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  • core_pfield_7
    Recently, I’ve decided to dive into the Ganbare Goemon games.

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  1. I have been a subscriber to Apple Arcade since it started, but recently I feel like I have only just dabbled with it, so I decided to try out what games are on there a bit more seriously. Action-oriented don't appeal to me on the phone, so I tried out All Of You, which came out recently, and I completed the game yesterday. The game is a little tricky to describe: it's like a puzzly point-and-click game, but not in the LucasArts adventure game style—more of what you saw on the DS. Games like Ghost Trick or Exit, which are built on a root gimmick on which the developers build a variety of puzzles for you to solve. In the case of All Of You, you follow the path of a hen through 72 puzzle levels, and each level sees you guide her from start to end to recover one of her chicks, who became lost in some way or another. The game has its own unique art style, but there is no general theme running through it. One level will be set in an underground cave, and the next one could be set in a mysterious alien temple. The only constant in the game is the gimmick, and in All Of You, you guide the hen by interacting with the circles that depict the game world. When you tap on a circle, you activate the action in that circle, and the puzzles in each level are completed by careful juggling of the action in each circle. The game mixes things up quite frequently, however, and it's not all logic-based. A lot of levels also require surprisingly exacting timing skills. It's similar in the abstract to the developer's previous games, I Love You To Bits and especially Bring You Home, although the execution here is familiar but different. I enjoyed it quite a bit, despite some frustrating levels, and it's not a long game at all. Screen Sharing tells me that I spent 6 hours playing it, and the length feels just right. The only negative thing I can say about the game is that it feels somewhat disjointed. It's a mobile game through and through, meant for you to dip in and out of in your spare time. As such, the overall narrative doesn't really have any impact, and I thought that there wasn’t much in terms of a sense of progression. A lot of the timing-based levels were surprisingly frustrating as well, and I wish that the developers had structured the game differently. A Super Mario World-like overworld that clearly labeled what you might expect in each level, or provided alternative routes would've been more welcoming. Nevertheless, it's a nice little game, and I'd recommend taking a look at it if you liked Alike's previous games.
  2. To be precise, Minish Cap was developed by Flagship, which was funded by Nintendo, Capcom, and Sega. It was established perhaps as a flexible second/third party that was not a work-for-hire dev, while also not a new dev team either, and that could work with a lot of companies’ IP. Nintendo was experimenting with a few new models at this time, apparently: they also founded Mobile21, with Konami a few years after Flagship. Neither experiment seems to have worked out, though. I hated the Minish Cap and the Oracle games back in the day, and a lot of it is due to the fact that they seemed to be games that had a lot of polish and great visual design, but were poorly planned. Nintendo and Capcom/Flagship might have had disagreements about the design of the Zelda games, but Minish Cap in particular simply seems to have suffered from a rush to meet the holiday deadline.
  3. @df0 We can laugh, but... Just imagine, what if they announce a new Ridge Racer game? Either a new entry in the series, or a remake of Revolution/Type 4/Ridge Racers?
  4. In related news, Konami has opened their Official Konami Shop, which apparently is different to the Konami Style shop that was already in place. (According to their FAQ, the new Official Konami Shop is “heading in a more fan-focused way here. It is our goal to provide you with gear and products you’ve always wanted! This store won’t sell games, but thoughtful merch related to our most beloved IP’s.”) I’m not much for merch, but there is some amusing stuff on the site:
  5. Konami released an MGS3 pachislot machine in late 2016, but you’re right: they’ve really dropped the ball when it comes to adapting other games. I imagine they’re working on other MGS machines right now. <Insert joke about pachinko nanomachines here.>
  6. @MW_Jimmy Can’t find an English source at the moment, but media outlets are reporting that Kaz Ayabe (series director and head of Millennium Kitchen, developer of the series) will act as director for the Crayon Shin-chan game.
  7. @probotector So I looked up the sales numbers for all of the installments in each series, and I would venture to say that more than a few people like Kirby: More to the point, however: it feels like Kirby allows developers more flexibility to come up with ideas for new games, but that’s not really the case with F-Zero. It could very well be that the people at Nintendo simply don’t see what they could do to make a new F-Zero game interesting.
  8. A compilation of all the Goemon games, or at least a greatest hits kind of package. But, really, I would simply like Konami to go back to their roots and make arcade-style fast-paced action games with great graphics and music. (Edit: And without the oppressive workplace culture, too.) Probably implausible at this point, though.
  9. I think this is overstating it a bit. Composers in those days were very well aware that the final product was going to be the compressed soundtrack, and (as far as I’ve read) most of them did the sound programming themselves. So I imagine that they were pragmatic about the whole thing.
  10. The best thing we’ve had so far are the soundtrack releases from the 90s (like Akumajo Dracula Best 2, which is worth looking out for). I’d love to hear the uncompressed soundtracks as well, unlikely as it might be.
  11. Stop a couple of guys from making trouble in my nephew’s neighborhood in Philadelphia.
  12. I have to echo @Wiper’s thoughts and say thanks to @shiffy for all the amazing music from Japanese personal computer games. I'm familiar with a lot of MSX/2 music, and the music Yuzo Koshiro composed for the PC-8801, but that's as far as it goes. I'm really happy that there are people shedding light on this (mostly forgotten) music. Anyway, I don't have much to add, except: Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked. If Peter piper picked a peck of pickled peppers, how many pickled peppers did Peter Piper pick?
  13. Ganbare Goemon: Sarawareta Ebisumaru! / Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon Stage 8 (Michinoku) (Shinji Tasaka, Yoshiyuki Hagiwara, Akihiro Juichiya) The first Goemon game for the Game Boy has some tremendous music, and perhaps it has one of the best soundtracks in the whole series. I’m always amazed at what composers could do with the Game Boy hardware. The level where you hear this is a bastard-hard jumping challenge, so you end up listening to the tune about 30 million times, but I don’t mind. It’s a relatively simple composition (with a standard AABA pattern and a bridge over a minor key) which never fails to make me smile.
  14. Lagrange Point (Akio Dobashi, Noriyuki Takahashi, Aki Hata, Makoto Kawamoto, Kenji Nakamura, Tadashi Sawashita) This game literally pushed the Famicom cartridge hardware: Konami built into the cartridge their original Virtual ROM Controller VII (VRC7) sound chip, an FM synthesizer that allowed the composers to make 16-bit-like sound with an extra 6 audio channels and advanced bank switching. The cartridge is literally immense:
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