Author Archives: John-Charles Holmes

About

John-Charles writes, draws, thinks, and plays video games.  Currently working on a degree in communications and cinema studies, he is interested in the culture of media and how people choose to interact with it, specifically video games.  As far as games go, he is self-proclaimed retro gamer with interests in rhythm games and classic Sega works.  He current also draws comics which can be found at sanpozeit.com.

Super Mario Bros. 3 on the 3DS Virtual Console and More GBA Games on Wii U

Everyone’s favorite plumbing simulator, Super Mario Bros. 3, is now available for download off of the 3DS eShop for $4.99. This is the original NES version of the game, so if you were hoping for the revamped All-Stars style GBA game, you’re gonna have to wait just a bit longer. But in the meantime, you can once again play what some consider to be the greatest NES game of all time anywhere and everywhere you go! I know I’ll be picking it up. [...]

DuckTales: Remastered Soundtrack Releasing Digitally on April 29th

One of the best surprises of last year was not just the actual release of DuckTales: Remastered, a polished remake of the original NES classic, but the amazing soundtrack of remixed and remastered tunes by chiptune mainstay, Jake “virt” Kaufman. The game itself was honestly worth actually buying for the music alone. So much so that fans were begging for a soundtrack release, but unfortunately that choice was in the hands of Disney and not Capcom or developer Wayforward. Now, a digital [...]

PAX East – Videoball Hands-On Impressions

I’ve learned a lot at PAX East this weekend. But if I’ve learned anything, it’s that Videoball is truly the sport…OF THE FUTURE. Midnight City had a near-complete version of Videoball on display at their booth this year. The developers assured us that the build we were playing was the most polished version to date, with most updates and remaining work on the game lying within the UI. For those of you new to Videoball, the game is a two-on-two virtual sports game, in which players [...]

PAX East – Bounden Hands-On Impressions

A lot of the new indie games on the floor of PAX East this year had the ambition of encouraging new ways for people to play and interact with video games. Bounden is a mobile game that does this by bringing two people together on both ends to learn how to dance in unison. Bounden starts off with a tutorial that teaches players how to turn and rotate the phone together in order to follow a trail of dots that [...]

PAX East – Hack ‘n’ Slash Impressions

If you’ve ever experimented with programming as a kid, then you no doubt have memories of making a program then changing around the variables to make some pretty crazy stuff happen. Or maybe you just did that with a Quake console or your sister’s Windows 98 account. Double Fine’s newest game, Hack ‘n’ Slash somehow manages to take the fun of that and apply it to a Zelda style game. In the demo on display at PAX East, the first area or so of the game [...]

PAX East – Shovel Knight Hands-On Impressions

While at PAX East, I got a chance to look at the almost complete Shovel Knight. The game is looking good on PC, Wii U, and 3DS with the title being very close to release. Yacht Games had two stages available to play, complete with end stage bosses to show off. The first thing I noticed upon picking up the game for the first time was just how tight the controls were. If you’ve ever played classic games like Ducktales [...]

PAX East – Astebreed Hands-On Impressions

Lately, a lot of doujin games have been turning up on not just American PC’s, but Steam at large.  What exactly is a doujin game?  Basically, it’s the indie games of the Japanese developers’ scene, and Playism’s been responsible for getting quite a few of them onto Steam.  One of the next possible contenders is Astebreed, a combination 2D and 3D shoot-em-up. One half of the game takes place in a traditional side-scrolling style, utilizing both a “cone” and “circle” lock on system.  Players can hold [...]

PAX East – Cosmic DJ Hands-On Impressions

The last rhythm game I can remember that actually utilized and encouraged the fine art of improvisation was Um Jammer Lammy.  Now, the upcoming iOS game Cosmic DJ can count itself amongst that oddly specific niche. Cosmic DJ is a game about making and remixing music, regardless of how much skill you have coming into it.  The demo I played started by offering me a number of scenarios to help revitalize something called the Jamtenna.  When I asked the sound designer, Katherine Wenske, if [...]

PAX East – Assault Android Cactus Hands-On Impressions

One of the most surprising titles of PAX East for me so far has been Assault Android Cactus by developer Witch Beam.  Talking to the designer Sanatana Mishra, he dropped the names of many great shmups in describing their own twin-stick bullet hell shooter, invoking the name and thoughts of the legendary Treasure.  Not because Assault Android Cactus is a carbon copy clone of these or any other shooters, but because of the simple design spirit they embodied. And man, was he pretty spot [...]

PAX East – Knight Squad Hands-On Impressions

Chainsawesome had a pretty hectic game to show off at PAX East today. Knight Squad is a massive eight player multiplayer experience where players take command of a rainbow selection of knights in variety of game types. Players run around the map, constantly stabbing each other out of oblivion and respawning immediately after, over and over while trying to complete different objectives. In the demo they showed off, there was a capture the flag mode, a soccer mode, and a mode [...]

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