No Dough Spared

About a month ago I added three games to my collection. One was a Super Nintendo game and the other two were from the PlayStation Store. The latter two first.

They are Galaga and Windjammers. Both were heavily discounted at $1.59 and $1.49, respectively. I don’t play that many games as old as Galaga, but, of them from that era, this is one of my favorites.

Up to this point I’ve never played Windjammers before. I mainly knew of it through podcasts that Jeff Gerstmann was on over the year when he would briefly mention the game. It does look to be one of the many SNK classics!

Finally, I bought King of Dragons on the SNES. This was the final of the three medieval beat-’em-ups made by Capcom that I didn’t have ported to the system. The easiest one to find is Knights of the Round with Magic Sword being a bit more rare. It was $70 for only the cartridge, but I haven’t bought many games in a long time so I had the dough to spare on this purchase.

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Hart & Usagi #87: PS Hits

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On episode 87 of the Hart & Usagi Podcast we chat about a variety of topics like Twitch bans, PlayStation Greatest Hits returns, and more.

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

TOPICS:
* Ninja Warriors Again announced for Switch
* Twitch deals out month-long bans to streamers using offensive slurs
* This Land Is My Land is a Western played from the perspective of a Native American
* Street Fighter 5 Gets Its Own Loot Boxes
* PlayStation Now getting Game Pass-style offline play later this year
* Sony Introduces $20 Budget PS4 Games Line with PlayStation Hits
* Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 ‘is not making any political statements’
* Doom Eternal will drag us back to Hell
* Street Fighter Was Almost Ported to the NES—Here’s What it Would Have Looked Like
* Kiryu Fights Forever With PS4 Remasters of Yakuza 3, 4, and 5.
* PS4 is Entering ‘Final Phase’ of its Life Cycle, Says Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO
* Dark Souls Remastered Fixes Blighttown’s Frame Rate Drops, so No More Excuses
* Report: Sony Will Stop Making Physical PS Vita Games
* Sony changes warranty terms for PS4, PS3, PS VR, Vita to comply with FTC guidelines
* Happy Anniversary to Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow, the Best Successor to Symphony of the Night

Listen or Download (1:12:49)

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Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive

Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive

Mike: @usagi704 | Domain of Usagi704 | Instagram

@HartandUsagi

Now Playing: May 2018 (and Podcast Update)

About a month ago I purchased Horizon: Zero Dawn. The Complete Edition with all the extra DLC was the cheaper way to go and more available than the original version. I don’t know if I’ll even bother with the extra content, but I guess I’ll just have to see if I want more of it to play by the end. This all is considering that I get to it anytime soon which is unlikely.

I’m currently playing Yakuza 4 as I’d mentioned in my previously resurrected Now Playing feature. The initial character you control is Akiyama. He’s a good ol’ chap with the best of intentions and a non-judgmental attitude with the firm belief that helping out others is more important than making money. I like him.

I’m now onto the second new character’s story, Saejima, and they already show a clear sign of them all tying together eventually. Here’s a badass that’s trying to get what’s his. At least that’s my first readings of his motivations.

On the podcast front, there won’t be any new episode for a little bit as I sort out my PC issues as those problems only affect that activity.

Thanks for reading!

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A Year of Now Playing: March 2017-April 2018

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It’s been a long time since I’ve typed up a Now Playing blog entry. My last edition was published at the end of February 2017.

At the time I was in the middle of playing Syphon Filter: Logan’s Shadow on the PSP. I don’t remember much from the game other than getting to a point where Logan was on a lift riding it up with enemy forces raining fire down upon him. I didn’t know how I’d ever pass this area so I moved onto another game. I did enjoy the game much more than its prequel, Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror, but eventually I’d had my fill of the black ops stuff.

Remember Split/Second? It’s that Disney published racing game where you triggered explosions (and some other things) to try and wreck your opponents on your way to victory. It was a welcome game during that Burnout series drought. It doesn’t surpass that best ever racing series, but it was still engaging it a similar destructive way.

Another game that went unfinished was Soul Calibur: Broken Destiny. This PSP entry introduced Kratos as a guest character to the roster. This was released in between the pair of PSP God of War titles. A lot of his abilities from the GoW games up to that point were included. I spent most of my time in the trials challenge mode. This would help in learning the character of your choice. I’m not the biggest fan of 3D fighting games in general so I played this more out of curiosity.

Mafia III‘s early trailers had my interest with the protagonist in Lincoln Clay in 1960s Louisiana. It had promise is how the game handled Clay’s dealing with racism, but it never does much of anything with it other than allow for a few slurs here and there to be spoken by some of the non-playable characters. It’s ultimately a GTA-style clone of an open world game, but thankfully it was quite good at that.

I know Shadow of the Colossus gets talked about with glowing praise, but it didn’t take long for me to realize this wasn’t a game for me. In a similar way, but where nobody praises it, I can say the same thing about ActRaiser 2.

Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run and Crash: Mind Over Mutant, both on the PlayStation 2, are another pair of unfinished games. I can’t remember exactly what the reason I playing them was. It might have been the game freezing up or a particularly difficult section I didn’t want to deal with.

I had downloaded the Trine trilogy off of the PlayStation Network for my PS4 and played through Trine: Enchanted Edition. It was as I remembered from playing the original version’s demo back on the PS3. It was fun to find uses for each of the three character’s abilities.

For an over-the-top third-person shooter that’s a lot of dumb fun, I suggest helping Fifty get back a diamond encrusted skull in 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand. Don’t forget to jump dat big ass ramp!

Onto some Game Boy Advance beat-’em-up action I played River City Ransom EX. This is a slightly updated look to the original game on the NES. The main difference is that you can save your progress to an extent. It doesn’t save were you left off just your character’s stats and items. Regardless, I’d get to River City High as normal, but no boss shows up to fight as they should so I couldn’t progress onward. I remember this being my problem on the NES too.

Sega Arcade Gallery has four ports of Sega arcade games. Two of them are some of my favorites: OutRun and Super Hang-On. These two games are surprisingly well done. While you’re definitely better off playing a version on a bigger screen, the GBA isn’t the worst. For the controls it’s done quite good. The A and B buttons are accelerate and brake, respectively. L and R handle the boost in Super Hang-On and the shifting in OutRun. I finished both of these along with the next game.

That game is also on the GBA and it’s Power Rangers Ninja Storm. It’s a very one-note kids game and not fun enough for even one play-through, but at least I did that. There’s only very slight differences in a few level given which set of Rangers you choose at the beginning. It’s definitely not worth a second go-around to see anything you missed. Not bad just very mundane.

For all of you who enjoy The Revenge of Shinobi on the Genesis, be prepared for an awful 2002 game on the GBA also called The Revenge of Shinobi. It doesn’t amaze with its graphics. It also didn’t keep me very long because of the release of Burnout Paradise Remastered.

On Burnout, I said in my previous post that it was still fun to go back to after much time has passed. What I didn’t mention was that it was my first platinum trophy in six years and my ninth one in total. It’s the first platinum I’ve earned on the PS4 just as the original version of the game was my first on the PS3. All nine trophies can be viewed here.

The most recent game completed was Red Faction: Armageddon. I found myself having fun destroying structures and then repairing them. I had to tell myself to move on because I was doing that too often. It probably wouldn’t have taken 10 hours to beat if I had trucked on through. There’s a new game plus mode, but being a typical action game as it is I didn’t feel the need to replay it.

Currently I just started Yakuza 4. Hopefully it won’t take me until May 2019 to tell you about it. ;)

Once again, thanks for reading. Catch me on the podcasts!

GAMEPLAY STATS FROM SELECT TITLES:
* Syphon Filter: Logan’s Shadow – Ep. 6, Part 5
* Split/Second – Ep. 12; 3215 credits; 22 trophies
* Mafia III – 41 trophies
* Spy Hunter: Nowhere to Run – Mission 10: Derailed
* Crash: Mind Over Mutant – 4h59m; 27%
* Trine: Enchanted Edition – Skill XP 316; HP XP: 271; 17 trophies
* Sega Arcade Gallery: OutRun – Score: 17,414,040
* Sega Arcade Gallery: Super Hang-On – Score: 1,383,970
* Burnout Paradise Remastered – 42h; 100%; 92 trophies (Platinum!)
* Red Faction: Armageddon – 10h26m; 100%; 29 trophies

Mastering The Remaster

On the previous episode of the Hart & Usagi Podcast, we talked about our excitement to revisit the classic racing game Burnout Paradise with Burnout Paradise Remastered. Well since then I purchased said game and completed it to a platinum trophy with some other goals in between. I can say that the experience hasn’t diminished in the last decade. It’s still as fun as ever. My only disappointment, a minor one, I can think of is that the graphics don’t look all that much better. I guess it just goes to show how amazing the game looked in 2008 that there wasn’t much need for improvement.

Onto other purchases as of late: Puyo Puyo Tetris and Yakuza 6: The Song of Life. The former is the best way to get a Tetris game on a current system. I’ve never been a fan of color matching games like Puyo Puyo so I did buy this title simply for one-half of what it brings which is only the greatest puzzle game ever in Tetris!

The latter was released just last week and while I just started playing Yakuza 4, I couldn’t wait on buying the sixth game. I always do this with the Yakuza series because of how difficult they become to find after not too long.

That’s it for the moment and as always thanks for reading!

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True Vendetta

Over the last few months I’ve gathered together some new items to share.

On the gaming front I’ve been interested in Code of Princess for a number of years since it was released for the Nintendo 3DS. I was happy then to see it listed on the Steam storefront. Somewhat recently it went on sale and I picked it up there.

When it comes to the Yakuza series I’ve bought all of them. However, I’ve only played up through the third game. To make sure I didn’t miss one I bought it at a higher price than I’d expect it to be by now. This means I have Yakuza 0 finally in my collection. I was afraid it would escape me when it was easier to get the later released Kiwami title. No worries now.

Other items I picked up are three movies on Blu-ray.

My favorite of the bunch is a 2016 film called Sing Street. I can’t remember why I decided to watch it in the first place, but the way it tells the basic coming of age story wouldn’t be anything special if it wasn’t set in the 1980s. Another thing that makes it fun is the soundtrack from the band the main character starts up and it takes after the European hits at the time. This is because it takes place in Dublin. While I’m not familiar with the area, the themes of growing up are still the same which makes it relatable.

The other two are True Romance from 1993, which is not about what the title may suggest, and also V For Vendetta from 2005. The latter is very much applicable to the United States today.

That’s it for the moment and as always thanks for reading!

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Hart & Usagi #84: Remaster The World

podcast84

On episode 84 of the Hart & Usagi Podcast we chat about a variety of topics like Awesome Games Done Quick 2018, anticipated games of 2018, a lot of remastered games getting announced, and more.

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

TOPICS:
* 50 Cent Has Ideas For Another Video Game
* Mike’s anticipated games for 2018
* The “Duke” OG Xbox Controller For Xbox One And PC Gets Price And Release Date
* Dark Souls Remastered On Xbox One, PS4, And PC Announced
* The World Ends With You Is Getting A Nintendo Switch Release
* Burnout Paradise HD Remaster spotted, out in March in Japan – report
* PUBG CEO wants the game on every platform, says Sony is “very strict” about quality
* Street Fighter 5 Arcade Edition Adds Sakura, Blanka, and Sagat for Season 3
* Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection Brings 12 Classics To Switch, PS4, Xbox One
* Mega Man 11 Coming to Switch, PC, PS4, and Xbox One
* Demon’s Souls Shuts Down Online Servers Soon, Losing Multiplayer And More
* It Turns Out Epic Games is Suing a 14 Year Old for Cheating in Fortnite Battle Royale, Now His Mom is Stepping In

Listen or Download (1:14:54)

Subscribe: RSS | iTunes

Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive

Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive

Mike: @usagi704 | Domain of Usagi704

@HartandUsagi