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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by ElkinFencer10 Tue Sep 24, 2019 11:34 am

Games Beaten in 2019 So Far - 54
* denotes a replay

January (12 Games Beaten)
1. Army Men 3D - PlayStation - January 1*
2. Ys I: Ancient Ys Vanished - NES - January 4
3. Mega Man - NES - January 6
4. Mega Man 2 - NES - January 6
5. Mega Man 3 - NES - January 6
6. Mega Man 4 - NES - January 7
7. Dr. Discord's Conquest - NES - January 7
8. Mega Man 5 - NES - January 26
9. Just Cause 3 - PlayStation 4 - January 26
10. Mega Man 6 - NES - January 27
11. Persona 5: Dancing in Starlight - Vita - January 27
12. Mobile Suit Gundam: Encounters in Space - PlayStation 2 - January 27


February (2 Games Beaten)
13. Earth Defense Force 5 - PlayStation 4 - February 2
14. Fallout 76 - PlayStation 4 - February 3


March (4 Games Beaten)
15. Octopath Traveler - Switch - March 2
16. Resident Evil 0 - PlayStation 4 - March 9
17. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered - PlayStation 4 - March 10
18. Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade - Game Boy Advance - March 30


April (3 Games Beaten)
19. Moemon - Game Boy Advance - April 5
20. Yoshi's Crafted World - Switch - April 10
21. Wargroove - Switch - April 26


May (8 Games Beaten)
22. Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen - Switch - May 5
23. Battlefield V - PlayStation 4 - May 9
24. Timespinner - PlayStation 4 - May 12
25. Earth Defense Force: Iron Rain - PlayStation 4 - May 17
26. Shenmue - PlayStation 4 - May 19
27. Xenosaga Episode I: Der Wille zur Macht - PlayStation 2 - May 26
28. Team Sonic Racing - Switch - May 29
29. Xenosaga Episode II: Jenseits von Gut und Böse - PlayStation 2 - May 30


June (5 Games Beaten)
30. Xenosaga Episode III: Also Sprache Zarathustra - PlayStation 2 - June 2
31. Gato Roboto - Switch - June 3
32. Katana Zero - Switch - June 4
33. The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct - Wii U - June 8
34. Dark Savior - Saturn - June 12


July (12 Games Beaten)
35. The Elder Scrolls V: Skryim - Switch - June 7
36. The Elder Scrolls V: Skryim: Dragonborn - Switch - June 7
37. The Elder Scrolls V: Skryim: Dawnguard - Switch - June 7
38. Tiny Troopers - Switch - July 8
39. Tiny Troopers 2: Special Ops - Switch - July 8
40. Persona Q2: New Cinema Labyrinth - 3DS - July 10
41. Super Robot Wars T - Switch - July 13
42. Super Mario Maker 2 - Switch - July 13
43. Command and Conquer - Saturn - July 16
44. Command and Conquer: Covert Operations - PC - July 16
45. Super Neptunia RPG - PlayStation 4 - July 18
46. My Girlfriend is a Mermaid!? - Switch - July 19


August (5 Games Beaten)
47. Fire Emblem: Three Houses - Switch - August 10
48. Wolfenstein Youngblood - Xbox One - August 24
49. Fire Emblem: New Mystery of the Emblem - DS - August 27
50. Metal Wolf Chaos XD - PlayStation 4 - August 31
51. Fire Emblem: Archanean War Chronicles - SNES - August 31


September (3 Games Beaten)
52. Golf Story - Switch - September 2
53. Red Dead Redemption - PlayStation 3 - September 7
54. Far Cry 4 - Xbox One - September 14


54. Far Cry 4 - Xbox One - September 14

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My first foray into modern Far Cry games was Far Cry Primal on PS4, and boy, that game was dope. So when I saw that Far Cry 4 was all modern and had a fabulously psychopathic dictator to topple, I was instantly interested. However, I was also poor, so I waited. I'm still poor, but now Far Cry 4 is hella cheap, so I'm FINALLY getting around to playing it, and WOW, good things truly do come to those who wait.

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The premise of Far Cry 4 is that you're a native of the island nation of Kyrat raised in the United States who has returned to Kyrat to scatter his mother's ashes as per her dying wish. Then your bus gets attacked, your companions get shots, your tour guide gets tortured to death, and you get drugged and wake up at a dinner table with the merciless dictator of Kyrat, Pagan Min. From there, you could either sit and wait for like fifteen minutes, have him come back and kill you, and get the bad ending; OR you could actually play the game you paid for, help the resistance group that your dead dad started overthrow Pagan Min, and blow up everything in sight.

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The game, as is standard for the series, is a first person shooter. You can craft storage upgrades from materials you hunt from animals to hold more ammo, more medical items, more explosives, etc. You can also purchase new weapons although some of these get unlocked for free as you progress through the game. Once you purchase a weapon, it can be reacquired for free at any shop, so that's a nice feature. With enough upgrades, you can equip up to four weapons - a sidearm and three main weapons. I usually ended up keeping a revolver, an assault rifle, a rocket launcher, and a sniper rifle with me. You also have four throwable weapons - molotovs, grenades, throwing knives, and bait meat that lures tigers and the like to eat your enemies. All in all, you get a lot of leeway to play how you want. You can be stealthy and sneak around using stealth takedowns, silenced weapons, and throwing knives. Alternatively, you can run in guns blazing with machine guns and shotguns and grenade launchers. The sky's the limit, and if that limit isn't filled with flying dismembered bodies, you're doing it wrong.

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Visually, you can tell that the game was designed for last generation consoles and ported to Xbox One, but it still looks pretty nice. The soundtrack is extremely well done, providing solid atmosphere without distracting from the action on screen. The voice acting, as well, is extremely well done, especially Pagan Min's voice actor. 10/10 would listen to again. A well voiced antagonist can really make or break a game, and Pagan Min's voice actor definitely made this game. The highlight of the game, however, is the hunting. I don't mean sneaking around the hunting deer with a bow. GTFO with that redneck real-world garbage. Na, man, I mean a REAL MAN'S hunting. Far Cry 4 is like a Cabela's game if it were actually fun. I'm talking about hunting tigers by driving cars into them at 100 KPH, hunting elephants with a rocket launcher, or hunting rhinos from a helicopter with a semiautomatic grenade launcher.

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My experience with the Far Cry series is still fairly limited, but from what I have played, Far Cry 4 is an exceptionally fun and well crafted entry. The story is interesting, the map is detailed and a blast to explore, the voice acting is exceptional, and the gameplay is addicting to say the least. AND THE HUNTING. I felt like the Terminator roughing it in the wilderness. Sure, rocket launchers tend to leave the animal's hide too damaged to use, but good GOD, it is fun. Far Cry 4 isn't perfect, and it still has its share of shortcomings with frame rate dips, glitches, and profoundly challenged AI at times, but as a whole package, it's an exceptionally fun experience, and with the price it goes for used these days, I high recommend it to fans of open world shooters.
Exhuminator wrote:Ecchi lords must unite for great justice.

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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Wed Sep 25, 2019 6:59 pm

1. Ys III: Wanderers from Ys (Famicom)
2. Dragon Scroll: Yomigaerishi Maryuu (Famicom)
3. Ninja-kun: Majou no Bouken (Famicom)
4. Hello Kitty World (Famicom)
5. Galaxian (Famicom)
6. Esper Dream 2: Aratanaru Tatakai (Famicom)
7. Ninja Jajamaru-kun (Famicom)
8. Jajamaru no Daibouken (Famicom)
9. Front Line (Famicom)
10. Field Combat (Famicom)
11. Portopia Renzoku Satsujin Jiken (Famicom)
12. Mississippi Satsujin Jiken: Murder on the Mississippi (Famicom)
13. Space Harrier (Famicom)
14. Geimos (Famicom)
15. Attack Animal Gakuen (Famicom)
16. Sky Destroyer (Famicom)
17. Ripple Island (Famicom)
18. Oishinbo: Kyukyoku no Menu 3bon Syoubu (Famicom)
19. Bird Week (Famicom)
20. Baltron (Famicom)
21. Yie Ar Kung-Fu (Famicom)
22. Challenger (Famicom)
23. Ikki (Famicom)
24. Dough Boy (Famicom)
25. Atlantis no Nazo (Famicom)
26. Bio Senshi Dan: Increaser tono Tatakai (Famicom)
27. Yume Penguin Monogatari (Famicom)
28. King Kong 2: Ikari no Megaton Punch (Famicom)
29. Congo Bongo (Atari 2600)
30. Coconuts (Atari 2600)
31. Arcade Archives: Donkey Kong (Switch eShop)
32. Dragon Quest V: Tenkuu no Hanayome (Super Famicom)
33. Johnny Turbo's Arcade: Super Burger Time (Switch eShop)
34. Fire Fly (Atari 2600)
35. Fire Fighter (Atari 2600)
36. Space Jockey (Atari 2600)
37. Airlock (Atari 2600)
38. Makai Hakkenden Shada (PC Engine)
39. Squeeze Box (Atari 2600)
40. Lagoon (SNES)
41. Atlantis (Atari 2600)
42. Xak III: The Eternal Recurrence (PC Engine CD)
43. Blue Blink (PC Engine)
44. Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys (PC Engine CD)
45. Cally's Caves 3 (Steam)
46. Planetarian: The Reverie of a Little Planet (Steam)
47. Contra (NES)
48. Arcade Archives: Vs. Super Mario Bros. (Switch eShop)
49. Arcade Archives: Moon Cresta (Switch eShop)
50. Johnny Turbo's Arcade: Joe and Mac Caveman Ninja (Switch eShop)
51. Ice Hockey (Atari 2600)
52. Indy 500 (Atari 2600)
53. Video Olympics (Atari 2600)
54. Fast Eddie (Atari 2600)
55. Muv-Luv (Steam)
56. Air-Sea Battle (Atari 2600)
57. Combat (Atari 2600)
58. Street Racer (Atari 2600)
59. Food Fight (Atari 7800)
60. Galaga (Atari 7800)
61. Donkey Kong (ColecoVision)
62. Cosmic Avenger (ColecoVision)
63. Mouse Trap (ColecoVision)
64. Zaxxon (ColecoVision)

65. Armor Battle (Intellivision)
66. Armor Ambush (Atari 2600)
67. Basic Math (Atari 2600)
68. Astrosmash (Intellivision)
69. Astroblast (Atari 2600)
70. Donkey Kong (Intellivision)


Armor Battle
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The Intellivision launch line-up looks suspiciously like that of the Atari 2600. You've got a blackjack game, a "Fun" (with a capital F) math game, even a two-players-only game about fighting tanks. Dismissing Mattel's Armor Battle as an outright clone of Atari's Combat would be ill-advised. Though both adhere to the same subject matter, Armor Battle is much more complex and detailed. Does this make it a "better" game, though? Let's find out!

Armor Battle consists of a series of single-screen tank skirmishes. Grab a buddy, as there's no computer AI to go up against. The big gimmick here is that there are four tanks present when a given battle commences. Each player is assigned to two (of the same color, blue vs. black), but can only maneuver one at a time. A press of a single button swaps the active/inactive status of two tanks. This is a rather ingenious mechanic, as it forces each player to master both offense and defense. Success in the game is predicated on smart tank swaps, knowing when to go in for the kill and when to hide under cover. While Combat had a timer and a score meter, the tanks of Armor Battle are destroyed after three hits. When a tank fires (successfully or not) its turret rotates slightly, requiring a bit of realignment. A smart anti-button-mashing measure.
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In Combat, battles were conducted in open areas, or in those with an arrangement of bulletproof "barriers" to hide behind. Such barriers are back in Armor Battle, in the form of buildings, but there's also varied terrain to contend with. Forests slow down tanks, but provide a small amount of cover. Water is also slowing, sans cover. Roads allow for quick driving, while the spacious grassy fields are traversed in a more moderate "default" speed. There are 240 battlefields contained within Armor Battle. One is randomly selected each time a stage loads, which (arguably) ups the game's replay value a perceptible amount. In addition to the typical shooting, each tank can drop one mine per round. These are silently deposited, and invisible. Thus, each player will have no clue about when and where their opponent has dropped one. Mines take down tanks in a single hit, and yes, you can run over your own. The addition of these mines makes for some anxiety-inducing matches, and opens the door for come-from-behind wins.

The graphics are good. Rich and detailed and miles ahead of what the Atari was putting out in '79. Most appreciated is the fact that whatever tank is under a player's control is given a slightly different sprite than the resting one. Sound effects are sparse, chirpy, and somewhat annoying. Speaking of annoying, the play control takes the game down a few notches (I suppose you could say it "tanks" it). Moving a tank is counterintuitive and tedious. Tank controls are inherently bad (yes I know the game is about actual tanks, I don't care), but Mattel found a way to make them even worse. The controller's "dial" (the very primitive pseudo-d-pad) is used to turn and position a tank in a given direction. Pressing up does not move the tank forward, as one would anticipate. This is instead mapped to an entirely separate button on the side of the controller. Moreover, everything moves at a glacial pace. When I said that the roads allowed for "quick driving" I meant relative to everything else. In actuality, everything is slow. Driving, shooting, turning. It can border on excruciating. Oh, and the game doesn't end until one player has 50(!!) of their tanks destroyed. So, you're looking at a minimum of 25 matches.

There's a lot going for Armor Battle, but Mattel's fledgling "keypad" controls make for some monotonous and frustrating gameplay. So, yeah, Combat is certainly superior, but we're really looking at two different genres here. A pick-up-and-play action title vs. a "strategic tank operations simulator." As a launch title for a then-groundbreaking console, this is worth taking for a spin or two. I just can't stomach the idea of playing for more than ten consecutive rounds.


Armor Ambush
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Even small-time Atari collectors have encountered a certain type of cartridge. Cheap-looking, brittle black plastic, no front-facing label. These carts, which eerily resemble Intellivision games, come to us courtesy of an enigmatic publisher called "M Network." Turns out the "M" stands for Mattel, and these releases are in fact Intellivision games ported to the 2600. It seems odd to see a company craft releases for a competitor's console, but this was standard procedure during the second generation. Everyone remembers the oftentimes questionable Coleco-branded releases on non-ColecoVision systems, and of course Atari had their vast Atarisoft line (wanna play Centipede on the TI-99/4A? You can!). Interestingly, Mattel had a habit of changing the names of games that underwent this conversion (except when said titles were arcade ports or based on a media franchise). Perhaps this was to avoid complaints of shoddy porting ("it's actually a different game!"), or maybe Mattel was trying to trick consumers into double-dipping. In any event, the most notable M Network title is probably Dark Cavern, based upon Night Stalker. But the subject of this review is Armor Ambush for the 2600, based on the Intellivision launch title Armor Battle, which itself was heavily inspired by Atari's own Combat. We've come full circle.

Armor Ambush retains the core gameplay elements of Armor Battle. Two players (no computer AI) are each assigned two tanks, though only one can be controlled at a time. The goal is to eliminate the tanks of the opposing player, by blasting each one three times each. Additionally, each tank can drop an invisible mine in the path of an enemy, for a one-hit kill. Warfare is conducted amid varied terrain: fields, roads, trees, water, buildings. Each element has an effect on maneuvering and gunfire in various ways: slowing or speeding up tank movement, hindering or outright blocking shots. While Armor Battle boasted some seriously impressive graphics, things are much more ambiguous in Armor Ambush. Roads are straight horizontal bars. Forests are clusters of small, dark green rectangles. Buildings resemble Tetris blocks. The water... well, I do read it as water, I'll give them that. This is a sloppy looking game, though it's far from incomprehensible.
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The controls in Armor Battle were fairly poor, but the controller at least had enough buttons to support every function. As Armor Ambush is played with a single-button joystick, the control scheme thus had to be greatly modified and compromised. The "classic" tank controls are actually superior here on the 2600. Right and left rotate the tank, while up moves it forward (just like Combat). Meanwhile, pressing down on the joystick is used to switch tanks, which makes it far too easy to switch by accident. As for the mines, those are released by pressing down and the attack button simultaneously. As mines are both invisible and silently-dropped, it can be difficult to gauge whether one has done this successfully. If you blow yourself up, it "worked."

Despite the overall jankiness of the controls, Armor Ambush moves along at a much quicker and smoother pace when compared to its forefather. And a full game is completed when (a reasonable) 25 tanks from one player's team have been destroyed, as opposed to (an insane) 50. Overall, I don't think Armor Ambush is any worse (or better) than Armor Battle. They're just different. Anyone who was seriously bummed about the cancellation of Combat II will find this relatively enjoyable.


Basic Math
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Yeah, there's no way around it. Basic Math is really bad. I try to be forgiving. I really do. When Basic Math was released (1977), developers and consumers alike weren't even quite sure what "video games" were. Forget the action-adventure and fantasy titles we have today. Video games of this era were either sports and racing simulations, consequence-free gambling simulations, or, uh, stuff like this. Being able to interact with onscreen objects was fascinating in those early days, leading to a bunch of short-lived crap "genres" like whatever this is. A 2600 launch title, Basic Math was quickly replaced with an extremely misleading alternate version called Fun With Numbers. No-nonsense Sears was just straight up brutal with their variation: it was simply called Math.

Basic Math presents a series of math problems for a player to solve. Addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Make no mistake: this is no edutainment game. There are no mascot characters, no cute monsters to "eat" whatever answer you choose. Basic Math is a sequence of digitized math worksheets. There are eight modes to select from. Four allow you to have some control over what problems are presented, while the final modes consist of "random" problems. Answers are inputted using the joystick. Pressing up or down scrolls through numbers 0-9, while pushing left or right moves the cursor to a different place value. Press the fire button to submit an answer. Note that you're given more space than is typically necessary. So for instance, you could respond to 2+2 with an answer of 9999 (this is wrong, by the way). When writing a quotient and remainder, a space must be made to distinguish the two. Rounds are timed, though this can be toggled off by flipping a difficulty switch on the console.
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The game's presentation is stark and totalitarian. Giant blocky numbers against a monochromatic background. Colors vary by mode; some of the choices are painful to gaze upon. I even have a (specific) problem with the sound design. When you solve a problem correctly, a happy little jungle plays. Fair enough. But when you input a number the game emits a sort of low bassy "fart" type of noise. It's a negative-sounding audio cue, something I'd expect to hear when submitting a definitively wrong answer, rather than a simple number input. Each session of Basic Math consists of ten questions, with a score (__/10) displayed upon completion.

I like math. I didn't particularly enjoy this. It is a neat little collectible, being an Atari launch title and all, but that's about the only positive thing I can say. Want to do some elementary-level math and feel fulfilled after? Help a first-grader with their homework.


Astrosmash
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Astrosmash (or Astrosmash! as the title screen calls it) is a fixed shooter for the Intellivision, released by Mattel in 1981. Clearly inspired by the Japanese titans of the genre, Astrosmash also incorporates elements of the Atari mega-hits Asteroids and Missile Command. It makes for an interesting experience, if not an extraordinarily memorable one.

In Astrosmash the player takes control of a spaceship, moving horizontally and firing vertically at descending enemies. The enemy roster mostly consists of asteroids: giant rocks tumbling downwards that will split into tiny erratic pieces once hit. Said pieces can be blasted as well. There are some other hazards, occasionally, like homing bombs, meteors(?), and an alien mothership. But it's mostly rocks and more rocks. A level is completed once a specific point threshold is reached, whereupon the speed of the inorganic villains increases.

The control scheme is rather intriguing. The fundamentals are basic: use the control disc to move the ship left and right, press one of the side buttons to shoot. But the game also makes use of buttons 1 through 3 on the keypad. The first two will toggle autofire on and off. Keep it on; it's undoubtedly useful and the game is a thumb-destroyer otherwise. Button 3 executes "hyperspace" mode. This shifts the position of the player's ship a small amount, instantaneously. Useful in those situations where taking a hit looks unavoidable, though in the heat of the moment I tend to forget such a function exists.
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In terms of the audiovisual presentation, Astrosmash does alright for itself in that "I guess it's better than the 2600" sort of way. Each stage provides a different background color, which is pleasant enough, and the multicolored asteroids make me feel like I'm battling an ever-cascading rainbow. There's a single stationary background: space mountains and shining stars. Though what stands out most about Astrosmash is the scoring system. Like Missile Command, defense is one of the objectives here. While blasting asteroids nets points, allowing them to hit the planet's surface docks them. It's even possible to get bumped back a level, or achieve a negative score.

One would surmise that this auxiliary element of "playing defense" would up the game's difficulty, but that simply isn't the case. In fact, this is one of the "easiest" second generation games I've ever played. In contrast to Missile Command (or Atlantis for that matter) you can never actually lose the game by letting asteroids slip by: the aforementioned point loss is the only penalty. Additionally, extra lives are earned by racking up points, and even the weakest players will net 1-ups at a much faster rate than they can lose them. Hitting upwards of 50 lives during a single play session is not unreasonable. I've only ever quit playing Astrosmash out of boredom, never out of frustration.

Though its influences are readily apparent, Astrosmash is indisputably a unique little game. However, its supremely repetitive gameplay style and flaccid difficulty prevent it from rising to the top of the ranks. There are plenty of better shooters, in outer space and on Earth.


Astroblast
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Astroblast is another one of those "M Network" Atari 2600 releases by Mattel. In this case it's a "downgraded" port of the Intellivision game Astrosmash. Epic way to change the title, guys. Astroblast was released in 1982, one year after the game it's based on.

The goal of Astroblast is identical to that of its progenitor. The player takes control of a spaceship, which moves along a fixed x-axis and fires vertically. Asteroids (and other various stuff) rains down from the sky. Points are gained if enemies are shot down, while also deducted if enemies manage to hit the planet's surface. Point increases will eventually open the way to new stages, with faster enemies and varying background colors. The graphics have taken quite a hit in this conversion. The backgrounds are purely monochromatic (no dotted starry sky) and the space mountains resemble an oscilloscope reading. Sprites are big, chunky, and fuzzy. As far as sound design goes, anyone who's played an Atari 2600 game knows exactly what to expect.
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Autofire (pew pew!) is back, pleasantly enough, this time toggled on and off by a difficulty switch on the Atari console itself. The other difficulty switch swaps between the game's two base difficulty settings: choose between very hard and absolutely insane. I don't believe the "hyperspace" warp maneuver from Astrosmash is present; if it is then your humble reviewer couldn't deduce how to execute it. Interestingly, Astroblast is one of those rare Atari games that officially supports both joystick and paddle controllers. The paddle controls are vastly superior, and that type of slick movement is really needed to keep up with the constant rocky onslaught. While the game supports just a single player, the box suggests "making" it a multiplayer experience, by allowing a friend to play the game at a separate time. Ingenious!

As I hinted at, Astroblast is much harder than the original Astrosmash. The asteroids drop at a faster rate, right from the start. Ten lives are provided, but they are drained extremely quickly, and the player isn't continually granted point-based extra lives. The two games are essentially polar opposites in this department: Astrosmash can be played seemingly "forever" (until the player starts nodding off from boredom), while a game of Astroblast can conceivably conclude within a minute or less. Also, Astroblast slams the player with a severe point deduction upon death. It's tough to get ahead.

Astroblast really just comes across as "hard mode / worse-looking" Astrosmash. Neither game is essential, nor particularly good. Those who are looking for a more challenging experience and don't want to use a telephone as a controller should look here, I suppose. Or, ya know, just play a truly exemplary shooter instead, like Galaga.


Donkey Kong
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I think that "everyone" agrees that the ColecoVision port of Donkey Kong was the strongest home console variation of the early 1980s. The Atari 2600 and Intellivision ports (both suspiciously developed by Coleco as well) come with some noticeable flaws. On the Atari, half the game is missing, and Donkey Kong appears to toss chocolate chip cookies in lieu of the trademark barrels. As for the Intellivision port, my God.... It's something all right. Let's first start on a positive note. Donkey Kong is an all-time classic, an inherently great game, and a sliver of goodness is bound to slip into any kind of port, no matter how compromised. Single-screen platformers are a fantastic bygone genre; Donkey Kong is one of eight or so available on the Intellivision.

The same stages that were excised from the 2600 are missing here as well. What's left is the iconic "ramp" scene, which opens every version of the game, and the "rivet" scene. Both adhere to the same platforming style of gameplay, albeit with slightly different goals. In the ramp stage our pal Mario must ascend to the top to reunite with his love Pauline, while the rivet stage is dedicating to walking over (and thus removing) a series of structural rivets to topple the ape villain Donkey Kong. Enemies include tossed barrels and the ever-spawning flames. The game is played with the Intellivision disc used as a d-pad, with one of the side buttons utilized for jumping. That leaves 15(!!) useless buttons, for the most part. The number pad is used briefly when the game boots to select between one and two (alternating) players, as well as for setting the difficulty level.
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Visually, the game looks so bad that it feels intentional. Mario appears to be wearing his trademark overalls, but apparently he forgot to put on a shirt. The first stage is a blinding pinkish-red. Pauline is purely monochromatic, colored the same shade as her surroundings. Stage two doesn't fare much better. A dull blue landscape with blurry fiery enemies. Pauline must really be sad about her situation at this state, as she's blue too. Donkey Kong himself looks atrocious. I'll spare the obvious scatological comparisons. Let's just say that he looks like a greenish-brown smear. His only facial features are pair of black eyeballs. Sound design is mostly acceptable, though there are some key tunes missing, like the one that's supposed to play when Mario wields his barrel-smashing hammer.

Controls aren't anything to write home about either. Mario's movements feel fluid enough, but the jumping is garbage. Mario makes these tiny awkward slow motion bounds that must be executed when an approaching enemy is still some distance away. It's pretty clear that Coleco put a minimal amount of effort into this port, cranking it out quickly just to get it on the shelves. As a giant Donkey Kong and Mario fan, I find it historically interesting and playable at the very least. Objectively, it's of very questionable quality and probably the worst interpretation of the arcade juggernaut.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Wed Sep 25, 2019 9:30 pm

That Basic Math review...it’s a 2001-stoner-movie-level IQ post. I literally laughed out loud reading it. (Also...”the ape villain, Donkey Kong”. :lol: ). I also laughed out loud reading Elkin’s fabulous Far Cry 4 review. (Like a Cabela’s games, but f**king awesome. Got it.). My wife is looking at me like I’m some kind of weirdo. (I am. She knows this and married me anyway.)

Keep up the good work, guys.
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Thu Sep 26, 2019 3:42 pm

1. Ys III: Wanderers from Ys (Famicom)
2. Dragon Scroll: Yomigaerishi Maryuu (Famicom)
3. Ninja-kun: Majou no Bouken (Famicom)
4. Hello Kitty World (Famicom)
5. Galaxian (Famicom)
6. Esper Dream 2: Aratanaru Tatakai (Famicom)
7. Ninja Jajamaru-kun (Famicom)
8. Jajamaru no Daibouken (Famicom)
9. Front Line (Famicom)
10. Field Combat (Famicom)
11. Portopia Renzoku Satsujin Jiken (Famicom)
12. Mississippi Satsujin Jiken: Murder on the Mississippi (Famicom)
13. Space Harrier (Famicom)
14. Geimos (Famicom)
15. Attack Animal Gakuen (Famicom)
16. Sky Destroyer (Famicom)
17. Ripple Island (Famicom)
18. Oishinbo: Kyukyoku no Menu 3bon Syoubu (Famicom)
19. Bird Week (Famicom)
20. Baltron (Famicom)
21. Yie Ar Kung-Fu (Famicom)
22. Challenger (Famicom)
23. Ikki (Famicom)
24. Dough Boy (Famicom)
25. Atlantis no Nazo (Famicom)
26. Bio Senshi Dan: Increaser tono Tatakai (Famicom)
27. Yume Penguin Monogatari (Famicom)
28. King Kong 2: Ikari no Megaton Punch (Famicom)
29. Congo Bongo (Atari 2600)
30. Coconuts (Atari 2600)
31. Arcade Archives: Donkey Kong (Switch eShop)
32. Dragon Quest V: Tenkuu no Hanayome (Super Famicom)
33. Johnny Turbo's Arcade: Super Burger Time (Switch eShop)
34. Fire Fly (Atari 2600)
35. Fire Fighter (Atari 2600)
36. Space Jockey (Atari 2600)
37. Airlock (Atari 2600)
38. Makai Hakkenden Shada (PC Engine)
39. Squeeze Box (Atari 2600)
40. Lagoon (SNES)
41. Atlantis (Atari 2600)
42. Xak III: The Eternal Recurrence (PC Engine CD)
43. Blue Blink (PC Engine)
44. Ys IV: The Dawn of Ys (PC Engine CD)
45. Cally's Caves 3 (Steam)
46. Planetarian: The Reverie of a Little Planet (Steam)
47. Contra (NES)
48. Arcade Archives: Vs. Super Mario Bros. (Switch eShop)
49. Arcade Archives: Moon Cresta (Switch eShop)
50. Johnny Turbo's Arcade: Joe and Mac Caveman Ninja (Switch eShop)
51. Ice Hockey (Atari 2600)
52. Indy 500 (Atari 2600)
53. Video Olympics (Atari 2600)
54. Fast Eddie (Atari 2600)
55. Muv-Luv (Steam)
56. Air-Sea Battle (Atari 2600)
57. Combat (Atari 2600)
58. Street Racer (Atari 2600)
59. Food Fight (Atari 7800)
60. Galaga (Atari 7800)
61. Donkey Kong (ColecoVision)
62. Cosmic Avenger (ColecoVision)
63. Mouse Trap (ColecoVision)
64. Zaxxon (ColecoVision)
65. Armor Battle (Intellivision)
66. Armor Ambush (Atari 2600)
67. Basic Math (Atari 2600)
68. Astrosmash (Intellivision)
69. Astroblast (Atari 2600)
70. Donkey Kong (Intellivision)

71. Beauty & the Beast (Intellivision)
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No, Imagic's Beauty & the Beast for the Intellivision has absolutely nothing to do with the fairy tale or subsequent film adaptations. Rather, it's an interesting little climbing-platformer from one of the second generation's premier developers. An Intellivision exclusive, the game feel like an adequate "replacement" for Donkey Kong, which received a rather questionable release on Mattel's hardware. Beauty & the Beast is a damsel in distress tale. It chronicles the journey of a young man in a yellow bodysuit, whose lover has been kidnapped by a villain racing to the top of a skyscraper. The antagonist here is actually a very large bearded man, way more terrifying than a fictional ape.

In the vein of Donkey Kong (or at least certain stages of the Nintendo classic), the goal is to guide the hero to the top of several consecutive segments of a building, until the peak is reached. While Donkey Kong featured the "How High Can You Get?" tagline, no one environment ever felt like it was truly "stacked" upon the previous one. In contrast, Beauty & the Beast is structured like an actual tower ascension. Environments are repetitive (reminiscent of Nichibutsu's Crazy Climber), the tower decreases in width as the hero scales higher, and there's a nice "height chart" cutscene between each stage to display progress. There's even an entrance door and fire hydrant included as part of the background of stage one. Very cool, Imagic.
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Controls are quite good. The game utilizes the disc for movement and a side button for jumping. That's it. The Intellivision "keypad" is useless, though the game humorlessly still came packaged with a controller overlay. Each stage contains three or four horizontal segments upon which Yellow Bodysuit Man can walk. He climbs not ladders but windows. Open ones only, if one slams shut during his climb a small tumble results. Irritatingly (though also rather hilariously), it's possible to fall off the side of the building. This sends the player all the way back to game's starting point, complete with the classic old-timey cartoon whistling sound effect. There are hazards to avoid, naturally. "The Beast" tosses a series of balls, and there are malicious birds and rats as well. Instead of a more traditional one-hit-death "life" system, Beauty & the Beast essentially gives the player one life, but also a health bar. If Yellow Bodysuit Man is hit he loses one block of health and a small amount of altitude. "The Beauty" occasionally tosses hearts (flashbacks to Nintendo's Popeye, also of '82), which grant temporary invincibility.

Those who reach the tower's summit are treated to a delightful scene where the Beast tumbles and Beauty and Bodysuit Man are whisked away by a small airplane. The game then loops, this time a bit more challenging with some additional hazards to dodge. Difficulty levels off quickly, however, and this feels like a game that could be played "forever." Like most Imagic titles, the graphics are super sharp. There's some fine attention to detail in the scenery and characters alike (with the exception of the kidnapped damsel, who is but a blue blob). The aforementioned airplane drags messages across the screen between each stage: these start out sarcastic but get more inspirational as the player progresses. Music is limited, but competent, and the sound effects are quite good. Overall, this is one of the strongest single-player experiences on the Intellivision, and a fine reason to begin exploring Imagic's non-Atari output.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by noiseredux Thu Sep 26, 2019 3:47 pm

Looks like a rip-off of Fix It Felix.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Thu Sep 26, 2019 4:04 pm

noiseredux wrote:Looks like a rip-off of Fix It Felix.


:lol:

I was always disappointed that Fix It Felix, Jr. - which is actually a game - was not included with the Wreck It Ralph video games for the 3DS and Wii. Seems like it would have been a perfect extra feature.

Also, great review, Bone. The Intellivision rules. You’ve played the AD&D games for it, right?
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by noiseredux Thu Sep 26, 2019 4:12 pm

yup, agreed. We still have the Wii game I think. It's very "okay," while the leaked Fix It Felix was actually the way better game.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Sun Sep 29, 2019 8:11 pm

Partridge Senpai's 2019 Beaten Games:
Previously: 2016 2017 2018
* indicates a repeat

1. Night Slashers (Switch)
2. Bye-Bye BOXBOY! (3DS)
3. GTA4: The Ballad of Gay Tony (Xbox 360)
4. Katamari Forever (PS3)
5. Detention (PS4)
6. Donkey Kong 64 (N64) *
7. OctoDad: Dadliest Catch (PS4) *
8. FlintHook (Switch)
9. God of War (PS4)
10. God of War HD (PS3)
11. Tiny Barbarian DX (Switch)
12. God of War 2 HD (PS3)
13. Starlink (Switch)
14. Shin Gundam Musou (PS3)
15. Battle & Get! Pokemon Typing DS (DS)
16. Banjo-Kazooie (N64) *
17. Super Mario 64: Rumble Edition (N64)
18. Mario Party 3 (N64) *
19. Paper Mario (N64) *
20. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (SNES) *
21. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX (GBC) *
22. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (GBC) *
23. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (GBC) *
24. Yoshi's Island (SNES) *
25. Super Mario World (SNES) *
26. Super Mario RPG (SFC) *
27. Kaeru No Tame Ni Kane Wa Naru (GB)
28. Final Fantasy VI (SFC) *
29. Final Fantasy IV (SFC) *
30. Final Fantasy V (SFC)
31. Final Fantasy III (Famicom)
32. Mother 2 (SFC) *
33. Mother 3 (GBA) *
34. Hebereke (Famicom)
35. Donkey Kong Country 2 (SFC)
36. Donkey Kong Country 3 (SFC)
37. Donkey Kong Country (SFC) *
38. Wario's Woods (Famicom)
39. Paper Mario: Color Splash (Wii U)
40. Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
41. Luigi's Mansion (3DS) *
42. Paper Mario: Sticker Star (3DS)
43. Mario & Luigi Superstar Saga & Bowser's Minions (3DS)
44. Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story & Bowser Jr's Journey (3DS)

45. Tomato Adventure (GBA)

Given that this is the Japan-exclusive game Alpha Dream made for Nintendo before they made the first Mario & Luigi game, I went into this game expecting it to be an okay sort of proto-M&L experience. While to a certain degree that is absolutely true, I was nevertheless routinely surprised at how mechanically interesting and narratively clever this game was. It's not super long at only 15-ish hours, but it was still absolutely worth the time and the 700 yen I paid for it on the Wii U Virtual Console.

The story of Tomato Adventure is about Demiru, a little rabbit-like boy in a vegetable/food land of the Tomato Kingdom. While on a search for his girlfriend Pasaran's robot, she's kidnapped by the evil King Abira, who plans to use her energy to turn the kingdom from food into toys. Fighting through his 6 Super Kids one at a time, you aim to save your girlfriend with the help of some wacky friends you meet along the way. The story is fairly self-aware, irreverent, and silly, with a tone that struck me as something between an early 2000's gag anime and a Loony Toons cartoon. It's got a tone more irreverent and less serious than Superstar Saga, for example, and that combined with the relatively short length keep it from getting stale. Being a 2002 JRPG aimed at kids, it doesn't have any sort of serious message to get across, but its protagonists and antagonists were fun and silly enough that it kept the story interesting for me regardless.

The presentation is a bit of a mixed bag. I didn't have as much of a problem with this playing it on a wide-screen TV on my Wii U, but this game must've been a nightmare to play on the original GBA in 2002. Demiru is quite small on the screen, and the environments themselves tend to be very colorful and loud in their presentation. That on top of relatively small text made me routinely thankful to not be playing this on an unlit 3" GBA screen XD . The music is also really nothing to write home about. The boss themes are pretty nice, but there's only one or two, a standard battle theme, and then the final boss has not one but TWO unique tracks. Each area you go to has one or two themes for its main areas and dungeon parts respectively, but nothing really memeorable. The music and sound design sounds much closer to something like Pokemon Ruby & Sapphire than Superstar Saga in terms of quality and style (at least to my ears). Very much Early GBA Chic.

The gameplay is where the ideas that would go onto make Mario & Luigi start to really shine through though. There is no jumping or platforming the way the M&L games have in the overworld, and first strikes on enemies aren't a thing, but there are still environmental puzzles galore and no random encounters (enemies walk around and you touch them to initiate combat). This game has tons of puzzle and action mini-game segments that, while some are pretty pants, all tend to be very different and you'll rarely see something similar more than once. There are some that are so frustrating the game definitely would've benefited from an option to just skip them and move on after you'd failed a bunch, but that's difficult to reasonably expect from a game from 2002.

The combat, like M&L, revolves around fulfilling action commands around the "Gimmick" (literally what they're called) devices you find throughout the game. Demiru meets 3 party members over the course of his journey, and while only one of them can be active at a time (Demiru must always be in your party), each of them has their own gimmicks only they can use, with Demiru having the most as to give him more variety. The gimmicks themselves are subject to power creep pretty badly (really no reason not to at least try out new ones as you get them as they tend to be reasonably more powerful than your old ones), but none of their timed mini-games are the same. Some are quite similar, but no two are exactly alike, even between characters, although the instructions on how to perform their mini-games are sometimes quite annoyingly vaguely explained. The game rolls out the gimmicks pretty slow at the start as well as their related mechanics, and the game has a pretty dang slow and easy start in general, but you'll have dozens of gimmicks by the end of the game and the final boss or two really don't mess around.

Very similar to how Superstar Saga has difficulties for Bro Moves that you can increase to use less BP and deal more damage, you can change the difficulty of gimmick's action commands between battles to deal more damage at the risk of failing the command. It creates a neat risk/reward system that incentives getting really good at the newest gimmicks to do more damage. Additionally, very similar to what would be used for Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story's Bro Badge mechanics, you have "Incredible" points that you can build up by successfully completing gimmick action commands, and you build them up far faster by completing higher difficulty gimmick commands. You only unlock this feature once you get your first party member, but each of the 3 party members has two possible Incredible Actions they can do (one at 3/4ths Incredible bar, one at full bar) for different effects ranging from a full-party heal to massive AOE damage to your enemies. To balance this, each gimmick has a certain number of times you can use it before you need to use other of your 4 equipped gimmicks (you must have as many as you can equipped up to a maximum of 4), which balances out the risk/reward by encouraging you to use gimmicks you can complete reliably, and not just ones that do a lot of damage.

However, this is where that mechanic stumbles a bit. If you fail an action command JUST one time, your entire stock of Incredible points drops to 0, meaning you are punished pretty hard for not succeeding at an action command. There's also no way to practice action commands outside of real combat, meaning there's no way to tell for sure what a new gimmick's action command will be, let alone exactly how upping the difficulty of a certain gimmick will affect the possibility of its completion. One or two gimmicks (including Demiru's 4th acquired one) are entirely down to luck, which can make building up Incredible points super irritating if you lose your entire bar because you guessed wrong. Some have higher difficulties that are absurdly difficult and bordering on impossible to complete on purpose, and there were many I found I had no chance to complete even by accident on power levels past 4 (each has 7 levels of difficulty). This is further complicated by the strange way this game decides to do character leveling.

Leveling your actual character through combat only ups their speed and maximum health. Your defense is tied to the armor you're wearing, and you'll rarely find new armor outside of buying it at the new town's shop (although money is basically never an issue if you just fight everything you see like I did). And your attack power is tied entirely to the gimmick you're using, and gimmick power level is decided by 3 things: the specific gimmick (some are simply more powerful than others as their base power rating), the 1-7 action command difficulty you've chosen for that gimmick, and finally how much you've increased that gimmick's power through batteries.

There are 4 types of gimmicks and their action commands revolve around the theme of their type: Timing, Renda (button mashing), Speed (do commands within a time limit), and Dokidoki (basically an "Other" category, usually revolving around memorization and/or abject luck). You can find in chests and from enemy drops (and in the much later game, outright buy for large sums of money) batteries that will increase the power level of a gimmick. It can't be done infinitely, but it's a good way to make a gimmick you like continue its usefulness even when other newer gimmicks have higher base power levels. This also smartly incentivizes spreading out the types of gimmicks across the characters you use, as while you may be able to very reliably do the action commands for most button mashing gimmicks and speed ones, that means you'll have a ton of unused timing and dokidoki batteries and relatively underpowered overall gimmick strength. Ultimately, all this means that while you can't necessarily grind levels for more power, you can grind money to power up your favorite gimmicks for the end-game (and the final boss is a proper blighter, so you'll need them at max power, lemee tell ya). It also fortunately means that you aren't really punished that much for avoiding combat, since levels don't affect your overall power level that significantly (compared to traditional JRPGs at least).

Verdict: Highly Recommended. I was very pleasantly and regularly surprised by the quality of this game. The slow and very easy start had me a bit worried it'd be pretty boring, but I hit a stride around the first boss of the game that really had me hooked. While the last two dungeons go on for a bit too long, the game otherwise has really nice signposting and good overall pacing, and a nice difficulty curve to boot (although the highest spots of it are a bit weirdly high for a game that says its geared towards kids). This is now one of my favorite games Alpha Dream has done, and one of the Japan-exclusive games I've most enjoyed playing. It's absolutely worth your time with a fan translation or to help practice your Japanese ^w^
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Ack Mon Sep 30, 2019 2:42 pm

1. Dusk (PC)(FPS)
2. Project: Snowblind (PC)(FPS)
3. Soldier of Fortune: Platinum Edition (PC)(FPS)
4. Ziggurat (PC)(FPS)
5. Wolfenstein 3D: Ultimate Challenge (PC)(FPS)
6. Destiny 2 (PC)(FPS/RPG)
7. Destiny 2: Curse of Osiris (PC)(FPS/RPG)
8. Destiny 2: Warmind (PC)(FPS/RPG)

9. Destiny 2: Forsaken (PC)(FPS/RPG)
10. Star Wars: Rebel Assault (PC)(Rail Shooter)

11. Castle Werewolf (PC)(FPS)
12. Project Warlock (PC)(FPS)
13. Castle Crashers (PC)(Hack and Slash)
14. This Strange Realm of Mine (PC)(FPS)
15. BioShock Remastered (PC)(FPS)
16. BioShock 2 (PC)(FPS)
17. BioShock 2: Minerva's Den (PC)(FPS)

18. Blood (PC)(FPS)
19. Blood: Cryptic Passage (PC)(FPS)
20. Blood: Post Mortem (PC)(FPS)

21. Shadow Warrior (PC)(FPS)
22. Shadow Warrior: Twin Dragon (PC)(FPS)
23. Shadow Warrior: Wanton Destruction (PC)(FPS)

24. F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin (PC)(FPS)
25. F.E.A.R. 2: Reborn (PC)(FPS)

26. Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines (PC)(RPG)
27. Men of Valor (PC)(FPS)
28. Ultima III: Exodus (PC)(RPG)
29. Albedo: Eyes from Outer Space (PC)(Point and Click)

30. Midnight Ultra (PC)(FPS)
31. Amid Evil (PC)(FPS)
32. Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (PC)(RPG)
33. Betrayer (PC)(Horror)

34. Borderlands 2: Commander Lilith & the Fight for Sanctuary (PC)(FPS/RPG)
35. Far Cry 2 (PC)(FPS)
36. Apocryph (PC)(FPS)
37. Eye of the Beholder III: Assault on Myth Drannor (PC)(RPG)

38. Menzoberranzan (PC)(RPG)
39. TimeShift (PC)(FPS)
40. Heretic Kingdoms: The Inquisition (PC)(RPG)
41. Shadowgate (PC)(Point and Click)

42. Might & Magic Book One (PC)(RPG)

I'm pretty sure it's a well known fact around here that I enjoy the Might & Magic series. However, I initially came into these games with the third entry during a Together Retro some years ago. While I have since ventured on through some of the series highlights as well as spin offs and even a fan release built using assets from the fourth and fifth titles, it never did quite sit right that I hadn't checked out the original and its follow up. Why not? Accessibility and childhood rental trauma. The first Might & Magic came out in 1986, and by the time I really got into RPGs, improvements had definitely been made in the genre's user experience. To add to it, I had memories of attempting to play this years ago after renting the NES port. I had no idea what I was doing at the time (in my defense, I was 7), and that made me concerned about being overwhelmed.

That said...one can't hide forever! The plan was to get through the first of the series and then port my party over to the sequel. While the second has its own share of issues, I'll get to that much later whenever I get around to beating it. But for now...Might & Magic Book One is a product of its era while also offering a fairly large and open world in which the player is only limited by the party's ability to survive. It's a fascinating world, built like a massive dungeon with walls that represent the forests, deserts, mountains, and glaciers that you travel through. Hell, the cover art on the box is even a completely accurate reconstruction of the world and gives hints to what can be found within. Considering it was 1986 when this game was released, and it was created and published by one guy, it's a hell of an impressive feat. John Van Caneghem has left an incredible legacy; while he isn't exactly in Richard Garriott territory, it would be remiss to say his work hasn't been crucial to the development of the WRPG and dungeon crawler.

The worst aspects of the first Might & Magic are fairly easy to sum up: a difficult beginning that will likely push some potential players away, a menu-heavy approach that may turn away more, a spell and item system that could have used some explanation, and a general sense of aimlessness in the world. You make progress yet don't necessarily feel like you do, but then it's an open world, so "progress" is at best loosely defined. Perhaps instead I should say that you never feel like you're actually running down the main storyline, partly because of a lack of direction, and partly because you can't be too sure that what you've uncovered isn't a part of it. That is at least in part because there is a lot hidden in M&M1's world, from secret monsters to special areas in dungeons or towns to crazy quests that don't receive much or even any explanation. You might disrupt a meeting of dragons or stumble across a crypt hidden in a town, fight in an underground arena, or free a prisoner from a castle, and you have no idea if any of it is actually putting progress towards your goal, which you also don't really know. Yet that's ok, because you're just going forward and continuing to explore, so you'll probably resolve much of what you have to do anyway, it just doesn't ever feel like there is much of a logical next step.

The truth is, of the things I've described, the aimlessness is the one thing that doesn't ever feel "manageable." Winning in the early part of the game feels like a crap shoot, but eventually you manage to survive enough fights and gather up enough gear that you encounter the tipping point and can start walking around. The general monsters you fight are less of a threat, and so long as you make sure to save your progress at inns constantly, you learn where the nasty stuff is and build yourself up. The spells, eventually you'll learn what's useful and what really isn't, and when you're strong enough, you starting making a habit of using certain ones. The sorcerer's Barkskin spell became something I always had active. The menus get better once you understand your way through them, and manipulating them becomes second nature to pass gear around or use objects. Of course, stats and instructions on gear and items would have been helpful, but some of this just requires experimenting in town. Get used to rebooting a lot.

What do you get in the meantime? Well, an actual adventure in a truly open world, even if it's one that requires a little imagination on the part of the player. From the very beginning, I could have wandered off to find one of the Great Beasts for the Wheel of Luck sidequest. They all would have stomped me and used the party's corpses for toothpicks, but I could still have done it. Walking between towns at first felt like a mad rush and then eventually became much easier, and I would sometimes just wander off and explore new areas for the fun of it, just to see what I could find. Perhaps there is treasure, or perhaps there is death, but either way, I learned something and saw some sights. Even when I beat the game, I was sure there was more to have tracked down and some things that were still cryptic, and that sense of discovery never left.

A fun fact: this game actively punishes you for playing as males, which was something I stumbled across as a kid in the NES port and made me wary to play it again. One of the game's towns, Portsmith, drains men at every town intersection. There is also a secret contained within the town that instantly annihilates males as well as a pool which changes your characters' gender in an instant. That town is the only place in the game where your character's sex plays any part (and I mean that as in physical, because gender identity or expression is never mentioned. You're simply operating off an F or M in each character's stat page). Alignment also matters for little beyond certain gear and potentially how you respond to prisoners, but for the most part, your party is made up of faceless individuals to whom you subscribe all attributes of personality. I brought one of all six classes, named after people on this forum as usual, and while I had opinions on who these characters were, they never actually exhibited any sort of sign about how the game world interpreted them. They were just blank pages for me to imagine and project onto, as featureless as the quest but open to my adventurous spirit.

Because I could project myself onto this world so easily, I had a wonderful time with Might & Magic Book One. I absolutely recommend it to fans of dungeon crawlers. It's not as "rudimentary" as something like Ultima, nor as brutal as something like Wizardry, even with the front loaded difficulty curve. This series is a sweet spot in terms of genre development, and I have found its entries generally accessible across the board. I highly recommend it to RPG fans who are curious about the early days but are wary to dip a toe into those often murky waters.
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by MrPopo Tue Oct 01, 2019 2:41 am

Yeah, when you look back at it Might & Magic 1 is really a marvel. It wasn't the first kid on the block, but they ended up being what can probably be called the best in its genre, at least up through the fifth entry (it starts to get fuzzier around the sixth entry when compared to contemporaries). It stands on the shoulders of the giants that came before, like Wizardry, and manages to do more without going overboard like Fate does (http://crpgaddict.blogspot.com/2017/02/ ... -game.html - to put those numbers in perspective, M&M1 and 2 are 80x64 in first person while Ultima IV is 256x256 overhead).

Might and Magic 2 does a little better job of letting you know there's a main quest and that you're progressing it, as I recall.
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