Saturday, September 22, 2012

Tamage: Tamachi High Lane

I love Game Center CX.  It's almost my ideal TV show.  A common segment is where Arino visits a game center in Japan.  I did my own Tamage (たまに行くならこんなゲームセンター).  

Tamachi High Lane

I woke up really early the first day of my most recent Japan trip.  Having lots of time to kill I decided to take a walk.  I spotted this Bowling Center near my hotel in Tamachi on the JR Yamanote line.  A few days later on the way back from Odaiba we stopped inside.

We passed on actually bowling.  We were both tired, and the last time I went bowling I pulled a muscle on the first swing.  I didn't need more injuries. 

The first thing that catches your eye is the surprisingly empty UFO catchers.

 The main attraction of this arcade is Rave Racer the 3rd game in the Ridge Racer series.

We sat down head to head.  I, actually having driven a car and played more than a few video games, ended up winning.  She didn't do bad though.

There was a broken down Basketball machine, and a pile of stuff covering half the arcade. You could tell at this point the arcade was stuff that hadn't broken yet.  Not pictured but it did have a beer vending machine.


Virtual Striker 2 and a Shanghai game

I was pretty close to taking that old style poster.  Everyday Bowling girl is of course in AKB.

Won't you check out Tamachi High Lane Sometime?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Cursed Crusade (PS3)

Man I sure did enjoy the demo for this game.  It had a nice - if rough - feel.  It had banter between the main characters that looked like it would develop healthily.  Maybe the battle system would also develop into something cool.


I got about 4 hours in and came to notice two different enemy types.  The guys I could kill quick and the guys I'd have to break their guard about 4 times.  And I have a bunch of different weapon options and none of them were nearly as deep as DeDa Souls.  You kept slamming that button.  There were chests I could find in the level (or not) if I found all of them I got a bonus point for my weapon customizing that didn't matter. If I didn't find all of them I got nothing.  There was nothing in these chests outside of the chance to find them all.

I could also use the dark world mechanic (where you totally go to hell (It actually looks kind of cool but) to find a beating cross or solve a stupid puzzle (like finding a specific wall to see a cutscene where I punch through it.)

Then there's the bear minimum of co-oping because occasionally you have to use your partner to get over a ledge.  Or he holds the last enemy so you can stab them in the head.  I couldn't figure out how to grab an enemy at any other time.

The the story is a C minus given an A performance by the voice actors.  Good job voice actors.  I'm sorry you're in a complete nonsense game.  It supposedly had a complete bulshit non-ending.  I went to youtube and watched the last stage where the player flipped around trying to figure out where to go like I did.  Fighting roughly the same enemies the same manor I did (I was playing on Hard and the only difference was they took longer to kill.)  Then I witnessed a cutscene that setup something (maybe).  Then the credits rolled.

It was like "we clearly can't complete this game but we have it done to this point so let's release it .  Then they did!  And I'm kind of angry over having good will about it.  Hey Rudie for post 100, why don't you actually address the culture part of this blog's title.  Maybe I will (Or be at a loss for a topic and just talk about some music I got.)

Pulseman (Megadrive)

Pulseman is known for being one of the few games that GameFreak made before they became the Pokemon game making company.  It got a Wii Virtual Console release against all odds which I'll totally buy if I ever own a Wii.  (Probably not going to happen.)

It's got great sprites and occasionally gorgeous areas.  The electronic worlds are a little sparse.  Most of the bosses are great and clever and the voice samples are catchphras worthy.

It's got a problem them.  There's this part in stage 4.  It's like some hideous asshole Sonic hack.  You have to spin around these orbs and move ever higher and to the right.  You spin around these tiny orbs way too fast.  It's a screaming match because you can't predict when to hit jump.  You're just spinning and hitting buttons and praying it'll be over.  The thought of playing that section again fills me with rage.  Some of the later stages are great!  The lead up to that part wouldn't take 30 minutes.  But thinking of going through that stage again and any good feelings I have for Pulseman evaporate and are replace with screaming.

Also while I was playing Pulseman on my PSP Lighting struck a tree outside.  That lightning strike killed my desktop computer, my router, and every Time Warner modem on my block.  It was also right after I beat level 4.