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#981 – SNAKE?… SNAKE?… SNAAAAAAAKE???!!!

10 Nov

Confused by #981 on my blog of gaming awesomeness? If you are, you might not be a hardcore gamer and that’s fine, I’m not here to judge (heck, I’m just happy you are reading this, you are a nice person). Today’s post is about some dialogue that was made famous in the stealth classic Metal Gear Solid. Why is that awesome? Because it might very well be the coolest Game Over screen in video game history.

Solid Snake is the ultimate bad-ass hero in the MGS series. He fights humongous walking tanks, cyborg ninjas, vampires… honestly, the man is the definition of a super soldier. But in the end, Solid Snake is human (not a snake like his code name would have you believe) so he can come to his ultimate end in the battlefield. And trust me, he will succumb to death more times than you would like (especially if I’m the one playing). When that does happen, you will hear an absolute terrified companion on the other end of your codec yelling for you to respond. It sends shivers down your spine the first time. After a couple more times it is engrained in your mind.

  
The calling out to a fallen hero might not sound awesome, but it is a small detail which really brings together the whole cinematic feel of MGS. It’s awesome for what it makes you feel for failing as the legendary Solid Snake. As well, it becomes quite comical hearing it over and over again, so it works in a serious tone as well as something light-hearted. No other Game Over screen can do that, at least in my eyes.

Please take a moment to appreciate what has become one of most popular audio clips in video game history. You know it’s…

AWESOME… AWESOME… AWESOOOOOOOME!!!

#982 – Inflating an enemy until they explode in Dig Dug

10 Nov

Time to go old school with this post, boys and girls! Video games were once a simpler pass time where all you could really do was move and shoot (or move and eat, looking at you Pac-Man). Stealing cars and escaping vaults were just the things of dreams as they wouldn’t arrive until years later. One legendary arcade game from the early 80s is Dig Dug. As the name entails, you do a lot of digging, that is all you really do actually… until you get to an enemy. Now, most games would have you fire a gun to defeat said enemy, but not in Dig Dug. No pumping characters full of lead, just pumping them full of air until they explode!

Digdug

Yup, you heard me right, you fill these guys up like they were an air mattress on your family camping trip. But instead of having it at the perfect firmness for grandma, you keep going until those cheap “Made in China” seems burst. The satisfaction of seeing them inflate is quite unique to Dig Dug, less violent and yet at the same time more violent than most games. How so? The lack of real weapons such as guns and bombs seems less violent but seeing an enemy grow to a ridiculous size and then blowing up… seems a little bit darker to me… just a tad bit.

Violent or not, Dig Dug is awesome and the way you dispose of your foes is even awesomer (it’s officially a word in my book). It may be old but it is still fun to defeat enemies the non-old fashioned way, trusty air. Next time I get into a fight (which I hope is never) I’m bringing my basketball pump, so bad guys watch out!

AWESOME!

#983 – So many new releases during the holidays

7 Nov

Being a gamer is awesome for many reasons (1000 to be exact, if you consider my blog to be the end all and be all of video game awesomeness) because we get new video game releases all the time, much like the movie and music industry. But there are dry spells and they unfortunately tend to be the majority of the year. It’s not always a bad thing because sometimes your backlog is huge and you need some time to catch up on it (I’m definitely the biggest culprit of that). Yet, when September rolls around all the way until Christmas, we are hit with blockbuster after blockbuster after blockbuster, in what is known as the ‘holiday release schedule’.

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The holiday schedule sees some of the greatest AAA titles being released as well as smaller titles that also deserve a play-through. Just take a look at some of the amazing releases that have passed and are coming up right now in Holidays 2015; Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, Halo 5, Need For Speed, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, Just Cause 3, Fallout 4, Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash, Star Wars: Battlefront, Rise of the Tomb Raider… I can go on and on, but you get the idea. It’s as though game developers forget that there are 8 other months in the year!

This time of year can be overwhelming with all the shopping, cooking, decorating, etc. that is custom for this time of year. But who cares when you have so much to choose and play from in the video game universe. Just make sure to ask Santa for those new releases or at least some money because when January comes around you might be penniless. But deep inside, you’ll be richer than all the richest kings put together (figuratively, of course).

AWESOME!

#984 – Getting away from the cops in Need For Speed

6 Nov

You are driving down the street, probably much quicker than you should when you hear a siren directly behind you. You go stiff and pray that you get let off the hook with merely a warning. The cop approaches your car door and you lower the window… let us stop there. No matter what the outcome is, how sweet would it be to drive off as fast as you can to avoid this confrontation. Pretty sweet if you ask me, especially if the only consequence was a virtual non-real fine and then you are back on your merry way. Well, in the wonderful world of Need For Speed, you can do just that. And boy is it more fun than stopping and getting a ticket.

Let me make this clear, I by no means condone running away from the cops in real life. But in Need For Speed, please go wild and break every road law in the book. That’s one of the amazing details that makes the video game world so fun, the chance to do something you only wish you could do in real life. I’m such a bad boy in this universe, aren’t I?

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NFS makes these virtual chases exciting every single time. In some games in the series, you can fight back with pre-determined areas that blow up a bunch of cop cars at once (a la pursuit breakers in NFS: Most Wanted). Or what about attacking the police by equipping weapons on your vehicle (a la NFS: Hot Pursuit). Or just the good old-fashioned way of driving as fast as you can to lose those suckers.

Whichever way you choose to defeat the law enforcement, that moment where you are in the clear is a proud achievement. Take a breath of fresh air, you are now a free man or woman… at least for another 5 minutes.

AWESOME!

#985 – Creating a Super Mario Maker level that is actually fun to play

5 Nov

Super Mario Maker is a dream come true for those of us (basically everybody) who have ever wanted to partake in the creation of Nintendo’s magic. Think about it in another way; imagine if you had the opportunity to help create the latest Disney or Pixar movie, the films those studios create are literally what happiness is made out of. The only thing is without a background in film or connections in the industry, that will probably never happen (and if it does just remember who came up with the idea first!). SMM at least makes game creation a reality, but creating something worthwhile is a hefty task.

  
After playing and watching hundreds if not thousands of levels online, you realize that most of your own levels suck. I thought it was cool at the time to put 30 goombas on top of each other only to find out… that it’s not. It gives you a greater respect for those people who created the legendary Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World, they not only made wonderful levels but also had to program it all, it wasn’t as easy as these tools make it out to be. So after frustrating creation after frustrating creation, I came up with something actually… decent. Notifications start popping up that people are playing my level and are actually commenting with positive criticism. I know I’m far away from Shigeru Miyamoto status, but this made me feel all awesome inside.

No doubt that creating something is fun, but creating something that is actually fun is even better. Give someone the proper tools and they can create a masterpiece. Don’t give up just because your first 723 attempts failed, you may finally hit the fun jackpot with number 724.

AWESOME!

#986 – Getting a new video game for your birthday

4 Nov

Reality check. Every year we get older if you like it or not. It is what we as humans refer to as a birthday. Now before you start crying about how old you are, just remember that it also means that once every year is a chance to receive presents in honour of another year on our lovely planet. And what are the best presents to receive on these wonderful occasions? Clothes? No. Toys? No. Money? No. Video games? Of course! (did you expect otherwise from a gaming blog?) Don’t get me wrong, those other gifts rock as well, but the joy of getting a brand new video game is, for lack of a better word, awesome!

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Every birthday that I have received a video game I will remember until the day I die. Let me take you down a few of the more memorable birthday gifts I have had the pleasure of receiving. I once received Donkey Kong: Jungle Beat for the Nintendo GameCube with the included bongos; cheerful excitement ensued. Or the year I received the port of Super Mario World for the GBA; to own a copy of one of the greatest games of all-time on a handheld made me over joyous. Or the birthday one of my best friends Arun got me a copy of Comix Zone for the Sega Genesis, I knew nothing about it and then was blown away by it. And who can forget my birthday earlier this year when my loving girlfriend not only surprised me with a pre-order for Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain but also a Retron5! I’m a lucky man for sure.

So make sure to embrace the day you entered this world by begging and pleading with all your friends and family to buy you the latest and greatest video game or an old school classic. Whatever you do get is an automatic win!

AWESOME!

#987 – Playing Wii Sports for the first time

2 Nov

A little bit of a history lesson for you all before I get into the meat of this post. The Nintendo Wii was originally called the Revolution. End history lesson, begin post. The Wii is a system that was loved and hated for many different reasons. And though it had a solid first party line-up, arguably the most important game released for the system was Wii Sports. It showcases what the unique technology of the Wii is capable of. When you play it you realize you’ve played nothing like it ever before.


Story time yet again! Let me take you back to 2006 when the Wii was about to be released. I wanted the system really, really, really badly. Unfortunately, the system was so popular that supply couldn’t match demand (basic economics, my school lesson for you all today). One of my friend’s though was lucky enough to get the system at launch and I convinced him to haul over that special white box to see what all the fuss was about. We plugged it in, turned it on and Wii Sports sealed the deal for me. At that point I knew Nintendo had something really special. When I finally got the system many months later I would pour many hours into the title and use it to show people how cool the Wii was.

I will admit that over time the simplicity of Wii Sports has made that initial magic worn off quite a bit. But you can never forget that first time you swing for the fences as though you are a real MLB player. Or when you tossed up a tennis ball and hit a perfect serve. Or when you rolled a bowling bowl for your first strike. I think you get the idea by now, so I’ll stop with the memories. But please never stop forgetting that awesome feeling that went through your body.

AWESOME!