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Spooky Reviews!

On 10/22/2020 at 09:17 PM by Cary Woodham

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Happy Halloween!  I’ve got some treats for you all, and no tricks!  More spooky game reviews I’ve recently written over at!  Well, not very many of them are scary, I write for a family friendly video game site for parents after all.  But please go ahead and read as many reviews as you can, and maybe even post a comment or two.  I’d appreciate it.  OK, let’s begin!

Connection Haunted (Switch)

Well I have ONE spooky game on here.  You’re about to connect to a server to boot up a classic FPS styled capture the flag game.  But when you start, nobody is around to play.  When someone else finally shows up, they don’t say anything in the chat and you can’t see them anywhere at first.  Then mysterious shadows appear that can take you out of the game!  Are the servers haunted?  It’s up to you to find out in this psychological thriller disguised as a first person shooter from the early 2000’s era.  I guess I just didn’t ‘get’ this game.  I don’t see what’s so fun about getting defeated by enemies you can’t see and having to start over.  But I didn’t ask to review this game, they just sent me a code so I was like, ok.

No Straight Roads (PS4)

This is one of the better games in this batch of reviews.  Mayday and Zuke are in an indie rock band and they live in Vinyl City.  Mayday is the guitarist and Zuke is the drummer.  The city they live in is powered by music, provided by the NSR power company.  Musicians can audition to be part of NSR, but when Mayday and Zuke try out, they are rejected.  Later they find out their power output was higher than anyone else’s, and that NSR is withholding power and electricity to everyone except the very elite.  And now they’ve banned rock and roll, too!  Mayday and Zuke decide to use their rock music to rebel and take back the city for everyone in No Straight Roads.  It’s kind of like a video game version of the 80’s song, “We Built this City on Rock and Roll.”  It’s a 3-D platformer with an emphasis on multi-tiered boss fights and music timing gameplay.   The game has some problems, but it does remind me of Psychonauts and I could tell the developers really put their heart into this game, and you don’t see that much anymore.

Ary and the Secret of Seasons (Switch)

Ary and the Secret of Seasons is a 3-D platformer action adventure game that hearkens back to the PS2 days and is similar to titles like Jak & Daxter.  The story is kind of a cross between Mulan and Avatar: The Last Airbender.  You play as Aryelle, a girl who lives with her family in a magical world where people have the power to control the seasons.  These people are called Guardians, and Ary’s brother Flynn is training to become one.  But when Flynn goes missing and is presumed dead, their father is stricken with grief and it’s up to Ary to cut her hair, put on her brother’s uniform, and take his place to find Flynn and solve the mystery of why dark crystals are raining down upon the land.  This game could’ve been really great if it had more time in the oven.

Mini Motor Racing X (Switch)

This is another good one, or I just enjoyed it more than I should have.  Race pocket sized cars on bite sized tracks in this one.  The strength is its versatility and different ways to play. Default is a top down racer like Super Sprint or Micro Machines, but if you don’t like the controls, you can always change them or switch the camera to a behind the car view.  The cars also make me think of Choro Q toys.  Anyone remember the Choro Q/Penny Racers games?  My favorite was Road Trip on the PS2.  It was actually a Choro Q game and the very definition of a hidden gem.

Fight Crab (Switch)

Is the first rule of Fight Crab not to talk about Fight Crab?  Well too bad because I’m talking about it anyway!  Fight Crab is what you expect it is.  You’re a crab, and you fight other crabs.  Punch and pinch your opponents, and use weapons like swords, guns, maces, and even chainsaws that your little crabs grab with their claws!  Fight underwater, on beaches, as a giant crab in a city, on a dinner table, or even at the seafood section of a supermarket!  It’s as weird as it sounds, but I think it would’ve been better as an arcade game where you could just plunk a couple of quarters in for the novelty of fighting as a crab.

Piffle (Switch)

You’re what looks like a person in a cat costume, and you’re happily playing with your dog.  When all of a sudden, a blocky demon swoops in, takes your dog, and sends evil purple blocks all over the place.  Now it’s up to you to bounce little kitten pellet balls called piffles to destroy those blocks and save your dog.  Well it’s a good thing story doesn’t matter in this adorable action puzzle game.  Piffle kind of plays like a cross between BreakOut and Puzzle Bobble/Bust-A-Move, and it’s pretty good, too.

Circuit Dude (Switch)

Meet Circuit Dude.  He’s a little robot who needs your help.  Guide him to place chips into slots so he can power up his big invention (whatever that is).  Run around 2-D top down mazes, solving puzzles along the way in this downloadable title that’s very similar to other ‘Sokoban” games like Chip’s Challenge or Adventures of Lolo.

Video Game Lottery Tickets

Recently I got some video game themed lottery tickets based on Space Invaders and Pac-Man, so I decided to take a break and show them off here.

Spinch (Switch)

What if colors were alive and needed to eat to survive?  And their favorite food was a little white ball creature called a Spinch.  Play as a Spinch as you run, jump, and dash to avoid colors out to get you in this psychedelic super challenging 2-D platformer.  Graphics reminded me of Yellow Submarine or 1970s Sesame Street animated shorts.  The music fits the game, but I’d never listen to it on my own as it sounds like Optimus Prime’s digestive tract.

Kids: Farm Coloring (Switch)

And for my last Halloween review, what could be scarier than a kids coloring book with farm animals!  WOOOOOOOO!  Really could’ve used more content as you just color 12 animals.  And parents will want to turn off the sound as they constantly play a piano rendition of “Old MacDonald” in the background.

And that’s all for now!  Thanks for reading and posting comments on my reviews!  And I hope everyone has a safe and happy Halloween!  For me, Halloween is going to kind of suck this year because we’re not doing trick or treating at my house because of COVID.  Personally, I’d be OK with it, but the other folks in my house are saying no, so whatever.  So I’ll just be spending Halloween night in Animal Crossing.  Later!  --Cary




10/23/2020 at 12:45 PM

I like the Mini Motor Racing X game. And those video game lottery tickets are neat collectibles. 

Cary Woodham

10/24/2020 at 07:55 AM

I was surprised how good Mini Motor Racing X was. Either that or I liked it more than I should have.  

I've been to other states where they have video game lottery tickets like those, just at other times of the year.  So check gas stations and stuff and see what they have.

Thanks for reading!


10/24/2020 at 09:58 PM

I was just playing a similar arcade racer, Hotshot Racing. 

Cary Woodham

10/25/2020 at 08:17 AM

I think I requested a review code for that one, too, but wasn't able to get it.  That happens sometimes.

Matt Snee Staff Writer

10/24/2020 at 05:18 AM

I wish I lived in Vinyl City. 

Cary Woodham

10/24/2020 at 07:57 AM

The places you walk around in Vinyl City remind me of touristy shopping districts like Universal CityWalk in Orlando or LA.  And actually parts of the nearby area where I live is starting to build up that way, too.  Thanks for reading!

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