So you’re a Youtuber, or maybe a Streamer. Maybe you have a website. Or maybe you’re whatever the hell we call a ‘Content Creator’. And if you’re one of those game-talker-abouter-things, whatever you choose to call them, you’re probably going to want review access to games. Steam keys, PSN codes, itch.io download links, whatever works.
Corrections: 2017-04-07 – It turns out Terminals does now have the coverage-checking feature I initially found it lacking.
Fortunately in the last couple years, a number of services have popped up to make this easier than manually dredging through the internet looking for contact details, searching PR databases, and waiting breathlessly for replies (please breathe; email is not a consistent delivery mechanism).
The main ones that I have found and use are Keymailer, Terminals.io, and Distribute(), and here I’m going to explain and compare all of them. Note I’m talking explicitly from the content creator side of things here, I don’t have the developer-side experience to comment significantly on the other side of things.
As a note, all services mentioned in this article are in Alpha/Beta. This whole developer <-> content creator thing is so new that even the world “content creator” is controversial at best, and more importantly all of these sites (and all of the developers, and all of the PR people, and all of us content creators) are still working out the kinks here.
All these services have had multiple issues I’ve watched get fixed over the last year, and all of them still have some growing to do. Most started out only supporting Steam keys but now all include the most popular consoles, for example. But are they worth using? Let’s find out.
VR finally arrives, after what’s felt like an eternity. Starting with the Oculus Rift kickstarter (which I had neither the faith nor the spare cash to back) I’ve been waiting for Virtual Reality, and it’s finally here, in a moderately economical form in PSVR.
I’ve tried out VR briefly in the form of Google Cardboard, as a proof of concept it was powerful, but it really just made me want to get some “real” VR gear. Samsung Gear VR was never for my phone, and Vive and Oculus were a bit out of my price range. Hence PSVR came to be my first headset.
This is by no means exhaustive (I’ve only played about half of the games/experiences I own so far), but here’s a look into my first few days trying VR.
On May 10th, MegaTagmension Blanc + Neptune VS Zombies releases. It’s a multiplayer Neptunia spinoff focusing on Blanc (sigh, and Neptune…) that’s based on Neptunia U’s parts but with a new Multiplayer component, some Monster Hunter inspiration and some general retooling that makes it feel more like it’s own game. This title is from Idea Factory and Tamsoft, developers of Senran Kagura and also Neptunia U.
I’ve played both the Japanese and English releases, so let’s see how this multiplayer action spin on the Neptunia franchise stacks up.
I received a review copy of Trillion: God of Destruction and, while I haven’t quite beaten it in time for launch (and I don’t feel comfortable reviewing a game I haven’t beaten) I have enjoyed my time with it and I’ll give my impressions so far here.
I’ll follow up once I’ve completed the game to fill in my complete thoughts.
For now I’ve put this game on hold. Most of the impressions below still hold true, but I must note the game gets quite slow and repetitive. The game’s harem roots show far stronger in basically every character’s story other than Gluttony’s story, who I happened to pick first. All in all it’s a game with some really good ideas and good writing here and there, but it bogs itself down too hard with Harem tropes and a Raising Sim mechanic that is far too slow.
Senran Kagura Estival Versus releases today on PS4 and PS Vita, and while I didn’t quite (nearly) get enough time to finish it in time for release, I have beaten the Japanese release and have some strong opinions on the game.
So I thought I would present an interim “what I think/what to know” review in progress before I finish up the real ordeal, for anyone looking to decide day one. Instead of worrying about a nice format I decided to just lay out all the relevant its and bits for anyone on the edge of making a buying decision.
I’ve been meaning to get into the rhythm of writing regularly (for this site and in general), so I’d like to introduce a new weekly(?) series of game spotlights: What’s On Tap?
What’s On Tap will often be Alt Games, short games, or just anything I find interesting but that doesn’t warrant a “full” review and doesn’t fit well in video format either.
Nested by Orteil (who happens to have made Cookie Clicker) is a free browser game about exploring nested elements. You start with a “universe” and you can dig all the way down to individual planets, animals, atoms…
Recently I imported the latest Neptunia side game, called Super Dimension War Neptunia VS Sega Hard Girls Dream of Coalescence Special AKA Cho Jigen Taisen Neptune VS Sega Hard Girls Yume no Gattai Special AKA 超次元大戦 ネプテューヌVSセガハードガールズ 夢の合体スペシャル
AKA We’re just calling it Neptunia vs Sega Hard Girls okay. I’ve been enjoying it and thought I’d write up a post about the highs and lows so far.
As this is an “import impressions” post, note that I have not fully completed the game (I have played about 10 hours and I would approximate possibly half the game) and I may not properly understand all aspects of the game as it is in Japanese. I do not speak Japanese so I play these games via a combination of Google Translate, trial and error, dumb luck and Determination. If I say something is missing it’s possible I just haven’t seen it, and I may miss otherwise obvious hints in UI text/etc that would have prevented me from making certain mistakes.
Also note the game released last week in Japan–there’s a possibility there will be some patches. Neptunia Victory II actually got quite a few patches to address issues and improve a few things.
I got one of the first batch of Steam Controllers this Friday and I’ve had an…Interesting™ time with it. I played it with 17 games of various genres to try it out and I’ve got a lot of things to say about it, at the least. You can find my specific experiences with the games at the bottom after the conclusion.
If you don’t follow me on Twitter, you might not know I’m a pretty huge Animal Crossing fan. Being able to design my home is pretty much the main driving force behind most of my actions in Animal Crossing, so I was quite excited to see them break out a whole game around designing homes.
Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer has gotten a lot of “who asked for this” replies from the peanut gallery but I’ve always been pretty excited and I was very relieved to find out that yes, it’s pretty darn fun!
Editor’s note: I’ll be comparing this game to Hyperdimension Neptunia a lot. Both are silly JRPGs by Compile Heart, so if you’re interested in one you’re probably interested in the other, but more importantly Omega Quintet is also based on a moderately modified Neptunia engine.
Editor’s second note: I do not actually have an editor.
All in all, Omega Quintet is pretty much what you expect for better or worse. Fairly low budget, the story is focused on humor rather than complexity or intrigue, graphics aren’t impressive, but the one thing that really stands out is the gameplay, specifically the combat. Continue reading “Omega Quintet Review”
I wouldn’t normally import a game almost certain to get localized, but I went and made an exception here as I had to have the chibi figures the game comes with. So I thought I’d make a review, note I’m reviewing this as someone who can’t read, write or understand a lick of Japanese.
If you’re unfamiliar with Senran Kagura, there may be evil sinful M rated boobies in the following digital pages, so kindly flee in horror if that is a problem.
All of this review is written from the perspective of the PS4 version of Senran Kagura Estival Versus and assumes you’ve played Shinovi Versus (it’s basically required playing first). I can’t say much about the vita version–it’s still in it’s wrapping and will probably remain that way. I have heard the Vita version has assorted minor problems, framerate dips, 30 FPS to start with, some bugs not present in the PS4 version (at least, I never saw them), and I assume the load times are far higher–they range from instant to ~5 seconds to load a cutscene/level on PS4.
The game has received a lot of patches adding a lot of extra missions, 10 DLC characters (3 are free) and a new cooperative multiplayer mode of some sort. The game has even more content than when I wrote this post, but nothing below is particularly invalided by the updates. I’ll make a separate post when I review the US version, which should ship with all the new content I believe.
Platforms: PS4 (March 31st), PC and Vita versions coming in the months after.
A review copy of this game was provided free of charge by the developer and played on PS4. This review will be spoiler free, showing only images of things already “spoiled” by official sources. I strongly recommend avoiding spoilers. For players who have already played, I will be putting out a spoilerific guide on launch day.
It’s an unfortunately common reaction to look at the first screens of Axiom Verge and think, “yeah, that’s a Metroid clone”. But while the inspiration is quite heavy and quite shamelessly apparent, it’s a big mistake to dismiss Axiom Verge as a mere clone. Digging under the surface, Axiom Verge does it’s Metroid roots proud emerging with it’s own identity and simply of the finest Metroidvania games there is. Yes, I’m including Super and SoTN in that.