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Added by voodoozen on 18 Aug 2011 08:16
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Retro Backlog

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People who added this item 6 Average listal rating (2 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 0
Addams Family - Game Boy
STATUS: Finished

I loved anything Addams Family when I was younger (still do, FWIW), and I played the crap out of this as a kid. Took me weeks to find the best routes and ways to avoid the constant onslaught of enemies. Bats swoop from everywhere, ghosts float around erratically, the whole stinkin' toy level... amazingly tough, moreso when you compound the throngs of enemies with the limited range and number of weapons.

Creepy? Kooky? Mysterious? Spooky? Nope, but mildly fun and definitely challenging





And to top if off, you don't have any way to save your progress - you wanna beat the game? Start at the beginning and work your way to the end, sucka!

It's a competent platformer with plenty of levels that are all designed with nice variety, hard bosses, and a decent amount of secrets to uncover if you look around a while. Not the best game on Gameboy (SML 2 is) and not even near the hardest (Kirby's Dreamland, anyone?), but it was a lot of fun if nothing else than for the Addams Family license and tie in to the 1990's movie - which, by the way, it had NOTHING to do with outside of pretending to mimic the same storyline.
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People who added this item 23 Average listal rating (13 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 0
The Addams Family - Super famicom and SNES
STATUS: Unfinished

Oddly enough, although I played the Gameboy game until I was dazed and had thumb cramps, I've never put the time into this version.
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STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 1h30m

[Oct 2011]
Another oldie-but-not-so-goody. I can tell you 3 things about the game:

1) It's full of the old R&B humor, and fans of the original 60's show will appreciate it.

2) Rocky and Bullwinkle are awful at jumping. Awful. Sometimes that super slow floating is good, say if you need an extra 1/4 second to land a tough jump, but it's mostly terrible. Maybe worse than terrible.

3) It's hard. DAMN hard. It took me forever to get to the end of this game the first time through, which is only 3 stinking levels.

Oh, licensed games. Why must you stink?



I was probably 14 or so when I bought this one, and I remember playing as Bullwinkle in Frostbite falls and later as Rocky on the moon feeling similar to some locales from the show (which we watched on Sunday morning reruns), but until this replay I had no recollection of the actual flow of the game other than chasing down your 3 "purloined prizes"... Basically you play as Bullwinkle/Rocky/Bullwinkle for the three levels here- levels that repeat the same buildings and traps so much I honestly started to wonder if I had been sent back to the beginning of the level. Having said that, it's not ugly, the graphics and backgrounds are well done for a GB game, and the character models look pretty good despite having soulless, hollow eyes. Doesn't save the game from its repetition and cheap death gameplay, but it was nice to see!

Controls were bad, but the game looked surprisingly good



There's some mini football games in between, similar concept as Mario Land where you can earn extra lives. And you're gonna need 'em. You only have two moves, jump and attack (well, and duck for Bullwinkle), which are gloriously hard to manage as edge detection is fuzzy at best.

Music
is basically just the main theme repeated ad infinitum, nothing unusual for these old games, but you'll be turning down the sound by about 30 minutes in to avoid going mad.

I know there was a NES and SNES version of the game, but you can skip both of those for sure- this may be the one time a GB title was the best version of a multi-platform release. The NES game is (rightfully) amongst the contenders for "worst game ever", and the SNES version, while very pretty graphically, is essentially the same dialog as the GB game with different levels, and has absolutely no redeeming qualities since it's impossibly hard and controls terribly, worse than the GB game, which is saying a lot.

Glad I replayed this one for a couple of reasons. I need a good challenge once in a while and it brought back tons of memories and nostalgia...

But it's not anywhere near a great game. It reminds me a lot (LOT) of Simpson's Camp Deadly, which was also developed by Imagineering Inc. Neither game is outright terrible, but neither is going to ever be a highly desired item in retro gaming circles.
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People who added this item 192 Average listal rating (129 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Aladdin - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
STATUS: Unfinished

Is this legal? Can I really have never gotten past the cave of wonders?

Heresy!
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People who added this item 380 Average listal rating (228 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
Banjo-Kazooie - Nintendo 64
STATUS: Unplayed


I know, I know. One of the best 3D platformers ever... and I've spent maybe 30 minutes on it. Eh. Seems like there's a lot of unnecessary controls, pushing buttons and sticks in strange configurations just to run up hills, fire at enemies...

Suffers from the Nintendo "Hey! We have a new control scheme Mr. Developer. Make use of EVERY button or your game doesn't launch." approach.
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People who added this item 99 Average listal rating (62 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 0
Batman - Famicom and NES
STATUS: Unfinished
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People who added this item 13 Average listal rating (7 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 0
Batman - Game Boy
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 3h30m

This one is a primitive but surprisingly good (and sadly overlooked) GB game. I'd SWEAR this was built on the same engine as SML 1. Music is good, too!

Biggest non-issue-but-bothers-me-anyway: Batman's size. Look at this, he's a hobbit!

They come in pints? I'm getting one!




I was overall pretty happy with this one. It's an early GB game, but it's got all the fun and pizazz that made portable gaming fun - and especially for a licensed title. Not as visually attractive as Return of the Joker, but fun nonetheless.

Except for that scrolling level in the Gotham Cathedral. That thing can go away for ever... the screen moves so fast, and the overwhelming number of enemies keep firing relentlessly... Took me probably 20 tries to pass that stage. If I had more time or more practice I'd be able to memorize the whole thing and blow through there, but man was it hard. Thank goodness for infinite continues!
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People who added this item 9 Average listal rating (4 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 3h30m

Back in the day I played and played this guy forever, never got to the Joker... decided to remedy that!

I can sum this up pretty quickly- remember how most early (pre-1994, at least) Gameboy games were short, maybe 4-5 levels and to make up for that the developers made them INSANELY difficult.

This is one of those games.

You're gonna see this. A lot.


Gameplay wise,The game doesn't hold up that well... the controls are stiff (batman moves like he's wearing lead boots), the levels are short and the enemies are plentiful and strong. Bosses are exceptionally hard- I honestly got lucky and managed to trap a couple in the corner and brute force beat them through button mashing. Loose to the boss and you have to repeat the last portion of the stage, meaning you could come in with 1-2 bars of health and, unless there's some kind of magic happening, you're gonna fail again. Plus you only get 4 continues (I only found one 1-up in the whole game. Maybe there's more, but I didn't find 'em).

The graphics, those hold up. The game is pretty good looking considering this game is 20+ years old and 8-bit. And the music is pretty memorable as well, it always fits the mood and really keeps you moving along.

Can't say I want to put the time into this one to master it, but if I did the whole thing would probably be around 30-45 minutes total play time. Typical of early era GB games, but nothing to remember.

Glad this one is off the list, all in all. Nostalgia aside, it's only an average little game. Fun, but the difficulty made it one I'm ok with not replaying.

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People who added this item 11 Average listal rating (5 ratings) 5.8 IMDB Rating 0
Battletoads - Game Boy
STATUS: Unfinished


no one will ever beat this game
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People who added this item 36 Average listal rating (22 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
Beyond Oasis - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
STATUS: Finsished
TIME TO BEAT: 8h4m


I've probably mentioned it before, but I was never a Genesis Kid. My friends and I only ever owned Nintendo consoles- be that for better or worse, that's just the way it was... Ok, well I knew one kid who had a TurboGrafx, but that was it (and I never actually played on it, so that doesn't even count). Basically, I'm playing Genesis games fresh, literally as if it were still 1992.

I picked up Beyond Oasis because I was looking for something Zelda-like after I finished Ocarina of Time, and during my search found a lot of love out there for this 1994 title... turns out, it's totally radical, dude!

Game kicks off with a short cutscene and then BOOM! There's a haunting, ancient tale, of which you are destined to fulfill, recounted by a ghostly fire guy who's spirit is embodied in a magical armlet? I'm in.



The game garners praise from RPG, adventure and beat 'em up fans alike, and with good reason. Beyond Oasis is probably the best fusion of several game genres and styles of it's era- there's plenty of running, jumping, and brawling ala Streets of Rage; item upgrading, weapon discovery, secrets and puzzles straight out of Legend of Zelda; an element system that would be at home in any RPG... it just melds so many video game elements into one very well produced package, you can't help but find SOMETHING to like here.

And perhaps most amazingly, the strongest part of the game isn't it's varied gameplay, it's the really stellar visuals: Set in a very similar time as Aladdin or Prince of Persia, Beyond Oasis conjures images that fit perfectly with a mysterious time and magical land. Colors, enemies, weapons all fit the world, and the dungeons all feel consistent but different. It's the usual "water/fire/ice" formula, but the designs and layout are beautiful.

Bosses are, well, a mixed bag... The bosses are all massive -some 2 screens tall- and are beautifully done and totally different. Problem is that the attacks aren't that hard to figure out or avoid, and they all seem a touch too easy; find the right weapon on your way through the dungeon and you can probably slice through them in a few seconds, especially if you have Efreet busting heads of any minions they might spawn during the fight

How's this for HUGE? Seriously awesome sprites in this game, you'll feel sad that you beat them in under a minute



Music isn't that memorable- not bad, but overall just a typical midi-orchestrated soundtrack.

The only truly weak point here are the controls , they just aren't as tight as, say, Zelda. Hit boxes are all over the map, jumping is a pain (same button as duck), and while it's great to have the option to run, tapping the dpad twice doesn't always respond- or worse, it happens by accident and you run off an edge. Nothing game breaking, but certainly frustrating when you're in the heavy beat 'em up game combat.

Overall, I'm really impressed with the game. There's so many secrets, a nice variety of worlds, weapons and bosses, plus some fun backtracking for items if you're so inclined. Really glad this one hit my radar!

BONUS Full PAL manual can be viewed here (thanks, canocha!)
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People who added this item 102 Average listal rating (57 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 0
Bomberman 64 - Nintendo 64
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 14 Average listal rating (5 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 48 Average listal rating (24 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 0
Bomberman Hero - Nintendo 64
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 7 Average listal rating (3 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 0
Bubble Ghost - Game Boy
STATUS: Finished

I beat this game one time. Once, and that was through pure resolve and a commitment to do so. Like with so many of the original GB games, there's no saves or checkpoints to help you make your way to the end. To finish you need to start at zero and get the end in one fell swoop, completing each tricky level one at a time.

The idea is delightfully simple: you're a ghost with a bubble, and you want to get out of a mansion with your bubble intact. All Mr. Ghosty has to do is blow the bubble past the hazards safely into the next room, out of the mansion, and go the heck home. Easy, right? Problem is everywhere you turn there's spikes, fans, candles and all sorts of pointy things, all waiting to pop your bubble and ruin the fun... Corridors are tight, spikes are constantly moving, and that bubble of yours has some serious inertia for the velocity (What? Relativistic mass in a video game? OK, its not).

This little guy makes Casper look like Freddy Kreuger




This would be quite good reinvented as an iPhone app where you could play 2-3 levels at a time and save your progress ala Angry Birds. But that's not how it works, and honey by the end those 30-odd can levels get tough... I might actually come back to this one someday. Maybe.
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STATUS: FINISHED
TIME TO BEAT: 6h45m

+1 for me! I managed to beat my first Game Gear game!!!


I can't tell you how much I miss old school platformers. No, wait, I can: They're HARD AND UNFORGIVING!

OK, so you're a walking tree, and that's good for your demographic. But... you seem awfully daggone happy to try and kill the world's most beloved mouse... wanna work that out with a therapist?


There's only a handful of levels (I think 6) in this game, but they're all, literally, first class "memorize or die!" challenging in the vein of NES and Gameboy 1990's offerings. There's few opportunities to make it on luck anywhere; the majority of the pitfalls and enemies are right against the screen advancing or just beyond where you could slide by with a simple leap of faith kind of jump. Nothing I'm not used to, but man, getting back into this is a bit of a challenge since the whole infinite lives approach has come about (see: Rayman Origins)

Sorry, treeman. No time for therapy. Have a taste of Mickey Butt!



Music is very midi, simple and repeats ad infinitum, but at least it's never truly annoying. There's stereo sound here, and that's good, but there's nothing worth remembering as 'classic'. Controls are worthy if not perfect; there's plenty of places where the jumping got me killed (every single falling or moving platform comes to mind) but they still outpace Mario's extra step in NSMBW. I'm not sure if that was planned or not, but it makes me wonder if Nintendo's 2D folks forgot to replay games like Castle of Illusion...

Mickey May be on the title, but levels are the real star here- there's tons of whimsical, challenging, and totally replayable levels in CoL, and given the opportunity back in the day I bet I'd have replayed this guy hundreds of times... kinda like I did when I played the Simpsons Escape from Camp Deadly way back in the way back. Which brings me to a point: This game made me really appreciate old licensed games.

The OK music, repetitive gameplay and ridiculous difficulty is really just par for the course of these old (and now classic) games. Had Camp Deadly been a full color SNES or GG title it would have been just as good as Mickey... well, maybe not "good", but nostalgia plays a lot more than actual impartiality.

in a few words: I need to remember that there were real limitations, and enjoy these kinds of games for what they are!
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People who added this item 170 Average listal rating (83 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow - Game Boy Advance
STATUS: Unfinished
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People who added this item 89 Average listal rating (44 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Castlevania: Bloodlines - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 8h


Typical Castlevania game, you could probably speed run it in 45 minutes, but the first time through?


Damnnnnnn! Hard as stone.

Cheap hits, random attacks, multitudes of enemies... It's a Castlevania game, alright


I can say that the music, controls and platforming are all top shelf, I never felt like the controls were letting me down... the brutal number of attacks and unrelenting enemies coming at you require lightning-fast reflexes, and that's all on the player to learn. Swooping bats, swinging snakes, fireballs and spikes are all over this game, get used to it!

Careful! Invisible enemies & moving platforms will test your gaming skill

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People who added this item 42 Average listal rating (14 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unfinished
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People who added this item 64 Average listal rating (31 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 0
Castlevania: Dracula X - Super famicom and SNES
STATUS: Unfinished

Despite enjoying it I've never gotten even mid way through this game.
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People who added this item 232 Average listal rating (150 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
Conker's Bad Fur Day - Nintendo 64
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 20h24m


Decided to give this one the run through it deserves. I says to myself at the 4 hour mark: "this is gonna be short, you're already 50% done!"

Then the Mighty Poo, catfish, Conckula... Man i was way off base. This game is as big and hard as they get by N64 measures. So was the legend it earns appropriate, is it great, good or mediocre? A little of all, actually.

The history on this is pretty interesting:

As the lifecycle of the Nintendo 64 began to wane, Rare started to search for a new mascot character to craft a franchise around. They settled on Conker the Squirrel, a fuzzy anthropomorphic rodent previously seen in Diddy Kong Racing as well as his own Game Boy Color title. With the main character set, Rare's team began crafting another in their long line of 3D platformers, with Conker bopping enemies and collecting shiny widgets to open new areas and gain new skills. It was all going so well, until the glut of similar platformers on the market sent Rare into a tailspin.

The game's producer, Chris Seavor, made an announcement to the press that the previously-named Conker's Quest would be getting a radical makeover into a "dark and controversial" game. This bizarre twist resulted in a very different sort of game, one of the last released for the N64. Conker's Bad Fur Day took inspiration from South Park and Mad Magazine, placing the rodent into a number of parodies of movies and TV shows, allowing him to curse like a sailor and battle memorable enemies like the Great and Mighty Poo, an animated hunk of singing turd.

The game was a pariah in Nintendo's lineup when it was released, only advertised on late-night cable and Playboy magazine. The N64 was viewed as mostly a machine for kids, so this vile abomination didn't have a market to land on.


Opera & Poo. Perfect Combo!



I can't say Conker was the greatest N64 game I've ever played, for all the humorous (singing poop), fun (conext sensitive stations) and often just strange gameplay (turning into a bat and hauling towns people to their gory demise? Wow.) CBFD is plagued by the curse of the 64-bit era: the controls are downright primitive by today's standards, the music isn't anything to write home about,and the textures are blurry and stretched all over, just like every N64 game ever. The real problems for me came when the early "cutesy" worlds give way to the darker movie parody levels, that's then the controls start to show their weakness and the difficulty begins to spike rather sharply. By the time you finish, the game has taken some very disconnected turns before settling back on the main story arc, ideas that in the grand scheme of things add little to the overall experience. Sticking to a silly-but-dirty style would have made for a little more consistent game, even if that would have meant not being as irreverently quirky.

Still the game is fun, funny and certainly a creative departure Ninty rarely (pun intended) takes anymore. The cartoony style and R-rated mix of violence are a treat given the gray-tastic shoot-em-ups we tend to get anymore. And I can give Conker a full star just for the voice acting alone, it was superb- even more awesome that it's just 3 voice actors for the entire game! Heck, just getting that much voice onto the cart is worth a half star :)
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People who added this item 29 Average listal rating (19 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 0
Cool Spot - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 282 Average listal rating (187 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
Contra - Famicom and NES
STATUS: Finished

Beaten probably 100 times. I bet this is my most finished game ever. EVER.

And I'll play it until I can't play any more. Konami Code forever!!!

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People who added this item 123 Average listal rating (80 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 0
Contra III: The Alien Wars - Super famicom and SNES
STATUS: Finished

Beat this guy probably once a week back in 2001 when I was living single and working a late shift. Still remember it fondly, sitting up at 2am and playing Contra on a system 3 generations behind... I was so cool.

This guy is nigh on impossible! {/grandpa}
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People who added this item 45 Average listal rating (24 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 0
Contra: Hard Corps - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
STATUS: Unplayed
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Dr. Franken - Game Boy
STATUS: Finished

Another moldy oldie from when I was a kid, buying any game I could afford- meaning usually $20 or less. Nostalgia Moment: When I went through my old GB games a year or two ago I found hand drawn maps, relics from my 14-year old self detailing the dungeons and areas that didn't have an in game map. How cool! I also logged a bunch of GameGenie codes and even better, in what's a testament to the time I was willing to commit to trial and error, I found my old save code archive- and not just codes here, I mean a literal 'Rosetta Stone' translation of how to save in any room with any item and health. Young me figured out the nomenclature for the save system... I could start over anywhere at any time, a kind of savewarp cheat. I was so smart :)

Frankie sure looks stylish in those jammies



The game isn't great, but it's reasonable for a GB era platformer. Frankie controls sluggishly and feels pretty heavy (he's not agile at all) which is most noticeable when you're jumping -which is often, as you're on every windowsill, bookcase, stair, etc in the entire castle.

Despite the easy things to bash, like the fact that the game is slow and there's no pacing whatsoever, and the music just repeats a midi "Moonlight Sonata" over and over endlessly, the game is worthwhile if only for one good reason: it's more a puzzler than platformer, and the puzzles were good. Because they require you to really explore, in a Metroidvania kind of way, you won't be able to just blast or platform your way through the game. It's right in my wheelhouse, and it works well in this particular setting.

Nothing's too challenging here; the enemies aren't that strong or numerous, I don't recall a single boss if there were any, but the castle is so large and the pieces to reassemble Betsie (your Franken-girlfriend) and solve the puzzles are spread out in a way that rewards wandering back and forth for hours. I remember navigating the castle for what seemed like weeks to get to the ending. On the whole, the game uses it's large geography well, and when you blend the old-timey backdrop with the monochrome(ish) GB color scheme, classical music, strange bad guys... they come together to give Dr. Franken a vintage, B&W feeling experience.

I bought Dr. Franken probably because I was into Aadams Family at the time, and it turned out to be a good choice. It took up a significant amount of my free time, I probably clocked 20-30 hours trying to beat it through trial and error, mapping areas (I was into that at the time). It's also a much *MUCH* better game than the ridiculous Dr Franken for SNES, which was a cheap cash in on the extreeeeeme, rad-dude fad that was the mid 90's. Totally gnarly, dude.
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Dr. Franken 2 - Game Boy
STATUS: Unfinished
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Donald Duck: Goin' Quackers - Game Boy Color
STATUS: Unfinished

I never seem to play GBC games anymore... I should
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People who added this item 59 Average listal rating (32 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 0
Donkey Kong - Game Boy
STATUS: Finished

The best GB game ever released. Period.

I beat this one after, what, 15 years of its release... I literally beat it one lazy afternoon after college, turned it off, and when I came back like 3 days later to go another round or two I found that the cart had no save states on it anymore- the battery had gone kaput. Talk about timing!

Anyway, great game deserves a proper review, and I don't have time for that yet. Stay tuned.

Pop this bad boy in your GBC to activate an OG Arcade bezel

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People who added this item 544 Average listal rating (497 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
Donkey Kong Country - Super famicom and SNES
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 440 Average listal rating (290 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 287 Average listal rating (178 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 36 Average listal rating (15 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Drill Dozer - Game Boy Advance
STATUS: Played 20 minutes

Interesting concept... kinda like mega man, a little more Japanime at first, but I've not really put much time into it.
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People who added this item 155 Average listal rating (89 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 0
DuckTales - Famicom and NES
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 4h30m

So we can all agree- older games, especially those now antiquated platformers of the NES/Master System, are HARD.

HARD, I tell you!

I remember playing Ducktales years ago on a friend's NES; like all kids of that era I loved the cartoons and really wanted to play the game, the closest one could be to an adventurous run through jungles, haunted mansions and even the moon with the McDuck clan... So since this is now officially "game time" for me, I booted up the old girl for a try at what I never did as a kid- finishing the game.

So why did we go to the moon exactly? Who knows... just enjoy the music



The game deserves all the retro-nostalgia love it gets, plain and simple. It's a classic platformer of the highest caliber- right up there with Mario and Sonic, even Aladdin, perhaps the greatest licensed Disney game ever. The plot may be Scrooge and the ducklings hinting for lost treasures scattered about the world (and moon, but the levels are the real treasure here; multiple paths, hidden secrets, challenging jumps and tricky bosses all make the game a tough but fun ride from start to finish.

Controls are nothing special, not as tight as I would have liked, but they fit the Ducktales universe quite well. Scrooge can either use his cane as a pogo stick to jump on enemies or grab onto some objects to move them, which is a nice change of pace from the usual jumping or throwing attacks that nearly all other platformers rely on.

The music is, well, iconic. Fans and gamers hold the moon theme as one of the highlights of gaming scores, and they're right, but there's not a bad tune in the whole game. The Ducktales theme song makes an appearance, of course, but even that uber catchy ear-worm is just one of the great tracks found here. Wonderful despite being 20+ years old, a testament to the great Yoshihiro Sakaguchi, the same composer who's work on the Mega Man series is also applauded for impressive 8-bit anthems.

Speaking of Mega Man... DT is very clearly a Mega Man engine game- which makes perfect sense since it's the same Capcom team that produced Mega Man and it's sequels. Many of the same game mechanics are here (selecting worlds in any order, moving from screen to screen without visibility forward or backwards, boss rooms with a small entrance). And Mega Man was also HARD, something that was toned down -but not forgotten- with DT.

I wish there was a save system here... saving or save codes would have made this game a perfect 10 for me. As it stands, it's gonna have to settle for being one of my favorite and best NES games ever.

If you're one of those people who loved the Disney cartoons of the 80's and 90's you probably have fond memories of Ducktales. Play the game, relive your childhood- life is still like a hurricane here in Duckburg :)
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DuckTales 2 - Famicom and NES
STATUS: Now Playing
TIME TO BEAT: 4h50m

First things first: Much like the many hidden treasures Scrooge & clan seek in their Ducktales adventures, this game is a lost gem.

I realize that this game came out during the rise of the SNES and the 16-bit (and arguably gaming's greatest) era, but the geniuses at Capcom did an amazing job making the colors bright, the sprites perfect, and the backgrounds beautiful. Coming straight from DT1 to this, I can really see a difference, and it makes me regret not having played this many, many years ago.

Let's break this down like it tabloid headlines, shall we?:


Ducktales 2 delivers stunning graphics: "Better than Ducktales 1!" shouts voodoozen to anyone who accidentally stumbles across his games blog


Stellar music and gameplay spotted nearly undetected in DT2. Public left dumbfounded when asked why they've never played the game


Exclusive interview: Internet reviewer confirms "This may be one of the best, and most deserving NES games of all time. How did we all miss this so long ago? For shame!"



Seriously, DT2 improves on nearly everything from the first game (the music was only 'great', not 'iconic' like DT1). There's an actual setup to the plot, the graphics and sound are refined and beautiful, the controls are nice and tight... It's hard to find things that aren't great about this one.

Can't ducks float naturally?





I can find two issues here, the first is that the game seems a touch easier than the first. You can run through the whole thing in 45 minutes if you know where to go- a fact proven that I finished the game in under 3 hours on my first play through. But to the designer's credit, I had to go back and replay the game because I got the 'bad' ending, due to me not realizing how many treasure map pieces there were. My time to beat here is the sum of the two play throughs, though.

Second minor gripe is the stinking rings that Scrooge has to hook onto above some pits. I died so many times because the game didn't like my position and wouldn't hook onto the rings. Likely more my fault than the game's, but I'm blaming it anyway...

I'm not a fan of these rings, making it around the circle here was palm-sweating, heart racing gaming for me



Play this, Ducktales fans. It's becoming harder to find, fetching $40+ on the used game market, but I assure you- it's worth your gold coins.
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Ghostbusters II - Game Boy
STATUS: Finished

Not half bad! And given that it's a licensed game from a bad movie, that's saying a lot.

This game is a top-down adventure game, and tries to follow the movie a little more closely than the other video game versions of GB2- that is to say, there are Ghostbusters in this game and they need to stop Vigo, but at least there's SOME recognizable GB2 moments. You control one of the 'busters while the other follows along and helps out. Controls are typical right/left/up/down, shoot and trap the ghosts, and they work acceptably but can be tough when you're trying to hit moving targets.

Lots of hallways in this town...



The game art looks cartoon-y (not like the RGB cartoon show, however) and the approach works for well given the Gameboy's limited hardware capabilities. I found that I really liked this game, but even a pleasant GB title like this can't save the fact that Ghostbusters II was a rancid turd of a movie, and no video game, however good, will ever help it shed that disappointment.
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Gunstar Heroes - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
STATUS: Unplayed
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People who added this item 131 Average listal rating (77 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 0
Kirby's Dream Land - Game Boy
STATUS: Now Playing
TIME TO BEAT: 3h

Good gracious, is this game hard! And here I thought it was for kids...

I died so many times through the levels- and there's only 5, including the final boss stage (which is basically the old-school "play all the bosses over again!" level)- I couldn't keep count. Kirby doesn't have much health, so even a minor streak of bad luck can send you to the "continue" screen.


Those darn twins pushing blocks... I spent 2 hours on them alone!




The game is, as I mentioned, short. Levels range from 5 minutes to maybe 20, but the game designers made up for that by throwing well-placed enemies at you in ways that make certain damage inevitable unless you've memorized the layout and tricks. Since I came in completely cold (this is my first Kirby game ever) I didn't have years of strategy memorized to avoid cheap hits.

Yeah, you can float over a lot of the areas and enemies, but not all, and there's plenty of spikes and flying enemies to get you, too. It's no cake walk.


Overall the game was pretty darn good -for its time. There's only a few characters but the graphics were a nice mix of cute and sharp sprite art. Super Gameboy Colorizing helps a lot too, brings the game almost to early NES levels.

Biggest drawback is the length of the game; GB carts just didn't have the capacity for much, so games repeated quite a bit and used fewer levels- not a knock on Kirby or the old GB, but the limits of the hardware are unfortunately apparent here.

The summary: I think I'll run through all the Kirby's in my collection; that's a lot, and speaks to just how well the game still translates. Kirby's Dreamland was cute but tough, fun and challenging, and every game after has added something to the gameplay... Something I need to explore.
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STATUS: Unfinished
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STATUS: Finished

Dang, I got so good at this game I could beat it without losing a life and under 45 minutes. Escape from Camp Deadly is another one of those games that you have to enjoy for the license, because the gameplay just isn't that good.

Narrowly escaping the "All non-arcade Simpsons games must suck" mandate, this little doozy is a simple side scrolling platformer with dodgy controls and unreliable jumping. It's heaps better than any of the crappy NES Simpson's games for sure, but that doesn't mean it's great. There's plenty of the old Simpsons humor built in, but you kind of have to approach the game as though it's an interactive Bart episode, sans dialog.

Biggest problem: Being strategic. Bart may or may not be able to stand out of harm's way; just when you think you're in a safe spot and start planning your next jump or boomerang throw you're suddenly slammed with a falling rock or stray swarm of bees. Jumps are just as confounding- you have to be RIGHT up to the edge of platforms on a couple of the trickiest jumps in the game, and even then you may not land where you expected, forcing you to take a hit or cheap insta-death.

Enemies? Nah, I can jump safely!




The GB screen didn't have enough real estate to display very large areas, and in order to make Bart recognizable in pixel form the developers had to make characters a little larger than just dots and squares from the Atari days (TMNT also suffers terribly from this). Problem is, that severely limits your ability to see left or right, and when enemies start spawning off screen you'll have no idea where they are until they appear, usually right where you were about to land a jump.

So if you're wondering why I'd spend time criticizing this game, listing no positives yet obviously having played it for endless weeks, the answer is simple: I only had 2 games for my GB for literally months, and when I tired of Tetris there wasn't any other choice!

Ah, the memories. Who'd a thunk that all these years later I'd have more games than hours/days/years to play them... I do like the game, but it can be a bit trying, plus it's hard to really want to dedicate the time to play this when I have better games unfinished for GB.
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People who added this item 163 Average listal rating (98 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unfinished
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People who added this item 255 Average listal rating (113 ratings) 7.9 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unplayed

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People who added this item 703 Average listal rating (581 ratings) 8.5 IMDB Rating 0
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past - Super famicom and SNES
STATUS: Finished

See GBA review below.

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STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 17h

[Nov 2011]

I made the call to play this one on GBA since 1) I've never finished LttP and 2) I can play the GBA version anywhere, sitting in bed, on the couch, or the privacy of my own bathroom... the GBA version isn't perfectly 'true to the original', but portability is way awesome!

So having finished my first couple 2D Zelda since the original back in the 80's, here's where I'm at: The game is a direct extension of the top-down perspective of the original Zelda for NES- and that's a cool thing, except that even with my adult sized brain I was still sometimes unclear which walls are 'up' and which are 'down'. I kept trying to jump onto a ledge below me only to find that I'm already at the bottom, and conversely I leapt off of edges unexpectedly on more than one occasion.
Frustration #1: There's a reason we've abandoned top-down 2D gaming. Although in all honesty the small screen probably didn't help.

I absolutely loved the first couple of hours of this game, exploring, finding the 3 medallions and being tossed into the dark world was beyond awesome... then the first enemy to hit me in the dark world takes off 2 whole hearts, and I was completely shaken. Really drastic change there, difficulty curve was massively steep and it only got harder. It's not necessarily a bad thing, but it leads me to
Frustration #2: grinding for hearts after every enemy encounter in the dark world, at least until you find more heart containers.

Past those 2 big things, I did find myself still liking the game, maybe not as much as young me. It still looks great, despite being nearly 20 years old (that map, oh man. So good!), and brought back all sort of memories of what epic used to mean. Having extra buttons on SNES was probably better than the A/B only GBA, but that's not a huge hindrance.

Told you the map was cool- so cool someone cross stitched it!


Music is forgettable, though. I'm just not feeling it. I know the game introduced some familiar themes to the series, but overall it's not nearly at the level of the games after it. And whoever decided to use the audio "Auggh!" from OoT every stinking time link swings his sword can quit designing video game audio forever. It's not cool. Reminds me of the annoying "You Found Something!" cut scene that plays EVERY time you open a chest in TP. Not game breaking, but annoying.

One of the The biggest things that may have hurt my experience was that I had to adjust my gameplay style from how I play 3D games. I had the same re-learning curve when I ran through NSMBW... that game kicked my butt over and over relentlessly for days (MONTHS!), and LttP did the same thing. Enemies are everywhere, they respawn each time you trek back into a room, and they all deal 2 hearts worth of damage. Sheesh! Basically, just don't rush it, don't try to hack-n-slash; go slow, play defensively and have your sword charged every second that you can.

It's classic for sure, and even though the graphics , details and sprites are really, really good for a decades-old game, it reminded me that you really had to use some imagination in these older games... check out the concept art here for what I mean, there's no way a 16-bit system could ever truly represent what the game developers envisioned. That alone gives it some style points, I find that all too often games do the imagining for you. LttP gives you just enough of a kick start to your mind's eye, you have to fill in the blanks yourself.

Game wants to portray:


but manages this:



I loved the lost woods, finding the sword is one of those moments in a game that make you feel re-energized and powerful, very satisfying to finally pull the Master Sword!

But is LttP one of my favorites? Well, I can't say it's better than LA or WW, so probably mid-range at best- which is a 9/10 for any series outside of a Zelda/Metroid/Mario game. But when you play LttP back to back with other entries in the franchise, you see that Link's Awakening DX did everything gameplay-wise a little better- but I am glad that Link's Awakening had LttP to build on; it took everything good about LttP and made it better. See review below!
voodoozen's rating:
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STATUS: Finished (technically. see DX review below)
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People who added this item 280 Average listal rating (149 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 15h45m

[Dec 2011]
I've played this on GB and GBC, but had never finished on either console... color apparently didn't help my resolve to complete the game originally, but after finishing LttP I picked this bad boy up again and was blown away. LA is officially my second favorite Zelda, right there with WW. It's that good.

Honestly, maybe it's nostalgia for gameboy games, but I love the music start to finish (the music is actually heaps better than LttP despite being more bleeps and bloops than the SNES midi quality of LttP), it's got some cute humor in it (Zeldas can be pretty dry, even when they're trying to be funny if you ask me) and now that I'm in 2D revival mode I've realized the 4 way controls and A/B/Start/Select only isn't that bad...

I originally thought I could finish in around 10 hours, but it ended up being 15+. I really wanted to find everything... and ok, so when you start the 'trade' quest, you have to finish it to beat the game, but even if that wasn't the case I would have done everything anyway.

if anyone ever asks you if GBC was better than the OG GB, you answer "Yes. Now stop asking stupid questions."


It was nice to have hints, calling the old man was a bit of genius by Nintendo, and with his help I made it all the way to the Wind Fish without having to resort to hints. Unfortunately I was stopped cold once I hit that last temple, and consulted the internetz for help. Good thing I finished that trade quest, eh?

Graphics on GBC were amazing, and they hold up with anything 8-bit Nintendo ever put out. I'd actually pick this over a lot of GBA games- obviously that's a personal preference since I'm an unrepentant old-school game fan. My only real complaint was the constant inventory swaps you're forced to do. It's a limitation of having only A/B buttons, but a nuisance nonetheless.

If you haven't played this game (or somehow haven't played a 2D Zelda), this is the place to start; it's got all the head-scratching puzzles, the challenging difficulty and absolute sense of fun of the other 2D installments, but the game shines in so many ways it easily takes the 'Best 2D Zelda' crown. You'll be in love with the island and the people, the enemies, the weapons and upgrades... everything Zelda should be is encased in this one little black cartridge.

BONUS:
Concept art is... stunning (and not as molesty as this screen grab makes it look...)
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People who added this item 673 Average listal rating (454 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unfinished

I should beat OoT first, right?
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People who added this item 587 Average listal rating (287 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Unfinished

GIVEN:
*Got this one because I love Zelda
*It looks stunning on a GBA micro and is very engaging
*I have time to play Zelda while traveling

SOLVE FOR:
Why I haven't finished this game

Show your work!
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People who added this item 935 Average listal rating (816 ratings) 8.7 IMDB Rating 0
STATUS: Finished
TIME TO BEAT: 40h

I have no clue where to start here... OoT is simultaneously the greatest genre and console defining game ever and EPIC in every sense of the word, but also a repeat-a-thon, dungeon/overworld/dungeon formulaic adventure game. Having said that, since it was ahead of it's time for most everything I'm torn on how I forgive the obvious issues and give it a fair rating. So let's start with the good...

The game is huge, meaning there's tons of content and plenty of places to explore. It's no so much like Tomb Raider where the areas and architecture make you feel tiny and instill a sense of scale, but the time it takes travel and explore make the game take hours and hours, but never felt like it was dragging.

Everything feels complete, like the developers didn't skimp on any dungeons or quests. Two of the dungeons alone have harder puzzles and require more time and backtracking than some entire FULL games, and they're all different ("different enough", see below) and challenging the player in creative ways, making use of new power ups and old ones as well. Very nicely done.

Music was great, maybe best in the series. Yeah, midi blips and bloops, but considering when this launched (1998), it's downright stunning.


And the Not So Great

Graphics are nice, but of course blocky. This isn't necessarily good or bad per se, but again it was 1998 and the first 3D Zelda- this was mindblowing compared to pretty much any game before it.

Ooooh, bad guy watch out. Link comin' ta getcha!



The game feels like most N64/PS1 era games: Controls are aggravating, enemies are stupid, textures are blurry, and the dungeons are all basically just giant key hunts... Like I said earlier, dungeons are all "different enough", but Zelda is all about dungeons, and these are sometimes so long that the slippery controls (Z-targeting sucks) and painful amount of backtracking make you rage when one little thing goes wrong and you're warped back to the entrance. I'll let Eiji Aonuma, OoT creator, sum it up:

"Sometimes it doesn't move as fast as it should, graphics aren't as beautiful as they should be; there are some confusing parts... any present Zelda is technically superior. Everything goes faster, more fluid."



Pretty much. Except I haven't finished any modern Zeldas, so I'm in for a treat :)


The game is hard. I died probably 10 times throughout the game, but I took a LOT of precautions and went back to heal often.

To my credit, I only had to use a guide once (water temple was HARD!), although I did give up and used a walkthrough to get Biggorn's sword right before I entered Ganon's Castle. Until that point I hadn't done ANY of that sidequest, and it turns out the Master Sword is better against Ganon anyway... so I don't feel too guilty.

I found almost everything- at least, what I really needed. I had all but 3 hearts, 50 gold skulltulas and every weapon and magic save the ice arrows.


SUMMARY:
I get that OoT was one of the most defining games ever created; the gameplay was unbelievable (for its time), and the story is/was epic... It changed adventure games forever, everything since has in some way been influenced by this masterpiece. And vs. other games of it's day, Ocarina is STUNNING. Some games are nearly unplayable nowadays, but OoT is still darn good 15 years later.

Like most games of the 64-bit era, it shows it's age in controls, graphics and a handful of outdated gameplay mechanics, but on the whole the game deserves the praise.


Still not better than Link's Awakening, though :)


Also, buy one of these: http://www.amazon.com/Ocarina-Replica-Legend-Edition-Songbird/dp/B00P8BORW8
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STATUS: Unplayed

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People who added this item 46 Average listal rating (28 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 0
Mega Man Zero 4 - Game Boy Advance
STATUS: Unplayed
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Atari, NES, Master System, GB, GBC, SNES, Genesis, GBA, N64 games

THE RUNDOWN:

GB, GBC, GBA

The original Gameboy was my first real gaming system. We had an Atari, but the Gameboy was all mine, and it still holds a special place as the gaming system that I've spent the most time with. Didn't move on to GBC until waaaaayyyy later, and GBA even later, which thankfully didn't stop the GBA micro from being my favorite gaming device (until the PSP Go, that is)


NES

What is there to say? Every kid in the 80's was playing the NES. I'm just really late to the party! Most of the people I knew only had a handful of carts, and a good deal of those were guaranteed to be budget (re: cheap/bad) games. Now that I've had time to be discretionary, I can finally live out my 1987 in style. Crank up the Beastie Boys.


SNES

Like the SMS/Genesis games I've stockpiled, I shamefully have more SNES games backlogged than anyone I can think of. Back in the day when the SNES was long past it's prime (2002!) I was the only guy who still had one... and a bunch of people were selling their dusty SNES games at yard sales and flea markets sometimes literally 3 for a dollar. You'll find many of those in this list!

SEGA

Got a bunch of SMS/GG/Genesis games recently, of which I've previously played maybe 3. These will waste ridiculous amounts of time with their awesomeness. Adding them here just to remind me I have them in the backlog!


Nintendo64


I played N64 one time in college. Once, and that was because I was a Mario Kart SNES Wizard and was sure I could make the young nerds squeal in terror of my mad skillz. That was not the case... I learned I knew nada about 3D anything, and so my N64 quest began. [/boring story]

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