Archive for the ‘N64’ Category
Two notable racers on the Nintendo 64 are always compared: Mario Kart 64 and Diddy Kong Racing. While more than 6 months separated the games in the US (and even more in Japan), they basically came out together in Europe and have always been compared. Jam and Fred discuss the development and gameplay of each before jumping into the dangerous waters of comparing the two.
Click here to read Drew’s original post comparing the two.
If Nintendo and Rare had an agenda through subliminal messaging then I present to you the game that is the king of repetition: Donkey Kong 64.
As always I like to delve into my personal history with this game. I got the N64 for my birthday as a surprise present from my two older brothers and I was a happy camper. It came with Banjo Kazooie and I was quite smitten with this game. The 3D levels and exploration where just fascinating and I had a fondness for the weird repetitive noises the characters made when their dialogue boxes appeared. Banjo Kazooie turned out to be a very evil game maybe even worse than smoking because it was probably my first venture into a collecting style game. Where in order to progress in the game you have to collect multiple items to get further and further until you finish the game and then you are left to go cold turkey, cold and shivering in the corner. Where do I go from here with my life? Why am I here? Sorry, I got distracted. So these collecting games were huge especially on N64. Mario 64 did this (even though I didn’t play this till a lot later). Over on the Playstation the Spyro series did this (very well in my opinion go listen to that podcast and read the review, please). Rare worked on Banjo Kazooie and I think they must have thought, “how can we take collecting to the next level?” and “what can we do with that Donkey Kong fellow?” Well along came Donkey Kong 64 which is a game that took the collecting concept and turned it up to the max and beyond. I brought this game (with the required expansion pack) and was expecting a nice casual collecting experience. Instead I ended up getting a monkey rap song in my head, which still leaves an imprint on my consciousness to this day and venturing on a collecting journey which took me well over a year to finish in its entirety. I left the cave that was my room with my first fully grown beard ready to return to reality and life again having never looked back since, until this game club. Now jokes aside I actually really liked this game a lot back in the day and it wasn’t the only one I played throughout the year. This was actually a common pattern for me oddly with N64 titles. Even Orcarina of Time took me over a year of on and off playing, I was just that type of gamer then. Donkey Kong 64 felt like a title I really got my moneys worth, not only because it was long but because I got the expansion pack which enhanced some of my other games like Turok 2 (any excuse to mention this game). Sadly I lost my N64 collection to one of my brothers who probably went on to sell the collection so I lost my original copy and my 101% save file. So to prepare for this Game Club I decided to go for the WiiU virtual console version and bravely start from scratch and try to finish this game in a month instead of a year. But that’s enough excessive babbling about my history its time to review this game today.
Donkey Kong 64 has got to be one of the most divisive titles to be released both by Rare and on the Nintendo 64. Depending on how you came to play it, you either love it or hate it. While Jam had tackled this title back when it released, even getting the coveted 101% completion, Fred had never touched it. Thanks to listener Blake (jedislurpee) we played through the game in its entirety and go back to dissect the development, gameplay, and key factors of a title that probably gets more hate than it deserves.
It’s been nearly 20 years since the Nintendo 64 (N64) premiered in the United States. Aside from being Nintendo’s third console, it marked a lot of major changes for both the company and the industry as a whole. Fred and Jam look back on the console that started as Project Reality and eventually became one of the influential pioneers of 3D polygonal gaming.
This week the mod conversation continues as the guys move into the CD-based consoles and the wonderful world of modchips. There were many ways to get different things done in the Playstation era and beyond. Finally the show wraps up with soft modding and the various things that can be done from consoles only a few generations old.
This week Fred and Jam wrap up Majora’s Mask with the final two dungeons, the ending, and probably the biggest draw to the game, the side quests. It’s a lengthy discussion that goes down to the wire but definitely demonstrates a game that while not appreciated in its time but can have a second life now. Part 1 can be found here.
Riding the coat tales of the excellent Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, which basically was another re-creation of the original formula that A Link to the Past had done before it only this time in 3D, it was going to be hard to top. Not only that, but there was a long four year development cycle for Ocarina and Nintendo wanted a follow-up done faster with a smaller team by re-using the engine and assets. It was determined that this could be accomplished by containing the whole game in a smaller world and on a game clock that would control the overall scope of the title regardless of what the player did. As a result, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask released in 2000, finished in less than half the time of Ocarina. Unfortunately it also garnered half as many sales (3.36 million compared to the 7+ million of Ocarina) and while critically praised, it didn’t seem to hold the attention of the many fans that wanted many of the series staples to remain intact. Majora’s Mask was recently re-released in 3D on the 3DS and it appears today’s audiences are treating one of the franchise’s few ugly ducklings with a bit more of an open mind. Is that love justified or are people just that desperate to get their hands on a unique Zelda title in hindsight?
The ballots are in, the votes have been tallied, the insults to our N64 Top 10 have been ignored and now it’s time to find out what you all chose to be the Top 10 Games from the Nintendo 64.
You can find the actual top 10 list below:
Due to a video issue and the ever growing challenge of collecting all of the games necessary for a top 10, we’ve decided to go audio only on the debate and reveal. It’s not all bad news though, we do have the printed version if you don’t want to listen to the nearly 2 hour debate over our top 10. Also be sure to submit your own top 10 via this comments section, sending an e-mail, or join the Patreon at $3 or more to be entered into a contest for $10 in Nintendo eShop credit. We want strong community involvement for next week’s response. The contest ends next Thursday, May 14, at midnight Eastern time. The text top 10 is below.
Platform: Arcade, Playstation, Saturn, N64, Gameboy
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)
Bust a Move 2 Arcade Edition was a popular title released on the Sony Playstation, Sega Saturn and N64. While the concentration of these systems was to move gaming into 3D, Bust a Move was a game that kept its feet firmly in the 2D realm, and it still does to this day. All versions are ports of the very popular arcade game and all versions are arguably fantastic ports, bringing that vintage arcade experience home. For this review I’ll specifically be covering the Playstation version.
I have always enjoyed the Bust a Move series. I have played the majority of the entries on home consoles and arcades. The most memorable game from my younger days was Bust a Move 2. This was literally in every arcade in my area. It ran on Taito’s F3 hardware and could be found in dedicated arcade cabinets and later the Neo Geo cabinets which were becoming increasingly popular. Bust a Move 2 was one of those arcade game where I would literally watch the demo screen over and over again even after I ran out of money to sink into the cabinet. There was something rather hypnotic about watching, maybe because I have always had a fascination with arcade puzzle titles, or maybe its because I’m a utter fan boy for Taito games, especially the Bubble Bobble games of which this series is a spin off from.