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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Tue May 14, 2019 6:31 pm 


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I very briefly played Rolling Thunder 2 recently as well, while going through my Mega Everdrive collection. It's a damn good looking game, at the very least, but yeah not being able to shoot while jumping is really weird if you're used to Shinobi. I want to put some more time into it soon
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2019 7:32 am 


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Herr Schatten wrote:
I also picked up a copy of Rolling Thunder 2, and I love all the Bond-esque cheesiness, but man does it play awkwardly, almost like a poor man‘s Shinobi. Who thought not being able to shoot while jumping would be a good idea? The password phrases are genius, though.


Ouch! Poor man's Shinobi indeed.
No, I can see why it would feel weird for anyone new to the game, but to be honest it's something I don't even notice anymore.
RT feels a much more deliberate and methodical game that Shinobi's freestyle hi-speed action.
Both classics, but I've always been more in the RT camp.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2019 2:26 pm 


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You can always try the MD/Gen-exclusive, Rolling Thunder 3. It has a faster, looser feel to it, partly because of things like being able to shoot while jumping.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2019 8:47 pm 


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Marc wrote:

Ouch! Poor man's Shinobi indeed.


Except Rolling Thunder came first. :p If anything, Shinobi was the one ripping off Rolling Thunder (although the two games have pretty substantial differences). Second on the RT3 recommendation. There's also Code Name: Viper on the NES, which was apparently handled by the same team that ported RT1 to the NES (Arc System Works back when they were doing outsourced work for other companies).

Cleared Bayou Billy and TMNT2 on the NES, both using continues. I tried to do a no-continue run for both games, but the driving stages in Bayou Billy are way too frustrating with their cheap one-hit deaths, while TMNT2 simply drags on way too long for me. Neither game are particularly interesting enough for me to attempt a no-miss clear, although I do think Bayou Billy's flaws are sometimes blown out of proportions. While Mad City (the Japanese version) is a much easier game, it's not necessarily better for it (the fighting mechanics in both versions are pretty simplistic either way). In some ways I actually prefer the difficulty level of Bayou Billy over Mad City, since I remember Mad City being way too easy for my liking. Plus, I prefer Annabelle's wardrobe in the NES version.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 15, 2019 11:37 pm 


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Speaking of Shinobi AC and RT : what do people in here think of E-Swat?


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 9:22 am 


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Not as good as either of the games you mentioned.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2019 2:43 pm 


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I've not played it in forever, but I remember thinking it was a bit bland, and not a path on the MD version.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon May 20, 2019 4:09 pm 


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a friend wanted me to stream a kusoge for her so that she could watch me suffer, and i ended up recommending taz-mania for the genesis as something particularly awful. i went and played through the entire game on hard for her, and it is truly abysmal. stage 13, in particular, is especially bad on hard mode because jumping in the water kills you instantly rather than lightly damaging you, and you're forced to make numerous totally blind jumps onto semi-randomly spawning, moving logs. on top of that, you're dealing with a sudden new mechanic of shifting planes while jumping, which makes you hold up or down to make sure you actually land on the desired plane (if you're not holding down while trying to ascend to a lower plane and taz's sprite is anywhere on the water, you just instantly die). if you hold down while jumping, your fall gets accelerated, but so does your left/right movement, meaning making precise jumps (as you must to survive) becomes considerably more obnoxious. it's hard enough to just move left or right while holding down, already, but the added momentum swinging your jump in one direction or the other is just a nightmare.

i am begging *someone* here, please boot this game up, enter the stage select code, and then go to level 13 and try it on hard mode. there's a fucking lot wrong with this game that i could ramble about for longer than i even spent playing it, but this stage is just agonizing and i am pleading for some commiseration. i only beat the game on hard after farming for continues in an early stage, as there is just so much unfair nonsense. blind jumps, instant kills, really poor collision detection, some outright trolling of the player by doing things like placing items your character will automatically eat to lose half their lifebar behind scenery pieces. just. auggghhh.
also, the music. oh my god, the music. Image
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2019 7:21 am 


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God there were so many of these back in the day. For the first year of owning my SNES it was save up for 4-6 weeks, buy game, stick it on hard, beat it, repeat. Then a few more people got one, and trading in took off, and suddenly it became buy game, hit wall, trade in/lend out. I ended up playing so much shit it was untrue, but the absolute worst (as I remember it back then) was Road Runner. I just remember a massive main sprite with huge floaty jumps, and level design that committed every sin in the 'Mario says no' book. Awful, awful dreck. I might check out this and Taz later just for amusement value.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2019 5:39 pm 


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i've not played road runner - doesn't that one actually have a somewhat infamous reputation, at this point? speaking of garbage snes/gen games, has anyone here played mohawk and headphone jack? i think that game has a reputation as every single tile in the game having a different gravity value (sometimes obscenely different), which makes it an absurd experience. i've watched a speedrunner do a playthrough with commentary, and i think it genuinely takes the cake in the category of just bizarrely fuck-awful mascot games from around that time. if anyone's interested, i can try to find the video i watched, it's like a kuso masterpiece.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Tue May 21, 2019 5:44 pm 


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Road Runner SNES had the bright idea of giving a speed focused character a short range downward peck as a main attack as well as stages and bosses designed around using it. The results aren't pretty.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2019 12:19 am 


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Stevens wrote:

Huge rant incoming - I've seen some people complaining that $15 is too expensive for a six hour game. FUCK THEM. Why is it so hard to grasp things like game development are costly, time consuming, devs need to put food on the table, and SHOULD BE COMPENSATED FOR THEIR WORK. To be fair these are probably the same type of people who would complain that shmups aren't worth more then $5 cause they can be "finished" in 20 minutes.

Sorry - had to vent.

If Steam had a pay what you want I would have easily kicked an extra $5 for KZ.


I get you. I've about 10 hours in the Messenger and about 30 hours in the Witcher 3. Which has been more fun? Definitely the Messenger.
Speaking of the Messenger...

Spoiler: show
...I love almost everything about the game, but I'm not digging this running back and forth. Luckily there are a plethora of crystals so it's easy to buy hints from the shopkeeper. The platforming is a lot of fun, and the time mechanic is a neat idea. It's just kinda annoying when you have to re-travel stages because you picked the wrong time. It has slightly diminished the experience for me.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2019 5:02 pm 


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I forgot to mention this in the previous post, but I also cleared the SNES Prince of Persia around two weeks ago. I thought it would take longer to finish, but it only took me a week. Since I was taking a photo of every password I was using to continue, I inadvertently kept track of the time it took me to clear each level.

Level 1: 05:04
Level 2: 04:11
Level 3: 03:28
Level 4: 04:09
Level 5: 05:13
Level 6: 03:38
Level 7: 04:55
Level 8: 03:53
Level 9: 02:13
Level 10: 03:40
Level 11: 02:53
Level 12: 03:08
Level 13: 05:35
Level 14: 04:16
Level 15: 05:33
Level 16: 06:42
Level 17: 01:24
Level 18: 05:56
Level 19: 10:11
Didn't keep track of how long it took me to clear Level 20, but all in all it took me around 80 minutes to clear this game using passwords.

It's interesting how continues work in this game. The timer doesn't reset when you die and use a continue. I'm guessing this was done to add to the challenge, but you can easily just quit to the title menu and re-enter your password (in fact, the game actually saves the last password you've used) and recover your used time. There's only like three or so stages that used checkpoints that I remember and none of them were particularly long, so I never felt encouraged to use them.

I would really like to try and complete the game in one sitting without abusing the password system next time, but I don't know if I have the time or patience to do so. The SNES version is already too long of a game as it is and I would probably would rather try to do that with one of the other ports of the game that doesn't have as many additional levels.

I've also cleared Rolling Thunder 3 on Normal (no passwords or continues used, don't remember the score) and DJ Boy on Easy (cleared 2 loops before running out of lives on the first stage with 1,810,300 points). For some reason, I remember the US version of DJ Boy being particularly much harder than the Japanese version even on Easy, but I didn't have much of a trouble clearing the game this time. Maybe the difficulty buff was on Normal only. The game definitely increases in difficulty from one loop to the next, but it still didn't feel too hard since all the cash I've accumulated from my previous playthrough got carried over to the next one, allowing me to buy all the upgrades again for my character pretty early on during the second loop.


Last edited by Jonny2x4 on Wed May 22, 2019 7:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed May 22, 2019 6:27 pm 


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Leviathan wrote:
It has slightly diminished the experience for me.


I feel you. It is a small blemish on an otherwise great experience.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 6:44 am 


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kitten wrote:
a friend wanted me to stream a kusoge for her so that she could watch me suffer, and i ended up recommending taz-mania for the genesis as something particularly awful. i

I actually rented this game as a kid, due to me being easy prey for cartoon licences (with games like Rescue Rangers or Tony Toon Adventures you can't blame me)

I never figured out how to move out of the starting area on the first stage. I'm glad it was only a rental...


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 8:09 am 


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So it was given to me as a kid, and I spent ungodly hours playing this piece of shit.
I had stuff like Sanic and Mickey Mouse Castle of Illusion and Quackshot ffs so why I put so much time into Taz I'll never know.
I don't have any memories of thinking "this is trash compared to this" or suchlike.

I think where I finally gave up was the memo handcart/rail tracks level.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 8:59 am 


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Jonny just stumbled into one of my weak spots. I absolutely adore Prince of Persia - one of the few actually successful games of its own genre, completely embracing a singular core gameplay that works despite its cinematic approach (compare schizophrenic endeavours like Flashback or Another World).
And the SNES version is just a masterpiece that improves on almost every aspect of the game, while also respecting its original vision - although it changes so much that both the original version (or, ideally, the DOS or Amiga ports) and the SNES one are able to stand side by side sporting unique qualities that make both of them worth playing.

Jonny2x4 wrote:
It's interesting how continues work in this game. The timer doesn't reset when you die and use a continue. I'm guessing this was done to add to the challenge, but you can easily just quit to the title menu and re-enter your password (in fact, the game actually saves the last password you've used) and recover your used time. There's only like three or so stages that used checkpoints that I remember and none of them were particularly long, so I never felt encouraged to use them.

Yeah, this is a really awkward element to the otherwise completely flawless SNES game IMO. I guess it does make the game more manageable for casual players considering the huge amount of new content added to the SNES version, which is honestly closer to "Prince of Persia 1.5" than a port.

But to me the essential experience of playing Prince of Persia (and this is of course even more true in the notably shorter original game) is playing stages through enough times that you are able to know where to go and which traps to avoid, in order to pull off a run where you just ace everything and make it to the end within the time limit, without abusing the game's save-scumming feature.
It's kind of trial-and-error, but with the recipe the game follows, it just works, and it is highly satisfying. The SNES game is lenient enough with the time that I think a single blind playthrough should be enough to prepare you for one full single-segment run. My first attempt to do so screwed up a lot on the later stages, and still (barely) made the 2 hour time limit.

Though as long as you make it to the final stage within the limit, that's good enough. The game actually lets you keep playing after the time runs out for as long as you want - but when you make it to the end, Jaffar won't be there, and you'll get the bad ending. This should be good enough to let people practice as much as they want, so it's kind of sad that the password system is as easy to abuse as it is. Makes finally facing Jaffar feel like less of an accomplishment.

Quote:
I would really like to try and complete the game in one sitting without abusing the password system next time, but I don't know if I have the time or patience to do so. The SNES version is already too long of a game as it is and I would probably would rather try to do that with one of the other ports of the game that doesn't have as many additional levels.

I've kind of already said this, but DO IT. I do recommend doing it first with the MS-DOS version though, for a more manageable and pure experience. Then return to the SNES game when you are hungry for more.

Also - this fucking box art
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Spoiler: show
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 11:44 am 


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Katana Zero is getting a speed run and hard mode. For free.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source= ... Y6G5AnQZaR
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 1:59 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
Prince of Persia


I used to love this game. Finished it on the Amiga back way when, don't think I remember every getting very far with the SNES version due to that - it was always a computer game rather than a console game in my eyes.

I did pick up PoP Classic for X360 - I'm not sure if I dreamed this or not, but I' sure I fired it up once, made the Price do a backflip off a wall Sands of TIme-style, and immediately turned it off. I'll check it out later while I'm at home.

Also Sands of Time was AWESOME, but that's another thread.

I also still adore Flashback, despite its pacing issues. Even had some fun with the flawed X360 remake.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 2:46 pm 


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I don't know if I've professed my love for Prince of Persia on this site before, but I've played the DOS version to death and even beat the Apple II and PC-98 versions, although I have yet to give the SNES version a proper shot. It's a masterpiece of game design and pacing, and the animation impresses me to this day. Easily one of my top 5 favorite DOS games, and runs great on an 8-MHz 286, too. Once you memorize all the traps you can have a lot of fun switching places with guards, then running away or maneuvering them into traps or off ledges.

Has anyone ever beat the Apple version without the two-tile running jump? I seem to recall a jump in the final level that requires it, since you can't jump again after landing from a running jump without coming to a full stop first.

Sumez wrote:
I've kind of already said this, but DO IT. I do recommend doing it first with the MS-DOS version though, for a more manageable and pure experience. Then return to the SNES game when you are hungry for more.


You may also want to look into the Japanese Mega-CD version, which is the only console port of the game that wasn't borked in some way. Its only downside is that you can't turn off the music like you can in the Japanese home computer ports.

And for those wanting to play said Japanese ports, I've found that the PC-98 version changes the sword and jump timings just enough to make certain jumps tricker (and the added final battle with Jafar significantly mor difficult) and doesn't let you inch forward while crouching, which is annoying, but not enough to make the game unplayable. The X68000 version seems to be sluggish even with the FPU that SuperDeadite mentioned.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 4:46 pm 


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^ re: the prince of persia talk. never played the game much, pretty sure i'd hate its weird trial & error sensibilities. however, i did recently order the super famicom version for its gorgeous boxart. next time my friend who lets me tag in on his import orders visits, i'll probably give it a shot.

Blinge wrote:
I think where I finally gave up was the memo handcart/rail tracks level.

going to be honest, here, i pause/unpaused through that, eheh. it's way too fast!!! Image

i did the same for clinger winger on battletoads - the only level in either game i pulled that shit on. they're both so brazenly awful, near-cueless memorization festivals that i just didn't care how i did it so long as i got through them. i also feel like i have a significantly reduced capacity for simon says shit compared to most people, really. i just cannot drill it in without what feels like total agony. reminds me of schoolwork or something, i just start glazing over and become inundated with myopic, existential woe.

Sumez wrote:
I never figured out how to move out of the starting area on the first stage. I'm glad it was only a rental...


i had a few rentals like this back when i was younger, too. i think the one that always sticks out to me as the worst was the NES "mario is missing," which i couldn't finish a single stage on. i was really particularly young at the time of renting it and extremely disappointed at how it was not as good as any other mario game i'd played. ahhh lol

- - - - - - - -

bear with me for a story i'll tie back into being relevant - so, my cat, aisha, gets separation anxiety when she's not in the same room as we are, but cannot enter into our game room without strict supervision because of the many display items in there for her to chew on. she similarly can't be in the living room without some supervision despite spending most of her time in there with us, so we have a homemade gate (that i'm proud of) in the hallway we'll put her behind when we're in another room or if she's acting up and we don't have the energy to deal with her wanting to misbehave - or, y'know, if we need to be out and about. this gives her the hallway, the staircase, and the area at the top of the stairs (where i usually sleep on a foam mattress to keep her company). it's got all her toys, the litterbox, food & running water, etc.

however, doing & undoing the gate requires fiddling with this latch, and the game room is in the area behind the gate with the only bathrooms either past it or all the way upstairs. the kitchen similarly requires going past the gate. if i want to go in the game room, i can't leave her unsupervised in the living room because of her tendency to get on stuff without someone watching and my tendency to have a lot of stuff, so i have to lock the gate behind me. she also likes to try to squeeze past it and into any room i'm in, because she gets separation anxiety really easily and starts freaking out if you enter another room without her and crying and mewling. she'll even wake up from a nap just to immediately lose her shit.

so, for the last year and a half, to play most of my classic games without moving individual consoles out to the living room SDTV, i have to wrangle her, get her in the gated area, and then squeeze into the gameroom without her slipping in. then, when i want a snack or need to use the bathroom (and i'm on a diuretic for health reasons, so this is frequently), i have to do the gate again, twice, and both sneak in & out of the room without her squeezing in. on top of my seriously difficult depression and anxiety issues, this has been gradually weening me off casual play of games i love for this whole period because it is really, really tedious and is also a strain on my back problems.

no longer!!! hopefully! i've finally moved all the classic gaming consoles back into the living room as of yesterday and have immediately started trying to catch up a bit. wound up playing a couple of games on webcam for a friend. unlike the taz-mania friend, she wasn't watching with the intention of revelling in my suffering, though like the taz-mania friend, she ultimately did laugh heartily at my agony when i hit the second of the two games.

- - - - - - - -

those games i played were:

ankoku densetsu (pce) -

also known in the west as "the legendary axe II," this game is a... sequel? spiritual follow-up? to makyo densetsu (which you can watch a pretty quality play i did of right here), that kinda manages to feel like a proper follow-up despite little-to-no meaningful crossover staff and some divergent mechanics. i managed to get to the final boss on my first attempt, and then cleared the game with a whopping thirteen spare lives (at some point, an enemy dropped a very rare "VII" icon, which turned out to be 7 1-ups) on my second attempt, only dying once from a time out in the final maze and finishing with a score of 767,000. while i think this game falls a little bit short of makyo densetsu's quality, i feel like it only falls a teensy bit shy and is actually a rather good game, like its predecessor. solid action, tight-but-occasionally-restrictive controls, pacing that feels great at first but becomes a little bloated late-on, and a solid, but slightly offbeat and charming presentation you'd expect from a pc engine classic.

its biggest faults are how directionless it becomes late-game, and how the general set design isn't quite as tight as its predecessor. as long as you keep yourself powered up and have vague familiarity with level layout, you can plow through this game with some incredible ease. while i think it stood at potential for exceeding its predecessor (whose last level is just way too damn long) due its slightly more interesting multi-weapon system and lack of the uniquely strange charge mechanic to clog the pacing up, it's missing a bit of the bite & structure. one way in which this manifests is that many bosses can be won by attrition, particularly if you're wielding the axe. while i use the sword through most of the stages for its flexible swing arc and reasonable range (occasionally switching to the chain), the later bosses in particular are total jokes with a beefed up axe and can be shred to pieces.

levels become a bit more mazelike as you hack and slash your way through them, ending with a genuine maze packed with dead ends (and copies of the rather mean next-to-final boss) for the last stage. though its not as long, winding, or memorization heavy as makyo densetsu's infamous tunnels in its last stage, it's still, similarly, not particularly fun, nor does it leave a satisfying taste in one's mouth for the conclusion. like makyo densetsu, ankoku densetsu ends up being a slightly front-loaded experience, where i think it's most enjoyable when it's leaning toward more casual design and not hitting you with the tedious hazards of its turgid final stages.

not to imply the game isn't worth one's time, however! i really feel like the goodwill generated by the earlier stages carries a momentum that lasts the rest of the game, and it's still a very enjoyable game to get a clear on. i'd recommend people maybe play it ahead of its predecessor, as while i don't consider it as good, it's a way more friendly way to break into the two of them and get used to some of their shared sensibilities. makyo densetsu is a bit more of an acquired taste, while ankoku densetsu is more easy to break into and immediately have fun with.

mesopatamia (pce) -

also known as somer assault, over here. ah, man, a stinging disappointment this game is! it's trash, plain and simple. i must have spent something like 8k yen on this little sucker and good god is it not worth it. when picking pc engine games up and browsing its library, i often liked to consider this part of what i mentally referred to as the pc engine's weird trilogy of idiosyncratic action games you couldn't really get much of, elsewhere. along with it was gomola speed, a 'snake'-esque... seek & destroy (?) that totally owns, and gekisha boy, which i've played none of yet but seems to be like what you would get crossing a crass irem auto-scroller with pokemon snap.

mesopotamia seemed really neat with its bizarre slinky protagonist and its deeply strange sense of motion, but atlus clearly had not a fucking clue what they were doing and designed one of the most incompetent action games i've ever played. were it not for the decent music and admittedly quite striking & quality pixel art (all the astrological signs get depicted as giant, metallic gods, including a big-tittied baphomet for capricorn, for whatever reason), i would consider this worse than a mid-tier xbox live indie game. and, to be clear, i say that having been someone who subjected themselves to more of that platform than anyone reasonably should - i know how biting an insult that is.

almost none of the game is designed around your weird movement and firing angles, getting hit can often take a second to register, and enemies & the totally random power-ups they drop can despawn (or not spawn at all) with comically minimal scrolling. levels have strict time limits that are sometimes (i believe literally, measurably) impossible to meet if you haven't gotten powered up without losing a life, and most bosses are most aptly fought by simply staying in a corner and blasting them away via attrition. i can't tell you how many lives i lost while playing this just because of timing out thanks to the directionless maze stages and slow movement.

on top of everything, i got to the very end to the final boss and couldn't defeat them (first it's... satan, as a woman? then some shadow duplicates? then... yahweh???). i think if i'd have persisted long enough, i'd have eventually gotten good enough luck on the projectile patterns, but some of the attacks seem completely unavoidable (particularly without speed-up) and i'd keep getting deep in and just losing through attrition. i'm going to tackle it again sometime soon and farm extra lives on my birthday astrological sign, which determines which boss will just throw you power-ups. can just collect a bunch of 1ups and then cruise through the rest of the game to actually have enough HP to just sit through the end.

i want to really, really, really recommend against this one to anyone not deliberately looking to add expensive kusoge or atlus titles - there's so little of redeeming value for the price tag. even as someone who has come to really appreciate gritty, mediocre action games of the time period just for their good sense to be brief & challenging, this was totally uninteresting, grindy, and awful.

- - -

edit: ah, also -

Image

this is apparently the ending screen in the US version, which appears to have a cutscene made just for its opening, too. does anyone know if the US one is slightly better programmed or fixes anything? the addition of the cutscene makes me curious if they cleaned anything about this mess up.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 5:14 pm 


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Marc wrote:
I used to love this game. Finished it on the Amiga back way when, don't think I remember every getting very far with the SNES version due to that - it was always a computer game rather than a console game in my eyes.

It kind of is, mostly due to the cultural idea of western games mostly being PC games, and Japanese games for the consoles and arcades. But that said, POP excellently lends itself to a gamepad controller, making a lot of the moves that are central to the game (mostly running, jumping and clinging to edges) feel a lot more intuitive. On PC you pretty much need to know how the mechanics work before you can get far into the game.

Quote:
I did pick up PoP Classic for X360 - I'm not sure if I dreamed this or not, but I' sure I fired it up once, made the Price do a backflip off a wall Sands of TIme-style, and immediately turned it off. I'll check it out later while I'm at home.

Honestly, I like PoP Classic a lot, I think it was a very honest attempt at combining the modern acrobatics of the new series with the classic title that started it, and the wall jumping stuff actually fits in quite well. Kind of reminiscent of the SNES game, it does away with the requirement to beat the game in a single fast segment, and instead records your fastest time on each individual stage. It allows you to go back and improve your time on earlier stages, which in turns gives you more time on the overall counter, without needing to replay any stages inbetween. Essentially making the game more of a segmented speedrun challenge, which is cool. I wouldn't play it before already finishing any of the more faithful ports, though (ie. probably the PC one).
The US version of Sands of Time also had the Mac version of the original game included (and PoP2 too, on the Xbox) as an unlockable. It's another quite good version.

kitten wrote:
^ re: the prince of persia talk. never played the game much, pretty sure i'd hate its weird trial & error sensibilities. however, i did recently order the super famicom version for its gorgeous boxart. next time my friend who lets me tag in on his import orders visits, i'll probably give it a shot.

Just to clarify, the trial-and-error description I gave was mostly based on the concept of beating the time requirement. Ie. you can fumble around a lot on some stages before figuring out where to go, and waste too much time to make the game realistically beatable later on. You definitely won't make it the first time you play the game blind - and if you are playing any of the stricter ports (ie. not SNES), you need to play over and over to push further into the game.
I can't really think of any trial-and-error in terms of the gameplay, which always allows safe ways to poke ahead to check for dangers, rather than relying on completely blind leaps of faith. Ie. observe the terrain from other platforms, or hang from a ledge in the bottom of a screen to see if there's a spike trap below you, etc. In general it's a very sensibly designed game.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 5:23 pm 


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Jesus Kitten, do you live in a mansion!?


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 5:29 pm 


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the 'gate' is a jerry-rigged gate i made out of zip ties, a few latch pieces, and three metal wire closet shelfing pieces from home depot (including a little bit of styrofoam tubing on top so it reaches the ceiling and she can't just climb over). this cost only about like $60 iirc, and it's in the divide between the living room/kitchen area and staircase/downstairs bedroom area. it's only a two bed, two bathroom, but it's very vertical (with yet another staircase down to a garage area). like $850 a month out in eastern tennessee, which has relatively cheap rent. i suppose it's a decently sizable apartment for two people, but it is very, very far from a mansion.

it's not the travel distance between rooms that was time consuming & draining, it's doing/undoing the gate. i have to squat down to do the bottom-most latch every time, which requires a little finagling and also requires corralling the cat. doing this a half-dozen times or more when i want to just spend 3-4 hours playing classic games to wind down became kind of a lot.

- -

edit:

i should probably also clarify, the area i sleep at at the top of the staircase is roughly the size of a queen's size mattress or smaller, and i sleep on a thin foam mattress with a cot-sized (smaller than twin) sheet over it. there's also a fan jammed into the corner that part of the mattress overlaps. it's, uh. it doesn't look like an area a person should be sleeping, but the cat appreciates the company and i like sleeping on the floor in a confined space.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu May 23, 2019 9:35 pm 


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Sumez wrote:
Jonny just stumbled into one of my weak spots. I absolutely adore Prince of Persia - one of the few actually successful games of its own genre, completely embracing a singular core gameplay that works despite its cinematic approach (compare schizophrenic endeavours like Flashback or Another World).

I feel Another World has a much better cinematic approach. The levels in Prince of Persia feel too much like levels in a videogame and it starts to become a bit repetitive after a certain point, whereas every area and situation in Another World (even the filler area they threw in for the 16-bit console ports) all have a unique feel to them. I remember renting the SNES version of Flashback once, but never got into it. I found the play mechanics too obtuse at the time, although I felt the same way about Prince of Persia to be honest. I might revisit it one of these days along with Nosferatu if I can get it for cheap.

WelshMegalodon wrote:
You may also want to look into the Japanese Mega-CD version, which is the only console port of the game that wasn't borked in some way. Its only downside is that you can't turn off the music like you can in the Japanese home computer ports.


That's one version of the game I always wanted to try out, if only for the anime-style cutscenes. I have a thing for those so-called "visual scene demos" (to use the Japanese terminology) they used to put in many PC Engine CD-ROM² and Mega-CD games, even if most of them tend to be kinda cheesy, even by anime standards. Speaking of the Japanese ports of Prince of Persia, I was surprised to find out Jaffar was just a regular swordsman in the original versions of the game. I always assumed he was always a magician, but that was apparently something they added to the Japanese PC and console ports.

Going back to DJ Boy, I've cleared it on Normal this time and died on the second loop with 1,054,200 points during the second stage. There's definitely a difficulty buff in the US version, but it's much more noticeable on Normal than Easy. I don't remember the Japanese version being particularly hard, even on Normal. Watching a video of the Japanese version online, the regional differences are much greater than I remember. I think pretty much all the areas, with the exception of the construction site at Stage 4 and the boss battles at Stages 1 and 6, were changed in some form or another. Not just the backgrounds, but the enemy placement as well. Stage 2 has you fighting in the dark in the US version, while Stage 3 became an auto-scrolling level in the US version. And even the way your upgrades work were changed a bit. In the Japanese version, you have to upgrade your max health by purchasing an item at the end of each stage, whereas the US version does this automatically each time you clear a stage. I've mentioned this before, but when you start a new loop in the US version, you'll lose all your upgrades and your max health will be reset to its starting value, but you'll get to carry over all your coins from the previous playthrough and any extra life you had any.

The weirdest regional difference for me isn't the difficulty buff or the fact that they changed the skin tone of the mammy boss and took out her farting attack, but rather it's the removal of the game's opening demo showing DJ Boy's girlfriend (Maria) being kidnapped. I initially assumed that they might had just changed the plot for the US version and they were just too lazy to add a new opening, but the ending text is still the same without the visuals. The manual is actually a direct translation of the Japanese original and not only does it still mention the girlfriend, it even has screenshots from the Japanese intro.

I did some digging and it turns out they were actually going to change the girlfriend's design for the US version and give her a more mature look. In the Japanese version she looks a bit like Roll from the Mega Man series, whereas her proposed US design was going to make her look more like Lunch from the Dragon Ball series.
Image
Image

It's weird they went through the trouble of redesigning the heroine for the US version and didn't bother to feature her at the end anyway. I'm guessing they never got around to redrawing the other two or so visuals in the game in which she appears. i wonder if there is some unused graphics still remaining in the ROM.


Last edited by Jonny2x4 on Fri May 24, 2019 7:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 2:56 am 


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Jonny2x4 wrote:
I was surprised to find out Jaffar was just a regular swordsman in the original versions of the game. I always assumed he was always a magician, but that was apparently something they added to the Japanese PC and console ports.


No, Jaffar was always a magician. The manual for the original game mentions "rumors" of Jaffar being a "magician, a master of the black arts of enchantment", and the introductory cutscene even shows him conjuring a large hourglass out of thin air. Though the final battle with Jaffar atop his palace is unique to the Japanese versions.

Sumez wrote:
Honestly, I like PoP Classic a lot, I think it was a very honest attempt at combining the modern acrobatics of the new series with the classic title that started it, and the wall jumping stuff actually fits in quite well.


I personally really liked that they retained the ability to switch places with the guards to avoid fighting them. (Unlike, say... the extremely poor NES port).
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 3:09 am 


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finished mesopotamia by farming for some lives, early on. opinion unchanged. aside from the opening cutscene, it differs from the US version in the character names and credits, too. all the astrological sign names are spelled backwards in the US version for whatever nonsense reason, and the names in the credits are different.

for example, the jp version (pic taken from phone):

Image

and then the same part of the credits in the US version (from a video on youtube):

Image
weird!!! can't believe lupin and jigen only worked on the jp version. bet that darn zenigata from interpol interfered with international crediting... Image
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 6:43 am 


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I'm guessing Iwata's nickname in the Japanese staff roll is a reference to the henshin cry from Armored Police Metal Jack. Atlus made a (rather rubbish) side-scrolling action game based on that anime for the Super Famicom around the same time they made Mesopotama.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 7:47 am 


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Jonny2x4 wrote:
I feel Another World has a much better cinematic approach. The levels in Prince of Persia feel too much like levels in a videogame and it starts to become a bit repetitive after a certain point, whereas every area and situation in Another World (even the filler area they threw in for the 16-bit console ports) all have a unique feel to them. I remember renting the SNES version of Flashback once, but never got into it. I found the play mechanics too obtuse at the time, although I felt the same way about Prince of Persia to be honest. I might revisit it one of these days along with Nosferatu if I can get it for cheap.


Thing with Another World, that game IS the very definition of trial-and-error, despite its admitted style, whereas PoP and Flashback can both be played relatively blind.

Only time Flashback really falls down is in the third (?) level, the Running-Man type thing where is tips more into shooting than adventuring and suffers accordingly.


Sumez wrote:
Honestly, I like PoP Classic a lot, I think it was a very honest attempt at combining the modern acrobatics of the new series with the classic title that started it, and the wall jumping stuff actually fits in quite well. Kind of reminiscent of the SNES game, it does away with the requirement to beat the game in a single fast segment, and instead records your fastest time on each individual stage. It allows you to go back and improve your time on earlier stages, which in turns gives you more time on the overall counter, without needing to replay any stages inbetween. Essentially making the game more of a segmented speedrun challenge, which is cool. I wouldn't play it before already finishing any of the more faithful ports, though (ie. probably the PC one).
The US version of Sands of Time also had the Mac version of the original game included (and PoP2 too, on the Xbox) as an unlockable. It's another quite good version.

I'm just glad I didn't dream it. Funnily enough, I did fire up the SNES version a few weeks ago, but the despite not having played it in many years, the over-familiarity quickly got too much for me and I abandoned it. Maybe the tweaks to the 360 version will prove more interesting this attempt.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2019 7:48 am 


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Jonny2x4 wrote:
I feel Another World has a much better cinematic approach. The levels in Prince of Persia feel too much like levels in a videogame and it starts to become a bit repetitive after a certain point, whereas every area and situation in Another World (even the filler area they threw in for the 16-bit console ports) all have a unique feel to them.

That's kind of exactly what I meant though. Another World is a very cinematic game, but it gets extremely tedious very fast, and just isn't very enjoyable as a video game, relying almost exclusively on boring gunfights or trial-and-error traps to challenge the player.
Prince of Persia is very much a video game at its core, and not much else. There's a cinematic experience to it, but it's not what is driving the game.

Quote:
I might revisit it one of these days along with Nosferatu if I can get it for cheap.

Nosferatu is cool. It's not a "good" game, but it's absolutely appealing, and looks very good. It's less "schizophrenic" like the others I mentioned, but it's also nowhere near the level of polish and solid design that PoP sports.

Quote:
I was surprised to find out Jaffar was just a regular swordsman in the original versions of the game. I always assumed he was always a magician, but that was apparently something they added to the Japanese PC and console ports.

Jaffar was always an evil sorceror judging by the game's plot. But keep in mind this was a personal one-man project at its original inception, and building in completely new mechanics and assets just for a final battle was probably out of Jordan Mechner's scope of the time. I feel like the ending of the SNES game is much more in line with what he originally had in mind for the game's villain.
At least the original final "showdown" with your mirror image manages to add a twist to the combat without really requiring a lot of coding or additional asset creations.
Even as a kid when all I had was the MS-DOS version I was actually surprised by the somewhat lackluster final battle.


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