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Wed 1st July, 2009

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Rensch commented on Nintendo Download: 12th March (Europe):

Metroid: Zero Mission is fantastic. Its organic, natural environments contrast very nicely with Fusion's technological-looking space station. Both have a very different feeling to them, yet are distinctly Metroid.



Rensch commented on GBA Classics Sonic Advance And Mega Man & Bass...:

Mega Man & Bass is a game I am really curious about.

I don't it ever got released in Europe if I recall correctly. It's hard to find so it's good Capcom keeps up its solid VC support.

I do own Sonic Advance, which holds up remarkably well.



Rensch commented on Weirdness: This Video Uses Super Mario Bros. 2...:

As a person from The Netherlands, one of the original 'calvinist capitalist' countries, you can still see it in the work ethic of some people, despite most of them not being protestant or otherwise religious.

Some might even say this is where the problems Europe currently faces stem from. The north is traditionally protestant and considers certain luxuries to be something you must earn. The south remained catholic and therefor doesn't have this ethic as strongly, leading to differences in how people approach labour, money and how all these things relate.



Rensch commented on Ocarina Of Time 3D Reportedly No Longer In Pro...:

I don't know if second-hand copies are still easy to find here in Europe. I bought mine second-hand as the first title for my 3DS back in 2012, when it was still very easy to find new copies.

If you can't get your hands on a retail copy, do yourself a favour and download it. It's that good. While very little has changed, the visuals and interface are redone to great effect. It makes the classic even better, without really making it feel like a remake. Instead, it feels like it always looked like this, which is quite amazing. It's not unless you actually boot up the old version that you see how much prettier it truly is. This is because the style and colour of the original is very much intact. The unlockable Master Quest is also a wonderful and generous extra from Nintendo.

Normally I am not too excited about remakes, but in the case of Ocarina of Time, I don't care. It's a game I can enjoy over and over again. Let's hope the Majora's Mask remake is just as good.



Rensch commented on Poll: Which is the Best Pokémon Game?:

HeartGold & SoulSilver, easily. It's pretty much everything that Gold, Silver and even Crystal had to offer. Those were never really topped until they were remade with all the new features brought in by two additional generations of Pokémon plus a whole host of new features not yet seen before. The PokéWalker was a nice little freebie, too. Put a Pokémon on it and level your Pokémon while walking the dog or going out to town for lunch. It was genius.

Simply put, the best Pokémon games, but made even better. Fantastic game!



Rensch commented on Poll: Which Is The Best Super Mario Platformer?:

I voted for SMB3, which I think is objectively the best one. Personally I like the Galaxy games a lot, the second one in particular. World is great as well. I must admit that I haven't played NSMB Wii and U yet nor 3D World. The latter looks particularly amazing.



Rensch commented on Video: Hyperkin RetroN 5 Review - King Of The ...:

This looks amazing. One thing worth mentioning is that you can also play SEGA Master System with a special adapter. Kind of a bummer it doesn't play that standard but still worth remembering to get more out of it. I'd really like to get one of these.



Rensch commented on Cave Story 3D to Arrive on 3DS eShop in North ...:

As much as they shamelessly cash in on what started as a Freeware title, I want to try this because of the radically different presentation. Great to see it available for download as I can't find it in stores anymore.



Rensch commented on Mario Kart Month: A History of the Mario Kart ...:

The first one I played was the one on the DS, which blew me away at the time. The fact that you could play online was a novelty, but the execution was very dissapointing. Only half of the tracks were included (and the fantastically creative Waluigi Pinball course was not one of them for some obscure reason). With its first major online title, the Nintendo WFC immediately set its reputation for frequent disconnections. The snaking technique being exploited by so many people didn't really help getting into the online multiplayer, either. Thankfully the online experience we were waiting for was found in MK Wii and MK7. (The latter of which has Waluigi Pinball available for online play. It really is among the best Mario Kart tracks ever, you know.)

Still the DS version will have a special place in my heart. It brought back the retro cups first seen in Super Circuit and is still one of the best-looking games on the double-screened portable. I also liked how you could make your own decal, adding something personal to the online mode.

And it had R.O.B. the robot as a playable character three years before Super Smash Bros. Brawl. How awesome is that?



Rensch commented on Mario Kart Month: Clones And Alternatives to N...:

Konami Krazy Racers is oft-forgotten, but was a surprisingly solid package back then. It benefited from the fact that it was a launch title, unlike MK: Super Circuit, which launched several months later. While it lacks the sheer amount of tracks SC has, it does have several unlockable characters. That is a feature which had not yet been adopted by the Mario Kart series in those days. Finding all four of those hidden characters was actually a huge challenge if you didn't want to rely on or similar sites. I remember finding this game for a low price several years after its release. Sure had loads of fun playing this game on my trusty GBA SP in the summer sun. The funny thing is that I never played MK:SC until the DS had been out for years.



Rensch commented on Mario Kart Month: A History of the Mario Kart ...:

Is it me or is the GBA's Super Circuit the least remembered of all the Mario Kart titles? If so, it really is undeserved, as it is one of the best. The fact that you could unlock slightly altered versions of the classic SNES tracks was an amazing feature. Nowadays we take the retro cups for granted, but back in 2001 it was a clever new feature that made Super Circuit into one of the most complete and fully realized titles in the GBA library. The basic nature of the SNES tracks provided a nice contrast to the more creative likes of new courses like Cheese Land, Ribbon Road or Sunset Wilds. Still one of the biggest, most replayable titles to come out of the GBA era. Quite a feat when you take into account that the game was released only months after the initial release of the system. They could have just done the same as they did with so many other NES and SNES classics and just port the first game and people would have bought it in a heartbeat. Instead, they went the extra mile and made a completely new game that had much of the SNES game's content as an unlockable feature. It turned out to be everything it needed to be and more by proving a Mario Kart game could not only work on a handheld, but also provide - and even exceed - the level of content the console versions had. Wonderful game!



Rensch commented on Feature: Memories of the Wii and DS Wi-Fi Conn...:

Back in say, 2005, I didn't have a Wi-Fi network at home. This was still quite common at the time, so Nintendo had a solution for that: a Wi-Fi dongle that would fit in the USB port of your computer. In retrospect, the thing was ridiculously overpriced. Getting it to work properly was rather annoying. I remember trying out Mario Kart DS. While the service was plagued by disconnections, and some of the coolest courses in the game weren't even available in multiplayer, the fact that I could play a handheld game online was a revelation.

Two years later came Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, the first two Pokémon games with a much-desired online mode. For the first time ever catching 'em all was not quite as impossible as it had been before. One of the most brilliant yet flawed innovations was the Global Trade Station. Put a pokémon up for offer or search for one you want and see what people want in exchange. On paper it worked well, but in practice people would ask for lv. 100 Palkia in exchange for their awesome lv.3 Bidoof. Hackers and illegitimate lv.1 shiny Dialgas and Kyogres littered the system.... and continue to do so to this day. Why even allow players to ask for a lv.1 Mewtwo. It never happens unless you cheat.

But even then, the fact that a Diamond player like me could get his hands on a Pearl-exclusive Murkrow in exchange for Diamond-native Misdreavus was wonderful. No more getting together with friends and buying clunky link cables to get that one elusive Pokémon like we used to as kids in the schoolyard. No, you'd just put up that Misdreavus and within an hour or so, you would have yourself a Murkrow from some nameless dude in Japan. Fair trades were usually rewarded. Sure, it felt less like socializing, but it was so much more streamlined and easy than before.



Rensch commented on Round Table: Let's Discuss Our Hopes and Dream...:

HeartGold and SoulSilver kept most of the additions of Crystal intact. I hope OmegaRuby and AlphaSapphire do the same with Emerald-exclusive features. There was plenty of interesting new stuff in Emerald like the Battle Tents, a bigger Safari Zone, Trainer Hill, Mirage Tower, Desert Underpass and off course the immense challenge of the Battle Frontier. I would be really dissapointed if they do not add the Battle Frontier. I expect some new areas as well.

And please, Game Freak, add the cool Rayquaza scene from Emerald. Imagine how awesome that'd be in 3D. I imagine they don't make both Teams Magma and Aqua be your enemy in these new versions - like in Emerald - but they could at least keep the Kyogre vs. Groudon thing and Rayquaza in the main story.



Rensch commented on First Footage of Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha S...:

Looking forward to this. I wonder how much I will enjoy this game compared to FireRed and LeafGreen or HeartGold and SoulSilver, though. I have played through the original Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald versions so many times, I wonder if I will enjoy it quite as much. I know Hoenn through and through by now, making it somewhat less exciting than playing Kanto or Johto again. I hadn't played much of those games in a few years when their remakes came out. I kinda hoped it was a sequel, rather than a remake, but I am satisfied with a Sevii Islands kind of situation.



Rensch commented on Nintendo of America is Cutting the Price of Fi...:

Please, for the love of God, follow suit Nintendo of Europe. I still wanna buy Mario Kart 7, New SMB 2 and DK Country Returns 3D. Especially Mario Kart 7 is high on my wishlist right now.

I am wondering, though. Is this going to be one of those 'greatest hits' lines. That'd make perfect sense to me.