Hart & Usagi #68: EVO2015 is Curtis

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It’s time for another scintillating Hart & Usagi Podcast episode. In this corner it’s USGamer’s 10 best PlayStation 4 games and in the opposite corner it’s two guys who played almost none of them. A captivating match-up! Other showdowns include Ant-Man vs. Pixels, UK businesses vs. personal use, and EVO vs. Jamie Lee Curtis.

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

NEWS/TOPICS:
* PlayStation Mobile Officially Closes Today
* The 10 Best PlayStation 4 Games
* UK High Court Kills ‘personal use’ ripping of copyrighted material
* Jamie Lee Curtis Attended EVO Disguised As Vega From Street Fighter
* Don’t Celebrate A Tournament Win Until You’ve Actually Won
* Acclaimed RPG Odin Sphere Getting HD Remake in North America
* Xbox One Backwards Compatibility an “Enormous Engineering Challenge”
* What are the Hardest Video Games?
* Adam Sandler’s Video Game Movie Pixels Wins Friday With $9.2 Million
* Pixels Has Slow Start at Box Office
* China’s Console Ban Is Now Totally Over
* Google+ and YouTube are finally splitting up

Listen or Download (57:30)

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Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive

Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive

Mike: @usagi704 | Domain of Usagi704

@HartandUsagi

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Hart & Usagi Podcast #51: Pile of Secrets

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On this edition of the Hart & Usagi Podcast we welcome back JiibayDan to chat about favorite controllers, 25th anniversary of the Genesis, and some hot Tetris pillow action.

Enjoy the show and remember to subscribe and follow the Hart & Usagi Podcast today!

NEWS/TOPICS:
* Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
* USgamer Community Question: What’s Your All-Time Favorite Controller?
* Sony: ‘EA Access’ Offers No Value to PS4 Owners
* Report: GameStop Changing Game Trade-In Program
* The Greatest Games for NES: 1988-89
* Microsoft Still Bullish on Kinect
* If Tetris Were Made Out Of Pillows
* Poll: What Should ‘Night Trap’ Have Been Rated?
* Debunked: Most Downloaded Games Per State Not What It Claims To Be
* Happy 25th birthday, Sega Genesis
* Playtotle 001: Character Design

Listen or Download (2:18:05)
Subscribe!
Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive
Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive
Mike: @usagi704 | WP blog
Dan: @JiibayDan | That Dan Stinehart Blog | ~Natively Awkward

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Hart & Usagi Podcast #47: A Fascinating Medium

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Despite the heat HartKnight and Usagi704 are back with episode 47 of the Hart and Usagi Podcast! Do we have a show for you? Absolutely. We welcome ebbderelict back for a fourth time and talk about Tetris being the greatest game ever and how maybe Super Mario Bros. isn’t. There’s also more sad excuses for microtransactions and an unlikely opponent of the FCC.

Enjoy the show and remember to subscribe and follow the Hart and Usagi Podcast today!

NEWS/TOPICS:
* God of War: Ascension multiplayer
* Video games are the most fascinating medium ever created, David Cage says
* The FarCry Racism Adventure
++ Mark Cuban: “I’m A Prejudiced Bigot”
* Congressman Funded by Telecommunications Campaign Cash Proposes Bill to Stop FCC’s Net Neutrality Plans
* Own a Piece of Gaming History When Recovered E.T. Games go on Sale
* Hyperkin Retron 5 Review
* 15 Must-Have Games for 3DS Virtual Console
* Game Genie Was More Than The Sum of its Cheat Codes
* Grand Theft Auto Parent Publisher Defends Microtransactions
* Watch Dogs: Finding Morality in Useless Information

Listen or Download (1:44:26)
Subscribe
Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive
Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive
Mike: @usagi704 | WP blog
Steve: @ebbderelict | Blog at ipernity

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@HartandUsagi

Best On NES

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If you’ve played some of the arcade games by Konami and/or Capcom, you’ve probably noticed some of the differences between those and the later home versions of the same games on the NES. Granted some of the differences might be minor, but those changes still make all of the difference in the cosmos.

When looking for some examples of these differences, one can easily see it in Ninja Gaiden. The thing with Ninja Gaiden is that the arcade beat-’em-up and the NES action platformer were likely developed at roughly the same time. Another game mentioned by JiibayDan was Dragon Spirit. I don’t know enough about the game to know if it had a better home port.

I recently played and finished the NES version of Jackal. This Konami game was originally an arcade game which I never saw or played until I briefly tried it out via MAME. The differences in this title are mostly in the controls of the jeep the player uses. Popping off a grenade takes a fraction of a second longer than on the NES. Because of this it doesn’t always fly in the direction you intend it to. This is the sole reason why Jackal is best on the NES.

Another game which also has smaller changes is Gun Smoke (That’s right, I don’t type it as “Gun.Smoke.”). The differences here is mainly the difficulty. There’s four fewer stages, smaller amounts of enemies, and your quarters stay in your pocket. :D Shops were added to the game to make the money displayed at the top of the screen mean more than just as a score. The music is also better too!

Bionic Commando is up next and this is one NES game that is known and loved far and wide. If you’ve ever played the arcade game, then you truly are familiar with probably one of the greatest examples of best on the NES. The graphics are artistically better, there’s a fleshed out story, and the damn thing just controls great! There’s also more variety in this version than compared to its quarter-munching cousin.

Finally there’s two Konami games which are some of my personal favorites of all time. They are the pair of run-‘n-gun titles Contra and Super C! I’ve played a bit more of the arcade original than that of Super Contra, but both of them run off of the same hardware and therefore had pretty much the same issues. The vertical screen didn’t help with the view of oncoming enemies. When aiming in a different direction while shooting you needed to wait a few seconds for the bullets to feel like it. I also felt that the arcade versions color palette was drab.

Best on the NES fits Contra and Super C well. The problems with the arcade versions were dealt with perfection. More stages were added and lengthened, but the challenge is very much still there. The difference being that the precise controls make it possible to have the character do what you want. There’s no more of the nonsense waiting for the bullets to go in the direction you intend them to. All you have to worry about on the NES is where and how much of Red Falcon’s ass to kick!

If you have any other potentially fun arcade games which, once on the NES (or another system), finally paid off on that potential, please, by all means, regale me with your story below.

Hart & Usagi Podcast #42: The Beat Down

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The Hart and Usagi Podcast is back for the first episode of the new year to talk about the beat-’em-up genre of gaming. To do so we welcome back Anthony from the ++Good Games podcast.

Join us as we take a trip down memory lane and also talk about today’s evolution of the beat-’em-up genre!

List of games talked about (a portion of):
* Streets of Rage
* Final Fight
* Double Dragon
* Riot Zone
* Sengoku
* Rushing Beat
* The Punisher
* Splatterhouse
* Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
* X-Men
* Knights of the Round
* Magic Sword
* Devil May Cry
* Bayonetta
* Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks
* Ninja Gaiden
* God Hand
* Target: Renegade
* Sword of Sodan
* Rastan
* Guardian Heroes
* Golden Axe
* Dungeons & Dragons
* Ikari III: The Rescue
* Rise to Honor
* Bujingai
* Vendetta
* The Bouncer
* The Combatribes

Listen or Download (2:57:58)
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Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive
Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive
Mike: @usagi704 | WP blog
Anthony: @24bitAJE | ++Good Games

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New Releases 2013: February

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The big games this month are Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time for myself. I’d also be likely to get Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus if I had a Vita. Which release in February are you gearing up for?

WEEK of 2/3
Dead Space 3 (PS3, X360, PC)
Fire Emblem: Awakening (3DS)
Fist of the North Star: Ken’s Rage 2 (PS3, X360, WU)
Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time (PS3, PSV)

WEEK of 2/10
Aliens: Colonial Marines (PS3, X360, PC)
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed (3DS)

WEEK of 2/17
Crysis 3 (PS3, X360, PC)
Hakuoki: Warriors of the Shinsengumi (PSP)
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance (PS3, X360)
Serious Sam Double D XXL (X360)

WEEK of 2/24
Dynasty Warriors 7 Empires (PS3)
Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan (3DS)
Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus (PSV)
Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee HD (PC, PSV)
Rayman Legends (WU)

New Releases 2012: Wii U & Rest of the Year

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WEEK of NOV. 18
007 Legends (WU)
Assassin’s Creed III (PC, WU)
Batman: Arkham City – Armored Edition (WU)
Call of Duty: Black Ops II (WU)
Darksiders II (WU)
Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two (PS3, X360, PC, WU, WII, MAC)
Epic Mickey: The Power of Illusion (3DS)
Hitman: Absolution (PS3, X360)
Just Dance 4 (WU)
NBA 2K13 (WU)
New Super Mario Bros. U (WU)
Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge (WU)
Nintendo Land (WU)
Persona 4 Golden (PSV)
PlanetSide 2 (PC)
PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale (PS3, PSV)
Pro Evolution Soccer 2013 (3DS)
Resistance Collection (PS3)
Skylanders Giants (WU)
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed (PS3, X360, WU)
Tank! Tank! Tank! (WU)
Tekken Tag Tournament 2 (WU)
ZombiU (WU)

WEEK of NOV. 25
Ratchet & Clank: Full Frontal Assault (PS3, PSV)

WEEK of DEC. 2
Far Cry 3 (PS3, X360, PC)
Mass Effect Trilogy (PS3)

WEEK of DEC. 9
Hawken (PC)
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed (PSV, 3DS)

Hart & Usagi Podcast #19 XL

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The Hart & Usagi Podcast is back with episode 19 and on the show we cover news on the Wii U among many other topics. We welcome SonicHomeboy back and part way during the show madtyger calls in!

TOPICS/NEWS:
Double Dragon Neon’s soundtrack
Wii U price
– Bayonetta 2
Wii U’s software launch list
Nintendo TVii
Hard drives for Wii U
Wii abandoned
WiiPads and replacement
Kill Instinct
PS3 super slim
Midway Arcade Origins
Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z
Dead or Alive 5
Mass Effect fan negativity
– The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Fallout: New Vegas, Bethesda Softworks
– Games recently bought
– Tim Burton

Listen or Download (1:54:47)
RSS feed for the show.

This Game Better Stop Sucking Ass: Top AVGN Episodes

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A week and a half ago over on Cinemassacre.com, the Angry Video Game Nerd’s wife posted a list of her top 20 favorite AVGN episodes. Not being a gamer, as she explains, her reasons for her choices are much different than a typical viewer’s would be.

Being one of those aforementioned typical viewers, I do have a different list I’d put together. However, this isn’t that list. If it was it would definitely have on it the Power Glove, Atari 5200, and Sega CD episodes. I love them.

What I have shown below is the exact same 20 AVGN episodes she listed, but in the order I’d prefer them in. I watched them all again to know right where I wanted to place them at.

Most of the episodes listed that rely heavily on special effects are more towards the bottom. I remember the fan reaction to the Bugs Bunny’s Crazy Castle episode with so much praise being placed on it as the best episode ever up to that point. I was confounded by the response because I literally thought it to be one of the worst. Upon rewatching it I still don’t think highly of it.

Some might wonder how I could dislike the Crazy Castle video and still enjoy The Bugs Bunny Birthday Blowout episode. It has to do with Birthday Blowout focusing on the game with the beating skit peppered in throughout. Crazy Castle felt like an excuse to do more of the skit than the games and while I don’t like it, I understand there being nothing much to the games in the first place.

An exception to the FX episodes on the lower part of my list is the one focused on the Nintendo World Championships. Its placement has to do with feeling more like an NES Punk video versus an AVGN video. The awkward style of humor is definitely more Pat’s thing which isn’t where my taste in what I find funny lies.

The most pleasantly surprising episode was on Wayne’s World. It’s probably one of the more simple AVGN videos. The game is explained and shown with clips of the 1992 film spliced in at specific points. That’s all there was to it and it beat my expectations in terms of quality and humor.

My top 3 had, what I felt to be, the most creative of them all. Kevin Finn as the ninja in the Ninja Gaiden episode was great improv comedy, James as every member of the Addams Family had funny lines from each of his characters, and finally Mike Matei as the Joker in Batman part 2 was laugh out loud hilarious!

20. Bugs Bunny’s Crazy Castle
19. The Wizard and Super Mario Bros. 3
18. ROB the Robot
17. Nintendo World Championships
16. Atari Jaguar Part 2
15. Battletoads
14. Christmas Special 2010
13. Halloween
12. Indiana Jones Trilogy
11. Game Glitches
10. Christmas Carol Part 2 – Shaq Fu
9. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Re-Revisited
8. Sega 32X
7. The Bugs Bunny Birthday Blowout
6. Spiderman
5. A Nightmare On Elm Street
4. Wayne’s World
3. Ninja Gaiden
2. Fester’s Quest
1. Batman Part 2

New Releases 2012: March 11-31

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WEEK of 3/11
Birds of Steel (PS3, X360)
FIFA Street (X360, PS3)
Journey (PS3)
Mario Party 9 (WII)
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations (X360, PS3)
Reality Fighters (PSV)
Ridge Racer (PSV)
Shoot Many Robots (X360, PS3)
Silent Hill: Downpour (PS3, X360)
Tales of Graces ƒ (PS3)
Warp (PS3, X360)
Yakuza: Dead Souls (PS3)

WEEK of 3/18
Armored Core V (X360, PS3)
Kid Icarus: Uprising (3DS)
Ninja Gaiden 3 (PS3, X360)
Rayman 3 HD (X360, PS3)
Rayman Origins (3DS)
Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City (PS3, X360)
Silent Hill HD Collection (PS3, X360)
Sine Mora (X360)
Total War: Shogun 2 – Fall of the Samurai (PC)
Warriors Orochi 3 (PS3, X360)

WEEK of 3/25
Alien Chaos 3D (3DS)
Boulder Dash-XL 3D (3DS)
Capcom Digital Collection (X360)
Rayman Origins (PC)
Test Drive: Ferrari Racing Legends (X360, PS3)
Tiger Woods PGA Tour 13 (X360, PS3)