Kid Icarus: Uprising

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Kid Icarus: Uprising

I never played the original Kid Icarus on NES, but I do know of it’s notable legacy. I did play the sequel on  the Nintendo Gameboy called Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters and was rather unimpressed. Like many others, I did like the “new” Pit (the hero of Kid Icarus) in Super Smash Bros. Brawl on Wii. I guess it’s no wonder that Super Smash Bros. creator Masahiro Sakurai was asked to make a sequel for the modern generation of video games.

kid icarus uprising 3DS

The game features a single and multiplayer mode. The story sets off with Pit being asked by the goddess Palutena to protect the Earth from the revival of the evil Medusa. Most of the levels start with flying missions (similar to StarFox) but due to Pit’s limited flight powers, the later part of levels finish while you travel on-foot.

kid icarus uprising pit vs boss
 The non-flight sections are almost like Zelda meets Metroid Prime. Pit can travel around dungeons and castles with plenty of secrets. At the same time defeating enemies and bosses with different strategies and weak-points. The online-multiplayer features two modes with a versus mode and battle royale though while they are fun the better part of the game is the story mode.
kid icarus uprising 3DS
Overall Kid Icarus: Uprising will most likely leave you unimpressed at first, but after the first ten levels it will get remarkably better and frankly pretty awesome. I also thought the voice-acting was superb and the dialogue and story between Pit’s friends and foes was hilarious and brilliant. I would give it a better recommendation but the only thing really holding it back is an uncomfortable control scheme similar to Metroid Prime Hunters on DS. I really do think the Wii or WiiU would have been a better platform for the game, but maybe a sequel one day.

Iron Soldier

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Iron Soldier isn’t the greatest game in the world – put amongst the software libraries of the N64, Saturn or Playstation it’s positively mediocre. ~Simon Reed

Iron Soldier

A Jaguar exclusive, Iron Soldier also happens to be one of the most common titles on the system.

Fortunately it’s no disaster like Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story (another common Jag title), but instead a fairly solid game that’s worth picking up if you’ve had a Jaguar inflicted upon you.

You take control a robot/mech, helping what sounds like a resistance group. There’s no real explanation of the over-riding plot, but it would be foolish to suggest that makes the building destroying action any less satisfying.

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At the start you have four missions to choose from (with 16 overall), which can be tackled in any order you wish.

Or at least, it seems that way. Some stages can be a real struggle if you aren’t equipped with weapons gathered from certain other levels.

Before you enter a mission you can tool up your mech with any weapons you may have, and you’re given a brief rundown of your objectives.

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This quick briefing has to be studied carefully – as not knowing exactly what you’re doing in a stage is suicide.

As soon as you enter a level you’ll probably be struck at how blocky the game is. If you needed any more evidence that the Jaguar wasn’t really 64-bit then here it is.

The next thing you’ll realize is that the controls aren’t the easiest to grasp.

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The simple task of movement requires you to press A and either up or down to start going forward or backwards respectively.

Once you’re moving (you can adjust the speed accordingly) you simply have to steer and shoot. Changing your weapons is tasked to the option button and – this took me a little while to realize – the numbered keys at the bottom of the pad.

Shooting is something you’ll be doing a lot as well, with endless streams of tanks and helicopters firing at you non-stop.

This is why knowing your objective is an absolute necessity, with missions being reasonably varied. Even if most basically just involve destroying stuff.

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The first stage, for example, sees you going around a city to destroy a warehouse. The second has you sinking docked boats, and another involves reducing a bridge to rubble with the use of grenades.

There’s no hugely complex action here, and the game is probably all the better for it.

Yes, the graphics may be ridiculously blocky, but the game still has some impressive explosions, and the way buildings dissolve into showers of cubes is actually rather charming, in a retro kind of way.

Iron Soldier isn’t the greatest game in the world – put amongst the software libraries of the N64, Saturn or Playstation it’s positively mediocre – but for the Jag it offers up some solid robo-destruction action.

Cosplay Wars: Lady Shepard vs. Lady Spartan

Cosplay Wars: Lady Shepard vs. Lady Spartan

Since I began playing roleplaying games where you could choose a lady or a guy I liked picking a lady. Sure, looking at a female character for 40 plus hours was better than staring at a male one, but it was more than that. I always liked the strong female lead that was not a stereotype of a strong woman. I was glad that in the later Mass Effect games they gave more options for those who picked a female Shepard just as I liked the female character in Halo Reach. Now what was weird was playing a female in the original Everquest and being constantly hit on by creepy guys, but that story is for another day.

Cosplay wars is simple, we have two teams. In this case, Team Shepard and Team Spartan. We have ten cosplayers for each team, you vote via the poll below on which team best represented their character. That’s it.

So tell us, which team won?

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MOGA: The Mobile Game Changer

MOGA: The Mobile Game Changer

Is your new year’s resolution to become an accomplished mobile gamer? To become an accomplished mobile gamer, you’ll need some precision control. Well, I think the MOGA Pocket Controller (MOGA) might be your weapon of choice.

MOGA - The Mobile Game Changer

All work ceased when the MOGA arrived in the office. We all just gawked at this beautiful sleek package on the desk. Who would be the lucky sod to crack open the controller and put it through its paces? Well, being the editor, there are certain perks and privileges that come with the job –  I wasn’t going to let anyone else get their grubby fingers on the MOGA.

 

Build Quality

MOGA - The Mobile Game Changer
The first thing that strikes you with the MOGA is its build quality – it is flawless! This little pocket rocket is one of the best looking controllers on the market. The piano black finish is gorgeous and the feel and control is akin to your PS3 and XBox 360 controllers, albeit a tad smaller for use on mobile devices (smartphones and tablets).

With dual analogue sticks, shoulder triggers and four action buttons, you will feel right at home when the MOGA is in your hands. The unit even has a ‘flip’ arm which secures your Android device up to 3.2in / 82mm in size – accommodating the market’s largest smartphones.

The MOGA draws power from two AAA (1.5V) batteries. You’ll get a fair few hours play on a pair of AAAs. We played with it for 6 hours and there was still lots of juice left in the batteries.

 

 

Compatibility & Games

MOGA - The Mobile Game Changer Let’s face it, what good is a controller if it can not be used on a myriad of games. Given the MOGA is for Android 2.3+ devices (we used it on a Samsung Galaxy S3), there are numerous games on Google Play that are ‘enhanced’ for the MOGA. Having said that, games that are compatible with the MOGA must run via its proprietary app, the MOGA Pivot App (don’t stress, it is a breeze to setup and use). Unfortunately, this means that your much loved retro gaming emulators can not utilise this controller. That aside, there are games being added to the library on a constant basis. You would be pretty hard pressed if you couldn’t find a swag of games that you could play using the MOGA.

 

Verdict

MOGA - The Mobile Game Changer
If you are a control freak and yearn for precision, then the MOGA Pocket Controller is for you. If you tend to play MAME or other retro system emulators, then you will need to look elsewhere. This is one great little controller that we highly recommend. 

DOTA 2: A Game for Crazy People?

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I played my first game of Dota 2 a week ago at the time of this writing, and am currently sitting on 34 hours logged. This is with two days spent out of town, away from my computer. 34 hours in 5 days, then. For a week, my computer has been little more than a Dota 2 delivery vessel. I am a man obsessed. Consumed, even. I dream of sick ganks and clutch ults. The distinctive sound of a stack of gold dropping, a reward for a last-hit, or the choir heralding my hero’s return to the battlefield, echo in my brain even as I write this. Any experienced Dota player will tell you that 34 hours is but a pittance, that I cannot even begin to plumb the depths of the game, much less attempt to relay them to you, the reader, but I feel I have no choice but to try. This is the first of hopefully several pieces journaling my descent into the madness that is Dota 2.

DOTA 2: A Game for Crazy People?

First, the absolute basics: Dota 2 is the “sequel” to Defense of the Ancients, or DotA, a free mod for Blizzard’s Warcraft 3. The original DotA is possibly the most-played mod in history, and is still actively supported. It spawned an entire genre pretty much single-handedly, the genre now known as MOBAs, or Multiplayer Online Battle Arenas; a  descriptor so vague as to be meaningless, but nevertheless the one we seem to have settled on. In MOBAs, two teams of 5 players face off in an enormous map. Their home bases are in the bottom-left and top-right corners of the map, and the map has three “lanes” running along the top, bottom, and middle. Each team automatically spawns minions, or “creeps,” periodically, which march unthinking down the lanes attacking whatever they see. The goal of each team is to break down the other’s defensive towers and ultimately to destroy the opponent’s Ancient, sitting in the middle of their base. Players gain gold and experience from killing creeps and other players, which are used to level up and buy equipment.

Dota 2

The main thing to understand about Dota 2, and the overarching theme of any discussion of it, is that it is fucking crazy. It is a mutant, an aberration of game design. Its mechanics seem to have been half-designed, half stumbled-upon, and never revised. In some ways, it is the essence of an RPG experience. You pick a character, grind low level mobs (“farm creeps” in Dota 2 parlance), and level up and load them out until you are an unstoppable force. Rather than take place over 40 hours or 40 days, the entire experience can be had in 40 minutes, and it turns out it is still massively satisfying. In other ways, it is totally unique, even alien. Sometimes, you want to attack your own creeps, so as to “deny” your opponents the full XP and gold from their death. Other times, you want to sit back and abstain from attacking anything at all, so as not to push the front line forward into enemy territory, where they have the defensive advantage. The game is loaded to the gills with idiosyncrasies large and small.

Dota 2

Dota 2’s title may suggest that it is a sequel, but in reality it is essentially a port of the original DotA into the Source engine. The Warcraft 3 engine had some particular quirks and features that DotA inherited by necessity, and they have been largely carried over into the new game. A new player may wonder, rightly, what the point of a full day/night cycle is. At night, units have shorter visibility, and there is one hero who is underpowered by day and reaches his full potential by night. A new player might wonder why, if you pull neutral creeps away from their camps for a crucial few seconds, exact replicas of those creeps spawn in their camp, leaving you with two identical sets of creeps to farm? These are minor features, arguably a bug in the latter case, borne of the Warcraft 3 engine. One might think that they might be streamlined or cleaned up. But no. “Streamlined” is not an adjective one should ever apply to Dota 2 under any circumstances.

Dota 2

This game has an info-density that would put any MMO to shame, and to be competent at the game you better be ready to absorb all that information, fast. At the time of this writing, there are 101 playable heroes, out of a planned 110, each with 4 abilities (unless they have 5 or 6!). Some of these may be active abilities, things like spells or techniques, while others are passive, meaning they are really more just a character attribute. Learning your own hero is feasible over the course of one match, but without some knowledge of your teammates’ and enemies’ heroes, you may be in for some unpleasant surprises, like being struck by lightning literally out of nowhere. Or perhaps a ghost pirate ship will come barreling out of the woods next to you and run you over. All’s fair in love and Dota.

Dota 2

These heroes are categorized by roles. Some of these roles are familiar to anyone who has played any kind of RPG, such as “durables,” a.k.a. tanks, or “nukers.” Some are completely unique to Dota, such as “carries,” who start the game underpowered and must be protected by other heroes, but grow in such a way that by the end of the game they are unstoppable. There are 15 (ish – it’s fuzzy and with lots of overlap) of these roles, and a hero may fill any number of them.

Dota 2

In addition to all of this are the items. There are dozens and dozens of items, which can have some fairly substantial effects on your character’s abilities. With the right loadout, you can even nudge a hero into a role they may not be primarily suited for, as befits your team composition. Items can only be bought at the shop in your team’s home base. Unless you go to one of the “secret shops” strewn about the map which have a separate inventory of items that can only be bought there. Don’t worry if you can’t get over there, though, because each team can also have a “courier,” a separate character that can ferry items from any shop to your character. You should coordinate with your teammates though, as each team’s courier can be controlled by anyone on the team at any time, (or killed by an enemy because, whatever! Dota!) and you don’t want any confusion.

Dota 2

So yeah, this game is fucking crazy. To their credit, Valve is trying their damnedest to lower the barrier to entry and improve the experience of new players. By far the most successful of these, for me, has been the game’s integrated guide system, which highlights the abilities you should be developing, in order, as well as presenting you with the items you should be focusing on for your hero. This has helped immensely, as the stress of having to learn what these scads of items do can be temporarily put aside while you focus on the already ludicrously daunting task of simply learning who these characters are, what they are capable of, and just what the hell is going on at any given time.  Make no mistake though, you will still need several tabs of Dota 2 wikis open at the start of every match to try to piece together what you are facing.

Dota 2

Even then, Dota 2 can be frustrating in a way that most other games would take great pains to prevent. Half of my games have ended with a character (usually for the opposing team) seeming so completely overpowered that I feel like they must have found some sort of exploit, that this cannot possibly be the way this game is meant to play out. But no, no, that’s just how Dota 2 is. There is also the ever-present threat of verbal abuse by your teammates. Dota 2 is a team game more than any other I’ve ever played, and if one member is noticeably worse than the others (or worse, drops from the game), the entire team will suffer dramatically for it. This genre is notorious for promoting discord amongst teammates, and Dota 2 is unfortunately no exception. Bring a friend, or four.

Dota 2

So why, then, am I doing this? Why am I submitting myself to the incomprehensible heroes, inexplicable random deaths and interminable abuse? It’s hard to know for sure what makes Dota 2 so compelling. I think partly it’s what I suggest above, that it can provide the satisfaction of a good RPG in microcosm, as over the course of one match your character grows from a fragile, defenseless creature to a fearsome force of nature. It is game as power fantasy, but this one makes you work for it, every time.

Dota 2

Beyond that, though, is the simple satisfaction that mastery of a complex system can give you. I, like many gamers I suspect, need to understand my games, to master their mechanics and bend them to my will. This, then, is perhaps the largest, most complex, most seemingly indomitable system ever conceived within the realm of videogames, and thus my greatest challenge. At 34 hours in, I have barely reached the point where I understand what is happening most of the time; where I am able to follow conversation between and maybe even play with those who are far more experienced and skilled than myself. Just getting to this point, overcoming the brick wall of confusion and frustration and negative feedback to arrive here, at basic competence, is already one of the most satisfying experiences I’ve had. The game’s runaway success may seem inscrutable given its absurd complexity, but having played it for just a week now, it seems unnatural that it is not the biggest game in the world already.

Dota 2

My previous experience falling deep down a gaming rabbit hole was with Starcraft II. Starcraft II, like Dota 2, is a game of almost limitless depth. It is also the exact opposite of Dota 2 in virtually every other way. Starcraft II often gets compared to chess. It may be asymmetrical, with three distinct factions with different fundamental mechanics, but Blizzard takes great care to keep things balanced, to make sure that every unit plays a core, elemental role in the overall game system, in pursuit of the perfectly balanced competitive experience.

Dota 2

If Starcraft II is a modern day chess, honed by game design masters, then Dota 2 is Cowboys and Indians, being played by a gaggle of eight year old boys, arguing over who missed whom and who is secretly wearing a bullet proof vest. If Starcraft is about a relatively small number of units and mechanics interacting endlessly to create new situations, Dota 2 is about implementing literally every idea that anyone connected to the game has ever had, in the hopes that if every hero is completely overpowered, it will all come out in the wash. The result is an experience that is at once sprawling, messy, disheartening, unpredictable, organic, empowering, and above all completely, endlessly, fascinating.

Player made dungeons in Diablo 3

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Player made dungeons in Diablo 3

One of the problems I had with City of heroes back in the day was the lack of tile sets for instance zones. What this means is how the layout and design of a map looks. In COH, you often had the same four types of maps, sewer, office building, warehouse and the laboratory.

diablo 3 rifts

Now I get it, we are in a modern city, how many unique places can there be? My answer is, have you been around a modern city? Why were we not fighting in grocery stores, sport stadiums, malls, jails? As time went on a few more were added, but nothing near what it should have been.

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In Diablo you have adventures, you can do bounties or rifts and the levels rotate so one moment you are in Hell and when you zone to level 2 you might be in a cave or one of the open zones. In addition, the maps themselves can rotate so it might be the same storage room, but the layout is different enough that it almost feels new.

While this is a nice touch I still feel as if more could have been done. Consider, in previous games not only could you play via LAN, but you could make your own maps. In the original StarCraft people would make some fantastic maps and they were fun to play.

city of heroes

Now there is a bad way to implement maps and sadly City of Heroes did so at first. People would make maps specifically to herd enemies and level up quickly. Little time or design was put in and the result was a flood of bad maps.

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Dungeons and Dragons online did player map maps well, where they are not only approved by the developers but by key players and bad maps don’t make the cut.

dungeons and dragons online, neverwinter. foundry

Let’s face facts, we are not going to get fast expansions and content, but another fact is we as gamers eat through content. I believe the fix is to allow players to design maps, leave monster and loot placement up to the developers. It is not a perfect system, but I believe it could bring more uniqueness to the maps and improve gameplay overall.

Dungeons

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Dungeons was a game I was really looking forward to, only to be very disappointed by the end product. ~Nick Herber

Dungeons

Sadly, Dungeons is in fact the exact opposite of one of those stories.  The premise is one that caught my attention from the very beginning.  You are the evil overlord who creates, adds to and manages dungeons that foolish, intrepid explorers will visit in hopes of satisfying some deep need or quest.
Dungeons - PC

Your job is three-fold.  Lure them in, sate their interest by giving them what they want, and then finish them off when they try to escape your dungeon.  I have long heard that Dungeon Keeper was a classic PC title (I never did play it) that Dungeons tries very hard to emulate.  I get the feeling though, that Dungeons missed the mark on several points.  Dungeons was a game I was really looking forward to, only to be very disappointed by the end product.

Graphics – 6:

The details and animation are all pretty average.  This is not a game that will tax your video card by any means.  That said, I actually liked the color schemes and ambient lighting used throughout.

Dungeons - PC

The lack of detail and often minimal animations do little to help matters, but at least the visuals do not seem to cause slowdown and do not tear through environments.

Sound & Music – 7:

I really would have liked more music.  What they have here is actually pretty good, but there is not a ton of variety to be had.

Dungeons - PC
The voice acting is pretty decent as well, which is a big perk since the dialog is pretty well-written for the most part.  The sound effects are nothing special though.
Gameplay – 5:

Where to begin… overall the game’s core mechanics are adequate if shallow.  The idea of luring people in to more or less ‘fatten them up for the kill’ is okay on paper, but quite often I found it frustrating how you had to pander to a hero’s needs.  The lack of direct command over minions only made the missions that much more repetitive as well.

Dungeons - PC
The commands are a bit clunky to access and use as well, though the tutorial does a good enough job of at least getting you pointed in the right direction.

Intangibles – 5:

So, generally I want a long game, but in this case Dungeons just plods on for a bit too long.  The missions really are so similar to one another that I was ready for the game to end well before the last level.  I also had some stability issues with the game.  It would freeze or crash on occasion, but for reasons I could never properly identify.

Dungeons - PC
It was not using a ton of memory and my computer is well above the specs for this title, but somehow I kept getting it into bad states.  That problem did seem to diminish once I got a few levels in, but it got me off on the wrong foot initially.
Overall – 5.75:

What happens when you make a game with a great idea but poor execution?  You wind up with something like Dungeons.  I went into the game with an open mind, despite some negative reviews about it early on.  Usually I can find a couple of high-points for a game to discuss – even if I do not particularly like it.

Dungeons - PC
While there was some witty dialog that was reasonably well-executed, I could not help but feel disappointed in how average the rest of the title was.

Your Epic Gaming moment Contest

Your Epic Gaming moment Contest

We’ve all had them, the tale that you tell your friends and maybe your children. It might have been a game you have been trying to beat and finally defeated that last boss. Perhaps you were going for an achievement that was really hard and finally got it. Sometimes an epic gaming moment can just be a really great night gaming with friends, but often it is taking down another player online or in person in versus competitions.

My Story

I had a lot of epic gaming moments, but one that really stuck out for me was in World of Warcraft. I was in a guild with a number of friends and we decided to start fresh on a new server. This was still early in WOW, so there was no expansion yet.

world of warcraft zone, molten core

We had gotten to Molten Core and have been trying to beat the end boss for some time. One day the guild leader said that today was the day we would beat the boss and so we started the fight and as we began he played this over the Ventrilo channel.

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Sure, it was geeky, but we loved it and it did get us focused and fired up. Not only did we beat the boss, but we beat it just as the song was ending, it was awesome, it was perfect, for me, it was epic.

The Contest

We want to hear your epic story, but we know how people are about posting anywhere expect Reddit and Facebook so we added an incentive. SteelSeries is sponsoring our contest to find the top epic gaming moments from you, the fans of Obsolete Gamer.

It’s simple, post a comment telling us your epic gamer moment in the comment section below. Post using your Facebook login so we can find you to send the prize. Over the next week we will read them all and decide on the best. The top three will receive SteelSeries swag. Here are the three price levels.

The Swag

SteelSeries-5Hv3-Gaming-Headset

Top Prize: Steelseries-5hv3 Gaming Headset

steelseries-3hv2-gaming-headset

Runner up Prize: Steelseries-3hv2 Gaming Headset

steelseriesQcKmousepad

Third Prize: The Steelseries OcK+ Pro Gaming Surface

The Requirements

To win you have to post your story here, we cannot accept it posted anywhere else. In addition, you need to be a fan of the Obsolete Gamer Facebook Page and the Steel Series Facebook Page. Our team will pick the top three and announce the winners via our Facebook Page. The contest is only for people in the U.S. We will sent you the prize once we get in contact with you.

So what’s your story?

The contest ends this Friday April 25th at Midnight Eastern so post your stories now!

Beneath a Steel Sky

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Beneath a Steel Sky

Ah, the point-and-click adventure – a genre so fondly remembered yet so close to extinction… ~Lewis Packwood

The fortunes of these most traditional of adventure games took a nosedive with the demise of the Amiga and never really recovered; the kids got into their fancy new ‘Grand Theft Autos’ and ‘Tomb Raiders’ and rapidly lost interest in figuring out how to combine broken string with some mud in order to create a mask with which to frighten the temple guard into giving you the key for the dungeon. Actually, when you put it like that it’s probably not surprising that the popularity of these games waned – after all, one of the best points about Grand Theft Auto is that you never have to spend twenty minutes painstakingly combing the screen with the mouse in a bid to work out whether you’ve missed picking up an essential item. “Ah, so that tiny yellow-green blob 14 screens back was actually a key!” is something you’ll never hear uttered by players of GTA.

Beneath a Steel Sky - Amiga - Gameplay Screenshot

 

Of course, I’m doing the genre a disservice – for all the frustrating back-and-forth wandering and pixel hunting there were a hundred more golden moments of ‘Eureka!’-style puzzle solving, not to mention elaborate plot twists. For, of course, ’tis in the narrative where these games truly excel, and Beneath a Steel Sky was a shining beacon in this respect. The developers even went so far as to create a mini-comic to be shipped with the game, detailing the events leading up to the opening credits.

 

Set in a dystopian future Australia, the comic describes how the main character, Robert Foster*, is raised by Indigenous Australians after a helicopter crash in ‘The Gap’ (the Australian Outback). He learns electronics and builds himself a robot, Joey, who becomes your companion throughout the game. Upon reaching adulthood, Foster is kidnapped by stormtroopers sent from Union City (a possible future Sydney), and his tribe is murdered. The stormtroopers have been sent by LINC, the mysterious computer mainframe that controls the city.

Beneath a Steel Sky - Amiga - Gameplay Screenshot

 

The game proper opens with a jaw-droppingly animated (for the Amiga) sequence as the helicopter crashlands in Union City and Foster escapes. It emerges that in this ruthless future world, cities comprised of mammoth skyscrapers have swallowed up most of the remaining liveable land. Working class citizens are confined to the upper levels of the city, whereas the leisure elite luxuriate below (‘beneath a steel sky’, geddit?). In order to confront LINC and learn the truth about his past, Foster must evade security and work his way down to the lower levels.

Beneath a Steel Sky - Amiga - Gameplay Screenshot

 

If the set-up sounds a little similar to Mega-City One in Judge Dredd, then it’s no coincidence – Dave Gibbons (of 2000 AD and Watchmen fame) did all of the artwork for the game (including the mini-comic), and every screen simply drips with cyberpunk chic. At the time it looked astonishing, and even now the dystopian backdrops are capitivating. The anticipation of what graphical delight awaited you on the next screen was almost as much of a draw as the fantastic plot.

Beneath a Steel Sky - Amiga - Gameplay Screenshot

 

Even though the game plot was more serious than some of it’s point-and-click contemporaries (e.g. The Secret of Monkey Island), BaSS still managed to squeeze in a fair amount of humour, mostly of the British variety (i.e. double entendres and sarcasm). Indeed, the fact that the game never takes itself too seriously is one of its most enduring features (Gears of War take note – non-stop, po-faced machismo is more likely to make gamers laugh derisively into their sleeves than empathise with the characters).

Beneath a Steel Sky - Amiga - Gameplay Screenshot

 

Of course, it wasn’t all a bed of roses. The chief problem with the game was it’s sheer size (in terms of memory space anyway): the Amiga 600 version of the game came on a whopping 15 floppy disks (which I believe is actually the most disks used by one Amiga game – correct me if I’m wrong). This meant that backtracking through screens might involve several bouts of disk-swapping and loading, which became very tedious very quickly. Luckily I upgraded to an Amiga 1200 after I got BaSS, which meant that I could load the game in its entirety onto the 1200′s mighty 60 megabyte hard drive.

Blimey, it’s crazy to think now that my current mobile phone has nearly 67 times more memory than my old Amiga 1200…

Beneath a Steel Sky - Amiga - Gameplay Screenshot

 

The other major problem with the game was the problem shared by many point-and-clickers – that of the obscure puzzle. To be fair, BaSS was relatively good in this regard compared with some other examples in the genre, but even one of the first puzzles in the game (which involved wrenching a rung from a ladder to use as a crowbar) had me backtracking between screens for AGES. And of course, all this was in the days before GameFAQs.com (God bless you GameFAQs! Sing hallelujah, for yay, the days of becoming frustratingly stuck in video games hath endeth!).

watchmen_characters

Of all the games on this list, I’d rate BaSS in the top five games I’d like to play again, which just goes to show how much of an impression it left on me (if you fancy giving it a go yourself, you can play it for free using ScummVM). Interestingly, it seems that point-and-click adventure games are starting to make a bit of a comeback, chiefly thanks to the Nintendo Wii and DS. The laid back pace of the point-and-clicker is perfect for the older end of Nintendo’s gaming spectrum, and the Wii remote and DS stylus might as well have been custom made for playing this kind of game… With talk of a Director’s Cut of Broken Sword to be released for the Wii and DS, as well as the release of a new generation of point-and-clickers (e.g. Sam & Max: Season One, The Secret Files: Tunguska), perhaps this is the start of a point-and-click rennaissance?

In the meantime, here’s a clip of BaSS to whet your appetite – this is the CD-ROM version of the game, which used voice acting rather than text (although, inexplicably, everyone seems to be American, even though the game is set in Australia…).

Pathetic displays of Nudity in Classic Video Games

Just like how dads in America used to hide their Playboy magazines it should be no surprise that wizards and spell makers of old would do the same. ~J.A. Laraque

Pathetic displays of Nudity in Classic Video Games

The other day I was told that the laser disc version of the movie, Who framed Roger Rabbit, is worth a lot of money because you can slow down the speed enough in a specific scene to get a Basic Instinct shot of Jessica Rabbit. If you are creepy enough to go research that yourself then these displays of nudity in classic games are for you.

Diplocephalus: Castlevania Symphony of the Night

The ultimate Myspace angle monster, you guys remember Myspace angles right? Diplocephalus is a monster from the Sony PlayStation game, Castlevania Symphony of the Night.  She has a beautiful upper body, but look out below because she is attached to a horrible monster.

nudity in gaming

When you hit her she turns and you get a shot of her bare hind quarters.  I just realized this is a monster representation of a hot click dating an ugly dude.

Big Snail: Metal Slug 3

A long time ago desperate horny boys with cable television would turn to the adult channel which was naturally scrambled and stare at it for hours for a few milliseconds glance of a semi-unscrambled signal. This is exactly what the nudity here is like.

nudity in gaming

In Metal Slug 3, when this monster spays you with acid, if you are a guy you dissolve into bones. If you are a girl, the acid dissolves her clothes and for a second you get a few frames of her naked body. Look, if they took the time to code it in the game we might as well take the time to stare at it.

Lizzy: Rampage World Tour

Why did all the boys love to play the lizard in Rampage, for the few seconds of heavy pixelated nudity when she reverts to her human form that’s why. Her expression is similar to waking up in bed next to someone you though was attractive last night at 3am after you had twelve beers only to wake up to a nightmare.

nudity in gaming

And don’t worry about the pixelated dots; they have breast augmentation that can fix that right up.

Centerfold: Secret of Mana

Just like how dads in America used to hide their Playboy magazines it should be no surprise that wizards and spell makers of old would do the same. In the 16-bit RPG, Secret of Mana, there are mystic book enemies than once in a while show you a nude centerfold spread of a woman lying on her stomach.

nudity in gaming

It’s cool though because even ancient spell-weavers needed a little me time.

Medusa: Super Castlevania IV

Ever had someone yell; “Oh my God, Look at that!” and you turn around too late to see it? I never noticed Medusa’s nipple-less fun bags when I used to play Super Castlevania IV on my SNES. I was too busy worrying about the snakes flying at me, but apparently a lot of parents noticed it.

nudity in gaming

 

You know, a lot of busty women always say; “My eyes are up here.” In Medusa’s case it’s better to remain focused on her boobs.

Peter: Power Instinct 2

It makes sense with all the fighting games and all the fighters and all the powerful attacks on people, many with little clothing that parts would become exposed. In fact they have videos all about women’s tops being ripped open in fighting games, but for as many horny teens that there are who would ask for that there are ten times that many who would beg you not to have this.

nudity in gaming

Rule one of Street Fighting should be put to on some high quality underwear.

Phantasy Star Online

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While the old series was more or a less a compeitior to Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy, PSO was in a class of it’s own. ~Adam R.

Phantasy Star Online

While Sonic Team might be constantly criticized for never really getting Sonic right when 3D came along, their magnum opus during the Dreamcast era was Phantasy Star Online. Which revived the classic Phantasy Star series after a 7 year break.

Phantasy Star Online

 While the old series was more or a less a compeitior to Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy, PSO was in a class of it’s own. The only thing like it were MMOs like Everquest on PC. It was to be played online as players can choose different classes and join other players to conquer levels and defeat bosses.
Phantasy Star Online
 The game later came out with different editions like a 2nd version with new content on Dreamcast. After the “death” of the Dreamcast, Sega ported an enhanced version on Nintendo Gamecube. There was also an Xbox version later on, but oddly it’s unplayable now since it had no offline mode and the online service for the original Xbox is gone.
Phantasy Star Online
This was one of the games I was always meaning to get, but never did. I never had broadband (until 2005) or got the internet adapter for Gamecube which was a big reason for it. Unless they come out with a Xbox Live Arcade version, I doubt I’ll ever get the chance to try it out. I hear the sequels never recaptured the magic of the original.

Qwak

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Qwak is one for the adrenaline junkie gamers isn’t it?! There will always be some gamers who love fast-paced reaction based games…and those who don’t. That’s fine. ~Jamie Woodhouse

Qwak

Qwak is one of those odd cases where the story behind the game could be argued to be more interesting than the actual title itself.

Not that Qwak is a bad game by any means – it’s a super slick arcade platformer of the type that you just don’t see enough of nowadays – but this is a title with a intriguingly long history. So here we go…

Released on the BBC Micro (and the Acorn Electron) back in 1989 by Jamie Woodhouse, the game was then buffed up and bought to the Amiga and Amiga 32CD in 1993 with the help of Team 17.

 

Qwak - Gameplay Screenshot

It seemed as if that was the end for Qwak, but a whole thirteen years later Woodhouse plucked his personal labor of love out of obscurity and bought it onto the GBA.

Without a publisher’s backing the game was released unlicensed from Nintendo, with only 300 copies of Qwak created and sold directly on Woodhouse’s site.

A handmade instruction manual and the option to make your own box just demonstrated how much care had gone into bringing the game over to the GBA.

 

Qwak - Gameplay Screenshot

This was not the duck’s final bow though, but merely a rebirth. Since the GBA release he  has now flown his way onto three other formats – Mac, PC and iOS.

But that’s enough history – what’s most important is how the game stands up today.

It’s hard not to feel that Qwak’s core principles do seem like something from another era while playing, but this turns out to be a strength, not a weakness.

The game requires you move and think fast. You have a button to jump and another to fire your limited supply of eggs, with the latter essential for dispatching the many foes you’ll encounter.

Quite what your enemies are supposed to be (are they animal mutants…or something else?) is irrelevant, but range from the easily culled to ones of the irritatingly persistent variety (some can fly, and home in at you directly).

 

Qwak - Gameplay Screenshot

While avoiding foes you also have a set number of keys to grab to open each level’s exit, with fruit and gem pick-ups helping to elevate your score. A time limit means you’ll have precious little time to plan ahead.

In fact, boosting your high-score could be argued to be the main driving force behind the game, despite the fact that there are a set number of levels to complete.

Only the very best will manage to reach the end of these on the normal difficulty setting though, so beating your score is one of the main reasons to keep playing.

Qwak - Gameplay Screenshot

Stages are thrown at you in a random order as well, meaning you lose any chance of settling into a rhythm – with this only strengthening Qwak’s already highly challenging arcade sensibilities.

A highly competitive two player option (not available on the GBA version) rounds off things rather nicely.

Overall, there’s no real excuse if you haven’t at least tried Qwak (a free demo is available on the game’s site), especially seeing as it offers you the chance to experience videogame values that modern titles seem to have deleted from their repertoire.

Yes, there’s a good chance that the game’s demand for super quick reactions may put you off, but stick with it – seeing your high score steadily climb upwards may hold more appeal than you might think.

—-BONUS—-

Here’s a little extra for the 200th post – a mini interview with Mr Qwak himself, Jamie Woodhouse.

Qwak has been released on eight systems over the course of 21 years – can you see yourself releasing it on more formats in the future, or are you just focusing your time somewhere else?

Nope, it won’t be appearing on any new formats, just yet. I’m more interested in creating new games.

A worrying proportion of the people I get to play my GBA copy of Qwak complain that it’s too fast and that they can’t keep up. Do you find it worrying how truly intense reaction based gameplay seems to dying out in a lot of big-budget modern games, or do you think that it helps make a game like Qwak stand out all the more?

Yeah, I think a lot of people feel that way, it’s too fast for them. It really is one for the adrenaline junkie gamers isn’t it?!
There will always be some gamers who love fast-paced reaction based games…and those who don’t. That’s fine.

 

Qwak - Gameplay Screenshot

You’re thrown back in time to 1989 – would you do anything differently in terms of the title’s design or what it set out to do as a game knowing what you know now?

I wouldn’t be the same ‘me’, so I’d probably do a whole lot of stuff differently. Hard to say though, exactly what could have been changed to make it better, or exactly what would constitute ‘better’.

Regarding the GBA version of the game, when did you send off the last of the 300 GBA carts? Did you include anything special in the final copy to be sold, and were you relieved or slightly sad when you sent it out? 

I can’t remember the exact date, or even month; I guess it must be a couple of years back now? I didn’t do anything special for the last copy. Was quite glad when it was all over, was tired of stuffing things in to envelopes and licking stamps!

Finally – which is your favorite version of Qwak, and why?

That would be the iPhone version (which is basically the same as the PC and Mac version). It just feels more colorful, plays better, and I love the puzzle levels on world 2!

My thanks go to Jamie for his time, and wish him the best of luck with his future titles. The main hub of all things Qwak can be found here, including links to purchase the PC, Mac and iOS versions of the game.

Cosplay Wars: Elizabeth vs. Moxxi

Cosplay Wars: Elizabeth vs. Moxxi

bioshock Elizabeth book

The battle of two worlds this week on Cosplay Wars. Team 1 features cosplayers representing the character of Elizabeth from BioShock Infinite. Team two represents the Boardlands beauty, Moxxi. Here is how it works, you look at all the pictures for each team and vote on which team represents their character the best. Leave a comment to eat points for our give-a-ways.

So, which team won?

[yop_poll id=”8″]

Outlaws

 

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For single-player gameplay, there were three options: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. (Come on, who doesn’t like Clint Eastwood spaghetti westerns?) ~Dan Epp

 Outlaws

The background story in Outlaws revolved around retired U.S. Marshal James Anderson, who lives an idyllic life with his beautiful wife and only child.  Idyllic, that is, until his opposition to selling his land to a nasty railroad baron (weren’t they all nasty?) brings about the death of his beloved wife Anna and the abduction of his daughter, Sarah.  The adventure began with Anderson burying his wife, digging up his shotgun, and heading off to find his daughter and take his revenge.  “Dyin’s too good for ‘em,” the game’s tagline said, and after watching the introduction, you’re rooting for ex-Marshall Anderson to show them all what that means.

Outlaws - LucasArts Entertainment - PC Gameplay Screenshot-2

Outlaws was a first-person shooter style game using a modified version of the Dark Forces game engine, and although the game’s storyline was focused on single-player gameplay, the game also featured a robust multiplayer mode.  Players could choose to play up to six of the main characters within the game: ex-Marshall Anderson, Matt “Dr. Death” Jackson (who killed the Marshall’s wife), “Bloody” Mary Nash, “Gentleman” Bob Graham (the railroad baron), “Spittin” Jack Sanchez, and Chief Two-Feathers, with advantages and disadvantages for each.

Outlaws - LucasArts Entertainment - PC Gameplay Screenshot-3

For single-player gameplay, there were three options: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. (Come on, who doesn’t like Clint Eastwood spaghetti westerns?)  The differences between the options were in how much damage Anderson could take from gunshot wounds; in Good mode, the player could walk Anderson into a spray of bullets with only minor consequences, in Ugly mode the ex-Marshall might be able to withstand one or two shots, but certainly no more than that – so no wading into a gunfight firing at will.

Outlaws - LucasArts Entertainment - PC Gameplay Screenshot-4

The graphics for Outlaws were the standard 800×600 mode, which by today’s standard would be bulky, but were more than adequate in 1997.  LucasArts also added Glide and Direct3D support on a later patch, which helped extend the game’s shelf life as better technology was released.  The animated cutscenes were quite unique, as they were run through a special filter to make them appear to be hand-drawn, which really helped add to the game’s atmosphere.

Outlaws - LucasArts Entertainment - PC Gameplay Screenshot-5

In addition to the main game, LucasArts included a set of five single-player missions that led the player through the early career of the ex-Marshall.   Each mission’s goal was the capture (preferred) or execution of a wanted outlaw on the run.  With each successful completion, Anderson is promoted, eventually earning his Deputy, Sheriff, and Marshall badges.  LucasArts also released a set of four missions on their website which they called, a “Handful of Missions,” in keeping with the spaghetti western motif.  These missions are stand alone gameplay, unconnected to the original storyline.  (Game companies that give you free extras are always tops in my books).

Unfortunately, despite the great gameplay, Outlaws did not perform well commercially.  It is forever a niche product (similar to Grim Fandango), which holds a special place in the hearts of those who played it.   Outlaws is another forgotten classic that deserves to be dusted off and enjoyed by retrogamers everywhere!

Jaws Unleashed

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About as much fun as having your leg chewed off.

Jaws Unleashed

“Take control of Jaws the Great White Shark while playing out the themes and
locations from the JAWS film universe”. Though you’d wonder why you’d bother,
with a score of 53% for the xbox format,
and 55% for the Ps2 from Metacritic.com

jaws unleashed

Xbox reviews
summary

glitches, camera issues, satisfying missions, large environment,
unique combat
about as much fun as having your leg chewed off
Fans of the
film will love it, but prepare to wrestle with controls
technical flaws, but
the savagery makes it fun (???)
lacklustre camera, collission detection,
graphics

jaws unleashed

Ps2
reviews summary

Playing as a killer shark a refreshing change of
pace
Reasonable amount of fun at a budget price
Unforgivable
gameplay
In the spirit of generosity about 30 minutes of fun

jaws unleashed

Official website (don’t bother)
Gamespot
screenshots
IGN
Trailers
Gamestats
popularity rating 40.7%

OGX Episode 2

OGX Episode 2

So it is true, crazy is easier to do that serious or sane for that matter. OGX is back with a new episode, much shorter because we know you can’t stand us that much and we had to go see Game of Thrones which was awesome by the way. This week we talked about companies more concerned about bringing out DLC then fixing bugs and topics such as which video game food would you eat in real life and which video game world would you send your worst enemy.

Iguana-on-a-stick

You can check out the OGX show page for the latest episode and you can also watch it on the O.G. Originals channel. For those that have Itunes you can now find all our episodes there, free for download.

Zelda Cartridge Soap Bar

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I know there is a joke in here somewhere about gamers needing a bath, but I won’t go there. ~J.A. Laraque

Zelda Cartridge Soap Bar

Our image of the day comes from This is why I’m Broke, a website for those of us with disposable incomes or those who think they  do, but are sadly mistaken. Now obviously it was a smart move to go with Ocearina of Time and not the original game as a NES cartridge size bar of soap would be kind of weird. I know there is a joke in here somewhere about gamers needing a bath, but I won’t go there.

Zelda Cartridge Soap Bar

Apparently this bar of soap smells like the “enchanted woods” I am not sure what those woods smell like but I’m guessing a lot like those green pine tree car air fresheners you used to see in every delivery van. So the question is, do you use this $15 dollar bar of soap when you get it or keep it in a; do not use dish like your old aunt Bertha?

Raccoon City or Silent Hill

Raccoon City or Silent Hill

Why did you talk to the girl with the sexy Myspace photo that lived in the middle of nowhere? You knew that either you would end up with a serious case of blue-balls or you would end up making a lost trip to the town that time forgot. The things we do for sex and she was a sure thing, but now it is time to make the drive home only to realize it will be months before you make the trek back to see her again that is if you ever go back.

Perhaps the visions of her naked body claimed your attention at the wrong moment, but soon you find yourself on a road you don’t know. Your phone isn’t working and as you go further and further your only hope is that you can turn around or find a gas station because you really need to take a piss.

You spot a road sign that just reads “Choice, 1 mile ahead.” What the hell kind of a road sign is this, you think to yourself, but before you have a chance to curse the department of transportation you see the roads ahead of you and the choice you have to make.

Raccoon City, Silent Hill

So, which one will it be, Raccoon city where you are bound to meet some zombie-type creatures and other abominations not to mention umbrella goons, or do you go to Silent Hill which could be any incarnation of the games or even the movies, or maybe they will force you to watch the second movie which is a horror to behold.

What’s it gonna be?

Pyramid Head

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or

Dead Lasers?

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You vote and tell us which one you would choose and if you think you can turn back, ya, you tried that and it lead you right back here.

[yop_poll id=”7″]

The Wolf Among Us

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The graphics portray a part of New York that feels gritty and dirty and makes you feel like these characters couldn’t really be happy in their current environment. ~Louis Edwards

The Wolf Among Us

Set prior to the events seen in the first issue of the FABLES comic book series, The Wolf Among Us puts players in the role of Bigby Wolf, a man once more infamously known as The Big Bad Wolf. Now the sheriff of a hidden community in New York City, exiled from the land of fairy tales, Bigby is tasked by the bureaucrat Snow White to keep order within a society of mythical creatures and characters trying to remain undetected in the world of the mundane.

The Wolf Among Us

From a chain-smoking member of ‘The Three Little Pigs,’ to a car-stealing Mr. Toad itching for his next wild ride, The Wolf Among Us examines the lives of beings straight from the pages of myth and lore, now trying to survive on the meanest and most run-down streets of New York City.

Gameplay is a mix of seek-and-find areas and quick-time events, but don’t be fooled by the names of the characters. While it is loosely based on the land of fairy tales, this is all Grimm with no sign of Walt Disney. This game is clearly aimed at adults, with adult language and murder and mayhem galore. That’s not a bad thing, though. The story is well written while giving the gamer a quick understanding of who and what they are dealing with.

The Wolf Among Us

This is a story driven game that uses its surroundings and language to give the gamer a true feel for each character they encounter. While episode one is a little on the short side, it’s still long enough to introduce several key characters, and even re-writes one well known childhood story. That’s not a bad thing either. The story will give you many choices, and will remember each answer you give. Characters will take note of your responses, and their future interactions will reflect your previous approach to the game.

The graphics aren’t your run of the mill 3D style but more of a graphic novel style. This lends well to the overall look and feel of the game and fits right into the storyline. The graphics portray a part of New York that feels gritty and dirty and makes you feel like these characters couldn’t really be happy in their current environment. Add in the well fitting music and the overall sense of despair can make one feel sorry for these folks.

The Wolf Among Us

Telltale Games has once again created an episodic masterpiece that can’t fully be judged until the final episode is upon us. We know there will be five episodes in all, and it is the anticipatory waiting that will make you enjoy the next episode even more.

Well done Telltale Games, well done.

Dark Disciples II

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Dark Disciples II

Freeware CRPGs are less common that -say- freeware adventure and platform games, mostly due to the fact that they need to be bloody big to be any good; a simple fact that translates into tons of content, detailed mechanics and buckets of Tolkien-esque words. Enter, Dark Disciples II, the honestly named and vastly improved sequel to the original Dark Disciples.

Dark Disciples II Dark Disciples IIDark Disciples II

 

 

 

It impressively is a rather huge freeware, tile-based, non-linear RPG sporting an impressive number of quests, characters, monsters and areas, that let’s players freely explore its four continents and even come up with some interesting characters. I suggest you give it a try. I did.

Mega Man Legends

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Imagine Metroid meets Ocarina of Time with walking/movement akin to Resident Evil, and you sort of get the picture. ~Adam R.

Mega Man Legends

While the original Mega Man series has only seen ten original games, Capcom’s favorite blue hero also had different spinoff and subseries. Like Mega Man X which features a new Mega Man built by the original Dr. Light in his last days. Later came along Mega Man Legends which introduced a new Mega Man into a 3D world.

Mega Man Legends - PSOne

Its story is also somewhat indepdent and perhaps unconnected to the rest of the series from what I can tell. This Mega Man is referred to as Mega Man Volnutt who travels with Roll Caskett (who shares the same name as the original Mega Man’s sister), her grandpa, and some monkey. It had something to do with mining and random robot attacks. Didn’t make much sense.
Mega Man Legends - PSOne
The game was not a traditional platformer but instead a 3D action-adventure. Imagine Metroid meets Ocarina of Time with walking/movement akin to Resident Evil, and you sort of get the picture. You travel around towns, and go into caverns/dungeons defeating bad robots.
Mega Man Legends - PSOne
The game met very positive reactions when it first came out on PS1. The complete overhaul was praised for the most part, and the 3D gameplay was likable. A PC and N64 version were later released but they were met with a fair harsher criticism. I played a little bit of the N64 version, but I was saddened to hear that the 3rd game in the series got cancelled.

Super Monkey Ball Jr.

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You know those moments in the Gamecube version where you couldn’t believe you just managed to avoid death? Well, in Jr, those moments increase tenfold. ~Simon Reed

Super Monkey Ball Jr.

It strikes me as a little odd that I haven’t revisited a Monkey Ball game yet, but that’s probaby as the only ones I own that can be classed as retro are the Gamecube original and this, the GBA incarnation.

The irony of this is that they’re technically the same game in terms of the levels offered. So the real fun is eking out the differences.

The most obvious difference is, of course, the graphics.

Super Monkey Ball Jr - Gameboy Advanced

Jr is still looks as good as you could hope though, with the simple maze layouts losing little in their transition to the GBA in terms of clarity.

After all, Monkey Ball has never been a series that’s relied upon its looks – sure, everything apart from the mazes are flat 2D cutouts, but that doesn’t detract much from your enjoyment.

But that’s the one sad thing about the game – when it was released it was held up as a mini technical marvel, much like other 3D titles on the GBA (Star X anyone?), and therefore may have been treated better by reviewers as a result.

And now, with its ‘technical marvel’ status now firmly a thing of the past, the game has to rely purely on its content.

Fortunately, it still holds up rather well in that department. But boy, is it difficult.

Super Monkey Ball Jr - Gameboy Advanced

For one there’s no analogue control, with the d-pad a workable but hardly satisfying alternative.

You know those moments in the Gamecube version where you couldn’t believe you just managed to avoid death? Well, in Jr, those moments increase tenfold.

Every quickly taken corner feels tougher than it should be, and even the added feature to adjust the gradient of the courses with A and B doesn’t make things much easier.

One nice touch is that you can save during the single player stages though – when you’re trying to scrape you way though expert this is a godsend.

So what about the mini-games? Well, you have to unlock them with points from the single player first of all, which is irritating, but aside from that they’re pretty good efforts.

Super Monkey Ball Jr - Gameboy Advanced

First you have Duel, which is basically the main game but with two players. A solid addition.

Then there’s Fight, which basically sees you bouncing around tiny arenas punching each other with oversized boxing gloves. It’s chaotic, but can get dull suprisingly quickly.

Bowling is impressively similar to its home console counterpart, and Golf is as quietly addictive as you’d expect.

But no, there’s no Monkey Target. Perhaps it may have been too tough to pull off on the GBA, but still, it would have been nice if it had been attempted.

Even if it looked atrocious I would have welcomed it with open arms.

So that’s Super Monkey Ball Jr. As long as you don’t expect it to be as good as the home console version you’ll have fun with it.

And it’s miles better than the recent 3DS outing.

Cosplay Wars: Aye vs. Ada

Cosplay Wars: Aye vs. Ada

 cosplay wars aye vs ada

This week we bring you a marque match up. East vs. West. From Resident Evil the blood red rose ready to stab you with her thrones, Ada Wong. From Parasite Eve the mitochondria mistress, Aya Brea. Cosplay Wars works like this, two teams, 10 cosplay images, you pick which team wins.

It’s as easy as that, so tell us, which team won?

 

Catlateral Damage

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Catlateral Damage

Goat Simulator with a Cat?

Perhaps not, but this indie game caught my eye when I saw it. First it is called, Catlateral Damage which is awesome in itself. What it is, is a first person mischievous cat simulator. Just like that damn goat, your mission is to knock over your owners belonging making a mess on the floor, just like real life am I right?

Catlateral Damage

You have 2 minutes to achieve this and just like the Table Flipping Game, the fun is in the knowledge that you are messing up someone else’s stuff. So the Dev is going to be adding more to the game so there will be different rooms and more stuff to knock off and the game is Greenlit and will support Occulus Rift.

Catlateral Damage Catlateral Damage Catlateral Damage

  • Visit the Greelight page & leave gameplay suggestions & feedback HERE
  • Play in a Unity supported browser HERE or Download the Alpha HERE

 

Thanks to PressHeartToContinue for the video review.

Portable N64 Handheld System

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Portable N64 Handheld System

You know personally I was not a fan of the controller on the N64, but I learned to get used to it and after that had a lot of fun. I remember years back an emulator for the N64 that we tried desperately to get working, but it used so much CPU resources most games were not playable. In the age of gaming on the going with handhelds and mobile devices you might ask why would you want to Portal N64 system, the answer is why wouldn’t you want one.

Portable N64 Handheld System

I love the way this looks, the unit uses a 3.5 inch screen and uses a Rumble Pak as well as an Expansion pak. It features an analog stick and get this, it has about 4 hours of battery life. The modders name is Bungle and has hopes to sell them. If he does we’ll buy a copy.

Specs:

  • Custom controller-shaped case with hand grips
  • 3.5″ screen
  • Battery: 4400mAh at 7.4v
  • Battery life: 4 hours 15 minutes
  • Expansion Pak 
  • Battery indicator
  • 1st party N64 controller
  • Custom buttons and d-pad, dual z buttons
  • Gamecube style replacement joystick
  • HMDX Go Portable Audio amp and speakers with volume buttons
  • Switchable internal memory/rumble

Rage

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Rage also has a driving element. At first glance, you might think this was just an add-on thrown in without much thought, all just bells and whistles. You would be wrong. ~Louis Edwards

Rage

It’s the year 2029 and our planet faces impending destruction by the Apophis asteroid. Unable to stop it from impacting, groups of people are sent underground into cryo-pods, known as Arks, where they are frozen in suspended animation. Here they are to wait out the destruction above and to resurface at a later time to rebuild the planet. You are one of these people. Upon your awakening you find that your Ark has malfunctioned and you are the only survivor from your pod. Over 100 years have passed since your cryo-sleep began, and it’s now time for you to face the New World.

Rage - PC Game

The story is well written and original, with many unique characters and a deep storyline. The opening sequence itself tells the entire story of the impending doom and how the people of Earth dealt with it, and is worth the time to watch. The story is continued with dialogue from different characters and does not disappoint.

The world of Rage is separated into several different towns, and all are separated by the vast Wasteland. Each town has a unique set of characters that will want to send you on a task that will have you blasting through bad guys, or racing and shooting your way to the finish line. The tasks will vary, but each one ultimately will have you shooting your way towards a certain goal.

The tasks vary in difficulty and length, but all are fun and non-repetitive. Throw in some boss battles, and you can easily kill 12 or so hours in the campaign. Difficulty can be set to one of four settings depending on your skill level. If you are in the mood for a real challenge try Nightmare difficulty. Fair warning, it does live up to its name. Always be sure to check corpses to see what they may have on them. Ammunition can be hard to come by early on in the campaign, so taking money and ammo from dead bodies is to your advantage. It’s not like they need it anymore.

Rage - PC Game

The Wasteland is controlled by six different clans that you’ll have to come up against.

  • The Wasted Clan is a dim-witted bunch that enjoys mechanics, home-brewed alcohol and fighting. They would rather grab a club than a gun.
  • The Ghost Clan is fearsome and fearless. What seems like a nod to the roots of Doom, they deal in the occult and stage gruesome sacrifices in order to gain power in the afterlife. They use the environment to their advantage while fighting and can be seen climbing around walls and hanging from beams. Their wingsticks provide both melee and ranged opportunities for them to cut you to pieces.
  • The Scorcher Clan believe the asteroid Apophis was the horse of a demigod. They believe that tapping the energy of the asteroid will make them invincible. The Scorchers like fire and cover everything they can in its images.
  • The Shrouded Clan are deserters and are a combined group of all other clans. They use a mix of fighting styles, ranging from clubs, to guns, to exploding RC cars.
  • The Jackal Clan are a vicious clan that covers themselves in fur and look and act more animal than human.
  • The Gearheads are the most intelligent of the wasteland’s factions. These bandits have built advanced machinery and weaponry that make them a force to reckon with.

The cities and the Wasteland are detailed nicely and well designed. Tasks will have you fighting your way through dungeon style rooms reminiscent of Doom and Wolfenstein 3D. iD Software definitely knows how to make a first person shooter. Flanking can be used effectively, if you are aware of the side paths. These aren’t always easily spotted, so keep a keen eye out for them.The number of enemies isn’t overwhelming and they use frags sparingly for the most part.

Rage - PC Game

Your path will be mostly linear, but there are a few offshoots where loot can be found and collected. Loot can be just about anything from collectible playing cards to dress shoes in a box….. WTH?….. Dress shoes in a box?….Really?….Why do I need dress shoes in a frickin box??!!….

In each city there will be a shop of sorts where you can purchase upgrades and ammunition. All of the strange items you may find along your way can be sold at these shops. Be careful what you sell though, as some of these items can be used to make helpful items. While shoes can’t be used for anything other than cash, there are plenty of other things that can be used to make useful items. A bunch of rags can be used along with some antiseptic for a nice little health boost, and those are always handy. Blueprints are acquired by completing tasks and these tell you what is needed to build different items. Shops carry everything you may need.

Rage - PC Game

Rage’s weapon system and inventory system turned out to be more RPG than FPS. There aren’t too many weapons to choose from but each weapon can be enhanced or changed by changing it’s ammunition type. You main weapons are the pistol, shotgun, AK style assault rifle, M4 style assault rifle, sniper rifle, crossbow and a rocket launcher. To give an example of how a weapon can be changed, load up some explosive rounds for your shotgun and it’s now a grenade launcher. Throw some electric bolts in your crossbow and you have a perfect weapon to take out a group of bad guys standing in a pool of water. The ability to change ammo type takes your modest arsenal and turns it into a vast array of weapons with exponential choices.

Rage - PC Game

Rage also has a driving element. At first glance, you might think this was just an add-on thrown in without much thought, all just bells and whistles. You would be wrong. Your first vehicle in the game is a small, unarmed buggy that is great for getting from point A to point B. Nothing too fancy, but it has a decent boost so you can get there in a hurry. The vehicles drive with power and precision, and can turn on a dime if needed (gotta love the e-brake). As you progress through the story, you’ll unlock better vehicles as well as mini-guns and rocket launchers to arm them with. These make traveling through the Wasteland a much more enjoyable trip. Taking out bad guys in the Wasteland can also earn you cash, so make sure you talk to the proper person in a bar to activate your bounty hunting task that will then be ongoing. Eventually you’ll unlock even better weapons for your ride, so don’t think your weapons will always be the same.

Multiplayer has also been included with Rage and offers a few choices. You can opt to play through one of nine side stories with a friend in Wasteland Legends. Either online or split screen, you can play through missions that you may have heard mentioned in campaign mode. You can choose either Normal difficulty or Nightmare difficulty.

Road Rage offers a mix of different styles of vehicle game play. Meteor Rally has a mix of Zones and CTF styles of game play where you collect meteors and drop them off to capture Zones. Chain Rally will have you capturing Rally Points and chaining them together for an increased score. Triad Rally has you capturing three consecutive Rally Points to score. Carnage is exactly what you think it is. It’s a free-for-all death match where killing the other drivers earns you points.

Rage - PC Game

iD Software introduced us to a genre that has long been a staple across every gaming platform known to man. Wolfenstein 3D took us on a mission to eliminate Hitler in WW II, while Doom took us on a mission to eliminate Satan’s minions. So many franchises owe their very existence to both of these games. For id Software to break away from known franchises and to embark on a brand new one took guts, ambition, and balls of steel. Not only did they succeed in creating an incredible game in RAGE, they also created a story that can easily be built upon and expanded on in this age of DLC.

Where Wolfenstein 3D, Doom and Quake created the bar that all FPS games are measured, RAGE raises that bar a few notches above any other shooter this generation by using RPG elements, mixed in with vehicle combat, and downright awesomeness.

Black 4 In One

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There is a certain cute factor to Mr Postman (you are a teddy bear after all) yet its quickly forgotten by the sheer brutality of that constantly shitting and spitting bird. ~Joseph Tobin

Black 4 In One

Manufactured by a German company (from what little I can find out online about it) named Bit Corp. (which sounds like a really cool chiptune artist name if you ask me) is the Black 4 In One cartridge. Why I refer to it as the Black 4 In One cartridge is because years after acquiring that one (I’ve had it since I was about 10 or 12) I managed to acquire an orange one with a different mix of games on it and the same name (which I may review later).

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Anyway the cartridge has 4 games on it and it uses 2 switches to determine which game will play when you turn on the Atari console with it plugged in. This weird as I’ve never seen the same switch system used on any other Atari cartridges yet its very effective.

Something of interest is this cartridge was only released in PAL territories so they are considered pretty rare in USA.

As you can see my personal copy had taken a bit of damage thanks to my kids. Somehow it still works – further proof of how durable these old Atari carts really are (even the cheap third party ones).

Anyway these are the games that are on Black 4 In One –

  1. Space Tunnel (right/right)
  2. Phantom Tank (right/left)
  3. Bobby Is going Home (left/right)
  4. Mr Postman (left/left)

Now for the games themselves…

Space Tunnel

Space Tunnel reminds me a lot of Vanguard except you move up and down instead of scrolling left and right. Alien ships at varying speeds and sizes come at you in squadrons of one, two or three at a time. What makes this a challenge is the bullets they fire ricochet off the walls and they tend to be as fast as the ship that fires them. slow ship – slow bullets. Fast ship – oh my god how do I dodge this thing?!? Its usual Atari fare of an endless amount of waves and trying to survive as long as you can whilst scoring as high as possible.

Space Tunnel

This game is pretty fun – the controls are responsive and the adrenaline shoots up when the fast ships are firing bouncing bullets at you. When you die (by touching a wall, an alien ship or a bullet) your ship becomes a twisted piece of wreckage and there is a loud bang sound. When its game over you can still move your wreckage left and right, further rubbing in the fact your ship is screwed. Whether intentional or not I like that.

Phantom Tank

In Phantom tank you drive a tank in a maze trying to kill phantom tanks which are attacking your base at the bottom of the screen. What is really cool is this is one game where flickering graphics are actually a good thing because they make the phantom tanks look very ethereal. So you navigate your way around, shoot 20 tanks and on to the next level.

Phantom Tank

While the first level or two aren’t too tough the third level is an absolute bitch. You are fighting in mostly open terrain with a small barrier to protect the top. Where this sucks is you can only have one bullet on screen at a time and only the screen walls or the moving tanks to stop it. Not to mention if you sneak up the top a single stray enemy bullet can drift down and kill your base. When your base goes it doesn’t matter how many lives you have – GAME OVER!

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In spite of this Phantom Tank has remained one of my favorite all-time Atari games.

So the first two games are pretty straight forward. Not a lot to say about them – they are what they are and are pretty fun. The next two is where it starts to get weird…

Bobby Is Going Home

Warning – this game is cute. I’m talking obnoxiously cute here. How a bunch of Germans came up with this game is beyond me – Germany is known for industrial efficiency, hard electronic music and good beer – NOT FOR CUTE! Don’t believe me – take a look at this screenshot!

Anyway you are Bobby (who is supposed to be a little boy but looks more like an elf on his way to a funeral) and you are trying to get home. In this brightly coloured world you have to traverse such obstacles as fences, ponds, retracting bridges, chickens, bats, butterflies, rolling stones and so on. Controls are pretty good although the high jumping can get you killed sometimes.

Bobby Is Going Home atari 2600

Throughout the game an obnoxiously cute tune plays to make this German kawaii nightmare complete. That happy tune will get stuck in your head. Anyway you go from left to right through various screens dodging obstacles. When you jump it plays a little tune which plays instead of the background music’s bass line (yes the game music has treble and bass parts – something that Atari doesn’t have often).

If you hit an enemy Bobby farts when he dies. If you fall into a pond you sink ito it and drown with a bubbly drowny-type sound. As you near your house the music slows down – I guess Bobby is starting to get tired by this point. The final screen is a snow storm with you going into your house and you are treated to a happy ‘there’s no place like home’ type tune. Then it all starts again except a little harder.

Bobby Is Going Home

This game most certainly has camp value and is very fun to play in spite of the cuteness blasting from every pixel on the screen made even worse by that tune you will find yourself playing in your head for years to come. For what it is this game is very well made – lots of colour, great looking backgrounds, butterflies that look like butterflies, house that looks like a house and so on. However those black things they call rolling stones look pretty weird.

Mr Postman

This is a game most reviewers can the crap out of mostly because they can’t get past the first screen so they dismiss it as being a bad game. Personally I think these reviewers are just being AVGN wannabees and are deliberately looking for stuff to trash in games in an attempt to be funny. A bad game is a bad game but Mr Postman is a lot better than many other Atari 2600 titles.

There are three screens in all and I can make it through all of them. But it took a hell of a lot of practice to do it.

Mr Postman

In this game you are a postman represented by a teddy bear. The aim is to traverse the three screens and deliver your letter to a house in the ‘City of Silence’. Why I know this and most reviewers don’t? I used to have the scrap of paper that came with this cartridge they laughingly called the instruction manual.

The first screen is very hard, the hardest part of the game in fact. You have to run across the bottom of the screen, climb the tree jump onto the swinging rope, jump off the rope and land on the bird.

Jumping onto the bird is hard enough but many people don’t even get that far as the bird is constantly shitting while spitting at the tree. So you risk being shit on by the bird (which of course kills you). If you make it that far you risk being spat on as you climb the tree (which also kills you). Timing your jump to catch the rope is the easiest part of this screen (again, if you miss the rope or bird it kills you). As the bird is moving a lot its hard to time the jump onto it. But it can be done and when you do a triumphant tune plays and you can fly around on the bird for a bit. Yay.

The second screen you are flying around in a hailstorm. If you touch the trees at the bottom you die. If hailstones hit you (which you have to shoot) you die, if the lightning bolt hits you (kind of like a faster moving missile like in Missile Command) you die. Plus you have to shoot the birds at the top of the screen through the gaps in the clouds. Surprisingly its not as hard as it looks. Anyway you kill all the birds and the hail you make it to the third and final screen.

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Congratulations Mr Postman you’ve made it to the City of Silence – now to make your way to the house and deliver that letter. But its not so simple as there are some tight squeezes to slowly inch your way through else you die by touching the walls. As long as you take it slow its not so hard but a couple of those spaces are pretty tight. Ironically there is a simple tune playing in the background as you roam the City of Silence.

There is a certain cute factor to Mr Postman (you are a teddy bear after all) yet its quickly forgotten by the sheer brutality of that constantly shitting and spitting bird. The hailstorm is chaotic and keeps you on your toes. Crawling through the City of Silence can be nerve-wracking navigating those tight corners. You really feel like you’ve accomplished something when you deliver that letter. But wait… it doesn’t end there. Thats right, this is Atari – you go back to the beginning to do it all over again!!!

So there you have it – all four games and for the most part four fairly entertaining ones. All games have excellent responsive yet precise controls so you can’t blame those if you suck at the game. I like the varying difficulty between the games as it caters to gamers of all skill and patience tolerance levels. A rarity for a small third party company as they are generally known for bad games.

Our Rating

  • Space Tunnel – 7/10 – Its fun, action packed space shooting in a confined space. The changes in speed keep the challenge going and the richochets keep you on your toes.
  • Phantom Tank – 8/10 – Great game even if the third screen is nigh impossible to beat
  • Bobby Is Going Home – 7/10 – Fun but gets repetitive once you know the patterns. Has some replay value as its the sort of game you just have to show to people and laugh when they can’t make it home even once (then you proceed to breeze through it). I can imagine people on drugs having a lot of fun with this one.
  • Mr Postman – 5/10 – The sheer brutality of the first screen will turn many people off playing it. Yet there are those who will be determined to beat it if only once.

Overall an excellent cartridge to pick up if you can find a copy.

OGX Episode 1

OGX Episode 1

When you deal with the stresses of work, school and just life sometimes you need some time to nerd it up. For the most part, us gamers do this in a game, but believe it or not, a lot of us are social creatures as well.

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We launched OGX to show fans of Obsolete Gamer what we really are like, raw and uncut. It’s vulgar, it’s geeky and it’s certainly is NOT political correct, but we do hope it’s entertaining. Now while this should is filled will silliness we also ask some serious questions and have some good discussions on topics such as the future of MMO’s specifically WildStar and Everquest Next. Beyond that we talk about such silly topics as which video game character would make the best wife. (Article on that coming soon)

So here is Episode 1 of The Obsolete Gamer Experience, you can find it on our OGX Show Page or you can watch it along with all our other current original programming on O.G. Original T.V. Channel Let us know what you think.

ISS Deluxe

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 Konami made sure you sweat when you play this game. ~Luis Zena

ISS Deluxe

This is one of the games that brought back interesting gameplay to a very interesting and abandoned sport genre, Soccer. The game itself is very easy to handle, of course you won’t be able to do much with the weaker teams so I suggest you start playing with the stronger teams like Brazil or Germany.

International Superstar Soccer Deluxe

The goal keeper is something else as he will guard the post like if it was a matter of life and death! I’m totally serious, this guy gets to a point that you just want to break the controller. HE SAVES EVERYTHING!! The post is also as big as it can get and the bastard always somehow makes the save.

International Superstar Soccer Deluxe

Either way, it’s always a challenge to beat him. I usually just lure him out of the post and pass the ball back for a kick on the side he is furthest from and he still manages to save the ball half the time. Yeah, Konami made sure you sweat when you play this game.

International Superstar Soccer Deluxe

The teams are also very unbalanced in the aspect of weakest to strongest. I know that most games are very playable even with the weakest character (TMNT Raph, I’m talking to you!) but this one makes you want to just pick Brazil or Germany half the time. You can try it with other teams but you’ll end up having a very hard time beating the goal keeper or even catching up to the offense as your guys aren’t even as fast as your rival. This uneveness makes you work harder and truly think like a pro to find a way to win. I haven’t played the game so much to get to that point, but you will know what I mean when you play it.

International Superstar Soccer Deluxe

To conclude, the game is very entertaining just don’t let yourself pick any other team other than Brazil or Germany when you start playing. With enough practice, you can beat the team with the weaker teams like Japan, USA, and even Mexico.

Lego Batman for the Sega Mega Drive

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Lego Batman for the Sega Mega Drive

If you head down to your local Gamestop you won’t find new games for the Sega Mega Drive, but in Russia you can, well kind of. There are a number of Bootleg releases of games being release for the Mega Drive and Lego Batman is one of them. Before you get excited, check the video, it does not look like the official Lego Batman in graphics, sound or gameplay, but hey, it’s a new Mega Drive game right.

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If you are curious, Super Mario 64, Lord of the rings and even Metal Gear Solid will be making appearances on the Mega Drive, yes, seriously.

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Double Dragon Flash Game

Double Dragon Flash Game

Double Dragon

The classic beat em up game, Double Dragon. This version was created to mirror the Gameboy version of the game.

  • Press the Space Bar to Start

  • Hit the Return Key to pause and select on the Menu

  • Press the Arrows Keys to Move

  • Hit Q to Punch

  • Hit W to Kick

  • Press Q & W together to do a Flying Kick

Godzilla: Monster of Monsters

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One of the knocks on this game is that it’s too repetitive, and I’ll grant that it really is. ~Jesse Moak

Godzilla: Monster of Monsters

If you’ve been following my blog, you might have figured out by now, via my site logo, and various graphics employed on the Twitter and Tumblr pages, etc., that I’m a pretty big Godzilla fan. In fact I pretty much decided from the moment that I began Retro Revelations, that Godzilla was going to be the unofficial mascot. When I created the logo banner graphic, I did so with several thoughts in mind. The foremost among them, was that having a depiction from a video game would help convey my love for video games, Godzilla, and film in general, as well as helping to convey what this blog site is all about: All things Retro and Classic. Plus I felt that utilizing that particular pic, which is actually from the ending of the game I’m about to talk about, was especially poignant, because the blog slogan is “Revisiting the Past, One Blog at a Time”, and I felt the image of Godzilla and Mothra looking at the Earth from the Moon, was especially evocative and kind of helped drive that home. So there ya go, a free peak into the creation of this site!
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I grew up loving Godzilla, and while I have yet to get around to writing about the classic movies I love so much, trust me, it’s going to happen.  I do not clearly remember which Godzilla film I saw first, as I grew up in a (better) era of television, when local stations would often show old monster movies late at night. But the first G-film I do clearly remember, is the first one I ever got on VHS tape. It may well have been the first VHS tape of my childhood that was actually “mine”, and not just the family’s. That movie was “Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster” (1966), which is still my second favorite Godzilla movie to this day. My first, of course, being likely the second movie I ever got on VHS, “Godzilla vs. Monster Zero” (1965). Regardless, from at least the age of 8 or so, I was a Godzilla fanatic as a child. In fact it sucks that there were several Godzilla/Toho films I didn’t get to see as a kid, because they were never on TV or I never saw them on tape, that I wish I could have just because I would have enjoyed them so much more as a child, when everything generally felt more awesome. You know, before we all grow up and die a little inside. But sufficed to say, being a kid obsessed with both Godzilla, and Nintendo, discovering there was a Godzilla NES game was bound to lead to love at first sight.
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The game in question is “Godzilla: Monster of Monsters” for the NES. It was actually published by Toho, the studio who created Godzilla and produced his films. It was developed by a little known (now defunct) studio known as Compile, mainly known for their classic shoot ’em up games such as Aleste, Gun-Nac, Blazing Lasers, and The Guardian Legend. But with this game, they took a crack at the side-scrolling action game, and it certainly is a unique take on the genre. As an adult, I have heard many negative things said about this game, and to be fair, it’s not the greatest game I’ve ever played. But to also be fair, for what it is it’s also pretty solid, and doesn’t deserve some of the shit that the internet retro gaming community has heaped upon it. As you can see in the pic above, in the game you travel to different planets, trying to stop the forces of Planet X, and each world map is depicted as a kind of chess board, with hexagonal spaces. In a way, the game plays out, at least on the surface, similar to a turn-based strategy game, as both monsters you control (Godzilla and Mothra) get a turn to move on the board, and then the enemy monsters also get a turn. Though that’s about as far as that goes, as there is literally no other real strategy to the board, you simply have to move across it, defeat the enemy monsters, and take out the enemy base on each planet (the space with the satellite dish thingy). 
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Each space on the board that you move to, represents a short side-scrolling level that you must play through as either Godzilla, who can move two spaces per turn, or Mothra, who can move four. Godzilla is stronger, with punches, kicks, a tail whip, and of course his “destroys everything” thermo-nuclear breath. But Mothra is faster, can fly, and attacks with eye beams and “poison wing dust”. Basically, it’s a lot easier getting through shit as Godzilla because he’s a living wrecking machine, but Mothra is able to fly over many of the ground enemies, so it is technically possible to get through some stages faster with her. Once you reach a space on the map next to an enemy monster, or they move next to you, it initiates a more fighting game style one-on-one battle. For each monster you defeat, your power and life bars upgrade a bit. After you defeat the monsters, and take out the enemy base, which consists of just getting to the end of that stage, you have beaten that world, and move on to the next. One of the knocks on this game is that it’s too repetitive, and I’ll grant that it really is. There is a bit of variety to the stages, with moon levels, weird alien jungle levels, firey volcano levels, strange subspace levels, and of course the robotic enemy base stages. But that’s about it, and they all pretty much play out the same, move left to right, destroy enemies, get to end of stage, move on to the next. So in that sense, for that part of the gameplay I can see how some could get turned off by it. But as a kid, I didn’t give a single shit. This was GODZILLA, on NINTENDO, and I actually received it as a gift for my (if I remember correctly) 9th birthday, along with several other games such as Loopz and Spy vs. Spy. But Godzilla was the one I cared about, naturally.
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After apparently traveling throughout the solar system or at least some of their moons, the final destination is Planet X. In the film “Invasion of the Astro Monster” (aka Godzilla vs. Monster Zero), the only Godzilla film to actually feature him going into space (and in my mind the best Godzilla film ever made), Planet X is depicted as a small, barren, rocky planet. But in the game, it’s depicted kind of like the Death Star from Star Wars, as every stage on the board is now an “enemy base” stage, complete with non-stop guns and missiles and ships firing at you from above that you must trudge through. It’s worth noting, for fellow Godzilla fans out there who would know what the hell I’m talking about, that while the game does feature several generic enemies, such as that goofy space dragon and fiery phoenix bird in that screenshot further up, many enemies from the game are also taken from other Godzilla/Toho films. Some of these include the Moonlight SY-3 ship from “Destroy All Monsters” (1968), the Gotengo ship from “Atragon” (1963), the Super X ship from “Return of Godzilla” (1984), and Planet X flying saucers from “Godzilla vs. Monster Zero”. There were also generic missile launchers and electric “Masers”, etc., featured in various classic Godzilla films.

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On Planet X, as with the previous worlds, you have to face all the monsters you previously faced, plus of course the game’s final boss, King Ghidorah, who also naturally happens to be the hardest monster in the game. If you can manage to take his three-headed ass out, and destroy the final enemy base, you have saved the Earth, send the Planet Xians packing out into space exile, and get to enjoy the end credits. One thing that has to be said about this game, is that while the gameplay is “so-so”, and the graphics are decent, the one area that really shines, is the music. “Godzilla: Monster of Monsters” features one of the best NES soundtracks I’ve ever heard in my life, I mean the tunes in this game genuinely rock. Every planet has it’s own tune, as does every monster (with the exception of Moguera and Baragon sharing a tune). The ending/end credits theme, is honestly up there with the Super Mario Bros. 2 end credits theme as one of the coolest and most satisfying “I just beat the game” songs I’ve ever had the pleasure of hearing. And similarly, it’s very soft and somber, kind of a nice closer to the game.

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If you’ve never played “Godzilla: Monster of Monsters”, while it’s not the BEST game in the universe, if you’re a Godzilla fan, merely curious, or just want to enjoy some great “chip tunes”, I highly suggest checking this game out. It brought me a lot of great memories (and a few frustrating game deaths) from my childhood, and I still to this day consider it a “classic” in it’s own right. Cheers!

Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 3.0 Thumb Drive

Now besides the technical stuff, the drive itself is sturdy which I like. Sure, you are not going into a war zone with it, or maybe you are, but just carrying around a thumb drive, you can find yourself dropping it or you dropping on it. ~J.A. Laraque

Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 3.0 Thumb Drive

So how do you test a thumb drive? The answer is pretty much the same way you test any other data drive, with software that tests read and write speeds.  We can tell you right from the start that the Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 3.0 Thumb Drive lives up to the name Hyper by writing at 135MB per second and reading at 225MB per second. So what does this mean in the real world or better yet, what does this mean for a gamer?

Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 3.0 Thumb Drive

It’s pretty simple. Say you play M.A.M.E games or other old school games and want to be able to play them anywhere. Having a fast thumb drive with a lot of space allows this. The version we tested was 64GB which is incredible considering my first ever hard drive was 750MBs and cost me over $350. You can find this drive for about $65 on places like Newegg. So while it might be a little more expensive than your normal 4 to 8GB thumb drives, you are going for two things here, speed and space.

When transferring large files you will sometimes find yourself wanting this done in a hurry which is where USB 3.0 comes in. USB 3.0 is the latest standard and is about 10 times faster than 2.0 and this drive is even faster than your normal 3.0 USB drives. So for instance, if you had 12GBs of games to transfer, it might take up to 40 minutes with a USB 2.0 drive, six minutes with a standard 3.0 drive and 3 minutes with the DataTraveler HyperX. The question is, how important is your time?

Now read and write speeds differ because a thumb drive does not have all the components of say a SSD drive, but this is not really an issue when you are playing a game or watch a movie from your drive. I did both, even HD movies and it ran as smoothly as on my SSD at home. Don’t worry if you don’t have USB 3.0, it works with USB 2.0 but obviously it won’t be able to take advantage of the speeds you would get from 3.0.

Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 3.0 Thumb Drive image 1

Now besides the technical stuff, the drive itself is sturdy which I like. Sure, you are not going into a war zone with it, or maybe you are, but just carrying around a thumb drive, you can find yourself dropping it or you dropping on it. The good thing is the outer shell protects it and even with the protection it fits perfectly on different devices, not taking up space or blocking other ports. I personally like that you can clip the cover on the thumb drive while it’s plugged in because I have lost a lot of covers that way.

So you know from my other reviews that it comes down to cost. It is like this, when you combine, USB 3.0, faster than basic speeds and 64GBs you will get a higher price point. If you never transfer a lot of data and you don’t care about speed then a smaller more basic thumb drive is for you. However, if you are always transferring data, running applications and media from your drive and time is of great importance than the HyperX DataTraveler HyperX 3.0 64GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive is a great choice and totally not obsolete.

The Castlevania Adventure

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So you can guess that a lot of gamers found this game difficult. There was only 3 lives per each half-stage in the four very long levels. The people who managed to get through the game noted that it was a very vanilla adventure once you take away the harsh difficulty. ~Adam R.

The Castlevania Adventure

In 1989, Konami had great success with two Castlevanias on NES and with another soon on the way. But they also produced an original Castlevania set in a different time than Simon Belmont. In-fact, it’s a prequel game set 115 years before the original.

castlevania the adventure

 It was pretty much the same deal as the original game on NES with a few differences. Like the absence of sub-weapons, and hearts actually restored your life which finally makes sense. You could upgrade your whip, but every hit of damage would drop the power so it was kind of a double negative there.
castlevania the adventure
 So you can guess that a lot of gamers found this game difficult. There was only 3 lives per each half-stage in the four very long levels. The people who managed to get through the game noted that it was a very vanilla adventure once you take away the harsh difficulty.
castlevania the adventure
I never played the original, but I did play the “remake” Castlevania: The Adventure Rebirth for WiiWare. Though looking at comparison screenshots, I think the only thing they remade was the story. Because it wasn’t hard at all, and I enjoyed it.

Commodore 64: A Visual Compendium Kickstarter

Commodore 64: A Visual Compendium Kickstarter

The “Commodore 64: a visual Compendium” is a Kickstarter for a high-end, coffee table book that celebrates the visual beauty of the worst best-selling computer the Commodore 64.  This will be the first book by new publisher Bitmap Books who specialise in high-end books all about computer games. Created by lifelong Commodore 64 fan and Graphic Designer Sam “MrSID” Dyer to combine his passions for visual art and retro gaming.

The final book will be 200 pages and ready to be posted in September 2014. It will showcase loading screens, graphics, maps and cover art along with information such as facts, a small review or even a quote from one of the developers.

The book will start with a foreword by legendary Sensible Software Graphic Artist, Stoo Cambridge. Whilst at Sensible, Stoo created artwork for games such as Sensible Soccer, Cannon Fodder and Mega Lo Mania. The book will start with the very early games such as Juniper Lander and work its way through games being released now by companies such as RGCD and Psytronik Software. Featured throughout the book will be double page spreads full coloured illustrations by Oliver Frey, a selection of game maps, and loading screens.

A pledge of £25 will secure a copy of the book along with one of five ‘Loader’ postcards

Other rewards include

  • Personally signed books by Stoo Cambridge
  • The chance to own your OWN spread in the book. You choose the game to be featured and even write your own mini-review to accompany the image.
  • A full page advert placed in the book next to the campaign supporters.
  • One of 100 exclusively copies of the PAL only game Micro Hexagon on cartridge. 50 will even be signed by programmer Paul Koller and musician Mikkel Hastrup.

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The Kickstarter has already achieved over 75% of his target in just over 5 days. You can find out more about the book and the campaign here.

Lucky Luke

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Admittedly, Luke isn’t the most intimidating of cowboys though. Firefights are played for laughs for the most part, an example of this being when enemies’s pants fall down when they’re hit with one bullet.~Simon Reed

Lucky Luke

While pondering which game to revisit today I was leant a hand by my mother, of all people.

lucky luke gameboy color

Rambling on about the rather dull GBC card title Cool Hand (which will inevitably get a revisit sooner rather than later), she unveiled her annoying habit of calling it ‘Cool Hand Luke.’

lucky luke gameboy color

This immediately made me think of the colourful platformer/shooter Lucky Luke on the GBC. I’ll be honest though – the game doesn’t rank highly on my ‘memorable games’ list.

lucky luke gameboy color

Hence only remembering it after having my memory jogged by my Solitaire loving parent.

lucky luke gameboy color

This is probably down to the fact that it’s yet another 2D platformer by developer Infogrames on the GBC however.

lucky luke gameboy color

Although many of their platformers were solid enough, and there were notable variations between each of them, you can tell which platformers are by Infogrames straight off the bat.

lucky luke gameboy color

The almost pastel shaded colour schemes, the heart based life meter, one off chase stages, bloodless combat (in that it lacks heft, not blood) – all signs Infogrames are involved.

lucky luke gameboy color

Lucky Luke isn’t a bad game though. In fact, it’s a well presented little title.

lucky luke gameboy color

Based on a Franco-Belgium comic character, Lucky Luke is set in the Wild West, and therefore has towns to fight through, gunfights to survive and horses to ride off into the sunset.

lucky luke gameboy color

The game mainly works becuase of its setting. Not many titles, especially not back in 1999 when Lucky Luke was released, centered around the Wild West, so to have a cowboy as a star was interesting in itself.

lucky luke gameboy color

Admittedly, Luke isn’t the most intimidating of cowboys though. Firefights are played for laughs for the most part, an example of this being when enemies’s pants fall down when they’re hit with one bullet.

lucky luke gameboy color

Aside from the gunplay, the platforming levels usually involve pushing objects around to reach higher areas or getting tools to allow you to do so. One example is when you have to make a makeshift see-saw to catapault your way onto a roof.

lucky luke gameboy color

It’s all done in the most simplistic way possible to appeal to the younger crowd, but it’s decent stuff all the same.

Set piece levels round off the package, with the best one I played involving riding on a stagecoach and surviving the attacks of vultures and angry native Americans. The music in this section was ace to boot.

lucky luke gameboy color

So overall, Lucky Luke is hardly a spectacular game – especially by today’s standards – but is worth looking into if you have a thing for 2D platformers on the GBC.

Cosplay Wars: Chun Li vs. Kitana

Cosplay Wars: Chun Li vs. Kitana

This week we are back with another Cosplay war. This time we pit the fast legged, thunder thigh wonder from Street Fighter, Chun Li against the Fan Blade, castrate you if you stare too long, femme fatale, Kitana.

chun_li_vs_kitana

So here is the drill. Two teams, Team Li and Team Kitana. Ten Cosplayers on each team, you look them over and vote on who wins. However, this time we added something more. You might notice on the right side-bar a ranking system. This is because we will be giving away swag we get here at Obsolete Gamer HQ. Sometimes its games, sometimes t-shirts and sometimes its playing cards. The point is we want to build a community and have people comment and vote and have fun. So if you vote and comment on why you picked the team you picked you will be entered to win this weeks mini swag.

Two Worlds Playing Cards

These are unopened playing cards from the Top Ware Interactive game, Two Worlds. Now sure, this isn’t a Xbox One or even a game, but once you sign up those with the highest ranking will be entered in a drawing whenever we have new items. The top 5 or top 10 will be entered and everytime we get new stuff we will have a drawing. This means you can will multiple times. Now you earn points for leaving comments, but this does not mean spam us with unless comments, we don’t want that and we have a lot of people keeping watch to make sure we don’t get spammed. Spamming not only costs you double negative points, but can get you banned.

Keep in mind, the more people we get the more swag we get and the better the prizes will get. So, I hope you will sign up, it is easy. See on the right hand side there, you can register with Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, even Steam. We promise we will never sell or share your contact information because we hate spam as well.

Now, tell us, which team won?

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OGX Silly and Serious

OGX Silly and Serious

The Obsolete Gamer Experience is the spin-off to the Obsolete Gamer show and is a show for random craziness. Pretty much we talk about the games we have been playing and other things on our mind. However, we wanted to add a bit more to it and so we set-up a format for the show called Silly and Serious.

screenshot of nick arcade

How this works is we ask a silly question and then a serious question. We wanted to share the questions we will be asking with our fans.

The Q-List

What is the most epic kill you ever got in a video game?

Do you think there is a need to make fun of gamers?

Have you ever been pulled away from a game for sex and if so have you ever postponed sex for the game?

How do you feel about video game companies that focus more on downloadable content than bug fixes?

What are the best foods and drinks to consume during a gaming session?

What are your thoughts on Blizzard removing the auction house from Diablo 3 and what do you think of auction houses and real money auction houses in general?

Name games you would skip work/school to play.

On the upcoming MMO’s such as Everquest Next and Wildstar what will be the necessary things to do in order for it to be successful?

What are your thoughts on video game channels such as Twitch TV and the shows and gameplay videos shown on them?

Choose the following:

  1. A video game character to have a one night stand with
  2. A video game character to marry and have kids with
  3. A video game level or world to live the rest of your life in

 

 

What’s Next

So there are the questions. Now, we will also be sending these out to people we interviewed to see if we can get any answers from them. As for our fans, we will be tying in our contests directly to posts such as these. Meaning, if you answer any of these questions by leaving a comment on the website you earn points towards the drawing.

Some of the gifts will be very small and simple like video game branded playing cards or a figurine and others may be a 64GB hard drive or a new game or special keys. It’s pretty much like this, we want to build a community and we know people like to post and interact where everyone else does, so we are trying to break away from that by offering a little incentive, so I hope you will join us.

We will be premiering the show next week so stay tuned.

Gameboy Micro Famicom Edition

The Game Boy Micro is slightly smaller than the Famicom controller but it is very close in size.  I have smaller hands so the small size is perfect for me.  Plus I love the gold and red coloring on it! ~Alana Dunitz

Gameboy Micro Famicom Edition

Finally decided to dive in and pick up a Game Boy Micro, and not just a plain one.  Had to be the special 20th Anniversary of the Famicom edition one.  I’ve been looking for one for a long time then when it finally because available from a seller in Japan I had to get it!

Gameboy Micro Famicom Edition A

The Micro was made to look just like the player 1 controller on the original Famicom, so it seemed fitting to have since it’s the Famicom 30th Anniversary this year.

Gameboy Micro Famicom Edition B

The Game Boy Micro is slightly smaller than the Famicom controller but it is very close in size.  I have smaller hands so the small size is perfect for me.  Plus I love the gold and red coloring on it!

Gameboy Micro Famicom Edition C

Here is the Micro along side the special edition NES Controller inspired Game Boy Advance SP we got here in North America.  It’s crazy to see the difference in the screen size, and just the layout and size differences between the two.  But I honestly love both and I’m so glad I have the two of them in my collection!

Gameboy Micro Famicom Edition D

Is there a NEED to make fun of Gamers?

Is it misery loves company, the idea that because you may be at a place in your life that you are not happy you feel the need to lash out because it is not fair that they are in the same place that you are? Could it be that some cannot accept the fact that some people will choose to live their life completely different than yours or than the norm? ~J.A. Laraque

Is there a NEED to make fun of Gamers?

While there is less of it than there used to be, gamers in general are still a target for jokes, many from other gamers themselves. Now we all know a gamer that fits at least some of the stereotypes and since there are so many I am sure every one of us fits at least one. My question is not so much for gamers making jokes about one another. We understand that to be a gamer, especially on the internet, you have to be able to dish a joke and take one. Calling someone a pale-faced 10-year-old living in mom’s basement is just a standard joke some gamers use on others. What about non-gamers?

Gamer-Stereotype

I always found it a bit disrespectful when someone who depends on the gaming or geek community for revenue be it a game, movie, comic book or website, looks down on and even attacks people from that community. The HBO series, Entourage had an episode where the main character, Vincent, goes to Comic Con to hype his Aquaman movie. He and the other character’s, besides Drama, mock the attendees.  The character, Drama, who is the older brother of Vincent, at least had respect for those fans since his series, Viking Quest, was long cancelled, but still had fans.

I have been to plenty of conventions and can understand some of the rabid fans can get annoying, but it is one thing to be put off by some fans who go a little (or a lot) overboard. It is another thing to have an overall distain for the convention goers as a whole. Now if you know the series you know that Vincent did not like the idea of being in the movie in the first place. Tie that in with the fact that the other friends did not like Comic Con and that they loved to make fun of drama and you could understand why he had to make a point about how he did not like being there. Again, considering most of the attendees would help make or break his box office there should have been a general respect.

Now obviously that is television show, it is fiction, however it has been written about many times that many people who depend on geeks and gamers have almost a hatred for the community. Even if you look at the most annoying gamer or geek you would think if nothing else you would put on a smile when you meet fans who are not crazy and annoying, but what we see too often is these people look down on any fan and feel it is a waste of their time to be at conventions and interact with fans.

Now look at the non-gamer. You will often find that non-gamers can have an irrational hatred for gamers. I find myself in the middle of this many times as I love sports and outdoor activities so I will run into people who out of nowhere will begin putting down gamers and it is always the same stereotypes. As one of the people I was with went into a description about how gamers never take baths, don’t have a job, dropped out of school and have no lady in their life I asked him if he was happy with his life.  He looked at me puzzled. I asked him if he was happy that he doesn’t have sex very often anymore even though he is married and if he is happy that his hates his job and is underpaid and if he is happy spending his weekends visiting other couples that he himself frequently complain that they are boring.

His answer was, no, he wasn’t, but that is part of growing up and being a man. I asked him and what if you do not want to grow up and be a man. I saw his response coming. He said that he was contributing to society and the (made up) gamer wasn’t. When I asked how his lack of sex, dead-end job and boring friends contributed to society, he did not have an answer and was getting upset so I dropped it.

If this was a one-time or rare occurrence it would not have mattered to me, but since it happens so often and is talked about in gaming circles I wanted to know why. Why was there this need to create the worst of the worst gamer and use it as the general template to use against us all? While men and women playing together has been going on much longer, it was around the time of Everquest that you really began to see men and women playing a game for hours on end together. So many people met and became couples within EQ some gamers looked to it as a way to find gamer girls. Now obviously we also know about the couples who broke up due to EQ and World of Warcraft and some that ended once the game got old to them. However, you really saw evidence of gamers being in relationships and it working as well as any other relationship.

Today you have gamers of all types, you have some who are single, in relationships, married and have children and just like any other relationship you have the ups and downs, what works and what doesn’t. Yet, we use the idea of the lonely sexless gamer whenever we really need an attack point. Strangely enough I found that people who either did not want to get married and or have children also faced criticism and jokes from people who were more “traditional”.

Is it misery loves company, the idea that because you may be at a place in your life that you are not happy you feel the need to lash out because it is not fair that they are in the same place that you are? Could it be that some cannot accept the fact that some people will choose to live their life completely different than yours or than the norm?

The idea is that someone who really loves games and chooses to have that as their main source of entertainment during their free time must either lead to something bad or mean they must be missing out on all the awesome things “normal” people do. However, if this was really the case then why would non-gamers constantly bring this up? Do they need the worst stereotype to be true to justify their choices? Do they need to think the worst is true to feel better about themselves and their own lives?

I have a female friend that told me once that she did not like her husband to hang out with single guys because he might feel he was missing something. I found this interesting because in most television shows or movies the single guys are normally made to look either, foolish, pitiful or sad. Think of Barney from, How I meet your mother or the guys from the Big Bang Theory. The point is no matter how these people may act or how geeky or how much of a gamer or player, in Barney’s case, they are, they all long for what everyone else longs for. Is the idea of the gamer couple who makes it work or even the single gamer who truly enjoys his or hers life a threat?

When I first interviewed Jace Hall, here is one of the first things he said:

“I spent 15 years creating and developing video games. I grew up playing video games. I still play video games to this day. Since I truly am from the “video game culture” it has always bothered me that the “mainstream” media culture tends to depict the video game industry in somewhat superficial and negative ways.

The truth is that people who either play or make games are just like everyone else! There is a wide range of people who are gamers, and most of them don’t look like the way Hollywood depicts them.”

Geek and Gamer culture has been looked upon in a negative light for so long that perhaps it is just ingrained in many of us. At one time the idea of working in gaming, becoming a professional gamer and making a living was laughable and now it has the same risks and rewards of almost any other entertainment field. Just as at one time the idea of playing a comic book character was seen as joke is now becoming a role to fight for. Yet, we, the consumer are still the target of jokes and ridicule. You can watch sports or cable news or relativity television all day and for the most part, that is fine, but play video games all day and your life must be horrible. Yes, there are those susceptible to video game addiction and there is the majority that work, go to school, have family, friends, and a significant other and still chooses games over other forms of entertainment.

Perhaps that is the answer right there. Perhaps that is the threat. Gamers are less likely to buy the most expensive cable package. Gamers are less likely to buy based solely on a commercial, they are more tech savvy and skeptical.  Maybe the scariest part is that if we as gamers spent a little less time attacking each other and pulled together in one voice we could make some real change in the gaming and entertainment industry. Often those who are constantly put down are less likely to speak up. We need to stand up and speak up. Maybe we cannot keep non-gamers from stereotyping us, but we can at least try to stop stereotyping each other.

Return Fire

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As technically impressive as the 3DO was for its day, it’s a sad fact that anyone who met the rather immense outlay required to own one had little in the way of high-quality games to play on it, and even less that actually made use of the new machine’s impressive abilities. ~Simon Lethbridge

Return Fire

One game that appeared to do just that, however, was Return Fire, and it was an exclusive too! Well, until the 3DO started floundering at least, at which point it was also released on the PS1 and PC, but still – for a while, 3DO owners had something to show off, and it was a game worthy of envy. It’s a simple military-based strategic frolic at heart which pits two forces against one another – green and brown. Player one controls the latter while a second player or the console itself controls the former, and the object is simply to seize your opponent’s flag and return it to your base. As you might expect, however, it’s not quite that simple.

Return Fire - 3DO

There are somewhere in the region of 130 stages altogether and they are divided equally into two groups – one consisting of single player stages, another of two player stages. They are viewed from a scrolling, angled-overhead perspective and most of them consist of an island with opposing forces occupying a different end each – two player maps give each side about half of the land area each while one player maps just have a few buildings on the player’s side with most of the island taken up by enemy buildings and defences. In either case, your job is to find the building which houses the flag, destroy it, collect the flag, and return to base, and there is initially only one mission on which to do this. Once this is completed, however, the next tier of stages is unlocked which has eight new maps. Finish any of these and the next tier becomes available with eight more, and so on.

Return Fire - 3DO

Your means of vanquishing your opponent and completing these stages comes in four forms. You start each stage safely within the confines of your bunker and here there are four vehicles to choose from – the Tank, which moves at a reasonable speed and can fire shells at ground or air targets with its rotating turret, the Armoured Support Vehicle, which is slow but has meatier defences and can fire air/ground rockets and drop mines, the Helicopter, which is fast and obviously unimpeded by buildings and suchlike, and can fire air/ground rockets, but is obviously a bit more delicate, and lastly the Jeep which is fast and nimble, can move across watery areas with its inflatable air thingies, and can launch grenades, but is of course incredibly weedy. Eight of the jeeps are available for each stage and these are the only vehicles with which you can grab and transport the flag, but you also get three each of the other vehicles for blasting your way to it.

Return Fire - 3DO

If any of your fine vehicles are destroyed you’ll automatically return to your bunker to choose another (unless you somehow manage to lose all seventeen of them!), but you can return at any time anyway to switch if you want. Helpfully, doing this also replenishes their limited fuel, ammunition, and armour as well, although this can be done ‘on the fly’ too, by stopping off at one of the relevant depots nestled amongst the gun towers and other buildings of either side. The depots though, like everything else in the game can be destroyed (even the trees!). This doesn’t present a dilemma for the solo-player as you’re only up against the enemy gun towers, but with a two-player game you then need to decide whether to preserve them for your own use or to destroy them to prevent your opponent from doing the same. Indeed, despite the extensive amount of shooting and destroying you’ll no doubt engage in while playing Return Fire (its ‘tagline’ is even “Destroy, Destroy, Destroy!”), if you want to actually play it properly, there’s a lot of strategy involved as well.

Return Fire - 3DO

One aspect of this is of course choosing the right vehicle at the right time, and they all differ enough for each player to find a strategy that suits them. You might want, for example, to use the chopper to scout out your opponent’s stronghold and try to locate his flag tower (there are usually some decoy towers too) and find the easiest route to it. Alternatively, you may choose to plough head-first through everything in a straight line from your bunker to your final goal. Whichever method you employ, it’s best not to hang around for too long or annoying little helicopters will turn up and start taking pot-shots at you (although it is very satisfying to shoot them down!). Other things to consider are the design of the stage in question. They all consist of one or several islands and in the case of the latter they’re linked together by rickety (and very destroyable) bridges which presents numerous possibilities in itself. As you probably already guessed, this is therefore a game which was not designed for solo play and accordingly is immeasurably more enjoyable when playing against a friend.

Return Fire - 3DO

As undeniably awesome as this mode is, I’ve also spend quite a bit of time with the one player mode and, while it is good fun, either for practise or for mere wanton destruction purposes, it does get a bit repetitive after a while. A big part of this is down to the graphics which are quite splendid but pretty much the same throughout the whole game. In spite of the angled-overhead viewpoint, the stages are presented in 3D which allows the camera to zoom in or out rather nicely depending on how fast you’re moving. Things do get a little blocky when the view zooms right in but that’s not too often. The worst thing about the visuals, though, is without doubt the total lack of variety. All stages are set in the same environment – sandy areas with surrounding water, bridges, the odd patch of grass – and all feature the same few types of building with the same roads around them. The only differences really are the shapes of the islands and the actual location/arrangement of the buildings and features, and even then, some stages are merely mirrored versions of others.

Return Fire - 3DO

One aspect of the game that definitely impresses, however, is the presentation. From the tank that trundles onto the screen to destroy the glass 3DO logo, to the dramatic title sequence, and the FMV clip of a WWII victory parade that greets completion of a stage, everything is very slick and polished, especially the audio which, famously, consists of several pieces of classical music. The aforementioned title sequence features Requiem Dies Irae while, in-game, each of the vehicles has its own theme tune including Mars: Bringer of War for the Tank, Flight of the Bumblebee for the Jeep, In the Hall of the Mountain King for the ASV, and of course Ride of the Valkyries  for the Helicopter, and the volume of the music even increases or decreases according to the intensity of the on-screen drama! There is also the occasional use of ‘incidental music’ such as upon discovery of your opponent’s flag, and victory is hailed by the Hallelujah Chorus which certainly gives the sense of a job well done.

Return Fire - 3DO

The ingenious use of this music, as well as some spot-on sound effects, is what really gives this game its fantastic atmosphere which is helped further still by some great attention-to-detail. Shooting a building often sees its occupants flee, for example (and yes, you can squash them if you so desire, complete with squelching noise). This superb atmosphere plays a big part in drawing you back to Return Fire too, even on your own. I don’t usually play it for long at a time by myself own as, despite the tremendously enjoyable and satisfying game mechanics, it’s easy, a bit repetitive, and largely pointless to play solo, but I still return to it often. Besides, it’s nice to play it with a full-screen (well, the upper two-thirds of the screen) now and then rather than half of it which can feel a bit cramped. If Silent Software came up with a decent back-story and incorporated some sort of mission-based one-player mode this could be an all-time great. It is a two-player game really though, and offers a rare chance to outfox a friend with cunning stategies rather than brute force, and in this capacity alone it’s one of the most enjoyable games I’ve ever played.

Nintendo 1DS Launching this Fall

With the huge success of the Wii U and the 2DS it was the perfect time to make this announcement.~J.A. Laraque

Nintendo 1DS Launching this Fall

For a while now people have been asking, “Why won’t Nintendo enter the mobile gaming market?” There have been a number of emulators and Nintendo-like games available for mobile systems, but a true Nintendo authorized mobile gaming unit eluded us, until now.

Nintendo 1DS

Coming November 12 is the Nintendo 1DS the portable system that will not only play all Nintendo titles from the NES to the GameCube, but will also play original DS titles. In addition, this handheld is a phone that can work on any mobile for carrier in Iran.

The Nintendo 1DS will have its own App store similar to the Apple or Android, (We did not mention Windows phones because seriously does anyone have a Windows phone, ok, that Nokia is cool. You remember Nokia right? Hey, what brand was the one that got infected with a virus and transformed in the Transformers move? Wait, didn’t that thing have missiles? Where did a phone get fuel to launch a missile?) that will allow you to download games. Classic NES game can go for as low as 99 cents, while newer titles can run as high as 9.99 or 99.99 or π.

The unit itself will start at –($99x^2) solve for x, and will feature a built-in NSA ready HD camera and video hidden cam recorder. Battery life is reported to be up to 12 hours when plugged in with a charger. Now, not only will you be able to play classic games, but many titles are being remade to support multiplayer and online play will tons of downloadable content, micro-transactions and no support for bugs ala Warner Bros Games.

So you might be asking yourself. Why now, why did Nintendo decide to do this. Well, part of it had to do with Flappy Bird. That scam, I mean, marketing program, proved very well for the developer. Also, we know Nintendo has had a long history of understanding the gaming market, especially in recent years including calling online gaming a fad and taking forever to switch to the compact disc format. With the huge success of the Wii U and the 2DS it was the perfect time to make this announcement.

Finally, and most importantly, it is April 1st and everyone knows the news you read on April 1 has to be real. It could not be say, a repost of a joke from last year when the website Nintendo1ds.com was created as a joke after the release of the 2DS. Especially, considering reputable sites like Obsolete Gamer have never done April fools posts before.

So head on our and get your 1DS today because like the people at Apple say, a fool and their money soon part.