Gaming has changed a lot in the last 30 years. From pixels to polygons, from barely workable 3D to incredibly complex gaming worlds, and from 16-bit soundtracks to fully orchestrated scores. One thing has been consistent for the last three decades though, and that has been the games. For every change in technology, growth in ambition, and exciting new idea, there have been men and women who took games to the next level and created some of the greatest games we’ve ever played in the process.
With this spirit in mind, we’ve decided to go back over the last 30 years with the gift of hindsight. Our editors selected 6 games from each year that we thought best encapsulated it. Our criteria included new ground broken, lasting impact, fun factor, general quality, influence, popularity and a whole host of other criteria. It was hard going, but we managed to narrow it down to a mere 6 from every single year. 1 winner and 5 runners-up. We then asked our writers to choose the best game of each of the last 3 decades years. Now, with the votes tallied and the list prepared, we offer it to you. Some of our picks may be divisive, and others may be safe as houses, but the democratic process won out, and these are our picks for Goomba Stomp’s favorite games of the last quarter-century. Here are the best games of the 1990s.
1990) Super Mario Bros. 3
Super Mario Bros 3 is often considered to be the best video game of the 8-bit generation and with reason. It introduced so many new ideas and for its time, the game was beyond anything you could ever dream of with eight worlds and seventy-plus ingenious levels of side-scrolling awesomeness. It introduced new power-ups and various suits Mario can use inside the levels, including the super leaf which turns Mario into Raccoon Mario, letting him fly, glide, and tail whip – and the fan-favorite, the Tanooki suit, which gives Mario the same abilities as the super leaf, but also lets him briefly turn into a statue protecting him from danger. Meanwhile, the frog suit allows you to swim very quickly underwater and jump higher while on land, and the hammer suit turns Mario into Hammer Mario, letting him throw powerful hammers and block fireballs by crouching.
In Super Mario Bros. 3, Mario could now slide down hills, knocking down enemies who get in his way, and the powerups from the original game also make an appearance. Also new to the series were mini-games, an overhead map screen to track progress and collectible warp whistles that teleport you to later worlds in the game. In addition, is the music box which puts enemies on the map to sleep and the anchor used to stop the Koopaling’s airship from flying around the map so that you don’t have to chase it. Jugern’s Cloud allows you to skip a level and Kuribo’s Shoe, easily one of the most beloved power-ups in Mario history, can be found in only one level!
The familiar Mario sound effects are present and accounted for, along with a batch of new musical compositions concocted by Koji Kondo and dozens of new enemies like Boom Booms, Boos and Chain Chomps make their very first appearance in the Nintendo universe. In my opinion, it is a near-perfect video game crammed with so much to see and so much to do. It is hands down the best in the Super Mario series— a masterpiece, full of innovation, surprises and a game that will forever stand the test of time. (Ricky D)
Runners-Up: Mega Man 3, Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, Ninja Gaiden II: The Dark Sword of Chaos, The Secret of Monkey Island, Startropics
1991) Super Mario World
There are about eight Mario adventures that could easily be listed within the lexicon of the greatest games ever made, and Super Mario World, released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System sits on that list. Super Mario World helped define the 16-bit era, transforming the classic Mario formula into something bigger, faster, brighter, and some would say, better. It proved that Nintendo could deviate away from a traditional formula and still have a massive hit on their hands. And for this reason alone, Super Mario World is one of the most important games Nintendo has ever released. It gave them the confidence to continuously experiment, even if it was at the expense of their now iconic mascot. It also helped the Super NES sell millions of units while teens were desperately trying to decide between purchasing either the Super NES or the Sega Genesis.
What makes the Super Mario series so great is Nintendo’s insistence in finding new ways to expand upon its basic concepts in unexpected ways. Super Mario World managed to push the boundaries and exceeded the expectations of gamers back in 1992. Following up on the brilliance of Super Mario Bros. 3 was no easy feat but Nintendo pulled it off with great success. I think it’s safe to say that Super Mario World is the apex of 16-bit platforming and set the bar impossibly high for any future 16-bit releases. (Ricky D)
Runners-Up: Another World, Final Fantasy IV, F-Zero, Street Fighter II, Super Castlevania IV
1992) The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
Back in 1993, A Link to the Past did many things other games had never done before it, and in many ways, A Link to the Past was the Zelda game that would lay down the blueprint for other entries to follow. A Link to the Past puts its contemporaries to shame, which is quite a claim when you consider the library the Super Nintendo boasts. There are easily more dungeons to explore in this game than any other games in the series, and each of those labyrinths is vibrantly rendered. Kazuaki Morita, who would go on to become a permanent fixture in the Zelda franchise, did an incredible job in creating a new multi-level geometry for Link to roam around. Every dungeon in the game is overflowing with intricately-layered platforms, a wide variety of enemies, and a healthy dose of complex puzzles. One could say that A Link to the Past is the ultimate dungeon-crawling game.
It was also a graphical showcase at the time, full of diverse environments and detailed sprites. The sound design, too, is a work of genius. Koji Kondo’s compositions here are legendary, and A Link to the Past helped to establish the musical score of the Zelda series. Meanwhile, the game introduced elements to the series that are still commonplace today, such as the concept of an alternate or parallel world, the Master Sword, and several new weapons and items for Link to use. Released to critical and commercial success, A Link to the Past was a landmark title for Nintendo and established a formula for adventure games that balanced exploration, storytelling, item acquisition, and puzzle-solving. It’s a formula still followed today, and not just in the series, but by many other game developers worldwide. In the Zelda canon — which, in my opinion, consists of six masterpieces — this 16-bit adventure is still by far the best in the series. (Ricky D)
Runners-Up: Alone in the Dark, Contra III: The Alien Wars, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, Super Mario Kart, Wolfenstein 3D
Doom is not the original first-person shooter, but it’s undeniably the most significant. The continued prevalence of FPS titles in 2019, 26 years after its release, exist as an ongoing tribute to the phenomenal impact of id software’s blockbuster shooter. It caused tidal waves in the PC gaming industry, set an unparalleled standard for 3D gaming, and made rock stars out of its small team of developers and programmers.
Time has been astonishingly kind to Doom, and this can be attributed to the unfiltered vision and unrelenting work ethic of id. Wanting nothing but the fastest, bloodiest, most visceral and badass video game possible, the team created an experience that still encapsulates every bit of their mantra to this day. It remains a blistering, brutal blast of pure adrenaline that’s as infinitely playable on its recent Switch port as it is in a web browser.
Looking at pretty much any screenshot of Doom will bring memories flooding back, as so much of the game’s visuals are truly iconic. The coloured key cards, the grotesque monsters, the Doom Guy avatar at the bottom of the screen, the BFG – everything on display is memorable, and without any semblance of a story to carry it all.
Doom’s method of gameplay over story quintessentially embodies the early philosophy of id software, where, “Story in a game is like story in a porn movie; it’s expected to be there, but it’s not that important.” That may be less of the case today, but back in 1993 it was unquestionably true. Doom’s influence has, and will continue to, echo through the ages thanks to its revolutionary gameplay and unabashed focus on big f’n guns and lots of f’n fun. (Alex Aldridge)
Runners-Up: Mortal Kombat II, Mega Man X, Myst, Secret of Mana, Star Fox
1994) Super Metroid
The bodies of dead scientists lie strewn across the floor. Leering strings echo in the background, mingling with the shrill screeches of the last Metroid. Super Metroid thrives on creating such an unsettling atmosphere. A masterwork of worldbuilding, it presents an eerily explorable planet unlike anything before it. In doing so, it also became one of the few games that can truly be said to have begun its own genre.
Super Metroid’s brilliance boils down to its setting – the desolate Planet Zebes. It is a silent planet, one that tells its own stories through its environment alone. From the ruins of the fallen Chozo society to the distorted remains of failed Space Pirate experiments, Zebes is filled with muted monuments of its tragic history. With its ominous visuals and its ambient, percussive soundtrack, it creates an alien environment that encourages players to uncover more of its past.
Progress through Zebes isn’t siphoned off into segmented levels as in other action games of the time. Instead, Super Metroid presents a masterfully interconnected world that can be explored in any direction – provided that one has the items necessary to overcome the game’s many obstacles. As the player becomes more powerful with every new item or ability, the world opens up further, exposing more of its mysteries and hidden depths. It’s this marriage of exploration and worldbuilding that makes the gameplay loop so intoxicating, even a quarter of a century after its release.
For 25 years, countless games have proudly dubbed themselves “Metroidvanias” as they strive to emulate Super Metroid’s signature seamless design. Yet even with so many successors, Super Metroid remains the pinnacle of the genre it fostered. Few games have created a world as engrossing and worthy of exploring as Zebes. (Campbell Gill)
Runners-Up: Donkey Kong Country, Earthworm Jim, Earthbound, Final Fantasy VI, Sim City 2000
1995) Chrono Trigger
Few RPGs inspire as warm memories as Chrono Trigger does. It makes sense too, Chrono Trigger arrived at a time when the world needed a game just like it. Final Fantasy VI is a great game, but it lacks the polish and vision of a game like this. Meanwhile, Final Fantasy VII was a ground-breaking game-changer, but its experimental development means that it hasn’t aged as well as we might like.
Chrono Trigger is the perfect sweet spot between the two. Crafted by the dream team of Yoshinori Kitase, Takashi Tokita, and Akihiko Matsui, Chrono Trigger benefited from having the best and brightest in the business at the helm, and a bevy of talented outliers contributing in other facets. Akira Toriyama of Dragonball Z fame designed the characters, while one of a kind composers Nobuo Uematsu and Yasunori Mitsuda concocted the score.
A timeless tale of a group of misfits who take up the call of all of humanity without even being asked, Chrono Trigger is an unforgettable experience, a game that is as timeless as its characters journey. (Mike Worby)
Runners-Up: Civilization II, Command and Conquer, Donkey Kong Country 2, Warcraft II, Yoshi’s Island
1996) Super Mario 64
In many ways, Super Mario 64 is the definitive video game. As a technical showcase, it simultaneously ushered the best-selling video game series and the medium as a whole into the third dimension, redefining the very notion of what games could be. As a design marvel, it remains one of the most critically acclaimed games of all time and continues to influence countless successors, from games in its own series such as Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Odyssey, to non-Nintendo games such as Banjo-Kazooie, Spyro, Crash Bandicoot, and A Hat in Time.
Nearly twenty five years later, Super Mario 64 remains a joy to play and to many series vets it still features the most responsive and flexible controls, most memorable worlds, most quintessential tunes, and most satisfying missions. From first landing on the castle lawn to discovering Yoshi on its roof, Super Mario 64 is full of unforgettable moments that will remain forever lodged into the collective subconscious of 90s kids and gaming culture. (Kyle Rentschler)
Runners-Up: Crash Bandicoot, Mario Kart 64, Pokemon Red & Blue, Resident Evil, Tomb Raider
1997) Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
Sometimes the best strategy for a franchise is simply to take up someone else’s ball and run with it. Such was the case with Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. After Super Metroid redefined its own genre, the previously level-based Castlevania decided to take that concept and evolve it further. Birthed from this experiment was the most memorable and successful game in the franchise, an outlier that saw us playing as one of Dracula’s own instead of one of the Belmonts.
Set free in Dracula’s castle as his very own son, players flew, floated, and ran toward their destiny, in hopes of committing a melancholic patricide that would only be diminished by the hilariously bad voice acting that accompanied it. Today, even those glaring flaws are looked upon with loving nostalgia. Such is the quality of a game like Symphony of the Night, a game so enduring that it could inspire a successor over 20 years later.
While everyone else was concentrating on the next realm of game development, Koji Igarashi focused on making the best version of Castlevania he could, without abandoning the look and style the series had come to be known for. The results speak for themselves. (Mike Worby)
Runners-Up: Final Fantasy VII, Goldeneye, Oddworld: Abe’s Odyssey, Parappa the Rapper, Tekken 3
1998) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Few games hold their value with as much longevity as The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. To this day, it remains the basis for virtually every major 3D action-adventure game. Even within its own franchise, Ocarina of Time tends to tower above other entries. Not because it has yet to be topped, but because it set such an all-around high benchmark for quality.
Where other games have surpassed Ocarina of Time’s individual mechanics, very few rival how cohesive and balanced the complete game still is. A slower text crawl does lead to a much slower experience overall, but Ocarina of Time is a game that thrives on its smaller moments. Every beat, every cutscene, and every dungeon meld together into an unforgettably epic adventure. (Renan Fontes)
Runners-Up: Grim Fandango, Half-Life, Metal Gear Solid, Resident Evil 2, StarCraft
1999) Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater is as much a time capsule as it is a video game. It’s a remnant of an era when the millennium was young, life was rad, the future was irrelevant, and goofing off was life. It got the punk kids into skating, the skater kids into video games, and the gamers into both. It truly exemplifies a period in time where my life aligned with this video game on practically every level.
As far as skateboarding games go, even within its own franchise, it’s fairly rudimentary. It lacks a lot of important features that were added in later instalments like manuals and reverts, but its simplicity helps mark it as a timeless classic – one that can be easier to pick back up than riding… well, not a bike, but it’s definitely easier than riding an actual skateboard. What it lacks in complexity, it more than makes up for in a tight, responsive control system that made virtual skateboarding feel refined and ready for intense, skill-based chaos.
THPS boasts some of the most iconic levels and music in the series’ history and the majority of it is imprinted in my brain at this point, even if it took me years to hear the bridge in Goldfinger’s ‘Superman’ thanks to the two-minute time limit on Warehouse. Long before activities could be gamified, Neversoft was putting collectibles and hidden secrets into a skate park. It created this bite-sized chunk of adrenaline that could be repeated over and over again, much like trying to nail the perfect skateboard trick. It adhered perfectly to the short attention spans of young punks and skaters, and it was endlessly addictive.
THPS is not just an important game in terms of establishing a genre, but it’s an important game for an entire generation of people who grew up on Bart Simpson and Bam Margera, Offspring and NOFX, Osiris and DC, Jackass and CKY, Sega and Nintendo. Skating has never been as big, and the series has all but died a death after the repugnant fifth entry a few years ago, but nothing can kill the memory of playing THPS back on PS1. Gaming and skating collectively will never be as gnarly again. (Alex Aldridge)
Runners-Up: Chrono Cross, Final Fantasy VIII, Planescape: Torment, Silent Hill, System Shock 2
‘Daemon X Machina’ – Spotlighting 2019’s Least-Hyped Switch Game
Daemon X Machina made a bold first impression with its bombastic announcement at E3 2018 – and gamers promptly stopped caring about it. It’s time for that to change.
Daemon X Machina made a bold first impression with its bombastic announcement at E3 2018 – and gamers promptly stopped caring about it. It’s time for that to change.
From the very beginning, Daemon X Machina has struggled for attention. It’s certainly not for lack of trying; after all, Nintendo has worked tirelessly to help promote this Switch-exclusive mech action game from Marvelous, even going so far as to position it as the first announcement of its big E3 Direct last year. Despite these efforts, though, Daemon X Machina has often been lost in the shuffle of other Switch exclusives. When there’s constantly talks of a new Animal Crossing, Zelda, or Smash Bros., an original IP like Daemon X Machina easily gets left out of the conversation. However, there’s no denying that it has some incredible potential, making it a game that’s certainly worth checking out amidst the crowded release schedule for the rest of the year. Now is the time to spotlight that ahead of its launch on September 13.
A good mech game doesn’t need to do much – it must simply provide the player with massive robot suits, near-excessive over-the-top action, and a story to help the game make at least a little sense. Daemon X Machina looks set to deliver in all three of those departments. It will feature a huge amount of flexibility to create the perfect mech, thanks to hundreds of interchangeable weapons and body parts, many of which can be scavenged from fallen enemies. With gargantuan destructible environments and hordes of robotic foes to take down, the combat looks to be as extravagant as some of the best action games of recent years. That’s not to mention the main plot, which focuses on the aftermath of the moon exploding. Yes, it does sound like ridiculous anime-inspired fodder, but a game about giant roots blowing each other out of the sky doesn’t need a plot that adheres to realism. It need only set up a somewhat-reasonable backdrop for intense mechanized combat, and in that regard, it’s looking like a recipe for success.
All these features are great on their own, but what makes them truly exciting is the pedigree behind them. Daemon X Machina is being developed by a dream team of developers who have worked extensively on some of the most iconic mech games ever made. For instance, the team includes Kenichiro Tsukuda and Shoji Kawamori, who respectively produced and designed the mechs for the legendary Armored Core series. This team aims to take the classic formula that made Armored Core and other classics so special and put it back in the spotlight with Daemon X Machina. However, that doesn’t mean that it will be merely derivative. It already displays a distinct personality of its own thanks to its ambitious gameplay concepts (again, exploding moon) and its distinctive cell-shaded visuals. Its striking color palette of bold reds, blacks, and whites shouldn’t be surprising, considering that its art is directed by none other than Yusuke Kozaki, who has worked on such stylish titles as the No More Heroes series.
If it achieves its potential, Daemon X Machina could be a godsend for its genre. While it would be unfair to call the mech action genre “dead,” it is certainly quite niche. This would be the first time in years that a giant robot action game has had the full support of a major company like Nintendo behind it. And while Nintendo has already supported this genre in the past, this will be the first time that it’s done so on a hit console like the Switch, which automatically gives it a wide and passionate audience. Even with its inherent niche status, Daemon X Machina is already in a better position than many similar games before it thanks to its publisher and platform. If it does well, it could inspire Nintendo and other companies to promote similar games, leading to a needed revival of the genre’s popularity.
But this leads to one of the simultaneously best and worst aspects of Daemon x Machina: its demo. Marvelous released an early demo on the Switch eShop back in February with the intention of drumming up interest in the game and getting player feedback. To put it plainly, it wasn’t very good. The action felt unsatisfying with a lack of any feeling of real impact with each blow; it was difficult to aim at enemies due to imprecise targeting systems, poor visibility, and an absence of gyro controls; and worst of all, its performance was horrendous. It was stuck at a mere thirty frames per second, which is already less than ideal for such a fast-paced action game. But it didn’t even manage to hit that target consistently, leading to a choppy and unsatisfying experience. One need only take a quick look through Digital Foundry’s breakdown to understand the demo’s many issues.
“Marvelous did something incredible here: they listened to their fans.”
However, the demo has turned out to be something of a blessing in disguise. Shortly after the demo’s release, Marvelous distributed a survey to many players and requested their feedback. A few months later, Nintendo released a new trailer showing how the feedback had been integrated into the game. The full list of changes reads like a wish list of everything that needed to be adjusted following the demo. Highlights include the addition of gyro controls, improved targeting and feedback systems, and most importantly, an improved framerate. In fact, the developers have stated that performance was one of their “top priorities” when adjusting the game.
Marvelous did something incredible here: they listened to their fans. The fact that they were so open to feedback and eager to improve bodes incredibly well for the final release. They know that the mech action genre isn’t what it used to be, and they seem truly passionate about creating a quality title in the genre they love. In an industry that is so often focused more on emptying players’ wallets than creating a worthwhile title, this attitude is incredibly refreshing, hinting of a project that’s filled with genuine care and passion.
The unfortunate truth remains that Daemon X Machina is bound to be one of Nintendo’s least-hyped games this year. As long as games like Astral Chain, Dragon Quest XI S, and Link’s Awakening are all releasing within the same month, it will almost inevitably remain that way. But there is incredible promise for it nonetheless. With the quality of the game design, the legacy of its creators, and their clear passion for their project, it looks set to become something very special and deserves every bit of attention it can get. If fans can look past the games that typically hog the spotlight to find this bombastic little secret, they could be in for an enthusiastic, if under-hyped revival of a once-dormant genre.
‘Earthbound’ is one of the Weirdest, Most Surreal Video Games
25 Years later…
Games that Changed Our Lives
The SNES is arguably home to some of the best Japanese role-playing games ever made, but even among such revered company, Earthbound (known as Mother 2 in Japan) stands out as a brilliant satire about growing up and our fears of conformity. It’s anarchy versus conformity, only conformity doesn’t stand a chance.
EarthBound has been often compared to Catcher in the Rye with its complex issues of identity, belonging, loss, connection, and alienation. Blistering, hallucinatory, often brilliant, Earthbound is a one-two punch of social satire and a hilarious ride into the twisted recesses of a boy’s psyche. This often funny, always poignant coming of age tale, deeply embedded in suburban mores, centers around four kids, off to save the planet by collecting melodies while en route to defeating the evil alien force known as Giygas.
Earthbound didn’t reinvent the wheel, but it sure had fun twisting the usual JRPG tropes. There’s a princess you must rescue, not once, but twice, who’s really just a child prodigy, and there’s an arch nemesis who turns out to be your next-door neighbour. The game puts you in the shoes of a young boy named Ness as he investigates a nearby meteorite crash. There, he learns that Giygas, has enveloped the world in hatred and consequently turned animals, humans, and inanimate objects into dangerous creatures. A bee from the future instructs Ness to collect melodies in a Sound Stone to preemptively stop Giygas from destroying the planet. While visiting eight Sanctuaries, Ness partners with three other kids, a psychic girl (Paula), an eccentric inventor (Jeff), and the prince of the kingdom of Dalaam (Poo). Along the way are underlining themes of corrupt politicians, post-traumatic stress, corporate greed, depression, capitalism, police violence, terrorist attacks, homosexuality, religious cults, and xenophobia. Your adventures take you through modern cities, prehistoric villages, cold winter climates, a desert wasteland, monkey caves, swamps, dinosaur museums, and even a yellow submarine.
“Ness, you’ve stood on the eight power spots of the earth. From these, you created Magicant, the realm of your mind.”
A pivotal moment in the game comes after collecting all eight melodies with the Sound Stone. After Ness has taken control of his Sanctuaries, Ness visits, Magicant, a surreal location that exists only in his mind and contains his warmest memories and his worst fears – an allegory perhaps, for how the entire game allows us to see into the mind of the creator. There, Ness must face his dark side. A man tells him, “Magicant is a place where you must cleanse yourself of the evil hidden within your mind. Take the time to look around, it is your mind after all.”
EarthBound is arguably one of the single best RPGs ever made, and boasts one of the best storylines of any game.
The tone of Earthbound is perhaps its most fascinating attribute, best exemplified by its most famous quote: “There are many difficult times ahead, but you must keep your sense of humor.” Earthbound skillfully surprises you with a reservoir of emotion and sentiment that happily counters the game’s trendy ironic veneer. Along the way, Ness visits the cultists of Happy Happy Village (based on a real-life Japanese doomsday cult founded by Shoko Asahara in 1984); their mission statement is to paint the town red by literally painting it blue. You’ll fight a watchful puddle of vomit and battle through the zombie-infested town of Threed. You’ll use a peculiar device called the Pencil Eraser to remove statues of pencils that block you from advancing through specific areas, and you’ll suffer through terrifying hallucinations of your family and friends, and be asked to dismember your arms and legs, or otherwise, lose your mind. In one of the game’s most memorable moments, Paula is kidnapped by the Department Store Spook, an unseen entity that resides in the town’s shopping mall. And after defeating Frank Fly and his evil creation Frankystein Mark II, you’ll be escorted to the back of a police precinct, only to be assaulted by four officers and Captain Strong, the chief of the Onett police force. Defeat the corrupt cops and you’ll gain access to the second town you’ll visit (named TWOson, so as not to be confused with Onett, Threed, and Fourside). And when entering a cave, you’ll battle five moles made up of members who each believe themselves to be the third-most powerful of their group. Then there is backwards city Moonside, a warped mirror image of Fourside, that hides a secret more terrifying than the town itself. Just walking around feels like something between an out-of-body experience and a nightmarish trance, in which abstract art attacks you and the psychedelic imagery, lit by gaudy fluorescent neon-lights which contrasts the entire look and feel of what came before. It’s a city where yes means no and no means yes; a place where blond-haired business men teleport you across the city blocks and where an invisible man with a unibrow and a gold tooth gets you past the sketchy sailor hiding out in the back alley.
Throughout the game, Ness is repeatedly antagonized by his neighbor, Pokey, who resurfaces several times, and countless other enemies including Titanic Ant, professional thief Mr. Everdred, and a glorious evil statue Mani, Mani. But the real big bad of the game is the aforementioned Giygas, a.k.a. The “Embodiment of Evil” and the “Universal Cosmic Destroyer”, who intends to sentence all of reality to the horror of infinite darkness. Giygas borrows heavily from Stephen King’s It and was inspired by a murder scene from the black-and-white Japanese horror film The Military Policeman and the Dismembered Beauty – a sequence which scarred creator Shigesato Itoi, when he accidentally watched the film as a child. Giygas is without question, the most disturbing, and strangest end-boss villain of any Super NES game – a character so deranged, there’s been hundreds of fan theories about what he really is.
While EarthBound’s overall gameplay feels like a traditional Japanese RPG of the era, the game is full of ingenious ideas that buck genre trends. EarthBound also makes no apologies for being very difficult to complete. It takes days to finish and is most challenging at the beginning when Ness travels alone and hasn’t yet powered-up. Inventory space remains incredibly limited since each character can only carry a certain amount of items and you can’t drop many of the items since they will come in handy later in the game. Boosting your XP is a must, otherwise, you won’t stand a chance in defeating any boss; and currency is also important when buying new weapons or visiting the hospital to attend to fatal injuries. Money must be withdrawn from the nearest ATM, deposited by your estranged father, and a bedtime snack from your loving mother sends you off to bed to recharge your stats. There are other refreshing deviations from RPG tropes, and every one of the four characters has a specific skill-set.
Earthbound is a strange game, themed around an idiosyncratic portrayal of American culture from a Japanese point of view. The game subverted popular role-playing game traditions by featuring a real-world setting while playing with various staples of the genre and adding a number of pop-culture references throughout. The Japanese title was inspired by the song of the same name by John Lennon – a song about growing up without a father for most of his life, and unsurprising, Ness’ dad is never once seen, and only communicates with his son via telephone. And that’s not the only Beatles reference you’ll see: EarthBound makes two additional nods to the world’s greatest band, along with allusions to Bugs Bunny, comedian Benny Hill, Rob Reiner’s This Is Spinal Tap, the Blues Brothers, Monopoly (Monotoli), Donkey Kong, Pac-Man, Rambo, Mr. T, and The Who, to name a few. Written, directed, and created by famous Japanese personality Shigesato Itoi; this is surely his love letter to 20th-century Americana.
Localizing Earthbound was a massive undertaking. Under directives from Nintendo, Marcus Lindblom worked with the Japanese artists and programmers to remove references to intellectual property, religion, and alcohol from the American release, such as the Coca-Cola logo and the red crosses on hospitals (due to issues with the Red Cross). Alcohol became coffee, Ness was no longer walking around nude in the Magicant area and the Happy Happyist blue cultists sprites were altered to look less like Ku Klux Klansmen. The Runaway Five members’ outfits were changed to make them look less like the Blues Brothers, and the “Sky Walker” was changed to the “Sky Runner” to avoid the Star Wars reference. Apollo Theater was changed to Topolla Theater, presumably to avoid issues with the real-life venue and the use of the word drug, seen on the various town maps was removed or changed. The list goes on and on…
Chock full of odd charm and humour in a genre that usually takes itself a little too serious, Earthbound is one of the weirdest, most surreal video games you’ll ever have fun playing.
The game had a lengthy development spanning five years and involved a number of Japanese luminaries, including writer Shigesato Itoi, songwriter Keiichi Suzuki, sound designer Hirokazu Tanaka, and future Nintendo president Satoru Iwata. Released in a huge box-set that contained a strategy guide with scratch-and-sniff stickers, Earthbound came with a $2 million marketing campaign derived from the game’s unusual brand of humor. As part of Nintendo’s “Play It Loud” campaign, EarthBound’s tagline read, “this game stinks.” Earthbound was proud to one of the most bizarre RPGs – and it didn’t shy away from its offbeat premise. Unfortunately, the game was met with poor critical response and sales in the United States, but as the years went by, the game received wide acclaim and was deemed by many a timeless classic. It has since become one of the most sought-after games in the second-hand market, selling for upwards of $80 for the cartridge alone. Holding onto an incredibly dedicated cult following, the main character Ness became a featured character in the Super Smash Bros. series and in 2013, EarthBound was reissued and given a worldwide release for the Wii U Virtual Console following many years of fan lobbying.
EarthBound is arguably one of the single best RPGs ever made, and boasts one of the best storylines of any game. There are two extremely popular fan-made sites dedicated to the game (Starmen.net, EarthboundCentral), and dozens of other sites have devoted countless hours in translating the sequel for English-speaking audiences. Earthbound was ahead of its time when released and its influence continues to be felt, inspiring the likes of Pokemon, Animal Crossing, Majora’s Mask, Chibi Robo, Retro City Rampage, and South Park: The Stick of Truth.
While Earthbound’s game mechanics stick to the traditional JRPG template, its surreal world, imaginative locals, and experimental soundtrack created a truly unique experience. Nothing stands out quite like its visual style – an 8-bit presentation powered by a 16-bit processor. The graphics might not be as advanced as some of the other 16-bit titles available on the SNES, but it is certainly among the most memorable. The SNES was home to some amazing soundtracks, but EarthBound’s soundtrack remains the best. Created by four composers, there’s enough music here to fill 8 of the 24 megabits on the cartridge – with direct musical quotations of classical tune and folk music, and a few samples culled from commercial pop and rock. It also contains one of the very best endings in any video game, a touching climax that captures the vulnerability and beauty of adolescence and the power of friendship. And the punctuation mark comes during the credits. Throughout the game, you’ll cross paths several times with a photographer who descends from the sky and snaps a photograph of your most recent achievement. These pictures will roll throughout the credits, serving as a makeshift montage of your time spent playing the game. And be sure to stay until the very end. To say more would be giving away the surprise.
I can’t think of another game as irreverently comic and deeply touching as Earthbound. Here is a game that resonates long after completion, and oozes originality in just about every frame. Ness may rock his sweet ball cap, handy backpack, telekinetic powers, and a trusty baseball bat, but even this hero needs to call his mom regularly, otherwise, he may suddenly find himself useless in battle. Earthbound stands, sweet and strong, outrageous and quirky, like its heroes — it’s about the loss of innocence as well as gaining wisdom – and is one of those treasures absolutely not to be missed. While it suffers from a slow start and stretched premise, the charm of its cast debunking an intergalactic conspiracy goes a long way. Of all the games I own on the Super NES, Earthbound is the game I treasure the most and the game that made me fall in love with the medium.
– Ricky D
Indie World 2019: The Best Games From Nintendo’s Showcase
With a healthy mix of brand new titles and a few shocking ports, here’s all the best games announced at Nintendo’s Indie World showcase.
Whenever Nintendo announces another indie presentation, it’s impossible to know what to expect. One may be a fairly low-key event, while another might announce a brand new Zelda game. The latest “Indie World” presentation for Gamescom 2019 found itself somewhere in the middle. It didn’t feature quite as many earth shattering reveals as the previous presentation in March, but with a healthy mix of promising new titles, updates on previously announced games, and a few shocking ports, Indie World was a worthwhile showcase in its own right. Without further ado, here’s some of the very best game announcements from the presentation, arranged in order of their appearance.
I’m firmly of the belief that you can never have too many Zelda-likes in your life. For this reason alone, Eastward looks like it could be an exciting addition to the Switch’s indie lineup. Better yet, this latest Chuckelfish-published game looks like it has all the makings of a great entry in the genre.
It tells a simple story: a miner finds a young girl alone in a secret underground facility, and together, they go on to explore a post-apocalyptic land. Although this world has been apparently ravaged by a cataclysmic disaster, it still looks gorgeous thanks to its lush pixel art and fluid character animations. Pair this with your typical Zelda-like gameplay loop of overworld exploration and dungeon puzzle-solving, and Eastward looks like it will be a promising prospect when it releases next year.
Shin’en Multimedia has long been known for making some of the best-looking titles on Nintendo consoles with visual stunners like the Fast Racing series. However, The Touryst is a departure from the games they’re known for. While it’s just as breathtaking as their previous work with its beautiful lighting and voxel-based design, it’ll be a much slower experience than Shin’en’s signature lightning-fast racing games.
As its name would suggest, it focuses on a tourist taking a relaxing tropical vacation, whiling away their time with activities like shopping, scuba diving, and visiting arcades. However, the trailer also hints of a greater mystery lurking beneath this laid-back surface. With Zelda-like dungeons to explore and puzzles to solve as well as a contemporary tropical setting, it seems like it could be considered a spiritual successor to the NES cult classic, StarTropics. It should definitely be one to keep an eye on when it launches this November.
Who’s the real monster here? Röki is a narrative-focused adventure game set in a world taken straight out of Scandinavian fairytales, featuring a snow-laden forest inhabited by fantastical creatures of Nordic mythology. It puts players in control of a young woman exploring this mystical environment, with the goal of saving her family and interacting with these various monsters. Its visuals adopt a beautiful storybook style, and with its emphasis on accessible gameplay and telling a touching story, it looks like it could be a worthwhile purchase for anyone in search of a more poignant adventure when it hits Switch this winter.
It’s not a true Nintendo presentation without a shadow drop or two, so SUPERHOT took it upon itself to be the first to fill that void during Indie World. It’s a striking shooter built upon one simple concept: time only moves when you do. This core idea creates a uniquely methodical approach to the genre, nearly turning SUPERHOT into more of a puzzler than a shooter. It’s already made quite an impact on other platforms, so it should fit right in on Nintendo’s hybrid wonder – and best of all, it’s available right now.
Hotline Miami Collection
If it has style, action, and plenty of violence, it’s probably a Devolver Digital game. The boutique indie publisher has supported the Switch with plenty of quality games over the past few years, but the brutal series that launched the publisher into fame in the first place has been strangely absent. Thankfully, that changed today with the surprise release of the Hotline Miami Collection on the eShop.
Gathering both games in the iconic Hotline Miami top-down shooter series into a single package, this release brings all of their signature hardcore difficulty and neon style to a Nintendo platform for the first time. For anyone who’s enjoyed Devolver’s fantastic output thus far on the Switch but hasn’t yet experienced these famously bloody titles, it should be an excellent purchase.
Ori and the Blind Forest
Microsoft’s surreal love affair with Nintendo continues with the reveal that another Xbox One console exclusive will be making its way to Switch. Ori and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition is the ultimate version of the acclaimed artistic platformer. It will feature the same beautiful visuals, detailed world, and touching story that made the original release so special, along with all the additional areas, story, and improvements of the Definitive Edition.
For those concerned that the game’s incredible visuals will lose their luster on Nintendo’s under-powered device, there’s no need to worry: the developers have confirmed that the Switch version contains no compromises, running at a locked 60 frames per second at 1080p resolution while docked, with a native 720p resolution in handheld mode. It joins the ranks of Cuphead and Super Lucky’s Tale as yet another former Microsoft exclusive to appear on Nintendo’s console, and with its uncompromising conversion to Switch, it should be one of the most remarkable Switch ports yet when it releases on September 27.
‘Fire Emblem: Three Houses’ Review: Raising the New Generation to a High Standard
Fire Emblem: Three Houses marks a triumphant return to home console that puts in the effort to pull the player into its world.
There are few comeback stories in the gaming industry as impressive as that of the Fire Emblem series. After very nearly going cold the grid-based, SRPG was single-handedly saved by 2013’s Fire Emblem Awakening and has since gone on to prosper as one of Nintendo’s most well-recognized IP’s. Now, after more than a decade, the storied franchise makes its return to home consoles with Fire Emblem: Three Houses, an entry that takes bold steps forward in promoting it above and beyond anything the series has seen to date.
Three Houses, Three Countries, One Path
Fire Emblem: Three Houses takes place on the continent of Fodlan and consists of three major countries. At the center of the three territories is the Garreg Mach Monastery which simultaneously houses the Military Officer’s Academy as well as The Church of Seiros, the land’s primary religion. The game picks up with your self-named protagonist being appointed a professor at the Monastery after protecting some of its students from a bandit attack. At the same time, an enigmatic young girl named Sothis begins appearing in your dreams who alludes to ominous events to come.
The gameplay of Fire Emblem: Three Houses can be split into two categories — The traditional turn-based grid combat familiar from past titles and the teaching and guidance of students at the monastery. Teaching and school life are brand new to the franchise and are the foundation on which the entire game is built upon.
In the early goings of the game, you are asked to choose between the three classes, or houses, to instruct and guide in your time as a professor. These three houses — The Black Eagles, The Blue Lions, and The Golden Deer — each correspond to one of the three countries of Fodlan and consists of students from those territories. Your selection of which house to lead will have ramifications that permeate practically every aspect of the game including the story, units available in combat, and interactions within the school; this lends the decision a weight that goes beyond choosing who has the prettiest faces.
The school year is divided into months with school activities taking up the bulk of the time that culminates with an assigned battle at the end. As a professor, you are tasked with teaching your students the art of war and this is accomplished primarily in the classroom.
Each week begins with establishing a lesson plan for your class. You can work with students one-on-one to develop specific skills of various weapon types, assign them to group tasks to forge bonds and other proficiencies, and help them establish goals that they will work towards on their own time. Doing so allows them to equip better weapons and, most importantly, acquire new class types through certification exams.
Small events such as students asking questions on subject matter or seeking advice on their goal paths are evocative or actually being a teacher. It’s easy to grow attached to your students as you guide them from a lowly Commoner class to something as grand as a War Master over the course of the game. While Three Houses does a good job of easing the player into these intricacies, there is an Auto-Instruct option available as well for those who find it daunting or don’t care for perfect optimization.
The end of each week features a free day that can be spent in one of three different ways. You can host a seminar with another faculty member that provides a large amount of skill experience or embark on battles for quest rewards and character-specific paralogues that help flesh out their backstories. The option to explore the monastery, however, is the most interesting and involved of the three as it gives you free rein to roam about the campus in a fully 3D environment.
All In a Day’s Work
Garreg Mach Monastery is sprawling, with numerous buildings explore, courtyards to walk through, and facilities to take advantage of. While the graphics of Three Houses aren’t necessarily something to write home about from a technical perspective — there are even moments of noticeable slowdown in particularly populated areas — the vibrant art style and eye-catching medieval architecture give the monastery a beauty that makes it a pleasure to wonder about it. Small details such as pegasus knights flying in the sky and messenger owls flitting about between buildings breath life into the campus and lend credence that this is an academy in a fantasy world.
There are a plethora of activities to do while roaming the premises and Three Houses does an admirable job of easing you into each of them. Tasks such as gardening various crops and fishing for the biggest catch not only provide valuable resources but also go towards increasing your professor level which increases your maximum Activity Points you can spend in a day.
Meanwhile, sharing meals with students in the dining hall, inviting them out to tea parties, and returning lost items all serve to build bonds between pupils and increase their motivation for further studies. Interacting with them in such ways or even just talking to them on the school grounds also offers insight into their thoughts and feelings on current events in the world, which goes a long way towards developing their character in addition to Fire Emblem’s long-established support conversations.
As characters spend time together in the monastery and fight together on the battlefield their support levels will rise, granting various bonuses in battle such as increased hit rate and evasion. These supports are accompanied by conversations that flesh out each character’s personality and provide valuable backstories not found in the main story.
In typical Fire Emblem fashion, the cast of Three Houses is unique and distinct with multiple layers of complexity over initial arch-typical natures. Peeling back these layers over the course of the game serves as some of the most satisfying intrinsic rewards it has to offer, with macho, good guy Raphael and self-doubting Marianne being particular standouts in my play session. This is accentuated even more since every single line of dialogue, no matter how minor, is fully voiced, a rarity for JRPG’s. The English acting ranges from good to exceptional, but the Japanese voices are also available for those who prefer it.
It’s a shame the same level of polish can’t be said about the main story, however. The plot is rather straightforward and doesn’t do much to push the boundaries of expectations outside a mix-up here and there. Many scene transitions are nonexistent and jarring and the stilted movements of CG scenes reserved for important moments detract more than they add. That said, the stellar character and world-building that take place within the monastery more than makeup for the lukewarm story-telling and give ample reason to become invested. Not to mention the curiosity of seeing the story from the other houses’ perspectives encourages subsequent playthroughs.
Bonding and interacting with students outside of your class is worthwhile as well as it’s possible to recruit them into your own house. Convincing a student to join your class takes a large amount of effort over a long course of time, making the moment they finally give the “Ok” feel much more earned than recruitment has in past Fire Emblems. This not only gives you another unit to use on the battlefield but also avoids potentially seeing them as an enemy down the line when things aren’t quite so peaceful in Fodlan anymore.
It’s easy to fall into a routine when going about the monastery in Three Houses. The constant loop of every action taken feeding into accomplishing another is positively addicting. It encourages you to make the most out of each day while also emphasizing the steady march of time. For a game that places such importance on the passage of time, however, it is slightly off-putting how the seasons in the monastery never change from its default bright, sunny day, especially with talk of snow and colder weather abound in later months.
All time spent at school is ultimately in preparation for combat, though, and Three Houses presents some of the finest and most refined form of it the Fire Emblem series has ever seen.
Applying Theory to Practice
The fundamentals of combat in Fire Emblem: Three Houses are the same as all of its predecessors but numerous additions and changes cast it in a whole new light. Encounters take place on grid-based maps and you move each individual character to attack enemies, assist allies, and position them for counter-attacks, among other things. Once all of your units have moved the enemy gets their turn to retaliate and the process repeats.
Before initiating combat a combat forecast appears that tells you the damage each side will inflict, the chance of landing that attack, and the chance of dealing a triple damage critical hit. Utilizing this forecast to calculate risk vs reward of various engagements becomes routine as deaths of characters are permanent when playing in Classic mode, although Casual mode makes its return that brings back lost units after the mission as well. The fight then plays out automatically with characters fluidly moving in unique and organic ways depending on how the battle plays out. While you have no control during these segments, there’s something viscerally satisfying about seeing someone like burly Raphael deftly dodge an attack and roundhouse kick the enemy to the face in retaliation.
The weapon triangle — a series mainstay that gave rock-paper-scissors qualities to weapon types — has been done away with in Three Houses, requiring players to think beyond simply matching enemies with their direct counters. In its place come Combat Arts, a system that’s been taken from 2017’s Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia. These special skills are obtained by gaining proficiency in weapon types through teaching sessions and combat and grant each character different ways to approach combat.
The set of Combat Arts learned are unique to each character. For example, Claude and Bernadetta are both proficient with bows but only the latter learns the far-reaching snipe art “Deadeye,” while only the former learns the blessed imbued “Monster Blast”. This applies to magic as well, with every character learning a different set of spells as they grow more proficient. While there is some overlap in spells and arts learned between characters, they nonetheless make them feel more distinct from one another as opposed to simply using the ones with the best stats, minimizing the problem previous entries have of “dead weight characters”.
Another wrinkle to combat is the addition of battalions and Gambits. Battalions are a unit of generic soldiers that can be assigned to each character to confer various stat bonuses. Each battalion grants the use of their special Gambit, powerful abilities that typically hit multiple enemies in an area, thus weakening their stats and preventing movement for a turn. Support type gambits exist as well, such as letting allies sustain a lethal hit once or making it so they take and deal only one damage for a turn. Not only do Gambits open up new strategic possibilities by introducing a form of crowd control to the series, but they are also pivotal in taking down Three Houses’ new enemy type: Monsters.
Monsters have been in Fire Emblem games before, but never in this form. Monsters are gargantuan beasts that take up four squares on the grid, sometimes more. They have multiple health bars to drain, devastating area sweeping attacks, and barriers that diminish damage taken and prevent critical hits. The key to slaying these beasts is to utilize battalion Gambits to attack multiple parts of the monsters at once and systematically whittle down their barriers.
Unlike regular enemy and boss types that can usually be taken down by one reasonably powerful unit, monsters require the brunt of your military force to slay. Contending with both monsters and regular enemies as they barrel towards your army provides for some of the tensest moments in the game that then result in blissful satisfaction for overcoming them; all the more emphasized by Three Houses’ phenomenal soundtrack that amplifies feelings of triumph to remarkable heights.
Map designs, on the other hand, leave something to be desired as many take place in large, open areas where strategy ultimately boils down to careful positioning of units on defensive tiles. Even maps with branching paths feel like little more than an excuse to give your units an opportunity to equally distribute experience gained from combat. The lack of gimmicks and terrain variety leads to missions sometimes blending together, a problem exacerbated by the fact that nearly every victory objective is either “Route the enemy” or “Defeat the commander.” It’s never so dull as to become mind-numbing, but having more variety in the 60-80 hour long campaign would go a long way towards solidifying what is otherwise an incredibly tight combat experience.
Lessons Learned, Experience Showing
Fire Emblem: Three Houses is a grand culmination that takes a deep, introspective look into what makes the series so great and evolving it in meaningful and impactful ways.
The monastery and professor role not only fit right at home in such a character-driven game but also breath fresh life into the school setting that has long been regarded as “the graveyard of creativity.” The main story may not be the most engrossing but never has it been easier to grow intimately attached to such a large and varied cast of characters. Those attachments manifest in battles as a drive to persevere and the various tools the game gives you, old and new, give the power to do so. Fire Emblem: Three Houses is no doubt, the triumphant return to home consoles that fans have been waiting over a decade for and a sterling lesson that for a game series, class is always in session.
Why Does the ‘Control’ Northlight Engine Matter?
With less than a month to go until the release of Control on Xbox One and Playstation 4, the hype surrounding the game is reaching its peak. We recently called Remedy’s upcoming title “the best game playable at E3 2019” and deemed it the “highlight of our experience at the conference,” but few details have been released about the title since the controversial Electronic Entertainment Expo. Remedy Entertainment, best known for their Max Payne, Alan Wake, and Quantum Break releases, has a track record of delivering storytelling experiences like no other, but they have an important secret to their recent successes that might aid their upcoming survival horror/action-adventure release. To better understand Control, let’s take a look at its in-game engine, Northlight, and explore why it enables Remedy to craft such gripping narratives.
What is Northlight?
For all of its titles, Remedy Entertainment has relied on the unique strengths of their self-created in-game engines to allow their storytelling experiences to thrive. Many of their previous successes have utilized in-house engines specially designed to deliver cinematic experiences and create games that keep the characters in focus, and Northlight was created to further advance upon their previous technology. Initially built for the Microsoft title Quantum Break, the new engine was created to allow for better interactive narrative experiences that could establish greater depth and realism in a digital world.
According to an interview with writer and creative director Sam Lake, Northlight pushes the envelope by allowing for “Mo-cap with full faces, with surface capture, and 4D scanning, and how to get that into an engine and make it really, really good. It focuses on character lighting, lighting overall, obviously pushing it to the next-gen.” These features all work in tandem to create photorealistic environments and characters that look, sound, and feel real to enthralling players and captivate viewers. In short, Northlight allows Remedy to create Hollywood-quality cinematic experiences within a digital platform.
Supporting Ray Tracing
A big part of Northlight’s success as an engine is due to its support of ray tracing technology, offering dynamic ambient light that sets the scene and creates engaging landscapes. For those unaware, ray tracing is a modern rendering technique that allows for more realistic shadows and lighting than previous digital rendering software, although often times it is prerendered, slow, and incredibly data-intensive. Thanks to advancements by Nvidia, ray tracing is finally possible to be rendered in real-time inside of in-game engines, making it more accessible to game studios.
Northlight’s game engine pushes the limits by incorporating these advancements into its software, making it possible for players to have the future of in-game lighting, provided that they have the right graphics card. This allows Remedy to truly bring scenes to life within their titles, dynamically lighting environments to create intense emotional moments and the biggest spectacles.
Although motion capture has been an integral part of narrative video games for a number of years, Northlight uses the Dimensional Imaging’s top of the line 4D technology to capture facial performances and accurately model emotions. According to Dimensional Imaging, this software utilizes “nine standard video cameras” to capture footage “without using markers, makeup or special illumination.” In turn, this allows for every nuance of an actor’s performance to be articulated in the game engine, giving greater realism and deeper emotional experiences.
In addition to this technology, Northlight utilizes traditional motion capture technology to create realistic clones of actor’s bodies. This was most notably seen when Remedy’s motion capture team’s picture of a dog in mo-cap gear went viral.
Hollywood Quality Picture and Sound
Because of its emphasis on delivering narrative experiences unlike any other in gaming, Northlight’s software has built-in timeline editors that provide greater creative freedom than conventional game engines. By offering the ability to analyze and adjust lighting, physics, and movement in real-time, Northlight ensures that every scene is picture perfect and rooted in realism.
Similarly, sound is also an integral focus of the built-in editing software in Northlight. According to their site, developers can “freeze and rewind sound, analyze it and even use it to drive visual effects and animations in perfect sync with the soundscapes.” With audio and visuals working in tandem, Remedy can create a dynamic game environment that looks and feels as real as any conventional narrative on television or film.
Northlight and Control’s Release
With Northlight, Remedy will be able to make the most immersive and story-driven world possible by delivering top of the line graphics and performances, both of which will play a huge role in Control’s success. Unlike Quantum Break, Control will take place outside of the conventional linear style game and work as a Metroidvania style title, making setting the scene and developing a dynamic and photorealistic environment an important part of propelling players through the game world and an integral piece of the experience.
At e3, Control’s featured demo was primarily centered around demonstrating the title’s gunplay and physics -which absolutely blew us away- so combining this positive experience with top-notch acting and cutscenes will surely create one of the better experiences of the year. With all of the unique possibilities offered by Northlight, Respawn is sure to make a massive mark on the industry and encourage other developers to push the envelope of available technology. Look for Control when it releases on PC, Playstation, and Xbox One on August 27th.
Goomba Stomp is the joint effort of a team of like-minded writers from across the globe. We provide smart readers with sharp, entertaining writing on a wide range of topics in pop culture, offering an escape from the usual hype and gossip. We are currently looking for Film, TV, Anime and Comic writers.
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