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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 3:36 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
Unfortuntely it's hard to think of any run'n'gun platformer that doesn't have a broken scoring system like that.
1CC play all the way


I'd imagine for a certain type of patient player that doesn't mind a lot of milking and a longer playtime the Metal Slug games are very satisfying to play for score. At least I wouldn't call them broken since there's no infinite milking. Doing a 1 life run where you get all the little tricks down and time everything to get the most from every milking spot could get pretty damn intense by the end. Whether it's actually fun to watch somebody else do it is totally another thing.

While I've never gone down that road, I think I'd rather play a Metal Slug or similar run n gun for score than a Toaplan style looper that requires a 4 hr. + credit to hit an arbitrary score goal of 10,000,000. I don't want to have to take a day off work to play one credit. Honey you don't mind having the kids all day right? I'm gonna try for that counterstop again. That being said I have nothing but respect for those who aren't afraid to throw on an adult diaper before dropping in a quarter if that's what it takes. :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 3:42 pm 


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Metal Slug awards you points for hitting an enemy even if it doesn't kill them. Before they move into the screen you can still hit certain enemies and get points from them, without ever killing them. If you want to maximize your scoring potential, you need to spend every surplus second from your timer on milking those points before moving on, including sacrificing two lives to letting the timer time out completely twice on the most lucrative spot in the game.

That's pretty broken to me.

The game also has multiple random item drops with wildly varying point values.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 4:08 pm 


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I find Demon Front's mix of Metal Slug, DDP and RE:Mercenaries highly addictive when going for a big combo. I know you've played that one, Sumez, what's your take on the scoring system?


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 4:18 pm 


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I actually considered bringing up Demon Front, it's really close to getting it right. It's got some good ideas, and at least at a glance, it looks pretty solid. Except from one major oversight.

I forgot the exact mechanics, but every stage has a secret item, as well as another item needed to pick it up. If you don't have the latter, you can just stand on top of the former, which will for some reason keep giving you massive points, and continue to tally up as long as you stand there.
It's obviously a glitch of some sort, and it's very centered on one item, so it's a little easier to say that "it's not allowed" than the boring pot shot milking of Metal Slug, but ultimately it makes it impossible to really compete in scoring in that game.

That said, Demon Front rocks.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 4:27 pm 


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Good thing I only compete against myself, I guess. Thanks for the quick answer.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 4:37 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
Metal Slug awards you points for hitting an enemy even if it doesn't kill them. Before they move into the screen you can still hit certain enemies and get points from them, without ever killing them. If you want to maximize your scoring potential, you need to spend every surplus second from your timer on milking those points before moving on, including sacrificing two lives to letting the timer time out completely twice on the most lucrative spot in the game.

That's pretty broken to me.

The game also has multiple random item drops with wildly varying point values.


A lot of games have exploits like that or checkpoint milking, unintended safe spots etc. Gain Ground comes to mind as another run n gun that has at least one point where you can get a huge bonus from hitting off screen enemies. I guess I just tend to like learning about those those sort of things in games and have a high bar for what it would take for me to rule out a game as broken for scoring. Infinite milking or invincibility glitches are pretty much a hard stop though.

Maybe that's bc my main genre has been old school fighting games where that community is very reluctant to consider exploits as off limits. The way a game is played becomes a mix of what the devs hoped it would be before releasing it into the wild and what players have discovered and invented. Unblockables in 3S are fair game, and the "fixed" rom is shunned. Roll cancelling in CVS2 to make specials invincible, crouch cancel infinites in Alpha 3, it's all fair game. Sometimes these things while technically broken, end up making a game more interesting or even more balanced than it originally was.

Even totally rando item drops, while I can see the argument against, don't really bother me that much.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 4:41 pm 


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To me it's not so much whether it's "allowed", but whether scoring in said game ultimately makes it less fun to play.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 5:05 pm 


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Yeah I get that. It does make sense to me why most people would not play Metal Slug games for score (or In The Hunt which basically uses the same milking vs. timer setup). I also get how it could be really appealing to those maniacs out there that dig its specific brand of scoring. One thing the series does have is a lot of little things per level that can differentiate a top players score from an intermediate one and a sort of malleability to how far some of them can be pushed with practice and knowledge. So at least there's some real depth to counter the very slow and drawn out pace.

Oh, also would the original arcade Shinobi be considered a run n gun? If you think about it, it's a very similar setup to Metal Slug. Shurikens are unlimited and basically function as a gun. Bonus for using proximity based melee attacks, rescuing POWs etc.

And I know this has been discussed elsewhere, but what's the distinction for which run n guns are on topic here for the strategy and high score forums? Is it only games like Outzone or Gunsmoke that are legit?


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 6:03 pm 


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I almost get the feeling that Metal Slug 1's score was meant as more of a head-to-head thing, with the game recognising the player with the most POWs saved at the end of each mission.

TBH, I also kinda wonder how seriously Nazca themselves took the matter, with Mission 2's riverbank randomly offering either a lucrative ragdoll... or a literal piece of shit. :lol: (definite toilet humour streak among Akio & co - that official art of Marco recoiling in mortal horror at said turd item comes to mind D:)

At any rate, I adore the games, and while I could never play them for score, I do respect the endeavour. Metal Slug 3 in particular sounds like an utter nightmare, with it packing in so much content, then tasking the player with that exhausting final mission.

Rastan78 wrote:
Oh, also would the original arcade Shinobi be considered a run n gun? If you think about it, it's a very similar setup to Metal Slug. Shurikens are unlimited and basically function as a gun. Bonus for using proximity based melee attacks, rescuing POWs etc.


Good observation - Shinobi definitely seems the most likely influence on Slug's melee, with the proximity trigger. Kage also rewards you extra for sword kills, and the same year's Spartan X has a proximity bonus too (kicks score less than the shorter-ranged punches), but neither's as exact a match.

I also wonder if Guevara's POWs were any influence on Slug, the way its forerunner Ikari's Gun/Grenade/Tank triptych (and ammo/fuel management) seems to have been. POWs give you ammo+fuel in Guevara, too. I like to think of future devs observing all this stuff in real-time, back in 80s game centers...

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And I know this has been discussed elsewhere, but what's the distinction for which run n guns are on topic here for the strategy and high score forums? Is it only games like Outzone or Gunsmoke that are legit?


I forget exactly when it happened, but free-scrolling stuff like Granada and Kiki Kaikai has been on-topic in the main, HS and ST forums for over a decade now, as have vertical push-scrollers like Senjou and Ikari.

As for Gun.Smoke, Elemental Master, Out Zone et al, AFAIK they've always been on-topic, in the forum's current 2005-onward incarnation (as they should be - I could understand someone regarding the first group of games as OT, but these are traditional auto-scrolling STGs in all but aesthetic).
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 6:32 pm 


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TBH, I also kinda wonder how seriously Nazca themselves took the matter, with Mission 2's riverbank randomly offering either a lucrative ragdoll... or a literal piece of shit. :lol: (definite toilet humour streak among Akio & co - that official art of Marco recoiling in mortal horror at said turd item comes to mind D:)


Metal Slug has some of the best art. Besides Akio, I've always admired Shinkiro's surreal juxtaposition of this photo realistic shading and proportion onto what are essentially cartoon characters with thick black outlines around them. What a weirdo.

I'm sure they didnt take the scoring system all that seriously in some respects. Kind of like how many beloved and highly dissected rank systems in shmups were essentially added as a way to increase revenue rather than as some noble attempt to create a perfect game balance. It was just about making it hard for good players to quickly clear the game and move on without dropping a few more 100 yen coins along the way. I'd wager a lot of arcade game designers in the 80s and 90s didn't foresee their games having a long life span, considering many would be swapped out for new games in a matter of months.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 6:56 pm 


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Rastan78 wrote:
Oh, also would the original arcade Shinobi be considered a run n gun? If you think about it, it's a very similar setup to Metal Slug. Shurikens are unlimited and basically function as a gun. Bonus for using proximity based melee attacks, rescuing POWs etc.

I'd place Shinobi very squarely into the spy action platformer subgenre alongside Rolling Thunder, Elevator Action Returns (hell, the original EA too), Sly Spy and so on. The calm and collected tactical action in those games is notably different from classic run'n'guns with their more manic pace.
It's about as much of a run'n'gun as Mega Man, which in my book is not at all.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 7:24 pm 


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I find Rolling Thunder and Shinobi to be tactical but fairly hectic. To me Rolling Thunder sits much closer to a run n gun like Sunset Riders than a pure action platformer like Mega Man. Maybe it's in the emphasis on constant harrassment from low HP enemies vs platforming.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 9:04 pm 


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I think the fact that you can't run and gun at the same time in a "spy action" game makes a very distinct difference. Also you can't really use your jump to freely dodge bullets as easily (though it still works as an evasion move)


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 11:30 am 



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I almost feel offended that in more than 70 posts there's no mention of Turrican 2:).

Yes, I know the game becomes awfully easy with autofire/turbo, but it's still one of its kind, with its superb soundtrack (for me the best of all time), massive levels and lots of atmosphere. The rest of the series is still very good, except super Turrican 2 which doesn't feel like a Turrican game, and it's not that good as a contra game.

As for Metal Slug, I think the first one is by far the best. It was the only one that I played back in the arcades and it's the only in the series that feels fair and a good deal, since lots of gameplay and fun can be had with just one coin. It's superbly paced and not too long.

MS2 could be almost as good, it not for the massive slowdowns. MGX solved the issue but made the game harder and this is where the series started to feel like a coin beggar.

MS3 gets lots of love and don't know why. Bullet sponge enemies and bosses, zombies that take away all the pace of the game, and it goes on forever feeling more and more unfair each level and sucking all the fun.

After this the series became stale but still fun, even with the asset reuse and scenarios where it's all about killing the incoming waves until we can advance.

Blazing chrome should be held with the same regards as the greats. Could be named Contra 5, but took the weighty feel of the metal slug series to stand on its own. Amazing soundtrack also.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 11:58 am 


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I have a hard time fitting the classic Turrican games into a specific genre like this. The fact that I can't possibly enjoy them probably plays into it, but I do think that they feel completely different from a typical run n gun despite visibly looking the part in some occasions. The fact that they aren't designed to play like arcade games definitely plays into it.

The Metal Slug series has been discussed and compared endlessly in here, so I'll try not to repeat myself too much, but I can't possibly go with 1 as the best. The stages that become mostly walkover due to spending almost the entire time in the tank feel like a waste of time, and the primary challenge of the game comes almost entirely from the final stage, though the first halves of st2 and 3 are minor highlights still.

2/X has a much better balance between the moments spent on foot and the ones in slugs, while still maintaining a more solid challenge in the latter as well. Its definitely a much harder game, but I don't think it really crosses over into an unfair quarter muncher. It has some weak points in the final stage especially, but the worst offender is probably the final boss. I love almost everything else about it.
I agree about the bullet sponge enemies in MS3, I never put enough effort into the game to give it a fair judgment, but it's definitely an incredibly difficult game.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 3:04 pm 


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Is the overall crowd consensus on Amiga Turrican positive, or is it more of a European nostalgic thing? I dunno, I have a hard time seeing anything of substance. The only care seems to have been put into the soundtrack, which I do adore. Enemy placement seems erratic and uncared for and the platforming likewise seems to just be random blocks, mostly stacked directly above one another calling for awkward jumps. My experience isn't lengthy, but I've tried, and likewise with Sumez didn't enjoy them.
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 4:53 pm 



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Which Turrican did you tried?

The first one is rough compared to the second, specially when it comes to level design.

The second one first level is absolute perfection in my book. In every sense. Both games had stable 50 fps, multi scrolling, massive levels and bosses, and ridiculous good soundtracks.

Obviously they were bound to make an impression, but they weren't consensual. I remember Amiga Power not caring for the series one bit, as it never appeared on their top 100 lists, and Turrican 3 scoring around 60/100.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 5:14 pm 


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I wouldn't call Metal Slug X a notably hard game by arcade standards, until the final stage (20+ minutes in), where it's looking to get paid with some assholic platforming, a herculean final gauntlet, and a last boss that's wildly difficult if not buried with massed ammo.

Metal Slug 1, otoh, is an unusually easy (I would say "generous") arcade game with a near-identical curve, though since it's starting from so far below par, its endgame spike is relatively minor.

Metal Slug 3 is only spongey if you're dying a lot, or you don't know where to expend ammo. This learning curve is part of all three games, but it's only MS3 that gets really aggressive about it. So I'm not surprised it tends to polarise (certainly on here). Last one in the chamber, out with a bang, and all that.

I still wouldn't call most of it exceptionally difficult (a couple of optional routes aside) until, yet again, the last stage. It's mostly daunting on sheer duration, and the Astro Slug's godawful peashooter, but it does pack a couple of genuinely harrowing gauntlets, and another real dickhead of a final boss (who seems to have been designed expressly around Exit Exploit, to the point 2P gets their own Slug in co-op).

I rate MSX the best overall - not a pushover, nor a trial - though all are marked by Nazca's characteristic endgame hell-spike. I'd call Noise Factory's respectable mission pack, Metal Slug 4, better-paced than them - but I have to caveat that, as it's in "die cunt die" mode from the second boss onward. Which is how I like my arcade games. :wink:
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 1:57 am 



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Jeneki wrote:
Geostorm / Gunforce II


There's Gunforce on the SFC to consider as well.

PC Engine Fan X! ^_~


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 3:50 pm 


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BIL wrote:
I still wouldn't call most of it exceptionally difficult (a couple of optional routes aside) until, yet again, the last stage. It's mostly daunting on sheer duration, and the Astro Slug's godawful peashooter, but it does pack a couple of genuinely harrowing gauntlets, and another real dickhead of a final boss (who seems to have been designed expressly around Exit Exploit, to the point 2P gets their own Slug in co-op).

There are harder arcade games out there of course, but I think a lot of MS3's notable difficulty really comes from attrition. As with the other games in the series, you got only three lives for the whole ordeal, and no extends or smart bombs or anything to give you any more leeway outside of that.

I'm kind of bad with games that demand that amount of consistency, and I'd take a super difficult game with a lot of 1UPs along the way, over a more meager one that gives you no leeway for failure.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 3:57 pm 


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Oh shit, yeah - completely forgot the Slugs' categoric lack of extends. That definitely ups the sting in their tails, especially MSX and MS3 with their titanic final stages. (MSX's may not be as drainingly over-long, but you're on foot until its 11th hour, where MS3's gives plenty of vehicle time)

I would've added a couple score extends to both of those, and MS4 (which is about as compact as MS1, but consistently as hard/harder than MSX/3).

Or if not score, I was just thinking yesterday, playing NAM-1975, how Slugs could've benefited from a similar approach - scatter a couple of 1UPs through the game, attached to optional prestige kills (in NAM's case, an aggressive midboss who's tricky to kill before it times out). I like this approach in certain CAVE and Raizing STGs, too - Ketsui and Garegga's st3 midbosses each leaving extends, the latter if you weather its attack long enough for it to reach its parking space, where you can then kill it to blow a crater in the floor, revealing the game's lone Extend item. :cool:
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 6:03 pm 


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PC Engine Fan X! wrote:
Jeneki wrote:
Geostorm / Gunforce II


There's Gunforce on the SFC to consider as well.

PC Engine Fan X! ^_~


The infamous SFC/SNES version that was programmed by BITS (UK) and appears to be running in slo-mo? I'm not sure if it's any good, but the AC version is definitely much faster and smoother. I remember liking what I played of it in an arcade, but it has been a long time since I played it.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2021 7:23 am 


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I've almost got the Strider 1CC / 1LC - that pretty much depends on whether ST2 managers to gyp me on the airship bit.
There's just one bit that I've absolutely no route or strategy for though. Second part of ST5 where you do the first upside-down run/long-jump onto the spiky platform, I get constantly battered around there and I've never made it to the anti-grav boss with more that two of my five life bars left. Once I've tidied up there, I've got it.

Moving house, so had to pack up everything except the Wii U, so just been playing random arcade games.
Gunforce 2 is a bit giddy isn't it? I mean, that game is blowing shit up from the second your credit starts. It's probably a bit over-busy visually really, but it's certainly a spectacle.
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2021 7:32 am 


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Marc wrote:
I've almost got the Strider 1CC / 1LC - that pretty much depends on whether ST2 managers to gyp me on the airship bit.
There's just one bit that I've absolutely no route or strategy for though. Second part of ST5 where you do the first upside-down run/long-jump onto the spiky platform, I get constantly battered around there and I've never made it to the anti-grav boss with more that two of my five life bars left. Once I've tidied up there, I've got it.


Probably the game's most intricate setpiece, but it's very static/repeatable.

Steep Slope Strider 2: GRAVITY UNUSUAL Boogaloo
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^^^ almost perfect. I overshoot slightly - had I jumped quicker at the very end, I could've avoided the drill, but it'd be simpler to launch the takeoff a bit earlier. Note the background, a useful visual marker. This was the third consecutive 1LC attempt of the night, after the previous two (better) runs got trapdoored by that utter shitbird Ouroboros mkII. :evil: Stage 2 has nothing on his cheap, rickety ass. I get shot up disembarking, too - I just could not be arsed at that point. One of the PS1 version's many excellent fixes, I can't even fall through him if I try there.

Still kept both Options all game, though. Image There's a famous exploit that'll let you pile two Options onto one HP block, but I forget how it's done... I'd elected not to use it, as the game's pretty easy by AC standards anyway. I do deliberately nut a Flying Mosqueman early on, in stage 1, so I can put my Options on the final two HP blocks, with three layers of insulation.

Quote:
Moving house, so had to pack up everything except the Wii U, so just been playing random arcade games.
Gunforce 2 is a bit giddy isn't it? I mean, that game is blowing shit up from the second your credit starts. It's probably a bit over-busy visually really, but it's certainly a spectacle.


Always makes me wish Nazca had done another game in that straighter-faced but equally batshit style. The doomed heli gunner who suplexes his last rocket out the door and onto your train is my spirit animal. :mrgreen:
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 3:13 am 


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Sumez wrote:
Contra 4 isn't just the best WayForward game by a landslide, it's also their only game that works itself up above "acceptable way to pass the time". I feel like they could make much better games consistently if they really tried for it more often.


Yeah, Contra was the first game from them I played so it really put them in a positive light to me but then I played a lot of their other stuff and their library is VERY mediocre. Shantae is grossly, massively overrated. Most people only play for the really weak 2006 DeviantArt tier fanservice. 2 was the peak. I appreciate it because you do not get anything remotely close to Zelda 2 like this one tried to be and for DSiWare, it was really the only good offering. But after 2, you just got really bland alternatives to way better games. I have no clue what I'd ever play a game like Seven Sirens when there's 4 Shovel Knight games, Kaze, Cyber Shadow, and a shit ton of other waaay more interesting 2D platformers of similar flavor.
I don't like the new art direction of their games these days. Their pixel art was incredible.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 7:38 am 


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Is Kaze actually good?


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 9:53 am 



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drauch wrote:
Is the overall crowd consensus on Amiga Turrican positive, or is it more of a European nostalgic thing?

I played the Amiga version of the first one a bit but dropped it due to the edge riding i.e. you have to get really close to the edge to make the camera scroll and it is quite irritating to have to reflexively stop as soon as you see an enemy and even then sometimes you'll get hit.

Very cool music, art, and the levels are large and fun, but yeah the edge riding kills it.


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:44 am 


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drauch wrote:
Is the overall crowd consensus on Amiga Turrican positive, or is it more of a European nostalgic thing? I dunno, I have a hard time seeing anything of substance. The only care seems to have been put into the soundtrack, which I do adore. Enemy placement seems erratic and uncared for and the platforming likewise seems to just be random blocks, mostly stacked directly above one another calling for awkward jumps. My experience isn't lengthy, but I've tried, and likewise with Sumez didn't enjoy them.


Honestly, the first bombs in quality after the first world really.
The second is a lot better, still very Euro in execution, but there's enough flair and style to make it worth dealing with the aggravating bits.
Haven't played anything like enough of 3 to offer an opinion.
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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 11:57 am 


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Sumez wrote:
Is Kaze actually good?

Kaze is lovely! I love this game. It's very fine tuned and feels great to play. It's no more than it needs to be and every little element wraps up very neatly. c:


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 Post subject: Re: Favorite Run'N'Gun Game(s)?
PostPosted: Wed Apr 28, 2021 1:50 pm 


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Late reply on my part. Yeah, I'm pretty sure I mainly gave Turrican 1 the most time. I'll give 2 a try again at some point.
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