Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Be nice day!

Morning all! Here's today's daily pic...

It's from last night, on the Tyne. Maybe I'll start a New Feature™ called "The Shipping News™"... ;)

In the news today...

GameSpy's 25 Most Memorable Games of the Past 5 Years 

Yep, Gamespy is 5 years young today, and they...
...aren't necessarily the BEST (games), just the ones that are nearest and dearest to our heart
Should get a good Mass Debate™ out of that one!

My other campaign today is "International Be Nice to Someone™" day. Tell your nearest and dearest something nice, or do something good for someone today. Me and The Chump are off to visit our buddy in the hospital today. Get well soon Gerg!


bryn said...

I think Burnout 3 should be higher in the list.
I've been playing it most nights for the last 2 weeks and its amazing.
As for memorable games in the last 5 years my top 5 would be:
1] GTA:III [PS2]- simply amazing, the first 3d crime sim, blazed the way for Vice City and soon San Andreas....
2] NBA Street 2 [PS2}- So many hours lost to this game, so many kick pass alley oop dunks [play the game if that makes no sense]
3] Max Payne [PC] - The 1st '3rd person shooter' with Bullet Time.
4] Spiderman 2 [PS2]- For the freedom to websling around NY as you please, inlcuding jumping off the Empire State building.
5] Burnout 3 [PS2]- for the slow motion crashes alone.

Merg said...

Surely that should be GTA3 on the PC -- after all, slightly better graphics, same gameplay, infinitely better control :) (then again, there's a good argument for Vice City for the better soundtrack... gah!)

Trivia: it's ironic that GTA was originally intended to be an Amiga game that ended up on the PC (and ported to the original playstation) and then GTA3 was originally "lead" on the PC ... but moved to the PS2 for the initial release ('cause that's where the money is)... oh, and going back to the Amiga, someone ripped it off with a title called "Payback", IIRC -- and it's a pretty funky version.

Crimson Skies should be in there, I reckon... so should SSX Tricky ... and wot, no Metroid? Shenmue?
Far Cry?

Something one could argue about for weeks, months, years, decades... :)

Perhaps we should have a poll sometime...

bungers said...


Mine would be... (and these are most memorable, not best ;)

1. Phantasy Star Online (DC) it was my first introduction to online RPG's
2. Star Wars KOTOR (xBox) ..for being a non duff Star Wars licence
3. Lord of the Rings : Two Towers (GC)..purely for redefining the movie licence tie in and doing it so well
4. Rez (DC)
5. Freedom Fighters (PC)...just for being a really enjoyable game!

Merg said...

Yeah, Freedom Fighters was pretty fun. Superb soundtrack too! (trivia - t'was by Jesper Kyd, who was the sound guy for the old Amiga demo crew, The Silents).

Didn't like the LoTR game or Phantasy Star... and you're being nasty about Star Wars licenses - there's been loads of good ones - look at the Star Wars games on the Gamecube, Dark Forces 1/2, Jedi Knight 1/2...

Rez probably does deserve a mention if only for being so original and including a sex toy in the package ;)

mmChronic said...

Jet Grind Radio - and four others whose names I've forgotten. Probably.

Merg said...

Actually, surely the Tony Hawk games deserve a mention for more or less spawning a genre on their own? Okay, there was stuff like EA's "Skate Or Die" and Atari's "720 Degrees" but I suspect the "Playstation Generation" first saw the Tony Hawk games.

Oh, and Deus Ex is just about under 5 years old, and it was a superb game! (way better than the console-bastardized sequel, sadly...)

I don't think Crazy Taxi quite makes it but if it does, it deserves a mention.

No mention of the Total War series, Meestah mC?

And should we include "The Sims", despite the fact we probably all hate it? After all, it did make quite an impact...

bungers said...

Deus Ex was rubbish.


mmChronic said...

The article was about games that had a memory attached - ie like the 1st all night MMORPG they all sat and played together. I've got very few mories attached to anything it seems. :)

Plus there is the 5 year thing - not sure what was out when so...

I do distinctly remember though buying JSR for the Xbox, sitting on the bus on the way home thinking "can't wait, can't wait" having already played the DC version, throwing the disc in and me being stunned by how much better it was.

Merg said...

As usual, Bungers gets it wrong. (He likes Violet Berlin, remember!) Deus Ex is one of the best games ever, and the sequel was hideously bastardized to work on the consoles, something I'll never forget Warren Spector for. (Ditto, Thief 3...)

The Jet Set Radio series is under 5 years. The Sims might be, it's right on the border, so to speak - I *think* it was a September '99 release!

Tony Hawk I suspect is nearer 6 though, now you mention it... I remember playing the N64 version on an emulator in about early 2000...

Mind you, the 5 years cutoff is just because that's how old Lamespy is... so I say we ignore it somewhat ;)

bungers said...

Sorry, I'll rephrase that then.

My memory of Deus Ex was that it was rubbish.


Merg said...

So what didn't you like about Deus?

I loved the freedom, and the way you could solve almost any of the "problems" multiple ways that were actually varied, and the game physics.

Only Shenmue has been close for the freedom/physics thang, IMO.

I also loved that it was huge -- took me weeks to finish, compared with most games with an "end", that I can usu finish in a weekend to a week these days... (or Devil May Cry 2 on the PS2, which has about 5 hours of gameplay.... aghr!)

mmChronic said...

Bungers knaas nowt about games - Morrowind is shite because it's gfx aren;t very good. This stopped him actually trying the game. I reckon he's Dogs' cousin. Probably.

With arbitrary 5 year limit removed the most memorable game evar(!) is Knightlore. I can still remember sitting on the bed loading that, seeing pretty load screen, pretty menu, then the best graphics (evar!) - this was of course in the day when Ultimate never leaked screenshots so nobody had a clue what it would look like.

Rainbow Pro^H^H^H Islands due to my Amiga being taken over by wor Darren who would sit playing that until we chucked him out.

GP2 - I remember a 3 disk (saving a whole disk - v important in those days!) version from a group called Wrath. ;)

Lunar Jetman - I was finishing paying the HP off on my Speccy and there was a 20 quid (or so) rebate for early payment. My mother duly nicked this off me as she had 'arranged' the early repayment. How she managed to convince the Thatchbitch to close the yards to allow my dad to get his redundancy cash and finish off my payments for me I'll never know. Anyhoo she let me keep enough for a game - LJ was that game.

That should do for now... :)

mmChronic said...

Oh - was Wrath or Illusions the name we ended up with? I know it was changed from one to the other due to clashage.

Merg said...

Quality LJ story -- so the whole war-on-the-working-man of the Tory early 1980's was all so you could get a freebie of Lunar Jetman? :) (did she influence Scargill too?)

I loved LJ, but I remember quite a few people who couldn't figure out how to play it. Remember the allged trailer (as seen on the casette inlay artwork) that appeared after a certain level (but never did!)?

Knight Lore was a bit of a stunner the first time you saw it... so was the early 3D Ant Attack by Sandy White. (And its colourful sequel, Zombie Zombie I think the name was...)

Manic Miner blew me away for being so... well... arcade-y. And it had 20 levels in 16K!

And, of course, Elite. THE game. BBC version was the best of the 8 bit versions, IMO (tho' the NES version was pretty funky....)

Hm... perhaps we do need some sort of vaguely recent limit - some of those games are nearly as old as Bungers (who knaas nowt about games!) ;)

Merg said...

Um... I think it started as Illusions and became Wrath. But I'm not sure anymore either...

mmChronic said...

I can assure you the LJ story didn't feel like quality then - it felt like I'd been robbed of 15 quid which was 3 fscking games in those days!

Bungers (despite not existing before 1990) actually had a BBC and wibbles on about BBC Elite and Frak and Repton and assorted other posh kids games! ;)

I was going to mention Manic Miner too (the sound effect when you die was awesome and went right up your spine) but after looking at the other games I mentioned I'm starting to sound like a old cnut. :)

bungers said...

I played Deus Ex after I'd played MGS (which should've made my list, but not sure if it was in the last 5 years). So I'm trying to sneak past guards, who clearly are miles away, looking in the other direction, and they come over, and they kill me. Rubbish.

Merg said...

Hey, I had a BBC (70 quid used from the local "Saturday Market" -- used stuff. I suspect it was nicked...)

Repton was just a not-as-good ripoff of the classic Atari/C64 Boulder-Dash (it later appeared on other platforms but those were the 'originals').

Frak was... weird. In a good way. Cool music, too.

Thrust also originated on the BBC and was a top game (tho' it was a (then) full-price £7.95! The C64/Speccy versions were by Firebird and a much nicer £2.99!)

Dunjunz was superb, but most people never saw it, which is a shame. Basically a Gauntlet ripoff but instead of all four players on one screen, each player got their own quarter-screen window to play in.

Games that started life on other platoforms were generally iffy on the BBC though... I much preferred the Speccy.

The Ultimate stuff I liked - Cookie, Tranz Am, PSSST, Jet Pac (which has stood the test of time the best of them...) Atic Atac, Sabre Wulf, Knight Lore, Underwurlde... Alien 8 was too much of a total Knight Lore rip for me, and after that almost everything was more isometric fodder, Cyber-Run aside. The only one I really enjoyed after that was Gunfright. The pantomime horse alone... !

Of course, that was about the time the "real" Ultimate dudes (The Stamper Brothers) changed their name to Rare, sold the "Ultimate" name to US Gold (remember them?) and started churning out NES games... they some very nice work there, too (RC Pro Am in particular), including a title called ... Solar Jetman!

And so the circle is complete ;)

BTW, the story was cool, though I'm sure events happing to you at the time sucked bigtime... so have you asked her for your 15 quid back lately? ;)

BTW, can any Speccy game discussion be complete without mentioning the superb (and STILL fun) Rebelstar and Laser Squad? ;)

Merg said...

Ah, so because sneaking was hard (but not impossible) the entire game sucked?

Are you sure you a) weren't in full view of tv cameras and b) they were human and not cyborg guards?

BTW, MGS has to be one of the most overrated games ever. The guards were ridiculously easy to sneak past -- they'd see you, you could run around a corner and hide and the guard would... stand, look puzzled and wander off! Sheesh...

mmChronic said...

Bungers BBC would have been full retail price at Fenwicks. Probably. :)

Coloniz(grrr!)ation - funky 18th C style tunes. Well not exactly funky as funk didn't arrive until a couple of hundred years later but YKWIM.

Thrust was memorable as the best value game evar. Couldn't believe how good that was for a budget job.

LoM - huge fsckoff handmade map on graph paper!

Merg said...

ah, LoM. Truely astounding game -- I still remember the arguments over whether it was an adventure or a strategy game! (It was both, really...) and the sequel, DR, was superb too.

Don't forget Skool Daze and Bak 2 Skool.

Paradroid. Incredible game. (and Quazatron - same game, different perspective...). By the guys who brought us the Rainbor Proj^H^H^H^H Islands conversion (tho' for those that loved it, Taito deserves props for the original coin-op!).

Chaos - esp with lots of human players.

All (apart from Paradroid) on a 3.58MHz Z80 with no fancy hardware and just 15 colours... and not a polygon in sight for any of 'em! (Sorry, Dogs)