The Adventures of Elena Temple: Definitive Edition.

Release Date: December 24, 2019
Genre: Retro Platformer
Platforms: Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PC
Platform Reviewed On: Nintendo Switch
Date Reviewed: December 27, 2019

Are you looking for a blast from the past? Good! Elena Temple may be the game you are looking for. Elena Temple: Definitive Edition introduces the good ol’ days of retro platformers. With many different “platforms” to play on, like the Some Toy Advanced, Maple, TOD 300, and Bell! The best ones I found were the Gameboy “Some Toy” skins as it also changes the music to the 8 Bit style. No matter what style you choose to play on, the game still feels the same on each platform. These are all different retro aesthetics you can choose to play on with the press of a button. This is great because it gives the opportunity to play in your favorite retro style. The customization options of Elena Temple are pretty great overall. You are also able to zoom into the game screen if it is too small for you and make it the size of your TV.


The platforming in Elena Temple is overall a pretty solid experience as well. The controls are tight and a lot of the areas offer some pretty good challenges. However, some of the deaths in Elena Temple do feel a little cheap and may cause some frustration. This is not something that happens to often thankfully. Some platforms move, and some disappear and need to be timed perfectly or you may fall to your death. This is where dying, isn’t all that bad. As soon as you die you will reset at the beginning of the current level you are playing on in an instant. So try and try as much as you want until you perfect that really hard jump.

Elena Temple comes with 3 dungeons with a grand total of 100+ rooms to explore. Each dungeon introduces unique and challenging elements. You choose where to go and in any order. There is a nice little map if you do end up getting lost. There are a total of 40 in game achievements which adds that extra layer to the game for play-ability. There are game modifiers you are able to unlock to play Elena Temple in different ways. Of course, like any good platformer, there are also secrets and easter eggs! Try and find them!


With the definitive edition it adds more to the game than the core game. It increases the play-ability by quite a bit. A straight arrow play through will take a few hours to beat it. But if you like to collect things and find secrets it can double or even triple your play time. Honestly, for the price point, this is worth every penny.


The Adventures of Elena Temple does a really good job of recreating that nostalgia feeling from platformers of the past. Tight controls, great sound and a great challenge. Elena Temple will certainly scratch that nostalgia itch. Unfortunately there are some flaws such as some cheap deaths, and sometime frustrating areas. But overall, a good experience for the value.



Steamworld Quest: Hand of Gilgamech

Release Date: April 25th, 2019
Genre: Card Battle RPG
Platforms: Nintendo Switch
Platform Reviewed On: Nintendo Switch
Date Reviewed: May 5th, 2019
Steamworld Quest is another entry in the wonderful Steamworld series. I started playing this series with Steamworld Dig. After Steamworld Dig they moved onto Steamworld Heist, a tactical RPG. Then next came Steamworld Dig 2 which is still by far one of my favorite Nintendo Switch games. Lastly and surely not least is Steamworld Quest, a card turn based RPG.
As soon as this was announced on Nintendo’s Nindie’s Direct I was sold immediately. You do not need to play the previous entry in the series to enjoy or to know what is going on in Steamworld Quest. The off series of Steamworld are their own stories in themselves.
As I said, this is a card turn based RPG game. The premise of this game is to build decks with each of your characters. You start off with three characters and acquire more as you progress through the game. You are only allowed to ever have 8 cards per character in your rotation. This makes the strategic possibilities endless. You have your basic cards with adds onto your cogs. Cogs are typically played as mana like in Hearthstone. Except you gather cogs by using your basic cards, not a turn by turn basis. Some cards require you to us 1 – 5 cogs to unleash their powers. It’s always smart in my opinion to balance the regular cards with the more powerful cards. You are able to play in any way you see fit whether you play with brute force, pure magic, support, poisoner, etc…. There are so much possibilities and can adjust to your own play style.
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Battle System.
The approach I took throughout most of the game was Copernica for pure damage and AoE, the twins for extra DPS and damage over time, and Galleo as my poisoner and healer. Again, you can play anyway you see fit.
The game plays as a side scrolling world. You walk from side to side to each area. Each area may have hidden areas that require you to find to gather 100% of the chests in each level. these are important because a lot of the chests will have additional cards for you to add to your decks. You gain levels and experience after each and every battle as well as gold and items. Steamworld Quest has an interesting mechanic where you cannot grind out a lot of levels to become so overpowered you one shot everything. Every level has a softcap and once you hit it your experience rate drops significantly, however, you are still able to earn items and gold which is highly needed to craft and upgrade our cards. During battle you are able to chain your cards together. For example, if you use all three cards during your attack phase from Galleo he will use a special attack that is associated with the weapon he has equipped. Try them out for some crazy combinations.
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Deck Builder.
As I mention above. You acquire items during battle. Some of these items are materials. You use these materials in order to upgrade and craft new cards. Crafting new cards cost gold and materials. Where upgrading your cards only costs materials. So in order for you to acquire all of the upgrades and crafting you will need to some do some grinding to get them all. Which is okay because in the game there is a speed up option to make the battles go by much quicker. This saved me a lot of time.
One other things I would like to mention is the music. The music is exceptional and highly recommend you listen to everything while you are playing this game. The last boss especially really got me excited about the music.
In conclusion, I highly recommend this game. This is not your typically card battler game, it is so much more than that. So even if you don’t typically enjoy card battler games, this one may appeal to you. It is a nice blend with cards and an even greater RPG battling system. I highly recommend this game.
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