It’s My Aeroplane

Review Aero Porter
My continuing failure at surviving the high stress world of luggage sorting makes it difficult to peel back as much of Level-5’s latest addition to the eShop as I’d like to in order to lay down some review words. But my poor performance hasn’t been from a lack of effort, with Aero Porter stealing plenty of attention over the last week, and the game is certainly worth some words all the same.

Aside from manipulating my OCD, Aero Porter is a terrifically strange and curious offering, and that’s certainly impressive, considering it comes from the mind of Yoot Saito, best known for giving us Seaman – that game where you raise and communicate with a human-faced fish on your Dreamcast.

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Failed Review – Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two

Review Epic Mickey 2 The Power of Two
Given how much work goes into creating the elements that bring a videogame into existence, even releases that fall short of their goals tend to offer minor points of interest. I’ve often maintained that even the worst releases have good ideas seeded somewhere within their core – why else would people work so hard in the attempt to flesh them out?

But Disney is determined to prove me wrong, offering a disheartening view into the business side of game creation with the multiplatform release of Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, a game that feels as if it were assembled by machines in a subterranean dome. And while that may sound like an extreme appraisal of a project that clearly had human hands involved in its creation, anyone involved that ever had a love for playing videogames was clearly discouraged from expressing said love here, I assure you.

Any logical sense that guides the creation process has been abandoned in the bizarre effort to race the original Wii release to the bottom while selling you on the idea that the exact opposite is the case.

There are a lot of more fanciful and poetic paths toward opening a discussion about the game, but the simple fact is that I can’t be bothered.

Life is too short to expend the effort on Epic Mickey 2.

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Demo Report – Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion

Demo Report Disney Epic Mickey Power of Illusion
With Disney now offering up a demo for Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion, we all have an equal opportunity to finally sample the 3DS title, which has held my curiosity since the company revealed that the game serves as a sequel to the fondly remembered Castle of Illusion that hit the Sega Genesis way, way back in 1990.

And while on one hand it’s surprising that Disney would commission a 2D sidescroller in the here and now, the 2D elements of their Epic Mickey series make it a tad less so. It’s certainly far less surprising that the game ties into Epic Mickey at least, and this short taste offers players a chance to see how the relationship bleeds into the 3DS outing.

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Demo Report – Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance

Demo Report Metal Gear Rising Revegeance
The Zone of the Enders HD Collection hit retail shelves last week, harkening back to the golden days of the PlayStation 2 – all the more so for the demo disc it includes with a fresh look at Platinum Games’ spin-off from the Metal Gear franchise.

The short demo offers a different trip from the one appearing at E3 earlier this year, beginning with a new optional VR tutorial, which attempts to ensure players get familiar with the game’s blade mode before stepping into the game proper.

Holding down the left trigger on the 360 controller, the right analog stick can be rotated to see the angle of a potential slice, engaged by letting go of the analog stick for a precise single strike. This proves useful for slicing cardboard enemies in training, but in the field, getting Zen with hitting the analog stick repeatedly to unleash a fury of slices comes in handy for quickly dispatching the Gekko’s that appear.

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The House of Mouse

Disney Epic Mickey 2
It’s hard to believe Warren Spector hasn’t always worked with Disney.

Spector visited Toronto last week along with writer Marv Wolfman to discuss the upcoming sequel to 2010’s Disney Epic Mickey, taking a moment to show off his Disney themed socks before demonstrating his extensive knowledge of the company’s animation history.

From documents and sketches hidden away in the Disney vault to pointing out the three rare instances where Mickey Mouse appeared in releases with differently angled ears, there’s no doubt that Spector has the deepest of appreciation for the source material painstakingly analyzed by Junction Point in creating a game that balances the need to chart their own course for Mickey while still honoring the years of work that have made Mickey the icon that he is today.

As impressed as I often am by passion, labors are not forgiven for shortcomings because of the love poured into them. But while Epic Mickey 2 carries the weight of criticisms regarding the original release, it’s very easy to believe that Spector’s motivation remains fixed on the earnest attempt to create a game worthy of the respect he continually pays to the house of mouse. And while Spector isn’t shy about pointing out that the original Wii exclusive sold quite well despite the critical reception, he doesn’t shy away from addressing complaints about the camera system and choice driven narrative that this sequel needs to improve upon on the road to realizing the original vision.

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Kirby’s Dream Collection

Review Kirbys Dream Collection
With the countdown to the release of the Wii U drawing ever closer, Nintendo offers one last release for the Wii, honoring the 20th Anniversary of their pudgy pink star with an endless appetite, Kirby.

This special edition release wraps a soundtrack and art book within some adorable packaging, along with six of Kirby’s earliest adventures, so let’s break that down below.

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Kicking it Old School

Review Johnny Kung Fu
Having a chance to check out UFO Interactive’s latest addition to the 3DS eShop this week offered another title looking to make everything old new again, or is that everything new old again?

As often happens to Kung Fu heroes, Johnny Kung Fu finds his best girl kidnapped and rushed away to the top of an ominous corporate tower. Determined to ride the elevator straight to the top, players find a nostalgia trip when confronted by the first floor, which is decorated with ye olde Game & Watch aesthetics.

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