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Old 07-20-2003, 02:45 AM   #196
Kojiro Hyuga
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Originally posted by Icarus4578
Better than before

Secret of Mana - SNES - Rating 8

Hiroki Kikuta is the composer, and this is one of the best soundtracks you can find on 16-bit. If you're smart, you'll buy the original soundtrack from http://www.gamemusic.com/ or someplace else. Although you'll hear variations of some of the themes repeated with different arrangements, there's a generous amount of music and most all of it is great. Soundtracks of this caliber are nonexistent these days. Of course, all of the sound effects are done well, as expected from the SNES.
You would be most unfortunate to not own a copy of Secret of Mana. Playing this game will make you wonder what happened to great game design with creativity such as this. What a shame that Legend of Mana wasn't as good. Ah well. :sigh:
Hey SquareEnix, GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER!!!

Have fun, and i'll see you soon.
Secret of Mana's soundtrack... I have it! That florest flute theme is just wonderfull, and the "Pre last bloss flying" music? One of the best in the 16 bit era... Icarus, do you know if there's any "arranged" or "Orchestrated" version of SOM soundtrack?
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Old 07-20-2003, 03:01 AM   #197
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Well, there's the Secret of Mana + Soundtrack at http://www.gamemusic.com/dept/101/ca...eiken+Densetsu which is just one track arranged, but it's a long track comprised of several songs. You can read the reviews at that site (GameMusic.com) and decide if it's what you're looking for. The song near the last boss is good but there are quite a few exceptional pieces throughout the game.

I never could figure out what that head you find on the ocean is for (when you're flying on Flammie). Hmmm.... maybe it was just put there for the fun of it.
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Old 07-20-2003, 03:49 AM   #198
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Let the carnage begin!

Rock N' Roll Racing - SNES - Rating 6
If you are fond of Rare's RC Pro Am for NES, and you've been looking for a game similar to it, look no further. Interplay's Rock N' Roll Racing plays EXACTLY the same way (albeit with a few additions here and there). In other words, it's very fun. So let's hit the highway!
You start a new game and select which difficulty level you want: rookie, veteran, or warrior. I'll tell you right now, if you don't select warrior you're not going to see the full game. From there, you choose a character (from out of 6) each of whom have different strengths such as accelerating, jumping, cornering, and top speed. From there, you must purchase a vehicle (only two are affordable at the start) and you must hit the road.
The game immediately resembles RC Pro Am and this is a good thing. Of course, it has better graphics being that this is on the SNES and all. You start off racing on one planet (which is comprised of eight tracks) and the object is the keep winning to earn money so that you can upgrade your vehicle or buy another. You also gain points after every track is cleared and once you've accumulated enough points you can set off to the next planet, and, obviously, each successive planet is harder than the one before it, and every planet has its own look and everything. Another thing you'll notice is how much more agressive your opponents get as you progress. This game can get quite challenging, especially later on, so don't throw your controller into your TV screen out of frustration. There are new hazards awaiting you on every planet.
The controls are responsive and quirky, like RC Pro Am (I sound like a broken record, I know). You steer with left and right, and accelerate and brake with B and A respectively. You also can shoot at enemies, jump, and use a booster to gain leverage. You have to be careful because you have a limit to all of these things. And the competition will eventually try and destroy you (yes, your car can be blown to pieces). Luckily, after every lap you replenish, and you can always buy new upgrades and such at the shop in-between races. You will need to buy tires for better traction and handling, armor for more resiliency, engines for better speed and performance, and shock absorbers. I like the way the game controls. In order to power slide into a corner, all you really have to do is hold down acceleration and turn into the direction of the corner before you actually get to it. It's very easy to master doing this. I also like the variety of tracks - there's a lot. And for those of you that wanna take it to a friend (or enemy?) there's the VS mode which is split screen but works out well for a SNES.
There are five racing tracks to be heard, and this can get rather annoying after awhile. The music is actually SNES-ized versions of such songs as Paranoid by Black Sabbath, Born to be Wild by Steppenwolf, and Bad to the Bone by George Thorogood. It sounds cheesy but in a good way , and none other than Larry Huffman AKA 'SuperMouth' provides commentary throughout the game. The sound effects are what you'd expect -- good stuff, if a bit weak in spots.
I cannot recommend this game enough. You're not going to find another game like this anywhere else, so you may as well pick it up for SNES (or the GameBoy Advance version). You're certain to have a blast with it. Once you've beaten it you may find yourself looking away from it, but it is the kind of game you know you'll always be able to come back to after a couple of years to have a good time. :bigsmile:

Last edited by Icarus4578; 03-22-2004 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 07-20-2003, 07:27 AM   #199
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Quote:
Originally posted by Icarus4578

Rock N' Roll Racing - SNES - Rating 6
:yikes:

Turn that upside down and add 1 and im happy!

Good review though!
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Old 07-20-2003, 08:02 AM   #200
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A six is a respectable score, meaning, the game is at least worth a try if you dig this style of game to being with. It's certainly above average, and it was great to play another game with similarities to RC Pro Am, but with its own little twist. How common does that happen?
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Old 07-20-2003, 08:06 AM   #201
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I liked that game, but I didn't really care for the geezer rock. Bad to the Bone is probably the most overplayed song on the planet. I enjoyed the music (both in composition and quality) in the SNES version of Super Off Road much, much more.
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Old 07-20-2003, 08:09 AM   #202
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I think that Rock ?n Roll Racing is one of the most underrated games, Its my favorite racing game with F-Zero.
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Old 07-20-2003, 08:10 AM   #203
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Never played that, though I've played the original Off Road. I'll have to give that game a spin, especially since the other was so fun. I think I've played Off Road Baja or something like that on SNES which was GREAT.

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Old 07-20-2003, 08:11 AM   #204
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NiN, have you played RC Pro Am?
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Old 07-20-2003, 08:17 AM   #205
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No i havent, i havent even heard of it before.
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Old 07-20-2003, 08:19 AM   #206
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Woah. That's one of the most memorable NES games ever made. Most everybody knows it. Here, have a look ~ http://www.vgmuseum.com/images/nes/01/rcproam.html

They also did RC Pro Am II and Super RC Pro Am. I've never played them, though.

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Old 07-20-2003, 08:24 PM   #207
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RC-Pro Am is a classic
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Old 07-22-2003, 09:22 AM   #208
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Beep Beep

Super Chase HQ - SNES - Rating 4
Have you ever wanted to just tear down the highway in pursuit of some whacked-out criminals like in all those action movies? Yeah, me too. Besides, racing games nowadays are almost always trying to do the same thing ~ customize your car, race, buy new cars/upgrades, repeat. Not that that automatically means a game is bad, but once in a while a little change would be welcome.
Enter Super Chase HQ, a port of the popular Taito arcade game/series. You take the role of a cop who is assigned missions to take down criminals, first by catching up to them in your Porsche 928 (oh how sweet it is! The Special Criminal Investigation Unit must really love you!), and then by ramming the living hell out of them, just like in real life! The first thing anybody who has seen the arcade will notice is that Taito shifted the view to being inside the vehicle, as opposed to the behind-the-vehicle perspective as seen in the arcade/Genesis versions. This isn't such a bad thing because it doesn't ruin the gameplay.
Each mission begins with a brief cinema showing criminals doing what they do best: breaking the law. Afterwards, you communicate with Nancy via a telecommunicator built into your vehicle. She describes the situation and shows you the assailant's getaway vehicle, and you're on your way. You have a time limit to reach up to the bad guys and bust their car up by smashing into it, thus rendering it immobile. And uuuhh, smashing up your Porsche in the process. ....Huh? :???: You can accelerate and brake. Furthermore, when urgency makes himself your companion you have nitro boosts at your disposal which will dramatically increase your speed. The game can be challenging because not only do you have a time limit but you also have to avoid traffic, motorcyclers hurling motolov cocktails at you, being shot at, etc. Whenever you complete missions, it shows you holding the criminals at gun point saying "You're under arrest!" in a muffled voice. If you lose, you can continue exactly where you left off --- a very welcome addition. However, continues are sparse and let's just say that it will probably take you more than one attempt to beat the game (although it is kinda short in length).
The graphics are pretty good for a SNES game with a pretty generous use of colors and good design, but nothing quite that impressive is to be seen here. The cars don't make use of the system's zooming capabilities (not that it matters much), and if this game is using mode 7 then I certainly didn't notice it. No matter.
The music is actually quite good, and the sound effects are done very well too. There's not much to be said about the game sound-wise. It just does a fair job, that's all.
To be honest, I had a blast with it while it lasted. But the lack of longevity (only five missions) really does make this game seem like it could've offered you more bang for the buck. The arcade of Chase HQ just feels more satisfying overall. So if you happen upon this rare SNES title for a small amount of money, you may want to pick it up. Just don't forget to take into consideration its short length.
I don't know about you, but smashing up my Porshe wouldn't be the first thing on my mind....

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Old 07-26-2003, 04:10 AM   #209
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You better run

Landstalker - Genesis - Rating 9
The debut title by Climax is the closest thing the Genesis has to Zelda in terms of sheer quality. Climax was a part of Camelot Software Planning if I'm not mistaken, and they made such gems as Shining in the Darkness and the Shining Force series (along with Sonic Software Planning). The development team responsible for Landstalker eventually left Climax to form Matrix studios which blessed us with the PlayStation epic Alundra. Climax tried desperately to attain the heights of Landstalker with such lackluster releases as Ladystalker (SNES), Dark Savior (Saturn), and the wow-is-this-painful Time Stalkers (Dreamcast). If you've been dying for a tough action/adventure title along the lines of Zelda, then Landstalker just might be the next best thing.
The game begins with the introduction of the protagonist Nigel, a spunky elf whose heart is rooted in adventure and treasure hunting. During the game's introduction sequence you watch as Nigel makes his way through ruins (controlled by the computer), making what would otherwise be incredibly difficult jumps look pretty easy. At the end of the ruins lies the statue of Jypta, which Nigel takes into his possession. He returns to sell the statue in town where, as fate would have it, a pixie named Friday is being pursued outside by (you guessed it) bad guys. Friday runs into Nigel, looking for a good hiding place. She briefly tells him about the location of the treasure of King Nole. After hearing this, he allows her to flee danger by becoming a stowaway in his backpack. So together, they set out across the sea riding atop a huge bird to the island of Mercator where Nigel's quest truly begins.
The game is played from an isometric 3/4 view, which automatically means that this game must have hard controls to get accustomed to. You can move only in diagonals, and my best advice to you would be to learn quickly how to control Nigel accurately using only up, down, left, and right on the controller because this makes things feel much easier. Nigel can jump and attack with his sword, as well as perform many other tasks such as lift objects, climb, etc. Jumping is of utmost importance here, but what makes this game so aggravatingly difficult, partiularly later on, is all the amaaaazingly difficult leaping you'll have to perform--made doubly difficult because of the fact that Nigel does not have a shadow underneath him when he's in mid-air to guide you. This is the game's one major flaw. But aside from this, it's smooth sailing otherwise. The game is very playable and lengthy, with devious puzzles and enemies which are more than up to the task of being a chore to deal with. There are various towns for you to visit and purchase goods from and every location has hidden items and gold scattered throughout. The dungeon design is some of the best I've ever come across, filled with booby traps, puzzles, enemies, insane jumps, tricky hazards, etc. Bosses are usually pretty easy to defeat, so that is kinda disappointing. You get to know certain people (particularly villians), and you may even spot a familiar face or two. Recognize Lady? She's from Ladystalker.
The graphics have a flair about them that hasn't been replicated to this day, even by successive Climax ventures although they look similar. The animation is well-rounded on everything, although the color pallete leaves something to be desired. I can't blame Climax for something inherently lacking in the system's architecture (the Genesis can only display a total of 64 colors at once), but there have been Genesis titles with much better color usage such as the Monster World series. It still looks pretty good to me.
If the music sounds reminiscent of the Shining Force series, it should. The music is composed by Motoaki Takenouchi (yessss!!) and here he does a great job of helping bring this game's atmospheres to their fullness in depth. Every song fits into its respective territory, and if you enjoyed the music and arrangements in Shining Force you'll enjoy this as well. The sound effects are also done nicely and in this area the Genesis is utilized especially well.
This game brings back many memories for me of a time when great games meant something special for the gamer. You can have all your graphical jargon, all your fancy FMV, and all the cineamtic mimbo-jumbo you want getting in the way of the actual gameplay. Great game design never dies, and with Landstalker it is of utmost priority. This game will challenge you like you've never been challenged before (save perhaps Equinox). It lasts a good 40 hours and even though the ending sucks the game is so darn good it doesn't even matter. If you can beat Landstalker then you can beat any action/adventure game out there, and that has to count for something. I'm very happy to have spent another 40 or so hours with this game. If only there were more games like this lying in wait for our consumption.
Also recommended - Crusader of Centy, developed by Nextech and published by Atlus, for Sega Genesis. It's an adventure more in the style of Zelda (though a bit shorter and easier).

Walkthrough with pictures to guide you (cheater....) ~ http://www.rpgclassics.com/shrines/g...s/walk01.shtml
For all of you Shining Force fans ~ http://www.shiningforcecentral.com/
Useful site (don't ask, just investigate it) ~ http://genesis.mobygames.com/home/

Catch you on the flip-side.

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Old 07-26-2003, 08:52 AM   #210
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...run into the distant night...

Three Wonders - Arcade (Three games in one)
Game #1 - Midnight Wanderers ~ Quest for the Chariot - Rating 8
So... which game did Treasure borrow ideas from to make their Genesis fan favorite action title Gunstar Heroes? If you answered Midnight Wanderers, you'd be correct! Both in look (character design) and in content, you can clearly tell that GH is inspired to say the least by this awesome action game. And allow me to go on record as saying that I believe Midnight Wanderers to be the better game. Even though MW came out in 1991 it looks like it could've been made in the later 90's. It's that good.
The Chariot of Light has been sealed up in the castle of Gaia, and now it's up to Lou and Siva to get it back. And eventually, to save the towspeople from the curse set upon them, turning them (and their girl friend Sena) to wood.
As far as graphics go, I'd say this game is about on par with Metal Slug. No, really. I could not believe it either... until I laid eyes upon it. Everything is drawn and animated wonderfully. Not suprising given that this is Capcom we're talking about. The game plays similar to Ghouls 'N Ghosts but with enhancements. You can shoot your projectile weapons up, left, and right, and if you're in the air you can shoot down. You can jump, hang on ledges and swing up on top of them or jump down, or, keep hanging on and move across slowly, just like in Strider. Plus, you can shoot while hanging, too. If you hold down and press jump (and you're on solid ground) you can perform a dash forward. There are treasure chests all over the place which contain items such as cards with different amounts of hearts on them (add 100 hearts to get a 1-up), weapon upgrades, and options which hover nearby and can be used for added firepower. There's quite a bit to this game. There are 4 main stages and then a final stage; the game isn't really long. But what is there is definitely worth your invested time. The enemies are all designed very well and the there's two bosses in each stage, until the final showdown with the demon Gaia. Oh, and lest I should forget, stages are disparted with short cinemas which quickly progress your journey.
The music is pretty nice and is eerily reminiscent of Ghouls 'N Ghosts in more ways than one. It's good stuff overall and fits in well. The sound effects are all great as well. Everything works together perfectly.
For me, this is one great action title and it shouldn't be missed. Capcom brought this home along with the other two games on the Import Sega Saturn CD titled appropriately enough Arcade Gears ~ 3 Wonders. I'd pick this game over Gunstar anyday.
Have a look for yourself but beware... the ending is also on the same page (and no, this is not a link to a ROM, just screenshots) ~ http://emulazione.multiplayer.it/mam...rs_midnite.htm

Game #2 - Chariot ~ Adventure Through the Sky - Rating 4
The second game is actually an enjoyable shooting title and is the continuation of Midnight Wanderers. Here, we see Lou and Siva taking it to the sky/space for some decent but short-lived shooting action. The way they look flying around should remind you of Strider riding his hang glider. Again, Treasure apparently borrowed the idea of the shooting stage in GH from this title. Of course, this shooter is far superior to that one stupid stage. What we have here is a pretty good shooter that is hampered down by the repetitive stage layouts, enemies, and lack of length. Some of the enemies are straight out of Midnight Wanderers, such as the witches flying around on broomsticks. The graphics are top notch yet again, and the bosses are simply beautiful. Some bosses are based on Astrology such as Cancer, Gemini, and Sagittarius, and as you deal damage to them their looks change. You should recognize one of the mid-bosses that appears often throughout the game from the middle of the second stage in Strider; he flies around carrying a huge gun (hint hint ;))...
The control is good, as expected. You fly around shooting down whatever gets in your line of fire, and you can use a special shot whenever necessary. There are power-ups that will raise the power of your shots, bombs, armor, etc. just like in most other shooters. There aren't really enough qualities to make this title stand out from other shooters save for the excellent artwork and bosses. There's 7 stages with the last stage requiring you defeat every boss again (but they're much weaker). Lar is your final confrontation before the Light of the Chariot can restore peace to the world.
One or two songs are good but the rest is either not impressive or just repetitive nonsense. The sound effects are all well done as you'd expect. I wasn't too interested in this game aurally.
This could've been a fantastic shooter but I felt that the stages offered little variety. I'm also not a fan of paying a quarter each and every time I take a hit (what in the living...?). The faults are a little more noticeable than all the positives, unfortunately. Sorry.
Take a look (beware the ending) ~ http://emulazione.multiplayer.it/mam...rs_chariot.htm

Game #3 - Don't Pull - Rating ?
I only played this game once, so unfortunately I cannot make an accurate review of it. It has no apparent relationship to the other games. You control a rabbit that kicks blocks around which you must use to try and defeat all the enemies on the screen. Whenever you defeat an enemy it leaves fruit you can collect. Unfortunately, just as I figured it out, I got hit by an enemy, and you have to pay to continue.... (you get no lives, just like Chariot). That's about all I know about this game. If you like puzzle games, you might enjoy it. It bears a more than passive resemblance to Kickle Cubicle (go figure).

Three Wonders - Overall Rating - 7/8
If you can find this on import Sega Saturn then by all means buy it! Even if just to play Midnight Wanderers, it's worth it.

....run until they take us away! ...Take us away! ...Take us awaaaaaay!

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