Dragon Quest Treasures Review - All About That Bling

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Loot. Few words in gaming hold such power. The promise of sick loot is a siren song that has driven many a player to take on bold challenges and reconsider their objectives… as well as to make exceptionally poor judgments and even pry open their real-life wallets. Many games, regardless of era and platform, are fundamentally about the satisfaction of obtaining loot, but few will admit that. Dragon Quest Treasures is the rare game that states outright that accumulating a trove of legendary loot is the whole point--and, if you can endure some of its gameplay and technical foibles, you too can experience the satisfaction of having a Scrooge McDuck-like vault of gold (but not the experience of swimming in it).

Dragon Quest Treasures tells the tale of young Erik and Mia, who were first introduced in Dragon Quest XI. Dissatisfied after having been adopted by the pillaging, hard-partying Vikings, the duo decide to escape from the ship and go out on their own to become great treasure hunters. Along the way they free a duo of odd winged critters and stumble upon the Dragon Daggers, enchanted weapons that whisk them away to the realm of Draconia, where treasure hunting is a way of life. Somewhere on these floating islands lie the legendary Dragonstone artifacts, and Erik and Mia are going to get them all--along with an absurd amount of mythical relics just waiting to be dug up.

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World Of Warcraft: Dragonflight Review In Progress - Who Says You Can't Go Home?

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World of Warcraft: Dragonflight is about coming home, in more ways than one. It's a homecoming for the titular Dragonflights of Blizzard's long-running MMORPG, who return to their ancient ancestral home to pick up the pieces and rebuild after thousands of years away. It's also a homecoming for players, who after years of languishing in WoW's unpopular Shadowlands expansion, get to return to Azeroth and all the familiar sights and sounds it holds.

Dragonflight, in that regard, is incredibly nostalgic, but not in the way you might expect. Though it without a doubt features the return of fan-favorite characters, monsters, and even gameplay systems, it never feels beholden or shackled by them. Instead, it takes those familiar elements and breathes new life into them. Whether it's the return of talent trees reminiscent of those from the game's earliest expansions, the game's updated user interface, its lack of mandatory activities, or the feeling of adventure the new dragonriding system invokes, Dragonflight miraculously feels both fresh and familiar at the same time. Even if there are some aspects of Dragonflight that could be improved, I can't help but be impressed at how a handful of new ideas, along with major facelifts to some old ones, breathe new life into Blizzard's flagship title.

Dragons, as you might expect, are the star of this new expansion. Players ride new, highly customizable Dragon Isles Drakes. The majority of the main campaign's primary characters are dragons. There's even a new dragon race, the Dracthyr, that is only playable as the new dragon-themed spellcasting class, the Evoker. The Dragon Aspects Alexstrasza, Nozdormu, Wrathion, and Kalecgos all play key roles in the game's initial story campaign. To see them all front and center for the first real time since 2010's Cataclysm expansion is part of what makes Dragonflight feel so nostalgic, signaling a return to the high fantasy of Azeroth after nearly two years of the dark, dour, and death-themed settings and characters of Shadowlands.

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Crisis Core: Final Fantasy 7 Reunion Review - Conflict Resolved

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Much like protagonist Zack Fair himself, the story of the self-proclaimed country-boy-turned-SOLDIER-First-Class is not one shrouded in mystery. If you've engaged with Final Fantasy VII or any of its various spin-offs, prequels, remakes, or animated movies, chances are you understand the weight of his legacy--which is, coincidentally, only rivaled by the weight of his sword. However, if you're looking for the definitive way to experience it, look no further than Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII Reunion.

A remake of the 2007 PSP exclusive Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, Crisis Core Reunion is a faithful retelling of Zack Fair's story with dramatic visual upgrades, full voice acting, and several quality-of-life changes. Considering the game was already heralded as a fantastic prequel and one of the best titles on PSP, it comes as little surprise that this version is triumphant in making Crisis Core into a modern day must-play for Final Fantasy VII fans. Not only does Crisis Core Reunion port the once fairly difficult-to-find game to several new consoles, allowing for a greater audience to experience the title, it transforms the game from feeling like a smaller, handheld experience into something that can proudly stand beside Final Fantasy VII Remake as a worthy companion.

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Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII Reunion follows Zack Fair, a skilled young man who quickly moves up the rank of soldier--Shinra's elite fighting force--to stand beside other legendary heroes like Genesis, Angeal, and the later-notorious Sephiroth. However, once information regarding the various experiments Shinra conducted on these elite warriors begins to surface, the four colleagues quickly find themselves at odds with each other. Inevitably, these tensions set into motion the events of Final Fantasy VII, including Sephiroth's turn toward madness, the burning of Nibelheim, and Cloud's involvement in the whole ordeal. However, Crisis Core doesn't solely exist as a precursor to something bigger, as it succeeds in weaving an engaging, intimate, and emotionally impactful narrative of its own.

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Need For Speed Unbound Review - Comic Book Racing

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The first thing that jumps out when starting Need for Speed Unbound is its vibrant art style. At a time when most other racing games are striving for photorealism, EA's latest distinguishes itself from the rest of the grid by adopting a stylized mix between reality and comic books. While its cars land on the side of realism, the characters behind the wheel are cel-shaded and its open world falls somewhere in between the two aesthetics. Vivid graffiti-style flourishes also pop up when you activate nitrous or fly off a ramp, and drifting kicks up colorful tire smoke that looks hand-drawn, with all of these effects punctuating the action with a unique sense of style.

There aren't any modern racing games that look quite like it, yet the rest of Unbound feels like a continuation of 2019's Need for Speed Heat. From the distinction between day and night races to the cat-and-mouse chase that occurs when you have to outrun the cops and make it to a safe house in order to bank your money. Unbound doesn't attempt to reinvent the wheel, but what's here maintains the series' recent quality, even if there are some wrong turns along the way.

As is now customary in Need for Speed games, Unbound features a rather forgettable story about getting back at a former friend who stole your ride. There's little point in delving into details because, ultimately, it's inconsequential. Cutscenes are sprinkled in every now and then, but for the most part, the story is just sort of there, happening in the background as you drive around the city, so at least it's unobtrusive. There's some fun incidental dialogue every now and then, including one mission where you're traveling with a "weeb racer" who spends the whole journey telling you about the history of anime and how it definitely isn't a cartoon. Rapper A$AP Rocky also makes an appearance (because why not?) and it feels like he was given a microphone and free rein to say whatever came to mind. It's a moment that stands out in a game that's filled to the brim with ancillary dialogue. Aside from this, the story is relatively easy to ignore, but it does succeed in giving impetus to the game's structure.

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