Hart & Usagi Podcast #58: FPS

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This is a special episode of the Hart & Usagi Podcast. We welcome back ebbderelict. Our main discussion will be about first-person shooters. However, beforehand we discuss some news.

Enjoy the show and remember to subscribe via RSS or iTunes and follow the Hart & Usagi Podcast today!

NEWS/TOPICS:
* Top 5 Most Violent Games of 2014, According to Consumer Reports
* Hackers Ruin Christmas for Xbox and PlayStation Users
* CISPA To Be Reintroduced in The House This Week
* ESRB Gives Hatred An Adults Only Rating
* Hotline Miami 2 Designer To Australian Gamer: Just Pirate It
* USgamer Community Question: What’s Your Most Anticipated Game of 2015?
* First-person shooters discussion

Listen or Download (3:01:40)

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Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive

Mike: @usagi704 | WP blog

Steve: @ebbderelict | ipernity blog

@HartandUsagi

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Top 18 Middle-of-the-Road Video Games

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Today’s video game industry doesn’t care much for the modest budgeted titles of just the last generation. The focus is always on the gimmicky no-budget or the all sizzle no steak of the million dollar titles.

What I’m going to focus on here is my favorite eighteen mid-tier games I’ve played. These will be listed without description, but they will have reviews linked for more information. These aren’t usually the best rated games, but if you go in being forgiving of some of the faults you’ll no doubt find, then you may just realize you’re enjoying yourself. But who am I kidding. It’s not like we’d want that to happen. Let’s get to it.

* Batman Begins
* Black
* Guitar Hero
* The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction
* Kill Switch
* Klonoa 2: Lunatea’s Veil
* Mercenaries
* Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks
* NightFire
* Stuntman Ignition
* The Warriors

* Bionic Commando
* Conan
* Demon’s Souls
* Lost Planet: Extreme Condition
* Mirror’s Edge
* Viking: Battle for Asgard
* X-Men Origins: Wolverine

21

Alright, back again and this time I show off a total of 21 games and 2 systems that I’ve added to my collection.

In the past some of you have wondered how I get all of this stuff. It’s all thanks to a wizard or if you’d rather a different reason, then we’ll go with Joe Pesci. Thanks Joe! (lol) In the end it’s about what I got not how I get it. So let’s get to the goodies.

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Larger view

First up is two Game Boy Pockets, one blue (eBay) and one green (eStarland.com). I invite you to check out this video I made that shows me testing the unopened green Game Boy Pocket for the first time.

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Now for the games. The picture above is to give a perspective of the many games I bought. Below are more detailed shots via links of smaller groups. Group #2 are actually replacement games as the ones I already owned were working fine, but the label color didn’t match the disc color.

GROUP #1
Fighting Force
Crash Team Racing
Need For Speed: Porsche Unleashed
Final Fight 3
The Scorpion King: Sword of Osiris

GROUP #2
Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit 2
Nightfire
Spy Hunter

GROUP #3
Metal Slug 7
Overlord: Raising Hell
Bleach: Dark Souls

GROUP #4
Metal Slug Advance
After Burner: Black Falcon
Tetris DX
Phalanx

GROUP #5
Neo Contra
Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War
Alone in the Dark: Inferno
CT Special Forces

GROUP #6
Tetris
Pokemon Blue

I was thinking of plans for future blogs/videos and I thought of showing off sections of my collection that were requested by you all. I’m not going to do a multi-part of all my PS2 games or anything really long like that. However, I’m willing to show games that I have from a certain series or something similar like that. Maybe even with some gameplay footage at the end to spice things up a little. So if you’d like to suggest something, please do. Just remember to check out my game collection list to see what I have first.

Like always, I’ll put up another blog here soon. So thanks for reading.

GoldenEye Is Not The Best Bond Game

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When I was thinking of what to exactly say about my gripe with those that consider GoldenEye on the Nintendo 64 to be the end all and be all of Bond games, I didn’t want to just copy and paste what I had said over two years ago. I decided to go to the forums for all of the ammo I needed. Sure enough I found this thread. Enjoy the rant.

Ah yes, Quantum of Solace. It’s the newest game from the James Bond universe. It’s also another reason for fans of GoldenEye on the N64 to start doing their usual comparison only to come to the same jaded conclusion that no Bond game can live up to their beloved game.

I don’t have any problem for those that have played GoldenEye since 1997 and can still enjoy it, but I have a hard time believing that most of those that claim the game’s greatness have played it since then. It really is time to take off the rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia that you’ve been wearing for over the last decade are realize that most all of the Bond games since then have been better. And I’m doing a direct FPS comparison when I say that and not referring to the third-person shooters like Everything or Nothing or From Russia With Love.

It wasn’t until 2001 that another Bond FPS game was released. This game was Agent Under Fire. I liked playing the game, but it definitely wasn’t superb. However, it still was better than GoldenEye solely because of better control with dual analog sticks. A year later NightFire was released and it really felt like a major improvement.

GoldenEye: Rogue Agent was released in 2004. If any Bond game should be compared to the N64 game then it would have to be this one. In the first minute of this developer interview, Chris Plummer, the Senior Producer of Rogue Agent, says that they were trying to recreate the experience of the Rare’s game. Well, if that was the case then you fans of the original can have at him, but I feel that this game does hold its own to a degree.

Now it’s 2008. In four years the progression of first-person shooters has come a long way. To have Quantum of Solace basically play similar to GoldenEye at this point in time would have been a huge mistake. Sure the new game takes a bunch from the successful Call of Duty games and adds a Kill Switch cover system, but the game’s better off for it. You can be sure that it plays way better than GoldenEye ever did.

In closing I have to ask one thing of those wondering why the Quantum of Solace game is more based on the previous film, Casino Royale. Have you seen the latest movie? The story hardly makes any sense. It makes me consider watching A View To A Kill and that one was garbage too.

My Score Versus GameSpot’s Score (Pt. 2)

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I’m back. It’s time for the second part of My Score Versus GameSpot’s Score. This time I’ll finish up with six games that I rated much more positively than the GS crew.

The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction
GS: 8.2; me: 9.0
The difference in ratings here shouldn’t surprise anybody that’s already in the know. I really liked this game when I played it back in January. I’ll definitely be going back to it in the future!

Day of Defeat
GS: 8.1; me: 9.1
This game was originally a free mod for Half-Life and it was released at a time when there wasn’t tons of World War II first-person shooters out there. I liked this mod before Valve made it cool to do so. Now if I didn’t have to pay for the upgraded Source version maybe then I’d play it.

NightFire
GS: 7.9; me: 8.8
I first played NightFire at a friend’s house and I liked it enough to buy it for myself. I found it to be more exciting and enjoyable than the two that surrounded it, Agent Under Fire and Everything or Nothing. Oh, and I also played the PC demo before I bought my copy. It took much longer to load the levels and it surprisingly didn’t control as well. For an FPS on a PC that just never made any sense to me.

Black
GS: 7.4; me: 8.8
I never really understood why not many others liked this game. It’s true that I didn’t much care for the extreme length of the levels after the first one. But, the shooting is fun and just like Ultimate Destruction the game explodes real, real good.

Street Fighter Collection 2
GS: 7.2; me: 9.1
I know that I like this Street Fighter II collection because it was the first time that I could have arcade perfect versions of the first three games in the series. This same package later showed up in Capcom Classics Collection Vol. 1, but somehow they managed to mess up the sound. I also liked the Deluxe mode that let you play different versions of the same character against one another. That mode is essentially what Hyper Street Fighter II: The Anniversary Edition is in Street Fighter Anniversary Collection.

Call of Duty 2: Big Red One
GS: 7.0; me: 8.2
I found a number of times when the GameSpot crew would be down on this game, at the time, just because it was similarly titled to the original Xbox 360 and PC versions. Sure the game didn’t do anything that we hadn’t seen up to that point. Maybe I just like this game more because it included voice work by three actors that starred in the HBO mini-series Band of Brothers.

I Don’t Care If It’s Not GoldenEye!

It’s time to cut the crap. Too many people can’t just sit down and enjoy any James Bond first person shooter since GoldenEye 007 for the Nintendo 64 all because “it’s not GoldenEye.” Give me a break! That’s the whole point of the 007 games that came after the one on the N64. Those weren’t GoldenEye because they weren’t trying to be GoldenEye.

I have played Agent Under Fire and NightFire and enjoyed both. You don’t have to like them just because I do, but please stop hating those games for what they’re not. Only GoldenEye: Rogue Agent can be disliked for not being as good as the original N64 game. The reason being that the developers actually said that they were trying to recreate the experience from that previous game. Chris Plummer, the Senior Producer of Rogue Agent, says this near the beginning of the first developer interview.

So, yes, Rogue Agent isn’t as good as the original GoldenEye. That criticism is fine since EA was wanting to basically remake that game. However, NightFire was great despite what some may say. Instead of complaining about which game isn’t GoldenEye, just go and play that game since it’s so great.