19 December 2015

Review: Tekken: Dark Resurrection (Playstation Portable)

Tekken is one of my all time favorite fighting series. Not because I believe it to be the best fighter out there, but because of nostalgia. I can not tell you how many hours I have spent in front of Tekken 2 with my friends. That game was my main reason for owning a Playstation 1 for the longest time. I have purchased every last game of the main series and when I got a Playstation Portable I immediately picked up Tekken: Dark Resurrection, which is the updated version of Tekken 5.

Wow. Just wow. It is not a handheld light version of Tekken, it is the real deal that just happens to be on a handheld system. It is every bit as fast paced, graphically beautiful and technically impressive. It truly feels like a top of the line PS2-Tekken title right in my hands and on the go. Very nice.

Tekken: Dark Resurrection contains all the usual stuff such as Arcade mode, Story mode, Practice mode and Tekken Dojo in which the players could download "ghosts", meaning a fingerprint uploaded by other players. This meant you could have the CPU behave as real people. The rooster is not slimmed down either, we have all the characters from the arcade plus three extras bringing the total up to 35 characters to choose from. The fighting system is completely intact, the loading times are very short and the game runs at buttery 60 frames per seconds. There is not much else to say quite frankly, it is a solid Tekken game that every Playstation Portable owner (who likes fighters) should pick up.

14 December 2015

Review: LocoRoco 2 (Playstation Portable)

The LocoRoco is a species of round creatures living in peace on their planet far away somewhere in the universe. Together with their friends the Mui Mui they care for the planet's vegetation and make sure that everything is alive, colorful and pleasant. One day, of course, evil forces called Moja arrive to the planet and want to take over. The LocoRoco have no idea how to fight this new mysterious creature army and thus put their fate in our hands to play the role of the planet. Meaning we get to tilt the ground to the left and right using the shoulder buttons L and R. Pretty soon the army is defeated and the LocoRoco can continue their happy lives in peace. That was part one. Pretty soon a sequel was released, because LocoRoco was such a success that it even feels a bit like a defining title when it comes to the PSP library.

The Moja have regrouped from their defear and they are now ready to once again try to take over the planet where the LocoRoco live. This time they have learned a new song that let them suck the lifeforce out of things to effectively spread chaos. The basic controls are identical, but this time around there is also a few new things. Among other things the LocoRoco, which are more in number, can now swim under water. This opens up to completely new kinds of challenges. The player can visit the Mui Mui house through the main menu to build new rooms and craft all sorts of interiours for the little creatures to enjoy. Sometimes it is also neessary to defend the house against Moja attacks. LocoRoco 2 is just as difficult as the first one when it comes to collecting everything that can be found in the stages, so do not judge the game by its cover - players craving difficult challenges should have plenty to do if they aim for a 100% completion.

Initially I was a bit skeptical about playing the sequal as it seemed like "more of exactly the same" to me. But again, the saying "If it ain't broke don't fix it" proves to be true. With just the right amount of new innovations, coupled with familiar mechanics and even more of the adorable LocoRoco - who jump, roll, swim and sing - the game rolls straight into my heart. LocoRoco 2 is undoubtedly one of the console's finest titles.