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3 alternatives to the NES Classic Edition

The latest from Nintendo is the NES Classic Edition, a system that exists because they we’re pretty sure you’d buy it.  This adorable, tiny nostalgic grey rectangle comes pre-loaded with 30 NES titles that weren’t exactly picked out of a hat, but there’s certainly some on here that baffled me (Castlevania 2, Excitebike) as much as the ones that were left off (Commando, Contra, etc).  Retailing at $60 USD, that’s $2 a game if you don’t factor in the hardware, but my feeling is that this system isn’t worth the effort.  Here are 3 suggestions as alternatives to the NES Classic Edition.  Read the rest of this entry

Princess Peach Toadstool is not subtle

princess-peach-not-subtle

When I was a kid, Peach (or Princess Toadstool or whatever the hell you want to call her) was clear:  she needed help.  When I was a teenager, she was subtle:  “I baked a cake.”  Right.  “Cake.”  (The guys in my class used to say, “I will give you cak,” but I’m pretty sure they weren’t talking about cake.)  The point is that by the time Super Mario Galaxy came around, she had dropped all pretense yet still wasn’t going to write it out word for word, but you get the idea.   Read the rest of this entry

Super Mario Bros Super Show Review

super-mario-bros-super-show-theme

“Hey Paisanos! This is going to totally blow!”

As a kid, I was all about the Mario Bros.  I had the first Mario Bros game for my sister’s Atari 2600 and then I got the NES and got my Super Mario Bros/Duck Hunt combo cartridge, and that was it; I was hooked for life.  (Seriously – I’m just about done with Super Mario 3D World for Wii U.)  Then, Super Mario Bros 2 came out (the American version – not the extremely difficult Japanese one) and blew everyone’s mind and it flew out of the stores at such a fevered pace that I never actually owned a copy.  Such was the fever of Mario Mania – it was everywhere.  Naturally, the time was right to launch a TV show, and I thought, “YEAH!  That sounds amazing! I am going to watch the hell out of this show.”

And I did.

And then I thought, “Oh.  I mean… oh.”  I let out an exasperated sigh, a few weeks passed and then, the following Monday, I couldn’t help but think, “Is it Friday yet?”  People who watched the show know exactly what I’m talking about.  Read the rest of this entry

First Impressions of Nintendo Wii U

We finally got Nintendo Wii U and I have to say that overall, I am digging it.  It’s not perfect (and I think they could make some easy tweaks to improve stuff), but it’s far from disappointing.  Read the rest of this entry

Angry Video Game Nerd: The Movie (movie review)

On Friday, August 8th, 2014 at 7:30 PM, we saw the  much-anticipated Angry Video Game Nerd:  The Movie (screening dates) with a full house of raging Nerd Heads.  The flick has been in production for several years now, so expectations were high and enthusiasm boundless as the lights dimmed and the picture popped onto the screen at the Sharp Theater.  Would the fans get what they want, or would they go home disappointed?  I was predicting the former, but you never can tell how these independent productions are going to turn out.  Ready for anything, I settled into my balcony seat and watched the movie roll.   Read the rest of this entry

The Game Over screen of Friday the 13th (NES game)

The game over screen for Friday the 13th is by far the best of it’s kind. This is a terrible NES game, but they got this one bit right.

YOU AND YOUR FRIENDS ARE DEAD.

GAME OVER

That is classic right there. None of that gentle "game over, continue" sort of stuff – this game’s all, "Ya dead, biatch! So are your friends! Now I’m gonna go to your house and burn it to ground after I eat all the food in your fridge and pee on your carpets! I’m gonna push your car into a lake after I fill the gas tank with sugar and drop a number two in the trunk! I’m gonna fill out a credit card application in your name, get the card and run up a bunch of debt that I will NEVER pay off! Kiss your FICO score goodbye, jack-hole!"

Anyway, here it is in it’s original 8 bit glory:

Legend of Zelda PSA: Condoms

That old guy from The Legend of Zelda is full of so much wisdom, isn’t he?  Now, he’s doing his best to make sure what Link is full of doesn’t – well, you get the idea. Read the rest of this entry

The ending screens of Ghosts ‘n Goblins (NES game)

Because the NES arcade port of Ghosts ‘n Goblins is frigging impossible (I assume all versions of the game are impossible, but this is the only one I’ve tried), here’s what the end looks like. Just to make it clear how hard it is to finish this game, you don’t get to see this ending (spelling errors and all) unless you beat the game twice. Yeah, because finishing this impossible bastard the once isn’t hard enough! And isn’t that a kick in the junk? You beat the game twice and they can’t even have the decency to spell the congratulations text correctly?

That is weak sauce. F U, G ‘n G!

Attention Must Be Paid: James Rolfe: The Angry Video Game Nerd and the Bullshit Man

While James Rolfe’s career continues to bring him more opportunities the longer he persists, I still feel that he could use a shout out, and so, it’s time for Attention Must Be Paid, James Rolfe edition… or, in internet vernacular, AMBPAVGN.

While wandering around the internet, I came across a video on YouTube that delighted me:  the series was called, You Know What’s Bullshit? and the episode was called, Temperature.  This, I am sure, is one of the greatest things to ever grace the YouTube servers.

“Potatoes are assholes; they’re so unpredictable.”

Has a better sentence ever been uttered?  I think not.  Potatoes are, in fact, assholes!  (Sure, they’re not on corn‘s level, but what vegetable is?)

The Bullshit series is a work of art in itself, from part 1 to part 13.  I was stunned with the quality of the writing, camera work and most of all, the superior editing.  YouTube has so much fatty waste clogging up its mighty heart that its easy to get stuck in the muck of loathsome dreck, a sea of unedited video with awful pop music poorly mixed in the background, and the Bullshit series was a tremendous breath of fresh air; people really were putting quality video on YouTube.  Who knew?

I soon found that I had engorged on the entire “You Know What’s Bullshit?” series (I’m also a big fan of the DVD sticker and DVD collection episodes) and yearned for more.  The discovery that there was more ‘bullshit’ to be experienced beyond Temperature was a revelation in itself, but I had no idea what loomed just over the horizon.

The first episode I saw of The Angry Video Game Nerd was his review of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the Nintendo Entertainment System.  TMNT for the NES is the worst kind of video game; it gave us the opportunity to interact as our favorite genetically altered reptiles, and in the early levels, you see so much promise.  Sure, the controls aren’t great, but it’s a fun game… at first.  Then it starts to suck, and that’s where James Rolfe comes in.

It sucking fucks, it fucking sucks, it fucking blows, it’s a piece of shit…  and I don’t like it.

James Rolfe as The Angry Video Game Nerd

James Rolfe as The Angry Video Game Nerd

Agreed, sir.  Agreed.

If you were a gamer in the mid to late eighties and onward, then you know how revolutionary Nintendo was for those of us who were used to the classic Atari 2600 (or pretenders like the ColeocoVision), as was the Super Nintendo (I know this is an old debate, but Sega sucked.  The Sega Master System and Sega Genesis were inferior pieces of hardware; we can debate game libraries till the cows come home, but when games came out on both systems, Nintendo wins hands down every time… hence Sega makes games for Nintendo now?  Figure that one out!), the Nintendo 64, and so on.  (I’ll take another quick second to say that for the most part, the Playstation is a load-time-cut-scene-infused paperweight.)  That being said, Nintendo had it’s fair share of bad games, whether licensed or not, and The Angry Video Game Nerd is just the man to exorcise the video game demons that haunt our souls from both yesterday, today and tomorrow.

I feel that I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Mr. Rolfe’s other efforts, which can be found on his website at Cinemassacre.com.  His other series, such as Board James, a partly informational series on Board Games, a convention I assume is going the way of the Polar Bear (his horror movie-esque short on Mr. Bucket is not to missed) or the annual Cinemassacre.com’s Monster Madness, which brings an assortment of monster movies to the forefront every Halloween, and I think any movie fan would enjoy, even if you’re like me and don’t spend much time watching horror, slasher or monster movies.

James Rolfe has taken the comedic review to strange and hilarious new places.  Sure, it can be juvenile, profane and even downright disgusting, but that’s what makes it fun.  In fact, I particularly enjoyed a long diatribe about how bad a game was involving excrement and… well, other things, after which The Nerd said, “That was foul; I apologize.”  It’s over the top, it’s silly and it’s great.  It’s also self aware, which may be the most important reason it works so well.  The guy does a brilliant job connecting with the audience… maybe its just me, because Mr. Rolfe and I are the same age and from the same part of the country and come from a shared experience, but I think there is something for everyone in Mr. Rolfe’s catalog.  Take a look, you’re bound to find something you like.

Unless you can’t tolerate profanity and vulgarity.  Then you’re shit out of luck.

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