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julianozuca Blog

Capcom: I'm In! (plus, a couple reviews)

Hi there folks, how are you doing?

Well, last time I came here to post something it was about the 25th anniversary celebration of the Street Fighter series... And on how Capcom were selecting fan works to use in their future releases. Well, I'm glad to announce that... I'm in! :D Just got a confirmation that my acoustic rendition of Zangief's Theme was chosen! I couldn't be happier... :cry:

Here is the final master I sent them--no downloads allowed though... :(


Zangief Vs. Blanka

"WTF?!" "RAWR"

Other than that I have a couple reviews I would like to share... One on the first Mega Man for Game Boy (recently re-released in the 3DS Virtual Console) and another on the very first DOS port of Tetris, now available for download at one of the developer's blog!

Thum 'em up (or down) if you care. 8)

Hope you all are doing fine. See ya folks! :)

Street Fighter Anniversary Heads-Up

Hi there guys, how are doing? (is there any body out there? :P)

Just wanted to shared some really cool stuff: Capcom is looking for fan works on visual art and music to use in the 25th Street Fighter series anniversary! That's a really good opportunity to get in touch with 'em and hope to see your work being spread. Here's the link:


Street Fighter 25th Anniversary

Meanwhile you may listen to my acoustic guitar take on Zangief's Theme:


Good luck, see ya! :)

Something Anew...

Because my pile of shame is steadily increasing (and because Gamespot keeps collapsing itself lol) I decided to create a place to make my time (and money) worth of something more. I'm starting a blog! There one will be able to find reviews and articles that make me feel less guilty for playing games. :)

It will be tied to my Backloggery account and I hope to have a nice archive by the end of 2012 (also known as the end of the world. :P).

I hope you enjoy it, drop your comments at your wish. ;)

julianozuca's Backloggery: The Vault

Impressions Journal #4: Dungeons of Dredmor (PC Download)

Impressions Journal

Hi there guys/girls, how are you all doing? It's been some time since my last update here... and it's been at least one year since I wrote an "Impressions Journal". -.- Well, Steam is around its always-awesome Holidays sales and it's forcing me to buy new ultra-cheap games (that only feed my already-fat backlog) and also to play other ones there were sitting there untouched for the sake of special achievements. Well, if I can take some advantage of that other than getting coupons is to make you hear about some obscure titles. :)

Dungeons of Dredmor is one of those interesting little indie titles. It would be your typical average rogue-like adventure if it wasn't for its particular sense of humor that keeps mocking (cleverly) at everything all the time. I like it despite a couple annoyances and if you're into this type of game you can't really go wrong for only $2.49... Actually it can even be a good opportunity for those interested in digging the genre for the first time since it's fairly friendly for newcomers.

To the points: 8)

Completion status: ? (13/101 achievements)

Time spent playing it: around 7 hours

Dungeons of Dredmor

What's Good

Absolutely amusing in its despise for the genre and the player.I couldn't help but laughing when I saw the recipe for crafting an "Omnipotent Pork Sword" or reading the description for the "Normandy" achievement: "Die on Floor 1; play a new character with the same skills... and die on Floor 1."

Friendly. A nice tutorial, good difficulty settings and the option of turning "Permadeath" off make it easy to suck you in.

Dungeons of Dredmor

What's Bad

A wide variety of items... WAY too much. Items in this game are a big part of the fun since you can even use a plastic cone for a helmet. But there are to many of them out there (even before leaving the 1st floor) and you simply must leave a lot of interesting stuff behind because of a full inventory. Selling points are somewhat scarce and pay almost nothing for the goodies; and crafting new items through alchemy or smithery may take some time time and evolution points. If only it had a library of some sort to be fulfilled it would make it worth the trouble for completionists.

Background achievements. Most of the times achievements poping up in the screen can be bothersome for taking you out of a game's mood. But here where they're plain cool... they simply don't show up. You'll see what you've got only after finishing a gameplay section. -.-

That's it for this time. I hope everyone is having a terrific Holidays time--as for myself I can say is awesome to enjoy a vacation after a long time. :)

See ya, take care!

Plenty of Retro Goodness On the 3DS While Waiting For the Hollidays.

Hi there folks! (if there's still any... :P) Long time no see!Just wanted to share a little on my gaming habits lately... which consists only in burst plays in my 3DS system.

Despite the lack of good software available for it now (waiting eagerly for Super Mario Land 3D and maybe Mario Kart 7 and Kid Icarus) I've been spending a considerable amount of time with my shiny little Aqua Blue thing... playing old stuff. -.-

First, the NES games from the Ambassador Program--free for those who bought the 3DS before the price slash. Super Mario Bros., the first Zelda, Balloon Fight and particularly Donkey Kong Jr. are some of my random choices here... But actually most of the time I've been into Game Boy games from the Virtual Console catalogue.

Curiously Nintendo started to release some of my favorite (and somewhat obscure) games and I'm plenty satisfied with that so far: Mario's Picross, 94's Donkey Kong, Gargoyle's Quest and especially Avenging Spirit--just_nonplussed pointed me a $200 original copy at eBay a while ago--made me happy ever since (click the links for my old reviews if you're interested) and I just got Mega Man: Wily's Revenge on the go (plus Double Dragon waiting on the stack).

Avenging Spirit

Also, Urban Champion has got a 3D remake that reminded me of how addicting this little game can be--new review here.

Urban Champion

There's something to be played in the DSiWare side of the Force as well, like Dark Void: Zero (great one), Escapee: Go! and Paper Airplane Chase--hated it by the way. :lol:

Since Gamespot decided to simply ignore Virtual Console titles for the 3DS (which is ridiculous, because Wii users got it all covered) I started a new account at Backloggery to keep track of my "now playing" games. Feel free to add me there if you want to!

And last but not least I'm considering making a blog to record my reviews due to GS's new policy of lowering users contributions relevance. Sad but true.

See ya, hope you all are doing well!

Alive! But Not Kicking That Much, Really. :P

Hello my dear-missed-fellow-Gamespotters! (if there's still one to read this after so much time. :P) How are you all doing?

Just wanted to apologize for being absent for an unbelievably high amount of time--this is becoming worse and worse as time goes by--but I can't really help it. I've been absolutely mired in work and studies and there's no chance for me to come back here everyday and keep up with your blogs, the news and pretty much everything else--God knows I've tried, I'm serious here.

In gaming news I've been shifting back my (almost none) free gaming time to consoles lately because I've tried some buys from play-asia.com and they all ended nice so far--despite taking a hell of a time to arrive. It's MUCH cheaper than buying the overtaxed original games here in Brazil so I'll keep that running (since I can't waste the "$5" coupons they send with each pack. :P)

Also I'm seriously considering to buy a 3DS because I've lost my old Phat DS to my ex-wife. :lol: And more than wanting to play those new 3DS games (exception made to Ghost Recon) I'm looking forward to hit my still-growing backlog of DS games.


Sadly I must say I'll come here every now and then to check things out... but I can't promise to be as active as I used to be, unfortunately. Also I must publicly apologize to the guys at The Autonomous Regime Union for not being able to keep it up... It was a terrific time when I was working hard with you guys, I'm deeply sorry. No joke here.

I'll leave you with some links for my current works and studies... And please, if you want to stay in touch with me--I mean, the REAL me :P--feel free to PM me for my Facebook/MSN accounts. I've made good friends here in the last couple years and I would not be happy to break some of those links.

A blog on music--studies and works:


A profile for soundtrack works (including game music):


And a profile for my own songs... Along with a blog on the open musical practice sections I run in my house every Sunday (sorry, mostly in Portuguese here. :))



See ya, miss you all, don't forget to hit me if you want to stay in touch. ;)

An Old-School Heads Up and Other Stuff

First of all sorry for being completely absent here for the last 2 weeks. A lightning bolt has fried my PC and only now I could manage to gather the pieces--including a mother board--to revive it. I'll backtrack your blogs and the union in the next hours/days... :(

SEGA has been releasing some classic Genesis game-packs for PC through Steam for some time now. I've bought the first one a couple months ago and it's been a great time to recall my old 16-bit gamer glory (even though I was much more a SNES fanboy back then) with Altered Beast, Golden Axe and Comix Zone. But now after the release of the 4th pack I just wanted to state that it's a must buy for anyone into nostalgia or just curious about videogames history.

SEGA Pack 4

The pack brings its fair share of dominating genres at the time, and they're all well represented by the games roster: Beat'em-up (Streets of Rage 1 and 2--I still like Final Fight series more but SoR beat it when it comes to multiplayer on consoles and Yuzo Koshiro's soundtracks), shoot'em-up (two "gems" from Treasure, Gunstar Heroes and Alien Soldier, which is an old-school Bayonetta--if you don't believe me read this great review from Louie), isometric RPG (Shining in the Darkness and Landstalker, which coincidentally I only heard about--and got teased for--recently in a blog from Dave) and strategic RPG (Shining Force 1 and 2, a "Fire Emblem" series of some sort, before it reached Western shores). As a bonus you'll get Wonder Boy III (which has nothing to do with the rest but it's still a decent platformer anyway) and an FPRPG, Shining in the Darkness.

Shining Force

The pack costs $7.50--a really nice bargain when you come to think about buying those games on the Virtual Console (Wii) for instance, where they cost 800 points [$8] each. Also this pack has got a lot of games that aged well (you can read the re-releases reviews for the VC and most of them are still above 7.0 on GS staff's accounts).

This conversation leads me to...


Old games reviews. Man, I feel sad for seeing the oldies getting bashed by reviewers... Just because some lack of context. A couple weeks ago I was browsing NES games here at GS and I did notice somewhat of a pattern in reviewers' behavior: reviewers scores are always way below the "scorers-only" average. As if you NEED to be harsh to be a reviewer, as if being harsh alone was a sign of you not being narrow-minded. Come on, give the score you want, but since you care to write a review you gotta back your point of view with something concrete. Recently I reviewed Urban Champion and IMMO it's nothing less than a fair NES game for its time: one of the few 1-on-1 fighters back then, big/funny sprites, a decent variety on controls, multiplayer... It gets the job done--especially when you come to think it was released BEFORE Super Mario Bros. It doesn't deserve the 1.5 score it's been getting from reviewers--in fact it's much more around 5.0, the real score average in the game's space. /rant :P

Last one: I just started a blog to share my work in soundtrack/background music and to discuss the issue. I'm working on a soundtrack for a play right now and I can't wait to do something for videogames--be it flash, indie, whatever. I can even do it for free, I don't mind, I just want to do it. :P

I'm going to update it every Monday from now on, so stay tuned if you're interested.

Thanks for reading, have a nice day, week... life! :) I'll catch you. ;)

Tagged: Top 5 Gaming Mistakes

Well, here I am tagged again... :P Thanks (or not, not sure) Dave for that! :x But please, don't tag me with the 'Best of 2010' thing, I'm sooo 1980. :P

Top 5 Gaming Mistakes

#5) Exchanging a cool game for a silly one

Somewhere in time (around 1996, I guess) I've got a SNES game that everyone was hyped about at the time: Ultimate Mortal Kombat III. My friends (and non-friends as well) started coming to my house for some tournaments, people were pulling their hair out of the head everytime someone managed to execute a new Fatality... Until I did it. I traded it... for Aero the Acrobat. :lol: You can't even start to imagine how much hate I got for that stupid move. :lol: But... I had my own reasons. I realized my UMKIII was fake, and I couldn't really enjoy it anymore for that. So a friend came with his original, shiny new box of Aero... And it wasn't a bad game despite the dumb pun in the name, I had tried it before for a rental and I absoutely loved the soundtrack... So we did it. My afternoons suddenly became empty. :P But my original copy of Aero is still sitting bold at my bookshelf.


Come on, it does look cool... No it doesn't.

#4) Mass save files erasing

Recently I run a routine check in my PC with my AVG and it suggested me to make some corrections... Which I accepted. Among those corrections it was that little checkbox "delete temp internet files"... Damn checked. Somehow that erased ALL my save files from Kongregate, the indie flash games portal... Oh. My. At least I'll have the opportunity to replay some games there AND make sure to write some reviews to make something useful from the mistake.

Meat Boy

Imagine going through all that... Again.

#3) Flushing gameplay hours down the toilet

I have a stupid, chronic gaming disease: I like to restart my games often. That happens everytime I feel I did something wrong that won't return as a new opportunity for me in a game--like equipping a character with my best items just to see him leave my party in an RPG, for instance. Actually I'm about to that again in Fallout because I was terrible in managing my items so far and because I let my partner Ian die--he has freaked out in the middle of a battle because I never handled him a healing item... :P Taxonomic will say I do that because I'm a cry-baby who doesn't know how to play RPGs properly, and probably he's right.


#2) Frying my new sound system

I've always been crazy about game music, you know that already. And I loved it so much at the 16-bit era that I tried to connect my SNES to my brand new, first payment EVER sound system... And guess what, I FRIED it. It didn't even have a aux in, but still I was trying... :P Stupid boy! :x I could swear I was hearing the bullets' sounds in R-Type III, but it was only the sound of my hard work being exploded.

R-Type III

I can hear the shots! Wait... Where's the music?

#1) Decatomb

You know Atari's Decathlon? If not you better watch this. Long before the motion controls era gamers were sweating their sins out while playing that piece of... software. :P Actually the game is great, don't get me wrong, but it REALLY kills you AND your controller as well. Imagine you shaking a joystick from left to right for every step an athlete must perform in a Decathlon. You know where I'm going with this. I split a joystick in two pieces while playing that game! MY UNCLE'S joystick. He's got REALLY pissed of on that, of course. I was 4 and the experience was so traumatic it ended being my oldest memory from my entire life. :P


Hope you enjoyed that, it was funny to recall those not-so-brilliant-moments in my life as a gamer.

See you!

Whoever Did This To Me...

Top 500

... is a nice person and I appreciate it. :) Thank you!

For some this may sound as bragging or that I'm just plain silly by getting excited for an emblem... But those who know me for some time now know how painful writing in Engilsh used to be to me. And now getting to the point of being a somewhat nice reviewer makes me feel happy for my progress on that front--even though there's still A LOT of work to do, of course.

To help me to remain worthy of this emblem I decided to tweak my old reviews a little--grammar and style wise, not content--and it was funny to see how shallow I was at that starting point. :P And it was nice to remember the first review to ever make me proud (curiously it also was the first to bring me some hate here, probably because you can't bash Castlevania).

Thanks again for the recommendation, and some special thanks to Backlash24 and Foolz3h for the tips and support on writing reviews. You're awesome. 8)

Talking about reviews here's my first one in 2011 (on the first game I finish this year): Cursed Treasure: Don't Touch My Gems!

It's a free Flash Tower Defense game with a lot of depth and addiction attached to it. Check the review (and the game) out if you're interested.

Also, I created an indie backlog thread at our indie union to keep track of the games I play, complete, master, etc. Let's see how it will grow until the end of the year... It will be a nice way to study an indie gamer's behaviour... :P Check it out for some nice suggestions on games as well.

Thanks for reading, see you!

2010 Definitely Has Changed Me As A Gamer

It was all Chris' (TechnologoDoom) fault. He started covering X360 indie games at his blog [because he was "rather interested in independent games both philosophically (impact on gaming), politically (Industry disruption), and recreationally (something new to play), and especially aesthetically (art!)" as he said on his 1st post] and man... The content was prodigal in novelty, seriousness, hard work and beautiful pics. :P It just couldn't stay there, it should deserve something bigger. At first I suggested Chris to create a website for that huge archive but then it comes Louie (just_nonplussed) and being a nasty gamer as he is :P both came up with the union idea. A place for... Something different.

I came into play just to help. They needed somone else to start the union up. I was a friend, I thought the work was worthy and all, so I did it. And since I was an officer... I needed to work on something, right? :P I knew nothing about indie games at the time, so I started doing articles on retro games that were innovative at their time - retro, we're talking about something I know a bit here. :P [I'll come back to it next year, I promise Chris. ;)]

And then I did a review on a cool retro-indie-game[also on GS if you care to recommend it]. And then an interview with an innovative new mind amongst the indie developers. And then we got the Canabalt fever. :P And then we started competing. And then I got this from GS:

PC Aficionado

[an emblem for being a PC aficionado! But... I've never been such a PC gamer...]

My life as a gamer has changed drastically. Why should I spend $60 (which turns to be $100 here in Brazil because of shipping/customs taxes) in a Wii game if I can spend $2.50 on a great indie digital download on Steam? Why should I stuck to brown FPS after brown FPS coming from the 'majors' when I can have a myriad of diverse colors - and ideas, of course - from more open-minded people?

So a new gamer was born. I would like to say thanks for the guys who work with me at the union. You guys are really amazing, it's been a terrific time ever since. 8) And... I would like to recommend my top five free indie games this year for those who are willing to try something new:

1) Don't Look Back

Don't Look Back

Unique way of telling a story through the gameplay itself. [review]

2) Cursed Treasure: Don't Touch My Gems!

Cursed Treasure

Tower Defense at its best. [I'm yet to write a review on this]

3) Every Extend

Every Extend

A perfectly balanced gameplay in a shooter where you can't shoot. :shock: [review, also on GS]

4) Canabalt


Simple yet deep one button action 2D plat. I love this pic. :) [review, also on GS]

5) Today I Die

Today I Die

A touching sample on how videogames can become art. [several languages] [review by TechnologoDoom]

That's all folks. I hope you had enjoyed the read, I hope you enjoy the games much more, join us at the union if you want to and have a safe New Year's Eve. ;)