Games Played: Urban Reign (PS2), Kinetica (PS2), Smackdown vs Raw 2006 (PS2), Borderlands Pre-Sequel (XBOne)
Had lots of fun with the games on this list, most of them favorites of mine for years. The uptick in PS2 gaming is a direct result of sharing my HDTV with my nephew while I use the older CRT TV. It's been fun reconnecting with the console, especially these old favorites of mine.
SVR 2006 is still an incredibly fun game and as far as I understand is the last of those older faster paced wrestling titles. The newer games are too slow for my tastes so SVR is always a fun game to go back to especially the laugh out loud hilarious Hell in a Cell matches where characters go into proverbial comas after falling from the top of the cell. Me and my nephews have had a lot of fun with this one lately.
Recommendation: A really fun and solid wrestling game that has a timeless appeal in its core gameplay. The quick pace is what I think is missing in many modern wrestling games. Even if you like those, try this one and spend a whole day of your life creating characters and tossing them off the cell.
I played Urban Reign on a whim after playing some Tekken and wrestling games. I'd never beaten Urban Reign before despite the many years its been in my possession, so I figured now would be the perfect time to do so. Urban Reign is a 3D beat-em-up, a favorite genre of mine, that's made by Namco. There is a heavy Tekken influence in the attacks and other animations of each of the game's fighters and there are even unlockable Tekken characters in the game. This time around, I had a lot of fun pulling an all-nighter to finally beat the game from start to finish. It was tough, with some really unfair moments, but it was fun overall.
Recommendation: Solid mechanics and extra modes make this one a blast. Too bad the characters were a little too generic to leave a lasting impression, otherwise this one would be remembered more fondly. Still, I put this in the same vein as Def Jam: Fight For New York (which I hold in high esteem.) So try it out if you like beat 'em ups like Streets of Rage, Final Fight, or The Warriors.
My nephew randomly fired Kinetica up one night and asked me to play it with him. After completely annihilating him in each race I got the urge to unlock all the tracks and racers. Surprisingly those few skills I learn while playing this game more than ten years ago have stuck with me along with the strategies. It felt great to boost, siphon, stunt, drift, and collect my way to victory and the topsy turvy track design was still exhilarating after all these years. Just today alt. racer Steyer took me to victory in all three season modes. Now to unlock the three secret racers.
Recommendation: Not an ordinary racing game by any stretch. I think I like Kinetica so much because winning relies as much if not more on strategy than it does superb piloting skills. The sense of speed is only really there when you're boosting and sometimes the track design does work against you even when you know what's coming, but all in all this is one of my all time favorite racing games and I don't like too many. So if strapping into motorized roller skates and going hundreds of miles per hour on stages that would give Sonic the Hedgehog a head rush while listening to trippy techo songs sounds like fun then you should definitely give this one a try.
Borderlands has been my favorite shooter series for the last two generations and playing through Pre-Sequel on the Xbox One has been a blast. I purchased it digitally after my nephew was complaining about the lack of split screen games in modern gaming. I, of course, remembered fondly playing through both BL 1 and 2 side by side with each of my best friends. After going out and buying an extra controller we started a new campaign, him with Nisha and me with Aurelia. When he's not playing, I play as The Doppelganger. There's not much I can say here about the game without going on at length about it, so I'll save it for a later post. Just know that this installment is fun and unique.
Recommendation: Well worth the buy. There's not as much content as BL2 but that game was just about perfect when it came to DLC. Go get it now if you haven't.