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    Rainbow Skies Dives into the RPG Gameplay

    Damion gets into Trouble

    Rainbow Skies will be launching on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation Vita on June 26, 2018, in North America and will be launching June 27, 2018, in Europe and Asia. This single player game will retail for $29.99 or €26.99. Shall I mention that this game is also coming from the maker of Rainbow Moon!?

    In the game, you play as Damion and it is his final examination as a monster tamer. Along with Damion, you have two other characters that will walk alongside him. Oh yeah! This is an important profession in his hometown, Arka, which is consistently attacked by these said monsters. To pass monster taming school, he must have the skill set. But the twist here is that he fails miserably and goes through a series of unfortunate events that destroys an entire compound filled with monsters. His examiner, Layne, is less than pleased as things take a turn for the worst.

    Rainbow Skies is a little different when it comes to set up, but brings something different to the table when it comes to a classic RPG style game. Skills are upgraded with magic books and these books are opened in chests or purchased in stores. These skills are not the same nor does every character learn every skill, so being aware of what you have and when you need to use it is important. Rainbow Skies gameplay takes 30-40 hours; but if you add side quests, gameplay could take up to 100 hours or more.

    As you do battles, you learn new skills and gain more hit points or HP. Best yet, there is no traditional game over in this game. The game is set in a vibrant world and has turn-based battles, skills and combo attacks to boot. There is not only the main story, but several side quests to help level and explore the game as well as mini games. Finally, this game has cross-save support on all three PlayStation consoles; play at home, save and take on the road.

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    Super Cloudbuilt – Xbox One Review

    When You Gotta Go Fast, You Get There By Any Means Necessary

    Speedrunning is something that has a community all it’s own. There are places that support it and host contests, and there are even charity events that raise a bunch of money to watch people speedrun anything from Tetris, to RPGs like Final Fantasy VII. So what if there was a game that combined parkour, shooting, and speedrunning? Well that game would be Cloudbuilt. What if that game came out in 2013 on PC and had a bunch of a DLC and was due for a remaster for the console? Well that game would be Super Cloudbuilt.

    Developed by Coilworks and published by Double ElevenSuper Cloudbuilt is being touted as a definitive remaster. The dev team has gone back into the game and looked at it “from the ground up”. What we get is something that is completely immersive and welcoming to new players, as well as a very challenging game for those returning.

    Players take on the role of Demi, a young soldier detached from her body. It sounds weird yes, but trust me, it all comes together. She awakens in a ruined building and must try to make sense of her new reality. Free running, jumping, shooting, Demi will do all she can to find out what’s going on, and why.

     

    Colorful, dark, cell-shaded, Super Cloudbuilt is a treat for your eyes. Colors pop against the dark backgrounds and are made to look even more colorful thanks to the dark outlines. Don’t let the colorful nature of this game detract from the challenging nature of it. In fact, the sparks of color also double as waypoints or points of interest in the game.

    The soundtrack to this game is incredibly well done. Music swells and lowers as action picks up giving you a real sense immersion. The music is a combination of deep thumping tracks mixed with orchestral movements. Players will find themselves bobbing their head while trying focus on reaching the next checkpoint.

    Speed and focus is the name of the game in Super Cloudbuilt. The speed running aspect of the game mixed with parkour elements mean you can get from Point A to Point B, but you decide just how you want to get there. This where the game shines, and also flounders a bit. Having the option to free roam while also flying at top speeds is exhilarating, until you hit a wall and fall to your death. When you do manage to slide, boost, wall jump, into a checkpoint, it feels amazing. Controls are precise and accurate so when a player does die, they have no one to blame but themselves. I will admit that when you are flying at top speed and suddenly stop, it takes the wind out of the game almost too abruptly. It feels like the entire game just stops and you have to start again. It’s a bit jarring.

    The addition of shooting in a game like this doesn’t take away from it’s parkour… core. It adds a new element that will have players tying to precisely aim and time their shots perfectly. While it takes a little bit to get used to the game’s controls, once a player is familiar with them, they will feel right at home in the world Super Cloudbuilt has created.

    If you are looking for something different I recommend Super Cloudbuilt. Fun, fast paced, challenging, and rewarding this game will satisfy the competitive nature as well spark the puzzle solving creativity within players.

    Super Cloudbuilt is out now on PS4, Steam and Xbox One at $19.99

    *The reviewer was given an Xbox One copy of the game for review purposes

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    A New Perspective on the Console War

    console-war-ps4-vs-xbox-one

    The internet is a buzz with smack talk about how Sony obliterated Microsoft and that the Xbox One is doomed. This type of banter isn’t new to me. This will be the third console generation to happen while I’ve worked in the game industry, and the talk happens every time, but that doesn’t make it any less irritating or short-sighted.

    Let’s a take step back in history, shall we? This E3 is actually very similar to the E3 following the last console reveals/launches, with the players in different places. Sony, the then market leader, announced an outlandish price for the PS3. Do you remember what it was? $599. That’s right! More expensive than any of this upcoming generation’s consoles will be. During this same time, everyone pretty much considered Nintendo down for the count, because the “gamers” weren’t that interested in what the Wii had to offer. Microsoft was riding high coming out of that of E3. Having already launched the 360, they were able to focus on the games. Now that we’re at the end of that generation, let’s take a look at how it all played out.

    At the start of 2013, worldwide sales of the Wii were close to 100 million. Xbox 360 and PS3 have garnered 77 and 70 million respectively. In the end, Nintendo kicked everyone’s butt because they appealed to a broader audience, and Sony’s ridiculous launch price didn’t put them THAT far behind in the long run.

    Now, we have Microsoft at the highest price point, Sony making competitive pricing decisions, and Nintendo has already launched the Wii U. Microsoft is trying to broaden its audience by releasing a system that does more than just games. Sony is releasing a system targeted squarely at “hardcore gamers,” and Nintendo is revealing its heavy hitting software for the Wii U.

    If previous E3s have taught us anything, it’s that you can’t really predict what’s going to happen because the consoles and their launch prices have very little to do with the long-term success or failure of the system. It’s all about the games, people! The Wii U is seeing a boost in sales after announcing new games in both the Mario and Zelda franchises, as well as a new Mario Kart and a new Super Smash Bros. These are the games that everyone wants from Nintendo. And while the Wii U has been struggling thus far, the promise of these titles should help sales of the system improve.

    Microsoft is taking a different approach with Xbox One, seeing gaming on the same plane as other media, including television, music and movies and wants to make a device that will appeal to people who would like to have all of their entertainment in one place. But, it’s also taking an aggressive approach in the DRM and required connectivity issues that aren’t sitting well with a lot of gamers. Many gamers have said they feel like Microsoft is “abandoning them.” And while that language feels a bit melodramatic to me, it is partially true. The hardcore gaming audience is no longer the primary focus.

    Sony has pulled no punches. They’re releasing a system focused on games. It will have other media features, but the games are the core. They’re also stressing how open the system will be in terms of DRM and online connectivity. Their approach is pleasing to the hardcore crowd, but it doesn’t seem likely to broaden their audience. In the end, that may not matter, but it’s hard to discount if you look at how the Wii shocked everyone.

    Microsoft and Sony are taking two different approaches. How the world responds to those approaches has yet to be seen. In terms of software, Sony is lacking one important element that Nintendo and Microsoft have nailed down – the blockbuster exclusive that will sell systems. Nintendo has the most going for it in this regard because it has more than one (Mario and Zelda), and their brand recognition surpasses any other gaming franchises. Microsoft has Halo, but it won’t be a launch title. Sony doesn’t have one huge franchise that has crazy sales. Rather, they have a number of popular franchises that sell well, but not as much as Mario or Halo. However that doesn’t mean Sony won’t find its gem this generation.

    So to wrap up, no one, and especially not me, can say with any certainty what will happen this time around. It’s way too early to count anyone out of the game, so let’s ease off the trash talk. I know it plays off the us vs. them team mentality, but this isn’t a football game, folks. A loss of any of these console makers results in less competition, which translates into less innovation. A person who truly loves games should not want anyone to fail.

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