Hart & Usagi Podcast #49: EA’s Uncomfortable With Change


On this edition of the Hart & Usagi Podcast we talk about how awesome Platinum Games is and how much EA isn’t. We also give our thoughts on what being an “indie” game is. All this and more can be yours with a simple download of the episode below.

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

* Assassin’s Creed IV, Code of Princess, Shovel Knight, and Klonoa: Empire of Dreams reviews
* Phil Spencer: Consumers love Kinect, they’ll still buy it
* Microsoft Arc and Logitech K750 keyboards
* The Legend of Korra: as told by Bayonetta dev Platinum Games
* Gamers Uncomfortable with Change, Says EA’s Peter Moore
* EA Mobile Says Dungeon Keeper May Have ‘Innovated Too Much’
* It’s Impossible to Define “Indie” So We Should Stop Using It Altogether
* The Best and Worst Character Reboots and Redesigns
* The Greatest Games for NES: 1985-87

Listen or Download (1:51:16)
Hart & Usagi Podcast at the Internet Archive
Matt: @HartKnight | HartKnight’s Archive
Mike: @usagi704 | WP blog



Retro Revival Week – Day 7: Tetris


Another quick and sharp left turn was made for Day 7 of Retro Revival Week. I decided to ditch Crash Team Racing for Tetris since it was its 25th anniversary.


If you’re feeling down about that, don’t be. I filmed a little bit of gameplay of all of the Tetris games that I own for the special day (sans Tetris DS). They came out to three videos and a total of almost 19 minutes. Video 1 includes NES Tetris and Tetris 2. Game Boy Tetris and Tetris Blast are in video 2. Finally, video 3 shows off Tetris DX.

Other retro fun involved playing against Usagi704 in Gundam Wing: Endless Duel for the SNES. Those matches can be viewed from his YouTube videos page.

Super Punch-Out Update
I played a little bit more of Super Punch-Out and was finally able to best Mr. Sandman to win the second circuit. The first opponent for the third circuit was Aran Ryan who I still have to learn to beat.

* Usagi704 gets in another shoot-’em-up called Xexex and throws down in Gundam Wing: Endless Duel.
* Darkbeat continues with the shoot-’em-up craziness with Giga Wing!

Well, that’s it for Retro Revival Week. I thank all those who participated. If there’s anybody that’s going to do a day or two after the fact, you can count me in. I’ll gladly do a bonus day if need be. Otherwise, I’ll return to my somewhat regular blog schedule. Thanks again! Retro rules!

Retro Revival Week – Day 6: Super Punch-Out


You’ll be glad to know that I was able to get some play time in for Day 6. Super Punch-Out was on tap and it’s a game that I’ve never played before. There’s a bunch of new things I had to learn before I could even beat the first opponent Gabby Jay. This game doesn’t have rounds. A fight just goes for three real world minutes. Unlimited super punches as long as you don’t get hit. And finally, the duck move which means that blocking is done by pressing up on the d-pad.

Upon learning all of that I still had major problems when I got to the third opponent Piston Hurricane. Apparently he’s a push over, but I wasn’t noticing that. After viewing a video of someone else dominating him, I was able to do the same. However, this tactic didn’t work for very long once I reached the second circuit. After awhile I was able to get up to Mr. Sandman, but I’ve yet to beat him. I’ve gotten close, though.

The video for Day 6 consists of bouts against Bob Charlie and Dragon Chan of the second circuit. I do pretty good against them after some practice so I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.

In genuine retro gaming news, Google is celebrating the 25th anniversary of Tetris with this sweet image of their logo.


* Usagi704 gets into some more shoot-’em-up fun with Salamander 2 on top of Wolfenstein 3D.

It’s racing day again as Day 7 brings Crash Team Racing. Retro rules!

New Releases 2009: May 10-23


Battlestations: Pacific (PC, X360)
Desktop Tower Defense (DS)
Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus (WII)
Sacred 2: Fallen Angel (PS3, X360)
Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner 2 – Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon (PS2)

As you can see above, this week isn’t really showing anything that I’d eventually get. However, the Shin Megami Tensei series has always been one of high quality, so I can recommend Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner 2 to those that enjoy those games wholeheartedly.

Bionic Commando (PS3, X360)
Boom Blox Bash Party (WII)
Punch-Out (WII)
Steal Princess (DS)
Terminator Salvation (PC, PS3, X360)
UFC 2009 Undisputed (PS3, X360)

For the second week it’s looking much better. I wasn’t anything other than confused with the UFC demo and the Terminator game’s an iffy choice since it’s a movie tie-in, but some may like them. I know that many are looking forward to Punch-Out, but I’ll be picking the other series revival in Bionic Commando. From what I’m hearing from those in the beta, multiplayer is sounding really good.

Code Name: Viper (NES)
Truxton (GEN)

These last two games are ones that I’ve known of for many years and only just now tried them out. Both are excellent games worth finding and picking up if you’re looking for something that’s not so new, but terrific all the same.

Code Name: Viper (released in Japan as Ningen Heiki Dead Fox) is an action platform shooter by Capcom for the NES. It ranges in price from $1.00-$7.50.

Truxton (known in Japan as Tatsujin) is a great early shoot-’em-up for the Genesis by Toaplan. It ranges in price from $5.00-$15.00.

A pretty cheap alternative, wouldn’t you say? That’ll do it for this time. Thanks for stopping by.

Motorstorm & 4 eBay Auctions Won

In this video I talk about my time playing Motorstorm on the PS3 and recent purchases that include four eBay auctions that I won. Also I take the time to mention about the poorly packaged winnings.

Game Genie (NES)
2nd copy of TMNT: Hyperstone Heist (GEN)
Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out (NES)
Super Dodgeball Brawlers (DS)
Taito Legends 2 (PS2)
Bruce Lee: Return of the Legend (GBA)
The Legend of Kage 2 (DS)
Night Trap (SCD)
SOCOM Confrontation (w/headset) (PS3)
3-disc Halloween DVD
Android Assault (SCD)
Mortal Kombat (SCD)
Ground Zero Texas (SCD)
Stellar Fire (SCD)
Jurassic Park (SCD)
The Amazing Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (SCD)
Mega Man 5 (NES)
Mega Man 6 (NES)


1987 Game of the Year


Note: Some readers fail to realize that others aren’t always going to choose their favorite games. If you’re one of those people, then you can only blame yourself for this additional mess that I have to have here. You may very well disagree with some of my choices, but that’s why it’s a good list. If you don’t say such things then consider yourself awesome.

Here’s how this show works. I’ll list the nominees (up to 5) and then choose the game of the year and runner-up. The games chosen have to be games that I’ve played. They don’t have to have been played at the time, but they do have to be within the year noted in the title.

NOMINEES (All games are the arcade versions unless otherwise noted.)
After Burner
Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! (NES)
Operation Wolf
Super Hang-On

1987 Game of the Year: After Burner
Runner-up: Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!!

1987 was the year of Sega in the arcade apparently as three of my five nominees were developed by them. I remember liking all three of those games, but After Burner always won me over. It was just too bad that it was another example of a game that I didn’t see much to play it.

Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out on the NES is the definite game for runner-up over the rest of the nominees. I still have to re-buy that game, but one day I will have it again. I remember my toughest opponent all of those years ago was Great Tiger. The disappearing act was quite bothersome.

As a side note, I must call out the local Coliseum Roller Rink as they had (and may still have) a number of excellent arcade games. Shinobi was one of those games among others that I’ll point out in the future.

Previous entries: 1985 | 1986

A Number of Quality Titles

Yesterday I went to the trusty local store, It’s About Games, and picked up the following four games.

Rush’n Attack (NES) – game only; fair
Super Mario Bros. 2 (NES) – game only; good
River City Ransom (NES) – game & sleeve; fair
Sonic the Hedgehog 3 (GEN) – game & case; great

At the same time I also decided to get Bad Dudes and the 3-in-1 cart of Super Mario Bros./Duck Hunt/World Class Track Meet. Unfortunately, neither game worked even after cleaning them. So instead I swapped them today for a very fine replacement in Super Punch-Out (SNES – game only; excellent).

After talking for awhile somehow we got onto the topic of pinball games. I mentioned that I liked the great TG-16 games Alien Crush and Devil’s Crush. The store owner immediately walked over and picked up a complete copy of Dragon’s Fury (GEN – excellent). I was like “OMFG!!” and added that to the buy list right then and there.

I ended up getting many high quality games and all of them were on my wish list, which is normally a rarity.


Condition scale: Excellent, Great, Good, Fair, Bad, Poor