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GamelogoBy Australian Ninja

Remnants & Relics. Buttonhole *Special* Feature

Welcome dear reader to Remnants & Relics, the first in an ongoing series of features looking back at various aspects of yesterday's video games. This series is one that I'd hoped to kick off many months ago, but I just haven't had the time to do it justice, until now. So consider this your opportunity to put on your best pair or rose-tinted glasses, open up a luke-warm can of clichés and prepare to hop aboard the way-back-machine.... It came from beyond two dimensions! -A Look Back at Isometric Gaming-

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ToonlogoBy Australian Ninja

ACMI Day Tripper

Welcome Buttonhole readers to another feature that is so choc-full of goodness that I've divided it into several sections. The top half is about the Indy video games showcased at ACMI. The bottom half is about the Pixar exhibit. It's ridiculously long and all terribly interesting to read, so you may as well read it in two halves, or just the parts that interest you. After reading about the ACMI exhibits on their website and getting more than a little excited, I decided to make the perilous trek to inner Melbourne. With time on my side and money stuffed in my pocket I ventured forth to the train station. Once on board I passed the time by staring out the window, reading a volume of Dark Horse's Concrete and snacking on tasty fruit. Arriving at Flinders St, I wandered around until inevitably finding my way out of the rat-maze like station.

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ToonlogoBy Australian Ninja

Classic Comic-book Review. Kraven's Last Hunt

"Here lies Spider-Man - Slain by the Hunter" So reads the grave of one of histories greatest superheros. "But he's not dead, is he? What happened to everyone's favourite web-slinger? Spidey seems to be alive and well now, what with his three movie deal and a string of monthly Marvel comic-book titles to his name, so why was he buried six feet under? The year is 1987. The company is Marvel. The character is Sergei Kravinov also known as 'Kraven the Hunter.' Back in the 60's Stan and Steve (Lee and Ditko, respectively) churned out a heap of cool villains for the title "Amazing Spider-Man." Doctor Octopus, The Cham

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Gun 360 logo GUN. Xbox 360 Review

Hey Jason, where you going with that gun in your hand?

Publisher: Activision

Fri, 30 June 2006

Jason Vorhees image by: Jason

And here we have yet another game from the previous generation of consoles getting a tart-up in the graphics department and being released for the mighty Xbox 360. This was one game I had always meant to check out, but never actually got to, however the hand of god (or the hand of Sammy) has reached down from above and presented me with this "grand theft auto wild west" if you will. Is it a poker hand of five aces, or the contents of the spittoon in the saloon? Read on!

As many of you will know, Gun is developed by Neversoft who spend most of their time pumping out the mostly excellent Tony Hawk series. Just off the top of my head, the last non-Tony Hawk game they developed was a Spider-man game for the original PlayStation (don't quote me on that, on very rare occasions I can be wrong :)).

Gun 360 screenshot 1
The Beverly Hillbillies were sick of being laughed at
Gun follows the story of Colton White, a man just workin' hard to make a livin', huntin' and trackin; with his old man Ned, until the day where his life is turned upside down; Ned is killed and, as you would expect, Colton sets out to deliver vengeance, old west style.

You've probably guessed by now that this game owes a lot to Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto series and while some people may criticize for lack of originality, I sez "if it aint broke don't fix it". Of course, this time the wild west setting puts a different spin on things and if anything this one's a tiny bit more linear than a GTA game.

You have your story missions, with Colton escorting damsels in distress, disposing of corrupt officials and generally righting wrongs and fighting oppression. That all seems ok on the surface but at some point you're going to come across a situation you cant handle, this is where the side missions come in. For every one you complete you get a RGP like increase in stats, so you can cause more damage, have a greater amount of health etc. (also of note is the health pickup in this game - no first-aid boxes or crap like that here - when Colton needs some healin', he reaches for his trusty whiskey bottle).

The side missions also have a reasonable amount of variety, offering things such as bounty hunting, pony express riding, being a ranch hand, game hunting and even a Texas hold em poker game.

Gun 360 screenshot 2
They call me the "Duck of Death"
Graphically, this doesn't exactly scream next gen, although ugly it isn't. The animations are smooth and the whole game seems to be covered in a gritty texture that only enhances the overall feel. Sound wise the game also does itself proud, all the background music and effects really add to the whole (insert favorite generic western here) feel.

If you're going to be dispensing justice, you'll need some weapons and, as you would expect, our man Colt is (eventually) armed to the teeth. He has a pistol (starting off with a six shooter) for close range stuff and a slightly more innovative take on the phenomenon that is "bullet time", a rifle, a shotgun, a sniping rifle, dynamite, an apache tomahawk and others. Several of these weapons are upgraded throughout the game, with better replacements being taken from dead bosses.

Gun manages to be an engrossing tale of the old west, and proves that Xbox 360 games (or games in general) don't have to look earth shattering to be enjoyable. Also, if you can get your hands on the double pack with Tony Hawk's American Wasteland; together they represent outstanding value for dollars.

by: Jason

More articles by Jason

Saddle up and take a tour through the old west and feel free to spin and holster your controller

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More Games

Press Release. Haze 4 Player Demo Availabe Soon.
Games and Beer
Pong designer Al Alcorn to give free talk at ACMI.
eGames and Entertainment expo '07 Report
Win a complimentary ticket to ACMI's "Game On"

Which of the following game genres do you like the most?
Role Playing
First Person Shooters
Adventure/Action (includes platformers)

ToonlogoBy Borgieman

Manifest '07 Report

Ninja's note: Once again, it's time for another Buttonhole report on the Melbourne Anime Festival, otherwise known as Manifest 2007. If you missed Ichibod's feature on a previous Manifest, check it out here. This Manifest coverage comes to you courtesy of forum regular and newest Buttonhole contributor Borgieman, a cool guy who knows his Anime and has been known to play a video game or two. So read on true believers! A Day at Manifest 2007

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ToonlogoBy Australian Ninja

Only Yesterday. Anime Review

The problem with having favourite films is that every time I watch another Studio Ghibli film it becomes my new favourite. It kind of renders the word 'favourite' meaningless when every Studio Ghibli film takes my breath away. Still, I can't complain about being thoroughly entertained by this whimsical and insightful film, "Only Yesterday". This gem was directed by Isao Takahata, well known for his anime film Grave of the Fireflies. Although Only Yesterday is a light hearted film that ambles along at a leisurely pace, it still manages to explore themes such as love, work, family relationship struggles, following your dreams and country versus city living. In the film, the main character Taeko decides to take a working vacation in the country, getting away from her office bound job and unexpectedly starts t

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ToonlogoBy Jason

Speed Grapher V1. Anime Review

Well, "I don't like it" was my initial feeling when viewing this Anime for the first time. Subsequent viewings haven't changed my views a great deal. Nothing really stands out as being absolute shit but it seems that this series tries too hard. It's almost like they were more interested in creating something 'edgy' and confronting but sadly forgot to include an even remotely palatable story. The hero of this particular piece is a bloke called Tatsumi Saiga. Tatsumi is a photographer and a veteran war journalist for whom taking photos has become somewhat of a fetish. Although he seems to have become jaded - nothing is worth wasting his film on - that is, at least until he stumbles across an exclusive club for the mega rich

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