It is probably safe to say that The Legend of Zelda series is one of the most beloved in video game history. With a history of 30 years and counting, it is only natural, then, that such a series would need to change, either to keep up with improving technology or to prevent itself from becoming stale. For these reasons, the series has indeed undergone many changes in its long history, with varying levels of success.
Ocarina of Time was revolutionary for the series just as Super Mario 64 was for the Super Mario Bros. franchise, for the Nintendo 64 characterized the grand change from the 2D games of the Super Nintendo era to brilliant, albeit rather polygonal, 3D. With the GameCube, we started seeing larger worlds with Wind Waker’s Great Sea and Twilight Princess’s expanded version of Hyrule. Twilight Princess also remains, to my knowledge, the only T-rated game in the franchise (probably because of Thelma’s…upper body), as this was apparently the series’ attempt to become darker and more adult. Skyward Sword for the Wii tried to mix things up further by placing some of the game’s challenges outside the dungeons and incorporating advanced motion controls. Continue reading Breath of the Wild: A Review
I have mentioned it from time to time, but over the last few years, I’ve been trying to catch up on a whole bunch of retro games I had missed. And at this point, I’m largely done. Sure, there are definitely more retro games out there that I should play one day, but as for the games I really wanted to check off my list, this goal has been met. Final Fantasy 4-9, Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross, EarthBound, Super Metroid, Super Mario RPG, all present and accounted for. The last one on my list to play was Final Fantasy V, which, like Final Fantasy IV, is probably pretty obscure for anyone who hasn’t been playing Final Fantasy since the beginning. (Thank you, Kingdom Hearts. You introduced even non-Final Fantasy fans to characters like Cloud and Squall, but not once do you mention FF6 and prior. With the exception of Setzer, of all people. Setzer.)
Final Fantasy 4 and 5 were the only games not explicitly on my list, but they came with Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy 6, respectively, and who am I to pass up on an essentially free pair of games? While FF4 was merely to pass the time and to say with confidence that, yes, I’ve played Final Fantasy 4, I must say that I enjoyed Final Fantasy 5 far more than I expected to. Let me summarize the game a bit for anyone who might not be familiar with it. Continue reading FFV and the Joy of Feeling Competent
Today’s newest gaming topic is yet another one that requires me to post a picture, so I shall. Right now, I am playing two games. Mainly, I’ve been working on Final Fantasy XII on the PS2, though I’m not currently able to take any screenshots of PS2 games. The other game is one I’ve been playing quite sporadically, Super Mario Galaxy for the Wii.
The latter game is one I’ve been recording for our United We Game Youtube channel, and not only is it clearly on a recordable console (I’ve actually been playing it on the Wii U, which is HD-compatible, a requirement of my capture card), but I already have some screenshots available that I’m using for thumbnails. And since I don’t want this post to be too terribly short, I’ll post a couple screenshots rather than just one. Prepare for a sneak peek at some future videos, exclusively for you guys. I hope you feel very special.
Continue reading Day 15: A Screenshot of a Game You’re Playing Right Now
Ah, back to the 30-day video game topics. Despite the obvious implication that this is only supposed to span the course of roughly a month, these posts have been taking me years to get through. Well, better get back to it. Right now, we’re only on day 13. The topic: a game I’ve played more than five times. There are a lot of games I could name right now that I’ve played far more times than is sane, but the one I’ve chosen to discuss is Donkey Kong Country 2. By now, many of you are probably more than familiar with the fact that I love this game. Even more of you are probably just familiar with this game due to your own experiences with it and don’t need any explanation for why it’s such a great game. So I’m not getting into that. The game was released in 1995, for crying out loud! That was 21 years ago! Wow, has it really been that long…?
All right, so, instead of telling you guys what this game is all about, why don’t I tell you about five of my most memorable experiences with this amazing game? The first time I really got into playing Super Nintendo games was when my parents had the SNES connected to a TV in the basement. Being out of the way, it made it so much easier to play these games to my heart’s content, unlike the poor Nintendo 64, which was in the living room. (You see, the coaxial cable part of the basement TV was okay, so the SNES worked just fine on it. But the composite…thingies on that TV stopped working, so our N64 only got sound and no picture. That’s why we got a new TV to connect the N64 to, along with all our other newer devices at the time, while the other TV, along with the SNES, got moved into the basement.) We already had about 20 SNES games, and some of my best memories from my ducklinghood involved me spending hours in the basement trying out a whole bunch of games I had never played before. Continue reading Day 13: A Game I’ve Played More Than Five Times
Hey everyone, I’m interrupting my usually scheduled blog posts to present a trailer video I made for an upcoming gameplay series starting this Wednesday, November 23, on our United We Game Youtube channel. It’s a very special game that is very dear to my heart, and I can only hope a good number of people decide to join me in this adventure! And please excuse my video editing skills. I’m still learning! Continue reading Coming in Three Days
There are some gamers who openly admit that they have no desire to play older games because they prefer the more advanced, better looking games of today. There are others who say that gameplay is the only thing that matters, so if a game is good, no matter how old it is, they will play it. I am usually in the latter category, but over the past year, I have realized that I, too, have a limit for how far back into the past I can go and still enjoy gaming. I think every gamer has this limit. Mine is the SNES, with a few exceptions.
You see, I once believed that I could play any game, despite its age, and enjoy it as long as it was a good game. I had plenty of SNES games I loved, and one day, I thought I’d travel just a little farther back in time and download a few Virtual Console games for the NES. These games were the original Legend of Zelda and Metroid games. Being classic games that marked the beginning of two amazing franchises, surely I couldn’t go wrong. Right?
Wrong. Continue reading How Retro Can You Go: A Discussion of Spooniness
Maybe I’m the only one here who feels this way. Maybe what I’m about to say is completely out there, and my sanity should be seriously questioned. But I’ve been thinking long and hard about something lately, and I have come to the conclusion that Animal Crossing might just possibly be one of the cruelest series ever made.
Okay, I hear you all out there, looking at each other in confusion. Yes, I can hear the noise made by mere glances. Ducks have good hearing, doncha know. And I also hear you saying, but Duck, Animal Crossing is the nicest game known to mankind. All you do is relax and have fun. And befriend cute animals. And decorate your house with all manner of wonderful things. And I agree, on the surface, Animal Crossing looks nice. There are no battles to be fought. No violence. Nothing objectionable of any kind. Continue reading Warning: Animal Crossing May Increase Your Blood Pressure
I’ve been thinking, after all these years of blogging, that maybe it was time to share something a bit more personal about myself. Let me tell you a bit about where I live…in Animal Crossing. From time to time, my mom and I enjoy playing Animal Crossing: City Folk, where we have, over the course of several years, amassed and spent millions of Bells. If you’re not familiar with Animal Crossing, this is a game where you, a human, live in a village of talking animals, earn money (usually by fishing, catching bugs, or receiving various strange gifts from the villagers as rewards for doing errands for them). You basically spend the game earning money and eventually upgrading your house to three levels, which you can decorate to your heart’s content.
Recently, we accumulated so much stuff, however, that we each had to make use of the third and fourth houses respectively to store all of these possessions. I know, that’s all quite silly, isn’t it? But we got two new houses to decorate out of the deal, and two new characters, as well. In the end, our Crossing houses turned out so delightful (and were filled with so many rare or expensive items from our years of playing) that it seemed like it was time to share them with you all. Now, this console is not connected to my capture card, so I was not able to take any screenshots, but I did take some decent quality photos, so here we go. Continue reading Animal Crossing House Tours
Part of what makes video games fun is that they allow us to experience things not possible in real life. We can visit fantasy worlds, wield immense power, and ultimately save the world, or even the universe, from evil. In most cases anyway. Part of the thrill that comes from video games is the unfamiliar. It’s why I’d much rather watch a fantasy or sci-fi movie than one that takes place in the real world with regular people. That all kind of changed with a game I recently completed. EarthBound.
EarthBound had been on my to-do list for a long time, like Final Fantasy VII and Super Metroid, but it took me a long time to play it because I didn’t have access to it until recently. I originally heard of the game thanks to Super Smash Bros and its inclusion of Ness, a seemingly normal boy with psychic powers. I admit I was unimpressed by Ness (unintentional rhyme) at the time, considering I had no idea who he was, but as the years went by, I heard people talking more and more often about how amazing the game he hailed from was. It wasn’t until March of 2016, however, that I finally got my hands on it, thanks to my dear Wii U’s Virtual Console. Continue reading EarthBound and Why I Find Pizza and Burgers Relatable
Occasionally, I like to look through the list of games on current or recent consoles to see if there are any obscure games that sound interesting. Back when the Wii was still part of the “current” category of consoles, I came upon a game called Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon. If you have been following my gameplay series for it on our Youtube channel, then it will come as no surprise that I did finally get around to playing the game. In actuality, a big motivation for buying the game was due to the fact that it looked like an interesting game to test out my brand new Live Gamer Portable capture card. It wasn’t too long, so it wasn’t a big commitment, and it looked a bit spooky, which could create some good reactions. And the $20 price tag on Amazon helped a lot, too.
Nevertheless, I heard some negative things about the game before I bought it, namely the issue with weapons randomly breaking and monotonous levels later in the game. While I can largely agree with these complaints, neither of these issues were the game’s greatest crimes. But, I’ll get to that soon. Continue reading Trusting the Story