Little Nightmares Review

by Matthew Thompson

I like to think I keep myself fairly well apprised of upcoming video game releases and yet somehow Little Nightmares slipped past my radar. It actually appeared on my Most Anticipated Games list a couple of years back when it was known as Hunger, but between the name change and the passage of time it eluded me on release. Late in 2017, I spotted the familiar cover art while browsing GameFly and was able to put the game through its paces early on in 2018. In the process, I uncovered one of the underrated gems of last year Continue reading

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My Most Anticipated Games of 2018

by Matthew Thompson

I always like to follow up my look back at gaming in one year with what I’m looking forward to in the next. 2018 doesn’t seem to have quite as much for me to be excited about as 2017 had, particularly early on, but there are still quite a few standout titles. For my top five, I decided to only include games that are officially announced and that I believe will actually release in 2018 (delays have a habit of making these annual posts a bit redundant otherwise), but I’ve mentioned a slew of others in the bullets that follow. Well, here they are: my most anticipated games of 2018 Continue reading

My 2017 Gaming Awards

by Matthew Thompson

Hey everyone! I ran a little behind on this, but I finally put together my post looking back at gaming in 2017. My original intent was to do a top five and then some other awards in a separate post, but I couldn’t decide what to pick for my fifth game and I found a way to squeeze the big four games I wanted to touch on in this post (my GotY, my two runners-up and my late to the party GotY of sorts). Well, here it goes Continue reading

Super Mario Odyssey Review

by Matthew Thompson

I have always preferred my Mario platformers to be of the linear variety. As much as I loved the 2D titles growing up, I didn’t really become enamored with the 3D series until they returned to the plumber’s more straightforward roots with Galaxy and the subsequent games since (Galaxy 2, 3D Land and 3D World). I wasn’t exactly enthused to see Odyssey going back to the 64/Sunshine style and after playing Odyssey, I think my lack of enthusiasm for this return to a more adventure-slanting 3D Mario was warranted Continue reading

My Yoshi Jack-O-Lantern

by Matthew Thompson

Hello everyone! For about a decade now, I have taken to making video game-themed Jack-O-Lanterns for Halloween each year. Cartoony platforming protagonists have become kind of my go-to for these pumpkin carvings. In the past, that has included the PS2’s holy trinity of Jak, Ratchet and Sly, the limbless wonder Rayman, and finally last year the legendary, mustachioed plumber himself Mario (in a Tanooki suit of course!). This year I tackled another platforming favorite of mine, Mario’s dinosaur buddy Yoshi. Now I am here to share some pictures of the carving. Here they are Continue reading

Life is Strange: Before the Storm “Awake” (Episode 1) Impressions

by Matthew Thompson

I was very skeptical when I first heard rumors about Life is Strange: Before the Storm and even more red flags popped up when I saw its official reveal at E3. My big worry was whether or not a prequel to a choice-based narrative-focused game like the original Life is Strange was a good idea. Would knowing the fates of the major players here dampen the experience? And to be honest, I was never a big enough fan of Chloe Price to really want a whole game focusing on her past either. When you throw in a new developer and different voice actress for Chloe, I had plenty of reasons for concern. But after playing through this initial episode of Before the Storm recently, I am happy to report this new Life is Strange project is off to a very promising start Continue reading

Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle Impressions

by Matthew Thompson

I was very open to the idea of Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, but had no idea if I would like it. Unlike most people, it wasn’t because of the Rabbids. I actually have some fond memories of the Rabbid games. I used to play the original Raving Rabbids title on the Wii with my mom and in the years since she has gotten me a few other entries in the series as gifts. The asynchronous multiplayer in the Wii U’s Rabbids Land was a particularly big hit with friends and family while some of the other Wii party games were a good time when I could gather more friends for game nights back in college. My worry was whether I could get into something turn-based. I’ve mentioned my aversion to this style of combat in the past. I’d avoided any RPGs like that since I was a kid and my only flirtation with strategy games of that ilk – Advance Wars and a similar game in the Prince of Persia series (yes there was a PoP strategy game and I own it!) – didn’t last all that long. Would this wacky Mario + Rabbids crossover leave me cold in the same way? Apparently not as I found myself hooked on this for a couple of weeks last month Continue reading

The Games of Fall 2017

by Matthew Thompson

Hey everyone! With a slew of Fall and holiday gaming releases coming soon, I thought I’d take a quick look forward to what I would like to play in these final months of 2017. Here it goes Continue reading

Madden 18 Longshot Mode Impressions

by Matthew Thompson

Madden used to be an annual Day 1 purchase for me. Due to a number of factors, I started getting the game less often until it became a rental the past couple of years. Part of it was me branching out into a lot of different genres and preferring my sports time be spent watching the real thing. The other issue is one often levied at sports games: a lack of substantial upgrades for each new entry. The fact that I was buying a glorified roster update started to grate on me. That is one reason I was excited to see EA announce the new Longshot mode for Madden 18 at E3 this year. After playing through it last week, it is safe to say that this new story mode is different from anything that has been a part of Madden in the past and a welcome addition to the long-running series Continue reading