My Collection


N64 Hori Mini Pad Controller Review & Comparison


Final Fantasy IX Vivi Plush Collection

I review all 3 of the official Vivi Ornitier plushes from the game Final Fantasy IX (9) for the Playstation 1. Which is your favorite of the bunch?


Games I Bought Recently (Episode 29) New System Edition

This episode I talk exclusively about my new system and games that go along with it that I am extremely happy to finally have. Future episodes will go over other games for my other systems, I just wanted to talk about the various confusion that goes along with purchasing this particular series of consoles.


So you want to start a Video Game Review Channel on YouTube?

     The amount of new gaming channels that appear daily on YouTube today is just impossible to keep track of, it is more important than ever to make original and compelling content to help you stand out, or at least have a good screen presence and know what you are talking about. IMO if you lack ideas on content, the best was to approach a new channel is to get some decent video editing software (I recommend Vegas Movie Studio HD 9.0) and capture hardware and focus on game reviews. 

     Why reviews? because people will specifically search for reviews on specific games and your videos will have a better chance of appearing in the search results. Here is a tip though, don't start off reviewing games like Call of Duty Black Ops and Super Mario World, as games like these have been reviewed to death and your review will become buried and get no views. Instead, focus on smaller niche titles that have none to barely any reviews up (when you search), that way someone that comes along and searches for a review of these specific titles will more likely find your video first in the results.

       You do not have to review only the good games! Don't be scared to delve into some not-so-great games, I like it when someone reviews a game truthfully and helps in my buying decision. It is often helpful as people tend to focus on only reviewing games they love and enjoy, which is fine, however do not forget that people also look for opinions on games they are interested in buying and if you find a game that is bad/mediocre it is OK to review it in a normal style (meaning don't go all AVGN on it) to let people know WHY you disliked the game you are reviewing. This may also build you some credibility for your future reviews if you can backup your points in the negative review videos (ignore rate down's, they are just from angry fanboys, the rate ups are from people who appreciate your honest opinion).

     Remember though...the content and information in your video review is still very important, and the first 30 seconds of your review is what will likely determine if someone stays or goes from the video, so if possible avoid lengthy video intros (at least until you get a decent viewer base on your channel). I also can't stress enough how important good equipment is either, most specifically try as hard as you can to get at least a Dazzle DVC 100 or Happague HD PVR. if you are going to film directly off your television with a webcam please be sure it is of decent quality (see my Mirror's Edge review for an example), however I would not recommend this recording style. Next you need a mic, please try and get a decent mic to record your voice overs with, $30 can get you one that is just fine to avoid terrible quality (go for a Logitech).

     I know I am not one to speak on video length, but try and keep your reviews at 4-7 minutes long, as making 10-15+ minute reivews often means that people will not sit through your entire video (I know this first hand), so keeping the videos short and to the point covering the most important aspects of the game is very important as people have short attention spans.

     So there you have it, a basic run down of starting a new gaming review channel on YouTube and how to approach it as best you can. If you have any questions or comments be sure to leave a comment below!




3 Nintendo DS RPG's to give your unsuspecting casual RPG friends this Christmas

Have a friend or two who can't get enough of your typical RPG's on the DS like Final Fantasy, Pokemon, Chrono Trigger, Dragon Quest, etc? Do they gloat on about how their party is lvl 99 and the last boss died in one hit? How about you give them the gift of pain and frustration this holiday season with one of these 3 DS RPG's:

The Dark Spire (2009)

Recommended gift for: The RPG player who likes everything clearly laid and and explained, his next destination to be clearly marked at all times.

What can be better than venturing in to the dungeon for the first time and having your entire party wipe in one turn to the first random battle? The Dark Spire is as hardcore as they come when it comes to dungeon crawl RPG's on the DS, and it is as devilishly hard and evil in its difficulty. Labyrinthine maps that can take hours to transverse per floor, no on screen cursor to show your position on the map (the best you will get are co-ordinates after the use of a limited spell), endless grinding, hidden doors, traps, you name it! Like to wade through tons of equipment to find the very best item to equip? Dark Spire throws that completely out of the window and gives you no indication on the amount of attack that new sword you got is going to give you over your old one. Better hope they have a good imagination as well as they never see what their characters even look like and almost the entire narrative of the game is done through text.

Your friend will need some serious dedication on his hands if he plans on making his way to the end of this game, you literally have to search every nook and cranny of the game to advance the story. Better yet, it has a stylistic old school approach in the graphics department, even offering a "retro" graphical style that screams 80's RPG such as Wizardry. Despite all of this, The Dark Spire was one of my personal favorite games in all of 2009. 


Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer (2008)

Recommended gift for: The RPG player who lacks planning and strategy, usually diving right in to the fight, despises death.

So you reached level 50, congratulations! Those 15 hours you spent grinding really paid off. Oh wow, that is one amazing sword...the best in the game in fact and incredibly hard to obtain, and you are on the final dungeon in the game as well! Before you know it you step on a trap and are suddenly surrounded by 7 enemies that kill you in 2 blows, you are reset back to level 1, sent back to the first town in the game, and lose all of your items and equipment, welcome to Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer.

This is a "roguelike" game, a very niche RPG sub-genre that only a handful of fans can appreciate.... fans that love death, agony, and the feeling of loss. The basic concept of the game is that you play as our solo hero Shiren, on your quest for the land of the Golden Condor. You will transverse though randomly generated dungeons, with randomly generated items and enemies, with each step you take also advancing everything else in a turn based manner (you take a step, so do the enemies). Upon death Shiren loses ALL of his posessions, including all levels and items earned. The only saving grace is that you can store items in a warehouse, which are unusable by the player, however if you do die they will be there to equip when you are sent back to level 1, essentially making your next trip through the dungeons a tad easier. 

The challenge comes in staying alive, as a simple mistake such as attacking the wrong enemy during combat can mean losing everything and starting from scratch. There is no denying that you feel a strong sense of character progression as you level up and find new equipment to make Shiren just that much stronger, however death in this game means losing hours upon hours of hard work, just perfect for your friend who is easily frustrated by dieing in games.


Knights in the Nightmare (2009)

Recommended for: The RPG player who lacks patience and determination to overcome the hidden depth and intricacies of a game.

You watch as your friend tears open the wrapping paper, eager to start the new game you bought him, little do they know they are about to delve into one of the most complex RPG's in years, with a learning curve that will be too difficult to fully master for almost any RPG fan lacking patience. Before you can delve into the story and bulk of the game, you must play the tutorial to have any semblance of a clue as to what the heck you are doing in this game. The only problem is...the tutorial is well over an hour long, with a HUGE list of categories and sub categories explaining every inch of the games mechanics.

If your friend can make it through the mind numbing marathon of a tutorial, he will find that Knights in the Nightmare is extremely unique in it's gameplay as it blends tactical turn based RPG elements with shooting action found from a shoot 'em up game. To put it simply, battles take place on a real time grid battlefield where the player controls a "wisp" with the stylus. This wisp is used to issue attacks with your allied units, as well as dodge enemy attacks at the same time. You have a timer which counts down as you move, but time comes to a standstill when you are not moving your wisp, giving you ample time to plan your strategy accordingly. Of course there are things like magic and skill attacks, as well as items. Your characters can also permanently die if you use their skills too much without them leveling up to increase their vitality. Theres so many variables and things to consider, so I will let the tutorial do the rest of the explaning.