Tuesday, 31 July 2018

My Retro Purchases July 2018

I started my retro purchasing on the 5th of July, when I picked up Tecmo world wrestling for the NES cart only for £2.50 and fight night round 2 for the original Xbox complete for £1.

While I was on holiday at the seaside I picked up  Warzone 2100 (Value Series) for the PlayStation complete for £1, Fluid for the PlayStation complete for £1, Star Trek: Invasion for the PlayStation complete for £1 and TOCA Touring Car Championship for the PlayStation complete for £. I think it would have been around the 13th but I didn't bother making a note of the fact I had gotten them until I got back home on the 16th so not exactly sure when I got them but it was from a weird little shop which mostly seemed to  repair disability scooters but had side lines in all kinds of other kinds of bits of this and that.

 On the 18th I I grabbed Yu-Gi-Oh The Falsebound Kingdom for Gamecube boxed with manual for £15, yeah it was from a CEX but I asked to see the disc first and checked that everything was genuine no reprinted fronts or anything like that. I have to admit I honestly don't get why people harp on about them doing that so much, seriously if your into your retro games then don't you look long and hard at what your looking at investing in before you do it? On the same day I also nipped into a charity shop and got Robot Warlords for the PS2 complete for 50pence.

On the 22nd I grabbed  Motorbike King complete for the PS2 for 10pence and Kickboxing Knockout for the PS1 missing manual for 50pence, yeah neither of them are titles which will set the world on fire but I kind of have a soft spot for some of the cheap budget stuff you could get your hands on for the playstation and playstation 2.

On the 25th I recieved Thunder Pro Wreslting Gaiden for the Sega Megadrive Japanese through the post it is complete and including postage it cost me £10 . I have meant to grab this for awile as its basically the megadrves version of Fire Pro Wrestling and from what I hear it was nearly turned into an American wrestling game called Jesse "The Body" Ventura Wrestling Superstars. I also went into a charity shop and grabbed WWE Crush Hour for the Gamecube complete for 15pence, Sensible Soccer 2006 complete for the ps2 for 15pence and Disney's stitch experiment 626 boxed but missing manual for 15pence.
I finished the month of today by grabbing Tatsunoko Vs Capcom, Kirby Epic Yarn, and The Legend of Spyro dawn of the dragon for wii all complete for £18 and then popping into a charity shop and getting Mercenaries 2 for the ps2 complete for £1 and Air Raid 3 for the PS2 complete for £1.
 So this month in total I spent £54.05 which I am actually pretty happy with as I have been trying to limit the amount of stuff I buy and have actually resisted buying a lot of things. I am a little bit dissapointed that this blog seems to have decended into little more than a place where I talk about my recent purchases. I fully admit the place has been very low on content for the last few months and if anyone follows me I appologise. In all honesty I think I have burned myself out a little bit. I was reviewing games and making YouTube videos and had become involved in a podcast all during which time I was trying my best to be there for others, hopefully things will turn around a little bit in another month or so.

Thursday, 12 July 2018

150 SNES games reviewed #37: Spindizzy Worlds

Spindizzy Worlds is a puzzle game published by Activision, originally released on the Amiga and Atari ST in 1990, which was then ported to the SNES by Ascii Entertainment. 

The game is a sequel to the 1986 video game Spindizzy which was released on early home computers such as the Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, etc . Spindizzy Worlds uses an isometric view, and the player controls a robotic device named GERALD (who looks like a yellow spinning top). His name is an acronymn for Geographical Environmental Reconnaissance And Land Mapping Device. The idea of this game is to explore a star system before it is destroyed, collecting the jewel like icons there as you go.

The best way to think of this game is as a less cutsey prototype of Super Monkey Ball, which features a yellow spinning robot instead of a trapped simian. Now take that image and push the graphics back about 10 years from Monkey Ball and you will be pretty darn close to what is on offer here.

Gerald will spin everywhere you direct it – but you’ll have a tough time getting it to stop at first, meaning you’re going to go shooting off of this and that platform, you’re going to get half way up a ramp and fall off, and you’re possibly going to do it again and again. Going up and down elevators is hard because no matter how careful you think you’re being, or how softly you think you’re using your fingers, sometimes you will find that you just cant seem to hold the little blighter in place long enough. The trick to this is Gerald travels at around his medium speed, if you try the face buttons then you will soon learn that one of them if held makes him go faster and another acts as a sort of brake or slow movement button.

A lot of this game kind of relies on you knowing when to go quickly and when to slow down, and of course once you think you have the hang of this the game will decide to give you a treacherous task to perform and decide to up the ante by making you have to do it quickly. Of course, this stops the game from becoming a cakewalk once you think you have gotten the hang of things, but it can also cause the game to get incredibly frustrating and I wouldn’t be surprised if there are not people who have torn there own hair out in flights of swearing and frustration. However I have seen people play this like they have some kind of neural link with the bloody game. Just like in Super Monkey Ball there are some players who with the right amount of practice manage to get so in tune with the controls and Gerald’s strengths and limitations that they can turn this in to a form of video game ballet and it becomes amazing to watch. Players like this are a rarity though. Most people will bounce around like a mad spinning top shooting off the sides or crawling at the pace of a snail and I think that in a way this makes this a hard game to show footage of. I am not saying that I am incredibly bad at this game or anything but I am quiet a shaky person mostly due to medication I am on for epilepsy, so I hardly make this kind of thing look graceful.

The graphics and sound are both adequate but that’s the best I can say about them. They don’t really add anything much to the game. For me this game is a bit of a Marmite game, you will either love it or hate it. If you want a fun challenging puzzle game then it might be worth giving it a whack but I would only recommend this if you have played the living hell out of things such as Monkey Ball, Kororinpa and Marble Madness and simply need more of that kind of game. If you decide you want a crack at this game you can get it online with a cartridge-only PAL copy going for around £7 which I would say is quite a fair price for this title. My copy is boxed but not in the best of shape and in all honesty I cant remember where the heck I got it from, or when I even got it.

I would give this game six out of 10, but like I said I think it is a real Marmite game. I can see some people saying it deserves eight and I can equally imagine people calling it a poor sliding mess and claiming six is far too generous, and that they would have given it three. If you like puzzle games maybe give it a bash but I can promise you that if you don’t usually like this kind of thing then this game will not be the one to change your mind.

Monday, 2 July 2018

My Retro Purchases June 2018

I started my months purchases on the 6th of June with Thunder Birds Japanese cart only for the SNES arriving in the post, it cost me £3, postage was free so I think this was a pretty good pick up. I also went in a semi local retro shop on the way home from work and grabbed Sonic 2 for game gear cart only for £1.

On the 8th I went to an Indy store and I grabbed Gauntlet 2 cart and manual for NES for £5 and Hook for NES for £5 , in my opinion anytime you can get a NES game for £5 and its not a sports title then you just kind of have to jump on it.

On the 10th on the way home from work I grabbed Asterix and the Great Rescue for megadrive cart only for £. I have to admit to having been a huge Asterix fan as a kid. 
Things were quiet on the retro purchasing front then until the 17th when I spent £1 on a complete copy of Grand Turismo 4 for the PS2 which also happend to have a memory card in the case and the disc for Project Silpheed the lost planet in the case tucked into the manual. Not bad for £1 at all really.
On the 21st I grabbed two loose NES carts, RoboCop for £6 and StarWars for £7.

On the 21st I went to a charity shop, a charity shop which usually wants £3.99 for any game you could possibly call retro whatever format its on and even if it is just an old ps2 copy of FIFA. Well surprisingly this time they had a sign up saying they had too much stock and any product with a red dot on it was only 25pence and so I got the following games all complete all for 25pence each Brave: The Search For Spirit Dancer for PS2, The Jungle book grove party for ps2, Singstar Anthems for ps2, Medal of honor European assault for xbox, Sensible soccor 2006 for xbox, James bond everything or nothing for xbox, Splinter Cell for Xbox, and Mashed for xbox

On the 22nd I once again found myself in a charity shop and I grabbed The Lost World: Jurassic Park complete for PS1 for £1.50.
My last purchase of the month happened on June the  26th when I went into a charity shop and  I grabbed Tony hawk's underground complete for Xbox for £1, Halo (classics edition) complete for Xbox for £1 and Project Gotham racing 2 (classics edition) complete for £1. I might have ignored them if it wasn't for the fact that they were in amazing condition with totally scratch free discs.

So in June I spent £38.50 on retro games which is actually a pretty low amount for me, as for star pick ups I would argue that it wasn't much of an eventful month and I don't think I really have a favorite purchase, so lets see what next month brings.