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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Flake Mon Oct 31, 2016 12:17 pm

3/19: Sonic Generations (3DS)
3/22: Sonic Colors (Wii)
4/10: Sonic Adventure DX (GCN)
4/17: Knuckles in Sonic 2 (SG/WiiVC)
6/15: Disgaea: Afternoon of Darkness (PSP/PSTV)
8/4: Metal Slug (Arcade/PS4)
8/5: Metal Slug 2 (Arcade/PS4)
8/5: Metal Slug X (Arcade/PS4)
8/5: Metal Slug 3 (Arcade/PS4)
8/22: Megaman X (SNES/GCN)
8/29: Megaman X2 (SNES/GCN)
9/3: Megaman X3 (SNES/GCN)
9/3: Megaman X4 (PSX/GCN)
9/4: Megaman X5 (PSX/GCN)
9/5: Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix (PSN/PS3)
9/6: Street Fighter V (PS4)
9/10: Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo (PSX)
9/17: Dragonball Xenoverse (PS4)
10/1: Metal Gear Solid (PSX/PS3)
10/09: Marvel vs Capcom 2 (Dreamcast)
10/11: Metal Gear Solid 2 HD (PS3)
10/18: Metal Gear Solid 3 HD (PS3)
10/21: Rival Schools: United by Fate (PSX/Retropie)
10/30: Dragonball Xenoverse 2 (PS4)

Rival Schools remains, to this day, one of my all time favorite games. The gameplay is not that special but the world building, music and over all flavor of the title so completely embodies what I loved about Capcom in the 90s.

This time I played through the game on my Retropie - the PSX emulator support is spot-on and thanks to the improved GPU and CPU of the Raspberry Pi 3 board, the only indication that I was not playing on the actual hardware was the lack of grinding from the PSX's laser. This may become my go-to method for emulation.

Dragonball Xenoverse 2 is a great follow up to the original Xenoverse but I feel like the developers played it too safe. Some really strong story opportunities were missed and while I applaud the decision to pull from the non-canon Movies for bad guys and story elements to keep things fresh, it feels like the game developers left a lot of cards on the table by totally bypassing pre-DBZ material.

I also did not like the music very much. It often felt out of place. The re-use of elements from the first game was also pretty heavy. It's a really fun game but I wanted it to be more than it was. Hopefully the post release DLC will offer some solid content to solidify the game.[/b]
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by Exhuminator Mon Oct 31, 2016 4:43 pm


Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Soporific Lies (DS) 6/10

After having beaten and enjoyed quite a few Dragon Quest games, I was certainly excited to play Dragon Quest IX. However, it didn't take long for me to realize said excitement was misplaced. DQIX never once surpasses its predecessors, but rather often fails to live up their legacy. This is Dragon Quest designed for the DS loving casual masses, bloated to the brim with time wasting fluff. More than anything else, DQIX is a game of stark dichotomies.

For example; DQIX is stupendously localized, yet its banal plot and mute protagonists fail to validate that effort. DQIX has seriously impressive graphics, but framerate issues are often so bad that even text speed is affected. DQIX's music tracks sound sumptuous, but with so little variety their repetition quickly becomes tiresome. DQIX has plenty of explorable land masses, but they are almost entirely empty of secrets. DQIX offers tons of job systems and skills to learn, but battles are so simple you won't need even 1/10th of what's available. And on it goes.

Do you enjoy filler gameplay? You will be in busy work heaven here then. There are randomly generated dungeons (called grottoes) to grind up your job levels in, lots of ingredients to collect for alchemizing bucket loads of gear, and high level optional bosses to fight. Now maybe that's fun for some people, but that all just came across as hollow and pointless to me. I would have been just fine with another Casino and Traps & Treasures board. But who am I kidding, as a classic Dragon Quest fan, it's very clear IX wasn't made for me.

Dragon Quest IX might have been a proper Dragon Quest, if only it hadn't have been so casualized and watered down to be as commute accommodating as possible. If less emphasis had been placed on busy work jank, and more focus on the core adventure and protagonists, I might have actually enjoyed myself. But the reality is, I wasted 38 hours of my life suffering through a rather boring JRPG. And I only did so out of a desire to eventually beat every mainline Dragon Quest. But for any reasonable person, I say give this one a pass. Unless you just can't resist the chance to alchemize horse manure with cowpats.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by ExedExes Mon Oct 31, 2016 5:45 pm

Xeogred wrote:Huh, never knew a GBA version existed. I'll have to check it out sometime. Is the screen/window view smaller though?

EDIT: I youtubed it and... the slowdown looks a lot worse to me. Music/sound and graphics take a huge hit too. But the arranged mode looks cool.

I didn't experience nearly as much slowdown as I did on the original. Stage 2 moves a lot faster, for example. It's as close to the SNES as it could be.
Xeogred wrote:The obvious answer is that it's time for the Dreamcast 2.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by alienjesus Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:34 pm

1. Ys Book II: Ancient Ys Vanished - The Final Chapter PSN Vita
2. 3D Streets of Rage 2 3DS eShop
3. 3D Gunstar Heroes 3DS eShop
4. 3D Sonic the Hedgehog 2 3DS eShop
5. 3D OutRun 3DS eShop
6. Mugen Senshi Valis II: The Fantasm Soldier PCE CD
7. Mugen Senshi Valis III: The Fantasm Soldier PCE CD
8. Bomberman PCE CD
9. Rocket Knight Adventures Mega Drive
10. Trax Game Boy
11. Panic Bomber Virtual Boy
12. Arcana Heart 3: Love MAX!!!!! Vita
13. Super Monkey Ball Gamecube
14. Lost Kingdoms Gamecube
15. Sonic Adventure 2 Battle Gamecube
16. 1080° Avalanche Gamecube
17. Bubble Ghost Game Boy
18. Catrap Game Boy
19. 3D Thunder Blade 3DS eShop
20. 3D AfterBurner II 3DS eShop
21. 3D Fantasy Zone II W: The Tears of Opa-Opa 3DS eShop
22. Ikaruga Gamecube
23. Dungeon Travelers 2: The Royal Library & The Monster Seal Vita
24. New Adventure Island PCE
25. WarioWare Twisted! GBA
26. Dragon Warrior NES
27. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D 3DS eShop
28. Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors DS
29. Gargoyle's Quest Game Boy
30. Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee PS1
31. Puyo Puyo CD PCE CD
32. Retro City Rampage DX 3DS eShop
33. Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition 3DS eShop
34. Super Puyo Puyo Tsuu Remix SFC
35. Super Aleste SNES
36. Sega Rally Championship Saturn
37. Knuckles' Chaotix 32X
38. Mystic Quest Game Boy
39. Nano Assault EX 3DS eShop
40. BOXBOY! 3DS eShop
41. Gunman Clive 3DS eShop
42. Persona 4 Golden Vita
43. IA/VT Colorful Vita
44. Persona 4: Dancing All Night Vita
45. Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards N64
46. Quartet Master System
47. Die Hard Arcade Saturn
48. Metal Slug: 1st Mission NGPC
49. Child of Eden PS3
50. Rayman 2: The Great Escape Dreamcast

51. Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA X PSN Vita
52. Um Jammer Lammy PSN PS3
53. Space Channel 5: Part 2 PSN PS3
54. 3D Fantasy Zone: Opa-Opa Bros. 3DS eShop
55. Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryuu To Hikari No Tsurugi Famicom
56. Castlevania NES *NEW*
57. Halo 3 XBox 360 *NEW*
58. Grabbed By The Ghoulies XBox *NEW*
59. Genpei Touma Den: Kan No Ni PC Engine *NEW*
60. Mugen Senshi Valis: The Legend of a Fantasm Soldier PC Engine CD *NEW*


Castlevania is a classic game I've never played, which I decided to beat for Halloween. I've previously beaten Order of Ecclesia, Dracula X Chronicles (PSP), Symphony of the Night, Rondo of Blood and Super Castlevania IV, but this is my first time going back to the NES game.

This game has a reputation for brutal difficulty. Was I playing the same game as everyone else - certainly it was challenging, but I found it easier than a lot of other NES games, such as the Mario games which I think are massively underrated in difficulty. Sure, Death took me a couple of tries and the Dracula fight was an absolute git, but with infinite continues, and only 6 short levels, I got through this in a single sitting the first time I played.

Castlevania has it's reputation I think due to a few mechanics - the stiff jumping which doesn't allow you to change direction midair, the heavy knockback dealt by enemies, the awkward enemy patterns, the tough bosses and the stairs. I'll address these in turn.

The jumping wasn't an issue, ever. I found that Castlevania asks very little special from you in terms of platforming - the main challenge comes from the enemies which will get in the way as you line up those jumps. This is where the knockback comes in - bats, medusa heads and fleamen love to get in the way of a landing and knock you backwards into a pit, and if you don't know where they are it can feel pretty cheap. Luckily, once you know when to expect them, it's not too bad to handle them - not a patch on the hassle you'd get from something like Ninja Gaiden.

Enemies can have annoying patterns, but they only really prove problematic when multiple enemies attack at once. In my opinion, the 2 single hardest points in the game are when you're being hassled by multiple enemies at once - the infamous ace knight corridor full of medusa heads right before Death, and the fleamen being dropped in in the clock tower area before Dracula. The latter in particular just felt a bit cheap to me, as did the giant bat bridge before it - too much luck required here for my tastes. The latter 3 bosses are a pain for sure too, due to the sheer amount of damage they do - Frankenstein and Death took me a few tries (Death mainly due to taking damage before the fight) but Dracula was brutal and I spent as long on this boss fight as I did the entire rest of the game.

That leaves just one of the big issues left - the stairs. Fuck the stairs.

Castlevania is a good game, but it feels a little short, and sometimes a lot unfair. It's difficulty is definitely overstated, but unfortunately the times it is genuinely hard are generally unfair feeling rather than a decent challenge. Luckily, the series obviously went on to greater things, so I'll let this one off as teething troubles. It's still a fun little game overall. I'll be interested to see how Castlevania 3 holds up - but the question is, to I play it on NES or Famicom?

Halo 3


A quick entry here. I played through Halo 3 in co-op with a buddy. Halo 3 is a fun game, but the whole campaign feels kinda....there. Like, I enjoyed playing it, but it all felt so inconsequential. Death didn't really matter, the story was kinda dull, and the gameplay never changed very meaningfully, other than the occasional vehicle section.

Halo is enjoyable, but for me I don't think I'm crazy enough about it to play the other games in the series. I'll just keep ahold of the one game I have (this one) for the occasional local multiplayer session, and be done with it.

Grabbed By The Ghoulies

I'm a big fan of Rare's output on the N64 - it was the pinnacle of their output for sure, and also some of the absolute best games for the console, and some of my favourites of all time. I love DK64, Banjo Kazooie, Jet Force Gemini - they're all great. I've always been curious about the first game they released under Microsoft - surely it can't be all that bad?

I've heard plenty of vitriol for this game, but just lately, I've heard a lot of love for it too. I spotted it for cheap and decided to give it a go. My opinion? It's a mixed bag.

The aesthetics have a very Rare feeling - they're colourful and quirky with the usual Rare humourous touch, and the music is great. Definitely up to par with their previous work, even if it is a little limited in variety as the main theme is reused a lot. However, despite the usual colourfulness, there's something a little....generic feeling about the game too. It feels a bit Dreamworks-y, if that makes sense, and I'm thinking more Minions or Madagascar than How To Train Your Dragon - it just feels kinda uninspired overall in terms of character design and overall aesthetic. It also feels a little low budget in presentation, which I can only assume was down to a lack of time rather than a lack of funding, given what a big name signing the company was for Microsoft..

The game is very basic mechanically - in each room you must complete a task (normally beat up the Ghoulies) by walking around with the left stick and attacking with the right stick. You just point in the direction you want to attack and it'll do so. You can pick up weapons to use, which break after a few hits. This fighting mechanic is amusing for a short time, but it quickly becomes stale - there's just not enough variety here to keep it interesting. A more conventional battle system could have saved this game from getting stale, but it was not to be.

The game adds some variety by having challenges for each room. These can vary from kill all enemies, to kill a certain type of enemy, kill them in a time limit, don't hurt a certain enemy type, don't take damage, attack using only weapons or no weapons, or don't damage the furniture. If you break the rules, the Grim Reaper will be summoned. He is a unbeatable enemy who walks towarsd you with his finger outstretched, and will kill you instantly if he reaches you. However, if he touches other enemies he will kill them instantly too, and be stalled. Sometimes, breaking the rules on purpose to get the Grim Reaper to kil tough enemies for you is a better solution to the challenge than trying to beat it normally.

The other major mechanic of the game is the 'Super Scare' mechanic. On occasion a scary monster will jump out and pull faces at you or something, and your character will freak out. You have to tap in a button sequence to not die. It happens a lot throughout the game, especially near the end, and it gets very tedious quickly.

That's all there is to this game. Overall, I just can not recommend it. The game has some neat ideas, but they get tired very quickly, and even at only 4 hours long, it outstays it's welcome by a large margin. Poor old Rare, it's all downhill from here...

Genpei Touma Den: Kan No Ni

When I purchased my PC Engine Duo R last year, it was listed with 3 games - Bonk, Bonk 2 and Cadash. When it arrived though, it came with 2 freebies - Fire Pro Wrestling, and Genpei Touma Den: Kan No Ni, otherwise known as Samurai Ghost.

I gave Samurai Ghost a quick go, and had a laugh at the oversize sprite and it's hilariously awkward animation. I found the game tedious and fiddly and gave up on it.

Fast forward to this year, and I'm looking for another quick Halloween game to play. Cue Samurai Ghost. I decided to sit down and give it a good go. And what do you know - it's not that bad!

Don't get me wrong, this isn't a masterpiece by any means. The gameplay involves you running your giant oversized warrior to the right, slicing up enemies and platforming as you go. The game appears frustrating at first, but once you learn you can block, it becomes way easier. You will block the entire time - half the enemies will leap into your sword and die instantly, and the other half will attack your sword, leave themselves open, and take a Samurai Ghost sword to the face in return.

The game has 7 worlds, with multiple levels in each. Most stages have a mini boss as well as a final boss, and they can take some strategising to beat - flailing madly (mostly) won't work.

Like the gameplay, the presentation is a bit of a mixed bag. The giant sprites are impressive enough, but the animation is really bad. There's also an unfortunate amateurish, MS Paint look to a lot of the graphics. However, there's some pretty impressive parallax going on for a HuCard game on TG16. The music is ok, I guess. I kinda forgot what it sounds like despite beating it 2 days ago, so that probably tells you all you need to know about it.

The final boss is a bit of a nightmare, with 3 forms and no healing between, but I pushed through and had a good time overall. The game is better than initial impressions suggest, and as a fairly cheap game for the system, it might be worth giving a go.

Mugen Senshi Valis: Legend of a Fantasm Soldier

Earlier this year, I beat Valis 2 and Valis 3 on PC Engine. I decided to go back to the first game for my next trip into the series, and play the PC Engine remake of Valis 1. This is actually the last of the 4 Valis games on the system to come out, and is the only Super CD title of the bunch.

Valis 2 felt more action focused, with the main obstacle being enemies, wheras Valis 3 took on a more Castlevania feel, with magic spell subweapons and selectable characters. Valis 1 takes more from the former. You can run and jump really high, and find power ups for your sword which add a variety of projectiles to it. You can also cast a variety of spells which you seem to acquire as you progress. The only one worth using is the barrier spell though, which lets you take a ton of extra hits. Finally, you can slide - this attacks enemies at a certain distance, lets you cover long gaps, and move faster through

The game is fun and fast paced, and broken up with some animated cutscenes which are quite nice for a game from 1992. The music is very enjoyable and the stages look good, although sometimes a little bit flat (a symptom a lot of PC Engine games seem to suffer from).

The difficulty is pretty fair, with the exception of the brutal last stage, which offers no sword power ups until the end of the stage. Unless you play flawlessly, you'll struggle with the stage hazards combined with ranged enemy attacks. There's no opportunity to power up again if you die on the boss too, leaving you to struggle futiley against him until you game over and can start the level again.

Apart from this one cheap moment though, I enjoyed this game quite a bit, just like Valis 2 and Valis 3. It's a series that isn't full of masterpieces, but is consistently enjoyable, and is one of my favourites for the system. I look forward to working through Valis 4 soon.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by MrPopo Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:59 pm

This time last year I had 80 games beaten. This year I have 72. So if I make some wise choices I should still be able to hit 100 (as I finished with something like 110 last year).
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by BoneSnapDeez Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:25 pm

Have you played Castlevania II, aj? I enjoyed it, though I recommend playing with a walkthrough handy.

I have Mugen Senshi Valis. Fun game, but I've never made much headway. Final level is difficult? It gets difficult for me halfway through! :lol:
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by alienjesus Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:32 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Have you played Castlevania II, aj? I enjoyed it, though I recommend playing with a walkthrough handy.

I have Mugen Senshi Valis. Fun game, but I've never made much headway. Final level is difficult? It gets difficult for me halfway through! :lol:

I haven't played CV2, this was the first of the NES games I'd tried. I intend to give it a go someday, but I'm not in any rush :lol:

Just when I was starting to have trouble with Valis 1 is when I discovered how broken the shield magic was and how effective the slide was as an attack.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by BoneSnapDeez Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:33 pm

Ah, I'll have to give it another go! Is there a save feature? I can't recall. Hate to say it, but it's hard for me to sit down these days and play for more than maybe 80 minutes straight.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by alienjesus Mon Oct 31, 2016 8:40 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Ah, I'll have to give it another go! Is there a save feature? I can't recall. Hate to say it, but it's hard for me to sit down these days and play for more than maybe 80 minutes straight.

No save feature in Valis 1, but there is in all the other games.

The whole game took me about 2 hours, with a 30-40 minutes of that being the final stage - if you lose a life here and lose your weapon, getting through it again later to take on the final boss requires a pretty perfect run through, and figuring out the right moves to make can take a while.
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Re: Games Beaten 2016

by IrishNinja Tue Nov 01, 2016 1:41 am

so in the last week, i've finished:

Last Window: Secret of Cape West - i really loved Hotel Dusk, and i might be in the minority here, but i think i liked this one better. shame we won't see Kyle's story tie up neatly but really glad i imported this.

D - that was cool, i can see the love for Eno. going back in for Enemy Zero sometime, then D2!

REmake - finally beat it on PS4, goddamn this game (and the GC one)'s gorgeous and really helps a classic age well.

i played an hour or two of RE0 (first time at it) and it wasn't bad, but decided to try & finish RE3 finally. I just reached the Clock Tower, so i wanna say halfway done?
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