Nicholas Bale

Reviews By Nicholas Bale

The Evil Within Review (PS4)

By Nicholas Bale () - 7.0 out of 10

The Evil Within, the latest project by Resident Evil 4 creator Shinji Mikami, is something of a mix of different styles of gameplay that never really knows what it wants to be. The story is all over the place, the environments shift arbitrarily, and it's hard to feel connected with any of the characters. Despite this, the moment-to-moment gameplay is quite good, and aided by an upgrade system that makes exploration and taking out enemies rewarding. Certainly flawed, but still an interesting experience to go through. Read More.

Monochroma Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 6.5 out of 10

Monochroma is a puzzle-platformer with a heavy emphasis of style, rather than particularly deep gameplay. With a little brother and his wounded leg, you must navigate a variety of environments, jumping and pulling levers along the way. But what the game gives in style and some well-designed puzzles, it takes back with some poorly-implemented platforming mechanics that make the game look unfinished at the best of times and aggravating at the worst. Read More.

Pier Solar and the Great Architects Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 4.0 out of 10

Pier Solar isn't a game that needed to be made, at least, not without actually apply choices from the modern age to make the game work. This game might be entertaining in the era that its original console was made in, but these days it makes too many blunders and doesn't fix enough mistakes that feel like they were taken straight from a design booklet from the 90s. As an experiment, and an amusement, it's good, but as a game to evoke nostalgia, it just isn't enjoyable to play. Read More.

Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Review (3DS)

By Nicholas Bale () - 8.0 out of 10

Professor Layton and Phoenix Wright come from two different games that should blend pretty well together - mixing the exploratory, puzzle-solving nature of the good professor with the objection-flinging, contradiction-hunting court battles of an ace attorney seems like a no-brainer. The result is a game that is sure to appeal to fans of both of the series, but with a distinct feeling that the two styles of gameplay could have been less segregated, even though the result is a satisfying blend of puzzles, intrigue, and mysteries to solve. Read More.

Indie Spotlight: The Last Door Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 8.0 out of 10

Despite a few weird puzzles and some bland writing, The Last Door does a good job of presenting a story straight out of Lovecraft's books, using its graphical style and some good sound design to its benefit, creating a point-and-click adventure game capable of making players jump. Read More.

Indie Spotlight: Luftrausers Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 9.0 out of 10

Luftrausers is a game that takes a concept - flying through the skies to destroy things for a high score - and puts as much polish and variation on that one idea without breaking out of its bounds. A balance between attacking and recovering as well as a perspective and control scheme that allows you to pull off some pretty deft maneuvers makes the game fun to play at its core, while a system of plane customization and challenges will keep you coming back for just one more round. Read More.

Indie Spotlight: The Fall Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 6.5 out of 10

The Fall blends adventure and sidescrolling genres to present the tale of an AI-controlled combat suit following its programming to get help for its occupant. It has flaws in many areas of the game, notably the reasoning behind the puzzles (but not the puzzles themselves), but a coherent and constrained plot, mixed with some good personalities make it worth the afternoon it should take to beat. Read More.

Indie Spotlight: The Last Tinker: City of Colors Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 7.5 out of 10

The Last Tinker: City of Colors is a platform/puzzle/combat game that mixes the three together to create a charming title that's surprisingly fun to play through. Despite a lack of any serious depth in any of the individual areas, the overall experience presents a solid experience that's worth a shot if you think you can handle a lighter presentation and simpler gameplay style. Read More.

Mario Kart 8 Review (Wii-U)

By Nicholas Bale () - 9.0 out of 10

Mario Kart 8 comes out of the gate, shells-a-blazing. With some fantastic track design and visuals to match, it's sure to be enjoyed by fans and newcomers to the series alike. However, if you're looking for a competent Battle Mode, look elsewhere - here you're just running around your standard racing tracks simply trying to find someone to hit, and that's just disappointing. An online mode is good for playing random matches, but kind of a pain to use for anything else. Read More.

Tales of Symphonia Chronicles Review (PS3)

By Nicholas Bale () - 6.0 out of 10

Tales of Symphonia: Chronicles revives the original Gamecube RPG and its sequel in an HD format, forgetting to actually add any more content beyond remastered textures. These are the best versions to play, for sure, but only if you have yet to play the originals at all. Read More.

The Wolf Among Us Episode 3: A Crooked Mile Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 8.5 out of 10

With the conclusion of Episode 2 of The Wolf Among Us, Bigby and Snow must work fast to work on the information they've been provided - the third episode of the adventure game brings some good choices to make, some good writing, and starts to really get into the meat of the mystery that Bigby and Snow have been investigating since the beginning. Read More.

Daylight Review (PC)

By Nicholas Bale () - 5.0 out of 10

Daylight is another first-person horror title that manages to inspire a touch of horror. Unfortunately, the procedurally-generated environments make for a dull time exploring, and the game's repetitive objectives make for an experience that falls flat of any good expectations. Read More.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze Review (Wii-U)

By Nicholas Bale () - 9.5 out of 10

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze brings new life to platformers, with tight gameplay, vibrant graphics, and music that will tickle your eardrums. And with simultaneous co-op play and a bevy of secrets to find, Tropical Freeze definitely feels like one of the must-have titles of the Wii U. Read More.

Super Mario 3D World Review (Wii-U)

By Nicholas Bale () - 9.5 out of 10

Super Mario 3D World brings the italian plumber and his friends back for some excellent platforming that's the mustachioed man at his best. The level design is excellent, the platforming precise, and the new powerup is a load of fun to play with. And when you get into multiplayer, things get hectic and fun as you and three other people race to finish each level before you manage to shove, burn, or throw each other to your deaths. Read More.