MisanthroPlay Episode #18: Wonder Boy in Licensee Land

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If he's a good boy, it's a Wonder! This week, MisanthroPlay covers the game series that went on to inspire the Michael Chabon novel: Wonder Boy. Starting as a Mario derivative before developer Westone became obsessed with Wizardry, Wonder Boy's lifespan may have been short at just under a decade, but it's undeniable that the series has produced some of the best exploratory platform adventures long before anybody had ever uttered the phrase MetroidVania. We finish up by looking to the future, where not one but two officially licensed Wonder Boy titles are due out before the end of 2016.

And if you're wondering if we get into that whole Adventure Island business, you bet we do, along with Bikkuriman, Dynastic Hero, Turma de Monica and all the greats. Even you, Saiyuki World! Take a bow.

In What Have You Been Playing, Alvin hacks and slashes through Odin Sphere Leifthrasir and decides to stay in Inside, while Robert is underwhelmed by Zero Time DIlemma, but surprised and impressed with Uncharted 4. Also, an investigative report: is Tokyo Mirage Sessions and Digimon Cyber Sleuth the exact same game? All this, and less.

Head on over to the MisanthroPlay blog to have a listen.

Writing Round-Up, August 2016

by Robert Fenner

It's safe to say that, outside of your bi-weekly MisanthroPlay episodes, I've been pretty lousy about keeping MisanthroPop subscribers updated with what I've been up to over the past few months. But that's all set to change, starting now! Below you can find the latest writing I've done from around the web.

Hardcore Gaming 101: Paladin's Quest / Lennus

  • Remember this B-Tier RPG from Copya Systems and Enix USA? The one with the weird colors and character designs not unlike a Moebius comic? Mechanically it was a snooze-fest, but its world deserves a closer look. So that's just what I gave it, along with its Japan-only sequel.

RPGFan: Oxenfree Review

  • Night School Studios sent me a review code for the PS4 Director's Cut of their inaugural character-driven horror adventure, and I fell in love with it. You'll see why in my review, but fans of well-written narrative simply must play this game.

RPGFan: The Silver Case Preview

  • I love old-school Suda 51 -- Y'know, back when his games were messes of subversive postmodernism, and before he stepped away from the director's chair to slap his name on a bunch of derivative Robert Rodriguez rip-offs -- so I'm hyped for this autumn's release of The Silver Case. That said, its Steam demo hasn't set my world alight. Read and find out why not.

RPGFan: Magical Eyes: Red is For Anguish Review

  • Between its slipshod writing and its male Mary Sue protagonist and his doe-eyed obsessive girlfriend, Magical Eyes is a fart of a doujin visual novel. Ya failed the Bechdel Test harder than most, buddy.

MisanthroPlay Episode #17 Space is the Place

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MisanthroPlay takes to the stars this week with an extensive look at one of Alvin's favourite genres: Space Flight Simulators. From its humble origins in Spacewar! to better known entries like Elite and Star Control 2, and even some weirder Japanese games like Star Cruiser and Infinite Space. Finally, we look to the future to see how Star Citizen is shaping up, and to voice our excitement for next week's long-awaited arrival of No Man's Sky.

In What Have You Been Playing, Alvin spends more time with The Witcher 3, enables VR for a return to ADR1FT, blasts some bugs in Earth Defense Force 4.1: Shadow of New Despair and steps into the digital card game future with Star Realms and Twilight Struggle. Robert is underwhelmed by I am Setsuna's overt pulling of nostalgic heartstrings, but has an excellent time with supernatural thriller Oxenfree: Director's Cut. Also, nobody gets to play Shiren the Wanderer 5.

Head on over to the MisanthroPlay blog to have a listen.

MisanthroPlay Episode #16(bit) The Sega Saga: Mega Drive & Saturn

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Robert and Alvin give each other Cyber Razor Cuts to pay respect to the Sega Mega Drive and Saturn consoles.

In What Have You Been Playing?, Alvin enjoys Subnautica, Kirby Planet Robobot, and experiments with Dolphin VR, while Robert grows exasperated with Star Ocean: Integrity and Faithlessness (read his review here!) but falls in love with Black Closet.

Head on over to the MisanthroPlay blog to have a listen.