Civilization

Sid Meier's Civilization

A game I fondly remember playing again and again, burning the midnight oil and gaming the night away because of it, was Sid Meier’s Civilization, released by MicroProse Software in 1991.  This retro MS-DOS based game had it all: outstanding gameplay, a well-executed concept, and superb graphics (for its day), and was yet another hit from Sid Meier and his team.

Players started with a single settler (a covered wagon) at the dawn of civilization, chose a location to found their first city, and from that built an empire as the game timeline progressed to the Space Age.  Sometimes you’d find another computer player right next door, and either had to keep the peace with non-stop diplomacy, or – more times than not – send in the troops to crush them like the insects they truly were.  Up to six other civilizations were out there to discover, and they all had to be dealt with, one way or another (either the Americans, Aztecs, Babylonians, Chinese, Egyptians, English, French, Germans, Greeks, Indians, Mongolians, Romans, Russians, or Zulus.)

Sid Meier's Civilization

Yet this wasn’t just yet another military simulation; players had to build their empires by monitoring the happiness of their citizenry, providing improvements that would encourage growth in their cities, establish trade routes, and pursue technology advancements through scientific research.  Neglect anything for too long and the consequences could be dire: fall behind in the technology and your troops might be like the Polish Cavalry facing the Blitzkrieg on horse with sabres.  Forget to keep your citizenry content and your cities begin revolting.  Overlook trading with other empires and find your city improvement budgets limited.  Limit your internal and external upgrades of your cities, and watch them spontaneously Neglect to build up your military might and watch as your cities fall to the armed might of your bitter enemies – or worse yet, random barbarians raging across the continent. A strong empire builder needed to be aware of all aspects of their empire!

Sid Meier's Civilization

But, wait, there’s more!  This was an incredibly deep game.  You start out as a Despot (where do I sign up?), but as the game progressed and new ideas developed as a result of technological improvements, other forms of government presented themselves.  Each had its advantages depending on your goals and current state of your empire, but each also had disadvantages.  It wasn’t a great idea to switch to Democracy in the middle of a military build-up or full-blown campaign, as your citizens tended to be on the pacifistic side.  On the other hand, if you wanted to push the envelope on scientific development, ruling over your cities with an iron fist as King wasn’t a winning strategy either.

You could also gain serious advantages over the other empires by building one of the many Wonders of the World.  These took a long time to build, using up many resources, but could be the difference-maker between victory or defeat.  These Wonders varied by game era, and could become obsolete with new technological advances.  Some had limited appeal and should only be looked at under a specific set of circumstances, however.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJu7cUVTO8E[/youtube]

This game has not only stood the test of time, it has spawned many sequels: Civilization II, III, and IV, CivNet (the first multiplayer Civilization), Civilization Gold, and Civilization Revolution, as well as many similarly-themed games, such as Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri, Civilization: Call to Power, Colonization, and Master of Magic.  And the franchise doesn’t appear to be running out of steam anytime soon.  If you love retro games and you haven’t played the original Civilization, what are you waiting for?

 

Nancy Upton vs. American Apparel

Nancy Upton - American Apparel

For those that do not know the story American Apparel started a plus size model contest since most American’s are not crack whore thin, but they went about it in a way that could be offensive to women and comedians that hate shitty puns. Nancy wrote in to American Apparel denouncing the contest and also created a blog about it. She then began taking pictures in a satire manner and entered them in the contest. Well guess what, she won, but it appears American Apparel does not have a sense of humor and even though she got the most votes they went with someone else.

Here is part of their response:

“It’s a shame that your project attempts to discredit the positive intentions of our challenge based on your personal distaste for our use of light-hearted language, and that “bootylicous” was too much for you to handle. While we may be a bit TOO inspired by Beyoncé, and do have a tendency to occasionally go pun-crazy, we try not to take ourselves too seriously around here. I wonder if you had taken just a moment to imagine that this campaign could actually be well intentioned, and that my team and I are not out to offend and insult women, would you have still behaved in the same way, mocking the confident and excited participants who put themselves out there?”

“Oh—and regarding winning the contest, while you were clearly the popular choice, we have decided to award the prizes to other contestants that we feel truly exemplify the idea of beauty inside and out, and whom we will be proud to have representing our company.”

Below are some of the pictures she submitted to the contest.

Nancy Upton - American Apparel Nancy Upton - American Apparel Nancy Upton - American Apparel Nancy Upton - American Apparel Nancy Upton - American Apparel Nancy Upton - American Apparel Nancy Upton - American Apparel

Sonic CD: Collision Chaos Old School: OC ReMix

[youtube id=”Jpknhgbq1g0″ width=”633″ height=”356″]

Sonic CD: Collision Chaos Old School: OC ReMix

Here is an awesome remix from the masters over at Overclock Remix. This remix features music from the Japanese version of. Sonic CD.

Sonic CD

• Game: Sonic CD (Sega, 1993, SCD)
• ReMixer(s): Gecko Yamori
• Composer(s): Masafumi Ogata, Naofumi Hataya, Pastiche, Spencer N. Nilsen, Yukifumi Makino
• Song(s): ‘Collision Chaos “G”mix (J)’
• Posted: 2002-07-08, evaluated by djpretzel

Founded in 1999, OverClocked ReMix is an organization dedicated to the appreciation, preservation, and interpretation of video game music. Its primary focus is http://ocremix.org – a website featuring thousands of free fan arrangements, information on game music and composers, resources for aspiring artists, and a thriving community of video game music fans.

The Fast Food Song

Fast Food Rockets

I did not know they had an anthem for weed smokers and video game addicts. This is the video The Fast food song by the the Fast Food Rockets.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GCPSh47gHz8[/youtube]

Artist: Fast Food Rockers
Song: The Fast Food Song

Lyrics:

Can I take your order please?

Let’s eat to the beat

(Chorus)
A pizza hut a pizza hut
Kentucky fried chicken and a pizza hut
A pizza hut a pizza hut
Kentucky fried chicken and a pizza hut
McDonalds McDonalds
Kentucky fried chicken and a pizza hut
McDonalds McDonalds
Kentucky fried chicken and a pizza hut

You like it you love it
You know you really want it
The voices I hear
Whenever you’re around

I want it I need it
Nothing else can beat it
Hot and spicy
Whenever I’m in town (mm mm)

Enticing exciting
Aroma so inviting
And when it hits
Me, I wanna take you home

Trust me you must see
Just what you’re doing to me
Driving me crazy
Hungry to the bone

I think of you and lick my lips
You’ve got the taste I can’t resist
Can’t resist – can’t resist
Let’s eat to the beat

(Repeat Chorus)

Would you like that to go?

Any sauces?

You’re so sweet and you’re neat
You knock me off my two feet
You’re chunky and hunky
I’m coming back for more (Hot Dog)

Your taste all embraces
I gotta sing your praises
Just savour the flavours
Waiting at your door

I think of you and lick my lips
You’ve got the taste I can’t resist
Can’t resist – can’t resist
Let’s eat to the beat

(Repeat Chorus)

Does anyone fancy a shake?
Shake
Ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh
Shake it to the left – Shake it to the right – Let’s shake
Ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh

I think of you and lick my lips
You’ve got the taste I can’t resist
Can’t resist – can’t resist
Let’s eat to the beat

(Repeat Chorus)

Metal Black

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

Metal Black (1991)
By: Taito  Genre: Shooting  Players: 1-2  Difficulty: Medium-Hard
Featured Version: Arcade  First Day Score: 98,810 (one credit)
Also Available For: Sega Saturn

One of the great things about writing this blog is that I end up learning so much more about the history of gaming. The most recent thing I’ve learnt is that Taito apparently made a lot more shmups that I had realised! This one was originally intended to be a sequel to their recently-covered, slightly odd vertical-scroller, Gun Frontier. If you’ve played both games, however, you’ll know they actually have very little in common! Perhaps the most immediately obvious difference between them is that the perspective has shifted to a side view for this game, but the story seems to bear no similarity to the Wild West theme from Gun Frontier either, with Taito apparently settling for a more generic ‘evil alien invasion’ type story here.

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

Using a severe meteor shower as cover, the aliens attacked the already-battered Earth with their powerful weaponry, intending to strip our world of all inorganic materials. These aliens and the star they came from were quickly dubbed Nemesis. Before long, mankind discovered that their crafts and weapons were being powered by an unknown but suddenly abundant molecule called Newalone which they immediately set about learning to harness for themselves. Ten years after the initial invasion, Earth’s remaining diplomats were working on a treaty that would allow a peaceful surrender which would see the previously completed ‘Black Fly’ craft unused. However, Earth’s resources were beginning to expire and the population was thinning out. Perhaps it was time someone took control of the Black Fly and struck back.

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

Each of Metal Black’s six levels has its own title and each sees you gradually moving closer to the aliens home star system. The first takes place over the ruined surface of Earth where the aliens try to use our remaining forces against us, including an aircraft carrier marooned after the oceans dried up. The second sees the Black Fly take to space, fighting the aliens against the backdrop of The Moon, but there’s another moon too. Is one of them an alien weapon? The third level takes place amidst the ruins of Earth’s satellites and nearby colonies. After entering a wormhole, the fourth level takes place in an alternate dimension before the you leave the wormhole for the fifth level which takes place in and around Jupiter. Last but not least, the sixth and final level takes place at the aliens stronghold of Nemesis as you might’ve guessed! There is also some bonus levels used to facilitate a couple of long-distance journeys which are viewed from a first-person perspective and require you to lock missiles onto various targets and fire (although these missiles are apparently not available for use anywhen else).

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

You might be thinking that Metal Black sounds, and looks for that matter, like any other generic horizontal scroller, and to some degree you’d be right. However, it does have a slightly unusual weapon system. At the start of the game the Black Fly is equipped with a fairly weak, forward-firing beam cannon which was adapted from the same beam weapons the aliens use. By collecting the abundant Newalone molecules floating around (the little red / orange / blue things in all the shots) it’s possible to gradually power the beam up. You can then continue to use the cannon as normal (and, helpfully, you can even shoot some enemy bullets at higher levels), or you can unleash all its power in one Super Beam Attack. This obviously helps destroy larger enemies quicker and acts like a smart bomb, but also reduces your beam level back to zero. However, there are almost always many molecules on the screen at any time so it’s relatively quick and easy to power your ship back up after a Super Beam Attack, or indeed the loss of a life, but it’s not an idea bereft of problems.

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

The first thing you’ll probably notice is that these molecule’s may well power up the Black Fly’s cannon, but there are no other weapons available to power up! Actually, there’s no collectibles in the game of any kind. This may seem realistic, given the game’s story, but it doesn’t make things easy. The other problem resulting from the chosen power-up system is that the enemy ships can also make use of the Newalone molecule’s to power-up their beams (which makes sense I guess – it is their technology). Okay, not all of them can do this but the bosses certainly can and do, and they can also use their own Super Beam Attack against you! If you use your Super Beam Attack at the same time as they do, you’ll enter into a Beam Duel with the more powerful beam eventually overpowering the weaker one. It’s an interesting idea and it does add something to the boss fights, but everything else suffers a little from the lack of any other weapons. After all, part of the fun of shmups is discovering all the power-ups and determining which ones to use when, etc, so one without any over-the-top upgrades needs to be extra special to get noticed, and I’m not sure Metal Black is.

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

The music and sound effects here are pretty anonymous and certainly don’t do much to get the game noticed, for one thing, and I’m still undecided about the graphics. They’re generally pretty good, with a majority of the sprites being varied and fairly well-animated, it’s just a shame that the Black Fly itself looks so mundane. It looks like a knackered old shuttle, and it seems to be flying upside-down too! There’s also a bit of a pixellated look to the game and the explosions are pretty poor, but there is some nice parallax and fancy scaling effects. The backgrounds and large bosses are particularly impressive, as are the various beam weapon effects, but I can’t help feeling that everything looks a little washed out, much like semi-prequel, Gun Frontier. Still, the game can certainly handle itself when things get busy, and they often do, especially with two-players at once, with an impressive amount of sprites, weapon-fire, moving backgrounds parts, etc, all moving around the screen at once.

Metal Black - Arcade Gameplay Screenshot

In fact, much of the game is like that. The six levels aren’t very long, but Taito have crammed as much as possible into them despite that. The lack of any fancy power-up weapons here is probably the best and worst thing about the game. You’ll rarely get five seconds peace as you’re constantly on the move attempting to evade and shoot the enemies who attack from all sides with apparently little regard for the limited range of your main (and of course, only) weapon, while at the same time, the lure of finding and using the various weapons is non-existent here. This review marks my first encounter with Metal Black, and all things considered, the result is pretty positive. Like Gun Frontier before it, there’s no major problems here – control over your ship is fine, it has a decent two-player mode, and it plays well enough generally – but it just isn’t really special in any way either. I’ve certainly played better shmups but, in trying something different, this one has neither really succeeded or failed, it’s just a bit different.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3cwogMB9o0[/youtube]

RKS Score: 6/10

Bonnie Bailey: Kingdom of Pretty

Bonnie_Bailey-Kingdom_Of_Pretty_EP_3

It has been a while since we had a true music video so enjoy this one from Bonnie Bailey.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PdlzaRR_R_0[/youtube]

Lyrics:

Strolling through
A lesion feels with you
Our lush, the first hypnotic phase
Cooin’ words, melting
As cliches keep me
Turn into the next page

Everyday is a first time
For something at all
As compelling as you walk to me
And i to you
Curiosity has me pink and gold
Your kingdom of pretty
Upon this floor, magical symphony
Consumed by the freedom of stabilities
Curiosity has me pink and gold
Your kingdom of pretty

You feel familiar
A comfort that comes with years
Sparkles flush my skin
As we end up in tears as i
Trace your footsteps around the world
Pushing moving like your little girl
A glitter among the bird lies

Everyday is a first time
For something at all
As compelling as you walk to me
And i to you
Curiosity has me pink and gold
Your kingdom of pretty
Upon this floor, magical symphony
Consumed by the freedom of stabilities
Curiosity has me pink and gold
Your kingdom of pretty

You’re so pretty
You’re so pretty

Everyday is a first time
For something at all
As compelling as you walk to me
And i to you
Curiosity has me pink and gold
Your kingdom of pretty
Upon this floor, magical symphony
Consumed by the freedom of stabilities
Curiosity has me pink and gold
Your kingdom of pretty

You’re so pretty

The man who thought the NES was worth $13,000

NES

This column has never been shy about pointing out epic fails in video gaming knowledge.   From CBS News graphics stating the Sega Genesis was recently hacked to fleshy art collectors who’d swear they saw Walter Day running from the Texas Schoolbook Depository in 1963, I take great joy in pointing out when supposed gaming information experts miss the mark by a hemisphere or two.

This gentleman on A&E’s Storage Wars takes the cake.   For those who avoid such shows like the plague, Storage Wars is little more that footage of people who buy abandoned or defaulted storage lockers at auctions and dig through the mess inside hoping to find buried treasures.

Information for what to look for is important for this line of work, and this poor soul didn’t have it.   Upon finding a cola-stained original Nintendo Entertainment System, it was proclaimed to be an NES-001, “the first Nintendo DS built” and was supposedly worth $13,000 based on the last time it sold on the “internets”.

Sadly, he failed to realize the famed $13,000 “internets” sale of an NES included the super rare Stadium Events cartridge, which is what carried the value.

Rather than take a quick stop to look at eBay, Amazon or anywhere else, he quickly calls another guy to go to a used game store and obtain the true value of the broken classic console:  $10.

Watch the video and listen carefully.  I swear you can hear that music from a lost Price is Right game at the end of the clip.

[youtube width=”600″ height=”480″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4FV512vPHQ[/youtube]

 

Khan’s Corner: First Impressions of Dominion


For those who don’t know what League of Legends is, Google it. I’m not here to be your fucking Wikipedia! What I am here for is to let you know my godly absolute and factual opinion on League of Legends new game mode, Dominion.

What is Dominion?

For those that played WoW (and don’t pretend you didn’t) it is basically Arathi Basin with minion waves and a fog of war in the center of the map. There are five points in the map and you must claim them, defend them, and reclaim them in order to secure the fought over resources for your team as you slowly dwindle away the enemy team’s nexus HP bar. Sounds pretty wizard doesn’t it? Well it is! It is pretty damn wizard.

What’s the big deal, Mr. Khan? Why is everyone getting so excited about a new game mode?

What’s the big de… WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL? The release and implementation of Dominion is pushing the Defense of the Ancients style of game play to new heights. The addition of new game modes in the genre known as MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) adds more to the static play style which is associated with these kinds of games. No longer will HoN, DoTA, and LoL fight over which game has better laning! Now the games will have to put forth some innovation to compete which will really help this genre grow.

Who cares about new modes and innovation? Gear of War 3 is out!

Don’t care about innovation? You don’t care for change? How would you like if Gears of War played like Doom 1, huh? Would you like if after years upon years of FPS games coming out there weren’t any new game modes? Zombie Assaults? Horde modes? Capture the Flag? Secure Points? You’d rather your FPS just be fucking Free-for-All death matches? Look reader, before you open your fucking mouth again, I suggest you think twice unless you enjoy sounding like an insipid dickfart.

Now that we’ve got a little backstory done on what Dominion is, let’s get into what I think about Dominion. I know, I know! This is the best part of the article.

Dominion is amazing for many reasons. Don’t get me wrong. I see the flaws but there are so many pros that outweigh the cons of this game mode. The normal MOBA game mode match lasts anywhere from 20 minutes to well over an hour. The amount of time needed to sink into a match of Summoner’s Rift can be daunting. What if your mom wants you to pick up your room? What if your baby woke up and is covered in shit? What if someone drives their car through your house and you have to deal with the aftermath! In all of these cases, gaming takes the higher priority but if for some reason you feel compelled to leave the match, you can be reported as a leaver which is a bannable offense! You really have to make sure there is plenty of time in your schedule to get through an entire match without being penalized.

Swain is going fuck someone in the butt

Dominion matches normally take anywhere from 15-20 minutes and trust me on this, the miniscule amount of time it takes to do a dominion match doesn’t take away from the full on hardcore Annie on Timbers action. Why is it so quick? As long as one team has three points covered and kills some enemies here and there, the nexus HP bar goes down. There is constantly something to do and that bar will go down. There is no way only 2 points will be constantly controlled while a third point remains neutral. People fight over resources in games and in real life. It’s an inherent reaction to go running to establish superiority and murder those who would claim stake over your land.

The style of this mode is a twist on the Arathi Basin concept in World of Warcraft. Before any of you nerds flip the fuck out and says “ACTUALLY ARATHI BASIN COPIED ( insert game here)” , I am using AB as an example because it the most relatable reference I can make to the masses. Fuck, you guys are dicks. Anyway, back to the matter at hand! Like AB, you run point to point claiming resource nodes for your team increasing the amount of HP you drain from the enemy Nexus. There are minions in between each node charging towards each other. You don’t have to kill minions in this mode but it is smart to do once in a awhile because minions capture nodes exponentially faster than a player. It’s also nice to have fodder between you and an enemy who skill shots. You can see anything going on anywhere in the map from the main roads to the nodes. The only areas engulfed in the fog of war are the enemy spawn point and the center of the map which houses a variety of buffs, such as a temporary speed increase and health packs.

Screw you Twisted Fate and Annie. Dis be mah node!

Riot is a genius company, let me tell you! I expected there to be an issue with fools who try to top the kill charts and forget about the objectives to win the game. A lot of people just feel an unexplainable bloodlust to chase down an enemy Singed instead of forcing him to run so you can capture his resource node. What Riot implemented to make people realize there is more to this mode than skull fucking your enemy was add an in-game ranking system which lets you know how well you are doing compared to the rest of your team. It takes into consideration your defending kills, your capturing of nodes, and slaying of enemies. This allows your team to get their heads out of their ass if they want to get that MVP rank and not look like a total scrub.

The time frame and familiar objective style factors into something fantastic for the community and popularity of the game as well. It opens up accessibility to players who haven’t taken the leap into the MOBA genre. Yes, League of Legends is free to play but the stress and unforgiving nature that comes from the classic game mode is for many new or casual players nerve-wracking. With the nostalgic Arathi Basin-esque flow and the manageable 15-20 game time it makes the plunge so much easier. Let’s throw in some similes so you bitches understand. Pre-Dominion: League Of Legends is like jumping into the water at the beach. It’s pretty awesome and a lot of fun but your eyes burn from the salt and holy shit would it suck if a jellyfish stung you! Post-Dominion: League of Legends is like going into a hot tub and there are two chicks DTF. The kind of chicks who would put their finger in your ass if you asked them to. Fuck! Dominion is awesome!

If you haven’t tried League of Legends yet, there isn’t a better time than now. With Dominion being a fast paced, enjoyable, and forgiving game mode for novice and veteran players alike this is the time to get into the MOBA genre. Join millions upon millions of players in this quickly blossoming and wallet friendly gaming. See you in the Crystal Scar, Summoners.

We called it: DC Universe Online goes free to play

dc universe free to play

DC Universe Online goes free to play

If you are a regular fan of Obsolete Gamer you know about our cold war with Sony and DC Universe Online. It started out with us liking the game, but pleading with them to fix bugs and make changes so the game survives. Next, when we tried to get an interview we were turned down which just pissed us off and from there it was war. At the very beginning we called that the game would soon be headed toward free-to-play and we were right.

Sony will be going the free-to-play route in October for both the PC and Playstation 3 versions. You will be able to download and play the game for free, but there are also addition options for al a carte purchases and subscription plans. You can see the choices here.

“Our philosophy embraces learning from our experience and as a pioneer in the free-to-play space with proven successful games like Free Realms and Clone Wars Adventures, we believe this new model will expand the DCUO experience and offer more options that cater to every type of player so they can play the game in a way that fits them,” John Smedley, president, Sony Online Entertainment, said in a statement. “We’ve listened to our community, and we’ve determined that the free-to-play model is the best fit for DC Universe Online.”

Do we really need to translate this? People were leaving DCUO like Raccoon City and the Mega servers were nothing more than “we have no players on our servers” and now we have to go free to play. However, Sony does know how to market their free-to-play services with games like Everquest 2 and the above mentioned Clone Wars Adventures offering just about everything for sale in their marketplace. Now the question is will this business model work for DCUO, will you now play the game since it is free and has mega servers?

The Interview: Game Over The Series

Game Over - The Series

Game Over The Series

A few weeks ago we posted an article about the upcoming series called Game Over that showcases a video game store and the funny stories and interactions that happens within. We had a chance to talk with the makers of the series about how the came up with the idea and what we can expect from the show.

[youtube id=”0mwvsOQAzuU” width=”633″ height=”356″]

Great to talk with you; let’s start with how you came up with the idea to create Game Over.

I just shot Stephen King’s In The Deathroom and wanted to do something different. Kicking around different ideas, I realized it’s the perfect time to shoot a TV pilot idea I had based on working in the video game industry. I started working at an EB Gameworld in 2001. After working there for years, I was subconsciously getting ideas for this show.

Tell us a bit about the process of getting production off the ground and getting everything together.

The entire project was a battle every step of the way. I was fortunate to have a great Director of Cinematography and he had all the equipment we would needed for the shoot. The hardest part was finding an area to film in was really the hardest part. We had places confirmed but when every place fall through; we literally had to build a video game store from the ground up. I called every real estate agent I could and asked if there’s any spots they knew of. Most were very friendly once they heard about the project. I remember when I tried to film in an vacant former supermarket, the real estate agent thought I was nuts but asked the owner anyway. He came back with a total price of $20,000 for 3 day shoot. We politely declined that.

When we started our crowd funding campaign, Paypal marked as a terrorists group and refused any donations to go through and once it was fixed the same people never got around to trying to donate again.

Also various game companies showed interest in donating products to the show, as time went on they all fizzled out expect Rockstar. Rockstar Games ended up giving us a ton of prizes to give out.

Game Over - The Series

Anyone that has spent a good amount of time in a video game store has seen something funny, strange or both, what types of stories, topics to you want to hit on?

I want to go beyond the obvious of dealing with annoying customers (believe me they will be in the show) but we also want to hit on the funny happenings in retail and in these characters personnel lives. I wanted to create interesting characters that people can relate to.

Do you plan to go more for the realism of life running and working in a video game store or is it more a backdrop for inside jokes and stereotypes?

I definitely will feature the various aspects of nerdcore, geek culture, etc.

Game Over - The Series

Can you tell us more about the stores you were going to film in and what happened with that?

Some episodes will take place entirely in the game store, while others will take place entirely out of the store. There’s definitely going to be inside jokes, etc that gamers will pick up on such as a future episode entitled, ‘All Your Base Belong to Us.’

We had a deal in place with the 3rd largest game retailer in North America. The President of the company called me and told me how much he loved the script and how everyone in a conference call told him they wanted him to get behind the show. Everything hit the fan when he decided to take away the investment money and spend it on radio advertising instead. He said we could still film at a location in Bear, Delaware but we had to film with no money. Going ahead without money was very difficult.

From there an independent game store contacted me and the owner expressed interested about getting involved. That deal from through when he backed out.

Beyond frustrated, the entire project was in limbo. No one knew what would happen or if it would even happen.

It’s when I attended a Pennsylvania Film Industry Association (PaFIA) meeting I was introduced to the studio head of Sun Center Studios. Sun Center Studio is the new multi-million soundstage here in Aston, PA.  I told him about the idea and he agreed to let us do auditions there and let us film there. Without him, we wouldn’t have been able to shoot Game Over. He literally saved the project. We were able to film in a complex on the studio lot. We were able to transform the room they gave us completely and also we were able to build the set and keep materials there.

Reps from Paramount and Universal stopped by and complemented us on the set.

Tell us about the staff and actors, are you guys all professionals as far as writing, filming, directing and acting or is it a mix of being fans and having the drive to create something such as this?

All cast & crew were professionals who are in the industry. Something of this undertaking definitely required a lot of professional work from building the set to editing. We had to build an actually game store from the ground up. A local Blockbuster video and Rite-Aid were going out of business and I was able to buy  racks, shelving, and a friend from an EB games gave me various cases, boxes and marketing materials to help ‘dress’ the set.

Literally this project was definitely the one that tested my passion to the limit. It takes beyond fandom to make something like this.

Do you have a style you are going for as far as storytelling and direction like a Seinfeld or Always Sunny in Philadelphia?

Think of our show as a hybrid of It’s Always Sunny in Philly meets Louie meets Clerks meets South Park. That’s really the best way to describe it. Haha.

Game Over - The Series

This might be a question more for film nerds, but can you tell us about not being able to use real game names and products in your episodes?

If you change anything by 7% you can legally use it. If you visit our site and see the set design pictures, we changed every insert, poster, etc we received.

As for games, we used a couple ‘open source games’ like Blood, etc because they essentially the equivalent of ‘public domain’ movies (which we have some of too).

Do you have a specific season number of episodes and do you plan to keep this running as long as possible or is there a set end date?

I definitely want the show to always stay fresh. Nothing irks me more than when a show stays ‘past it’s welcome’. The plan right now, is make treatments/outlines for future episodes and see how many episodes the network wants per season.

What can those who want to help and support the show do?

When this show gets pitched to networks, a big selling point will be the built in fan base. In today’s market that’s so important, so we need everyone:

Like Us on Facebook

www.facebook.com/gameoverseries

Follow Us on Twitter

www.twitter.com/gameoverseries

This is a show by the fans for the fans! We need the support! THANK YOU!

Stormlord

Stormlord - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Stormlord (1990)
By: Hewson Consultants / RazorSoft  Genre: Arcade Adventure  Players: 1  Difficulty: Hard
Featured Version: Sega MegaDrive / Genesis  First Day Score: 18,050
Also Available For: Commodore Amiga, Atari ST, PC, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC, ZX Spectrum
Download For: Symbian Mobile OS 

Stormlord

Censorship is a funny thing. Whether it’s games or movies, it seems that it’s fine to feature regular, gratuitous, and often unnecessary violence and gore, but as soon as there’s some nudity? Well that’s just plain evil. Only someone truly sick would want anything to do with that kind of thing. Even older games with limited visual prowess weren’t safe. Indeed, for all its positive qualities, and there are a good few, Stormlord is still most well-known for the teeny bit of nudity it featured. Arriving first on the various home micros of the day courtesy of celebrated British coder, Raffaele Cecco, the game soon found its way to the MegaDrive too, but even with Sega’s liberal censorship policies it was here that it met with the most controversy yet.

Stormlord - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot
The game, you see, is a side-viewed arcade adventure set in an enchanted world known by the less enchanted name of ‘The Realm’. It is here that the evil Queen Badh has trapped innocent fairies in spell-bubbles and it’s up to you, as ancient warrior, Stormlord, to free them. The aforementioned controversy? The fairies were naked. That’s it! The fact that they’re really small and you couldn’t even see their bits and pieces didn’t stop Sega demanding that RazorSoft cover them up. Okay, there is also an occasional larger woman with a nipple peeking out but she’s just part of the scenery and doesn’t appear often. Stormlord is a pretty damn tough game though so I guess the less distractions the better!

Stormlord - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot
The action is spread over ten gruelling levels and you have a set number of fairies to rescue on each (within a time limit) which are of course dotted around in mostly inconvenient places, often surrounded by traps, enemies, or both! Luckily Mr. Stormlord can contend with both. He is able to fire magic stars or, if you hold down the fire button for a second or so, a more powerful sword. Either of these will take care of most monsters easily enough which include wizards, dragons, goblins, caterpillars, bees, skeletons, and flying fiery things. Unfortunately the traps cannot be shot. These generally consist of plants of both man-eating and pod-spitting varieties, pits of fire, rain-clouds of death, fire-breathing dragon heads and more besides.

Stormlord - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot
The levels, as well as featuring all this nastiness, are also home to a number of more helpful items. Most of these are found close to a specific obstacle you’ll need them to pass, such as a keys and high-jump boots, to honey (attracts bees) and umbrellas (protect from evil rain). The only problem here is that you can only carry one item at once. Something else that helps you get around the different sections of each level is a friendly eagle. If you stand on the relevant stone pad, he will swoop down and carry you (by your head – ouch!) and drop you off elsewhere. You’ll have to be careful when you use these though as they are often one-way trips, and that’s the biggest problem with Stormlord. Progress through the levels involves a lot of trial and error and if you make the wrong move, you’ll sometimes have to start all over again. Grrr!

Stormlord - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

It’s also necessary to retrace your steps quite a bit here, which is part and parcel of arcade adventures really, but given this game’s difficulty and the fact that the enemies respawn, this doesn’t assist progress in the game much. Indeed, I had this game for my MegaDrive for many years and I could never get any further than the third level! That said, I did enjoy the game for the most part and its presentation is superb throughout. The soundtrack is fairly atmospheric and the effects are great (including an amusing wolf-whistle when you touch the woman-shaped scenery). The graphics meanwhile are well-defined and really nice while they last too, but there’s not a huge amount of variety. While the level layouts do of course change substantially, getting increasingly harder and more complicated as you might expect, there’s just two different sets of scenery graphics for example – the enchanted forest and the fiery castle you can see in the screenshots.

Stormlord - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot
All of the sprites are very nicely drawn too (especially the sexy fairies – hee hee!) but feature very little in the way of animation, even Stormlord himself. His posture doesn’t change when jumping or doing anything and he moves rather stiffly, even when he dies! If he suffers a glancing blow he’ll just growl and carry on with the task at hand, but direct contact with any enemy or trap results in him crumbling to a pile of bones on the floor. Fortunately he controls nicely enough though, the game is hard enough without those kinds of problems! It’s a real shame Stormlord is so tough too. It looks nice, has some good features, and I like its fantasy setting, it’s just too difficult. Like me, you’ll probably persevere for a while but when you’re playing the same sections over and over again and still not even halfway through the game, you’ll probably just give up.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3l5iQ0xNj4[/youtube]

RKS Score: 6/10

Circulate

Circulate - PC - Gameplay Screenshot
Truth be said, I’m not much of a casual games fan and even less so when I’m too busy to spare the few precious moments needed for that extra drink. Also I’m not in the best of moods. And ButtonSmasher has been taking up too much of my gaming/blogging time. Oh, yes, and Circulate, the brand new game I’m supposed to be reviewing here, is definitely advertised as one of them casual offerings. Then again, were I wearing a sombrero (sombreros always make you happy, mind) I’d definitely describe it as an indie, physics based, action heavy puzzle game, which definitely sounds a lot better and is closer to the truth too.
Circulate - PC - Gameplay Screenshot

So, what precisely is Circulate, I pretend to hear you ask. I mean, besides an indie, physics based, action heavy puzzle game. Well, that’s not a very easy answer to give unfortunately. Circulate, you see, has the player spinning whole levels around and occasionally clicking on -for lack of a better word- spheres, while trying to get them spheres in containers, trying to make them vanish, or generally moving them properly around while avoiding a variety of obstacles and traps. A concept that is apparently way easier to understand than explain.

Circulate - PC - Gameplay Screenshot

And is it a good a game, I pretend to hear you ask again, while thinking I should cut down on the habit. Why, yes, yes it is. Innovative and maddeningly addictive too. The learning curve is just perfect, the controls are intuitive, the levels incredibly varied and more than enough to keep you sleepless for a few nights (there are 120 of them), the kaleidoscopic graphics are beautiful, the music is just fine, the tutorial mode works perfectly and the game is an absolute blast to play. Add the numerous options available, including the one to play Circulate in windowed mode, its modest price and the very reasonable hardware requirements, and you got a game any PC gamer should try.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=umVdDP0vYQE[/youtube]

That’s a (seven and a half) out of (ten).


Planescape: Torment

Planescape Torment - Gameplay Screenshot

There are few words that can describe the wonder that is Planescape: Torment.  A few that come to mind: amazingdeepgloriousimmersive.  This game is worth every accolade sent its way and more.

Released by Interplay in 1998, Planescape: Torment was developed by Black Isle Studios, the RPG masters who also worked on Icewind Dale, Fallout, and Baldur’s Gate.  The game is set in the Planescape universe, part of the Dungeons & Dragons setting.  You are in the City of Sigil, the center of the universe – a place where any creature from any place in the multiverse can visit, as long as they do not disrupt the eternal rule of the Lady of Pain.  The game mechanics follow the 2nd Edition rules set, so no Feats or other munchkin bells & whistles.

Planescape Torment - Gameplay Screenshot

The graphics are in 2D isolinear, a standard for RPGs of the late 1990’s.  Though not as detailed when compared to today’s near photorealistic graphics, the characters and backgrounds are still quite detailed, and do not distract from enjoyable gameplay.  The music sounds a bit other-worldly, which is par for the course for a game set in the Outer Planes of the D&D cosmos.  Unlike some games, where the music is either repetitive or annoyingly out-of-place,  the music in Planescape: Torment does what it’s supposed to do: add atmosphere to the gameplay and stay in the background.  By the way, the sound effects and spoken dialogue are spectacular, too.

Planescape Torment - Gameplay Screenshot

You begin the game waking up from a marble slab in the middle of the mortuary.  You don’t know who you are.  You don’t know anyone you meet.  You’re covered with scars that seem too numerous to be received in just one lifetime, which is to be expected, as it seems you have a curious immortality: although you can die, you cannot stay dead.   This isn’t a standard RPG; your goal isn’t to find a treasure or defeat an ultimate villain.  All you need to do is to discover exactly who you are, and why is it that you suffer so.  As you progress through the game, you will gain new insights to who you’ve been, the friends and enemies you’ve made, and the feats you’ve accomplished.

Planescape Torment - Gameplay Screenshot

Since your memory is gone, you choose what class you want to level up in as you gain experience, and you are not limited to that class each time you reach the next experience plateau.  More importantly, experience is rewarded for more than just combat.  How you speak to NPCs can result in a bonanza of experience points, as can completing tasks.  The choices you face in every encounter can adjust your alignment depending on what approach you take.  In short, everything about Planescape: Torment is open-ended, the hallmark of an excellent RPG.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7s2Qkx3lN5s[/youtube]

As you gain experience, you also gain ability points.  Which attributes you put those points towards makes a difference in how the game progresses.  New dialogue options might open up for you.  Certain NPCs may treat you differently.  Quests might have different parameters.  Your choices impact how the game plays!

I cannot remember a game that I have enjoyed more than Planescape: Torment.  In fact, it became my favorite game I ever played back when it was released, and no game since has been able to knock it from that position.  The only weakness I can think of for this game is that eventually it ends.  If Black Isle made another Planescape game I would buy it in a heartbeat.  If you haven’t played Planescape: Torment, you’ve missed out on something BIG.  Get yourself a copy. STAT!!

Ridge Racer

Ridge Racer - Playstation - Gameplay Screenshot

About 2 weeks after the launch of the PS1 in the USA, a buddy of mine who bought about every console in those days, said “We need to get the new Sony console. I read great stuff about how good it looks. Plus, we can link them up!” I was still pretty heavy into my Genesis, and didn’t know if I wanted another console, but after playing Ridge Racer at the store, I was sold.

Ridge Racer - Playstation - Gameplay Screenshot
A launch title (Namco 94-95), with 7 other games (I bought 2, and will talk about the other tomorrow), Ridge Racer truly felt like an arcade game. The graphics were a huge step up from my Sega product, and with the nifty music blaring on my 26 inch RCA (still have it), I finally had a good-size monitor to enjoy the 3D-goodness.

Ridge Racer - Playstation - Gameplay Screenshot

In Ridge Racer, there were the usual game modes, Time Trials and easy/medium/hard. You raced with 12 cars, trying to beat them (to unlock) and your previous low times. The music pumped throughout, and in a new twist, you could take out the game CD and put in music of your own while still playing. The different cars didn’t vary much, and they seemed to control about the same…except for the elusive Black Car.

Ridge Racer - Playstation - Gameplay Screenshot
The Black Car was the Holy Grail of the game. After you defeated the other modes and cars, you were able to take on the evil one. If you could defeat it, you would own it. Namco’s version of The Crossroads. One of the most difficult ‘bosses’ I ever faced, the only way to win was to run a perfect race…meaning if you scraped a wall, or skidded too much on a turn, the sumbitch would pass you and you’d never catch up. I put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into that challenge, and still fondly remember the day of victory. With the powerful engine and control of The Black Car, you could improve your times even more.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPw8-A-k8M0[/youtube]
Other goodies included turning around and driving the tracks in mirrored-look, as well as changing your driving view.

Overall, it was a special game that was needed at that time. The console that (in my opinion) was the biggest jump in technology from the previous ones started off with an almost-perfect arcade port. It was beautiful and it was fun. It may not stand the test of time with a ton a sequels that were pumped-out, but will always hold a special memory for me.

Jedi Kittens Strike Back

Jedi Kittens Strike Back

Seriously, this video short was made for Youtube. What goes together better than Star Wars and Kittens, I mean really.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z3r9X8OahA[/youtube]

Video Info:

Tweet: http://bit.ly/JediKittensStrikeBack
The Jedi Kittens are striking back with with an action packed adventure. Who can resist the X-Wing and Tie Fighting kittens!

Join my facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/thefinalcutking

Music composed by Andrew Gerlicher –http://www.youtube.com/user/ForgeTrackAudio1024

Special thanks to Aaron Benitez for helping me shoot.http://www.youtube.com/thevfxbro

Behind the scenes are coming tomorrow on the second channel.
No Cats were harmed – in fact they were rescued. Meow

Elevator Action Deluxe

Super spy Agent 17, or Otto to his friends, is rather suddenly back in upcoming Square-Enix release Elevator Action Deluxe.

elevator_action_deluxe

After a recent Japanese website tease the news is official, with the upcoming retro remake slated for a late summer release only on the PlayStation Network.

The game is a follow-up to the original Taito arcade hit of 1983 which later gained a second wind as a moderate hit on the Nintendo Entertainment System as well.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VheXWyCUSjc[/youtube]

Square-Enix has provided this space with the first officially released screenshots, including pics of the original classic, which is to be included in the upcoming release, and shots of it’s multi-player modes as well.

 

Cosplay Profiles: Princess Zelda

Well excuses me princess! All us Zelda fans loved fighting to save the princess even if she did not give up the cookie. The great thing about Zelda cosplay is you really get to don a great costume. Here are some cool Zelda cosplay images from players around the world.

Sad fact: Many people confuse Link with Zelda.

 

Extreme Planking: Stiff as a Board

Planking Fun - Extreme Planking

For those who do not know what planking is here is the wikipedia definition:

“Planking” (or the “Lying Down Game”) is an activity consisting of lying face down in an unusual or incongruous location. The hands must touch the sides of the body and having a photograph of the participant taken and posted on the internet is an integral part of the game. Players compete to find the most unusual and original location in which to play. The term planking refers to mimicking a wooden plank. Rigidity of the body must be maintained to constitute good planking.

Since early 2011, many participants in planking have photographed the activity on unusual locations such as atop poles, roofs and vehicles, while some “plankers” engage in the activity by planking only their upper body and feet while leaving the back suspended.

Some plankers have taken to the extreme by taking pictures of themselves in a planking position in crazy locations.

Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking

Planking Fun - Extreme Planking Planking Fun - Extreme Planking

Fantasy Zone The Maze

Fantasy Zone The Maze - Opa-Opa - Sega Master System - Gameplay Screenshot

Fantasy Zone The Maze a.k.a. Opa-Opa (1987)
By: Sega  Genre: Maze / Shooting  Players: 1-2  Difficulty: Medium-Hard
Featured Version: Sega Master System  First Day Score: 421,610
Also Available For: Nothing

I don’t know about you but the thinking behind some games is really confusing to me. After releasing ultra-cute shoot ’em up, Fantasy Zone, in 1985, even finding sufficient success with it to adopt its main character, Opa-Opa, as their mascot, Sega then released a similar but improved game in Fantasy Zone 2, also a psychedelic side-viewed shooting game. Both games were tough but proved very popular nonetheless and were converted to several consoles of the time. So after this success, and with the character and game series firmly in place, the logical next step would be Fantasy Zone 3, right? Actually, no. The next game in the series was Fantasy Zone The Maze, a curious combination of the first game and… Pac-Man?

Fantasy Zone The Maze - Opa-Opa - Sega Master System - Gameplay Screenshot
Yes that’s right, the third Fantasy Zone game is a maze-based collect-the-dots game! Or in this case collect-the-coins. It retains its links to the series from which it takes its name by virtue of the fact that player(s) control good old Opa-Opa (and Upa-Upa), and the backgrounds to each round are taken from the worlds that comprise the first Fantasy Zone game, i.e. Plaleaf, Tabas, La Dune, and all the rest. Each world features four rounds with different layouts – three standard and one bonus. Every navigable part of the standard rounds are filled with rows of coins of varying sizes (and different values accordingly) which can be used to buy various weapons and power-ups with which to outwit the many enemies found in each maze.

Fantasy Zone The Maze - Opa-Opa - Sega Master System - Gameplay Screenshot
All the enemies emanate from a circular generator, usually found in the middle of the stage. Each time it ‘charges’ it releases a batch of aliens but you can reset the charger, thereby delaying their arrival, by passing over it. Obviously this diverts your attention from collecting the coins though, and this must be done to finish the round (plus the larger, more valuable ones shrink down to small ones if you leave them too long), so you will inevitably have to contend with aliens to some degree. Luckily these can be dealt with by purchasing the aforementioned power-ups which can be found scattered around each maze. Again, passing over them will buy them (if you can afford it!) with each lasting for a limited time. Before the start of each round you’re given an inventory of which ones will be available and how much they will cost.

Fantasy Zone The Maze - Opa-Opa - Sega Master System - Gameplay Screenshot
Predictably, most of the power-ups available here are taken from Fantasy Zone itself, such as big wings (speed-up), twin shot, laser, firebombs, etc, but the best one is all-new, though not very imaginatively-named – the ‘Top Power’, which turns the player’s ship into am industructible fireball (for a short period)! Much like Fantasy Zone however, each time you buy a power-up, the more it will cost next time. Also, appearing in the respective corner of player one or two now and then is a smart bomb or extra life. Very handy, thank you! After each round you’ll receive a bonus based on how fast you completed it, and after each third round (each world, in other words) you’ll enter a nice bonus round. This takes the form of a simple maze filled with various bonuses. However, you’ll only get a second to memorise its layout as the lights soon go out, leaving just a small area around your ship illuminated!

Fantasy Zone The Maze - Opa-Opa - Sega Master System - Gameplay Screenshot
As you probably guessed, most of the aesthetics here are lifted straight from the first FZ game including the backgrounds, sprites (albeit miniturised in most cases), sound effects, and music (slightly remixed), but the gameplay is of course almost entirely different. It’s an interesting, well-executed idea though, and fans of this kind of game will find plenty to enjoy here. There’s 51 mazes altogether so it will last a long time, and while the game is pretty tough with just the one player (some of the smaller enemies move far faster than Opa-Opa), it was really made with two-players in mind I think. My good friend Luke and I have completed it many times over, for example, but no way could I do it on my own. To fans of the first two games, it was probably a big disappointment in all honestly, as they must’ve been expecting more or the same, not some obscure maze game, but if you (and a friend) take the time to judge The Maze purely on its own merits, you’ll find a enjoyable and addictive collect ’em up which is fantastic fun, especially with two-players.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y1ocEC_DX9A[/youtube]

RKS Score: 8/10

Beat Hazard Super Mario Bros 2 OC ReMix

[youtube id=”I0evGfaK_uE” width=”633″ height=”356″]

Beat Hazard Super Mario Bros 2

Beat Hazard

This is pretty cool. This is a video of the game beat hazard being played with the OverClocked remix song of Super Mario Bros 2.

 

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

I was looking forward to Deus Ex mainly because I like the stealth style of gameplay, but with the option of going guns blazing if I wanted to. The game did give me what I wanted out of a sci-fi stealthy first person shooter, but there were some let downs for me personally as well.

First off, I write this review expecting people to know about the game and for those who already played it or wish too. Right off the bat I liked the visuals in the game though it still uses static backgrounds for its backdrops, meaning the city you are in is fully 3D, but perhaps the mountains in the far background is just a picture, which really isn’t a big deal.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

The gameplay itself can be either fast or slow depending on your style. However, cover from fire is very important because even though you are augmented you are far from invincible. The cover system is a lot like Gears of War where you can hide behind a structure and peek and shoot around it. This is how you will fight most of the time unless you are sniping someone from far away or my favorite sneaking up on someone from behind.

Now as said you can be more stealth based or more frontal assault and there are various weapons to go with each. I just have the feeling the game was made more for stealth so if you play that way it is a much better experience.  So when going stealth you spend most of your time crouch walking and hiding behind things and sneaking through air vents to sneak up on the enemy.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

Now this is where I have to complain a bit. The AI is pretty stupid sometimes in Deus Ex. Here is an example. You sneak into a room via an air vent and sneak up on a guard and use your silent takedown move. Now if you are smart you hide the body and keep the other guards or the camera from seeing you, but even if they see you all you have to do is hide in that vent until they go away. I sat in one spot and shot guard after guard as they came to check the body and I was in no danger of them coming after me though the vent.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

Let’s talk augments. Your character becomes pretty bionic and you can upgrade a variety of augments on your body for extra run speed, armor, aiming and so on. Now you earn points to upgrade either by gaining experience or by purchasing them at LIMB clinics. Now here is the thing. In my opinion hacking is the most important augment because it opens doors, gets you into computers where you can turn off cameras and turn turrets and robots on the enemy so honestly you want that first.

Another complaint, since they want you to upgrade and add to your augments they make it so certain things kill you that really shouldn’t. For instance, I jumped off a ledge a bit higher than a dumpster and died. A fall of that height should not kill anyone, but they want you to get the no falling damage augment so it does.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

Back to hacking, so for some missions you need a higher hack rating to break into a door or computer so, again, it’s paramount to raise it first. However, many computers are completely useless and if you are like me who looks for everything you spend a lot of time just hacking computers, but it can be good to find codes or other information.

Stealing is also big in Deus Ex. If you want to have money, ammo and weapons then you need to steal everything and really you can even steal from your own company because they don’t seem to care and it can net you some good weapons. The same goes for hacking the doors and computers in your own company it nets you good loot so steal away.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

There is your main mission and side missions in each “City Hub” which is the way the game gives you an interactive city, but keeps you in a sand box. You start in Detroit and go on to places like China and Canada, but it is pretty much the same once you get there. Just remember, for the most part, once you leave a city hub you cannot do any of the side missions there so hit those up first it won’t affect any time table dealing with the main storyline. The side missions can net you experience, credits and sometimes a special weapon, but overall it made little difference on the ending of the game.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

Yet another complaint, there are minor consequences to what you do in the game even though it makes you feel like there are big ones. For the most part you can skip all the side missions and not really miss anything, which I guess can be good for people who hate side missions. The same goes with choosing to knock out over killing, it makes no difference in the end and only applies to a very few mission parameters.

Searching, stealing and information gathering is mostly what you are doing in this game. There are action sequences and some decent fire fights, but honestly, between going the stealth route and hacking everything you see the game is pretty easy except for maybe the boss fights. The key is to search everything and if there are two other augments you should do after hacking it is to upgrade your inventory space and to get the social perk for additional conversation options.

Deus-Ex-Human-Revolution-PC-Gameplay Screenshot

Overall, the game was fun. I wanted to keep playing and it kept me interested, but besides the lady pilot I did not really care about anyone else including the main character. I had the most fun trying not to kill people and instead sneaking up on them and knocking them out. With that said, the game is still worth a play through, but that is about it. I see no real reason to play it again considering you can save right at the end and see the alternate endings which I hate to say were disappointing.

[youtube width=”600″ height=”480″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OA_-mhoksL8[/youtube]

Sonic Advance: Egg Rocket Zone Remix

[youtube id=”HSXARTdjDws” width=”633″ height=”356″]

Egg Rocket Zone Remix

We love video game music and remixes here at Obsolete Gamer so we want to profile some of the ones we have come across and enjoy. Today we have a cool remix from Sonic Advance. If you have a remix you love e-mail us and we might be able to profile it for you.

Sonic Advance Music

Music Info:

DOWNLOAD LINK: http://www.mediafire.com/?6s9m8d0h330it39

This remix comes from my friend’s brain (http://www.youtube.com/user/Ra2rd93 ), and it’s about a fantastic music of a fantastic videogame: “Sonic Advance”…

The original music is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shwlxgLzfAs

Super Metroid

Super Metroid - Super Nintendo - Box

As I came across this game I though to myself why not pick it? After all, this game is one of the most praised by Metroid fans as they pick it as their favorite. The game itself has a very intriguing storyline that kept you interested in the game. As many of you remember the tragic ending of this incredible game….ahhh yeah the memories….Anyways, on with the game. Here you have a platformer style game with RPG elements and action packed! Should I even say more? The music is unforgettable and the graphics were top notch for its time.

Super Metroid - Super Nintendo - Gameplay Screenshot

 

Want to hear even more? The hero is actually a very sexy heroine! Yes, this is girl power to the max! I’m sure most of you Metroid fans already knew that but back when the first one in the series where at the ending your “hero” would take his/her helmet off and surprise surprise it was a chick! I have never felt so turned on!! har har har.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bQXb33_GnA[/youtube]

 

So I won’t say much more as I don’t want to spoil the fun for those of you who haven’t played this masterpiece but I will tell you one thing, try it out! It’s available for the Wii virtual console.

R-Type available today for Android devices

r-type

Fans of classic space shooters rejoice because R-Type is coming to your Android phone starting today from DotEmu.

Pilot the R-9a Arrowhead, the last hope of human race in its war against alien invader! Your mission is clear but not so easy: blast off and strike the evil Bydo Empire!

Initially developed and published by Irem in 1987, R-Type has become an essential game on arcade cabinet, Amiga, Atari, Amstrad, Commodore 64 and PC. Today this masterpiece is ported and published for Android devices by DotEmu SAS.

R-Type for Android is a real diving in your youth and will include all the features you enjoyed in the original game:

  • A large amount of items and powers-up to collect through various and sharpened sets.
  • Strong enemies and bosses at the end of each level (8 altogether).
  • The famous « charge shot » for more power!
  • Share your results with your friends with OpenFeint!

R-Type for Android will come along two difficulty modes and a new intuitive control system – full touch mode – to directly control your spaceship. Get your hand on a real blast from the past and (re)discover all the hype from the 80’s!

R-Type for Android is compatible with devices running on OS 2.1+ and with a screen resolution of 480×320 HVGA or above. Supported devices will include Samsung Galaxy S / Google Nexus S, Motorola Xoom, Samsung Galaxy Tab, etc.

Also great news for fans, R-Type Android is officially Xperia PLAY optimized providing the best user experience!

[youtube width=”600″ height=”480″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XMlrLbxywGU[/youtube]

R-Type Android is now available for $2.99
Android Market: https://market.android.com/details?id=com.dotemu.rtype
And soon for Amazon Appstore.

Video gaming should not be the scapegoat for death of British gamer

gameaddiction

It’s no secret that the mainstream media circles like sharks around any news regarding the video gaming industry.  Ignoring easily found industry stats that show the average age of a video gamer is 37 years old, most video gaming stories seem to focus on children, the smallest demographic of the industry today.   Ignoring the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) ratings system and it’s proven track record, most video gaming stories seem to insist that the latest hit Rated M video game is being purchased by droves of children, all of whom will grow up to be criminals and violent souls.

This was evident shortly after the Supreme Court shot down California’s law which would have criminalized sales of Rated M games to children.  Many headlines and stories were worded to make it sound as if 8 year olds could now rush out and purchase Mortal Kombat without anything to stop them.  It’s been evident at other times this year as well, with some stories claiming that games like Bulletstorm and Duke Nukem Forever could bring down the moral standard of society or something.

The newest mainstream media event regarding video gaming is the story of 20-year-old British gamer Chris Staniforth.  A fan of the XBox 360 console, Staniforth died from deep vein thrombosis, a condition that can be caused by sitting or laying down in a cramped position for long periods of time.

Right away, news stories from a variety of sources came to be, with headlines reading “XBox Gamer Dies of Blood Clot After Marathon Session” (Fox News), “XBox Addict Killed By Blood Clot” (Yahoo!), and “Playing Video Games Without A Break Could Kill You” (MSNBC).

Sure enough, the mainstream press is latching onto this one, focusing not on the fact that Staniforth didn’t take breaks or stretch periodically, but instead focusing on the fact that he was a video gamer who played long sessions at a time.

Video gaming didn’t kill young Staniforth, folks.  His own lack of activity did.  He could have been an employee in a computer cubical for 40 hours a week that ate lunch at his desk.  He could have been a person that travelled a lot, sitting for those long hours in planes and cars.  He could have been sitting around watching a Harry Potter movie marathon, collecting stamps or watching paint dry.

DVT hits hundreds of thousands of people a year from all walks of life and all ages.  Yes, there are fatal cases there as well.  I really have to wonder if this young man was a movie critic or a bus driver if there would be near as many headlines.

Yes, Staniforth’s death is tragic.  It’s serious and sad news.  But how about a little journalistic integrity every once in a while, something that puts the focus on his lack of activity instead of his entertainment choices?   This is not a video game story, mainstream media, it’s an exercise, activity and health story.   Reporting it as anything other than that is irresponsible and ignorant.

Extra special thanks to Fox News, who put the words “gamer” and “gaming” in quotation marks in their version of the story, as if those were some kind of oddball terms.  As a result, this writer and “gamer” for 30 years will refer to them as Fox “News” going forward each and every time I note something written by one of their “journalists” or “reporters”.

Some good might come of the story if it makes others aware of how important activity of any kind is during their work or entertainment time.  Sadly, thus far, most reports (excuse me, “reports”) wish to focus on the whole “video games could kill you” angle instead.

Remember to get up and take some breaks, “gamers”… and computer techs… and taxi drivers… and airline passengers… and everyone else.  The activity is important during ANY and ALL tasks.

Warhammer 40K Space Marine

Warhammer 40K Space Marine title screen

Warhammer 40K Space Marine review by Honorabili

One Sentence Review:
“Finally, a game as good as Halo or Gears of War for the Warhammer 40K universe.”

Overall Score:
8 out of 10

Overview, Fun Factor, & Replayability:

From Relic/THQ, we see yet another great game for the Warhammer 40K franchise. This time instead of commanding your space marines in RTS style they bring us the gore and grittiness of fighting for the Imperium of Man in a 3rd person kind of FPS style. Think of the game kind of like a mix of Halo, Gears of War, and Dead Space as far as gameplay goes.

Warhammer 40K Space Marine orksThere’s two modes to play as of this writing: the single player human Space Marine campaign and the online multiplayer capture and deathmatch games. The single player campaign lets you take the role of one of the top heroes from the Ultramarines Space Marine Chapter and fight off an Ork and Chaos invasion from one of the sacred and rare Titan Manufactorum Forge Worlds. The campaign can take you 8 to 12 hours to play if you play it at a good pace. The online multiplayer is pretty straight forward, and is sort of like playing games like Team Fortress 2 or Unreal Tournament. The gameplay for the multiplayer actually feels a lot like the game Transformers: War for Cybertron. You can either play the mode where you capture and hold points with the first team that reaches 1000 points winning or you can play for whoever gets to 41 kills on their side first. In the online multiplayer, teams alternate playing Space Marines and Chaos Marines against each other.

Warhammer 40K space marine bloodyFrom what I heard there is a free DLC expansion coming out in October 2011 and it is supposed to make the campaign co-op multiplayer as well as they are supposed to be adding a Last Stand Mode for online multiplayer similar to The Last Stand mode from Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War 2. That should be great fun and that might make it more inviting for regular gamers to want to buy this game rather than mainly Warhammer 40K fans.

The game is pretty fun. You have to constantly be focusing on shooting enemies while knowing they will descend down on you at melee range and you’re going to have to start chopping everything down into a pile of meat as soon as possible. In the single player your character has access to a lot of special relics and wargear that makes him much more powerful than your multiplayer’s cookie cutter marine. Both are fun because even the single player is challenging enough that you will get killed even by a simple enemy (especially the squigs that have a pack of bombs attached to them… who ever knew that the orks were terrorists!). I give the Fun Factor overall a score of 7 out of 10.

I probably won’t be replaying the single player campaign unless I have nothing better to do. The meat and potatoes of the game mainly comes from the online multiplayer. I think it’ll add a lot with the upcoming update in October so that will add a lot of replayability to the game. The online multiplayer is pretty fun, especially when you are playing with friends online which is pretty easy because of the Steam integration that it has that’s almost as good as playing online games of Left 4 Dead. I give the current replayability a score of 7 out of 10. I’m just waiting for the expansion now to get excited about this game again.

Difficulty & Difficulty Versatility:

So far I’ve played the single player campaign once on the Normal Difficulty. There’s Easy, Normal, and Challenging, and even Normal was a little challenging for me. I wouldn’t say it was hard but it was hard enough that I had to pay attention all the time. If I were to play it again I would play it on the hardest difficulty but most likely I will wait to see how the campaign becomes after they add co-op and whether it will scale the difficulty based on the number of players. That’s all as far as single player goes.

As far as multiplayer goes, the matchmaking system is… well, not that good I think because I’ve had games where the high end players (your account rates on a scale of levels 1 to 41, which each level unlocks new wargear and perks for multiplayer in the style of COD:MW1 and COD:MW2) all got bunched together and beat the living shit out of the low level cannon fodder characters. I hope they’ll fix that!

chaos vs ork war bossValue:

The game is currently sold for around $50 US. I got it mainly because I’m a huge fan of the Warhammer 40K universe. I’d say pay that much if you really like that universe that much. I’d say for a normal person to pay around 20-30 tops for this game if you are just getting it as a game.

Sound:

Both the voices they chose for the Space Marines, Chaos, and Orks all sound as they should, again like in Dawn of War. All the weapon noises and the slashing and chopping sound great! You really feel the chaos of battle, especially when you play the game really loud.

My only complaint about the sounds in the game come from the multiplayer. If you have a microphone, it will automatically transmit sounds from your computer with your entire team. There is no push to talk as far as I know. So… you will get to hear people laughing or talking to other people. I even played a game where some guy was singing folk music over the mic. Yeah… WTF. FIX THIS SHIT!

I give the sound effects a score of 9 out of 10. Great shooting, great explosions, great voice acting!

Music:

The music is as good as I would say Warhammer 40K: Dawn of War 1. You really feel inmersed in the Warhammer 40K universe with it. I give the music a score of 8 out of 10.

Hi! I'm a Chaos Lord... my mommy doesn't love me!
Hi! I’m a Chaos Lord… my mommy doesn’t love me!

Stability/Reliability:

The game never crashes and I usually alt-tab a lot while playing. Stability and Reliability get a score of 10 out of 10.

Controls:

The controls of this game are streamlined when compared to Darksiders. The movement is based on the WASD system plus mouse. I haven’t yet tested it with an Xbox 360 controller but it should be the same to play with that on a PC as on an actual Xbox 360 console. Controls get a score of 7 out of 10. They get the job done but they are not as streamlined as pure PC FPS games.

warhammer 40k space marine titanGraphics & Performance:

Finally, we have an FPS action game that lets us see the Warhammer 40K universe up close in good detail. Everything in the game looks great, for all factions. I would say the graphics look as good as any game based on the Unreal 3 engine, which this game doesn’t use; instead Relic wrote their own game engine, the Phoenix Engine. I give the Graphics a score of 9 out of 10.

Overall the performance is pretty great. The single player ran like a champ on my new gaming PC but I did run into problems with the multiplayer. It may just be me but I did hit a LOT of lag spiking in the multiplayer games and I’m using a 3 Mbps DSL connection with no activing on the connection other than just running the game. I think a lot of this problem comes with the stupid microphone always on problem that I mentioned above. Maybe the voice chat client is really inefficient. I suffered less of the problem when I played it on matches where almost nobody used it. I give the single player Performance a score of 9 out of 10. I give the multiplayer performance a score of 5 out of 10. I just always expect this to lag until they patch it. Sometimes it works but hey, I’m not too much of an optimist.

space marine inquisitorConclusion:

If you love Warhammer 40K then get it. If you love the Dawn of War series and want to play something a little different but in the same twisted universe then get it. For most people I would say, wait until the price goes down unless the upcoming DLC expansion is simply bloody amazing. I wish they would have let me play as the Orks too in multiplayer… Most people right now are still playing the new Deus Ex instead but I don’t regret buying this one. Dead Island on the other hand… THE END!

DubStep Friday’s: NYANSTEP

NyanCat

We found the cure to all your worries and it is the mixture of Nyan Cat and DubStep. Salad UK is back again this week with an enchanting music video that will consume your soul.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ZtzB2SI6dQ[/youtube]

Video info:

Nyan Cat gets a mindfucking Dubstep Video remix to the Alex S remix 😀

Made this in like 3 hours seeing as i hadn’t made a video in a few days plus im going Hype this weekend and will prolly be too fucked all weekend to make one then too.
So yea, sorry its not amazing, but what else could i do with a cat that hardly moves o.O

Original Video(s):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QH2-TGUlwu4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KT_89gi2Dk

Become a fan!
http://facebook.com/SaladUK
Tweet it up!
http://twitter.com/saladuk
Be my friend 😀
http://facebook.com/AddSaladUK
My Backup channel
http://youtube.com/saladuk2

DJ Alex S
http://www.youtube.com/DJAelxs

Track:
Nyan Cat (Alex S. Dubstep Remix)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BeGjTiUqw8U

Rayman 2: The Great Escape

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot

For all of you gamers who have never experienced a Rayman game, you’re missing out. The first game was a decent PlayStation hit, and a fun 2D platformer. But, Rayman 2: The Great Escape is on a different level. A true 3D platformer, Ubisoft really takes advantage of everything the Sega Dreamcast hardware can do.

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot
Rayman himself, is a little creature without arms and legs, his hands and feet just float around his body. He shoots energy balls from his hands (which ricochet, a cool feature) and his long ears allow him to float or fly like a helicopter. Also, in an homage to the classic arcade character Q*bert, he and his friends speak a gibberish-language. Luckily for us, there are subtitles.

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot

At the end of the first game, Rayman and his buddies saved his world, and in the sequel, more of the same. A crazy boss named Admiral Razorbeard, with his awesome ship and his lackeys, the Robo-pirates, are trying to (once again) take over the world. He has also kidnapped Rayman’s friends and a lot of other creatures. Your mission, is to collect 4 masks that will summon the world’s God to get rid of the Admiral.

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot
There are almost 20 levels total, including mini-levels, for you to enter. Using your energy balls as weapons, you’ll jump and use your helicopter ears to float long distances in a mostly-linear 3D environment. Along the way, there will be creatures in cages to rescue and other balls of energy called “lums” that you will need to collect. Some of these are for health-replenishing, some are necessary to complete the mission. For example, there are 1000 yellow lums in the game. Most completists will play the levels over until they find them all…I’m not one of them. One of the few flaws of the game is they made me backtrack (one of my gaming pet-peeves) to collect a certain amount of lums to go forward with the game. Just finding the exit of the level wasn’t enough. Personally, I think that should be the choice of the player, and not the developer….just sayin’.

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot
The other big flaw (which is common in this type of game) is some brutal camera angles. While you can rotate the camera on the X axis, you can’t the Y, causing some “leaps of faith”. There are also times where the camera is “set”, which wasn’t always the best angle to use, in my opinion. These two reasons are why it’s not a perfect game. There were some true “throw the controller” moments.

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot
I love this 3D-platforming adventure, and I give props to the developer for mixing it up, giving some variety in levels. Early in the game, there’s some “water-skiing” behind one of his friends, and an area where he can use his ears to fly. Pretty sweet.

Rayman 2 - The Great Escape - Sega Dreamcast - Gameplay Screenshot
I probably had a good 10 hours or so of gaming, which is just enough to keep it fun (before grinding sets in), and also enough to feel I got my money’s worth. There is a high replay value for the achievement whore who needs every lum. I believe if you can collect all 1000, there’s a bonus level…I will never see this, sadly.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zpVzjt9aLH0&feature=related[/youtube]
With the cool 3D graphics, a beautiful mythical world to explore, the great controls, and cute and funny original characters, this seems to be a must-have for any Dreamcast collection. Highly recommended.

A Guide to the world of the Indie Adventure Game

Indy Adventure Game
It must have been back in the day when Terry Pratchett’s Discworld II was released that I first noticed PC Zone proclaiming the adventure gaming genre dead and most probably buried too, even though quite a few classics like Gabriel Knight III or Sanitarium would still follow. Yet, it was indeed more than obvious that the glory days of Monkey Island, Space Quest and Day of the Tentaclewere definitely coming to their end. Games went mainstream, quality dropped, the thinking gamer became a ridiculously small minority, good taste went tits up and magazines kept telling everyone just how very dead adventures were.

Heck, even now, after the obviously lucrative niche market The Adventure Company has carved itself, a variety of quirky Nintendo DS adventures and the amazing success of Sam and Max Series 1, nobody is convinced that adventures are truly back and people are still talking about redefining the genre, dropping costs, appealing to the mainstream, going 3D, whatever. What they are very obviously forgetting is that game crafting isn’t a power bestowed solely to big studios by the gods of gaming. It’s an art and craft everyone can have a try at, by either producing a freeware game or going for the more life-sustaining indy commercial development model. This exactly is the case with independent and/or freeware adventure games, a creative scene that’s been thriving for over a decade and going from strength to strength.

An Independent Adventure Game, you see, is a game created outside the stuffy world of uneducated managers who think they actually know what people like and believe there’s no value besides the exchange one. Indy Adventure Games, just like any medieval artisan’s product, only have to be true to the creator’s vision. They can be wildly innovative, copyright infringing, in full pixelated 2D, remakes of classic games, political, silly, absolutely shite, pop, over 500MB, excellent, boring, free or very cheap; anything at all. And, unlike commercial games, especially the ridiculously expensive ones which we’ve been living with for quite some time, they just can’t be proclaimed dead. As long as people -ordinary people- care for them, they’ll be around.

To play an Independent Adventure Game…

For the time being though, the indy adventure game is far from a dying species. One could even speak of an apex, if it weren’t for the ever increasing volume, variety and quality of productions. There are happily dozens of extremely talented developers and groups that keep churning out game after lovely game. To find out about -and of course play- said games, well, you’re spoiled for choice. For starters, this very blog will keep on covering those that catch my eye, Tim’s brilliant Independent Gaming will let you know about 99% of the newest releases, the Adventure Gamers Underground section, the AGS games pages, Adventure Developers, Erin’s blog and the the Adventuress will go on discovering and reviewing them, and then there are the developers’ websites like those of xii games, Herculean Effort, Wadjet Eye and Radical Poesis to search and savor.

<Intermission: In the unlikely case you’ve never played an adventure game and are thinking of having a try now that you ‘ve just discovered the world of freeware, please, do not expect frantic action. Expect interesting stories, mainly 2D graphics, lots of puzzles, inventory manipulation and lots and lots of pointing and clicking at things. The mouse and a capacity for lateral thinking are your friends./>

Now, to get you started and playing the latest and probably the best, I can’t help but suggest having a look at the linking epic that is my AGS Awards Winners 2006 post and the TOP 20 indy Adventures of 2006 as selected by Independent Gaming. Then, there’s this short ‘n’ random selection of games, merely for illustration purposes:

What Linus Bruckman Sees When His Eyes Are Closed

LB

Could you ever imagine EA coming up with a title like that? Or with a game simultaneously featuring two distinct stories? How about a hard brain twister? The most innovative adventure game of the past decade then? Of course not, and that’s the beauty of it. Download Linus here.

Space Quest 0: Replicated

Space Quest 0 - Replicated

Not a huge admirer of fan creations based on existing games, but this one is a glowing exception. SQ 0 is an excellent, original and funny little game, complete with 16-colour EGA graphics and old-fashioned parser interface, in which -you know- you type stuff. Could have easily been a proper part of the SQ saga methinks. Download it here.

Missing

missing

Now, for some adult-oriented entertainment. Missing is a gritty and beautifully illustrated adventure utilizing a simple ICOM-like point-and-click interface, that puts the players in the (probably) authoritarian shoes of a cop searching for his vanished wife and kid. Download it here.

Soviet Unterzoegersdorf

Soviet Unterzoegersdorf

Quasi-political satire with photorealistic graphics and absurdist humor, this one features a socialist cop in an almost socialist fictional state surrounded by Fortress Europe. Also looks quite a bit like Gabriel Knight II. Download it here.

Nearly Departed

Nearly Departed

A game by John Green, a Disney illustrator, no less. Fantastic graphics, impressive cartoon quality animation, simple interface and a still unfinished but very playable and highly enjoyable adventure. Besides, it’s the story of a reluctant zombie. Download it here.

Crafting, it’s so easy.

Well, provided you can come up with some decent graphics, game design, animation and music, it is. Programming could come in handy too, but as creating your very own engine can be both difficult and time consuming, there are many -mostly freeware- tools/engines that only require a minimum of effort and programming skill. The list that follows will hopefully help you. As for Interactive Fiction (text-adventures) it will be covered some other time. For now have a look at this interesting i-f writing bit.

AGS, the hallowed Adventure Games Studio, is by far the most popular scripting and adventure game creation environment to date. Pretty easy to use, freeware, geared towards classic 2D point-and-click retro adventures and backed up by a huge vibrant community, it’s probably where you should begin. Have a look.

LASSIE Adventure Studio, another free game creator, provides with the tools to create adventures in the classic Lucasarts style in Macromedia, Flash and Shockwave. Why not visit the LASSIE official site then?

The Wintermute Engine is slightly less easy to use a development environment, but with obvious 3D capabilities, impressive built-in graphical effects and high-tech tendencies. Quite the beast, really. Download it here.

Finally, and in a very blog-post ending way, you can also give the pretty excellent SLUDGE and Adventure Maker (also does PSP software, mind you!) tools a go. They are definitely worth your time. And mine.


Double Dragon 2

Double Dragon 2 - NES - Gamplay Screenshot

This is definitely the best double dragon game for the NES. I personally had a horrible time with double dragon 3 because of the difficulty and well, one life! They got a lot of things wrong that they did right in part 2. Anyways, double dragon 2 is one huge masterpiece with a great cooperative play with a friend gameplay. Playing with yourself as bad as it may sound, it’s OK but playing with a friend is a hell of a lot of fun! Just think about it! You can also pick between game A or B which simply means if you want to be able to hit your buddy or not. I like hitting my friend!

Double Dragon 2 - NES - Gamplay Screenshot

 

The game is very complete and challenging as well. There are about eight missions to go through and they all come with very unique scenery. You are also given continues to help you continue through your quest. If you play the game enough though, even at the hardest mode, you’ll be able to beat the game with ease. All your friends(foes) from the first double dragon are back well at least the ones I remembered.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWfNVX6AXDU[/youtube]

 

I can’t tell you how many times I played this game with my brother and we surely didn’t got tired of it. Well, we did until Super Double Dragon was released! So that’s about it, until next week!

Gemini Wing

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Gemini Wing (1987)
By: Tecmo  Genre: Shooting  Players: 1-2  Difficulty: Medium
Featured Version: Arcade  First Day Score: 85,980 (one credit)
Also Available For: ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, Atari ST, Amiga, MSX, Sharp X68000

Like most people (or game fans, at least), I have a fairly extensive list of games I always meant to play but never got around to as a result of time or financial constraints, but Gemini Wing has never been among them. My only memories of it are the rather lacklustre reviews the home conversions received, notably on the Speccy (which had blue and yellow monochrome graphics as I recall), so when I decided to take a look at the arcade original of this vertical-scroller (which is actually a few years older than I realised), I didn’t have very high expectations. Initially, however, it’s been a pleasant surprise! I hope my luck holds, I could do with a decent new shmup to play…

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Even for shmup standards, Gemini Wing has a pretty hideous storyline that I won’t inflict on you here, but suffice to say, every alien race in the galaxy has apparently declared war on Earth! Things aren’t as bad as they might seem though as the invading aliens didn’t reckon on the ingenuity of the Gemini Wing fighter. It is using this that you (and a friend) must engage the terrifying alien fleets across seven stages of vertically-scrolling action. It appears you’re fighting the actual aliens themselves here too, for the most part, rather than their spaceships and stuff and they’re quite a diverse bunch that wouldn’t look out of place in our gardens and forests!

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

As you can probably tell from the screenshots, many of the aliens look like insects, other animals, and plants, and they include centipede’s, bats, various types of flies, praying mantises, spiders, beetles, trees, even single-celled organisms! The bosses are similarly organic in nature. The first, for example, is a walrus, and the next a pair of one-eyed snakes! Like Metal Black, recently reviewed here, Gemini Wing tries to do something a bit different with the weapon system too, and with a bit more success this time. Your fighter is equipped with a reasonable, though poor range, cannon, but you may notice the ship also has a tail of circular icons behind it.

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

These are called ‘Gunballs’ and each of them represents a different special attack ranging from three-way fire, to homing missiles, to a wall of fire, and others. They are used in the order they trail behind you and each lasts for one brief attack, acting like lesser smart bombs of a sort. More of them can be collected by destroying a certain kind of alien called a ‘Bringer’ which have ‘Gunball tails’ of their own! Bringers are hard to kill but each time you shoot one will change the type of Gunball they are carrying. When it carries the attack you want, you can steal them by flying into them and snatching them. Be careful though as they can also steal your Gunballs in the same way!

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Not all the Gunballs are weapons though. Certain ones will also give you speed-ups, an extra life, or award you with bonus points too. If you do manage to destroy a Bringer (it takes a lot of shots), its Gunballs will scatter around the screen, much like your own if you lose a life. This does of course make things a little easier as you can gather up most of your lost power-ups again when you restart (which happens immediately from the point you died). That’s not to say this is an easy shmup though. As well as numerous medium and large enemies, there are frequent swarms of dozens of smaller enemies (like the green things to the right) and they often move lightning fast!

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Others attack from behind while some, such as the beetles, come flying down the screen straight at you. Most of the enemies have horribly unpredictably flight paths too, especially the smaller ones, and it’s not just the aliens who cause problems. Many of the stages are home to hard-to-reach guns and there are various kinds of barriers that you have to try and shoot through as well. Fortunately the Gunballs are fairly common but you’re still likely to become overwhelmed now and then! The game can sure handle a lot of sprites on the screen at once too – there are sometimes literally dozens of several different types attacking at once.

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Your ‘tail’ of Gunballs following you around can be a bit distracting too, but this isn’t the hardest shmup in the world either. The sprites and backgrounds are both pretty varied, and the sprites in particular look nice. However, Tecmo missed some great opportunities as well. For example, the first stage takes places over a giant canyon of some sort. Some parallax scrolling here could’ve looked amazing and given the game a real sense of scope! Nevermind though, it’s still looks decent enough. The music and sound effects are pretty average though, it has to be said, and not something that you would even notice really unless you actually tried to.

Gemini Wing - Arcade - Gameplay Screenshot

Initially at least, this appeared to be a bright, cheery game which kind of reminded me, thematically, of a vertically-scrolling version of recently-played Amiga classic, Apidya, what with the abundance of insect-like enemies and all (well, vice versa since Gemini Wing came out first but you know what I mean!), and plays a little like PC Engine great, Gunhed. Having something in common with those two fantastic games is certainly no bad thing and, while Gemini Wing is not as good as either of them, it is a pretty half-decent and playable game. It has a great two-player mode (and yes, the players can steal Gunballs from each other!) and proves a nice challenge too. The difficulty increase is gradual with only a few overly tough sections, and there are some innovative features here which work well. As mentioned earlier, to me at least, this has always been one of those games that was just, sort of… there, but having now given it a chance, it has proven to be a rather pleasant surprise.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGWq0n0tQ8g[/youtube]

RKS Score: 7/10

SNK : NEO GEO Downloads

logo-snk-playmore

SNK Playmore USA has released three more classic games on the Playstation 3 network including:

ALPHA MISSION 

alpha mission

Pilot the fighter ship SYD and attack both air & ground based enemy targets, collect power-ups and defeat the bosses in this 1985 precursor to the early NEOGEO era sequel! The fate of Earth rests in your hands!

T.N.K. III

tnk-3

Play as Colonel Ralf, maneuvering your tank and firing its machine guns and cannon. Destroy the enemy army in this arcade classic originally released in 1985, featuring revolutionary controls for its time!

VANGUARD II

vanguard-2

Destroy hostile enemies and their massive base in this innovative sequel to the arcade hit!

Each game costs 2.99. For more information check out their official website.

Star Trek Online to go Free to Play this year

star-trek-online

If this wasn’t a trend before it is now. Cryptic Studios announced that Star Trek Online will be going free to play later this year and players will be able to download and play the game at no cost.

As expected there will be additional features that you can pay for by accessing a virtual store. In addition, there will still be full or gold membership for existing members or you can pay $14.99 for gold membership.

You can see the differences between gold and silver membership here – http://www.startrekonline.com/f2p 

“In addition to seeking out new life and exploring strange new civilizations, part of our continuing mission for Star Trek Online is to expand and improve,” said Jack Emmert, CEO, Cryptic Studios. “Transitioning to a free-to-play model is a natural way to share all we’ve built with a broader community of players and we couldn’t be more excited.”

Star Trek Online free-to-play allows players to get into the game and engage the Star Trek universe in a number of ways:

The Universe is Your Only Limit – Play as much as you like for as long as you like at no cost. No subscription is required, nor is payment of any kind required.

Episodic Gameplay – Experience new weekly episodes that feature story-based gameplay and put your captain’s ability to command to the ultimate test.

Your Captain, Your Crew, Your Destiny – Become a captain, seek out new life and new civilizations and encounter hostile beings as you advance to maximum level for free.

Familiar Places, New Experiences – Travel to Starfleet Academy, Deep Space Nine, The First City of Qo’noS and many other iconic locations and notable worlds from the beloved Star Trek universe.

Engage and Explore Your Way – A web and in-game virtual goods store provides players the option of purchasing gameplay upgrades or additional premium content as they like, when they like.

Taking place in the year 2409, Star Trek Online boasts extraordinary features and lets fans both new and old experience unparalleled adventures within the Star Trek universe. Players have the opportunity to become high-ranking Starfleet officers and participate in missions structured like episodes that take them into the depths of space, across exotic planets and inside other starships. All players are invited to explore strange new worlds and encounter new life in a vast, ever expanding universe!

For more information visit their official website.

SMB: Solid State Musical Tesla Coil

Super_Mario_Brothers-telsa-coil

I was just sent this via our Google+ feed from one of our fans and this video features the Super Mario Brothers Theme played on a Solid State Musical Tesla Coil built by Joe DiPrima and Oliver Greaves and the Austin, TX Chapter of The Geek Group. This is totally geeky, but awesome at the same time.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VX5V_9s0Gfw[/youtube]

Thanks for this, Kevin.

Find Makarov: Operation Kingfish

Call of Duty-Modern Warfare 3-Find Makarov-Operation Kingfish

“Find Makarov: Operation Kingfish” is the seven-minute sequel to the fan-made, original film, Find Makarov. The real life movie reveals a key moment in Modern Warfare history as Soap recalls one of his most memorable Task Force 141 missions. For more information visit findmakarov.com.

[youtube width=”600″ height=”480″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=afs8lcfBY7Q[/youtube]

Created by We Can Pretend, Meteoric, The Junction VFX, and Stealing Time
Director: Jeff Chan
Executive Producer: David Fradkin
Producer: Evan Stasyshyn
Stars John Morgan as John “Soap” McTavish

Nicolas Cage: Freakout Montage

nicolas_cage_freakout

We all know Nick Cage goes crazy in a bunch of his movies, its why we love him. Well, now we have a montage of him freaking out and its pretty freaking awesome.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xP1-oquwoL8[/youtube]

Here is the video info:

Cage Rage. Montage of Nic freaking out. Full film list here:http://www.pajiba.com/guides/nicolas-cage-losing-his-sht-the-video.php

The Cage himself talks about this video in a recent interview:
http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/awesome-interview-nicolas-cage/

Music – Clint Mansell – Lux Aeterna (Requiem for a Dream Soundtrack)

Super Mario Bros. Swingdance video

SuperMarioBro Swingdance

There’s no doubt that the Super Mario Bros. video game and characters have had and will always have an impact on the video game industry.

Now they are having an impact on swingdancing, and the video of the crazy dance routine has the internet buzzing.

Morgan Day and Emily Wigger put on the routine at the 2011 Camp Hollywood National Jitterbug Championship, delighting the crowd with a routine featuring music and sound effects from the classic Super Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros. 2.  Even a temporary fail by the deejay couldn’t stop the couple from stealing the show.

Watch the video of the full routine and tell your friends.

[youtube width=”600″ height=”480″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8Dkog-pe-I[/youtube]