Posted in Old Games

Miitopia

Well I am very late to the party for this game – I just recently picked this game up as a cheap little bargain, and my heart has been totally captured by its charm!

I played Tomodachi Life all those years ago when that came out, and I liked it a lot for all of its quirky gameplay, which is what made me originally want to play Miitopia. However I never actually got round to buying the game at any point, and it soon became a forgotten desire in the back of my mind.

But it was brought back to my attention recently when a Youtuber that I watch regularly was doing a play-through series … It only took me a few minutes of watching to realise that I needed to go and find this game somewhere so I could play it myself!

The premise of the game is that it is a casual fantasy RPG where you basically control who all of the characters are by way of assigning Miis. You can either create the Miis from scratch, take them from your 3DS’ user list or your friends list, and you can even access Mii Central where lots of Miis created by other players are stored for you to use as you see fit. This can lead to some rather amusing situations as there are a lot of really good creations out there, and equally there are some really bad ones! You could make you family and friends, or you could make beloved characters from your favourite games and TV shows. Your imagination (and the Mii maker) is your limit!

Miitopia sports a Final Fantasy-esque job system, with the added bonus of some rather zany options, which certainly make for a varied party. And while you travel as a party of up to four Miis, during battle you will only have direct control over your main character. The rest of the team will act on their own accord, but the AI does seem to be quite intelligent when it comes to choosing what to do.

As well as the jobs, each of your party members will also have a personality trait for you to choose. Each trait has different quirks, and some of them pair up particularly well with certain jobs. For example, a stubborn Mii can brace himself to take minimal damage from an incoming attack, and can also decide that they can do better after attacking an enemy and repeat the attack – this goes perfectly with the Warrior class!

One of the more charming aspects of this game is the friendship system. After each successful day of adventuring, your Miis will bunker down in an Inn for a good night’s sleep. Two Miis can share a room, which will increase their bond. Random events can also increase friendship, as well as helpful activities in battle such as healing. Eventually as your friendship level with another Mii increases, they will both unlock new abilities in battle which are so fun and quirky – from showing off by dealing extra damage, lending a hand to attack alongside each other, expressing concern when the other has been hurt, and even going on a rampage when they have been knocked out! These little bits are so fun to watch, and I couldn’t need any more encouragement to grow the friendships of my team to watch the cute chaos ensue when they go up against the monsters of the world.

But friendship isn’t the only thing that can come about in Miitopia … Miis can fall out and quarrel as well. There are certain actions and events which can cause annoyance between the affected party members, and if this happens often enough, it may turn into a full on quarrel. When two party members are quarreling, they may interrupt each other’s attacks, deciding that they can do a better job, and they might even get into a full-on fight … right on top of the enemy! This particular situation deals a little bit of damage to both of the party members and major damage to the enemy who got caught in the middle! It’s possible for Miis to put aside their differences and forgive each other, at which point they can continue to build up their friendship.

The plot of the game is fairly standard for a fantasy RPG – the main antagonist is the Dark Lord (who you also choose the identity of), and he has stolen the faces of the people who live in Miitopia! He then puts these faces on the monsters that roam the lands, and it is your job to hunt down these monsters and rescue the faces of the people! It’s another fun quirk of the game, to see all of these faces on the monsters.

I wouldn’t personally say that there is a whole lot of challenge to the game, but it doesn’t need to be challenging – the charm and personality make this game a pleasure to play through.


  • Platform: Nintendo 3DS
  • Release Date: 08/12/16
  • Genre: Casual Fantasy RPG
Posted in Old Games

The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess

If you were to ask me what the first thing that comes to my head is when talking about Twilight Princess, my first thought would be the sheer excitement I had as a child waiting for this game to come out. I had some sort of promotional DVD which I assume must have come with a magazine that I used to collect at that age, which had the trailers for the game on it, and I must have sat on the edge of my seat watching these trailers a ridiculous number of times!

As much as I enjoyed the colourful environment of Wind Waker, once I saw how dark Twilight Princess was going to be, I knew I was going to fall in love – and I was right.

Gorgeous visuals, dark atmospheres, a huge and breathtaking world, and an unforgettable story – this is what is waiting for anyone who gives their time to this installment of the Zelda series.

I felt like this was a truly epic adventure, with nine huge dungeons to conquer, monstrous bosses to defeat, and a sinister antagonist in the form of the King Of Twilight, Zant, who was acting on behalf of returning villain, Ganondorf. On top of this, the designs for the monsters were fantastic, particularly those that you would find in the Twilight Realm … the monsters found within are twisted beings, completely contrasted to the world of Hyrule.

As is usually the case with a Zelda game, the soundtrack is unforgettable, big and bold! To this day, I still whistle various tunes as I’m doing the most random of chores.

I feel like I can’t talk about Twilight Princess without mentioning a certain cutscene … If you’ve played, then you know the one. A twisted account of Hyrule’s history, and also a foreboding premonition of what could come to pass. This cutscene is one of the creepiest things I have ever seen, and most likely it is the creepiest thing that I’ve seen in a video game! It’s a perfect example of the exceptional artistic design behind this game.

The creepy cutscene of Hyrule’s history.

I really enjoyed the new gameplay mechanics that were introduced here, in particular Link’s Wolf Form. This really varied the gameplay, making sure that you’re not likely to get too bored running around as Link all the time in this vast world (which would never be a problem for me personally …).

The companion character of this game, Midna, was also a great addition to the game in my opinion. It was the first time it felt like you had a true companion … I like Navi in Ocarina Of Time, but her main purpose is to give you information on enemies and how to beat them. Tatl in Majora’s Mask was an improvement as she had more story involvement. The King Of Red Lions in Wind Waker had a lot of story involvement, but wasn’t a true companion seeing as … he’s a boat. Midna travels with you in your shadow, she has a lot of personality, and I love her story and what she brings to the game.

Though it isn’t my favourite entry to the series, there’s no question that this is one of my favourites – one that I have revisited many times!


  • Platform: Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo Wii U
  • Release Date: 19/11/2006-19/12/2006 (Region Dependent)
  • Rerelease Date: 04/03/2016-10/03/2016 (Region Dependent)
  • Genre: Fantasy Adventure
Posted in Old Games

The Legend Of Zelda: Majora’s Mask

Majora’s Mask is the dark direct sequel to one of the most famous entries to The Legend Of Zelda franchise – Ocarina Of Time. It features the same Link, the Hero Of Time, in his child form. We are told that he is on a journey searching for a friend. The most obvious interpretation is that he is in fact looking for Navi, as she left him at the end of the game. But this is never stated as fact, so who he is searching for is really left to our own interpretation.

The game was actually made using the same engine and character models as Ocarina Of Time, so you will most likely recognise all the characters you see in the game, even though they will in fact be different people! I actually don’t see this as a design issue though, as Majora’s Mask is supposed to take place in a parallel world to Hyrule, so I personally feel that the repeated models compliment this well.

The usual Zelda conventions are somewhat tweaked here, in that the main focus is removed from the dungeons, with only a total of four main dungeons for you to clear through. Instead the game pushes you to focus on mask-collecting and side quests, two things which were present in Ocarina Of Time but were not nearly as significant to the story.

I love the side quests so much, and really get a lot of enjoyment out of completing them, but this is hardly my favourite thing about Majora’s Mask.

This is a dark game. Nintendo are usually known for their cute, family friendly games, and although The Legend Of Zelda certainly does have its dark moments, Majora’s Mask set the bar to a different level entirely. Skull Kid has caused the Moon to fall, and so it shall … in three days! The people of Termina are largely ignorant to the certain doom that hangs above them, until the final day … on this day people flee, they take refuge, they are scared for their lives – all the people you come across will react differently to this crisis.

Truly, the beauty of this game is in the tiny details hidden in every area.

In 2015, long-time fans the world over rejoiced at the release of a 3DS remake! The world of Termina has never looked so detailed and full of life! There were some updates made in the remake to make the Player’s journey easier, such as the complete overhaul of the Bomber’s Notebook, which was certainly appreciated by myself at the very least.

This was one of my all time favourites when I was younger, and it still feels just as important to me today!


  • Platform: Nintendo 64, Nintendo 3DS
  • Release Date: 27/04/2000 (JP), 26/10/2000 (NA), 17/11/2000 (PAL)
  • Rerelease Date: 13/02/2015 (NA, EU), 14/02/2015 (JP, AU)
  • Genre: Fantasy Adventure

Posted in Old Games

The Legend Of Zelda: Wind Waker

Yet another Zelda entry, and it will not be the last. Wind Waker was something of a controversial entry at the time of release, mainly due to the introduction of cel-shaded graphics and cartoonish atmosphere. Personally it was an aesthetic that I enjoyed – it felt so different and refreshing to the series and it gives the game world so much personality!

Wind Waker is set in a world unlike any we had seen before in the Zelda series – a great sea covers the world, the only land in sight being the isles of varying sizes which are far and few between. Although the bright colours and art styles seem charming, this game isn’t afraid to flaunt a darker side. There are plenty of areas you will come across, some of them dungeons, others areas in the overworld, which will be a stark contrast against the rest of the world.

One of the things that I love is how refined the combat felt in Wind Waker compared to previous 3D titles. Link learns swordplay from Orca in his hometown, and one of the techniques taught is how to parry – this awesome move makes combat feel so fluid and skillful, it was a really nice touch and so easy to use. There’s nothing quite like catching your enemy off guard, shocking them and exposing their weaknesses!

The dungeons and bosses in the Zelda series are known for how good they are, and there’s no exception to the rule here! I don’t think I’ll ever forget the first time I tackled the first dungeon boss of the game … grappling onto a dragon’s tail, swinging high above a pool of lava, with the enormous Gohma watching and preparing to strike … I can’t be the only one who loved this boss battle right?

Of course I have to mention the spectacular soundtrack, as is the case with just about any game from the Zelda franchise – I don’t think there’s a track in the whole game that I don’t love! Peaceful and fun tracks we hear in the towns, the track we hear whilst sailing at sea giving us the feeling of being on a grand adventure, and again let’s not forget about the bosses! For the first time Zelda has given each boss of the game a unique soundtrack, once again adding to the amazing personality and atmosphere of Wind Waker!

The main antagonist is my favourite of all time, Ganon. If you want to know what I think of him, you can head to my Top 10 Antagonists to read everything I have to say.

In 2013 Nintendo gave us a phenomenal remaster on the Wii U which gave us beautifully updated graphics and a few changes and additions to the game, my favourite being the Swift Sail which let’s you sail across the Great Sea faster than you ever could before!

This definitely goes down as one of my favourites, and I always love going back to it for another journey as the Hero Of Winds.


  • Platform: Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo Wii U
  • Release Date: 13/12/2002
  • Rerelease Date: 20/09/2013
  • Genre: Fantasy Adventure

Posted in Old Games

Luigi’s Mansion

Happy Halloween everyone! In honour of one of my favourite annual events, and of the release of Luigi’s Mansion 3, I thought I would talk about the game that started off the moustachioed man’s Ghost-hunting career.

Even to this day I sometimes like to get out the Gamecube and play on some of the classic games in my collection, and Luigi’s Mansion is certainly one of them. The game came out 18 years ago in 2001, and was the first time I got to experience Luigi as a protagonist.

The game starts off with Luigi making his way to his new mansion … which he won in a contest … which he didn’t enter … If you thought this sounds suspicious, then congratulations! You have more sense that the Mario Bros. Luigi was meant to meet his brother, Mario, at the mansion, but he is no where to be seen, and the mansion itself is not quite as pictured on Luigi’s handy map!

It doesn’t take long for Luigi to discover that his mansion is in fact haunted. After an encounter with local oddball, Professor E. Gadd, Luigi is armed with the Poltergust 3000 (a vacuum cleaner…) and is ready to take on the hordes of ghosts that are plaguing the mansion and find his missing brother!

The game’s spooky aesthetic is perfect in my opinion, with Luigi constantly freaking out, the mansion in deep darkness, and the amazing theme music ominously plays throughout. Power returns to the rooms as Luigi clears them of ghosts, making that room a safe place for you and also replacing the theme with Luigi’s whistling version.

It’s not all sucking up random ghosts with your trusty Poltergust 3000 though, as there are larger ghosts with actual personalities who can be found across the mansion who act as the game’s mini bosses and actual bosses. They all take a certain amount of puzzle-solving to deal with, as you must flash your torch on their heart to be able to suck them up – but they don’t reveal their heart so easily! An example is one of the earlier Ghosts who is preoccupied with her appearance at a vanity table, but if you use the Poltergust 3000 to open the curtains, letting in a breeze, she will hastily close them again, showing you her heart in the process.

Besides all of this, there are collectibles for you to find as well, and the puzzle-solving gets a bit deeper as you progress, through the use of elemental medallions which allow you to use fire, water and ice as a means of dealing with certain ghosts and situations.

It would also be wrong of me to not mention the fantastically named Gameboy Horror, a gadget given to you by Prof. E. Gadd and a clear homage to the Gameboy Color. This is how the nutty professor keeps in touch with you whilst you are in the mansion. It also keeps track of what you’ve collected so far and also shows you the map of the mansion, giving you a good overview of where you’ve been and where you are going.

I could keep going on about how much I love this game, but I think I’ve said enough for now. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next installment and see what mischief Luigi has gotten himself into this time!


  • Platform: Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo 3DS
  • Release Date: 14/09/2001-17/05/2002 (Region Dependant)
  • Rerelease Date: 12/10/2018-8/11/2018 (Region Dependant)
  • Genre: Adventure

Posted in Old Games

Democracy 3

Democracy 3 is a politics simulation game where you are the leader of the country (finally a chance to see what all the fuss is about)! When you set the game up you will get to choose which country you want from a number of options, and you’ll set various other options before you jump in.

I will be the first to hold my hands up and say that I know very little about politics, much less than I should know. Despite this, something about Democracy 3 makes me keep coming back for more.

You will spend most of your time staring at the same screen, which shows you all the laws that are in place, all the problems you suffer, all the situations that are happening, as well as your popularity with the various demographics. To me this screen is reminiscent of a mind map (going back to my primary school days now) where there are the different sections; transport, law and order, public services, tax, economy, welfare and foreign policy.

How it works is that you have a set amount of “Political Capital” each turn, which you then spend on implementing new policies, or changing/cancelling existing ones. This is going to be a true test of your management skills, as you will find at the beginning of your term in office that the country is facing plenty of problems for you to tackle. As well as that, you also need to be wary of your funds – the economy will take a serious downfall if you allow the country’s deficit to get too out of hand!

Each turn will show you how the state of the country has changed following your policy changes, as well as informing you of any situations that arise. And you will also be informed by any potential plots that might be underway … it’s impossible to keep everyone happy, and some groups may resort to extreme measures if they are displeased with your leadership.

On top of this, your cabinet members may decide they don’t like the way you’re leading the country – something you’ll want to keep an eye on! Your cabinet members are the ones who generate your Political Capital, and they will generate less for you as they get more displeased with your actions. Each one has loyalties to different demographics, and if they don’t like you, then the cabinet member won’t like you either. If you can’t satisfy them, you’d better get someone else in who is more suited to your play style!

It can be very tricky to keep everything perfectly balanced – there will almost always be something that comes out of no where to throw a spanner in the works! I could be running a perfect country, and yet someone (usually capitalists…) will still see fit to plan my assassination.

Election day is the other possible way for your leadership to come to an end – as important as it is to make changes that are beneficial to the country, you also have to bear in mind what the voters think! Implementing too many policies that annoy the public will spell disaster for you once election day comes around.

So all in all, this has become one of my favourite simulation games – and I daresay it’s even managed to teach me a thing or two about politics!


  • Platform: PC
  • Release Date: 14/10/2013
  • Genre: Political Simulation, Management

Posted in Old Games

The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time

This game will always have a special place in the gaming vault that is my heart.

It was the first game I ever played from the Zelda franchise, and it was the first game that I truly loved, securing the title of my favourite game ever (until Breath Of The Wild stole the title!).

As a child I was unable to complete the game, so I didn’t see the whole plot unfold until I tackled it again in my teens. Watching the credits roll felt like the perfect end to the perfect game, with a beautiful track and a gathering of all the characters you met on your journey. It was enough to bring a tear to my eye as I completed my favourite game for the first time, particularly as it took such a long time for me to actually accomplish this! I always find it quite upsetting to see Navi leave Link to return to the forest – it seemed bizarre and quite heart-breaking that after their incredible journey together, Navi would just disappear.

Speaking of Navi, it’s very possible that I’m the only person who has played this game that actually liked Navi. I thought she was a good companion character, and I suppose I found her to be a very helpful guide as a child. I thought it was nice to have a companion with you on such a long and perilous journey through Hyrule. Without Navi, Link would be completely alone until he visits the likes of Kakariko Village and Hyrule Castle Town.

Ocarina of Time gave me (and many others) my first taste of an open world, and it felt so good to explore. Travelling across Hyrule to see all the different areas there are to explore, trying to get to Hyrule Castle Town before they raise the drawbridge and night, fighting off hordes of Stalchildren if you’re caught out in Hyrule Field at night (or spending the night in the river where they can’t reach you if you’re not feeling up for a night-long fight), meeting all the locals of the settlements and seeing what they have to say, or what you can do for them. It actually holds a lot of parallels with modern day open world RPGs.

Ocarina of Time is split into two parts. The first part of the game where Link is still a child, and the second part which takes place 7 years in the future after Link is sealed in the sacred realm until he reaches an age where he can wield the Master Sword to defeat Ganondorf, the main antagonist.

This also adds an interesting element to the gameplay, as you have different tools available to you depending on your age. For example, Young Link has access to the boomerang and the slingshot, and can crawl through small holes to reach new areas. Adult Link has more advanced tools and weaponry such as the hookshot, the bow and arrow, and the megaton hammer.

The game also features a host of dungeons to be completed, some as Young Link and some as Adult Link (and one dungeon requires you to enter it at both time periods!). The dungeon format is fairly standard for the Legend of Zelda series. You explore the dungeon, fight enemies, solve puzzles, fight a mini boss which will get you a new item, this item will help you progress to new areas of the dungeon, and ultimately help you fight the boss at the end of the dungeon.

The bosses steadily get harder as the game goes on, and personally I think they’re satisfying to beat. They’re not too difficult, but provide a fair challenge.

In 2011, Nintendo gave us the 3DS remaster, and it is such an unbelievable treat! As good as the game was, it only got better with beautifully updated graphics, some tweaked controls such as the ocarina (which you will use frequently) getting it’s own touch screen button, instead of having to take up an item slot, and filled out environments! The game world had a complete rework with all sorts of environmental items being added in to make the areas look like they are truly teeming with life.

What else is there to see about this game? My love of video games stems from this masterpiece, and as such it will always be a special game to me.


  • Platform: Nintendo 64, Nintendo Gamecube, Nintendo 3DS
  • Release Date: 21/11/1998-18/12/1998 (Region Dependant)
  • Gamecube Release Date: 28/11/2002-03/05/2003 (Region Dependant)
  • 3DS Release Date: 16/06/2011-30/06/2011 (Region Dependant)
  • Genre: Fantasy Adventure