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Reviews in Review: Steins;Gate, Half Minute Hero 2, Trials Fusion photo
Reviews in Review: Steins;Gate, Half Minute Hero 2, Trials Fusion
by Ben Pack

"Reviews in Review" is a new show that releases every week where I will go over the reviews published this week on Destructoid, as well as give a score to the week in general. This week I talked about the reviews for Steins;Gate, Half Minute Hero 2, and Putty Squad. 

Otherwise, check out the recap of all the reviews that ran this past week on Destructoid below. Make sure to stay until the end of the video too for a DESTRUCTOID EXCLUSIVE interview.

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The best stuff on Destructoid this week [4/19] photo
The best stuff on Destructoid this week [4/19]
by Steven Hansen

[We post a lot of articles here at Destructoid. The endless, ouroboros news cycle has us burning the snake at both ends, which will ultimately push big news, thoughtful original pieces, and all sorts of other great content off of the front page. Check here every Saturday for my attempt to rectify that.]

Some kids want to be astronauts or doctors or lawyers or hedge fund managers. When I was a kid, I wanted to be a garbageman. Kid me is much brighter than real me. I'd probably be making three times more money annually, have health benefits, and a retirement plan. 

And I'd have garbageman arms. Strong arms. Weathered and leathery. Not vein laced or ripped. Just thick. The sort of arms that could squeeze the life out of another human being if they needed to, but not with malice. With an exasperated sigh. With a rote understanding of doing what needs doing (and only if it did need doing). Forlorn, but with a stupid persistence for a lack of alternatives.

Here's last week's post. Let's begin anew.

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We've got 5,000 keys for this weekend's WildStar beta! photo
We've got 5,000 keys for this weekend's WildStar beta!
by Mr Andy Dixon

[Update: The beta weekend has been extended until Monday!]

Our friends at NCSoft and Carbine Studios have hooked us up with 5,000 beta keys for their hot new MMO WildStar!

The beta weekend starts tomorrow at 7am and ends on Sunday Monday at 11:59pm Pacific. To snag your code, just head on over to your code redemption page and click the button! Once you've got your key, go sign up for an NCSoft account if you don't already have one, then click the "Apply A Code" button at the top of a page. If you like what you see, head on over to the WildStar pre-order page and secure yourself early access to the full game in late May.

Have fun! And don't forget, fans who play the beta can earn free items for launch! For each day players log into the game between now and launch (during pre-order weekends as well as Open Beta), accounts will receive 3 Boom Boxes at launch. These boxes can be used once per day to receive a random assortment of possible goodies, including XP buffs, unique runes, weapons, housing items, unique costumes, mounts, and more!

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Review in Progress: Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn (PS4) photo
Review in Progress: Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn (PS4)
by Chris Carter

Last year close to its launch, we reviewed Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn -- so what's with the retread, you ask? Well, that was before we implemented our Reviews in Progress program, which was designed to cover games as a whole with a score down the line, including endgame content that MMO veterans may want to know about before dropping their cash.

The fact is, A Realm Reborn has had many updates since launch, including the massive 2.2 patch that was implemented recently and a PS4 port. In an effort to step up our MMO coverage, we'll be taking a look at the whole picture in regards to Final Fantasy XIV both at present and going forward.

It doesn't even feel like work, either -- I'm enjoying myself far too much.

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The Darkest Dungeon gods were kind to me photo
The Darkest Dungeon gods were kind to me
by Patrick Hancock

Hot off its huge Kickstarter success, Darkest Dungeon is already in a playable-enough state to have a demo at PAX East 2014. Although the demo was only a short snippet of what's to come, it was easy to get a sense of the themes Red Hook is shooting for with this roguelike RPG. 

It looks great, it plays like a strategy-RPG, and its structure was likened to XCOM: Enemy Unknown. This game is brilliant.

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Review: Trials Fusion photo
Review: Trials Fusion
by Jordan Devore

There's nothing quite like Trials and, after several games in the popular racing/platforming series, fans know what to expect from developer RedLynx: more of the same.

Yes, there will be a stupid, amazing theme song you'll hate yourself for letting get stuck in your head. There will also be moments of immense frustration made bearable by the eventual satisfaction of clearing that one particularly devious obstacle. And there will be bitter leaderboard rivalries as you fight to shave milliseconds off your best times.

Trials Fusion represents all of these things, and more -- occasionally to its detriment.

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I died an embarrassing amount in Hotline Miami 2 photo
I died an embarrassing amount in Hotline Miami 2
by Brett Makedonski

Anyone that has even the slightest bit of familiarity with Hotline Miami knows what defines it. The neon-swathed visuals, the gratuitous violence, the quick and unforgiving gameplay, and the blaring soundtrack all made the game as loved as it was. With regard to a sequel, any deviation from this formula would result in something that just wasn’t Hotline Miami.

So, Dennaton Games isn’t going to.

Judging by the build of Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number that was at PAX East, the pieces are in place to give fans of the original more of what they want. The two stages on display showed off the exact style that many have come to know and love, but also expressed how Dennaton is ready to offer something a little new.

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Super Smash Bros screenshot extravaganza: 130 new screens photo
Super Smash Bros screenshot extravaganza: 130 new screens
by Dale North

Here is a blowout gallery of 130 new screenshots from the Wii U version of Super Smash Bros., featuring new looks at new characters Zero Suit Samus, Yoshi, Sheik, Charizard, and Greninja. This comes hot off the Nintendo Direct broadcast that featured these new guys. 

My favorite of the bunch is the one above. It depicts all that is right about videogames today, though Luigi getting busted in the nose by Samus' knee is also great.

What's your favorite?

Here's a launch into one of our gallery viewers. Enjoy!

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Review: Conception II: Children of the Seven Stars photo
Review: Conception II: Children of the Seven Stars
by Dale North

Serina is objectively the Best Girl.

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Review: Steins;Gate photo
Review: Steins;Gate
by Brittany Vincent

Time travel is infinitely more interesting once you leave the trappings of the TARDIS or any one of those familiar (some would say hackneyed) science fiction mainstays behind. Steins;Gate, the visual novel that inspired a 24-episode anime series, film, and several other spinoffs, has woven a masterful tale that explores the trope in a manner not unlike the popular deconstruction of magical girl series, Puella Magi Madoka Magica.

We're all familiar with the philosophy that altering even the smallest detail from a past event could alter the future drastically, but how much damage could a text message do? Could it destroy the hopes and dreams of everyone you love? How far could you go to make things right again?

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Music-making game Cosmic DJ has a corgi in it! photo
Music-making game Cosmic DJ has a corgi in it!
by Dale North

This past weekend, I found myself running through the crowds of the PAX East show floor, pushing people out of the way to get to the Indie Megabooth, where Cosmic DJ was waiting for me. As a musician and a fan of music games I would have sought it out anyway. But I found out via Twitter that the game features a corgi, so I took off running.

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Tuesday Newsday: PAX East, Titanfall, Evolve, Below & a Sexy Werewolf photo
Tuesday Newsday: PAX East, Titanfall, Evolve, Below & a Sexy Werewolf
by Max Scoville



On today's hard-hitting debut episode of Tuesday Newsday, we cover some of the highlights from PAX East, like Cult of the Wind, where you run around pretending to be an airplane, or Rain World, where you're a big squishy slug-cat. Meanwhile Firaxis has announced Civilization: Beyond Earth, Titanfall reveals details on new DLC, and Evolve has a skill tree for its monster. Brett got to play Capy Games' Below, which sounds incredible, and The Behemoth is teasing their next game. Oh, and this wolfman is gettin' all randy.

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Review: Half-Minute Hero: The Second Coming photo
Review: Half-Minute Hero: The Second Coming
by Kyle MacGregor

The original Half-Minute Hero was a very special and intriguing game. It boiled down an entire genre to its barest essentials, reducing the interminably long JRPG to just thirty seconds of gameplay.

Both a heartfelt tribute and pointed critique, the bite-sized adventure brimmed with self-referential humor. It trot out just about every trope in the book, firing on all cylinders with a lengthy series of inside jokes and clever witticisms. Smart, familiar, and charming; it appealed to both fans of the genre and detractors alike in a way that so few games do.

Humor often has diminishing returns though. Even the funniest quip can lose some of its luster the second time around. And in that regard, Half-Minute Hero: The Second Coming isn't quite as remarkable as its predecessor. Luckily, the deconstructionist RPG has upped its game in other arenas.

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Dumb Idiot Ideas: The Difficult Kinect Challenge photo
Dumb Idiot Ideas: The Difficult Kinect Challenge
by Max Scoville



This week, we filmed a wonderful short piece in which Bill and I discussed the lack of video games that let us play as actual animals. Unfortunately, Bill's microphone cut out mid-discussion, and the camera's face-tracking started focusing on an animated GIF of some dogs having sex I had up on my monitor behind me. 

So, here's what we did instead. 

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Chop up and equip your enemy's body parts in Severed photo
Chop up and equip your enemy's body parts in Severed
by Hamza CTZ Aziz

Severed is the next game from DrinkBox Studios, the creators of Mutant Blobs Attack and Guacamelee! Severed follows a distraught warrior trying to piece together a mystery, such as how she wakes up missing part of her arm. You'll be exploring an open world, taking on enemies through gesture-based controls in first-person, and along your quest you'll gain new powers by severing and attaching your enemies' body parts to yourself.

The nonlinear aspect in this dungeon-crawler adventure will give you control over the upgrade paths, allowing you to take on a variety of enemies with different strengths and weaknesses. As the developers explained it to me, think Severed as a cross between Mega Man, Infinity Blade, and Mike Tyson's Punch-Out

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The best stuff on Destructoid this week [4/12] photo
The best stuff on Destructoid this week [4/12]
by Steven Hansen

[We post a lot of articles here at Destructoid. The endless, ouroboros news cycle has us burning the snake at both ends, which will ultimately push big news, thoughtful original pieces, and all sorts of other great content off of the front page. Check here every Saturday for my attempt to rectify that.]

It's my birthday today. What did you get me?

Here's last week's recap. Let's begin anew.

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