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Showing posts from 2011

Medal of Honor (PS1)

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I'm not sure what got me into playing these games after having just repaired my PSone. I guess I was in the mood for shooters. World War 2 shooters, to be exact.

Well, it had been a while since I had played the original FPSes that started the World War 2 FPS craze so I thought now would be a good time to revisit them. Medal of Honor was the first FPS I played on a console and I remember being impressed by the controls at the time. I was, of course, familiar with the PC FPS mouse+keyboard setup so I was at first very critical of how Medal of Honor would play. That didn't last long. From the get go, I enjoyed blasting the endless troops of Nazi soldiers.

Fast forward to 2011. How would the game fare to today's standards? I didn't expect the control scheme to be any good. Turns out there's a control scheme in the game that you can choose that fits today's modern console FPS dual analogue stick control scheme. I was truly surprised by that as I thought the control…

Regarding those Wii HD rumours...

So the rumour mill has started on the next home console from Nintendo. One of the big features is apparently going to be a controller with a HD screen built-in. This can only mean one thing...

Zelda: Four Swords Adventure 2! Woohoo!

Concerning a Station where you Play games.

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Yes. The PlayStation. With a Super NES pad. You probably already know the famous story of how the PlayStation came to be, in which case you know it was originally supposed to be a Super NES with CD capabilities.

I'm using that Nintendo connection as a segue to my future series of posts concerning... tada! The Sony PlayStation, aka PSX, aka PS1, aka PS one.

Yeah, yeah. I know I'm supposed to be this big Nintendo fan who only blogs Nintendo stuff and I promised to blog about Gamecube stuff and... I haven't. Not yet anyway. But thing is, I was cleaning out my house the other day and I found my old PS one, looking all cute and white... and neglected.

The problem with my PS one was I had bought it after my previous original body PlayStation had died and very soon after the PS one died as well. Fed up with Sony's apparent lack of quality control I gave up on the PlayStation forever and moved on to (supposedly) more reliable world of PCs for my gaming needs.

But that was a d…

Retronauts Live 6 - Jeremy and Gang talk the GBA.

Now that Retronauts is firmly back and comfortable with its new call-in format, I can rest easily that my need for retro gaming chatter is easily satiated every time a new episode goes up.

The most recent episode was about the Game Boy Advance, one of my favourite handhelds as you may know, and while it was a good episode on the whole, with mentions of the Gamecube attachment, Game Boy Player, (thanks to our friend noiseredux from Game Boy Player Land), the three Castlevania games, Riviera, Super Mario Advance, the tendency of the GBA to mostly get 16-bit console ports, Mother 3 and even Rhythm Tengoku, I was slightly disappointed that the Game Boy Micro got no love (despite the Famicom limited edition being the image for the episode) and neither did Advance Wars.

For shame. If only I had a skype headset, fast internet and a time machine, I could fix this. Still, it's not all doom and gloom! It's actually a good episode, despite my complaints. This is the internet, after all. …

10th Anniversary of the Game Boy Advance.

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Today is the tenth anniversary of the Game Boy Advance, my favourite little handheld that could, and boy did it do it oh so well.

I've mentioned before that I bought my indigo GBA near the Japanese launch and the only games I could get at the time were Japanese ones so I opted to get Super Mario Advance and F-Zero. Both totally awesome experiences, especially F-Zero, which made me feel like I finally had a Super NES... IN MY HAND.

And the GBA was that essentially. A GBA in your hand. It would later go on to inherit the legacy of the Super NES as an all round awesome 2D graphics handheld portable gaming device (phew! That was a mouthful) by being the place for awesome 2D RPGs.

The GBA would be home to a series of some of the greatest Castlevania games ever, two great Metroid games, great (but not perfect) remakes of Super NES RPGs as well as many other great games.

Unfortunately this awesome little thing had one big great flaw. While it did allow you to play awesome games, it unfor…

Done with Mother 3. For now.

This morning on the commute to work, I spent the whole train ride trying to defeat the most difficult boss in Mother 3 I have encountered so far. My train ride lasts about 40 minutes, and the whole time I was just fighting him. Victory never felt so sweet as when the train pulled in to my stop, the boss finally succumbed. To say it felt marvelous is an understatement. I then saved the game, switched my DS off and promptly walked to my office.

However, during my lunch break, I found to my extreme horror that the save file had disappeared.

I checked my last save backup I made and it was early in the chapter I was at. The boss I defeated this morning was at the end of the chapter. This particular chapter happens to the longest chapter in Mother 3.

So yeah, I'm feeling a wee bit frustrated with the game now. I really wanted to finish it, but it looks like I won't be revisiting it anytime soon. I don't feel like replaying a whole chapter. As far as I'm concerned, I am DONE …

This is now RetroBoyAdvance.com!

So I registered a new URL for my little blog: http://www.retroboyadvance.com

I can't believe I was able to snag this domain name. Did no one else thought to register it? Anyways, Blogger is smart enough to reroute the old URL to the new one, but update your bookmarks anyway!

In other news, I am still slowly making my way through Mother 3. I am in the penultimate chapter (I think) so not long now till the end.

Revisiting F-Zero: Maximum Velocity.

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I've been a bit busy at work lately so I haven't had the time to update this blog as frequently as I wanted to. There's a bit of a lull right now so I'm taking this chance to throw together some random, maybe unrelated thoughts on this blog.

After finishing Aria of Sorrow last month, I've been at a lost as to what long-term game I was going to concentrate on next. I was adamant this time I would not play yet another Metroidvania, so I've gravitated towards several games, some new to me, some old yet haven't received much attention.

I had bought a GBA around the time of its launch in 2002 and I thought I wanted to revisit the games I had bought back then - Japanese versions of Super Mario Advance and F-Zero (known as F-Zero: Maximum Velocity in the West). I still have the boxes of both games but the carts have long disappeared, thanks to a brother who doesn't know how to keep things properly. (Yes, I'm bitter over it.)


Loaded the roms onto a flashcar…

GBA Review: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow

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So today it’s time to talk about a game many consider the greatest GBA Castlevania ever made – Aria of Sorrow. When it was first announced in January 2003, I was cautiously excited about the game and pored over every screenshot and trailer released. But I never really got into the game when I bought it after it was released in May of that same year.

I really should have liked it more, because at the time, Aria of Sorrow was as close to Symphony of the Night as one could get. It was just by that time I had moved on from gaming in general and had started to pursue other interests. Still, this is a good time as any to rediscover the GBA games I’ve overlooked.

I don’t usually play the same type of game, much less a direct sequel to the game I just recently finished. I like to try finding a different type of game for a different type of gaming experience than the one I had just had. I was thinking of perhaps playing a racing game or a typical jRPG after completing Harmony of Dissonance.

B…

Retro Boy Advance - the Handheld.

It has come to my attention that my carefully thought out name (okay, not really) for this blog was already being used by other people to name their modded consoles.

Here's one.
Here's another.

Ah well. Chalk it up to coincidence!

GBA Review: Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance

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My first entry into Castlevania was the very first game for the NES. I hate to admit it now but when I played it I thought it was a dumb game. Having come from the Mario School of Perfect Controls, I thought the controls were terrible and awkward. Ugh and let’s not talk about climbing stairs!


My standing with the series has improved quite a lot since then though. Having played and enjoyed Castlevania: Bloodlines and Symphony of the Night many times over made me a true fan and I have since actually finished the original NES Castlevanias, along with a few others as well, including Castlevania Chronicles on Playstation.

Symphony of the Night however remains my favourite Castlevania to date and while I love the linear platforming of classic Castlevanias, there is nothing I enjoy more than a good Metroidvania-style romp against Dracula.

The Game Boy Advance, awesome system that it is, launched with Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, which was a game that was deeply inspired by Symphony of the…

Break for Lunar New Year.

I almost forgot that the Lunar New Year is upon us. I'm heading back to my wife's hometown for a while but I'll probably have more updates up next week. Got more stories I want to write for my ongoing Tales of the Famiclone series, so look out for that!

Tales of the Famiclone - How I Discovered Beat 'em Ups.

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I wouldn't get my own famiclone (we kids just called it the Micro Genius) until late 1993 and by then the Super NES (not to mention the Sega Mega Drive) would have been in full swing.

But I'm getting slightly ahead of myself. Rewind back a year to 1992. It was the new school term, I was in Standard 5 and there was a new kid in my class. His name was Azmi and a bunch of us was chummy with him. He had a Micro Genius with a bunch of games and invited us to come to his house and play.

When a bunch of people come over to play video games, the games of choice would of course be multiplayer games and so one of the games we played was Double Dragon II.


To say the game blew me away was an understatement. The games I had played prior to this were simple one-screen games like Donkey Kong, Popeye, Tetris and like I mentioned in my previous post, Battle City.

Double Dragon II had a story (which I could not understand due to it being in Japanese) told in cutscenes, something those other game…

Tales of the Famiclone - How I Discovered the Micro Genius.

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My first memory of video games was in 1990. I was 9 and my family had just moved in to a new house. Our neighbours had this new thing called a "Micro Genius" plugged into their TV and their kids were playing a game where you controlled some fat guy with a mustache.

Yep, the Micro Genius was a famiclone and the game was Super Mario Bros. I given a chance to play that game but when I pressed right on the pad, I died at the first goomba. I hear everyone dies at the first goomba. I instantly took a dislike towards the game.


The next game they gave me to try was called Battle City. I've never actually heard or seen anyone talk or write about this game but when I first played it I thought it was the bee's knees. You (or with a friend) controlled a tank and your mission was to protect your base from being attacked by enemy tanks. The base was represented by an eagle at the bottom of the screen and it was surrounded by a wall that could be shot down by either you or the ene…

Old Games. Just Like New Games.

So I've been thinking about what games I would want to get for the 3DS at launch but none of them really excite me. The only game I can even consider buying and actually enjoying would be Piloteings Resort but ehhh, I dunno. I've never really played the previous Pilotwings games and from what I know about them, it doesn't really make me want to play them.

I'm willing to give it a chance though. I just wished there were other games in the launch day lineup. I was really hoping Ocarina of Time and StarFox 3DS would make it for the launch day but now Nintendo is only saying sometime "before June". I want those games when I buy the system dammit!

Yes, I'm impatient.

The other two games that have me excited for the 3DS but have left me disappointed because they're not at launch either are actually the two announced Virtual Console games, Super Mario Land and Zelda: Link's Awakening.

What does that say about me? I can't wait to get the latest Ninten…

The Consoles I Own and Want to Own.

So currently I own:
1 x Game Boy Advance (JP, Indigo, melted screen)1 x Game Boy Advance (EU, Indigo) [added: 22/03/2011]1 x GameCube (NTSC, Indigo)1 x Game Boy Player (NTSC, Black)1 x Game Boy Micro (EU, Silver)1 x Game Boy Micro (US, 20th Anniversary Edition) [added: 22/03/2011]1 x Wii (NTSC, official Malaysian unit)1 x Nintendo DS Lite (Crimson Black, Korean)I know it's somewhere, I just have to dig around a bit:
1 x GameBoy Pocket (Yellow)So yeah, not a particularly impressive collection but I am planning to get some older consoles down the road, whenever the time is right. I will update this post when I obtain them. My current wish list:
Famicom Nintendo Entertainment System (NTSC) Super Nintendo (NTSC)More GBAs (regular or frontlit/backlit SPs) Virtual Boy (haha, well, we'll see)I will try do a list of Nintendo-related games I own but that will have to wait, I think. I just moved and I'm still getting my house into some semblance of order and that is going slowly becau…

Warning! A huge battleship "3DS" is approaching fast.

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I know I said this blog would be about old games and old game consoles but with all the recent hoopla regarding the 3DS, I just can't help myself. I'm not a true Nintendo fan if I don't gush over newly-announced Nintendo handhelds, amirite?

So now that the US price has been announced ($250) and launch date has been confirmed (27th March 2011), what do I think? I guess the price is fair, considering the amount of tech the 3DS has within its guts. 3D screen, 3D-capable cameras, touch screen, gyroscope, accelerometer, pedometer and an always on tag mode (now called StreetPass).

That last point I find quite intriguing because the most interesting feature in Dragon Quest IX was its tag mode ability, which allowed you to trade maps and add other players' characters as guests in your game. Unfortunately this was hampered by the fact that you had to actually stop playing and specifically set your game to tag mode. I found this slightly annoying because the most likely place fo…

Obligatory Introductory Story.

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Hello world!



I was talking to a colleague and the conversation hovered over an issue of Retro Gamer and that soon led to our mutual love for old Nintendo consoles, mainly the Super Nintendo. Well, for me it was the Super Nintendo, for him it was the Super Famicom. We grew up in the same country but apparently we grew up with different consoles.

So anyway, soon he made the suggestion that I should start a blog about retro games, seeing how I love retro gaming so much. This blog will not concentrate on just the Super Nintendo/Famicom however but will cover mostly the GameCube and GameBoy Advance-era games and occasionally I will branch out and touch upon the other retro consoles.

So why make yet another blog about retro games, specifically Nintendo ones, which many people have already poured thousands upon thousands of words over? Because I love Nintendo and just one more blog about them can't hurt, right? In any case, this blog will be a catalogue of sorts for my passion (or obsess…