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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 8:12 pm 


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Happy page 300 buds Image

Okay, imma let rip. Image Index post here. It's a bit bare ATM - just getting the basic skeleton filled out with major game entries, then I'll start adding links to individual posts, plus filling out the deeper cuts (this last step will probably be an ad-hoc thing, thread's grown into a big bugger!). I think it's better to post it near the bottom of 299, rather than the top of 300, so passers-by aren't doomed to scroll down past it erreh time. :cool:

*For now, I'm going to group distinct games that share names, as well as originals and their conversions, under a single heading. EG:

Ninja Ryukenden [AC/FC/PCE] AKA: Ninja Gaiden
[AC]
>posts
[FC]
>posts
[PCE]
>posts

Double Dragon II: The Revenge [AC/FC/MD/PCE]
[AC]
>posts
[FC]
>posts
[MD]
>posts
[PCE]
>posts

While I know this isn't strictly accurate - particularly in the case of a radically differing conversion like DDIIFC - I think it'll be more efficient and mousewheel-friendly. Anyone looking for a specific version will find it under the umbrella entry. Meanwhile, it'll avoid having two, three or more entries for widespread games.

If it's an avowed original game (EG: Top Secret - Hitler no Fukkatsu), or a collection containing an individually-listed game (EG: Ninja Ryukenden Tomoe), or if it's a game that goes by a unique name in some region (EG: Haunted Castle, Castlevania IV), they'll have their own entries.

I know this may be controversial, so do let me know if it's a bad idea - it may well be. :lol: Trying to balance ease of referencing with minimal scrolling.

*For naming format, I'm going to go with [JP Name] [System] [US Name] [EU Name].

*To aid with readability, I'm also going to add icons for 1CC writeups (commentary from a "game clear" perspective), strategy guides (specifically detailed gameplay advice) and system library reviews.

Needless to say, nothing's set in stone, and this index will inevitably be tweaked extensively over the coming months and years. Lemme know what you guys think, and thanks for keeping this thread going excellently! Image
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 11:08 pm 


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It doesn't even feel that long since I remarked on the thread reaching 200 pages. :)

Grouping by name seems fine to me and so does the naming scheme (I was gonna propose that the other regional titles be appended).

I don't know how much you've indexed already, but would you like me to index the posts that happened since my last update to the provisional index? Besides those, the (temp) index is mostly missing everything before it was posted.

Anyway, happy to see that it is finally underway. Just let me know if you need any kind of assistance. :wink:


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sat Feb 08, 2020 11:58 pm 


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We're still going to the right.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:30 am 


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And we'll likely never stop. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:59 am 


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Oh, such a monogatari.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 7:23 am 


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__SKYe wrote:
Anyway, happy to see that it is finally underway. Just let me know if you need any kind of assistance. :wink:


Thanks. :smile:

I think for now, I'm going to file series under shared headings, chronologically. Roughly:

Akumajou Dracula (Series) AKA: Castlevania

Akumajou Dracula [FDS] AKA Castlevania
>posts

Dracula II [FDS] AKA Castlevania II: Simon's Quest
>posts

Akumajou Dracula [AC] AKA Haunted Castle
>posts

Same for stuff that's not a "series" per se, but shares a consistent namesake, EG: Ninja Ryukenden. I dislike the word "franchise," but it makes sense here. (reminds me of a nice fat BK Whopper - which I do like! - but not in association with MAH PASSION Image)

Here's the header for now:

Index Header wrote:
Yellow text indicates an individual game. Green text indicates a series or franchise; individual members will be found under these headings, in rough chronological order.


The alphabetisation might get a bit wild with stuff like Makaimura / Dai / Chou / Goku, but it'll look cool, and that's a price I'm willing to pay. :cool: :lol: EDIT: Hmm. On second thoughts, may go with alphabetical order there - will be easier than requiring the viewer to know the series' release history.

Mortificator wrote:
Oh, such a monogatari.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:01 am 


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That's probably for the best, actually.

Grouping by series is probably most useful for those who are not yet familiar with many games and/or are simply browsing for something to read. Some people may recognize the series but not all the titles.
Those who are familiar with most (all?) games likely already know what they're searching for, so the sorting style isn't too important, as long as it is consistent.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:12 pm 


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I don't think sorting by release date within a series will make the index any less accessible to the average reader. If anything, it's more intuitive. Besides, it seems weird to organize a list of Japanese names in Latin alphabetical order. At least use a Japanese (あ -> い -> う or radical and stroke order) ordering scheme.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:12 pm 


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I feel like whatever games I can help on are the type that anyone here can do a short write up about. Maybe Kung Fu Master/Spartan X and Vigilante?

Edit - Might be able to do one for Bionic Commando Rearmed too. Oh and Katana Zero if anyone cares:D
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 6:17 pm 


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It's pretty much a loose index of stuff posted over the years - if you'd like anything listed, lemme know. :smile: Needless to say, anything written going forward is welcome too! Once I've gotten the backlog chopped down, it'll be a lot simpler to just update the index every month or so.

I think you were posting on Spartan X's arcade version a couple years back? I remember I was inspired to mess with the FC's Game B loops... these are also posts I'll be including, come to think of 'em. Image

EDIT: oh dear god what was I doing Image

Image

I'm gonna call it a day in a bit, got the basic layout down and can start plugging in games, series and posts this week. Tons to add, should fatten up nicely! It'll always be a bit rudimentary, but then it's a simple text directory for an inherently lazy, comfy old couch of a thread. That's how I've always seen it, anyway. :cool:
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 11:51 pm 


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Anyone notice Astro Port has a new game out on Steam? It looks pretty guud. https://store.steampowered.com/app/1177640/ROCKETRON/


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:10 am 


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That one originally came out a little ways back, but yeah, it just arrived on Steam a few days ago.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:37 am 


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damn i might be down to write about Alien Soldier :0
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 10:42 am 


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Speaking of AS, along with "Guide Image" "1CC / 1LC" (where'd I leave that Mario coin sprite...) and "System Library" icons, and probably something for AESTHETIC, I'm gonna add "HAWT Image" for the occasional contentious yet informative internet dance battle that blew up over the years. Truly, the opposite of love is not hate but indifference. :lol:

(here is my tentative shortlist for aesthetic links :oops: ^_~

Spoiler: show
Image Image Image
Image Image


I probably went a bit too far huh :shock: Stil frames and single-line only, I promise! Image
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:16 pm 



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Just coming in to say:

FUCKING AWESOME!!!

Love the thread index. Love it. What a gold mine this thread is, and now finally with a mine shaft.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Tue Feb 11, 2020 4:46 pm 


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Haha, that's a good way to put it. :mrgreen:

Just realised I've never posted my Castlevania Loop 2 CATACOMB KILLER on the forum. Copying its description in here, to avoid linking straight to Youtube.

---

A Necessary Document
Akumajou Dracula: HOW 2 LOOP CATACOMBS
v1.0 / 2020 Biruford Press, 99 Tinkletowne Crescent, Weewillehwinkeh BLVD

Image

"OMG, WHO CANT DO THE CATACOMBS ROFL"

YOU can't, noob! ImageWhile the first loop's ain't shit, the second's become total Memoriser Bullshit™ on account of the altered Fishman spawning.

"OH NAWW! PLS HALP"

TBH I don't fully understand it myself. Image

"NAW PLS"

However, I can survive it consistently! Here is a video of my safe route. It was played on Vs. Castlevania, but it works perfectly on the FDS, NES and FC versions. Image

From Video Description:

Stage 29 is the game's most rehearsal-heavy stretch by far. I've recorded three consecutive demos, to showcase not only my current route, but also the slight differences that can arise due to input variation. Please read on for the route's vital points. Although there's still stuff here I don't fully understand, as long as I follow the general outline, I consistently succeed.

Goals beyond "don't die" are 1: Keep Holy Water for boss, and 2: Don't get hit, because VSC's damage scale don't play!

0:00 - Hold [right] on the pad, so you'll hit the ground running. Nab the Large Heart and Stopwatch from their respective candles. Jump straight onto the raft.

0:06 - Use the Stopwatch around this point. Get onto dry land and fight off the bat and fishmen. The time spent doing this seems to ensure the later raft will be waiting for me. Might be superfluous, but at this point I'm fine with it.

0:14 - Use the Stopwatch again, timed so you'll collect the Holy Water as shown. The raft will arrive shortly - jump on. Note the fishman that spawns on the far right - you don't want him doing that when you get close. Again, these steps may be superfluous but they produce consistent success, so I'll keep 'em for now.

0:22 - Get onto the alcove. I jump in an attempt to spawn the bat high, so it won't pester me while I'm on the raft. If it spawns low, it's possible to whip or Holy Water it. Note the fishman above - generally you can just improv around him as shown, he shouldn't impede your getting onto the raft.

0:30 - Shift to the far left side of the raft and stay there. This is important and will set up the rest of the sequence.

0:35 - Jump onto the final raft as shown, and keep to its right side. As shown, you're home free at this point.

---

Well, reasonably home-free. As shown, you can't doze off, or the very last Fishman will get you. However, it's a relatively comfy jump onto safe ground. I'm gonna revisit VsC's loop soon, and will update this with any new findings. Already stress-tested it with a couple runs late into the loop, but you never know. Image
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed Feb 12, 2020 12:43 am 


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That middle section between the moving platforms is always the killer for me. Do you know how much RNG is involved with the spawns? I'm pretty sure the answer is none as long as you can route consistently, but I still get some unpredictable results from time to time that end up with me merc'd by a fishman spawn either dropping down from the rocks above or harpooning me from below during the platform switch. Still, I'm pretty confident that with perfect execution you can manipulate the spawns in such a way that the fishmen will never get near you.

edit - PS, nice recovery on the fleaman spawn! I always panic when I miss one, but you timed the hopover with elan and grace.
edit2 - can you post your routes for loop1 bat bridge and clock tower? Those are my biggest obstacles for the 1LC right now.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed Feb 12, 2020 3:25 am 


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it290 wrote:
Do you know how much RNG is involved with the spawns? I'm pretty sure the answer is none as long as you can route consistently, but I still get some unpredictable results from time to time that end up with me merc'd by a fishman spawn either dropping down from the rocks above or harpooning me from below during the platform switch. Still, I'm pretty confident that with perfect execution you can manipulate the spawns in such a way that the fishmen will never get near you.


I think so too. The following is strictly conjecture - I could be totally off. But since it always works for me, FWIW, I think there are three active elements: Bats, Fishmen and Rafts. All work slightly differently, but ultimately, they're fully controllable via player input.

> Bats will spawn regularly throughout most of the catacomb, attacking from the direction you're facing.

> Fishmen will "wake up" when you're in the vicinity of their candle, and erupt a short time later. Loop 1's are timed to miss, Loop 2's to kill.

> Rafts seem to move on a global timer, so as long as I'm consistent, they'll be where I want them. This is why I make a point of killing the Fishman trio and Bat on the first island stop; it's practical and easily-repeated, since they'll always be in more or less the same positions.

Quote:
edit - PS, nice recovery on the fleaman spawn! I always panic when I miss one, but you timed the hopover with elan and grace.


Good eye! :smile: I really like that escape, planned on giffing it as a model example of the game's signature "twitch/method" style. Fleamen are relentless backstabbers, but when faced head-on, will always go for an anti-air leap. So standing your ground as shown is a reliable emergency escape.

BERUMONDO NO OUGI 0061: HOTPANTS DAISAKUSEN (・`W´・)
Spoiler: show
Image


Works on Akumajou Densetsu's KEMONO no USAGI, too! However they have more self-respect and will run off eventually.
Spoiler: show
Image


And as it so often does, Ninja Gaiden plays doppelganger to CV - its fleamen will always miss a retreating player:
Spoiler: show
Image


^ Not-Fleaman, Not-Ghost, Not-Skeleton - it's like a CV1 tribute gig Image

Quote:
edit2 - can you post your routes for loop1 bat bridge and clock tower? Those are my biggest obstacles for the 1LC right now.


Stage 6's bridge and tower are horribly cruel if allowed to get out of hand, but they're also pretty route-able. Currently, I always get the Stopwatch. It's nice to reach Dracula with x3 Cross and a ton of ammo, but given how dangerously random his first form is, I prefer to have max HP.

For the bridge, it's critical that you hold [up-left] right from Frame 1 (I do it from the map screen), up until it's time to make the first jump. This'll ensure the first bat plays nice. I tend to get some minor RNG with the remainders, I'm guessing due to frame-specific input variance, but with the Stopwatch and a bit of nerve I'm usually fine. Main risks are a trailing fireball from one of the middle bats, and sudden charges from the last couple, but all can be improvised around.

Here's the same run's second loop bridge for comparison (I'm pretty sure stages 5 and 6 are identical across loops).

For the tower, once the opening Skeleton skirmishes are taken care of, it's pretty much set in stone. Here's Loop 1, and Loop 2. Main concern is not going too far left while dispatching the skeleton duo - if you trigger EAGLEMANIA early, it's gonna get ugly! If I've taken one of my two allotted hits (Vs. Castlevania), I'll grab the wallmeat to the right of the stairs down in the first Eagle area.

It's probably possible to consistently route the Boney-Kun Tag Team, too. I always bait their downstairs colleague over the pit for easy dispatch. I've never been quite bothered enough to try, though. Despite having two Famicom no-miss attempts end by falling down the stairs while fighting them. :lol: I kinda like the spike of RNG danger in an otherwise hard-routed stage, before the real RNG peril of Dracula mk1.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Wed Feb 12, 2020 4:44 am 


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Thanks — I'll have to try that tower strat. Stopwatch makes so much sense there. The bats are often a run killer for me, but when I get the timing right I can generally pass through unscathed as you've demonstrated, but Eaglemania is usually my downfall as I've been to fixated on keeping my subweapons. Just have to remind myself that Drac is eminently doable with a whip if need be as long as one keeps cool, and that getting past the tower is infinitely more important. I never really struggle with the skeletons, the first guy is easy to bait and I find the tag team quite manageable.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 7:46 pm 


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The greatest thread in the internet. Here's to another 300 and more.

Thanks to BIL for the curation and enthusiastic and in-depth contributions, also to everyone else involved as well.

Once things settle down for me, I would like to give my fair share of contributions as well, maybe starting with Kenseiden, a nice samurai/horror-themed sidescroller for the Master System.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 10:11 pm 


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Nice index, that's going to be pretty useful to parse through this goldmine of info, runs and tips. And good idea on putting it at the top of the first post!

If you want to add stuff for Nazo no Murasame-Jo, I previously posted a 2-ALL here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FkkzfOEuWRY
No idea if the comments on the game from my description are going to be useful or not, but here they are in any case :
Spoiler: show
Nazo no Murasame-Jo is a really cool game (just like most of the games I record runs for, I know lol) coming straight from Nintendo. Some of the guys there thought something like "Hey, we have this Zelda game engine. Why not also use it to create a samurai action game?"

And the result is a fast-paced arcade-style game with tons of ninjas out there to kill you running all over the place. You have a projectile weapon (daggers, windmill sword or fireballs), and a close-range sword attack that triggers automatically when an enemy is close, or when a shuriken is in front of you so you can stop it like an action movie hero.

On top of that, you have a special weapon with three uses. It can either be a cloak of temporary invisibility or a smart-bomb like thunder. The thunder is a lot more useful. Those items can be replenished by pcking up hidden items in the stages.

Speaking of stages, there are 5 of them and they have two phases : first is the castle grounds where you have to find the entrance, and the following is the castle itself where you have a boss to defeat by the end. The level layouts are small labyrinths, but they remain mostly linear hopefully. Only the last boss's hideout is a bit different as its "castle" is very short and linear.

There are no puzzles in this game, though many of the items (spread shot, speed sandals, water sandals, etc.), are hidden in specific locations, so you can make your life easier when you remember those locations. The life replensihing items in particular are good because you only have 3 hit points per stage portion. You can also see in the run that I abuse the fact that the items respawn when you leave the screen and come back, so if you make a mistake you can come back, though be careful of the timer.

The run itself was far from what I can do at my best, and there's billions of stupid deaths in the second loop, but the game gives you tons of lives if you exploit the bonus phase before a castle. My very basic "algorithm" in that phase is as follows :

1) Hit the top right statue
2a) If it is a life-up item, I hit the top left and bottom right statues
2b) If it is a talisman, i hit the bottom row statues

Upon reaching the third loop, I kill my remaining lives on purpose because endless loops are not my cup of tea and I don't think the difficulty even increases at this point anymore.

Unlike Zelda, this game will remain obscure for years, as its famciom disk System version wasn't released outside Japan, and neither did the Famicom Mini version on the GBA. Takamaru himself would mostly appear in cameos and as an NPC in some Nintendo games, though he was playable in Samurai Warriors 3 on the Wii and even had a campaign in that game with a storyline based on this game. It is pretty nice, though I have yet to kill that mode's final boss.

Played on NEStopia, recorded with OBS Studio.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:57 am 


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bottino wrote:
Once things settle down for me, I would like to give my fair share of contributions as well, maybe starting with Kenseiden, a nice samurai/horror-themed sidescroller for the Master System.


Kenseiden is good stuff! I think a lot of its contemporaries (like Dracula II) could've benefited from its no-grind, all-action ARPGing. Want more moves? Seek and destroy! I also liked Order of Ecclesia adopting a very similar map system. :mrgreen:

M.Knight wrote:
If you want to add stuff for Nazo no Murasame-Jo, I previously posted a 2-ALL here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FkkzfOEuWRY
No idea if the comments on the game from my description are going to be useful or not, but here they are in any case :


Excellent, thanks!
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:31 pm 


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Excited to see this index panning out. Great job, BIL!

BIL wrote:
Well done! I still haven't summoned the will to break that traditional Metal Slug endgame hellspike.

You won't have any trouble reaching MS3's final mission, though in appropriately climactic form, it's IIRC as long as the preceding four combined (though not if you factor in all their alternate paths), and loaded with deadly setpieces. I've a love/hate relationship with it - there's stuff I'd condense heavily, but I'm glad it turned out the way it did. The exhaustion of a clear feels especially germane with the titanic struggle and sacrifices depicted onscreen. :mrgreen: "ALL ABOUT LOVE" is debatably paced, but there's no denying the affection Nazca/SNK put into the last hurrah. Image


Thanks! I just cleared up to the final stage for the first time (lost two lives to Sol Dae Rokker, lost my third to a stupid mistake near the end of the first Mars People hallway). It's definitely an extravagant game, even moreso than 1 or X. My impressions are pretty preliminary, but I do feel like MS3 has some of the best fights in the series up to this point. The brief fight with soldiers, helicopters, and zombies in stage 2, the skirmishes near the factory elevators in stage 3, and stage 4's desert and pyramid ascent are all series highlights, the likes of which are only occasionally matched by the previous games' highest points like MSX's train tunnel battle or its fight with Allen. A lot of great, volatile action there. (Scenarios like stage 3's bridge fight and, to some extent, the absurd Japanese soldiers section seem pretty great too, but I haven't tried seriously learning them.) If I had to make a complaint, stage 2 mostly doesn't live up to the rest of the game (as in X, really) - you really do a lot of annoying plinking away at zombies with the handgun there, though there are still interesting moments, and my practice runs through the final stage have me thinking it doesn't have as many intense action setpieces as the previous stages either (and the mothership shmup section is a bit overlong too, but that might bother me less). I can't really say how I feel about it compared to X, but at least at the moment I think it's a great game. Maybe further learning of the final stage will change my opinion one way or the other.

Mortificator wrote:
Good job with X! You got all the Metal Slug bonuses too, I'd be tempted to finish off some bosses via frontal attack. I'd put this game at the top of the series.

Concerning Metal Slug 3, stage 2 has zombification & de-zombification options right before the monoeye aliens. There are runs out there where players speedkill them with precision vomit, but getting off one blood stream and going human is enough for me. The stage 4 boss can be borderline unfair when you draw the yellow bullet attack with a bad random pattern. And some stuff in stage 5's mothership you can't really anticipate, it'll almost certainly get you the first time. Unless you're super-strict on your one-credit rule some practice via the debug menu checkpoint warp will let you learn it without suffering through the preceding bloat each run.


The monoeye fight did give me trouble for a while, but I've started getting it down. I'm not really confident in the zombie vomit strategy (even getting off one blast and then escaping feels dicey) but I've gotten better at sussing out when best to unload my accumulated grenades to end that phase as quickly as possible. I really don't mind the fight, but I do feel like if you do it head on without trying to subvert it, it's surprisingly nasty for a stage 2 boss. (Though it's nothing compared to Metal Slug 4's, as my cursory first few credits have shown.)

The stage 4 boss is definitely pretty absurd. I don't think I've ever gotten away from him without at least one death (and even that is uncommon). I know there's a big element of luck in that fight, but in the event you do get his horrible gold needles, what's a good strategy to employ? I've tried going to the edge and jumping, but it feels like it might be a little safer to hang out around the middle or something.

And yeah, I felt similarly. It was really tempting to have the mech self-destruct to end MSX's stage 2 boss early every time - the points you get for preserving the mech hardly matter, but I felt like I couldn't just sacrifice the score bonus for style points.

--

I've been playing Ninja Spirit, too. Making it to stage 6 with some regularity but still consistently getting blown out there. Practice runs and credit-feeding have seen me make my way through the stage a decent number of times, but never actually on a real credit - it's tough to work out the proper strategies in the middle of that chaos. Mostly just bringing it up in order to have an excuse to post this art, since there was some discussion on Tsukikage earlier in the thread.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 10:24 pm 


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bottino wrote:
The greatest thread in the internet. Here's to another 300 and more.

Thanks to BIL for the curation and enthusiastic and in-depth contributions, also to everyone else involved as well.

Once things settle down for me, I would like to give my fair share of contributions as well, maybe starting with Kenseiden, a nice samurai/horror-themed sidescroller for the Master System.


I played a shit ton of Kenseiden as a kid. Great and under rated.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 9:16 am 


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I just had to dig up Randorama's excellent write-up of the Pang! series. Could we add this to the index? :)

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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:45 pm 


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Most definitely, that one's been shortlisted since it was posted. :mrgreen: I'm about 80% of the way through the links Skye and I collected, will be done by the end of the week. After that, I'm gonna use March to give the thread (and the associated ones referenced in the Appendix) a page-by-page comb-through, as there's a ton of discussion that it'd be good to file under "GD."

EDIT: a ton of stand-alone Review / ST posts as well! It was really just a quick browse / recollection I did, the first time around... even that yielded armloads of material.

Sir Ilpalazzo wrote:
I've been playing Ninja Spirit, too. Making it to stage 6 with some regularity but still consistently getting blown out there. Practice runs and credit-feeding have seen me make my way through the stage a decent number of times, but never actually on a real credit - it's tough to work out the proper strategies in the middle of that chaos.


An honourable pursuit. Image One of the great sidescrolling scenes of war, cruel and capricious! It's for these subjects that I've added the "Journal [1] - [5]" category. Here's my most recent entry (I think...) on the carnage engima of Saigo Stage Six. Will formalise it soon.

TLDR: I've come to regard 6-1 as the deadlier half. Both are humming with aerial interference that the POW Kusarigama will near-subconciously swat away. As to the ground forces: 6-2's bulldozing Ryuichi2 + Ghost setups are intimidating at first, but they (along with any accompanying Monks) are very controllable via fakeout jumps, along with strategically sparing Ghost so he won't respawn up ahead at the worst moment. Don't overlook the featherlight height and momentum controls, they're critical.

6-1's Ryuichi1s and Monks, OTOH, can collectively punish the hell out of seemingly deft evades, requiring constant vigilance and swift improv. I always breathe a sigh of relief when I make it to the "beach," that long stretch of sand.

Wait fuck that was supposed to be a TLDR! This damn game! :shock: :lol: TLDR: 6-2 is imposing but more controllable. 6-1 is formless and deceptively punishing. This is war, survival is your responsibility. Image

Quote:
Mostly just bringing it up in order to have an excuse to post this art, since there was some discussion on Tsukikage earlier in the thread.


Very cool - I like the grimly realistic yet still unmistakably stylised take on Tsukikage. Coincidentally, I'm watching the superbly batshit Baki (2018) atm (perfectly described via YT comment as "Ippo's Bizarre Adventure"). The kusarigama is a nasty piece of work, and it appears in both "real-world" and Saigo styles. Not for nothing, the latter user is a Tsukikage-styled Uberninja. :cool:
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 3:24 pm 


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bottino wrote:
The greatest thread in the internet. Here's to another 300 and more.


Hear, hear.

I'm happy I was able to contribute a small portion of info apparently. :") I suppose should go back and edit that original Wild West C.O.W. Boys of Moo Mesa post to include links to the 2-ALLs of both versions.
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:36 pm 


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While I'm not really qualified to speak, it strikes me from videos and BIL's expert accounts that Saigo is (esp. in stage 6) perhaps one of the "shmup-iest" of action platformers---extreme vertical mobility, high destructive power/range, highly aerial enemy attacks whose changing configuration is the main concern, terrain being reduced to an afterthought and barely present. The "after-image" ninjas make the fighting even more flexible and loosely-tethered to actual human combat. (They have been used to good effect in pure-platformers as well, albeit as an obstacle---see N++).

I don't really have a point, except that there's this combined extravagance and austerity at work; it feels like a strong vision that could shift players' tastes and expectations in the genre.


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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:49 pm 


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In terms of player/enemy balance, it's absolutely STGesque - the swarming zako, the lumbering heavies, and the blistering firepower that atomises and shatters respectively. I wonder about Contra's influence, and perhaps Kyuukyoku Tiger's. Kage X Contra, a step nearer the raging catharsis of KT's blue spread. The classic "vulcan" that's both macro flyswat and micro sledgehammer, roles blurring in the heat of battle. Saigo's shuriken are an obvious parallel, but the ethos is just as vivid in the sword and kusarigama. Experience forges a near-unconscious trust in the scything doom - the kind modern STGs often task the player with channelling into score. Much like KT opposite Raiden DX, here there is no holding back. Image

I don't have the luxury of watching you die, with Ryuichi-san trying to cut my head off, but I'm sure you all did your best up there. Image
Spoiler: show
Image


Appropriately enough, trading coverage for DPS creates exactly the dilemma an STG veteran would expect. Bullets! Dodging! WTF! Also, dig Ryuichi going for gold, only to step on a landmine. Situational awareness, you need it!

Spoiler: show
Image


The shadows scream Gradius, of course. They're given an interesting spin by gravity, the one-way Y axis making vertical formations innately valuable. Warning: A Huge Battle Skeleton Is Just Kinda Chillin' Out.

Spoiler: show
Image


Don't try this without a shield!
Spoiler: show
Image


Don't try this with a shield.
Spoiler: show
Image


...the latter dovetailing nicely into Rank control being a significant game element, haha. I'm sure it's in other non-STGs, but this is the only one that comes to mind offhand.

Maximalist/minimalist is an excellent way to put it - this extends to the terrain and its influence on the action. Outside of the deliberately irregular fifth stage, Saigo isn't a platformer per se. However, in true martial fashion, topography and footing are critical - especially in stage 6. With the raging RNG and one-hit kills, leaving the ground and thus forfeiting your jump isn't to be done carelessly. Approaching a shoal brings with it the spectre of an onrushing heavy, one that'll happily kill you mid-jump. Clambering up (just walk straight in - even the huge rocks can be thus traversed) preserves your jump, but it's slower, and death is perpetually encroaching... it looks trivial from a distance, but making landfall here is just as adrenalising as Dracula's Treachery Platforming™.

Meanwhile, Monks and Ryuichis are bound to their pathfinding AI - unlike Tsuki, their jumps know no moderation. If one's approaching a shoal as you disembark, consider letting them vault harmlessly over your head. 6-2's Ryuichi mkIIs and their lethal jumpslash turn its stones into into launchpads - ones that can work for or against, depending on tactical improv. Ghost doesn't respect terrain at all, bulldozing in for the kill - this too can be turned around, if you keep the rotting behemoth trudging after you at safe distance! Tactical Wilderness Action. Image
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 Post subject: Re: Ninja Gaiden [NES] + Scrolling Action Monogatari
PostPosted: Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:21 pm 


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Is it even possible to clear Rolling Thunder 1's third stage on the second loop without hitting the time limit once? At first you think you made it, only to find that they just tacked an entire stage at the end which just keeps going while the time keeps ticking.
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