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12:00 PM on 02.02.2014

The best and worst games of the week - A Bravely January

January has come and gone, but that doesn't mean there weren't some great games to play. Just look at all the amazing "indie" games that hit the PC this month. We had the fruition of two KickStarter campaigns finally see the ...

Wesley Ruscher


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Review: Republique: Exordium photo
Review: Republique: Exordium
by Chris Carter

Republique was quite the ambitious Kickstarter project. With big names like Jennifer Hale and David Hayter attached, not to mention the million dollar budget, to say this stealth adventure promised quite a bit is an understatement.

Having played the first of five episodes, I can safely say that most of the lofty goals have been met, but there is a bit more that's yet to be seen.

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Review: Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time photo
Review: Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time
by Chris Carter

Plants vs. Zombies launched in 2009 on the PC and absolutely changed the face of tower defense games. It was a cultural phenomenon, inspiring even the most infrequent of gamers to play for hours on end, popping off one zombie's head after another with reckless abandon.

But the original game was also a premium purchase, and with $20, you got every bit of content right away. The sequel, Plants vs. Zombies 2, offers up a very different approach -- it's free-to-play only, and, at first, it's launching exclusively on iOS devices.

Everything about this approach has disaster written all over it, but somehow, Plants vs. Zombies 2 actually pulls through mostly unscathed.

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Review: Deus Ex: The Fall photo
Review: Deus Ex: The Fall
by Chris Carter

After a pretty tantalizing teaser, Square Enix was all set to announce the anticipated follow-up to the successful Deus Ex Human Revolution -- and much to the ire of fans, it ended up being a mobile exclusive.

It's not all bad news though, as Deus Ex: The Fall actually works pretty well considering the platform, and offers up a lighter, more portable version of Human Revolution. That said, it would have been a much better experience on a dedicated portable -- or at the very least, anything offering tactile controls.

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The best and worst games of 2013: May Returns photo
The best and worst games of 2013: May Returns
by Jordan Devore

May was largely a quiet month for new game releases. Despite what felt like a slower schedule, especially coming off of a rather absurd April, here on Destructoid we did have a pair of 10s with the portable Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D and captivating, clay-fueled puzzler The Swapper. Quantity isn't everything!

One thing is for sure, May presented us with an eclectic group of titles. Take a look at some of the genres represented in this breakdown of everything we covered.

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The best and worst games of 2013: Hyperdimension April photo
The best and worst games of 2013: Hyperdimension April
by Jordan Devore

This review recap is brought to you by Daft Punk's Alive 2007, which fueled the incessant copying and pasting efforts needed to put one of these together. I don't feel like I've blinked since I started working on this, but it's worth it!

April was notable in that most of what we covered was smaller-scale and released through digital channels rather than at retail. We had Dead Island Riptide, sure, but there was also the likes of Don't Starve and Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. Speaking of which, did you notice that video reviews are back? There's going to be plenty more of those on the way.

Which games released in April, if any, decimated your free time?

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Review: Sonic Dash photo
Review: Sonic Dash
by Chris Carter

Not content with taking the Doodle Jump formula and simply placing Sonic in it with Sonic Jump, Sega has tapped a new mobile avenue, the 3D endless runner. Surprisingly, this sub-genre is the one that actually suits Sonic the most -- perhaps more than any IP ever could.

But as you can imagine, with the problematic and pushy nature of in-app-purchasing, Sega's handling of the franchise in general, and some developer's inability to translate quality into the mobile arena, a whole heap of things could go wrong.

Thankfully, they mostly don't. Mostly.

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The best and worst games of 2013: Infinite March  photo
The best and worst games of 2013: Infinite March
by Jordan Devore

What a month! Now that March is well behind us (and we remembered to take a look back to ponder), I feel confident in saying that between BioShock Infinite and Tomb Raider, and yet another Gears of War, we are well into this year of big-budget gaming.

Take a look at everything we reviewed in March -- there's a lot! What was your jam? What did you miss out on? I still need to grab copies of HarmoKnight and Luigi's Mansion for my 3DS. The poor guy has gotten dusty and now only I'm to blame for it.

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Review: Ridiculous Fishing photo
Review: Ridiculous Fishing
by Jonathan Holmes

A lot of great game developers are fascinated with fishing. Pokémon, Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess, and Animal Crossing all feature the option to fish. Earthbound/Mother creator Shigesato Itoi created a series of fishing games. Former Sup Holmes guest Sophie Houlden wants to make a game where every system is based on fishing

What is it that makes fishing such a compelling mechanic to developers? Ridiculous Fishing helps to answer that question. It's takes all of the moment-to-moment experiences associated with fishing (calm, anticipation, surprise, disappointment, pride, shame, epiphany) and turns them all up to appropriately ridiculous levels of intensity. That's why it's the best fishing game.

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The best and worst games of 2013: February Rising photo
The best and worst games of 2013: February Rising
by Hamza CTZ Aziz

Our monthly reviews recap continues on from the series return last month. January was packed full of great games, to the point of sensory overload. Thankfully February didn't have as many new titles, giving us a chance to catch up.

That said, there were still some pretty awesome games that came out last month. Most notable of the bunch were Bit.Trip Presents Runner2, Dead Space 3, and Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance. And let's not forgot the highest scoring game of the month, Star Wars Pinball.

Check out everything that came out in February for a quick and easy look at what you may have missed out on. 

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Review: Alien vs. Predator: Evolution photo
Review: Alien vs. Predator: Evolution
by Jim Sterling

When the makers of Alien vs. Predator: Evolution saw the negative press and subsequent fallout regarding Aliens: Colonial Marines, they must have laughed. I imagine them bellowing obnoxiously, roaring their gleeful approval that no matter what their game will be like, there's no way it could be considered anywhere near as bad. 

Sadly, these hypothetical developers are wholly mistaken. Evolution is ironically titled, as backward and inefficient as it is. It manages to do the seemingly impossible and rival Colonial Marines in its awfulness. Just when Aliens fans thought things could only get better, along comes Angry Mob Games to demonstrate that, no, the franchise isn't done being pissed on yet. 

In fact, the flood's only just begun. 

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Review: Star Wars Pinball photo
Review: Star Wars Pinball
by Brett Zeidler

It's been a couple years since Zen Studios first took on the Marvel license and subsequently released expertly crafted tables centered around the biggest characters and story arcs in the comic book giant's vast library. Each table outdid the last, and it seemed like there was no way they could do any better with the next tables. Then they did.

After fifteen tables and no signs of slowing down, the studio has done a brilliant job with the Marvel license, so what would the next logical step be for the masterminds at Zen? Well, Star Wars Pinball, of course.

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The best and worst games of 2013: January May Cry photo
The best and worst games of 2013: January May Cry
by Jordan Devore

I'm not sure what it's like from the outside looking in, but as someone who's directly involved with covering games and has to be thinking about them on a daily basis, January was one hell of an action-packed month.

We kicked the year off proper with more than 30 reviews, including assessments of some long-awaited releases like DmC and the localized Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch. Did they live up to expectations? An untold number of comments have been written on the subject, and many more have yet to be written.

If you weren't keeping track, this is the post for you. We've broken down our January reviews into an easily-digestible format with highlight quotes and scores for each individual game. Looking for something new to play? Prepare your scroll wheel.

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Review: Final Fantasy All the Bravest photo
Review: Final Fantasy All the Bravest
by Jim Sterling

Final Fantasy is close to being the Star Wars of the videogame industry, and not in a positive way. Square Enix, the George Lucas of this particularly scenario, has done a fine job exploiting its brand to almost damaging proportions, attaching the Final Fantasy name to anything it can, regardless of quality. 

Final Fantasy All the Bravest could be seen as the culmination of that. It is to Final Fantasy what a Toys R Us shelf stocked with Jar Jar Binks dolls was to Star Wars. Only, slightly worse. 

After all, the Jar Jar Binks dolls never asked you to keep giving it money after you'd bought it.

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Review: Grand Theft Auto: Vice City: 10 Year Anniversary photo
Review: Grand Theft Auto: Vice City: 10 Year Anniversary
by Chris Carter

All this Grand Theft Auto anniversary talk makes me feel old. It feels like just yesterday I was listening to Michael Jackson, swerving around as Tommy Vercetti, and taking in the sights of Rockstar's faux-Miami setting.

I think a lot of people missed out on Vice City because it came out so soon after Grand Theft Auto III, and that's a shame. Just like Grand Theft Auto III on mobile devices before it, this new anniversary edition honors the franchise's legacy: so long as you're willing to put up with touch controls.

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Apple finally announces the iPhone 5, available Sept 21 photo
Apple finally announces the iPhone 5, available Sept 21
by Dale North

[Update: Pricing, date added.]

No one on this planet was surprised when Apple announced the iPhone 5 today at their press conference in San Francisco. Still, the world has been waiting on details, and now we have them for you. 

Apple calls it "the most beautiful product we have ever made, bar none." It's made entirely out of glass and aluminum, the thinnest and lightest phone they've ever made. It's 20 percent lighter and 18 percent thinner than the iPhone 4S. It will come in two colors: white with a raw aluminum back. and black with a black anodized backing.

As expected, Apple's new phone sports an elongated screen. It's a 326ppi Retina display, four-inches. The resolution is a massive 1136 x 640, making for a phone that is the same width, but taller. This adds the ability to display one additional row of apps.

On the inside, the new A6 processor doubles the speed and graphics of the A5 chip. Rob Murray from EA took the stage to show off Real Racing 3 running on the iPhone 5. He called the visuals in his demo "full console quality."

Apple is calling the wireless tech inside this new phone Ultrafast Wireless, which encompasses GPRS, EDGE, EV-DO, HSPA, HSPA+, DC-HSDPA and LTE standards. On the WiFi side, it's 802.11n, for speeds up to 150 Mbps. 

The pricing falls right in line with the iPhone 4S: $199 for 16GB. $299 for 32GB, and $399 for 64GB. Pre-orders start on Friday the 14th, with shipping following on September 21st in the US and several other countries.

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