Friday, July 3, 2015

Backlog Blitz: NES, Week 20, "Celebrate Rebellion!"

Well. This seems like a pretty good weekend to write about the Star Wars games. After all, there are some remarkable similarities between Star Wars and the American Revolution. By which I mean, there was a rebellion, and um, that bit where Benedict Arnold turned to the Dark Side and force-choked Jar-Jar Binks and I should have paid more attention in history class. Anyway. Let's talk about old games! 

Star Wars
Have you ever wanted a game where even non-ice levels feel like you’re moving on ice? This is that game. I think Luke Skywalker strapped some bars of soap onto his feet before he left Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru’s place. Platforming like this is impossible, especially with impossible jumps that you have to trigger from JUST the right place and you’ve got yourself quite the recipe. I’m impressed by the sound, though. Mainly because it’s the chiptune the Alien game I played way back when was missing. Slow bleeps and dripping noises is SCARY, yo! Put that in a SCARY game! Make this sound like Star Wars, please! Look, this and its older brother Empire Strikes Back have somehow managed to be worse games than Force Unleashed II. Yeah, that bad. That. Bad. 

Star Wars: Empire Strikes Back
Same oddly sticky-slippery controls as its predecessor, but with a fun new element I call LAAAAAAAAAAG. Input lags like you’re playing Halo with dial-up. And that makes a titchy little platformer like this ridiculously impossible. Also, this game sucks.

Really with the long and unskippable cutscene? 
…I’m. I think I need to be stoned or tripping to play this. This… MY SPACESHIP SHOOTS HEARTS! MY SPACESHIP SHOOTS HEARTS. HEARTS. LIKE CARTOON HEARTS. I’m not sure if it’s a weapon or what. But it shoots hearts. This is the sidescrolling shmup of stoners worldwide. Or something. I don’t know. The powerup icons are weird too. I think they’re…bells. They make little dingling bell noises when you shoot them and I think you’re supposed to juggle them in the air so they get more powerful. Like. What. Just. I don’t understaaaaaand.

So. Sci-fi Ninja Gaiden, huh? I can dig it. Except that it isn’t nearly that fluid. WHY MUST YOU BETRAY ME SO. It feels choppy. I don’t want my futuristic cyborg assassin dude to move like Robocop. I want him to be awesome and ninja-ey. MAKE HIM MORE NINJA-EY. He should move like, I dunno, the ninja from Mark of the Ninja. Or something. I liked the Metroidvania touches, though. Those were cool.