Retro Club - Konami and the Megadrive
  • Waynes World SNES
    Terminator 2 SNES

    Both utter shite.
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  • davyK
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    JonB wrote:
    A fortnight might be a bit much for this. It's a pretty standard arcade game.

    The arcade game is certainly very hard. I'll sse how the MD version compares.

    The Megadrive version is effing hard - harder than the arcade version - or at least is more annoying...

    It's a solid enough port but it uses the muddier end of the MD's colour pallette so is quite dull looking - but I just find it so much tougher due to the longer levels with sparse restart points.

    There is a longplay of the arcade game lasting 21mins.....a longplay of the MD version lasts over 70mins....

    It's actually so hard I like it for some odd reason - and you can crank the difficulty up too - at the hardest level it would take monk-like devotion to get anywhere - so hard and unfair it's actually funny.

    The MD game is multi-region - the title screen changes if you change the region on your emu or console - JuJu in JPN, Toki in the West.

    If you want another game to try in a similar vein but isn't crap, take a look at Wardner by Taito. Splendid game - the MD got a port but its pretty rare - I've only ever played it via MAME though I can remember it in the student union arcade in my student days.

    If you want a crap one then Beavis and Butthead (SNES) was highly regarded in that area by Super Play who got more fun out of the title screen because you could make them laugh on it.

    Holding the wrong end of the stick since 2009.
  • Got up to level 3 on the arcade version of Toki, but I stupidly let the continue timer run down whilst chatting, and had no save states.  I'll go back to it, but I switched to the MD version at that point, and reached the start of the 7th level (with save states this time).  It's not a bad game, but I'm not enjoying it much.  Although it's certainly tricky it seems a lot more doable (for me at least) than Battletoads/UN Squadron/Midnight Resistance from previous weeks.  I can defo see what Davy means with the muddy colour palette thing; the underwater levels in particular look poor.  It's also more noticeable in the port just how slowly your character moves - ok, so he's a lumbering beast, but did he have to be that lumbering?  Also, many of the power-ups seem to be missing.  You can pick up different types of weapon, and I think I saw ice skates at one point, but stuff like the helmet is nowhere to be seen so far.

    I had Wardner with my original Megadrive.  Or possibly Wardner Special (I couldn't tell as it was Japanese).  My mates dismissed it as decidedly 8-bit in appearance, but I stuck with it as it was very playable and I liked the different weapons.  I vaguely remember thinking a certain section was impossible if you'd picked up the wrong kind of firepower (maybe something to do with sun/moon/stars etc?).

    I reckon with the play a shit game thing, there's no point in setting anything in particular for us to play - just play anything poor that you fancy starting next week.  The main reason I'm saying this is that I really don't want to suffer the first level of the Terminator game Retro mentioned at the top of the page again.
  • I played to level 4 of the MD version of Toki. I quite like it. The level designs are more interesting than the arcade game and it's not as brutally tough (the bosses are especially easy in comparison), although the one hit death thing is always harsh. Perhaps there are shitloads more levels though, so maybe it's really difficult later on. The arcade game only had about 6 levels. But yeah, the movement speed is definitely too slow, and it's not as colourful.

    I played the arcade version of Wardner not long ago. I always quite liked it but never put much time into it in the arcades. I got all the way to final boss, but found it impossible even with save states.
  • Now on level 7. It's amazing how much easier that mammoth boss was compared to the arcade version. Thank fuck. It took multiple save points and many many restarts, this one took me 3 lives. There are some tough bits in the game for sure, but the bosses are much simpler.
  • The mammoth boss took me ages earlier.  For some reason I thought you could only hit it in the face, by firing at the apex of your jump, so I spent ages (and a good few lives) timing that (whilst avoiding the projectile and getting a clear shot of the head when the trunk was lowered), but got squished every time as it repeatedly reached the left of the screen before I could kill it.  When I realised you could hit its stomach I saw him off within around 30 seconds.
  • Moot_Geeza wrote:
    I reckon with the play a shit game thing, there's no point in setting anything in particular for us to play - just play anything poor that you fancy starting next week.  The main reason I'm saying this is that I really don't want to suffer the first level of the Terminator game Retro mentioned at the top of the page again.

    You need to get back to Super Metroid, no shit games for you this week!!!!

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  • Get your finger out, its Castlevania IV next week...
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  • I finished MD Toki. 9 levels in all, so not too long. I pretty much stand by what I said before. I like the level layouts and the different stuff they've packed in them. And the simpler bosses are a definite bonus compared to the maddeningly hard ones in the arcade game, although some of them are actually too simple. But the main character's movement speed is just too slow, and the one hit deaths and lack of checkpoints probably mean it would have been really tough without save states. At least you can give yourself loads of lives and continues in the options. A few changes and it could have been very good.
  • I reckon with the play a shit game thing, there's no point in setting anything in particular for us to play - just play anything poor that you fancy starting next week.  The main reason I'm saying this is that I really don't want to suffer the first level of the Terminator game Retro mentioned at the top of the page again.
    You need to get back to Super Metroid, no shit games for you this week!!!!

    Shit games for me all week at work though, I can only play Metroid on the Wii U.

    I'm thinking: Cyber Shinobi & Alf on the Master System (this month's Retro Gamer seems to imply the latter isn't a bad game - remember reading it was absolutely awful), and I think I fancy Jurassic Park on the Megadrive, which despite the 87% in MMS always looked too shit to buy.  This is coming from someone who loved the book/film.  Plus possibly Karate Kid on the NES if I have time.
  • davyK
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    JonB wrote:
    But the main character's movement speed is just too slow, and the one hit deaths and lack of checkpoints probably mean it would have been really tough without save states. At least you can give yourself loads of lives and continues in the options. A few changes and it could have been very good.

    really tough is an understatement....I have the cartridge and I got as far as the ice level after many lengthy and frustrating sessions. The bosses are a let down / relief after the tortuous levels depending on your point of view - thankfully the game has a restart at each boss..

    Cranking up the difficulty removes the power-ups... I can remember trying it like this when I first got the cart just to see how ridiculous it was. It was ridiculous.

    Even with the dodgy colour scheme and the limited soundtrack I agree it could have been great if only the difficulty had been cranked down a tad.

    Holding the wrong end of the stick since 2009.
  • Talking of bad games, I played DJ Boy on the MD last night. The arcade game wasn't great, but the half-arsed conversion makes it awful. Wouldn't have thought you could go so wrong on a scrolling beat 'em up.
  • Finished Toki.  We've made all the main points; it's basically a decent enough game but nothing special.  I did really like the minecart type section towards the end though, but then I generally love minecart stages in most games.  69%. 
  • I've gone off script and am playing Dynamite Headdy. It's still completely brilliant. Yeah.
  • davyK
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    Had a session on MD Toki - wow - the character movement really is slow - far slower than I remember - and imagine playing it back in the day at 50Hz......Thankfully my console can be switched to east/west 50/60Hz - still slow movment though which is weird as the jumping is quite quick..

    For you wimps using save states who probably don't see the game over screen, the damsel is squeeling "help me" on it and it sounds like "text me"....

    Picked up 3 MD carts today CIB and in great condition - Micro Machines, Micro Machines Military and Jungle Strike - fine games.
    Holding the wrong end of the stick since 2009.
  • davyK wrote:
    For you wimps using save states who probably don't see the game over screen, the damsel is squeeling "help me" on it and it sounds like "text me"

    Rumbled :)

    Dynamite Headdy is incredible.  Completing it with the secret basketball numbers is one of my proudest gaming moments - it's a tough, tough game in places.  Spinderella, Baby Face, Twin Freaks - so many highlights.  Even the ending sequence is superb.  It's my pick of the 16-bit Treasure titles, for sure.

    I've also gone off the menu, and have played a fair chunk of Pluseman on MD today.  I downloaded it on VC a couple of years ago and decided that I couldn't see what all the fuss is about, but it really picks up quite quickly after the first level, and has a Dynamite Headdy standard of inventiveness to the gameplay.
  • davyK
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    Trying out the new games I got today has me going through my MD collection now - quite modest at 33 carts (though a few of them are compilations with between 2 and 4 games on them) - had a quick play of Vectorman which is *very* nice - but I will have to put it away as that is for a future week....

    Pretty sure I have an MD compilation for PS2 that has Dynamite Heddy on it...
    Holding the wrong end of the stick since 2009.
  • Christ, Dynamite Headdy is hard. Up to level 8 and had to use multiple save states on the last boss. The thing is I remember all of it so far, so I must have done all this the proper way about 20 years ago (although I'm sure I never did finish it). I swear there was a way of getting extra credits, but I don't seem to have any and am running out of lives. Might start again.

    Edit: Ah right, just read up about the continues. That explains (a bit) how I could get so far before.
  • I thought actually getting the continues was easier said than done.  You had to be really quick.  So many nice touches. 

    Sunch as:



    Hidden codes & secret bonus points added far more replayability than many Megadrive games, and it was a long game too.

    davyK wrote:
    had a quick play of Vectorman which is *very* nice - but I will have to put it away as that is for a future week....

    I've only ever played a couple of levels of Vectorman.  I remember the staff of Diehard Gamefan working themselves up into a frenzy about the graphics, and how Blue Sky were at the cutting edge of MD development.  As a Segaboy, I viewed it as the response to Donkey Kong Country.
  • davyK
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    Moot_Geeza wrote:
    davyK wrote:
    had a quick play of Vectorman which is *very* nice - but I will have to put it away as that is for a future week....
    I've only ever played a couple of levels of Vectorman.  I remember the staff of Diehard Gamefan working themselves up into a frenzy about the graphics, and how Blue Sky were at the cutting edge of MD development.  As a Segaboy, I viewed it as the response to Donkey Kong Country.

    It looks nice but the control is super swish.....
    Holding the wrong end of the stick since 2009.
  • So I done Dynamite Headdy eventually. I think I must've got to level 8 when I had it originally, so not too far from the end, but then the last couple of bosses were nightmares. Seriously, it would have been really hard to work out their different patterns on a tightly restricted number of lives. Madness.

    Still, it's such a brillant game, despite going a bit far on the difficulty towards the end. Amazing graphics for a MD game, and the music is even better, and then it's just so full of ideas and variety. Best platform game on the MD by a margin I always thought, and still do.
  • Iirc the only way to beat the final boss without a huge dollop of luck is to take the mini Headdy pickup whenever possible, despite the fact that you can't hit him in that form, otherwise the falling ceiling will get you unless it decides to give you the large gap right next to your character.  I'd agree that it's the best platformer on the machine - although they're very different games it's within touching distance of Yoshi's Island for me.
  • Thirty four (week): Crap games week

    Choose your own games to play from the numerous shitters released on consoles of yesteryear.  Was Rise of the Robots unfairly criticised? (No).  Is Wayne's World on the SNES an underrated movie tie-in?  (No).  Should The Official Sega Magazine have awarded Pink Goes to Hollywood more than 19%?  (Not sure yet).  Was Bebe's Kids worse value for money than Bebe's kids' dad?  (Possibly.  That was a terrible footie reference btw).      

    rise.jpg

    Play and discuss, or simply reminisce.

    Schedule:

    (01/07, fortnight): Castlevania IV (SNES)
    (15/07. week): Free choice Parodius
    (22/07, week): Scrolling Beat 'em up free choice
    (29/07, fortnight): El Viento (Megadrive)
    (12/08, week): Atari 2600 High-Score Challenge Returns
    (19/08, fortnight): Yoshi's Story (N64)
    (02/09, week): Rollergames (NES)
    (09/09, fortnight): Actraiser (SNES, VC)
    (23/09, fortnight): Grand Theft Auto (PS, PC)
    (07/10, week): New Zealand story (various)
    (14/10, week): Bitmap Bros free choice
    (21/10, fortnight): Vectorman (MD, compilations)
    (04/11, fortnight): PC Kid 2/Bonk 2 (PC Engine, VC)
    (18/11, week): Wonderboy week
    (25/11, week): Kirby week

    (02/12, fortnight): Solstice II/Equinox (SNES)
    (16/12, week): Fantasy Zone (MS)
    (23/12, fortnight inc. Christmas break): Pinball free choice
    (06/01, fortnight): Blackthorne (various)
  • There's been some sort of massive virus meltdown in my office at work, so while the rest of the company was beavering away at the disaster recovery site halfway across London, I managed to get some bad gaming done in an empty office between 10am and 12pm (apologies, retroking). 

    I focused on the Megadrive today, and played enough of the following to attribute a score (which I'll do out of 10 today).  I mainly picked games that I remember getting panned by the gaming press:

    Dark Castle [1]

    This really was exceptionally bad.



    Obviously, the noise those enemies make gets irritating after a few seconds.  You throw stones (I think?  Maybe it's a gun) by slowly rotating your arm to the correct trajectory before pressing fire, which just doesn't work.  Awful.

    Final Blow [3]

    Never liked this in the arcades either.  I couldn't tell you if it's a better game or just rose tinted specs, but I'd take Heavyweight Champ on the Master System over this all day long.

    DJ Boy [5]

    Not a terrible game, but the decision to give the player one life is ridiculous.  I expected this to be worse than it is from its reputation, but without save states it would have been dire.  I got to level four before I gave up I think.

    Last Battle [4]

    Fist of the North Star in Japan, but censored for PAL release, so instead of enemy heads popping when you punch them theie bodies just fly off the screen intact.  Add a point before the removal of the gimmick, but after an OK-ish start (the gameplay isn't the worst, and it has multiple routes) this got tiresome quickly, and I gave up after getting lost in the fourth stage I played.

    Revolution X [4]

    The Aerosmith Operation Wolf style game.  The most memorable thing about this for me was how bad the sound was - you'd expect them to have at least given a decent chunk of memory to the quality of the tunes considering it's they're using the license of a rock band, but nope.  Destructible scenery adds 1 point, but far worse than the port of Terminator 2: The Arcade Game.

    Street Smart [6]

    I moaned about this the other day.  I always liked the look of it in the mags, but it got poor reviews (< 50%).  I can see why (it's only marginally better than Pit Fighter), but I've got to admit I really enjoyed my save state assisted run at this today, and stuck with it to the credits. 

    Sword of Sodan [0]

    By far the worst game I played today.  It has absolutely no redeeming features, unless 'big sprites' is something that floats your boat, in which case add half a point.  I walked from left to right, slowly getting massacred by enemies who only occasionally fancied getting hit themselves.

    Jurassic Park [5]

    Poor.  I'm shocked this was made by the same team as Vectorman.  Some effort seems to have been spent on the animation and cut-scenes, but there was very little to like about the basic sub-Prince of Persia meets Alien 3 gameplay.

    Rise of the Robots [3]

    The intro was nice, and the rotating graphic of the next enemy is snazzy.  Otherwise it's pretty dire.

    Shaq Fu [6]

    I didn't mind this at all.  It's a notoriously bad effort from Delphine Software (of Flashback fame), but I think the mags were a little unkind to this.  It's a well animated fighting game that's probably on par gameplay-wise with Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story, which received marks in the low-80s.  Obviously the fact that it stars Shaquille O'Neil as some sort of mixed martial arts expert did it no favours whatsoever, but I thought this was alright. 

    Strider 2 [5]

    I spent the first five minutes on this wondering why the original is considered infinitely superior.  Firstly, I wasn't overly keen on the first one when I played through it for a few months ago, and secondly, US Gold really do seem to have replicated the controls nicely.  However, it didn't take long to realise the levels are messy, overlong, and rely too heavily on trial and error.  Still, this wasn't anywhere near as bad as its reputation suggested it would be. 

    Rastan Saga 2 [5]

    Laughably bad animation and gameplay far worse than the original can't stop me having a soft spot for this, as it came with my Megadrive and I completed it as a kid.  Knock two points off if you're in the least bit sensible.  I remember thinking it was odd that Rastan holds his sword in his right hand whilst facing right, but his left hand whilst facing left.  In hindsight a lot of games probably just reversed the sprite for stuff like that.
  • I used to own Sword of Sodan. Definitely the worst MD mistake I made. Although Fantasia wasn't far behind.

    I like that Rise of the Robots review. Yours was pretty generous.
  • davyK
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    Oh - Fantasia - I actually have the cartridge - must give that a try. I pride myself by not having physical copies of anything really crap but I forgot about this one...

    Holding the wrong end of the stick since 2009.
  • Focused on SNES games today, but had a little less times.

    Bebe's Kids [1]

    This was horrendous.  I was playing it on a decent emulator, but the input lag still was so bad it was at least a split second behind.  Perhaps it was the fault of the emulation, but I doubt it based on the infamy of this title.  The first two enemies had to be hit dozens upon dozens of times, like a cross between a JRPG grind and the scrolling beat 'em up this masquerades as.  I actually ran out of health before dispatching both enemies, and couldn't bring myself to try again.

    Wayne's World [3]

    There was a fair bit of sampled speech in this; stuff like 'woah', 'excellent', 'not' and 'schwing', but the gameplay itself was ruined by oversized sprites.  I thought it was going to be incredibly self-aware - and possibly gain an extra couple of points - at one point during the intro, when Wayne and Garth promise to reveal a list of the 'top 10 worst videogames of all time'.  Alas, this wasn't on there.

    The Terminator [6]

    Took a gamble on this being crap, based on the fact that I didn't know it existed on the SNES, and Judgement Day was so poor, but this wasn't bad at all in the end.  Sublicensed to Bethesda Softworks and Mirage Studios apparently, although I guess neither fancied paying Brad Friedel to use his theme.

    Timecop [2]

    Utter shite, like most of these digitised games, in hindsight.  Unresponsive, fugly and so annoying I didn't even find it funny.

    Eric Cantona Football Challenge [7]

    Another game I assumed would be shit, but wasn't.  After the hilarious non-likeness of The King on the title screen, the Striker/Utimate Soccer gameplay mix was speedy, responsive and playable, and I won a thrilling encounter with Cameroon 3-2.  Not the best footie game ever but infinitely superior to, say, World Cup Italia '90.
  • Nice reviews moot, want to know how you rated some of those in the games nights we did?
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  • Only if they're vaguely similar and don't make me look like an idiot.
  • lol, you gave Revolution X a 4.5

    I'll leave it at that.
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