Box art scan shamelessly stolen from GameFAQs. Someone at Capcom USA should have been sacked for turning Firebrand into a green gargoyle instead of his signature crimson.
From time to time, video game companies see fit to tinker with their intellectual properties. This may be due to creative surges within the development teams wanting to try something new. Sometimes a dev team knows the formula within a given series has become stale or rote, and they feel the need to mix things up. There are examples where changing the formula has had resounding success, such as Konami's Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, as well as instances where this approach completely flopped, as was the case with Accolade's Bubsy 3D. Whatever the reason, creative minds generally need to branch out to do different things to keep things fresh and flex their creative muscle.
Such is the case with Gargoyle's Quest from Capcom. It's sort of an off-shoot of the Makai-Mura series, better known as Ghosts 'n Goblins, or Ghouls 'n Ghosts. In Japan, the game is known as Reddo Arima: Makai-Mura Gaiden, which can be roughly translated as Red Arremer: Demon World Village Side-Story. Rather than starring the main protagonist of the Ghosts/Ghouls series, Arthur, it actually stars the "red arremer" enemy from the original game known as Firebrand. Based on the game's plot, it could be seen as a prequel to the original game, which you find out at the end.
I want to take a brief break from my usual blogs about my store to talk about Mighty No. 9 now that I've had several weeks to take it all in. If this is something you'd be interested in reading about please click the link below. If not then we can't be friends......
Unless you've had your head in the closet for the past 25 years, you've atleast heard of Street Fighter. You know, that game with men who are fighting. In the streets. And occassionally indoors when circumstances permit. However, incase you've been locked inside a bunker with Brendan Frasier waiting the apocalypse for the last quarter century, clutching your copy of Red Dawn as if it were some sort of survival guide for the Commie infested future let me sum up the gameplay of a fighting game - you punch and kick guys who are trying to punch and kick you until someone falls over, twice. Believe it or not, this formula hasn't really changed at all since then, and with good reason. It's fun. If I could make punching people my occupation, I'd give up my life of excess over at Gamestop with gusto and spend all my money on lotto tickets and cocaine for the rest of my existance.
Doesn't that box look lovely? I think it sure does, and if I wasn't poor I'd absolutely want that box. Turns out for those of you who are financially better off than me that this package will be able to be purchased, and for gaming aficionados like yourself I bet you find this package strangely exciting. Personally, I am as giddy as a school girl, and a Catholic one at that. Tee Hee.
Oh, and yes, there's other news as well. Turns out that Mega Man launches Monday, September 22 for WiiWare. Why, that's THIS Monday. Even better news, it launches on the 25th for PSN and the 1st for the 360. Won't that make you all happy. I am sure quite a few of you are probably looking to be schooled by Splash Woman, because you just like being abused like that.
All in all, great news about this throwback to retrogaming! Here's hoping that the expectations regarding this game aren't horribly dashed like another high expectation game recently did. (**SPORE**)
Maximo: Ghosts To Glory (2002) is Capcom's effort in trying to create a modern platform game with the classic Ghosts 'N Goblins feel to it. The game was originally planned for release on the Nintendo 64, but after being delayed a couple of years it found itself on the PS2 instead.
When starting a new game you'll see Maximo returning home after war in a nice CGI cutscene. Things aren't exactly as he had hoped because Achille has taken over his kingdom and opened the door to the underworld. To make matters worse, Achille has captured four princesses aswell as Maximo's wife, Sophia. With a devastation spell, Achille sends Maximo to the underworld where he's given a chance by the Grim Reaper to resque the princesses and regain control over his kingdom.
Despite being a difficult game, the gameplay of Maximo isn't complicated at all. Maximo is restricted to four moves: a basic swing of his sword, a power strike, a downward strike after double-jumping and throwing his shield. When venturing through the five worlds of the game you'll encounter different enemies that each require a unique combination of moves to defeat.
Knowing how to defeat each enemy is critical for your success, because just like in games of the past, Maximo dies after only a couple of hits. Furthermore, you need 100 coins each time you want to save; which is only possible in the central hub-level of each world. If Maximo happens to loose all his lives he'll return to the underworld where the Grim Reaper will ask for a Death Coin to revive the fallen hero. A Death Coins is obtained by collecting 50 Blue Spirits. If you die without any Death Coins, it's game over for good. All of this results in a game that's far more difficult than other platform games on the PS2, or even modern games in general.
Needless to say, Maximo will require a lot of trial & error, figuring out how to defeat certain enemies or remembering where the next armor chest is located. To make things less repetitive, Maximo will find abilities along the way aswell as power-ups for his sword and shield. Some abilities are almost vital to survive (like the double swing or throw shield abilities) while others aren't of much use throughout most of the game (like Thunderbolt) The sword power-ups however always come in handy, as they make Maximo's sword stronger and are needed for certain abilities. To get the most out of these abilities it's best not to die, because Maximo looses all but a few "locked" ones when faced with death.
Each world features five levels that are to be completed to gain access to the world's boss and the next world eventually. Each level has its own difficult moments but luckily a couple of checkpoints can be activated, so death doesn't necessarily mean starting all the way from the beginning of the level. After clearing a level you'll get a great feeling of success that is hardly present anymore in most modern games.
Maximo's graphics match its old-school gameplay in a sense that everything (except the character models) looks a bit blocked and flat. Often, walls or floors aren't more than a single huge polygon with a texture slapped onto it, clearly showing Maximo's history on the N64. This never bothers me because Maximo is intended to feel like a 16-bit era game. On the other hand, character models are detailed and animations are fast and smooth.
The sound of the game does the job well, with nice sound effects and good voice-acting for the (scarce) CGI cutscenes. I especially like the the game's music that enhances its classic mood aswell as each world at the same time. A couple more songs would have been nice though.
Overall, Maximo is a double-edged sword. Novice gamers will be frustrated with the game's trial & error gameplay and cumbersome save system while old-school gamers will love the game's nostalgic feel. If you're up for a challenge, like platform games or like 16-bit games, be sure to check out Maximo: Ghosts To Glory. 8.6/10
Look at that box art. Damn. You know, most people wish for their box art to look somewhere close to what the game is like, but instead, the original Mega Man's box art is that. To me, it looks like the artist or marketing team were on an acid trip while going over / creating that box art, and that is why we have that. Certainly, some creative liberties were taken with that box art.
Anyways, I am not writing this article to talk about that, but instead this. Capcom has finally realized that they can make a lot of easy money by rereleasing Mega Man for the Virtual Console. You know, as a kid, Mario was great and all, but at least for me Mega Man stole the show. I loved that series, and well, Mega Man 2 is a masterpiece. I bet there are a lot of other people who hold a similar nostalgic value for Mega Man.
Well, fortunately for people like myself, Capcom has decided to start the hype train for the release of Mega Man 9, the game that is quite possibly going to be the hardest Mega Man of all time, if what they said is to be believed. All I know is that I want the game, and to further make me want the game, Capcom is releasing Mega Man for the Virtual Console, tomorrow. That's right, tomorrow kids, at least stateside. And even better news for me, Mega Man 2 is coming out for the Virtual Console in early September.
Let the hype train roll, Capcom, I bet you'll see some healthy sales with those two releases, as well as the release of Mega Man 9.
It seems as though some of you are pretty excited. Personally I am excited. It's certainly a throw back to retro roots, with graphics meant to imitate the original NES Mega Mans. In short, it's pretty damn cool, and hopefully the game play comes through. Time shall tell in that regard.
I imagine most of you expect Capcom to release this on all console digital distribution formats. Certainly, I sure did. You might notice that I said did. Yeah, about that... Kotaku and Ars both though have some troubling news. It appears that for you Sony and 360 Owners, Capcom currently does not desire your money, as it says that Mega Man 9 is only in development for WiiWare. Wow, that's a... shocker.
To mark this development, it's time to bring out the OH NOOOO! Otter. I imagine that lots of you really would like the opportunity to get this game, but have found their prospects of getting this retro odyssey somewhat... dashed. Perhaps Capcom has been misquoted, and meant to say it'll come out for other systems later. Perhaps they really meant what is being reported by folks like Luke Plunkett. You know, he writes for Kotaku, so he is part of that bunch of respectable game bloggers, so they wouldn't wrongly state something, would they? Well, regardless, the OH NOOOO! Otter feels your pain. Since I can't feel your pain because I own a Wii, at least the OH NOOOO! Otter can.
You know, I thought the "Mega Man 9 will be done in 8-bit graphics" was an exaggeration. Something... lost in translation. Those things happen. That's why we say crazy Japanese translations like "SUPER HAPPY CRAZY FUN TIME". But you know, Mega Man 9. Wow, was it for real? Surely someone was jerking our chain, Capcom would never go back to revisit a class style of game, would they? Eh? EH?
WRONG! Turns out Mega Man 9 is very, very real. Complete with robot masters like Magma Man and my personal favorite, Concrete Man. More importantly, they weren't lying when they said it would be in 8-bit graphics. It really, really is. A part of me is saying WTF, while the other 4/5 says "Holy shit that's awesome!" Seriously, absolutely awesome, like "I AM BUYING THAT" awesome. Truly, Mega Man 9 has the potential to be quite the throw back to old school Mega Man. Here's to that. By the way, pictures can be seen at Kotaku
Another trailer has been released since the Street Fighter IV 'debut trailer.' This 'epic trailer' shows more gameplay. Also announced this week are two fighters that will only be available on home versions of the game and not in arcades. These new fighters are Fei Long and Dan Hibiki.
During Capcom's Bionic Commando "Top Secret" podcast, the series creator Keiji Inafune said that he has yet to hear from Nintendo about involving the Mega Man series in Smash Bros. He says: "Well, I really do love Super Smash Brothers. It's a great series-but, Nintendo hasn't asked me yet if they can use Mega Man in their game. I'm still waiting-we have a little bit of time left, it's not coming out for another few months. They might get around to asking us if we'd like to put Mega Man in Super Smash Brothers. Maybe if somebody from Nintendo is listening to this podcast, they'll give me a call." There is still time Nintendo! Give them a call!
For his 15th birthday in 2004, Mega Man (or Rockman, if you prefer) recieved the special treatment and had all 8 of his original games bundled up and re-released with some special extras on the Xbox, PS2, and GameCube. Fortunately (or unfortunately) each version has unique exclusives, making no version inferior to the others (that includes you, GameCube). If you're a hardcore Mega-Maniac and that still isn't enough, there's always Mega Man X Collection gathering up all the other titles.
Whatever you call him, the blue bomber always delivers the right technique, and should he defeat you... he will assimilate your specialty move into himself, further expanding his arsenal. Just look at the lineup of bosses little Rockman conquered in Mega Man 2, he means business.
There are few "Mega" things that can rock as hard as Rockman himself, but Sega knew how. Affectionately called the Mega Drive in Europe and Japan, this 16-bit system ushered Sega into the golden age of gaming in the early 90s; with an edge that showed even mighty Nintendo that the stakes were raised.
Finally, we acknowledge a collector with fairly even-spread numbers for most of his consoles. All games in silentscythe's collection are childhood favorites, and likely get some play every once in a while. A healthy helping of RPGs and adventure games always catches my eye, and are a welcome addition to any collection.
That's all for now. Check out chat tonight, and tune in to channel 3...
In 1999 Capcom and SNK struck up a deal to license each other their intellectual properties to produce two fighting games each.
Capcom's first entry was Capcom vs. SNK for the Dreamcast. Drawing mainly from their own Street Fighter, and SNK's King of Fighters series, Capcom made a solid 2D fighter with balanced characters and challenging gameplay. Hypnotic menus draw you in from the start, and animated backgrounds keep you interested through while you fight. The "groove" system lets you pick how you get to activate power ups and special combos, and the flexible ratio system lets you add a few more characters to your team if they are all weak.
SNK's first attempt is widely overlooked as its release was only for the Neo Geo Pocket Color. Unfortunately SNK's poor financial standing led to bakruptcy in 2001, followed by a buyout by Playmore that same year. The new SNK-Playmore followed up on their obligation with SVC Chaos. This title definitely puts a SNK twist in style, but still feels a bit forced with some unbalanced characters. The best part by far is how SNK draws characters from more series than Capcom, leading to higher variety of characters. Also, the artwork from the game is stunning. Game sprites and special attacks received a visual makeover, while the backgrounds are truly something to look at.
In 2005 Capcom celebrated the 15th anniversary of the Street Fighter series. The Street Fighter Anniversary Collection hosts a fair selection of SF games on the Xbox and PS2. Capcom also licenses a number of character-themed collectible control pads to Nubytech to mark the occasion. The Xbox recieved Akuma, Bison, and Guile while the PS2 recieved Akuma, Ryu, Ken, and Chun-Li in addition to wireless control pads featuring Cammy, Evil Ryu, and Sagat. The premier item released with these was an arcade stick for both Xbox and PS2 that brought the arcade experience home. Sometimes the standard controller doesn't quite cut it for these arcade style games.
Slayer1 gets the spotlight this week as the featured collection. The size might be considered average, but a detailed view will show how it truly shines. Ratings for most titles, and a large number of micro-reviews in the comment section give just enough personal input on games to determine his taste in gaming.
Capcom has premiered the English language trailer of the fourth installment in its wildly popular Gyakuten Saiban series, Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney. There is no slated North American release date, but this trailer makes me hopeful for one, as it was already released in Japan earlier this year.
Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney is the first game in which Phoenix Wright and Maya Fey are not the lead characters. Replacing them are Apollo Justice (a guy with two tall spikes in his hair that seem to always stay in place, gotta love anime physics), and "Mysterious Magician" Trucy.
Also, a reminder for all you Phoenix Wright fans, the third installment in the series, Trials and Tribulations, hits Nintendo DS here in America on October 23rd. I know I'll be the first one to buy it.
Fresh out of Comic Con 07, comes a sneak peek at Capcom's new Phoenix Wright inspired attorney game based on the hit Adult Swim show, Harvey Birdman: Attorney At Law. The game comes out this fall for Sony's Playstation 2 and PSP systems.
I remember when I first heard about the game this past spring, I was worried about how it will turn out, but I think all my concerns have been erased by this gameplay demo. The graphics are flat and 2D, the voice actors are there (oh dear God let Stephen Colbert be in the game), and it's funny. Of course, the cameo of Guile of Street Fighter 2 fame in the jury in that clip sealed the deal for me. I'm so buying this game on release day...and Aqua Teen Hunger Forice Zombie Ninja Pro-Am.