Now Playing: December 2014

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Early this month of December I was looking to play some games with some satisfying brutal visuals. I selected a number of games and had it up for a vote on Twitter. One of those games was Yakuza 3 as voted on by @usagi704.

Yakuza 3 has some new elements which I wasn’t a fan of. The main one was finding Revelations. Upon completing a small quick time event sequence and selecting an appropriate title for it, the reward is obtaining a new attack for Kazuma to use. Thankfully none of these are required so ultimately this complaint of mine is very minor. Good news is that this game still delivers excellent beat-’em-up action especially in the latter half of the game. I completed the game with a total time of 18 hours and 7 minutes.

Next game played was suggested by @ebbderelict and this time on the PlayStation 2. It’s Urban Reign. It’s a 2005 Namco brawler with a weak story that can be completely ignored. The purpose of the story is just to have an excuse for the fights to happen. Mission 15 is the first roadblock for new players. It features a very difficult opponent by the name of Kadonashi. He counters most everything and loves punishing combos. In Mission 24 he reappears with a partner. I didn’t find it very fun and stopped playing at this point. Maybe sometime later I’ll give Urban Reign a second chance.

Another vote I took at around the same time as the one mentioned above was for unplayed original PlayStation games I had. This was for celebrating the system’s 20th anniversary. @24bitAJE recommending RayCrisis: Series Termination after recording the last episode of Space Suplex.

Just as he’d said, RayCrisis was definitely a short game. Even Usagi704 had noticed it was short for even shoot-’em-up standards. RayCrisis is of the “Ray” series of games developed by Taito. I’ve always liked the idea of the games and how they play, but as usual with me, I’m not very good at this genre. Regardless, I found it much more fun than I was expected once I played on Usagi’s setup. There’s a lot to be said about having a CRT television with component video cables.

With those games out of the way I will tackle Strider 2 next.

The Ninja, The Viper, and The Fighter

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Another set of games acquired over the last week. I’ll get the downer part of this news out of the way at the top.

As you know from my review (online archive) of the Stickman’s Ashland, Ohio location, it’s pretty bad in about every possible way. When I was there a week ago last Friday I bought Truxton. It’s a fairly difficult to find shoot-’em-up for the Genesis. It cost me $12 for the game only which is about what it is. The guy at the store claimed it goes for $50-70 complete. I looked that up after I got back and found out the real deal. A complete copy of Truxton only goes for $20.

The fun doesn’t stop there. It wasn’t until late Saturday night I noticed online that I was charged $21 for the game. Since they’re closed on Mondays for some reason, I had to wait until Tuesday to return to get my money back. As it turns out they’re so cheap that they called the other crappy location in Shelby, Ohio to charge my card. Luckily I was able to get the difference back in cash so I wouldn’t have to go through that again. Bottom line: They sell crap and I ain’t going back.

I’m happy to say there’s a good thing I can say about Stickman’s. It’s in the form of another location in Galion, Ohio. Of course I expected it to be crap, but apparently the third time is still a freaking charm. This location isn’t owned by the same person as the other two locations and it shows. Everything you’d expect from such a store was being done at this location. The place was clean and didn’t smell bad, the prices were reasonable, and the games were cleaned and tested. I’ll gladly go back to this place in the future after getting Code Name: Viper, a second better looking copy of Shadow of the Ninja, and the Genesis version of Pit-Fighter. It probably helped that the owner was a woman.

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From Glyde.com my order with Urban Reign came in. It was an excellent complete copy at only $3.25 and it’s not the easiest to find.

And finally my winning eBay auction of the Game Boy version of Samurai Shodown arrived today. It’s probably more rare than any of the other games listed in this blog entry yet I was able to get it for a mere 99 cents.

One Game Is Not Enough

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The following is my reply to the blog post “Stop Single Game Syndrome” on Substance TV.com.

I’m definitely all about new/unique/different gaming experiences or at the very least more of them.

I was never a fan or even interested in the Tomb Raider series. However, I got interested once I saw Tomb Raider: Legend in action. I picked it up and was happy I did. In fact, Tomb Raider: Anniversary (finished too) and Underworld are similar so I’ve since picked them up.

I’ve also tried other games that I wouldn’t normal bother with that didn’t go over so well. The two that come to mind is Psychonauts and Splinter Cell. The former was a big collect-a-thon and I’m not into those kinds of games. The latter was too strict on the stealth which lead to a not-so-enjoyable experience. At least I gave those games a try. I have since bought the third Splinter Cell game, Chaos Theory, to see if I like it more.

Another great example is Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. I never liked any of the 2D games so I didn’t think to look at this game when it came out. In 2006 I decided to give the game a shot. Not only did I like it a lot, I also bought Warrior Within and The Two Thrones soon after. I even did three speed runs of the game back-to-back with my best time being just under three hours. On top of that I’ve bought the PSP versions of the latter two games renamed Revelations and Rival Swords, respectively. The 2008 game was a big letdown with the frustrating combat. The Forgotten Sands looks to be a return to form for the series, which I greatly approve of.

With my most recent purchases I picked up Alter Echo which looked interesting after seeing some gameplay videos. I even decided to get the PS2 Shinobi game and Urban Reign, if I can ever find it, because your show made them look so good. :)