Now Playing: May 2012

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The May edition of Now Playing for 2012 is now upon you.

This one’s going to be fairly short. I only played three games this whole month. PC and car problems will do that to ya. Well, okay, it did that to me at the very least.

From the end of last month I had finished up Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne. It gave me 17 total games finished so far for this year and stands as the current total. Since I beat it four weeks ago at this point, there’s not much extra I can say about the game that I didn’t already mention in Now Playing for April. One interesting note was that this version of Max Payne 2, the PS2 version, was released for download on PSN on the day I finished it.

The above game was the final one from the list of suggestions I got from some of you good friends when I asked at the beginning of the year. My planned reward was Yakuza 2 which I’m currently getting through at the moment, but very slowly I might add.

Despite being excited to start it, I’ve been less enthralled by the game over time. I’m not entirely sure why this is since I really liked the first game (sans annoyingly difficult boss fights). It might be that way because the game is mostly the same with additions or improvements where needed. I’m sure it’s also because of my lack of desire to have to deal with difficult boss fights again and this is why I chose to play on Easy over Normal. The main antagonist, Ryuji Goda, spends quite a bit of time outside of the story which I also found disappointing.

Regardless, I have still found it to be very enjoyable to have Kazuma’s fists meet the faces of many opponents. And sometimes a wall, bike, or pipe. The Heat moves are also fun. In Osaka next to the river hitting △ threw the guy in the water. Doing the same next to a glass display case had Kazuma pick up the guy and throw him into it smashing the stand into pieces. XD

Overall, it’s still a great game even though I sound a bit down on it.

Final game was once again Super Street Fighter II: Turbo Revival. I improved several of my times in the Survival and Time Attack modes when playing as Shin Akuma.

Thanks for reading. Peace!

THIS MONTH’S GAMING STATS:
* Yakuza 2 – Chapter 13; 15h52m
* Super Street Fighter II: Turbo Revival
Survival: vs. 5 – 7:55
vs. 10 – 21:35
vs. 30 – 2:55:45
vs. 50 – 5:15:98
vs. 100 – 11:41:92

Time Attack: Normal 8 – 1:18:90
4 Boss – 53:52
vs. Shin Akuma – 13:82
vs. Ryu, Ken, Shin Akuma – 46:89
vs. All – 4:41:62

Now Playing: March 2011

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For the first half of March I played the remaining amount of the original Yakuza game. My initial, middle, and final thoughts on the game should give you a good idea of my experience with it.

After finishing Yakuza I’ve been mostly playing Kamen Rider Dragon Knight on the DS. It’s nothing spectacular, but my enjoyment of the licensed property has made it more fun for me. Last time I had cleared the game with five of the Riders. Now I’m finished with double that amount giving me only three to go. Onyx is up next.

Lastly I played three games online with stripesonfire. It’s been a long time since I played Street Fighter IV and it made for a not very exciting time. It didn’t help that my MadCatz FightPad didn’t work at all. For some reason SFIV is hard for me to get into.

Next we played Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix. It was much more fun since I know the game better. I was expecting my little skills to scare away any challengers as is usually the case despite I hardly play fighting games anymore. Thankfully stripes stepped up and we had a blast.

Magic Sword via Final Fight: Double Impact was the last game of the Capcom blitz. I’ve never been the biggest fan of this game because it’s quite hard to play with any sort of skill. Regardless it was still enjoyable. I hope to play more in the future with or against stripes!

Yakuza – DONE! Kamen Rider Dragon Knight – STARTED!

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ONE GAME FINISHED, ANOTHER STARTED
As predictable as the sun rises and sets each day, the last two fights against Jingu and Nishiki in Yakuza was a pain in the ass. Jingu’s annoyance was his gun and two soldiers who kept respawning. Nishiki would usually get a knockdown as I was getting up or he’d activate some button mashing of X and/or Square a few times in a row. If it wasn’t for health pickups in the immediate area I would’ve been done for. Finishing those two fights was sadly a feeling of relief and not the feeling of accomplishment it should’ve been. Thankfully the story wrapped up nicely with a little bow on top. My score for Yakuza on PS2 is 4/5 (no half-points).

The score doesn’t really get affected by anything other than the annoying boss fights. Everything else becomes second nature once you get used to them and that doesn’t take very long at all. My total time with the game was 20 hours.

With Yakuza finished (#8 for 2011), I’ve moved onto Kamen Rider Dragon Knight for the DS. Unlike the Wii version of the same game, this one isn’t a port of an earlier Japanese PS2 game. The main part of the game is Ventara Mode where you play as one of the 13 Kamen Riders through 50 missions each (650 total) unlocking various content along the way.

So far I’ve completed all missions for Dragon Knight, Wing Knight, Incisor, Torque, and Sting. Thrust is next.

COLLECTION MILESTONE
Something I forgot to mention in my previous blog post. Yakuza 4 officially brought my collection to 800 games! On GameSpot it says 799, but this is because I have the original NBA Jam on SNES twice. Early copies have Charles Barkley, but he was later taken out when Barkley: Shut Up and Jam hit the Genesis. The version with him was the one I had at the time in 1994.

THQ STOCK
You might have heard articles claiming the overall review scores for THQ’s Homefront as a reason their stock quickly dropping about 25% a few days ago. This doesn’t make any sense.

THQ’s stock didn’t drop 25% because of review scores for Homefront. Here’s how I know. Dante’s Inferno was marketed by EA in a similar manner and received the same scores, which weren’t bad at all, and their stock didn’t fall around this time last year. Not only that, but many, many high profile games get released each year to less than stellar scores and no headlines are made about those stock prices. It has to do with something else and we simply don’t have the answers yet.

NES eBay Lot

About two weeks ago I received the items I bought on eBay. Those items consisted of an NES model 2, light gun (orange), 2 controllers (original), and 14 games.

The only unfortunate thing about the games is that I already own 9 of them. I fell that it was worth the repeats just so I could get the model 2 NES at a decent price.

In addition I also bought Yakuza 2 and a second copy of the original NBA Jam for the SNES. I only did so after demoing it and seeing that it included Charles Barkley. Early versions of this game have him in it. He was taken out in later printings of the game because of his involvement at the time with Barkley Shut Up and Jam.

Here’s the usual wonderful gallery of photos.

NES 2, Light Gun, Kung Fu, Golf, Super Off Road, R.C. Pro-AM, and Rad Racer
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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Double Dragon II, Super Mario Bros. 2 (w/manual), Tetris, Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario Bros./Duck Hunt (w/manual), Bad Dudes (w/manual), Dragon Warrior, and Skate or Die
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NBA Jam and Yakuza 2
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Playing Licensed Games

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For my next few games that I play I’m going to tackle the licensed games in my collection. If that includes crap, then so be it. Here’s the laundry list of games that I plan on playing that fall into this category.

Batman Begins (PS2)
Biker Mice from Mars (DS)
Conan (PS3)
Crue Ball (GEN)
Disney’s Aladdin in Nasira’s Revenge (PS)
Gungrave: Overdose (PS2)
James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing (PS2)
Justice League Heroes: The Flash (GBA)
Mickey Mania (SNES)
The Punisher (PS2)
The Red Star (PS2)
Rise to Honor (PS2)
RoboCop Versus The Terminator (SNES)
Spider-Man 2 (PS2)
Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run (PS2)
TMNT (PS2)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (PS2)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Back from the Sewers (GB)
Transformers (PS2)
VR Troopers (GEN)
WCW vs. The World (PS)
WWF Raw (SNES)
The World Is Not Enough (PS)

Of course this list isn’t comprised of every licensed game that I have. Some I have already played (ie: Astro Boy: Omega Factor) or there are too many similar titles (ie: the rest of the WCW/WWE games) to be considered.

Now onto purchases that I made today at Gamestop. I took advantage of a coupon that was printable off of ps3fanboy.com. It’s for 25% off of any three used PS2, PS3, or PSP games. Here’s what I got.

Flatout 2 (PS2)
TMNT (PS2)
Yakuza (PS2)

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Also from JapanGameStock.com I bought two used Super Famicom controllers and a PS1 memory card.

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On the PS1 memory card were some old saves. Take a look.

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