DownStab | Video Game News, Reviews, Videos, and More

Sunday Roundup: 12/28/14

Mario Bros ChristmasI’m late on getting this Christmas themed Sunday Roundup out, but after the holiday itself, and the craziness that was my job, followed by the fun times had on New Year’s Eve, and then a week long vacation in Las Vegas and getting to see the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show, I barley had any time to write! Because of that, I have actually combined the last three weeks into this one Roundup. Honestly, it really just contains the games from the holidays, as I didn’t buy but one game afterward, but to be perfectly fair, you all know. Also, this is the last Roundup of 2014! And I have to say, it was an exceptional way to end the year indeed!

Pandoras Tower CoverPandora’s Tower
Wii
Release Date: April 16th, 2013
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

The Operation Rainfall games have been out for a good while now, yet I’ve still never played or purchased any of them. The crown jewel of that (at least in GameStop’s eyes) is Xenoblade Chronicles, but the other two games (Pandora’s Tower right here, and the also excellent looking The Last Story) are both Wii showcase games as well. They carried with them a sort of nostalgic pride for older gamers, as well as a collector’s commitment to seek out these somewhat harder to find games.

The Last of Us CoverThe Last of Us
PS3
Release Date: June 14th, 2013
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

The Last of Us was definitely on my Christmas List last year, and I was incredibly happy to open it up from my brother this year. Thanks, Phil! Despite the game later being released as an HD remake on PS4, owning the original still means a lot to me: it rounds out my collection of Naughty Dog games on the PS3, and it is also one of the best games on the console. I’m very excited to play this one!

Bayonetta 2 CoverBayonetta 2
Wii U
Release Date: October 24th, 2014
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

I played the first Bayonetta in college. One of my floormates really loved the game, but I didn’t like it near as much as he did. I feel like it’s a game I should have really enjoyed: I liked the original three Devil May Cry games, and I pretty much liked every game in the vein. Perhaps I just didn’t give Bayonetta enough time to grow on me. Regardless, I exchanged a copy of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare for this Wii U sequel. Honestly, I’m really pumped to play this one too: the reviews have gotten to me, and the gameplay and visuals look awesome!

Sonic Lost World CoverSonic: Lost World
Wii U
Release Date: October 29th, 2013
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

The problem with Sonic games will be around forever it seems, as the most recent release of Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric is anything but extraordinary (judging from reviews I wouldn’t even deem it ordinary). Despite this, last year saw the release of Sonic: Lost World, a new game drawing inspiration from the Super Mario Galaxy type of gameplay. Though not regarded nearly as highly as the plumber’s outings, Lost World had always been a game I was seeking out, perhaps because of that comparison, or the Nintendo themed DLC planets, or maybe the bright visuals. Either way, thanks Alyssa for this new Wii U game!

The Walking Dead Season Two CoverThe Walking Dead: Season Two
Xbox 360
Release Date: October 14th, 2014
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

The sequel to one of the only games to make me cry! How could I not want to play this new one from Telltale Games! I think taking on the role of Clementine, a much younger hero than the first game’s Lee, will change up much of the decisions and how you react to others and they to you. I’m still thinking (and hoping, honestly) the gameplay is just like the other Telltale Games games, because that’s what I’ve come to expect and love about these series’. I wonder if I’ll end up crying again… Hmm…

Warhammer 40000 Space Marine CoverWarhammer 40,000: Space Marine
Xbox 360
Release Date: September 6th, 2011
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – $9)

I’ve combined a couple weeks of Roundups here since it’s the Holidays and I’ve been incredibly busy. Even right now I’m writing this articles in Las Vegas waiting to go to the final day of CES! So what all that means is I was able to go to GameStop and pick up a few games myself. I was astounded by all the amazing games I received as gifts from everyone, but there were still some games that jumped out at me, including Warhammer 40K: Space Marine. Also jumping out was a very rare Buy 2 Get 1 Free of any used product deal at GameStop: no under $20 limiting factor. Sweet!

Tomb Raider The Definitive Edition CoverTomb Raider: The Definitive Edition
PS4
Release Date: January 28th, 2014
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – FREE)

Laura’s father absolutely surprised me by giving us a PlayStation 4 console! I was not expecting it in the slightest. I’ve put a PS4 (and before that a PS3, Xbox 360, etc.) on my Christmas list for years, but never imagined someone to actually get one for me. That’s what made this year so special. I felt like a kid opening that console up! Thank you so much Mr. Williams! You gave a console to a very loving home. And now I can start playing some of the PS4’s best, like Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition, which I won’t have anything to compare how definitive it is to because I still haven’t played the original Tomb Raider. Well, I have played the original original Tomb Raider, but you know what I mean.

Marvel Super Hero Squad The Infinity Gauntlet (3DS) CoverMarvel Super Hero Squad: The Infinity Gauntlet
3DS
Release Date: October 11th, 2011
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – $6)

I just bought this game on the Wii a few weeks back, but seeing it on the 3DS is an opportunity I can’t pass by. I didn’t know the game was on the 3DS either, so it caught me by surprise when it was sitting on the shelf, complete no less! There really isn’t a huge market of used 3DS games at GameStop yet. I am hoping that trend changes soon. Perhaps with the release of the New Nintendo 3DS people will start trading in games to pick up the new handheld. And I’ll swoop in and buy all those games. Suckers!

LEGO City Undercover CoverLEGO City Undercover
Wii U
Release Date: March 18th, 2013
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – $41)

Only a few Wii U games really stood out to me during it’s launch window, and LEGO City Undercover was one of those games. It’s hard to not make the comparisons to the Grand Theft Auto series: you play in a huge open world city, you get to drive around cars where ever you want, you can do pretty much everything, and so on. Naturally being a LEGO and Nintendo game there isn’t any crime or violence, in fact you play as a police officer, but the similarities are apparent. For some reason the game has always retained a high resale price, even nearly two years after it’s initial release.

Myth Makers Orbs of Doom CoverMyth Makers: Orbs of Doom
Wii
Release Date: October 26th, 2007
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – $1)

You know, I should probably start a series on “Dollar Games” and just see the type of crap you can put up with in these likely awful titles. Myth Makers: Orbs of Doom has been on my radar a little over 5 months now, after I discovered the game is part of a series of games all with the Myth Maker moniker, and all with terrible flaws and gameplay. The other games are Trixie in Toyland and Super Kart GP. They all look and sound like winners, right?

Raiden Fighters AcesRaiden Fighter Aces
Xbox 360
Release Date: May 7th, 2009
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – $6)

Whoa, what a find! Raiden Fighters: Aces is an Xbox 360 exclusive collection of the entire Raiden Fighters series of scrolling shooters. Itself a spinoff of the Raiden series, Raiden Fighters still features top down gameplay and frantic firing action. This version on the 360 is relatively hard to come by, and this is the first time I’ve seen it in the wild at all. The game usually goes for $15-$30 online, but sadly this copy doesn’t have the instructions :(. Still, for that price I am absolutely on board!

Dead Space Extraction CoverDead Space: Extraction
Wii
Release Date: September 29th, 2009
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – FREE)

The Dead Space series has been one I’ve been trying to get into since its conception way back in 2008 but still haven’t managed to play. Extraction for the Wii is a spinoff exclusive to Nintendo’s console, though an updated release was seen on the PS3. It’s an on-rails shooter set before the events of the first Dead Space. As far as collector’s value goes this game isn’t really all that pricy (I got it free as part of a deal, but it’s usually around $10), but finding it has become harder for me. Luckily this particular GameStop had one and at the right time!

Mario Kart Wii CoverMario Kart Wii
Wii
Release Date: April 27th, 2008
Purchased at: GameStop (San Jose, CA – $37)

The only Mario Kart game I do not own is now mine! Mario Kart Wii is a fun one, but it’s one that hit a sore spot for a lot of gamers familiar with the series. It introduced motorcycles to the series, which were then seen in each subsequent entry. The game got a lot more hectic and a lot less tournament worthy/competitive. For me that didn’t really matter as I still thought this a good Mario Kart game, but others scoffed. It’s still damn fun and worth it for any Wii owner. For what it’s worth, I think Mario Kart 8 is superior. So there’s that.

Borderlands The Pre-Sequel CoverBorderlands: The Pre-Sequel
Xbox 360
Release Date: October 14th, 2014
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

My brother also got me Borderlands: The Pre-sequel, which was also on my list! I was honestly kind of surprised to see this one, mainly because it was relatively new at the time, meaning it cost a lot of money. Having played and beaten both Borderlands games before this one with Laura, I want to start this one and keep the tradition going! I really like the Borderlands gameplay and style, so I’m hoping it seeps through to this game as well.

Injustice Gods Among Us Ultimate Edition CoverInjustice: Gods Among Us: Ultimate Edition
Xbox 360
Release Date: November 12th, 2013
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

Much like Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe before it, Injustice: Gods Among Us features a huge cast of DC heroes and villains to duke it out with across a variety of stages. This edition comes packed with all the DLC characters and content, too! I’ll likely keep this one in the packaging because after I set up my PS4 the game was offered for free as the Free Games with PSN deal thingy. Hooray for free games and keeping new games wrapped!

Fragile Dreams Farewell Ruins of the Moon CoverFragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon
Wii
Release Date: March 16th, 2010
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

Not part of Operation Rainfall but in the same caliber in my mind is Fragile Dreams on the Wii. The game incorporates lighting as a central part of gameplay, using the Wii Remote as a flashlight to illuminate areas, defeat ghosts, and solve puzzles. It’s a niche game for sure, but I’m thinking it will stay relatively cheap in the collector’s circle. That is mainly because it is readily available online and the resale value is still low (~$20).

Super Princess Peach CoverSuper Princess Peach
DS
Release Date: February 27th, 2006
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

Hooray! I’ve been searching for this DS gem for years now, and Laura finally got me my very own copy! Super Princess Peach spins the traditional Mario formula in a new fashion, casting the Princess as the main character saving the Mushroom Kingdom! I’m actually already through more than 75% of the game, and while it’s not the greatest thing on the DS, it’s a very fun and colorful game. Definitely worth the talk. It is also a departure from the normal Mario game, meaning it might be a bit more collectible in the future.

Persona 4 Arena Ultimax CoverPersona 4 Arena: Ultimax
Xbox 360
Release Date: September 30th, 2014
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

While I like the Persona series and also greatly enjoy fighting games (and this is apparently one of the better ones), I really wanted this game just to complete the Tarot card set. And I did! I’m not one to buy a game to get something other than the game in my collection, but those cards are too damn awesome to miss! And hey, I have a pretty sweet fighting game to play when I get around to it!

Okami CoverOkami
PS2
Release Date: September 19th, 2006
Purchased at: Goodwill (Sunnyvale, CA – $6)

Who would have thought a few days prior to Christmas Goodwill would have a spectacular selection of perfect PS2 games? I was able to grab Okami here as well as a handful of other expensive and harder to find games for just six bucks each! You wouldn’t believe my excitement when I saw these games just sitting there! I actually bought a few other PS2 games not listed here because they are already in my collection, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to grab them for a low price and flip them for some extra cash later!

We Love Katamari CoverWe Love Katamari
PS2
Release Date: September 20th, 2005
Purchased at: Goodwill (Sunnyvale, CA – $6)

The Katamari series is always crazy and cool, and I played and really enjoyed the wackiness of the first PS2 game back in 2008. This PS2 sequel seems to be largely the same thing, which is exactly what I want. The awesome thing about all these Goodwill PS2 games is the price: This game as well as most of the others retail for well over $15 – $20.

Shadow Hearts CoverShadow Hearts
PS2
Release Date: December 12th, 2001
Purchased at: Goodwill (Sunnyvale, CA – $6)

A super early PS2 RPG, Shadow Hearts was easily the best find of the day. The game usually sells for $30 or more, and the condition here is near flawless. The game itself is a basic type of RPG, and as with most games that came out so early in the PS2’s life, it doesn’t feature the best visuals or gameplay. There is a sequel, Shadow Hearts: Covenant, which is readily available at plenty of locations, or online, but also fetches a pretty penny. Maybe it’ll be donated as well…

Ico CoverIco
PS2
Release Date: September 24th, 2001
Purchased at: Goodwill (Sunnyvale, CA – $6)

Ico was released by Team Ico, who would later go on to create Shadow of the Colossus and are still developing (?) the upcoming The Last Guardian. Ico and Shadow of the Colossus are sometimes regarded as the best games on the PS2, Shadow of the Colossus in particular. Even their PS3 HD collection release was met with unanimous praise. Having said that, I couldn’t find a cheap copy of Ico anywhere until today! This is a great find, and one that helps round out a good PS2 collection.

Destiny CoverDestiny
PS4
Release Date: September 9th, 2014
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

Laura’s dad gave us the Destiny PS4 bundle, meaning we got a sweet “Glacier White” system along with a copy of Bungie’s space epic. I already started the game and I’m getting some Borderlands/Phantasy Star Online vibes, which are good things. I like the gameplay so far, and the approach to mission-based levels are nice. They allow me to play a long time or a short bit and still feel like I accomplished something. Look forward to hearing more about this game soon!

Adventure Time The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom CoverAdventure Time: The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom
3DS
Release Date: November 18th, 2014
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

Sadly there was no collector’s edition release for this game despite having collector’s editions for the previous two 3DS entries in the series (which I have!). The Secret of the Nameless Kingdom uses the same formula cooked up in the previous game, Explore the Dungeon Because I DON’T KNOW, so it’s a semi-standard top down action RPG. Reviews haven’t been extraordinary but they’ve been decent enough. Being a fan of the source material as well as in ownership of the past game, I owed it to myself to get this one. Thanks Laura!

Castlevania Order of Ecclesia CoverCastlevania: Order of Ecclesia
DS
Release Date: October 21st, 2008
Purchased at: N/A (Christmas Gift)

Oh man, finally! I mentioned in a previous post about the games that had no place on my Christmas lists, but I didn’t mention how certain games somehow remained on my Christmas list for years and years and never found a way under our tree. Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia was one of those games! I pointed out to my mom in jest a few months back that this game had been on my list for six previous Christmases. She must have listened, because she remembered, went online, and got it for me! I played all the GBA and previous DS games in the series (as well as the awful 3DS Mirror of Fate), and after hearing this one was considered the best out of all of those I really wanted to play it. So thank you very much, mom, for getting me this truly awesome game!

Chessmaster the Art of Learning CoverChessmaster: The Art of Learning
PSP
Release Date: February 12th, 2008
Purchased at: Amazon (Online – $3)

You know, for just three bucks I couldn’t say no to a brand new PSP game. Or, at least it was pegged as brand new. When I got the game the packaging looked more like it was resealed by someone and not the original factory plastic seal. If it were a more worthy game I’d probably be upset, but I’m sure the resale market for the PSP version of Chessmaster isn’t yearning for a factory sealed copy of the game. And again, it was only three dollars!

Merry Christmas,
Jsick

Liked it? Take a second to support DownStab on Patreon!

Jsick

I've been writing about video games for years and playing them even longer. You'll find me playing all types of games, old and new. Mega Man III is greater than Mega Man II.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Those are stellar Goodwill finds! I love frequenting thrift stores and finding those kind of deals.

    I also picked up Raiden Fighters Aces at a local GameStop and was very happy about the find.

    1. Agreed! If only every trip to thrift stores were this successful!

  2. Vanilla Destiny was a struggle. It had its share of rough edges that needed to be sanded down. I would be curious to see what you think of the new expansion, The Taken King. Thanks

Leave a Reply

Close Menu
LIVE NOW! CLICK TO VIEW.
CURRENTLY OFFLINE