Elizabeth Henges

A freelancer that mostly writes about video games and media. I'm gaiages on most sites--feel free to say hello!

Spotlight

My personal favorites.

NieR: Fatherhood and Sacrifice

The new God of War title released last month, and it had many gamers talking about a subject that’s not brought up often in the gaming sphere–fatherhood. It’s for a good reason, too, as the tale of Kratos and Atreus is an amazingly told tale. But as Kratos learns to build bonds with his son and deals with the loss of his wife, I can’t help but think of a lesser-known gaming father and his tale. His wasn’t a story of redemption, though, but of sacrificing everything for your child.

Monster Hunter: World gives strong women proper body representation

Monster Hunter: World can be described with many words but ‘realistic’ is not a prominent one. After all, you’re fighting giant fantastical beasts with absurdly large weapons, all while your bipedal pet cat runs around in a fairy outfit. Many aspects of the Monster Hunter series fall clearly in the realm of fantasy, but one aspect of these games that is realistic is how women, and their bodies, are represented.

The Bittersweet Endings of The Banner Saga 3

The Banner Saga 3 was released late in July to overall critical praise. Stoic’s strategy RPG trilogy was never known to be happy and uplifting, but as the story moved forward to its resolution, it was increasingly clear to see that there would be no happy end to this tale. How exactly it ended, though, was left up to the player, left to placate a man who has all but lost faith in the world and humanity and is being forced into a difficult decision.

The Secret Side of Pokémon You Never Knew About

If I asked you what an “EV” is in Pokémon, you might assume I was talking about the lovable little fox creature that evolves into a myriad different forms. But if you’re a competitive Pokémon player, you know exactly what those two letters mean—effort values. These values are increased by battling different kinds of Pokémon and give monsters a valuable edge, but the games won’t show them to you in any menu. And they’re just one of the hidden, deeper mechanics in the series that go beyond the well-known rock-paper-scissors of type matchups and factor into the complex world of competitive Pokémon battling.

The Joy of unravelling the deception in The House in Fata Morgana

Visual novels arguably have less to impress gamers than other genres. With no real ‘gameplay’ to speak of, visual novels need to rely heavily on narrative prowess to make a lasting impression. Originally released in Japan in 2012, but only getting an English localization in 2016, The House in Fata Morgana is pegged as a horror visual novel. As the player explores the desolate mansion and views the different tragedies of the past, however, the game slowly unravels its tangled plot threads, revealing that it’s much more than just a compilation of sad tales.

In Defense of Fetch Quests

When people think of sidequests, they often only think of the ones that offer an interesting narrative or character motivation. Whether it’s beating up a bunch of thugs to get a kid’s video game back in Yakuza 0, or taking down a mighty djinn in The Witcher 3, people will often point to these games as shining examples of what sidequests should be. Many RPGs’ side content gets held up to The Witcher 3’s high storytelling standards in particular, and often players come away disappointed that most games have more typical, fetch quest style sidequests in comparison.

Latest Reviews

My latest reviews for any site.

Mercenaries Wings: The Fallen Phoenix Review

Earlier this year, Circle Entertainment released Mercenaries Saga Chronicles on Switch, offering the first three games of their SRPG series at a low price. Gamers didn’t expect the series to continue beyond the original trilogy, but shortly after Chronicles’ release, Radeon announced Mercenaries Wings: The Fallen Phoenix, the fourth entry to the Mercenaries series. This title does have a couple new changes to the formula from the three Chronicles titles, but ultimately it’s not enough to alleviate Mercenaries Wings beyond the realm of mediocrity that the series exists in.

Into the Spine of: Persona Dancing Games

Are you ready to have your favorite character from the Persona series dance to your favorite songs? Well, the characters from Personas 3-5, at least (sorry, Persona veterans)? Atlus is ready for you to dance the night away with the new releases Persona 3: Dancing in Moonlight and Persona 5: Dancing in Starlight, along with the PS4 release of Persona 4: Dancing All Night. Are these spin-off titles worth adding to your collection?

Life is Strange 2 Episode 1: Roads Review

Dontnod released the original Life is Strange to critical acclaim in 2015, and since the conclusion of Max and Chloe’s tale fans have been eagerly awaiting the second season of the narrative series. After three years, a prequel, and a free episode starring a different protagonist, Life is Strange 2 has finally released its first episode, ‘Roads’. The second season is off to a very strong start and benefits from the new characters and scenery.

Russian Subway Dogs Review

I’ve always been a cat person. It’s not that I hate dogs–I’m just allergic to them. I can admire them from afar, but the hives I get when they give me sloppy wet kisses means that I can’t cuddle them like I can my feline friends. Digital puppies, however, are fair game. All of the adorable aspects of a puppy without the allergic reaction? Sign me up! That was my mentality when starting up Russian Subway Dogs, the arcade style game from Spooky Squid Games.

Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age Review

It has been over nine years since the last mainline Dragon Quest game made its way Westward. Since Dragon Quest IX, we've missed out on the Japanese-only MMO entry Dragon Quest X, but in recent years there’s been a renewed sense of life in the franchise with titles like Dragon Quest Heroes and Dragon Quest Builders. While these spin-off titles still carry the spirit of the Dragon Quest series, they haven’t been the classic menu-based RPGs that the franchise is built upon. The wait is finally over, though, as Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is finally releasing on PlayStation 4 and PC.