Author: Pedz

GRcade Twitchcast Episode 15 – Catching Up!

The hosts of this weeks GRcade Twitchcast are Pedz and The Doom Spoon.

It’s been a while since the last GRcade Twitchcast, in fact, there hasn’t been one since E3. Doom has been busy and has had a few issues and Pedz has been lazy. Basically, this is just a catch-up episode where the guys catch up and just talk random stuff for a little while. We hope you enjoy this, and we should now things have settled down the Twitchcast will be more regular.

For audio only download click here: Audio Only

 

 

Retro Monday Game 94 – Apocalypse!

Apocalypse was a ‘multidirectional shooter’ (or as we call them usually to call them now ‘Twin Stick Shooter’)  game for Sony’s PlayStation. It was made by developed by Neversoft and published by Activision. It was released in 1998 and was the second game that was created by the Neversoft.

The game was picked via a poll of three games over on GRcade. The three games were picked by Preezy.

Another game I knew nothing about. Which seems to be quite the common theme at the moment.  Well, I have to admit, that the Playstation era visually for me, just isn’t very nice, it hasn’t aged particularly well. Obviously, it will depend on the stylistic choices made and the aesthetic of the game, but a lot that I see or play just don’t hold up. This is one of those games. It isn’t helped that I’m playing it on a 4K TV making it looks worse. For the time I think it would have been held fairly highly, and while the visuals aren’t amazing, when I re-adjusted to them, but the 4th level I was really digging the look of the game and in general prefered the game after the first level. I enjoyed my time with this, it’s not massively different to similar titles before it, when I was asked ‘what kind of game is this?’ in the stream, I said it seems similar to something like Smash T.V. but not as hard. It has different things to Smash TV, there are points where the camera angle changes and there are platforming sections, but it’s nothing that hasn’t been done before. It’s a fun game, and for me, that’s what matters. A game doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel to be fun and enjoyable, which I think a lot of people forget nowadays and expect some kind of revolution at all times.

The sound is actually pretty good, the first level I admit I wasn’t a fan, I thought it just sounded odd. I think the music picks up from there on. with music that suits the levels, and on occasion you come across a billboard and on it is a video from a music video which can be from several bands. The ones I happened to see/hear were not something I knew, bar ‘System of the Down’ and ‘War?’ and I thought maybe on was ‘Pantera’ well, it wasn’t. The sound effects were all well done too, the various weapons all had their own unique sounds which were distinct from each other and the explosions were very loud and explosion-y. BUT, the voice acting of Bruce Willis – yes, Bruce Willis the actor – were underwhelming, the quality wasn’t the issue, it was more than he sounded like he couldn’t really be bothered with it and it just seemed half-arsed. On top of that, the dialogue through the stages was repeated way too much you heard 90% of what is going to be said by Bruce by the end of the first stage. It’s a shame as it could’ve been so much more than what it was if there were more lines recorded and Brucey actually had an interest in it.

Verdict: Recommend.

If you’d like to take part in voting for the games or even  picking the games yourself, take yourself over to the GRcade forums and pop into the Retro Monday thread and just post to show your interest. Not just that, you can watch the gameplay live over on Twitch where it’s streamed at 9pm on a Monday evening.

 

Retro Monday Game 93 – Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins!

Back in 80/90’s Nintendo were seeing great success in general, but the Super Mario Bros, in particular, was massive, Nintendo was also having great success with the Game Boy, so why not bring the series to that platform? Well, they did in 1989 with Super Mario Land, they followed it up with Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins. It came out in 1992 in Japan and 1993 for the west. The game wasn’t actually created by Shigeru Miyamoto who created the Mario series but was in fact created by Hiroji Kiyotake.

The game was chosen via a poll of three games that were selected by Super Dragon 64 on GRcade.

This is a game that I am familiar with. I loved it back as a kid and I still love it now. I’ve played it to completion a few times and I still think it’s a great game. I’m also still always amazed by how this game looks in comparison to Super Mario Land. Super Mario Land looks very very different, whereas Super Mario Land 2 actually looks like a Mario game. It does look a little off when playing on the GBC as it wasn’t a proper Color game, but on the monochrome screen, it was lovely as the colours weren’t off. Anyway, the game starts off with Wario (yes, this is the first game Wario was in) taking over Mario’s ‘house’ and you are on a journey to get it back. here are six different themed areas with 3 levels each where you have to get a golden coin and when you have all six you can unlock the door to take on Wario. The worlds themselves are all distinct from each other and have some lovely variety. For example, the first world I went to was a giant tree that I climbed, I later went to space and then a Scary Pumpkin. The bosses are a all well suited to the areas too, there’s no Bowser or Koopa Kids here. As I said they are suited to the theme of the area. So in Space, you fight an Alien, in the Pumpkin a Witch.

The Mushroom and Fire Flower make an appearance too, though the Super Mario’s design is different more than likely due to the lack of colour to differentiate from Big Mario as the was no colour. Hearts replace Green Mushrooms again I think it’s due to lack of colour and being able to easily see the difference. On top of it, you have a new power. It’s a Carrot. It makes Mario a Playboy Bunny… Ok, it doesn’t, but it does actually give him Rabbit Ears. These are used in a similar way to the Raccoon tail in Super Mario Bros 3. They aren’t exactly the same, you can’t run and fly with them, they similar in that you use them to slow your descent by tapping on holding jump. Holding it slows your fall, but tapping slows your fallrate even more, which comes in handy.

The music is great also, with a lot a variety again, sound effects are also on par. It seems like a lot of effort went into it to differentiate it from Super Mario Bros, yet retain the overall feel of a Mario Bros game. You can see that I’m really into this game, maybe nostalgia is playing a big part in that and I don’t personally have many qualms with it, other than the game is a little too easy for 99% of it. I died maybe once or twice and then I got to the final level and lost 40+ lives. It’s a massive difficulty spike. It’s still a very good level, but the middle section, for me at least, was very tricky, but I got there in the end.

Verdict: Recommend.

If you’d like to take part in voting for the games or even picking the games yourself, take yourself over to the GRcade forums and pop into the Retro Monday thread and just post to show your interest. Not just that, you can watch the gameplay live over on Twitch where it’s streamed at 9pm on a Monday evening.

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