WHEN: Tonight (May 12) at 10:00pm CST/11:00pm EST
Well after an extended vacation, Crabmonster Movie Night is back with a vengeance. All summer I will be playing double features on a weekly basis, maybe twice in a week. Now with only work and fewer summer classes I can focus on getting movie night up and running again.
This week is a dosage of extreme manliness with Sonny Chiba as the Karate Bullfighter and then another Ghibli film Whisper of the Heart
Well my lust for fighting has grown and grown, after branching out and jumping into the scary territory that is KOF land I have started playing all the fighters I have either dabbled in or always wanted to try but never got around to it. There are quite a few so I didn't spend forever to master them, just learn the groundwork and beat arcade mode at least once and judge it based on that.
Garou:Mark of the Wolves-
I LOVE this game, it feels like a great mix of KOF, Real Bout (more on that later) and SF3/Samsho. I really dig everything about the game, I keep seeing people do these fucking bonkers feint cancel combo strings that look like a nightmare to deal with. I think I will take my time in learning it.
I really enjoy this game, it looks beautiful and sounds great. I never got into the Fatal Fury series because of jumping in the foreground/background seemed awkward. This does away with it, it still feels like a FF game but more traditional. I like it!
Ninja Masters: A ninja samurai shodown weapon fighter from ADK, who made Twinklestar Sprites (best game everrrr!). What is neat about it is that you can sheath your weapon and your attack style changes, I only played it for a little bit but I thought it was pretty cool.
Galaxy Fight: The first in the Sunsoft fighting trilogy. I thought it was ok. The whole thing feels really basic, no extra super moves or anything like that. Compared to Waku Waku 7 it is pretty shitty. It makes me sad when a fighter sucks, like, I can tell Sunsoft put effort into it, the sprites look really nice and the backgrounds are pretty, but all that work went into a weak fighter like it didn't even matter.
Real Bout Fatal Fury 2: I was never really a big fan of the old Fatal Fury games, my interest in them only starting with FF3 which wasn't even that amazing. I was turned off by the clunky controls and the plane-shifting didn't really excite me, it only complicated things. FF3 played more fluidly than FF1/2/Special, and the Real Bout series
Art of Fighting 3: Game pisses me off. The animation is stunning, the huge sprites move more fluidly than SF3 but still look rather dull. I hate the whole fighting system. It would be nice if everything didn't knock you down, and when you get knocked down you stay down for 46 seconds before getting up again. It makes for some very irritating back and fourth matches, all it is is a shoving contest. Call me a n00b but I hate this game.
Mark of the Wolves is fucking amazing, I want to get better with it but the amount of skill needed to play it is astronomical. I love a challenge.
Allen O'Neil personifies what it means to be HARD.
In my last badass spotlight I focused on Geese Howard and how hardcore he is. I made a mistake. Allen O'Neil makes Geese look like a kitten. His character description off the wikipedias: "Killed by enemy commandos early in the war he later appeared several times in the later games each time dying in inescapable ways, so soldiers thought he was immortal."
Allen is notorious for cheating death no matter what happens.
In MS1 he is just a midboss, firing his gun in 8 directions, throwing grenades, whipping you in the face with his ammo belt (badass), and spouting his AMAZING catchphrases.
-GO HOME TO MOMMY!
...That laugh still haunts me, Allen is such an asshole because he KNOWS he can kill you. Allen is deadlier than any tank or mechanical monstrosity you have to fight. He is faster, better armed, and straight up scary sometimes. But he isn't all bad, Allen still has a heart. He only wants to finish the war quickly so he can go back home to his family. This adds a little more depth to his character besides "YOU'RE MINCEMEAT!". Allen is such a pain in the ass to kill, he takes roughly as many shots to kill as a tank, if only he would stay put long enough to do some decent damage. When the final blow is struck Allen slumps over and says "See you in hell!!". You think the battle is over, but far from it...
In MS2 you think you are on your way to fight one of the bosses and OH SHIT ALLEN! The battle is the same as last time, bullets fly and grenades are thrown. When you eventually defeat him he says his trademark last words and falls into the water below only to be devoured by a KILLER WHALE. As if that wasn't final enough, the whale emerges to spit out his bones. Surely that would be the last you see of Allen...
Fucking WRONG! In the final mission of MS3 you have to fight a familiar enemy, the aircraft boss from the second mission of MS1. It's a pretty basic fight if you've fought this boss before. In MS1 Morden was shooting rockets at you, in MS3 it's motherfucking Allen again! Causing more headaches by using his own attacks and beefing up the challenge of this fight even more. He seemingly dies a third time, falling out of the plane and splattering on the groud but oh no, he returns aboard the Marspeople mothership (how!?) to help fight the aliens. As you head onward he chooses to stay behind and cover you. After the final boss fight the ship explodes, presumably with Allen still aboard.
For a while things were going smoothly, perhaps Allen had been finished off for good. But he returns in MS4, but it isn't the original, it's a robot duplicate. He also returns, alive and well in MS7. And he dies yet again.
Is Allen immortal? Some say it is his will to survive and see his family that keeps him going, some say that perhaps he really is a ghost, haunting the battlefield. Regardless, Allen O'Neil is a badass among badasses. So many people would put Solid Snake or Kratos at the top of their badass lists, those guys wouldn't last a minute against Allen. Allen isn't afraid of death, death is afraid of Allen!
My memories of this game came rushing back recently. I was cleaning out the area around my computer desk and I found a big stack of PC games from when I was a kid! I found this game, Lego Racing, that shitty Lego Island 2, CROC LEGEND OF THE GOBBOS, Dark Forces, Jedi Knight, the Sega Smash Pack aaaaand *edit* well fuck me I had Croc 2, how did that happen? I remember when my grandma got a computer in...maybe 1996, my friend had Dark Forces and Jazz Jackrabbit for his computer so those were the games I had to have. It was awesome. Now just like any young boy I was obsessed with motherfucking LEGO'S. When I found out they were making a game (I think I might have heard about it in a comic book or something), I HAD to get it.
Story: You play as Pepper, a "pizza delivery dude, the dude with the food!". Your job is to make pizza deliveries although I only remember doing a couple of those, I usually just wasted time at the racetrack. The Brickster is a criminal who likes to unbuild things, he breaks out of jail and you help the police capture him again. The story is pretty light stuff but it makes up for it with charming characters and variety of things to do.
Gameplay: The gameplay is very simple, just use the directional keys to move. They work like the tank controls in Resident Evil. Forward and backward move forward and backward and left and right rotate you. You can walk around and click on stuff to watch it change. You can play as several characters, each one has different effects on things you click. Say somebody is walking by, you can click them and their hair will change, or the color of their clothing, etc. you can go to the building you started out at and check on your score in the various minigames on the score cube. I like walking into people on the street, instead of bumping into them like most games you can plow right through them and they explode.
My favorite part of the game though was vehicle customization, I remember building a helicopter, a racecar, a jetski, and by clicking on vehicles you could ride them in races or just for fun. If you visit the racetrack, build your car and customize it you can enter in a race, same with the jetski. The helicopter could be used to fly over Lego Island and see everything from a birds eye view, it was cool. Along the way you could have all sorts of conversations with characters in the game, the dialogue was pretty charming and well written on my recent look at the game.
But the game is far from perfect, the controls are pretty assy. They are entirely too sensitive, and you can only travel on the roads or set paths for you to travel. You're walking on a path and you bump into the edge of it, losing all your speed and you have to accelerate again. It can get very very annoying, and this applies to the races too, the physics when you are riding vehicles is identical to when you are on foot only you go much faster. That's my only serious complaint with the gameplay.
Graphics: The graphics in this game are very simple, lacking just about all the detail found in the modern Lego games. But it works. Everything is bright, it's easy to get around. I like the look of the game. This is the first Lego game, they obviously hadn't perfected the look so I will let it slide. The NPC characters are well animated. I remember playing it on my grandmas ancient computer as a kid, the framerate was so choppy! I played it on my current PC and it looks much better though. C.
Sound: Let me just get this out of the way, I LOVE the soundtrack to this game. What is cool about it is how depending on what area of the Island you go to the music changes to fit the area more or less. I think I have some serious retrogoggles with the soundtrack. Even after like, 10 years I still remembered most of the music to the game. The main downside is that it's a wee bit....muffly? It's not crystal clear but that's not a big deal. The sound effects are expectantly cartoonish.
I was impressed with some of the voice talent they got for the game, notably June Foray who did the voice for Rocky the Squirrel and Natasha on Rocky & Bullwinkle. And Terence McGovern who did the voice for Launchpad on Ducktales (ah-woo-hoo!) and John Morris who played Andy in the Toy Story movies. B.
Overall: Overall Lego Island is a pretty enjoyable game in 1997. It has NOT aged well, but it still has enough charm and interesting things to do to be entertaining for at least one playthrough.
Retrogoggles grade: *edit* you know what? This game gets a 10, I was being too strict, I LOVED this game when I was a kid. I loved racing my car, smashing into people, riding my awesome jetski, that british parrot that would freak me out, going into the cave where the mysterious man behind the door would tell you tips about the game. I love Lego Island!!
Modern grade: 5
As I began to write this blog I noticed an ad for Rappelz Epic V, why the fuck do all these "FREE FANTASY MMO" developers throw money around to be advertised on every game site imaginable? Who can honestly say they play those? Like we need more of that crap.
So I played a bunch of random Dreamcast fighters with a buddy of mine, one of which was KoF Evolution (99). I used to play that game a little bit in the past but I had a ton of fun with it this time. I think I might be getting a little bored with 3rd Strike and I want something new in my fighters. But I guess when I say new I shouldn't be referring to fighting games that are a decade old.
My resolution for my spring break is to get better acquainted with the KoF series and maybe Last Blade 2. In 99 I found myself using Jhun, Joe, Terry, K', and either Ralf or Iori. I have tried to play some of 98 online and I get my ass beat so badly I am going to have nightmares about it. Some guy was Orochi Yashiro and just threw me all day, even when I dodge I get thrown. It was the most frustrating thing in the world. :(
I am a huge SF fan. I know the games, the match ups, the combos, the tiers and all that shit. But when I look at KoF I think "who the hell are half of these characters?", it is so daunting to go into a series with such a large roster of characters and I am just overwhelmed. SNK likes to confuse me by having a million things to worry about. I don't really know the first thing about how to play these games the right way. KoF feels like SF juggling chainsaws on crack.
But goddamn it is a lot of fun.
So hopefully by the end of spring break I will at least become familiar with how the game is played, I have always wanted to be good at these games but it seems like too big a task. I should have started playing these ten years ago.
Sometimes there are men so powerful, so feared that the mere mention of their name will send shivers down the backs of anyone, good or evil. Geese Howard is such a man. I am going to discuss who he is and why he is so badass (for those not in the know).
Geese Howard started off his career in badassery as a corrupt police commissioner in South Town in Art of Fighting 2, prior to the events of the first Fatal Fury. After his rise to power he became the head of his own criminal syndicate, it's headquarters located at the appropriately named Geese Tower. Geese is a man with power, both physically and metaphorically, he has his hands in just about anything illegal in South Town, and the Bogard brothers know about it, what with Geese you know, killing their father and all. He is both a deadly martial artist and also a smart buisnessman, don't fuck with Geese.
Geese is SO badass that he fell to his death TWICE. I mean, Bison is pretty tough too but he always had that bullshit psycho power to fall back on. What did geese have? Grit. That's what. He died in Fatal Fury, came back in Fatal Fury 3, then came back and died AGAIN in Real Bout Fatal Fury. Even though he is officially dead in the storyline he still manages to come back as a secret boss or even as "Nightmare" Geese in I think Real Bout Special or Real Bout 2, even as a ghost he is compelled to kick some ass.
young Geese from AoF2
Geese was also the founder of the King of Fighters tournament, he is so hardcore that he formed a tournament just to kick the shit out of everybody. Cocky? No. Honest? YES! I am pretty sure that he was the sponsor for the Boss Team in KOF.
In short, Geese Howard is among the baddest of the badasses in videogame history. Topping all the wannabes (I'm looking at YOU Rugal!). The man deserves respect, but not admiration though. Geese was a prick. He doesn't have any real fancy gimmicks to his fighting style, sure he has the projectile attacks and stuff but everyone has those. Geese is a badass because of his raw fighting skills over over the cheap shit that SNK would give their later bosses.
I should also note how amazing his theme and voice samples are. Soy Sauce for Geese is one of the most memorable boss themes ever and it gets you fucking hyped for the battle, when you hear it you know something serious is going down.
-You can not escape....from...death!
-I'll paint my house....wif...your bra