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6:27 PM on 06.23.2015

The best failblog you will ever read.

Thank you oh based ShadeofLight, you glorious cutie you. <3

I'm going straight to the fail blogs. And I don't even care.

Love you all, k, thx, bye. :3

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3:23 PM on 05.14.2015

Now that's what I call a AMA! (I'm so sorry)

 

Hello dudes and dudettes, how you doing?! Me? I've been good. 

The last month has been pretty rough. Summer has been threatening to rear it's ugly head and along with it, horrendous amounts of heat (if it's hotter than 20 degrees celcius, it's too hot). The increased heat and sunlight has also been giving me real bad headaches. My eyes are quite sensitive to sunlight so headaches and migraines are frequent during the summer months. To top this all off, I finished writing my dissertation and just two days ago finished my last exam! For the first time in 3 years, I am free to do what I want. 

It's weird, the freedom hasn't hit me yet. Perhaps I'm just too used to being under constant pressure, so this 'lightness' kind of feeling takes some getting used too. On the plus side, lots and lots of time to get started on my PS4 backlog! Finished The Order:1886, Driveclub and Far Cry 4, getting started on Ether One and cannot wait to start Bloodborne in a few days. Oh and PS4 has no games btw, don't forget, no games, not a single one, nope, none here. I'm actually lying, I'm not playing anything. True story (rolls eyes so hard).

But that's enough about me. Lets talk about me. Everyone has been doing these terrific AMA blogs recently, from the enviable and fuckable Occams and Mike 'The Sex Beast' Martins to less enviable but still totally fuckable Seymour Duncan and GoofierBrute. Might as well throw my hat into the ring and join this lovely practice (unlike a certain person who shall only be refered to here as Tuna Pie, omg make a AMA please, weab :3). So go ahead and ask me anything, I'm open to any question you got for me.

Peace and see you below or not, i-it's not like I c-care. (Please, I'm so lonely, I haven't seen my cat since March, he's probably so sad like me)

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7:03 PM on 02.23.2015

My Top 9 Dtoiders. And a few more. Just a few. Kinda.

I’ve had to do some hard stuff in my life. Preparing for and running a marathon (never doing that again, fucking legs hurt like shit). Pulling 6 all-nighters in a row with about 5 hours of sleep in total before handing in my last batch of essays (got two firsts and a 2:1, for anyone interested!). I’m working on a 7000 word dissertation right now and gathering a shit ton of data, which I’ll then crunch through SPSS and blah blah it’s hard.

But writing this list of 9 Dtoiders who I hold dear and can truly call one of my friends was…monumental. There are so many cool people on this site, for some many reasons, that narrowing down 9 was pretty tough. Hell, I’d have trouble narrowing down a Top 20! So I’m saying ‘nah man, I’m gonna go my own way’ and I’ll make a top 9 goddammit! But everyone I care about is getting a little something, as a ‘not quite top 9 but defo top 50 or something’. Yes I’m ripping of Shade, #dealwithit.

To lay some ground rules, I’m not including any FP writers on this list, as my list would pretty much just be those writers then. Without them, Destructoid wouldn’t really exist now would it? I will say though that Jordan, Steven, Robert, Brittany, Darren, Chris, Brett Makedoskjdjfrjnski the Third, all the others (you know who you are), you guys write a lot of cool stuff and I’m grateful for the chance to read it. Do keep on writing off-beat weird shit, thoughtful opinion pieces and funny news stories!

Now enough with sappy intro’s, let’s get to the big, sloppy, lube covered meat of this dumb blog!

TRIGGER WARNING: EXCESSIVE EMOTIONS AND FEELINGS IN THIS BLOG, DO NOT READ IF YOU HAVE EMUTONS, DAVID CAGE WOULD BE SO PROUD BUT NEED MOAR PIXELS AND NUDITY DOE!

1) Occams

So much has been said about this bundle of joy. Like how he is the nicest person on this site. Like how he’s always there to welcome new people with a welcome smile, a decoder ring and a quickie behind the bins at Taco Bell. Like how he has an ear for any problem you have (something I’ve been tempted to oblige on occasion) or his reasoned, calm and respectful way of talking that makes you all warm and cosy inside, like someone turned the dial on your oven to maximum, the oven being your heart and the dial being your penis.

What I like most about this guy? He has impeccable taste in art and movies (Taxi Driver man!), a morbid sense of humour which is right up my alley and a damn sexy beard. You’re my favourite Occams and, no insult to anyone else, but it wasn’t even close to choose you for number 1. I think everyone can understand.

 

2) Nekrosys

My sexy Australian friend, how could I possibly make a Top 9 list without you in it?! Ever since you’ve been an active contributor me and you have been making sexy talk, chatting about anime, debating the merits of Gamersgate, fapping about our love of Ratchet and Clank, chatting about more anime, derailing comment treads (usually with anime gifs) and…more anime.

You introduced me to Monogatari, which I seriously am forever grateful for. Days where I’ve been bored and tired out of my mind, you’ve been there to make it brighter with dumb talk and dick jokes so I can go to bed with a smile on my face and a boner in my pants.

Thanks man. You’re a real friend, truly. I hope we can do this for a long, long time. Only naked.

 

3) Mike Martin (but you’ll always be Phil the Sex Fiend to me, you creep)

God Mike, you are a legend. I find it amazing you have enough time to look after your family, work, play games and STILL do all the community stuff you do. It makes me look at my life and how ‘busy’ I am and think ‘Shit, I gotta step my game up and stop being such a lazy shit’.

Also you’ve been through so much shit. I never realised until a few months ago and my heart broke when I heard. I think out of everyone on my list, you command the most respect from me. It takes considerable strength of character and willpower to keep on smiling after all that.

If I can be half the man you are, I’ll be a pretty good man. And have one massive cock. A big, veiny, meat rod of a cock, covered in the salty tears of many forceful entries. (Drools)

 

4) PStoid Crew (Yes I’m cheating, shut up)

The PStoid crew consists of Nanashi, Trev, Kim, Djnealb, Cornflake and Scield and I just adore each and every one of them. I’ve been stalking Ninny-nans for ages now, popping up in all his blogs and listening to PStoid since day 1 so I hope I can call him my friend. Trev is my funny valentine and his berating of Bananners is always the highlight of the podcast. Plus he has some cool cooking facts, likes Soul Sacrifice and I imagine he’s unfathomably hawt. I hope. Kim is just a lovely person, in a ‘I hate everything and everyone, what’s this a puppy, fuck it, little shit) kinda way. Whenever she goes off on a rant about something, I strap in and prepare for a storm. It’s always hilarious though, always.

Djnealb, Cornflake and Scield are also just really cool guys who keep the podcast grounded and pull it back from whatever crazy tangent it goes off on, which happens frequently and with many funny and sexy results. Point being, I absolutely love this podcast and the people on it and it has quickly become a habit of mine to listen to them. May you guys continue to make me chuckle for a looooong time.

 

5) HyperLemonBusterCannon

My brotha from another motha. The Ying to my Yang. The maple on my syrup. The condom to my penis. It was fairly recently that you started commenting on the front-page, like a few months maybe (or that I started noticing anyway) but you rose to become one of the coolest guys on the FP so quickly I still have whiplash. Seeing your stamp of approval is always nice and uplifting (though you’re giving them to everyone recently, you dirty slut) and just having some banter with you is a great way to pass the time. In a FP bogged down with stupidity, an over-abundance of old memes and bad trolling, you shine as a beacon of fun, charisma and…spunk.

Truly, you are what I am fighting for! I’m not fighting anything. That was a joke. Bet he’s never heard that one before. Hah!

 

6) Fenriff (Best image I could come up with, sorry dude!)

Ah Fenriff, what a guy. He’s wrote a blog a week since the beginning of time and, while I couldn’t read every single one, the ones I did read were well-written and interesting. It takes skill and passion to write that much for no money and also to write to that high a calibre. So the fact no-one has snatched him up yet is one of nature’s mysteries. Get on that Niero or whoever, allow Fenriff to join Bbain and Wrench as a FP writer!

Fenriff is also a really nice dude as well. I still regret not having that match in PSASBR with him. Maybe one day we’ll play together. Hopefully with lots of natural oils and plastic instruments. We might even play a game too!

 

7) Dreamweaver

As some background, I live with my mother and have 3 sisters, whom I adore, even if they are the most annoying people in the world. I’ve never had a brother before and have always dreamed (HAHAHAHAHA. Puns) of having a little bro. After getting to know the colourful and oh so weird Dreamweaver, I think I know what having a little brother must feel like. I wanna be there for Dream, to help with any problem if he’s willing to tell me about it. To lift him up when he’s low, share in his highs and just hang out sometime. It’s nice. Real nice. Wonderful even.

You are too hard on yourself man. And you worry too much. Just relax. I and everyone on this site like you and respect/adore/wanna fuck you. As a really funny movie once said ‘Always look on the bright side of life, do do, do do do do do do.

Also you got a friend in me.

 

8) RedHeadPeak

I love History. I love well-written and funny blogs. I also had a crush on my History teacher but she was shit at teaching so when I got a B on my exam my infatuation quickly evaporated. RedHeadPeak fulfils all three criteria (though he’s not my history teacher but he probably is sexy and he’d get me an A on my test for sure). His Skyrim and History blog series is one of my favourite series on Dtoid ever, even if it did make me squirm a few times. Trepanning is nasty yo.

Another guy who needs to be hired as a writer! Or something. At least offer him a coupon for a free blowjob from Andy or something! You could even dress Andy up as a 17th century harlot! That’d be hawt.

 

9) Elsa

Next to Occams, I cannot think of anyone as thoughtful and intelligent on Dtoid. In a world of derp and dumbness, Elsa shines like a sun. Of light. And fire. And stuff. I’ll admit, I read a c-blog in the hope that Elsa has written something interesting in the comments. That’s how resplendent and awesome our resident old age pensioner is.

I hope that when I’m older and greyer, I can still be as hip as Elsa. That I can talk to the kids about the latest games on their PS13’s, play online and hold my own against them youngsters and their fast reflexes and radical hairstyles and such. Turning into an old fart who complains about change sounds so dull. Don’t do that. Follow Elsa’s example.

This is where I rip of ShadeofSexiness big time. 9 is such a small number for a community filled with so many stars and cocks. So here are the people who I also adore and would snog in a movie theatre while some chick flick plays in the background. There's a lot of text here folks, I recommend ctrl+Fing this shit. 

Andy (Dick) Dixon

His Royal Penis, no list is complete without his pink bathrobe and feel good attitude. What a guy. And what a cock.

Cold William

The resident amiibo addict and Nintendo fan, William may be cold but he’s a cool (OH I’M ON A ROLL BRUV, PUNS 4 DAYS) guy who has a lot of truth in his ramblings. Also his daughter is OP, needs nerfing ASAP.

Chist

A rising star in the community (to me anyway), I’ve started to talk with you quite a bit recently and you’ve started blogging much more, which I’ve enjoyed. 12/10, hawt eyepatch, would molest again.

JawshButturBawls

Oh Jawsh. What a delight. Gardevoir was a turning point in my life and has changed me for the better. Though Chie bro? Naoto is where it’s at man. But still, we must continue to discuss our waifu choices forever.

Sayword

My fellow Playstation fan, we have some laughs together, though I’ve not seen you in a while. We gotta chat some more man!

Chicag0riginal

Pretty much the only person on my PSN friends list who I talk to consistently. Great guy with a lot of enthusiasm. I always enjoy our banter.

Sonic429

My first harem babe, we may clash a lot on Playstation vs Nintendo but I still love and respect you a lot.

GoofierBrute

Goof is just always there, with a friendly upvote or a useful comment. He’s like the mash to my sausage and beans, he completes my meal. And he’s delicious.

Roberto Plankton and ZombieOrwell

Look up weird in the dictionary, rip out the page, burn it at midnight while chanting The Divine Comedy backwards and you’ll see an apparition of Roberto Plankton and ZombieOrwell. They will then proceed to…touch you inappropriately. Also swell guys. I always get them mixed up. No idea why.

Wrenchfarm (Or Nic Rowen, whoever the fuck that is)

I’ll admit, I barely knew Wrenchfarm before he became a FP writer. But man, what a great FP writer! His Shadow of Mordor article was a real cool read and his mechwarrior addiction is hilarious. Deserves his FP promotion, I just wish I knew him for longer!

Bbain (Or Ben Davies, also whoever the fuck that is)

I knew of Bbain since day 1. Just a really lovely guy with a lovely outlook. But now he’s on the FP and started his Experience Points series? I’m in love. (Don’t hurt me Scarritt, it’s a joke!)

TheScholarlyGamer

Is this guy my favourite Canadian? Probably. I use lovely a lot but this guy is just lovely. Look up lovely in the diction-what I already used that line?

…Fuck. Still, love you lots TSG. Keep on trucking.

SeymourDuncan17

This guy is filled with so much love that I’m surprised he hasn’t exploded from it. Kinda like that gif with the exploding head from that movie. But with rainbows and unicorns instead of gore.

El Dango

I’ve not seen many people put as much effort into their blogs as much as this guy. Custom headers, custom gifs, cool formatting. Step your game up guys, el Dango represent.

Pixielated

My favourite transsexual lesbian Castlevania and Metroid fan with superpowers who is currently under the thrall of our supreme Mistress Princess Zelda. ‘Nuff said.

OpiumHertz

This neo-nazi scum is so cynical and blunt that I cannot help but like the fuck outta him. Scary avatar though. 2scary.

ShadeofLight

You’re lucky you’re on my list. 17th place psssssssshhhhhhhhh. Just joking dude, you’re a swell guy and a big personality on Dtoid. I’d fuck you anytime.

Ooktar

My secret santa! I still can’t get Tron 2.0 to work man. But it’s the thought that counts and I’ll look at Tron in my Steam folder and get a nice warm boner thinking of you. Forever.

SolarPonyDjango

You are such a nerd Pony. And I love you for it. If you hadn’t wrote that terrible joke, maybe you’d be Top 9… ;)

Hosse

You’re a lovely (there I go again with that damn word) person Hosse. Also you frequent deviantart a little too much. So much sexy Link art, so little time.

Zxy

My other sexy Australian friend. You know a comment section is gonna be lewd when Zxy and Nekrosys are there. Good times man.

Hoffman

The artist formerly known as M.Bison, Hoff is like marmite. I hate marmite but I like Hoff. Really like your ‘Just Hoffman’ persona bro, keep that up. Also tone down the Playstation fanboyism a bit, you’re better than that.

DesertDragon and Batthink

These guys are British so are straightaway superior. But Desert like Madoka Magica and Batthink likes Evangelion! That’s special right there. We gotta meet up for drinks and anime some time guys, no joke!

Cosmotropolis

Cosmo is another fairly new guy and also one of my favourites. Kind, funny, thoughtful. You can join my harem anytime dude. Just ask Nekrosys for a membership form and provide a semen sample. Clarty of .9 or better only.

Isay Isay

Easily the funniest guy on the FP. Very punny my friend, very punny. May you make me laugh and groan for many more moons.

Shinta

Shinta writes about Anita Sarkessian so I don’t have to waste my time doing so. He also has great taste in music and games. Though not liking Danganrompa? For shame. :P

DanteKinkade

If I ever went gay, it would probably be because of Dante here. Or as I lovingly call him ‘DanteKinkyAids’. Don’t let haters get you down, I got you man.

Cannibal Steven

You take the award for weirdest newcomer to the site. But goddammit man, you’re so nice!

Caltyslitorous

Another guy who’s posting a lot more recently and expanding into blogs. I’m loving getting to know you man, keep it up. And get naked. Now.

FullMetalJ

FMJ, besides having an amazing username, introduced me to Evangelion. For that, you are my hero. That more than makes up for your frenchness. Well…mostly.

Baguette.

Lauri Hepooja

We almost played Mario Kart together. I wish we did. L All my fault. I will make it up to you my fair lady. Do with me what you will.

Pleeeaaase. Do…anything.

Retrofaction and Long John

You both are cool guys yo. I put you together because of that podcast you made and it was fabulous. Retro, you keep being awesome! Long John, make more podcasts! And keep on being awesome! Tommy Wiseau!

Ninezero

We bonded over out hatred of Nintendo fanboys and that is the glue that holds up together. Also Ninezero takes no shit from no-one and unashamedly loves his AAA games. Even Battlefield 4. You have my sword.

TheDustinThomas

Dat beard. Dat. Beard. Also a big part of Dtoid’s c-blogs as a recapper, blogger, podcaster, wrestler. Maybe not the last one. But a real cool guy who is perhaps underrated considering how much he does.

Robo Panda Z

Sick username? Check. Love of anime? Check. Great sense of humour? Check. Generally lovely person? Check. Do I have a boner? Double check.

Matt Damon

Matt Damon. Matt Damon. Matt Damon. Matt Damon. Matt Damon. Matt Damon. Matt Damon.

Sotanaht

This dude is surprisingly kinky yo. Like, almost Nekrosys and Dreamweaver levels. I like it. Another babe who’s welcome in my harem anytime.

The Laughing Owl

You get a lot of shit dude. Some may be warranted. Most is from people who need to stop being fucking babies. Keep on doing what you’re doing.

LuckRequired

Another Brit! And a damn cool one as well! With his ‘You can’t say that’ series, his ‘Blogronomicon’ and general musings, this dude is just nice to follow and read. <3

Luna Sy

I still don’t know if you’re a girl or boy. And I still don’t care, you’re funny and sweet and that’s all that matters. I’d still really like to know though. You know, for science and shit. Not because I’m a creepy stalker or anything, naturally.

JoyfulSanity

A real quality blogger right here, his words are like liquid gold. Or the highest purity cum, either or really. I said I’d like to talk to you more and I still do. Let’s touch butts!

Vxxyman

Pure kindness. I’ve not heard you say a mean thing…ever. Also your forum pic is great! Love it! 

And last but not least, everyone who’s name is not here.

Look, this took a ridiculous amount of time to write and I started repeating myself a fair bit. Needless to say, if I didn’t mention you here that doesn’t mean I don’t care. It means my hands hurt but my love boner for you burns bright. Just to name some people: Perro, Cosmic Centipede, S_Deadalus, Barry, Everyday Legend (RIP/jk). You all make Dtoid what it is and I like each and every one of you.

Well that really is all folks. Clean off your monitors, I imagine they’re covered in strange liquids. I know mine is.

 

Goddammit I love you all so, so much. Till next time. May we enjoy another year full of fun, banter and cocks.

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10:27 AM on 12.22.2014

Top 10 games I played in 2014...kinda

2014 has been a…interesting year. I’ve not played most of the AAA hyped games of the year (not a bad thing, considering 99% were broken) but I’ve not really played many games from 2014, period.

It’s been a backlog year, all things considered. So without further ado, here are my top 10, in no particular order, games of 2014, which may or may not have been released this year but who cares!!!

 Surprisingly fun. Colour me impressed!

Mario Kart 8

I’m not a fan of karting games. The last time I actually enjoyed one was CTR on the PS1 and that was so long ago that I honestly don’t remember a single thing about it. Except there was this buff orange bandicoot called Tiny. He was cool.

Mario Kart 8 though? It’s great. I like the graphics, the handling is smooth as hell, it worked (it’s sad that is a selling feature) and it was good fun, a hell of a lot of fun! Nothing special per say. I don’t think I’ll look back on it in 5 years fondly, if at all. But as a pick up and play game, on occasion? Perfect. Let’s play some MP guys!!!

 This never happened in my playthrough. Pure ghost playthrough is best playthrough.

Dishonoured

I love me some stealth games. The raw thrill of just sneaking around people who are completely oblivious to your presence and gently chocking them with a chloroform drenched cloth then taking the still warm body to your dungeon to prepare for the an…Yes. Stealth games are really, really fun.

And Dishonoured is probably my favourite one. The powers gave you so much freedom to explore and devise strategies. The movement is crisp and precise, the art-style is wonderful and I just spent so much time dicking around. Add to this a plethora of secrets, optional side missions and a collection of fun trophies to hunt down and you have the perfect stealth game. When the sequel drops, I will be there.

 What a lovely, family friendly game.

Soul Sacrifice Delta

The semi-sequel/enhanced version of Soul Sacrifice, Delta is easily my favourite hunting game. There’s so much content here without the annoying filler of other hunters. Just suit up, get in there, beat the monster and get your rewards, repeat. Done. Simple and clean, IS THE WAY THAT YOU’RE MAKING ME FEEL TONIGHT!!!...Later, later, keep it together.

Yeah, Soul Sacrifice Delta is one of my favourite Vita games. It’s cheap, it improved on the original is literally every single way, it has a great story (like seriously, the dark and brooding nature of the story is delicious!) and it shows what the Vita is capable of. Go buy it nerds.

 

Kingdom Hearts 2.5 HD Remix Limited Edition Super Awesome Hyper Fantastic Bundle Ultimate Cannon!

Is it fair to include remasters in your top games of the year? Hell yes! Especially when they’re done this well.

It’s no secret that Kingdom Hearts 2 is one of my favourite games ever, so I was going to buy a remaster without even thinking about it. But a remaster of the Final Mix version of the game, with new bosses, weapons, items, etc? Awesome! But it also has Birth by Sleep, the PSP game that isn’t available digitally on Vita and many say is the best Kingdom Hearts? Double Awesome!! And the Final Mix version of said game? Triple awesome!!! And remastered cut-scenes of some other game I don’t care about? Still Triple Awesome!!!

I love Kingdom Hearts. And this could be my favourite release of the year. A remastered collection. Bite me.

 

The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker

Wind Waker was perhaps my greatest surprise of the year. I went in expecting a fun but severely over-hyped game. What I got was an adventure filled with magic, whimsy, beautiful visuals, seagulls and a talking boat. All wrapped up with some great uses of the Gamepad. Off TV play really is a great feature, truly.

It has problems, of course. It’s far too easy. The bosses are all spectacle but are also, again, easy. Sailing gets tedious quickly, so I’m glad there is a fast travel system. It’s kinda short, barring side quests. And yet, it’s one of the best RPG’s I’ve played this year and has hyped me up for Zelda U. I finally understand that Nintendo magic everyone harps on about! It’s pretty special.

…Okami is still the best Zelda though. :P

 

Tearaway

You know when you play that one game and it just consumes a certain part of your life so that, when you finish it and surface from your reverie, you go ‘Where did the time go?’ Tearaway is that game taken to 11.

I don’t remember when I started playing Tearaway, nor exactly when I finished. All I know is that I loved every minute I spent in the world of Tearaway and I hope we get more of it. I don’t have any issue with the PS4 port because more people can enjoy this wonderful game and, if it sells enough, maybe we can get a sequel? I can only hope.

 

Professor Layton (Entire series except Azran Legacy)

No-one is more amazed than me that my favourite game on the 3DS is a puzzle game. And yet I’m not surprised in the slightest. My 3DS experience can be described as ‘crushingly disappointing’ but Professor Layton makes everything worthwhile.

The English Professor is the most disarmingly charming character I’ve seen in a long time. Luke is cool as well, as are the entire quaint and weird cast. It’s amazing how just plain English the game feels, especially since the devs are Japanese! I swear that Bob down the street could have made this game in his shed, while sipping some Yorkshire tea and eating a marmalade crumpet, it’s that faithful. Still need to play Azran Legacy but I know it’ll be a wonderful experience.

 

God of War (Entire series)

I managed to pick up all the GOW games, including Ascension, for about £30. That’s 6 games. For £30. £30!!! BVOTY. Best Value of the Year. And every game in the collection is great.

I think everyone knows what the GOW games are about. Simple but fun mechanics, jaw-dropping scale and brutal, brutal combat. I don’t think I’ll ever forget how Kronos died, with his fingernail ripped off, his intestines spilling out from a cut in his side and a spike driven through his head, jaw first. Ugghh, so harsh. I love it.

So happy there is a new GOW for PS4. I just hope it changes things up a bit. I don’t mind more of the same but something new would be greatly appreciated.

 

Infamous: Second Son

If one game could take my GOTY, it would be Infamous: Second Son. It doesn’t do much new or different from previous games, it’s lacking in content a bit and…that’s all my gripes actually!

If I can focus specifically on the visuals, this is by far the best looking game I’ve seen on console. Ever. A full 1080p with SMAA T2x anti-aliasing and anisotropic filtering results in a literally flawless image. Coupled with a rock-solid 30fps and the level of immersion is unparalled. I spent way too much time in photo mode taking shots. Just, wow. An incredible achievement.

And the game itself is just so much fun! I could mess around in the city of Seattle for ages, it’s just bliss. The Dualshock 4 feels so much more precise so getting headshots is fun and the variety in powers adds some spice to the preceding’s.

Infamous: SS makes me excited for what we’ll see for the PS4. Cause this is just year one. And 2015 looks pretty badass!

 

Danganrompa (And Danganrompa 2 when I finish it)

I never thought a story about over-achieving teenagers who are forced to kill each other by a talking bear could be so beary interesting. But it is, oh hell yes it is.

You essentially are locked in a school and the only way to escape is to kill someone, which leads to a class trial to find the culprit. If the killer escapes, they escape and everyone except them dies. If they are caught, only they die. No spoilers but I was enthralled the entire way through. Sometimes I’d figure out the case halfway through gathering clues. Other times I’d be at a loss until I was halfway through the trial. Needless to say, if you have a Vita and enjoy games with great stories, you owe it to yourself to buy this!

I also just started Danganrompa 2 and am loving it so far. Let’s hope there is a third!

 

So those are the top 10 games I played in 2014. The releases of 2014 may have been disappointing to me personally but, thanks to my backlog, I can honestly say that it was a terrific year for gaming. And with Persona 5, Bloodborne, Xenoblade Chronicles X, Zelda U, Uncharted 4, The Order: 1886 and many, many more, I can safely say that 2015 is going to be the best year in gaming for a while. I sincerely hope so!

 

Take care guys and let me know how wrong my opinions are in the comments! They are pretty wrong, clearly.

 

Honourable mentions:

-Vanquish

-Ratchet and Clank: Into the Nexus

-Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time

-LA Noire

-Y’s: Memories of Celceta

-Kingdom Hearts 1.5 HdRemix

-Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 1 and 2

-Asa Akira’s Bangkok Adventures DDXXX

PS: (One of these does not exist)

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9:36 AM on 09.08.2014

My favourite game: Kingdom Hearts 2

Picking a favourite game is hard work. What constitutes a favourite game? The one that made you the most emotional? The one with the most memories attached to it? The best one in terms of game design and lasting impact on the industry?

At first I went for Streets of Rage 2. My dad and I spent a lot of time bonding over this game, as a kid and while I grew up into the mildly sweaty nerd I am today. When he passed away a few years ago, the game meant even more to me than it already did. A window into the good old days, when we cleaned the streets together, me with my Dr Pepper and my dad with his whisky.

Then I thought of Final Fantasy XII. To me, this game is the pinnacle of JRPG’s. It does so much right that whatever it does wrong is negligible and I’ve spent hundreds, perhaps even a thousand or more, hours just exploring, min maxing, speedrunning and a whole host of other pointless things. I spent 15 hours grinding my character to level 99 before leaving the first city. For fun. This game got me into JRPG’s and nothing has come close to dethroning it.

But in the end, there was only one answer to this question. It all comes back to Kingdom Hearts 2. And that’s because it has both the emotional impact and memories of Streets of Rage, while also being one of the best action-RPG’s I’ve ever played.

Let’s break down the components that make KH2 the best game ever.

Gameplay

The gameplay fucking rocks. Very action based, all about high speed combos and constant movement, with lots of over the top abilities (RAGNORAK!), magic and all of it totally customisable. You can make an 8 hit long combo or shorten it to just 2 hits, it’s totally up to you. While it doesn’t let you choose between focusing on magic or melee, as they level up automatically whether you want them to or not, they both are so much fun to use that you won’t even care.

And talking about gameplay, you cannot talk about KH without talking about bosses. Ice titan, Hades, Axel, Sephiroth, Xemnas, all the Organisation XIII fights. They are constantly inventive and force you to mix up your play style. Sometimes it’s just a case of mashing the attack button till they die. Others you may need to time your blocks and launch careful counterattacks, sometimes you may have a time limit. They are always different and always fun.


Especially Sephiroth's fight. Love that fight.

Also you can dual wield keyblades. DUAL. WIELD. KEYBLADES. Amazing! I’ve beaten KH2 many, many times and I’m not close to being bored. Just put the difficulty to Proud mode. It’s a little on the easy side. :D

Characters

 
Oh Sora and Riku, you so kawaii desu.

Sora, the main character and the one you play as, is a super nice guy and always on the side of justice and doing the right thing. He’s equal parts goofy, serious, smart and sensitive. Essentially, someone easy to relate to and play as. Couple that with Donald Duck and Goofy, who remind me of the best parts of my childhood and are on form in KH2, and you have a very strong trio of heroes that make any cut-scene a joy to watch.

The supporting characters all get this level of care as well. Roxas, Namine, Axel, they all have well defined identities (or not, considering they are nobodies HAHAHAHA…I’m sorry) and personalities. Even the bad guys have their own flair. From the kinda annoying idiocy of ‘DANCE WATER, DANCE!’ to Saix’s brooding manner or Xemnas’s preaching and fanatical ramblings, it makes you want to see who you’ll meet next, what you’ll see next.

This fucking guy. This FUCKING guy.
Just be glad gifs don't have sound.

And of course, Disney. If you love Disney, you’ll love KH2. Nightmare before Christmas, The Little Mermaid, Lion King, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, they all make an appearance. Hell you turn into a super cute lion in the Lion King world! It’s just so much fun to see these icons from my childhood and fighting alongside them, hearing them talk, going through the events of the story but altered. Pure joy.

Memories

KH2 holds a special part in my heart. I was around 14 when I played it and it left a huge impression on me. As a shy kid who had quite a few friends but only 2 really close friends, I looked at games as my main avenue for having fun and seeing new things. Before KH2 I just played games for the fun of it, to enjoy the gameplay and character’s, not looking at how they made me feel, what the main themes were or anything below the surface. But KH2 changed all that. All this talk of ‘darkness’ and ‘nobodies’ and ‘shadows’ seems like convoluted tripe but for me, it just went deeper.


Good times man.

It was a story about friendship and looking out for friends, no matter what. It was about redemption, owning upto mistakes and amending them the best you can. It was about identity and what YOU think about yourself. KH2 kick-started a radical shift in my perception of videogames and helped me look critically at games, dissect them more than I ever did before. And therefore, it helped me enjoy games on a whole other level.

And it has Donald Duck wielding a sceptre in it, Goofy sliding around on a shield like my mother at an ice rink and Pete tripping me up with marbles!

What a marvellous game.
Also best fan-fiction ever.

  read


8:07 AM on 09.04.2014

Genesis Retrospective: Zoe Quinn, um I mean Michael Jackson's Moonwalker!

So you may have heard of this Zoe Quinn malarkey? I have. While I have my views on it, both sides have acted like idiots (as they always fucking do, omg I donít even know why Iím surprised) so Iím extremely tired of it. Therefore Iím doing another of my Retrospectives. It lives!


Yo dawg, I'm, like, alive and shit. Whatevs man. Radical.

Anyway, the game weíll take down memory lane today is Michael Jacksonís Moonwalker. Thinking about this game makes me laugh in many, many different way. First letís talk about the premise.

You play as Michael Jackson and go through 5 stages which are split into 3 parts each. The goal of the game is too rescue children. Wait, what? Yep, rescue children, specifically Katie from the Moonwalker movie which the game is based on.

Now the game was released in 1990, before the charges of abuse were brought up. But still, itís quite hard to look at the game in the same way in retrospect. I played the game in 1998 (I think, probably, sure lets go with that) and I was thinking Ďam I seriously playing this game?í As a kid, I believed MJ was guilty as hell. Now, not so much. The point is, those events paint the game in a different light.


I love the guy but damn his personal life was messed up.

But moving past that, the gameplay consisted of MJ doing his thang, walking around, pulling some sweet ass dance moves and shooting sparkly projectiles from his hand. Because heís the king of pop! Geddit? Nor do I. The levels are multi-layered and MJ usually works his way around, beating up gangsters in spiffing blue suits and some Ďladies of the nightí, I assume. His attacks include his signature hand flying out to the side, his wobbly leg thing that was cool for some reason and those aforementioned sparkly sparkles of death. And pop.

The goal is to open doors, where multiple Katies (again, I donít know) are being held. One of the most annoying things in the game was that EVERY SINGLE TIME YOU SAVED KATIE, SHE WOULD SAY íMICHAEL!í AND IT GOT OLD REALLY FAST. Especially with the Genesis soundchip, which made her voice sound like Maleficent talking through a kitchen roll. Not pleasant. Eventually youíll save all of Katieís clones and then a money with a gun will appear, jump on your shoulder and guide you to where you have to go.
Iím not even going to comment on this, there really is no need.


Monkey's fucking wrecking shit, getting his hoes back from da man yo!

Once you reach the area that Monkey wants, heíll fuck off and then a minority in a trench coat will say ĎHAHA! YOUíLL NEVER CATCH ME!í He will then run away, while MJ stands by like an idiot and a flood of enemies invade the screen. This is where you can use the best, most awesome thing in the game. Pressing down a button makes MJ spin like a Beyblade spun by Super Saiyan level 4 Goku. It drains health but youíll not need it. If held for more than 2 seconds, the enemies will awkwardly jiggle themselves into position and perform a dance number! Seriously! Itís pretty rad, they do that leaning crazily to one side thing and then everyone except MJ dies, usually. Too much fabulous, not enough time.


So, so, so much kawaii desu.

Itís pretty much this for the entire game. Each stage has its own theme (club, street, woods, cavern and hideout in that order) and own enemy types, including thugs in hawt leather jackets, zombies that love jumping and generic military laser gun men in blue and green varieties. But itís the final fight that settles this game as a masterpiece (slight hyperbole there). After doing that youíve done the entire game, youíll face minority in trench coat one more time. AndÖhe fucks off again! No fight against him, no sir. Instead about 100 enemies will flood the screen. But wait, why is MJ flashing? Whatís this cut-scene? Whatís on MJís face? IS HE TURNING WHITE? Oh shit, heís turned into aÖrobot?


KELLLLLLLLLL! I'M SCARRRRRREEEEEEDDDDDDD!

This game guys and gals. This game. So MJ is now a robot that can shoot laser out of his eyes. Time to wreck shit! After killing way too many enemies, itís done, a message screen commends you for killing all the bad guys, evading all the traps and Ďsavingí the kids. They will love their new home at GajKnightís Brothelô. Not really. Itís not called GajKnightís Brothel.

But wait, thereís more! Itís seems, wait, itís time to fight Mr Big (really, thatís his name. Yeah.) So off we go to space in our spaceship in pursuit. Wait, wait a minute, wait. WHAT?!!!


Literally my reaction.

So after killing bad guys by making them fall over, following the directions of a monkey and turning into a mecha, the only logical conclusion is a space battle, amirite? I can dig it. The actual battle itself is from a cockpit view and has you lining up shots to take out Mr Big and various ships. Itís pretty crude honestly, not the hype as hell ending I expected. But you are playing as Mecha Jackson in space. Thatís still pretty hype, all things considered. Beating Mr Big rewards you with a cut-scene of Mecha Jackson flying off to god knows where, probably Uranus to rescue the indigenous people from the plague of Justin Beiber or something, I dunno. Then the credits roll and MJ is shown dancing. With a random black kid because why not?


Just had to put this here. Great tune!

Honestly, Iíve never seen Moonwalker so I donít know if all these things are part of the movie. But judging the game on its own, itís just batshit insane. It has no context, no reasoning for anything (who da fuck is dat monkey though?!) and itís just plain weird to see people being killed by dancing. Though Iíve definitely hurt many people with my sick moves (read: literally, they make people sick), Iíve never killed anyone. Intentionally.

I couldn't talk about this game without mentioning the controversy around its soundtrack. Apparently MJ himself worked on the music, something which he denied afterwards, yet Sega insist he did. I donít know and frankly I donít care because I love the soundtrack. Trying to get MJís music to run on the Genesis and still keep that soul and tone of the original is not an enviable task by any means. Fun, exciting, maybe. But you probably donít want to mess that up. Thankfully all the tracks are well done and keep the music intact while playing to the Genesisís strengths: sick bass and thumping good tunes.



The bass is so nice in these tracks. Just sitting there in the background giving a nice ambience to everything. The punchy tunes are classic Genesis sounds and mesh well with MJís music. These versions are very close to the originals I found. Unique enough to stand on their own but similar enough to invoke that nostalgia value.








Well thatís another soundtrack done and dusted. As always, download links for the tracks are below in various formats. So what do you think? Does the game pique your interest? Howís the music? Is Mecha Jackson the most awesome thing ever concocted?! Sound off below. Thanks for reading nerds!

Download Links.
http://www.16bitaudiophileproject.org/michael-jacksons-moonwalker/
FLAC, MP3, you get the drill.   read


11:05 AM on 08.21.2014

Emotional moments in video games

So bear with me a moment guys. Recently I finished watching Neon Genesis Evangelion. For anyone who doesn't know, itís a very famous anime that basically breathed life back into the genre in the 90ís and is looked on with equal amounts of adoration and hatred. But the point is, I finished watching it. And, on me mams life, I cried the most I have cried in a very long time.



NGE really got to me. Its plot fascinated and enthralled me. Its characterís really touched me. Shinjiís (the main characterís) inner demons, his self-doubt and his relationship with his father were enthralling. And I spent a lot of time reflecting on my experience with this anime.

To bring this back to videogames, I realised soon after that me crying isnít much of a rare occurrence. Iím actually really sensitive and didn't realise it or at least didn't acknowledge it. And most of my more sensitive moments were videogame related. So I thought Iíd put together a little blog about the gaming moments that touched me deeply.
(Note: Spoilers for Shadow of the Colossus)



rain (ending)

rain was a small game from Studio Japan that came and went. It flew under the radar sadly, which is a shame because it is up there with Journey in terms of PSN gems that everyone should play. In it, you play as a boy who can only be seen in the rain. He sees a girl similar to him who is being chased by shadowy monsters and he runs to help her. The restÖwell, play the game nerds!

Anyway, I went into rain looking for a nice, moody little art game. And I got exactly that. But what I didnít expect was to feel so, well, emotional. As the game plays, ambient music in the background subtly works to engage you emotionally. One of my favourite pieces of music ever, Claire de Lune, is in the soundtrack and, hand on heart, itís my favourite version. The characters donít talk, yet you love them so, so much by the end. They are beautifully animated and their voiceless communication and antics just make them that much more endearing.


The most beautiful thing you'll hear today.

But the ending tipped me over the edge and opened the floodgates. I wonít spoil anything but Iíll just say that ĎClaire de Luneí plays, a cut-scenes starts and I have a moment of utter happiness and crushing sadness. Iím getting a little emotional just typing this honestly. Itís just pure interactive beauty, something only a game could do because Iím so invested after everything IíVE done.

I honestly canít really explain why the ending go me so emotional. It just did. I was sobbing within seconds and I didnít have the faintest clue why. Itís one of those I guess.



Persona 3 Portable (ending)

Iím going to assume everyone knows about Persona 3 by this point so Iíll save the intro. ;)
Well the True Ending of the game, like the ending of rain, got to me. This also applies to Persona 4 Golden as well but I played P3P recently so Iíll use it as my example. Same deal with rain, I was so invested in the characters, setting, everything. But what made me bawl like a baby wasnít really the ending (though it was a very beautiful ending). It was that the journey was over. I spent 70 hours in P3Pís world. 70 hours hanging with my bro Junpei, romancing all the girls (but I felt most for Mitsuru because I could relate to her plight the most), eating Takoyaki, listening that infectious music. I LIVED in that world. And now it was over. Done. It was too†


This song has still not left my damn head!

Saying goodbye to all of that was hard. It may sound lame, and really it is. Itís a bunch of pixels, who gives a fuck right? But still, it was sad. Thinking about it though, itís that good kind of sadness really. The kind where it breaks your heart but you know that you can always come back and start again. Itís not the end really.



Shadow of the Colossus (Agroís death)

Iím also going to assume most people have played or know all about SotC. Because if you donít then omg, what is wrong with you?
SotC is an emotional rollercoaster anyway. Slaying these massive behemoths, flying through the air clinging to wings as big as a planeís, being dragged underwater and surfing on the back of one of them, you experience and do a lot. And through it all, Agro is there with you, diligently carrying you to each encounter and even fighting with you on occasion. In retrospective, his death was obvious. But I damn well didnít know that!


Actually this is the most beautiful thing you'll hear today. :P

So when Wander and Agro cross that bloody bridge and it gives way and instead of Agro trying to rush to the end, he just throws you to safety and plummets to his death, I was shocked to my core. I didnít want to continue. It wasnít fair. I and Agro had made it this far, TOGETHER. Why bond me so completely too this horse, this dumb horse who didnít follow my commands and controlled terribly, just to rip him away at the last minute? It was cruel for him to die and I quite literally hated the game. Needless to say, I shanked that last colossus so hard.


Best. Horse. Ever.

I really love Shadow of the colossus. It, to me, is the culmination of everything I love about videogames, of living and breathing another world and giving up reality for something, well, better and nothing has come close to toppling it. Because it made me cry over a horse. A dumb, stupid, horse.


There are more moments but I felt these were some of the stronger ones. What all this made me realise is how powerful games can be. I can count the number of TV shows, books and movies that me extremely emotional on one hand (Breaking Bad, Taxi Driver, No Country for Old Men, His Dark Materials trilogy). Yet there are at least 10 games that made me all tight chested. Such is their emotional weight.†

It makes me excited for what the future may bring, how developers can use these pixels to twist my emotions to their will and transport me to somewhere where Iíll never want to leave. Iím excited for whatever new project Studio Japan have cooking. Iím excited to meet all new characters in Persona 5. And I still clutch to the hope that The Last Guardian will one day be released and live up to its full potential.

Because this really is the reason I play games.


So how about you guys and gals? Any games that made you cry like little babies? Or just feel really emotional? Or am I just a massive pussy?   read


9:44 AM on 08.01.2014

Top 10 fetishes of all time!

Everyone has a fetish, albeit with varying levels of extremity and fluids. Sometimes itís a type of person, an object, a situation or just a feeling. But we all have one. Well I have 10 of Ďem! Of all time!

So hereís my top 10, totally serious, not at all written for a joke list of fetishes. I also dedicate this blog to Dreamweaver and sonic429. You sick fucks. ;)

10. Dtoid (specifically Hamza)

If you donít have a fetish for this hot piece of ass, then what is wrong with you?!




9. Yaoi
Yaoi (not to be confused with the other Yaoi) is the sexual attraction to Yaoi Guaiís (totally correct spelling). Yaoi Guai's have it all. A bit of fur to stroke as I ponder the future, strength to protect me from all aggressors and big strong paws to jerk me off with vigor. Truly the all in one pleasure machine.




8. Bathrobes
Itís not so much the robes themselves (though Iíd never say no to a baby blue robe and a glass of champagne) but the insinuation that the person is wearing JUST the robe. Nothing else.

Hawt.



7. Peering into peopleís heads
Iíve been doing this for years, with a wide variety of people and itís been consistently enjoyable. There is nothing better than using the tools at your disposal and a little ingenuity and force to peer into someoneís head and saviour the beauty that resides inside.




6. Tsundereís
Now this is actually not so much a joke. I find tsundere characterís pretty interesting. The whole Ďcold but gradually open up and become welcomingí angle works for me. Much better than other anime tropes



5. Actirasty (AKA attraction to sun rays)
You know what Iím about to do.
Praise the sun!



4. Sonic Fan-fiction
In the year 1991AD, our lord delivered unto us our saviour, Sonic. With his birth an age of wonder began, filled with platforming perfection and words that are now rendered immortal and a code that we should live by. ĎGotta go fastí. Alas our lord has gone into hiding, cast out by the heretical scum of the Mario pagans and the failing of his own father, hallowed be his name. But we, his beloved and maligned children, have carried on his legacy, with our writings, theological discussions into his past and possible (sexy) futures and, of course, our bountiful images that do not do our master justice.

We are his offspring. We carry his legacy on, in all of us, we carry a piece of Sonic.
Sonic is love. Sonic is life.




3. Millions of crawling spiders inside bosoms
I never knew I wanted this. But the many musings of a certain community member who shall not be named have awakened in me a wish. That wish is spiders.
Millions and millions of spiders. Just barely kept back by skin stretched thin by the bulging mass of legs and eyes. Thin, milky white cords of silk interweave like tendons, straining to keep back the flood within two sacks of a buxom maiden, filled with her beautiful children.
Truly, this is the American Dream.




2. DP
I love DP.




1. Naoto Shirogane

What is there to say? The embodiment of perfection. She is what we all try to measure up to and none of us come even close. Perfection, personified.


So that's my (totally legit) top 10 fetishes. What are yours? I know you have one, you naughty boy/girl/sonic429. Share with me your secrets!   read


8:50 AM on 07.31.2014

You like top 10's yes? I got one! With Chiptunes!

Another top 10 list! Cause there just ainít been enough of them amiright?

No but I love top 10 lists. Simple and straight to the point, without all the faffing and essay structuring. So here are my quick top 10 chiptunes. They are in order of awesome, of course.



10. Shovel Knight-Strike the Earth

Iíve not played Shovel Knight yet. I really should though, I think weíd get along so well (GajKnightÖShovel Knight, geddit, yeah, gg, job done) but Iím holding out for the Vita release. I did download the soundtrack the moment it became available though. Jake Kaufman OSTís are day 1 buys for me, no doubt, and Shovel Knight just didnít disappoint even slightly.

I could fill this list just with Kaufman tracks but suffice to say, heís truly a gifted artist and I hope he makes sweet, sweet music directly into my earhole for a long time.

Directly. Into. My. Earhole.

[i]
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9. Hotline Miami- Hydrogen

YES I KNOW ITíS NOT A CHIPTUNE! Itís still really, really amazing though. So let us just pretend it is and save ourselves 2.5 minutes of arguing. Also I couldnít think of another joke so thereís that. Humourís hard yo.



8. Sub-Terrania- Funky Writer

Sub-Terraniaís another game Iíve never played. I should really play these games to hear the context of their music. Regardless Funky Writer is a really good track, from a respectably good soundtrack. Itís got a foreboding atmosphere lurking behind all dat funk and bass.

Interestingly, Jesper Kyd composed this soundtrack. He also composed some of the Ass Creed and Hitman soundtracks, as well as Borderlands, State of Decay and Darksiders 2 (totally did not steal this from Wikipedia).

I also thought he developed Lone Survivor but that was Jasper Byrne. Easy mistake I guess. Not really. Iím dumb.


I couldn't find a proper Youtube video (they all sound funny) so here's a direct link to the album on Bandcamp.

7. 1001 Spikes-Abanís Theme (Both versions)

Another game Iíve not played! This is becoming a problem now.
But regardless of whether the game is good or not, the soundtrack is REALLY good. Abanís theme especially is the best track in the album. Misokaís version is classic stuff, great backing beat, lovely synth on top and all wrapped up with really good production.
Then the Key version comes after and dials it upto 11. The backing track is more aggressive, the synth is even synthier(?) than before, itís just so good girl. Love it.



6. Elemental Master- Until the End of the Earth

Iíve talked about this track and this album in my last blog (read it now nerd!) so I wonít go into too much detail. Suffice to say that this track made me go and hunt down the iso so I could play the actual game. Totally worth, it, fantastic game, even better soundtrack.


Extended version cause WHY NOT?

5. The Revenge of Shinobi- China Town

I have a love-hate relationship with Revenge of Shinobi. Iíve never beaten it, ever. It was the first game I ever played and it almost turned me off of games completely due to how BALL-BUSTING hard it is! Iíve recently bought it on PSN and died countless time just trying to get to the second level. Argggh, this game man, this game. Iíd call it cheap and out-dated but Iíd sound like a lame ass baby.

But one thing is clear. The soundtrack kicks ass. And China Town especially. It has that old Japanese feel to it with the oriental sounding tones but the sick bass and poppy sounds lend a modern semblance. Essentially this is the perfect track for an old-school ninja fighting in a modern city. One day I will know that feeling.



4. Altered Beast- RYSE FWOM YOUR GWAEV!

This is another track and album I covered in detail before (go read that too nerds!)
So hereís Altered Jesus.


Why is not a thing?!



3. Outrun- Magical Sound Shower

This is the final song from a game Iíve never played, I promise! But what a song.
I canít even begin to describe how, well, just how nice this song is. It reminds me of long drives in the countryside during sunset, or sitting in the garden reading while simultaneously dodging birdshit and suicidal squirrels. Good times. Itís simple, clean and oh so good.



2. Sonic 1- Green Hill Zone (AKA pure happiness)

This was coming. You knew it, I knew it, everyone knew it. It came.†

Everywhere.

Green Hill Zone is the best track in all of the Sonic soundtracks. And that comes down to one word. Nostalgia. That moment when you put Sonic 1 in and start the game proper. The graphics pop up, in all their sexy, 16 bit glory. Sonic moves like a blue streaked lightning bolt, with perfect momentum. And this track plays. One of the most magical moments in gaming right there.

Realistically, I would say that Chemical Plant Zone is really the best Sonic track overall. But my nostalgia goggles are firmly blinding me. Also Mega Drive Sonic>Mario. Come at me!


LOVE THIS SHIT!!!

1. Streets of Rage 2-The entire fucking album man, I donít know, sue me. Expander, there ya go.

What a contrived and totally expected first spot. Yeah I know. But if it ainít broke, donít break it. Thereís a reason people cite Streets of Rage 2 as one of the best soundtracks in gaming and thatís because itís baller ass, sick wicked awesome.

Expander is, I guess, the best track because itís fast paced, with amazing bass, synth, build ups, everything. All condensed into 2:29 of head bopping glory. But Go Straight has that amazing nostalgia value that only first level songs have. And Dreamer is just so awesome as well. And so is Never Return Alive. And Alien Power. And Revenge of Mr X.

Best. Soundtrack. Ever.


So that's my top 10 chiptunes. I think it's a pretty alright list. What do you think?
Leave your vitriol in that space below these words. See ya later dudes!   read


7:27 AM on 07.16.2014

Genesis Retrospective: Elemental Master

The Genesis (or Mega-drive, for us Europeans) is easily one of my favourite consoles of all time, just edging out the PS2 in my esteem. With it's varied library of amazing games, unforgettable experiences and innovation, it definitely deserves it place in video game history.†

But mentioning the Genesis without mentioning it's incredible musical accomplishments would be an oversight of biblical proportions. Paving the way for dance/synth music in video games, it gave us classic soundtracks from the likes of Streets of Rage, Revenge of Shinobi and Sonic the Hedgehog that still hold up as some of the best soundtracks available today.

With this blog series, I hope to bring back some attention to the forgotten gems in the Genesis library and rekindle my own love of these classics. The focus is on the music, as that is what I love the most about the Genesis but I'll also go into detail on other things. (Shout out to robertoplankton for the fantastic idea!)

So without further ado, lets start off this weeks entry with a game that is extraordinary in every respect, yet tragically overlooked: Elemental Master


The American box-art is much better than the Japanese box-art. And even better than the European box-art...which doesn't exist.

Elemental Master is a top-down shoot-em up released in 1990 in Japan and 1993 in North America. Sadly Europe never got it (damn you Sega!!!) so I only got to play it a few years ago through 'other means'. I'm glad I did though because it is fantastic in every way.

Interestingly, the game does have a story and almost all of it happens in the very beginning! As soon as you start a new game, a pretty good looking cut-scene starts that shows your character, Laden, confronting the antagonist, Gyra. But wait, what's this?! Gyra takes off his mask and reveals himself to be...Roki, Laden's brother! OMG! This all happens at the very beginning, before any gameplay at all and was pretty cool because I can't remember a game, especially a shmup, that would drop such a big story bomb literally 20 seconds in.†


You do that Laden. Enjoy your fratricide as well.

The music that played during this section also sets the tone for the rest of the game perfectly. Upbeat and with a strong techno vibe, if you're not bobbing your head to the beat then you clearly have something wrong with you. I mean seriously, this is super impressive stuff. So much going on and just, ah, I love it. So good!


Great tune. And it's not even the best one.

After the cut-scene, you had the choice to pick from 4 levels, each representing a different element (Fire, Water, Earth and Wind) and which can be tackled in any order, Mega-man style. After these are 3 more levels in linear order then the final boss. Moving onto gameplay, the game set itself apart from the other shmups of it's time by letting you control a character on foot (which leads to the 'running in place' animation looking exceptionally stupid), rather than a ship or vehicle, and allowed you to shoot at the top of the screen but also at the BOTTOM! This meant enemies could come up from behind or flank you and you'd have to turn around to shoot them. And since the screen auto scrolled and enemies would send projectiles every which way from both the top and bottom, the pace was RELENTLESS!

And there were other factors to account for too! Environmental hazards littered the level, like lava streams. So inbetween attacking enemies from the top and bottom, you also had to dodge these hazards. Chaotic doesn't begin to describe it.


This is a more quiet moment. Savour it as it doesn't last long.

Enemies are fairly standard fodder and aren't really stand outs, though they look very nice. They could use more animation to feel more, well, animated but they're fine. The bosses though completely blew me away with the large amounts of animation that they had and them being multi-sprited only added to their size and presence. The battles really felt fun to fight and dodging and weaving the hail of projectiles was exhilarating. The water boss stands out as a firm favourite, as does the final encounter with Roki. And the ending cut-scene...well, that was seriously good shit, made the entire journey worthwhile!

But despite all this, the game won't tax shmup enthusiasts. Laden has a lot of powers and all are useful everywhere besides a few encounters where you have to use a specific power. And you can charge them up for very powerful attacks. Add to that health increases and pickups everywhere, you get a moderately easy game. I managed to beat the game on my third go and I don't even play shmups!


This boss was the one that killed me the first time. But I got that fucker, got him GOOD!

Finally getting to the best part of this game, the soundtrack. It kicks so much ass you don't even know. This is one of my favourite Mega Drive soundtracks, up there with Streets of Rage 2 and Sonic 2.†

Standouts include 'Until the End of the Earth', an amazing, high energy track that just has so much awesome in it that I can't even describe it. By far the best track in the game, which is saying something.



Then there's 'Blood-stained Lake', which hooks you with it's satisfying bass claws and doesn't let you go.†



'Fate' is another fun track with some really heavy bass and a super quick tempo.†



'Calling on the Dark Dragon King' rocks. I love the distorted sound the Genesis makes here, it just fits so well.†



And the song that ends the game, 'Setting Out'. The upbeat, happy vibe is so good after the final boss and the variety in the track with all the build ups just shows that the composer had a lot of fun writing this piece.



These are only some of my favourite tracks from the game. All the tracks are amazing and worth listening too in their own right.



So that's another one done and dusted. I hope reading about a fairly obscure Mega Drive game was at least partially entertaining. If not then I hope the music tickled your fancy!

What do you make of Elemental Master? Sound like something you'd enjoy? What about the music, is it your cup of tea? Till next time nerds, Gaj out!

Download links
http://www.16bitaudiophileproject.org/elemental-master/
MP3 (320), FLAC and 96/24 FLAC available.   read


7:53 AM on 07.05.2014

Genesis Retroactive: Altered Beast

The Genesis (or Mega-drive, for us Europeans) is easily one of my favourite consoles of all time, just edging out the PS2 in my esteem. With it's varied library of amazing games, unforgettable experiences and innovation, it definitely deserves it place in video game history.

But mentioning the Genesis without mentioning it's incredible musical accomplishments would be an oversight of biblical proportions. Paving the way for dance/synth music in video games, it gave us classic soundtracks from the likes of Streets of Rage and Sonic that still hold up as some of the best soundtracks available today.

The point of this blog series is to appreciate and, hopefully, discover new music that we can all listen to and enjoy. I will critique aspects here and there but mostly it's about the appreciation. Or lack of, if you don't like it, which is fair enough. You weirdo.

So without further ado, lets get started with a soundtrack that I've fallen in love with all over again...Altered Beast.


This was so metal back in the day. Still is. What's more impressive that a werewolf on fire?!

Altered Beast was originally released as a pack in game back in 1988 and received a good reception, with praise aimed at it's graphics and particularly it's use of parallax scrolling. You played as a Roman Centurion who is resurrected by Zeus to save his daughter Athena from the evil god of the underworld, Neff. Besides idiotically confusing Roman and Greek mythology (though who doesn't) it's also a side scrolling beat em up in which you can transform into a wolf and kick lots of mythological ass by kicking shit.

Unfortunately it's aged rather poorly. Playing it today, the graphics are not especially impressive, though the death animations of enemies are still amusing. What has aged really poorly is the rock hard (dare I say...cheap?) difficulty. So not really a game to recommend playing in the 21st century.†

It's soundtrack though, I can wholly and unconditionally recommend.



"Ryse fwom yuor Grawe". Those 4 words inspire so much nostalgia and hatred, it's unreal. Every single time you died, which my 8 year old did A HELLA LOT, you'd hear Zeus utter those dreaded words. It grated so much back then. But now, it's strangely nostalgia. Iconic even, of a bygone era when games actually had difficulty.

Talking about the track, this is very much the best track in the game. It starts of regal and foreboding, as you take your first steps in the game the synth trumpets sound to herald the beginning of your quest to rescue the fair damsel. The beat in the background just adds to this whole feel of conquest and adventure. It's one of my favourite tracks to begin a game with and it sets the tone of the so perfectly. This is ancient Rome, you are a warrior, a goddess is in danger and only YOU can save her. Perfect.



Then, when you collect enough power-ups, you quite literally go into BEAST MODE and turn into a fricking werewolf. The track changes as well and the eponymous "Altered Beast" track takes over. This track is probably my second favourite in the whole game. The thumps in the background just raise my blood pressure to dangerously high levels (for me anyway. I'm not very active.)†and the overlay just propels me onward to dash attack or fire blast everything in my way (because apparently in the Altered Beast universe, werewolves have the power to perform Haodukens. I can dig it).


Sending a Haoduken straight into Satan's dick? How metal can this game get?!

The rest of the soundtrack carries on the general theme of the game. Gaum-Hermer is a bassy number that instils a feel of dread as you explore, Closed in Upon me does this as well with it's strong, forceful beats and downtuned overall feel that makes you feel like you're going through a slog as you desperately try to get to and destroy Satan, erm, Neff. Special mention must be given to I'll Be Back as it just is so good as destroying your will. The ultra low beats juxtapose with the high, thin synth to almost feel like a cry of pain and the succession of 4 quick taps never fail to back this feeling up. This plays on the last level before the boss fight and is literally perfect.


And then this thing plays. WHERE'S THE CONSISTENCY?!!!

Now this track just baffles me. I mean, it's a great ending track and is well made, produced, etc. But it just doesn't fit here at all. I just turned into a werewolf, pummelled a thousand enemies by kicking them in the face and haodukened Neff's dick into oblivion. And I get this far too chipper tune as reward? I would have preferred something a little more gloomy, more mysterious but with a tinge of glorious victory. Just my two pennies.

But anyway, it doesn't diminish from an extraordinary soundtrack that captures the feeling of battle and adversity. For a pack in game, it's rather quite impressive.

[hr]
Well folks, that wraps that up. I hope this has been a somewhat pleasant read and I plan on doing more of these, should time allow. Perhaps as a fortnightly thing sounds about right. Tell me in the comments about your thoughts on the music! Does it capture that spirit of adventure for you as it did me? Do you love Genesis music in general as much as I do? (Clue: You don't, it's impossible).

Also I will be providing download links for this album and future albums from a website I 100% trust and completely recommend. They are doing God's work there and I hope you won't mind me supporting them a little. I'm not a spam/troll/plug account, I promise!

Download link to Album: http://www.16bitaudiophileproject.org/altered-beast/
Options for 320 MP3, FLAC and 96/24 FLAC available. (96/24 FLAC is da best, just sayin').

Take care guys and girls, see ya soon!   read


9:23 AM on 05.23.2014

10 things Gajknight finally got around to telling you after his exams.

The title says it all. Exams are over! Get hype!

So I thought why not make a blog about myself. It's great stress relief and I kinda don't know what to do with myself at the moment. That weird feeling after exams where you wonder what next...

So anyway, here's just a small snippet of me.


Me in one year. Fuck.

1. I'm studying Psychology at University.

Yep I'm studying Psychology. It's funny really, in secondary school I didn't give a shit about Psychology. I picked Maths, Further Maths, Biology and History, with the aim to study optometry at University. After failing Maths but getting a D in Further Maths (I don't know either) and finding Biology as boring and dull as a Brian May concert, that changed rapidly.

So I dropped Maths, Further Maths and Biology and picked up English Literature and Psychology. I was pissed. I'm not used to failure so this stung hard. But, weirdly, I started to really like Psychology. Learning about these crazy (pun intended) psychological issues people face, like Depression, Schizophrenia, Bipolar, etc was super interesting. And I was really good at it, which helps I guess. And here I am, doing it at a University level.

I'm in my second year and I hope to graduate with a First and go do a post-graduate at Warwick, with the ultimate aim being to become a Clinical Psychologist. Lots of work ahead of me. But I think I can do it. Just about.


I like to worm my way into a good book.

2. I'm a avid reader of pretty much everything put to paper

I got into reading in primary school. We had to read during free time or do homework. I chose to read and have kept with it since then. Back when I had unlimited time, I'd get the maximum number of books from the local library (8) and read them within two weeks. Then I'd rinse and repeat ad nauseum.†

Now I don't read that much but I still do read a least 1 book a week. I've read everything, from Woolf to Wilde to Conrad to Bronte. I've even read The Divine Comedy because it sounded so metal (pro tip: It's hard as fuck). I'd like to read more though. I miss the days of just reading, with no exams or 'future' hanging over my head.


I'm a shy guy.

3. I am INCREDIBLY shy

Shock and awe, THE GajKnight is a shy person in real life! Well hell yeah I am!

Strangers just make me anxious. I worry about how they†perceive†me, if I look funny, if I'll say something stupid and make a fool of myself. I'm perfectly alright with friends and people I know. But strangers are scary yo.

I'm an introvert as well. So I don't go clubbing every week or the like. A nice, meet up with friends to watch movies and joke around is more my style.

Maybe that's why I'm so interested in Psychology. Maybe it's all just a convoluted way for me to look for a cure to my ailment, a quest for me to fix myself. Or maybe I'm being stupid again. Anyway, I'm shy.


I don't know what anime this is but I like it already.

4. Pizza, Chicken Wings and Dr Pepper are the foods of the Gods

These three foods are the best foods created by man. They are all any sane and healthy human being needs to survive and the apocalypse will be when God descends from above on his chariot of broken dreams and baby tears and takes all my Pizza, Chicken Wings and Dr Pepper.

And when he does, I'm gonna go Kratos on his ass so hard.


Sea-salt ice-cream is the best. And Roxas and Axel fanfiction is disturbing.

5. My favorite game is a 3-way split between Streets of Rage 2, Final Fantasy XII and Kingdom Hearts 2

Don't make me pick a favorite, I really just cannot decide. They've all been at the top at one time or another until I finally decided to make them all first.

Streets of Rage is the best 2D beat em up ever and has one of the best soundtracks in existence. Final Fantasy XII made me fall in love with RPG's and none have come close to beating it, even slightly (well Ni No Kuni...NO! NO!).†And Kingdom Hearts 2 is just a very special game. I just love it with every fiber of my being.

Bring on FFXII HD, Kingdom Hearts 2.5 HD ReMix (and Kingdom Hearts 3!) and Streets of Rage 2 HD (I wish).


I get all the bitches. And hammers.

6. I'm a property developer

I buy houses, do them up and then sell them on or keep them as rentals.
So far I've worked on, err, about 23 houses. I started when I was 12 with my dad, just learning the basics like putting floors in, plastering, installing kitchens, etc. Now I do it almost by myself. Me and my mum buy the houses, I do them up and she does whatever with them afterwards. We make a great team! Though she gets very bossy. (But don't tell her I said that or I'm dead ;))


Not my cat. He's way cuter.

7. My cat is cuter than your cat, FACT!

This is true. My cat kicks your cats butt in the cuteness factor. No contest.
I love that little moggy.


Literally me.†

8. I'm so British it's actually painful

My favorite tea is Earl Grey.†
I have a jacket with the British Flag emblazoned on it.†
My accent is quite posh and I have a habit of drawling my r's and s's. Rather.
I can recite Monty Python and the Holy Grail almost fully from memory.
I don't mind queuing. Honestly, it's†efficient†and neat.
Corgi's are cool as fuck. Huskies are the best but corgi's are a close second.
My teeth are slightly discoloured from all the tea I drink.
And most importantly, I spell colour properly.


Dropping sick beats like it 1723!

9. Music is a understated part of who I am

I listen to a lot of music. All different types as well (except Dubstep, fuck that noise). I'll give anything a try as long as it sounds good.

Some of my favourite albums and soundtracks include:
-Jar of Flies-Alice in Chains
-Ten-Pearl Jam
-Castlevania: Symphony of the Night OST (PS1)
-Channel Oragne-Frank Ocean
-The Fat of the Land-The Prodigy
-Journey OST (PS3)
-Machine Head-Deep Purple
-Nola-Down
-What We All Come To Need-Pelican

And many more I can't even remember.†



10. (Insert soppy thing about Dtoid here)

But seriously, Dtoid is a really nice place. I feel extremely welcome here, everyone is incredibly individual and†interesting†and it's just nice. And you rock. Yes YOU!

Well that's me guys. Thanks for reading my far too long blog, I hope it was at least somewhat enjoyable. Though I haven't even scratched the surface of things I wanna talk about. Maybe I'll write another one of these in the future. Who knows.

See ya on the front page, nerds!   read


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