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Blast from the Past: Nintendo 64


For the past few days, I’ve been completely inactive on Destructoid for two simple reasons: Lost Odyssey, and my love for a new Nintendo 64 Emulator I found. I’m not here to talk about the fact that emulators are the greatest thing ever (which they are) but that I have been replaying my childhood for the past few days on this emulator. I’m just going to go through a few games that I’ve really been playing, my impressions/reviews of them, and how fantastical they are. But first, let me quickly sum up what the Nintendo 64 means to me.

The Nintendo 64 was the very first system I actually owned. I played the shit out of my babysitter’s Super Nintendo but I never owned it, no matter how many countless hours I spent playing it. My dad got me and my brother the Nintendo 64 for the Holidays in 1996 when I was just six years old, but I remember bringing it home and playing a helluva lot of games. I wouldn’t say my “Start of the Affair” would be a Nintendo 64 game (that honor goes to Wolfenstein 3D) but it was definitely the system that introduced me to the idea, “I’m going to be playing video games for a very long time.”

That quick summary doesn’t even cover how much I love to have the sudden urge to whip out my Nintendo 64 from my basement and play some Goldeneye or anything else. But since my recent discovery of a fantastic N64 emulator, I’ve been able to play it comfortably from my computer whenever I want (as well as play games I never owned). I just plug in my USB Xbox 360 controllers and get to work. Here’s a few games that I’ve been playing the most out of all of the ones I have on here, and my thoughts on them.

Winback: Covert Operations
Developed by Koei

In my opinion, one of the most underrated games of all time. This game was hard. And while the emulation was pretty shitty, (large blue boxes would float across the screen very slowly) I still managed to enjoy myself and get the gist of the entire experience.

You play Jean-Luc Cougar, a secret agent who’s sent on a mission with a team to infiltrate a laser satellites command center which, to no one’s surprise, threatens the entire world. In the first minute of the game, the helicopter that is going to take you to the landing point is shot down, forcing your team to jump out of the plane, separating everyone. Throughout the game your meeting up with your other team members, who usually die a few minutes later (I’m not kidding, you practically witness your entire team die in the game).

The gameplay is fantastic. It’s the first game that allowed the player to have the whole hide and shoot gunplay. Hide behind and object, pop up, shoot, come back down. I should probably mention I found this game to be very difficult with its lack of checkpoints and sometimes clunky controls. The game is really great which offers a pretty solid storyline, and one of the first games that actually made me feel sad when I saw a team member of mine standing next to me get shot in the head.
Here’s a piece of trivia I just read on Wikipedia:
“As a homage to the game, one of the dog tags that can be obtained in Metal Gear Solid 2 is of Jean Luc Cougar's. Cougar’s dog tags can only be found in the original version of Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, not Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance. His dog tags can be collected while playing the Plant Level on very easy. His tag ID number is 26.”

Blitz 2000
Developed by Midway

You’ve played this game. Why am I talking about it? Because it’s fucking awesome. The late hits, the insane catches, and the fact that the computer player intercepts your passes 2938 times in one game just adds together to make one bitching (and frustrating) game.

I always enjoy a good game of competitive Madden, but I would prefer a game of Blitz any day. The pace of it is so fast and perfect that after you finish one game, you want to play another. The thing that pisses me off is that the computer is so fucking hard to beat. No matter how hard I try, they always seem to intercept my throws at least twice a game.

Did anyone play Blitz: The League? I played the demo on XBLM and it was complete shit. I couldn’t stand playing it.

Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire
Developed by Lucas Arts

One of my favorite Star Wars games to date. If any people with epilepsy want to try this game on their emulator, don’t bother. I’m positive you’ll have a seizure because I have two ROMs and they both constantly are blinking while the game is going on. But I digress, this game is fucking awesome.

The story pretty much follows a bounty hunter named Dash Rendar, who’s slightly less badass than Han Solo. To be honest, I don’t really understand the story. I get how it’s going on parallel to the episodes 4, 5, and 6 but frankly, there are missions that almost seem completely unrelated to each other that I just don’t really know. What I’ve figured out is that there’s a guy who’s trying to get rid of Darth Vader as well as destroy the rebellion and Rendar kills him in the end. It sounds awesome when I say it, right?

What matters most is the gameplay, which is awesome. There’s pretty much three different types of levels. One is aerial where you’ll be placed in the Hoth Battle, in the middle of an asteroid field, or at the end of the game, destroying this huge clusterfuck of a machine that (like I said) I have no idea what it’s going to do. The second is on a swoop bike slamming into enemies that are on their way to kill Luke Skywalker (note that this is just one level in the game). And the other is in 3rd person killing bitches, which is used throughout most of the game.

The gameplay is a lot of fun, allowing multiple weapons, crazy boss fights (including a HUGE squid monster underwater) and even giving you the power of having a jetpack. You’ll see some familiar faces, Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Leia, and even a boss fight against Boba Fett and Slave 1.

This emulator is awesome, and the fact that I can actually play it on a Xbox 360 controller is really easy to handle. Hope you enjoyed the read, I’m going to go play Diddy Kong Racing.
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About Clockworkone of us since 3:32 PM on 12.31.2006

Location: Chicago

Playing Now:

Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
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