jdodson1

Joined 01/23/2012

Partner to Francesca and father to Finley. I'm an Engineer and built the video game site Cheerful Ghost.

2434 Posts

I know it's not quite Christmas anymore but LGR dropped this review of Jazz Jackrabbit Christmas game and I thought it was fun and wanted to share it. If you're not aware, Jazz Jackrabbit is a classic DOS released back in 1994 by Epic MegaGames (later renamed to just Epic Games, the creators Fortnight). Jazz is a fun sidescroller that is one of the best of breed on DOS and Jazz Jackrabbit 2 just made everything more than a little bit better.


Metal Jesus has a new video out where he asks his crew what systems they have hooked up to their TV. The answers were pretty interesting coming from a bunch of avid collectors and at one point John Hancock had 32 systems on 3 TVs! The systems hooked up to my TV are the NES Classic, Wii, Wii U & Switch and I'm planning on removing the Wii at some point. The Switch is the latest system that's attached to my TV and I recently put my SNES Classic back in it's case because I'm not playing it at the moment.

What gaming systems do you have hooked up to your TV?


I've always been an armchair fan of the Mega Man games but never played any of them regularly until I got an NES Classic. I latched on to Mega Man 2 and haven't let go since (expect an upcoming Cheerful Ghost Radio NES Review episode in the new year). As such, it was fairly natural that I took note of Mega Man 11 and then found it totally awesome that Travis got it for me this year as a gift on the Switch! I wanted to write down some of my early thoughts on the game and will check in regularly as I make progress with it.

This Isn't Mega Man 2 But That's Ok

Beyond the 3D graphics at first blush Mega Man 11 looks and plays like the classic games we love. It's hard because the game feels just like the classics but under the covers are a slew of new mechanics. In fact, these new mechanics I found annoying at first but after clocking about 3 hours into the game are finally working for me.

The new stages are much longer than any Mega Man stages I've played so far which is to say, they are much longer than the stages in Mega Man 2. At first this seemed odd to me, how can you have a Mega Man game with super long stages and get through it and then I realized that Mega Man 11 is aimed a much more modern audience. The stages in NES Mega Man were short due to cart limitations and password saves states and replay-ability. Mega Man 11 sticks It's flag firmly in the save state world and expects you to complete a stage one time and move on. Gone are the days where the game expects you to turn it on and replay each robot boss battle on your way to beating Dr Wily. Mega Man 11 expects your gonna pick a difficulty and play each stage until you complete it until the end of the game.

This focus on stage length, difficulty and your game progress is all tied together through a new mechanic i'd not seen in a Mega Man game focusing on an in game currency, screws. Fear not, this isn't tied to any micro-transactions and screws are something you can collect easily in each stage by finding them or killing enemies. Collect enough screws and you can visit Dr Light and buy a ton of items such as E-Tanks and Mega Man enhancements like the ability to get a wider buster shot, lessen your push back when you take damage and increase the amount of energy that drops from enemies. These power ups unlock at certain points in the game and each one is a different amount of screws to unlock. Say you are having a particularly hard time in the Block Man stage? Collect enough screws to max out on E-Tanks and other items to make the stage easier. The screw currency gives the game focus in that you can unlock abilities and power ups making subsequent playthroughs easier. If you want the game to be more difficult you can avoid all this entirely but I'm working my way through it the first time and it's nice to get a bit of help.

Block Man Down, Acid Man to Go

After about three hours I finally defeated Block Man. The Block Man stage is quite punishing and once you complete a section it tosses it back to you in a harder form until you master each section to finally confront Block Man. Turns out Block Man isn't too hard, or isn't if you use the Super Guard power-up and some E-Tanks (which I recommend) and as such is one of the best stages and bosses to take on first. According to some searching, Acid Man goes down smooth with the Block drop weapon so I'm now working on that stage.

Another part of Mega Man 11 worth a series of accolades is the level design. So far the Block Man and Acid Man stages are quite different and contain very clever puzzles that are hard but fair. I've taken a peek at a few other stages such as Bounce Man which feels like a level designed by people that love crazy bouncy castles.

So far Mega Man 11 takes the best elements of the series and solidly moves the game forward for a new audience. If you like Mega Man games and don't mind coming back to the same levels and slowly getting better a bit at a time, Mega Man 11 is for you. You can download a demo of the Block Man stage on PC, Switch, PS4 and XBone to give it a shot if you're not entirely sure if this is something you might be into. I've heard Mega Man 11 looks better on the PS4 and XBox One and all I can say is the game looks great on the Switch. It's a bit jaggy in handheld mode but once it pops to the TV it looks fantastic.


Wanted to send everyone a special Holiday greeting and hope that today is a fun and restful day. As we open our IRL loot boxes please drop what you got from the Holiday Loot Elf in the comments to share!

Pictures get you a bonus accolade!


Sony just released a brand new Lemmings free to play game on iOS and Android which is a interesting turn as just yesterday I pined for a new mobile release. It's a classic franchise that deserved an updated version and after I heard the news this morning I downloaded it and gave the first few levels a try. So far, the game is fine, it uses energy that slowly refills over time or you can purchase an instant refill for money. That energy is what you use to activate your Lemmings abilities to float to the ground, build up and dig. It lacks some of the polish of the DOS original but as I've said, so far it's a fine port. I'll do a more formal review later but I wanted to let you know that it exists and that you can pick it up for free on Android and iOS now!

https://cheerfulghost.com/jdodson/posts/3966/lgr-looks-back-at-holiday-lemmings

"Lemmings: A cute, clumsy and clueless species of green-mopped creatures on a journey home, in desperate need of help. For over 25 years, players have answered their call, with millions playing the puzzle game that became a pop-culture phenomenon.

We cheered when we saved them, cried when they died and as a schoolkid back in the ’90s, my classmates and I seemed hell-bent on killing the poor things in the most barbaric way possible. Kids were cruel in the ’90s. We had no internet.

Now it’s time for a whole new generation to save/slaughter those adorable critters once again, with a brand new Lemmings game out today, designed specifically for your mobile device.
"

https://blog.eu.playstation.com/2018/12/20/lemmings-comes-to-mobile-devices-today/#sf204641336


Lazy Game Reviews is a YouTube channel about game reviews, retro reviews as well as retro PC hardware reviews. It's one of my favorite channels and I wanted to share one of his latest videos that was seasonally appropriate. Holiday Lemmings started out as a few level demo and got a full fledged release later on. I had all the Lemmings demos I could get my hands on but never was able to buy the full versions. It's not a hard game to find now but I wish Sony would do more with it and release a new Lemmings game on all platforms including mobile.


Macaulay Culkin has been showing up in a few YouTube shows I watch regularly including the most recent episode of The Angry Video Game Nerd talking about all the Home Alone Games. The Nerd has reviewed a few Home Alone games before but talking about each one with Mac himself is pretty incredible.

Macaulay Culkin has also showed up in two Red Letter Media shows re:View and The Best of the Worst. In re:View Jack and Mac talk about the 90's incredi-bad film Hackers and in Best of the Worst he reviews a couple terrible films alongside Home Alone 4!

re:View (Hackers): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lM7_oyCZqj0

Plinketto (Best of the Worst) Prototype, Quigley & Home Alone 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_FURNuBeQg


To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Doom, designer John Romero is releasing SIGIL a free Doom megawad that continues the original Doom campaign. Can't use enough words to say how badass this is and how simple the concept is. John Romero is releasing a free Doom wad you can play for free but also, if you want, get a Limited Run pressing of it for a $40 box and $166 Beast box.

The box copy comes with a 2 CD jewel case with the Megawad plus original music by Metal God Buckethead. For original Doom fans the Megawad seems like a must play and for avid PC game collectors this Limited Run pressing seems just as important. Please believe I'll be playing the Megawad on launch and I'm still deciding if i'll be picking up a physical release.

https://limitedrungames.com/products/sigil-standard-edition-box-pc-megawad?variant=13014785523765

https://limitedrungames.com/products/sigil-beast-box-pc-megawad?variant=13014782083125

"SIGIL is a free megawad for the original 1993 DOOM created by John Romero. It contains nine single-player and nine deathmatch levels. The free megawad will be released in mid- February 2019 and requires players own the original 1993 registered version of DOOM in order to play. SIGIL is the spiritual successor to the fourth episode of DOOM, and picks up where the original left off.

You can play SIGIL with several modern source ports such as GZDOOM, or the Steam version of DOOM. You must own the original registered DOOM or The Ultimate DOOM to play. SIGIL is playable in Co-operative, Deathmatch, and Single-Player modes. SIGIL is for PC/Mac.
"


https://i.imgur.com/3wxTO1v.jpg
"Over the past several years, the work of evaluating our development processes and making hard decisions has led to new games and other products that we’re proud of. We now have more live games and unannounced projects than at any point in the company’s history. We’re also at a point where we need to take some of our talented developers and bring their skills to other projects. As a result, we’ve made the difficult decision to shift some developers from Heroes of the Storm to other teams, and we’re excited to see the passion, knowledge, and experience that they’ll bring to those projects. This isn’t the first time we’ve had to make tough choices like this. Games like Diablo II, World of Warcraft, StarCraft II, Overwatch, and more would not exist had we not made similar decisions in the past.

Despite the change, Heroes of the Storm remains our love letter to Blizzard’s worlds and characters. We’ll continue actively supporting the game with new heroes, themed events, and other content that our community loves, though the cadence will change. Ultimately, we’re setting up the game for long-term sustainability. We’re so grateful for the support the community has shown from the beginning, and the development team will continue to support Heroes with the same passion, dedication, and creativity that has made the game such a unique experience.

We’ve also evaluated our plans around Heroes esports—after looking at all of our priorities and options in light of the change with the game, the Heroes Global Championship and Heroes of the Dorm will not return in 2019. This was another very difficult decision for us to make. The love that the community has for these programs is deeply felt by everyone who works on them, but we ultimately feel this is the right decision versus moving forward in a way that would not meet the standards that players and fans have come to expect.
"

Heroes of the Storm is a very cool MOBA (Multiplayer online battle arena) set in the Blizzard-verse where characters from Diablo, Warcraft, Starcraft and the Nexus get together and duke it out. Heroes of the Storm is different in that it's a bit more accessible, exp is earned as a team and has a huge assortment of different maps and objectives(most MOBA games feature just one map). That said, it's struggled to find a massive audience even though it's totally free to play and has the backing of Blizzard in the wake of titans such as League of Legends and DoTA 2 and it looks like that struggle has cause Blizzard to halt it being a top tier game in it's crown after 3 years.

The good news is that Blizzard supports games for a long time after they've been released so the servers should remain online nearly indefinitely. The sad part is streamers, pros and the community will falter a bit and eventually lessen to a dedicated few. Still, Heroes of the Storm is a great free game to get in and play with friends and if you are looking to give the whole MOBA craze a shot I can't think of a better game to start with.

https://news.blizzard.com/en-us/blizzard/22833558/heroes-of-the-storm-news


The latest documentary from Noclip is out and it's all about the history of Half-Life. Noclip wasn't able to talk to anyone from Valve about the game but managed to create an incredible documentary from interviews with Geoff Keighley, Scott Smith, Randy Pitchford and a lot more. One thing I learned while watching this is that Gearbox got It's feet wet as a game developer making a ton of Half-Life expansions and then jumped into their own IP to create the Borderlands franchise. The doc covers Half-Life, Half-Life 2, Counter-Strike and other Half-Life mods and maps as well as Episode 3 and Mac Laidlaw's Epistle 3 as well as fans trying to finish up the Half-Life story themselves. It's a great Half-Life love letter and clocks in at 1h 47m so set some time aside!

"What happens when one of the most revolutionary series in video games suddenly goes dark? To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Noclip hits the road to investigate the legacy of Half-Life and the incredible community working to keep the dream alive."

After watching this documentary I re-read Marc Laidlaw's Epistle 3 and saluted the Half-Life series without Episode 3. Marc's ending was spot on even if left me with a bit of a low feeling. Sometimes things can't be wrapped up in a bow and in the case of Half-Life maybe it's better that way?

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


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