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Finding the Diamond in the Rough – Part 2: Sega Master System

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Conker_money

Now for a game console that’s relatively rare and worth some money itself in this country.  In fact, most of the games on this list are worth less than a complete copy of the console itself.  If you don’t have a heavy collection, have a power base converter, or even own a Game Gear, you may want to consider moving this product to collectors for some extra cash.  That said, if you live in Europe, there is a massive library of available titles for this great system.

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Written by Fred Rojas

April 24, 2015 at 4:14 pm

Mini Podcast: Bust-A-Move 2

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bam2_boxPlatform: Arcade, Playstation, Saturn, N64, Gameboy
Released: 1996-1998
Developer: Taito/Probe
Publisher: Taito/Acclaim
Digital Release? Yes, but only on the Japanese PSN (of PS1 version)
Value: $3.50-$10 (disc/cart only – all platforms), $7-$15 (complete, all but N64)/$25 (complete N64), $30-$40 (sealed)

This month we have been tasked with covering three games and Jam was the first into the gate with his Playstation 1 reflection of Bust-A-Move 2.  The follow-up to the original game, better known as Puzzle Bobble in arcades, this was one of the many instances where home console ports began to catch up with and properly port over the arcade experience.  Jam and his special guest delve into their reflections on this classic cooperative puzzle game.


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Written by jamalais

April 24, 2015 at 11:00 am

Finding the Diamond in the Rough – Part 1: NES

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Conker_money

We’ve had quite a few articles about game collecting lately, most notably the process of how to find and get games from various locations with little to no issues.  One thing that was not as highly discussed is knowing how much items are worth/cost, especially because games’ values vary depending on re-releases and upcoming releases.  At the Midwest Gaming Classic 2015 I got to see first hand how that works and factors you may have never imagined can jack up the value of random items.  For example, Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time on the 3DS was readily available when the game launched in 2011 at the retail price of $39.99.  These days it’s worth quite a bit more at $50 for a loose cart and $65 complete – I’ll get to these price trends in a sec – due to the fact, according to many of the booth vendors I spoke to, that in January of this year the carts became extremely rare on store shelves and it spiked a bit more when the Zelda Wii U delay was announced.  Looks like Nintendo decided to go more digital as the game can be easily purchased on the eShop for MSRP, but if you’re a tangible collector that game has outlived its apparent welcome.  Also it appears that gamers have begun to want that game back in their collections because of the delay of the Wii U title so they have something to be all nostalgic about until that game finally arrives.  These are things I neither knew about nor cared about, but they are important.  A while back I wrote an article on knowing the difference between different games and what games fetch high value, well today I decided to get a little more specific and show you some of the coveted titles that fetch a large sum of money on retro consoles.  Keep in mind this was written in April 2015 and a lot can happen with each passing day as of the writing of this article.  Please keep in mind all prices are based on Price Charting, a US-based price guide that compares eBay, Amazon, and third party sites for what games actually sell for as opposed to what they are listed for.

Note: Due to the size this article has become, I’ve broken it up into several articles that will go live throughout the rest of the week.  I will also feature each article under its appropriate console(s) for easier access.  So lets kick this off with the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES):

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Written by Fred Rojas

April 23, 2015 at 1:07 pm

Donkey Kong Country SNES Review

Dkc_snes_boxartPlatform: Super NES, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance – Note: Portable versions have compromised graphics and performance
Released: 1994
Developer: Rare
Publisher: Nintendo
Digital Release? Yes, 800 points on the Virtual Console for Wii and Wii U (optimized for Wii U)
Value: $18.52 (SNES)/$6.51 (GBC)/$10.00 (GBA) – cart only, $38.97 (SNES)/$16.24 (GBC)/$20.00 (GBA) – complete, $80.00 (SNES)/$53.07 (GBC)/$51.00 (GBA) – sealed – According to Price Charting 

Donkey Kong Country (DKC) on the SNES is a game held in high regard by a lot of Nintendo fans. Developed by Rare, who at the time was a second party developer to Nintendo and consistently releasing new and unique IPs, which only got better when it came to the follow up console the N64. Nintendo was quite happy for Rare to develop a game starring Donkey Kong, who up to this point was just sitting on Nintendo’s shelf not really doing a lot (development on this title began before the Gameboy re-hash of Donkey Kong ’94). Rare came up with an idea for a platformer that proved to be very successful and led to two additional sequels being developed on the SNES and then a 3D iteration on the N64.  It is now time to peel back a banana and see if this SNES game still holds up today.

dkc_in_snes

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Written by jamalais

April 17, 2015 at 11:39 am

Posted in Reviews, SNES, Wii

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Rocket Knight Adventures Initial Run/Quick Look

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Rocket Knight Adventures is this month’s game club and a highly regarded part of the Genesis/Mega Drive library.  Not only does it show off the hardware tricks that Konami was famous for but it’s also tough as nails.  Having never played it, Fred jumps onto his console (and with a web cam so you can see all his goofy faces while playing) to make a first attempt at conquering it.  Does he succeed?

Written by Fred Rojas

April 16, 2015 at 4:04 pm

Posted in Genesis, Videos

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Now & Then: Mortal Kombat 3

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Mk3

Switching It Up

mk3_1A lot happened both in the talent pool of Mortal Kombat players and in the game design overall between the release of Mortal Kombat II and Mortal Kombat 3 (MK3).  For starters there was a mass exodus of on screen talent due to royalty disputes, so almost no one from the original two games returned for the third release.  In addition, Boon and his team were trying to turn Mortal Kombat into a viable fighting game with things no one had ever seen before and mechanics that could compete with the massive rush of fighters in arcades.  The game was completely Americanized, with all hints of Eastern influence including symbols, locales, and the soundtrack completely absent without a trace and instead replaced by urban stages, 90s hip-hop soundtracks, and cyborgs replaced the signature ninjas.  These locations were now composed of pre-rendered 3D backgrounds and the character sprites were almost totally digitized as opposed to the digitized/hand drawn hybrid of the previous games.  Along with it came an overhaul of the controls, including combos and a “run” button to address rightful claims that defensive players ruled the previous title.  It’s all one giant 90s metaphor but that doesn’t change the fact that MK3 (and it’s update Ultimate MK3 or UMK3) stands as the moment I felt the series went into the mainstream fighter territory.  Couple this with the fact that it was on just about every console that existed at the time, still dominated arcades, and had more content than rival Street Fighter II could ever dream to do with its iterations and I see why it’s creator Ed Boon’s favorite.  Mortal Kombat 3 definitely upped the ante.

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Monster World IV Review (English Translation)

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mw4_boxPlatform: Mega Drive and PS2 (Japan Only), English translation available on XBLA (360), PSN (PS3), and Virtual Console (Wii)
Released: 1994 (Japan only), 2012 (English Translation)
Developer: Westone (English port handled by M2)
Publisher: Sega
Digital Release? Yes
Price: $8.00 (Wii), $9.99 (XBLA & PSN – part of Monster World Collection)

The Wonder Boy/Monster World series is one of those unappreciated darlings in gaming that has spread its love across various Sega consoles and even arcades but never reached it’s height of popularity in the West. So I guess it made sense that the series swan song, titled Monster World IV, was released on the Mega Drive in Japan only. It was not until 2012 that a official English re-release came out on services like XLBA and PSN, which is the version I will review here.  [Editor’s Note: There is a fan translation of the original game released by DeJap in 2000, that site can be found here.  Our review does not account for or evaluate this fan translation.]

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Written by jamalais

April 6, 2015 at 11:00 am

Posted in Genesis, PC/Mac, PS3, Reviews, Wii, Xbox 360

Tagged with , , , ,

Die Hard Trilogy Review

Die_Hard_Trilogy_CoverartPlatform: Playstation, Saturn, Arcade
Released: 1996
Developer: Probe
Publisher: Fox Interactive
Digital Release? No
Price: $3.92 (PS1)/$15.99 (Saturn) – Disc Only, $5.49 (PS1)/$24.99 (Saturn) – Complete, $14.95 (PS1)/$62.97 (Saturn) – Sealed according to Price Charting

Die Hard Trilogy was released in the early days of the Sony PlayStation and was generally well received. We were all excited for this because 3D was becoming big as developers looked to leave the 2D style of game in favour of the blocky 3D models.  Also this is Die Hard, one of the coolest film franchises ever, so why wouldn’t people want to play this? Well time has passed and the dust has now settled. Is this game really as good as we remember, or has it gone the way of the film franchise?

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Written by jamalais

April 2, 2015 at 11:00 am

Alien Trilogy Review

Alien_Trilogy_boxPlatform: Playstation, Saturn, Arcade
Released: 1996
Developer: Probe
Publisher: Acclaim
Digital Release? No
Price: $5.75 (PS1)/$11.64 (Saturn) – Disc Only, $14.47 (PS1)/$21.99 (Saturn) – complete, $74.99 (PS1)/$34.99 (Saturn) – Sealed according to Price Charting

Alien Trilogy was developed and released in 1996 as the bigger budget, larger team, and more experienced group making a full scale Doom clone alongside the presumed B-Team at Probe Software.  That other team was set to make Die Hard With a Vengeance to release alongside the film and eventually widened scope to release the Die Hard Trilogy.  Two games, each with its own take on large popular franchises in the 20th Century Fox vaults, and trying to hit it big.  Did Alien Trilogy succeed by cloning the more popular franchise and game genre?  Find out after the jump.

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Written by jamalais

April 1, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Podcast: Alien Trilogy and Die Hard Trilogy Game Club

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040115_post

The better title for this episode was probably “Because 90’s”, but either way Fred and Jam tackle six massive movies made into two interesting games by one single studio.  Both released in 1996, Probe Software’s Alien Trilogy was a re-writing of three movies in one single genre (Doom clone) whereas Die Hard Trilogy was a compilation of three different genres (3rd person shooter, light gun shooter, and driving game) based on each game.  The results are interesting and stems some interesting conversation on these powerhouse trilogies.


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Written by Fred Rojas

April 1, 2015 at 11:00 am

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