Video Game Blog
September - October 2005

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10/31/2005
Happy Halloween! Time to play some spooky video games. One horror based game that is overlooked but I enjoy is Illbleed for the Sega Dreamcast. It was more of a cheesy horror as opposed to a spooky horror. The game is one of the harder to find Dreamcast games but sells for practically nothing. Try it, you may like it.

Want a scary stat for Halloween? I read where the average person over their lifetime will swallow 50 spiders while they are sleeping. That should help you sleep good tonight.

10/30/2005
I was at a drug store when I saw this game system. It came with 60 games built in, two controllers and a light gun. It was not priced, so I did not see the price but it caught my attention as the games did not look familiar. Usually those are a bunch of pirated NES games or a bunch of variations of Tetris and other simple games. But this one looked more like it was a bunch of Point Blank type games. Wish I could remember the name of it.

I love the commercial for the V-Tech educational handheld system. They are bragging about the system with its 8-Bit quality graphics. Gotta rush out for one of those. I know they are trying to get kids to learn while playing but take it from me, educational games never have and probably never will be a worthwhile investment. Outside of Typing of the Dead, I have yet to play an educational game that would keep any kid's interest for more than ten minutes. To be blunt, the gameplay on them almost always sucks. Unless you are stuck on a cross country road trip and it is the only thing you have, you probably would never play it.

With Doom out at the theatres (and in the grand tradition of video game based movies, flopping), one has to think what great video game ideas were overlooked. Not that Doom isn't a good idea for a movie, but it is more the kind of movie I expect to debut on the Sci-Fi Network instead of at the theatres. So with that in mind, here are some more video game movie ideas that were overlooked.

Crazy Climber the Movie
A madman has taken control of a skyscraper and threatens to detonate a nuclear bomb if his demands are not met. The bomb is ticking away on the roof and the building is full of armed terrorists. The only way someone can stop him is to become a Crazy Climber and scale the building.

Donkey Kong
When Mild Mannered Mario has his girlfriend stolen by a giant gorilla, he takes things into his own hands. A wild battle ensues across the city as Mario constantly chases down the giant ape. From pie factories and barrel factories to the final battle at a construction site, Mario must try to keep up or lose the love of his life.


10/25/2005
I cannot wait to the day when all the video game graphics are photo-realistic so people can quit whining about graphics. Very few games come out that do not have great graphics but people will whine about a little jaggies here or not enough draw distance. Personally if you are noticing things like that, either you are too anal or the gameplay isn't good enough to keep you occupied. And if that is the case, you should get rid of the game because gameplay is what video games are about. Want great graphics? Look out your window at reality. It doesn't look better than that.

I still want to see a real Looney Tunes video game. One that features a ton of guest appearances, lots of great gags and the zaniness that is a Warner Brothers trademark. If they can make a great game like Kingdom Hearts with the Disney characters, why cannot they do the same with the Warner Bros characters? Give me a few weeks and I will have you a great script with a ton of cameos.

Another video game idea, I would like to see a game where you go back in time to collect extinct species before they disappear and bring them back to a zoo to repopulate them. It could be educational without being dull. From the Dodo bird and Great Auk who would be easy to catch, to the tougher to get Elephant Bird and Tasmanian Wolf. If you really want to add a challenge, go back for the mighty Mastodon or the Sabre Tooth Cat. They always put so much emphasis on dinosaurs but there are some great creatures that lived after them and they could make a great game.

Speaking of great games, will we ever see B.C.? It was the cool caveman game from Fable creator Peter Molyneux. The game looked awesome but then it was put on the back burner. Rumor had it coming out for the XBOX 360 but that is one of those I will believe it when I see it. Anyone know if it made an appearance at E3?

While Microsoft is doing many things right this time to get the Japanese market interested in the XBOX (having a Final Fantasy game is a great start), one must wonder if they will buy the XBOX 360 or wait for the Playstation 3. It will be interesting to see and will be a big factor in the upcoming battle.

10/22/2005
With the coming of the XBOX 360, one must wonder if the stores will start dumping the original XBOX system and games. Most stores only have so much room and with all the systems out now, they have to make space somewhere. And one must think with all the best games now going over to the 360, the system will slow down in sales. Will be interesting to see what kind of deals pop up.

If you are a collector, this could be the best time for finding rare XBOX games. Towards the end of a video game's life, some of the best games are released and sell some of the smallest numbers. The best example of this was with the Sega Saturn that had its best are rarest games come out at the end. Games like Burning Rangers and Panzer Dragoon Saga appeared when most people had moved on. This could happen with the XBOX, though there is a much bigger installed base. Will be interesting to see.

Received an email about a show in Philadelphia called America's Video Game Expo. It is supposed to combine video games, both old and new with comic books, collectible card games, animation and sci-fi. Sounds like an interesting premise as most gamers I know are also into one or two of the other hobbies. It is free to attend and will be November 12th and 13th. Here is the website address, check it out. www.VGXPO.com

10/20/2005
Played the Warriors game yesterday and so far I really like it. It offers enough variety to keep it interesting and they do a great job of giving it a movie feel. I have heard people complain about the graphics, but they look fine to me. I guess some people just expect it to look just like the movie. Personally, I always placed gameplay ahead of graphics and this one has gameplay in spades.

Speaking of the Warriors game, I wrote a wish list of games that I would like to see back in January 2002 and my #1 game on the wish list was The Warriors. I talked about the type of game I would want and it seems that Rockstar incorporated much of it into their game. So much that I have received some emails from people who think they stole the idea from me. I don't know about that. Guess these people must be telling other people as the hits on that particular issue are shooting up fast. It would be cool think know that I inspired the game, but I doubt it. Anyway, I do have my wish game to play and that is pretty cool. If you want to read about it, here is a link to the page. Bit Age Times #15

Wonder if anyone has done a Sims game where you have to create your own haunted house and try to scare customers. You would get a budget and decide on masks, sets and makeup. Then you would set it up and try to scare the paying customers. Do a good enough job and you get a bigger place with a bigger budget. Take it from someone who worked in a haunted house during college, there is alot more to setting one up than most people think. I think it is a better idea than Sim Cruise Ship or some of the other lame games I see.

10/18/2005
Have not done much on the site because I was in the process of transferring the site to a new service provider. I had outgrown my former one that I had been with since 1998. The bandwidth of this site is growing at an amazing rate of 2 gig a month and I was already at capacity. Now I have triple the bandwidth, five times as much space and it costs less! But there have been some hiccups in the transfer that I need to iron out. But it is a great move in the long run.

Finally have some days off coming up and I hope to put some more time into Oddworld Stranger. May even play some of the new game I bought for the XBOX. Picked up Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic for $5.00 used. And then there is the Warriors, which is due tomorrow, if I am correct. Good thing I have a four day weekend coming up.

A funny thing happened. I picked up Intellivision Lives for the Gamecube for my boys a few months back. It was $5.00 at Toys R Us. I figured they would play it a little here and there but I was not expecting it to become the top game. They are now battling to see who can get bigger high scores on Astrosmash and Shark! Shark! It brings a smile to the face of an old school gamer.

I wonder if you put an infinite number of Madden players in a room, playing Madden, could one of them perfectly replicate an NFL season?

I usually do not get too excited about sports games as I rarely have the time to really devote to them. But I am a big fan of Arena Football and the thought of Electronic Arts doing an Arena Football game is intriguing. Anything has to be better than that disaster that was called Kurt Warner's Arena Football. All they did was took their NFL Blitz and added Arena uniforms and rules. The game was terrible and it was shelved faster than Kurt's career. Speaking of Kurt, it is amazing how someone who could be so great for three years (at least they cannot call him a one year wonder) could fall so fast. I am no expert, but I have been a Rams fan for decades (ever since they got Eric Dickerson) and watch most of their games. In his first few years, he played more like an Arena quarterback, by which I mean he was taking more three step drops and throwing. After a few years, he was becoming more like an NFL quarterback and taking five and six steps before throwing. His biggest weapon, the quick release was gone and soon so was his career. I know he is still playing in Arizona, but he is terribly mediocre and not the MVP who drove defenses crazy and scored at will.

I really hope they do another Spider-Man game based on the engine of the last one. The foundation was very solid and with some work they could have an amazing game (pun intended). They got the feel of swinging around the city down perfect. They really captured the essence of being Spider-Man. And the city was great. They just needed more variety. More villains, more missions, more people, more stuff to uncover and more mini games. They had a great start and it would not take a ton to improve upon it.

I started watching the television show, Supernatural (I usually end up watching one new show a year, which ends up getting cancelled before it can really take off) and thought the basis would be great for a video game. You could move around the country and solve different urban legends. Each level would be a different place and you would have to look for clues, figure out what is the culprit and determine how to beat it and then go after it and beat it. Unlike most horror games where all you do is walk around and shoot things, this one would have you doing detective work as well as battling the creature or spirit or whatever. There would have to be some variety so you don't end up battling the same thing each level.

10/13/2005
I often get asked why I don't offer a forum for guests of the site to participate in. They ask about a message board or guest book or stuff like that. I may have talked about that here before, I do not remember. But the reason is that when I did have a message board here about five years ago, it turned into a place where for every real post, there would be three posts for get rich quick schemes, porn and other garbage. I do not have the time to delete all of it, so I found it easier to just bypass the whole thing. Another example of a few bad apples ruining it for everyone.

Remember all the controversy surrounding BMX XXX game? It was amazing how a crummy game could kill that controversy.

Wonder if there is any chance that any of the video game cartoons of the 1980's will make it on DVD? I am talking about Pac-Man, Saturday Morning Supercade and Dragon's Lair. It would be nice to see a boxed set of these with some bonuses. Heck, they could add some of the classic games to the DVD as a bonus. Imagine watching the Dragon's Lair cartoon and then playing the game. Wonder how playing Pac-Man with a remote control would be?

Tivo a special on G4 about the Japanese Electronics Show and finally got around to watching it. The more I see about the Nintendo Revolution controller, the more I like it. It is great to see a company thinking outside the box. I would never think a controller alone would make me consider a video game system, but that one has my attention.

The holiday buying season is right around the corner. This will be a interesting year. Will the XBOX 360 have a massive holiday or will gamers wait for the PS3? Will there be a shortage of XBOX 360s? How will the sales of the PSP and Nintendo DS fare this holiday? What will be the big game of the season? There is no Grand Theft Auto, Metal Gear, Halo, Zelda or Mario this holiday season. So will there be one must have game or a bunch of good games? Will this be the last big rush of XBOX games? How long before they pull the plug on the XBOX as all the games move to the new platform? How much support will the Nintendo Gamecube get this holiday?

Just imagine if Nintendo made Nintendogs very realistic. What if the dogs aged and one day died? Think about if you linked to other systems, your dogs may get in a fight or create more puppies. Or if your dog got tired of you ignoring it and just ran away. I am guessing the emotional distress could be cause for a lawsuit. But it could be fun to mix breeds and it would be funny to see someone turn on their DS after a few weeks and see a sign saying their dog ran away or even better, there is a dead dog laying there with the words, starved to death.

10/09/2005
Did you know there was a Walk of Fame for video games?  Me neither.  But one of the readers of this blog emailed me an address where you can vote on what video games and creators are next to receive a star.  Go ahead and vote and vote often.  Here is the link:  http://www.walkofgame.com/

Gametap is finally up and running with a free two week trial.  I am tempted to try it but still want to know more.  I guess that I must shoot out an email.  I want to know if there are high scores as my only reason for doing this is to post some high scores and hope they last for more than a minute.  I must say the number of games is pretty impressive with a good selection and more to come.  But $14.95 a month is more than I would like to pay.  I was hoping for more like $9.95 a month.  Oh well, guess it costs alot to put up a site like that.  If you have an interest, here is a link to the site and you can try to two week membership:  http://www.gametap.com/home/Home

Went to Cedar Point yesterday and of course I spent some time in the arcade (the fact that it was raining made it an easier decision).  Enjoyed a game of Monster Bash pinball, what a cool table.  Tried South Park pinball and was not impressed.  I did get the high scores on Frogger and Centipede, despite having a less than responsive trackball.  I was bummed that Robotron was not working.  And they still had the Donkey Kong with messed up sprites.

10/07/2005
Have some extra money and want to buy a piece of the video game industry?  If you answered yes to this, then here is an auction for you.  The publishing rights to all the Acclaim video games is up for auction.  What exactly you get for the money is anyone's guess as the site say almost nothing.  And to be honest, most of these properties are owned by other companies and being published by other game companies, so most are totally worthless.  I see Batman video games and Simpsons video games but both are being done by other companies.  I doubt that you can do anything with those.  About the only ones that have any value are the games that Acclaim created and owned all the rights to.  Stuff like Wizards and Warriors and Vexx.  Not that any of these have much value, but at least you can brag you own them.  It may shut up those guys who brag they have the entire NES collection or all the PS1 games.  You can say so what, I own the publishing rights to Iggy's Recking Balls.  I do not know what the minimum bids are but my bids for a buck a game has not been accepted as of writing.  Here is the link to the website: http://maltzauctions.com/acclaimip.htm

I must give props to Lorne Lanning for Oddworld Stranger, it is a good game.  A bit tough in parts but a great game.  It has his trademark sense of humor and enough weirdness to make it stand out.  I am enjoying it.

With the success of Nintendogs on the DS, I think it is time to bring out another virtual pet game.  I know you are thinking that I will say Nintencats or something like that.  But that is too obvious and anyone who has read enough of this blog know that I am a bit in left field.  Heck, some people say I am not even in the stadium, but that is another discussion.  No, it is time to revive the pet rock only virtually.  You can name your rock, paint it, and if you want to take it for a walk, you can move the screen around and watch it roll.  It is so stupid that it could be a hit, again.  You would have to make it cheap and the silliness of it may make it sell. 

10/05/2005
Will finally have some time off today, so I plan on playing some Oddworld Stranger.  I have wanted to play this game for quite awhile.  Live ammo, how unique is that?

There seems to be no neutral ground with the Nintendo Revolution new controller.  People either love it or hate it.  Personally, I think it is pretty ingenious.  A step closer to virtual reality with the ability to swing it around like a sword.  I like how Nintendo is trying different things.  From the touch screen on the DS to this, it shows that they are willing to move past the same controllers that Sony and others keep bringing out.  For games to really move forward, we need to rethink the controller.  What good is a game that looks real if you are still moving your character with the basic controller?  I was disappointed how very few games took advantage of the PS2's analog buttons.  I thought it could really improve games.  The old on/off of most controller buttons is so old fashioned.  They had those on the Atari 2600.

Has anyone ever used those i-glasses or others similar to them?  You know the kind that makes you feel like you are looking at an 80 inch television.  I came close to ordering those a few times, but I doubt they were any good.  Maybe a next generation of them will come out and really improve.

When is Weird Al Yankovic getting his own video game?  They could base it on his many song parodies.  You could have different levels based on his songs.  You can hide some of his videos in there as unlockables as well as songs.  I am not really sure how you would do it, but I know it has potential.  And the dude has a big fan base to tap into.

Finally one of my all-time favorite arcade games is coming to the home market!   Taito Legends will feature Zookeeper!  The first time the game has ever been ported to anything.  Don't email me about that game called Zookeeper for the DS as it is not the same.  The collection looks impressive with some real winners in there.  Check out this lineup:

Space Invaders (1978), Phoenix(1980), Space Invaders Part 2 (1980), Colony 7 (1981), Electric Yoyo (1982), Jungle Hunt (1982), Zoo Keeper (1982), Elevator Action (1983), Great Swordsman (1984), Return of the Invaders (1985), Bubble Bobble (1986), Gladiator (1986), Tokio (1986), Exzisus (1987), Plump Pop (1987), Operation Wolf (1987), Rainbow Islands (1987), Rastan (1987), Super Qix (1987), The New Zealand Story (1988), Operation Thunderbolt (1988), Battle Shark (1989), Continental Circus (1989), Plotting (1989), Volfied (1989), Ninja Kids (1990), Space Gun (1990), Thunderfox (1990) Tube It (1993)

Guess I have to add another game to my wish list.

09/30/2005
I received the items from wherehouse.com and it may have been the fastest I ever received items over the net.  Took two days to get my items.  Not bad for the $3.50 I paid in shipping.  I would order more stuff from the sale, but I have spent enough for awhile.

If you have went to the Bit Age Times part of the site and wondered where all the issues were, I fixed that.  I put links up so you can go to every issues easily.  Enjoy the short lived newsletter.

One of the funniest things is the look on people's faces when I tell them that my website has 3,000 pages.  They just looked stunned.  And the sad thing is that I am not done with it.

One day I would like to buy a few pinball machines.  I had pinball machines when I was a kid.  My dad surprised my brother and me with three of them for Christmas one year.  We still have them at my parent's house, along with one my brother bought.  The problem is quality pinball tables cost a fortune these days.  I would love to get ones like Monopoly or Roller Coaster Tycoon but they are a few grand used, if not more.  May have to start saving up for one.

Been tempted to get a second arcade controller.  I have a Devastator 2, which is an awesome controller (two joysticks, trackball and spinner) but I really want one with a true four way joystick.  I went with eight way joysticks because my two favorite games are eight way, Crazy Climber and Robotron, but there are times when my frogger does not move the way I want him to or get caught up on a ladder on Donkey Kong and wish for one.  May have to look into one. 

09/28/2005
Took advantage of the wherehouse.com sale.  They have a coupon out there that gives you 33% off on your order of music cds/dvds/video games.  I ordered Oddworld Stranger and Batman the Animated Series Season 3.  You have to check the prices on the DVDs as some are better at Deep Discount DVD when you factor in shipping and tax.  But on video games, you cannot beat it!  Not sure how picked over they are as I bought my stuff a few days ago, but if you can find something, enjoy!  The sale ends on September 30th.  Here is the code -  ISC409OF.  It also works on spun.com.

I see where Square/Enix is buying Taito.  Talk about a video game juggernaut in the making.  Will be interesting to see how this works out.

09/25/2005
The truth is hard to take.  I found out that I am a devil customer.  At least at Best Buy.  There is a report that Best Buy sent to their suppliers that told how they were gearing their store to appeal to angel customers and to repel devil customers.  How do you know which you are?  If spend alot of money on new electronics, if you buy lots of new releases on Tuesday or the first week they are out, if you upgrade your television and computer often, then you are an angel.  If you look for bargains, if you shop the clearance items, if you say no to most of their overpriced and near worthless warranties, then you are a devil customer.  I would be upset if I actually did my shopping there.  But I found that if I want to pay full price for video games or get an extended warranty on a video game system, then I will go to EB or Babbages or one of those places.  If you want to find out more about this, google the following phrase "best buy angel devil customers".  It may open your eyes.

The first time I played Roller Coaster Tycoon Pinball was at Walt Disney World.  It was in the arcade in front of Space Mountain.  I loved it and played multiple games (including the free games I won).  But I have not been able to find it since.  Nowhere around here has it (though I have yet to try Dave and Busters, still have not gone there), so I figured it would be a year before I could play it again.  Well, it has appeared on Visual Pinmame!  Now I can play it anytime!  Granted it is a very good version, but it does not compare to the original.  Pinball is always better on a real machine.  But it will satisfy me for awhile. 

Is it me or has there been a shortage of good video game deals in the Sunday circulars.  I remember that I used to be able to find them quite often.  But now it is like there is the new games and that is about it.  There may be a $10.00 of this game but not much else.  Guess they are trying to get rid of us "devil customers."

09/23/2005
Word is spreading that if you did not preorder an XBOX 360 by now, you will not get one.  That is unless you want to shell out $800.00 for a bundle or camp out at Walmart or Target.  All I can say is WAIT!  Why pay for stuff you don't want or spend a night in the cold with people who have nothing else to do with their time and money, when you can wait six months or less and get one with no problem.  But if you must wait, I recommend waiting with your Nintendo DS as it has longer battery life and nothing is worse than losing your place in line because you need to get more batteries (of course spare batteries would remedy this).

It may just be a sickness, but I am tempted to get Nintendogs.  As disgustingly cute the game is, it looks like fun.  I only have one major problem.  I don't own a Nintendo DS.  Guess that will keep me from going over to the cute side.

They should make a video game that captures the obsessive side of collecting.  Before you say "Pokemon", I mean one that really captures the obsessive nature of collectors.  It could be about stamp or baseball cards or comic collecting.  Heck, it could be about action figures or Hummels.  You would pick what item to collect and then have to try and get as many as possible.  You would start with a set amount of money and have to see how many you can collect for that amount of money.  You can set how long you want to play for - one year, two years, whatever.  You would then head to flea markets, collector shows, scan the paper for classified ads and of course go on ebay.  You have to buy and sell them as you will soon run out of money.  Do you keep that ultra rare card or sell it on ebay to get a bunch of cards.  In the end, you collection will be graded on quantity, quality and condition.  And to make it more interesting, there will be people trying to scam you with counterfeits, ripoff sellers on ebay and other stuff.  You would have to battle out other collectors.  As goofy as it sound, it could be great fun if done right.

They have Mario Baseball, Mario Tennis and Mario Golf.  What sports are next?  How about Mario Boxing?  Or is that too much like Super Smash Brothers?  How about Mario Olympics.  You can have the Summer and Winter edition.  Nintendo, if you are listening, there is a gold mine here.

09/19/2005
I tried for ages to get Food Fight to work on MAME.  I was even going to buy the Atari Flashback just to play it (and endure playing with those bad 7800 controllers).  But then for reasons I cannot explain, I was able to finally get it to work.  What a great game!  One of my favorite arcade games.  Happy, happy, joy, joy!

If you are bored and need a good laugh, go to Amazon.com.  Select a handful of DVDs and put them in your wish list.  Then come back and see how the prices keep changing.  This is especially true if you look around the internet at other DVD stores.  To give you an idea how the prices fluctuate on a DVD, I bookmarked Taxi Season One (one of my favorite shows).  The price has gone for a new copy from Amazon (I am not counting the people who sell used ones on there) from $23.95 to $35.95.  And it has been every price between.  So the moral of the story is that if you are going to buy DVDs from Amazon, wish list them and keep checking.  I heard if you clear out your temporary internet files and search again, you can sometimes get a lower price.  Or you can do what I do, buy most of my DVDs from Deep Discount DVD, where the price is almost always lower, you get free shipping and the price stays the same everytime.  But I have found that buying video games on Amazon off the people who are selling them there is a good way to get some deals.

I am probably subjecting myself to a bunch of junk email for asking this, but has anyone ever done one of those deals where they say "Get a free PSP" and actually gotten it?  I may have mentioned this before in this blog but after seven months of writing, you tend to forget what you have talked about and I am too lazy to reread all of them.  I never bothered with it as it sounded like a major scam to me.

One question I get about the website is why all the banner ads.  They are there for one reason, to pay for the hosting fees of the site.  I tried asking for donations (like the link at the top of this page) but I have yet to get a single one.  But with the banner ads, I can pay for the upkeep of the site and keep it free to visitors.  Plus, it allows people to find items that I may talk about on the site but do not sell. 

09/16/2005
Been playing alot of Soul Calibur 2 for the XBOX.  Good game to pick up and play for a half hour.  The Weapon Master mode is alot of fun, even if it can get quite frustrating at times.  And it is good to finally a game with Spawn in it that does not suck.  Though I did enjoy the Dreamcast Spawn shooter.  Fun little game that you can pick up for about $5.00.

There is a classic video game show coming in my area next month.  The Classic Computer and Game Show (CCAG) will be in Northern Ohio on October 22nd.  If you are in the area, check it out.  Here is a link to the show:

http://www.ccagshow.com/

So how many of you have reserved an XBOX 360?  I saw a few places that had where you did not have to get the whole bundle but just the system.  I think one was Toys R Us, but I am pretty sure they sold out right away.  It will be interesting to see how much support the XBOX gets once the new system comes out.  I am guessing that Microsoft will release few titles for it.  Too bad as it was really hitting its stride and it would be sad to see it slow up to a point where all you are getting is new sports games, bad movie licenses and ports of PC games.  Sorta like what happened the last few years of the Playstation.

09/13/2005
Went to two Best Buy stores.  One I was the first person in the store, the other I was there within 15 minutes of when they opened.  What did I come away with?  One lousy $0.99 game.  Star Wars Starfighter for the XBOX.  The only reason I bought it was it was a buck and so I did not come away empty handed.  The only other XBOX title I saw that was on clearance was Rocky Legends.  It was supposed to ring up at $4.99, but it was coming up $9.99.  Way too much for that game.  Very few titles from the list.  As usual with any visit to Best Buy, I left disappointed.  If I go there 10 times, I will leave empty handed at least 8 times.

Did I miss something?  I see there is a third Tak game coming out.  I did not know the first one sold one.  I am surprised the second one sold well.  But a third one?  That is what is wrong with the video game industry, a great game like Beyond Good and Evil did not sell well, but Tak does well enough to warrant two sequels.  I cannot wait for the sequel to Dr. Muto!

The latest section of the website for me to build is the Arcade reviews.  The hits in that section have been steadily going up, so I decided to add more reviews.  This week alone, I did new reviews for Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong 3, Frogger, Battlezone, Punch-Out, X-Men, Monster Bash, Monster Farmer Jump and probably one game that I cannot remember.

09/12/2005
*I will be heading over to Best Buy in a few minutes.  They have a huge selection of clearance games ranging from $0.99 for Catwoman to $9.99 for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  I have three XBOX games on the list that I want and some Gamecube games for the kids.  The three I hope to find are Tron 2.0, Bard's Tale and Return to Castle Wolfenstein.  All three are $4.99 each.  Wish me luck.

Just finished watching the Icons episode on the history of the Playstation.  While I knew the history, I wanted to watch it anyway.  I have to hand it to Sony, they had motivation, determination and the vision to pull it off.  Everyone has been backstabbed or screwed over at one time in your life.  We all dream of revenge, but how many of us could ever get the kind of revenge that Sony did against Nintendo?  For anyone who does not know, the Playstation was originally going to be a CD Rom add-on for the Super Nintendo.  But Nintendo backed out from a deal they had with Nintendo and instead went with Phillips.  A big part of it was they wanted to make all the money from the production of the CD Rom games.  Sony felt betrayed and decided to go ahead with the Playstation.  When the next generation of game systems came out, they released the Playstation and the rest is history.  Nintendo went from the top company in the video game industry to now they are #3.  Sony completely dominates the industry.  It is sweet justice.  While I like Nintendo's games, I do not feel bad for them.  They were complete bullies when they were on top.  They got what they deserved.

Received an interesting email the other day. 

"Up Up Down Down! 
 
We're a garage based amateur game publisher.  My studio is working on a flash game called PinkSlip that pits Suits vs Golddiggers vs Nerds vs Jocks vs Sociopaths.  (nervous laugh)   Check it out >>
 
www.pinkslip.us  
 
I'll update you again as soon as I have a playable demo, just wanted to let you know that we exist and Pink is coming!!!! 
 
Smell the payroll,"

Check it out if you want.  Right now it is one screen with some flashy animation.  I will have to see what kind of game it is.  At least it does not look like a lame platform game or a Tetris clone, like most games I find on the internet are.

Anyone know what happened to MAME DX?  It was a program where they were enhancing the graphics of arcade games.  They had an enhanced Donkey Kong and a few others.  Looked real good but then I just quit hearing about it.  Too bad as it showed promise.

09/10/2005
I was at Arby's the other day and I looked at their mascot.  You know the oven mitt that has a face.  I know it is pretty lame but as I looked at it, I thought that if it had been created twenty years ago, there would probably be a NES game with it as the lead character.  It would be a crappy side scroller as you move the glove around and try to save the roast beef sandwiches from generic bad guys.

That is what I hated about the NES era.  Half the games were the same game over and over.  With the popularity of the Super Mario games, you had so many clones.  This one you are Bart Simpson, the next you are the Noid.  I got so sick of it when I bought Wacky Races, hoping it was some cool racing game and found out it was another crappy side scroller with Muttley.  It was one of the few times that I was tempted to take a hammer to a game.

Speaking of Wacky Races, it was not until the Dreamcast that I was able to play a real Wacky Races game.  What a fun little racer for the Dreamcast.  With the cel shaded graphics (one of the few times when they really fit), all the original cars and the great voice overs.  If you have a Dreamcast, buy this game. 

Dumped a bunch of games at EB (that's short for Electronic Boutique).  They were having their trade in at least five games and get an additional $5.00 per game.  I must warn you to pay attention to what you are getting for the games.  If you are not getting the $5.00 for the game, don't bother trading it in.  They had games they were going to give me like twenty cents for.  I would donate it to Goodwill before I sell it for twenty cents.  But I did get enough to get a Gamecube for my kids as their died.  I also put a down payment on the Warriors for the XBOX.  I hate to preorder any game but I am such a big fan of the movie that I took a chance.  The last time I preordered a game was World Series Baseball for the Dreamcast and I was disappointed. 

09/08/2005
With online play becoming such a big part of video games, especially with the next generation almost upon us, how long before viruses hit?  How long before someone creates one and spreads it to other game systems.  And what if it does something horrible to the systems like crash it or wipe out something vital?  How would a Microsoft or Sony react to this?  If your 90 day warranty is over, will they replace your system or are you out of luck?  While I hope this does not happen, it is a real possibility.  If hackers can bust into the Pentagon and IRS computers, anything is possible.

Speaking of 90 day warranties, is it me or is this a scam?  I would like to see everyone get together and refuse to buy another game system until they came with a real warranty, but the chances of that are the same of winning the lottery and being declared emperor of Earth.  Game systems should have a one year warranty.  You can get a better warranty on an electric razor that sells for $50.00 than you can on a $300.00 game system.  And the razor will be more reliable.

When is someone going to make a game based on summer camp?  And I don't mean Friday the 13th.  You know a game where you could play baseball, go canoeing, take hikes, make crafts and tell ghost stories.  A game that allows you to experience the good and the bad of camp with some fun stuff thrown in.  It would be a game for kids and not adults, but not the typical crap kid game.

This is totally off topic, but so what.  I think it is sad that it took the United States to make quarters for each state to finally get people to save money.  We cannot get these people to save any money for their retirement or in case of an emergency, but make fancy quarters and they hoard them like gold.  Just gotta laugh.

There is something that has not been made into a video game, coin collecting.  I do not know how you would incorporate it, but it is an idea that is ripe for the taking.  Coin collecting is the biggest hobby in the country and possibly the world, so why not a video game?  I have no idea how to make it interesting, but give it to Sid Meier and dare him and I would bet he would make a fun game out of it. 

09/06/2005
Received an email about a Burgertime tribute site.  I was talking about how I wanted a remake of Burgertime and this site offered downloads of a few games that fit that description.  Here is the link to the site:

http://www.burgertime.info/

The site has pretty much everything you could ever want with Burgertime.  From java games to downloads of remakes to wallpaper, if you wanted anything dealing with Burgertime, this site has it. 

It took awhile but the blog is taking off.  I am now getting as many hits in two days as I used to in an entire week.  Thanks to everyone who is spreading the word.  The emails I am getting are also on the rise.  Send me any ideas for games or links to sites and I will be glad to share them.

If you spend any time in the newsgroups, you will find all kinds of false information.  The internet is infamous for false information.  So with this in mind, I decided to put some false information here in the blog.  Keep in mind these are all false - made up - as bogus as a three dollar bill.  But it will be interesting to see if any become rumors in the newsgroups:

Next Grand Theft Auto to take place in the 1950's.
First news has leaked on the next Grand Theft Auto game, under the code name Grand Theft Auto: Americana.  It is to take place in the 1950's and center around the conflicts of the greasers and the socs.  It will feature a large soundtrack of 1950's era rock and roll, including Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and others.  There will be plenty of classic cars to be stolen as well as motorcycles.  Mini games abound including drag races, swallowing goldfish and even hula hoops.  Locations will include drive up diners, schools, drive-ins and more.

Educational Simpsons Game in works
The long running Mavis Teaches Typing is going to change.  In order to expand the audience, it will now be called Homer Teaches Typing.  The program will center around teaching typing by being more entertaining.  With Homer as your teacher, you will hear many of his famous quotes including "Duh!" for misspelling a word and "Woo Hoo!" for getting it right.  There will also be rewards for completing tasks which include newly created Simpsons and Itchy and Scratchy cartoon vignettes.  Also there will be mini games and comic books that can be unlocked.

Atari Jaguar Returns!
In a surprising move, the Atari Jaguar will return in a different form.  Much like the Atari Flashback systems, the Jaguar will return as a stand alone console with built in games.  It will feature 20 of the top games from the system, plus a selection of unreleased titles.  Games like Cybermorph, Trevor McFur and Tempest 2000 will be included.  The system will retail for $29.99 and available through mass merchants.

09/02/2005
My heart goes out to the people affected by the hurricane.  I donated some money and said some prayers.  I hope everyone else helps as much as they can.

Word is that the Doom movie is actually looking pretty good.  Out of all the video games, I think Doom has the ability to be a good movie.  Half-Life would be a good movie as well, if they gave it a real budget.  It probably has already been optioned for a movie.  I am surprised there is no Grand Theft Auto movie in the works.  The game gets so much press, good and mostly bad, that it should be a natural for a movie deal. 

I see that Midway is giving away their Midway Arcade Classics 3 to anyone who preorders LA Rush.  The only problem is that I have no interest in LA Rush.  If it was on preorders of any Midway game, I would consider it.  While I am not too keen to the games on it, I know my wife would enjoy it.  She likes games like Hydro Thunder and other arcade racers.

So far the preorders I have seen on the XBOX 360 have been around $500.00.  Granted it is the system, extra controller and a stack of games that you may or may not want.  Thanks but no thanks.

There are rumors spreading that the PSP will have a price cut this Christmas.  Most likely it will go down to $199.99 if there is any truth to it.  Still too much for me, but it could spur more interest.  And with all the UMDs that Sony has alone released, it could mean  more money for them.

Speaking of UMD, how soon before you see Sony release a different system that will play them?  A mini TV unit or portable DVD player that will play them.  I am seeing too many movies released on UMD to expect it to stay only on the PSP.