Game Reviews

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Tribune News Service

“Paper Mario” is a fun game perfect for the experienced or novice gamer.

Grant Nelson, Staff Writer

“Cyberpunk 2070”
A game that I feel gets way too bad a rep is the recent “Cyberpunk 2070.” This game gets a lot of love and hate due to glitches and tech issues on last generation consoles but on PC and next generation consoles its far better. Despite all the hate, the game is a great story-based role-playing game set in an open world that is similar to “Grand Theft Auto 5” in the far future and filled with far more sex, drugs and trips.
The game setting is very much like Liberty City or Los Santos but far more lawless meeting blade runner. The game explores many post-human concepts such as blurring the lines between artificial life and organic life. You explore a vast futuristic city filled with quests and action and hookers.
The game, “Cyberpunk,” like “Grand Theft Auto,” is filled with school commentary but this time it is nerdier. The world and lore feel a lot like a mix of mass effect with grand theft auto. The amount of roleplaying and impact your choices have on the story is something a lot of role-playing games in recent years have lacked.
The game delivers with heavy combat as well, with many gun types and customization. The game offers a very in-depth character creation. The game, while not what was expected, delivers a fun story and world to explore.

“Mario”
The games that I fell in love with as a kid were the Mario role playing games such as the “Paper Mario” series and “Super Mario” role playing game. These games created engaging stories as well as a fun and cartoonish world for the player to explore.
The games just had a sort of charm and life similar to “Dungeons and Dragons” or “Adventure Time.” The games traced across a world and had great boss fights, characters and just a lot of world building you just don’t get from, say, most Mario games.
It’s very much like classic role-playing games like “Final Fantasy” but for kids and always feel like a Saturday anime like “Digimon,” “Pokémon” or “Dragon Ball.” The game has very well written stories and just feel an endless anime quest that has nostalgic creatures and artwork.
In a time when we crave classic role-playing games that have a story and a sense of childlike wonder to them, I highly recommend these games.

“Skyrim Together”
“Skyrim” refuses to die. The fan base has created an entire universe out of the game, from mods that take on across the empire of Tamriel to more recent mods such as “Skyrim Together.”
The servers can fit up to 60 players, and so, players can travel across the sand box with their friends and share the expense as true “Elder Scrolls” multiplayer with the all the mechanics of “Skyrim” mixed in with play-versus-player and player-versus-environment.
The mod has rebuilt the dungeon system and has created a very new expense for fans of the old school “Elder Scrolls” games. There are also mods that have created wars between the high elf Thalmor armies and the human empire, or mods that give one command of their own city.
Most of these mods are sold in the “Skyrim” store, and they are really worth the time as we wait another 13 years for the next “Elder Scrolls” game.

“Warhammer 40k Dark Heresy”
A pen and paper role-playing game I love is called “Warhammer 40k Dark Heresy.” This grim, dark gothic space adventure takes to the far future where there is only war and chaos.
You take on the role in the base game as an imperial witch hunter that hunts down cultist, demons and mutants across the human empire.
You can trace it to vast hive cities to wild alien jungles. The game is much like “Dungeons and Dragons.” You have a party and a game master that is the cruel god of the world you play in. The game is very dark and filled with gothic themes and roleplaying. The setting is very much based in cosmic horror and sometimes you can hear the brass as you slay demons and cultist.
The main faction you play as the game are not good guys in any seance of word as you destroy entire worlds to stop the forces of chaos. For anyone who likes role playing and playing the bad guy, give it a shot.

“Doom Eternal”
A game I have started to play and love is “Doom Eternal.” This game is as metal as it gets. Taking place in an apocalyptic war between humanity and demon hordes of hell, this is as brutal as it is fun.
The game is very much like “Halo” on steroids and is filled with so many ways to fight your way through demons with a massage array of guns and power combos. The game takes you on a platforming warzone across hell, and you battle to save Earth and explore the lore and history of hell with great amounts of world building.
Doom captures the best aspects of games like “Halo” and “Metroid Prime” and is just so alive with action, great multiplayer and a very fun story. It just dropped the last story DLC pack and with everything together, it creates an amazing world so high on metal with a creative plot and calls back to the original doom from 20 years ago. It’s worth the money.

“The Alphabet Squadron”
A series that I think any fan trying to get into the new “Star Wars” canon would enjoy is “The Alphabet Squadron.” It coincides with games like “Star Wars Battlefront 2” and “Star Wars.”
I usually hate most new “Star Wars” content, but these books are a personal call back to many new republic books that many of us grew up with. The books follow new republic space marines and fighter pilots going after imperial warlords and remnants both in space and on ground.
The books really capture the epic battles from the movies and games, and they also do a great job of world building and set up ground for stories to be told. The books follow misfit soldiers trying to come together, and it covers things such as black ops missions and wet work. They are great pieces of military science fiction.
The books draw in other story arks from the show’s rebels and other books. It is a great adventure that remind me a lot of “Star Fox.” I say give the books a shot.

“Vampire the Massacre”
A game that I play a lot is “Vampire the Massacre” and the Total Darkness franchise. Landmark video games that are vast, open world role-playing games take place in shady California where at night, you can do anything you want.
You can go to BDSM clubs and feed upon gang members. A wide variety of endings based on your choices makes this game a classic. Other aspects in the franchise are the very gothic and occultic nature of this world, with stories following vampires, werewolves and fairy creatures. This world’s mythology is even more dark and outlandish in how these races live in the modern-day urban world.
The next game in the blood lines is going through hard ships in publisher politics and the like but I, like many, remain hopeful it will come out far sooner than later, but who knows? The pen and paper role-playing game is very much still popular and is more story driven world than “Dungeons and Dragons.” It has many mechanics that one does not find in “Dungeons and Dragons” in how one can build their story and world.
The local nerds of the round table usually run a game every semester, and it is a lot of fun. Try giving it a shot.