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pierrot
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by pierrot Tue Nov 12, 2019 10:58 pm

I don't know, Bone. How could it be better than that other hyphenated VN, Yu-No? I mean, Yu-No has almost ten whole years on Muv-Luv, and it was originally on the PC-98. I think it's pretty clear who has to win here.
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Markies
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Markies Wed Nov 13, 2019 12:44 am

Markies' Games Beat List Of 2019!
*Denotes Replay For Completion*

1. Power Stone 2 (SDC)
2. Radiata Stories (PS2)
3. Dusty Diamond's All-Star Softball (NES)
***4. Saiyuki: Journey West (PS1)***
5. Shining In The Darkness (GEN)
***6. Metropolis Street Racer (SDC)***
7. Half-Life 2 (XBOX)
8. Soul Blazer (SNES)
9. Mario Party (N64)
10. Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance (GCN)
11. Street Fighter Collection (PS1)
12. Pokemon Stadium 2 (N64)
13. Burnout (PS2)
14. Phantasy Star III (GEN)
15. Batman: The Video Game (NES)
16. X-Men Legends (XBOX)
***17. Final Fantasy VII (PS1)***
18. Maximum Pool (SDC)
19. Puzzle Quest (PS2)
20. Jet Moto (PS1)
21. The Legend of Zelda: Collector's Edition (GCN)
22. Dead Or Alive 3 (XBOX)
23. Growlanser III: The Dual Darkness

24. Luigi's Mansion (GCN)

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I beat Luigi's Mansion on the Nintendo GameCube this evening!

My city has recently started its own Retro Gaming Convention every August. It started in 2016 as just a place for Vendors to sell games with some tournaments on the side. In the past few years, it has grown to much more with celebrities and panels along with vendors selling games. It is the best time of year to go game shopping as you can look at up to 80 vendors in the span of a few hours. Before I attend each convention, I always create a list of what game I am looking for each console. Without the list, I'd either be too amazed and not buy anything or be too amazed and buy everything. The list helps me narrow down my search to what games I really want. In 2018, I chose Luigi's Mansion for my GameCube game and I luckily found it at the convention. I wanted to play it during Halloween, but I missed it by a week or so.

The best part about Luigi's Mansion is the Luigi himself along with all the subtle Nintendo nods to previous games. Luigi has so much expression and is so funny, even though he barely says any words that it makes the game so enjoyable to play. I love watching him get spooked or the happiness of him finding a new key to a room. The game plays out like one large puzzle. You go into a room, 'solve it' and then are given a key to the next room. Some bosses are thrown in there along with some fighting. It moves along nicely and I like how everything is self contained. You get a real sense of progression as you move throughout the game.

The game was a launch game for the GameCube and it basically teaches players the 'foreign' concept of dual analog sticks. Because of that, it is unique, but the combat can become difficult. To catch ghosts, you almost need split second timing. Also, you can't invert the sticks, which I prefer, so moving your flashlight and vacuum takes some getting used to. In fact, I never grew accustomed to it and the final two bosses can be such a pain as they ramp up the difficulty.

Overall, I like the presentation and the enjoyment of the game. I just wish it played a little better. I wish the combat was more intuitive and a bit more smoother. It's a cute little spooky game and well worth it to see Luigi's reactions. It's an interesting concept and I like Nintendo taking chances with the Mario Universe. It's a really good game, but I think the combat holds it back from really being great.
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ElkinFencer10
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by ElkinFencer10 Wed Nov 13, 2019 9:51 am

pierrot wrote:I don't know, Bone. How could it be better than that other hyphenated VN, Yu-No? I mean, Yu-No has almost ten whole years on Muv-Luv, and it was originally on the PC-98. I think it's pretty clear who has to win here.

Spoken like a true Never-Played-Muv-Luv-er.
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 Nov 13, 2019 11:21 am

Yu-No is god-tier, but Muv-Luv Alternative is exponentially better.

Next we can discuss the best VN with an asterisk in its title.
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Ack
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by Ack Wed Nov 13, 2019 1:34 pm

BoneSnapDeez wrote:Yu-No is god-tier, but Muv-Luv Alternative is exponentially better.

Next we can discuss the best VN with an asterisk in its title.

Yu-No is god sitting on its mountain, but Muv-Luv Alternative is the god of the sky. It is over your Yu-No god.
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PartridgeSenpai
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by PartridgeSenpai Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:11 am

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)
46. Corpse Party (PSP)
47. Rave Master: Fighting Live (GC)
48. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (GBA) *
49. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon (GBA)
50. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (GBA) *
51. New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS)
52. The Outer Worlds (Xbone)
53. Momodora: Reverie Under the Moonlight (Xbone)
54. Guacamelee 2 (Xbone)
55. Steamworld Dig 2 (Xbone)

56. Yoku's Island Express (Xbone)

The Game Pass Metroidvania train keeps on a'chuggin' as I finish yet another. Yoku's Island Express is what would happen if someone took Sonic Spinball and made it a Metroidvania with a charming, light tropical island theme. It is, as strange enough as it is to say it, a pinball take on the Metroidvania genre, and it actually pulls it off pretty damn well! I did 95% of the stuff in the game, apparently (the last couple achievements were so time consuming I didn't bother) and it took me probably around 12-ish hours (the game has no playtime counter, so far as I can tell, and the Xbone itself won't tell me either).

You play as Yoku, the new postmaster on the island of Mokumana. Though a dung beetle, Yoku rolls around a white ball of rock to get from place to place, and that is your pinball. In places that aren't too steep, you can use left and right to roll around, but otherwise you're usually using the left and right triggers to activate yellow and blue bumpers all over the world to get you from point A to point B. You get new powers as you go through the game, as fits the genre, such as a noisemaker to toggle things in the environment, wallet upgrades to allow you to hold more fruit (basically coins that are also a kind of points that you earn as you play that unlock stuff in the game), the ability to swim, but the overall mechanic of pinball doesn't change much outside of the occasional spot to grapple hook.

There generally two kinds of areas in the game's fairly large contiguous map. You have more corridor-like areas where you're doing more simple bumper-based platforming to get from place to place, and then you have what are effectively mini-pinball tables to get through to get to the next area (often after doing some kind of thing within the table). Those tables are fun, but can often be frustrating with the very precise angle you need to hit. This is mitigated a bit by the bumpers themselves glowing where you touch them, so there's a clear visual cue for your position and therefore the spot you should be aiming to hit once you've done it correctly, but it's still so tricky that it's never really a solved problem (if you view it as a problem in the first place). Those tables also make it a real pain in the ass to re-navigate through them though. Navigating to a specific spot on the island can be a real chore due to the lack of save points and somewhat limited fast-travel system, but the very good overworld map helps mitigate that.

The writing is simple, but the humor is charming and not overtly in your face. The presentation overall is very laid back and pleasant. The music is very good, especially the main theme is one I can't stop humming to myself X3. The world is also awash in color and style. The 5 or so areas of the island have their own look to them, and the pretty, painted-looking style to the world makes everywhere very pretty. Put that on top of how there's never any kind of failure state beyond having to redo a little bit of pinball or re-collect a bit of the already super abundant money-fruit, and this makes for a very laid back Metroidvania experience (outside of getting frustrated at pinball, anyhow XD).

Verdict: Recommended. The frustration on the precision of the bumper hits and how long it can take to get around the island keeps this from being higher recommended, but I still had a fun time with this. It took me a time or two booting it up to really get into it, but once I did I was hooked and had a great time with it. It's certainly not for everyone, even people who consider themselves fans of Metroidvanias, but if the concept of a pinball Metroidvania sounds like something that'd be up your alley, then Yoku's Island Express is probably something you'll enjoy ^w^
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Thu Nov 14, 2019 5:17 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)
72. Surround (Atari 2600)
73. Borderline (SG-1000)
74. Omega Race (VIC-20)
75. Star Battle (VIC-20)
76. Mahou Kishi Rayearth (Game Gear)
77. Muv-Luv Alternative (Vita)

78. Joe & Mac (SNES)
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Shortly after its initial arcade run, Joe & Mac saw a slew of console, computer, and handheld ports. The SNES variant seems to be the most common. And, oddly enough, it's the only one to be released in Data East's native land of Japan. Once again, we have an action-platformer, starring two cavemen (and thus one or two players), attempting to rescue their lady friends from a cabal of weird fiends including, but not limited to, evil cavemen from an opposing tribe, dinosaurs, prehistoric mammals, and Satan himself. The subtitle Caveman Ninja was dropped for this particular release, which is fitting because the game contains a grand total of zero ninjas.

The striking visuals translated perfectly to Nintendo's hardware. The game's inundated with plenty of color and dynamic backgrounds. The sprite work is fantastic, with most characters sporting an array of humorous facial expressions. Music is okay, and just okay. "Caveman tunes" are perhaps the hardest to compose. Controls are generally sufficient, though the Valis-style "super-jumps" (initiated by holding up along with the jump button) are never appreciated. Though the SNES port retains the core mechanics and aesthetics of the original arcade release, it's been heavily reworked and consolized. First and foremost, there's a world map, straight out of Super Mario World. This adds but a veneer of depth, as Joe & Mac is still predicated on linear gameplay. Occasional forks on the world map lead to bonus rounds, which can only be accessed by keys found hidden in the standard stages. Each bonus round is loaded with an excessive number of health-restoration items, and typically nothing else.
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There are some quality of life improvements as well. First and foremost, health no longer ticks down on a timer (hallelujah); this nonsense has been swapped out for a standard health bar. Sorry Wonder Boy, but these cavemen don't suddenly drop dead of starvation. The default weapon is no longer a crappy arcing projectile, but no projectile at all! Sounds like a downgrade, but the first weapon upgrade is obtained early, and weapons are retained upon death. Speaking of death, the SNES port sees the caveman "respawn" as opposed to kicking the player(s) back to a checkpoint, which feels a bit surreal and "backwards" compared to most arcade-to-console conversions. But most importantly is the change in difficulty. SNES Joe & Mac feels fair and balanced. Bosses are no longer bullet-sponges, and the screen is no longer cluttered with stock enemies. The game simply flows much better overall, with the challenge feeling more legitimate.

I rated the arcade Joe & Mac as "fair" though I'm willing to call this one "good." Just barely. The game certainly doesn't do anything special, but there's also nothing grossly offensive about it. Those small modifications manage to drag this one out of mediocrity into that "worth a playthrough" category. You could do better, but you could also certainly do a lot worse.
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prfsnl_gmr
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by prfsnl_gmr Thu Nov 14, 2019 7:30 pm

Caveman tunes are hard to compose.... :lol:

Awesome review, Bone. I always assumed the SNES version was a straight port, but I was wrong!
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BoneSnapDeez
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by BoneSnapDeez Thu Nov 14, 2019 10:30 pm

Pretty sure it's just the SNES port that's like this btw. The others are more straightforward ports.
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marurun
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Re: Games Beaten 2019

by marurun Thu Nov 14, 2019 10:34 pm

I actually really like the Joe and Mac soundtrack. The SNES version replicates the arcade tracks pretty well and the tracks hold up to the SNES’s super-deluxe constant reverb pretty well. Also, the sound effects are pretty good.
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