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United States

Sun 20th Jan 2008

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sirmatt commented on Star Soldier R:

I think you have to see this game more as a racing game, akin to Excite Truck (which I loved): going through the same track repetitively, trying to get that "S," or in this case, that g*#$d*&mned high score!

The shooter aspect of this game takes a back seat ultimately to the strategy of racking up points. Again, it's just like Excite Truck in that aspect: you start to know the course like the back of your hand and the "racing" part of it plays second fiddle, and yet it still is fun because you are trying to eke out those last critical points to get your ranking and so on. It's just that now, you are focused on an overlay of strategy and all the little flips and tricks you have to do to up your point score.

The racing takes the back seat in a racing game, the shoot-em-up aspect takes a back seat in a shoot-em-up in favor of perfecting that overlay of tactics, tricks, shortcuts and techniques. Same other words, the lack of tracks really means sod all. I mean, even after getting an S in all of the Platinum levels, I took weeks and weeks to finally get an S in Gold Canada in Excite Truck, and I played that sucker with great excitement each time. The same phenomenon applies here.

This game makes this even more fun with regional and international scoring, it just motivates you.

I play games on a very limited basis, maybe 30 - 60 mins a day and this game is perfect for me, I love it. I own Soldier Blade (love that, too) but Solider Blade is just a different game. Same, yet different. Soldier Blade has a greater focus on the shoot-em-up because it's endless, and yet not as densely packed and incredibly orchestrated like SSR is.

See this more like a tough points-based racing track game versus a pure shooter, and you will get the picture.

  • Matt


sirmatt commented on Metal Slug:

As a "casual" gamer who is not going to sit around for more than an hour a session, I can't get through these friggin' games fast enough! So one Metal Slug is perfectly good for me.

This is the game I REALLY wanted when I realized I had to get either Gunstar Heros (I see the quality, but hate the game) or Contra III (Gunstar Heroes won based on web ratings...bad move, that one). Thank goodness Metal Slug is finally on the VC. LOVE IT! GO SNK! RAH RAH RAH!! SNKKKK!!!!

As for the controls, the Anthology is not that bad (friend rented it, so I have played it...shaking for a grenade is not the end of the world).

Oh and NeoGeo STILL does not run in 480p. Shame, shame, SNK. N*E*S through N64 games work in 480p, for goodness' sake...SNK, fix your emulator! I am tired of swapping cables on my Wii to get it to work with the discrete prog/interlaced inputs on my projector!



sirmatt commented on The Legend of the Mystical Ninja:

Can anyone offer any insights for a man and wife team playing this versus, say, playing Kirby's Dream Course?

Or how about this versus Bomberman '93 two player?

Please advise...I am looking for cutesy-and-addictive games to lure my wife in with.

Thank you.



sirmatt commented on Bomberman '93:

Can anyone offer any direct insight into the value of a two-player game?

I see lots of people here and on the net praising the 4 player and so on modes, however no one really directly addresses two player. I've only got two wii remotes and one regular playing partner. Is this a worthwhile purchase or just so-so like the solo mode is?

Conversely, I am trying to decide between this and Kirby's Dream Course. Any insight there insofar as two player fun and addictiveness goes? I have played and enjoyed both games on emu's.

Please advise.



sirmatt commented on Baseball Stars 2:

Peppy (Thanks Fox!!),

Yeah it's just my projector and certain HDTV's that have this problem. Your input ports support and can auto-switch between 480i and 480p. Mine cannot, they are discrete on my InFocus X1 projector, which is a few years old.

There are, however, plenty of people out there that have this problem with slightly older HDTV's and so on.

Even having to switch between the two settings shouldn't have to happen. This is a fun system, not a pain-in-the-ass system.

Still sucks, still won't be buying a single other Neogeo game (however much I would love to download KOF '94 right now) until it supports what is should have in the first place. 480p should have been enforced by Nintendo, really no excuses, especially when all other systems, old and new, and especially "of the era" of the Neogeo, support it on the VC.



sirmatt commented on Streets of Rage 2:

Viva la Button Mashing!

I am definitely the kind of guy who can't be bothered learning combos and fight strategy so on...I just want to mash buttons and wail on dudes. I love the feeling of calories rapidly burning through my ever-weakening thumb when it comes to beat-em-ups, hence the Simpsons love. My thumb becomes a meta-example of the strife and struggle my character is going through and, on that 1:1000 scale level, I can viscerally relate.

This game, for me, is just a hard one to get into: as above, the cast of characters and story locations pretty much suck. I mean, I can buy into being chased 'round a maze by a hedgehog trying to save the Egg Roll Kingdom in Chew Man Fu better.

Viva la Chew Man Fu!!!



sirmatt commented on Streets of Rage 2:

My wife and I beg to differ on this game.

We find it hilarious that you start in the streets and end up going through:

  • A video arcade
  • A pirate ship
  • Disneyland's front yard sidewalk
  • an Alien (cave? den?) to ultimately beat up an alien
  • a baseball field
  • then the pitchers mound apparently drops thousands of feet down into the ground to an underground (fight club?)

It's like they said "hmmm...let's put everything that a 13 year old might think is fighting...disneyland (for the weenies and home schooled kids)...aliens...DANG WE'LL EVEN THROW IN OUR OWN VERSION OF 'BLANKA'!!!"

This may be a killer game, but the themes are just plain RETARDED. I really have a hard time playing this with a straight face, or playing it without groaning.

Oh and the dude on the first level with the rocket pack...the sprites don't scale at all, so it is fairly hard to judge depth when fighting's like you're Paper Mario fighting with your thin edge...just another annoying bit.

I have played this on and off for many months now, I had to hold off on my disgust for it's visual aesthetic and give the gameplay a fair shake. It's fine, probably excellent as above, but I just have a hard time getting over the crap themes.

Give me the Simpsons or 'Turtles Arcade games any day...crappier playing I know, but at least with a much more coherent theme.

BTW for reference purposes, VC games I have and actually like:
Soldier Blade
Baseball Stars 2
Harvest Moon
Street Fighter II Turbo
Bubble Bobble
Mario 64
Mario Kart 64

and I don't care for another "5 star" hero, Gunstar Heros there u go. Different strokes for different folks.



sirmatt commented on Harvest Moon:


(in a good way...I think)

It will suck you in and not let gooo...

I did NOT think I would get into this game, I am 26 years old and did not believe I'd be interested in some tamagotchi world...yet I do love nature and so on, and loved the concept, because I love gardening.

So barring having a farm, and outside of the little potted herb garden on my condo patio, this game has whipped me into an "entreprenurial" frenzy and I am busy growing patches and patches of crops. I just got the sprinkler, because watering was eating up my (2 minute and 45 second) "days"!

Last night my wife and I spent four and a half hours going back and forth debating along the way, who to marry, what to do next, what pattern to use to plant, etc....BTW best pattern is:


where X is a crop and O is untilled (if you tilled it, drop a fence post on it to "un-till" it and allow access to that center crop).

SEE WHAT I MEAN?!? I am giving ADVICE!!

Anyhow, if you want something to wile away 5 or 12 hours on per session, by all means grab this charming little game.

God help me...



sirmatt commented on Mario Kart 64:

My wife and I enjoy this one. Other reviewers are right, the sparseness here probably makes this one worse than other installments like SNES version, but this is pretty solid anyways. Feels a little thin and blocky non-3D sprites are kinda cheap looking, but we playfully shout at each other and call each other a *&#-ing $&# just the same.

Pretty good, although I would prefer 800 points for the SNES version. We can play for 20 - 30 mins and be done, perfect for us. Fine for now.



sirmatt commented on Kirby's Adventure:

This game seemed so easy to start with, but it ramps up. Fluffy and cute, but with some good challenge. Cute bosses that smile at you with wide glossy eyes while they relentlessly attack is a strange and wonderful thing, lol. For 500 pts a lot of gameplay and fun.



sirmatt commented on Gunstar Heroes:

I've had this for a long time and got seduced by the five-star reviews. I see why it gets five stars but more on an academic level than a sheer fun level. It is pretty manic but can be pretty frustrating too. Two player is pretty solid.

Honestly, I was looking for an ersatz Metal Slug, but this does not really match Metal Slug for character, fluidity and flow. It's more disjointed, the animations are Genesis-y (not as fluid), the characters are less other words, it's less ALIVE.

Imaginative, yes, but for example the dice-rolling level is tough to get out of and I didn't really "get" it. I am more of a casual gamer. I don't want to chip away at something for hours on end. It feels a little tedious to me. I like to play for a little while after work, that is my style.

The bosses can be tough, but luckily you get a hit counter to show you how much more damage you have to do.

Personally, as a 26 yr old "short session" after-work-for-fun gamer, I have found this game hard to get super-excited about. Games like Devil's Crush, Air Zonk and Wave Race have done me better.

= Matt =



sirmatt commented on Bubble Bobble:

I bought this game out of sheer guilt. My multitude VC purchases up to now had only a shred of inclusion for my wife (such as the two-player Gunstar Heroes and Streets of Rage 2, along with Street Fighter II Turbo...I am 26, she is 21). She sorta liked those, but loses interest in the "guy" subject matter. What's more, playing any sort of "adversarial" (aka not cooperative) versus games with her of any stripe is VERY BAD NEWS - she can be a little petty! She admits to being quite competitive and gets miffed at losing, rejoices in winning, etc. So Street Fighter II quickly took a dive in average popularity around our house, for example.

Cooperative two-player is the way to go with my significant other.

Anyhow, I was tired of nights of feeling guilty playing alone while she watched and then slunk off to bed. Not fair, not fun. I wanted a solid two-player game we'd both be into.

I bought this game instead of getting Military Madness because I knew she wouldn't take part so much in the two player aspect of that game, plus the fact that it would be adversarial. I used to have a NES and it's rhythms and visuals are burned into my soul. It just FEELS good. Same thing with Punch out - some sort of psychological comfort blanket aspect to it...I dunno.

She loves two things about this game:

  • They're cute
  • Their tails waggle


Plus the part-action-part-puzzle aspect appeals to her. She generally stays alive a lot longer than I do (blames it on my "kamikaze style.")

I started by playing one player which lured her in with it's cuteness and fun factor. Soon we were playing two player and were going for quite a while, up to like level 25 or so.

Good pick for play with a significant other. Big thanks to the person above who suggested it as such, you saved my wife from becoming a Wiidow.



sirmatt commented on Baseball Stars 2:


First of all, I want to shout from a mountaintop, NEOGEO ON VC DOES NOT SUPPORT 480P!!!

I use a projector that has discrete interlaced and progressive scan inputs, and others have HDTV's that have the same conundrum: we have to unplug our Component cables and plug in the composite cable set in our Wii each time we want to play Baseball Stars 2 or any other NeoGeo game. Oh and lest I mention if you have wires for a projector running through your ceiling or floor, and only have three leads for Component video, you'll probably want to run ANOTHER for the single coaxial RCA signal off of the composite cable. THIS IS UNFORGIVABLE!!

SNK, I will not buy a SINGLE other NeoGeo title, despite my KILLER enthusiasm for the system on the Virtual Console, until this is fixed.

That said, after going through the reaching, fiddling and fumbling around my unwieldy system setup to change these cables over EAACH AND EVERY TIME, Baseball Stars 2 is a pretty frickin' fun game.

Just like Metal Slug, it OOZES with life and character. LOVE IT!!
SNK just does the art and the characterization so well. In fact, I think I love Baseball Stars 2 more than Metal Slug on that particular point.

Gameplay is very simple to the point of getting a little boring after a while. Too simple. Great for a kid, no doubt. Not very deep gameplay, the most exciting moments you'll have are trying to flash-decide which base to throw the ball to when you take control of your outfielder.

Other than that, not a slog through or anything, it's an enjoyable pastime game with a lot of character and a frenetic visual pace. Would buy again.




sirmatt commented on Soldier Blade:

I am an older gamer lured back to gaming on the Wii, and I like FUN games that I can pick up and enjoy over and over. This is definitely one of them.

I have other VC games (Street Fighter Turbo, Wave Race 64, Kirby's Adventure, Air Zonk, Devil's Crush, etc.) but I keep coming back to this one. It's just fun to me, as I grew playing 1943 at our local Fuddruckers, so I have deep-seated love of the vertical top-down shooter.

Other games I go back to frequently are Wave Race 64, Mario 64 and Street Fighter Turbo.

On the other hand, Air Zonk, Devil's Crush and Kirby's Adventure kinda suck in their own ways (mainly not so fun, not so realistic with physics and not a challenge, respectively), in fact don't bother buying those as they are just not so engaging. Wait for Williams Pinball on some real tables.

In conclusion, I LOVE SOLDIER BLADE!



sirmatt commented on Devil's Crush:

I beg to differ with the enthusiasm on this game. I am an "older" gamer lured back by the Wii, and I love the virtual console games.

I am frequently playing SOLDIER BLADE (love it!), Street Fighter II Turbo and Wave Race 64, but Devil's Crush just doesn't do it for me so much.

My main gripe is that one big gaming site is right: the ball physics are just annoyingly light. The ball feels a little too light. Just by a hair, but it's annoying enough to a pinball "purist." I used to play tons of Pro Pinball by Cunning...ball physics are pretty great there. This game is just annoying and it ruins it for me, personally.

People say the reason Mercury Meltdown Revolution is so addictive is because of it's realistic blob physics. I tend to agree, and extend that to pinball physics.

Personally I wish I would have passed on my recent purchase of Devil's Crush and Air Zonk in favor of Starfox 64.

****** UPDATE 2/08 ************

OK forget this review. This game is cheesy fun. Ball physics are fine, not so bad as I originally thought. Frame rate skips once in a while, but who cares. And I wish they still had the pentagrams, because those triangles look dumb. Other than that, fun game with lots of little mini-tables to play that are super cheesy (cherubs and alligators and weird skinned snakes and stuff...odd).

Good stuff, I wait for Williams Pinball Hall of Fame...delayed YET AGAIN....ugh....

= Matt =



sirmatt commented on Air Zonk:

Speaking as an "older" gamer lured back to gaming by the Wii, I like these VC games:

  • Soldier Blade (have a soft spot for vertical top down shooters a la 1943)
  • Wave Race
  • Street Fighter II Turbo (spent many an hour hammering on this one as a kid...maybe that's why I can kick this game's butt fairly quickly now) and quite care as much for:
  • Air Zonk
  • Devil's Crush
  • Kirby's Adventure

As far as TG16 titles go, I just LOVE Soldier Blade (keep coming back for more plus it's fun...lots of shouting and cursing lol), but I am just not loving the Air Zonk. Dude, it is HARDER! Plus I am just not a fan of the side-scrolling shooter. Never played 'em, never liked 'em. To me that perspective just seems sort of intuitively clunky, whereas a top-down you "sorta" feel more seat-of-the-pants "really flying".

Anyhow, this game can be challenging. It's cute and bright but usually it's just a tad tougher than that point where I get addicted to it. I personally wish I would have bought Starfox 64 instead of this and Devil's Crush.

****** UPDATE ************

OK, screw the review above. I love this game. It's bright, cute, and a B*TCH!! Challenging and yet can be a lot more fun if you play your cards right - GET AND KEEP THOSE WEAPONS UPGRADES! Otherwise this game is SERIOUSLY tough.

The music also is really catchy and gets stuck in my head - it's playing right now in fact!

It is a good challenge and I enjoy "digging away" at it, plus for me - since I like quick-hit gaming, not long, involved sessions - the save state feature is great.


  • Matt