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12:52 PM on 09.30.2014  

Waka waka waka. I call dibs on Pac-man!

For many years, Pac-man has been the mascot of all things video games. But as the years progressed he has been outshined by the likes of such stars as Mario, Megaman and Sonic. Well I say it is not time for Pac-man to seek his revenge by eating the power pill of justice and laying the smash down on all who oppose him.

Plainly and simply out: I call dibs on Pac-man!

Now you may ask, "Grimm, why do you consider yourself the chosen one to unleash Pac-man's fury?" Well here they are, the reasons why I am the best man for the job.

Tournament Medal


1.) I was in 2 consecutive Pac-Man Championship DX tournaments
- Back when PAX East first started, I entered a tournament. While I didn't win, i did place 3rd (the guy who beat me moved on to win the whole thing so I say that makes me 3rd and the guy who lost to the runner up being 4th. The 2nd year I went I placed 2nd. My own hubris got the better of me and one fatal mistake was made. They asked me after my semi-final win if I wanted to wait a few mnutes, I said no, and it was my undoing. But I still did damn good and i DID get the highest point totals of anyone in that 2nd tournament so that's something. The picture shows my runner up medal for placing in the top 4 in my first tournament. In the 2nd tournament I played... 2nd place got nothing.

Pac-pix


2.) Of the 3,051 games I own, 21 of them are Pac-man related (not including Pac Championship and Championship DX on XBLA)- You could say that I am quite the fan of Pac-man in general. I have played almost every game there is including all of the arcade stand up machines (thanks to Funspot in New Hampshire and their Video Game Museum). One of the first games I ever played were Pac-man and Jr. Pac-man for the Atari 2600 and I spent countless hours playing them. To this day, Pac-man is one of those games you can still play for hours and have a blast. Hell, I even own Pac-pix! Now that's dedication!

awesome

3.) I have wanted Pac-man (also Megaman and Little Mac) in Smash bros since the N64 game.
- Years ago, when Super Smash Bros first came out for the N64, my friends and I always talked about what if there were guest characters from other games. We all spouted off names like Megaman and Sonic, but I was always a firm believer that pac-man deserved a chance to be a playable fighter. All these years later, when I saw the announcement, I lost my mind! I couldn't believe that alongside Megaman and Little Mac who I also wanted, that my main choice made it in the game! When Melee came and he wasn't in I was crushed. Then Brawl came and we had Sonic and Snake.... but no Pac-man. Finally, his time has come and my dream has come true!

mats

4.) I have Pac-man floor mats in my car and a steering wheel cover
- Sure they're beat to hell cuz I've had them for over a decade, but they're still there and still awesome. Sadly the steering wheel cover is too big for my current car, but I still have it somewhere.

So to make a long story less long, I call dibs on Pac-man because he and I go way back and have been bros for over 20 years. I for one cannot wait to see what he can do next week in Super Smash bros for the 3DS! I have dibs on Pac-man!

cool

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2:39 AM on 05.12.2014  

10 Things about GrimmTrixX thou shalt know

So as we know everyone loves a good bandwagon with which to jump on and so here's my super sexy list of stuff about me that some know, some don't, and now all shall know.

1.) I have been playing video games for just over 27 years.


Myself (around age 8) and a few friends playing Wrestlefest at Chuck E. Cheese's. My mom wanted me to smile but I was in the middle of a game.


I just recently turned 31 in April and I have been playing games since age 4. I started with my Dad's Atari which he gave to me and it just continued on from there. I received, and still have every mainstream system since Atari. I also have random stuff like a Turbo Grafx 16 and a Sega Master system which I've only had for about 3 years on both.

2.) I am a huge wrestling fan.


My autograph of the Rock when he was IC champ.


I have been watching wrestling, primarily WWE (then WWF), since I was just shy of 7 years old. The first time I saw it was Wrestlemania 6. I have been hooked since. My all time favorites are the Ultimate Warrior (RIP) and Hulk Hogan, but along the way I have also been fans of guys like The Undertaker, Gangrel, but more recently Wade Barrett and Antonio Cesaro. I look forward to the future of the WWE. While it's not nearly as amazing as it was when I was younger, it's still fun and I love seeing the children of my favorite legends as current superstars. Also it helped that my dad was friends with former WWE Referee Tim White so I have lots of cool autographs that he got for me.


3.) I have a video game collection consisting of 3,026 games.


This is what 2,450+ of my games look like (500+ not shown).


Yes, you read correctly, Three THOUSAND games. I have been playing games for years and this is the most awe inspiring thing about myself. I have kept almost every game I ever bought/received and while I have played a lot of them, I doubt I've played more than 50%. I buy way more games than I play which sucks. But now that I've hit this milestone I am slowing down on my collecting process and going to focus more on PLAYING them. I truly do understand those memes that say "There's nothing to play!" and it's an image of a huge stack of games. First world problems I guess.


4.) I used to collect action figures before video games.


U.S. Agent in a Punisher Package? Yep!


Collect is a loose term when it comes to me and figures. Do I have some in the original packaging? Sure. But most are in crates in my basement since, as a kid, I played with them. Some are broken, some are missing pieces, but when you have crates of He-man, Ghostbusters, Marvel/DC figures, and Ninja Turtles figures it's still pretty cool to have. I couldn't afford to collect both so I chose games. I also enjoy this mispackaged one I found ages ago. If someone sealed it back to do this, then they did a damn good job because it's seamless. I also have a decent collection of comics, as well as video game and Star trek based novels.


5.) I once dressed as Spock, Kano (MK3), and The Shredder for the last 3 Halloweens at my job.


I had lots of fun wearing these at the bank where I work.


I love to dress up for Halloween. I don't think I ever missed a Halloween for dressing in a costume. So for my 3 years at the bank where I work, I dressed up all 3 years that I have been there and these are them. I think they're pretty good. Kano and Shredder were home made, Spock I bought the shirt and ears but drew on the eyebrows.


6.) I have a BA in Art with a focus on Graphic Design.


Something I drew just from looking at an image of Mega Man I found online, no tracing. Project was to draw something 3 times in 3 different ways.


You ever go to school, unsure of what you want, then you graduate and realize it's not what you want to do? Yea that was me. I always wanted to work with video games but when I went to college "video game design" wasn't really a thing, not here in Rhode Island anyway. I started with Computer science. I didn't want to be a programmer. So I moved to art. I mean I enjoyed drawing and whatnot and had good ideas so why not. So I got my BA and then after I graduated I just really didn't want to do it. While my drawing skills are good, I am no natural at it, as it takes me quite some time to make good images. I wish I went for English as I enjoy writing. I am focused this year to make a website with my writing as a focus. We will see how it goes and I will let you all know when it happens!


7.) I was in the first 2 "Blockbuster Video" video game tournaments.


Not my actual pin, but I do have this exact one on an old busted Batman hat shown in my first image. The hat is somewhere around my house.


Some of you may be old enough to remember this, but once Video games could be rented in a store! And sometimes, the biggest store of them all, Blockbuster Video, would hold tournaments. They did it for about 3 years I think. The first one was with a special Donkey Kong Country cart which just went level to level and the goal was to get the most bananas in the allotted time. For 2 straight weeks I was number 1, but the third week I got beat by like 50 bananas. I was crushed. You see, I was young then and both my Dad and I assumed it was your CUMULATIVE score from all 3 weeks... nope... just the highest score overall. So I lost at the end. Lame.


8.) I used to do game reviews for a small site my friends and I made called Glitchytasty.com.


Yes...this was the logo and I hated it. The info is correct except my Wii FC is different.


Ok so the name is obviously a pun on "Itchy..Tasty" from Resident Evil so let's get that out of the way. It was not my idea but my friends. So I did game reviews/previews for the 2 years the site was up. We did get  free copies of games but my friend hoarded them. I only managed to get a free Mario Sports Mix. The site is still up if anyone wants to see my olod previews/reviews. My friend who made the site now works for 343 Industries. He worked on halo 4 and now on Halo 5. Lucky Bastard.

9.) I worked at game Crazy for 5 years.


RIP Game Crazy.


I know I mentioned it earlier, but I did indeed work at a Game Crazy video game store. I started on its 4th day of opening and was there until it's bitter end. The company went bankrupt in 2010. My location closed it's game crazy around February of that year, but I transferred to the Hollywood video side until the doors closed in May. This year is the 4 year anniversary of it's closing. When they were about to close the doors for good,  I got over 60 games and over 30 movies/TV show discs for... get this.. $0.80 each. That was my best gaming haul ever. Only a few were rental copies, most were what we transferred from game crazy. I also met my friend, who works for 343 Industries now, here at Game Crazy and we've been friends ever since. It was a great 5 years of my life and I'll always miss it.


10.) I was in 2 Pac Man Championship DX Tournaments at the 1st and 2nd Pax East.


Friggin' amazing game.


This was my first REAL tournament. Sure Blockbuster tournaments were still you playing a game while others watched, but this was competitive and elimination. My first time I got 3th place (I lost to the man who won it in the finals), the 2nd year, sadly I only got 2nd. I can get 9mil+ points minimum in the Championship II level, which is the one the tournament used both times. Now my first tournament was great because I was killing the other players. When I lost, I lost to the guy who then became the 1st place winner, so it's cool that I lost to him if I were to lose to anyone. The 2nd year he didn't show up, so I had a chance. I whooped everyone, scoring 9 mil almost every time. But sadly, after my semi-final match, the final was next. The head of the tournament asked if I wanted a couple minutes to rest since I just played a match where I won by ONE ghost.

The small crowd was going crazy he and I were neck and neck. The funny thing was... the kid I was battling was in the previous years tournament. He lost to the guy who would become 2nd. So in essence him and I were battling to regain glory of our losses. In  the end I beat him by barely 2000 pts. it was insane and everyone went crazy. So the final came, my hands weren't too steady, i made ONE mistake which cost me the WHOLE thing because on that level, one death, just ONE, can cause you to lose hundreds of thousands of points. The kid only got to 8 mil, and if I didn't take the risk, I'd have won it all.


God damn Brain slugs.


So there's just a few fun facts about GrimmTrixX. Hopefully soon my site will be up and you all can hear more from me in a greater capacity. Thanks to those of you who read this whole thing!!   read


11:37 PM on 11.16.2013  

What's So Backwards About Backwards Compatibility?

As many people are aware, the Xbox One and the PS4 are not compatible with their previous versions, Xbox 360 and PS3 respectively. This is a touchy subject for many people and I think I have some insight as to why.

Some may say the industry is changing. "Why would I want to play Xbox 360 when a new system is out?" They may shout! Well, besides the fact that they're still going to make games for the 360 for 1-2 years, it's so we can play games we currently own.



Many know me as a video game collector. By the end of 2013 I'll own over 2,700 games in my 26 years of gaming (I'm 30, been playing since I was 4). As a result of this, I own MANY video game consoles. One of the best parts about backwards compatibility is that I don't need to keep every single one hooked up. Now granted... I DO have them all hooked up, but the convenience is there for many, like me, who keep their old consoles. Many people believe that backwards compatibility is a relatively new thing, but that couldn't be further from the truth.

With this new generation of gaming, I am harkened back to the days of Intellivision, Colecovision and Atari. I would EASILY think of them as Xbox One, PS4, and Wii U. Many don't realize that Atari made 3 versions of their self-titled console: The 2600, the 5200, and the 7800. The 7800 was almost fully compatible with 2600 games. Hell, the Intellivision II (remodeled version) had an adapter to play Atari 2600 games! Cross compatibility right there! So to say there's no room for backwards compatibility in the gaming world is ludicrous!



Let's jump to the NES era. In this era you have NES, Sega Master System, and the Atari 7800 battling. Atari dies out and the NES wins over the SMS. But think of some fine points about Sega for a minute. They made a handheld console called the Game Gear, maybe you heard of it. Well this has an adapter to play SMS games on it! 

Then comes the SNES, Sega Genesis era of gaming, which to me is still the best. Now granted the SNES couldn't play NES games but with the help of an adapter, the Sega Genesis could play SMS games which was great! When the Gameboy came out, Nintendo came up with Super Gameboy and I don't know about you but I lost my mind! The fact that I could play my handheld games on my big TV (20 inch TVs were big back then for a kid to have in his room) was a great incentive to stick with the SNES.

But the consoles were not the only form of gaming to get compatibility by this point! Gameboy games worked on the Gameboy Color which, even though the GBC is an upgraded Gameboy, it still counts as you could toss your old GB and strictly use the GBC. Then the beloved GBA comes out... that thing could play GB, GBC, AND GBA games.



So now we advance, the N64, Sega Saturn, PS1 era lurks. Once again we get struck down with no backwards compatibility. This marks the first time in in 5 generations of gaming that we can't use our older games. Now I'll admit, I don't think many of us were even thinking of backwards compatibility back then, despite having it, since it didn't really have a name yet. But you COULD use the same video cable for the SNES/N64/Gamecube so there's that! But thinking back on it now, yea it kind of sucked. Luckily for us there was tons of games for older consoles and back then trading games wasn't really going around in full swing like it is today. Hell the first used game I ever bought was Mario Golf for the N64, and the battery inside was dead and I had to swap it for another copy.

So now we hit arguably the most popular gen of gaming, the sixth gen with PS2, Dreamcast, Gamecube, and Xbox. PS2 could play 99.5% of PS1 games. I leave out 0.5% cuz there's about 10 games that don't work completely. I found this out playing Mortal Kombat Trilogy which plays fine in VS, but go play single player and try to see your characters ending, the game will freeze on Shao Kahn when he gets ready to explode.

PS2 was an amazing all in one system. Oddly, I was an Xbox fan and actually bought that, then GC and PS2 dead last. I still own the very last fat model they made and it works great. I had a DVD player so that wasn't a priority to me. But then we move to Gamecube. Gamecube couldn't play old CONSOLE games, but, with the GBA player, you could once again play GB/GBC/GBA games on your TV which was an amazing feature. The Xbox has nothing jumping into this gen and took a gamble, but I say they're doing pretty good.



Let's not forget more handhelds. The Nintendo DS could play GBA and DS games, and our beloved 3DS can play DS games, furthering the compatibility into this gen. But next we get to the current gen, Xbox 360, Wii, and PS3. These 3 consoles are simply amazing and I am glad to own them all. Once again this gen I went 360, wii then PS3. Even now I haven't played a PS3 game in over a year (don't worry Santa is bringing me The Last of Us). But let's look at this gen closely.

It all began with 360. Now the 360 can play a good amount of original Xbox games, and sadly Microsoft stopped despite claiming eventually all would work. This however proves that updates could be done for compatibility. Now I don't pretend to know how to create video games, but compatibility, on a superior system, should fairly easily be done using software and not hardware, right? Someone correct me on the specifics but it seems odd to not have it. But at least SOME games worked on the 360. The Wii could play almost every Gamecube game which drew me in so I could let my Gamecube rest for a while (only to be resurrected to play GBA games on my 40 inch HDTV). The PS3, at first, could play PS2 games because it had the actual PS2 hardware. But... Sony realized they could remove that and sell PS2 games as PS2 Classic games and make more money, but hey, the compatibility was there initially. We don't talk about PSP and Vita because well... they did a poor job when it comes to this topic. Hell, the PSP Go made it so you couldn't even play PSP games on it unless you downloaded them.

So now the next gen is upon us! in 6 days it's be in full swing with Wii U, PS4 and Xbox One all coming out. This Gen I already own a Wii U, but I am going Xbox One. I am not picking it due to my fanboyism, I simply chose it because I am a die hard Dead Rising fan and I NEED DR3. That and the PS4 has no exclusive games I care about except God of War and even then Ascension sucked. I am sorry but it's the worst in the entire series but that's for another day.



So what does everyone think? Is it weird that only 2 generations of gaming didn't have backwards compatibility? Did you notice it or not? I always knew it, but it never impacted me as much once I truly realized that we've had it almost all this time. To be nice, if you didn't want to read this blog, here's a compatibility rundown (if I am missing something please add it:

(C/W= compatible with)
(C/A = Compatible with adapter)

[u]Compatibility thru the ages:[/u]
- Atari 2600 C/W 7800
- Atari 2600 C/A Intellivision II
- Sega Master System C/A Sega Genesis and Game Gear
- Gameboy C/A SNES
- Gameboy C/W Gameboy Color
- GB,GBC C/W GBA
- GBA C/W Nintendo DS and DS Lite
- GB,GBC,GBA C/A Gamecube (via GBA player)
- PS1 C/W PS2 and PS3 (earlier models)
- Xbox C/W Xbox 360 (Limited)
- Gamecube C/W Wii
- Wii C/W Wii U

The 5th gen is the only one to have zero compatibility since the 8th (now current) gen has Wii to Wii U, and the 3rd gen had at least SMS to game gear and Genesis.

But sadly no 360 to One, or PS3 to PS4. Not even digital games ::shrug:: You'd think by now we'd know how to use software and allow it, especially if I paid for it digitally on 360.. Why they wouldn't think I'd wanna play it on the next console, when digital will be the 9th generation of gaming most likely, is beyond me. Don't worry, they'll be gracious to add older games to XBLA (or whatever Xbox One will call it) and make us pay for them again, such is gaming. 

Long story short, there's been WAY more Backwards compatibility than not, so why remove it now?

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12:17 PM on 06.03.2013  

My Gaming Story: 26 years and counting

Like most gamers of today, I started out as a young child at age 4 with a little system called the Atari 2600. It all started when my father gave me his Atari system when I was around 4 years old (26 years ago since I am now 30). Now while I cannot say this is when I fell in love with video games, since i was only 4, but this was my first time actually playing games. The first game I ever played was called Kangaroo. This was your basic old school platformer where you have to make the mama Kangaroo reach her baby at the top. I played this game, and many others such as Pac man Jr, Dig Dug, and Missile Command, which simply added to my future love for gaming.



So come age 5 I finally received my own Atari 2600 Jr... but that's not where it all began. This is simply because in Christmas of 1988 I received my NES. This is when gaming got its hooks in me and would from then on never let me go. Now growing up as an only child, I was spoiled rotten. While my parents didn't buy many games for me, they sure as hell rented plenty of them. Twice a week my dad would swing by the local Major Video (which would later become Blockbuster Video and then later become an empty building) and get me a new NES game. I would play games for hours on end after school right up until bed time. I still went outside and played with friends, but as an only child, when my friends weren't around, what else was a boy to do? Growing up I owned MAYBE 16 or so games during the NES's actual lifetime (I now own 253 NES games thanks to my game collecting addiction), but renting was the thing to do. I must've killed hundreds of NES games as a kid and I definitely miss it more than you know.

So then we move onto the SNES/Genesis generation. Good lord what a time this was! I remember waking up on Christmas morning (not sure on the year) and opening up my SNES and hooking it up all by myself to our TV in the den and playing Spider-man/X-men and Super Mario World. Now this was not the first time I played the SNES, I had previously rented the console 2 times from some mom and pop video store. Both times playing Joe and Mac and Super Mario World. Renting consoles was a thing many people did since they couldn't afford to buy them unless it was a holiday. But I definitely remember the day I played MY SNES for the first time quite well. I rented the Sega Genesis about 3 times, playing the likes of Sonic The Hedgehog, Altered Beast, and Dick Tracy. I also rented tons of games over the years, the same as NES, for both consoles.

Long story short, I moved through the ranks of every major console. I chose PS1 over the Saturn (I own one now, however), I got an N64, Dreamcast, and everything in between leading up to the Wii U. I have every major console or handheld released in the US and played thousands of hours on an original Gameboy playing such titles as Tetris, Quarth, Gremlins 2, and other such obscure titles as well. But the time that got me into gaming was that time between NES and SNES.




So here we are, 26 years after playing my first video game, and I still love it. I currently own 2,614 video games spanning countless systems. I own an Atari 2600 (2 of them), Atari 2600 jr, NES (top loader and 2 front loaders), SNES, Sega Genesis gen 1 (with Sega CD gen2 and Sega 32x), Gameboy (and a Gameboy pocket), GBA SP (NES style), Mario Kart edition Nintendo DS, DS Lite (2 of them, one black and one Zelda gold edition), 3DS, Turbo Grafx-16, N64, PS1 (original and a PS One with monitor), PS2 (last fat model made), Sega Saturn, Sega Master System, Atari Jaguar, Gamecube, Xbox, Wii, Xbox 360 (2 of them one non-HDMI white and one halo 3 special edition), Virtual Boy, PS3, PSP slim, and a Sega Dreamcast. I might be leaving some out but I think that's it.

So to say I am serious about video games is quite an accurate description. With the dawn of digital gaming, I am sadly losing interest in the next generation of video games. I will always have my games to play, however, as my backlog is over 1000 of these games. If 26 years later I am still into gaming, it's pretty obvious I will remain so, whether it's with new games or simply playing all my old games. Either way, gaming is who I am.

I can't say what the future of gaming truly holds and if I will embrace the digital age of gaming for sure, but I am definitely not as in love with the games of today as I was when I was a child. With having to work 35-40 hrs a week, spending time with family, friends, or my fiance, and the fact that many of my friends aren't as into gaming as me and never really was, there's not nearly enough time to play games as I would have liked. I do try my best to game at least 1-2hrs a day if I am lucky but such is life. While my gaming addiction may have started with the NES, it will not end until the day i die and that is a truth that you can bet on when it comes to me. Here's some fun stuff I drew a few years back, for some classes in college, thus further showing my love for games. Here's some Atari characters (and its 3ft by 4 ft in size), 3 megaman drawn with alternating mediums (based on a pic I found online but hand drawn not traced), and a close up of Chris Redfields alt attire from the RE1 remake)

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7:48 PM on 01.28.2013  

DOOM on Nightmare ain't no joke

Now I love a difficult game as much as the next person, but good lord what have I gotten myself into this time? Now back in the day I remember when DOOM was a new game. My friend got the shareware version and we played "knee deep in the dead" over and over. But when I was a kid, I wasn't much for challenging games and I think that's common even today. You bet I used all the cheat codes and played on ultra violence. I've only ever beaten DOOM and DOOM 2 on normal without cheats maybe once or twice. So I've decided that now is the time to kick this series in the ass and beat all 5 major titles on Nightmare...Good lord I am in for some pain.



So I started playing Ultimate DOOM on the Doom 3 BFG edition on Nightmare... Let's just say this is definitely going to be a challenge. My goal in this is to beat these games all on Nightmare:

- (Ultimate) DOOM (Xbox 360; plus the hidden Xbox only e1m10 on the Xbox doom 3 special edition)
- DOOM 2: Hell on Earth
- Final DOOM (original PC version I have that's been collecting dust)
- DOOM 64 (N64 version; Duh)
- DOOM 3 (Xbox 360 version)
--Plus Resurrection of Evil and Lost Chapters and probably all 21 Master Levels primarily on the Xbox version for a level by level structure setup and then the 3 missing levels on PC

Why do I want to do this? I don't truly know. Call me a glutton for punishment I guess. I mean maybe in the last 10 years or so I decided that I enjoy difficult games and difficult challenges. I mean I've beaten every Halo game on legendary solo (except Halo anniversary so far since I beat Halo CE on legendary before and Halo 2... good lord I hate you halo 2. Difficult isn't even the word). But I like a challenge and this seems like an amazing one. I also love DOOM as a series and always have wanted to do this so now is that time.

My main focus is to beat the levels. I am not out to kill every enemy and find every secret item, I WILL however beat every mission in these games, secret ones and all. Now I am only on E1M3 in DOOM but it's all about trial and error. Lets see the facts. While you get double the ammo from all ammo pickups and enemies do way more damage... enemies RESPAWN! I thought the Arch-vile resurrecting enemies in DOOM 2 was bad enough, now all enemies respawn. Yipes! I never knew this about Nightmare and man oh man is that difficult. The name Nightmare truly does this difficulty justice.

So I urge anyone who wants a super challenge, try the DOOM games on Nightmare. It's punishing but when its all over I always get a sense of personal accomplishment. I mean.. I have a 100% gamerscore on Dead Rising... it almost made me go absolutely insane but now that it's done, I actually enjoyed doing it... next stop, finish my achievements for the other dead rising games.... once I am done with DOOM.. and by the looks of things, that could be a while. Wish me luck!

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9:32 PM on 01.22.2013  

I love my Nostalgia Goggles

Have you ever heard someone say phrases like "Oh that game didn't age well" or the term "Nostalgia Goggles"? I don't know if I too am afflicted with the dreaded disease of Nostalgia or not, but I don't believe in the word. As you know if you read one of my previous blogs, I own way too many video games. The majority of them are from the classic gaming era. Consoles such as NES, SNES, and Sega Genesis are just a few of many that plague my very existence. But, like most people who enjoy the classic games, they were the highlights of many of our lives.

I can go, right now, and play Goldeneye 64 without even thinking about it. I have NEVER said a game didn't age well because I don't compare games of yesteryear with the games of today. It makes no sense to compare an SNES game to a PS3 game. Remember Toejam and Earl? The game is still fun as hell, at least to me anyway. I play classic games in the same mindset that I played them when I was younger and not as a side by side comparison of how games look today. Every generation of games has their great moments. Does gaming get better? I say no. I say games get DIFFERENT. Video games, much like music, simply change with the times. Why did they make Megaman 9 and 10? If Megaman Legends was so much more amazing due to its 3D platformer graphics why would we have made "throwback" games? Hell, 2D fighting games are STILL bigger than any 3D fighting game franchise. Now granted, some 3D fighters are great. But some games need to stay 2D while others can evolve to 3D and be great like the Super Mario Galaxy series or Prince of Persia.


Still amazing fun after all these years

See, in my youth I played LOTS of video games. As an only child, whenever my friends weren't around, what else was I going to do? Read? Throw a baseball to myself? Jog around the block repeatedly? I had fish growing up so I couldn't go play with the family pet and I was the first grandchild on my mom's side of the family (my dads's side of the family all live further away) until I was 7 so I couldn't even hang with cousins until later in life. I turned to video games as something to do as a child when I couldn't go see my friends which happened often for reasons I don't really know because I was young. I would wake up, go to school, come home around 2pm and play games until 10pm. Then I'd fall asleep watching back to back episodes of Star Trek TNG and Star Trek DS9. But take that example of a day in the life of GrimmTrixX, and make it 5-7 days a week and multiply it numerous times.

My dad would rent games from Major video (then it became Blockbuster video; now it's an Eb Lens...) twice a week. He'd pick a different game for me every time and I would kill the games and move onto the next ones. This happened for years so as a kid I played hundreds of games and every game blockbuster had to offer during the NES-N64 eras of gaming. So looking back on old games and playing them brings back fond memories but they're also insane fun even now.

They remind me of a simpler time in gaming when game companies focused on if a game was good and not if it could make them money. Sure I can go play halo 4 right now or Black Ops 2, but then what? Are they great games? Sure. Will I remember them in 20 years and look back on them fondly? Probably not. Why? Well I am an adult now. I have so much more to think about today then when I was younger that playing games of this generation, while fun, are harder to enjoy because I cannot invest nearly as much time into them as I could in the past. I cannot attach meaningful life experiences to many video games made in the last 5 or so years. But if we play Kickle Cubicle on the NES I remember my friends first cat being hit by a car, because that's the game we were playing when it happened. Go figure.

One reason I love classic games is that they were quick to pick up and play and even beat.I don't even know how many times have defeated Super Mario World? I have beaten and re-beaten that game so many times I lost count. It's still my all time favorite SNES game and I could go play it right now and have as much fun as I did back when it had first come out and beat the game again. Old school games have ultimate re-playability to me. But with Xbox 360/PS3/Wii/WiiU era games, once I beat it, I'm done. You can throw all the alternate endings at me you want, once I beat it, good or bad ending, it's over. The only series this gaming generation that I really replay is any Dead Rising game. Something about that series is just plain enjoyable.


Proximity mines on Facility...best gaming years of my life

All i am saying is, I hate the hate that the term Nostalgia gets. It's used more as a put down than anything else. Do I deny that games today look more realistic? Of course not. But does that mean better? How many lush and vibrant worlds exist in RPGs today, yet some can't hold a candle to greats like Final Fantasy VI or Chrono Trigger? Why do I have more fun playing ANY SNES game over half the things that came out in the last 5 years? I mean sure I must have some kind of bias, since I own over 2500 video games, but keep in mind, I own almost 100 Xbox 360 games. I own 280 PS2 games, etc..etc.. My collection spans the gaming universe from Atari To Wii U. i love all things video games, I'll just always prefer gaming from The 80s-00s over any video game era even when I an a super old man. The difference is, I will keep playing new games and evolving to new consoles, unlike many people who get into their bubble and don't advance. My dad hates movies of today and hates any music made after the 80s unless it was made by an older artist who started in his time. Our generation needs to evolve with technology lest we be defeated by it.

Gaming, in itself, is an opinion. We like what we like and that's that. I won't ever tell someone what they like sucks and is terrible. Believe me I have played and I currently own LOTS of terrible games but if you come to me and say Black Ops is the best game you ever played, and you truly believe it, then enjoy the hell out of it because I am glad you found what you enjoy to play.

I just want everyone to be a gamer. I want everyone for years to come who is just getting into games to feel how I felt all those years ago when I started with Atari and NES back in 1987-88 when I was 4 or 5. I love looking at and playing my old school game collection both as current and past enjoyment. My "Nostalgia Goggles" are forever super glued to my face and I wouldn't ever change that. If I like something now, I like it forever. I don't ever change the things I once enjoyed over time. I don't like rap music... but do I hate rap music I once liked? Hell No! Bone Thugs N Harmony is still my all time favorite rap group and always will be. I still love music from the 80s and 90s, I still love watching classic cartoons and TV shows I once loved and enjoy them just as much today such as: classic TMNT, Star Trek TOS/TNG/DS9/VOY, Power Rangers, He-Man, etc..etc.. hell, I have a large collection of action figures from the 80s-90s and they were all obtained just by buying them in the store as a kid with my parents. I didn't go to ebay and buy them like I had to with my huge gaming collection (namely because buying all these games at full retail would've never happened and would've cost SO much more than obtaining them used or for free by working at a video game store for 5 years and customers would give me classic games for the hell of it or sell them to me dirt cheap).

So to end this somewhat shorter blog than I normally do, I just want to say there's nothing wrong with nostalgia. Without it, how do we know about the history of gaming? I'll someday be that 80 year old man telling his grand children about a man fighting a giant gorilla or about a female bounty hunter Samus. And while they won't get the reference (maybe.. depends on if my game collection lasts that long and if TVs/electricity still works roughly the same in 2063). But if you love old games like me and still enjoy them then feel free to leave a comment. I will forever miss having hours upon hours to play games, but the sad truth about growing up is you truly have less time to do the things you love because 30-40 hrs of week just steal that time and energy away...Now if only I could win the lottery...


Fixed
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7:11 PM on 01.19.2013  

When did the word "Warranty" turn into "Insurance"?

Remember a time when you bought an extended warranty for an electronic device like a game system or, in my current case, a smartphone, and it covered anything? If the item was smashed, shocked, fried, or struck down by the hand of God himself you could bring it to the store, swap it for a new one right then and there, and be on your way. Well I guess times truly do change when you don't pay attention to the way things are worded in this day and age.

Now I am not new to a cell phone. I, like most of you, have had numerous cell phones and at least a new one every 2 years. So color me surprised when my recent new phone, the lovely Samsung Galaxy S III, took a slow motion nose dive out of my over-encumbered hands and onto my nice, ice cold, paved driveway. Now the phone survived the fall, as in, the phone still worked. The screen however, was not nearly a lucky. Smashed in 2 primary spots, the screen screamed in pain. Spiderweb cracks engulfing all but a slight spot in the center, rendering a finger swipe useless if not painful. I mean, in order to use it safely I even put the sucker in a clear ziploc bag, which oddly enough the touch screen still worked when i touched it; quick fix successful.


I think I see a skull in the middle right side

Here's where it gets ugly. On the 18th of January after a boring 8hr shift at my job, I quickly flew to my nearest Verizon store to, as I assumed, simply swap out my phone and get a new one and be on my merry way. I mean after all, I pay $6.99 a month for this "warranty" which is $83.88 a year before any taxes, so it makes sense to me that I can just swap it. You see, a few years back, before smartphones like the iphone and other such devices came out, my girlfriend had 2 phones break on her. We had the same priced warranty back then, and both were swapped out in the store, no problem. One was the phone just simply no longer worked and the other she had dropped it. No matter how it happened, both times she got a new phone and that was that.

So now we are deeper into the digital age. It's The age of the smartphone and cloud storage as well as the age of controller-less gaming and 3D movies in your living room. Sadly, it is also the age of cell phone "Insurance." Now for starters, when did phones become that important that they needed to be insured? I can't drive it. I can't live in it. I most certainly cannot pay for a funeral with it (although the prices some of the phones go for, perhaps you could). So why, did that word "warranty" go and change to "insurance.? I'll tel you why and it is also summed up in one word: Deductible.

This is a word most of us adults fear the most. Deductible.... The word just sounds disgusting and vulgar and makes me want to punch someone in the face, most notably the person who invented this word. In any case, I get home and go online to Asurion's website. After making a claim, here's the dreaded word "Deductible" and it is for a whopping $99. So you're telling me I pay $6.99 a month so I am then allowed to ONLY pay $99.... for a phone I paid $199 for thanks to the discounted upgrade. I bought this phone in late November... and now, because I finally broke one of my many cell phones over the years, this is what I get? Whatever happened to bringing it in, they swap it out, and I leave a happy customer knowing my $6.99 a month was worth it? Oh and guess what... they don't even send you a new phone! The one they sent me plainly says "re-manufactured in the USA." So not only did I have to pay $99, and pay $6.99 for this, but then they send me a refurbished phone?! What is wrong with our country!?


Old cell phone memories...and I have no idea why I still have these

Over the years I've run the gamut of phones from prepaid Nokias, to some garbage t-mobile phone, to some LG phone that was ok, to a krazer (which was still my favorite phone ever before smartphones existed), to a special edition Star Wars R2-D2 Droid 2 (which was my first smart phone and I loved it) and now to my Samsung Galaxy S III. Never have I been so furious at an extended warranty plan. I have two Xbox 360s, both have red ringed TWICE EACH and not ONCE did I pay for a new console. My original PS1 broke, FREE swap. My Sega Dreamcast broke years ago, FREE swap. As I mentioned earlier that 2 of my girlfriends phones broke, FREE swap BOTH times. Is anyone else seeing the pattern here? On all of these items I had extended warranties, hoping I'd never need them, and when I had to use them, I got my item swapped out and all was good. Now it's 2013 and I truly see how our future in this country will be, when things like cellular phones need insurance.

I understand they're probably more intricate and expensive to make, I understand that $99 is reasonable considering if I didn't have it I'd either have to pay my $200 upgraded price or worse, but why is that the case now and it wasn't before this time? Is it because Cell phone companies just thought of this in the last few years and realized it was easy money? I mean if I had a regular cell phone I still would've had to pay $45 for a replacement. Shouldn't we all simply just get an automatic extended warranty and just make us pay $99 to replace it? I wouldn't be mad if I wasn't already paying $6.99 a month and I wouldn't be mad if I didn't have to pay that in the first place and could pay $99 for a replacement, but both is just ludicrous and wrong. My Droid 2 never broke on me so I never had to use the warranty which is why i am finding out about this now. Hell I have dropped my Droid 2, 3-4 times, in the SAME driveway and the worst thing that happened was the plastic case I had flew off, that's it. So how do we not get a "one time it's free and anything after that you pay" kind of system that most products today still have?


Ahh... the old R2-D2 droid. I miss your indestructibility

Now granted I didn't have a case on my phone yet, so maybe that's my bad, but realistically, should I have to buy body armor for my cell phone? Perhaps a sleek Kevlar lined cover? Should they manufacture something that will break after being dropped one time? Certainly in the year 2013 this technology must exist. I mean after all, I am pretty sure shatterproof glass and other such materials exist today. But as fate would have it, I DID order a case for my phone and guess when it arrived? The day after I dropped the phone. Does that qualify as irony? I don't know but either way it wasn't enjoyable at all.

So be careful when you get that extended warranty. Get it in writing that they replace it, because I never looked at this "$99 deductible" garbage because I made the mistake of assuming something as insane as this could never exist. Why is my state of the art gaming system able to be swapped for no extra cost but not my phone? Why can I blow out stereo speakers and have them swapped out no problem? I paid $99 for a re-manufactured phone that I just bought for $199 new less than a full 3 months ago and that just doesn't seem right to me.


Nerdy new phone case that arrived a day late...I'm aware it won't protect the screen, per se, but it does shift the phones weight so maybe it'd fall backside down next time...

Did I mention when they first sent me the phone it didn't come with a SIM card and I had to go to the Verizon store to get one and the guy was going to charge me $20 but thankfully hooked me up and didn't? Yea...I love not being able to use my new phone until 3 days after I get it and then have all this happen 3 months later. But hey, it's not all bad, I get an extra charger, battery and a SIM card for all my hassle...

So if anyone agrees with me or has a similar story they would love to share I am all about it. If I sound unreasonable and you disagree, feel free to comment too, I need to know what others think of this policy and if I am just starting to show my age.   read


8:20 PM on 01.14.2013  

So many games, So little time: The Road to 2500 Video Games

Have you ever had a huge backlog of games that you've been meaning to play? You go to work and day dream about just what game you will play and how far you'll get, only to realize time is not on your side? Take right now for instance. I sit here, after working 9+ hours, full of free time to play games, but what am I doing? Writing this very blog. Now while some may say this is counterproductive on the game playing front, I like to think of this blog as the beginning. Here is my lovely tale of gaming from the beginning to current events, as well as a rundown of my gaming collection by the numbers (not an actual list of my games, just how many on what system).


Me and my gaming setup/shelves


The Road to 2500 games has been a long and arduous journey. It started with my 4 year old self being given his father's Atari and immediately getting hooked on games like Dig Dug and Kaboom. The first video game I ever played, however, was a little game called Kangaroo. Then I received the first console that was ever officially purchased for me and me alone... The Nintendo Entertainment System. I would play Mario and Duck Hunt all day long. My dad even played and showed off shooting all the ducks with his back to the TV while only using the NES Zapper and a small mirror. My dad used to rent me tons of games as a kid since they didn't have money to buy me tons of games but renting was the best! I would get 1-2 games a week and burn through them like crazy. Sometimes I picked them and other times he would pick them on his way home from work.

So many memories with my NES. I can remember the game my friend and I were playing when his first cat died and it was Kickle Cubicle. My friend and I used to watch his dad play Legend of Zelda, Legend of Zelda II and Faxanadu all while learning how to figure out our first endeavor into any kind of games with RPG elements. In my friends case, he always got the new Nintendo systems all because his dad wanted to play Zelda games. haha But one would assume I've had tons of games all my life, which isn't the case. I actually only owned about 16 NES games during their actual years of production, the bulk of my games came much later since I rented a lot more as a kid than actually bought/received games. I also didn't get a Sega Master System until mid 2012 so no fond memories of that system, but at least I do own one now! Somewhere amongst this madness I got a Gameboy and loved it. I also once left my gameboy in my pool bag in the trunk of my moms car (we used to goto a pool club when I was a kid for fun summer swimming times) and the screen got all black and burned out. Luckily, my mom had bought me another Gameboy the following Christmas but hid it because she forget she bought me one, and so then I was all set!

Then came the 16 bit generation! Sega Genesis and SNES battled it out for supremacy of the gaming world! I initially rented consoles at this point as a kid and within the first year of its existence I rented the Sega Genesis about 2-3 times and I got one for Christmas the following year in 1991. Then Christmas of 1992 I was blessed with an SNES along with the packed in Super Mario world and Spiderman/X-men in Arcade's Revenge. I can remember waking up early, opening it up, and hooking up the console myself just to play them on christmas morning. I had also rented the SNES numerous times before getting it and i still remember my first SNES game due to renting the consoles/games, Joe and Mac. I even played in the Blockbuster Video Game championships for 2 years in a row, and was in the lead during the year they had Donkey Kong Country in the tournament. But the 3rd and final day I lost by 100 bananas and was mad cuz my dad told me it was cumulative from all 3 days (which i wouldve won) but it was just by the top score and I lost. The other year was some random games, i forget which ones, but didn't do well there. Somewhere in this gen I got a Sega Game Gear. it was fun but ate through 6 AA batteries every 3 hours. But they made a charger pack and all was good. I also got a Sega CD, only for Night Trap and Willy Beamish... and Night Trap got pulled from shelves 2 months before I got a Sega CD. Sure I got one years later, but it crushed me as a kid and the only real game I played, and still play, is Eternal Champions: Challenge from the Dark Side.


One of my dirty old Atari's and some of my handhelds


Next is the amazing PS1 and N64 era! I leave out Sega Saturn namely because I didn't get one of those until maybe 3 or 4 years ago. PS1 and N64 were both amazing consoles, which I am sure you all know. This was the generation where my parents said they wouldn't buy me any more video game consoles unless I saved my money, little did I know this was a trick to see if I could save money, and I sure did. Think of it, what 13 year old kid can save any money? Well I showed them and I saved any money I received. So the N64 came out and I was still saving and running to Blockbuster Video to play their stand up unit that Reset every 15 minutes or so but I didn't care. Then it was November and I was ready to go buy it after school with my mom. I had enough money for the system and a game. Then my dad comes home...and what does he bring me, an N64! Remember that infamous video of N64 kid? No that wasn't me but I was pretty excited nonetheless. They were proud that I had saved my money and could tell I really wanted it so I was able to spend my money on another controller and some more games, what a great memory that is and always will be.

PS1 wasn't as exciting of a story, it was more of a "ask for it for Christmas, get it, love it" kind of thing. By this point my parents knew I would always love games and so decided to lift the "no more consoles" embargo. However, my parents fooled me big time that year. Resident Evil had been out for a while and my friends had it, so of course I needed it. So I wake up christmas morning 1997, got some stuff, but no PS1. They told me maybe another time I could get one. So we went to my Aunt's for Christmas and BAM PS1 city! They even got me my first 2 PS1 games, Twisted Metal 2 and Resident Evil! I couldn't play Resident Evil because my younger cousins were around, but I could play Twisted Metal oddly enough, probably because the gore isnt as real, and I didnt play it long there anyway so it wasn't a big deal.

Then by this point I am older. Dreamcast came out, I wanted one, got it for Xmas in 1999, loved it. My friend bought one too (not the same friend from earlier) namely because it could play burned games and he was all about that, so he went from having an NES and never getting another system until Dreamcast and then getting and eventually modding his Xbox after the warranty ran out. lol But my first 2 Dreamcast games were NFL 2k and NBA 2k because they came with the system in a bundle. I never liked sports games, (i still don't and don't really like sports altogether) but NFL 2k was fun as hell and I loved the series until its demise with NFL 2k5 and I suck at Madden and just hate how it plays so I never got into sports games anymore.


Spliced image of my 2 major game shelves and my strategy guide rack in the middle


Then the infamous PS2/Gamecube/Xbox generation. I, unlike most people, got a PS2 last. I got Xbox first because I was sure it was the best one after reading magazine and checking online sites and I was hooked. To this day I still say Xbox and Xbox 360 are my favorite consoles of the last 2 generations. Then I bought a Gamecube ONLY because Resident Evil had to go and be remade on it and I also wanted Super Smash Bros Melee. I also only bought a PS2 later in its life (last big model PS2 but right before the slims were made) and that was only because I am a huge WWE fan and I wanted the Smackdown series. Flash forward to today and I own more PS2 games than any other console in my collection. Sure that's because PS2 games dropped to dirt cheap at the game store I worked at, but still I love it nonetheless.

Here we are, Current gen. Even though it's now almost over, My time with the Xbox 360/PS3/Wii has still been fun. Sure not as many fond memories, but still great games. As always I started with Xbox 360, not just because it was out first, but I loved the Xbox and so this made sense. I got a Wii at launch just because we had an extra console at my work and I got it cuz I new it'd be hard to find later. PS3 I didn't get until the Slim models came out and even then I only got it because God of War 3 was coming out. I literally haven't played my PS3 in over a year, it's my blu-ray player/Netflix/Hulu Plus machine. I only have it for those reasons and for system exclusives, of which I am not really into many of them apparently. If its multi-platform I always go Xbox 360. The Wii is always a fun system and it got my girlfriend more into gaming so that's always a plus.


Gaming area with most of my consoles. Replace Wii with Wii U, add in a Turbo Grafx 16 and you get the idea.


Many of my systems I received during my days at Game Crazy. Some I got for $10-15 at the store from customers (since after a while we couldnt take more old games in so we could then make offers). Systems like Saturn, virtual boy and 32x. While I had rented them, I never bought them til 4-7 years ago. But it was those 5 years (2005-2010) that I ludicrously blew up my collection by 2000+ of my now 2500+ games. During the all of the consoles actual life spans (not including current gen) I probably only owned 10-15 games. Fun fact: The first system I owned over 30 games for while they still produced games for the console: Gameboy.

So what's in store for this generation? The Wii U is cool, I have one, but I'm not quite in love with it yet. The 3DS is fun but still JUST as fun as the DS was as I am not all "Wowzers 3D sure is nifty wifty!" So we'll see what's to come for the next 10 years of gaming.


Just playin' me some Wario Land on the old Virtual Boy!


So here's what people come to see: The Collection. My collection just this week has hit an astonishing 2504 games... Ponder on that one for a minute... 2504 games... yowza.

Here's a rundown of the sickness:

GAMES
NES - 250
SNES - 166
N64 - 150
Gamecube - 89
Wii - 74
Wii U - 2
Gameboy/Gameboy Color - 172
Gameboy Advance - 101
Virtual Boy - 5
Nintendo DS - 125
Nintendo 3DS - 14

Sega Master System - 9
Sega Genesis - 179
Sega CD - 52
Sega 32x - 7
Sega Saturn - 16
Sega Dreamcast - 71
Sega Game Gear - 23

PS1 - 202
PS2 - 280 (highest amount in my collection)
PS3 - 30
PSP - 102

Xbox - 171
Xbox 360 - 187

Atari 2600 - 16
Atari Jaguar - 5
Turbo Grafx 16 - 4
N-Gage - 2 (I have 2 games but no actual N-Gage system...yet)

= 2504 games...yipes

Consoles
NES - 3 (1 top loader, 2 front loader)
SNES (original)
N64 (original)
Gamecube (Indigo)
Wii (launch)
Wii U
Gameboy - 2 (1 classic, 1 pocket; oddly enough I don't own an actual Gameboy Color...yet)
Gameboy Advance SP (NES Classic design; I don't own an original GBA or a GBA Micro...yet)
Virtual Boy
Nintendo DS - 3 (Mario Kart original DS, Black DS Lite, Legend of Zelda DS lite)
Nintendo 3DS

Sega Master System
Sega Genesis (ver.1)
Sega CD (ver. 2)
Sega 32x
Sega Saturn
Sega Dreamcast
Sega Game Gear

PS1 - 2 (original PSX and the smaller PSone w/ attachable monitor)
PS2 (original)
PS3 (slim)
PSP (silver slim model)

Xbox
Xbox 360 - 2 (one old white pre-HDMI slot model and one Halo 3 special edition model)

Atari - 3 (2 Atari 2600s, 1 Atari 2600 jr.)
Atari Jaguar
Turbo Grafx 16

So that's a nice little rundown of what my collection consists of these days. I also have 250 Strategy guides and about 20 or so Art Books. I also have posters, pre-order gifts, many special editions of games, and other such video game related items. I even own a 2-3 ft Master Chief statue that we had at Game Crazy and I was allowed to take it! On top of all this I also own over 60+ Star Trek Original Series novels, tons of comics/graphic novels as well as a nice collection of video game based novels.


Some of my Video game Novels, handful more bought afterwards


But what is to become of my beloved hobby in the future? Mom and pop stores have caught on to the internet and now sell their games for the outlandish online prices, Gamestop is still overpriced for most of their games and have almost eliminated any games from the PS2/GC/Xbox era and earlier, and as i get older my money becomes more and more needed and less usable for things such as this hobby/addiction. But above all else, as I get older, time moves faster and I am more conscious of it.

I love the thought of being able to never run out of games to play, or to just be able to play whatever I want whenever I want. Yes I am aware of virtual consoles and digital downloads (and believe me I dread the console generation after this coming one because the rumors are it will all be digital). I just can't do digital downloads and the only ones I own are those that are ONLY digital such as Super Meat Boy or older but now have online play like Street Fighter 3: Third Strike.

I also own about 10-15 PC games, but I am not a PC gamer and havent really ever been. Sure I played DOOM and Worms World Party when I was younger but PC gaming never stuck. I always preferred console gaming, initially because PC controllers were terrible back in the day and I hate using a keyboard and mouse for gaming. I'm way better at FPS games with a controller than a mouse and keyboard. But because I am a console game collector and not a PC game player or collector, they simply do not count to me as part of my collection. But if other people count PC games and digital download games in their collections, well then I hit 2500 games months ago.

As you can see from my cover photo, thats my collection. That is, back when it was only at 2300 about 1 or 2 years ago. The shelves have slightly changed but the insanity still remains. Thanks to Destructoid I have talked to others who have huge game collections and it's cool to know I am not alone in this at all. So I hope you all enjoyed this (those of you who bothered to read before or after my list of games/consoles lol) and feel free to ask me questions and/or comment! I leave you with this:


Kangaroo, Baby!
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11:04 PM on 07.24.2012  

Dear Activision, You're Useless. Love, GrimmTrixX

So this blog is going to be short and sweet. What the HELL were they thinking having NO local multiplayer in Tony Hawk Pro Skater HD? I get it, it's 2012, Xbox live and online gaming in general are huge. But WHY are all these game companies forgetting that friends like to hang out TOGETHER? I don't want to be hanging with my friend and then say "OK so go to your house so we can play tony hawk online!" I was JUST with him.. why does he need to go home so we can play a game of HORSE in THPSHD?

This game is useless to me now. Not only did this discourage me and make me not want to play it ever, but now my friend isn't getting the game on Xbox live for the same reason.. NO LOCAL MULTIPLAYER. A game series that has been 2 players since its incarnation, gets remade in HD (and the levels do look great...well Hangar does since I played it once and despised the fact that it's not 2 players and can't bare to look at it anymore), and then we get this garbage.

The blood and character models still look like crap too! They basically redid all the maps graphically and that's it.. That's really all they did. I wish I looked at reviews but I honestly though "How can Activision mess it up... it's a remake of the first 2 THPS games, the best ones" But they found a way. I completely miss when games had online multiplayer AND offline multiplayer. I mean is it because "no one wants to play split screen"?

You know who says that? People with 20 inch televisions. My 40 inch TV begs to differ. Since I was a child I couldn't wait until TV's got bigger (even then I knew they would), so I could play 4 player split screen with my friends more easily. And here we are, 2012, and all game companies want is for me and my friends to all buy their game, and play online in our own homes. Greedy pieces of trash.

So screw you Activision. Enjoy my $15 because it's the last of my money that you will ever see.

Tony Hawk Pro Skater HD blows.

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11:37 PM on 05.12.2012  

Where's my Friggin' Sequel: Eternal Champions

For years we have been bombarded with Street fighter, King of Fighters, and Mortal Kombat since the release of Eternal Champions: Challenge from the Dark Side for the Sega CD. Before Eternal Champions hit the Sega Genesis, everyone thought Mortal Kombat held the record for most violent game. Well I am here to tell you that those people did not play Eternal Champions.



This game had it all! EC had 25 characters, which dwarfed any other fighting game at the time. Sure a handful were semi-clones (think Super Smash Bros Melee with Mario/Dr. Mario or Roy/Marth), but many still had unique finishing moves and special moves at least in appearance.

The best part about this game of course included my favorite sci-fi theme: Time Travel! How could you get a cooler story?! All of the fighters were pulled from time JUST before their demise. The Eternal Champion (the primary Antagonist on the Genesis who was then replaced by HIS master on Sega CD, the Dark Champion) pulls these fighters from time, and they have to fight to the death. The winner is then returned to his/her timeline and given a chance to avoid their death and live again, while the losers, are sent back to their original time period and die as they were supposedly meant to die. This to me is an amazing story line and is one of the very reasons I love the concept of time travel.

The characters in Eternal Champions was Deadliest Warrior before the TV show even existed in someone's brain. This game had all kinds of fighters such as a caveman, pirate, cowboy, gangster, vampire, Warlock, circus performer, cyborg, Atlantis dwelling green guy, and you can even unlock hidden characters like a chicken, a politician, a vietnam soldier, and a monkey!



So as I said before, this game was violent as hell. Each character had their own finishing move called a "Vendetta." These moves are basically fatalities only some were just plain brutal. Remember that censored point blank headshot by the Joker in MK vs DC universe and it's not much more violent MK 2011 version? Well try being a Cowboy with a shotgun and firing one shot into a head to plow it up, and then firing the 2nd shot and blowing off more of the gunk that was once your head. And this was a game made in 1995! The tamer Sega Genesis version was still violent, but the Sega CD game was much worse (and more awesome).

Adding to Vendettas we also get the Overkills from the Sega Genesis game, but added on top of that were Sudden Deaths AND Cinekills. Overkills and Sudden deaths are basically the same. Finish the final round with your opponent landing in a certain spot when he/she took their final hit, or hit them for the final hit in the right spot and they would do a "pit stage" type finishing move. The only difference is Sudden Death's can only be done in the 3rd round, where Overkills could be done in the 2nd or 3rd round. Cinekills were an added bonus! TO get a Cinekill you basically had to dominate your opponent with a nice string of combos, knock them to 20% health or lower, and made them dizzy. if you did this your opponent would be sent to the Dark Champion himself and he would personally kill them. I've only done 2 of them myself back in the day with my two best characters, Midknight and Larcen, and they were an amazing site to behold, especially before the days of internet and social networking. This was back in the day when if Gamepro magazine didn't tell you how to do it, you either had to figure it out yourself or you just never knew about it until years and years later.

With that said, Where's my Friggin Sequel? Technically the series only has 1 entry, with Challenge from the Dark Side being a "Complete Edition" of sorts. There have been numerous rumors over the years or its impending journey into the world of Sequality, but nothing has been done. Sega... have you ever thought that maybe your company fails because all you do is make Sonic the Hedgehog games and hope that somehow people go "Oh yea I forgot I love Sonic! Let's buy them all." The only people who are buying Sonic games are those who always loved him. I love Sonic Generations and all, but they had to go back to being old school to even warrant my attention.



Larcen had a spinoff title for the Game Gear called Chicago Syndicate and Shadow was in X-perts. Both took place in their own time periods before the Eternal champions tournament.

If Eternal Champions 2 ever became a thing, it would sell like crazy! The game could be as violent as the ESRB would allow, which is potentially even worse than Mortal Kombat. Everyone loves stage fatalities, especially in this series when you would forget they even existed only to be surprised by the outcome of a match where you botched, or forgot how to do, a Vendetta. I played the crap out of EC and EC: CftDS and would do so with a sequel in a 2.5D side scrolling fighting style with updated graphics, levels, vendettas, overkills/sudden deaths and maybe even make new Cinekills. That's all I have to say about this very underrated and amazingly fun fighting game series.

Fun side note: Bone Thugs ~N~ Harmony's song "Eternal" used a sample from this games. Some guy on youtube mixed the song's lyrics into the Eternal Champions actual song. But if you hear each separately they def used the sample. It's awesome both as a gamer and a BTNH fan. NSFW:
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPUjkdbkxuI

Apparently BTNH sampled EC's bad ending music too for Crosssroads... Yea BTNH is definitely cooler now in my eyes. Probably should've cited Sega in their albums but whatever.
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3s4oApwijw

Here are the Cinekills:
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9BVTzwkHss

If you want to see the Overkills/Sudden Deaths, here they are:
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQlXJl_zf3Q

Also Vendettas (Dawson's bad ass shotgun Vendetta is at 2:30):
- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akJk0Mpl3Ic&feature=related

  read


3:12 PM on 05.06.2012  

Where's my Friggin' Sequel: Blood Omen/Soul Reaver

So it's about that time for more of my most wanted sequels in gaming. This one is not super old, but old enough to be annoying that there hasn't been a sequel for this series in quite a while, I am of course talking about the Blood Omen/Soul Reaver series. I miss it, I love it, I want some more of it.



It has been almost 9 full years since we were given the amazing game that is Legacy of Kain: Defiance. That's WAY too long for more action from the wraith Raziel or the vampire Kain to be wreaking Havoc, whether it's against each other or others. I have been a die hard fan of this series since Soul Reaver on my Dreamcast (I never heard of Blood Omen on PS1 until way later, I played it before Blood Omen 2 came out however). This series was one of the reasons I bought a PS2, since I got Gamecube AND Xbox before a PS2 but thanks to the WWE Smackdown series, Silent Hill 3, and Soul Reaver 2, I eventually bought one.

Sony has never been my first choice for gaming. I mean I love many of their games but not enough to get them right away. I've owned a PS3 for over a year now and have maybe 9 games... I've had a 360 since 4 months after it's release and have over 160 Xbox 360 games... that's some crazy math. But there's just something about this series that makes me go crazy and play it for hours and hours.

Perhaps it's the crazy powers Kain possesses in Blood Omen 2, or Raziel's ability to shift between realms, but there's something about these 2 characters that makes me enjoy their games. So I ask the question that's on all of our minds... Where's my friggin' sequel?

Defiance had a great ending, and maybe there wasn't much left to say afterwards, but I still want more. I mean Kain has been around for hundreds of years! Can't we have a Blood Omen 3 that takes place during some point between Blood Omen 2 and Defiance? And what about Raziel? He's also been around a long time? Why not a prequel before Raziel became a wraith? The possibilities for a sequel are there and could be potentially endless. But let's not forget, Kain had other vampires under his control, so why give all the love to just Kain and Raziel? That whole series could be fleshed out much more in terms of characters and the storied lives of Kan and Raziel.

So I say to you Eidos or whoever the hell owns the rights to this series, do something with it! A decade is way too long for a series that made most of us forget how crazy vampires could be, or how cryptic a wraith can be. Ii this series gets a sequel, be it Blood Omen 3, or Soul Reaver 3, or Defiance 2... I would go absolutely insane and would definitely buy it on day 1.   read


3:22 PM on 04.29.2012  

Where's my Friggin' Sequel: Kid Chameleon

I have decided that every Sunday, I am going to write a fun new blog about sequels. As gamer of 25 years, I have seen quite a few things throughout the years. One thing I love is sequels. Now call me crazy, but I just can't stand it when you have a great series and then all of a sudden you don't see another game for 15-20 years, or ever again for that matter. You all know my love for Gladius 2 so I will not go into detail about that, same goes for a hopeful Lost Odyssey 2.

So starting here, now, and every Sunday from here until further notice, in my first edition of "Where's my Friggin' sequel," we are going to talk about Kid Chameleon.



This May 28th marks the 20th anniversary of Kid Chameleon and all I can say is Where's the love? This was my 2nd favorite Sega Genesis game of all time (You cannot beat Toe Jam and Earl) and such an amazing and under appreciated game. Kid Chameleon had just over 100 levels with branching paths, he has crazy super powers obtained by grabbing different masks such as a hover board, knight armor, and a friggin' tank that shoots skulls. Also, he has shades and a leather jacket. If he's this bad ass as a kid, imagine how cool he's look older?

My question is this... Why has there not been a sequel in 20 years? I mean Casey, Kid Chameleon himself, entered the virtual world to save kids who were trapped inside the game just for losing. With technology the way it is today, a sequel could easily be made from the ashes of the story. I mean you break a hole in the virtual world and save all the people... so why not make good old boss Heady Metal find his way out into the digital world and perhaps make him affect the real world, leaving only Kid Chameleon to save the day yet again. Tons of new helmets could emerge, many more varied levels, not to mention the insane graphical achievements we've made in the last 20 years. I'd almost prefer it if they made him older and perhaps Heady Metal escapes using wireless or 3G or some crap just a thought.

If you have not played this game, whether it's from a ROM, Virtual console, Sega Classics Collection, or any other way then do yourself a favor and play this game. Kid Chameleon is challenging, the different paths cause your adventure to change each time, great graphics for the Sega Genesis generation, insane enemies and super powers, and a simple and straightforward story where the hero comes to save the day. Ad in the fact that for its time the idea of being trapped in a video game... while you are PLAYING a video game is not lost on me. As a kid it made you feel as though you WERE Kid Chameleon and you couldn't rest until you defeated Heady Metal and won the game.

So Sega, do not let Kid Chameleon fall into obscurity. Let Sonic the Hedgehog rest for a while, he's been running for far too long. Since you aren't doing so well, how about giving some of your other characters a moment in the spotlight to maybe regain your momentum. Until next week everyone.

- GrimmTrixX   read







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