You like Castlevania, don’t you? Part IV

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

Castlevania_-_Symphony_of_the_Night_(gamebox)Symphony of the Night is not just hands-down the greatest Castlevania game of all time, but I also consider it one of the top 5 greatest video games of all time. It is not just the original Metroidvania, but it’s the pinnacle of subgenre. Great looking backgrounds and enemies, incredible level design, a large array of interesting locations and a crazy boss for each of them, an amazing soundtrack, and more items than you’ll ever find no matter how many times you play. Seriously, I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve beaten this and I’ve still never gotten that damn Crissaegrim (the ultimate weapon in the game, only found through random drop), which angers me to no end, because I let a friend play my copy of this back in high school and he literally found it by accident within minutes. Someday…

tumblr_mhmax3PZKQ1qkmqj8o1_500

People complain about the voice acting…

View original post 998 more words

A Quick Byte: Abzu

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

5359645-lWowwwww, where did this game come from? I had heard nice things about it, but it didn’t look or sound particularly amazing. It really just looks like Journey, but underwater, and while Journey also surprised me with it’s endearing simplicity, it’s got nothing on the sheer beauty of the world of Abzu.

I grabbed this when it was one of the free PS Plus games a month or two ago, not really expecting much, but hey free is free. I ended up trying it out recently when I had a few hours to kill between longer games, half-expecting that it would just end up deleted and forgotten like the majority of the free monthly games offered. Oh, how wrong I was.

21458093_10154762731646366_2696002969568826961_o

I think it’s something that has to be seen in its full glory to really have the same impact. Not only do screenshots do it justice, but even…

View original post 272 more words

Review: Night Trap 25th Anniversary Edition

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

imageI have a confession to make. I’ve never played Night Trap before! It sure seems like something I’d have played, doesn’t it? I’ve always wanted to try it, but I never had a Sega CD and I just never got around to playing the later ports. On the plus side, this means I went into this completely untainted by any nostalgic bias.

The first thing I noticed about Night Trap was that it was indeed a very dated game. It was originally designed as a VHS game and it definitely shows, for better or worse.

21543815_10154762728881366_5327540073846809914_o Doesn’t seem to be anything suspicious going on here

From the characters, the sets, the plot, the dialogue, the tone, the music, and everything else, this game just bleeds 80’s-ness. It all feels very much like some kind of cheesy made-for-TV horror movie that you would have seen in the early 80’s. The kind that’s…

View original post 909 more words

Show us your game collection, Richenbaum!

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

I’m not one to start bragging about my toys unsolicited, but Sir Lucius was kind enough to ask, perhaps not realizing that like some nerdy vampire, once invited, I will be all up in your business.

Today’s tour begins with the living room. Here we have the PS4 Pro, PSVR, Xbone, and disgustingly excessive 4K HDR smart TV.

FullSizeRender
It was this or have children, so we went for the TV.

This particular TV has an Android OS capable of emulation and external flash and hard drive use so just about all my old-timey console games are now playable directly on the TV, which is good because there doesn’t seem to be any room left in here to plug any more consoles into this thing!

Let me also add, for anyone wondering, that the 4K hype is absolutely true (especially if you have HDR too). It’s a costly transition…

View original post 989 more words

How to pick up chicks in Quake 2

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

Stay a while and listen while I break from my usual M.O. of reviewing hoards of games to recount an offbeat tale of railguns and romance.

It was some time ago, so far back that I can’t quite recall the exact year, but I can narrow it down to near the end of the previous century. I was wasting time on mIRC, which is technically a program designed for chatting, but in reality is a filthy cesspool of illicit activity and depravity. It must have seemed so idyllic to all us poor, angry youths with emotional issues and flexible morals, but that’s a tale for another time. The point is that I was speaking to an associate from an industrial music room and in the throes of our collective boredom we decided to try our hands at an online deathmatch game of Quake 2.

quake2chick and I don’t mean these…

View original post 702 more words

Review: Sonic Mania

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

3098974-sonicmania00.pngIf you’re anything like me and haven’t touched a Sonic game since the Sega Genesis days, then Sonic Mania and its return to the good old days of simple, but effective side-scrolling platforming probably sounded pretty good to you too. I’ve never really played any of the later 3D Sonic games, so I don’t really know if they’re as bad as everyone says and can’t compare this to them, but I know I like good old Sonic games, and that this sure feels like one of those.

21054970_10154710006596366_9014264898305197465_o Pay attention, this is literally all the story you’re going to get right here.

Sonic Mania is mostly made up of a selection of “best of” classic levels, which are not only remastered for HD, but have also been greatly expanded and improved upon. Each level is now a massive multi-pathed labyrinth (even more so than some of them already were), yet they’re…

View original post 601 more words

Review: Prey (2017)

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

Prey_ps4_frontcover-04_1465777150The latest offering from Arkane Studios brings us yet another spiritual successor to System Shock and Bioshock, this time falling under the previously established brand of Prey, for what seems to be no other reason than for Bethesda to renew the rights to a series that was never all that popular to begin with. Despite the fact that it has absolutely nothing to do with the previous Prey though, it manages to more than live up to the reputation of the name (I guess? I liked the old Prey, but I was always under the impression that it wasn’t actually very well received at all), and I would even say that it surpasses its predecessor in many ways.

They are certainly two very different games. Where the original more closely resembled a 90’s FPS, with a heavy reliance on over-the-top action and very graphic violence (not that there’s…

View original post 846 more words

Review: Sundered

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

sunderedAfter I tried out Jotun on Sir Merriweather‘s recommendation, I knew I had to get this game too. Sundered, the latest entry from Thunder Lotus Games, promised to be a fast-paced, extra-challenging Metroidvania with some amazing looking hand drawn animation and environments, all set in a bizarre world that seems to be the product of dumping sci-fi, fantasy, and Lovecraftian horror into a blender, and I think it delivered quite well on that promise.

What really sets Sundered apart from other Metroidvanias, I mean aside from the amazing visual design, is the difficulty. Combat is pretty difficult early on, there are a good deal of nasty traps and hazards lying around, and health potions are extremely limited. You can only survive by gathering enough shards to increase your stats and become tough enough to survive the increasingly difficult enemies in your way. It may sound a little bit…

View original post 701 more words

Review: The Last Door

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

coverThe Last Door is actually technically two games, as it was released episodically over the course of two separate standalone seasons, but as they both make up a single complete story, let’s just call it all The Last Door for simplicity’s sake.

Anyway, The Last Door is a point and click adventure game by The Game Kitchen (developers of the upcoming game Blasphemouswhich you may have heard of by now).

TLDCE2 2017-07-31 01-05-15-795 Alone in the dark! Wait, wrong game.

This is a very Lovecraftian adventure, where you end up having to do a good deal of detective work in order to unravel the mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of an old friend, which naturally involves a bizarre cult and unspeakable supernatural beings. In typical Lovecraftian style, it focuses more on building an atmosphere of dread over what strange things lie waiting for you in the various dark and treacherous locations…

View original post 228 more words

Review: The Dream Machine

A MOST AGREEABLE PASTIME

boxcoverOh, I have been waiting seven years to finally play this game. The Dream Machine is a point-and-click adventure that was released on an episodic basis, with its first episode coming out in 2010 and the conclusion finally just arriving in 2017. It features a fascinating plot about the physical exploration of dreams, but the really interesting thing about it is that not only were the characters and environments entirely made up of clay, cardboard, and some other assorted household items, but this was all done with just a two man design team and only using Adobe Flash.

the_dream_machine 2017-07-26 19-19-50-898 I wish my dreams looked this good.

This is another of those games where screenshots can’t even do it justice, because as nice as it looks in a static image, that’s nothing compared to how impressive it all looks in motion. The sound design is very impressive too, with so…

View original post 473 more words