I swear I'm not an asshole, but the levels I keep coming up with in Super Mario Maker 2 seem to be conspiring to prove the opposite point about me. Given my propensity for trying to build my own video games and love of the greatest bros in the history of the world, Mario and Luigi, pre-ordering the latest Mario level builder was the easiest decision I've ever had to make. Immediately after getting home the Friday night that it released, I tore into the Story Mode hoping to learn all about the intricacies of what makes a truly great Mario course. Two days later, with the Story Mode complete, I was primed and ready to start creating my first world. That's when I started to notice something odd about my level building. That's when it started to dawn on me that I might just be an asshole.
Counting Down the 10 Most Charming and Joyful Things in Cadence of Hyrule
Cadence of Hyrule, the new Zelda-spinoff rhythm game, is basically 1000 smiles distilled into their purest form and injected directly into your brain. It is the most charming, utterly pleasant, and breathtakingly unique game I have played in quite some time. Without further adieu, let's count down the Top 10 things that make this gem basically a puppy party in game form.
Metroid Feline 4: Gato Roboto
Did you ever wonder if your favorite games could be improved by replacing the main character with an adorable feline protagonist? The answer is probably "No", but with Gato Roboto, the latest entry from doinksoft and Devolver Digital, I managed to learn that this indeed was something missing from my life thanks to the spot on homage to Super Metroid combined with the nostalgic visual simplicity and delight of a Game Boy title. Don't mistake this for the many hybrid Metroidvanias populating the gaming world these days. This is the closest you will come to another straight up Metroid title without booting up one of your retro systems.
Katana Zero: How a Corrupted Save and a Cat Led Me to One of My Favorite Games of the Year
I am stuck in a time loop. Katana Zero, the hyper-stylized new Indie for Switch and PC that can best be described as a glorious amalgamation of the punishing insta-death mayhem of Super Meat Boy, samurais, and, oddly enough, the movie Drive, has somehow enveloped me in its central mechanic even when I'm not playing it.
Things Congress Tried to Keep from Us: Preparing to be Titillated by Night Trap 27 Years Later
The early 90’s were a fraught time in video game history. Advancements in hardware were leading developers away from cute 2D platformers like Mario and into more mature fare like the bloody Mortal Kombat and Doom. Congress and parents took notice, and in an effort to protect the future of our children, a now infamous Senate hearing was held on December 9, 1993 zeroing in on one game in particular – the Full Motion Video vampires vs coeds game Night Trap.
The 5 Best Bosses in Dark Souls
I had one major goal in mind this past weekend. After over 3 weeks and several hundred deaths, it was time to finally beat Dark Souls and earn my important and totally not made-up Badge of Gaming Courage that surviving the brutal punishment nets you.
Dark Souls: My Night in Blighttown
Dying 10,000 times in Dark Souls is a gaming rite of passage that I somehow missed out on when it first came out 8 years ago, so I made sure to subject myself to its horrors with the recently released remaster. Despite having never set foot in the world of Dark Souls, there was one place that I was already well aware of thanks to its infamy, Blighttown. I had heard countless stories of how this was the area that broke people either forcing them to quit the game completely or smash a controller in frustration.
Being Your Best Mario: Ranking the Power-Ups in Super Mario Bros. 3
Since I'm currently in the midst of a crushing run through Dark Souls, I decided I needed something to level my gaming mood out. Inspired by my recent ode to Luigi, watching a speed-run in person, and my undying love of Fred Savage's 1989 opus, The Wizard, I opted to revisit perhaps the greatest 2D Mario of all time - Super Mario Bros. 3.
Game Dev Story: The Rise and Fall and Rise of Pwned and Operated Studios
Recently, I've been wanting to start up development on another game more true to my tastes, so I decided to seek out inspiration in the supremely charming and addictive business sim, Game Dev Story, that was recently ported over to the Switch. Along the 8 or so hours and 30 in game years that transpired, I not only created a lot of wonderful video game puns, but I also wrestled with my beliefs about capitalism and worker's rights all in a nice sprite filled setting. Now presenting, for the first time ever, the story of Pwned and Operated Studios.
All Hail Tetris 99, Destroyer of Sleep
Just one more round. It's a common refrain among players fighting for supremacy in video games, but I've never found the compulsion to be more difficult to shake than with the recently released battle royale game Tetris 99. Sure, I've lost sleep to plenty of other games in the past, but something is different with this one.