Thursday, August 20, 2009

Recent Game Pickups

Game Pick-ups August 09

It's been ages since I posted anything, so I thought I'd talk about a few of the games I picked up recently. Well, not about Pikmin 2 or The Munchables. They were pretty sweet deals at €23 and €18 respectively, but I just want to knuckle down and finish Super Mario RPG on the VC before I move on to anything else on the Wii. Just one more star to go!


I was in a local record shop to grab some headphones last week and I went to check out their small game section at the back. Sitting on the shelf was Frequency, Harmonix's first PS2 effort and a pretty damn expensive game to get hold of now, new for €9.99.

I really enjoyed Amplitude. It made you feel like you like you were mucking about on a mixing desk, building songs up from their basic components. I thought was always was interesting to hear what different combinations of those components sounded like.
Some of the later songs required crazy amounts of dexterity, but hitting the right combination of buttons at the right time and activating the track you were on was always extremely satisfying.

Frequency seems to pretty much the same as it's sequel, from what I've played. The graphics aren't quite as flashy and the track listing seems a bit more obscure, but I'm sure that I'll enjoy it equally.

Sonic Mega Collection Plus

While Sonic Mega Collection on the Cube is great, there is one major drawback. The lack of save states makes it pretty tough for a lazy game such as myself to beat any the games on it. Screw practising, I prefer to cheat my way to success. Thankfully, you can save away in the PS2/Xbox versions, so after spotting it in GameStop, I decided to double dip.

Just like the Cube version, this includes with all the major Sonic games from the Mega Drive, but you also get a bunch of (fairly ropey) Game Gear efforts. From what I've seen so far, there doesn't seem to be any 60Hz option, which is a big disappointment if true. On the bright side though, you can save anywhere you like by bringing up a menu with the L2 button. The only problem with that is that it takes forever for the game to save or load. A temporary quick save like in the PS2 version of Half-Life would have been a welcome inclusion, but it's better than nothing guess. Maybe I'll finally be able to get past the fucking Labyrinth Zone now. :D

Castlevania & Contra

Another compilation and one I had forgotten about until pretty recently. I already had the original Castlevania on the VC, but I didn't have the rest of the games here and with the cheap price it was going for on eBay, I decided to grab a copy.

What you're getting here are the three NES Castlevanias plus the NES versions of Contra and Super C, complete with customisable controls and save states. I was kind of worried that the game mightn't agree with Windows XP, but it worked fine and the emulation seems pretty good from what I've played.

The only problem I have is that in order to save or load, just like Sonic Mega Collection, you have to go into a menu to do it, there's no way to quick save or load by pressing certain keys. I mean, the time it takes to save or load a game on a PC is minimal and you've been able to do this in PC emulators for ages, so why not include it here? I guess I'll have to soldier on without it, but it would have been nice to have the option to use it for some of the more bastard-hard sections of the games. Medusa heads, I'm looking at you.

Perfect Dark Zero

I'm planning on picking up a 360 soon, so I decided to have a gander around the used section at GameStop to see if I could find anything interesting. Prefect Dark Zero immediately caught my eye. While I know it's not the greatest of games, I sunk a hell of a lot of time into Perfect Dark in the N64 days and I really wanted to check this out. And hey, it comes with a fake DataDyne security card thing. That's got to be worth €13 all on it's own.

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