Friday, December 16, 2011

A Fate Worse Than Game Over


One feature of video games I like that I don't seem to see as much as I'd like lately is the ability to fail without a simple game over or restart. I just think that is really entertaining to make a bad choice or just generally screw up in a game and be rewarded with the game changing in some way that is meant to make me feel guilty. It sort of bothers me when I see the lazier side of this, like in the first Assassin's Creed didn't do anything to discourage the player from wanting to kill civilians, so attacking them just drains the player's health. I find it way more interesting when a game predicts the bad behavior of its players and responds to it in a unique way. A good example of this is getting swarmed by angry cuckoos in Zelda games.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Poverty Haul 12/15/2011


Today I was out shopping for the holidays, and I figured that, since I was out, I should hit up some of the usual spots in search of poverty games. I was in the same plaza as a Game Stop, so I went there first, but it was a waste of time as usual. There was some Friends trivia game for PS2 for a couple of bucks, and I probably could have been talked into purchasing it if I were out with friends, but since I was alone I walked away from it. Maybe another day. Next, I went to my preferred local used game store, Game On, which generally has games in pretty good condition for a reasonable price. They hadn't had a new influx of SNES or NES game in a while, so I was pleased to see that they had restocked a bit. I picked up Pit Fighter for the former because it is awful and StarTropics for the latter because I know people that like it.

Mega Man & Bass: Not A Fishing Spinoff


I've written about Mega Man quite a bit here on the site, probably because with the sheer amount of games in the series there is bound to be some overlooked gems and some bad games. I am quite fond of the series, so that is probably why I have mostly focused on the stuff that I like, so I guess that makes this article something of a turning point. Now, Mega Man & Bass isn't really a bad Mega Man game, but it isn't a great one either. Don't be surprised if I ever write about another game in the franchise that I like, considering I haven't written about Maverick Hunter X or the Zero series yet, but with this game it feels like things are probably trending down into the inevitability of things like Mega Man X7, Mega Man Network Transmission, and Mega Man Soccer.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Disappointment of APB


Very few games have disappointed me as much APB: All Points Bulletin. I was initially sold on the concept alone: a GTA-style MMO based around cops and robbers. It seems like such a great idea, and since it was being developed by Realtime Worlds, the company formed from ex-GTA staff that made the excellent Crackdown, I had a lot of faith that it would be pulled off. Add on to that a really complex system of character customization, and I was really excited for the game. When I finally played the game I was massively disappointed because it just isn't fun. The concept is still great, and I don't think the game itself isn't salvageable, but it will never be the game I wanted it to be.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

SmackDown! 2 Knows My Roll


I've said before that there are only two wrestling games worth playing: WWF No Mercy for the N64 and WWF SmackDown! 2: Know Your Role for the PS1. While the former is technically a better game, the latter has always been my favorite. It was made by Yuke's, whom make most all the wresting games since 2000, as well as UFC games, Berserk games, and the strange Evil Zone. SmackDown! 2 is fast paced, has a lot of wacky shit, and also happens to come from the era in which I watched the stuff. My opinion is no doubt clouded by nostalgia, but I contest that it is a fun game, with lots of entertaining things to do. At the very least, it is the only game I can think of that let me create a horrific effigy of Mega Man.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

D(imension) Force


It has occurred to me that I haven't posted much about SNES games. This is mostly a product of my small SNES collection, so to help rectify this I've decided to write about some random SNES roms. After landing on a few Japanese-only RPGs, which I don't feel qualified enough to get into, I ended up with Dimension Force, which I had never heard of. There doesn't appear to be much of a difference between it and the North American, D-Force. This 1991 shooter was made by Asmik Ace Entertainment, a company that has been around since the NES era, and is still active today, but has never made much of importance. The most notable of their releases to me is the terrible The Ring: Terror's Realm for the Dreamcast.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Spider-Man vs. NYC


I grew up playing Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin for the Genesis, and it is one of the earliest games for the system that my family owned. Maybe it was because of that, or because it was at the height of the comics boom, when everyone loved Spider-Man, but my brother and I loved this game. It's really not a very good game, but all that mattered was that it is a game that a kid can play as Spider-Man. It was the first game developed by Technopop, a company that only lasted through the nineties, whose only other notable game was the early console FPS Zero Tolerance, also for the Genesis.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Defense of Tank Controls


It has always bothered me that some people completely dismiss a game based on the way it controls. The goal of controls is to give the player a way to interact with the game, and, to me, a game has good controls if they facilitate logical interaction with a game. Basically, if the controls allow the player to do what needs to be done in the game, then they are good controls. Most complaints that a game has “bad controls” seem to boil down to a player that wants one game to control like another instead of attempting to understand why the other control scheme may be more suited the that particular game.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Brown Before It Was Cool: Desert Strike


It's strange how much things stay the same. Back in 1992 EA's biggest success was a military shooter based around real world weaponry and a fictionalized version of a modern conflict in the Middle East. Some people were saying that it was in bad taste. It was a whole big thing. On the other hand, much of the success of Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf was based on the way it was different from the other shooters at the time. It isn't about just blowing up everything on screen and never getting hit by a single bullet, but about going around, completing objectives, and tactically dealing with any opposition there might be.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Deadly Premonition


This is video game blog Poverty Game Night. You can call it PGN. Everybody calls it that. For those that can't tell just by that reference, this post is about Deadly Premonition. I can't remember the last time I've had such a difficult time articulating what is so great about a game. Even though the game is flawed in most every way, it is more than the sum of its parts. It is a game that is utterly bizarre and strangely fascinating.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Legend of Moneypenny: James Bond 007


Released amid the furor around Goldeneye for the N64, James Bond 007 for the Game Boy didn't get attention. There are quite a few reasons for this. For one, it was released in 1997, very late into the life-span of monochrome Game Boy games and not long before the release of the Game Boy Color, so it wasn't really a time in which any game for the system got a whole lot of attention. Secondly, the game could not be more different from the game that popularized first-person shooters on consoles. It is not surprising that the game goes overlooked considering the situation, but it is quite interesting. It is the first game from Saffire, a small developer formed out of Sculptured Software that didn't make anything particularly noteworthy before going out of business in 2004.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Off on a Tangent: Piracy


I don't think publishers these days understand how good they've got it. They love to complain about piracy and used game sales, and are intent on redefining the concept of software ownership in order to “protect” their works. Compared to how things have been, publishers have the most control over their games than ever before. Consumers no longer own software, they own a license to software, and this license allows the publisher to basically make any restrictions they want on the product. It just annoys me that publishers completely ignore the negative effects on the honest consumer out of fear of theoretically losing money.

Final Fantasy Adventure and Sword of Mana


I picked up Sword of Mana because I heard it was a remake of Final Fantasy Adventure, the first Game Boy game I ever bought and a game that I am quite fond of. See, Adventure for the Game Boy is actually the first game in the Mana series, which was followed up by the great Secret of Mana for SNES, but has more recently been known for some pretty mediocre games. A remake of an early Game Boy game updated for GBA that brings it more in line with the SNES graphics and systems of later games sounds great on paper, but something just feels wrong about the whole thing.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Wario Land 3: Yay Torture!


The first Game Boy I ever owned was a Game Boy Color, but I didn't have too many games for it and so I didn't play it very much. I didn't really get into portable games until the Game Boy Advance, so I missed out on quite a few good games. For example, I never played any Wario games with the exception of WarioWare titles, so I missed out on the critically acclaimed Wario Land series. When I saw a beat up copy of 2000's Wario Land 3 for the Game Boy Color in the bargain bin at my local used game store for three dollars, it seemed like as good a place to start as any.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Breath of Death VII: A Parody, Not a Sequel


I don't usually play Xbox Live Indie Games, and I guess technically I still haven't, because it is difficult to determine what is actually worth the time or money. I picked up the Breath of Death VII/Cthulhu Saves the World pack on sale on Steam for two dollars, as opposed the usual three, because I was already buying a bunch of other stuff, so it was hard to find a reason not to purchase it. They were made by Zeboyd Games, a three person team that started making Xbox Live Indie Games in 2009, first with a couple of interactive novels and then with these two parody RPGs.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Top Gun: Impossible To Land


When looking through a pile of old NES games, the last game I ever want to see Top Gun.  It is indicative of an owner that had no taste in games, and would likely purchase any licensed schlock that was released for the popular console, and generally lowers any expectations I might have had for the collection.  There are some excuses for owning the game, like receiving it for free or writing a blog about playing awful games, and sadly I fall into both of those categories.  It is games like this that defy the entire idea of a Nintendo Seal of Quality.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Fuck Mountain King


In celebration of Halloween, it only makes sense to make an entry for the first game that ever scared the shit out of me. As an Atari 2600 game, I can't imagine anybody can find the game particularly horrific these days, but, as a kid, Mountain King made me uneasy. I don't know if CBS Electronics, the subdivision of a toy company that just wanted in on some of that Atari money, intended to make the game scary to kids, but that was the way things turned out.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Ariel: The LIttle Mermaid


I imagine there are at least a few people out there that are fond of The Little Mermaid for the NES. It is a Capcom game for NES, after all. But that is not what this post is about, it is about 1992's Ariel: The Little Mermaid for the Genesis, which was most definitely not made by Capcom. Actually, it was made by a company known as Bluesky Software, whom aren't responsible for many games, but did make Jurassic Park:Rampage Edition. While I kind of like Rampage Edition because it was pretty much an insane expansion pack to the first Genesis Jurassic Park, they apparently aren't that great at making their own good game from the ground up.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Dragon Quest IX At Goodwill?!


There is a certain sort of game that one expects to find when trolling Goodwill. That's not to say that I never expect to find good games there, but it usually more offbeat or older stuff. A good example of the sort of stuff I've bought from Good Will is the PC version of NBA Hangtime, which is a fun game, but it is pretty old and I wasn't even aware there was a PC version. I never expect to see newer games, with the exception of abject failures like Tony Hawk Shred, so I was quite surprised to see two basically new copies of last year's Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Starry Skies. It may not have been the highest selling game, but it did pretty well for a Dragon Quest game in the US.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Ghostbusters: The Old Good One


Ghostbusters is a franchise that has always had a pretty shaky history when it comes to video game adaptations. This probably stems from the fact that the series started in the early eighties, and there wasn't much developers could do to make a good game based on the series for primitive systems like the Atari 2600. Even though the NES or Master System could theoretically host a good Ghostbusters game, they didn't because the games were based upon earlier versions. Thankfully, when Compile developed Ghostbusters for the Sega Genesis they started from scratch and ended up making a fun game.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The WonderSwan and Wonder Classic


I'm hardly definitive source of information on the WonderSwan series of handheld game consoles, seeing as I'm not Japanese, but I do consider myself to be something of a portable system connoisseur, so I recently made a point to track one down. I guess I'll start with a history lesson. In the late 90's the Game Boy was nearly ten years old and while the refinements of the Game Boy Pocket was nice, the improvements of the Game Boy Color weren't quite impressive enough to revitalize the aging market. There must have been the idea Nintendo wasn't quite as powerful as it had been because multiple companies tried to push devices into the market. Before this point there had been competitors, but they all ended disastrously.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Baby's Day Never Got Out


Some weird stuff just can't be found in stores.  For example, I found this. . . thing while browsing a Genesis rom set.  Now, I don't really remember the Baby's Day Out other than the name, but apparently it was a movie that bombed horribly and spawned a game that was mercifully canceled.  The first name I noticed when starting the game up was Hi Tech Expressions, the publisher that inflicted that Beethoven game upon the world, but it was actually developed by a studio called Designer Software, who's only release was some Mickey Mouse game.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Guardian Heroes: Now Affordable, Still Awesome


Until recently I would have had a hard time justifying putting up an article about Guardian Heroes. Sure, it is an oft overlooked classic game, but the fact it was only released on the Saturn, which is notoriously hard to emulate, and the rarity of the game meant that tracking down a copy of the game could get quite expensive. I consider myself lucky in that, not only do I own a Saturn, but I also have a friend that has owned the game for years. Now that the game has been remastered and released on Xbox Live Arcade for a measly ten dollars, I won't feel guilty about writing about the game for this site, and I no longer have to organize meetings at my house just to show off the game.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Countdown Vampires: Creatively Bankrupt Survival Horror


With Halloween not far off, I feel like I should write about some survival horror games. Thankfully, the late nineties have left behind a massive amount of poverty horror games meant to cash in on the success of Resident Evil. Probably the most egregious level of copying can be found in 1999's Countdown Vampires, the first game developed by K2 LLC. There is a certain sense of comedy about the fact K2 was acquired by Capcom in 2008. Of course, being unoriginal is only one of a multitude of problems, which I will attempt to document henceforth.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Neo Geo Super Dodge Ball Is Best Dodge Ball


Most people that have spent some quality time with an NES probably have some fond memories of Super Dodge Ball. For those of you that haven't, you are dead to me. It's a great game that is marred by some pretty horrendous sprite flicker, and sadly, most of it's ports sequels had issues with controls or general shittyness. Thankfully, just before going bankrupt in 1996, Technos, the company behind Super Dodge Ball, Double Dragon, River City Ransom, and a million other Kunio games, released their final game, Super Dodge Ball for the Neo Geo. This version happens to be my favorite version of the game, and the one of the most entertaining games that might be found in an arcade cabinet.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Insane Bicycle Stunt Bonus


There are few games that I have played as much as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Steam says I've played it for 73 hours, which is a lot, but it's not an absurd amount considering the game. Of course, Steam doesn't account for all the time I put into the console versions of the game. On PS2, I must have played it twice as much as that, though not quite as much on Xbox. Overall, that is an absurd amount of time. The scary thing is, I still haven't done everything there is to do in the game. I guess that's just the way Rockstar games go for me.

Cliffhanger: At Least It Has Cliffs


I've played some games with pretty big oversights, but I can't think of any as egregious as Cliffhanger for the Game Boy. I mean, how does a game called Cliffhanger  omit the ability to hang. I could understand if the movie it was based on weren't actually about a dude hanging on cliffs, but about the plot device, but that's not the case. If my memory of some ten minutes of the film, which I must have seen over twenty years ago, serves me right, I'm pretty sure the movie was about a dude that scales cliffs, and, in many situations, hangs from them. In fact, the cover of the game is a picture of Stallone hanging from a goddamn cliff.  I guess I should have expected this from Malibu Interactive, a part of a failed comic book company.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Steel Ball Da-Da-Da! Breakout!

The meme probably already ran its course quite a few years ago, but I like to think that most people reading this know about Japan Break Industries. For those that don't know about it, they are a Japanese demolition company, also known Nihon Break Kogyo, that took the internet by storm in 2004 with the release of what is definitely the most catchy demolition-themed song ever. This flash video done with ASCII art and set to the eurobeat version of the theme, which would fit perfectly in an episode of  Initial D or something, was really popular. More importantly for this site, there was a promotional Flash game as well.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Trouble With Focus


Lately, I've been thinking that I have a problem with focus. I have a whole bunch of games that I have access to and would like to play, but for some reason I just don't. This isn't a problem I have that is specific to video games, and I have a similar issue with books and television, but it seems particularly pronounced in my preferred hobby. There are certainly a lot of factors that lead to this, but the more I think about it, the more it occurs to me that it's not just a problem with me but a problem with games as well.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Mega Man Powered Up


Mega Man Powered Up is pretty much my ideal way for remakes of classic games to be done. It takes the original Mega Man from 1987 and brings it to the PSP, maintaining what made the original great, meanwhile adding to it in a lot of ways. There are a lot of mechanical additions and interesting bonuses, but the most important addition is an element of whimsy. Between this and the also excellent Mega Man Maverick Hunter X, it seemed like Capcom was finally shying away quick and lazy ports of their old titles and were beginning to do some quality updates, but, sadly, due to the poor sales of these two titles they did not continue in that direction.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

WWF Super Wrestlemania: Not The Arcade Game


Okay, I fucked up on this one. I picked up a game called Wrestlemania for the SNES thinking it was the Wrestlemania game I remembered, but boy was I wrong. The game that I remembered, which is really the only 16-bit WWF game worth remembering, was WWF Wrestlemania: The Arcade Game, not WWF Super Wrestlemania. There is a big difference, in that the former is a wacky and fun wrestling game, and the latter is a horrible relic of wrestling games' past. I should have remembered the cardinal rule of buying old games: “don't pay money for anything with an LJN logo,” but head was filled with images of hitting people with literal tombstones and Doink the Clown, and I didn't even realized I had thrown away three dollars until it was too late.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Women That Make Resident Evil Great


At the recent 2011 Tokyo Game Show, Capcom showed off a new trailer for the upcoming Resident Evil Revelations for the 3DS. This trailer puzzled me, not only because this trailer mainly starred a new character, but because this new character, named Rachel, is incredibly incongruous with the way the Resident Evil (video game, not awful movie) series has portrayed women up to this point. I'm not sure if Capcom is aware of it, but up until this point the series has had a great track record of featuring strong, (mostly) non-sexualized female characters, and Rachel appears to be the antithesis of this.

Friday, September 23, 2011

MW3: MechWarrior 3 That Is


As far as deals on poverty games go, my local Goodwill has been a great source of old, cheap PC games, and not just those budget PC games that Target carries, but good, sometimes classic, stuff like Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders. At $1.99, I was hard pressed to find a reason to leave MechWarrrior 3 on the shelf. Granted, I've never gotten into the whole BattleTech thing, but I am a fan of various walking tanks and large death-dealing machinery, though the mech designs of the franchise aren't really my style. This 1999 title was developed by Zipper Interactive, the company that went to make Crimson Skies for Xbox and the majority of the SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs titles for various Sony platforms.

Alpha Protocol: Espionage and Beards


Just when I was wondering what game I should write about today, I found out that Steam is selling Alpha Protocol for all of two US dollars. Two bucks for a game that came out a little over a year ago. I recall hearing a lot of mixed opinions on the game when it came out. Not mixed as in there were some people that liked it and others that didn't, but mixed as in there are parts of the game that work and parts that don't. Still, I can't really say no to a two dollar game, even if it is flawed, broken, or terrible, so I consider the possibility of finding any redeeming qualities a plus. As it turns out, the descriptions of the game that I had heard were quite accurate, but the game is definitely worth the my money and time.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Gargoyle's Quest For Recognition


I don’t recall where I first heard about Gargoyle’s Quest, but it is the sort of game that frequently shows up on lists like:  “The 10 Best Game Boy Games You Never Played.”  First off, titles like that bother me because the author had no way of knowing what the readers have or have not played, so it should be called “The 10 Best Underappreciated Game Boy Games” or something like that.  Secondly, I shouldn’t really complain about the article title because it happens to be quite accurate, as it is a great game and I hadn’t played it until recently.  With the release on the 3DS Virtual Console, I figured it was worth four dollars to give it a try. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

The Disposable Nature of Video Games: An Analysis and a Manifesto

One thing that has always bothered me about the culture around games is the obsession with the new and the complete disregard for the old. I'm not stating this as some jaded “retro gamer” that hates how people play Call of Duty instead of Sonic the Hedgehog or whatever, I'm annoyed that anything more than a year old is not considered as important anymore. It just so out of sync with how people consume every other type of media. So, why is it that people see only the latest games as worth their time and everything else as disposable?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Robotek HD and webOS Gaming


After the complete clusterfuck of mistakes that HP made with the Touchpad, I got one at 99 dollars, which makes it one of the mospoverty tablets on the market. Sure, at that price point it is quite nice, and it does the standard smartphone/tablet stuff well, but this is a site about games, and in that department it is predictably lacking. Outside of Angry Birds, which comes pre-installed, there just isn't much available. One game that is available, and thankfully free, is Robotek HD by Hexage, a company that makes games for every major and minor OS.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Ancient Aliens: Mushroom Kingdom


As a part of the nostalgic memories of many people's lives, Super Mario Bros. is rarely looked at with a critical eye. The problem is, upon closer inspection, much of the game just does not add up. How did all these worlds get here? Who is Mario and what are his goals? There are a great deal of unanswered questions that Mario historians have not been able to answer. These historians have rejected the facts right in front of them because they are unable to accept these facts without compromising their established world view. I believe that many of the mysteries of Mario's worlds can be explained by the intervention of aliens in the past.

A Brief Look At Gundam Games


Video games based on Gundam have a terrible reputation, and it while it is not entirely undeserved, there are a great deal that goes completely overlooked. There are a lot of games that are awful, a lot that might be good for fans of certain genres, and some that are incredibly satisfying for fans of the series. As a fan of the franchise, I can understand how readers may not consider me a reliable source, but there are good Gundam games, and it bothers me that people seem to completely dismiss any game with the Gundam on it. This is by no means a complete guide, but I think it covers a good deal of important titles.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Shining Some Light On Boktai


If I had to choose the most unique or most insane GBA game, I would likely cast my vote for Boktai: The Sun Is In Your Hands, the Konami game that is built around the use of a light sensor. Leave it up to Hideo Kojima, creator of Metal Gear, to come up with some really bizarre game ideas. I suppose if the man behind one of their most successful franchises tells them to buy a bunch of light sensors because he has an idea for a game, then Konami is not likely to tell him no. Whatever the case, I am glad it got made because it is a really interesting game.

Mighty Bomb Jack: From The Dark Early NES Days


Mighty Bomb Jack is an NES sequel to Tecmo's first game, Bomb Jack. Released in 1986, it is a game from a transitional period in the NES's history from arcade-style games to more modern console era games. I don't know if Jack is supposed to have been a mascot for Tecmo, but the character has a bizarre design that is a mix between a superhero and cereal mascot. In a lot of ways the game straddles the line between those to styles, and the result is a game that is mostly just frustrating and annoying.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Dear Natalya: Nobody Likes You


Seriously, nobody at all. You are not just an encumbrance, you are a hindrance to fun. Obviously, you were a pain in GoldenEye 007 for N64, but you really didn't add much to the movie either. I mean, the movie had so many characters with Trevelyan, Boris, and Xenia, so what did you really add to it? You're just some boring Russian girl, and you weren't actually Russian because you were played by a Polish woman. You're a Bond girl, but you aren't that hot. You are like a frumpier Scully from the X-Files. Maybe you were a good role model to geeky girls that are into computers, which is rare for a Bond film, but you were probably also a role model to bitchy women.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Counter-Strike: Condition Zero +Deleted Scenes


The development history of Counter-Strike: Condition Zero is pretty strange and confusing, and possibly as a result the game is kind of a mess. Sure, at it's heart it is still Counter-Strike 1.6, which is a solid, though dated, competitive FPS. Throughout its four years in development Rogue Entertainment, Valve Software, Gearbox Software, Ritual Entertainment, and Turtle Rock Studios all worked on the game. Considering that, it is not surprising that the game ended up the way it is.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Maximum Carnage: Listen All You Fools


I think there are a lot of people my age out there who have fond memories Spider-Man & Venom: Maximum Carnage from Software Creations. It is something I don't think anyone who grew up after the 90's comic book collector's bubble burst would quite understand. It's a Spider-Man game that also has Venom as a playable character, it has a bunch cameos of other Marvel characters, and the big boss is the crazy serial killer Carnage, whom all the kids loved at the time. On top of all that, it had music from Green Jell├┐, and in retrospect that is really the only good thing about it.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Newsflash: Deep Labyrinth Found To Contain Many Subterranean Levels


I bought Deep Labyrinth because it was a five dollar DS game that wasn't some licensed crap or Imagine: Baby Surgeriez or whatever all that DS shovelware was. It may be a very generic game, but it still somehow has the second-most generic name for a dungeon crawler on the DS, losing out to Hudson's Dungeon Explorer. Deep Labyrinth was made by a company known as Interactive Brains, which mostly makes games for Japanese cell phones, so it does not come as a huge surprise to find out it is actually a port of a cell phone game.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Scorpion King: Best GBA Game Starring The Rock?


By all rights The Scorpion King: Sword of Osiris for the GBA should be an abomination. It is a licensed game in a sea of shitty licensed games for the GBA, and it is based on The Scorpion King, a movie, starring The Rock, that was a spinoff of The Mummy, a pretty lackluster series to begin with. Granted, I have never seen the film version of The Scorpion King, but I don't think it is bold of me to assume it isn't any good. Maybe it is because my expectations were so insanely low, but I was surprised to find that it's not that bad. Sure, it's nothing amazing or unique, but it is a very competent game.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

My Nostalgia For Motocross Maniacs


People that know me know that I am a huge fan of portable game consoles. People that know me really well know that I got into them rather late. Sure, I had a Game Gear, but the first handheld I owned that was actually portable was a the Game Boy Color I got not long after launch. Before that I only ever used the Game Boys of friends on occasion. The first Game Boy game I ever played was a little game called Motocross Maniacs by Konami, which happens to also be one of the earlier Game Boy releases. I liked it a lot back then, but until I found this cartridge with a severely mutilated label, I had not seen it in about twenty years. When the worker at the register asked if I knew what game it was, it was feel of great success when he confirmed that it was, in fact, Motocross Maniacs.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

(C-12) Final Resistance


For a system that has so few good third-person shooters, I was surprised that I had never heard of (C-12) Final Resistance, which is an unusually decent for a game on the first Playstation.. As it turns out, I probably hadn't heard of it because, in the United States, it didn't come out until 2002, nearly two years after the PS2 was out. It was made by SCE Studio Cambridge, the same developers responsible for the MediEvil series and the version of LittleBigPlanet for PSP. It was originally released in the EU in 2001, which seems more reasonable than when it came across the ocean more than a year later. I don't know why it took so long. Certainly, a game from a Sony studio released by Sony themselves could have been released sooner.

Pac-Man 2: An Unexpected Adventure


If I were to ask the common man what the sequel to Pac-Man is, the response would mostly likely be Ms. Pac-Man. But, in reality Ms. Pac-Man wasn't so much a sequel as a hack, originally called Crazy Otto, but that is story for others to tell. The only time Namco had the courage to name a game as a true sequel was with 1994's Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures, which isn't at all like the previous games in the series, but is weird and interesting in its own right. I played it on Genesis, but as far as I know there isn't a big difference between that and the SNES version.