Video Game Reviews

Here's where I keep track of video games I have played. I rate the games on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being "highly recommended" and 1 being "forget this game and go read a book or something."

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City on PC (8/10)

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Car Flip

GTA: Chinatown Wars on the DS was my first Grand Theft Auto game and it remains one of the best games on that platform. When Vice City went on sale on Steam I decided I had to try out a proper 3-D GTA game on the PC.

Reviewers always seem to note the violence and mature themes as the selling point of this franchise, but really what makes it so great is that it fulfills a video gaming fantasy that I imagine most Atari aged gamers had as kids: being able to get off the race course and just drive wherever you wanted in a game. The closest I came to this as a kid was driving off the road in…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Wed, 06/30/2010 - 10:49

Mass Effect on PC (9/10)

Mass Effect - The Citadel

Mass Effect is another BioWare RPG that I picked up on Steam for five bucks during their holiday sale (along with Jade Empire). This is a fantastic looking game. The Citadel (screen shot above) is an  absolutely spectactular environment in which to roam around. This is also one of the first RPGs I have played in which every line of dialogue is voiced’a big help for me and my poor reading skills and short attention span.

The story and the rich universe in which it takes place is top-notch (as far as video games go). The game does a good job in pointing the player in the right direction so I…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Mon, 06/07/2010 - 19:44

Doom 3 on PC (8/10)

Darkness and Demons... It's Doom 3!

No that isn't a black square you are looking at above. It's a  screenshot. A screenshot from Doom 3. Forget story and inventive game play, Doom 3 is all about mood lighting. And by "mood lighting" I mean darkness. Lots and lots of darkness... and shooting things.

The original Doom is a classic. I look at it as the pinnacle of the arcade-style shooter. When games were all about insane difficulty and scoring points. In some respects Doom 3 maintains much of the same feel of the original: lots of jump scares and monsters tucked away in places that make little sense in terms of real-world design…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Wed, 03/17/2010 - 11:26

Jade Empire on PC (7/10)

Jade Empire Screenshot

It's been quite a while since I have been able to make myself play another BioWare Game. I really liked the Baldur's Gate games, but Neverwinter Nights left such an awful taste in my mouth that I have been avoiding their titles ever since. I only decided to give Jade Empire a try after playing Fallout 3 which had revived some of my faith in RPG style games.

Thankfully, Jade Empire steers clear of the swords and sorcery setting and simplifies a lot of the horrible, number-based statistics that Neverwinter used to describe every object in the game. Also, I had heard the combat had a more of a…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Wed, 03/10/2010 - 11:46

Klonoa on Nintendo Wii (8/10)

This was a cartoony and fun side-scrolling platformer with nice2.5-D graphics. A bit easy and lacking the exploration and precise control of a Mario game, but enjoyable and worth playing through especially for the unexpected ending.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 02/19/2010 - 20:26

Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars on Nintendo DS (9/10)

Grand Theft Auto - Chinatown Wars Aside from the hour or two of GTA 2 that I played on the PC years ago, this was my first Grand Theft Auto game. I don't find that whole gangsta thing terribly appealing. However, mature rated games are very hard to come by on the DS so I decided to try this out. Having finally completed the main storyline, I have to say this one of the best games on the DS by far.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 02/05/2010 - 19:26

Mirror's Edge on PC (9/10)

Mirror's Edge

Mirror's Edge is another free-running inspired game like Assassin's Creed. But unlike Assassin's Creed, the acrobatic roof running is actually an integral part of the game mechanics and fun. With its puzzle-based level design, this game has much more in common with Portal than anything else. The puzzles are a bit more straightforward than the mind-bending logic tests of Portal, but they offer just about the right amount of challenge for my impatient gaming skills. Once you get a knack for the controls, running and leaping across the scenery is very satisfying. The combat can be a little…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Mon, 12/21/2009 - 13:23

Assassin's Creed on PC (6/10)

One of the many exciting sit and watch missions in Assassin's Creed

Pictured above is one of the many exciting "sit and watch some guys talk" missions from the PC game Assassin's Creed: Director's Cut. Yup. Your goal on these quests is to find some guys, sit on a bench, and listen to them. No this isn't a Wii Fit balance game, it's Assassin's Creed!

The main reason you would want to play Assassin's Creed is to experience the free-running acrobatics’dashing across the rooftops of ancient Damascus’in the privacy of your own home. In case you are unfamiliar with free-running or its somewhat gayer French cousin, Parkour, they are an EXTREME!!!!! version of…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Sun, 11/08/2009 - 21:12

Fallout 3 on PC (9/10)

Fallout 1 and 2 are two of my favorite computer games. Those games had a great style to them, engaging post-apocalyptic story lines and a great turn-based combat system. Fallout 3 is a worthy 3-D successor to those games that falls short only in its game combat mechanics. At first glance Fallout 3 looks like a first person shooter. You can try to play it that as a standard shooter but you will soon find out that it's an awful FPS. Fortunately, the game has a pseudo turn-based combat system in which you can pause the action and spend "action points" to attack specific parts of an enemy's…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 10/09/2009 - 19:41

Braid on PC (10/10)

 Braid got a lot of critical praise when it was released for Xbox. When it went on sale for the PC on Steam for $4.99, I immediately grabbed it. For once, this is a game that actually lives up to the hype that surrounds it.

Braid uses standard 2-D platforming conventions like jumping around on enemies and prize collection, but what sets the game apart is its unique time-manipulation mechanic. At first, the ability to reverse time if you make a mistake seems like a rip-off of Prince of Persia: Sands of Time. In that game, reversing time only served as a "lives" or respawning system’a way to undo…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 09/25/2009 - 09:08