Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Normality (MS-DOS)

Normality PC title logo
Developer:Gremlin|Release Date:1996|Systems:DOS

This week on Super Adventures, I've reached my last proper game post of the year. I mean it's not the last thing I'll be writing for the site, there's another article coming next week, but this is the last time I'll be going through the first hour or so of one game, showing off screenshots along the way. Until next year anyway.

Oh, I'm playing Normality by the way, in case the title stamped up there didn't give it away. The logo jitters around in game and I was tempted to make my image animated to show it off, but then I realised I didn't need another ugly distracting GIF on my front page for weeks. I learned that lesson back when I did that Amiga Fighting Games article.

My GOG orders history page claims that I bought Normality two years ago and I'm sure it's probably right, though what it doesn't know is that I only got the game so that I could write about it here... and then I forgot. Until now! I've only got a vague idea of what the game even is, but the love I've seen it get online put it on my radar and I have a feeling that even if it pisses me off I'm going to get some good screenshots out of it.

The game has a story and puzzles, and if you keep reading you're going to find SPOILERS for the first couple of hours of both. Just so you know.

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Streets of Rage (Genesis/Mega Drive)

Streets of Rage title screen mega drive
Developer:Sega|Release Date:1991|Systems:Mega Drive, Master System, Game Gear

This week on Super Adventures, I'm playing Streets of Rage on the Sega Mega Drive. Seems weird that it's taken me this long to get around to it, but I was putting it off until I figured out how to screenshot a soundtrack. Turns out that it's all on YouTube though, so you can listen to it there while you read: a link to that thing I just told you about.

But why am I playing this right after playing the very similar Golden Axe? Well, I had this great idea, where I was going to play all three of the games on my Mega Games 2 compilation cartridge. I figured they were so basic I'd get like eight screenshots out of each, but I could put them together to get a full article out of them. Then I saw how long how the Golden Axe section was becoming on its own and realised that my clever scheme wasn't going to work... but whatever, I'm all set up here to play some Streets of Rage so I'm writing about it anyway.

They're both side scrolling beat 'em ups developed by Sega, but Streets of Rage isn't a coin-op conversion like Golden Axe; it was a Mega Drive game from the start. Though it was ported across to the Master System and Game Gear so I suppose I have to check out those versions as well. Here's another exciting fact about it: the fighters shouldn't have amputated legs on the title screen, that seems to be a quirk of the PAL version I'm playing.

That guy's hair is made of spaghetti in all regions though. Also all three of them always wear gloves that cover their knuckles, despite the fact that the game's called Bare Knuckle in Japan.

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Golden Axe (Genesis/Mega Drive)

Developer:Sega|Release Date:1990 (1989 in Japan and Arcades)|Systems:Lots

This week on Super Adventures, I'm playing the legendary arcade game Golden Axe! On the Mega Drive!

It might seem a bit strange that it's taken me like eight years to finally get around to Golden Axe as it's fairly well known. Maybe not Mario or Doom tier, but definitely Alex Kidd tier. Higher than Toki, lower than Tekken. Anyway, one of the reasons I haven't played it yet is because when I started this site I was only writing about games I hadn't seen before and knew nothing about, and this is one I know a bit about. In fact it's probably the first Mega Drive game I ever owned. I wasn't very good at it and I've never reached the ending, but I've seen those first few stages at least a half dozen times!

The other reason I've put off writing about it, is what am I going to write? You walk to the right and you hit things, there's not much else to it. I suppose I could mention that the arcade game was created by the team that made Altered Beast the year before. Also, they were apparently going to call the game Broad Axe, after they couldn't use their first choice, but then the president of Sega US noticed that the dwarf's axe in the game looked golden and decided that they were going have to change the title to Golden Axe or else they weren't going to sell it. That's what I've read anyway!

By the way, the kanji in the logo with all the weapons hidden in it, "戦斧", means 'battle axe', which is what they wanted to call the game in the first place. I think Golden Axe is a better name to be honest.

Friday, 8 November 2019

Need for Speed Games Part 4: Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit 2, Need for Speed: Underground

Today on Super Adventures, I've reached the end of the first decade of the Need for Speed games. We're in the EA GAMES TRAX era now, where every time a new song comes on, the TRAX box slides onto the screen to let you know who you're listening to. Even on the title screen.

This also means we're in the licenced soundtrack era, and the sixth gen console era! And Underground brings us to the era of perpetual twilight, where daytime is banned. Unless it's literally set underground, I don't think they ever say.

Anyway this is it, the last part. After this you won't be reading about any racing games here for a long long time, so enjoy it while it lasts (or endure it for just a little longer). Earlier parts are here, here and here.

(If I don't mention what system a screenshot came from, it's from the PC version.)

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Need for Speed Games Part 3: Need for Speed: Porsche 2000 (aka Porsche Unleashed)

This week on Super Adventures, I've been playing through all the Need for Speed games released during their first decade. Well maybe not all of them, I'm sure there's one I've accidentally skipped, because they just kept making the things! There are more Need for Speed games than there are Bond movies at this point. Well, kind of. It depends on whether you count games like Need for Speed: V-Rally and Over Drivin' Skyline Memorial. Or if you count games like Porsche 2000, Porsche 2000 and Porsche 2000.

Speaking of which, today I'm writing about Need for Speed: Porsche 2000, also known as Porsche Unleashed, or sometimes just Porsche. Once again the US version has the better name, as I don't think a game has any business having '2000' in its title when it actually came out during the year 2000. FIFA 2000 coming out in 1999, that's fine. Death Race 2000 coming out in 1975, that's cool too. But this I don't like.

This is the third part of four. If you want to go back to an earlier part you can find them here and here.

(If I don't mention what system a screenshot came from, it's from the PC version.)

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Need for Speed Games Part 2: Need for Speed III: Hot Pursuit, Need for Speed: Road Challenge (aka High Stakes)

This week on Super Adventures I'm still playing through the first ten years of the Need for Speed series and today I've reached the third and fourth games, Hot Pursuit and Road Challenge (known in the US as High Stakes). If you want to read about the first two games you can find part one here.

I hope you like screenshots of cars and roads, because that's all I've got for you today. They're pretty good cars though. There's a Chevrolet Corvette, a Ferrari F355, a Lamborghini Diablo, another Corvette... all kinds of cars.

(If I don't mention what system a screenshot came from, then it's from the PC version. Unless the game doesn't have a PC version.)

Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Need for Speed Games Part 1: The Need for Speed, Need for Speed II

This week on Super Adventures, I've decided to finally write about some Need for Speed. It's the most successful racing game series of all time and it's been around almost as long as Mario Kart, but I haven't written about a single of one them yet!

The trouble with racing games, and the reason I don't write about them much, is that they're all about racing. I mean that's not a problem when you're playing them, many would even consider it a positive, but it makes writing about in detail a bit tricky as all you do is drive down a road, often in circles. Then if you do it right you get to go do the same thing someplace else! I could fill up space by taking lots of screenshots of cars and menu screens, but I'd run out of stuff to say fast as I'm not exactly an expert on the subject.

But I've thought of a clever solution: if I write about lots of Need for Speed games then I don't have to write so much about each one! And seeing as the 25th anniversary game, Need for Speed: Heat, is coming out in four days, I've decided to write four separate parts covering the series' first 10 years, in chronological order, starting with Road & Track Presents The Need for Speed and Need for Speed II!

Friday, 1 November 2019

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse (PC)

Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse Remake Title Screen PC
Developer:Sega Studios Australia|Release Date:2013|Systems:Win, PS3, Xbox 360, iOS, Windows Phone, Android, OS X

This week on Super Adventures, I'm playing Castle of Illusion! Again!

I didn't mean to, not originally. I just wanted to grab a couple of screenshots for my article about the Mega Drive game, to show what the remake looked like by comparison. But it turns out that they've remade a lot more than just the graphics, so I decided to give it its own article instead.

I've had this one lying around my in my Steam library unplayed for three years now, ever since they cunningly manipulated me into buying it by announcing it was going to be taken off the store. Sure it was almost certainly going to be put back on eventually, but what if it wasn't? I could've missed my chance to ever play the game! (It came back seven months later).

This Castle of Illusion first came out in 2013, 23 years after the original (and 6 years before now) and it was the last game to be made by Sega Studios Australia. They'd been around for about 10 years by that point and had been known as Creative Assembly Australia for most of it, developing games like Medieval II: Total War and London 2012 - the officially licensed game of the 2012 Olympic Games. Not a whole lot of platformers though, unless you count a port of the 2D Sonic games to the DS, so that's not massively encouraging. But hey the other Creative Assembly came out with Alien: Isolation out of nowhere and everyone loves that except me, so maybe this is actually really good!

Semi-Random Game Box