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alienjesus
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by alienjesus Thu Apr 30, 2015 6:09 pm

1. Star Fox 2 SNES
2. Sonic Advance 2 GBA
3. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Wii U
4. Advance Wars: Dark Conflict DS
5. Joy Mech Fight Famicom
6. Grandia PS1
7. Money Idol Exchanger Game Boy
8. The Battle of Olympus NES
9. Lost Kingdoms 2 GC
10. Fire Emblem Shadow Dragon DS
11. Code of Princess 3DS DL
12. Discworld Saturn
13. Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru [For the Frog the Bell Tolls] Game Boy
14. 3D Sonic the Hedgehog 3DS DL
15. 3D Streets of Rage 3DS DL
16. Pokémon Shuffle 3DS DL
17. 3D Altered Beast 3DS DL
18. 3D Super Hang-On 3DS DL
19. 3D Space Harrier 3DS DL
20. 3D Galaxy Force II 3DS DL
21. 3D Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master 3DS DL
22. Sonic 3 & Knuckles Mega Drive
23. Bayonetta Wii U
24. Fighting Vipers Saturn
25. Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan 3DS
26. Super Castlevania IV SNES *NEW*
27. Shovel Knight Wii U eShop *NEW*
28. Discworld II: Missing, Presumed...!? PC *NEW*

Super Castlevania IV
Castlevania is a series I only have a small amount of experience with, especially in it's classic form. I've beaten 4 Castlevanias to date before this one - in order, Order of Ecclesia, Dracula X Chronicles, Symphony of the Night and Rondo of Blood.

I've heard good things about this entry, although I wasn't sure I'd get to play it as prices have been high for this one on eBay whenever I've looked. I spotted it in a local store for what i thought was a great deal (turns out it was OK, but not amazing - lower than eBay at least) and picked it up, and gave it a crack (of the whip).

Super Castlevania IV is a fairly nice looking game. The environments look good, and I love the enemy design, although I was surprised that there's not much variety here - there are lots of bosses, but you'll be seeing those axe armours and bone towers a lot in this game. Bosses are very cool though. I liked the games slightly gimmicky use of mode 7 too - it gives it a very unique feel.

Difficulty wise, I felt it was pretty easy for the most part - definitely easier than Rondo, and I'd say easier than Order of Ecclesia too, despite it being a different type of game. There were a few spikes, especially stage 8 and the final level, but nothing on the level I was expecting from the series. I don't know if Castlevania IV is actually regarded as being easy or if it's just one of those games where the difficulty is overblown (like Super Ghouls n' Ghosts and Mega Man). It's helped a lot by the more welcoming controls which allow you to whip in multiple directions and also to adjust your jumps in midair.

The music is pretty great here, and most renditions of the classic tunes are pretty good. Some of the levels have more ambient tracks that don't feel quite right - I much prefer the adrenaline packed classics like Vampire Killer and Bloody Tears.

My only major issue was with the grappling points throughout the game, which I found a bit finnicky when I jumped off of them - a lot of deaths occured from these, especially early on. The checkpoints are weirdly spaced too - sometimes there would be 3 across a very easy section, and sometimes, like in stage 8, a massively long and tedious section full of literal death traps with not one to be seen.

Overall, I really enjoyed Castlevania 4. It was fun, and I'm glad I picked it up. Castlevania is a series that I've enjoyed whenever I've played it, and I'm sure I'll pick up more of them over time. Definitely worth a play.


Shovel Knight
Shovel Knight is a game I picked up a while ago, but only got around to playing recently. I've heard nothing but good things for the game, but the fact that it was made by a lot of WayForward ex-staff worried me - everything I've played by WayForward has been decent, but not remarkable. I wasn't blown away by Mighty Flip Champs, A Boy and His Blob or Shantae, and I was expecting the same to happen here.

I needn't have worried though, because Shovel Knight is pretty damn great. The levels are wonderfully designed, the controls are perfect, the gameplay is fast paced and fun and the game doesn't outstay it's welcome. It's the best modern 'retro' game since Mega Man 9 for sure.

Shovel Knight takes a lot of inspiration from Mega Man for sure - 8 bosses with themed stages, a choice of which to tackle in which order, a rival who is more than reminiscent of Proto-Man - it's a clear influence. However, you can definitely see other 8 bit influences in there, not least Duck Tales and it's pogo jump, and some level designs that feel right out of Castlevania.

Musically, when it hits a high note, it has some absolutely wonderful pieces. The first stage/black knight theme is awesome. However, equally, there were some bits of music that I felt sounded a bit hastily put together, and they just didn't have the catchy melody I'd hope for - espoecially true of some of the stage themes.

I wish the artifacts system had been used more in game - these can be found by going off the beaten path and finding secret chests in levels, but because of theiir optional nature, the opoortunities to use the artifacts felt lacking. In addition, it was easy to forget that some of them even existed - I totally forgot about the green orb thing, the gear and the alchemy coin until the final level.

Shovel Knight isn't perfect, and Mega Man 9 still holds it's place in my heart as the most complete, consistent and well-balanced retro styled game, but it is a ton of fun and an absolute blast to play through. Definitely play it!


Discworld II: Missing, Presumed...!?
Also known in the US as Discworld II: Mortality Bytes, Discworld II is the sequel to the stupendously hard point n' click Discworld, and is another adventure game romp through the world of Terry Pratchett's excellent book series. The plot of the game is that Death isn't showing up to take people's souls, so you have to make him come back. This will involve tracking him down, making Death a movie star, having a shot at doing the job yourself and a whole bunch more.

Discworld II definitely addresses issues from the first game, in a way that is verysatisfying to see. It's easier to see which objects are interactive, there's much better hinting of what to do, more logical puzzles and less pointless red herrings designed to frustrate, it gets rid of some of the most annoying recurring jokes from the first game, and overall it's just better in every way.

This includes visually too - it's actually quite a pretty game for it's day. It has a visual style reminiscent of Curse of Monkey island with big cartoony characters, but admittedly a little more low budget. It opens with an animated song and dance number, and it deifnitely likes to show of it's new animation when it can.

The game loves to break the 4th wall, especially around references to the difficulty to the first game (even the box blurb mentions how hard the first game is), the fact that Eric Idle of Monty Python voices the main character Rincewind and the fact that you're playing a video game and people keep sending you quests. They also blatantly tell you something is a hint sometimes too. It's actually very funny, but it does serve to detract you from the game world quite a bit. It feels more like you're playing a game with some discworld characters in then exploring the actual discworld...er...world.

The characters are much more fitting this time though - lots of characters appear and most of them are fairly accurate to the books, if not perfect. A few persist on being just utterly wrong though, in a way that suggests they were put together by people not familiar enough with the books - Ponder Stibbons is a big offender, as is the brief appearance of Vetinari. Rincewind himself, the main character of the game, is perhaps one of the biggest offenders, as he just isn't cowardly enough - he just goes along with everything far too much here.

The environments and characters draw from a much bigger set of books this time, with Moving Pictures, Reaper Man, Pyramids and Lords and Ladies being some of the more prominent references. They're very well done, and it's nice to be able to get out of Ankh Morpork in a bigger way than the previous games, although I think we spend far too much time in Djelibeybi this time around. Whilst being able to explore the world a bit more is nice, I feel the first game did a better job at creating a believable Discworld for you to explore.

That is the only thing the first game did better though, and this is just a more enjoyable, better made and higher quality game in every way. It works with SCUMMVM, although you'll have to do some file manipulation for it to make the second disc work.For fans of the books, it's a definite blast, but it could probably be pretty enjoyable to people who aren't familiar with them too. This is much, much better than I expected.
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Stark
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by Stark Thu Apr 30, 2015 6:28 pm

alienjesus wrote:However, you can definitely see other 8 bit influences in there, not least Duck Tales and it's pogo jump.

The developer mentioned that they actually were influenced by Zelda II interestingly enough. Made me (and everyone) think of Ducktales though. :lol:
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MrPopo
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by MrPopo Thu Apr 30, 2015 6:45 pm

Super Castlevania IV is generally considered one of the easier entries, though I ended up finding Rondo to be easier to get through. That said, the second I unlocked Maria I switched to her and went through the rest of the game with her. If I had tried to Richter it the whole way through I might have considered it harder than IV.
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laurenhiya21
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by laurenhiya21 Thu Apr 30, 2015 8:14 pm

1/10: Superbrothers: Sword & Sorcery EP (Steam)
1/10: Rusty's Real Deal Baseball: Bat & Switch (3DS DL)
1/11: Time Fcuk (Steam)
1/11: Coil (Steam)
1/17: Portal 2 (Steam)
1/31: Tales of Xillia (PS3) (re-beat 3/31)
2/12: Tokyo Jungle (PSN)
2/22: LoZ: Four Swords Anniversary Edition (3DS DL)
4/25: Stanley Parable (Steam)
4/28: BattleBlock Theatre (Steam)


Total: 10 games

Ah, it's good to finally have more time to devote to games :)

Stanley Parable
I won't say too much about this as I think it would take away some of the charm if I gave away too much... All you really do is choose where to walk and what things to push, but the funny narration (in a smart way I guess?) combined with the situations you're thrown in is amazing. It's a bit short (even if you go for multiple endings), but it's very much worth it imo.

BattleBlock Theatre
This game also made me laugh a lot, but in a veeery different way than Stanley Parable. It's not exactly potty humour, but it's definitely very, very silly. I can't remember most of the good lines the narrator says, but an example of one was something like "Don't hit the lasers or you'll poop yourself and die!". I know that's not really everyone's cup of tea, and normally I don't like it that much, but here I felt it was done pretty well. The gameplay was pretty solid too imo, even if it's just a simple little platformer. It was very colourful, the difficulty didn't ramp up too quickly, the controls felt pretty responsive, and there were a fair number of checkpoints. I can't really think of any one time where I thought it was unfair to be honest. Only problem I had with it was the sliding was a bit difficult for me to pull off, but thankfully you don't need to use it that often.

So I really enjoyed both of these games, and I think BattleBlock Theatre is probably now one of my favourite platformers :)
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by BoneSnapDeez Thu Apr 30, 2015 8:39 pm

First 50:
1. Grandia (PlayStation)
2. Jungle Hunt (Xbox - Taito Legends)
3. Jungle Hunt (Atari 2600)
4. Jungle Hunt (Plug & Play - ColecoVision Flashback)
5. Donkey Kong (Atari 2600)
6. Donkey Kong (Intellivision)
7. Donkey Kong (ColecoVision)
8. Bubble Bobble (NES)
9. Side Arms: Hyper Dyne (PSP - Capcom Classics Collection Remixed)
10. 1941: Counter Attack (PSP - Capcom Classics Collection Remixed)
11. Ys: The Ark of Napishtim (PSP)
12. The Ninja Kids (Xbox - Taito Legends)
13. Neutopia (TurboGrafx-16)
14. Golden Axe Warrior (Xbox 360 - Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection)
15. Phantasy Star Online Ver. 2 (Dreamcast)
16. Growl (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
17. Arabian Magic (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
18. Dungeon Magic (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
19. Gekirindan (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
20. Ys II (Saturn - Falcom Classics II)
21. Darius Gaiden (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
22. G Darius (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
23. Giana Sisters DS (DS)
24. RayStorm (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
25. Mr. Do! (ColecoVision)
26. Beauty & the Beast (Intellivision)
27. Boxing (PlayStation 2 - Activision Anthology)
28. Crystalis (NES)
29. Dragon Warrior (NES)
30. Faxanadu (NES)
31. Tombs & Treasure (NES)
32. Kirby's Dream Land (Game Boy)
33. Kirby's Adventure (NES)
34. Kirby Super Star (SNES)
35. Hoshi no Kirby 64 (Nintendo 64)
36. Kirby: Triple Deluxe (3DS)
37. Dig Dug (Wii - Namco Museum Megamix)
38. Phoenix (Xbox - Taito Legends)
39. Phoenix (Atari 2600)
40. Pleiads (Xbox - Tecmo Classic Arcade)
41. Kangaroo (Atari 2600)
42. Final Fantasy Adventure (Game Boy)
43. Gorf (Atari 2600)
44. Richard Scarry's Huckle and Lowly's Busiest Day Ever (Pico)
45. Mickey's Blast Into the Past (Pico)
46. Secret of Mana (SNES)
47. Psycho Soldier (PSP - SNK Arcade Classics 0)
48. Genshi-Tou 1930's (PSP - SNK Arcade Classics 0)
49. Datsugoku: Prisoners of War (PSP - SNK Arcade Classics 0)
50. SAR: Search and Rescue (PSP - SNK Arcade Classics 0)

51. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (SNES)
52. Tic-Tac-Toe / Shooting Gallery / Doodle / Quadra-Doodle (Channel F)
53. Robot War / Torpedo Alley (Channel F)
54. Pinball Challenge (Channel F)
55. Elevator Action (Xbox - Taito Legends)
56. Elevator Action II (PlayStation 2 - Taito Legends 2)
57. Altered Beast (Xbox 360 - Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection)
58. Congo Bongo (Xbox 360 - Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection)
59. International Soccer (Commodore 64)
60. Out of this World! / Helicopter Rescue! (Odyssey²)
61. Alien Invaders - Plus! (Odyssey²)
62. Ice Hockey (Atari 2600)
63. River Raid (Atari 2600)

1982...

River Raid
Sticking with Activision again.

River Raid was developed by Carol Shaw, one of the first female game designers. It was developed for the Atari 2600 and later ported to the Atari 5200, Atari 8-bit computers, Intellivision, ColecoVision, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, and even the MSX!

And it's totally awesome.

Shooters were common before 1982 but most were "fixed shooters" - single screen games where you can move back and forth on an X-axis (ie: Space Invaders). Others, like Defender and Scramble, had horizontal scrolling. River Raid, on the other hand, is one of the earliest examples of a vertical shooter with a scrolling screen. That said, this isn't the same sort of vertical scrolling seen in Xevious (and beyond). You're still restricted to horizontal movement on the bottom of the screen, and pushing the joystick up and down causes your fighter plane to accelerate and decelerate, respectively. In other words, the screen will move faster or slower as you push/pull. All the while the screen scrolls below displaying a river landscape with varied green terrain.

Enemies are abound, but unlike your jet they are unable to fire projectiles. Instead they, along with the green terrain, will deduct a life if crashed into. Ships and helicopters are restricted to the water and move in a horizontal pattern. They're generally easy to shoot or avoid. The most dangerous enemies are the drones that Barack Obama fires at you from offscreen. Veer too far to the right or left and it becomes quite challenging to dodge one when it emerges. Bridges also appear periodically and the must be shot down lest you desire a blown-up jet.

Fuel management is crucial. Tanks are littered throughout the river and they become more scarce as you continue flying. Shooting a tank causes it to vanish, so firing haphazardly is generally a poor idea. In an interesting twist, shooting a fuel tank will also net you points, so it's actually a smart idea to shoot one down instead of collecting it if your gauge is already almost or totally full.

This is a "points-based" game. It essentially consists of one long level that never ends, so the goal is to rack up as many points as possible. An Activision expert named Jordy told me I can use the badge criteria to determine when the game was "beaten." Here it's 15,000 points. I went well beyond that. Technically you can roll over the point gauge, at a score of one million, but that's completely insane and would require several hours of perfect precise play.

River Raid is fun as hell. Controls are perfectly fluid and the game is an intense palm-sweating experience. Absolutely fantastic; one of the best of the Atari era. And since it's Activision you can find it on any number of their Anthology compilations. Anyone interested in the history of shmups, or video games in general, can't afford to pass this one up.

Next up: a game with an actual ending!!! (well, assuming I can beat it and don't have to switch to something else :wink: )
Last edited by BoneSnapDeez on Fri May 01, 2015 11:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by prfsnl_gmr Fri May 01, 2015 11:21 am

Nice. Good work with River Raid. It is a stupendous 2600 game, but I have not played it enough to earn the badge. I need to remedy that sometime.
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by BoneSnapDeez Fri May 01, 2015 11:40 am

The cheap and easy way to gain points is to just take it slow. Don't accelerate rapidly unless you need to get out of a trap.

The narrow light green sections are full of enemies just waiting to be picked off, not to mention extra fuel tanks that can be shot for points.

In the really narrow dark green sections (where you have to choose either the left or right path) I typically went into survival mode and focused more on not crashing into terrain than shooting enemies.

If you die and respawn in front of a fuel tank shoot it immediately. You won't need it as you'll have a full gauge and it's an easy way to gain points. Actually, in the opening section you can shoot half the tanks there too as there's a surplus.

By the way I am quite confident you can "earn the badge." Once you get into a groove it takes all of 10 minutes, maybe less. When I finally sat down and went for it the other night I succeeded on my 7th or 8th attempt.
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by Sarge Fri May 01, 2015 12:21 pm

MrPopo wrote:Super Castlevania IV is generally considered one of the easier entries, though I ended up finding Rondo to be easier to get through. That said, the second I unlocked Maria I switched to her and went through the rest of the game with her. If I had tried to Richter it the whole way through I might have considered it harder than IV.

Maria is easy mode, for sure. Good grief, is she overpowered, and an amazing boss killer. Those doves alone enable her to do tons of damage in a limited period of time. Add the extra mobility in and it's just not fair.

I did do a Richter run, and it does get really tough. But I think that was more just the bosses than anything, I don't remember it being much harder overall than SCIV.
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by marurun Fri May 01, 2015 11:47 pm

Sarge wrote:
MrPopo wrote:Super Castlevania IV is generally considered one of the easier entries, though I ended up finding Rondo to be easier to get through. That said, the second I unlocked Maria I switched to her and went through the rest of the game with her. If I had tried to Richter it the whole way through I might have considered it harder than IV.

Maria is easy mode, for sure. Good grief, is she overpowered, and an amazing boss killer. Those doves alone enable her to do tons of damage in a limited period of time. Add the extra mobility in and it's just not fair.

I did do a Richter run, and it does get really tough. But I think that was more just the bosses than anything, I don't remember it being much harder overall than SCIV.


The last level can be quite a challenge with Richter because of some of the jumps, especially on the collapsing bridge with the bats coming up from behind.

Maria I think was supposed to be a little balanced by taking more damage from hits and her birds doing a bit less damage than a whip strike, but her rate of attack and her mobility are just killer.
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Re: Games Beaten 2015

by REPO Man Sat May 02, 2015 12:18 pm

Duck Tales Remastered (Xbox 360) - Easy Mode.

Still got a few other difficulty levels to beat the game on, also have some achievements to get.
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