shmups.system11.org

Shmups Forum
 
* FAQ    * Search
 * Register  * Login 
It is currently Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:15 pm View unanswered posts
View active topics



Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 41 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 11:51 am 


User avatar

Joined: 26 Jul 2009
Posts: 7225
Limbrooke wrote:
Superb game and lots of fun as puzzler - one of those one more try games that keeps you coming back.

Calling Kuru Kuru Kururin a "puzzler" keeps rubbing me the wrong way. It's a racer first and foremost, pretty much nothing of a puzzler.
_________________
The rear gate is closed down
The way out is cut off

Image


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:46 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 05 Feb 2007
Posts: 2296
Location: Missouri
JGSS: Japanese Game Show Simulator
_________________
That is Galactic Dancing


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 3:41 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2019
Posts: 375
Location: BW, Germany
Starting from a fresh savegame last weekend, I cleared Kururin Paradise yesterday. This took a little longer than the first game, I'd say about three times as long:

Image


The first difference that catches the eye are the graphics, which are again very lush and charming, but the art style is much more cartoony this time around, with a frequent usage of plain colours, and most objects having bold outlines. It works very well and I appreciate that 8ing went with something a little different. There's a bouquet of nice little touches; in many cases, the crash barriers are not of the generic, brightly flashing kind anymore and blend in better with the stage's leitmotif, even casting shadows at times. On some occasions, the floor is partly or completely transparent, revealing animations below, while objects like balloons, fireworks or tree branches cover parts of the playing field on others.

While these amenities make the game even prettier, I've found that they may take a dash of getting used to, at least for players very familiar with the first game. It feels a little more noisy in comparison and makes navigation a little harder – for example, the shadows could at first spawn a reflex of percieving the passage as being narrower than it actually is. These things are nothing major at all though and finely balanced.

The soundtrack by Atsuhiro Motoyama is generally outstanding and technically does not have to hide itself behind triumphs like The Minish Cap or Golden Sun*, although compositionally (and scope-wise, but that comparison would be unjust; they're completely different genres), it's certainly still a league behind those. The Baron's theme does reappear few times in various alterations towards the end of the game however, and I like the first game's composition just a tad more overall, which I think is due to its slightly wider spectrum and of course completely subjective.


Paradise expands on its predecessor's gameplay mechanics in various well-directed ways, keeping the formula fresh and pleasing those longing for more:

• By holding R, you can rotate twice as fast at will. Using this novel ability is never required, in fact you can complete the game without ever resorting to it. It can make certain sections easier however, because it allows you to "dodge" where you couldn't before, and to smoothly readjust in case you took a bend too early. Most profoundly though, skillful handling will net you much better times, so for the inveterate speeder, this is probably the most important innovation.

• Progression on the world map is nonlinear now; some stages have a second exit, resulting in a junction. The path to this exit is blocked by a gate which can only be opened by finding the corresponding key in another stage. It's still pretty simple since no side roads have more side roads adjacent to them, and the concept is never nested or anything like that.

• You don't collect your siblings via fly-by anymore; instead they hide behind special "top hat" nodes which are each cleared by winning one of twelve mini games (Paradise has an overarching theme of stage magic/mystery, stemming from the team of magicians who kidnapped the siblings this time).

• In addition to the adventure mode and the returning challenge mode, you can play 16 mini games, twelve of which are unlocked by clearing the above-mentioned "top hat" nodes. While I've found that some of them can be fun for a short while, I think these are a mixed bag overall (it also doesn't help that I've seen most of them elsewhere in earlier games) and I'd have favored seeing more regular stages instead.

• There are a few interesting new hazards like ghosts clinging to your rotors, temporarily slowing down your locomotion and rotation, ice floor, quicksand and invisible quicksand/winds.


The stages are decidedly more eccentric broadly speaking, but feel a little less distinct because there is less thematic variance. As it happens to be oftentimes, sequels tend to move away from the general towards the specific, and Paradise is no exception, but who am I to say that in itself this would be a bad thing. :) K³ has 38 adventure and 55 challenge stages, Paradise in contrast has 42 adventure stages (+12 minigames) and 33 challenge stages.

So on paper their circumfences look about on par, but Paradise is a much harder game. I spent around one third of the time clearing the last four stages alone, especially the second one "Finale" and the last one "Curtain Call". The mood of these bonus stages is the antithesis to those of K³. It's more along the lines of: alright, now the game begins. Now let's see if you can clear this! Image The second one has the narrowest and at the same time longest, most relentless passages seen up until now, and the winds in the last one throw large portions of your muscle memory overboard and you have to learn some completely new, counter-intuitive maneuvers from scratch. :lol: The difficulty of which (but also the fun!) isn't well transported through video, you really have to play it for yourself. Clearing those was very satisfying.


Beating the pre-set record times is also a good deal more difficult this time around. Ordered by ascending difficulty, these are called:

K³: (T)eacher Hare, (P)rofessor Hare, (M)aster Hare
Paradise: Teacher Hare, Magic Baron, Kururin's Father

I'd say the Baron's times are about on par with the (M) times in K³. For the father's times, you really have to pull out all the stops: use the turbo whenever possible, the rotation speedup whereever sensible, going for ludicrous shortcuts while taking damage if necessary and chaining everything together perfectly. For now I'm happy that I beat all the Baron's times, though not in one go – I had to revisit a good deal of stages (it says "Baron" next to the player name, these kanji cannot be typed in when starting a savegame. It says "full size" next to it on the file select screen, meaning normal difficulty).

All in all I can only say that Kururin Paradise is an excellent sequel for those who seek more after the first game and I'm very happy that it exists! :)


* Although my top-tier in this regard would belong to games like Mother 3 and Invader


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2020 4:45 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2019
Posts: 375
Location: BW, Germany
Started to slowly make my long and rocky way toward beating all paternal times.

Behind below teaser image is a brief video montage showing some examples of the way stages need to be tackled to that end:

Image
(played on genuine hardware using a gamecube controller, watch in 720p60 if possible)

I'm approaching the stages in sequence and haven't yet reached the later, more elaborate ones, and I have no idea at all how I'm supposed to go about these. After in some cases dozens upon dozens of attempts, I'm inclined to remark that, as is often the case, watching could easily discount the performing. The reward is sweet though, and since most stages are relatively short, it yields frequently, saving - nay - spurring the endeavour!

On that note, would there be any interest in me streaming some of this? I was also thinking about recording a new and improved longplay of the first game in one continuous session, which I could do in the course of that (and would be much more relaxed).


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 7:01 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2019
Posts: 375
Location: BW, Germany
Gnawed away at the remaining fatherly records over the last few days, and finally cleared the last one:

Image
(earlier pics of clearing teacher hare's and baron's times included for completeness sake/to retain the conventional 2x2 montage format)


I stashed a video of the moment here, there's a cut near 0:48 because I took the photo there and didn't want the idle time to bloat the video. The last stage (I went in order) turned out being surprisingly easy, cleared it in just a couple of tries upon pretty embarrassing execution, and there was still a generous time buffer left. The hardest stage for me was maybe the one just before that. The 00'27"20 benchmark just seems really tight on it, unless I missed some non-TAS viable strategy – not only is it particularly cramped, progression's also very cycle-based. If you get yourself stuck between moving parts of the barrier, or just hesitate ever so slightly, your attempt's over. I eventually managed to clear it with a 00'27"18 time. Because the game doesn't pre-set record times for them, the four Neo Land stages don't have to be tackled again, neither do the Lv11 challenge stages.

Just like in the first game, you don't get anything further for clearing all pre-set record times besides the brief cutscene and the new name affix. The journey's the reward! :) Was a lot of fun. It always piques my interest when individual attempts go by really fast while the underlying gameplay concept is interesting, well designed, and easy-to-grasp-hard-to-master. The Kururin games are a prime example of that, where, in the spirit of a good arcade game, improving your records can get surprisingly addictive due to the potential of depth arising from a plethora of subtle, well-balanced details.

Here's a translation of what gets said in the final cutscene (it's nothing mind-blowing):
Spoiler: show
Father:

Kururin, well done
You have surpassed your father!

Kururin:

Dad!
How? That's a little amazing!

Father:

Very well done!

This is it.
There's nothing else I could tell you.
(I hope I got that somewhat right)

Now don't slack off, keep honing your skills!

Kururin:

Thank you, dad!
I will do my best!



Next stop: Image ?

I don't know...


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Sat May 30, 2020 11:45 am 



Joined: 09 Apr 2012
Posts: 2362
Didn't you say you haven't played Kururin Squash? You really should, it's a good game. Not as good as the GBA games of course...


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Mon Jun 01, 2020 8:23 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2019
Posts: 375
Location: BW, Germany
Truth to be told, even on the surface it'd be hard to imagine turning one's back on the final game of the series at this point.

I guess I'm just overly careful with holding out the prospect, while in actuality it may already have been decided ;o


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:29 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2019
Posts: 375
Location: BW, Germany
Something arrived in the mail :D

Image

Really looking forward to playing it, will be a while before I'll be able to though.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:37 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 10 May 2007
Posts: 12795
Location: SODOM
Nice. :smile: Japanese GCN slipcases are so cute!
_________________
Image
STOMP 'EM IN THE NUTS
[THE MIRAGE OF MIND] Metal Black ST [THE MASSACRE] Gun.Smoke ST [TRAGEDY FLAME]


Top
 Online Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:24 pm 


User avatar

Joined: 14 Aug 2019
Posts: 375
Location: BW, Germany
Definitely! I knew they were smaller, but this was the first time I've seen one not-on-photo up close, so I was still a bit surprised when I unpacked it. :mrgreen:


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Kururin series (GBA/GC)
PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2020 1:25 am 


User avatar

Joined: 26 Jan 2005
Posts: 7528
Location: MD
First time I bought a JP GC game was also when I first realized that the Game Boy Player disc uses the JP style case. Too bad Drill Land had that save issue.


Top
 Offline Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 41 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: BIL, Immryr, Monstermug and 12 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Space Pilot 3K template by Jakob Persson
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group