John Learned

Latest Articles

Nioh 2's Beta is a Brutal Brick Wall of Difficulty

Like its predecessor, Nioh 2 cranks its difficulty amp way up.

The Surge 2 Review: Deck 13 Takes a Proper Step Out of From Software's Shadow

Deck 13 continues to march forward in the increasingly-crowded Soulslike genre.

Nioh 2's Beta is a Brutal Brick Wall of Difficulty

Like its predecessor, Nioh 2 cranks its difficulty amp way up.

The Surge 2 Review: Deck 13 Takes a Proper Step Out of From Software's Shadow

Deck 13 continues to march forward in the increasingly-crowded Soulslike genre.

How a Parry Saved Street Fighter: 20 Years of 3rd Strike

Everyone loves a comeback.

Sekiro Spoiler FAQ - Your Questions Answered, and All the Endings Explained

Got questions about any of the multiple endings of Sekiro? We've got all the answers, as well as character fates and more, right here.

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice Review

The finest cut is the one that comes at the right time.

Dark Souls Remastered Review - Nintendo Switch Update

From Software finds a classic sitting next to a forgotten bonfire. This review now includes impressions of the Nintendo Switch version of Dark Souls Remastered.

Shenmue I & II Review

As Sega readies the end of Ryo Hazuki's journey, it polishes up the first two games. Are the remasters worth your time?

Dark Souls Needs to Die: My Complicated Relationship With the Series That Helped Me Beat Cancer

How a quest to master Dark Souls and cope with cancer became a personal curse.

We Were Madmen: A Diary of Demon's Souls' Final Days

From the beginning of the final month to the last moment, we take a tour through the end of From Software’s seminal action-RPG.

"Make it Biblical:" How Vagrant Story Changed Game Localization

INTERVIEW: Alexander O. Smith and Rich Amtower go in-depth on the game that helped elevate localization into an artform.

Nioh: Defiant Honor DLC Review: Hardcore Will Never Die, but You Will

Great levels, but weak boss fights; the second Nioh expansion isn't messing around.

The Oral History of EVO: The Story of the World's Largest Fighting Game Tournament

The history of the Evolution Championship Series as told by the people who have been there from the beginning.

The Surge Review

The imperfect next step.

Nioh DLC Dragon of the North is Less New Places and More Swords to Faces

While some might balk at the lack of new locations, Nioh’s first DLC falls back on what it does best: fighting.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City Walkthrough -- The Dreg Heap

A guide to the first area of the Ringed City DLC.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City Walkthrough -- The Ringed City

Venturing into the eponymous main area.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City Walkthrough -- How to Beat Judicator Argo

A guide to beating the penultimate boss of the series.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City DLC – Beating Slave Knight Gael

This guide will help you overcome the final boss of the Dark Souls series, Slave Knight Gael.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City DLC Walkthrough – The Best Weapons to Use for PvP and PvE

What are the best weapons to use for PvE and PvP? Find out right here.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City DLC Walkthrough -- How to Beat the Optional Boss, Darkeater Midir

Prepare for a long, challenging fight if you want to take on and defeat Darkeater Midir.

Dark Souls 3: The Ringed City DLC Walkthrough – A Guide to Finding All of the Weapons and Spells

Need one of the Ringed City's weapons? Here's where you can find them all.

Let's Talk About Nioh's Difficulty

Now that it’s out in the wild, we talk about where the line really is

Nioh PlayStation 4 Review: A Worthy Heir

Nioh mostly measures up to the high standards set by other Soulsborne games.

A Voice for Ivalice: The Localization and Voice Acting of Final Fantasy XII

Now almost ten years removed, the localization team and voice actors look back on a magnificent work of game translation.

Street Fighter V Stress Test: Notes from the Underground

This past weekend, the Street Fighter V beta lurched back to life. Here's what we found.

Zen and the Art of the Art Book: The Close Relationship Between Udon and the Video Game Industry

How Udon Entertainment gives the super fan insight into a game’s production.

Street Fighter Beta Diary: Day One (And Maybe Only)

There, there. Shhh. I know.

Street Fighter V Beta: Day 0: What We Know So Far

What better way to prepare for tonight’s beta than to get everyone on the same page?

Getting Strong Now: The Pros Share Their Training Tips for EVO

Daigo, Combofiend, and Seth Killian on how they prep for the fight game community's most prestigious tournament.

A Fighting Chance to Live: The Story of FightCade

How FightCade saved an online classic gaming community from the brink of doom.

Reproduction Cartridges and Elegant Piracy

How a byproduct of emulation became gaming’s Cuban Cigar.

Dragon Age: Inquisition and the Mysteries of Faith

Dragon Age writer David Gaider reflects on how BioWare's RPG tackles the seen and unseen.

For Whom the Fight Bell Trolls

How the fighting game community's most notorious villain barely lifts a finger.