Digest- CIVILIZATION in Review; video game reviews galore!

MB Updated Digest- CIVILIZATION in Review; video game reviews galore!
There Will Be Games

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It's a Michael Barnes smorgasboard at this week. Come take a bite.

First and foremost, my review of Kevin Wilson's SID MEIER'S CIVILIZATION is up. Yes, read that again. Kevin Wilson's SID MEIER'S CIVILIZATION. That says a lot right there. The biggest surprise is that the game is a big honking Eurogame, and not one of the good ones. I'm talking full-blown efficiency engine stuff. The thing is, the PC game is that too, but that all happens on the backend- not on the table in front of you.

Then we've got my review of the utterly disappointing EPIC MICKEY, the game that Warren Spector is now saying that negative reviewers "didn't understand". He's claiming that reviewers didn't understand that the reason the camera was so shitty (which makes the game a real drag to play) is because they used an "adventure game" camera instead of a "3D platform" camera. Note to Spector- if you've got 3D platforming, maybe you shouldn't use this so-called "adventure game" camera. He's full of shit in a way that usually only Peter Molyneux is on this one. Did you know this guy did the BUCK ROGERS board game, TOON, and a bunch of TSR stuff? I didn't know that. Maybe I just didn't understand.

MAJIN AND THE FORSAKEN KINGDOM gets the treatment too. It's OK. It's the kind of game that the video game hipsters that claim that anything that's part of a franchise or an FPS is bereft of creativity will immediately love regardless of its dodgy quality or the silly, trite story.  There's some interesting puzzles and AI-assisted co-op play, but by and large it's a rental at best.

Then there's FINALLY my review of PINBALL FX2. We really should have appended some material on the new Marvel tables, because they're _awesome_.

Last but not least, I was on the Jumping the Shark podcast yet again, this time talking about underrated games of 2010. METRO 2033 gets talked about a lot again. I was going to challenge Tom Chick's negative review of NEED FOR SPEED: HOT PURSUIT, but we ran out of time.

Coming up next week, reviews for GRAN TURISMO 5, TRON EVOLUTION (which is way better than it has any right to be given that it's a movie cash-in), and...what may pull in front of HIGH FRONTIER for the GotY prize in a photo finish.

There Will Be Games

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Sometime in the early 1980s, MichaelBarnes’ parents thought it would be a good idea to buy him a board game to keep him busy with some friends during one of those high-pressure, “free” timeshare vacations. It turned out to be a terrible idea, because the game was TSR’s Dungeon! - and the rest, as they say, is history. Michael has been involved with writing professionally about games since 2002, when he busked for store credit writing for Boulder Games’ newsletter. He has written for a number of international hobby gaming periodicals and popular Web sites. From 2004-2008, he was the co-owner of Atlanta Game Factory, a brick-and-mortar retail store. He is currently the co-founder of and as well as the Editor-in-Chief of Miniature Market’s Review Corner feature. He is married with two childen and when he’s not playing some kind of game he enjoys stockpiling trivial information about music, comics and film.

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