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Messages - ClexYoshi

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Thank you, Donald. I appreciate you doing this. I'd issue a redaction for my otherwise glowing review ( ) given that the promising story mode is canceled and something with the cross-platform netcode borked the online play in subsiquent patches... Any competitive events will likely be run on old versions that don't immediately and hilariously implode.

TalkBack / Re: Pokemon Scarlet And Violet (Switch) Review
« on: January 15, 2023, 11:38:24 AM »

I cannot imagine this review to have been very easy at all, because this is the nadir of the Pokemon Company's business model breaking down in real time while at the same time being that watershed moment where I feel like Pokemon has managed to engage me in the same way it did when BW became my favorite generation.

Even still, one patch has come to... fix a Music bug. I don't think Gamefreak has TIME to fix this mess, quite frankly.

Even still, weather it be my break from pokemon since Su/Mo, or how fresh-faced I am to Gamefreak's previous attempts to test the waters on open worlds, I truly love this game. I do not think there is a single new design that doesn't tickle my fancy, and there's so much accessability to things that used to be so opaque in pokemon... Power EV hold items being sold the moment you make it to Mesagoza, mints and bottlecaps for the low price of some Pokeyen, Battle Items and TMs easily available, The Mirror Herb mechanic for learning egg moves, being able to bring your Daycare setup to anywhere you want... It's never been easier to just be able to have and use a competitively viable pokemon, to vary things up if you want to participate in VGC and your comp isn't working... heck, you can even try other people's teams.

Shiny hunts are easier too, although if you really got that itch for trying to beat the odds in collecting rare stuff, Pokemon Size and the returning Marks from Gen 8 still provide something to chase for. Most of my misgivings for this gen are on the backs of the sins of Gen 8 (the lack of availability for pokemon, removed moves leading to a metagame that favors ghost pokemon who no longer are checked by persuit trap, etc.) but just... wow, do I love Terrastalization and how it's a mechanic that ACTUALLY SHAKES THE CORE FOUNDATION OF BATTLING! that being said, I do have to give it up to some really, REALLY questionable balance choices in the name of power creep. Gholdengo's ability to block Rapid Spin, Mortal Spin, AND Defog while also sporting a very busted Steel STAB in the form of Make It Rain makes for a pokemon that is nigh impossible for Stall teams to deal with. Stuff like Cyclizar being way too good at abusing it's extremely strong Shed Tail thanks to high speed and regenerator, and complete nonsense like Rage Fist and Last Respects have tipped Ghost-type pokemon into a centralizing force in the smogon meta, and thus needed to be banned. also, they made a special attacker that smokes blissey in the form of Chi-Yu running Terratype Fire with Fire Blast. I couldn't believe it when I saw the calcs... Thankfully, all that caught a ban from the Smogon OU council since they voted that fun is allowed and that Terastalization shall not be banned.

Pokemon Violet got me to really... enjoy a Pokemon game, and enjoy a Nintendo Switch game again (even though I discovered my right joycon is drifting again. I really cannot stand the switch, it's such trashy hardware.) and... I don't know how I'd score a game I love but can clearly see that it has some very inexcusable issues.

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 796: I'm a Tantric Man
« on: November 06, 2022, 10:44:26 PM »

Tsk, tsk. must not have been paying attention to twitter.

oh well. I got you goofballs to play La Mulana, I can live without having a Freedom Planet RFN shout-out in 2022.

TalkBack / Re: Them's Fightin' Herds (Switch) Review
« on: October 25, 2022, 07:46:57 PM »
also, I made a bit of a research related goof. Ryan Faust is Lauren's BROTHER, not her son! oopsie!

TalkBack / Them's Fightin' Herds (Switch) Review
« on: October 18, 2022, 05:12:37 AM »

Behooven to the hardware

Before I can begin this review, I need to address the draft horse in the room; Yes. There is a reason this indie fighter has an uncanny resemblance to a certain popular IP that happens to also star cute and cartoony ungulates. I could go over the game's near decade of history.  However, I would like to focus this review on the product in front of you today. If you would like to learn more about Them's Fightin' Herds' past, I would direct you to the excellent documentary on the subject made by Esteban Martinez over on Youtube.  

   Them’s Fightin’ Herds is a game mostly inspired by the lineage of "Anime" fighters that find their roots in the likes of Capcom's Darkstalkers, Ark System Works' Blazblue, or French Bread's Melty Blood: Actress Again. What we have here is a 4 button fighter; Light, Medium, Heavy, and Magic buttons that often times a character's kit is centered around. There are a few universal mechanics across the entire cast such as a dedicated Anti-air attack, grabs, and a universal launcher. Each ungulate however uses the tools wildly different and even have very different forms of movement caked into their kits. For example, Velvet gracefully skates along the ground as if she has ice physics if you crouch after a dash, while the timid Pom can both air dash and glide safely to the ground with her wool pompadour. The combo system itself is also pretty free and open feeling too, and there's a fair bit of expression to be had in how strings and combos are done thanks to the gravity-scaling Juggle Decay system. While maybe not as beginner friendly as examples of the genre that attempt to boil everything down to its most basic mechanics, the relative ease of execution, tight-knit cast, and the package's smart use of various modes of play make for something that is accessible yet doesn't compromise on depth.

   Of course, that would all mean nothing without the means to properly sit down and learn. As someone who only skimmed the surface of various genre examples before the steam release of this game, TFH's teaching tools are one of the game's strongest suits. The tutorial mode does a great job of breaking practically every mechanic in the game down, from simple stuff like blocking and the magic series ABC combos, to an outright brilliant dissertation on ethereal fighting game mechanics such as what Frame data, hit boxes, and hurt boxes are. The witty dialogue, breakdown of mechanics, and the way the tutorial urges players to come back and run through it multiple times to reinforce knowledge provide it with replay value. This is of course only the beginning of TFH's teaching tools, as not only is the training mode filled to the brim with almost any feature you could possibly ask for, not only are Replays there complete with being able to review them with the training mode data sets with pause and frame by frame, but there is an incredibly powerful pair of practical modes that bear special mention for how they contribute to the on-boarding process.

   The first of which is the story mode. Not content with just the usual arcade ladder (arcade mode is there for those who want it.) or a simple 'cutscenes with fights' style approach; Story Mode is replete with RPG-inspired overworld traversal, platforming challenges to teach you movement options, and a set of combatants that were designed to help players build strong fundamentals. The simple predator that makes up the most common of enemy encounters in Story mode is a wolf that has a big lunging overhead attack and a slide along the ground to teach players to deal with high and low attacks, or the boss fight against Velvet being designed to teach players how to deal with projectiles. It probably also doesn't hurt that much of Story Mode's script was penned by famed cartoon director Lauren Faust and her son Ryan Faust, which lends the writing a warm and genuine feeling in between the dad jokes crammed into many of the incidental NPCs. Story mode in its current state should take most players about 3 to 4 hours provided lower difficulty levels are selected by those who are newer to fighting games, as the higher difficulties feature far more aggressive AI, less opportunities for healing, and show off just how powerful (and cheap!) the extra moves bosses get can be. Play on the harder difficulties if you crave that SNK difficulty. It should be noted that as of the writing of this review (and April of 2020 when the game initially got its 1.0 release on PC), only Arizona's section of the story mode is available. Although developer Mane6 has promised their commitment to having story chapters for the other members of the core cast, progress on such has been decidedly glacial.

   That other all-important piece of the puzzle here with Them's Fightin' Herds is the online component. TFH uses the GGPO middleware for rollback netcode to make for as buttery smooth of an online experience as possible, and with crossplay to boot. Both of these worked, for the most part. Let me preface this by saying all of my online testing was with a network adapter and fully wired, but I had a crash (which seems to be a general bug this port currently suffers from) trying to get into a match. I also had one match where a hiccup during the match seemed to have introduced a bunch of delay. These cases were the exception to my otherwise smooth experience, though. Besides that one match, everything worked and felt like I was playing with someone next to me. Classic Lobby and Casual match also make sure you can just get into matches without having to fuss about much either, but that would of course ignore what may actually be my favorite lobby system in any online fighting game.

   The pixel lobby has an impressively stacked feature set to it, including online training with other players, chests containing salt (the currency of Foenum) that can be fought over to buy lobby cosmetics with, a battle shrine that works like an arcade cabinet, and the Salt Mines. Even if popping into an empty lobby, merely wander around and find the entrance to the salt mines to start up this impressive mini-game wherein you and anybody else that joins have 15 minutes to survive an onslaught of the predators from the story mode, all while mining for salt and collecting hats! Having all these ancillary activities in the online lobbies to warm up with and have a chance to interact with the community in a lobby can do wonders to limber you up when you eventually do throw down with someone!

   The truth about fighting games though is that even if a game has all the substance fit to burst, it can drown if the style isn't there. Say what you will about the divisive nature of how it presents itself, TFH is a looker with its emphasis on high quality 2D animation, colorful cast and environments, and the way it blends Pixel art, Flash style animation, and 3D fight environments in a way that's stylistically cohesive. The soundtrack also needs special attention, not only for general compositional strength, but because of how impressive the dynamic music system is. For example, when a character starts gaining momentum in a match, their instrumentation will start to seep into the stage's normal melody, meaning that each stage has a musical variation in the soundtrack for each character.

   Being a 200 hour veteran of the Steam release of TFH, I'm happy to report that there seems to only be small compromises to the proceedings on Switch. The simple UI from the PC release seems to be the only option available, and load times can be a bit longer, but weather docked or in handheld mode, framerate was always at a solid 60 FPS save for points where data had to stream in such as the end arcade predator rush and during a character win quote once. Resolution also looks nice and sharp. That being said, there are some assets that are of noticeably lower quality than their counterparts in the PC release.. However, this is minor if it means the game gets to run at 60fps when the action heats up.

   I also feel it is worth mentioning that I had quite a bit of issues with game crashes, particularly while specific animations played or while the game was trying to load up fights, whether they be the predator fights from story mode, or the aforementioned online match. I did reach out to a representative at Mane6 during the review period and they assured me that a day 1 patch should remedy some of these issues. They aren't frequent enough to render the game unplayable, and the generous auto-save during story mode made sure I never lost a lot of progress, but game stability is a huge issue I had during the review period. A feature that unfortunately had to be cut from the PC release is the custom combo trial; while the function to save and load custom combos is there, the file sharing infrastructure that allowed for combo files to be shared between PC players is not there. Also, while the game itself is feature-rich, the base roster of 7 characters is rather paltry, and the promised wave of DLC will only bring this cast up to 11. While some may view this as good, given that there are less matchups to memorize, having that variety of cast is important to a healthy game. It should also be noted that because of the small, dedicated community playing the game, the developers chose to not have ranked play in TFH, and thus no skill-based matchmaking.

   Them's Fightin' Herds is one of those indie games with a lot of heart and moxie, that wears its heart on its sleeve and shoots for the stars with what it tries for, even if not everything comes out polished on first blush. It is a fighting game born out of passion and intersects at a weird venn diagram of people that a project like this will even appeal to. In 2020 at its 1.0 launch on PC, Them's Fightin' Herds was something that had such wildly new ideas for how to take fighting games as a genre forward, and came at the perfect time for online play to take center stage. In 2022, it is ever so slightly harder to recommend when games in the triple A space seem to have taken notice of features that TFH beat them to market with. If you want a game with heart, soul, and a unicorn that shoots a demon out of her magic book, you've come to the right place. if you want a fighting game that's got the correct number of buttons for single Joy-Con play with a friend on the go, TFH ain't a bad choice for that either!

lmao, nine horses! The Cow-horse, the Dragon-Horse, the Horn-horse, the Deer-horse, the Wool-Horse, the 'Paca-Horse, and the Goat-Horse.

In all seriousness, I've been waiting for this day for so long; the culmination of over a decade's journey coming to roost on consoles. I'm honestly curious if Mane6 themselves are doing the port job or if Modus stuck some sort of support studio on the job, given that before this acquisition, console release seemed like a pipe-dream for the rather anemic and inexperienced dev team?

TalkBack / Re: Doki Doki Literature Club Plus! (Switch) Review
« on: July 01, 2021, 12:24:48 AM »
I was wondering how they'd handle something that in the PC version of the game was literally handled by the game making files and you having to root around in the game's directory in order to do a lot of the fourth-wall breaking thing.

DDLC's whole appeal is that it's an actual creepypasta ARG that people got really into.

Podcast Discussion / Re: Episode 696: WAM - Wet Ass Mario 64
« on: October 26, 2020, 03:44:37 AM »
it's been a couple of years since I've listened to an episode of this show.

The more things change, the more things stay the exact same.

Also, you shouldn't advertise yourself as a tax haven, Jon. you'll attract the Trumps.

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 22, 2020, 05:01:43 AM »
See, I can never forget Blast Away the Wall because of cannonless and how that speedrunning trick nearly ruined the community for Super Mario 64 until people found consistent setups for it.

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 20, 2020, 10:40:49 PM »
I doubt I'm going to stimulate further discussion on Super Mario 64 by posting further, but I believe I've reflected on my thoughts on the game and fired it up to mess around a bit more to really pin down a final statement here.

Super Mario 64 is brilliant and fun in almost any form you choose to play it in. There's a flexible, toy-like quality to it where so many people can approach it in so many different ways, and that's the game's real brilliance. it might not result in the same sort of cascade of non-linearity that maybe certain CRPGs on PC were doing at the time, but being so accessible and provide that sort of freedom is a heck of a balancing act to nail in design space that was so uncharted outside of maybe like... Jumping Flash.

This appreciation deepens when you realize how Nintendo came to some of these design decisions. SUper Mario Bros. has always been about exploring about for secrets, but games like Donkey Kong (game boy) and Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island represent both the exploratory nature and the puzzling nature of each of Super Mario 64's challenges in a duality. I do not think it any sort of coincidence that much of Mario's moveset from DK94 would find it's way into the 3D Mario games.

I do think the cracks show a bit when you hold details up to scrutiny of a modern eye. the N64 controller is incredibly uncomfortable to hold and that middle prong of it that my hands are too thick to hold properly is the star of the show here. while a tool of unrivaled precision in it's day, the analogue controls are only as strong as that camera can support, and the restrictions on lakitu and his stiff pans and how hacked-together it feels lets Super Mario 64 down. likewise, I do not find the gameplay of giving Bowser the Cesaro treatment to be compelling and to this day I am incredibly inaccurate at doing the bomb tossing. There's also some Very, VERY questionable logic with collision, particularly when it comes to attempting to grab 2D objects like Bob-ombs or Chuckya. I would say the lack of checkpointing is problematic, but the levels are small and compartmentalized enough to where it theoretically doesn't become a real problem until it comes time for some of the late 100 coin stars.

Presentationally, it holds up SO much better than many of it's N64 contemporaries due to smartly deciding to be somewhat minimalist with textures. the fact that the suspender buttons, the eyes, and the Emblem on Mario's hat are the only textures on him give that low-poly model an ageless aesthetic that can't be said of link's cheese wedge hands or banjo's... everything. yes, objects are texture mapped, but everything is kept to minimalist details as to avoid calling attention to them. The Score by Kondo-San, while certainly not anywhere NEAR my favorite, is the sort of iconic and memorable fare that you'd want. shout-outs to Koopa's Road and the Jolly Rodger Bay/Dire Dire Docks being pretty far removed from the jazzy rag-time sorts of compositions one might associate with a Mario game.

There's a very, VERY good reason that Super Mario 64 is positioned on the pedestal it is on today, why people have come together in grand academia to study in great lenghs it's level design, it's engine quirks, it's physics and created grand conspiracies about it. there's a reason it supplanted Quake and Super Metroid as THE video game for speed running competition. there's a reason that Super Mario 64 is responsible for me adding "Gay Baby Jail" to my vocabulary. There's a reason Super Mario 64 is a game I would even remotely consider playing in 2020 even when I do not have very high opinions of many 64-bit era video games, particularly the polygonal ones.

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 17, 2020, 07:44:04 PM »
Wowie, PapaSmurff, That's some biting commentary! I feel like in the case of the original game that some of it can be forgiven because of the limitations of the hardware and lack of ease with 3D controls.

As someone who's played a few Super Mario 64 Romhacks, though, the control simply isn't quite tight enough to make straight platforming challenges viable for the average consumer. even with adding a lot more smoothness and control to the games, that didn't really become viable (look at some of the rage at sunshine's jank that occurred in the RetroActive on that game 3 years ago. What ever happened to the rule on keeping Retroactive from looking at multiple games in the same franchise anyway?)

Now, granted, Super Mario 64 DS eliminates some of the jank. it has a real camera, there are more aids to movement (digital inputs for walking Vs. Running, Yoshi's Flutter Jump, Luigi's various platforming tricks, Mario sliding down walls he can jump off of Vs. having a 5 frame window when you bonk to jump again), and other little bug fixes that alleviate jank, but by 2004, I think Nintendo was clearly not willing to risk adding something to Super Mario 64 that would give it the qualities that frustrated people about Sunshine. At that point, the team at EAD Tokyo would be lead on a crusade to streamline Mario design in such a way that they could start to build levels as obstacle courses more than playgrounds.

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 12, 2020, 06:21:04 PM »
I find Tiny-Huge Island and Wet-Dry World to be pretty fun, actually! the nervousness I feel playing Tik-Tock clock can also feel very rewarding, in my opinion. They are much stronger levels than Lethal Lava Land, Shifting Sand Land, or Dire Dire Docks. I've seen SM64 hacks that demand far more and push SM64's loose controls to their limit, unfortunately.

That being said, if you really don't like the upstairs that much but still want to beat the game, you could always BLJ OH WAIT 3D ALL STARS IS BASED ON THE GREEDO SHOT FIRST OF MARIO, THE SHINDOU VERSION AHAHAHAHAHAHA

I suppose if you're willing to build speed via a series of frame perfect wall jumps, you can skip the 50 star door and the staircase that way.

TalkBack / Re: Petal Crash (Switch) Review
« on: October 12, 2020, 06:10:27 PM »

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 11, 2020, 06:15:17 PM »
I've... always seen Super Mario 64 as a pretty easy game. even when going for your 100-coin gauntlet on stages, the lack of checkpointing never bothered me, even on incredibly punishing stages like Rainbow Ride.

You might not savor Super Mario Sunshine if Super Mario 64 is grinding you down to the point where you don't think 120 stars is a reasonable ask, Tophat.

I kinda find talking about the game's actual contents akin to talking about Wolfenstein 3D, where it is such a genre blueprint that I'm so familiar with that I can't really go and remark on the game's substance...

But things in Super Mario 64's periphery are FAR more fascinating... like the story of how Argonaut ended up pitching a 3D platformer starring Yoshi to Nintendo in 1994 that Nintendo rejected, only for Super Mario 64 to show up at Spaceworld 1995 and Miyamoto approaching Jez San privately to apologize. apparently the dude is still pretty salty about Nintendo effectively poaching Dylan Cuthbert and other talent before throwing their big pitch out on the curb to become Croc: Legend of the Gobbos.

That's right; Croc was supposed to be a Yoshi game, and Jez San believes that Miyamoto might have committed plagiarism against them.

to quote the Eurogamer interview;

"Miyamoto-san went on to make Mario 64, which had the look and feel of our Yoshi game - but with the Mario character, of course - and beat Croc to market by around a year. Miyamoto-san came up to me at a show afterwards and apologized for not doing the Yoshi game with us and thanked us for the idea to do a 3D platform game. He also said that we would make enough royalties from our existing deal to make up for it. That felt hollow to me, as I'm of the opinion that Nintendo ended our agreement without fully realizing it. They canned Star Fox 2 even though it was finished and used much of our code in Star Fox 64 without paying us a penny."

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 07, 2020, 05:01:05 AM »
I got my first 120 when I was a kid, with an assist from my cousin for Jolly Rodger Bay, as I was intensely afraid of the eel as an 8-year older. some of the 100 coin stars I do remember being pretty tight affairs as a kid, but... honestly?

Super Mario 64 is pretty cozy. Yes, Tik Tok Clock has some devious stuff in it if you're afraid of taking the spill all the way down, but Rainbow Ride is not nearly as bad as I remember it, 100 coins or otherwise. Granted, It should be noted that i played with the unlocked camera recently, so maybe the camera doesn't make it as cozy as I thought, but I seem to have only sharpened my skills when it comes to Super Mario 64, and it felt like death rarely would happen. I probably can chock this up to considerations the level designers made to accommodate this wild new 3D and general knowledge I have of the game.

Heck, I may have even showed off to my friends I was streaming for and performed a BLJ to skip the 50 star door and do some Tik-tok clock action early! (sorry to you suckers playing the Shindou version on your Nintendo Switch. :()

Podcast Discussion / Re: RetroActive 48: Super Mario 64
« on: October 06, 2020, 08:41:47 AM »
I may be retired from listening to Radio-Free Nintendo, but lucky you! I played Super Mario 64 earlier in the year because my Girlfriend had never really sat through anything more than 0 stars speedruns!

I ended up playing the game specifically using the SGI project, a set of model and textures for the DirectX12 version of Super Mario 64 that tries to make Super Mario 64 resemble the SGI-made renders that were made for promotional materials for Super Mario 64. It also incorperates a free camera that works perfectly with a right analogue stick or mouselook, if you're some sort of heathen who desires to play Super Mario 64 on a keyboard/mouse control scheme.

Obviously, though, I got a N64 for Christmas of 1996, after specifically seeing Super Mario 64 at a Toys R' Us that my dad and I went to on a lark during our usual bus route (at the time, dad had his license revoked for DUI, so we'd take the bus up to the mall or Walmart or such.) and having that outer courtyard that was effectively just this giant playground to mess around with Mario and the way he changed from his 8-bit and 16-bit incarnations was a brilliant choice. the ambience of the birds chirping and the waterfall added to this idea of being able to just... play around, like one might play around at the Jungle Gym at my grade school. the fact that this memory 24 years on is so vivid in my mind stands as a testament to how strong of a design choice hubs to run around in was.

and really, I'm not sure how I should approach discussing Super Mario 64. Should I hit on the powerful memories of a childhood that formed with Super Mario 64 as a basis? Should I talk about the game's eternal zeitgeist? the reverence to which people regard it and the ways people have peeled back the layers of it's depth and complexity? Should I talk about TASers like Panenkohek, who both created an insane meme and has helped educate many on the inner workings of Super Mario 64's coding? should I talk about how Cheese at the beginning of 2020 won a jackpot of $10,000 for being the first person to beat Super Mario 64 with 120 stars in under 1 hour and 39 minutes while at a speedrunning event with a stomach flu? Or should I talk about my thoughts of playing this newfangled version for PC, only possible thanks to tireless efforts of people who managed to decompile Super Mario 64 back into it's source code via reverse engineering efforts?

While I mull over this, I hope many people post here. I am interested to read what folks have to say about this game.

I feel like y'all are tryin' to get me to come out of RFN listening retirement with podcast titles like that.

TalkBack / Re: Shantae and the Seven Sirens (Switch) Review
« on: May 29, 2020, 03:06:53 AM »
Zack, I have to disagree with one thing.

Shantae and the Seven Sirens has yet to make me go through a long, boring, and protracted insta-death gauntlet Carrying Rottytops and watching Shantae to the peepee dance, which makes it better by default.

In all seriousness, though, this is the Shantae sequel I've always seen in my mind's eye ever since I played the original in 2005, the one that cleans up the flow issues while staying true to the character and cherry picking the best features from throughout the series to contain in one awesome package.

I recognize Pirate's Curse's quality and how generally stellar it is, and I'm super happy it made people notice the franchise I fell in love with so long ago for it's sheer force of peronality, but it's inexorably tied to Risky's Revenge in my mind, and I honestly cannot reccomend Pirate's curse without Risky's Revenge and Risky's Revenge, and...

Well, neither of those games are indicative of the original, which I fell in love with, both for it's STUNNING work with the GBC hardware, and it's delivery on proving that Castlevania 2 could have been done right. None of the games ever felt as expansive, weather it be Risky's Revenge being hamstrung by it's 50mb DSiWare limitation, Pirate's curse ditching the interconnected world for boat fast travel... I just never felt there was a game that captured that same feeling of adventure, that felt as lived in... but I think Seven Sirens has done it, and I honestly want OG Shantae remade with the HD 2D art, with this style. maybe incorperate Monkey Bullet into moneky form and change some of the level design to take advantage of it and the extra screen resolution and get rid of monkey paw, but dangit, we're like... Day/Night cycle and finding the Zombie caravan with a track and field mini-game away from just hitting the brilliance.

I do have to confess I'm not done yet, but unless the game drops the ball hardcore in it's latter half, I easily enjoy Seven Sirens more than Pirate's Curse.

TalkBack / Re: Bug Fables (Switch) Review
« on: May 29, 2020, 02:48:17 AM »
I really do hope that someone at Intelligent Systems gets to play and enjoy this game.

TalkBack / Re: La-Mulana (Switch) Review
« on: March 12, 2020, 09:57:36 AM »
You know, when NIS Announced these switch ports, I thought about talking to you guys about writing up reviews as a freelance guest writer here. :P

Honestly though, Neal, I would have even suggested to time traveling you to play the 2007 freeware game on PC. this game blew my college freshman mind. La Mulana is one of my all-time favorite games, as long-time community members infamously may know. I love La Mulana so much that I ran an entirely grassroots knocking-on-doors political campaign to see La Mulana played for Retroactive for the telethon one year.

Funnily enough, I ragequit Hollow Knight when the Godseeker stuff and Nightmare Grimm came up in my playthrough. that stuff is a million times more punishing than any of the combat in either La Mulana title, because I felt like I just simply did not have the hand-eye coordination to handle the speeds unto which some of the optional bosses ask of you,e ven when you give yourself every advantage the game offers you.

TalkBack / Re: Nintendo And LEGO Teaming Up For Interactive Mario Line
« on: March 12, 2020, 09:46:06 AM »
This is still so bizarre to me considering there was a point in time where LEGO was trying to sue the pants off of Nintendo for N&B Block.

TalkBack / Re: Skullgirls 2nd Encore (Switch) Review
« on: November 05, 2019, 07:11:11 AM »
If anyone has the expertise to make a fighting game, it's MikeZ; a former Pandemic studios employee who did a lot of the battle design for the original Star Wars Battlefront 2. He also has attended multiple EVOs as one of the top Blazblue players in the USA, if not the world. This has led him to work with Ark System Works and Capcom as well to assist with balancing in games like Blazblue: Continuum Shift and Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom 3. You can probably draw a lot of paralells between Skullgirls and Marvel Vs. Capcom with how it handles it's 3 on 3 gameplay with assist buttons and a Delayed Hyper Combo (DHC) tag system.

I own each LabZero engine game across various platforms, and I would say that OG Skullgirls is where I sat down and actually tried to understand how 2D fighters worked. I never got good back then, but it was the first time I ever really sat down and tried to hit buttons meaningfully besides spamming special moves or such. It was the first time I learned combo trials. It's where I learned my love for grapplers in fighting games. Cerebella was such a fun character design that I tried her, loved her, and it made me appreciate characters in fighting games of old that I had previously taken a pass on, like Iron Tager, Zangief, Clark Still, Potemkin, etc. I also truly learned what zoning was and how to effectively do it because Peacock's suite of tools was so robust and surprisingly easy to use on that front!

I actually would go on to back 2nd Encore's crowdfunding effort. At the time it wasn't called that, and was more-or-less just funding to help Skullgirls get out from under the thumb of then-publisher Konami with the reward being a DLC character in the form of Squiggly, with stretch goals letting the backers determine who among the colorful cast of background characters would get to step into the fight. Of course, I didn't exactly back to participate in this, but rather because one of the stretch goals was to pay licensing fees for the LZ engine for another up and coming indie developer who would go on to make a fighting game that's been incredibly important for me.

As a result of hand cramps I was having at the time, I really didn't put much time into 2nd Encore. I've since solved the hand cramp while playing fighting games by getting a fight stick. I think if I revisit 2nd Encore, it'll be on my PC copy.

For now though, my mind is on that OTHER LZ engine fighting game. If THAT comes to switch, BOY HOWDY am I double dipping so I can body the poor sap who gets stuck with a review code for that. <3

TalkBack / Re: Sweet Home: Opening the Door for Resident Evil
« on: October 11, 2019, 04:06:27 AM »
that video actually only just recently came out!

TalkBack / Re: Sweet Home: Opening the Door for Resident Evil
« on: October 05, 2019, 07:48:03 AM »
I remember initially hearing about this game from Derick Alexander of Stop Skeletons From Fighting (although at the time he was going by the moniker, "Happy Video Game Nerd").

I remember the Happy Video Game Nerd! I always wondered what happened to him. Will have to check him out again.

Yeah! he's still very active! moved from Alaska to Seattle with his girlfriend Grace and does all sorts of neat videos still. he does a fair bit of Collab work with Matt McMuscles. I quite like his Punching Weight series he does now, where he looks at games that attempt to do things on a platform so out there that one has to admire it (things like 3D on GBA, ports of games that a platform should not have the power to run, and yet the ports exist, etc.)

TalkBack / Re: Sweet Home: Opening the Door for Resident Evil
« on: October 03, 2019, 06:00:17 AM »
I remember initially hearing about this game from Derick Alexander of Stop Skeletons From Fighting (although at the time he was going by the moniker, "Happy Video Game Nerd").

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