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jdodson

I heart video games so much I created Cheerful Ghost.

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Joined 01/23/2012
Ethereal Being 1

2076 Posts

"The Open Beta phase will begin on August 29 at 10 a.m. PT. All PC players will be able to play for FREE during this period. To play, you’ll just need the Blizzard Battle.net desktop app and a free Blizzard account—no additional sign-up or code required."

I've heard great things so far about Destiny 2 on PC and it seems it's a very amazingly created port that runs super smoothly. Curious what everyones thoughts are now that anyone with access to Battle.net can give it a try for a couple days?

https://news.blizzard.com/en-us/blizzard/20974970/play-destiny-2-free-on-pc-august-29-31-during-open-beta?utm_source=destiny-2-open-beta-activation-20170829

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Secret of Mana on the Super Nintendo is one of the best RPG's of all time. It was remade on the iPhone in 2012 and I thought that port was terrible in every possible way. So i'm a bit nervous to hear that Square is remaking Secret of Mana in 3D and launching it in 2018. It could be a great game. But... if the trailer is any indication, it doesn't look like it will be that good. Firstly the voice acting isn't to my liking and i'm not a big fan of the art style either. Still the game could be fun and i'm not going to rule it out entirely, i'm just not too excited about playing it. Personally, i'm more excited about getting it on the Super Nintendo Classic, but I am a sort of purist when it comes to certain games and films (like Star Wars). I don't mind revisionings of things but some games and films are better left as is and maybe Secret of Mana is one of those games? Also... maybe not so we will see how it turns out.

The 3D remake will be available on 15th February, 2018 for Steam, PS4 and PSVita!

https://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/259/secret-of-mana-is-one-of-my-most-beloved-games-of-all-time

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Back in August of 2013 I wrote about the new Kickstarter for Death Road To Canada and quickly after that I backed the Kickstarter. After that I interviewed the creator of the game and then dug in to wait for the games launch. The game finally launched in 2016 and it was added to my backlog of games to play. Since the games launch they have updated it considerably and the game seems to be even more widely praised by it's fans so I decided to jump in and give it a shot.

Death Road To Canada is a very well polished rogue like zombie bashing road trip game that pays homage to the Oregon Trail and the Ninja Turtles arcade game. Like most rogue likes you die... a lot but the main game loop is so much fun that doesn't really matter. There is much strategy to the base game and how you approach zombies, collecting loot and making choices really matter. Not to say there isn't a fair amount of RNG at play making some games massively unfair but sometimes the RNG is in your favor and that luck and your skill make it a very special experience. One other fun element of Death Road is that you can play it with a friend. I had a friend over recently and we played the game for hours really enjoying ourselves.

You can play the game with a keyboard and mouse but I seriously recommend you use a gamepad. I found the experience with a controller to be much better and playing with friends, it's a must.

Looks like the game will be getting even more future updates and if you are interested in checking those out, check the steam update link below. If you are looking for a new rogue like to play that hooks you right from the start and works on PC, Mac and Linux you should look into Death Road to Canada.

http://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/1590/interview-with-death-road-to-canada-s-kepa-auwae

https://steamcommunity.com/games/deathroad/announcements/detail/2353548518942679770

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https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/f/f5/The_legend_of_zelda_a_link_between_worlds_screenshot.jpg
Back in May I started my playthrough of Link Between Worlds on the 3DS. It's a fun follow up to Link to the Past and bring enough new things to the table to be interesting. As with most new Zelda games and because I have a one year old I play it in bursts. Recently I completed a few dungeons in Lorule, which is the Dark World equivalent in Link Between Worlds. Link Between Worlds keeps the dungeon locations to the same places as Link to the Past. The Lorule dungeons are all different but keep some of the themes with the original dungeons. For instance, Lorule has a Thieves Dungeon that is similar to the Link To The Past Dungeon. Each dungeon in Link Between Worlds, so far, keeps the base similarity to Link to the Past while changing the puzzles and having the dungeon layout be totally different. I'd also say, in general, the Link Between Worlds Dungeons are a bit harder and more varied in puzzles. The Lorule Dungeon bosses are also based on the original Link to the Past dungeon bosses but feature a new mechanic. So far, like most Zelda bosses, they have a couple hooks but once you understand them are easy to beat.

If I had to guess I'd say i'm slightly less than half way through the game and given about how long it's taken me to get to this point I should complete it sometime this holiday season. Good thing people in Hyrule are used to living under the thumb of evil despots because i'm not going to save them anytime soon. But you know, freedom doesn't come quickly when you have kids.

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I've heard shooters in VR make people sick. I've also heard that one solution to this is to move people around by warping the player around the game field but this solution has always seemed odd to me. That said, that does seem like the VR "solution" to the problem and Doom VFR seems to employ that mechanism to make the game work. In service of the new play controls in VR the story is a bit different and given what you need to do that to make a VR shooter amazing the story seems natural enough to fit how Doom should feel. But with VR you sort of have to try it to have it all make sense.

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"Hyperkin's RetroN 5 continues to be a popular yet decisive retro clone system that has many redeeming qualities...and a few things it needs to improve upon. Metal Jesus & Kelsey give you their honest opinion after using the Retron 5 for several years."

The RetronN 5 is a classic console mega station that allows you to play NES, Famicom, SNES, Super Famicom, Genesis, Mega Drive, Game Boy, Game Boy Color, and Game Boy Advance games. I picked up the RetroN 3 to replace a broken NES & Super Nintendo but the RetroN 5 supports WAY more systems and is totally compatible with HDMI outputting your retro games in amazingly crisp HD. Seems like the consensus is it's pretty good with a couple negative points such as the RetroN controllers are terrible, but you should just use your original ones anyway.

If you are looking to replace an old NES, Super Nintendo and Genesis on an old CRT TV check out my review of the RetroN 3 below.

http://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/3182/the-best-retro-3-in-one-my-review-of-the-retron-3

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https://www.primagames.com/media/images/products/snes_classics_se_sm.jpg/PRIMA/resize/600x
February of this year I picked up "Playing With Power" a strategy guide for the NES Classic games. It didn't review each game but hit the main ones and provided a really great history of the NES along with reprints of the original Nintendo Strategy Guides and Nintendo Power issues. It was a inexpensive and fun guide for people that like that sort of thing, which I do.

Recently Prima has let us know that it is going to release "Playing With Super Power" which is a strategy guide for the upcoming Super Nintendo Classic. It's going to feature game play tips and walkthroughs for many of the games including Star Fox 2 and more. And some of the "and more" looks well worth the price of admission alone such as:

"The Legacy: An in-depth look at how the Super NES has left its mark on the gaming industry, and how its legacy continues.

The Memories: Featuring a plethora of fan art, music, and more, this book is a love letter to playing with Super Power!

Speedrunning Tips: Some of the best speedrunners around share their tips and strategies for getting the best times in these beloved classic games.
"

Awesome. Seems like a really great upgrade to the last guide and yeah, i'm definitely going to pick this up. I got the NES Classic "Playing with Power" as a paperback and it's all fine and everything but this time I plan on getting the hardback.

https://www.primagames.com/games/nintendo-snes-classics/products/playing-super-power-nintendo-snes-classics-collectors-ediiton

Check out my NES Classic "Playing With Power" book review:

http://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/3246/it-s-dangerous-to-go-alone-take-this-playing-with-power-book-review

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Game Theory released a video a couple weeks ago and given Marc Laidlaw's recent Episode 3 fan fiction I thought it was well worth sharing. If you've played Half-Life or Half-Life 2 the G-Man is featured in the story and I'd argue is one of the main characters of Half-Life 2. Since G-Man isn't explained well in the games there are many theories online about who he is and the one Game Theory presents is a pretty compelling one. Since Marc Laidlaw is the only author of the Half-Life series answering questions right now someone asked him about Game Theory's G-Man theory and his response was pretty interesting.

I don't want to spoil anything so firstly I recommend you watch the Game Theory video above and then click the Twitter link below for Marc's answer. ALSO if you haven't already, read Marc's recent Episode 3 story(Epistle 3) because we all deserve closure.

https://mobile.twitter.com/marc_laidlaw/status/900986007746510848

Marc Laidlaw's Epistle 3:

http://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/3447/this-is-my-final-episode-former-valve-writer-marc-laidlaw-finishes-half-life-3

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Half-Life 3 may never be released by Valve but former Valve writer Marc Laidlaw has posted some fan fiction that he is calling Epistle 3 that wraps things up. It's a short and very touching story of Gordon Freeman and Alyx Vance after the events of Half-Life Episode 2. Does it wrap up the story? Yep. Does it feel like a genuinely epic and proper ending to Half-Life 3? Absolutely. Does it answer every question and tie up every loose end? Nope.

Marc's site is getting crushed right now so check out a GitHub version below. Marc's version changed names and gender swapped the characters and this version fixes that:

https://github.com/Jackathan/MarcLaidlaw-Epistle3/blob/master/Epistle3_Corrected.md

Original story will be available when the Internet stops killing his website:

http://marclaidlaw.com/epistle-3/

Marc is talking on Twitter about why he wrote this and answering some questions about the G-Man specifically:

https://mobile.twitter.com/marc_laidlaw/status/900980779802439680

Reading Marc's story now a couple times through really gave me closure and the way he writes is so immersive it made me feel like I was back playing the game. Even if Valve never gets around to releasing Episode 3 this was the closure I needed.

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A new video is out that shows the new abilities Samus can find in Metroid: Samus Returns. The new Aeon abilities such as scan pulse, lightning armor, beam burst and and phase drift are new to Samus Returns and are powered by a new Aeon energy meter. The trailer seems to imply that the new abilities are optionally available to find which might allow the game a more open ended path to navigate through. The original Gameboy version of Samus Returns is pretty linear and also very hard to navigate as there was no(that I remember) in game map system requiring you to resort to making your own OR finding one online. Samus Returns includes a modern in game Metroid map AND it looks like it might not be based on the original Metroid: Return of Samus game map. Samus Retruns seems to be, though i'm not entirely certain until I read a review or play it, a revisioning of the Gameboy title that changes up quite a few things including the classic map locations and bakes it up fresh for a modern audience that might not be familiar with the original game.

Metroid: Samus Returns comes to the Nintendo 3DS on September 15th.

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PortsCenter with Ben Paddon is quickly becoming on of my favorite new YouTube shows about gaming. PortsCenter is essentially a review show but focuses on a particular game port and all the ports and history surrounding it. Sometimes the port is bad and sometimes it's good and in the case of the Super Nintendo SimCity port it's transcendent. In this episode Ben talks about that and how the SNES SimCity port was created by Nintendo under license from Maxis, something I didn't know before. I agree with Ben here as SimCity on Super Nintendo is the only version of classic SimCity I return to. I've never personally built a Megaopolis city as that's quite hard to do but i've gotten close just never quite hit 500,000 citizens.

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After searching for the last couple months to find a used NES Classic I finally found one. After scouring the local retro scene and Craiglist I finally just lucked into picking one up from someone at work that no longer wanted it. It's in great condition as it wasn't used much and it was quite a bit of fun to play this evening. Looks like there is a lot of choices for buying a second controller as well as controller cord extensions that are not too expensive. I decided to buy two cord extensions so if I get a SNES Classic and the cords are too short I can use them with it.

One thing I hope to do is write up a quick review for each of the games on the NES Classic and now that I have one, we'll see how that works out. I've played many of the games on it but some I'll be flying in with a fresh perspective as some of the really early Nintendo games such as Ice Climber i've not played.

I'm really happy to have finally picked up a NES Classic and now I plan on focusing on finding the original box for it.

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In 1992 Kirby's Dreamland hit Gameboy and the Nintendo puffball train hasn't stopped since. There is a new Kirby game coming to the Switch next year but until then we can pour one out for the little marshmallow that can eat... anything. One thing I didn't know as I was watching the 25 years of Kirby video above is how many Kirby puzzle games there are. It makes some sense as Kirby is a lovable puff-thing that you can put in any game to make it instantly more charming.

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Brink didn't get great reviews when it launched or garner much praise but today it went free to play on Steam. If you are looking for a free multiplayer shooter to play that offers interesting character customization, parkour gameplay mechanics and a bit more... the price is right. If you want you can still pickup the games DLC but the base game is entirely free and right now there are quite a few people playing it on Steam so if you do try it out, you won't be the only one playing.

http://store.steampowered.com/app/22350/BRINK/

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The US release Super Nintendo Classic trailer has gone up and this retro feast confirms many details that were in the Japanese Famicom Classic trailer. Live rewind & game borders are coming to the Super Nintendo Classic. Last night pre-orders went up on Amazon and Best Buy and sold out quickly. Many were happy to secure one but many were sleeping, including myself. Hopefully the rest of the pre-order sites go live today and there is a brief window where I can pick on up.

If you are interested in getting on I urge you to check the Nintendo page for retailers that have yet to go live with pre-orders like Walmart & Target:

https://www.nintendo.com/super-nes-classic

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