Saturday, June 20, 2015

Backlog Blitz: NES, Week 18, "Skate Or Buy! (My Book)"

It's been a while! Life (well, school) hit me pretty dang hard for the last few months. Finally done with college, though. I've got my $160,000 piece of paper that says I can put words together good. Which is nice. And now I'm finally playing video games again. (Currently, The Witcher--the first game!--and retro games). Anyway, you're here to read about old games! Letsago!

Section Z
WOO! A bullet-hell where I’m a guy in a rocket-suit! Controls are fluent and actually feel like they’re controlling a space-dude! And there’s a maze aspect to the levels as well—if you don’t pick the right paths you’ll end up looping back to the beginning of the level or something. I’m not sure what the triggers are, actually, but there’s definitely a labyrinth deal going on. 

Well, beside getting stuck on the first puzzle for like ten minutes (seriously, hiding a key behind an ornamental skull is the fantasy equivalent of a key under a fake rock), this is a lot of fun. I mean, I’ve died dozens of times and I’m barely anywhere, but… I’m kind of curious what would happen if I plotted out the rooms in Shadowgate compared to the rooms in Tomb of Horrors—there’s a very similar aesthetic, that’s for sure. Also, games that make me keep track of my torch usage are cool. In a sick sadistic sort of way. Point-and-click Tomb of Horrors. Me likey.

Skate or Die!
If nothing else, I like the graphics. The characters are very 80s skate-punk, which I dig heartily. I actually recently found a skateboard from that area with the little board-guards and stuff to protect the actual board from getting damaged. Weighs about 10 pounds, though. But I digress. The controls in this are…They’re bad. It’s one thing for Pirates! to have weird controls—they’re simulating controlling a massive sailing vessel. Here, this, this travesty, is disappointing. Skateboards control normally even from the rider’s perspective. It should be no different in the case of a game controls. I don’t get the point of the competition aspect either. Why not just have a semi-open world dealy where I can complete missions? Wait, that’d be NES Tony Hawk and that’d be cool. This is no NES Tony Hawk. Which is a shame, because that would be a doable.

Skate or Die! 2
This opening screen is certainly…ambitious. Chunky chip-tune riffs that actually sound like an 80s metal song… I likey. It’s the only good thing in this game. But who thought that having push be “UP” would be at all a good idea? MORON! DUMMKOPF! These controls are atrocious! GOTT IN HIMMEL! My thumb cramped almost immediately. 

ALMOST FORGOT! I wrote a book! Well, a short book! Hallowed Ground is a collection of Lovecraftian and Gothic short stories and poems. It was my senior project, and what devoured so much of my time over the last few months. If you'd like to read it, it's available digitally for free, or physically for $6 (the lowest price I could set).