Tuesday, March 04, 2008

to-day in retail and radd

So to-day I went Shopping. Not a big spree or anything; I was a hair manic, fought through it with a bunch of writing, then rolled on down to the mall for a bit. Not an exciting trip (because I bailed on buying myself a copy of Guitar Hero III), but I did score a new copy of Touch Detective 2 1/2. Fifteen wing-wangs! --I stalled out on Touch Detective a while back, but it's a far better series for me than the hideously overrated Phoenix Wright crap(com). Plus, when given a shot at supporting Atlus at retail, I usually will.

The funny part of the mission was when I plopped down my copy of Ghost Squad. The register biscut said "you know...this didn't review very well.(1) It's...it's pretty short." I laughed at him. "It's an arcade game. Length is not the point."

Now, for the uninitiated, Ghost Squad is a light-gun game. I'd bought the Wii Zapper a while ago, and found it a most acceptable accessory, and its pack-in game, Link's Crossbow Training, was great fun for the hour it took me to beat it, and the hour or two I spent on grinding away for better medals later. Mainly, though, the Zapper and Link's shooting-gallery hijinx made me realize how many glorious hours I'd invested in arcade light-gun games. Usually rail shooters.(2)

At the moment, there are two of these gracing the market. One, as is clear, I bought. The other is the rather well-reviewed Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles. But, as I told the monkey at the store, "I'm about a hundred bucks into the Resident Evil series without actually liking any of them, so screw those clowns."

The argument I wanted to make, but spared the poor retail minion, was "Dude. It's Sega. It's AM2. I think this'll be an okay purchase." Two and a half hours in, I still haven't quite beated it, but I'm dang close. And it's fun!

Now. If you'll excuse me, I'm off to beat No More Heroes. After that, more Ghost Squad.(3)

1.
Check this out! This is the very store where I have picked up, by game and Metacritic score:
Animaniacs: the Great Edgar Hunt 65
Final Fantasy: the Crystal Chronicles 80
Robotech: Battlecry 74
Star Trek: Conquest 51
and a couple other things. (Most of the handheld collection's in storage--preparing for the move. So I can't inventory the entire collection...)

Sos anyways...now you start sweating the fucking review scores? After I buy fucking Star Trek: Conquest? (Which, for the record, I thought was...sorta fun. Obviously unfinished and shipped early, but sorta fun.)

2.
Area 51 was probably my favorite, but the House of the Dead series was always good, and Sega cranked out a couple games with these GIANT fixed guns and HUGE screens that never failed to entertain the living bejeezus outta me.

3.
Look for my inevitable march up the leaderboards!! As a tribute to one of my loser buddies, my screen name is "Collision".

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1 Comments + Unabashed Criticism:

Blogger Fat Contradiction said...

Ghost Squad! Beated it! Last boss was cake this time 'round. But I made up for it by sucking majorly on the second mission. Man is it tough to shoot that last dude in the melon when the plane's all turbulent an' shit.

Anyways, I took some time out from playing to make a LIST. It follows.

Things of awesome re: Ghost Squad:

High-fives abound! Upon successful mission-completion, you high-five your partner. At the end of one mission, you get to high-five the president.

Why do you get to high-five the president? Because you just ran around Air Force One shooting fools. Running around inside a plane shooting guns is tight. And also sweet.

Occasional quick-time events result in brutal wrestling-style moves and one nice throat-slitting finish. Woulda liked to see some M-rated blood here, though. Breaking necks? Great. Slamming dudes onto the floorboards thrice? Neato. But cutting a throat with no blood is frankly limp, Sega.

Any game where you get extra points for busting caps in the faces of fools is okay by Fat!

Ghost? Stands for Global Humanitarian Operation and Special Tactics. Special Tactics means "headshots". Humanitarian means..."headshots".

A nice boat-load of unlockables. The costumes are a nice touch, but there's a million guns that actually change the style of play a whole bunch--there's a tactical shotgun with savagely limited ammo, a handgun whose bullets are armor-piercing, etc. Good stuff, enabling me to play the game with my own, y'know, flair.

So far, the only gun I love is the submachine gun. It's got lots of ammo, firing off 3-shot bursts in confined areas is thoroughly satisfying, and it feels entirely appropriate to use the 2-handed Wii Zapper with it.

Sniper mode--this is an occasional moment in stages where you have to snipe your way through. It's really nicely implemented, I think. Plus, sniping is just...it's just really fun is all.

I have in the past called the graphics "beautiful, Dreamcast-caliber"; I would like to suggest they're at least GameCube quality. There's a scene-setting moment at the beginning of stage three, an overview of a Macchu Pichu jungle set, and it's simply lovely.

There's one substage where you enter a restaraunt from the second floor and hang upside down, shooting fools. It looks great (see above) and plays ultra-fun. It's ripped off straight from like Boondock Saints and a battle from 3000 Miles to Graceland, but it gets it right where both those movies...ah, blew.

Nintendo's rumble is exquistite, and it's nicely implemented here. It just feels good.

That speaker in the Wiimote? Also well-used here. While nothing will ever match No More Heroes' use of the speaker as a cel phone, requiring you to hold the 'sucker to your ear, the reload noise and (I think) voice of yr tactical commander coming through yr gun is a great touch.

Length and interactivity. You can beat the game in a half-hour, sure: 3 missions, about 10 minutes each. But each mission has 16 levels of (unlockable) difficulty. Even if you can beat each mission level the first time through (you can't), that's 3x10x16 minutes, or 8 hours. That's not terrible. Repetitive, sure, but not terrible. After all, this is an arcade game: the entire point is the pursuit of perfect performance within exceedingly tight constraints.

Plus there's a decision-point structure such that you can't do every substage within a single mission play-through. Helps, y'know?

Terrific little game. Also, I beated it.

-Fat

(I wrote this before reading this review. He makes a lot of my points, and got there first. All I can say is that the dude's right, y'dig?)

4:32 AM  

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