Phrase of the Week

PHRASE OF THE WEEK: DIE JOB DEATH CAR? (Daijobu desu ka - Are you OK?) (C) Sodom

Monday, October 4, 2010

Okay, last one... (filler)


Nuff said.

...although that's just for mere three months... Didn't expected THAT to come, honestly. Should we open champagne?

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Whiplash review became a One-Week Spotlight (filler)

At last, I started to gain speed on the stuff I do. For the first time, my review was 'recommended' somewhere else and by someone else... Well, closer to the topic. Whiplash was chosen for User Content of The Week on Headshot gaming.
Here's the raddish. And here's the horse. (c) Lion King's Timon & Pumbaa.

Now, for some true announcement, got another mental break right on the 28th of September and all due to the goddamn failure on visa application. Won't tell any more, however, it's all private, woohoo! But, if you please, I'll post THE COMPLETE LIST of my current WIPs. With Hexen for N64 review being fully ready (lacks cover and screencaps for the complete post though...). And considering that I kept some of them in deep secret, I think now it's time to do the justice.

  • [PC] Rise of the Triad
  • [NES] Dezaemon
  • [ZX] Adventures of Buratino
  • [ZX] Wolfenstein 2004
  • [NES] Diablo
  • [GB] Populous
  • [NES] San Guo Zhi: Qun Xiong Zheng Ba
  • Some console game makers and S.T.U.F.F., part deux
  • Deeper look on GINCS. All what's simple is genial.
Yes, so big the list is. Why I just can't post them all, you ask? Well, here comes your answer. Even a pack of these.
  1. I don't feel like really finishing them.
  2. Sometimes I get so excited I start to write crap which results in a dead end. Sorta kinda.
  3. The game or object of review is not fully studied.
  4. In case with 100% text. It may take one hour to do the screencaps and 15 minutes to render the cover. On the first: considering that I may screenshot very random moments of the game, it's not an exception that I may be blamed for playing child games by my mother again (I rarely ever get FULLY obsessed by a game now, though).
And now, to finish this load of crap, some 'Penny For Your Thoughts!' moments. In other words, the games that I plan to review but due to overload of WIPs, can't do that currently.
  • [PS] Firebugs
  • [SNES] Doom
  • [SNES] Super 3D Noah's Ark*
  • [PC] Rival Realms
  • [PC] S.A.G.A.: Rage of the Vikings
  • [ZX] Goody
  • [ZX] Genghis Khan
  • [N64] Daikatana
  • [GBC] Daikatana
  • Something christmassy or else. **
So that's it for the author's scrappy block, hope I will break the silence of non-commenting pretty soon and will deliver with an extra portion of obscurity awesomeness.

* Not taking the actual Wolfenstein 3D on SNES for the review, because accuracy-wise, it's terrible. Loosely-based-on-the-original levels along with heavily butchered game completion scheme made their job. No, new weapons ARE kinda cool, but taking the butchered level structure into account makes it pretty much expectable to fail. Also, thanks to Nintendo's [censored by Nintendo's censorship] censorship, the atmosphere of good ol' Wolfie is now supported only by splendid music. So I took Super 3D'Noah's Ark by Wisdom Tree (basically, nothing else than Color Dreams in religious disguise) which is, apart from its' tedious setting has really awesome level design and... oh boy, four levels per episode instead of three in SNES Wolf3D.
** In concept, those may be both parts of Santa Claus in Trouble for the PC, Bomberman 2002 for the NES and one Santa Claus game for the PS, forgot its' name.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Third follower (filler)

To start the posting on this month off, I'm gotta welcome the third (AT LAST) follower of this site. Come in, teh2Dgamer, and enjoy your stay.

And make sure you subscribe to him and his awesome vids:

Coming up soon is... uhm, the list's too long, so let me decide our next victim soon.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Some console game makers and S.T.U.F.F., part un (filler)

I would gladly post my next review, but the reason why I started to make this is... just because I've got lots of them in my mind. So, there it is. The software that might help you to create your own games, but NOT on the PC. Rather than that, on the consoles. Even on the handhelds. Even on the phones. Some might even be reviewed here. But right of the bat, some shrt descriptions for each of them.

Had to omit several game makers since I haven't seen them in action, so... Wait for part two! Like, RPG Maker's granddaddies on MSX and their GBC counterparts. Also, if I missed somethin', call me anytime.

Oh, and if you wanna download and try something of these, leave your request in comments. Pretty much like it. Hee wee go.


Platform: NES -> NES
Genre: scroll-shooter

Pretty much the only game from the 'work-right-on-the-console' category on the NES. As many would guess, it creates... that's right, space shooters. Three levels, built-in sprite and music editors. Was released ONLY in Japan. Also... is it me or it doesn't have any place to save the ready-to-use game on?


Platform: PC -> NES
Genre: multicart

Yeahle, the SDK for creating multicarts! Based/hacked/ripped straight from one of the Animal Crossing's built-in ROMs. The original Forbidden Four had Mario Bros., Ice Climbers, Super Mario Bros and The Legend of Zelda (packed with battery save, yah!). With some messing up, you may create your own product... like below. Don't ask me how to do it, though. All in readme. Just one note right off the bat: insert games with corresponding mappers.

And one more thing, in case if you want to insert your own logo like I did. First, try to adopt your new title screen to the colors set by default. Second, if the logo looks glitchy, then try to fix it with Djinn Tile Mapper: select the tileboard with logo in the graphics window (but make sure it's positioned 1:1 like on the picture), search for the game names in the 'Names, scripts and other stuff' (biggest window by now) and hop-la! You see the garbaged logo. Now, if you know enough about what HEX is, you may definitely fix it.


Platform: PC -> MD
Genre: interactive novel or something like this

Another SDK, but this time, more, MUCH MORE user-friendly. And really little-known, so lemmie bump it up. Allows you to create text adventure games, supported with pictures, right onto a MegaDrive ROM. All you need is imagination, custom GFX and music. About the music. Theorethically, MVSTracker must do this dirty job, but importing the ready-to-use tracks into MVS0 ends up with having the header different to tracks in the example ROM. And the tracker itself looks pretty limited... to me. Supports either 16-color or 31-color images (with the second screwing up sometimes) and, as you may have guessed, supports MVS format chiptunes. Also, pretty easy system for scripting scenarios (source code of the engine itself's included too).
If you didn't get something about the language, then...
  • Everything without variables - Text! Dialogues! Stuff! May be used with the ENTER key.
  • #loadbkg forest - runs forest.pcx from the 'pics' folder.
  • #playmusic lunituni - runs lunituni.mvs from the 'music' folder.
  • #goto scenario - runs :scenario entry (see below) in the same script. If used without '/i' in the beginning, the content of the previous entry blends with the 'scenario'.
  • #progcall progname - runs PROGNAME.txt in the 'scripts' folder. Any name may used for the script name, but be sure to have MAIN.txt, this one is an autorun script.
  • /i - new line. Not to be used before you the '!' variables (see below), most likely after them.
  • #set fl0000 - turns the fl0000 key on. Notice that GINCS doesn't work with any keys other than fl0000-fl9999.
  • #clear fl0000 - self-explanatory.
  • #if fl0000 - is the fl0000 key on?
  • #if not fl0000 - is the fl0000 key off?
  • :scenario - new entry, named 'scenario' script-wise. On practice, may be called anyhow, just don't make the title too long.
  • !scenario;Run The Scenario - menu. Engages the ':scenario' entry in the current script.
  • ' - dash. Does nothing, used for commenting the script itself.
That was pretty much the first step. Check the example game to see how it actaully works. And, again, the footage:


Platform: PS -> PS
Genre: 3D scroll-shooter, Starfox-like

Never officially went outside of Japan. Sadly. Still, we live in the age of emulation, so there you go! If you thought that Dezaemon series lacked shape (even with Dezaemon 3D on N64), then here you go: you may create something similar to Starfox from the SNES. Not only that, you get the maker bundled with THREE sample games. And the model builder as well. Althrough, I must admit, with lotsa Japanese text, you'll barely ever make something in it.
Nevertheless, the game itself is so-o-o-o-o-o-o speedy (althrough you may blame the untextured polygons) that you would definitely try to make something in it, if not only the lack of translation...


Platform: PS -> PS
Genre: ditto?

Well, everyone knows what RPG Maker for PS is. Allows to create your own RPG by storing it on both yer memory cards, comes with a sprite editor, Anime Maker, blah-blah-blah... Well, THIS GAME is a sequel. J-only, once again. And, most notable change in here is that this installment disposes of the most overused in the world Final Fantasy battle system completely. Instead, we get something like... Chrono Trigger in Hard Mode. Nicey, huh? Also, the graphics are pretty much alike to those you can meet in the latest RPG Makers for the PC. With, needless to say, more memory card space required for the custom characters' sprites (but only those, who battle!). It's all in [you may guess it], but this link may help you to understand where and what.
And almost forgot to tell ya! This game supports custom music now! Only thing you have to do before composing your own songs is to get Ongaku Tsukuru 3.


Well, that's all for today! Thanks for visiting and, repeating again, if you need something listed above, just say it in the comments and I'll post the download link. Next time, we're gonna fuck up Fighter Maker for the first PS.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

[PC] Whiplash

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Genre: racing
PC/developer/publisher: Gremlin Interactive Ltd.
Year of release: 1995
Players: 2
Media: 1 CD-ROM
Additional peripherals supported: gamepad

Get Crashday. Remove all the career stuff and replace it with teamplay. Add a bit of atmosphere from old-skool NFSes, and you'll get Whiplash, maybe one of the best racing games ever made for old systems (DOS and Windows 95, to be exact). Why? Well, if it begged me to play it as much as my faves, Crash Team Racing and Gran Turismo, there is a reason for that. Why won't we discuss which ones, if you have a minute or two?


Okay, it may have kinda poor graphics, even if you keep all the GFX options on max, but. First, it was a DOS game, and if DOS would do the 3D render similar to Quake II or even III, all the numerous polygons will be untextured, plus, the game would go no more than 25 FPS, no matter which machine you try. Second, who said these graphics actually LOOK like they're bad? Try that Country Justice cocksucking trash and you'll see that the graphics are supahbad not only technologically, but estetically too. Okay, never mind. We're not here to discuss the polygon count, you know.
What's cool in Whiplash (therefore refered to as Fatal Racing, or simply FR) is the gameplay. It's not just about finding perfect curves 'on air', it's also about floating, bumping, bumping bad guys, riding on extreme curves... Well, to my knowledge, this is the first well-known racing game that used lotsa stunts, succeeded by Crashday and Trackmania series... And you thought that the coolest stunt racings were released today? Try FR, it will let you blush in that case, I swear.
Oh, and the feature I mentioned above. Teamplay, yeah. Any modern racing game I've seen (newest CTR clones don't count) always lets you to be a one car army. And that's it. In FR, you will have a choice: either you play alone (eight cars overall) or with a partner (same goes for each team, so it goes to sixteen rides). As a team, you will get a bigger chance to win the first places on the championships (or the last ones, if you both fuck up). Of course, what kind of team this would be without some helping stuff like communication... Time after time, you will get messages about your comrador's ride status ('No one's getting past', for example, or 'I'm going in for pits') to make sure that everything goes Ol' Raitt and decide what to do (accelerate, in most of the cases, or bump 'em all) in case if something goes Fairly Odd. If you want, you may even set a chase camera that shoots your teammate (and his position), in place of the timer or rear view mirror. Or, refer to the 'F*' keys to give orders to him.That helps VERY MUCH, I give you my testicles if I won't prove that.
As a dessert, I'll tell you that this is, perhaps, THE ONLY racing game on my memory that may be played COOPERATIVELY. So, if you have a friend that mastered all his Colin McRays and Carbons inside and outside, bring him to your home so he would play this game shoulder-by-shoulder with you. Now, this method gives more profit than playing it with a dead AI. You may decide whom to bump and when to stop for pits... But make sure that you and your friend are used to split-screen mode. Otherwise, you may use the cable connection between two comps, so good luck on trying to sync that stuff!
And, of course, what kind of a fatal racing game it would be without the damage system! Visually, they don't appear. Anyhow. If you won't count the smoke. But when you drive the car... That starts to feel ve-e-e-e-ery badly. Wanna always arrive first? Accelerate to max speed and never, I said, NEVER bump the walls. Yeah-yeah-yeah, bumping walls a lot may harm not only your baby, but it's ultrasonicness as well. In other words, the more you receive, the more your max speed suffers. Easy as hell, yet it's the factor one of your upcoming failure. That's not GTA4 where you get the stolen stuff all broken and still ride with the wind like nothing happened. So, you know, don't fail © Rise of the Triad. In case of what, you either pit or lose one of your three lives (the only time when you may hear the announcement shouting 'FATALITY!!!' Gawd, that's what should be used for M.U.G.E.N. announcers instead of classic Shao Kahn's voice). You lose the cup during the both operations, still.
There is a lot of difficulty levels, starting from 'Girlie' and ending with 'Impossible'... But they only slightly change the AI's behavior and pump the laps number up. That's it. What really makes the game harder (rather than marathonish) is one of three collision damage levels, plus one secret one that may be enabled by DR DEATH cheat (accept this as your name before you type your name in). While low one makes the game feel like yet another NFS clone, Death Mode is sooooo assy but sooooo beautiful that makes the action just goddamn hardcore. Also, that makes bumping the enemies easier too... And that makes you to cut out EVERY curve perfectly, therefore...
And it's sure wouldn't be a stunts racing game without really wild tracks filled with abnormal roads, spaghettis and the things that may make your car fle-e-e-e-e-e-ep! For a starter, there are a lot of turns (yet you may simply accelerate like nothing happened). Then there comes a section of more deadly angles of turning and bumpy roads. Then, lots of 'passages'. Then, ramps. And, to make your blood not just boil but rather burn, and burn as long as you play this game... 360° road sections which will make the world turn upside down... Or even aside. Controlling a car in such a hell needs practice, practice and practice yet again.
Nicey and responsible controls will sure help you in your quest for gold medals. To mention, you can select between a manual gear swap or an automatic (automatic is recommended, so you would use more attention on not going out of bounds).
Sound. Nine out of ten, if I would have a rating system. The sounds are all cool, yet the announcer may get a bit annoying after 30 minutes of playing. Every car and every track has its' own narrative description (digg 'em boyz). The music is just drivy and gorgeous. Even if that's not Flatout's earbreaking awesomeness, it's something close to this level. Just different genre, that's it. Awesome running demo music. Really classy and awesome (yet again) main menu theme. Another fitting and recognizeable theme for the first track, Grand Royale, that may be listened again and again, considring that this game is just full of marathones... The other themes keep the spirit up pretty much like above mentioned tracks did. Just one disclaimer... All I said about the awesomeness of FR's OST refers to the MIDI version of the soundtrack. The CDDA version, for some really weird reason, retains only the demo theme alive, while the others were merely replaced with some techno songs that turn into techno shit when blendered with FR's atmosphere. And yeah, you guessed it. No classy main menu melody. WTF, I MISS IT SO MUCH! Oh, and one more disclaimer. If you decided to use the MIDI tracks, use the old sequencer, because with the newer one, some instruments will get on desync. And, if you can, please post the entire MIDI soundtrack on YouTube, I would HIGHLY appreciate that, thank you.
Oh, I forgot another feature that makes FR look like most modern games... Replay video editor. Loved to mess up with this when I was a kid...


So, overall, if you think that ALL serious racing games are all about showing the road and the car's LARGE BUTT, play this and think again. It may not be really serious, maybe even fully arcade, but it really, really does its' job. It entertains. Eat my eyes if you are a racing game fan and you didn't liked burning rubber and burning the badguys on the right side from you.
Now, why do I think this game had to be ported on consoles and not remain a PC exclusive. Well, let's take PlayStation for example. Even if the actual game required 4 megs of RAM at least (or eight), the graphics would be no bother to deploy here becuase there's not so much textures used. Plus, not so much polygons. Dumb CDDA track could be either replaced with epic rearrangements of the real FR music converted to XA or become sampled PSM tracks (announcer's endless pile of quotes could use XA format, pretty much like CTR did), but I know that Gremlin would make that nightmare come true, so... Also, the replay editor would be gone, but... Well, if Gran Turismo allowed to record replays, then I'd put this one too. With the editor.
So, may anyone tell me, why FR wasn't ported to any of the consoles existing on that day? Gremlin had trouble with money, I guess?

'Serious' arcade racing never was so fun. If you like marathones and explosions, this fun is sure for you... And, to pump the juice up, this game should be yours if you like to beat games WITH a friend! Nobody knows why there was no, well, remakes or ports of this. Even homebrew ones. Maybe because this gamie is an obscurity? Gark, too bad.

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Whiplash has better title. Fatal Racing has better title screen.
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Wee, wee ween!
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Never mess with Ms. Platina Berlitz. Otherwise, brutality guaranteed.
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When drivers become pilots.
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Beware of pitstops. The AI tends to mash your ride even there.