As unfulfilling as a minigame collection from an indistinguished European developer sounds, especially to someone who prefers the depth of strategy RPGs and polished puzzlers, with such a vast selection of activities to pick from, there’s bound to be some worth playing in 101-in-1 Explosive Megamix, right?
Three details that are fab:
As I confirmed in my preview several weeks ago, there are in fact 101 games to play (it wasn’t an exaggeration!) — most of which you’ll need to unlock by getting high scores in the available activities and earning coins.
There’s an addictive minigame in which you guide a rocketship with your stylus, building momentum by collecting toxic barrels for fuel, dropping back to Earth if you miss too many.
There’s also a fun minigame that has you catapulting a young Romeo to a portly Juliet wiggling with excitement on a cramped balcony.
Five details that are butt:
One save slot.
Awful soundtrack. I could hardly tell the difference between most of the songs.
Single-card multiplayer?! Unless your mom picked up multiple copies as Christmas presents for you and your brother/sister, it’s unlikely you’ll ever run into someone else who owns 101-in-1.
You have to scroll through the dozens of arbitrarily organized minigames, three at a time with the touchscreen. Categories would have been nice! Also, you need to make sure the minigame is on the center of the screen before hitting a checkered flag to load it; you can’t just double-tap it.
Not all of the activities are self-explanatory, and the game offers no instructions at all.
Flicking basketballs into a hoop with the touchscreen (and there’s no net animation when you actually manage to make a basket after dozens of shots).
I’ve heard great impressions about Little King’s Story, not just from Edge, who scored it a rare 9 out of 10, but from many European gamers heralding it as a deeper Pikmin with city building. If you’re a fan of real-time strategy titles, this will be a critical addition to your library.
But where should you preorder it from? GameStop is offering it for $49.99 with a bonus Onii Stress Doll. Amazon, though, is selling reserve copies for a slightly discounted $46.99 but doesn’t list any extras. Is this goofy, squishy doll worth three extra dollars?
It’s hard to justify spending extra cash on something my cat is just going to chew up… My cat is a dick.
[Update: Oh, nevermind, it looks like Amazon, EB Games, Game Crazy, and GameStop are all getting in on this preorder deal. Get bent, GameStop!]
Before there was Okami or de Blob, there was Numchuck and the Conquest of Color, a homebrew GBA game starring a heroic forest creature bringing back color to a monochrome land with his magic paintbrush tail. If you’re wondering why the hue of Numchuck’s fur looks so familiar, I suspect he went through the same "Advanced Non-Concussive Cobalt Effect" that afflicted Sonic.
Developer Eric Lee uploaded a one-stage demo from the platformer he created back in 2005 with the help of programmer Tim Sorrels, hoping to get the homebrew project out while the format is still somewhat relevant.
It’s not the most polished release, and I died much too often due to uneven controls (and not due to my own incompetence), but I liked the music, and seeing the stage colored in as you progress is neat. Try it out if you can!
Forgive the self-link, but I suspect it’ll be of interest here as well: Capcom just announcedAce Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth for release in the “west” this winter. Does that mean it’ll actually be on time in Europe? Probably not.
In any case, yesssssssss. I may not be a “post Phoenix/Edgeworth fanart on my DeviantArt account” Phoenix Wright fanboy, but I am a “play and enjoy all the games” Phoenix Wright fanboy. Totally looking forward to this, and yes, totally bugging Capcom about the DSi bundle.
"Do you want to throw everything away and come with me?" The vocal samples in this heavyhearted track are from, of all places, FLCL. Usually, I’d write off songs with anime audio bites as tremendously corny, but I think it works well for this piece.
MisfitChris explains where his mind was at while composing the track: “I’ve been having a harsh time lately… Just letting out my feelings into music. Glad you guys are listening.”
Hyperkin’s FC Mobile II is a handheld NES clone that also features TV out and two wireless controllers and a wireless Zapper. Essentially, it works as both a handheld and console-based NES. If it can play Japanese games like the name suggests it can, I’m on board. Oh, and if those controllers don’t suck like 99% of wireless NES controllers ever.
You guys don’t need me to tell you that there’s a new Retronauts podcast out — if you know about our little site, odds are pretty good you’ve heard of 1up as well. But I wanted to bring your attention to this one, because a) it celebrates the Game Boy (and other stuff), and b):
So, we’re trying a new format for the show: a series of smaller segments on specific topics, consisting of one-on-one (or one-on-two conversations as necessary) between the host and someone familiar with and knowledgeable about the topic.
There will be less shouting, which means people will complain because the show “lacks energy.” There will be fewer large-scale topics, which means people will complain because the show “lacks depth.” And so it goes.
If you’re not, in general, a fan of video game podcasts, you may be surprised by just how nice this new format is. It is, like Parish says, way less shouty. I’ve been struggling with podcast formats for a long time, trying to come up with something unique and listenable. The Retronauts team has demonstrated why they’re at the top of the field with this refresh. It is a perfect… podcast!
I noticed this negligible issue in Retro Game Challenge, but it popped up again in The Dark Spire, which released last week. The typeface Atlus used for most of the first-person RPG’s text has scrunched up Ms and Ws — again, it’s a minor annoyance.
Gukid cared enough about it, though, to hack a fix that replaces the Ms, Ws, and punctuation. As usual, you’ll need a copy of The Dark Spire's ROM to apply the patch, one that we advise you to acquire through legal methods.
It’s interesting to see someone clean up these issues, however trivial they might seem to others . Apparently, there are several other DS games wiith the same problem:
Bandai’s LuminoDisc isn’t just a top that uses LEDS to display text while spinning, although that’s pretty neat. According to Technabob:
"If you hit a certain threshold, you’ll see secret hidden messages and animations. There are a couple of game modes, like trying to hit 150 rotations in 10 seconds, and a really tricky mode called “Just 100″ in which you need to stop the spinning at exactly 100 revolutions."
So it’s a toy that measures a rate of motion over 10 seconds — it’s basically a Shooting Watch, but for spinning a top. I don’t think that’s a skill that can be applied to video game performance (or really anything else) but it’s cool to see the idea behind the Shooting Watch applied to another activity.
I’m not sure how NCSX gets a hold of these things, but the import shop is selling new and factory boxed Hori Track Controllers, originally released for the Famicom over 20 years ago. Under the controller, you’ll find two switches for toggling left-handed/right-handed mode and the trackball velocity. Here is another glamour shot:
I hope NCSX keeps finding stuff like this and one day discovers boxes of Sanwa’s beautiful Mr. Joy Famicom controller. Actually, it would be great if they just stumbled on one of the joystick shells and sent it directly to me.
The actual book has nothing to do with gaming, but the green cover and title/subtitle seem appropriate for any Game Boy retrospection. Maybe I will buy it, and paste over its pages photos from the late 80s and early 90s of children playing with their portables.
I was looking forward to Tokyo Beat Down for real, the way most people look forward to games about guys in space helmets making blood come out of guys in different space helmets. The reason is that I love brawlers. I didn’t think they could make a Final Fight-style game that was too repetitive for me, but I underestimated Tamsoft’s ability to not be very good.
Three details that are knockouts:
Whenever you complete a level, the game announces that “YOU BEAT THEM DOWN!” This is true no matter what the objective of the level is. Interview bystanders? “YOU BEAT THEM DOWN!” Find a bomb? “YOU BEAT THEM DOWN!”
Lewis Cannon, the character you spend the most time controlling, is a violent, kind of dimwitted asshole who is obsessed with both justice and fighting. In other words, the character’s personality helps explain why just about every situation is resolved by punching a bunch of guys. Also he’s full of weird one-liners.
Somehow, despite the story being flimsy, ridiculous, and jokey, I started to care about the Beast Cops. That’s the sign of fantastic writing.
Three details that are beat down:
Everybody walks with the same weird loping, hunched-over posture. Tamsoft knows how to keep costs down.
The throw is completely invincible. As soon as the animation starts, you are impervious to all damage, including rockets, and you knock down everyone even remotely nearby. I could have just shown some damn restraint and not spammed that move, but it was there and sometimes I got desperate.
There are maybe five different varieties of enemy, and they’re only superficially different. They all use the same tactic: stand just out of reach and shoot at you.
Score: One four-hit combo that only connects twice. The gameplay is endlessly repetitive, but the writing is so damn sparklingly good that you’ll endure it through one full playthrough.
Flashcart manufacturer Neoflash holds a biannual competition inviting DS, GBA, and PSP coders to submit their homemade games and applications to win cash prizes and Neoflash products. I’ve featured several entries from the company’s most recent contest, such as colorful platformer Natura No Story and the racy SutraDS.
Neoflash announced its winners this morning, but one DS title was missing from the roster of submitted entries:
Ported from the TI83+ by Dutch programmer Romaap, this game’s premise is simple (and awful) — earn points by positioning the gun above a black character and shooting him in the head. You lose points when you miss or when you decide not to be a contemptible human being.
Romaap insists he didn’t make the game to offend others:
"My mate made the original discrimi****** for the scientific calculator TI83+. I did not made [sic] this to anger people, my apologies if I do. This is my first game for NDS so don’t expect anything good. I’m not good at graphics either."
The Neoflash community scolded the ignorant coder, and removed all traces of the game from its forums. Romaap later resubmitted the game with a new title, Shooting Range, also replacing the character sprite with a soda can. “I hope nobody thinks shooting cans is racism,” he said.
“‘The previous version’ was a mistake, I’m very sorry. I did not thought [sic] about the consequences,” Romaap explained.
This is actually the second racially intolerant homemade game I’ve come across for the DS, the first being Olympic Battlefields. And as long as we’re we’re pointing out hateful DS games, don’t forget about the first homophobic homebrew title to hit the handheld, RanAway.
Auntie created this game in two days for a Ludum Dare competition, and it’s way better than any game I’m ever going to make. Basically, Tombed is about constantly digging downward while a ceiling of spikes steadily descends. Different-sized chunks of dirt/rock allow you to break through more at a time, and unbreakable areas force you to move around in addition to digging. It’s sort of, uh, Mr. Driller meets those sand stages in Super Mario Bros. 2, or something.
It’s focused on a single gameplay element, totally frantic, and easy to play. In short, it’s a cool arcade game.