Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Songs that should be in Rock Band: The Chain & Gypsy

Well, since I had trouble last week with my laptop, I'm going to present two songs today. Though it's not out of the ordinary, since I do present a few songs when talking about one band that hasn't been in Rock Band before, but today, it's about a band that has been in, and just had a pack of songs released a couple of weeks ago. I'm talking about Fleetwood Mac. A pack was released recently with a few of their hits along with a couple of solo works from Stevie Nicks, but there were two really big hit songs that were left out: The Chain and Gypsy.

I've always loved Fleetwood Mac, but never really knew it until I started getting into music a few years ago. I think these two songs will be a very welcome addition to the Rock Band library, and I actually think they probably have them on hold, but may be using them for something bigger.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Gaming on a Budget: Golden Sun: Dark Dawn & Metroid: Other M

Golden Sun: Dark Dawn
Price New: $19.99

Since Paleo doesn't want to do this right now I thought I'd give it a go for a little while. Golden Sun: Dark Dawn 3rd game of the Golden Sun franchise featuring the children of the original cast out to save the world from a new threat. The other more controversial game being Metroid: Other M, an attempt at a return to a more traditional Metroid game with emphasis on storyline. It is a love/hate game in a lot of ways and while some of the story kind of got tedious at times the game is still a fun game to play.

Metroid: Other M
Price New: $14.99

I have recovered.

ASUS Eee PC 1015B-MU17-BK 10.1 Inch Netbook (Black)
I now have this new netbook, and it's excellent. I may try doing a video review of it on my new youtube account sometime soon. I'm actually thinking of 'vlogging' in the near future.

As of right now, I don't see much of a point in doing the 'Gaming on a Budget' or the 'Thursday Trailer' articles, since they don't get many hits and they distract me from writing other things. I'm going to try and focus on some more meaty articles such as reviews and such in the coming days.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Flash Friday: Soul Brother

Ink here, filling in for Paleo for this week's Flash Friday and hoping to reboot it.

Today's flash game is Soul Brother. It's a very cute Metroidvania about taking over bodies and using their deaths to further your quest to redeem your soul. There's only a few rooms and a handful of collectables compared to other Metroidvanias, but the cute pixelated art style and unique gameplay mechanics make this short adventure worth it.

Play it now: Soul Brother

Monday, April 18, 2011

Gaming on a Budget: Amazon Atlus Monday Sale

Since our noble leader Paleo is down with a case of computer failure, I'll at least do one day of Gaming on a Budget for his sake and I choose:

If you are a fan of Atlus and RPGs and want to pick up a few on the cheap now may be a good time to do it as several of their most recent games are marked down a hefty bit. I'd personally recommend Persona 4 and 3D Dot Game Heroes. Or if you are really weird the party game collections they apparently made. But this is only for today so be quick as supplies are limited.

Weekly articles on suspension (maybe...)

I had a terrible weekend.

First my laptop went on the fritz, the graphics processor went haywire and overheated, and after a while, it was doing fine, but then I accidentally broke the keyboard while trying to fix it, so that's also something wrong with it, and now it has pretty much died and I've given up all hope. I'm using my dad's PC to post this right now, and I'm going to try to get my old laptop to work a bit later.

Soon after my laptop started screwing up, I was getting sick. It's some kind of cold mixed with allergies or something, and I don't usually get a sickness like this. There was also a huge storm in my state this weekend. Tornadoes everywhere, luckily, none came near where I live, but there was a severe warning for my county.

To make matters worse, I found out that a job I wanted to get hired for has been filled, and there was only one other person going for that position, so I feel pretty crappy about myself right now. I was hoping I could use the money earned from that job to buy a new laptop or at least a netbook.

I don't really feel like writing on the blog because it's hard for me to think straight... even though I just wrote on the blog. (I'm such a hypocrite, I hate myself.) Anyway, I've been taking some medicine for the cold/allergies and I have a long break for Easter this coming weekend, so hopefully I'll feel up to speed and start writing some more articles that aren't just weekly ones. I'll be sending a heads-up to the other editors to see if they want a hand at any of my weekly articles, so be on the look out for that.

Retro Reviews: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Aracde Game

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game was released in 1990 by Konami under the guise of Ultra Games.

If you grew up in late '80s the Turtles were awesome. The cartoon was great, the movie was pretty cheesy but fun and the games were great. Even the first for the NES had its good points. But for many people my age our definitive Turtles game is one of the several beat-um ups that were released starring them. And TMNT II whether the arcade version or the NES version holds great memories for me but the NES version holds a higher place in my nostalgia ridden heart.

One night in New York City, April O'Neil's apartment goes up in flames and it is up to the Turtles to rescue her. Only for her to be subsequently kidnapped by Shredder and the Foot Clan. So it is up to you as one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to rescue April and defeat the Foot Clan.

TMNT II: The Arcade Game is your standard side-scrolling beat-um up that was big during the late '80s/early '90s. You go from left to right fighting a plethora of Foot Soldiers of different varieties and when you get to the end, fight a boss. It really is not a complicated set up but enjoyable nonetheless. Throughout the game's 10 stages you go from April's apartment, the streets of New York, the sewers, a frozen park, a parking lot, a highway, a construction site, a ninja dojo and finally the Technodrome. While all the stages play pretty much the same most of them have some sort of variance that will keep a first timer on their toes. You get a few moves to use; your regular attack, a jump kick and a super move that will kill most regular enemies out in one shot but is a tad tricky to pull off. The game treads a nice line of being hard and fun, it rarely will get so hard that you just stop wanting to play while not being so easy that you can just waltz through the game unabated. There is a tendency towards some cheap hits, especially late in the game but most of those can be gotten around with proper planning and skill.
Most notably different from the arcade is the fact that you can't play with 4 players. The NES just couldn't handle that so instead we get 2 new levels, the aforementioned snowbound park and ninja dojo. Both are nice additions to the game and give it a bit of extra length to what is a short game in general.

Graphically the game is quite good for the NES. Sure it isn't the arcade version quality and there is some flickering when the stage is really busy but it looks quite good for the NES as the levels all have their own graphical theme and the Turtles and their enemies are all easily identifiable.

Musically the game is fairly classic. Some good renditions of the TMNT theme plus some great original stuff really keep the energy going throughout the game. Of course Konami was another great 8-bit music composer so this isn't a shock. The SFX are also fairly satisfying. With different kinds of enemies making different sounds depending on their make up. So metal enemies will make a clank sound and so forth. There are even some voice samples which while not special do what they need to do.

In the end, TMNT II is a great NES port of a great arcade game. Sure it may not have the same 4 player game play of the arcade but it is still extremely satisfying and a classic beat-um up.


+ Very good graphics

+ Very good music

+ Classic beat-um up gameplay

+ Good variety of stages

+ Well balanced

- Some cheap hits

- No four player mode but come on, this was the NES

- Gratuitous Pizza Hut ads

Zelda-Nation: Fun With Timelines

One of the more interesting aspects of Legend of Zelda fandom is the debate on the timeline, if any, that the franchise follows. Go to any Zelda fan site and you are sure to find numerous theories pertaining to the order and nature of the timelines. Typically they fall into two major groups, linearists and splitists which means you believe that the timeline follows a straight order or that you believe that the timeline splits, usually focused around the ending of Ocarina of Time. I'm not sure if I need to explain this but the ending of Ocarina of Time involves Zelda sending Link back to the past to live his life and Ganondorf will never come to be while also leaving a future where Ganondorf was sealed in the Sacred Realm and such.

Here lets let the Angry Video Game Nerd explain:

Now to be entirely honest I don't spend a lot of time on timeline of the franchise. While it is certainly interesting to a point, to me the whole debate seems rather fruitless because I am not entirely convinced that Nintendo has put that much effort into. I mean I could be wrong and I'm certainly not telling fans to stop debating it but people really put their emotions into it. I've seen flame-wars over the topic and it is kinda startling.

But for the sake of argument, I'll presume that there is a timeline that the franchise follows and see what I come up with. Probably won't be anything new or original and I'm not doing any real research on the matter outside of what I know of the franchise and my own observations. If there is anything I need to be corrected on, please say so and I'll make a note of it.

What we know for sure is that there have been several Links, several Zeldas and only one Ganon/dorf. Also we know that Hyrule's landscape has changed dramatically but there are commonalities of towns and landmarks. There are only a few obviously direct sequels (in which the same Link stars) in the franchise as well, those would be:

LoZ/AoL, OoT/MM, Seasons, TWW/PH

Though if LoZ/AoL are indeed directly linked (no pun honest) doesn't it seem weird that there are two different Zeldas unless the Zelda in AoL is different than the one in LoZ but I dunno.

Of course this leaves 6 other LoZ games that feature an unique Link or at least not obviously connected Link. One game I'm kind of curious about is Link's Awakening. While not explicitly stated, to my memory anyways, I've always thought that the Link in that game was the same Link as the one in A Link to the Past but I also vaguely remember reading something in some video game magazine (I'm thinking Nintendo Power) that somehow the events of Link's Awakening takes place directly in the middle of Adventures of Link when Link takes the raft ride from the West to East continent but that seems unlikely to me.

But really the crux of the whole issue is OoT and how you interpret the ending. The Wind Waker takes place after the Ganondorf is sealed time but if Ganondorf was never to exist when Link is sent back to his childhood could Twilight Princess really have happened? Most people put Twilight Princess coming after that but now that I really think about it how could it? Sure Ganondorf is essentially presented as being a god in Twilight Princess so it is possible that he could enter any reality he chooses. With that being a possibility I suppose if I had to say the majority of the Zelda games take place in the Twilight Princess branch of the timeline.

But to be honest, as interesting as this is, I'm starting to feel like I'm rambling. My true feelings is that outside of the directly connected titles most Zelda games can be taken as their own stories with meta-styled references thrown in for the fans of the franchise. If there is a truly deeper connection, fantastic, but until proven otherwise I'm not going to think too deeply about it.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Zelda-Nation: Post The First

In all my years of gaming one franchise has captured my heart like no other, The Legend of Zelda. While I wasn't an immediate fan of the franchise back in '87 (the originals release day) since the early '90s I've been a big fan of the franchise. It is the franchise that penetrated the overall dominance of platformers in my early days and turned me from just an average gamer into a "hardcore" (as much as I hate that term) gamer.

So I figured since it is the franchises official 25th anniversary (in Japan) and release of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D set for June 19th and with Skyward Sword due hopefully this fall I thought I'd do a series of posts until at least the release of OoT 3D celebrating my love of this franchise. Though if my fellow editors want to chime in on this very topic, more the merrier.

Now for a warm up: My Favorite Zelda Commercials!

Where can I find an NES with black buttons?

The Granny is freaky as hell. Also a Wizrobe. Damned Wizrobes.

Man I love this commercial.

Couldn't find an embeddable version of the long one.

What was with NoA and having rap songs for Zelda games?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Thursday Trailer: Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D

For some weird reason, videos aren't embedding like they usually do, so bare with the small size.

Today's trailer is of Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D for the 3DS. This new trailer was shown at Capcom's Captivate event a few days ago. It should be coming out this summer, and it will have a demo of the other 3DS game they're working on, Resident Evil: Revelations. I'm very excited to play this game, especially with my friends online and locally. Hopefully I'll have a 3DS by the time it comes out!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

PK Gaming Podcast: Episode 3 Part 2

I was going to wait until Friday to post this, but I have it ready now, so what the hell, I'll post it now.

There were only two parts in this episode, but we had a lot of fun recording it and talking about some of our favorite games with the 'Hall of Fame' topic.

Like I say at the end of the podcast, I'm not sure when we'll be able to record another, but hopefully it will be in May, though I'm not sure what we'll talk about in that one, we'll see. I do know what we'll talk about in the June and July podcasts if we get them done. June: Pre-E3 speculation and July: Post-E3 comments. (D'oh, I forgot that E3 is June 7th-9th, we might as well do the speculation episode in May then.) If at least 3 of us aren't busy during those times, we'll have 3 new episodes coming in the next 3 months.

If you have any questions about the podcast or the site in general, please e-mail us at PKGamingPodcast@gmail.com.

In this part of Episode 3:
Hall of Fame: Ours and Others
The Inductee: Super Metroid

Download the episode here!

(Click on the Regular "Download" Button, or where the Flashing Red Arrow is pointing to Begin Download)

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Songs that should be on Rock Band - Bush

Alright, this week, time for some 'post-grunge' 90's rock. Bush was/is a british band that became popular in America after the grunge era, and has been labeled as a sort of 'post-grunge' rock. I have a feeling that Bush won't be in the Rock Band music store anytime soon though, with the major focus on keyboard-heavy songs due to Rock Band 3, but hey, it could happen eventually.

I'd really like to see Bush's 'Sixteen Stone' album as part of the rock band library, but that leaves out hits like 'Chemicals Between Us' which is one of my favorite Bush songs.

Monday, April 11, 2011

PK Gaming Podcast: Episode 3 Part 1

Well, we finally recorded our third podcast this past weekend, with me, your host, Paleo, and starring Ink, our new editor Mr. Saturn (he's added later in the podcast runtime), and special guest Pandareus from the Negative World forums. The podcast isn't happening quite as often as I'd like it to, which is apparent how I feel when we start talking about the blog and the other podcast I've been in. Hopefully, since the college semester is coming to a close, maybe we won't have these huge gaps like this over late spring and summer.

By the way, if you listeners have any option where we can archive our podcasts, please tell us. Right now we're just using sendspace and the unfortunate thing with that is the fact that our files will be deleted after a certain period. (We still have the podcasts, we just need a place to store them indefinitely.)

If you have any questions about the podcast or the site in general, please e-mail us at PKGamingPodcast@gmail.com.

In this part of Episode 3:
How PK Gaming is doing/Weekly Articles
The Nintendo 3DS

Download the episode here!

(Click on the Regular "Download" Button, or where the Flashing Red Arrow is pointing to Begin Download)

Gaming on a Budget: Elite Beat Agents & Rhythm Heaven

Elite Beat Agents
Price New: $11.22

Today, I present to you, two very highly regarded rhythm games on the Nintendo DS. Both released at $29.99, but they're now more than half-off that original pricing! I haven't played Rhythm Heaven, but I hear great things about it, and for Elite Beat Agents, well... if you have a DS and you haven't played EBA before... what is wrong with you? Get it now if you haven't!

Rhythm Heaven
Price New: $12.69

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Review: de Blob 2

Review based off Wii version

The sequel to the 2008 cult classic, de Blob, de Blob 2 once again puts into the, um, feet of the Blob fresh off of saving Chroma City from the nefarious INKT Corporation invasion and their attempt to rid the city of all color and leaving the INKT leader, Comrade Black, stranded on an island full of cute colorful creatures. Unfortunately for the residents of Prism City, Comrade Black escaped the island and has taken on the guise of Papa Blanc, a leader of a cult of Inkies and is out to win elected office, though not fairly. It is up to Blob and his robotic friend, Pinky, and stop Comrade Black's new attempt the rid the world of color and..........................wait for it.................................TAKE OVER THE WORLD!

de Blob 2 plays pretty much the same as the first. As you steer Blob through the stages, you collect paint, use that paint to recolor the buildings, signs, furniture and Raydians who had their color stolen from them as well as using paint to defeat the INKT soldiers and their various weapons of mass discoloration. These are typically done in the form of missions that will have to complete as long with bonus missions you will access after you finish the main objectives. There are a few new twists in the game such as color pools which make it easier to get the colors that require mixing without the need of finding red, yellow or blue paintbots though paintbots will still play a prominent roll in color collecting. Next are the side-scrolling stages. At various points you will enter hatches that bring you into various buildings where you will be tasked to destroy any INKT machinery, free any Raydians trapped within and eventually revert the building back into its original colorful form. Another is Inspiration: basically the upgrade system added for the game. It'll let you upgrade Blob so you can collect more paint, use less for special attacks and collect more lives and defense. You can also upgrade Pinky for use in the co-op mode, which is much like the co-op in Super Mario Galaxy 2. A few tweaks to the gameplay from the first includes moving the jump from a wrist flick to the A button, whether this was to better facilitate the PS3 or 360 versions I don't know but it does make jumping an easier process. Also there are now checkpoints after clearing portions of each stage and with each stage roughly taking an hour plus to finish, it lets you take a break if you need to without losing your progress. Some of the flaws of the first game weren't addressed, mostly the lock-on uses to launch attacks. Sometimes Blob won't lock onto what you want him to sending him bounding off the wrong way or onto the wrong thing. This only gets in the way when things get really hectic in the later parts of stages but can be enough to drive you crazy. Also the camera can work against you, especially when you are jumping around tall buildings and a bad angle will either cause you to fall off and have to start over or fall to your death.

Graphically the game is much like the first. Very cartoonish, simple character models and while each stage starts off dull and grey by the end each stage will be extremely colorful, vivid and fun to look at. I'd actually consider buying this on the PS3 when it gets less expensive and see what HD does for the overall look. One of my favorite aspects of the game are the pre-rendered cutscenes, they are generally very nice looking and pretty funny overall and really fit with the overall feel of the game.

The music in the game is very relaxed and fitting with the mood of the game and changing as you bring more color to the world and even depending on what color you use. While the music might not be as memorable as Mario Galaxy's fantastic score, it does the job admirably. The SFX also fits the cartoonish nature of the game. The characters are voiced in a cartoon gibberish style, which does a good job of conveying the characters personalities well.
In summation, de Blob 2 is one of better 3rd party efforts to come onto the Wii, which may not say a lot considering the average effort put out by 3rd parties. And considering the Wii's rather anemic line-up this year so far, you could do worse than to pick up this game or even the prequel which is cheap and also quite good.

+ Solid 3D platforming
+ Colorful, cartoonish graphics

+ Very easy, going music
+ Funny story and FMV sequences

+ Gameplay tweaks make game easier to control and allows you not to play each stage in one go

- Lock-on can be a pain sometimes
- Camera won't always cooperate

Friday, April 8, 2011

Five Video Game Reviewers You Should Be Watching If You Aren't Already

Sure everyone knows about the Angry Video Game Nerd and how he has inspired others to do videos covering retro and modern games via the internet. In fact I spend a great amount of time watching these videos as they are often entertaining if not informative so I thought I should highlight the lesser known guys or as they are called the AVGN-clones (and no a certain irate person won't be showing up on this list) with a sample of my favorite video of theirs.

The Happy Video Game Nerd

Probably the most obvious clone, in fact he created his series for Screwattack's Out Nerd The Nerd contest several years back. While a parody of AVGN the HVGN has developed his own style that has really gone a different route from his early days. His gimmick as it is basically highlighting great and unappreciated classic games that we love to play as opposed to the total crap that the Nerd does. The HVGN has turned me on to several great games I missed such as Metal Storm for the NES or Rocket Knight Adventures for the Genesis.

Roo's 16-Bit Gems

Similar to the HVGN Roo is also looks back at overlooked classics but generally focuses on 16-bit era gems (hence the name). His reviews tend to be a bit more information driven and often gives a general history of the game and it's developers with a bit of humor thrown in for good measure. As of yet he really hasn't turned me onto any games (though I am interested in a few) his EarthBound overview and review ranks as one of my favorite videos anywhere.

The Spoony One

Definitely one of the angrier of the clones, Spoony (named after the insult Tellah threw at Edward in FF2) while not focusing strictly on games has gotten himself a firm niche of reviewing PC games and FMV games. His reviews tend to be very skit heavy and referential to other media which makes his reviews extremely enjoyable. My favorite review of his is his 11-part deconstruction of Final Fantasy VIII (a game that really had it coming) and his Let's Play of Phantasmagoria 2, an FMV game from 1996. Also some of his best recent work is his series of Ultima reviews starting from the beginning and still on-going.

Pat the NES Punk

A more manic sense of style than the others his reviews focus mostly on the NES both good and bad. Also a skit heavy show his reviews are a bit between HVGN and AVGN as far as tone goes. He does bring a fair dose of information to his reviews along with the humor which is expressed well in his idiosyncratic voice and motions. While not unearthing anything I didn't know about, he did get to that legendary piece of crap, Action 52 well before the Nerd did, so points there.

Far From Subtle TV: Awesome Video Games - Video Games Awesome

Yes two shows from this group: Awesome Video Games is a show based on the antics of two young boys Ace and Chet (work with them here people) and their strange, quick to rage father, Dad Esq. The main gimmick of the show is that Ace and Chet love games, but seem to barely understand how they work. Typically they completely fail to understand the goal of a game or misinterpret it in other ways. While not a review show in the traditional sense their shows do often highlight some aspects of a game; like how Friday the 13th is fairly boring or how R.O.B. isn't as fun as he looks. If you can stomach the quick camera movements and get the joke behind the show, you should love this.

Video Games Awesome is one part review and one part Let's Play. Typically the show features the 4 actors of the show (right now with show creator Fraser's girlfriend filling in for Ben (Ace)) as they play through newer games on a mystical floating screen. The show's typical highlight is the rather easy going nature of the cast as they play and react to games they show.

So yeah these are my favorites of the many game reviewers out there now. If you've got any you'd like to share be my guest as I love watching these kind of things.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Thursday Trailer: Sonic - 20th Anniversary Title

Today's trailer is a teaser for a new Sonic game that is due to come out this year. You see Sonic speeding across this strange land with what seems to be remnants of the past games in the series, and then... original sonic shows up? That's weird, but cool! It seems this game will only be coming out for Xbox 360 and PS3 as of right now.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Songs that should be on Rock Band - Feelin' Stronger Everyday

Wow, I can't believe I almost missed one of these articles! And I actually had a lot of songs in mind for this week! Though it was actually one that I heard on the radio coming home that has been stuck in my head, and that is 'Feelin' Stronger Everday' by Chicago. I was very excited to see Chicago in the Rock Band 3 setlist when it was revealed, and it has me clamoring for more of their songs. Playing the brass section with the keyboard does feel a bit silly, but it's fun! By the way, I was going to reserve this spot for 'Freeze Frame' by The J. Geils Band, but it was announced last Friday as DLC today! I need to get a points card so I can download that and a few other releases I've been meaning to get...

Monday, April 4, 2011

Gaming on a Budget: Fragile Dreams & Eternal Sonata

Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon
Price New: $18.99

This is a game I've been wanting to try for a while now. From what I hear, it's a bit of a survival horror, but very unique. There's a lot of exploration as well. I may try to get this game myself in the near future.

Eternal Sonata
Price New (360): $13.92
Price New (PS3): $16.99

If you can get past the unskippable cutscenes in this, I've heard that this is can be a pretty lengthy, and high-quality JRPG. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Retro Reviews: Ken Griffey, Jr. Presents Major League Baseball

Ken Griffey, Jr. Presents Major League Baseball was released in 1994 by Sculptured Software and released by Nintendo.

Its spring and with spring comes warmer weather and the beginning of my personal favorite sport, the grand game of baseball (GO BRAVES!). So I figured what would be a better game to review than possibly my favorite baseball game of all time, starring every kid growing up in the '90s favorite player Ken Griffey, Jr.?

Ken Griffey, Jr. is in many ways your standard sports game during the 16-bit era. One part sim and many parts arcadey-simple. In the game your pit your favorite team in a variety of modes, ranging from single games, various sized season modes or if you are that impatient going right to the playoffs. There is also a home run derby for all you people love the long ball and want to see a lot of them very quickly. Alas though the game did not have the MLB Player's Association license so all but Ken Griffey are players based on the players but not named them. It sucks if you are the kind of person who really likes having authentic teams and players. You can rename if you so choose to so if you want to play with the real players you at least have that option.

As a baseball game it plays very fast. When I played as a kid, the average game took maybe 20-30 minutes with little in the way of wasted time. For instance when you pitch, instead of having an animation of the catcher tossing it back to the pitcher the ball just miraculously appears in the pitchers hand and you are ready to pitch again. Or if a ball is put in play once the result is determined the game reverts back to the home plate view. Perfect for those of you without a lot patience for all the minutia that can go on in a baseball game, either in real life or in modern games. Also while the sim aspects of the game are relatively limited you still have options whether on offense or defense. You can bring in relief pitching or defensive substitutes while pitching or pinch hit or run while on offense. It pretty much amounts to the simplest aspects of sim baseball with the rest being very arcade-like in a lot of ways.

The controls are for the most part good. The directions on the d-pad indicate what base your are throwing to and also help you aim your pitches. Though while on defense I recommend having the computer assist your fielding since if you are like me, the screen shifts can be so fast you might react wrong to ball and send your fielder in the wrong direction. For instance: say a hot shot between 3rd and 2nd, you might want to control the shortstop but get the 3rd baseman and sending him in the wrong direction.

Graphically the game is big and bright but not entirely detailed. Some the ballparks are well designed and faithful to their (at the time) real-life counterparts and others are just generic designs but really it should not really matter unless you are obsessed about the details of your team's parks. The player models are matched to their players, so your speedster 2nd baseman is smaller and skinnier than your hulking powerhouse 1st baseman. They add just enough simulator styling while having the arcade feel to them.

The music is pretty good to. The title theme is a guitar heavy rock theme that fits the tone of the game perfectly. The in-game theme is also a nice rock theme that plays throughout the game but never gets tiring. Heck the game even has end of the American National Anthem play before games as well as the Canadian National Anthem as well. How's that for detail? Sound FX give a good atmosphere of a baseball game, nothing special but they do the job.

In the end I can really only recommend this if you are baseball fan like myself. Or if you are a person who likes sports games but thinks that today's game are too complicated to get into. This is a great baseball title on a system not exactly known for sports games and very easy to get into for the uninitiated.


+ Well done graphics.
+ Fast arcade style gameplay with some simulation aspects thrown in.
+ Great music.
+ Ken Griffey, Jr. at his prime.
- No MLBPA license
- Who rendered Griffey's face for the in-game title screen. Gah!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Flash Friday Temporarily Suspended

(This isn't an April Fool's joke, it really is suspended.)

I usually don't have trouble with finding Flash games. I sometimes have trouble finding Flash games to present on Friday. The main reason I created this feature was to have something weekly on the site, and it helped me come up with other ideas for weekly articles. Unfortunately, this feature, unlike the other ones, had a bit of limited number of articles I could make due to the amount of "good" Flash games I have encountered. There are a lot more Flash games out there yes... but... who am I kidding, I'm lazy, I feel this might be a time to reflect on what I've presented so far, and may give me time to find some more Flash games to feature in the near future.

There have been 20 Flash Fridays so far, here is a list of links to each one, ordered from when they were posted:

11/12/10: Upgrade Complete!
11/19/10: Dino Run
11/26/10: Achievement Unlocked
12/3/10: Ant Buster
12/10/10: One Chance
12/17/10: Tower of Heaven
12/24/10: Mountain Maniac
12/31/10: Miami/Sydney Shark
1/7/11: Dolphin Olympics
1/14/11: Infectonator World Dominator
1/21/11: Small Worlds
1/28/11: Exctinct! Are you smarter than a plant?
2/4/11: Realm of the Mad God
2/11/11: Covetous
2/18/11: Meat Boy
2/25/11: The Majesty of Colors
3/4/11: How to Raise a Dragon
3/11/11: Robot Dinosaurs That Shoot Beams When They Roar
3/18/11: I Love Traffic
3/25/11: Icycle

I hope you have all enjoyed what I've shared with you so far. I'm not sure when I'll start up Flash Friday again, but it won't be suspended for more than a month at least. I just need some time to play more Flash games.