Mini Review Monday: Of Mario and Frat Boys

Initial impressions and quick reviews is what mini-review Monday is all about.  Here we go!

Super Mario Galaxy 2:
Challenge in an Mario game?  Amazing!  This is the best Mario game that I've played in a really long time.  It may be the best Mario game ever.  I started playing platformers when I was 5 years old and since Mario platformers tend to be accessible to new gamers they are pretty easy games.  This was great when I was 5, but now I can blast through a Mario game in one day and have no trouble with any of the levels.  Mario Galaxy 2 changes the formula because it doesn't pull any punches.  It threw me into difficult platforming sequences from the 2nd level onward and I loved it.  Challenge is a nice change of pace in gaming today and I'm having a great time with Mario Galaxy 2 because of it.

  Eat Mushrooms, fly with dinosaurs.

Army of Two 40th Day:  
No.  Just No.  This game has a button to do stupid frat boy interactions with your partner.  The GPS system can identify what rank the enemy soldiers are... somehow.  A player can grab aggro and basically let the second player be completely ignored.  The field of view is strange when played with two people and the controls don't feel very tight either.  This is a generic shooter that doesn't deserve any of your attention... unless you want to make fun of it while you play, then by all means, go ahead.

Risk Factions:
Based on the 2008 updated Risk formula and distributed on Xbox Live, Risk Factions brings Risk into the digital age.  I especially like the new objectives and key points on maps.  Capturing cities counts as 2 territories, get enough crypts to gain the ability to freeze a territory, hold enough barracks and control of the missile becomes yours.  Things like these help change up the game.  Risk Factions finds a nice middle ground between classic Risk and fresh ideas.  With the free demo on Xbox Live there is no reason to not give it a try.

Factions include cats, zombies, robots, and snowmen. Seriously.

Alpha Protocol:
In this spy-action game there are some interesting ideas but the execution misses the mark.  The confusing conversation system, boring story, loose controls, weak mini-games, and badly implemented upgrade system all lend themselves to a mediocre game.  If you are interested in a stealth action game or a good conspiracy storyline then your time is better spent playing Splinter Cell: Conviction.  Both the single player and co-op campaigns in Splinter Cell: Conviction are fabulous.

CS Source:
Counter-Strike Source recently patched in achievements which inspired me to go revisit the game.  It's still the same old Counter-Strike, but that's a good thing.  Counter-Strike is the pioneer of modern day shooters.  It was doing terrorists vs counter-terrorists when Call of Duty was still covering WWII.  If you like multiplayer first person shooters and have never tried Counter-Strike then now is a good time to go back and visit it.

 The grandfather of Modern Warfare



  1. I suggest putting the pictures in the section they belong. Right now it looks like the Factions pic goes with Army of Two and the CS pic goes with Alpha Protocol. Either put the pic after the paragraph it goes with or before the paragraph but after the game title.


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