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Got fond memories of playing exhumed on the Saturn way back in the day. Really looking forward to the remaster that will be coming out soon. In fact the last few years has been pretty great with many 90’s fps making a come back, already had amazing remasters of Duke, Doom 1, 2 & 64, Turok 1 & 2 and soon Exhumed and System Shock. 

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Yeah it's great that there's appetite for it, but have to say that I'm not all that impressed by what's been shown of Powerslave Exhumed, in particular the lighting looks so bland while in the Saturn game it's utterly glorious. Seems to amount to improved resolution and little more. I suppose by release there might be more to make it seem worthwhile, but hey the Saturn game is still perfectly playable!

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On 30/11/2021 at 21:50, Sprite Machine said:

It's all right so far. Not as hard-going as SoM, although combat feels woolier and more chaotic, like I barely feel I'm in control sometimes. The menus and equipment screens are sluggish, like the little SNES is trying to push around too much memory at once, I dunno.

Graphics are improved and the day/night cycle is very well done. Different beginnings depending on which character(s) you pick is mad clever. Good stuff.
 

I wish I'd picked a magic healer in my party, I'm relying on items a lot! I shall continue! :)

 

I think I'm gonna give up on Trials of Mana. Unfortunately, after some ten hours in, I'm just not enjoying it very much.

The combat is tedious. There is a disconnect between pressing buttons and seeing the result, so all battles just feel like an incomprehensible scuffle. You can't easily avoid them, either. The interface is sluggish, the level design is frustrating and everything feels slow and drawn out. I can't get on with it.

Annoying, really. I ploughed on with Final Fantasy Adventure (despite it being mostly awful) and Secret of Mana (which was hard going at times) but I just can't bring myself to finish this. Life's too short to play shit you don't like.

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On 28/11/2021 at 14:14, Qazimod said:

@Goemon I finished it for the first time earlier this year, and went through it again recently just so that I could have some recordings of battles to put online somewhere. I found that most of the time there wasn't too much of a need to grind, but there was one late game encounter (near the end of the "Fated Hour" chapter) that I thought was so one-sided that I didn't attempt it again until levelling up a bunch. Also, doing lots of battles can be useful for learning more techniques and opening up your options in battle.

 

And yeah - as with most games like this, Haste is always useful - having "more turns" makes it easier to correct mistakes and prepare for things. :D 


I actually ended up not grinding at all apart from one section where I got to a shop and didn’t have the money to buy the swag I wanted so did some for money. Which bit were you talking about?

 

I’ve finished it now, really enjoyed it. I’m not sure why it’s taken me so many attempts to finish it. All the fights can be dissected, which can be really satisfying when you die a couple of times trying stuff and then you concoct a team and plan that smashes a boss out of sight.

 

Also loved the use of time travel to affect things and how it was used in quests.

 

I think my only minor gripe is when fighting, if the fight is active you’re forced to hurriedly pick your attacks as the enemy can continually attack you. Taking your time here can literally mean the difference of a character living and dying, which I’m not really a fan of. It also doesn’t help that you can’t really see the list easily so you’re scrolling partially blind. I think I only saw about a 10th of the dual and triple attacks too. I put this partially down to the menu, which is only a thin sliver of viewable space and the panic of needing to pick something quickly.

 

I’m kinda interested in other JRPGs now and wonder if I’ve just not been paying attention when playing them. I’m not a fan of having to stand and take hits, random battles etc. but I did enjoy the strategy of fights in this game.

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3 hours ago, Goemon said:

I actually ended up not grinding at all apart from one section where I got to a shop and didn’t have the money to buy the swag I wanted so did some for money. Which bit were you talking about?


It was

 

Spoiler

the end of the Black Omen dungeon, and the back-to-back of Zeal, the Mammon Machine and Zeal again


- although I don’t think I was that underlevelled, and everything after that was fine, so it’s no big deal. :D 

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I'm playing Enslaved: Odyssey to the West which I got for £1 off Norwich Market (360 version).

I actually played this very briefly when it came out and for some reason didn't get on with it (I think I only did the first level).

I don't know what I was thinking because I'm now about 2/3 through and it's really, really fun. It looks lovely with really nice colourful graphics and excellent motion-captured movement. Andy Serkis plays Monkey and the voice acting is really top notch too.

It's based on the Monkey/Journey to the West story but given a Sci fi twist. Gameplay is a mixture of cinematic platforming sequences (similar to Uncharted), light puzzling and really fun melee combat.

It's a brilliantly balanced game, always giving you something fun to do and with a fairly gentle difficulty curve.

I think this was a bit of a flop which is a shame because it's bloody good. I wish I'd given it more of a chance when it was released.

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On 16/11/2021 at 09:10, Yasawas said:

Aladdin (MD)

 

Oh dear. I have to assume the love this inspires is down to nostalgia or being blinded by how utterly stunning it still looks but it's not much of an actual game, is it? I don't mean it's bad or that I actively dislike it but it's pure mediocrity and even shorter than I'd imagined. Pretty frustrating in places too - chiefly in how misleading it can be in communicating the difference between background and solid platforms at times. I've died more than a few times to that one. Currently on the final boss who is a total arsehole but I will plug on because stubbornness is my superpower.

 

I'm playing this on the Switch Disney Collection thing so I fancy giving the Final Cut a go afterwards to see what they changed while it's fresh to mind. Plus I suppose I need to play the SNES one now too so I can have a take on the most tedious retro gaming debate amongst my generation. Woo!

 

And now Aladdin (SNES), hooray. Ten minutes and two levels in and it's miles better so hopes are high.

 

Also quite excited to see this new DLC includes The Jungle Book which I've never played. Is there much to choose between the SNES and MD versions of that one? It has the best soundtrack obviously so I suppose I can't go too far wrong either way. 

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4 hours ago, Yasawas said:

 

And now Aladdin (SNES), hooray. Ten minutes and two levels in and it's miles better so hopes are high.

 

Also quite excited to see this new DLC includes The Jungle Book which I've never played. Is there much to choose between the SNES and MD versions of that one? It has the best soundtrack obviously so I suppose I can't go too far wrong either way. 

I have to say, after a recent playthrough of MD Aladdin myself, and having been very impressed with the game at launch I feel you're being a little unfair. 

While there undoubtedly are areas of the game in which it's difficult to tell background from foreground, it really isn't more than a couple of button presses to work out how to proceed. 

Remember, this isn't a game designed to be played through once using save states. Levels are designed to be played and replayed. Once you get familiar with it, the game has a fantastic feeling of flow and it really does feel like playing a cartoon. 

I still think Aladdin himself controls really well too. 

I can completely understand why you may prefer the SNES game but I genuinely don't think it's miles better, it's just different and the game design focuses on different things. 

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13 minutes ago, JamesC said: 

While there undoubtedly are areas of the game in which it's difficult to tell background from foreground, it really isn't more than a couple of button presses to work out how to proceed. 

Remember, this isn't a game designed to be played through once using save states. Levels are designed to be played and replayed. Once you get familiar with it, the game has a fantastic feeling of flow and it really does feel like playing a cartoon.


I can’t agree with the foreground/background thing! Two spots in particular stick with me - a ledge edge in the lava runny jumpy cavey level that wasn’t obviously load-bearing and kept killing me as I jumped too short until I beat it into myself that I could run on it, and the boss fight with Iago. Although I fully accept the latter might be me having a brain fart. It happened more than once that I found I could walk through things that looked solid and vice versa though. 
 

And I don’t use save states, how dare you! It does flow very well in patches, mainly because it looks utterly gorgeous, but before long it’s broken up with some more aimless platforming or clumsy combat. The 16 bit era had some wonderful Disney titles but this isn’t one of them imo.

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4 minutes ago, Yasawas said:


I can’t agree with the foreground/background thing! Two spots in particular stick with me - a ledge edge in the lava runny jumpy cavey level that wasn’t obviously load-bearing and kept killing me as I jumped too short until I beat it into myself that I could run on it, and the boss fight with Iago. Although I fully accept the latter might be me having a brain fart. It happened more than once that I found I could walk through things that looked solid and vice versa though. 
 

And I don’t use save states, how dare you! It does flow very well in patches, mainly because it looks utterly gorgeous, but before long it’s broken up with some more aimless platforming or clumsy combat. The 16 bit era had some wonderful Disney titles but this isn’t one of them imo.

Fair enough. I had a really good time with it on my playthrough but, yes, the foreground/background thing is something thats undeniable, I just didn't find it too bad in Aladdin (it's a real issue in Earthworm Jim and Pitfall-The Mayan Adventure though). 

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8 hours ago, JamesC said:

Fair enough. I had a really good time with it on my playthrough but, yes, the foreground/background thing is something thats undeniable, I just didn't find it too bad in Aladdin (it's a real issue in Earthworm Jim and Pitfall-The Mayan Adventure though). 

 

On Earthworm Jim we definitely agree. I never liked any of those at the time and every so often I get inspired enough by a post or YouTube video to try again but I'm doing well if I even get as far as launching a cow before frustration sets in. Style over substance in the extreme.

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I'm dipping in-and-out of Suikoden 2 at the moment (I played the first game this time last year as my Christmas game so wanted to recreate that feeling.)

 

I think the familiarity is all a bit too much and so it's been a bit of a slog. It doesn't help that with such a wide variety of characters - and no way to really gauge how they will progress stats wise without grinding levels - picking a good team is tiring. I do still like the whole concept, of course, but I'm doubt I will finish this by New Years Day like the first game, its probably going to be a longer burn. 

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On 30/11/2021 at 22:28, pastry said:

Just finished off Exhumed (well, NTSC-U Powerslave actually) for the first time in over 20 years. What a cracker of a game!

exhumed_00001.thumb.jpg.5256ca36f3f035030fe1cfeb14c7176c.jpg



 

 

Did you go for all the team dolls? The one underneath where you're standing is easy enough to get, but bomb jumping back up those rings? an absolute sweaty-palmed bastard ! If you fail you gotta beat the final boss for another go as well, I think I managed it on my 12th or so attempt - definetely a few hours or pig headed stubborness. I also triggered a glitch where I fell to my death here but somehow survived, so I could freely walk around miles below the level. Was pretty cool, need to get round to uploading the video.

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Actually played Elite for the first time ever on the weekend, despite being a child of the 80s I just never played it, even when I had an Amiga. Tried out the very impressive NES version, it's very unforgiving at the start but a lot of fun. So many games have borrowed elements from it and I can see why in 1984 it was so ground breaking.

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6 hours ago, Down by Law said:

 

Did you go for all the team dolls? The one underneath where you're standing is easy enough to get, but bomb jumping back up those rings? an absolute sweaty-palmed bastard ! If you fail you gotta beat the final boss for another go as well, I think I managed it on my 12th or so attempt - definetely a few hours or pig headed stubborness. I also triggered a glitch where I fell to my death here but somehow survived, so I could freely walk around miles below the level. Was pretty cool, need to get round to uploading the video.

 

I collected them all 20 years ago but nope, not this time. 

 

I got the two in the laser maze and the one in Amun mines, and I remembered there’s a doll in that last zone but couldn’t quite remember where. I boosted to the top of the rings instead... and... nothing there!
 

it’s a good challenge but not sure I’ll bother - I’m planning to get into PDS next, because I’ve only ever completed the free disc 1 on SSM. I did own PDS too, but I was probably playing Dreamcast by the time I bought it.

 

anyway, Exhumed was great fun. Because I emulated I used a DS3, which worked a charm with analogue support of the NTSC version. Triangle for free look, bumpers for weapon switching, analogue movement and strafing - worked well. Still looking for that elusive modern 6 button analogue pad. 

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Heh, it's on an invisible walkway right underneath where you are on the photo. Dropping down the rings to make the leap of faith ain't so bad ( you can even shimmy off the main walkway, air strafe and land right on it of you're feeling confident) but getting back up is no joke. You've got to land the jump back onto the lower ring without overshooting it (tough) then bomb jump up to the 3rd ring without smashing your head or slipping off the tiny ledges and falling into space (insanely tricky)

 

After the laser maze I thought I was in for a cakewalk but nope. I give mad respect to anyone who makes it through the laser maze though. Lobotomy weren't messing around. Using the Saturn pad I had to shoot the wall to make sure I was dead centre mass before moving sideways. Straight back to the start of the level upon death always gives that added pressure too. 

 

All that cussing then no Death Tank on the Pal version which is a shame. Still a good sense of completion mind 😁

 

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Finished Aladdin (SNES) and am a bit more realistic about it now. It probably is better than the MD one, but after a strong first impression it floats between being unremarkable and being frustrating. The final boss fight was a surprise when it came but much more fun than the Virgin one, the soundtracks to both are dreadful and Shinji Mikami is no better at making a cave escape level fun than David Perry it turns out. Two very average games and nowhere near the best Disney platformer on either system basically.

 

I'm playing The Jungle Book (MD) now because I'm too scared of its reputation to try The Lion King and if nothing else I'm guaranteed the best soundtrack of the lot with this one.

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Resident Evil 2 Dreamcast - last time I played RE2 was in 1998. I played the PlayStation US import version, as I had started my first job and was flush with cash. in my early 20s with money to burn and no responsibility.

 

Revisiting again some 23 years later, now a middle aged man with little time to play games and tons of responsibility. Playing the DC version as it’s easier and smoother, I really don’t have the time and patience to play it on a difficult mode. I want a serene journey. As for the game, it does feel really antiquated now but there’s still something about it. I prefer it to the remake. The fixed camera angles feel more cinematic and the tank controls can induce blind panic when zombies are bearing down on you and you’re fumbling around trying to get a shot off. 

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On 10/12/2021 at 08:35, Yasawas said:

Finished Aladdin (SNES) and am a bit more realistic about it now. It probably is better than the MD one, but after a strong first impression it floats between being unremarkable and being frustrating. The final boss fight was a surprise when it came but much more fun than the Virgin one, the soundtracks to both are dreadful and Shinji Mikami is no better at making a cave escape level fun than David Perry it turns out. Two very average games and nowhere near the best Disney platformer on either system basically.

 

I'm playing The Jungle Book (MD) now because I'm too scared of its reputation to try The Lion King and if nothing else I'm guaranteed the best soundtrack of the lot with this one.


I picked up the Aladdin’s recently.

I’ve never been massively fussed by the MD version but was hopeful for the SNES version with it being made by Capcom.

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I’ve just finished Super Ghouls n Ghosts on the SNES.

 

I will admit that I moved to save states for the penultimate fight against Astaroth and Nebiroth with the Goddess Bracelet. This is mainly down to when you die you have to replay the whole level again. The design of the level makes progress slow and I must have spent an hour just playing the final stage over and over only to die at the boss and have to go all the way back. So to get through I made a save at the boss. 
 

I might have been able to do it but it was getting too frustrating having to do the whole level again. From the save it probably took 10 attempts to do it, that doesn’t sound like much but that’s easily another hour of replaying that last level.

 

The game is quite liberal with continues as you can get one for collecting 20 (I think) money bags that are scattered through out the levels. Also on dying the bags respawn so there’s some sections where you can probably grab a continue if you die a couple of times.

 

I’ve actually really enjoyed it overall and it was no where near as difficult as I remembered, apart from that final section.

 

One thing I found interesting is that the first level, which I’d consider needed to be the showcase, has the worst slow down in the whole game (apart from the stage 4 boss). I would have expected the opposite, that the first level was silky smooth and the last level (which more people are unlikely to see) to suffer from being unoptimised.

 

Glad I played through. I think I avoided it for a long time for fear of difficulty but having recently been playing Ghosts N Goblins Resurrection (and loving it) I decided to dive in.

 

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Well I finished The Jungle Book (MD), pretty much by spite at the end. Didn't enjoy it as much as either Aladdin to be honest. Nowhere near as pretty, it's fairly dull collectathon in aimless Europlatformer levels with no difficulty at all until you get to the boss who will likely wreck you. Weak. Discovering early on that Julian Rignall was in the credits in a design role was the most exciting thing about it.

 

Now Paper Mario (N64). I've liked the sequels I've played but had never tried this one. Does it never introduce any kind of timed button presses as part of the combat like the later titles? That would be a little disappointing. I appreciate Nintento didn't develop Super Mario RPG but even that had some kind of rhythm-based element to the fights to give you a bit more to do.

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2 hours ago, Yasawas said:

 

Now Paper Mario (N64). I've liked the sequels I've played but had never tried this one. Does it never introduce any kind of timed button presses as part of the combat like the later titles? That would be a little disappointing. I appreciate Nintento didn't develop Super Mario RPG but even that had some kind of rhythm-based element to the fights to give you a bit more to do.

 

It does introduce it. Soon. You've probably already hit it :)

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Just finished FZ Senki Axis (Final Zone) on the Megadrive.

 

I had some high hopes for this. Screens made it look really cool and I’m generally a fan of mech based shooters.

 

Unfortunately it’s pretty disappointing.

 

The game is all over the place TBH. It seems to have this bizarre, not slow down, but it’s like the game is skipping frames. Enemies seem to jump around like the frame rate is really low but it’s not really that. The frames do instantly drop as soon as you start shooting and TBH I ended up shooting constantly as when the game is running at normal speed, it’s harder to control. The mech is generally too fast for the environment.

 

The levels themselves are not great. You’re on a map that loops so walking up constantly will put you back where you started, which is weird. The aim of the level is to kill a certain amount of enemies so you’re wandering around looking for enemies but the map is looping so it makes them awkward to find. The AI for the enemies is pretty much no existent so you stumble on some tanks and they don’t even bother you, it’s like they’re just driving around aimlessly.

 

The other thing the game does is have these generic enemies that don’t count towards your enemy total but they’re constantly spawning around you to cause a distraction. As you get further into the game, these become the bigger threat because of their constant spawning next to you and they all start shooting you. The enemies are just palette swaps too. So level 1 you’re shooting green tanks, helicopters etc. and on stage 2 you’re shooting red tanks and helicopters. 
 

The whole thing just feels pretty cheap, like it was made on a crazy low budget. Saying that there was at least 20 people in the credits including 5 programmers so I’m surprised how rough it is.

 

I had a look at reviews for the game and they seem all over the place. Lowest was 8/100 and the highest was 85/100 (with everything in between). Personally I wouldn’t mark it that high, it’s a 50% at best.

 

Glad to have finished it but I no desire to go back ever again.

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I have a real soft spot for Final Zone. 

It's hugely flawed and I can't really disagree with most of your criticisms but for me it still has a huge fun element. 

It reminds me of Isolated Warrior on the NES which is another favourite. 

It's not a game I've ever tried to complete. I just like to put it on for a quick arcadey blast every now and again. 

 

Have you played Granada? It has a similar gameplay structure but it's from a top down view and is more successful technically. 

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3 hours ago, JamesC said:

I have a real soft spot for Final Zone. 

It's hugely flawed and I can't really disagree with most of your criticisms but for me it still has a huge fun element. 

It reminds me of Isolated Warrior on the NES which is another favourite. 

It's not a game I've ever tried to complete. I just like to put it on for a quick arcadey blast every now and again. 

 

Have you played Granada? It has a similar gameplay structure but it's from a top down view and is more successful technically. 


Oh interesting. I figured I would have a soft spot for it regardless based on it being mech shooter but some of the problems were just too glaring for me. Nice to see it in someone’s list though.

 

TBH I think the premise is cool and I was flooded with ideas of how I would tweak it to make it great. If I had more skills, it’s actually a style and design that I’d like to have a go at. The boss battles where you’re boosting as you fight for example have a load of potential to do some cool stuff.

 

I actually bought Axis and Granada in the same pick up so will move onto Granada soon. :)

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