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Video Game Review: Minecraft: Story Mode – Season Two, Episode 2

August 16, 2017 | by Herija Green | Comments (0)
Minecraft Story Mode Season 2
Go home, Admin, you’re drunk!

Please note that since each episode of Minecraft: Story Mode — Season 2 features the same graphics engine and control setup, those elements will not be repeated in our reviews for the final four episodes. To read our thoughts on that, refer to our review of Hero in Residence.

Following a rather plodding debut, Season 2 cranks up the action significantly in Giant Consequences, picking up right where the first one left off as a stone colossus descends on Beacontown spoiling for a fight with Jesse and not the least bit concerned with collateral damage.

As has become a staple of the series, the moment one foe falls another rises in its place, and to that end we’re (re)introduced to the Admin, who now inhabits a different body but is no less powerful. He’s playing almost a watered down version of The Joker throughout much of the episode, making light of your friends and your attachment to them.

Some of the Admin’s motives come into focus here as well: he believes in power above all else. Thus he sees Jesse as a worthy adversary whose friends, specifically the likes of Lukas and Radar, are his weakness.

And naturally, Jesse disagrees, seeing them as his strength. To test that assertion, the Admin sets up a new test for Jesse and company to tackle, threatening the livelihood of Beacontown to coerce their participation.

While it’s only temporary, it’s enjoyable to have everyone together, and it allows the game to start giving more depth to the newcomers. That includes Stella, whose cluelessness continues to serve as a comedic respite from an otherwise serious affair.

Most of the episode is spent trying to successfully navigate the Admin’s house of horrors, consisting of the usual quick-time events — the shooting gallery being the most interesting but also frustrating given how hard it was to separate friend from foe at that distance. Still, the game is so forgiving that even multiple failures don’t derail your progress.

Giant Consequences also feels like it puts more weighty decisions on your plate than the first episode, which is a good thing. We’re particularly intrigued where a late-game choice involving Stella will lead that relationship moving forward. Things end with the deck being reshuffled again, placing Jesse in a new bind to find his way out of.

OVERALL (3.75/5)

Coming on the heels of a slow-paced opener, Giant Consequences features better action, more meaningful decisions and an interesting cliffhanger leading into Episode 3.

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Blu-ray Review: Going in Style

August 4, 2017 | by Herija Green | Comments Comments Off
Going in Style’s plot is predictable from start to finish and never deviates from the obvious path. That would’ve fared better had it gone a sillier route and stayed away from trying to add too many “serious” subplots, or, conversely, had they chosen to commit to a couple.
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Video Game Review: Pyre

August 3, 2017 | by Herija Green | Comments Comments Off
Set in a world known as the Commonwealth, Pyre begins with a group of three travelers coming across an injured figure on the road. That figure is you, banished to the Downside (akin to a type of purgatory) for the crime of literacy. That’s right, in this realm the ability to read is forbidden, and it’s for this very rare skill that the travelers have sought you out.
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Blu-ray Review: Ghost in the Shell

July 24, 2017 | by Herija Green | Comments (0)
Visually, Ghost in the Shell is impressive. Sure, there’s the odd green screen that looks wonky — the fishing scene with Major and Batou stands out in that regard — but for the most part everything looks crisp and does a good job of bringing the anime to life, including some nearly shot-for-shot lifts. With a healthy dose of action as well, Ghost is a strong showcase piece for powerful 4k TVs.
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Video Game Review: Black The Fall

July 20, 2017 | by Herija Green | Comments (0)
You play as a nameless, faceless protagonist trying to break free from some sort of Soviet work camp, although the presence of sophisticated machinery indicates it’s not meant to be historically accurate. While the hammer and sickle gives the game a little more grounding than what we’ve seen in Limbo, Inside and Little Nightmares, it still offers no concrete narrative.
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