Finishing The Unfinished

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Fairly recently I decided to make up a list of games that have left unfinished and mostly focus on getting to the finish line. I would list them here, but I keep taking some games off of the list because I either find out that they’re too frustrating to continue (ie: Urban Chaos: Riot Response) or barely started to even count as being played in the first place (ie: Sonic Rush).

Four games that I’ve now completed are as follows: Retro Game Challenge, Biker Mice From Mars, Metal Slug, and TMNT.

RETRO GAME CHALLENGE (DS)
I purchased this game when it was released back in the early part of this year. I kept at it until I got to the last challenge which was to beat all of the eight games included. I had only half left, but for whatever reason I didn’t get back to it.

Once I did get back into it, I quickly beat Robot Ninja Haggleman 2 , Rally King, and Rally King SP. Guadia Quest was the lone RPG left and I’m sure that most people leave this one until last since it does take up a majority of the time to get through.

It was very satisfying to beat and I can’t recommend this DS game enough to those that are willing to relive the older days of gaming’s history; the good, the bad, and the difficulty.

BIKER MICE FROM MARS (DS)
This game may seem strange to some, but those that grew up during the time that I did will probably remember a cartoon by the same name in the early ’90s. This DS game in particular is from the 2006 series revival that came to North America last year.

Instead of just racing, like on the SNES, this game is also the typical licensed fare of action-platforming. A single level sometimes feels like it goes on forever and the enemy groupings can be pretty cheap causing frustration to set in. Despite that the final boss was very easy to beat.

METAL SLUG (PSP VIA METAL SLUG ANTHOLOGY)
I don’t really have much to say about this game. All I had left was the final mission and it was really short especially when compared to the one in Metal Slug 3. That one was way too long.

My main complaint was that the cheapness of it originally being an arcade game made for many deaths. Otherwise it was fun.

TMNT (PS2)
Oh my. Where do I begin?

The combat in this game is completely and utterly boring. No matter what’s happening or what moves are at your disposal, it’s the same from beginning to end.

The platforming is fun when you can get on a roll, but usually this is interrupted by a bad camera angle or zoom position. My biggest problem is that because of the bad camera you’ll have times where you’ll jump too close to a wall and because of this you’ll do a wall run to your death. It’s also bad when you have to deal with moving platforms as you will likely fall off a lot when making a jump to the next one.

As far as where I was in the game. It showed 51% complete, but that was referring to unlocking everything, which I don’t care about. I think I played about three levels and then quickly finished off the few bosses at the end.

I feel the same about this game as I do for the movie of the same name. It looks pretty good, but has little substance to keep you coming back for more.

Thanks for reading what I guess can be considered mini-reviews. Later!

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Now Playing: August ’09

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Here’s the quick list of what I’ve been playing.

Jackal (NES)
Ninja Gaiden (NES)
Retro Game Challenge (DS)
Fracture (PS3)
Sega Genesis Collection (PSP)
The King of Fighters ’98 Ultimate Match (PS2)
The Punisher (PS2)

For the usual details check out this video.

I want to thank everybody who voted in my last blog post for the game that I’ll look for to purchase some time in the next month.

The winner is Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge!

9 – Castlevania II (GB)
7 – Einhander (PS)
6 – Double Dragon II (GB)
4 – Wild Guns (SNES)
3 – Resident Evil Gaiden (GBC)

Not to worry for those that may still want to cast their votes. You can do that in the comments section for this post.

Again thanks for voting and watching the video. Later!

Now Playing: Feburary ’09

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Street Fighter IV (PS3)
Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection (PS3)
Retro Game Challenge (DS)
Super Street Fighter II: Turbo Revival (GBA)
Burnout Paradise (PS3)
Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix (PS3)
Viking: Battle for Asgard (PS3)
Skyblazer (SNES)
Chili Con Carnage (PSP)

I finished three games this time around: Chili Con Carnage, Streets of Rage 2, and Street Fighter IV. The former is what I can only describe as a lighthearted take on Max Payne, though not literally. There’s a bunch of challenges that are in between the missions, but I just messed around with the first one and then ignored the rest. I beat the middle game via Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection and its save state feature that was carried over from the previous collection. The latter game was beaten to unlock the hidden characters.

Speaking of Street Fighter IV, I’m sure a number of you would like to know what I think of it so far. Obviously it’s great and does live up to the pre-release hype. The only thing that I miss is the rebalanced versions of the characters from Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix. From what I heard so too is David Sirlin.

I enjoyed my time with Viking: Battle for Asgard despite not playing it for about two weeks. If I remember correctly I think I’ve cleared about half of the second map. I also haven’t really touched Skyblazer that much either. I’ve beaten the third boss in the game.

I put more time in Burnout Paradise. I gave in and purchased the legendary cars pack. If you’re not in the know the pack consists of cars based on the iconic ones from Dukes of Hazard, Ghostbusters, Knight Rider, and Back to the Future. You can check out videos on these rides here.

Now it’s time to name the Game of the Month. I bet you’re thinking it’s going to be Street Fighter IV. You’d be right normally, but this one game is truly unique. I’m talking about Retro Game Challenge (yeah because the header graphic doesn’t give it away). I love this game’s references to the games I grew up playing. It’s also fantastic in how the games presented give you that nostalgic feeling without them being anything that was actually out at the time.

That’s it from me. Until next time!

A Few Hard-To-Find Games Found II

I was only planning to buy Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection and Retro Game Challenge this last week, but an unexpected stop changed things.

I accompanied Usagi704 to Gamestop. The plan was only for him to pre-order Street Fighter IV. While there I noticed a rather large number of used Game Boy Advance SP systems. After a trade-in mishap a year or two ago, I’ve been wanting to get back the brighter screen version of it. Being hard to find I settled on an original version. Once I saw these beauties, I couldn’t pass them up. The difference in the displays are pretty major when you compare them side-by-side.

Game Boy Advance SP – Pearl Blue
Tomb Raider: The Prophecy (GBA)
Wolfenstein 3D (GBA)
Strider 2 (PS)
Hydro Thunder (PS)
Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection (PS3)
Retro Game Challenge (DS)

As you can see from the above list, I also got some games that were more troubling to find.

The GBA games were both found with the GBA SP system. The Tomb Raider game came highly rated on GameSpot and Wolfenstein 3D was a very faithful port of the PC game. It even has the “Get Psyched” loading screen despite obviously not needing it.

Strider 2 and Hydro Thunder were fairly pricey on eStarland.com, but both were well worth it. Check out episode 7 of Substance TV as it explains Strider 2 really well.

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Details: Front – all

I haven’t tried the Genesis Collection as of yet, however I have played Retro Game Challenge and I can say for sure that it’s a blast. It has a bunch of references to real people. So far I’ve come across the following references:

* In-game magazine is titled GameFan.
* The first editor in chief is named “Dan Sock.” An obvious reference to Dan Hsu, complete with photo.
* Second editor in chief named “Dave” is Dave Halverson, founder of the real GameFan.
* Right after finishing the challenges for Rally King, the Nintendo film The Wizard is referenced.
* Once Star Prince is unlocked, there are serveral mentions of “The Game Master” and his impressive button-mashing skills. This is referring to Takahashi Meijin of Hudson Soft.

I’m sure there’s a lot more that I didn’t notice and even more to come. RGC is guaranteed to please any long time gamer.

What I’m Looking Forward To For February ’09

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What I’m looking forward to for this month isn’t something I’ve been exactly keeping a secret. There’s also some tentative titles (marked with an *) that I may look into.

Burnout Paradise update:
The Burnout Paradise update was released late last week. I can say for sure that I’m not a fan of a bunch of the changes that were made.

Barrel rolls were made to now automatically right the car after the first roll. It makes it really difficult to do two or more now where as that wasn’t the case before. To those that can’t do a barrel roll, you just need to get some practice. It’s what you do to get skillful. Of course, I’d like to see this “fix” undone.

Another thing that sucks is how long it takes to just start the game. There’s even more menus now than before and it serves nothing other than to confuse new players. On top of that now you need an ea.com account before you can play online. I didn’t before so why now? It doesn’t serve any purpose in the game.

My World My Way (DS)*
Normally I wouldn’t be caught dead with a game like this, but after hearing about it on a recent podcast, it sounds pretty fun. You play as some super pampered girl that defeats enemies with her powerful pouting abilities. Seriously that’s what this character mainly does. Sounds hilarious.

3 on 3 NHL Arcade (PSN)*
I doubt I’ll actually bother with getting this game since I have yet to play NHL Rock the Rink for PS1. However, I do have the demo ready for a run through.

F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin (PS3)*
I played this demo about two weeks ago. I really liked the shooting mechanics just like I did in the PC demo for the original game. If you know me, then you’ll know that the horror genre doesn’t usually go over well with me. Sometimes there’s an exception, but it’s a rarity to be sure.

Retro Game Challenge (DS)
My main interest in this game is two-fold. (1) Usagi704 talking about how great the import version was and (2) finally a new DS game that I actually care about. It’s being released this week and is one of two games that I will be picking up.

Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection (PS3)
This is the other game I’ll be getting this week. At first I wasn’t so keen on bothering with what is technically the Sega Genesis Collection Vol. 2, but then I started to realize what was being offered here. Sure some of the games I enjoyed on the Sega Genesis Collection have gone missing, but the addition of the entire Streets of Rage series is worth it alone. Along with online play for certain titles and trophy support pushes this collection into the must have column.

Street Fighter IV (PS3)
SFIV is without a doubt the biggest game to drop this month. Obviously I’m going to get it, but I’m, for whatever reason, not sure if I’ll do so right away. I thought this way right before the release of Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix back in November, but then I bought it right away and I was glad that I did. I should probably just do the same here. It’s not like I really have anything to worry about.

Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride (DS)*
The only Dragon Quest game I’ve played to date was the original NES game. I do own III and VIII, on GBC and PS2 respectively, but I’ve yet to play them. This and that I’m a very light fan of RPGs to begin with makes for a very unlikely purchase.

Cool New Titles From E3

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The following games are ones that I either found out about for the first time or was presented with more info during E3.

Duke Nukem Trilogy (PSP)
At first I thought this game was going to be the three previous PC games on the go. However, it’s actually three brand new games in one package. Sounds like a pretty sweet deal. It’s also pretty ironic that this game was just announced, but it has a release date unlike another Duke Nukem game.

Resistance: Retribution (PSP)
Resistance on the go and in third-person instead of first-person? Sign me up!

Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars (DS)
Just the idea of a Grand Theft Auto game on the DS sounds interesting. I can’t wait to hear and see more about this game soon.

Retro Game Challenge (DS)
The Japanese title Game Center CX is now coming to North America as Retro Game Challenge. It’s based off of the popular video game show that’s also seeing a release here as well. For more info check out Usagi704’s review of the import version.

God of War III (PS3)
Here’s a series that I’ve enjoyed since day one so it’s no surprise that I’m excited about Kratos’ next adventure.

Mirror’s Edge (PS3)
Wait a minute. An original game by EA? I thought I’d never see the day. I guess that’s what happens when you’re no longer number one in the video game publishing world. Here’s a game that’s based on free running. Looks like a game to keep an eye on.