Archive for the ‘Game reviews’ Category

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Super Mario Bros 3 Title Card

Now believe it or not, I didn’t get to play Super Mario Bros. 3 until a few years ago, but at its time it was said to be the best Mario game on the NES. Super Mario Bros. 3 came out in Japan in 1988 and need I say anything about The Wizard promoting the game to Western audiences. The game then came out in America in 1990 and Europe in 1991. Over twenty years have passed now so as a person who’s only started playing it a few years ago can I recommend it to the gamers of today?



The story is a little different than the usual Mario story. Bowser is back and his forces have taken over the castles in different lands. Princess Peach has sent Mario to stop Bowser’s forces and restore peace to each of the lands. However after doing that, Bowser kidnaps Peach while Mario was doing that (I don’t think I’m giving anything away when I say that) so you got to rescue her too.



Super Mario Bros. 3 goes back to the formula of the first game. You use the D-Pad to move, the A button to jump, hold the B button to run and the Start button pauses the game. The HUD contains your coin count, you life count and your P meter (hee hee) which shows you how fast you were running.

Super-Mario-Bros.-3-gameplay 1

The goal of the game is still the same as before only this game is the first to have the world map feature, where you can access the levels as well as the new item houses where you can get power ups to store for later and live houses where you can get extra lives. If you have a friend, you can play multiplayer mode where the second player controls Luigi and you take turns trying to complete the levels. You need to complete the levels in order to proceed but later on the game does give you a choice in multiple pathways where you can choose which levels you want to complete in order to move on. All of the levels don’t have checkpoints which can be a little annoying for some sections but all the levels are relatively short. I


Each world of Mario 3 has their unique theme. In fact Mario 3 was the first to introduce these themes before they became overused in the New Super Mario Bros. series. The first world is your basic grassy hill theme and then there’s the desert world with sinking sand sections, water world with oversized cheep cheeps (the scumbags), giant land where everything is giant, Sky land with all the bottomless pits, Iceland which can melt in hell, pipe land (I’m above the drug jokes) and fire land where you finally fight Bowser.


Mario 3 not only brings back the classic mushroom, fire flower and invincible star but it also introduces a ton of awesome new power-ups. The most prominent is the super leaf which gives Mario raccoon ears and a tail that makes him fly (you figure out that one but it is useful for platforming sections). The new frog suit allows Mario to have better control swimming underwater but it sucks on land. The tanukee leaf is a rarer better version of the super leaf because pressing down allows Mario to turn into a statue that can crush enemies. One level has you use a big shoe which allows you to stomp on enemies and makes you immune to floor hazards such as spikes and nibbles. The best power-up however is the Hammer Bros. suit which allows you to throw hammers that can kill everything including Boos and Thwomps. It’s even rarer that the tanukee suit so try not to lose it.


Mario 3 introduced a ton of new enemies, such as Boos, Thwomps and Dry Bones, as well as brought back the original enemies from Mario 1. In fact it also introduced different varieties of old enemies such as fire spitting Piranha Plants, homing Bullet Bills and Bloopers that send their offspring after you. Many of these enemies you can find in the new fortress levels, which are like mini castle levels that are challenging but they come with the most pathetic mini boss in all of video games.


Each world ends ends with you invading one of Bowser’s airships which are probably the most dangerous levels in the game. They not only sport cannons and flame throwers there are also bottomless pits and they are all auto scrolling levels which is another concept that this game introduced. At the end of the airships you fight the new Koopalings, Larry, Iggy, Lemmy, Wendy O’Koopa, Morton Jr., Roy and Ludwig Von Koopa. All of them are pretty easy but Roy and Ludwig’s stomps can stun you and Wendy’s rings make her the most difficult to fight.



The 8-bit graphics still hold up today. The sprites are nicely detailed and it’s a lot more colourful than most of the games you can find on the NES.


The music is pretty catchy and fun to listen to. They added more variety of music to the levels including the athletic theme and the fortress and airship themes really make the levels feel menacing (especially the airship theme).


The control is certainly an improvement over the previous games. Although Mario is incredibly responsive to button inputs and his momentum is fine, his jump feels very floaty and his traction could be a little less slippery but there should never be a time where you are unfairly killed because of control.

Final thoughts

So after over 20 years, Super Mario Bros 3 is still a fun game to play. It introduced a lot of great ideas that will be used in future games, the level design is great and all of the power-ups are awesome. The only problem I think the game has is the difficulty level. It goes up and down like a roller coaster in various places instead of getting progressively challenging like a game should usually do. Despite that though, I still heavily recommend this game to anyone who is curious about it, but go for the virtual console versions as I wouldn’t recommend trying to beat it in one sitting (unless you know all of the game’s secrets such as the warp whistles).

Final rating: 8/10

This review is dedicated to my old college tutor

Simon Gibbs

Simon Gibbs



WHAT I’M EXPECTING As Batman popped his head out from this years E3 he brought high expectations and I’m hoping that Batman: Arkham Knight is just as good as the last one…. no I want it BETTER with more fights, gadgets, enemies and story to discover! I have my doubts and the question on everyones mind is what is Batman going to do without the joker?? it’s like the Yin without the Yang… also warning spoiler’s (more…)

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Crash 2 Title Card

Crash Bandicoot was one of the Playstation’s biggest hits so naturally a sequel had to be made. Crash Bandicoot 2 was released in 1997, one year after the first game. Now when I looked at the first game, I stated that it was still good but it wasn’t the best way to get into the Crash Bandicoot franchise. Does this game make the necessary improvements that the first game needed?

crash 2 cover (more…)

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Pac-Man Ghostly Adventures Title Card

Pac-Man is one of the most iconic video game characters of all time. He’s even older than Mario and Donkey Kong. When it comes to my experience with his games, I have not played any of his games except for the arcade classic. I have seen his recent television show and I think it’s ok. It’s nothing terrible but it’s nothing special either. I don’t think some episodes are suited for the 21 minute run time and it does use some outdated 90s catchphrases. The game I’ll be looking at today is based off this television show. So just like Sonic Boom, I’m looking at a video game based on a television show based on a video game. Is this game on the same quality as Sonic Boom or will it be a diamond in the rough?



Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review. Sonic Boom Title Card lighting

I never thought that this game would be the first Wii U title I would review, but I wanted to review this game at some point or another so let’s get on with it. This game is considered a prequel to the new Sonic Boom television show that aired in October 2014. The game was developed by Western Developers Big Red Button (which consist of a few former employees from Naughty Dog who made Crash Bandicoot, Jak and Daxter and the Last of Us). Now Webmaster Tom actually borrowed the game from me for a while and played it, so I figured since we are both long time Sonic fans he could voice his opinions of the game along with me. But before we get into the game itself, let’s talk about what we thought of the game before it came out and what sparked our curiosity to play it.

Sonic_Boom_Rise_of_Lyric (more…)

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Bart's Nightmare Title Card

Ever since I met Doug Walker (a.k.a Nostalgia Critic) at Alcon 2013, I wanted to review something in his honour and what better way to do that than look at something that he’s looked at. Like Doug Walker, I am a really big Simpsons fan. I already own Seasons 2-8 on DVD and it is one of my all-time favourite shows with its great comedy writing and witty social commentary. I’ve never played any games based on the Simpsons though until this review. Now even though Doug has technically thrashed the game, I’m going to look into it with a little more detail. Is this game really as bad as Doug made it out to be?

Bart's_Nightmare (more…)

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Metroid 2 Title Card

It’s been a while since I reviewed the first Metroid game, hasn’t it? The first Metroid game on the N.E.S was a big hit, so a sequel was released for the Game Boy in 1991. Like the first game, this is the first time I’ve beaten this game so is this a game that I can recommend to the gamers today?

metroid 2 cover


Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and unfortunately it is time to end the Pokemon Marathon.

Now that we are done looking at the 2nd Generation of Pokemon, it’s once again time to count down the Top Ten Best Pokemon from that generation. If you read my Top Ten Gen 1 list, the same rules apply here but I will introduce some new rules. When I look at the next generation, I won’t talk about how the battle mechanics or the new moves affected Pokemon from previous generations. I am strictly looking at the Pokemon that were introduced in that generation. Also no hold items will be counted. I am looking at these Pokemon based on their own merits. With that said, let’s get started with this list. This list was more difficult than the last list because so many good Pokemon were introduced and there are so many variables to consider. But in the end, I had to make my final decisions.

Top Ten Best Pokemon Gen 2 (more…)

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and welcome back to the Pokemon Marathon.

Pokemon Stadium 2 Title Card

Pokemon Generation 2, as well as Pokemon Stadium were massive successes. So naturally Nintendo had to make a sequel to Pokemon Stadium where you can battle with your favourite Generation 2 Pokemon. Pokemon Stadium 2 was released for the N64 in 2001 right before the likes of the Nintendo GameCube entered the scene. Is this just a cheap cash in on the success of Pokemon Stadium or is there something more to it this time around?

Pokémon_Stadium_2_Coverart (more…)

Xs and Os Review

Posted: April 1, 2015 in Game reviews

Greetings mortals, I am DracoJames102 and I am here to give you a review.

Today my friends we go back to look at the first game ever made. A game that was ahead of its time, a game that has existed before all of the other games even came to be and is still being played to this day. I am of course talking about Xs and Os.

cavemen playing xs and os


A complex story of good vs evil. No spoilers but it is quite gripping.


This game requires an ordinary pencil and a piece of paper. You draw a giant hashtag, you choose to be Xs or Os while your opponent chooses the other side and then an epic war between the mighty Xs and the powerful Os commence. The objective is for one of you to get three in a row. This was great inspiration for another masterpiece of gaming, Connect 4 (but that’s a review for another day). Be careful though, the game can end in a tie if you’re not careful. It takes true skill to master this game.

xs and os


The graphics were quite remarkable given the time period and it’s simplistic charm still holds up today.


The existing soundtrack is rather dull. However you are encouraged to play whatever music you want.


Be warned. There is a lot of drawing involved so if you can’t draw crosses and circles, you’re screwed.

Final thoughts

This is quite possibly the greatest game I’ve ever played in my life. It is a technical masterpiece in the world of gaming and it has and will continue to inspire game developers until the end of time.

Final rating: 😃/#?

Happy April Fools Day Everybody