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Tue 8th May 2012

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Carnuss commented on Review: Heroes of Ruin (3DS):

After Resident Evil Relevations and Monster Hunter 3&4 Ultimate, Heroes of Ruin is my third favourite title on Nintendo 3DS, because unlike the two masterpieces of Capcom, Heroes of Ruin from n-Space is easy to start and fun to play, especially in online multiplayer mode. Fortunately there are still many players online at night time, so everybody can taste the fast&furious online exploration and battles playing Heroes of Ruin.

In my opinion the 3D graphics is great and the fantasy environments and monsters are well detailed and varied. I really liked the giant spiders falling down from the ceiling or the goblin drillers surfacing the ground. Unfortunately the bonus daily and weekly challenges are long gone, so it's not possible to collect Valor Points for purchasing the special enchanted equipment from the archmage Therus anymore. When playing with registered friends, additional stat boosts are unlockable. Streetpassing enables to purchase from equipment sold by others to the merchant called Smiling Raphael (at the Trader's Network). The four character classes are different enough with their distinctive skills. It's challenging to chose from the myriad of loots. After 10 hours of pure gameplay (game is paused while browsing menus) I'm not even halfway, so it's length is decent.

To conclude, I don't understand why this title so underperformed expectations, because it offers the right ingredients. It's an exciting hack'n'slash action-adventure RPG with a neat storyline. Anyway, I don't really mind the maximal 99999 gold limit and the max (28-30) level cap.



Carnuss commented on Review: Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Star...:

By the way, regarding grinding, I would opt for hunting down the members of the metal slime family, because they are worth a ton of EXP each. They generally lurk the in the dungeons, avoid contact with the player's party, as they notice you, they try to run away and if they reach any walls, they simply vanish into thin air. They often flee from battle, if engaged in combat, but it's worth all the fuss to slay one. You need a sword equipped and to use the Metal Slash ability to harm them (they are immune to magic and the attack of other weapons misses them most of the time). My favourite places for hunting metal slimes: the Quarantomb, the Bowhole, the Tower of Nod (metal king slime at level 3) and of course the slime plateau near Angel Falls (the last two locations are reachable only by using the Starflight Express).

I recommend you to have at least one warrior or gladiator in your party and to equip him/her with a Falcon Blade or Über Falcon Blade (it offers two attacks per turn). You can even double its effect by using the Falcon Slash ability (reaching a total of 4 attacks per turn), or use the Egg On minstrel ability on your soldier (and chose defend for him/her for some turns), to charge for a devastating attack set loose later (with Falcon Slash and a Falcon Blade performing 4 consecutive attacks at once). You can find a Falcon Blade in the cargo bay of your ship in a red chest and buy more after the completion of the main story at the upgraded weapon shop in Stornway. Of course, I would happily receive a Supernova or Hypernova Sword (in exchange for my Über Falcon Blade).



Carnuss commented on Review: Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Star...:

In my opinion Dragon Quest IX - Sentinels of the Starry Skies DS is one of the best games available on the Nintendo DS (my other favourite is Grand Theft Auto Chinatown Wars).

DQ 9 offers stunning visuals, great musical scores and a very deep and interesting storyline. Apart from the main story there are additional Quests, which deliver more adventures and backgound information about the main story characters.

If you begin the adventure in the world of DQ 9 you will get acquinted with many interesting characters, so you will surely want to read the conversations with them. Furthermore, it's uncommon, but in this game it's pretty rewarding to talk to the many side characters, because during the flow of the story their commentaries change and you often get new details.

I liked that most of the game flows in real time, like you guide your party on the bottom screen using the stylus to explore new and exciting locations, to find tresure chests and to evade or maybe to battle certain groups of monsters. The map on the upper screen and even the world map is very accurate and useful. When you engage in combat, time stops and the battles are turn based. It could get very time consuming (like to heal your party members or to target the enemies or to use items in battle), but fortunately you are able to automate the actions of your party members.

Expect no random battles (except on see, but after completing the main story you are able to fly over oceans using the Starflight Express).

One of the best aspect of the game is that you can truly shape the look of your main hero and all other 3 party members. Not just their appearance, but also their clothes and equipment. They look absolutely distinctive during the whole game, not just during the world map exploration, but also during the turn based battles, which are animated in a 3D rotating perspective on the upper screen! It's very impressive to SEE how magic and special abilities work on COLOSSAL enemies and bosses.

Becuse the game is extremly complex, you should check the available guides on the net for hints and tips (Links: or

Some of the below details became clear to me after only long hours of gameplay:

  • your party can consist of 1-4 members. I decided to depart with a full party (with 4 different vocations: 1 minstrel for her special skills (as my main hero), 1 mage for offensive magic, 1 priest - for healing and 1 warrior - for physical attacks). If you choose less party members, they will gain experince much faster.
  • equip your party members fully (with shields, sticks or swords, etc.), because every equipment increases some stats (apart from cursed items).
  • if you gain enough experience, you receive skill point, which you should allocate to the vocation specific skill first, which is in every case the last line/option on the skill tree
  • you are advised to complete the Quests, which are required to unlock more vocations
  • you can change vocation at Alltrades Abbey infinite times, without loosing any stats, thus you can strengthen all party members as warriors or gladiators (but keep in mind that learnt magic or acquired specific skills are linked to the source vocation)
  • certain items can be used in battle for magical attacks or healing (without consuming MP), so equip all magicians with powerful wands (like the Magma Staff)
  • most resources are regenerated at certain spots of the world map. Even mini medals (near Brigadoom) and Yggdrasil leaves (at the Phantom Tree in Pluvi Isle)
  • there are some useful blue chests, which regenerate at every start-up (such as at Stornway, Wormwood Creek, Upover, Summit, Tower of Nod, Gittingham Palace - very good rewards)
  • there are some extremly useful skills: such as Half-inch for a thief (to steal items from enemies, for example mummy bandage), Jack's Knack for a sage (ability to change vocation everywhere) or Pratfall for a minstrel (targets a group of enemies and, if successful, will put them in a state of laughter, unable to perform any actions)
  • to land the Starflight Express push the tip of its shadow on the ground with the stylus and to enter inside, just push the Starflight Express itself
  • tresure map exploring meant to be a post-game experience (because the completion of certain Quests are linked to random tresure maps): you can fight 12 normal and 13 legacy bosses

Unfortunately Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection has been shut down in May 2014, so the following 3 net based portions of the game can not be reached:

  • DLC unlockable Quests (Quest 121-184)
  • special Stornway Inn quests, who give special items for free
  • DQVC-shop at Stornway Inn (Sellma), where you could purchase rare and exclusive items (altogether 32 DQVC exclusive items) based on weekly cycles (with daily random wares during a weekly cycle), pre-defined for the whole year

Some relief is that during local multicard multiplayer games, you can acquire the bonus DLC quests and visit the DQVC-shop of the other player who previously connected to Nintendo WFC.

The completion of the main story took me 120 hours (including some grinding).

It took me 240 hours to reach all of the 6 post-game bosses, after completing the main story. I stopped playing it after two years (2014-2015), with a total of 260 hours of gameplay (and could defeat only the weakest of the legacy bosses). The 6 post-game bosses are the following:

1 - the real Leviathan

2 - Nodoph (at the top of the Tower of Nod)

3 - Rover (under Gleeba)

4 - Tyrannosaura Wrecks (at the secret room of Stella, which is located in the third Carriage of Starflight Express)

5 - Yore (under Stornway Castle)

6 - King Godfrey (at Gittingham Palace)

There is a secret shop at Dourbridge and you can obtain special keys to open closed locks (it means some backtracking). Even after completing many Quests and defeating the above listed 6 bonus post-game bosses, you can battle extremly powerful legacy bosses (for orbs and special equipment), explore random high-level tresure map grottos (for rare enemy types and equipment rewards from blue chests), for alchemy recipes (for rare equipment), for Erdrick's full equipment or for a full wardrobe, full defeated monster list or full performed alchemy list.

Unfortunately, I couldn't try out the local multicard multiplayer experience or the tag mode treasure map exchange (in which case the clone of the main hero of the other player remains at the Stornway Inn, similarly to Mii Plaza).

To conclude, DQ 9 has a wide palette of magic, skills and abilities and you are able to forge rare items through alchemy and battle hundreads of cute or even colossal enemies based on fantasy tales (like dragons, slimes, etc.). A true masterpiece of video game from Japan in English language.



Carnuss commented on Review: Resident Evil Revelations (3DS):

Some additional details:

RER is huge, if you download it from Nintendo eShop (lately there's been a 50 % discount in Europe), it requires more than 25000 blocks (~ more than 4 GigaBytes). I suppose that the cut-scene videos in the solo campaign (with prologes) equal a full feature movie.

It features handguns (4 types), magnum guns (3 types), machine guns (4 types), shotguns (4 types), rifles (3 types) and a rocket launcher (sadly with only one shoot). There are 3 legendary weapon types: pale rider (magnum), drake (shotgun) and muramasa (rifle). Other uncommon weapons: Handgun G18 (with machine gun like fire rate) and High Roller (a machine gun with very slow fire rate).

As you can carry only 3 weapons at the same time with you, I've experienced all sorts of weapon sets and thus prefer the following set of weapons in Raid Mode: Handgun G18 (against weak monsters), Magnum Python (ideal against stronger, slow foes) and Rifle PSG1 (equipped with the exclusive online custom parts from unlocked Infection Missions: Auto Loader - offering continous shooting - and Gluttony - in this case, offering additional machine gun ammo from your inventory (+ 700 rounds) - it becomes a heavy machine gun like strong weapon, perfect for strong Skagdeads and Final Forms of Abyss).

You can unlock 9 characters (as far as I remember well) with different skills (everyone has 2 extra skills), many have at most 3 playable customes. Of course, every character has his/her own phrases and voice acting.

All-in-all, great and unique game in my opinion.



Carnuss commented on Review: Resident Evil Revelations (3DS):

In my opinion Resident Evil Revelations is the best 3DS game (my rating: 10/10). Not just for survival horror fans, because it is a spectacular and realistic action/exploration/shooter game. Recommended for adults, because face-to-face battles, violence and blood are strong elements (and it is really scary sometimes). Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (the flagship of the same publisher, Capcom) is the only game that rivals it. But MH3U is tougher in many aspects (according to my experience with 50 hrs), although the landscapes are much more varied, the game is more complex and playtime could be infinite (however it lacks the online multiplayer option, which will be included in Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate coming in early 2015). I have not seen Resident Evil Mercenaries 3D, but I heared that it's shorter and simpler than RER (although online gameplay is also offered).

I completed the Solo Campaign in Resident Evil Revelations in 30 hours at (the easiest) casual difficulty level. The online co-op capable Raid Mode consumed so far 45 hours out of my time (but I've seen players with 900-1000 hours gameplay times). The graphics, the background music, the sound effects, the voice acting and the cut-scene videos are all excellent and constitue high-quality parts of a video gaming industry masterpiece (later ported to Wii U, PS3 and X-Box 360). The 1,7 million sales of the 3DS versions excedded the combined numbers of the other 3 mentioned later ports of the game. The developers crammed many content into the game. For example you can complete the Solo Campaign at 3 difficulty levels (after completion a New Game+ option becomes available, conserving collected weapons, accessories, ammo and upgrades). In Raid Mode solo and online co-op options are also available and it's possible to unlock new characters (with different skills) to play with. StreetPass and Play Coins functions are cleverly used (described later in details).

There are 2 save slots (with copy and delete options). I found that the Solo Campaign flows generally at a slower peace in 12 Episodes (divided into various number of phrases where the person of the player, his/her partner, the location and even the time in the stroyline changes rapidly phrase-by-phrase), whilst Raid Mode offers a vivid and true life-death challenge (especially by the high number of monsters popping out of every corner). In the Solo Campaign, the underwater diving section was my favourite (at the end of the game), whilst Raid Mode offers 20 stages of standalone or online co-op mayhem, topped by the Bonus Stage, the entire Ghost Ship. In the Solo Campaign you collect ammo, customization kits and new weapons as you discover and scan the new areas. Scanning secret handprints or foes (dead or living) provides bonuses. Player can change and customize weapons only at special weapon boxes. In Raid Mode the player receives custom parts and weapons after each completed stage and can spend earned Battle Points and even collected Play Coins in the Store for weapons, custom parts, ammunition and other extras (such as herbs, grenades, etc.). By StreetPassing (locally or by completing a stage in Raid Mode) the player can earn Supply Missions (generally for ammo, herbs and grenades, but there's a rifle to unlock) for the Solo Campaign and Wanted Missions (defeat StreetPassed players as monsters for weapons or custom parts depicted as crowns on the stage selection screen) or Infection Missions (StreetPass other players who posses the same virus infection for exclusive custom parts or collect StreetPass hits for level 50 weapons) and possibly Monster Hunting Missions (kill the mentioned number of beasts for BPs - for example the completion of Stage 2 results in such bonus mission) for Raid Mode. Remember that you can manipulate received StreetPass missions by turning off Auto Save in the Options and logging out (without saving) and in again when checking the Missions section of the Main Menu. After reaching a certain level (at least level 36 or to be sure, the maximum, level 50) if you accumulate 6-10 StreetPass hits (without checking/saving them) an Infection Mission may turn up. Manipulate StreetPass Missions to receive Infection Missions, because the rewards are exclusive, if you can turn them up and unlock them (by collecting the required infected/standard StreetPass hits). Infection Mission types (how to unlock them and possible loots): Progenitor Virus (requires 4 of the same type infected StreetPass hits, for Auto Loader, Gluttony, Full Burst and Grenade Launcher custom parts), T-Veronica Virus (requires 8 of the same type infected StreetPass hits, for Cornucopia 3, Cornucopia 4, Cornucopia 5, Power 6, Critical 5, 3 Burst and Piercing 2 custom parts), G Virus (requires 20 infected StreetPass hits, for Cornucopia 3, Cornucopia 4, Cornucopia 5, Power 6, Critical 5, 3 Burst and Piercing 2 custom parts), T Virus (requires 10 infected/standard StreetPass hits, sadly only for acquiring level 50 weapons, which is unefficient, because you can grab them by unlocking the manipulated appropriate Wanted Missions). Best exclusive custom parts: Auto Loader (for constant firing), Gluttony (for hand guns/machine guns and shotguns/rifles it offers constantly the other pair of ammunition from the inventory if their ammo runs out), Grenade Launcher (shoot grenades from hand guns/machine guns/shotguns/rifles) and Cornucopia 3 (replenish ammo for hand guns/machine guns), Cornucopia 4 (replenish ammo for shotguns/rifles) and Cornucopia 5 (replenish ammo for magnum guns). For more information check: GameFAQs Resident Evil Revelations (3DS) Weapon FAQ by Moonlightnite.

I've seen that experinced players on the net used only their knives against any types of foes. It was efficient even against level 50 Skagdeads on the Promenade Deck of Bonus Stage 21 (the Ghost Ship). If you hit them continously they cannot swallow you.

Last remarks: many complained about the difficulty of the complicated boss fights/escape scenes, they should accept that Resident Evil Revelations is not an easy game. I have not experinced many slowdowns (only a few during the Solo Campaign). Because I played Raid mode using a free public WI-FI hotspot, unfortunately I've experinced many difficulties: many unsuccesful connection attempts and many aborted stages due to the unexpected termination of connection (after enemies and the partner have freezed). In case of slow connection enemies moved slowly, the partner shoot like a crazyman standing still, doors opened slowly and loading times were very long. Once the entire game crushed during an online Raid Mode battle due to a fatal communication error. Many times, in Stage 18 (at Abyss level) the guest player closed the valve at near the end, but could not move forward, because the steam did not disappear for him. Because I turned 3D-depth to the lowest level, I experinced no problems when using the periscope of rifles. All-in-all, all the flaws I have experinced were only minor, thus not degrading the overall fun of gameplay.

I've played it online in August, September and October 2014, unfortunately the number of 3DS players decreased significantly on weekday evenings lately. Still not a bad result for a game released in February 2012 (more than 2,5 years ago).

I will regret if Resident Evil Revelations 2 entirely misses the 3DS platform (according to recent news).



Carnuss commented on Review: Captain America: Super Soldier (DS):

This Captain America presentation is unfortunately a mediocre game. Although I've enjoyed the fighting parts very much (stealth missions and running sections are much less fun). Bosses are challenging and there's always a chance to be hammered by the waves of enemies. The voice acting, the background music and the WWII battle feeling are its benefits (especially the German soldiers or the unlockable extra outfits), while the poor game design sadly corrupts overall judgment (for instance the story takes place in one castle and there's no intro animation). The completion of the story took me circa 14 hours.



Carnuss commented on Review: Professor Layton and the Last Specter ...:

Another brilliant entry in the Professor Layton saga. It has more content than Curious Village and Pandora's Box. The main story offers altogether 155 puzzles. It took me almost 40 hours to find and complete all story puzzles (compared to the 24 hours required for the completion of Curious Village or Pandora's Box). In addition, 15 puzzles become available in the Layton's Challenges section after completion of the game. The Weekly Puzzle Download/Unlock section offers another 33 puzzles in my opinion.

This time, there are four mini-games (a toy train, an aquarium, a puppet theatre and a mouse catching game).

All-in-all, I've found the story less charming than in Curious Village or Pandora's Box, though it was obvious that Level5 aimed to please all fans of the Professor Layton series.



Carnuss commented on Review: Little Red Riding Hood's Zombie BBQ (DS):

I've imported it from the USA to Europe, because in my opinion, Little Red Riding Hood’s Zombie BBQ is a great shooting game (based on the use of stylus), however its developers decided to choose some weird gameplay features.

For instance, you cannot name your save file and its dull that game save slots indicate absolutely nothing in the corresponding main menu list (no player name, no game progression, no high score, etc.). Another ball missed is the lack of score points. For killing zombies you receive no reward. If you manage to arrange, you can survive some level parts by simply evading the incoming zombies. In addition, there are no check-points during levels. Finally, opponents become extremly hard to beat very early. I've stucked in the midlle of the game, because in the case of the Three Pigs, you have to defeat three bosses one after the other in a row.

To sum up, there are altogether 8 chapters (of which the final level is only available on Hard or Extreme mode), each one consisting of 2 rush levels and a boss fight stage. The graphics looks stunning (the main menu, level environments and bosses are all presented in 3D) and the music and sounds are also acceptable. On a DS Lite I've only experienced some moderate slowdown when too many enemies surrounded me. Despite its above described flaws I recommend it to any action game fans.



Carnuss commented on Review: Solatorobo: Red the Hunter (DS):

In my opinion, Solatorobo: Red the hunter was the best DS game of the year 2011 and is perhaps one of the best DS game of all time (because of its quality music, stunning visuals and action packed gameplay full of mechas and speaking furballs).

The main character (Red Savarin) riding his Dahak robot, along with his companion (Chocolat) are freelancer mercenaries who accomplish quests posted at a trade broker. To make a living, they travel across the beautiful floating islands of the Sepherd Republic by plane (Asmodeus). Rewards are rings (the money used) or P-crystals (for expanding robot customization space) or custom robot parts (for improving your abilities).

Solatorobo offers many gameplay twists unseen in any other video game so far. It is full of creative ideas. For example the fighting itself, where you cannot just punch the opponents, instead you can grab them, lift them, turn them over and throw them against other opponents. Your robot can grab the bullets and bombs of enemies which can be thrown back to the sender. At some quests you can operate a machine gun or a gun turret, where you have to load the necessary ammunition first. The opponents are very imaginative mechas and beasts.

The quests and side-quests are highly varied and interesting, helping to get familiar with the main characters. You can participate in many activities such as crab fishing, ore mining, air racing (which is also available as a separate game mode directly from the start menu, playable as a multi cart wireless multiplayer game such as Mario Cart with different tracks and racing aircrafts). You can participate in quiz contests as well and fight in a separate duel arena against other characters or beasts (sometimes with special rules like you cannot receive a single hit, otherwise you fail). My favourite part was when I had to fight droids and their control ships flying my robot through a series of mini islands.

Later, 4 robot types become available, each with different skills and appearance. You can buy or receive different custom parts to boost the performance of your robot in various fields (such as hydraulics, attack, defense, movement speed and life revival).

The greatest merit of Solatorobo is still its incredible 3D environment which is presented using an amazing and truly vivid graphics. There are birds, flags, aircrafts and moving elements everywhere in the backgound. The intro and cut-scene animations are also amazing. The musical scores and background sounds are also top notch. There are even some distinctive voices for every speaking character (mainly French words). In the cabin of your airplane (called Asmodeus) you can replay any collected cut-scenes, musical scores or browse your photo album or explore a library of the involved world. You can save your gameplay here or at frequent physical save spots or at the end of story chapters.

I recommend to unlock the 12 bonus side-quests connecting to an Internet Access Point before the main story ends (in the European version). It took me 56 hours to complete the main story and almost every side-quests. It is very unfortunate that world-wide sales are disappointing, because I also would like to see a sequel.



Carnuss commented on Review: Elite Beat Agents (DS):

Although I've found other rhythm games unfortunately not appealing for me (such as Rhythm Heaven or Beat City), this one has excellent manga-style graphics, a brilliant background organization and even the theme songs and voice actings are great. True classic.



Carnuss commented on Feature: A Visual Guide to Nintendo's Handheld...:

It's funny, because I've purchased a cosmos black 3DS on it's premiere day and because of the short battery life time and the rescaled resolution issues later I've decided to buy a cheap silver DS Lite too. In the meantime I've built a considerable DS game library, so nowadays I play games mainly on the DS Lite (instead of the 3DS). I suppose my approach is well, quite unusual.



Carnuss commented on Review: Aliens: Infestation (DS):

I've really enjoyed Aliens: Infestation. To be honest, because of the Alien universe and the action packed 2D platforming gameplay I regard it as one of the best DS games.

It offers 4 locations to discover (the Sulaco spaceship, a military base at LV-426, the ruined spaceship of the aliens and a research facility at Phobos), 5 weapons to acquire (pistol, machine gun with grenades, shotgun, flamethrower and minigun), 5 level bosses to beat, 2 special quests (operating the gun-turret of an APC-vehicle and fighting with aliens in a spacesuit in outer space) and 1 minigame (called knife trick). It took me almost 21 hours to complete the story (which is supposedly at least 5 hours long).

Unfortunately, there are some minor flaws (such as not random respawning of aliens, weird placement of supplies and some NPC human characters are not isolated from the hordes of aliens), but my greatest sorrow is that the game does not offer an extra option to directly replay former stages (for instance at least boss battles) and alien encounters are scarce in mounting shafts. On the other hand, I was truly impressed by the detail of the retro hand-drawn graphics, the musical score and the variety and intelligence of the aliens.



Carnuss commented on Review: Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective (DS):

Game mechanics is truly unique, I like it, but I get stuck repeatedly, because it's not obvious what I should do next. In such cases only long experimenting (with repeated conversations) and later cheating helps (I mean the uploaded game guides on YouTube).



Carnuss commented on Review: Thor: God of Thunder (DS):

Golden Axe style 2D platformer game with fantastic graphics including parallax scrolling. Really enjoyed it.

From the 7 chapters the first 3 are the most amazing (especially the presentation of ice and snow), but very easy to complete. From the 4th chapter difficulty level increases highly, boss fights become extremely tough. In my opinion, overall level design becomes flat for the last two chapters (while bosses become more gigantic and interesting). I voted to throw Mjölnir at approaching enemies (plus certain rune caused additional damage around me and gave inviolability for a moment when throwing my hammer).

To sum up, it took me 9 hours to complete the game, because of the mentioned tough boss fights at later levels (7/10 is a fair rating).