Tag Archives: Xbox One

Review: 88 Heroes

 

With Dr.H8 on a war path to annihilate the earth, and the world’s best heroes currently unavailable, the 88th president of the United States gathered 88 of earth’s not so great heroes to take him down before it’s too late. With 88 heroes, you might think it should be a cakewalk to take down DR.H8, but with some of the most obscure powers, (like a pizza eating armadillo), it’s going to be a challenge to stop that evil mastermind.

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88 Heroes is the first game developed by indie studio Bitmap Bureau, which happened to be founded in February of last year. Hopefully Bitmap Bureau can hit it out of the park and make a name for themselves right out the gate. With each hero having their own mechanics, it does make the journey through the 88 levels quite interesting. Having a new hero on every level and each time you die, can be quite difficult, but it does make the experience more enjoyable.

At first glance, 88 Heroes may seem just like any other modern day 2D pixelated platformer with a beautiful art style, chiptune-esque music, and sprinkled in with some shout outs to some classic action films; but after a couple levels you begin to see what 88 Heroes can be. You find your way through each level attempting to reach the elevator to get you a little closer to Dr.H8 while taking advantage of each hero’s special ability, or succumb to the level due to the ridiculousness of your heroes power (or lack thereof). Now it does get a little frustrating when you have already wasted more than a few heroes on one level, but that’s the charm of the game. Without a very engaging story, (much like those classic action films), 88 Heroes has to win you over another way, and that’s where the zaniness and sense of accomplishment get you.  

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The lineup of heroes Bitmap Bureau has brought to the game is wonderful, with references to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Microsoft, Mario Bros and other great media from the 80’s and 90’s. Don’t be mistaken, Bitmap has brought some original heroes into the mix as well, such as Miss Fortune, (She flips a coin and if you’re lucky she takes you straight to the elevator at the end of the level, but if you aren’t, you’re dead on the spot and down one hero), or Nibbles the destroyer, (A nearly indestructible gerbil in a run-about ball), plus many more creative heroes. The colorful cast of heroes that Bitmap has crafted for your adventure wouldn’t be nearly as great if their villain wasn’t just as zany as them. Dr.H8 watches over our heroes from the safety of his hideout (except for some difficult little boss battles, that can deplete your supply of heroes if you aren’t careful). While you overcome Dr.H8s Treacherous rooms you also get to see some insight on how he truly feels and the way he treats his robot henchmen, (it isn’t very good).

I won’t tell you 88 Heroes is an easy game, because I would be lying to you. Bitmap Bureau has made a challenging and fun platformer, with some puzzle elements to their gameplay. You might disagree, but solving each and every room with a new hero is a puzzle within itself, having to understand how each heroes power works and ways to manipulate it to your advantage. One could say there’s 88 ways to tackle each room, but you know there’s probably more. Occasionally you’ll be able to breeze through a room getting that perfect score with your first hero, other times you could lose a hero or two along the way for not playing it smart and going in too fast. Bitmap Bureau really did something special with the change of heroes, bringing in an extra level of difficulty with a puzzle element and still making it fun to play.

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Not only is it fun with a high level of difficulty, but it’s also feels great to play. You might be a little confused at first when learning each of the hero, but after you work out the kinks each hero feels great. This is no easy accomplishment, with 88 different heroes and there are some awkward powers, but they all feel smooth.  

With everything great that Bitmap Bureau does, 88 Heroes still has it’s flaws. One of the biggest things I felt the game was missing was a little story, maybe a cutscene every so often with some witty banter between some of the heroes and maybe Dr.H8. A little more story would have pulled everything together, if done the right way. Also, maybe a selection of three heroes each time you die or hit a new level, just to ease up on the difficulty, which might push some people away from this wonderful game.

CLOSER:

Bitmap Bureau did a great job on 88 Heroes, with its zaniness and overall fun. It’s really inviting for players who enjoyed platformers, but then adds that puzzle flavor which really opens up the game, and that’s why 88 Heroes gets a solid 4. I definitely recommend you go out and pick it up today. You can pick up 88 Heroes on Steam, The PlayStation Store, and on the Microsoft Store for $14.99.

Released on March 24, 2017

Developed by Bitmap Bureau

Published by Rising Star Games

Reviewed on PS4

(4/5)

4-rating

A review copy was provided for the purpose of this review.

Check out the trailer for 88 Heroes below:

E3 2016: Frank West is Back and in the Christmas Spirit in ‘Dead Rising 4’

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If you missed Microsoft’s conference this past Monday, then you missed Frank West killing zombies while the audience was being drenched in artificial snow.  That’s right, Dead Rising is back and stars our favorite photographer/reporter with a much more charismatic personality than before.  The trailer shows off the open world of Willamette, as well as the inside of a mall from the first game, that can be explored in order to wreak havoc and kill zombies for pleasure more than any other reason.  The biggest announcement in the trailer doesn’t come from the weapons or the combination of weapons that can be used, but the flurry of new ways to destroy your enemies.  Frank will be utilizing three different categories of weapons that can be switched through three of the face buttons on the controller.

These are ranged, melee, and throwing weapons.  The transformative weapons and now armor have also been upgraded in reference to previous games and include things like a mech suit that has a heavier attack and increased strength.  I added the increased strength because the suit can do things like rip parking meters out of a concrete floor and use the concrete as a weapon. The entirety of the trailer seemed very comical as Frank took to Twitter to post his chaotic encounter with the zombies and as well as taking selfies whenever he can.

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While we aren’t sure how this game will tie into the Dead Rising story, if there really is one, we do know that it will live up to the B movie legacy that it’s always had.  If not an Evil Dead legacy, then more of a Shaun of the Dead type legacy.  The only hope that we have is that the character wasn’t returned to give fans the same thing that the first game offered but with extra areas to explore.  But, we will just have to wait and see when it does come out on Xbox One.

Check out the E3 trailer for it below:

E3 2016: The Best Way to Kill Zombies is Together in ‘State of Decay 2’

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Microsoft’s press conference this year was among the strongest of all the conferences that E3 had to offer.  They showed a lot of newly announced games as well as touched up on previously announced games with new gameplay trailers.  One of the newly announced games this year was State of Decay 2, the Xbox One sequel to the 360’s State of Decay.  The game will feature, for the first time, a four player co-op in a massive open world where survival is the highest priority.  The trailer shown at E3 depicts two different groups of people, not aware that the other exists, fighting off zombies and managing to survive.  The trailer ends with one of the teams being overwhelmed by zombies and shooting off a flare, panning over to the other group of people that see the flare.

This will be a core mechanic of the game; shooting off a flare to signify that you are being overwhelmed and need help.  It will not be an MMO of any sorts but will allow a drop-in, drop-out co-op play for up to four people to help you out, as opposed to the previous installment.  In reference to the video, some of the screenshots depict what looks to be a more intense storyline with heavier cut scenes as opposed to the previous in-game  dialogue scenes.  The game cuts out the previous’s engine to be replaced with Unreal Engine 4 to display better rendering effects and gameplay mechanics.

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Aside from that, the game looks to be similar to the first in survival horror and making sure that those in your squad and safehouses live to see the light of the next day.  The graphics look incredibly gorgeous and the environment looks to be much more wooded and full of new surprises for our protagonists/teams.  Whether or not we will be able to switch between characters has been undetermined but considering that was a fan favorite part of the first game, there would be no reason to remove it.

The game is set to release sometime next year for Xbox One and Windows 10.

Check out the E3 trailer for State of Decay 2  below: