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Dvader's not exactly 100 Favorite Games of All Time
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Mon, 04 Feb 2019 13:32:59
Every list needs some SimCity in it.
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Mon, 04 Feb 2019 15:26:28
SimCity 2000 is easily my favorite city builder, and will always have a place on my hard drive.

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Tue, 12 Feb 2019 04:56:14

92. Splinter Cell Blacklist

Image result for splinter cell blacklist cover

Image result for splinter cell blacklist

I got a 360 in the middle of that generation and went on a crazy buying spree of used games, to this day I have quite a few games I havent even played yet. One of those games I got was Splinter Cell Conviction which felt like the 24 version of Splinter Cell. There were some neat ideas, the whole target system but it was abused in that game. Overall it was a good game but didn't have the elaborate levels of past SC games, especially the best one at the time Chaos Theory. A year goes by and Blacklist hits and I dont pay much attention. I know it got reallty good reviews but I added it to my buy when cheap list. One day I bought it and didn't even play it for a while, eventually I had an opening to try this new SC game and holy shit I was blown away. Blacklist was everything Conviction should have been, all the best from the old Splinter Cell with the updated controls and moves of the new to make the ultimate SC game.

I know this game doesn't even have Michael Ironside and that is a sin but gameplay doesn't lie, this is one of the best stealth games around. The wealth of options for any given mission is vast with loads of gadgets to mess with or combat options. Every mission has bonus objectives and can be timed and done in different ways, from speed running, to skillful ghost runs any way I wanted to play had a category with goals tied to it. Each mission was so well thought out, the story is exciting, but the best part is just how big the game is. Outside the main 13 missions there are a ton of coop missions that can be done solo that have their own unique locations and goals. These are like skill based levels that have certain timers or restrictions plus leaderboards which I kind of got hooked on. I am a Metal Gear guy all the way, I have enjoyed Splinter Cell as the more technical stealth franchise but it never felt as fun until this game. This is a stealth game masterpiece.

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Tue, 12 Feb 2019 05:27:12

91. Panzer Dragoon 2 and Panzer Dragoon Saga

Image result for panzer dragoon 2

Image result for panzer dragoon 2

So like I mentioned before I got a Sega Saturn for christmas with two games Sim City and Panzer Dragoon.  Of all the launch games Panzer Dragoon gave off the feel of a  new 3D generation the most. The game was a blast but it was super short and there wasn't much to it outside just beating the standard campaign. The sequel fixed that in a big game and is one of the best on rails shooters ever made. Yeah it is still a rather short game but now there are multiple paths to take and a dragoon that evolves in different ways depending how you play. Now there is replay value, now there is a depth to the campaign. I loved starting off with a baby dragoon running along the levels and eventually learning to fly to become the majestic bad ass armored dragon the franchise is known for. The levels were more elaborate with hidden objectives which tie directly into the dragon evolution system, now there is incentive to master the levels. The bosses were spectacular especially the final battle against the gigant dark dragon. Once again the score was unqiue and impactful, there is a certain sound to this franchise that I have never heard any wear else in gaming. I played this game to death, unlocked all the hidden options and special mode. This was Sega at their best, making arcade like action experience with loads of replayability and incredible personality.

But Sega didn't just make simple fun games, they made everything so they took an on rails shooter and made one of the best japanese RPGs of all time...

The Panzer Dragoon Saga European cover art. The protagonist, Edge, stands before his dragon and another character, Azel.

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Saga is legendary mostly due to it's rarity and how expensive a copy of the game has become. The saturn was dead by the end of 97 still one major game remained announced, Panzer Dragoon Saga. Problem was that for us Americans Sega was only going to make a limited amount of copies, I believe tied directly to EB games or Gamestop. Well I followed this closely and preordered the game at EB, got a copy when it hit and still have it in great condition. The Saturn's swan song was an epic send off. Coming with a whopping four discs Saga was large scale RPG that managed to incorporate the essence of the Panzer Dragoon gameplay into a well thought out and fun to play RPG combat system. There really isnt anything out there that plays like this game.

It has the scale of a Final Fantasy game, big world to explore, towns to visit, gigantic boss battles, crazy CG cutsccenes, I could not believe this was done on a Saturn. The limitations were clear, Team Andromeda performed a magic act to get this game even running on a saturn, they did the best they could with what they had. The star is the combat system, it has strategic battles where it is necessary to manage enemies who come from all sides which is the core element of the whole series, its so beautifully translated here. It is a shame so few got to play this gem of a game. Sega really needs to remaster this, who cares if my rare copy losses value as a result.

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Tue, 12 Feb 2019 05:43:56

Time to appreciate the incredible music of Panzer Dragoon.

https://youtu.be/Hv6i4IQHIQk?list=PLAA91F9469514B2B9

https://youtu.be/hkVLYROEJCk

https://youtu.be/q4c4iXMUGco?list=PLD503D8B8A7D95E67

https://youtu.be/KgTL5rC02q0?list=PLD503D8B8A7D95E67

There is nothing like it, so beautiful. Sega was the best, I know Nintendo had the better games but Sega was covering so much ground and doing so many off the wall crazy things. Sorry Star Fox, this is a better shooter series.

As for Orta, the game is excellent as well, tons of depth to the formula. It just came out on xbox when I didnt have one. I eventually nabbed one and played it while I was playing many other Xbox games. I didn't put in the time like I did with the saturn games, it never hooked me the same way. From the 32 bit era into the next gen my life began to change from being parent dependent  to having my own money and time. So during the saturn era I was very much stuck with whatever my parents would buy (and I will say I was spoiled) so I replayed games many many times. By the time Orta hit I was jumping from game to game like I do now, a sort of galactus entity that just devours games quickly and moves on to the next. Part of me misses those old days, you appreciated what you had more.

Edited: Tue, 12 Feb 2019 05:49:05
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Tue, 12 Feb 2019 21:07:15

I think my favourite part of the OG Tomb Raiders was the mansion...not that I ever got very far in any of them. Nyaa

I really need to give a Panzer Dragoon game a go some day. And have a proper crack at a Splinter Cell, too.

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 06:02:04

90. Shenmue 1 and 2

Image result for shenmue 1 cover

Image result for shenmue 1 dc

Sega's epic gamble didn't really pay off but it gave us a classic oddity of a game series that is still revered to this day. Shenmue was the most expensive game at the time costing $70 million and it showed. The dreamcast was the most technologcally advanced system anywhere, the graphical leap was massive from PS1/N64 and no game showcased it's incredible graphical power like Shenmue. Back then Epcot Center in Disney World had a location named Innovations and in the turn of the millenum they partnered with Sega turning Innovations into an almost mini e3 for Sega. There were stations for all kinds of Sega games including demos for unreleased games. This is where I first got to play Shenmue, it felt right at home in Epcot cause it felt like something from the future. The level of detail in this game remains almost unmatched, every drawer, cabinet, room is made to feel like it's really lived in. Was it really necessary to be able to interact is basically every piece of furniture when the majority of it was pointless, no of course not but that is part of Shenmue's charm, the absurd level of detail to create a living breathing world.

Shenmue began as Virtua Fighter RPG, it soon shed the VF name and became an original story and concept headed by the legend Yu Suzuki himself. This was a blessing and a curse as AM2 came in with all the technical expertise to create a game on a scale that had not been attempted but they only now arcade like gameplay, they never talked an action adventure game. The end result is one of the strangest control schemes, playing Shenmue was not intuative but once again it all sort of worked in a quirky way too add to the personality of this game. AM2 was unabashed to make the player wait for events inside the game due to its internal time system which played out in a faster version of our time. If someone told you to meet them at 8pm you had to wait till 8pm. In the mean time you could explore, talk to hundreds of NPCs who all have a daily routine, take up some odd job to make money or even go to the local arcade to play classics from AM2's past. At the time this kind of inteactive world was so one of a kind, it was almost like Rockstar before they started to make their epic open worlds.

Shenmue also changed gaming forever by giving us the quick time event. Sure it existed in different forms in the past but Shenmue's implementation and literal title for it has become a staple in gaming for better or worse. Shenmue plays as if you are in control of a martial arts movie, a very slow methodical martial arts movie where the hero spends hours riding a forklift. Still when the story is on the game is as exciting as any, I loved the modified Virtua Fighter combat system which lead to some great battles culminating in the grand 100 man fight. Shenmue 1 was one hell of a ride and kind of the dreamcast's swan song. Yu Suzuki's ambition for this franchise was a little far fetched, this first game would be the first chapter of an 11 chapter saga that would span 4 to 5 games, that ambition would prove too much for Sega as Shenmue failed to reach sales expectations. Luckily for us Shenmue 2 was already in development and came out soon after.

Image result for shenmue 2 cover

Image result for shenmue 2 cover

The Dreamcast was now dead and America would not receieve Shenmue 2 on it. Instead Sega partnered with MS to give the Xbox exclusivity for Shenmue 2 which pissed me off royaly. I had no love for MS, they were the enemy, the new intruder into the console market that was for Japanese companies and their entrance closed the door for Sega. I wanted a PS2 and I even gave up my dumb grudge over Nintendo and got a Gamecube, but I did not want an Xbox. 2003 comes along and a game called Knights of the Old Republic comes out and all of a sudden I wanted an Xbox. So I got one and Shenmue 2 was one of the first games I picked up for it, I was sop excited to continue the epic tale and man was I blown away by how much better the sequel played.

The controls were streamlined, the world was far larger and more exotic. The combat moments were far more frequent, the story moved at a better pace, there were better mini games, less emphasis on just wasting time. Shenmue 2 is one of those sequels that polishes and refines the first in almost every way. It pained me to see the story end on such a high note only for this series to go dormant for so long. This year we will finally get the conclusion, maybe not as intended but it's better than nothing. To think in 1999 this franchise represented the height of Sega's ambition to push the boundaries of what gaming can be and now in 2019 Shenmue 3 is a discarded franchise that Sega refused to resurrect so it fell upon the fans and outside companies to fund a project that is now at retro sequel of a relic of game design from the early 2000s. It maybe 18 years too late but I'm happy to have more Shenmue.

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 08:27:19

Shenmue could be argued to be the first modern AAA IP.

A developer spending blockbuster film type budgets on a game to launch a series that would rival the biggest in the world. That $70 million wasn't to develop a game, but a franchise to rival that of then juggernatus like Final Fantasy right off the bat.

It's similar to titles like say Anthem today. HUGE investments for a possible HUGE payoff.

Unfortunately, for Sega the route of immersive worlds took the way of Grand Theft Auto 3.

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Wed, 13 Feb 2019 20:51:58

^At least they were able to do well on the Yakuza series in Japan.

Do I need to play the original, or would watching the Shenmue 1 "film" and then playing 2 suffice?

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 05:08:40
+1
Foolz said:

^At least they were able to do well on the Yakuza series in Japan.

Do I need to play the original, or would watching the Shenmue 1 "film" and then playing 2 suffice?

You can watch the film and be fine.

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 05:31:43

89. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 and 3

Image result for teenage mutant ninja turtles 2 nes

Image result for teenage mutant ninja turtles 2 nes

I have had quite a few obsessions in my life and as a kid my first big one was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I watched the cartoon every saturday morning, I had the action figures, the pajamas, and a big technodrome. So of course I had to have every TMNT game, yes even TMNT1 which is NOT on this list. Seaweed, still gives me nightmares. After that debacle of a game Konami came to their senses and gave NES owners what they really want, a port of their awesome beat em up arcade game. This was when Konami was the king of the arcade beat em up and the best one was TMNT. Obviously the graphics could not be replicated, it's a bit ugly on the NES but the entire game is faithfully replicated with new levles and bosses. To me this was the best beat em up series, there is something about the look of the game. Those iconic enemies, the different colored foot clan each with a unique attack. The classic TMNT enemies that all served a bosses, so many too choose from, all so memorable. I loved the jump kick attack so fast and responsive. Picking between the turtles is always fun, I usually went with donatello because his bo had a great reach. This was one of my most played NES games, its so easy to just pick up and play.

A few years later this game gets a sequel in the arcade called Turtles in Time, it was a huge hit. It was getting ported to the SNES, I ended up with a Genesis through no choice of my own. I was full on Genesis fan boy except for a few games, and none hurt me more than not being able to play Turtles in Time, yeah even more than Zelda ALTTP. I would see ads for it on magazines and get angry. Some how I missed where there was another NES TMNT game coming out as well, a totally original one.

TMTN3 CoverArt.jpg

Image result for tmnt 3 nes

One day I was in the mall with my family and we stopped by a toy store and there was TMNT 3. It was around my birthday and I wanted the game so bad so my grandfather got it for me as an early birthday present. I new TMNT game just like that! It quickly became my favorite TMNT game. It had more outrageous levels, better bosses, more variety, it's one of the best beat em ups ever. Even though it was toward the end of the NESs life I still manage to play this game a ton of times. I know Streets of Rage 2 is the gold standard but for me TMNT is the king of beat em ups.

I never did get an SNES and it didn't really matter. Soon after TMNT mania died out and video games got way better than the standard beat em up. I didn't even own Hyperstone Heist, I was kind of done with it. But I will always remember my time with these two gems.

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 06:09:49

TMNT: The Arcade Game and Turtles in Time are two of my all time favourite games. Awesome stuff those games. I remember walking into my local arcade and seeing TMNT sitting there when it first came out. My jaw hit the floor. Immediately me and three other locals pumped in a bunch of quarters to play the game from start to finish right there and then. I can’t imagine the amount of money I spent on the game throughout the years. Your welcome Konami. Nyaa

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Thu, 14 Feb 2019 06:40:12

Beat-em-ups are a genre I feel have aged terribly. Which is sad because despite having great style such as graphics and music, the gameplay is basically braindead. Streets of Rage 2 is really the only one I can play for more than ten minutes and not get bored. Sure there's also Mazin Mutant Saga and The Ninja Warriors but those aren't really traditional beat-em-ups.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 01:53:02

88. Nioh

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Souls games created a whole new sub genre of action RPGs that few if any could replicate well. Enter Team Ninja who lately didn’t have the best track record but they do know action, they wanted to make their version of the souls but with faster paced combat which lead to Nioh. I first played Nioh on a beta months before release, it threw many game systems at you with all sorts of loot and menus full of stats that didn’t make much sense. It didn’t click for me so I decided to pass when it came out. When the full game did release it was met with great praise and many said the game was much improved over the beta, the praise was so overwhelming that I decided to give it a shot and I am so glad I did.

Nioh’s combat system is fantastic, the reason being the combat rewards attacking by refilling your stamina, this leads to a game where attacking is favored. Combine that with a three stance system that changes the attacks of every weapon type and now you have one hell of an in depth combat system that makes souls games seem tame. Now this game doesn’t have the level design or enemy variety that a souks games does, but it was their first go at this kind of game so I give them a pass. What I couldn’t believe is just how huge the game was, it can take over 30 hours for one go and that just unlocks harder modes where mastery is really needed.

While the game doesn’t have the vast interconnected world of souls it has interesting smaller levels with some cool themes. Trap infested mansions, a destroyed dock, ruined villages and more. I was enthralled with every moment of this game and it gave me a sense of challenge that not even souls reached, almost like a mix of Ninja Gaiden and Souls. I will for sure get the sequel day one, Nioh is going to be one of the premier action game franchises in gaming.

Edited: Sun, 17 Feb 2019 04:08:25
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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 04:37:05
I wonder how many quarters I dropped in TMNT the (actual) Arcade Game. God it was fun. For some reason though, I never really got into the Turtles console beat'em ups. Just seem like a step backwards I guess. Tournament Fighters on the other hand... well that was as good as any fighting game from the time that wasn't named Street Fighter.

And Nioh.... Yeah, I still want to play that.
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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 06:03:05
+1

87. Tetris

Image result for tetris nes

Image result for tetris nes

What needs to be said about Tetris, its a perfect simple puzzle game that will stand the test of time. My love for Tetris didn't start with the Game Boy, in fact I never had Tetris for Game Boy, I had Tetris NES. The Nintendo version, not the Tengen knockoff one. Here is the thing, the NES version didn't have the official russian theme song that the game boy had so I don't associate that with Tetris. NES had three songs and one of them was Dance of the Suger Plum Fairies from the Nutcracker, why I have no clue but to me thats the Tetris theme song. The best part of the NES version was the challenge mode that had Nintendo characters appear on the screen. When you beat their challenge they get added to the end screen. If you beat it with all you get an ending screen that was the precursor to Smash bros, all famous Nintendo characters together, I loved it. Tetris was one of my most played NES games and it was a hit with the family. It's the only game my mom would ever want to play, my sister enjoyed it as well.

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But Tetris has no generation boundaries, it just keeps on going generation after generation. During my high school years Tetris was found on my TI-83 calculator. Lunch break and home room were battlegrounds for epic Tetris competitions between friends. Who can get the highest score and not be caught by the teacher. I bought Tetris DS because like Tetris NES it starred Nintendo characters, it also introduced me to modern tetris where you can CHEAT and spin the tetromino for ever on the line. When was that decided? I am a purist, screw that spin crap.

Recently Tetris is back in a big way. The excellent Tetris Effect was one of the best games of last year and just this week Tetris 99 hit which puts all other battle royale games to shame! There is something so primal about quickly loading up a game of tetris with 99 other people playing to see who can outlast all, that quick but fullfilling game that can be had in minutes. Its the essence of what sold Tetris on the Game Boy in the first place.

Image result for tetris 99

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 11:24:46
robio said:
I wonder how many quarters I dropped in TMNT the (actual) Arcade Game. God it was fun. For some reason though, I never really got into the Turtles console beat'em ups.

Same here.  I probably put hundreds of dollars into arcade machines.  I loved TMNT, almost always playing as Donatello.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 11:58:33
Tengen Tetris was great by the way.  I wish I had a chance to buy it before it was taken out of stores.

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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 12:36:17
If you go back and look at those unlicensed games that Tengen put out, it's pretty remarkable. Gameplay-wise, their version of Tetris was superior to Nintendo's (but Nintendo's still had Music C which still makes it my favorite). then they had a bunch of Sega games of all things, like alien syndrome, shinobi, and fantasy zone, which were all also great. And I think their versions of Pac-Man and Miss Pac-Man were better than licensed ones. Anyway, those were good games. Wish I picked up more.
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Sun, 17 Feb 2019 13:08:06
Didn’t they make Rolling Thunder as well?

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