MetalFRO's Blog

Posted on Jan 14th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Otomedius Excellent, Shoot the Corecast, shmup, podcast, STG, shooter, shooting game, Konami, Xbox 360, Parodius, Gradius


In Episode 019, Addicted and MetalFRO take a critical look at the Konami shooter, Otomedius Excellent. A spiritual successor to the Parodius series, and heavily inspired by the Gradius games, we dig into what works, what doesn't, and what bothers us about this title, as well as looking at how cultural differences can sometimes affect perception of a game, and its design, throughout the world. We hope you'll enjoy the discussion!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2020-01-12_stcc_episode_019_otomedius_excellent.mp3


Continue reading Shoot the Core-cast Episode 019 - Otomedius Excellent



Posted on Jan 8th 2020 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Blaster Master Zero, Inti Creates, Nintendo Switch, indie game, platformer, overhead


Image shamelessly linked from Amazon.

I started a tradition a few years back, where I pick a "new to me" indie game, and play it on New Year's Day, in an attempt to either beat it on day one, or see how far I can get, then continue with that game, until I can beat it. New Year's Day 2015, I played through Shovel Knight, and ended up beating the game in a single day, which I was very pleased with. The following January 1st, I played Freedom Planet, which was a much longer game, and also fairly difficult in spots, so I didn't manage to take it down that day. The following year, I sunk my teeth into Axiom Verge, and while I sort of knew it wouldn't be a one day game, my first time through, I managed to knock it out in just 4 days, and it has since become one of my favorite games of the last decade. Unfortunately, due to moving for a job, I was unable to keep this tradition going in 2018, but January 1st, 2019 heralded the return, with me taking on The Messenger and really enjoying that experience, despite some frustration with the precision platforming, and my own  meager skills.


Continue reading Blaster Master Zero Review



Posted on Dec 17th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Tiger Heli, Shoot the Corecast, Toaplan, Taito, shmup, shoot em up, STG, shooting game, shooter, helicopter, tate


In Episode 018, Addicted and MetalFRO take on the legendary shmup development studio, Toaplan, and dissect their first shooting game effort, Tiger-Heli! We look at this classic both in the arcade, as well as the Famicom/NES port, and see what makes it tick, as well as exploring the early Toaplan DNA found within the game, that you see more fully explored in later games. Is this game still worth playing? Listen, and decide for yourself!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2019-12-14_stcc_ep_018_tiger-heli.mp3


Continue reading Shoot the Core-cast Episode 018 - Tiger-Heli



Posted on Dec 9th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Links Awakening, The Legend of Zelda, Game Boy, Nintendo, Switch, remake


Image shamelessly linked from Nintendo UK.
The new art style is a nice compromise between shiny, flashy graphics, & a respectful homage to the original.

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening is a landmark title in a series that is highly lauded by the gaming community. Not only did it manage to successfully take the formula established in the series' debut title, and solidified later in A Link To The Past, and shrink it down to a portable format, but it also told a unique story that deviated from the established canon quite a bit, and became its own experience. Despite the large number of entries in the series since its release, many of them on other Nintendo handheld devices, Link's Awakening is still often spoken of as being in the upper echelon of titles in the series, and, indeed, on the Game Boy itself. It's not unusual to see it in a top 5 list of Zelda games, and even occasionally sits atop a list at number 1. It's no surprise that Nintendo, having seen some success with remaking the Game Boy's only outing for Samus Aran, in Metroid II: Return of Samus for the 3DS, would return to the Game Boy well again, and give Link's first portable adventure a fresh coat of paint.


Continue reading Link's Awakening Redux - Initial Thoughts



Posted on Nov 19th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under N2O, Shoot the Corecast, podcast, Shmup Club, Gremlin Interactive, Nitrous Oxide, STG, shooting game, shooter, shoot em up, t


In Episode 017, MetalFRO and Addicted talk about a Western-developed game that is largely forgotten today among shooting games, despite being heavily inspired by one of the genre's early hits, Tempest. N2O: Nitrous Oxide takes the Tempest formula to new, psychedelic places, and we give you an in-depth look at the game! What makes this tube shooter different than its predecessors? We discuss that and more!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2019-11-17_shoot_the_core-cast_ep_017_n2o_nitrous_oxide.mp3

Check us out and subscribe (and rate!) on Apple Podcasts!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/shoot-the-core-cast/id1432819542?mt=2

We're listed on Google Play - subscribe and review the podcast over there!
https://play.google.com/music/listen#/ps/Iih3vrijcro4yno3yrkeawnx6nu

We're on Stitcher Podcasts now, as well, so if you use that service, have a listen to the show from there!
https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/shoot-the-corecast

We also have a presence on SoundCloud now, though it's just the most current episode at this time:
https://soundcloud.com/user-992886896/

We have t-shirts! Help support the podcast, and rep the shmup community by buying a Shoot the Core-cast tee - now with Gaiden design!
https://www.redbubble.com/people/jdieckmann/works/34582606-shoot-the-core-cast-podcast?asc=u&p=t-shirt

Check out the original discussion about the game:
http://www.rfgeneration.com/forum/index.php?topic=19181.0



Posted on Nov 7th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Analogue Pocket, Game Boy, Game Gear, Atari Lynx, Neo Geo Pocket Color, FPGA, retrogaming, portable gaming, handheld


Image shamelessly linked from TechCrunch. This thing looks GORGEOUS.

By now, most dedicated retrogaming enthusiasts should be familiar with the name Analogue. They make FPGA-based consoles that mimic original hardware, so that older, cartridge-based games can be played on modern hardware, and output to modern TVs. Analogue's first product was the premium Analogue NT, a clone of the NES that utilized the same CPU and PPU as the original consoles did. Unfortunately, it had a small manufacturing run, and sold at a staggering price tag. After that sold out, they retooled the design to make it smaller, but also less expensive, by making future units (under the Analogue NT Mini moniker) utilize FPGA technology. FPGA is better explained in detail elsewhere, so here's the 10,000 foot overhead view: FPGA stands for Field Programmable Gate Array, and instead of software emulation on a standard architecture (like an ARM processor, for example), the FPGA can be programmed in such a way that it mimics the hardware of the original device, because it can be made to produce the same results that the original CPU, and other components, would produce. This means that FPGA technology can be used to mimic all sorts of hardware. Notably, it has been seen as quite successful in mimicking video game console hardware.


Continue reading Analogue Pocket - A Dream Portable Console



Posted on Oct 30th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Zaxxon, Shoot the Corecast, shmup, podcast, Sega, STG, shooting game, shooter, shoot em up, isometric


In Episode 016, we take a closer look at an early shooting game that seems to be largely forgotten in today's gaming landscape, despite it being ahead of its time, and somewhat influential. Not only is it the first arcade game to have a TV commercial, but it also introduced us to gaming in an isometric perspective. Why is this game so forgotten? We discuss that and more, as we talk all about Sega's Zaxxon!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2019-10-28_shoot_the_core-cast_episode_016_-_zaxxon.mp3

Check us out and subscribe (and rate!) on Apple Podcasts!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/shoot-the-core-cast/id1432819542?mt=2

We're listed on Google Play - subscribe and review the podcast over there!
https://play.google.com/music/listen#/ps/Iih3vrijcro4yno3yrkeawnx6nu

We're on Stitcher Podcasts now, as well, so if you use that service, have a listen to the show from there!
https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/shoot-the-corecast

We also have a presence on SoundCloud now, though it's just the most current episode at this time:
https://soundcloud.com/user-992886896/

We have t-shirts! Help support the podcast, and rep the shmup community by buying a Shoot the Core-cast tee - now with Gaiden design!
https://www.redbubble.com/people/jdieckmann/works/34582606-shoot-the-core-cast-podcast?asc=u&p=t-shirt

Here's the original discussion thread from the forum:
https://www.rfgeneration.com/forum/index.php?topic=19157.0



Posted on Oct 8th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Hercules, Dramatic Readings, Disney, Game Boy, game review, licensed title, Tiertex, Virgin Interactive


Welcome to a new episode of Dramatic Readings! This time around, I take a look at a later entry in the life of the gray brick, a Disney licensed title. Not by Capcom, and surprisingly, not by Virgin Interactive...at least not directly. This game comes to use via Tiertex, and its level of quality is suspect. I'll leave the rest to your imagination, however. You'll need to watch the video, to get my full take on the game. Let me know what you think in the comments - did you enjoy this game? What other licensed games do you enjoy? Let's discuss!

Here's the original written review this video is based upon:
https://gameboyguru.blogs...isneys-hercules-1997.html



Posted on Sep 26th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Blazing Lazers, Shoot the Corecast, podcast, Shmup Club, Hudson Soft, Compile, shooting game, caravan, Gunhed


With Episode 015, MetalFRO and Addicted dig into the first TurboGrafx game for the RF Generation Shmup Club, the early release, Blazing Lazers! This game has elements from other shooters you may recognize, because it was jointly developed by Hudson Soft and Compile, and their other games and influences definitely shine through. Does the game hold up today? We dicsuss that, and more!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2019-09-21_shoot_the_core-cast_episode_015_blazing_lazers.mp3

Check us out and subscribe (and rate!) on Apple Podcasts!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/shoot-the-core-cast/id1432819542?mt=2

We're listed on Google Play - subscribe and review the podcast over there!
https://play.google.com/music/listen#/ps/Iih3vrijcro4yno3yrkeawnx6nu

We're on Stitcher Podcasts now, as well, so if you use that service, have a listen to the show from there!
https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/shoot-the-corecast

We also have a presence on SoundCloud now, though it's just the most current episode at this time:
https://soundcloud.com/user-992886896/

We have t-shirts! Help support the podcast, and rep the shmup community by buying a Shoot the Core-cast tee!
https://www.redbubble.com/people/jdieckmann/works/34582606-shoot-the-core-cast-podcast?asc=u&p=t-shirt

Here's the original discussion thread from the forum:
http://www.rfgeneration.com/forum/index.php?topic=19090.0



Posted on Sep 8th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Metroid II, Nintendo, Game Boy, game review, Gunpei Yokoi, sequel, retrogaming


It's finally here! After many months of delays, life stuff getting in the way, and a few hiccups with my recording setup, I finally have a new episode of my review series to enchant you all. I'm taking a look at Metroid II: Return of Samus, in Episode 025 of Dramatic Readings! This game is a total classic, but isn't always as well regarded as I feel perhaps it should be. After I, myself, got a rough start with the Metroid series as a kid, I rediscovered it as an adult a few years ago, and was blown away by Super Metroid. Revisiting this Game Boy outing, there's a lot to love, and a handful of things not to. I'll tell you all about it with this video, and I hope you enjoy it. What do you think of Metroid II? Do you think it holds up? Have you tried either of the remakes? Let's discuss in the comments below!



Posted on Aug 27th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Strikers 1945 II, Shoot the Corecast, Shmup Club, Psikyo, Strikers, WWII, fast bullets


Here in Episode 014, MetalFRO and Addicted pick apart a classic, late 90's shoot-em-up from famed developer, Psikyo. What makes Strikers 1945 II so well remembered? We dive into that, and hear from the RF Generation community as well, on what they like about the game. Some great discussion was had, and we definitely learned a few things about WWII era planes, as well!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2019-08-24_shoot_the_core-cast_episode_014_strikers_1945_ii.mp3

Check us out and subscribe (and rate!) on Apple Podcasts!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/shoot-the-core-cast/id1432819542?mt=2

We're listed on Google Play - subscribe and review the podcast over there!
https://play.google.com/music/listen#/ps/Iih3vrijcro4yno3yrkeawnx6nu

We're on Stitcher Podcasts now, as well, so if you use that service, have a listen to the show from there!
https://www.stitcher.com/...odcast/shoot-the-corecast[/url]

We have t-shirts! Help support the podcast, and rep the shmup community by buying a Shoot the Core-cast tee!
[url=https://www.redbubble.com/people/jdieckmann/works/34582606-shoot-the-core-cast-podcast?asc=u&p=t-shirt]https://www.redbubble.com/people/jdieckmann/works/34582606-shoot-the-core-cast-podcast?asc=u&p=t-shirt


Here's the original discussion thread from the forum:
http://www.rfgeneration.com/forum/index.php?topic=19059.0

Thanks for listening, and we hope you enjoy the episode!



Posted on Aug 9th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Game Boy, Launch titles, Super Mario Land, Tetris, Baseball, Alleyway, Tennis


*pic from Vintagegaming.com*

Nostalgia can be a tricky beast. We all have warm, fuzzy feelings about one thing, or another, from our childhood. A favorite toy, a cartoon we watched after school, or on Saturday mornings; perhaps even a place we used to play. Many of us have a lot of fond memories of video games we played, whether with family and friends, or even solo gaming sessions, totally engrossed in whatever electronic entertainment happened to be captivating us at that time in our lives. But what about a system, and its launch games? Most of us would say, with a few exceptions, that launch titles are quite often weaker than most of the library. I would argue, nostalgia aside, that at least a portion of the Game Boy library transcends that trend. Let's examine the launch lineup, 30 years after the fact, and see if that theory holds water.


Continue reading Reflecting On The Game Boy Launch - 30 Years Later



Posted on Aug 1st 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Ghost Blade, Shoot the Corecast, shmup, podcast, HuCast, danmaku, Cave style


Here in Episode 013 of Shoot the Core-cast, we bring on a special guest to help us talk about HuCast's indie shoot-em-up, Ghost Blade, a posthumous release on the Dreamcast, from 2015. We also talk about the HD update the game received just 2 years later, Ghost Blade HD. We proudly welcome our special guest, Ser Flash, of Studio Mudprints, creator of the Bullet Heaven series of videos, on YouTube!

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/podcasts/shmupclub/?name=2019-07-31_shoot_the_core-cast_episode_013_ghost_blade.mp3


Continue reading Shoot the Core-cast Episode 013 - Ghost Blade



Posted on Jul 8th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under One on One, Game Boy, game review, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, sports game, basketball


When I was a kid, I spent a fair bit of time with the classic One on One basketball game on the family's home computer. This was an early version, by EA, which featured basketball greats Larry Bird and Julius "Dr. J" Irving. In the 90's, however, the formula got an update by EA, and Dr. J was replaced by basketball whiz kid, Michael Jordan. His star was rising quickly, and although Larry Bird was getting older, he was still well regarded in the sport. How does this particular iteration of the game fare? Find out here in Episode 022 of Dramatic Readings!



Posted on Jun 20th 2019 at 08:00:00 AM by (MetalFRO)
Posted under Gradius III, Shoot the Corecast, shmup, podcast, Konami, STG, shooting game, shooter, shoot em up


Here in Episode 012, MetalFRO and Addicted tackle one of the most difficult arcade shooters of all time, the legendary Gradius III, from Konami. Not only that, but we compare it to the much more friendly, and approachable port, released on the Super Famicom and SNES. Which version will we prefer, and which should you play? Have a listen, and hear what we think about these 2 iterations of the game.

Here's the direct link to listen to the podcast on the site, or download the MP3 for later:
http://rfgeneration.com/p..._ep_012_-_gradius_iii.mp3

Check us out and subscribe (and rate!) on Apple Podcasts!
https://itunes.apple.com/...re-cast/id1432819542?mt=2

We're listed on Google Play - subscribe and review the podcast over there!
https://play.google.com/m...h3vrijcro4yno3yrkeawnx6nu

We're on Stitcher Podcasts now, as well, so if you use that service, have a listen to the show from there!
https://www.stitcher.com/...odcast/shoot-the-corecast

We have t-shirts! Help support the podcast, and rep the shmup community by buying a Shoot the Core-cast tee!
https://www.redbubble.com...t-podcast?asc=u&p=t-shirt

Here's the original discussion thread from the forum:
http://www.rfgeneration.c...m/index.php?topic=18999.0

Thanks for listening, and we hope you enjoy the episode!


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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