Gaming Pick Up’s Volume 4

With Halloween out of the way, it seems obvious that a large bulk of this month’s collection would be horror-themed. After all, some of the greatest releases for the modern era have been in that genre with gaming technology finally catching up to the high definition high budget productions of cinema. But this time around most of the titles that have been accumulated range from fighting to RPG’s, with most pertaining to current generation consoles. With that said, here is a brief overview of this month’s gaming pick up’s. Bear in mind that this list is not classified in terms of quality or personal taste. Rather, this is merely an expose into the summation of what one might find interesting as both a collector and a modern gamer. 

Soul Calibur 6 (Xbox One, 2018)

Developed and published by Bandai Namco Studios, this sixth entry in the series is special in that it not only has one of the most expanded rosters in the franchise but also a story mode that is both captivating and thoughtful. Japanese game writer Sohei Kamada penned the story and introduced many new elements into the plot, which for a fighting game is rarely done. Players can upgrade their characters, personalize their fighters with new outfits and weapons, and even play as Geralt of Rivia from the Witcher series. This sixth incarnation of the franchise is more of a throwback entry in the storied series, taking place in between the events of the first two Soul Calibur games. As players embark on their journey in story mode, they uncover new discoveries and secrets from the original games. This is truly a game that adds new breath in a franchise that is consumed by a genre that is at times too overly simplified. But with Soul Calibur 6 players can finally satiate their desires for an interesting story and one versus one melee combat. 

Toy Story (Sega Genesis, 1995)

Released by Disney Interactive for 16-bit consoles, Toy Story is truly a throwback side-scrolling action platformer. With eighteen action-packed levels, players can play through the main events of the first film. You basically take control of Woody as he tries to rescue Buzz Lightyear while all along navigating the plot of the first film. The game makes brilliant use of the Genesis’ parallax scrolling capabilities and delivers a stunning rendition of this storied Disney franchise. Although the character selection is limited to mainly Woody, at certain stages players can take control of RC during vehicular combat segments. What is special about the Genesis version is that does not only have the most level segments but also a special racing section titled “Day-Toy-Na” which is not available in other console ports. This title symbolizes everything that made the 16-bit era so magical for the 90’s gamers. It took the best elements of the film and made it it’s own on home consoles. Disney’s Virgin Interactive studios truly made the most out of sprite animation and players are able to experience the game as if it were an interactive cartoon. Truly one of the best film adaptations to hit the small screen. 

Resident Evil Origins Collection (Nintendo Switch, 2019)

A compilation of the first two games in the Resident Evil timeline, this origins collection is full of nuance and high definition horror goodness. While it seems obvious that this time of the year would be devoted to horror games, this is the first title in that genre that truly seems right to mention as the pinnacle of the milieu. The first Resident Evil, in particular, holds some of the most memorable moments in the series. A horror-filled old mansion, carnivorous crows, and a macabre environment all make this game look even more terrifying in 1080 P high definition. The Switch version makes it even more appealing since you can now take these two games on the go, and with a more user-friendly interface, the ability to choose between classic and modern controls and an Albert Wesker mode in Resident Evil 0, players now have enough reason to purchase this not so budget-friendly release. This to mention is one of the drawbacks of this game since its sixty dollar price tag seems steep considering it is available on both the PS4 and Xbox One for a fraction of that price. Regardless, this is the perfect game to own for October and it is a welcomed addition in any Switch owner’s library. 

Kingdom of Amalur Reckoning (PS3, 2012)

With nearly hundreds of hours of gameplay, and a plot penned by famous fantasy author R.A. Salvatore, Kingdom of Amalaur is by far one of the greatest action RPGs of the last generation. Players have endless choices of customization, ranging from hybrid character classes that can wield both magic and melee and varied landscapes that are truly a joy to explore. The visual art style is more aligned to a lush vivacious color pallet that is truly different from the grim medieval worlds of Skyrim. This release is even made more interesting by the fact that Spawn creator Todd Mcfarlane had a hand in developing the visual art style of the game’s world. It is truly a shame that this tile never developed into a franchise with all the gravitas and mythos of its expositional landscape. In an era of constant reboots and remakes, Amalur is a world ripe for a rebuild. 

Ghostbusters HD (Switch, 2019)

Of all the games to get a modern-day port, Ghostbusters is truly a shocking sight to behold on the Nintendo Switch. Visually striking a generation ago, this somewhat third entry in the franchise’s cinematic universe does not seem necessary in the current era. But yet, one cannot be compelled to venture back into the Ecto-1 and go for another spin in the world of a ghost-ridden New York City. This third-person action-adventure game has players assuming the role of a new recruit and as you navigate the world of the franchise you get to upgrade your proton pack and embark in a world that blends the realm of modern-day reality and fantasy. As a new character, players meet familiar faces from the film such as Peter Venkman (Bill Murray) and Ray Stanz (Dan Akroyd). Although very little has changed with this HD upgrade, it still feels nice to revisit this franchise that holds such a special place in cinema buffs hearts. 

Willow (Nes, 1989)

One of the greatest movie tie in games of all time for the NES, Willow is an action-RPG similar in style to the original Legend of Zelda. Players embark on a grand adventure as the title character, Willow, as he must traverse from the humble origins of his village to Bavmorda’s Castle. Everything about this three-decade-old game is marred in Zelda style aesthetics. From its isometric point of view to the discovery of new items that open up new locations on the world map. Amazing considering this game is simply a movie tie in title that could have taken the easy route and used the film as an anchor for sales. Instead, Capcom took the wise approach and created a product that is high in quality in and of its own merits. This is a great game to own because of what it has to offer retro gamers in terms of depth and variety. The world of Willow is as vast as its cinematic counterpart, and for those seeking a true Zelda clone, this is definitely the one. 

About Anthony Frisina 83 Articles
Anthony Frisina is a graduate of the City University of New York-Brooklyn College with a BA in Political Science with a minor in Psychology. After finishing his undergraduate degree, Anthony went on to attend Brooklyn College's Film Academy and Writer's workshop program, achieving an interdisciplinary degree in Screenwriting and Film theory in the Fine Arts. Transforming his love for classic American cinema, Anthony went on to adapt a number of his own works into different mediums, including his well-received Western novel The Regulator. Anthony likes to spend his free time writing articles for magazines and periodicals that cover a wide range of topics, from science fiction to popular culture. As a screenwriter, Anthony has had his screenplays featured at numerous spec script writing competitions across the country where he one day hopes to write the next great American film.

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