Posts Tagged ‘old-school’

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Call me a sucker for everything retro. When I heard that Midway Arcade Origins was coming to Xbox 360 I knew that I had to get it. Of course every time they offered a compilation of old school classics I ended up buying it no matter what console I had at the time, and Midway‘s retro offerings have been whored out on all of them to date. Sure nothing has changed since the time when I played most of these games back in the ’80s and early ’90s except for the fact is that this time there’s achievements. Challenge accepted! Now where do I insert the virtual tokens?

PROS:

More Than 30 Classic Games
Actually there are 31 games which solidifies the more than 30 games message in the advertising. Some of the games I really enjoyed including Smash TV, Total Carnage, Defender, Sinistar, Joust, Arch Rivals, Rampage, and more. Of course there’s some games in this collection that I wish would just die. Yes, I’m talking to you Pit Fighter and Spy Hunter 2. Overall this compilation of old school classics is quite enjoyable giving me some nostalgic memories of days gone by. This collection also has multiple ways of playing with Free Play where I can keep entering virtual quarters and play as long as I want, and Score Attack which only gives me a set number of lives. Score Attack is also the only way to unlock each game’s achievement.

CONS:

Terrible Controls
For a collection of games that have been faithfully emulated you would think a tweak or two in the control department would help. Sadly, that is not the case here. The main problems show up on titles that used trackball and steering wheel controls. The analog stick is the only alternative, but on games like Championship Sprint and even Marble Madness it can prove to be quite a pain in the ass to control. I’ve also noticed a slight hiccup issue with the analog controls in Smash TV. I don’t get it. The controls work great on the XBLA version. Why not on this one?

No Online Multiplayer
Multiplayer is included with Midway Arcade Origins in the form of couch multiplayer, but I think this collection would be even better with some form of online multiplayer. The games that were available on Xbox Live Arcade, before their delisting, had online multiplayer making for some fun. Sadly, the only online functionality this set has is online leaderboards. Maybe the thought of being number one on the leaderboards is enough for some people since the days of these games was achieving a high score. Then there are games like Rampage, Arch Rivals, and others that are much better with some competition both online and on the couch.

Missing Games
While Midway Arcade Origins features an eclectic collection of games there are a few titles that have been omitted. Where’s NARC? It’s on all the other collections, but not here. Why? How about Pigskin 621 A.D.? Arch Rivals is here, why not this one? Primal Rage? Hydro Thunder? I could go on and on. Some people out there on the internet message boards have even mentioned the Mortal Kombat games. I guess they haven’t noticed yet, but those games are in one “Kollection” on Xbox Live Arcade. Hopefully WB Games has plans on a follow up down the road, because there are so many titles for at least another release.

IN CONCLUSION

Midway Arcade Origins clearly fills the need for retro gamers like myself with a nice compilation of classic titles, but the control issues on some games along with the omission of other titles sort of hurts it. Some of these games are fun for a long time, but there are others that have aged so badly that I’ll just play to earn the achievement and then steer clear of them forever. This is a collection for serious retro gaming fans. Everyone else (especially those born after the early ’90s) should give it at least a rental just to see what gaming was like in the early days.

Developer: WB Games
Platform: Xbox 360
Players: 1-2 (local multiplayer)
Price: $29.99

GAME STATUS: Completed and won on multiple game modes
ACHIEVEMENTS EARNED: 8 out of 12 (90 Gamerscore)

For my original review of Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition click HERE.

I crossed through rush hour traffic. I braved the raging rivers. I survived diving turtles, crocs, otters, and snakes. I even got foggy style with some female frogs as I took them to my lily pad across the river. Frogger is classic and fun, but will the Hyper Arcade Edition join Pac-Man Championship Edition as an awesome remake? Well here’s my post thoughts.

In the early going, I was impressed with the new version of the classic Frogger. Zombie Studios brought the classic gameplay (which I loved) and upgraded the look even going as far as creating theme options based on Konami classics Castlevania, Contra, and Dance Dance Revolution. These new themes were nice to play for a game or two, but lost their luster after that as I moved back to the original look. The music selection was pretty good with some electronic and dubstep beats giving me an extra hop to my step as I rocked my way to the lily pads.

As for the other gameplay modes. Well just like the classic themes they only hold their value for just a few games and become completely forgettable later. Games modes like Battle Royale, Paint, and Tile Capture get really boring after awhile. I did assign bots for some sort of challen ge, but I got none. It became too easy. What would’ve made this better would be some sort of online multiplayer which would keep anyone playing for an extra week or two. Couch multiplayer and bot play can only do so much.

DO I CONTINUE TO RISK BECOMING POSSIBLE ROADKILL?

Frogger was a lot of fun in my earlier gaming days, but now it doesn’t feel quite the same to me. Don’t get me wrong I’ll still play the classic arcade game (which I still have on my hard drive), but the Pac-Man Championship Edition style makeover was not really needed. It’s just one Frogger version too many yet I have four versions of Pac-Man on my hard drive. Frogger Hyper Arcade Edition was fun while it lasted, but it’s not a game that’s going to stay on my hard drive. Consider this frog retired and the game deleted.

Developer: Konami, Zombie Studios
Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
Players: 1-4 (Local Multiplayer)
Price: 800 Microsoft Points ($10.00)

Pros:
A Great Mix Of Old School Classics
Addictive Gameplay And Plenty Of Replay Value

Cons:
Some Sort Of Multiplayer Would’ve Been Nice

Just imagine this. What if you could infuse bits and pieces of old school classics and blend them in to a brand new game. Sounds crazy right? I’m sure that most of you don’t really care about older games because you weren’t born then. Well it’s time for us old guys to educate you. Today, I’m reviewing the game Space Bat on Xbox Live Indie Games, and this title brings back plenty of old school nostalgia and blends them in to make a new game. It’s also one of the more addicting games I play on the Indie Games Platform.

Space Bat combines the elements of three old school classics: Space Invaders, Galaga/Galaxian, Arkanoid/Breakout, and Pac-Man. The background and enemies represent Space Invaders. The bricks, Vaus and gameplay mechanics represent Arkanoid. Pac-Man is basically the ball and he leaves a trail of pellets in his wake. Did you like all those games? Well if you did then you need to check this game out.

Those of you who have played Arkanoid/Breakout before will understand how to play Space Bat. Using your Vaus you guide Pac-Man towards the Space Invaders. Sometimes there might be some bricks in the way but good ol’ Pac-Man will take care of that without the need of a power pill. Beware of some invaders who will swoop down to the bottom Galaga/Galaxian style (even with the music). Invaders that get caught on your Arkanoid Vaus will cling on until Pac-Man eats them. Don’t you just love all these old school gameplay mechanics? The invaders also carry Arkanoid style power-ups which last as long as a Pac-Man power pill so make sure you take advantage of them. However, you might want to bounce Pac-Man back up towards the invaders or else you get the infamous Pac-Man dying sound.

Space Bat’s single-player levels are filled with plenty of challenges and replay value. While that’s good news to some I feel that some sort of co-op or competitive multiplayer (locally of course) would have made the game even better. You know what else would have made the game even better? An Atari 2600 joystick! This way the old school concept would have been perfect. There is an option to brag to your online friends with your high score which should bring in some competition, but nothing is better than having someone with you jamming to the game.

Space Bat brings back a lot of memories of games of the past. Even going as far as bringing back some of the sounds even if they’re not arcade perfect. Old school game fans will love Space Bat, and even some new school players will get into it as well. The best part is that Space Bat can get quite addictive so make sure you set some time aside to play this game. Now back to working on that high score because 94,000 is not going to cut it for a friend challenge.