Damon

Damon

Damon Finos was born in Ontario, Canada, and has been living in Japan for over a decade. When he's not writing his next big novel, Damon spends his free time playing video games - ranging from old school Nintendo to Playstation 3. He's also a huge movie buff, avid reader, and enjoys organizing his Thai spices.

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword – Review

by Ben Adkins 7.25 / 10 Banzai!s To celebrate Breath of the Wild and the launch of the Nintendo Switch, I created the ’31 Days of Zelda’ event, in which I played The Legend of Zelda games (or did other “Zelda-related activities”) for the entire month of March. This included two run-throughs of the original FCD/NES The Legend of Zelda as well as Breath of the Wild’s immediate predecessor, Skyward Sword for the Nintendo Wii. In fact, the last day will be spent writing this review. If you are not a fan of the series, or despise the Wiimote ‘controller,’ …

Continue reading

Tokyo Game Show 2016 Video Presentation

Check out our video presentation of the 2016 Tokyo Game Show! Plenty of virtual reality (VR) titles, indie games, as well as some new stuff coming soon, such as Final Fantasy XV, Gravity Rush 2, Resident Evil 7, and more!

Tokyo Game Show 2016

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Tokyo Game Show, and except for a short stint during the recession in 2008-2010, the TGS has more than recovered, breaking records in size year after year. TGS 2016 saw a total of 614 exhibitors (compared to 480 last year), all showing a total of 1,523 different game titles (compared to 1,283 last year). During our visit, we certainly noticed the difference in size. We remember back in 2006 when two of the giant halls at Makuhari Messe in Chiba occupied all the game exhibitions, while the third consisted of shops and …

Continue reading

Review – Beyond: Two Souls

by Ben Adkins 10 / 10 Banzai!s Games like this are the reason I still believe the PS4 was a year or two ahead of schedule. This is easily on my top ten list of best 7th generation games. Beyond: Two Souls takes everything that its predecessor, Heavy Rain, did and does them better. The graphics are outstanding. The controls are simple, but you feel like you’re doing something, which is not the case with many story games on the market. But what makes Beyond worth full price in a time when the prices on Amazon drop sooner rather than …

Continue reading

Real Life Mario Kart!

I was wandering through the crowded sidewalk of Shibuya the other day, when I happened to hear – what sounded like – lawnmower engines rumbling down the street. Were times getting tough for the local motorcycle gang? I followed the sound, as did several other curious people around me, and was shocked to see the characters from Nintendo’s Mario Kart. Yes, real-live Mario Kart! There were seven drivers in total, a mix of Japanese and non-Japanese, each driving an ordinary go-kart down the main street of Shibuya. And all of them were sporting Mario Kart costumes, ranging from Super Mario …

Continue reading

Review – Journey

by Ben Adkins 8.5/10 Banza!s From the creators of flOw and Flower comes Journey, more of an experience than a game, and proof that good things come in small packages. It’s a short PSN game with a beautiful score, simple controls and graphics that draws the player in emotionally without any words or text. Without language, the player is able to focus on gameplay, solving puzzles and collecting glyphs. Basically, this game turns the essence of gaming into a playable form that is often lost these days. You start off with your character in a desert, and your goal is …

Continue reading

Are Video Games Getting Easier?

A while back, the Japan Times published an interesting which described the “new fatalism” among young people (teens and twenties) in Japan. Based on research from psychiatrist Toru Kumashiro, young Japanese believe that effort doesn’t reap rewards, so there’s no point in trying. While I may not disagree with this, Kumashiro then used video games as a determinant to support this new fatalism attitude, saying that 1980’s games required skills, while now, “the biggest hits require the least effort.” Could this be true? Do video games these days require far less skill and effort than those 8-bit games in the …

Continue reading

Review – Alone in the Dark

by Ben Adkins 3.5 / 10 Banzai!s Alone in the Dark is easily the worst game I have played in the past decade, which is really sad because I played the PlayStation 3 version. The PS3 version is supposed to be the best of the bunch, with improved controls and an extra action sequence not presented in other version. How bad is this game? It is so bad that Atari threatened lawsuits over bad reviews, under excuses that they violated embargoes (which was apparently just fine if you wrote a good review for the game) or by claiming they used …

Continue reading