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The Ten: Updated Wednesdays-Fridays-Sundays

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Let's take a look back, and talk about video games.

Hey, guys! So, it's been more than two years since I started this blog, which kind of weirds me out.  It went from being a life-update blog where I posted some reaaaaally personal stuff, to a little bit more creatively-based, and then finally warped into the monstrosity of Nintendo-based video gaming articles that it is today. Over these past two years, I've gotten over 4,000 pageviews, which makes me pretty happy- I sure can't be disappointed. I just like to know that people are reading my articles, whether I have to blatantly post them on facebook every time I do update, or if someone randomly searched for something on google and came to this site, or if they saw my signature on a forum and decided to take a look. I'm glad I can say I even HAVE 4,000 pageviews, and I hope that I can keep the number rising as I talk about games that cater to a more hardcore audience and aren't on a system that's dying slowly but surely. That's the Wii, in case you didn't know.

First off, this is kinda a mega-post, since I'll be covering a variety of subjects- partially because I need to take a little bit of a break from writing to focus hard on my schoolwork, but also because... well, the news is going to be pretty dead for a little bit, at least until E3. I'll continue to post articles on old games and maybe any new titles I pick up along the way, but I kinda doubt you'll be hearing anything new from me until after E3. I mean, I'm going to go crazy about E3 and probably freak out several times in the week following it, but we still have a ways to go. I'd like to branch off and write some articles on movies and animation, so I can make this blog's subtitle a little bit more accurate, but I also need to get on top of my webcomic, school, and other things. BUT I wanted to type up a pretty big piece before I did that.

First off, a mini "Not So Fresh" Review, for Mutant Mudds. After completing this game last night, I can honestly say I enjoyed the hell out of it- major props to Renegade Kid for creating a lengthy, difficult title for the eShop. At first, the twenty Water Sprites doesn't seem like a tough goal to reach, but when you factor in the collection of all 2000 diamonds throughout the levels and the additional twenty Water Sprites available in secret levels, you have a weighty challenge. The diamonds are required to unlock different powerups in Grannie's Attic, which in turn eliminate or overcome obstacles in the levels that allow you to enter the secret levels. I really don't know what the toughest part of the game is- throwing yourself in harm's way to collect diamonds, the secret levels, or the levels themselves. I mean, the actual levels are tough- especially when you go into space where the obstacles are far more prone to one-hit kills- but the secret levels are much more precise, concentrated challenges that have tough platforming areas and split-second choices. However, the game's difficulty is not game-breaking, allowing you to retry the secret levels as many times as you want after you've entered them. There's only one secret level entrance that provides a real challenge, simply because it requires a certain powerup and is located at the end of the level. Something I found is that the power jump powerup can be used to bypass the pits you're supposed to cross with the super jetpack, which leads to some weird secret level exploitation. But all that aside, Mutant Mudds is hard. It's good BECAUSE of this, though, and has made me think long and hard about other games that I've criticized for unnecessary difficulty. However, Mutant Mudds' difficulty doesn't feel unnecessary because it adds bulk to the title and makes it something that you want to play. It's retro, it's fun, and the gameplay is simple but the level design demands skill.

Next, a mini "Not So Fresh" Review, for Resident Evil: Revelations. I gotta say, I bought this title a while ago, and I got up to the first kill-room and was a little disappointed. For a game that relies to heavily on conservation of ammo, the kill-rooms pretty much negate that, especially when you're being crowded by enemies. The dodge mechanic doesn't work very well when you're holed up in a swarm, which means you've just gotta unload. However, I got past that part of the game because the rest of the experience is actually really good. The episodic format works so well for the game, especially the "Mercenaries" mode, the Raid portion being deliciously fun and having great online Co-op! That's right, the online Co-op is actually awesome. But the design of the game, as well as it being in an isolated environment (for the most part), works so pleasantly, that, for a first Resident Evil game, it's a really good fun. I have watched playthroughs of other Resident Evil games, and this one blends the old Resident Evil formula very well with the more recent game's pacing and mechanics. As for story- well, it's ridiculous. And silly. A few of the new characters are extremely campy- both in manner and speech, and you can't help but roll your eyes at some of the dialogue. The main story is absolutely crazy, as well, with betrayals and double betrayals and general high stakes. But when you really get down to it- the sense of isolation- especially without a partner, and the varied, but well-designed ship environment make this game a real keeper. Though Kid Icarus currently hold the spot of best 3DS game, this one comes in close second.

So I just wanted to take a look back and really discuss something that has been on my mind for a while now- my definitive list of games I love. My "top" list. The ones that deserve all the praise they get. Now, I've reviewed several games on this blog and talked about many more, and I have a fair amount of praise for a number of titles, but I can dole out the praise all I want- there's some key titles I have among my list of favorites that really embody my style of gaming and what I consider to be well-designed. These are games that I play and enjoy no matter what, and I'll be listing them here and perhaps making some articles on why they ARE my favorites. So let's do it- my favorite games. This list will be periodically updated!

Game Boy (Color Included):
Super Mario Land (and 2)
Super Mario Bros. Deluxe
Oracle of Ages/Seasons
Wario Land 3
Dragon Warrior Monsters (and 2)
Pokemon Red and Silver

Nintendo 64:
Diddy Kong Racing
Paper Mario
Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards
Mario Tennis
Super Smash Bros.

007: Agent Under Fire
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles
Gauntlet: Dark Legacy
Kirby Air Ride
Four Swords Adventures
Twilight Princess
Wind Waker
Metroid Prime (and 2)
Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door
Sonic Adventure 2Soul Calibur 2
Super Mario Sunshine
Super Smash Bros. Melee
Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3

Nintendo DS:
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time
Kirby: Squeak Squad
Spirit Tracks
New Super Mario Bros.
Pokemon Pearl and Soulsilver
Super Mario 64 DS
Skyward Sword
Mario Kart Wii
Monster Hunter Tri
Muramasa: The Demon Blade
Super Mario Galaxy
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Xenoblade Chronicles
The Last Story
Sonic Colors

Minish Cap
Starcraft (and 2)
Cave Story
Don't Look Back

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