2005 Game of the Year

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NOMINEES
God of War
Mercenaries
Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks
Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones
The Warriors

2005 Game of the Year: God of War
Runner-up: Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks

In a year with God of War overload it’s difficult to look back and remember exactly what made the PS2 original so great. However, rest assured it is great. Despite my dislike for the clearly untested Hades section and the game ending boss fight with Ares which goes on too long, I really took to this game. I’m surprised I never did a speed run at the time, but I eventually did get around to doing so on the PS3 port with a time of 2 hours and 56 minutes.

After trying to play through the first off-shoot game Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero and thankfully completely skipping by Mortal Kombat Special Forces. A game it should be ashamed to call itself as such. We got Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks. It was way better than it had a right to be, but I was glad it was good. Along with a great nostalgic MKII look, it also played well with fun co-op and lots of hidden goodies as you’d expect.

Previous entries: 1985 | 1986 | 1987 | 1988 | 1989 | 1990 | 1991 | 1992 | 1993 | 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004

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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: July ’09

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The Game of the Month award makes its return for this month’s Now Playing.

The game that’s worthy of the award is the fantastic Crash Commando for the PlayStation Network. I really enjoyed the demo and I was about to pay the full $10 for the game until it went on sale for a week at $5. I snatched that up real quick and the online play has been a blast. It’s back up to $10, but still worth it.

Over the past month I somehow was able to keep with Mercenaries 2: World in Flames until I finished the game. Now that it’s out of the way I can play a game that’s at least a little better in that there’s not a ton of glitches.

I’ve also started Fracture, but not recently. I’m sure that I probably would’ve been done with it already, but I made Mercenaries 2 and The Punisher more of a priority. Fracture’s a fairly decent game, but don’t go paying much for it since the online portion of the game is dead at this point.

Speaking of The Punisher, I added another three videos to this ongoing Let’s Play of the game that I’m doing. Part 13 has a really easy battle with a tank since you can lob grenades with a grenade launcher over the cover that’s provided as you’ll see me do in the video.

Finally, the high score challenge that’s been done in the past over on retrowaretv.com’s forums has started up again. The most recent one was Balloon Fight where I scored 50,250. Granted that was just my first and only try. The top score was 428,000. Crazy!

That about does it for me. Until next time, you guys take it easy. :)

Gaming Update incl. Saints Row 2

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I’m not usually into doing the whole gaming updates as others are, but I decided to make an exception this time since I have a few things that I do want to cover.

About a week ago I had everybody choose two out of the 12 games that I listed that I’d play next. If you didn’t see my comment in that post with the results, then I’ll list them here.

8 – Saints Row 2
4 – Metal Slug 3 via Metal Slug Anthology
4 – Gungrave
4 – Gunstar Super Heroes
3 – Strider 2
3 – Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror
2 – Lost Planet: Extreme Condition
2 – Final Fantasy via Final Fantasy Origins
1 – The Legend of Kage 2
1 – Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run
1 – Retro Game Challenge
0 – Tomb Raider: The Prophecy

I honestly hoped that Lost Planet and Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror would’ve been the two top choices, but I’ve since played Metal Slug 3 and Saints Row 2 and I’ve been having a blast! I was kind of surprised that these two games, which were of the randomly selected group, would be as fun as they are.

I finished Metal Slug 3 fairly quickly, but little did I know how difficult it was. Before I found the global options for difficulty, auto fire, and control config, I was playing it on Normal. Despite the game kicking my ass, I still managed to make it to the beginning of the final mission before running out of continues. I’d say that’s pretty good for a first time run through of the game.

After finishing Viking: Battle For Asgard, I moved onto Saints Row 2.

I find some of the characters to be hilarious such as Johnny Gat and the drug dealing mom, who was funny when she got all excited about my character breaking her out of jail.

Speaking of my character, I didn’t really do much with the details since I did just want to get playing the actual game. However, I do like how he came out. I gave him a British accent with a Steven Seagal style ponytail that’s colored pink to brown and, no matter what clothes he wears, they’re always colored black, red, and light gray.

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View larger image

Below are a few things that I picked up recently at Best Buy. Aside from The Dark Knight, which I got back in January, the rest were all for a total of less than $60. Fracture was $20, Face/Off was also $20, and the fifth season of ER was surprisingly $17. I think that the first four seasons that I bought were about $40 each when I originally got them years ago.

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I have two SNES games from eBay coming real soon. They’re some hard-to-find ones that, when compared to eStarland.com’s prices, were really good deals.

Until then! :)

2006 Game Awards – Genre Awards

Now it’s time for the Genre Awards for the games that I played for the first time during 2006. Enjoy!

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Best Action Adventure Game: Mercenaries (PS2)

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Best Shooter: Gears of War (X360)

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Best Fighting Game: Mortal Kombat Trilogy (N64)

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Best Platformer: Castlevania Double Pack (GBA)

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Best Puzzle/Rhythm Game: Guitar Hero II (PS2)

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Best Compilation: Capcom Classics Collection (PS2)

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Best Driving Game: Need For Speed Most Wanted (PS2)

Pick 5: Addicting Games

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Since there hasn’t been a new Pick 5 feature on GameSpot since back in late July, I figured I’d do a new one myself. This one is about games that were so addicting at one point in time that you kept coming back to it and no other game could take you away from it. Here’s my five most addicting games of all time.

1. Burnout 3: Takedown (PS2)
The first game on this list provided the excitement that no other racing game before it had at the time. I played a lot of Need For Speed III, but once I started playing Burnout 3 nothing was better. And I still believe that to this day. Its sequel, Burnout Revenge, didn’t get me playing it nearly as much. For such a series, I feel it’s actually worse off to give more than one direction to drive on a given track. The point is to battle for position and if there’s more than one direction that just splits up the pack and decreases the excitement. At least it did for me. That’s why I choose Burnout 3: Takedown!

2. Counter-Strike: Condition Zero (PC)
Everybody at this point has at least heard of Counter-Strike. I started playing the Half-Life mod during the Beta 7.0 version. Not long after it was picked up by Valve Software and I’ve since become less of a fan of it. So you can imagine I wasn’t taken in by Counter-Strike: Condition Zero…at first. It took a speed run of the Deleted Scenes portion of the game to get me excited about it. Once I was finished watching that I ordered the game through Steam. I wasn’t hooked on the main part of the game since it was basically the online game with bots and extra objectives. I played the Deleted Scenes missions many times to where I created save points right after the annoyingly long intros to each level.

3. Die Hard Trilogy (PS)
At the time of this game’s release I was really into the Die Hard movies. So when this game came recommended by GamePro (subscribed at the time) I was all about it. The first game on the disc was a third-person shooter, the second game was a light gun game, and the third game was a bomb-finding driving game. The games were fun, but even more so once I was using the cheat codes. The third game is so much more fun if you don’t have a timer consistently nagging you. :P

4. Mercenaries (PS2)
When I first saw Mercenaries in action I knew for the most part that I’d enjoy the game. However, I didn’t realize just how much that would end up being true. Total chaotic destruction is the name of the game and I loved every second of it! Also, cheat codes that would let you stand in the middle of a huge explosion and not die. Now who wouldn’t love that?

5. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (PS2) and Prince of Persia: Warrior Within (PS2)
At first I only bought The Sands of Time to see if I’d like the game enough to purchase its two sequels. Sure enough I did enjoy the first game to the point where I finished it four times in a row. I then bought the next two games and played through both of them twice. I didn’t find the combat in the third game, The Two Thrones, to be as exciting as the previous two games since it expected you to use the speed kill system more often than not. I went back to Warrior Within and finished it two more times. Talk about a series that totally had me enthralled.

Games, Games, and More Games!

More excitement on the video games collection front. This time I only scored seven games. I know it’s down from 11, but some of these games are pretty damn fun.

First up was another eStarland.com order of four games. I was notified that Twisted Metal Black was available, so to make the cost of shipping worth it, I added three other games to the list. Those were Ridge Racer V, Unreal Tournament, and the only PS1 game of the bunch, Syphon Filter. At one point after putting my order through I tried to cancel out Unreal Tournament. This was because of what I read from GameSpot’s review about a problem with the controls. I still ended up receiving it since eStarland’s customer service decided not to take action (not the first time either). I was glad in the end, after playing some of UT, that I did get it since the problem I’d read about can be remedied in the options menu.

A few days later I bought Castlevania: Curse of Darkness, Midnight Club, and Ratchet & Clank locally. None of which I’ve played yet, however CoD will most likely be the next game I start playing. That is after I’ve had my fill of Mercenaries.