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Masters Welcome to my blog. Beware; extreme randomness abound.

Title: Zelda's Legacy
Posted: August 29, 2008 (09:53 AM)
Certainly the Legend of Zelda series can make a case for being the greatest franchise of all time -- it's got a lot of classics under its belt. Interestingly enough, there is a lot of disagreement about which of its games are the classics, even among lovers of the series.

I'm far from the expert here (part of the reason behind my starting this post is to get suggestions on which Zelda games are the ones to play), but I have my own uninformed opinion of the top Zelda experiences among those I've tried.

Legend of Zelda
Blah. Here's a game which is much like Metroid for me, although many diehards still claim the original is the best (or second best behind Ocarina). It's a bit archaic for my tastes, given that the formula has been done to death with superior presentations.

A Link to the Past
I used to think this was the shit. That's no longer the case. I still retain the fond memories, and realize the merit it once had, but the things I didn't like before (the bad map, the dragged out quest) are much more noticeable now that I'm not in love with it.

Link's Awakening
Surprisingly, this black and white cousin of ALttP holds up far better. Maybe because it's not trying so hard to be epic, and its map actually doesn't suck.

Ocarina of Time
This one disappointed me, probably because I had such high expectations of it (fueled by Runinruder's absolute love for the game -- he ranked it in his top three all-time). Maybe I'll try it again to see what the fuss was all about. Maybe I won't.

Phantom Hourglass
I'm playing this one now. I like the stylus stylin'. It drags a bit, and seems geared toward infants though, and that hurts its ability to keep your interest. Mine is waning already.

I would like to know what people thought of Twilight Princess and Wind Waker and Oracle of Seasons though. I'd probably be willing to give OoS a go on my DS at some point.

Posted: August 25, 2008 (12:13 PM)
I thought I'd make a post about what used to be my favourite series of all time: Castlevania. First, I want to get down all of the CV games I've played, and figure out which ones I've missed along the way. Second, I'm going to try to rank the top CV games as I see it.

The List:

Castlevania II - Simon's Quest
Castelvania III - Dracula's Curse

Castlevania The Adventure
Castlevania II - Belmont's Revenge
Castlevania Legends

Castlevania - Dracula X
Super Castlevania IV

Castlevania - Rondo of Blood

Castlevania: Bloodlines

Castlevania - Circle of the Moon
Castlevania - Harmony of Dissonance
Castlevania - Aria of Sorrow

Castlevania - Symphony of the Night

Castlevania - Lament of Innocence
Castlevania Chronicles

Castlevania - The Dracula X Chronicles

Whew. That's a lot of Castlevania. 17 games about Dracula.

I believe I've missed out on (debatable, really) the two N64 games, two DS games (Dawn of Sorrow and Portrait of Ruin) and Curse of Darkness for PS2/Xbox. (And let's not forget the upcoming Quantum of Solace... :T) While I don't care to try the two N64 games, I'll probably finally get around to some CV action on my DS.

Anyway, here's my top five, out of the above pool:

5. Belmont's Revenge (GB)
4. Symphony of the Night (PSX)
3. Super Castlevania IV (SNES)
2. Lament of Innocence (PS2)
1. Dracula's Curse (NES)

If I've got the energy, I'll post some reasons later.

Title: Updates: A question of quality
Posted: August 25, 2008 (07:55 AM)
It's been awhile since I made a post, so I thought I'd end the drought with something that's been on my mind for a topic over the last few days.


I don't mean sequels or prequels. Not really, anyway. I'm talking about remakes and next gen revisions. Do you know of any really great ones? Any terrible ones? Let's hear it.

My first nomination for an amazing update would be the Maximo games. The first one is amazing, but Army of Zin is nearly perfect. Here is a case of an update being a much, much better game than the original source material ever was. The Maximo games are hard, but fair, with well spaced checkpoints; where the original Ghosts 'n Goblins franchise featured cheap deaths and almost no checkpoints, amounting in serious frustration.

The best of the GnG canon is probably Super GnG -- a game which doesn't come close to competing with Army of Zin on any level. Score one for the next generation. Old skool doesn't always get the win!

I can think of another stark contrast between old and new that goes the other way: Doom 2 versus Doom 3. The dusty old PC favourite wins by a landslide.

But as wide as that gap in quality is, consider this: Alone in the Dark (circa 1950 or whatever) absolutely kills the utterly broken Alone in the Dark for the 360, which I am just now fiddling with. The newer game scores points for graphic realism -- and nothing else. That match-up is a blow out if there ever was one.

Any others?

Posted: August 18, 2008 (08:13 AM)
Ok. Let's talk, then list. Every time I see one of those top 10 or top 100 games lists and see what's on them, I think to myself, "a lot of those games would not stand up to a replay TODAY". There's an important distinction to be made between what games we loved in their day, and the games we still love now. Furthermore, some listmakers enjoy throwing in games like the first Super Mario Bros. because of its "importance".

That's all great. But today's list won't be about games that tugged your heartstrings a decade ago, nor will it be about listing games for posterity. Today's list will be about the games you simply cannot do without. Today. Right now. This is why I call it Your Favourite Games List.

Because as much as I loved Revenge of Shinobi in the nineties, playing it now just doesn't make me happy. I get into arguments with Retro about this topic all the time. His top ten list NEVER CHANGES. Mine is constantly evolving. If you're anything at all like Retro, I challenge you to go back and play some of the games you've had on a pedestal for years without thinking about it -- and feel the pain I've felt when they come toppling down. Conversely, it's a wonderful feeling when a game you've put up there, STAYS up there, after all that time. That's something truly special: that's timelessness.

To be fair to Retro, his situation is a little different than the usual retrogaming booster -- he actually doesn't really play new games. Part of the falling from grace that we see happen with our old games is a supplanting at the hands of newer, better games. Without exposure to anything which might usurp his top ten spots, it's a lot easier for them not to change.

However, delving deeper, games can fade without better games coming along to facilitate their deaths. Sometimes it's just limited replay value at fault. I'd say that certain genres have the advantages here: a puzzle game (Pac-Man) probably has a better chance of staying relevant over the long haul than say an RPG (Final Fantasy I), because one might be more wont to go back to it again and again. (Having said that, I know there are tons of RPGers who play their old, decrepit Phantasy Stars over and over, so what do I know.)

Anyway, let's hear your thoughts.

And your lists. Here's mine:

Unreal Tournament (PC)
The Legendary Axe (TG16)
Gate of Thunder (TGSCD)
Crime City (ARC)
Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES)
Wonderboy in Monster Land (SMS)
Street Fighter Alpha 3 (PSX)
World Class Baseball (TG16)
Alone in the Dark (PC)
Castlevania III (NES)
R-Type (SMS)

For the hell of it, I'm gonna list my most notable fallen angels:

Super Metroid (After Symphony of the Night, the magic was somehow... reduced.)

A Link to the Past (For some reason, the overhead Zelda formula just doesn't WORK for me anymore.)

Blazing Lazers (Used to be my favourite shooter. I still love it, but now I'd play something like Sapphire before playing this.)

Title: Welcome to the Next Level
Posted: August 18, 2008 (07:26 AM)
Remember those Sega Genesis commercials? Those were pretty sweet. Between WTTNL, "Genesis does what Nintendont" and the guy screaming "SEGA!" Sega had some good marketing guys back in the day.

Anyway, that's not what this post is about -- unless you want it to be. I finally picked up an Xbox 360. Now I just need a TV worthy of being hooked up to it. The 13-inch black-and-white cathode ray job isn't gonna cut it. =D

Incidentally, the guy at the store threw in RUMBLE ROSES XX. Wow, this is hot. I'm trying to BUY more poses, like the one of your girl riding a bicycle. In a thong. What a game.
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Title: Favourite FPS games
Posted: August 15, 2008 (11:12 PM)
I'm going to make a list of my very favourite FPS games (as the title indicates). If you would like to contribute, please do, but understand that my list is the definitive one for the site. =D

Unreal Tournament
System Shock 2
Silent Debuggers (heh)

Title: PS3 or Xbox 360?
Posted: August 15, 2008 (11:51 AM)
So I'm finally going to step into the present day. The only question remains: in which direction? Usually what I do at times when I'm faced with a critical decision such as this one, is to make lists.

The PS3, as far as I know, comes in two different shades of dumb. You can get the one that plays PS1 games, and the one that plays PS2 games. Apparently, the PS3 that plays BOTH PS1 and 2 games, is no longer available. What this is, is atrocious. That being said, how many good PS1 games are there really? I mean, really? I'd probably want to play Symphony of the Night, Silent Hill, R-Type Delta, Street Fighter Alpha 3 and Thunder Force V, but that's it for me. I think the PS2 backward-compatibility is more of an issue. Of actual PS3 killer apps, I know very little. As in, nothing.

The thing with the Xbox 360 is, I never really owned an Xbox. So, the 360 wins the backwards compatibility contest by default. Again, I harp on these issues of oldness, because I have no clue what the hell is going on with today's games.

So why bother buying either one of them? Well that's simple: Resident Evil 5 and Silent Hill 5. FIVE hasn't been this exciting since Mega Man.

That wasn't serious.

Title: First!
Posted: August 15, 2008 (08:17 AM)
This is my first post, ever! I should really be working, but I'm bagged and can't wrap my mind around what I should be doing next at the job. What I'll be thinking of instead: ideas for my second post ever.
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