Cuphead (2017) Review

Two cups lose a bet against the Devil and in order to save their souls they must capture the souls of every other resident on their home island.

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I think we will kick start 2018 with a review of one of the mos popular video games of last year a small indie title known as Cuphead don’t deal with the Devil.

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Cuphead is a run and gun sidescroller inspired by the cartoons of the 1930’s, Cuphead and his pal Mugman both take inspiration from Mickey Mouse and Oscar the Lucky Rabbit.

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Cuphead offers three main level types, the first is a classic run and gun scenario similar to old arcade games, you will need to get from point A to point B without dying, this is extremely difficult due to the barrage of enemy types that constantly attack you, enemies do not often die without respawning and the army of creatures that target Cuphead and Mugman is relentless, some of these stages do have a mini boss which will need to be defeated however these bosses are nowhere near as difficult to beat as the games main challenges.

d41ac18a-aa8c-42d3-ab90-aaf9a10d0ad5_Cuphead_Baroness_Von_Bon_BonBoss Battles are another game type available for players to tackle, these boss battles are extremely tough and only the most patient and level headed players will be able to triumph in these scenarios, these boss battles are the best part of the game in my opinion, the animations make it seem as if you are watching an old cartoon and its just as wonderful to watch the game as it is to play it.

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The final level variant in the game are on scroll shooters, these level types take obvious inspiration from the old space scooters of the day, Cuphead and Mugman enter aeroplanes and take on bosses who will constantly morph into different forms, many smaller enemies will spawn  for our two heroes to take on while also taking aim at the levels boss, I had the most difficulty with these level types.

 

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Cuphead and Mugman pack some pretty wild finger guns, the standard gun is powerful enough to get you through most of the game however if you feel like you wanna spice things up a bit then why not spend some of your well earned coins on some new ammunition or perhaps some new abilities

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I don’t think I really need to emphasise just how outstanding the visuals are in Cuphead, as previously stated the game takes inspiration from 1930’s cartoons and the games artists have done an excellent job of making the game emulate this extremely well, not only does the entire game look like an old cartoon but its the smaller touches such as static on the screen which really help to make this game even more beautiful than its needs to be.

The soundtrack is just as wonderful as the visuals, a few tracks use vocals sang by a barbershop quartet but personally I prefer the frantic instrumental tracks during the run and gun sections, although its all very well done and well worth a listen.

Cuphead is one of the most creative games I have ever played and if you enjoy old cartoons and high reaction intense game play then this is the perfect game to add to your library, but if you don’t enjoy difficult games or if you are only just starting out as a gamer then this is one to skip as the game is very challenging, I really enjoyed Cuphead however it is a bit too short for the price the developers are asking for it costs 16 pounds for what is no more than a six hour experience so knock it down to a tenner and you’ve got yourself a bargain 9/10.

I hope you enjoyed my review of Cuphead for the Xbox One and Microsoft Windows.

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

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The Invisible Man (1933) Review

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The Invisible Man is a bit of a cheat this month, it is part of the Universal Classic Horror collections but most people would say its belongs more in the Science Fiction Genre as it doesn’t do to much for it to be considered a Horror movie.

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Claude Rains plays the scientist Jack Griffin who is the Invisible Man, for most of the picture Jack Griffin’s face is covered completely in bandages but I find he is more fun when you cant see him, this is due to Claude Rains past work as a theater actor, he had only worked in silent movies before he was hired by James Whale for the titular role of the Invisible Man, a fun fact of the casting process for the movie is that everyone thought that Claude Rains audition for the film was over the top and generally quite terrible however James Whale couldn’t stop laughing at how funny Claude Rain was and it convinced him to hire Rains for the leading role of the film.

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Two of my favorite performances are by E.E Clive who plays the innocent and witty constable Jaffers and Una O Connor who plays the emotional bar owner Jenny Hall, she gives a very over the top performance filled with screaming and crying, a lot of people would likely find this annoying but in a weird way I find it charming.

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The effects in the Invisible Man were ground breaking back in 1933, this was before green screens and CGI so getting an invisibility effect to work was extremely difficult, when the Invisible Man had no clothes on the effect of him being in the room was done using cleverly placed wires which can be pulled to drag furniture and other objects, but when a shirt of trousers were to float in mid air and move as if they were being worn by an invisible person the effect was done by placing Claude Rains in a black velvet suit against a black background and it was very tediously pulled off using multiple shots in a matte process.

The Invisible Man is not a very scary film but it is a very impressive piece of cinema history, the effects are amazing, the acting is very over the top but also very funny and the wonderful cast really helps to make the film a beloved classic.

The Blu-Ray is unfortunately lacking in special features it does have one documentary and one commentary track however compared to the last three movies we have taken a look at this is rather disappointing.

you can purchase the Universal Classics Monsters Collection on Blu-ray here

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Universal-Classic-Monsters-Essential-Collection/dp/B008H45YSO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1506697249&sr=8-1&keywords=universal+monster+collection

A DVD version can be bought here

https://www.amazon.co.uk/THE-CLASSIC-MONSTER-COLLECTION/dp/B001GQWT24/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1506697249&sr=8-2&keywords=universal+monster+collection

You can contact me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Frankenstein (1931) Review

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Frankenstein is not the first ever movie about Frankensteins Monster that achievement goes to director  Eugenio Testa with his 1921 short film Il monstro di Frankenstein, however the 1931 film starring Boris Karloff is the adaptation which helped to shape and develop the monster into the horror icon he has become.

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The movie is filled to the brim with Iconic peformances such as Colin Clive who plays the mad doctor, it was he that first screamed the lines “HES ALIVE, HES ALIVE”, both Dwight Frye and Edward Van Sloan make a return from Dracula this time with Frye playing Fritz the doctors hideous assistant and Van Sloan playing Doctor Waldman, Dr Frankensteins previous teacher at the university but even with all of these wonderful performances the best performance is given by none other than Boris Karloff who plays the title role of the monster.

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Karloff played the monster as a lost puppy type of character, the monster was dangerous but his bursts of anger and destruction came from his confusion and the way people reacted to seeing him more than it was his own decision, the monster wasn’t cruel it had just never had the chance to experience kindness, there is a very powerful scene in the movie where a young girl gives the monster a flower and unfortunately she is killed by the monster when he accidentally drowns her in a river while they were playing.

maxresdefaultAn interesting piece of trivia about Frankenstein for those who haven’t seen it is that the film first begins with a warning from Edward Van Sloan its a chilling warning that im sure would have set many people into a fit of fear back in the day, the opening dialogue is as such” How do you do? Mr. Carl Laemmle feels it would be a little unkind to present this picture without just a word of friendly warning. We’re about to unfold the story of Frankenstein, a man of science who sought to create a man after his own image without reckoning upon God. It is one of the strangest tales ever told. It deals with the two great mysteries of creation: life and death. I think it will thrill you. It may shock you. It might even horrify you. So if any of you feel that you do not care to subject your nerves to such a strain, now is your chance to, uh… Well, we’ve warned you”.

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Frankenstein is an amazing piece of history that still stands the test of time, it is one of the most enjoyable of the older Universal classic horrors and its performances went on to inspire multiple books, stage adaptrations and newer Frankenstein films, its a monster of a movie which has enough heart and fright for any movie fan, the Blu-Ray has many features including three documentaries and two commentary tracks.

you can purchase the Universal Classics Monsters Collection on Blu-ray here

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Universal-Classic-Monsters-Essential-Collection/dp/B008H45YSO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1506697249&sr=8-1&keywords=universal+monster+collection

A DVD version can be bought here

https://www.amazon.co.uk/THE-CLASSIC-MONSTER-COLLECTION/dp/B001GQWT24/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1506697249&sr=8-2&keywords=universal+monster+collection

You can contact me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Dracula (1931) Review

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Dracula is one of the most influential horror movies ever made and it was Bela Lugosi’s performance as the sexy and manipulative Count Dracula that really made the film as successful as it was and it was, the way that Lugosi acted out his role with his Hungarian accent and struggles with the English language that allowed him to give such a unique performance and it is Lugosi’s accent that most people copy when trying to imitate the famous vampire.

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Dracula is a classic tale of a malicious vampire from Transylvania who moves to England to seek some unsuspecting women so he can drink their blood and take control over their minds and bodies.

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Many people love the peformance of Dracula given by Bela Lugosi however my favorite performance in the picture is that of Dwight Frye who plays Renfield, Renfield is the real estate agent who meets with the Count to sell his castle before moving to England Renfield is bitten by the count and becomes and insane maniac, its Renfields laugh in the movie that sends chills down my spine.

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The rest of the cast each give fantastic peformances but no one stands out more than Edward Van Sloan who plays the Monster Hunter Van Helsing, Van Helsing is also a professor of science in this interpretation of Bram Stokers classic tale.

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As I have previously stated Dracula is an excellent movie which really helped inspire many of the popular horror directors of today, the performances are chilling and the atmosphere is dark and eerie, you can really appreciate how far movie effects have evolved by watching this film, there is a scene where Dracula transforms into a bat and how they pulled this off was a rubber bat attached to a fishing rod and it still looks good, I love Dracula its one of my favorite older horror films and its the perfect flick for this Halloween, the Blu-Ray of Dracula is filled with special features including an alternative score, two documentaries a commentary track and the original Spanish version of the movie.

Dracula is a classic horror which needs to be seen its part of a Blu-ray box set which can be bought on Amazon and its this box set which I am using for my reviews this month

you can purchase the Universal Classics Monsters Collection on Blu-ray here

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Universal-Classic-Monsters-Essential-Collection/dp/B008H45YSO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1506697249&sr=8-1&keywords=universal+monster+collection

A DVD version can be bought here

https://www.amazon.co.uk/THE-CLASSIC-MONSTER-COLLECTION/dp/B001GQWT24/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1506697249&sr=8-2&keywords=universal+monster+collection

You can contact me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (PC) (2002) Review

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A year and a half ago I reviewed a mediocre Philosophers Stone game for the PC, it was a fairly bare bones 3D platformer that was way too short and it skipped over many of the best moments from the film and the original novel, today we will be taking look at the PC video game of the second book in the series Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

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You play the game as Harry Potter the boy who lived who is attending his second year at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry, just like the first game this is a 3D platformer where the objective of the game is too attend classes and beat challenge maps, a huge difference here is how you learn spells, in the first game learning magic was awkward because you needed to trace over shapes with your mouse and with such a limited amount of time performing this task became very difficult, thankfully the game designers have taken a different approach with the sequel as now instead of tracing we instead need to hit corresponding keys on the keyboard in a specified order in the style of a rhythm game.

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Quidditch matches have also been heavily modified and I don’t like the changes they have made here, instead of having complete control over your broom so you can fly freely the game controls the broom for the player and all you need to do is bump into the enemy seeker until you are close enough to catch the golden snitch, its boring, it has no challenge at all and the worst part of it is that it feels like the game designers were just being lazy and were trying to rush out the game.

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The graphics are impressive when compared to the first game, everything is smoother and less pixelated but for a game from 2002 they are still pretty bad, on the bright side the level designs are more detailed and are genuinely more interesting to explore, the best part of the game is finding all of the secrets around Hogwarts castle and the castle grounds, through out the game you will learn an array of spells which can be used to defeat enemies and open up secret passageways where you may find a famous witches and wizards card.

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The first game had only 25 cards to collect and for doing so all you would receive was a slightly extended ending, this game has a whopping 101 cards which is the staple for the majority of the Harry Potter games, the cards come in three categories, gold, silver and bronze, the bronze cards are common and for every 10 you collect you will gain an additional health bar, the silver cards are uncommon and for every ten of those you find you will come one step closer to accessing a bonus area which can only be accessed once the player finds all 40 of the silver cards, the bonus room is a platforming level, which is full of enemies and puzzles, the player has a set amount of time to try and find the 11 rare gold cards in the game, again I don’t think its worth going out of your way to collect these but honestly it was much more fun to do so here than it was before.

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You can buy cards from other students around Hogwarts by using Bertie Botts every flavoured beans which can be found throughout the game, this isn’t necessary since every card can be found hidden inside and around the school but it is helpful if you don’t want to back track later on, the best way to collect beans is by entering the bonus bean room which you can only access if your house has the most points during the segments of the game where Dumbledore tallies up the house scores.

The music in the game is what can be expected from a cash grab title that was made to help push DVD sales but its fun to listen too and not once is it annoying nor does it take away from the game play experience.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets for the PC is a fun little game that is worth picking up if you manage to find it really cheap but if you cant your really not missing out on much, I can quite happily say that this is a good game but its far from a great Harry Potter gaming experience 6.3/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets for the PC

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

The top 5 unannounced games I want for Nintendo Switch

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The Nintendo Switch is officially less than 10 days away from release and while there are a lot of games which have been announced I am only genuinely excited for three of them, those being Mario Odyssey, Splatoon 2 and of course the long awaited Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, but what about the games that haven’t been announced?

These are the 5 games I want to be announced for the Nintendo Switch…..hopefully at E3

HD Remakes

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Lets get the boring one out of the way first, Nintendo are great at making new games and expanding the universes of their video game characters but I still want to see more of their old games getting remade with modern graphics and controls, we all want Mario Sunshine and Luigi’s Mansion HD and so do I but I think some of Nintendo’s older titles would benefit from HD remakes, imagine being able to play Mario 64 in 1080p and without the dodgy controls and what about a HD remake of Donkey Kong 64 or Pilot Wings, there are a lot of titles that would be great as HD remakes but for me personally I would like to see a HD Metroid Prime Trilogy or HD Pikmin and Pikmin 2.

Animal Crossing

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This November will mark the fifth anniversary of Animal Crossing New Leaf for the Nintendo 3DS, I think its time for a brand new Animal Crossing game and what better system to do this on than the Nintendo Switch, honestly I have never enjoyed the handheld Animal Crossing games as much as the ones released on stay at home systems and if released on the switch an Animal Crossing game would suit what I want and it could also be played as a handheld game for those who prefer playing on the go, so everyone wins however there are some major changes I want made to the series, first of all I want more creativity when it comes to building your town and by this I mean that players are able to build the islands themselves from the ground up also I think at this point we should be able to play as an animal if we want too, how about a character building mode where we can create our own characters in very unique and creative ways, I wont go into too many details on this as it may become an article of its own at some point.

Pikmin 4 

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Ok so Pikmin 4 has technically been announced for years but it hasn’t been announced for the Nintendo Switch so I still think this counts, I love cute things and the Pikmin games are no exception I like how Nintendo have taken a subject as dark as the extinction of the human race and made an adorable game series where you play as space captains who run around earth and control strange plant creatures to collect fruits and relics that have been left behind by humans, I haven’t gotten around to playing the third game yet but its on my to do list but in the mean time I hope Nintendo hurry’s up with Pikmin 4.

F-Zero 

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I think Mario Kart is a great game series but we get one or two of those every year, but we havent had an F-Zero game  since 2003, for those who don’t know F-Zero is a fast paced racing game that takes place in space, the games went on to spawn an amazing anime series and F-Zero was one of the biggest inspirations for the Hovercraft’s in Mario Kart 8, I don’t know why this series stopped but many would agree that it needs to return in big ways.

Luigi’s mansion 3 plus a Dark Moon Port

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I loved both of the Luigi’s Mansion games and I would really like to see a Luigi’s mansion 3, the changes I want to make in these games may surprise you but I think they could work, first of all I want Mario out of the game completely I think Luigi’s brother gets enough of the spotlight already, I want multiple playable characters which all have unique abilities and must be switched constantly to solve puzzles, some ideas of characters could be a toad, Luigi (obviously), Professor E-Gadd and Princess Daisy, also a new and more menacing villain and a scarier premise, that is my dream Luigi’s Mansion game and although I cant imagine this will ever happen I will still want a Luigi’s Mansion 3 and I know a lot of you guys do too.

Those are the top 5 games I want announced for the Nintendo Switch

Which games are on your list

I hope you enjoyed this article

Next week will be an article of my opinions of Nintendo DLC and how it could either succeed or fail

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

 

The Pros and Cons of the Nintendo Switch Live Presentation

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We are officially only three weeks away from the release of the Nintendo Switch and in celebration every week up until the release I will be releasing articles expressing my excitement for the system.

On the 12th of January 2017 Nintendo released an hour long presentation discussing important information about their new system, I have watched the presentation multiple times and although I am very excited about the new console I do feel that Nintendo have made some rather critical mistakes.

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Lets start by going over what I consider to be the most disappointing parts of the presentation

Here are the Cons of the Nintendo Switch

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  • Apart from a couple of games the launch line up is not very exciting
  • At the moment games are very expensive, you wont likely be paying less than £50 for a game and some games cost even more
  • Accessories are also ridiculously over priced but to be honest Nintendo have never had great deals on their accessories.
  • There is only 32GB of internal storage but you are able to expand the storage by inserting a micro SD card
  • The battery life while you are out and about is between 2-6 hours which isn’t great but could be much worse
  • Only 1080p resolution on the TV and 720p on the tablet, may not seem like a huge deal but when compared the competition this is fairly low
  • No pack in game comes with the system
  • You need to pay to play online now
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    With the worst out of the way, I can finally talk about the Pros of the Nintendo Switch

  • The price of the system is only £279.99
  • The release date (March 3rd 2017) is earlier than we expected
  • Lots of third party developers are creating titles for the system
  • For the first time ever Bethesda Game Studios are developing for the switch,The Elder Scrolls Skyrim is being released on the system

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  • Two brand new IP’s were announced, out of the two IP’s that were announced the most exciting for me was ARMS, ARMS is a non traditional boxing game that uses extendable arms to fight, it looks really cool and I am really looking forward to playing it
  • A sequel to Splatoon was announced
  • A brand new 3D sandbox Mario game was announced, Super Mario Odyssey has not had too much information released about the new game but we do know that it has a release date of Holiday 2017
  • A direct sequel to the ever so popular Xenoblade Chronicles was announced, Xenoblade 2 will be released sometime this year
  • Hyrule Warriors fans will be pleased to know that a Fire Emblem Warriors game is coming to the Switch
  • A HD port of Mario Kart 8 is coming in April, it includes all previous DLC, A brand new Battle Mode and new characters and tracks
  • Breath of the wild has a brand new trailer complete with voice acting and a release date of March 3rd was announced meaning that Zelda will be there for the launch of the system

So that was a basic breakdown of what I consider to be the best and worst parts of the Nintendo Switch Live Presentation, Next week I will be discussing the top 5 games I want for the switch which have yet to be announced.

I hope you enjoyed my look at the Nintendo Switch Live Presentation

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer