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Sarge
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by Sarge Thu Dec 21, 2017 6:55 pm

Three great games there. Shadow is my favorite of the lot, but Kickle Cubicle is one of those overlooked games that's a ton of fun. And AKF doesn't do anything special, but it does it well.
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by ElkinFencer10 Thu Dec 21, 2017 11:35 pm

Games Beaten in 2017 So Far - 135
* denotes a replay

January (10 Games Beaten)
1. Persona 4 Arena - Playstation January 1
2. Chrono Trigger - SNES - January 7
3. Ys: The Vanished Omens - Master System - January 8
4. MUSHA - Genesis - January 10
5. Dragon Quest Heroes: The World Tree's Woe and the Blight Below - PlayStation 4 - January 11
6. Ys I - TurboGrafx-CD - January 13
7. Ys II - TurboGrafx-CD - January 14
8. Dragon Quest Builders - PlayStation 4 - January 23
9. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard - PlayStation 4 - January 26
10. School Girl/Zombie Hunter - PlayStation 4 - January 29


February (12 Games Beaten)
11. Fire Emblem Heroes - Android - February 3
12. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD - Wii U - February 5
13. Dante's Inferno - PlayStation 3 - February 7
14. Hotel Dusk: Room 215 - DS - February 11
15. Persona 4: Dancing All Night - Vita - February 12
16. Sniper Elite 4 - PlayStation 4 - February 17
17. Pony Quest - NES - February 19
18. Halo Wars 2 - Xbox One - February 22
19. Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions - PlayStation Portable - February 24
20. Hotline Miami - PlayStation 4 - February 26
21. Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light - Famicom - February 27
22. Bad Dudes - NES - February 28


March (6 Games Beaten)
23. Root Letter - PlayStation 4 - March 2
24. Vroom in the Night Sky - Switch - March 10
25. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Switch - March 17
26. Super Bomberman R - Switch - March 18
27. Super Mario Run - Android - March 24
28. I Am Setsuna - Switch - March 24


April (9 Games Beaten)
29. Mass Effect: Andromeda - PlayStation 4 - April 1
30. Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army - PlayStation 4 - April 2
31. Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army 2 - PlayStation 4 - April 2
32. New Frontier Days: Founding Pioneers - Switch - April 3
33. Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army 3 - PlayStation 4 - April 4
34. Persona 5 - PlayStation 4 - April 17
35. Alienation - PlayStation 4 - April 18
36. Danganronpa: Trigger Happy Havoc - PlayStation 4 - April 23
37. Danganronpa 2: Goodbye Despair - PlayStation 4 - April 29


May (14 Games Beaten)
38. Puyo Puyo Tetris - Switch - May 4
39. Fire Emblem Gaiden - Famicom - May 6
40. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe - Switch - May 6
41. Outlast II - PlayStation 4 - May 7
42. Dishonored - PlayStation 4 - May 10
43. Snipperclips: Cut it Out, Together! - Switch - May 12
44. Pikmin - Gamecube - May 12
45. Metal Slug - Neo Geo MVS - May 13*
46. Dariusburst CS: Chronicle Savior - PlayStation 4 - May 14
47. Batman: The TellTale Series - PlayStation 4 - May 17
48. Batman: Arkham VR - PlayStation 4 - May 18
49. Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia - 3DS - May 25
50. Farpoint - PlayStation 4 - May 27
51. The Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings - Xbox 360 - May 29


June (10 Games Beaten)
52. Star Trek: Bridge Crew - PlayStation 4 - June 2
53. The Walking Dead: A New Frontier - PlayStation 4 - June 3
54. Rebel Galaxy - PC - June 18
55. The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel II - Vita - June 20
56. Medal of Honor: Allied Assault - PC - June 21*
57. Medal of Honor: Allied Assault - Spearhead - PC - June 21
58. Medal of Honor: Allied Assault - Breakthrough - PC - June 22
59. Aliens Versus Predator - PC - June 23
60. Army Men - PC - June 24*
61. Apartment 666 - PC - June 26


July (20 Games Beaten)
62. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Hyperstone Heist - Genesis - July 12*
63. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Hearts of Stone - PlayStation 4 - July 15
64. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - Blood and Wine - PlayStation 4 - July 22
65. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt - PlayStation 4 - July 24
66. Splatoon 2 - Switch - July 25
67. Kamiko - Switch - July 25
68. Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge - Xbox - July 26
69. Panzer Dragoon - Saturn - July 27*
70. Snake Pass - Switch - July 27
71. Buck Bumble - Nintendo 64 - July 28*
72. Castlevania - NES - July 29
73. Castlevania II: Simon's Quest - NES - July 29
74. Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse - NES - July 29
75. Super Castlevania IV - SNES - July 30
76. Castlevania Adventure - Game Boy - July 30
77. Castlevania Adventure Rebirth - Wii - July 30
78. Contra Rebirth - Wii - July 31
79. Heavy Fire: Special Operations - Wii - July 31
80. Heavy Fire: Black Arms - Wii - July 31
81. Panzer Dragoon II Zwei - Saturn - July 31*


August (9 Games Beaten)
82. Sunrider: Mask of Arcadius - Steam - August 4
83. Panzer Dragoon Saga - Saturn - August 5
84. Sunrider: Liberation Day - Steam - August 6
85. Emily is Away - Steam - August 8
86. Ys III: Wanderers from Ys - SNES - August 19
87. Nights of Azure - PlayStation 4 - August 25
88. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy - PlayStation 4 - August 26
89. Strike Suit Zero: Director's Cut - Xbox One - August 27
90. Devil's Third - Wii U - August 30*


September (14 Games Beaten)
91. Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle - Switch - September 4
92. Dungeons & Dragons: Tower of Doom - Wii U - September 4
93. Daytona USA - Xbox 360 - September 6
94. Dungeons & Dragons: Shadow Over Mystara - Wii U - September 6
95. Cave Story+ - Switch - September 10
96. Cosmic Star Heroine - Steam - September 14
97. Lego Worlds - Switch - September 16
98. Metroid: Samus Returns - 3DS - September 18
99. Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls - PlayStation 4 - September 23
100. Weeping Doll - PlayStation VR - September 23
101. Dying: Reborn VR - PlayStation VR - September 24
102. Shadow Warrior 2 - PlayStation 4 - September 28
103. Pokken Tournament DX - Switch - September 29
104. White Day: A Labyrinth Called School - PlayStation 4 - September 30


October (7 Games Beaten)
105. Monster High: New Ghoul in School - Wii U - October 2
106. Senran Kagura: Peach Beach Splash - PlayStation 4 - October 8
107. Barbie Dreamhouse Party - Wii U - October 14
108. Tales of Berseria - PlayStation 4 - October 25
109. Cyberdimension Neptunia: 4 Goddesses Online - PlayStation 4 - October 28
110. Super Mario Odyssey - Switch - October 30
111. Splatterhouse: Wanpaku Graffiti - Famicom - October 31


November (21 Games Beaten)
112. Fire Emblem Warriors - Switch - November 1
113. Sine Mora EX - Switch - November 2
114. Ys III: Wanderers from Ys - TurboGrafx-CD - November 4
115. Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper - Wii U - November 4
116. The Bunker - PlayStation 4 - November 5
117. Dear Esther - PlayStation 4 - November 5
118. Gex - 3DO - November 5
119. Crysis 3 - PlayStation 3 - November 6
120. Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus - Xbox One - November 10
121. Sonic Forces - Switch - November 10
122. Call of Duty: WWII - Xbox One - November 11
123. For Honor - Xbox One - November 12
124. Blue Reflection - PlayStation 4 - November 17
125. Bully - Wii - November 20
126. Star Wars: Battlefront II - Xbox One - November 22
127. Doom - Switch - November 22
128. Onslaught - Wii - November 22
129. Zombie Panic in Wonderland - Wii - November 22
130. Criminal Girls: Invite Only - Vita - November 28
131. Dynasty Warriors Gundam 3 - PS3 - November 29
132. Gundam Side Story 0079: Rise from the Ashes - Dreamcast - November 30


December (3 Games Beaten)
133. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 - Switch - December 17
134. Castlevania Judgement - Wii - December 18
135. Valkyria Revolution - PlayStation 4 - December 21


135. Valkyria Revolution - PlayStation 4 - December 21

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You know how most series have "that game"? The one game that breaks form, tries something new with mixed results, and is generally not well regarded? This is the Valkyria Chronicles' series "that game." Taking place in a separate Europa from the main series' universe, Valkyria Revolution sheds its predecessors' hybrid-but-leaning-turn-based combat for hybrid-but-leaning-real-time combat, and while it's good for a series to try to keep itself fresh, this was perhaps not the best way for Sega to go about doing that.

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One thing that Sega did do well and for which I must commend them is making the game distinctly different but still feel like its predecessors. The combat, for example, felt a lot like Valkyria Chronicles except that instead of having a certain distance you can move before you have to end your turn, you move in real time; the only "turn" aspect is an action timer for your attacks. The action takes place, for all intents and purposes, in real time, but it still felt very much like the core series. The visual style also felt very similar. It looked a little less watercolor than Valkyria Chronicles, but the interesting use of visual filters made the whole game feel like a painting in a history book, a feeling that long-time Valkyria fans will recognize right away.

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The game's story is a mixed bag. The basic premise is that you're a soldiers from Jutland, a small kingdom that's been under the thumb of the massive Ruzi Empire and suffering from an economic embargo orchestrated by Ruz for the past year. Jutland breaks its less-than-voluntary alliance with Ruz with a surprise attack on the formerly Jutish (now Ruzi) territory of Molda, starting the "Liberation War." In some regards, it's not totally dissimilar from Valkyria Chronicles - you play as a soldier from a small underdog nation that's going up against a massive empire. This game's problem isn't with the story, however, but with the story telling. The narrative is told in the form of a frame story, and while that works quite well, the pacing is slow and, at times, sluggish. The main story battles always seem to end predictably - you fight a big boss, beat the big boss, and then Amleth has a personal crisis at the most inconvenient possible time because plot devices and allows the big boss to escape. It's a shame, too, because the game's story is rooted in political intrigue and manipulation - it's got a distinct House of Cards feel in some ways.

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The game's visuals are nice and very artistically done, but they're not impressive, per se. The somewhat blurred artstyle can take away from texture detail at medium distances, and it can make distant objects look much lower resolution than they are. Of course, those are part of that deliberate art style, but I personally think the game could have benefited from a little more sharpness. The biggest visual problem is with the animations in cut scenes. Faces are stiff with mouths that don't even come close to matching up with the words - legit 1950s Godzilla movie tier - and when characters walk off screen during a scene, they'll turn a full second before they start walking. The extraordinarily unnatural movements in cut scenes deals a hefty blow to my immersion.

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The sound design here is hit or miss. The soundtrack is great, but the voice acting and sound effects are very 50/50. Some of the voice acting is good - the voice actresses for Uni and Blanc from my beloved Hyperdimension Neptunia series lend their talents here - but some of it is stiff and just awful. The enemy AI's lines also get extremely annoying because they'll get stuck; you'll have an enemy who says "I'm attacking!" over and over again without end until you attack them. Generally, though, outside of the most prominent characters, the voice acting is utterly forgettable.

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Despite the issues with pacing, and despite the lackluster voice acting, and despite my personal nit picks with the visual art choices, the game's biggest flaw is without a doubt the bugs. There aren't many that I found, and the ones that I did find were all isolated to the Finale chapter, but that chapters was relentlessly frustrating with the bugs I encountered. The first issue that I encountered was that my weapons would randomly not work; about 85% or 90% of the time, if I had a character use his or her gun or throw a grenade, nothing would happen. No sound effect, no visual effect, no damage. The attack wasn't blocked; it just didn't exist. That continued in all three battles of the Finale as well as the boss battles. Even my magic attacks wouldn't work for anyone except Amleth meaning that I had to just smack giant tanks with my sword until they exploded from the sheer force of my stubbornness. Then there's a bug that I encountered my first attempt that the Finale that, if you run into it, makes it literally impossible to kill the second to last boss. He just won't take that last point of damage. THEN when I finally made it to the final boss, there are orbs indicating which magic types its weak against. Guess what didn't spawn and, I assume, therefore didn't trigger the magic weakness? Yep. Those orbs. So all of my attacks were doing 1 HP of damage, and the boss had like 250,000 HP. Needless to say, I died. Granted, close and relaunching the application fixed most of these (except that bug with the second to last boss), but the fact that they appeared at all was supremely vexing.

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Valkyria Revolution is, all things considered, an alright game. It's definitely going to resonate better with newcomers to the series, I think, than veterans and longtime fans, but it's worth playing if you find it on sale. I would not, however, pay any more than $20 for it. It's not a great game, but it's definitely not bad. I was disappointed in it, but I think this is less a case of a sub-par game and more that it just didn't live up to the standards set by the series that preceded it. For newcomers to the the Valkyria Chronicles series, give it a play; you'll probably enjoy it. For series veterans, unless you're like me and have to play every release no matter what reviewers say, I'd suggest just going online and watching the cut scenes to get the narrative; they're so lengthy as it is that I jokingly started calling the game Valkyria Gear Solid, so there's a good bit of story to be had.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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Exhuminator
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by Exhuminator Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:02 am

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(I beat the SNES version, but the SFC version's cover is so much better.)

125. Batman Returns | SNES | 1993 | 7/10

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Batman Returns is a SNES beat 'em up, developed and published by Konami in 1993. It is a licensed game based on the 1992 film of the same name. (I chose to play Batman Returns at this point in time, because it takes place during Christmas and has related thematic elements.) Konami was no stranger to making beat 'em ups in the early 90s, and their genre expertise rings true here. Batman Returns controls well, runs smoothly, and provides plenty of tactile combat action. Its graphics match the same tonal feel of the film perfectly, as does the moody OST. The OST sincerely mimics the film's own OST, to the point of sounding more like a CD playing than typical SNES stuff. Cutscenes follow the plot of the film verbatim, making the player feel as if they are reliving the same events. There are digitized stills from the film incorporated into the plot exposition, making for convincing story telling. So from a presentation and tie-in perspective, Batman Returns does a great job. If someone had rented Batman Returns on VHS, and then rented this SNES game in tandem to play afterward, that would have made for a good bit of fun on some December night in 1993. But notice I said "rented" and not "bought".

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The thing is, Batman Return's gameplay is a tad too shallow for keepers. For one thing, you can only play single player, no two player love here. Batman Returns takes less than an hour to beat, as well. It's fairly short. But it doesn't feel like an hour. Because while it's true that most beat 'em ups get repetitive over time, Batman Returns does so alarmingly quickly. Batman only has a few different attacks (grab and slams are the best), and barely gets to use any of his elaborate gear. This limited offensive set versus a small roster of constantly repeated baddies gets stale soon enough. Batman Returns does try to break up the monotony with some platforming and driving segments. But those ancillary segments feel half baked and tad sloppy, compared to the main course of beat 'em up action. If Batman Returns had incorporated more variety in its level design, a larger enemy roster to contend with, and a co-op mode, I would have scored the experience higher. Still, the atmosphere and tone really nail the "feel" of the film. That's impressive given the platform. So if you're a fan of the signature film, and enjoy SNES beat 'em ups, by all means strap on some skintight Kevlar and crush a few skulls.
PLAY KING'S FIELD.
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by alienjesus Fri Dec 22, 2017 8:42 am

First 50:
1. 3D Power Drift 3DS
2. Maze Hunter 3-D 3DS
3. Hyrule Warriors Legends 3DS
4. Icarus Proudbottom's World of Typing Weekly PC
5. Paper Mario N64
6. Catherine PS3
7. Glover N64
8. Blast Corps N64
9. Snipperclips: Cut It Out, Together! Switch eShop
10. Pullblox 3DS eShop
11. Pokémon Picross 3DS eShop
12. Bare Knuckle III Mega Drive
13. The Legend of the Mystical Ninja SNES
14. Alisia Dragoon Mega Drive
15. Shinobi III: Return of the Ninja Master Mega Drive
16. Dynamite Headdy Mega Drive
17. Runbow Wii U eShop
18. The Mystical Ninja starring Goemon N64
19. 3D Puyo Puyo 2 3DS
20. Fantasy Zone II: The Tears of Opa-Opa 3DS
21. SteamWorld Dig 3DS eShop
22. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Switch
23. Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped PS1
24. Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time GC
25. Pilotwings 64 N64
26. Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones GBA
27. Puyo Puyo Tetris Switch
28. Life Force NES
29. Bionic Commando NES
30. Bonk's Revenge TGCD
31. Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia 3DS
32. Splatoon 2 Switch
33. Shantae & The Pirates Curse 3DS eShop
34. Devil May Cry PSN
35. Team Kirby Clash Deluxe 3DS eShop
36. Blaster Master Wii U VC
37. Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes GC
38. Wario Blast! featuring Bomberman Game Boy
39. Astro Boy: Omega Factor GBA
40. Daiku No Gen-San: Ghost Building Company Game Boy
41. Kirby: Planet Robobot 3DS
42. Noobow Game Boy
43. Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 Game Boy
44. Mario Golf N64
45. Akumajo Special: Boku Dracula-Kun Game Boy
46. Rockman World 5 Game Boy
47. Hamtaro: Ham-Hams Unite! GBC
48. Sonic Mania Switch eShop
49. Marvelous: Mōhitotsu no Takarajima SFC
50. Super Mario Odyssey Switch

51. Gauntlet IV Mega Drive
52. Alex Kidd in Shinobi World Master System
53. Psycho Fox Master System
54. The Ninja Master System
55. R-Type Master System
56. Momotarō Katsugeki PC Engine
57. Overcooked: Special Edition Switch eShop
58. Parasol Stars PC Engine
59. Star Parodier PC Engine
60. Cadash PC Engine
61. Dead or Alive Ultimate Xbox
62. Dead or Alive Ultimate 2 Xbox
63. OutRun 2 Xbox
64. Pop'n Twinbee SNES
65. Wild Guns Reloaded PS4
66. Journey PS4
67. Rez Infinite PS4
68. Caladrius Blaze PS4
69. Jackie Chan's Action Kung Fu NES
70. Blue Shadow NES
71. Kickle Cubicle NES
72. Baku Baku Saturn *NEW*
73. Clockwork Knight Saturn *NEW*
74. Bust-a-Move 2 Arcade Edition Saturn *NEW*


Replays!:
1. Bare Knuckle III Mega Drive
2. Die Hard Arcade Saturn
3. The World of Illusion starring Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck Mega Drive
4. Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble 3DS VC
5. Trip World 3DS VC


2 to go and I'll finally have review every game I've beaten this year!

Baku Baku

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Baku baku is a block matching puzzle game for the Sega Saturn. The plot goes that the princess of the kingdom is a spoilt brat who wants more pets, but the king despairs because she doesn’t look after the ones she’s got very well already. He has the idea to host a competition for the job of royal zookeeper, and this is where you step in, as either a boy or girl character. This is just cosmetic though, and makes no real difference.

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In Baku Baku, blocks fall from the sky in pairs. These blocks will either contain animal heads (depending on difficulty there are Rabbits, Dogs, Monkeys, Pandas and Mice) or foods (carrots, bones, bananas, bamboo and cheese) or a combination of the two. You can rotate the falling blocks as they fall. When an animal block is dropped next to a food it eats (e.g. Panda & Bamboo) then it will jump out of the block and chomp that food, as well as any other matching food blocks it is connected to vertically or horizontally, potentially clearing out a large space. If 2 animals drop next to the same food simultaneously, they’ll both eat the food, clearing both animal blocks.

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Baku Baku is a head-to-head puzzle game like many that were popular at the time – think Puyo Puyo and you’re on the right track. You’ll be competing to feed all the animals on your screen whilst on the opposite side your opponent will be doing the same. If you clear out a lot of food at once or combo a few matches in one drop, a whole bunch of food and animal blocks will drop on your opponent’s field. The nature of the game means that comboing back is likely, so the game has some decent back and forth. In addition, there is a rare magic block which will delete every one of a particular icon it lands on top of.

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Obviously, the best idea here is to turn it horizontally so that it clears out 2 types of block instead of one. The losing players board gets chomped by the princess’s pet lion.
Baku Baku features 10 stages, and on normal at least the difficulty is fairly moderate – much easier than the Puyo Puyo games of the era for sure. Early levels are a bit of a breeze, but the last few stages of the game are quite challenging, and managing your opponent’s constant attacks can be tricky.

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Graphically, I have to be honest, Baku Baku isn’t a looker. The character models are pretty ugly 3D and they animate with very few frames. The game also opens with an FMV sequence, but it barely looks better than Sega CD quality – it’s super blurry and windowed. The game also has that early Saturn look where everything looks a bit like a mid-90s website with poor quality images and whatnot in the menus – something other great games have been guilty of too, such as Guardian Heroes.

Baku Baku is a fun enough game for Saturn. It’s nothing mind-blowing but it’s fun and functional and sometimes that is enough. If you spot it for a reasonable price you could do far worse than picking up and playing Baku Baku.




Clockwork Knight

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Clockwork Knight is a sidescrolling platformer for Sega Saturn which is clearly inspired by Toy Story. At night, all then toys of the house wake up and sing and dance and whatever. However, all goes wrong when some evil force kidnaps the beautiful princess toy and brainwashes a bunch of other toys to do his evil bidding. To save the day, our clockwork hero Pepperachau (something like that anyway) decides to blow up all of his former friends in his quest to retrieve the princess.

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Clockwork Knight is a fairly simple platformer. Peppy can jump, hit enemies with his key, and ‘crank’ the key by tapping repeatedly to do extra damage or open locks. Double tapping the d-pad also lets him run, and you can pick up some objects and stunned enemies to throw them at each other to defeat them.

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Clockwork knight also features some interesting level designs set around the house, with you jumping over kitchen worktops and shelves and the likes. One level is set on a toy train track too, which adds some variety. However, that’s where my praise ends, because I have a lot of issues with this title.

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First off, Pep controls pretty poorly. The controls are responsive enough, but the jumps feel inaccurate and hard to judge, maybe due to Pep’s gangly form, and the movement is awkward. The walking speed is too slow for its own good, but the running speed is a bit too fast and makes jumps harder to control. Double tapping the d-pad to run is kinda sucky too, and I did it by accident a few too many times.

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The game is also relatively short, with only about 10 levels to play though, one of which is a tedious maze stage, my vote for ‘worst level design in classic games ever’. The time not spent on making the levels possibly went into the graphics, but I really hate the art-style here too. The actual 3D backgrounds of the game look OK for early Saturn 3D, besides some very basic textures, but the pre-rendered character sprites are hideous. Ignoring that pre-rendered sprites have aged badly, they look far worse than similar sprites even on the SNES or Mega Drive. The whole thing seems a bit rushed. Thankfully, the soundtrack is jazzy and fun, besides the godawful intro theme to the game which was terribad.

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It sounds like I’m being harsh on the game, and truth is I am, but I don’t think this game lives up to it’s reputation, which isn’t exactly a glowing recommendation to begin with. I could go easier on it for being a launch title, but frankly, there’s so many better platformers out there I’m struggling to see a reason to justify playing Clockwork Knight. Even as one of the cheaper popular Saturn games, it’s price is still way too high for what is a moderately enjoyable platform experience at best. Clockwork Knight is fine, but I don’t think it’s worth it really. I probably won’t be going back to often.





Bust-a-Move 2

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Bust-a-Move 2 is an arcade puzzle game and a spin-off of the Bubble Bobble franchise. It’s also often known as Puzzle Bobble, why the name was changed is beyond me.

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Bust-a-Move sees heroes Bub and Bob shooting coloured bubbles at other coloured bubbles from the bottom of the screen. When the bubble connects, if at least 3 identically coloured bubbles are touching, then they will disappear. Any bubbles below them that are no longer connected to a bubble above drop off the screen.

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The trick to Bust-a-Move lies in figuring out which bubbles will be the ones which can break off large chunks of the stage and making sure to uncover them. Often this involves mastering bank shots, where you bounce a bubble off the wall of the stage to hit the sides of the stack at an angle. This can be quite finnicky to master. It’s crucial to do this as fast as possible as the ceiling of the stage lowers over time, and if any bubbles cross the bottom line of the stage, it’s game over.

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Bust-a-Move 2 features a story mode of some sort, where you play through 6 sets of 5 stages. This mode has limited credits on the Saturn release, and was a course of some frustration to me as I found the game to be very inconsistent in difficulty and some stages seemed to rely too much on the luck of the draw – get the wrong coloured orbs early on and you were in trouble. Often, you’d clear stages 13,17 comfortably and then lose 4 continues on stage 18, or you’d find that stage 7 caused way more problems than stage 27. It was quite a pain and I lost a fair few runs before getting through, some of which I didn’t feel were down to fair game design.

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Outside of story mode, Bust-a-Move 2 also features some other modes, including a head-to-head multiplayer mode. I didn’t really get into it as it seems to me that this game works better as a single player experience, but it’s a nice option for those that want it. This Saturn port of the game actually includes the original Bust-a-Move 2 and the enhanced version Bust-a-Move 2X, but I honestly didn’t get into it deep enough to tell you what the differences are.

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Overall, Bust-a-Move 2 is a fun game, but I found this version of it to be more frustrating than the later Dreamcast release I’ve also played, Bust-a-Move 4. The core gameplay of the series is enjoyable, but the arcade origins can often show through in unforgiving difficulty and a credit stealing dose of RNG being a core part of proceedings. Overall though, if you find the game for a good price, it’s absolutely worth picking up for a play now and again.
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Exhuminator
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by Exhuminator Fri Dec 22, 2017 3:11 pm

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126. Daze Before Christmas | Mega Drive | 1994 | 7/10

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Daze Before Christmas is a platformer developed by Funcom, and published by Sunsoft in 1994. Daze Before Christmas was published in Australia on the Mega Drive, and Europe on the SNES. A USA release was planned, but unfortunately was canceled. The plot concerns Santa Claus trying to right many wrongs brought upon him by "Mr. Weather". The elves have been kidnapped, the reindeer stolen, and all Santa's presents taken as well. So Santa sets off to right these wrongs. His adventure consists of typical platforming tropes, run and jump over pits, shoot or stomp on enemies, climb poles, swing on ropes, that sort of thing.

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The one caveat is that if Santa finds a cup of hot chocolate (or is it coffee?), it temporarily turns him into Anti Claus (or as I called him Satan Claws, as he is red and has horns). As Anti Claus, Santa is immune to enemy attacks, but his Anti Claus ability is temporary. As Santa explores levels, he constantly finds presents. When opened, these can contain enemies, traps, extra lives, elves, or even blue presents within. Hermaphrodite dongle jing jing bizzlewop. Blue presents are important, because they are the presents stolen that he must return to children around the world. As such, there are bonus levels, where Santa flying high on his sleigh, driven by reindeer, attempts to drop the collected presents into chimneys. Daze Before Christmas also has a few boss fights as well.

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I'm not the biggest fan of europlatformers, as they generally carry a series of tropes I find unappealing. Although Daze Before Christmas is a europlatformer, it manages to transcend many of said tropes, and instead be a highly decent experience. The graphics are pleasant, well rendered, and sprites are animated convincingly. Before each of the twenty four levels, a well drawn level specific title card is shown, adding flavor to the proceedings. Controls are simple and responsive, and the jumping physics aren't half bad. Daze Before Christmas' OST is excellent whether you play the Mega Drive or SNES version. Both versions incorporate Christmas music into their tracks, but each platform has differences. The Mega Drive's OST leans towards chillax Jazz, whereas the SNES' OST sometimes has a calypso vibe to it. Both OSTs are above average and enjoyable, though the SNES OST comes out on top.

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As good as Daze Before Christmas' aesthetics, audio, and controls are, where the game falters is its level design. The levels are rather simple in construction, with far too much repetitiveness in both enemy design, and traversal obstacles. Furthermore, there are twenty four levels, which frankly makes Daze Before Christmas seem about twice as long as it should have been. Dooper stingray toast donkeys flapjaw stingray polygonal zongers. However, considering the target demographic for this game was young kids, it's understandable that they'd appreciate content over quality. Thankfully Daze Before Christmas provides occasional passwords to check progress. Not that you'd really need them, as Daze Before Christmas' difficulty is rather low. Overall, Daze Before Christmas is very nearly a hidden gem, but its global quality averages out to "pretty decent", and not "really great". However, considering its subject matter, Daze Before Christmas was more impressive than this reviewer expected. I can only imagine the joy of Australian and European kids on Christmas day 1994, as they played Daze Before Christmas with a smile on their faces.

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PLAY KING'S FIELD.
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by BoneSnapDeez Fri Dec 22, 2017 3:45 pm

I love how "European" the art style and graphics are. It's unmistakable.
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marurun
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by marurun Fri Dec 22, 2017 4:43 pm

Exhuminator wrote:Hermaphrodite dongle jing jing bizzlewop.
...
Dooper stingray toast donkeys flapjaw stingray polygonal zongers.


You feeling OK, bud? Maybe a bit too much alcohol in your nog?
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alienjesus
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by alienjesus Fri Dec 22, 2017 4:54 pm

I assumed he was checking to see if anyone actually reads the text.

I have to admit, I managed to some how entirely skim over Dooper stingray toast donkeys flapjaw stingray polygonal zongers, possibly because I was still reeling from hermaphrodite dongles.
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by Exhuminator Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:19 pm

alienjesus wrote:I assumed he was checking to see if anyone actually reads the text.

It could have been that... or maybe I was sending the CIA secret codes. 8)

-

I've only got one Christmas themed game left to beat! It's supposed to take less than an hour to finish. I might even do it tonight. ZONGER DONGERS
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Re: Games Beaten 2017

by prfsnl_gmr Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:34 pm

Keep brining the Christmas games, Exhuminator. Somebody has to play them this time of year! (I always kind of wonder about them, though...I mean, ostensibly, they were meant for children to receive on Christmas. If you got one of these for Christmas, however, wouldn’t you kind of be over the whole “being excited for Santa Claus” thing? Wouldn’t they really be better Thanksgiving presents.)

.....

1. Shantae 1/2 Genie Hero (Wii U)
2. Blek (iOS)
3. Bloo Kid 2 (3DS)
4. HarmoKnight (3DS)
5. 3D Fantasy Zone II W (3DS)
6. Fantasy Zone (SMS/3DS)
7. 3D Fantasy Zone Opa Opa Bros. (ARC/3DS)
8. Fantasy Zone II: The Tears of Opa Opa (SMS/3DS)
9. 3D Classics Twinbee (NES/3DS)
10. Rainbow Bell a/k/a Twinbee (ARC/DS)
11. The Legend of Zelda:Breath of the Wild (Wii U)
12. The Guardian Legend (NES)
13. The Clash at Demonhead (NES)
14. The Goonies II (NES)
15. Day of the Tentacle Remastered (iOS)
16. Mario Kart 64 (N64/Wii U)
17. Drancia Saga (3DS)
18. Chain Blaster (3DS)
19. Color Commando (DS)
20. Ace Mathician (DS)
21. Jump Trials Supreme (3DS)
22. Dragon Quest VII (3DS)
23. Fairune II (3DS)
24. RBI Baseball (NES)
25. River City Tokyo Rumble (3DS)
26. Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara (Wii U)
27. Arkanoid vs. Space Invaders (iOS)
28. Device 6 (iOS)
29. Transformers: Human Alliance (ARC)
30. Metroid Samus Returns (3DS)
31. A Ride Into the Mountains (iOS)
32. Super Mario Run (iOS)
33. Legend of Kusakari (3DS)
34. Banjo Kazooie (N64/360)
35. Go! Go! Commander Video (iOS)
36. River City Knights of Justice (3DS)
37. Super Little Acorns 3D Turbo (3DS)
38. Tomb Raider Go (iOS)
39. Lume (iOS)
40. To The Moon (iOS)
41. The Executive (iOS)
42. Gorogoa (iOS)

I picked up Gorogoa (iOS) on DSH’s recommendation, and it did no disappoint my expectations. The art direction was superb, and the puzzle design was outstanding. It was perhaps a bit too short - you can get through it in less than two hours - and once you learn it’s tricks, the final puzzles are a bit too easy. It is nonetheless a singular experience, and I really cannot recommend it highly enough.
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