Paul Eastwood's reviews and writings

  • Video Games Live

    Blog Post

    Video Games Live LogoThose of us who play a lot of video games know the power that music brings to them.  We all have our favorite classic tunes, and we know the feeling of hearing a great piece of music while playing a game.  Personally I am a huge fan of game music, listening to soundtracks and remixes of soundtracks in my everyday life.

    Video Games Live is a show designed to bring the joys of video game music to the greater public.  The show consists of an orchestra playing music from games while footage from the game plays on big screens, accompanied by a light show and sometimes stage antics.

    Last week I had the privilege of attending this show.  For those of you who are stalking me online, let's just get this out of the way.  I live in New Orleans, Louisiana, and the show was just outside the city April 1st.

    Now for those of you who listen to the podcast, you will know that myself and one of our other writers, Michael T, were planning on attending the show in February but it was canceled.  Although we're still not completely sure why, they rescheduled it at a different venue about six weeks later.

  • Glory of Heracles

    Half-Hour Handheld

    Glory of Heracles CoverGlory of Heracles is a DS RPG published by Nintendo and developed by Paon.  It attempts to harken back to the old school of RPGs, leaning toward the SNES era.

    The playing of this game by me will discover whether this game achieves that goal, and if that goal is worthy.  Are SNES RPGs still relevant?  Have we moved on, or will the sense of nostalgia be enough to reel us in?

    Glory of Heracles was actually a series of games in Japan published by Data East since 1987.  Nintendo acquired the rights when Data East went bankrupt in 2003.  This is the first game to make it to the west; apparently Nintendo is hoping to pull a Fire Emblem. 


  • The First Hour Podcast - Episode 5

    Podcast
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    Here it is, the fifth episode of The First Hour Podcast! In this episode, Paul and Greg discuss their views on the 3DS announcement, another writer (also named Paul) drops in to talk about the latest Pokemon games, and Mike returns to give his opinion of Final Fantasy XIII. And that's not all!

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  • Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days

    Half-Hour Handheld
    Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days coverIf you didn't already know, Kingdom Hearts is a crossover series between Square Enix and Disney.  As unlikely as that seems, the games have been quite popular.  Two Playstation 2 games, a GameBoy Advance game that was later ported to the PS2 (I know) and a PSP game have come out of this union.

    358/2 Days is the DS (and latest) installation of the franchise.  Although nobody's really sure how to say the title, it was a smart move to develop it for the dual-screened handheld, as more people own a DS than any other system.  The question we'll be asking ourselves today is the usual: is this game worth continuing?  Because it's a handheld game, which I believe should be designed for shorter playing sessions, I'll be playing just the first half-hour for review.

    Kingdom Hearts has a lot of... how to say... avid fans.  Personally, I'm more of a casual fan.  I think that strikes a good balance for reviewing this game.
  • The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction

    Full Review
    Incredible Hulk Ultimate Destruction cover"Comic book video game."  Maybe not the most successful four-word combination in the history of the world.  But you can't blame them for trying, right?  What could be cooler than playing as your favorite super-hero?  The premise of Ultimate Destruction is that you play as the Hulk, and the Hulk smashes things.  And although there's more to the game than that, smashing things is the basis of the gameplay, and guess what.  It's fun.

    This game was developed by Radical Entertainment and released in August 2005 for XBox, PS2, and GameCube.

    Ultimate Destruction is an open-world game.  Basically, there are three areas. Two of the areas are huge, the third is a hub that is much smaller.  In each area, you can go wherever you want and do whatever you want.  And by that I mean smash whatever you want.  The main progression of the game involves buying new moves for hulk to smash things.  In order to unlock new moves, you play through story missions.  The story missions are normal comic book video game fare, and they mostly boil down to smashing things, getting from point A to point B while smashing things, or smashing things while trying to keep something from being smashed.
  • The First Hour Podcast - Episode 4

    Podcast

    Alas, episode four was never meant to be. Technical difficulties marred our first recording of it, and we just didn't have our heart in subsequent recordings. We have decided to leave the episode as the mess it was and move on to a fresh episode five.

  • The First Hour Podcast - Episode 3

    Podcast

    Welcome to the third episode of The First Hour Podcast! In this episode, Paul and Greg wrap up Mass Effect 2, talk Sonic games, and more!

    Subscribe on iTunes or via RSS.

    Please leave us your feedback!

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  • First Hour Podcast - Episode 2

    Podcast

    Welcome to the second episode of the First Hour podcast! In this episode, Paul, Greg, and Mike T. discuss Mass Effect 2, Tatsunoko v. Capcom, ESRB ratings, and more!

    Download the podcast here. We hope to provide iTunes and general RSS support very soon.

    Please leave us your feedback!

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  • The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks

    Full Review
    Legend Of Zelda Spirit Tracks Cover

    The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks is the latest in the revered Legend of Zelda series. I doubt anyone needs an introduction to this series, so I won't give one.

    Spirit Tracks is on the Nintendo DS, and is a direct sequel to 2007's Phantom Hourglass. The controls have remained mostly the same, with a few refinements that I'll get into later.

    Spirit Tracks follows the story set out by Wind Waker and Phantom Hourglass. It's now a hundred years later and everything is settled in the new land, with Zelda as the princess. Link is training to become an engineer (get it? Training?) when suddenly bad things happen and Link is the only one who can fix them. We've heard it all before, right? Maybe all except the train part. But this time, Zelda has had her body stolen, and she travels with Link in spirit form. She acts both as fairy companion a la Navi (although much less intrusive), and she doubles as a giant-sword-wielding, invincible suit of armor. Zelda can possess Phantoms and you can control her, in a new twist to the Zelda series. So for those of you clamoring for a playable Zelda character, this is as close as you can (and probably ever will) come.

  • First Hour Podcast - Episode 1

    Podcast

    Welcome to the first episode of the First Hour podcast! In this premier episode, Paul and Greg discuss the site's origins, discuss The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, and argue about the Nintendo 64's library of games.

    Please leave us your feedback! We've been listening to podcasts for years but this is our first time actually producing one.

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    Plok Title Jam - Mazedude

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