Backlog Summer: 07.12.2014

Newcomer Iain joins the Dojo staff on their summertime backlog journey!

By Nintendojo Staff. Posted 07/12/2014 12:00 3 Comments     ShareThis

Welcome back to another installment of Backlog Summer! This week, new Nintendojo writer Iain joins the round table and shares what older games he’s been playing through recently. Read on to find out how much progress he and the rest of the staff have made through their backlogs!


Iain Farrell

Summer time and my stack of unplayed current games is mahoosive! That doesn’t stop me getting the itch to pick up something familiar. Recently I’ve played a lot of the NES game DuckTales— you can read more of my thoughts here. It’s amazing how many times since I finished the article I’ve gone back for “just one more go.” I’m looking at Ice Climbers next…

This week also saw me pick up Advance Wars again for Game Boy Advance. It’s a fantastic strategy game that requires you to take control of buildings and crush your enemies. There is a story but let’s be honest, no one plays a strategy game for story. The story is how your game played out. The story is the tale you’ll spin to your friends of your epic win at the last minute because you had the foresight to build an anti-aircraft gun to tear up the enemy planes and helicopters that were trying to assault your bases. Advance Wars sprites are pixel perfect, it has great sound effects and a deep battle system which combines power-ups and resource management with satisfying unit to unit combat. It’s a very rewarding combination and a good game can be fitted comfortably into a lunch break which makes it ideal to pick up through the day.

I can’t understand why there hasn’t been another game in the series since Dual Strike on DS, but with any luck that game will soon be playable on your Wii U as a Virtual Console game. Don’t wait for that, though! Get thee to eBay and see what you can find!


Anthony Pershkin

I feel like a huge idiot, because it turns out I forgot to save my game the last time I played The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap. Luckily for me, I haven’t made that much progress. But even so, this week I was only able to get to the point at which I ended my previous session.

Meanwhile, I feel like I’m almost done with Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin. The Death boss fight was rather surprising in terms of difficulty. I honestly expected it to be not as challenging, considering Portrait of Ruin is a Metroidvania game, but it took me about five tries to get through this fight. Not the most difficult battle we’ve had against Death throughout the series, but still a memorable one thanks to the game’s creative use of its character-switching mechanic.

I think after I’m done with Portrait of Ruin, I’ll move on to Order of Ecclesia. I never finished that one, either.


Marc Deschamps

This week, I rescued Arryl in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD. Like most of the boss fights so far, I had no problems dispatching Ganon’s giant bird. I don’t really mind the easier difficulty, though. There are enough other things to focus on in the game that it doesn’t bother me. Like the story, for example. I forgot how exciting it was seeing Link and Tetra saved by Valoo! And it just looks breathtaking in HD. The game’s visuals impress me more with each play session. My two-year-old nephew happened to be in the room while I was playing, and he was mesmerized. He just thought I was watching a cartoon!

Anyway, now that Link’s sister is safe back home, it’s time to re-power the Master Sword. This is really where the game’s sailing and questing across the ocean begins. So far, I’m enjoying exploring the game’s vast world, but I know this is where things are going to get a bit more difficult. To the best of my recollection, there’s quite a bit less hand-holding from this point on. I know where my next two destinations are, but I’ll likely have my work cut out for me as I start the next part of the game.


Anthony Vigna

I’m also playing The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD! Don’t worry Marc, I’m not stealing the spotlight from you by playing the same game. I’m still playing Star Fox Adventures, but because that game is a Zelda clone, I thought I’d play something from that series for comparison.

Replaying Wind Waker really opened me up to a lot of the problems that Star Fox Adventures suffers from. For instance, Wind Waker has a ton of awesome enemies that actively try to attack you in different ways. Because every enemy was designed differently, each one feels unique and makes battles exciting. However, the combat in Star Fox Adventures gets boring as the game progresses due to the lack of enemy variety. After completing over half of the game, I’m still fighting numerous hordes of SharpClaw! Sure, there are different versions of SharpClaw, but they all fight the same way.

Another tedious element of Star Fox Adventures is backtracking. Since there are multiple planets, you’ll need to pilot the Arwing to reach your destination. However, because the game requires you to go to Dinosaur Planet multiple times, you’ll be forced to play the same Arwing level multiple times! The worst part is navigating on Dinosaur Planet itself because of its design. The Arwing only lands in Thorntail Hollow, so if you wanted to go to another area on the planet like Cape Claw, you have to walk all the way over there and back to reach your ship! In Wind Waker, your boat goes wherever you want it to go and traveling is actually fun! Could you imagine the exploration in Star Fox Adventures being like Wind Waker? That would be nuts!

Don’t get me wrong, I still like Star Fox Adventures and its clever puzzles, but it could have been so much better. I’m still glad that I’m playing it though, because it’s definitely not as bad as I originally thought it was.


Robert Marrujo

It’s not like being pint-sized is something new in video games. We’ve been getting shrunk to more diminutive proportions as far back as Capcom’s Chip & Dale games on NES. Yet, as common as the mechanic can be, it never gets old, when done right. Chibi-Robo continues to be a blast for me, as I mop up the messes of the Sanderson family and scrounge for Moolah to amp up Chibi himself. Exploring each new room brings more surprises and more challenges. I wasn’t able to get through the kitchen until I got hold of a mug, of all things, to protect Chibi from harm. The game is stuffed with clever little touches and it breaks my heart that the series isn’t more popular.

I mentioned before that I would be cracking into my collection of DS games this summer, too, and I’ve started with The Legendary Starfy. Think an underwater Kirby and you’re halfway there. It’s been a long time since I’ve properly played through the game, so it’s almost feeling new, this time around. The graphics are a fine sight on DS, very bright and detailed. The gameplay is equally compelling; gliding underwater feels so empowering. Starfy is actually from a long-running series in Japan, and it pains me to think that this game is the only one that’s hit our shores, so far. The only thing dampening my fun with it is a slightly overbearing story, but it’s cute in a way, and not intolerable. More next week!


Nicolas Vestre

Mario Tennis: Power Tour has shown itself to be a great pick up and play game. Maybe it’s getting easier because I completed almost every challenge in the first game day of playing, netting me huge amounts of experience points. Leveling up the main characters any way you want makes the game very personable, especially when playing doubles matches. It’s too bad you don’t face off against characters from the Mario universe until much later in the game– facing off against human characters is a little weird (this game does have Mario in the title, after all), but not a deal-breaker. Also, I’m just discovering Power Shots, which the human players have started using on me. Getting the hang of them might well be my ticket to victory in the more difficult matches to come.

I’m still toying with the idea of playing Wario Land 4, but one or two other non-backlog titles might get in the way (blasphemy, I know!). But after those, I’ll be playing Wario. Actually, if Pokémon Trading Card Game releases on Virtual Console in North America, that game will take precedence– it’s been fourteen years since I beat that game, so it just edges out Wario Land 4!


What games are you playing through this summer? Let us know in the comments!

3 Responses to “Backlog Summer: 07.12.2014”

  • 1249 points
    Robert Marrujo says...

    I just had to point out how awesome that Backlog Summer masthead is; Shy Guy all day, everyday.

    Thumb up 2
  • 1396 points
    penduin says...

    Iain: Days of Ruin came out after Dual Strike, no? Dual Strike let me down a bit, but I was quite captivated by Days of Ruin.

    Still, your point is valid – we need a 3DS and/or Wii U “Wars” title, stat! :^)

    My backlog is so huge and shameful I won’t get into it here, but since I’m thinking about top-notch strategy games, I’ll confess that Fire Emblem Awakening is on the list. :^)

    Thumb up 0
  • 75 points
    Robert Palacios says...

    Shy Guy e’ry day son!

    Thumb up 1

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