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snakes3425 Blog

Rehashes

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The same game getting released over and over again is nothing new, ex. Call of Duty, Gears of War, Resistance and HALO they all follow the same formula going around blasting bad guys but the stories and characters are at least different with different environments. However everytime this happens Fanboys cry their eyes out about how it's destroying gaming while the King of Rehash Nintendo seems to be immune to all crticism when they re-release Mario 3 and Ocerina of Time for the 20th time.

In the world of Game Design Deadly Sins the one that takes the cake is re-release, and lets look at the king of re-releaseses the Street Fighter Series. II, III, IV and Final Fight have at least 20 different games with little change to the game play, story line or setting just new characters. The only game that seems to avoid this curse is Street Fighter I, which seems to have vanished into oblivion thanks to its release on the Turbo Grafx 16 and the name change to Fighting Street. The point I'm making here is try something a little different when it comes to your fighting games: 1 game with all the characters and moves for that part of the story and that's it, it's better then having to run down to the game story and spend 60 dollars for what ammounts to a glorified download pack

Games I want to See at E3 and guesses as to what they'll be about

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Here is my list of Games I hope to see at E3 this year

1. HALO 5 (Do you have to guess it'll pick up where 4 left of)

2. Left 4 Dead 3 (The Zombie Epidemic in the Western United States, Asia, or Europe)

3. Call of Duty 2013 (Fingers crossed that it'll be World War I, Korea or a full Vietnam game unlike Black Ops which just had Khe Shan and Hue City or a Black Ops 3 forcusing on Agent Hudson's early missions in the 1950s and Early 60s a Modern Warfare 4 focusing on the post-World War III or a pre-20th Century war like the American Civil War, Spanish-American War, Boxer Rebellion, or Russo-Japanese war or if they go back to WWII make it a full scale China-Burma-India-Pacific Campaign from Pearl Harbor to Okinawa (sorry I have a personal reason or wanting that, my grandfather was a veteran of the china-burma-india-pacific campagin) or a full scale Eastern Front Campaign from Barbarossa to the Fall of Berlin not these bits and pieces)

4. Transformers: War for Earth (Sequal to Fall of Cybertron)

5, My Little Pony: Fighting is Magic (Becoming an offical game instead of a hack, that is an XBLA-PSN Exclusive) couldn't resist on that one, I'm not ashamed to admit it that MLP: Friendship is Magic is my favorite show

6. New Star Wars Games focusing on the Dark Times and the Rise of Darth Vader or set in the New Jedi Order and Legacy Eras

7. Middle-Earth RPG (A Non-Hobbit/LOTR baised game set in Middle-Earth during the First, Second or pre-Hobbit Third Age)

9. Assassin's Creed 4 (American Civil War or Early 20th Century)

10. Silmarilian RPG (An adapation of LOTR's pequel Silmarillian)

11. New Castlevania

12. Shadow of the Colossus 2 or Shadow 1 port

13. Dishonored 2

14. Batman: Arkham 3

15. Fallout 4

16. Mortal Kombat 2

17. Street Fighter 5

I have left off a lot of Nintendo but that's because in my own opinion (I stress that this is my own personal opinion nothing more and nothing less) is that there isn't much to wet my appitite. Microsoft and Sony give their console shinny new updates and tons of new and excellent games, while Nintedo seems to be stuck in a time warp thinking it's still 1991 and we all read comic books written by Rob Liefeld and feature heroes so off off their rocker they'd be locked in a loony bin with Jason Voorhees for the rest of their lives. The WiiU may be an interesting piece of hardware by why do you need to hold the controler to your face for sniping, when just clicking the thumb stick and having the scope zoom never was an issue, not even Kinect and Move were that brainles, and well Mario, Metroid, Zelda and Pokemon, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD NINTENDO DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT INSTEAD OF JUST SELLING US MARIO 3, OCARINA OF TIME, ZELDA 1, AND POKEMON RED AND BLUE WITH JUST DIFFERENT WALL PAPER BUT NO CHANGE IN THE STORY, BOWSER AND GANNON KIDNAP THE PRINCESSES FOR THE 10,000TH TIME AND MARIO AND LINK HAVE DO THEIR PREVERBIAL MUST SAVE PRINCES OR WORLD IS DOOMED, seriously Bowser, Gannon if kidnapping the Princess didn't work the first time what makes you think it'll work the next 500,000 times AND POKEMON IS STILL "WE'RE TOO CHEAP TO PAY FOR SCHOOL SO LETS SEND THE KIDS OUT INTO THE WILDERNESS TO FACE WILD ANIMALS WHILE WE STAY AT HOME AN SPEND THEI COLLEGE FUND. I mean have a plague threaten to wipe out the Pokemon and the kid has to find a cure, or have a Princess Peach userped and Mario must restore her to the throne or hae a new villian from beyond Hyrule launch a massive invasion just enough of the Princess gets kidnapped and you must save her or gotta cath-em all PLEASE

Thoughts on Transformers: Dark of the Moon

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I finally got a chance to see the movie that had topped my list of must see films for 2011: Transformers 3 aka Dark of the Moon. Overall it was pretty good and I'll try my best to avoid any major spoilers. Basic plot is that the tide of the Cybertronian Civil War has turned in favor of the Autobots, the Decepticon Supreme Leader, the renegade Prime known as the Fallen has been vanquished, Megatron and his remaining followers have fled into hiding to begin their plan for revenge.

With the war seemingly won, the Autobots have assumed a new role, that of Peacekeepers on Earth, and here is where the movie gives G1 Fans what they've been waiting for, Optimus Prime finally recieves his trademark Generation 1 trailer, which converts into weapons. Probably the biggest disappointment, at least from a guy's stand point is of course that Megan Fox was fired, and replaced by a new Actress who takes on the role of Sam''s new love interest, Carly (yes the Carly from the G1 Cartoon makes an appearence)

Plot wise the film is an adaptation of the three part Ultimate Doom Episode (a Space Bridge to bring Cybertron itself into Earth's Orbit and the presence of a Human collaberator with the Decipticons) however the bigger plot elment is one no one saw coming: One of the Major Autobots is revealed to be a traitor. with Dark of the Moon we finally get what we've been waiting for, the Autobots have been betrayed by one of their own, and are now hated by the majority of Humanity except their closest allies, Sam, Carley, Lennex, and Epps, siezing upon this the Decepticons declare war on Earth and launch a full scale invasion, which leads to the films climax, the Battle of Chicago between the Autobots, the US Military, and the Decepticons, which finally brings the war to an end opening up the possibility that Transfomers 4 will be the begining of a new story arc or a possible prequel saga

Problems: there really isn't anything new outside of new characters and a new leading actress, the bigger plot hole is what are the other countries doing to repel the Decpitcons and how is it other countries seem to not raise a complaint that the US has an alliance with Alien Robots who have technology that is light years ahead of anything on Earth.

Over all Dark of the Moon is a perfect finale to the Bay-Speilberg Trilogy and I for one look forward to the DVD release and any more news on Transformers 4

My Favorite Mortal Kombat Games

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with the release of MK 9 I felt like making a top ten list of my favorite MK Games

10. Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3/Mortal Kombat Trilogy (They put Scorpion back in these games)

9. Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe (Getting a chance to pit Batman against Scorpion, as well as exacting a small form of payback on DCfor allowingSuperman IV, Batman and Robin, the Batman Forever Video Game, and all of those god awful Superman Games, especally Superman 64, to see the light of day)

8. Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks (the only good non-fighting game in the MK Series)

7. Mortal Kombat 4 (Playstation 1 Verson)(The Dreamcast Port, Gold, is horrible, and the controls for the N64 verson are even worse, I'm also thankful that they switched from digitized actors to 3D rendered character models, I'm porbably a minority on that)

6. Mortal Kombat (Orginal) (GensisVerson) (A blood cheat, that's allthat needs to be said, the SNES verson, I hate nintendo for wimping out and not putting in the blood andgore)

5. Mortal Kombat: Deception (A very intreging story line)

4. Mortal Kombat (Orginal) (Sega CD Verson) (A 100%intact port of the arcade game, would've been better if not for one thing, the load times)

3. Mortal Kombat: Armageddon (Tons of character to pick from)

2. Mortal Kombat (2011)(takes the series back toit's roots)

1. Mortal Kombat II (SNES Verson) (The first MK game I ever played (my parents got it for me for my birthday), anda near perfect port of the game)

Possible Call of Duty Scenarios

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With Call of Duty Black Ops due out in November, I thought it would be interesting to list some scenarios that I think would/should be made into Call of Duty Games or video games in general because soon the games and books made about these events will be all that is keeping them alive

Pre-World War II

1. World War I: There aren't that many veterans of the war left, and everything that happened in World War II can at times be connected with the events of World War I, despite this World War I has yet to get a game devoted to it.

2. US Operations in Mexico during the Mexican Revolution (1914 (Veracruz) 1916-1917 (the war against Pancho Villa) A rather unknown event, that is overshadowed by World War I

3. The Boxer Rebellion (1899-1901): One of the first major wars of the 20th Century

4. The Spanish-American War (1898)

5. The Russian Revolution/Civil War (1917-1921): Ties in with World War I, and the war's aftermath

6. The Spanish Civil War (1936-1939): The first major European War in which the Nazis faced off against Allied forces (the International Brigades)

World War II

1. The Pacific Theater: While World at War did justice to this part of World War II's history, I feel some what disappotinted, in that you only had 3 Campagins set in the Pacific: the Makin Island Raid, the Battle of Peleu, and the Battle of Okinawa. What makes the disaponintment worse is that they left out many of the battles one thinks of when it comes to the pacific theater: Pearl harbor, Guadalcanal, Tarawa, and most importantally Iwo Jima (How can you do a Pacific War game and not include the famous Flag Raising on Mt. Surabachi?)

2. A Game told from the Axis Point of View: Some what controversial but it would be a nice change of pace to be able to play as the Germans, Italians, and Japanese

3. The China-Burma-India Theater: The Main Land Theater of the Pacific War.

4. The Eastern Front: Not just Stalingrad and Berlin like in World at War, but the entire Great Patriotic War from Operation Barbrossa in 1941 to the Fall of Berlin.

5. The Italian Front: The Forgotten Front of World War II's European Theater, while it was covered some what in COD 2: The Big Red One, it didn't go beyond Operation: Huskey, where were the Anzio Landings, and the battles on the Gothic Line?

6. Airborne Operations (Market-Garden) and the Battle of the Buldge: Yes Medal of Honor did that already, but it seems waisted, how can you make a game and not include the Battle of the Buldge or Bastonge, the battle the made the 101st Airborne famous?

7. Special Operations: Commando Raids launched against Axis targets during the war (such as the Dieppe Raid, and the raids on the Tirpitz)

8. The Resistance/OSS: One of the most forgotten parts of the war, the Resistance and OSS are often over looked when it comes to giving credit for the victory in the war

Post-World War II

1. Vietnam: Yes Black Ops will have a Vietnam segment, but I was hoping for a full on Call of Duty: Vietnam Game

2. Korea (1950-1953): The Korean War is often called the Forgotten War, and it shows in Video Games, there has yet to be a game made based on the Korean War

3. US Operations in Grenada and Panama: Small wars, but no less important in the history of the Cold War

4. The Breakup of Yugoslavia: Once again the Yugoslav Wars have rarely been covered in games

5. Black-Ops in the Soviet Afghan War: Same idea as the upcoming Black Ops game but set during the Soviet-Afghan War of 1979-1988

6. Korean War II: Once this was a popular setting for flight sims, but it has never been made into a FPS.

Virtual Boy Review

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Back in the day, there was one cosole that topped my christmas wish list: the new Nintendo "portable" system known as the Virutal Boy. Of course like many back in the day, I was suckered in by the idea that Virtual Reality as the way of the future, man was I a fool, even today the Virtual Boy was a holy grail item in my eye that I had to track down just to play it to see how bad it was. Well my wish finally came true Monday, and all I can say is I wasted my gaming life trying to track down the worst Nintendo product I have ever seen.

The one positive note on the Virtual Boy is it's game library, while many of the games are jokes and suitable only for collectors, there are a few good ones example, Teleroboxer is an excellent boxing game, and one of the few games that's in a POV mode, actually allowing the Virutal Boy to live up to it's name. Warioland is of course the definitive title on the Virtual Boy, and once again it's a great game. However the good Virtual Boy Games also begged to be in color rather then red and black, and many probably would have done a whole lot better on the market had they been released for the SNES, Genesis or any of the newer consoles.

Outside of the games, everything else about the Virtual Boy is a disaster. For starters the console itself looks like a pair of goggles on legs, and lacks any headstrap to allow it to be portable, which maybe a good thing. The biggest draw back to the Virtual Boy, and VR games in general is this: YOU CAN'T SEE ANYTHING!!!! and this is made even worse by the fact the Virtual Boy came with a controller, and the only way you can master the console is by memorizing where the buttons on the controller are prior to play, and when I say you can't see anything I mean that in a litteral sense, the googles actually block out your vision, so say for example the Virtual Boy did come with a headstrap, and you decide to walk down the street while playiing it: you'd be bumping into people and walls left and right, and worse out into traffic. The one I bought actually came with it's instruction book, and there are 19 safty warnings through out the mannual, (yes I counted) including one saying "Virutal Boy shouldn't be played in the car" even though you probably get the idea just by looking at the system itself.

The worst feature of the Virtual Boy's hardware is the fact that Nintendo ellected to use mirrors, as a way of creating the 3-D effect, and if even one of those mirrors shatters if the system is dropped by accident the whole console becomes useless. Of course the biggest let down was that the console only produced red and black graphics, I mean come on, the Game Gear and Lynx were both capable of producing color graphics, and those pre-dated the Virtual Boy by about five years, and the Game Boy Color was on the way as well, so why was it so hard to make the Virtual Boy able to produce color graphics? Sure it may be a drain on batteries, but at least the games wouldn't be causing the players to have splitting headaches everytime they pop a cartride in.

All in all the Virtual Boy lives up to it's reputation, it's ugly, fragile, and most of it's games would have been better had they been ported to the consoles or other handhelds. The biggest tragedy of the Virtual Boy was that it ruined the stellar career of Gunpei Yokoi, creator of Metroid and the Game Boy, and he was subsiquently fired from Nintendo soon after, even though Nintendo itself has as much blame for the Virtual Boy's downfall as Yokoi does.

Atari 5200 Review

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I finally did it, a complete collection of Atari Consoles, unfortunatally the last console I needed to complete my set was the infamous 5200. Ugh, where do I begin on this one, almost everyone knows about this console, how a design flaw in the controller rendered them all but useless after a few hours of gameplay, how the library was only about 90 games and more the half of those were simply 2600 remakes, with better graphics or ports of Colecovision games.

However, that 90 game library, complete with its flood of remakes actually is the 5200's strong suit, since many of those remakes are actually the definitive versons of numerous classic arcade ports including Pac-Man, Space Invaders, and Galaga, and believe me, the 5200 verson of Pac man is a vast improvement over it's 2600 counter part, complete with better sounds and non-flickering ghosts. However, the bad thing is that it wasn't backwards compatable with it's predicessor, eventhough Atari's two biggest competitors: Mattel's Intellivision, and Coleco's Colecovison, had attachements that made them compatible with the 2600's library.

Overall the 5200 actually is quite a sturdy system, despite the fact it's the size of the TV itself, and doesn't feel like it would break easily. However the biggest blunder Atari made lies in the console's RF Adaptor, which ironically is the first RF adaptor to automatically switch between the regular TV Progams and the game system, most RF adaptors at the time required gamers to flip a switch manually. So how could this be a problem? the problem lay in the fact that not only did the game system connect to it, but the power supply did as well, the result of this may have reduced the amount of wires you had getting tangled up on your floor, however if the power supply and console weren't connected in the proper order (console first, followed by the power supply) it could easily blow out the box, damage the console, or worse cause a short that could easily set your house on fire.

However, the biggest flaw the Atari 5200 has, and the one aspect that has gone on to feature prediminatally in my Fantasies, usually along side a vice, a frying pan, and a shotgun is the piece of junk controller Atari sent with the system. Many think the Joysticks were the problem, but this was not the case, since they still function without the dust boot , the problem is in the cheap circitry Atari used to make the controller, and as a result carbon build up occurs on the contact points inside the controller, rendering it useless over time. Even the third party controllers had their downsides (the 5200 required the keypad for game play, and also had a special plug for the controller, which makes the WICO Control Stick useless, without an adaptor and the far more rare and expensive WICO Keypad) In terms of the controller the best bet you'll have for a working controller is to buy one that has been rebuilt from the ground up, with gold contact points and a more reliable circit board, which hold up far better then the original, or a refurb kit and repair the controller yourself.

All in all the 5200 is an average system, that didn't take advantage of it's more powerful hardware, and had Atari delayed the release long enough to fix the controller, and redesign the powersupply/console RF Switch, and had they put more time and effort into developing a unique library, with new and original games, instead of remakes, the 5200 could have given Colecovison and Intellivision a run for their money.

Most Annoying Video Game and Console Problems and Design Flaws

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Here's my top ten list for the most annoying console problems and design flaws

10. The Red Ring of Death and E74 (Xbox 360): More of an annoyance then anything else, especally if you have a lot a games that you enjoy playing, but it's the hype that people have generated about it, that results in it inducing more fear and panic then anything else.

9. The Red Screen of Death (Atari Jaguar): This drives me crazy, I've got four Jag games, and all of them work perfectally, but every so often I get the snarling F-U Middle Finger Red Screen of Death from my Jaguar, usually it just takes cleaning the carts, or blowing in them, but every so often it takes about 10-20 minutes to get a game to boot up, had Atari delayed the Jag by a year maybe this wouldn't have happened.

8. The Buzzing Sound (Sega Genesis): This also drives me up the wall, an annoying buzzing sound coming from my Genesis Model 2, and I've tried everything to make it go away, including cleaning, swapping consoles, buying new copies of the games, and every time I get this buzzing sound in the background that throws my concentration off.

7. Backwards Compatibility (Nintendo Wii): This drives me crazy, I like playing gamecube games on the wii, but the backwards compatibility is so broken it's not even funny, usually it's as simply as putting an Xbox disk into a 360, or a PS2 or PS1 disk into a PS3, and away you go simple, and easy to exit from. But the Wii's backwards compatibility is a disaster, and trying to figure out how to exit a GameCube game when you're done is a chore in an of itself, and is something not detailed in the instructions.

6. Load Times (Sega CD, Playstation 1, or any CD Based system): Another problem that drives me nuts, the flow breaking load times, it's like everytime you play through a game, you get interuppted by a long load screen that takes forever to go away.

5. The Virtual Boy (Nintendo): Everything about this was a disaster, it's ugly, it's graphics are subpar, and is a blot on the game boy Designer's otherwise steller record. But more then anything it's design makes it increadibly uncomfortable to use, resulting in a stiff neck or sore eyes.

4. The Disk Drive (Playstation 2): Another thing that drove me nuts, I loved my PS2, using it as a DVD Player and playing the hell out of it with some of my favorite games, but one day it turnsout the disk drive finally gave out, and I had to get a new one, thanks a million Sony.

3. The Intellivision and Atari 5200 Controllers (Intellivision and Atari 5200): Who in their right mind approved these controllers, the Intellivision's controller is increadibly uncomfortable to hold, and hard to figure out, especally since some Intellivision games use the keypad as opposed to the disks. The 5200 holds the record for the worst controller design ever in a video game console, while it did have the innovations of start, pause and reset buttons, the joystick was constantally breaking, and finding a gold replacement is hard and expensive, often resulting in you having to wash your hands everytime you use it and keeping it in an airtight safe.

2. The Atari 2600's Switches (Atari 2600): For a classic system like the Atari 2600, there is little that can be seen as wrong with it, however there is one problem: many of the games require you to either hold the reset switch or play with the other switches in order to advance to the main game, and if the reset switch is broken many of the games become useless until it can be repaired or replaced. For a company that was ahead of their time, would it be so hard to have added a start button to the 2600's joysticks.

1. The Blinking Red Light and Flashing Screens (Nintendo Entertainment System): I know what you're all thinking, how dare you put the NES at the top of a list like this, for the record my complaint isn't about the games, or the NES's legacy, it's about the Model 1's HARDWARE. The cause of the Blinking light and flashing screens is two fold, first the connector pins and ZIF could easily become bent out of shape or corroded through heavy use, or the use of a Game Genie, and as a result the damaged pins would cause the 10 NES Lockout chip to go haywire, and while blowing into the cartidges was effective, it was only a temporary fix. A designflaw of this magnitude is as inexcusable as the RRoD is today, however where MS offers to repair the consoles for free, Nintendo did nothing, even though a recall was definatally in order, and the NES Top Loader should've been released as a replacement once it became clear there was a major problem.

Worst Gameing Features and Practices

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My top Ten list for the worst featuresand practicesin video games.

10. Bad Translations: Especally in Role-Playing Games, I've lost count of howmany times I've gotten lost or killed in a game because I mis-read or couldn't make out the clues.

9. Bad Instructions: Especally with older games, have you ever played a game where just figuring out the basic and controlsare a chore in itself, and you have to guess what you're suppose to do.

8. Recycled Games: I'm looking at you Nintendo. Basically recylcling an older hit game (Mario and Zelda) to a newer console but using the SAME STORYLINE OR PLOT DEVICE EVERY SINGLE TIME

7. Brain Dead AI: How many times do you think a game will be a challenge, but you can breeze through it with no problem or do an escort mission that you fail constantly thanks to AI being a pre-school flunk out.

6. Cliffhanger Endings: What's the chance of there being a sequal to a game that bombed on the market, yet the ending is left unresolved, leaving you wondering what happens next.

5. Bad Cameras: Ninja Gaiden I'm looking in your direction. The Ninja Gaiden Series is probably the definitive Ninja game out there, yet there is one thing that keeps it from being perfect: THE BLASTED CAMERA IS SO BADLY DESIGNED IT'S A BIGGER ENEMY THEN ANY OF THE FIENDS OR NINJAS YOU ENCOUNTER DURING THE ENTIRE GAME!!!!!!!

4. Lying in the Title: Street Fighter 2010or Contra Force anyone, how many times has this happened to you? you buy a game, especally an older game, because it has the title of a great series of games on the front cover, only to find out it has nothing to do with the seriesand just has the name for making money.

3. Falling off cliffs: Mirror's Edge, Shadows of the Empire, the list goes on, how many times has this happened, you have to navagate a narrow ledge, without loosing your balance, yet you still fall off and having to restart.

2.Overhyping: Turning Point, Sega 32X, Sega CD, 3DO, ET, Atari Jaguar, Rise of the Robots the list goes on.How many timeshas an ad campaign fora big name release, be it a console or game,get you so hyped up that you can'twait for it, only for it to turn out to behorrendous, and leaving you feel like you waisted5 months or 2 years of your life.

1. Crashing, Power Failures, Glitchs,or Freezing during the final boss fight and you forgot to save: How many times has thishappened to you, you've playedthrough thehardest level on the hardest setting and you're one hit point away from wining, and suddenlythe power goes out, or your console/computer freezes, crashes orglitches out, and you realize you didn't save your game, and now you have to startthe level or the entire game all over again.

My Choice for Greatest Game system of all time

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Through out video game history, there have been numerous consoles, that have left their marks on the history of the industry. However there is one system that stands out for me as the Greatest system of all time: The Atari VCS/2600. While it's game library became flooded with poor games, the 2600's is still the greatest system of all time simply for one important reason: It's lifespan (14 Years), people were still buying VCS/2600s when the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis were burning up the charts, and it's also important to remember that without the VCS, the NES, SNES, Xbox, Playstation, 360, PS3, PS2, and the Wii wouldn't exist