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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by prfsnl_gmr Sun Mar 08, 2020 1:31 pm

dsheinem wrote:
prfsnl_gmr wrote:Double Dragon - Pretty horrible. Looks like an enhanced version of the NES games, but the levels more closely resemble the arcade game. The hit detection is way off, though, making this one hard to recommend.!


I like this port - it is the best 8-bit version of Double Dragon I think there is. Weird that you had hit detection problems, I don’t remember that at all...


I spent some more time with it this morning, and I think my initial assessment was a bit unfair. It’s a fine port, and it doesn’t have a hit detection problem. It has an attack range issue. Specifically, your basic attacks have a really, really short range (which I mistook for a hit detection issue), rendering every move except the jump kick, the whip attack, and barrels/boxes/crates/rocks pretty worthless. As someone who grew up with the NES port, this takes some getting used to, but I did adjust to it. (On my last attempt, I made it about halfway through the last level, and I think I could beat the game with a little practice.) Your best weapon is the fact that you take little, tiny steps way faster than the enemies; so you can easily out maneuver them. This results in a lot of throwing a rock at the enemies, luring them somewhere, running back to the rock, and throwing it at them again. I still think I prefer the NES version, with its RPG mechanics, incentives for using different attacks, and drastically different level design, it the SMS version is a solid port.

@Bone

I played Quartet this morning too. It is pretty much the epitome of a Sega Master System game. Everything from the graphics and the sound, to the wonky jump physics and rightly colored enemies spawning all over the place just screams Sega Master System. I’ve never played the arcade original, unfortunately; so, I can’t say how it compares to that. Based on my limited experience, however, it seems like a fun, but really, really hard game.
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marurun
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by marurun Mon Mar 09, 2020 10:55 am

I finally got the Genesis Mini hooked up over the weekend and spent a little time exploring some of the titles, and two of those were arcade ports: Tetris and Darius.

So, Darius kicked my ass. It feels like an arcade game. I was impressed by just how accurate this port is. I know it's a more contemporary project and not something that would ever have existed back in the day, but I cannot emphasize just how well done it appears to be. The sprites are all huge. All this accuracy leads to a problem, however. In the arcade Darius was a 3-screen cabinet, leading to a very, very wide screen. That gave the large enemy sprites room to move and gave players more time to react. This Genesis port is just a tad more than 1/3 the horizontal resolution, leaving everything to feel very cramped. Now, this is not a new problem. NEC/Taito dealt with that on the PC Engine as well, but there they chose to shrink the sprites and make adjustments to help things feel a little less cramped. The Genesis version definitely looks and sounds more accurate, but the PC Engine versions are all more fun to play. Still, quite impressive.

I also gave Tetris a crack. This is a port of Sega's arcade Tetris that M2 put a little extra polish on. It plays just great. The music is a little bland, but the sound effects are good. And it has that old Tetris mechanical feel. No spinning the piece once it's in position, delaying the next one. Also, no next piece preview. This is pretty core, classic Tetris. My wife and I both took a crack at it. One weird thing about this Tetris version is how quickly the speed ramps up. I'm used to having this speed up every 10 lines. This one seems to speed up every 4 or 5. That means you barely have time to adapt to each new speed. My wife and I each topped out around level 8, at least in a brief bit of play.

Finally, to took another run at Super EDF on the Switch Online. I love that SNES game. It is a fantastic arcade port, but between this game and Darius, I have apparently gotten even WORSE at shooters. I didn't think this was possible. For as much as I love shooters, I don't play them very much, and the result is BALLS. I die, a lot.
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by marurun Wed Mar 11, 2020 1:52 pm

I was really looking forward to having my TurboGrafx-16 Mini in time for this month, but the indefinite COVID delay is disappointing.
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by alienjesus Wed Mar 11, 2020 4:43 pm

I got stuck in to a few Master System games for this month's Together Retro yesterday.


I started off with Rastan. This game's pretty good overall - it looks pretty nice and sounds alright too, especially in FM audio. I played through the game from start to finish - although if you've played this and know how hard it is, know that I also used a cheat code to help. If you want to do that too, then hold down-left and both buttons on the controller as the game loads, and the title screen will have blue text instead of red for the logo. This means you've enabled infinite continues. When you continue you restart from the level you're on, but it's enough to help you get through for sure! Overall I quite liked Rastan. It's not a must have by any means for the system but it's good enough that you should get it if the opportunity presents itself.

After that I made a quick start on Rainbow Islands. I'm playing on Retron5, so I didn't commit to the full game - I have it suspended at the start of world 3 right now. I have found all the gems in each of the first 2 levels so am on track for a good ending. Does anyone know if continues are infinite in this one? I haven't found out yet and I'm worried!

Anyhow, you can definitely see some compromises on this one. There's notably less colours on screen than in the arcade, and it seems you can only get double rainbows instead of triple. There's lots of flicker when you have several enemies and rainbows on screen at once too. I'll sit down and play through more of this one soon.
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by Nemoide Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:44 pm

Okay, I played through the arcade version of Shinobi on Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection for 360 last night (by abusing save states) and tonight started Shinobi on Sega Master System. I just played through enough to get a game over (mission 3 stage 1) but plan on playing more using the level select code so I don't need to restart the game each time.

...I think I prefer the SMS version. The fact that the game gives you a health bar makes it SO MUCH MORE FORGIVING than the one-hit-kills in the arcade. Yeah, you might make a blind jump and take damage, but at least you're not instantly dead! Plus getting upgrades from rescuing the children is a nice feature. My big complaint is that the bonus stages are super hard, which is fine in the arcade because it just nets you a life (you could get more by putting in a quarter) but with SMS, that effectively completely locks off ninja magic! The manual says you can get multiple ninja magics, which is also nice... but I don't see that happening for me.

I might take a stab at the NES version once I've finished playing the SMS one just so I can compare them... we shall see!
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by Nemoide Thu Mar 12, 2020 3:24 pm

Shinobi SMS question: does anyone have any tips to beating the Mandara boss? I can get REALLY CLOSE to destroying all the statues, but end up getting killed from the last one.
I've heard people online say it's easier with a powered-up projectile weapon, but I think that means I'd have to start several levels ahead... is the level skip code not actually worth using because of that?
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by marurun Thu Mar 12, 2020 4:27 pm

You can do it without the rockets, but you gotta tap FAST.
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by Sload Soap Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:06 pm

I struggled with that boss and had rockets. I found it was about quickly but steadily tapping out shots fast enough to spin the statues but not so fast your shot doesn't register/ And I didn't move even when that last one got really close. Tough boss.

I played a few of my remaining SMS ports this evening, namely Double Dragon and R-Type. I won't go into too much detail as they have already been discussed and I pretty much agree with what has been said. I don't really like any version of Double Dragon (or any pre-Final Fight beat 'em up games to be honest) but this one is pretty daft. As Prof says most moves are basically redundant due to Billy/Jimmy's stumpy little arms and legs so I found the game devolves into just lining up flying kicks and hoping you can knock the enemy into a wall. Crowd control is essentially non-existent, the bat is useless, the whip/chain is OP and I found myself a bit bored. Like Scramble Spirits the game is quite generous with lives and continues but I didn't really much feel like going on. It looks okay, aside from the green Abobo's and the purple/green punk guys who kind of look like the splatter punks from Batman Forever. Sound wise, yeah the NES does it better, quite thin instrumentation here.

R-Type is just a really solid port of a fantastic game which kind of by default makes it maybe the best shooter on the system. I believe Compile did this port which makes sense when you consider the impressive feats they performed on the same platform with their Aleste/Power Strike games. It's not a perfect port, there is flickering and it's not as colourful especially when fighting a boss but the sprites are accurately translated and it moves with purpose. It may technically be the best port to the system in relative terms. Even the music survives pretty much intact which is impressive.
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by BoneSnapDeez Fri Mar 13, 2020 2:44 pm

Alright. Bubble Bobble is done. Famicom Disk System version. Why? Because I'm a huge nerd.

Two major differences between this and the NES variant we received in North America. First, this one actually saves progress instead of providing a password. This is arguably better, though of course you can't skip ahead all willy nilly by looking up said passwords on the interwebs. Second, the FDS doesn't give 1-ups for points amassed, which is hugely annoying.

I'll echo what I said to Pigeon earlier. This is a very overindulgent game. There's 100 levels and there only needed to be, I dunno, 30 or so. Some of the later levels are just straight up trolling, and not much fun at all. I don't like how the mechanics vary slightly between stages, in terms of how the dragons can jump "through" platforms, how bubbles move, how long enemies can stay in the bubbles, etc. I prefer consistency.

The power-up system is underdeveloped too. Some you'll only see once per playthrough. If at all.

I hate the good/bad ending nonsense. In fact, I particularly loathe whenever multiple endings are shoehorned into simplistic games that don't need them.

Aside my complaining, this is a fun single-screen platformer. Seems geared heavily towards two-player co-op, and is indeed more fun that way.

The arcade version is probably better, with its superior graphics and sound. Just marginally better though. No idea if this is the best home port, it's essentially tied with the NES version and I have yet to play it on the Master System.
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Re: Together Retro March 2020 - The Arcade @ Home on 8/16-bi

by Nemoide Fri Mar 13, 2020 11:57 pm

Okay, I cleared Shinobi on Sega Master System!

I think this is a great game! I was playing it on my Genesis using the Powerbase Mini FM and I think the FM soundtrack really enhances the experience. After playing through the arcade version, I'd say it's a very faithful reproduction, but modified to be more forgiving assuming you use the level-skip code to give yourself pretend-continues; I don't even consider that cheating, the idea of getting to the last boss and restarting the game multiple times to learn his patterns sounds like hell. I didn't even have issues with blind-jumps between levels, though if I didn't play through the arcade version, I'm not sure I'd know I'm SUPPOSED to jump to a different level at a dead-end. I like how the game is somewhat methodical, but still fast-paced.

I think I'd actually rank this as one of the best games on the SMS! I've got to play more of the Shinobi series...
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