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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Killer Instinct

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #11 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. Today’s game is one that I game across by chance and was one of the fanciest and coolest fighting games from the 90s, ladies and gents I present you Killer Instinct on Super Nintendo.

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Killer Instinct was a fighting game released for arcades in 1994 and then got its console ports on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and Game Boy in 1995.

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Killer Instinct plays like many other fighting games, in which the player controls a character in order to beat an opponent in a one-on-one encounter. The game borrows the attack set of Street Fighter and is also inspired by the finishing moves from Mortal Kombat. There are also several features that distinguish it from other franchises:

  • A double energy bar: instead of winning two rounds, each player has two bars of energy. If a character finishes with his or her opponent’s first life bar, the fight stops and resumes like a round, but the winning character still keeps whatever amount of energy he or she had at that moment. The player who depletes his or her opponent’s second life bar wins the bout.
  • Automatic combos: rather than press the necessary buttons in order to deliver the individual attacks that form a combo, in Killer Instinct the combos are automated and can be enabled by inputting a determined button or special move.
  • Finishing moves: Similar to Mortal Kombat‘s Fatalities, each character has at least two moves known as No Mercy (Danger Move in later revisions) in order to finish the opponent. One of these No Mercy moves can be executed at the end of a combo (which is labeled as an Ultimate Combo), when the opponent’s life bar flashes red (when his or her second bar is going to be depleted), although it uses a different combination of movements. Another finisher is the Humiliation, that forces the opponent to dance (the dance style depends on the character), but this can only be used if the player has his or her first life bar. Unlike the Fatalities, however, the Killer Instinct’s finishing moves do not feature brutality or dismemberment.
  • Ultra Combo: Another finisher; it operates like an Ultimate Combo, though this one allows the character to deliver a long string of hits as the combo finisher instead, usually surpassing 20 hits, and can sometimes reach upwards of 80 hits.
  • Combo Breaker: The player who is being caught in a combo may break out of it by performing a combo breaker move. The combo breaker is a designated special move of the player’s character. A combo can be broken at either the auto-double or linker stage. To successfully break an auto-double, the player must use the breaker move at a strength lower than the auto-double itself (i.e. for a player to break a Medium auto-double s/he must use a Quick breaker). The combo can also be broken at the linker stage. At this stage the player can use any strength of breaker, making long combos a risky affair. Also, after performing a combo breaker, a white starburst will appear at the tip of the breaker’s health bar, enabling advanced versions of some special moves that require a different command (e.g. Jago, instead of a regular green fireball, can shoot a red fireball).

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My memories of Killer Instinct are not as vivid as some of the other games I’ve mentioned in previous posts, but what I do remember is that this game was some really hot stuff back in the 90s. I think I had two sets of friends that owned this and when we’d get to have session it’d always be so chaotic. This was Mortal Kombat but with a slighty swifter pace, stranger characters and even better gameplay. Now let me say this now, I loved Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat as a kid, I played the hell out of those games, however Killer Instinct came across as a game that meshed the two of them together with a few upgraded features which made it a blast to play. The visuals were good and the music was good too, I liked the characters too as they all looked so varied and interesting. The ultra combos were so flighty and looked so flashy and the stage deaths were cool brutal and hardcore. The more I think about it the more I see this as a spin-off from the Mortal Kombat game series, this game had a similar style of animation and art direction and the gameplay was brutal and violent too. I guess that’s why I took to this game so well haha.

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There’s my two favourite characters, I used these two all the time. Why? Because they looked awesome! XD

So in conclusion Killer Instinct was a game that was a game that had taken what was already available in the world of fighting games and made it even better. It is slick, unique and though similar to Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter, Killer Instinct felt like it was in a league of its own and it was truly one of those exceptional games from the 90s that is forgotten in history and nostalgia. If you ever come across this game then give it a chance, it’s some good stuff yo. 🙂 

Well there’s another game review done only 19 more to go! If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! I’ll see ya tomorrow with another nostalgic video game review yo! 😀

 
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Posted by on April 11, 2013 in Game Reviews, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #10 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. And so today we conclude the Mario Land game series with the most different title in the series which also started a series of its own, I am of course talking about Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 for Game Boy!

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Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 is a platforming game released for the Game Boy in 1994 and is a continuation from the end of Super Mario Land 2: The Golden Coins. The story for the game picks up right after Super Mario Land 2 and involves Wario trying to get as much money as possible to buy his own massive castle and make Mario jealous. What a legend.

In terms of gameplay it is very different from the standard fare in a Mario platformer. The game takes place on a linear route through several themed areas, which are split into several courses culminating in a boss fight. Wario can jump on or bump into enemies to knock them over and during their dizzy state he can pick them up and throw them at other enemies. When in his grown form, Wario is also able to perform a shoulder charge, which is used to attack enemies, break through blocks and open hidden treasure chests.

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As for the power-ups in the game are all new besides the return of the Starman. There are three new power-ups in the form of helmets including:

  • The Bull Helmet increases Wario’s strength and doubles the length of his shoulder charge attack, allowing him to smash through blocks more easily, gives Wario the ability to stick onto ceilings and in mid-air, perform a “butt stomp” into the ground which stuns nearby enemies and breaks through blocks underneath him.
  • The Jet Helmet increases Wario’s running speed and lets him fly long distances in the air, as well as to shoulder charge underwater.
  • Finally, the Dragon Helmet lets Wario shoot long-ranged bursts of flames both on land and underwater, making it very useful for defeating enemies and destroying blocks quickly, but in return, replaces his shoulder charge until he takes damage or changes helmets.

If Wario takes damage from an opponent or obstacle, he’ll shrink, losing his shoulder charge move, and will remain small until he gets a clove of Garlic, another helmet or reaches the end of the level. If Wario is hit while small, or is hit by an instant kill obstacle (like pits or lava) he’ll lose a life and all the coins he had.

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Unlike the Mario series where coins are used to earn extra lives, coins in this game are instead used as currency, the goal being to try and collect as much treasure as possible by the end of the game. You can collect them in blocks or knock them out of enemies, Wario can pull out one large 10 coin piece which can be thrown and collected if necessary. It can be used to attack enemies, activate checkpoints or open the exit at the end of each stage. To gain extra lives you have to collect heart points which are earned by defeating enemies or collecting hearts, with an extra life earned for every 100 points earned. At the end of each level, the player can choose to either gamble the amount of coins he or she has collected in the level in a game of chance, or spend them to try and earn heart points and extra lives. Also hidden in certain levels are keys which open secret treasure rooms containing treasure.

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Oh yes! Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 this was one of my favourite Game Boy games ever. I loved it just about as much as I did Super Mario Land 2, maybe even more so. The gameplay was just so different from basic Mario gaming, Wario was so much more physical, dangerous and action-heavy. I just loved how much of a badass he was, Wario ran around rugby tackling all enemies he came across and went them flying and if that wasn’t cool enough he could also use his ass to flatten enemies from the air! Wario didn’t give a fuck, he was a greedy bastard out for money and treasure and destroyed anyone in his way and that’s why he kicked so much ass in this game. The power-ups were also one of the best parts of the game but my favourites would be the Bull and Jet helmets, I liked the former one because it allowed you to do an epic butt stomp from the air, whereas the latter allowed you to blast across the screen in the air or on ground. In addition to the great gameplay the game had wonderful graphics that was nicely done artistically and the wicked music that was catchy and memorable.

So in conclusion Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 was an incredibly awesome game which was just as good or maybe even better than Super Mario Land 2. It was a truly different but awesome game with great gameplay and a wonderful main character in the form of Wario. This game started a whole new series that has lasted for 7 more sequels. I am so glad I got to play this back in the day and I highly recommend it for Mario fans curious about Wario’s origins.

Well there’s another game review done only 20 more to go! If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! I’ll see ya tomorrow with another nostalgic video game review yo! 😀

 
 

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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #9 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. I know we’re again but I swear I’ll get on top of this soon! Anyways today’s game is one that I loved and hated with equal amounts in my childhood days on my Game Boy, so with that in mind let’s talk about Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins for Game Boy!

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Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins was released for the Game Boy in Japan and the United States in 1992, while it debuted in Europe in 1993. This game a sequel to Super Mario Land, it features reworked visuals and gameplay from its predecessor and the plot involved Mario trying to reclaim his castle after it is stolen by the antagonist Wario (making his debut appearance). There’s a magical seal that Wario placed on the castle entrance can only be undone by collecting the six Golden Coins, which are guarded by Wario’s henchmen in various locales of the game’s setting, Mario Land. Mario’s quest thus revolves around retrieving each of the golden coins in order to regain access to his castle and defeat Wario.

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Like other Mario games the objective is to reach the end of each level, defeating or avoiding enemies while doing so. Enemies come in old and new varieties and can be defeated by jumping on them or using other methods like using a fireball. Warp Pipes return in this game allowing you find hidden areas or shortcuts, coins, and question mark blocks. Unlike in previous Mario games, coins are not used to get lives; instead, they are used to play games in a special area that awards lives and other power-ups. To gain lives, the player must find hearts like they did in the original. After killing 100 enemies, a star comes down and gives you temporary invincibility. The star can also be found at other places in the game. While being invincible, the 5th and each subsequent enemy killed will provide one life.

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There are several different themed zones along with secret levels that can only be accessed by finding alternative exits found in regular levels. Each zone has its own boss, which must be defeated to get one of the 6 Coins. If the player loses all of Mario’s lives, all of the 6 Coins are returned to the bosses, which must be defeated again to retrieve the coins. At the end of a level, there is a door that must be touched to clear a level. In addition, there is also a bell above the door which, if touched, activates a mini-game where the player can try to get either a power-up or 1-ups. All levels can be replayed at any time.

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Yes Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins, now this is what I am talking about! Along with Pokemon Red, Silver and Mario & Yoshi this game was one game I played practically all the time. This was one of my favourite games. I loved everything from the gameplay to the graphics and music too. After playing Super Mario Land for so long moving to this game was such an upgrade and it was SO MUCH BETTER than the last game. I loved how it looked and felt a lot more in line with Super Mario World on the SNES. My favourite power-up in this game was the bunny hood, I abused that so much, just having the ability to hover all over the place was great. Plus the hat looked great on Mario haha. I replayed so many levels and beat this game several times… on Easy Mode. Yes I used the Easy Mode but that was only for finishing the main castle, everything was done normally. I think I beat the game on Normal difficulty at least once before though. But yeah I loved this game, the visuals were great and the music, ah, the music was so crazy, loud and funky but very catchy and memorable. Also coming across Wario in this game for the first time was scary, seeing him in silhouette running up and down the castle, that was super creepy. And when you actually fight the guy, he looks big and dumb but also very demented and scary.

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So to conclude Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins was a fabulous game on the Game Boy which really was a much better game than it’s predecessor thanks to inspiration from the Mario console games that were out at the time. It is a little on the easy side and some argue that it’s not as great as some make it out to be, but for me this is nostalgic goodness that no fan of Mario should miss out on. 😀

Well there’s another game review done only 21 more to go! So we’ve tackled Super Mario Land 1 & 2, I guess we should continue and finish it off with the final game in the trilogy, so come back tomorrow and we’ll tackle the next one. If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! 😀

 
 

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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Super Mario Land

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #8/9 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. I know we’re again but I swear I’ll get on top of this soon! Anyways today’s game is one that I loved and hated with equal amounts in my childhood days on my Game Boy, so with that in mind let’s talk about Super Mario Land for Game Boy!

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Super Mario Land was released for the Game Boy in Japan and the United States in 1989, while it debuted in Europe in 1990. The gameplay of Super Mario Land is similar to that of Super Mario Bros. on the NES, the game is this a side-scrolling platformer and as usual yo play as Mario. You need to travel across several levels tackling enemies, avoiding hazards and defeating bosses. The main goal is to defeat Tatanga, the villain known as the “Mysterious Spaceman,” and save Princess Daisy (this game marks her first appearance in the Mario series).

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Mario’s primary attack is to jump on top of his enemies, which normally kills them. However, there are a few antagonists who cannot be undone in this manner or may even cause damage to Mario if he jumps on them. Power-ups like the Super Mushroom work normally, but the Fire Flower enables Mario to throw “superballs” that fly at a 45-degree angle and ricochet off floors, walls, and ceilings. Unlike traditional fireballs, Superballs can also be used to collect coins, which is useful for coins that are difficult or impossible to reach otherwise. Also, unlike other games in the series, gameplay doesn’t pause briefly when Mario collects a power-up or takes damage.

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In two specific levels Mario flies in the “Sky Pop” aeroplane or travels in the “Marine Pop” submarine instead of walking. In these levels, there is no Super Flower because Mario can shoot the entire time. He still can grow by getting a Super Mushroom or become invincible by getting a Starman. During these levels, the screen constantly scrolls forward until it reaches the boss at the end, and it is not possible to slow down or stop it. Mario can be killed either by an enemy or by being crushed by the edge of the screen.

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The game consists of four worlds with three levels each. At the end of every level, there is a tower with access at the top and at the bottom. If Mario can reach the upper access, there is a bonus level in which the player can win extra lives or power-ups. If he only reaches the lower access, the game continues normally. At the end of every third level, Mario has to fight a boss by either battling it or getting around it to reach a point behind them that will end the battle, similar to fighting Bowser in the original Super Mario Bros. After the game is completed, the game returns to the title screen, and the player is given the option to play in “Hard Mode.” If the game is finished in Hard Mode, the game goes back to the title screen and allows the player to choose which stage to start in, allowing for replay of any particular stage.

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This seahorse is an asshole, I suffered many bad times fighting him!

Ah Super Mario Land, this game was the reason I was an angry child. Besides playing Sonic on my Mega Drive, this is one of the other games that really whipped my arse when playing. I loved the game for its differences from the other Mario games available at the time, the visuals were cool and different, I liked the different levels and the way the fire flower fireballs were changed to bounce off the walls was cool and added some dynamic ways to take out enemies. But then the game had a great deal of difficulty and towards the later levels things just became hard as hell, all I did was die, die and die again. After a while your skills and attend would dwindle and then your jumps and precision would go to shit. After that point I gave up and would go back to Pokemon instead. At least the visuals were good and the music, even though a tad repetitive was very memorable.

So in conclusion Super Mario Land was a game that I really played the hell out of and almost beat on a good few occasions, but the amount of failure I had with the game was too much pain to endure. This is a good platforming game for the Game Boy but it is a little hard and awkward with the controls. Give it a try if you’re looking for a hidden Mario title that isn’t as conventional as the rest.

Well there’s another game review done only 22 more to go! If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! I’ll see ya tomorrow with another nostalgic video game review yo! 😀

 
 

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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Kirby’s Dream Land

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #6 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. Today’s gameI obtained by chance but it definitely is a game that’s worth talking about, today it’s all about Kirby’s Dream Land for Game Boy!

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Kirby’s Dream Land was released for the Game Boy in 1992 and was developed  by HAL Laboratory (the people behind the Super smash Bros. series). The story behind this game is the gluttonous King Dedede has stolen all of the food from the inhabitants of Dream Land for a midnight feast, so Kirby, a resident of Dream Land, goes to retrieve the food and stop Dedede.

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This game plays like many other platformers of the 8-bit and 16-bit era of video games: Kirby must use various natural abilities and occasionally external abilities or items while heading toward the goal at the end of each level. Like many 1980s-era platformers, the player can accumulate points, with an extra life granted when the player has enough points. However, because Kirby lacks a save function, scores are not recorded. Also, there are no save files, so the player has to start over again when the Game Boy is turned off, if the player chooses to return to the title screen after a Game Over, or if the player resets the game. All levels are played on a two-dimensional plane, letting Kirby move only left, right, up, and down. Kirby can walk, jump, and fly. Kirby can also inhale objects and enemies, swallowing them or spitting them out as projectiles.

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I think I first came across this game just a little while after playing Super Smash Bros. on the N64 because before then I’d never even heard of Kirby or played any of the games in the series. I happened to comes across this game randomly while scanning around for new Game Boy games I think in the year 2000 or 2001 and I found the game to be incredibly charming, cute and fun, though a tad difficult at times. I loved running around as Kirby sucking up enemies and ingest them or spit them out at other enemies, fighting bosses was also interesting as there was mid-level bosses and main bosses at the end of each level which was different but similar to Sonic 3 in some ways. Unfortunately I never got too far with this game because it was a little tedious and the gameplay was not as refined as other platformer games at the time. I really liked the animation for the characters especially Kirby when he dances and the music, ah the music is now legendary with great songs from Green Greens to the victory jingle, it’s all so good. It’s nostalgic and awesome at the same time!

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I also find it incredible to see how far Kirby has come from this incredibly simple platformer to the much more improved games in the series, the latest one being Kirby’s Return to Dream Land on the Wii last year that had so many upgrades, beautiful visuals and multiplayer up to four players!

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So in conclusion Kirby’s Dream Land is a cracking if yet simple platforming game from the 90s that paved the way for a series of games that would improve with each new entry in the series. It is cute, fun and simple yet effective. Give it a try if you want to see where Kirby originated from.

Well there’s another game review done only 24 more to go! If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! I’ll see ya tomorrow with another nostalgic video game review yo! 😀

 
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Posted by on April 6, 2013 in Game Reviews, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Looney Tunes

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #5/6 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. Today’s game is one I got given by a friend and played for a few months, today it’s all about Looney Tunes for Game Boy!

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Looney Tunes was released for the Game Boy in 1992 and is obviously based on famous cartoon show of the same name. Here’s a summary of what the game’s about:

“What’s more fun than watching cartoons? Actually starring in one! Each level features a different character starring in its own “mini-cartoon”, with plots, obstacles, traps and surprises designed especially for each one. You’ll actually become Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, the Tasmanian Devil, Road Runner and more as you race to save the world against some very familiar enemies, and a few new diabolical menaces you may never forget! You’ll have to master each character’s special talents to cross deserts, swim the deepest oceans, fly through the air and creep your way through a haunted mansion filled with totally gruesome ghosts and goblins! There’s only one way to describe this awesome action: Totally looney!”

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Yes, Looney Tunes I can remember this game from the early 2000s and I did play it a lot as I never owned too many games on my Game Boy, so many of them did get replayed. Like when I played Mario games, you jumped, attacked enemies on land and in the water and fought bosses too. Looney Tunes provided some nice gameplay with changes in each level from the characters to the locations themselves. I really got used to playing as Daffy Duck as his level was the first and after having to start over again and again you could blitz through Daffy’s level without taking damage at all. It was the later levels that provided the real challenge and difficulties. One of my favourite levels was the one with Porky Pig when you’re playing in the plane fighting enemies in the sky, though it was bloody difficult and the one part of the game I could never advance past! Graphically the game looked good and I really liked the music too. Besides the difficulty of the game, after a while playing this game did get really old really fast so that’s why ended up getting rid of it in the end.

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In conclusion Looney Tunes for Game Boy is an interesting platformer with action and variation from level to level and just enough decent gameplay to hold your interest. While it’s not the best platforming game I’ve ever played I can say I’m glad I came across it.

Well there’s another game review done only 25 more to go, I know this one was late and we’ll try to get back on track ASAP! If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! I’ll see ya tomorrow with another nostalgic video game review yo! 😀

 
 

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Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2 – Mario & Yoshi

Howdy peeps and welcome to Day #4 of Month of Nostalgic Video Game Reviews 2! This is a blog series where I review video games from my childhood. And today we have a hidden gem that crosses the world of Tetris with the Mario series in a strange but fun way, welcome to Mario & Yoshi for the Nintendo Game Boy.

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This was a game I spent endless amounts of time playing on my sister’s Game Boy Pocket, along with Pokemon, Tetris, Super Mario Land 2 and Wario Land, Mario & Yoshi was one of those sort of games that was very addictive and really got was fun when you were bored.

Mario & Yoshi was released for the for both the Nintendo Entertainment System and Game Boy consoles in 1991 for Japan and then in 1992 for North America and Europe.

It’s a falling block game where a playing field that is divided into four columns. The monsters were made up of various Mario enemies which appear at the top of the screen and fall into each the columns, turning into blocks as they land and creating stacks that grow in height. The main objective is to prevent the four stacks from growing too high by eliminating blocks from the field; a game over occurs when any of the stacks crosses the black line drawn across the top of the play field.

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To eliminate a block from the top of a stack, it must come in contact with a falling monster that matches it. You control Mario, who is below the playing field and swaps the positions of any two stacks at a time. Thus, the player is required to switch around the stacks to ensure that the monsters fall into the correct places. Points are awarded for each set of monsters that are eliminated.

In addition to the four different types of monsters, two halves of a Yoshi eggshell will also fall. The bottom eggshell half behaves like a monster: it disappears when it comes into contact with another bottom half. However, if a falling top half comes into contact with a bottom half, the two will join and hatch a Yoshi, earning the player bonus points. Furthermore, if a stack of monsters grows atop a bottom half and a top half is then added, all monsters between the halves will be encased and eliminated. Larger Yoshi characters will hatch depending on the number of monsters encased, which also increases the number of bonus points awarded. If a falling top half does not have any bottom half to join to in the stack it touches, it is automatically removed and no points are awarded.

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My memories of this game were pretty good, I always found myself drawn to this game just to see how far I could get. Like Tetris this game was all about stacking and getting points and sometimes small objectives like those were enough to get ya playing for long periods of time. I liked the presentation was nice, visually it was good and the music though repetitive was memorable, and the gameplay was cool, was just nice to be able to stack loads of stuff up and see how far you could get even when things looked dodgy, if you planned ahead and was quick enough you could pull off some amazing stunts to get massive points! The only issues I had with this game was that there was a lack of variety and it could only hold your interest for short periods of time.

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In conclusion Mario & Yoshi was a fun little game that had many similarities to Tetris but had a unique Mario element to it that made it stand out. The only works for short periods of time, can be difficult at points and there isn’t that much to do outside of the main game. But if you can deal with those issues then you should have some fun with this game.

Well that’s another game review done, just 26 games left to go! If you have experiences with this game or any of the following ones do comment below! I’ll see ya tomorrow with another nostalgic video game review yo! 😀

 
 

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Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews: Pokemon Gold & Silver

Howdy ladies and gents and welcome to Day #20 of my Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews where I’ll be giving you reviews of some of my most nostalgic video games from my childhood. And today we have what I call one of the best second instalments of any game series ever. Continuing the Pokémon hype, today I’m going to give you my nostalgic memories of the second generation of these games in the form of Pokémon Gold & Silver!

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Back in the late 90s Pokémon was in full effect and everyone was on the hype with the games, TV shows, the trading cards, the toys and the other merchandise. Little was I aware that there was another new Pokémon instalment on the horizon, and when that second generation hit the world, Pokémon became the biggest thing in the world again. It was critically acclaimed, the fans loved it and still hail it as one of the best, if not the best generation in the series. It sold over 23 million copies and even got remade for the Nintendo DS with addition enhancements which until Pokémon Black and White 2 was the definitive Pokémon experience. Anyway read on to find out why these games are such a big deal.

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So Pokémon Gold & Silver got released in 1999 Japan and to Australia and North America in 2000 and Europe in 2001. And just like in the first game you aim was to become a Pokémon master, collect gym badges and complete the Pokedex by collecting all of the Pokémon in existence. However there were many innovations to the basic formula from before like:

  • They were 100 new Pokémon added to the mix, bringing the total number of Pokémon to 251.
  • There were two new types of Pokémon added in the form of Dark and Steel Pokémon.
  • Three new types of legendary Pokémon showed up in the form of Raikou, Entei and Suicune. These legendary dogs moved the entire Johto region and while you could track their movements, running into them was game of chance, and catching them would be very tricky without a proper strategy.
  • There was also the introduction of shiny Pokémon (even though I’ve never seen one ever).
  • Pokémon could now hold items which had special attributes in battle.
  • Berries were added to the game series, they came in different forms from just restoring health to curing poison to restore PP for your moves. This worked in and outside of battle. And if you gave the berry to your Pokémon to hold then it would take effect at the right moment in battle.
  • A real-time day and night cycle was added to the game, this meant that certain Pokémon would only show up at certain points in the day. Also there were events that took place on specific days too.
  • A new item called the Pokégear was introduced, functioning as a watch, map, radio, and phone, allowing you to call characters who offer their phone number. Trainers will call for a rematch and others will call about rare Pokémon that can be caught in a certain area.
  • Pokémon could now breed thanks to a Pokémon Day-care place; if you had a male and female version of a Pokémon (or a Ditto) then you could make an egg and hatch a baby Pokémon.
  • New Poke Balls were introduced for different situations, allowing Pokémon catching easier.
  • In addition to exploring the new Johto region, players could backtrack to the Kanto region from the first game expanding their journey by double.

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When it came to my memories with Gold & Silver it was heaven! I have never played a Pokémon game more than this generation. I basically sucked the life out of my Pokémon Silver cartridge on my Game Boy Colour. I bought the game off of my friend in school for £10 and to be honest that was my best purchase of anything ever, Pokémon Silver was my obsession. I played it everywhere, at home, at school and when I went to see my family in London too, I just loved how much bigger the game was than Red and Blue and the fact that you got to go back to the Kanto region and beat all of the Gym Leaders there was so awesome. I also loved the overall structure of the Johto region, the game had a better flow, the day and night cycles was amazing and I loved the Pokégear, I listened to the radio all the time and waited forever to get phone calls from trainers waiting for a rematch. This game just had everything. I loved the improved visuals, the new Pokémon to catch and battle, the new levels of exploration and the music, my god. IT WAS AMAZING! It is one of my favourite game soundtracks ever! It so so nostalgic, addictive and just overall is just the best Pokémon soundtrack hands down!

So to conclude, Pokémon Gold & Silver completely eclipsed the original games in every way. It had better gameplay, much more Pokémon to battle and collect, it was a much bigger journey to complete and the presentation was so much better than before. To me this still remains the definitive Pokémon experience and with the enhanced ports on the DS it really is the best way to play Pokémon in my opinion. There haven’t been many games I’ve lost my life to, but the second generation of Pokémon was the first and I loved every bit of it. My love for these games is eternal and beyond words. If you have yet to experience this version of Pokémon, go out and do it now, Gold & Silver the Pokémon games you should be playing. Fact! 🙂

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Do give these enhanced ports a try, they are incredible and pack a deal of nostalgia yo!

Alrighty then people that is another review sorted; hopefully you were feeling the nostalgia as much as I was. Do remember to share your gaming experiences in the comments below, and be sure to come back tomorrow for some more gaming nostalgia! 😀 😀

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2012 in Game Reviews, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

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Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews: Pokemon Red & Blue

Howdy ladies and gents and welcome to Day #19/20 of my Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews where I’ll be giving you reviews of some of my most nostalgic video games from my childhood. And today we have what could be described as the biggest RPG series next to the Final Fantasy series, heck its technically one of the biggest franchises in history, of course I’m talking about Pokémon! Today I’m going to give you my nostalgic memories of the first generation of these games in the form of Pokémon Red & Blue.

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Now let’s see, Pokémon generation one. I mean is there anyone who hasn’t played it? Pokémon is something that everyone has done at least once. My friends and I still reminisce about our first experiences with Red, Blue and Yellow. So what was the deal with Pokémon? Well allow me to explain.

Pokémon first showed up in the form of Pokémon Red & Green for the Nintendo Game Boy in 1996 in Japan, and then found its way to America and Europe in 1998 and 1999 under the names Pokémon Red and Blue. Pokémon Yellow followed a little while after. In the game you took control of a trainer who ultimate goal was to become a Pokémon master, to do that you would have to collect battle eight gym trainers and collect their badges, then take on the hardcore Pokémon trainers of the Elite Four and most importantly you had collect the 151 Pokémon to and complete the Pokedex (an in-game encyclopaedia). Oh and let’s not forget the fact that you had battle your rival from time to time and you also had to take on Team Rocket, an evil organization that wish to rule the world through their misuse of Pokémon.

So in terms of gameplay you traversed through forests, caves, across oceans, and through towns and cities in the fictional region of Kanto battling and catching Pokémon, taking on Pokémon trainers, finding important items on your journey and collecting Gym Badges. Some places weren’t accessible unless you had a special item or if you had a special ability. Also while moving through this overworld is was in a top-down perspective. The real fun came from battling Pokémon. Now Pokémon are the monsters that reside in the world of Kanto, they come in a variety of shapes and sizes, some looks like animals, some looks like mythical creatures and some just look weird… And it is your job to collect them all.

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When you start the game you get one starter Pokémon, then you can go out into the wild and battle other Pokémon. In battle the game is in a side-view battle screen where you fight in turn-based fights. During battle you have the choice to attack, use an item, switch to another Pokémon or flee. There was a level of strategy that came with these games because of the different types of Pokémon. It was all about type advantage, if you had a type of Pokémon stronger than another then you were laughing (say water vs. fire), however if you were at a disadvantage then your situation could be a little messy (say fighting vs. physic). When you fight you have the choice one attack out of four and once you beat the life out of your opponent you gain experience. Eventually your Pokémon can level up, gain new moves and evolve into a stronger form (though some Pokémon can’t evolve or some can only evolve via trading or the use of elemental stones).

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Besides making Pokémon faint, you also had to catch them too. In battle you’d have to beat them to within an itch of their lives and use items called Poke Balls to capture them. Eventually as the Pokémon you attempted to catch got stronger in each new area, one required additional strategies like poisoning them or putting them to sleep. You could only catch a certain amount of Pokémon in either Pokémon Red or Blue, so you had to trade with another game cartridge in order to obtain the missing Pokémon unavailable in your game. With the power of Game Link Cable you could connect two games together and trade Pokémon with each other, and besides trading you could also battle each other too. This game also looked very nice and the soundtrack features some of the most memorable music in gaming history, even if you’re not a fan of the series you’ll know the music from the earlier generations, and that is a fact yo!

When it comes to my memories of Pokémon, to say I was obsessed would be an understatement. I owned Pokémon Red and played it on my sister’s Game Boy Pocket for ages… And ages… AND AGES! I think I first saw the anime Pokémon show which got me into the franchise and then we got our game and our lives changed. I just loved how much stuff you could do. I love collecting Pokémon and establishing a team of specialised Pokémon or recreate the team Ash Ketchum had from the TV series. I played this game continuously for days on end, the Game Boy always ran out of juice because of me and my sister. While I never fully completed the Pokedex, this is one of the few games where I completed the main adventure on several occasions. Just doing all that level-grinding, training and battling the trainers and the members of the Elite Four, all of it I can remember so vividly! Though one of the best times was messing around with the Missing No. cheat on the side of Cinnabar Island, all those Rare Candies, Master Balls, PP Ups and HP Ups, good times! Haha! 😀

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In conclusion what can be said about Pokémon that hasn’t been said before? It was big; it set the world on fire and turned into a massive franchise overnight. I don’t think the world of gaming would be the same without this epic franchise. These games made a ridiculous amount of money and were critically acclaimed by all reviewers due to its colourful characters, addictive RPG gameplay and trading system, and an absurd amount of hype from not only the advertising and TV show too. And let’s not forget all the word-of-mouth about Pokémon that passed down the grapevine like a plague. While it may not have aged all that well, Pokémon Red, Blue & Yellow were the definition of the classic Game Boy experience and I reckon everyone should play if you haven’t already.

Sorry about the delay on this review but I have been swamped with uni work and I fear that it’ll mess up my schedule for the next few days. But rest assured I will finish these game reviews on time, so check back soon for some more nostalgia!

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2012 in Game Reviews, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

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Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews: James Bond 007

Howdy ladies and gents and welcome to Day #14 of my Month of Nostalgic Game Reviews where I’ll be giving you reviews of some of my most nostalgic video games from my childhood. And today we have a funny little hidden gem from the late 90s on the Game Boy in the shape of James Bond 007.

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The 90s was a good time for Bond, the film franchise got reinvigorated with GoldenEye in 1995 and then got a game based on the film in 1997 which went on to be one of the biggest games in history for the first-person shooter and movie-tie-in game genres. However outside all of this hype, there was a little James Bond video game for the Game Boy in 1998 that came along and while it was probably not remembered by many, for me and those other fans in the world who used to own this game there was some fun to be had with this game.

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So for those not in the know James Bond 007 was an action adventure game released in 1998 for the Nintendo Game Boy that played more like The Legend of Zelda for NES rather than the GoldenEye on N64. In the game features a story where Bond travels from country to country coming across characters from previous Bond films, such as Oddjob and Jaws. When it comes to gameplay you played the game in a top-down perspective and as James Bond you could dispose of your enemies with weapons or karate. And like the NES Legend of Zelda you needed to find and use items at certain points in the game in order to solve a puzzle or beat impossible odds.

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For me this game was frigging awesome, and that wasn’t because it was some really amazing and memorable game. It was simply because it was simple and fun to play and I used to play it repeatedly. I guess liked this game because you went from one place to another taking out enemies with your fists and guns with ease and I also liked finding items which would advance the story too. Also sprite work for this game was funny and the music, man the music for this game was so badass! From the title music which was a simplified version of the James Bond theme to all of the other kick ass music in the levels, I just thought the soundtrack was so cool back then. I think I stopped playing this game after 2003 when I got my Game Boy Advance and I never came across it again until I watched a walk-through of the game on YouTube last year. I was just chilling in my uni accommodation and remembered James Bond 007 on Game Boy and then looked for it online and then the nostalgia just came flooding back! 🙂

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While this game is not a mandatory play I’d say still give it a try if you could find a copy or watch a playthrough on YouTube. James Bond 007 is a funny little game that is pretty enjoyable if you give it a chance. 🙂

Well that’s another review done, hopefully you liked it. Remember to comment and remember to come back tomorrow for more nostalgic games! 😀

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2012 in Game Reviews, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

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