Monday
May312010

PPR's Clone Chronicles #1 By GeorgieBoysAXE

So with the Anniversary episode being released very soon, I have been mentioning a lot of the Clone Games. What these Clone games you ask? definitely not the result of some Mad Scientists sick twisted designs of a resulted masochistic genetic experimentation, that much I can definitely assure you. No what I'm referencing exactly is a different developer developing a completely new IP or an existing license or franchise utilizing a Gameplay aesthetic or mechanics that are already founded on previous existing games in a pedestal that balances the side of homage or shameless cash-in on a an established formula with little or no innovation invested within said game. Granted I may have come off a bit curt there but it's a line that is dangerously danced on when developers cater on gamers with a gameplay formula that has been established & there are genres that maybe considered derivative between their own respective releases, there are still quirks or mechanics, animation, or distinguishing elements that give you this sense of Deja vu & I just wanted to go over my experiences with the batch of games that I have played through a series of what I will call...the Clone Chronicles, this isn't a permanent blog series that I am introducing into Press Pause Radio but some thing I'm going to touch on from blog to blog. So where am I taking this to on this series? why the new Atlus release 3D Dot Game Heroes exclusive on the Playstation 3 of course. The game is developed with references of video game nostalgia kept in mind as well as several if not a nearly completely aped environment along with elements & items (especially items) directly inspired (more or less taken) from the Legend of Zelda Franchise mostly from the original Legend of Zelda with cues from "A Link To The Past" here & There also tossed into the mix. 
 
So where I mentioned that 3D Dot Game Heroes takes more cues from Legend of Zelda as opposed to the LTTP is the environment & progression of the game. 3DDGH has that nostalgic sense of being one completely off beaten path in terms of a nearly completely open explorative open world other than paths in which you determine within a sick sense of muscle memory that further exploration or progression can not be done with out a specific item or tool that must be acquired beforehand. also like the original Legend of Zelda, all of the NPCs within the game either have Side-quests which there are an abundance of extremely vague hints (or sometimes blatantly obvious ones done a comical fashion) there's that sense of nostalgia where beyond your experience of the Legend of Zelda franchise that has stayed with you, the advancement of the game in terms of the next objective or the next area that you travel forth to is pushed nearly to the point of bewildered confoundment as you find yourself with out some sort of clear or at times even reasonable clue to progress the game further which is almost akin to experiencing the original Legend of Zelda for the very first time which is feeds into this addictive urge to play through the game but only pushes me towards frustration after sever failed attempts of solution from trial & error decisions that I had to make, which I can't completely blame on the game as I am a pretty fucking stupid individual but there were some crushing blows to my ego that only came crashing when I did discover the solution towards the next progression of the game & it was beyond obvious. 
 
Another glaring similarity towards the original Legend of Zelda is that the dungeon/temple stages in which you locate the key story items, weapon/items, & tools as is another stable from the LOZ franchise is nearly identical to the original for 3DDGH. The glaring similarity that there is absolutely no distinguishing features or visuals that segregate or differentiate one dungeon from any others, it's actually accurate to say that other than some weapon item obstacles, puzzles, or enemies that all of the dungeons are color palliate swapped which is something again I can appreciate it but solely on Nostalgia & deep down I would have preferred more of a distinctive take on the dungeon ambience & visuals than what I got. now where the comparison to LTTP is contrived from the items & weapon items such as the Hook-shot & Pegasus Dash Boots are scattered through out the game which again only adds to the comforting familiarity within 3DDGH which I really have no complaints with but again on the basis & inspiration for this particular little blog series, it only pushes the game far past the flattery of calling it an "Homage".Now what makes 3DDGH different is that fact that it's just a very tongue in cheek game in terms of all of the flavor text & derivative Japanese RPG story line. it's dialogue & references will definitely make any NES nerds laugh & the modern chiptunes are very memorable & make you feel a few years younger. The Dialogue again I have to point out is beyond fucking hilarious whether you visit the King & experiment with the different Dialogue trees along with other characters or explore all of the inside jokes from the guys at From Software within the game makes it all the more pleasant. 
 
So overall, get it, at 39.99 this is definitely a recommend for all PS3 owners & especially any fan of the Legend of Zelda & I'm just going to go out of the way & stress yet again that this is a quality clone. I have honestly only scratched the surface of the game in this humble look at it because of the subject matter of course but just because a game is a clone game doesn't make it a bad one. So with that the next three games I'm going to split amongst open choice to listeners who keep up with blog, the next entry within this series can either be one of the following three? TT: Buster's Hidden Treasure for the Genesis, The Krion Conquest for the NES, or  Neutopia for the Turbo-Grafx 16. Post your votes in the forum thread or comment here & I'll make the decision from there until then,  
 thanks for reading & be sure to watch out for the Anniversary episode coming out tonight or tomorrow along with the announcements for the Voicemail! thanks again~GeorgieBoysAXE

Sunday
May092010

PPR 21

 

Get your headsets and modded controllers ready, because you are now listening to episode 21 of Press Pause Radio! On this episode, we discuss gaming news involving the Halo: Reach multiplayer beta and the recent deal between Bungie and Activision. Toast will share his Top Five video game podcasts, as well as a review of Splinter Cell: Conviction. Our main topic for this episode is all about multiplayer games. Has the era of playing cooperatively on the couch died, and left us now with only lobbies and online only multiplayer games? We will discuss this and much more on the legal to drink episode of Press Pause Radio. As always, feedback and comments are welcomed and appreciated through the website or on our iTunes page. Thanks for listening, and have a great week.

PPR Episode 21

Saturday
May082010

Quarter Circle Forward Review: Splinter Cell: Conviction

 

“It's only after we've lost everything that we're free to do anything.”

Toast here with the Quarter Circle Forward Review that we discussed in Episode 21, Splinter Cell: Conviction

Splinter Cell: Conviction begins where Double Agent left off, continuing the struggle of Sam Fisher who has recently left Third Echelon. To avoid potential spoilers of the previous game, it is safe to say that the agent left his former employer on less than positive terms. Revenge is the overwhelming theme of Conviction, as Fisher searches for answers by any means necessary. No longer held back by government regulations and protocol, Sam now can dispatch his enemies without mercy. This is done through the new Mark/Execute and Interrogation mechanics.

 

Many die-hard Splinter Cell fans may think of the Mark and Execute ability as too easy, and in many ways it can be. Performing a hand to hand kill or execution will allow the player to mark a certain number of enemies and then instantly execute them with one button press. The camera angles and dramatic motions make this look amazing every time, and can easily clear a room of bad guys. For fans of stealth action games, this may be considered an insult to their abilities as gamers. For myself, I found it almost essential and required to progress through some of the games tougher levels. Having almost no experience with this particular genre, I found myself reloading my checkpoints multiple times even on the Rookie difficulty setting. I simply do not play enough stealth action games to be good at being invisible, and for this reason I really appreciated the more casual approach that Ubisoft has taken for this latest Splinter Cell.

 

 

Interrogations are simply interactive cut-scenes, and are done only to progress the story. The same can be said of the reflective instructions and images that will be displayed throughout the level on various walls and other parts of the environment. Both elements make the player feel like a cold blooded killer, but will not impact the gameplay at all. For the game as a whole, the story and voice acting can be perhaps it's main flaws. The story seems like a lackluster season of 24, and can be very predictable. Micheal Ironside as Sam Fisher can be unbearable at times, but can be considered an Oscar worthy performance compared to the enemies who will yell ridiculous lines of dialog as you hide and avoid detection.

 

 

Overall I enjoyed finishing the campaign, which can be done in roughly six or seven hours. The co-op campaign and various multiplayer modes can extend the longevity of the game, and purchasers of Conviction will have access to the Ghost Recon: Future Soldier beta later this year. For fans of the Splinter Cell franchise, I will say it's an excellent addition to the collection. For more casual gamers or new arrivals to the series, I would suggest perhaps a rental only.
Thursday
Apr222010

PPR 20

 

Press Pause Radio returns for another round with episode 20! Did you miss us? On this episode, the PPR World Warriors discuss the fighting game genre from it's humble beginnings to it's current success. With the decline of the American arcade scene in the late 90's, fighting games began to decline in popularity as well. We will discuss this in detail throughout the show, and speculate on the great future that is in store for all joystick mashers. Ser discusses the top five fighting games that have been sadly overlooked and will also review his favorite fighting game of all time. Reviews and comments are always appreciated, on iTunes or on our website. Hadouken!

PPR Episode 20

Monday
Apr052010

Press Pause Radio Top 5 Megaman weapons!

Been a While since I've found the time to post one of these up yeah? So GeorgieboysAXE here & My Top 5 List for Press Pause Radio episode #19 was the Top 5 Megaman Weapons that you can aquire through out the last 10 titles (from the Classic series & no spin-offs) so with out further wait let's start off the list, but wait, before we do that. Press Pause Radio now has a Top 5 section within our forums to where you can add your own thoughts to it & post up your list & choices so go register if you haven't already or go log in if you have & post post post at www.presspauseradio.com

5) Black Hole Bomb

A power unlike any other acquired from Galaxy Man in Megaman 9, the Black Hole Bomb allows you the ability to take out nearly all enemies mid-sized & below in one fowl swoop! along with the Flame Dragon's weakness, this power if used right will make life much much easier in Megaman 9. in areas where there constant respawns of enemies, (the Pipe cleaner floaters mostly) busting out a Black Hole Bomb in the the right spot will allow for all of them to be destroyed giving you the opportunity for them to drop supplies such as Health & Weapon Energy to keep the Black Hole Bombing on as well as micro managing grabs to share amongst the other powers that have used, with the helpful ability of aiming the weapon & having some distance giving you the edge of attacking fiercely from a safe distance, you'll use this power a lot.

4) Gemini Laser

Gemini laser acquired from the Odd mirror imaging robot master Gemini Man from Megaman 3 gives you a sense of strategy from using it in the right environment & method yet again being as the Gemini Laser gives you two main tactical advantages of being able to to take out multiple enemies as it is not absorbed into the direct hit one enemy (granted again as long as the enemy is mid-sized & below) & the laser recoils against walls at angles giving it the opportunity of allowing you to take out enemies above you before they even notice your presence as well as also allowing for some lucky outcomes if you even just decide to fuck around with it for a bit, definitely a common used ability within Megaman 3.

3) Skull Barrier

So long since the debut of Leaf Shield from Woodman in Megaman 2, we;ve had variations of shield powers with Megaman & I have a strange affinity for these powers as I find myself using them a lot during platforming segments but other then Jewel Satellite from Megaman 9, I always found myself using this shield weapon out of all of the ones I have experience sticking with the megaman series, this being as with most all shield they either have a time frame of how long they are active or they will they can be shot forward by megaman if the fire button is pressed again however with the Skull Barrier, this shield will remain active until you shoot it forward with the fire button & instead of the time frame it'll slowly drain your weapon energy until there is no points left to drain which can give you a huge advantage during platform segments where there are enemies that will rise up from the bottomless pit to attack at you or enemies above dropping off projectiles & what have you to fuck your life. Skull Barrier gets the win from Megaman 4.
2) Strike Ball

I know what most of you are thinking being as I have in way just pulled a "Game Informer" with inducting a power into best all-time list of all time with a power from the newest entry of the Megaman series Megaman 10 & it's less than a year old. The Strike Ball being acquired from Strike Man in Megaman 10 again has stuck out for me as opposed to the other weapons within the game. the same feeling I incite from Gemini Man, the Strike Ball gives a tactical advantage within traversing through Megaman stages that you didn't have before, even though the Strike Ball can't go through multiple enemies like the Gemini Laser can, it does have the ability to be arced upwards or downwards before firing therefore giving much more control over the shot & not needing to be so dependent on you environment to arc the shot, therefore you can do some damage with a few shots & go cause Bouncy mayhem!

1) Metal Blade

Ok So in a way I'm sure this was seen a mile away but can you blame me? with Metal Blade you have a powerful, rapid fire weapon that can rapidly fired akin to the mega buster & aimed multi-directionally? also with a near infinite amount of use being as Metal Blade can go on for days it's no wonder Capcom Nerfed it when re releasing Megaman 2 as part of the Megaman Anniversary collection, the sheer power this weapon gives you should give you this feeling of empowerment knowing that you truly have something to mow down enemies with at incredible speed & power. This Weapon is so bad ass that the Robot Master it comes from from being Metal Man from Megaman 2 is even weak to....his own fucking power, meaning that it's too powerful really to be in anyone's hands...that's deep
So there's My Top 5, & again you can post thoughts or feed back, replies & whatever the hell else might have you at any of our pages online as well as the new section for Top 5 on our Forums only found at www.presspauseradio.com & also keep in touch as Press Pause Radio will have Voice Mail soon where you can leave a message on the Show & we'll play it on there! stay tuned ya lovable listeners you!

Tuesday
Mar302010

PPR 19

 

We continue our retrospective on all things Mega Man on episode 19 of Press Pause Radio. Paco could not be with us for part 2, so our hosts bravely explore the unknown and discuss the spinoffs and newly released titles in the Mega Man franchise.

GeorgieboysAXE has a double shot of the Blue Bomber, as he shares his Top Five Mega Man powers, and a Quarter Circle Forward review of Mega Man 10. Discussion about this show and more can be found on our forums, or at http://www.presspauseradio.com. Rate or review us on iTunes as well, we appreciate all of your feedback.

 Also please check out our good friend's Youtube page. It has the official Press Pause Radio seal of approval (patent pending).http://www.youtube.com/user/cyanidebreathmintz

PPR Episode 19

Thursday
Mar252010

PPR 18

 

So Starting off the first part of our special retrospective on The Blue Bomber himself! some how this episode ended talking more about Final Fantasy XIII instead but we definitely cover the roots & personal opinions of the Blue Bomber as well set the stage for Episode#19! until then check out part one of the Megaman Retrospective!, Toast has got the Top 5 this week along with QCF & please if you can please review us on iTunes & do to it!

Episode#18 You got Grouchy ranting nerd!

PPR Episode 18

Tuesday
Mar232010

PPR Top Five: Top Five Xbox Live Arcade Games

 

     Hello Internets, this is Toast and this week's Top Five are the five best Xbox Live Arcade games. These five downloadable titles are in my opinion the best games that you can find on the Xbox Live Marketplace. Have a game that was not mentioned? Is your top five similar to this list, or completely different? Head on over to our forums and discuss which games you would have added to the list. Without further ado, here are the top five.

 

5. Splosion Man


     This is a fun and challenging puzzle platformer released during the Summer of Arcade, which seems to be when the best Arcade titles are released. Splosion Man is no exception to this rule, with it's emphasis on completing levels effectively and in as little time as possible. This game offers a single and co-op experience, as well as perhaps one of the best songs to ever come out of a video game.

 

4. Trials HD

 

     As previously mentioned on this very website, I was late to discover Trials HD and since downloading the title I have falling completely over the edge (no pun intended). Trials HD may seem like a racing game or perhaps a better looking version of Excitebike, however nothing could be further from the truth. The combination of insane physics and massive amounts of stages and events to complete make this title a must own.

 

 

3. Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2

 

     Picking up from where the original Geometry Wars left off, Retro Evolved 2 has all of the dual stick shooting greatness as well as new game modes and an emphasis on besting your Xbox Live friends. The fact that the person who has a higher ranking on your friends list always has his or her score mocking you from the top of the screen is ingenious, and prolongs the replay value. The action is intense and sometimes extremely hectic, with beautiful visuals and a great soundtrack.

 

 

2. Castle Crashers

 

     The perfect party game! This is The Behemoth at their absolute best, and is simply a game that everyone must own. The cartoon beat em up can be played with three of your closest friends, and has tons of unlockables. The DLC is very inexpensive as well, and is worth the price of admission and then some. I just hope the 360 version will receive the volleyball mini-game that the upcoming Playstation Network port will have, but I doubt it.

 

 

1. Shadow Complex

 

     Castlevania: Symphony of the Night and Super Metroid are two of the most well known and loved games to ever be released. The game play is well known, and has hardly been duplicated since their releases. That is, until Shadow Complex was introduced to the world last summer. The controls and mechanics of the game are perfect, and in my opinion makes Shadow Complex the next evolution of the "Metroid-vania" style of gameplay.