thrown into battle as a soldier on the front

'Phantasy Star Universe: Ambition of the Illuminus' (X360/PS2/PC) - Screens

by Rainier on Jan. 1, 2006 @ 1:30 a.m. PST | Filed under Tokyo Game Show - Tokyo Game Show 2007

Phantasy Star Universe: Ambition of the Illuminus allows gamers to experience an even richer and more varied Phantasy Star experience. Players will explore exciting new levels, such as the Ruins of Old Rozenom City and the subterranean Granigs Mines, where they will encounter new and more powerful enemy types and bosses, and master additional versatile class types.

The expansion further enriches the online Phantasy Star Universe experience with newly created and enhanced gameplay and customization features. Players can commune in new and expanded lobby areas filled with colorful decorations and music, including the new Casino Voloyal where roulette and slots can