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Entropic Amaranth's blog

5:57 PM on 07.09.2009

I <3 Games: Sunset Riders

Creativity seems to have left me for the moment, so I'm starting a blog series. All I need to keep in mind are great games that you may not have played, and with a wealth of video game knowledge that starts in the mid 70's, I should be able to keep this going for a while. I'm not exactly artistically gifted, unless you count the shoops in my DAT ASS post as art, so if someone would like to make me a blog series banner, I would greatly appreciate it. Where was I? Oh right, video games.

One of my favorite games as a child was Sunset Riders. Developed and published by Konami, Sunset Riders is a Contra inspired run and gun set in the wild west. It was released as an arcade cabinet and later as a Super Nintendo game*. I owned the latter version, and many, many nights of epic game sessions were wasted trying to beat this damn game.

The game features four selectable characters. It's obvious that Konami had a very loose understanding of how cowboys in the Wild West dressed and looked, and the result is a very Japanese take on a very American set of characters. I always favored the cowboy in yellow, Steve. Does that sound like the name of a famous sheriff to you? The other name choices weren't much better, with the most interesting out of the lot being the stereotypical Mexican bandit, Cormano.

Still, aesthetics aren't everything in a game like this. What we're here for is the twitch based run and gun gameplay, and the game has plenty of it. It has a different feel to it than Contra or Metal Slug. Enemy bullets have a tendency to slowly float towards you across the screen, giving you plenty of time to dodge. That doesn't mean it's easy though, and you'll often find yourself in situations where you just can't dodge bullets. You have to learn to get out of the way early unless you enjoy gazing at Game Over screens.

The game spans eight levels, a couple of which take place entirely on horse back. Instead of the usual side scrolling you've grown used to, you're now forced to deal with dodging oncoming obstacles ala Battletoads while still shooting down your bandit foes. Did I mention that this game is hard?

Inbetween stages the view switches to a first person perspective and you're given the opportunity to shoot down some more bandits for points. If two players are playing, you're competing for points. If I remember correctly, you can still die on these stages, which would leave your bonus null. It's a fun distraction, but that's all it really is.

I doubt that you'll enjoy this game as much as I do. It doesn't hold up nearly as well as the older Contra's, and the frustration that comes with a design philosophy to suck quarters out of you isn't nearly as bearable as it once was. I only love it because it's the first game I ever bothered to sit down and play. If you're a run and gun enthusiast, a retro gamer, or a glutton for pain, it's definitely worth a look. Others are going to want to steer clear.

*There's a Mega Drive version as well, but we don't talk about that. Also, here's a gameplay video.

This sounded a bit too much like a review, but whatever.   read

2:09 AM on 07.09.2009

The Finest Asses in Video Games: Volume One

Itís no secret that video games are nearly the sexiest thing to exist on our planet. I say nearly because clearly that honor goes to the plastic mess that was Michael Jackson. Seriously, the guy resembled processed cheese more than he did a person. Excuse me, I didnít mean to veer away from the matter at hand- the matter of asses. The following is an in-depth look at what I believe are the finest asses in video games. Lubricant not included.

Donkey Kong

Oh, Donkey Kong. When you burst onto the scene in 1981 I was still the figment of a twelve year old girlís imagination, but that didnít stop me from noticing your fine behind. I watched the way you shimmied up that ladder, your ass cheeks pulsating in the dim lighting of that famous warehouse, my unit throbbing in unison to the beat of your hairy bongos. Yes, your ass and I have had a romance since before my emergence into the world, so it is only fitting that you are on my list.

Letís look at the positives here. For one thing, Donkey Kongís fine silky hair provides a natural stimulant for the prospective explorer. He also spends what is close to an eternity climbing ladders and lifting what I am going to assume are five hundred pound barrels over his head, so you know the ape has stamina. Nintendo has seen fit to shrink his ass with each new video game, but that does little to still my memory of this hulking beast. Donkey Kong will let you rock to his jungle beat late into the night and youíll likely pass out in his meaty arms long before you can satisfy him.


The party has hardly started and weíve gone from fucking a gorilla to fucking a dinosaur. I hope youíre wearing protection. Yoshi is a creature that can instantly eat anything, digest it, and form it into watermelon sized egg. He then shoots this egg out of his ass hard enough to send it bouncing away. Take a second to process this. Still with me?

Yoshi is capable of stretching his rectum from non-existence to the size of a watermelon in seconds, meanwhile feeling no pain and God knows how much pleasure. How could you not want to get up on that sweet dinosaur derriŤre? Not only that, but as footage from Super Mario Galaxy 2 shows, Yoshi can stretch his incredibly long tongue in different directions; meters away from his body. Are you following me? Yoshi can simultaneously control the size of his rectum while stretching his tongue over his back and around yours. In short, Yoshi is a sexual deviant that parents should keep their children far away from, and men and women of all creeds and colors flock to him for their sick, sexual needs.


We are brought to the last ass of your list, the ass of Navi. Although her form is never revealed in the Ocarina of Time, my imagination has seen it, and since what I think is clearly more important than fact, her ass is the finest of all video game asses. When you see this thing, your brain will melt.

Jim Sterling

Well, the title does say the finest asses in video games, so itís only fitting that video games most controversial writer make this list. For those of you who havenít seen it, Jim Sterlingís ass is a sight to behold. When each of the blubbering cheeks is spread apart, a blackened glory hole is revealed; a single piece of dark matter that threatens to devour the entirety universe if not satiated. Being the incredibly biased creature that Jim is, heíll often foam at the mouth and call you Nicole Wiebe, the sick fuck.

It should also be noted that the thing suspended between Sterlingís sagging man boobs and his lower jaw resembles an ass, and could be a viable candidate for further dipping. Upon request, I hear Jim will adorn his famous monocle, and if youíre lucky, his ass will as well.   read

1:31 PM on 07.08.2009

The Forgotten Kokiri

It was a love doomed from the start, but it was hers, wasnít it? The small hylian boy who was fated to save Hyrule was her first and only love, and though she took comfort in Milo upon his long departure, the fire for him was never put out. She waited for his return with an eager heart, yearning to tell him how she felt- to share with him a bond eternal.

It was not meant to be. Hyrule grew dark during his absence, and at the dethroning of the king and the death of the Great Deku Tree, the forest grew dark with it. Her duty was to her children, first and foremost. Into the forest she temple she walked, awaiting his courage. Though the others did not know it, she did. He would be the one to deliver them from the shadow of death and it was her destiny to help him. Love could wait.

It was then, eight years after his departure, that he would return. Nearly fully grown now, her heart yearned for him. She wanted to call out to him, to fly from her slumber with urgency and place her arms around him, but she would not. That would interfere with destiny and throw the fate of Hyrule into turmoil.

She watched him in her mindís eye. Watched as he defeated the evils that had grabbed hold of their sacred temple, watched as he defeated the puppet the King of Evil had left for him. It was her time to be awakened, and she did so earnestly, for she longed to again see his face. She briefly considered changing her form to something more appealing to his boyish instincts, but thought better of it. The comfort of seeing her as she was when he left would be better, for him and for her.

She granted him the gift of the forest, and within that instant, he was gone again. Within the chamber she waited and watched. She looked on as he cleansed each of the ancient temples, as he restored Hyrule to its former glory. She watched as he defeated the King of Evil himself, and she gazed on in sadness as he held Princess Zelda in his arms. She watched him fade out of existence, returning to a time long lost, and she felt the course of history change around her.

He was gone. Her forbidden love was gone forever, and she was left to wither a forgotten spirit. Into the Lost Woods she wandered, watching the scenery fade away around her. She gazed at her physical form and watched as it melted into an ethereal vapor, and moments later-

Her existence ended.   read

10:08 PM on 07.07.2009

An Evaluation of World of Warcraft: Discovering the Appeal

Over the duration of the past two weeks I played a trial account of World of Warcraft. I made a point to play at least one hour a day, made note of things I liked and disliked within, and have formulated an opinion on the game based on my short time with it. I understand that there is a massive wealth of content that I was unable to experience due to limitations put on my trial account and a general lack of time; I suggest that anyone reading take my opinion with a grain of salt.

After waiting a day for the World of Warcraft client to download, install, and update I dove right into playing one of the most popular games of all time. I picked a server whose name interested me, Firetree, and set about choosing my faction, race, and class. I ended up with a relatively sexy Night Elf Huntress by the name of Amaranthine, her allegiance pledged to the Alliance for what would be a short life.

As I adjusted to the interface and controls, something that took hardly anytime at all, I got a taste for the depth of the lore on display. Over the duration of my playtime I never felt particularly immersed, but I did feel that the world was crafted masterfully. NPCís existed for the sole purpose of being scenery, different exotic creatures populated every nook and cranny, and famous heroes from Warcraft lore stood proud at the thrones of their respected cities.

While I never felt that the gameplay was necessarily compelling. I did enjoy experimenting with new abilities and tactics. Itís obvious that a large portion of the game was designed to steal my time, and in turn my money had I been paying, there were moments of enjoyment pocketed throughout. While the goal remained the same throughout my entire stay in Azeroth, level up, I did see glimpses of more interesting goals in the form of dungeons and epic loot.

The different players I met were a varied sort. Many seemed to be adolescents who were taking refuge in World of Warcraft as a means to escape the horrors of middle and high school, others were regular people who enjoyed the escapism that World of Warcraft offered. By the time my trial account was up, I had met dozens of different personality types and creeds. The stereotype that hardcore World of Warcraft players are all basement dwelling losers whose only friends are their custom figurines is nothing but a myth. Below Iíve outlined the reasons I believe WoW remains so popular, and while most are obvious, I hope that at least few are insightful.


Much in the same way that the adults featured in Darkon created a mythical kingdom in their respective tired towns, certain World of Warcraft players have found a refuge in the realm of Azeroth. While their hobby is certainly less extreme, the basic principles remain the same. Everyday life has a tendency to be boring, full of rote tasks that are far from fulfilling. World of Warcraft provides a world where you can make an impact, or at least appear to. Azeroth is a world where your actions lead to the slaying of mighty foes, as opposed to the payment on your apartments utilities.

Do not misunderstand me, this isnít at all a bad thing, unless taken to the utter extreme. Video games by their very nature are forms of escapism. World of Warcraft simply takes this to the next level, providing players with a persistent world; one that is influenced by the actions of those who would populate it.


Even before the recently added achievement system was put in place, a large part of what has made World of Warcraft popular was itís lure of ďone more thingĒ. The idea that if I complete just one more raid I might obtain a mythical and rare weapon or piece of armor, something that few other players on my server has accomplished. In the end these accomplishments amount to nothing outside the realm of Azeroth, but going back to my point of escapism, to the average WoW player that hardly matters.

Ever since the addition of a tangible achievement system with in game rewards, that addictive quality has quadrupled. Friends of mine will spend days of their lives grinding for achievements in order to obtain a new mount or pet. I find this to be unfortunate and detrimental to the average WoW player. Instead of allowing them to decide what is a noteworthy accomplishment and what isnít, they are now being told what they must to do to have a sense of worth.

Social Relationships

Many people struggle with approaching their fellow human beings. That doesnít make them total shut-ins who refuse human contact and fear sunlight, it simply means their shy. World of Warcraft provides people like this with a mask to hide behind. Making relationships isnít nearly as scary as it once was when youíre Kelmdor, the first of few to slay the Lich King on your server. As our resident community blogger Zodiac Eclipse is proof of, itís entirely possible to cultivate a meaningful relationship through something like World of Warcraft.

Some people may look down on those who shun reality and instead choose to make intangible internet friends, but Destructoid itself is proof that lifelong relationships can be birthed through anonymity with ease and grace.

As a video game, World of Warcraft is a decent foray into the RPG grind with solid art direction and inspired quests. As an experience, World of Warcraft is phenomenal, so long as youíre the type of person it caters to. Iíd suggest that anyone who hasnít tried it does so, you may find it to be something youíll love. Just be wary that your new life in Azeroth doesnít begin to take precedence over your life on Earth. You may regret where that time went someday.

And this picture is just awesome.   read

5:27 PM on 07.07.2009

A Quick Look at Brutal Legend With Tim Schafer

This is about four days old, so I apologize in advance if you've seen it before or if this is regurgitated content from the front page or even the community blogs themselves. That is not my intention. I merely wish to share the culmination of all of the hype surrounding Brutal Legend through this 17 minute long game play demo, featuring commentary by Tim Schafer himself.


It has been many years since I have been this excited for the release of a video game. The wonderful atmosphere combined with what appears to be solid game play and solid writing has got that geek part of my pants squirming with delight, eager to get its grubby mitts on any tiny bit of info surrounding the nearly finished product. Suffice it to say, (R)Oc(k)tober can't come soon enough.

I noticed that the video breaks off and runs into the side bar. If it bothers you I suggest making the video full screen. It's definitely worth it to show off the attention to detail present.

[Via Giant Bomb]   read

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