Review- Video Game- Shifting World Rating ***4.5/5***

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Although this game isn’t exactly new, it definitely is worth picking up. For a great deal at EB games you can get Shifting World, a platform puzzler produced by Aksys Games. Many of the games released by this company feature people drawn into a situation where they are forced to perform tasks to escape their capture, in Shifting World you are able to escape each level by shifting into a black or white dimension.

The gameplay breaks down as so, you are in a world where you can either shift through black or white surfaces to advance to different areas within the stage. Every so often there are surfaces with different black and white designs that do not allow your character to shift. The shifting feature is accessed by pressing either left or right shoulder buttons. Early on all you need to know is that the B button is jump, and you collect keys and walk through doors much like in the Zelda games, by walking right into them. Later on in the game new mechanics are introduced, the ability to switch from a 3D world to a flat 2D world allows you to use surfaces floating in the background that remain inaccessible in the earlier levels. In addition to the main mechanic of shifting between black and white dimensions a new feature arises later on that lets you rotate the world around you as you so that you can access new locations within the worlds.

The entire game is about 60 levels split between two modes, Adventure Mode and Time Attack Mode. Adventure Mode is the basic story mode, while Time Attack levels are levels you unlock during Adventure Mode that have you attempt to escape a level as fast as you can.

The effortless gameplay is quickly addressed by ramping up the difficulty level in each subsequent world, with more obstacles and threats being added as you progress. The goal of the game isn’t centred on getting a high score or completing a puzzle within a set amount of time, instead your goal is simply to progress and learn more about the characters as the story is revealed. There seems to be no penalty for dying in the game and i find that to be a positive feature.

For the laid back, low pressure, beautiful art style, increasing degree of difficulty and interesting character progression, with the only fault of the game being that it could have included more levels, i give this game a rating of 4.5/5 and I highly recommend it to anyone that has a 3DS.

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Review- Video Game- Project X Zone ***Rating 4/5***

It has now been a little over a month and a half since I first started playing Project X Zone. When I started out I was afraid that it would be a typical difficult strategy RPG, but I quickly discovered that assumption to be wrong. I have a terrible track record with RPG’s, not having completed even one RPG, but this time around I am on the verge of success! It was pretty easy to just pick up this game and go. There were no confusing attack stat menus, items were simple to use and categorized greatly, and there were also no complicated button combinations or specific attacks that were only effective against a specific enemy. Levelling up was simple to do in the game, and in some levels, even the later ones, I found my characters were levelling up multiple levels in single game stages. It was more of a basic turn-based RPG and did not really rely much on strategy, except in levels where specific characters needed to be protected or in situations where a specific location had to be reached within a set amount of time. Overall the memorable and loveable characters made it a fun game to play. Each Pair of characters had 5 basic attacks, with one special attack, and one multi-attack that targeted up to 5 close by enemies. Each attack had its own interesting animation, with the special and multi attacks having full anime characters instead of just the basic game sprites.

These are things I enjoyed but now comes the bad news. There were lots and lots of trademarks to a bad game. By this I mean that Namco/Bandai was relentless with the enemies. The Enemies in this game respawned a lot! It seemed that every time you killed a major villain (and they would explode, unlike when they escape and just phase out of the scene) by the next chapter in the game they would be brought back to life, cloned, multiple times over! Another trademark was that of ridiculusly high enemy HP. By the end of the game most of the characters levelled up to between 10,000 and 15,000 HP. This sounds crazy high, but then you had to deal with level bosses and mid range enemies that had HPs of between 54,000 HP and 111,000 HP! That was just crazy! To top it all off also, the final boss, the big baddy of Project X Zone, he had over 270,000 HP and he would land attacks that would kill my characters instantly! To make it even worse, AND THIS WILL ABSOLUTELY BE A SPOILER, during the last battle all the bosses you killed come back yet again, in multiple copies, and they beat the crud out of you! It was a big annoyance to reach the Final Boss Fight only to then get knocked out by a barrage of attacks from enemies you already killed multiple times, while trying to defend and attack against the final boss. I got a game over screen several times in this last level and it has forced me to restart the level multiple time, and waste several hours for no progression.

Overall Project X Zone was a pretty easy game to get into. The characters were all the best characters from old memorable series, the battle system wasn’t too complicated, and the earlier levels were very forgiving. My only real complaints in the end were the ridiculously high HP enemies, the fact that many of the characters I wanted to play with were not available until later in the game (a point I mentioned in the video clip), there were preselected characters you had to use each level and you could only choose who the supplementary character was, and the fact that enemies kept coming back to life level after level! So after having some time to really get to know the game I can honestly give this game a rating of 4/5 because it was a really enjoyable game and the only faults I had were standard tropes of most video games, after all bosses have to be difficult to beat.