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Archive for January, 2010


Posted by nfinit on January 4, 2010

I have a simple metric for determining a good game.

If when I’m playing that game and I can’t think about anything else but that game, and when I’m not playing that game, I’m thinking about playing it, that’s when I know I’ve been exposed to a good game.

It’s only happened a handful of times that I can recall.  The first Sonic the Hedgehog was probably my earliest pre-Crash example.  certainly Lunar: Silver Star Story, Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger apply as well.  There have been some times when I have fallen before the particular malady of the MMORPG, but I confess I am but a weak man and these prolonged lapses should not be held against me.

But it’s another thing entirely for me to become obsessed with a game before that game is ever released, and that is what has become of my infatuation with Hideki Kamiya’s upcoming masterpiece, Bayonetta.  I’m infatuated with the demo, for chrissake and I was jonesing for that demo so bad that I could not wait for the American version to release and instead borrowed account information from a Japanese Xbox Live account and downloaded the Japanese game demo about three months ago.

Anyway, all this is to say that when you see review scores from Edge and the like giving the game either perfect 10s or scores in the high 90’s, that’s not a mistake.  It’s possibly the finest action game we’ll see crafted this generation, much like Ninja Gaiden on the Xbox 1.

As we await for Bayonetta to grace us with gaming perfection and render the next 11 months of GOTY discussion moot, allow me to use the magic of streaming internet video to help you understand why exactly your life is less complete without Bayonetta in it.

Friend of the blog and bigger Sega fan that you are BlazeHedgehog offers a play through of the aforementioned Japanese demo from October

And here’s Giant Bomb’s Quicklook from the same demo– since Giant Bomb sucks and refuses to allow streaming directly from thier video feed, we’ll pretend it’s 1998 all over again and offer a direct link instead:


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Fast Draw Showdown: Further proof against a kind and loving god

Posted by nfinit on January 1, 2010

So let’s say we were to make a game that combined the absolute worst things about the Nintendo Wii and the year 1990.  What would we come up with?

The Simpons Sing the Blues Pop’n Music expansion disc?
Super Punch Out 2:  James “Buster” Douglass Knockout Boxing 3 ?
A Virtual Console release of a Mad Dog McCree ripoff dating from 1994?  DING DING DING!

Really?  The Wii gives us the potential for a light gun renaissance and this is what developers give us?  Fast Draw Showdown and a castrated versions of HD games no one wants to play because Wii owners saw all thier friends playing the grown-up version a year before?

House of the Dead: Overkill had given me high hopes for the future of lightgun games on the Wii, but it seems we’re stuck with crap like this.  What, did they feel like Lethal Enforcers was too lowbrow for the Wii audience?

Best not to give anyone any bad ideas, though, as Lethal Enforcers was also a lousy lightgun game and it’s quite honestly shocking that Midway hasn’t already sold the rights to the franchise.
There’s plenty of deserving lightgun games that have been left laying fallow that badly need at least need a re-release on Virtual Console, if not a full-on WiiWare remake.
1:  Lucky n’ Wild
In all honestly I could end this post with this entry and sum up my gripes with the state of lightgun games with this sentence:  Why can I not play Lucky n’ Wild right now?  It’s the perfect Wii game!  It’s multiplayer, its arcadey, it combines racing and lightgun shooting, and it’s so old no one will really mind playing it on Wii graphics instead of on a high-def system.   Plus, it’s full of that old 80’s action schlock that everyone finds hilarious nowadays.
Here’s what I don’t get– Namco is remaking Splatterhouse.  No one has ever cared about Splatterhouse and yet Namco went and made three of the damned things back in the 16 bit era.  No one’s going to care about it in 2010, it’s going to be released on the PS360 and it’s going to be forgotten because we don’t care about Survival Horror anymore unless it’s Resident Evil, and even then you have to trick us into playing Gears of War Zombie Edition.  Lucky n’ Wild is basically made for the West.  It has cops, guns and cars!  This is everything we love!  If Lucky n’ Wild was a movie then we’d already have the 00’s remake sequel starring Bruce Willis and Sylvester Stallone.
2:  Gunblade NY
Speaking of things that go great with guns, Gunblade NY combines guns, helicopters, and New York City!  Admittedly, most of the appeal of Gunblade NY (and it’s sequel, LA Machineguns) was the enormous, hulking mounted lightguns replete with shoulder-jarring recoil, but it’s still a great concept that could easily be ported to the Wii, and since it was an arcade game, the game itself would be tiny enough to be sold via digital distribution.
There is some small amount of hope for Sega lightgun games, however.  House of the Dead:  Overkill sold to Sega’s liking, and it’s developer, Headstrong Games, have said they’d love to take a crack at Virtua Cop next.  So maybe a visit to Sega’s lesser-known Model 2 lightgun franchise isn’t out of the question.
3:  Terminator 2:  Judgement Day
This will probably never see the light of day simply due to licensing issues, but let’s be honest.  There’s exactly three decent things to come about from the entire Terminator franchise:
1:  Terminator 2
2:  Terminator 1
3:  This game.
Terminator 2: Judgement day was also remarkable in that it’s one of the very few examples of 90’s digitized graphics that don’t serve to detract from the game in a modern setting, which for Williams/Midway is no mean feat– those guys had a bad habit of just wrapping the barest premise around some greenscreened actors and calling it a day.  Not so for T2, it’s legitimately a classic arcade title in its own right, mechanized Austrians or not.  In fact, I’d go as far as to say that in terms of pure gameplay, Terminator 2:  Judgement Day was the best game to ever utilize digitized graphics.
4:  Mechanized Attack
For some people, the 80’s were about The A-Team and Family Ties and other brain-melting television drivel.  Others joined wierdass cults devoted to writing large checks to guys like Jim Bakker and decrying Dungeons and Dragons.  Other people spent a lot of quality time eroding their sinus cavities with cocaine.  For me, the decade was defined by dropping my weekly allowance at the mall arcade shooting down missile barrages fired by Russian nuclear submarines using an Uzi.
Or alternately fighting off entire Russian tank batallions using an Uzi.
Also testing my skill shooting boxes.  Using an Uzi.
The 80’s:  The Uzi decade.
I was originally going to put the far superior Operation: Wolf in this spot until I learned that Operation: Wolf is actually on the Virtual Console right now, albeit the NES version which hardly counts.
A single lunatic armed with an automatic rifle defeating the entire Russian army is a timeless theme, and it’s one that should be revisited now that Vladiamir Putin has started to lift plot ideas from James Bond movies and is threatening to divert harmless asteroids into Earth’s orbit.  Isn’t it about time we started killing Russians again?
5:  Silent Scope
A home conversion of Silent Scope was attempted on the Playstation 2, but it didn’t work because the entire point of Silent Scope was the scope, or rather the hectic gameplay element of trying to pick out tiny, highly hostile targets using your scope against the background of a larger, seemingly harmless city.  But it’s 2010, we’ve got cheap, tiny color LCDs on everything nowadays, surely we can find a way to mount one inside a gun stock holding a Wiimote.

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