“The Last of Us Part II’s” Perfect Score Conspiracy

The launch of video game developer Naughty Dog’s newest game The Last of Us Part II has been less than ideal to put it quite generously. Several months before the official release of TLOU2 substantial amounts of story based game content leaked to the internet. Project leader Neil Druckmann stated in an interview with Kinda Funny Gamescast he did everything he could to get the leaked content taken down.

Protecting the integrity of your intellectual property makes sense. Unfortunately, there were a lot of media outlets who were unfairly struck with DMCA takedowns for just speaking about the leaks.

Theory 1: Mr. Druckmann wholeheartedly knew before the leaks people were not going to like the treatment of one of TLOU’s main characters. That’s why there was so much deception about the game’s narrative in promotional material. It explains why the actions to purge the internet of anything related to the leaks were so aggressive.

Theory 2: Mr. Druckmann failed to anticipate just how upset his narrative decisions for TLOU2 would make fans of the original TLOU. This is when Mr. Druckmann realized the game he spent seven years developing was not going to sit well with a large portion of fans.

This is all speculation but this humble observer can’t help but think the majorly negative response to TLOU2’S leaks made SONY nervous. The Last of Us Part II is exclusive to the SONY Playstation and was a highly anticipated sequel to one of gaming’s most popular titles of all time.

The fan backlash from the leaks made it clear TLOU2 was not going to review well with fans. An “agreement” was made with official critics to cushion any damage caused by negative user reviews. Furthermore, the perfect rating scores pretty much across the board suggests somebody likely expected TLOU2 was going to review exceptionally poorly with a large amount of players.

Perfect critic scores no doubt helped day one sales. The real question is how well TLOU2 will sell beyond that? The original TLOU featured a popular multiplayer mode that gave the title longevity beyond the single player campaign. The Last of Us Part II currently lacks a multiplayer mode.

Reports of retailers refusing to take anymore returns of TLOU2 does not bode well.

The Last of Us Part II currently has a 4.7 out of 10 user review score on Metacritic.com with over 95,000 user reviews. There is also a change.org petition to change the story of TLOU2 with over 40,000 signatures. That’s not a theory.

Regardless of what actually happened behind the scenes it’s a shame TLOU2 turned out to be such a disappointment because the original TLOU has a very special place in the hearts of gamers around the world.

See you…

Paper Cuts Season Finale Tonight!

Catch the season finale of Paper Cuts tonight at 11:30 PM EST. Paper Cuts is the cutting edge in late night.





YouTube: Paper Cuts Ep. 10 – “Revelations”

The Project

sonicmercuty.com logo

Hey everyone,

I assure you, I’m hard at work on a project I can’t wait to show to all of you. We’re very close to leaving the pre-production phase. Hopefully, within the next few weeks I will have something more tangible to show you. The last thing I want to do is constantly be posting vague coded messages about a “project.” I just can’t really say much about it right now except that I’ve put a lot of effort into this and I hope it finds an audience. Thank you for your patience.

Bryan DeMarco

2017 Begins!


Just wanted to give a friendly update on the status of Sonic Mercury. With the help of some very talented people, I’ve been hard at work at the helm of an exciting new project. I can’t say exactly what it is just yet, but know it’s way beyond the scope of anything I’ve posted here in the past. This new and exciting project is also probably a little bit different than anything I’ve posted here before. As things develop further in the next few months I will be posting more information on the project at hand. It sucks to have to be so cryptic about the project right now but it’s just not the right time to reveal anything. Hopefully, when I can finally post something more substantial, you get just as excited about this new endeavor as my crew and myself have been for the past few months.

In the meantime, I wish you all a Happy New Year. Go create something of your own. To paraphrase a bit from Kevin Smith, “only you have your specific voice.” Your expression might have a meaningful impact on another person’s life. You’ll never know unless you try. Here’s to a new year with new adventures!


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Weirdworld Comic Series Review

Sonic Mercury a review of Weirdworld

Weirdworld, volume 2, is a Marvel comic book series written by Sam Humphries and features artwork by Mike Del Mundo. Weirdworld takes place in a less frequented corner of the Marvel Universe. This is a place ripe with magic, barbarians and adventure. Volume 2 of Weirdworld follows the journey of a teenager named Becca who hails from Marvel’s version of Earth. Becca was flying from the United States to Mexico when her plane somehow crash lands in Weirdworld.

“Becca’s introduction to Weirdworld.”


Weirdworld SonicMercury.com
“Becca’s introduction to Weirdworld

At first glance it might appear as a typical fish out of water story, and it is to an extent, but there is so much more than that here. For a story that takes place in such a fantastical setting, Becca’s personal journey is surprisingly deep. It’s not long before you find out the reason for Becca’s plane trip was to deliver her mother’s ashes to her mother’s favorite place in Mexico. Now she must carry out a daring quest, with unlikely travel companions, to escape Weirdworld and deliver her mother’s ashes to their final resting place.

Weirdworld comic review, Sonicmercury.com
“Becca checks on her mother’s ashes as ghosts in Weirdworld stalk her.”

My initial impression of Weirdworld was that of an 80’s epic fantasy adventure in the vein of Heavy Metal, and the lesser known Rock and Rule. It was pretty easy for me to imagine the person who narrated the trailers to those films narrating the opening to Weirdworld. Becca’s first companion in Weirdworld is Goleta, who takes on Becca as her squire.

Weirdworld Review, Sonicmercury.com
“Becca suits up for Weirdworld.”

For Goleta is a brave Viking woman who enjoys good drink…

Weirdworld comic review, Sonicmercury.com
“Goleta drinks her mighty Viking drink.”

…and good battle. She particularly hates wizards.

Weirdworld comic review, Sonicmercury.com
“Goleta slaughters a sand shark.”

Oh, Goleta also drives a badass hot-rod. Weirdworld is pretty awesome. Becca and Goleta’s trio is completed by the wise Catbeast.

Weirdworld comic review, Sonicmercury.com
“The Catbeast rises.”

Catbeast offers his knowledge of the lesser known parts of Weirdworld to help the trio complete their quest. I don’t want to spoil anything else because I want you to enjoy this adventure as much as I did. The bad news is, it looks like Weirdworld has been cancelled by Marvel. Several forums suggest the writer Sam Humphries has left Marvel to write exclusively for DC Comics. The good news is, this adventure exists. Individual issues might be hard to collect, but the trade just came out covering the entire six issue arc.

It’s been too long since I’ve picked up a story and felt totally immersed by completely new characters in a completely new world. Becca, Goleta, and Catbeast carve out quite the epic quest in their short run. It’s a story that quite honestly would make an incredible film. This adventure is just as exciting as it is heartfelt. They say Weirdworld is “a place where the lost can be found.” Don’t let this story become lost. It’s too good to go unnoticed. Del Mundo’s artwork is fantastic, and Humphries’ writing is just as good. I will definitely be looking forward to their future endeavors.

Who knows, if enough people pick up the back issues or trade, maybe Marvel will continue the series. What I do know is that Becca is too good of a character, and her adventure too much fun, to just fall off the face of the Marvel universe. In the mean time, I hope you enjoy Weirdworld as much as I did.

-Bryan DeMarco

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*All images scanned from the paperback trade of  Marvel’s Weirdworld. I do not own the rights to any of the images used and they are displayed for review purposes only.



I’m Back Baby!


I know I have been gone for quite a while, and for that I am sorry. The truth is I am currently working on an MFA in Creative Writing for Entertainment, and that takes up quite a bit of my time right now. Maybe you’ll notice an improvement in my writing. Maybe not. Anyway, hopefully in the near future I will be writing lots of fun stuff for all of us to enjoy in many different forms of media.

It’s October again, and Pat is once again treating all of us to his 13 Days of Halloween Spectacular. So, while I will be making no promises like last year to update every single post he does this year; I will be making this post to remind all of you to watch Pat’s show. Click the giant link to check out episode #1 of this year’s special. The episode is about one of my all time favorite franchises The Evil Dead.

By the way I am still fairly active on Twitter, and if you want to get a glimpse of what I have been up to this last year check out my Tumblr page.

13 Days of Halloween 2015 – #1 “THE EVIL DEAD TRILOGY”


For more from Pat check out his YouTube Channel The GessNation or his Facebook page The Shred Shack

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Gamer News

Sonic Mercury Mortal Kombat X,Mortal Kombat X

Mortal Kombat X Revealed


Hey, so uh, yeah its official. Mortal Kombat X is real! An announcement trailer has surfaced today featuring staples of the franchise Sub-Zero and Scorpion battling it out in a winter forest setting. The two donned costumes that were reminiscent of their original ninja designs yet they appeared updated and far more detailed than ever before. The end of the trailer teases a 2015 release. With that info in mind I think it is safe to say that this trailer is not in game footage but likely a CG rendering of what we can expect in the new game.

Based on the “kombat” shown it looks like the x-ray attacks from the last game will be present. It looks like the game will again be 2.5D in presentation meaning a 2 dimensional presentation in a 3D environment. This means no side stepping but the character models and levels will still be rendered in 3D. (More confused? or less?) Think Street Fighter’s presentation versus Tekken’s. The environment seems to play a bigger role this time as both Scorpion and Sub-Zero were shown interacting with trees during their battle, bouncing off of their trunks and using their branches as weapons. Individual character weapons appear to be making a comeback as well.

The setting of a snowy forest at night is noticeably less fantastical than in previous games. It looks like Scorpion and Sub-Zero are fighting in an actual forest. The overall atmosphere is darker than in previous games and the tone is serious. Despite Scorpion and Sub-Zero’s magical powers it is the most realistic MK rendition I have seen. I won’t spoil it for you but the fatality shown at the end of the trailer is just brutal.

IGN reports that every match played in MKX will have an impact on the online portion of the game. Most interesting is that it is being reported players will be able to select different versions of the same characters, effecting both strategy and fighting style. Mortal Kombat X is said to feature an original story encompassing both classic and completely new characters in the fight of good versus evil. Luckily MKX will be on show next week at E3 so we will not have to wait long to learn more about this title. Mortal Kombat X will be available on PS4, PS3, XBOX One, XBOX 360 and the PC.

Here is the link to the announcement trailer for Mortal Kombat X as posted on the Mortal Kombat Community YouTube page.


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Horror News

Sonic Mercury, SonicMercury.com/theevilwithin

The Evil Within Release Delayed

Highly anticipated horror title The Evil Within has seen its release date pushed back. Director of the title Shinji Mikami and his development team requested more time to polish the game. Publisher Bethesda Softworks included this quote with the delay announcement.

“Shinji Mikami and his team at Tango Gameworks have asked for additional time to further balance and refine the game in order to deliver the polished, terrifying pure survival horror experience they set out to create.”

Thankfully the new release date is only a few months so instead of a late August release we will see The Evil Within release in late October, just in time for Halloween. Also included in this announcement were details about in game perks rewarded to people who pre-order The Evil Within. Dubbed The Fighting Chance Pack here is what it comes with as listed on Bethesda Softworks home page.

  • Medical Kit – A vital health enhancement to enable Sebastian to fight on.
  • Green Gel – Used to upgrade Sebastian’s attributes.
  • Double Barrel Shotgun and Three Shells – A larger and more formidable shotgun than the regular shotgun, it’s useful for tight situations with multiple encroaching enemies.
  • An Incendiary Agony Bolt – Capable of showering nearby enemies with damaging fire sparks.
  • A Poison Agony Bolt – Will draw enemies towards it and poison them, allowing Sebastian time for a quick escape.

The Evil Within has been on everyone’s radar because the director of the game Shinji Mikami is the creator of the Resident Evil series and this new title is said to be his desire to return survival horror to its roots. From the different sources I have seen who have had the opportunity to go hands on with The Evil Within it sounds promising that Shinji and his team at Tango Gameworks will make good on their promise. If the game does live up to expectations it will be well worth the wait. The Evil Within is slated for release on PS3, PS4, XBOX 360, XBOX One and PC.


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Gamer News

Grand Theft Auto Online

Tuesday May 13th the High Life Update is finally set to arrive for GTA Online. The addition of new high-end properties and the ability to own more than one property including garages is something online players have been wanting since day one. Five new locations with new interiors have been added to the real estate of Los Santos. Three new cars will be available, the Zentorno, Massacro, and Huntley S. A new motorcycle the Dinka Thrust. There is a new weapon the Bullpup rifle. Fifteen new missions will be added as well as new high-life themed attire. A feature many fans of GTA’s races will take note of the new “non-contact” mode where racers will no longer be able to bump each other off the road. Traffic and other obstacles will still remain. New vehicle horns as well as new player salutes will be included in the High Life Update. Lastly a new Mental State stat will appear for all players. The is designed to show how passive or insane your fellow players are. 

Still glaringly missing are the heists promised for GTA Online from day 1. This update does add some much asked for additions, namely the new property and garage features. As someone who personally has really enjoyed GTA 5 and its online mode for what its worth, I can’t help but feel that the overall online experience including the updates has been far shallower than expected. GTA Online is far less populated by players now than when it was launched last September. Much of the mayhem and unprovoked hostility in GTA Online stems from this shallowness. There is little to no incentive for players to work together outside of certain missions and even then as soon as a mission is over it is fairly common for one player to murder another for the money they earned together on that same mission. These factors combined with a dwindling online community, mostly out of sheer boredom of repetition and a caustic peer to peer environment, make me think that Rockstar has dropped the ball on this one.

The next update after high life is supposed to be the one featuring heists. It just feels like too little too late. The large community that first participated in GTA Online has for the most part moved on. The updates have been mostly superficial and I’m curious to see that whenever the heists update finally does come out if that many people are really going to care. How many players are going to want to come back to GTA Online after playing every other aspect of it to death. I theorize that Rockstar might have an announcement regarding all of this at E3, probably regarding GTA on PS4 and XBOX One. Are you still excited to play the heists missions in GTA Online? Leave a comment below.


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Gamer News

nintendo,e3,video games,sonic mercury

Nintendo will not be holding a traditional conference at E3 for the second year in a row. Instead Nintendo is opting for a similar approach to last year’s E3. Nintendo will have a presence at E3 showing off new software and hardware on the showroom floor but instead of the traditional conference they will broadcast an E3 specific online special called the “Nintendo Digital Event.” Along with the “Digital Event” Nintendo will be broadcasting live all 3 days from E3 from the “Nintendo Treehouse.” Nintendo will also be holding a Super Smash Bros Tournament during E3 among 16 high skilled players. Like last year, Nintendo will again have a presence in Best Buys across the country. This year the new Smash Bros will be playable on the Wii U for fans to try at participating Best Buys nationally.

I think the original reasoning for Nintendo to take this approach last year had a lot to do with the extreme hype and momentum Sony and Microsoft were carrying into last year’s E3. It also had to do with the fact that the Wii U was tanking and overall Nintendo hardware sales were down. Opting out of a traditional conference felt like Nintendo bowing out of the ring to let Sony and Microsoft duke it out for console supremacy, and to an extant that is what happened. On the other hand this new approach by Nintendo is perhaps more clever than credited. The Wii U is still tanking. Even after Nintendo severely cut yearly sales expectations the Wii U still failed to meet the quota. It’s no secret that while the Nintendo DS is still selling well, Nintendo as a whole is hemorrhaging money.

Foregoing the traditional conference saves Nintendo money. By having a live Nintendo specific channel in the “Nintendo Treehouse,” Nintendo has guaranteed coverage of everything it wants to show off during the entirety of E3. They don’t have to rely on third party outlets like IGN or Rev3Games to provide coverage on their products. This way Nintendo can ensure anything and everything they want to show off will get full coverage. The downside is that it is largely possible the only people who will tune in to the “Nintendo Treehouse” are the hardcore Nintendo fans, people who already own the Wii U, and therefore a limited audience with limited potential to grow the console install base. Showcasing a new game at local Best Buys has more potential to reach a larger audience and is a cool way to try to share the E3 experience with people who may never get to go to the actual expo.

In the end Nintendo does have fairly deep pockets so it is unlikely they will be going anywhere soon. Will this new approach to E3 payoff in the long run? If nothing else at least Nintendo is making headlines by changing it up. I mean I wrote this post right here about it. There was a rumor circulating recently that Nintendo might unveil a new console this year and just cut their losses entirely with the Wii U. I find this really hard to believe as research and development for a new console is really expensive and Nintendo is no stranger to struggling hardware. Outside of the Wii, the N64 and the Gamecube both had modest install bases compared to their competitors. E3 2014 starts June 10th this year and thus another chapter in gaming is only a month away. Where Nintendo’s story goes from there is anyone’s guess.


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Gamer News

Wolfenstein The New Order,Gamer News, Sonic Mercury,Z3ROTH3RT33N

In my last post about Wolfenstein: The New Order I had mentioned that some stealth elements would be present in the gameplay. Yesterday a new YouTube trailer was released on Bethesda Softworks official page and it sheds some light on just how stealth plays into Wolfenstein. The trailer subtitled Stealth Vs. Mayhem shows two alternate ways of approaching the same level. From the trailer it appears that stealth is actually quite viable and it appears more involved than previously believed. Using silencers and picking locks, protagonist B.J. Blazkowicz quietly progresses, dispatching unsuspecting enemies along the way. The mayhem approach is pretty self explanatory. Go in high profile with guns blazing, which admittedly looks like a lot of fun and probably the way I would play the game. A few high powered weapons are shown off as well as the ability to duel wield different weapons. Let’s be honest though hearing me describe this stuff isn’t nearly as fun as watching it for yourself so here is the link to Bethesda’s Official YouTube page so you can check it out for yourself. I would say the gameplay trailer is probably NSFW as it is pretty violent. You can read the disclaimer at the beginning of the video and decide for yourself. Wolfenstein is slated for a May 20th release for PS3, PS4, XBOX 360, XBOX One as well as on the PC and of course if you pre-order it you will be given access to the DOOM beta. For more on Wolfenstein: The New Order and games like it subscribe to Sonic Mercury’s mailing list at the bottom of the page.


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Horror News

Survival Horror

A new gameplay trailer for The Evil Within has surfaced. The trailer shows off many new areas including a forest suggesting the world for this new survival horror title may be more diverse then has been shown previously. Up until now The Evil Within appeared to take place all inside one building but it is now apparent that this is not the case. There is also a scene showing the main character walking towards a barn through a field of surreal sunflowers suggesting that our journey through the game may feature lapses in sanity. Many different creatures, monsters and other nasties can be seen as well.


The Evil Within is being developed by Bethesda Softworks and directed by Shinji Mikami the creator of the original Resident Evil Games. Mr. Mikami has previously stated that he was unhappy with the current state of survival horror games and began creation of The Evil Within with the intent of bringing the genre back to its roots. Mr. Mikami has also stated this will be the last game that he directs. According to the new trailer the release date for The Evil Within will be August 26th 2014. As this trailer was created for this weekend’s Pax East conference in Boston I think it is safe to assume this is the U.S. release date. It was speculated The Evil Within could potentially have been in development until 2015 so it is exciting to know we will be able to get our hands on this one sooner than later. Here is the link to the new trailer via the official Bethesda YouTube channel. The Evil Within. (NSFW – Violence and Blood)


I will say I definitely get an old-school Resident Evil vibe from the atmosphere in this trailer. The good news is we will only have to wait a few months to find out if this new title makes good on the promise of old-school survival horror. For more on The Evil Within and games like it subscribe to SonicMercury.com’s emailing list at the bottom of the page and subscribe to the links provided at the end of this article for even more updates.



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