Backlog Summer: 07.19.2014

The staff delve into some new (old) games this week.

By Nintendojo Staff. Posted 07/19/2014 12:00 Comment on this     ShareThis

Welcome back to another installment of Backlog Summer! How much progress have the staff made through their backlogs since last week? Read on to find out!

Anthony Vigna

I beat Star Fox Adventures this week! I don’t really have much to say about it than I already stated before. Problems like backtracking continued to persist and harm the experience, but the game felt solid when it did something new and original. Overall, I felt that it wasn’t a great game, but it definitely had its moments. Because of that, I’m glad that I went back to play it!

Now, I’m moving on to the next game on my list, which is Crimson Shroud. When the Guild 02 games were making their debut, Level-5 discounted all of the Guild 01 games at reasonable prices, which prompted me to pick up Crimson Shroud. However, after an hour of playing, I lost interest and moved on to something else. I didn’t think it was bad! I just stopped playing it…for some reason. Hopefully I’ll end up liking Crimson Shroud when I return to it next week!

Marc Deschamps

Last week, I mentioned that I’ve reached the point in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker where the game starts holding your hand a lot less. Well, I wasn’t wrong. I spent the majority of this week stuck on Mother and Son Isles. I could not figure out how to get in and get the Fire and Ice Arrows I needed to progress! After quite a bit of irritation (and a number of incorrect theories), I figured it out. Now I’m back making some progress and feeling much better about turning on my Wii U. There are few things worse in gaming than when you’re stuck on something. It really does make it difficult to want to go back. When I originally played The Wind Waker, I had to go online for help at two points in the game. It’s always something that I had a weird sense of guilt about! I’m really hoping I don’t have to do that again this time.

Nicolas Vestre

I finally got around to starting Wario Land 4 on Wii U Virtual Console! The previous three entries in the series were excellent (I can’t pick a favorite), and this one is no exception. For the most part, the game plays like what I have come to expect from a Wario Land game– great platforming with a huge reward for exploration. But Wario Land 4 has a twist: Once you’re in a level, you’re stuck until you locate a frog statue. Once you stomp on the statue, a time limit is imposed, and you have to hike back to the beginning of the level before time runs out. This means that you start with being able to explore at your leisure, to being forced to go as fast as you can. I can only think that this will get more challenging in future difficulty levels. Of course, this is a Wario Land game, so money is everywhere for the taking. And unlike the previous two titles, you’re not invincible; a heart counter constantly reminds you of your mortality, and pointy enemies are everywhere.

Huge boss battles have always been a staple in Wario Land games. I’ve only fought a couple in Wario Land 4, but if those are anything to go by, I’m in for a treat, because they’re massive (as well as timed) and challenging. And another cool thing: there are hidden pipes that lead to rooms where you solve a puzzle to get a giant gem. Many of these puzzles have you throwing this little fellow with a magnifying glass around the room like a rag-doll in order to net the gem, and every time you stomp on him, he screams “OUCH!” It makes me feel sorry for the guy, but I can’t stop jumping on him!

Robert Marrujo

I was bad this week and sidetracked from Chibi-Robo. Just this week, I promise! The reason being, The Legendary Starfy has sucked me right into its aquatic little world. Starfy is just so fun. The mixture of swimming, finding treasure and secret stages, and scrambling across land is addicting. Spinning to take out baddies is oh-so satisfying, but I like that the development team made it so that Starfy gets dizzy if you try to spam the move too much. The story though– meh. I mean, the cast is likable and all, but there’s a lot of reading and I’m not being drawn into the narrative very much. The gameplay is so fun and solid, that I wish the developers had taken a less heavy-handed approach to storytelling. It’s making me think of Sony’s LittleBigPlanet, another franchise I wish wouldn’t blather so much.

Another distraction for me this week (though admittedly a bit of a one-off, given its nature) has been Bust-A-Move DS. Random, I know, but it was like five bucks on eBay (including shipping and handling!) and I just had to get it. Bust-A-Move’s gameplay is tried and true puzzler action at its best, and though this DS iteration isn’t the smoothest version of the game I’ve ever played, it’s very fun. I’ve been on a kick looking up this series and Bubble Bobble as of late, so you might be seeing me mention another one of those games in a future Backlog Summer!

Anthony Pershkin

My backlog adventure is currently going all over the place. I’m still progressing in The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap with baby steps, so I’m only at the Cave of Flames at the moment. The game is very easy so far and I doubt it’s going to change drastically, but I still like the way it feels overall. The technical side is also really impressive. The rotating barrel in the first dungeon shows how creative Nintendo can get with the system’s limitations.

I needed something exciting in my life, so I started yet another playthrough of The Wonderful 101. It amazes me how I’m loving this game even more after my every play session. I can write a book about the complexity of The Wonderful 101’s battle system and how it combines the best elements from every other game Hideki Kamiya did in the past. The bosses are unlike anything I’ve ever seen in the character-action genre. Just out of curiosity, I was replaying the same boss fight over and over again, and every time I got something new: a new attack, a new pattern, a new character-specific quick-time event.

As for Castlevania: Portait of Ruin, I have no idea where I’m currently at, because the last time I played it, I fell asleep. I think I was just grinding levels for the final boss, so I guess I’m not that far from finishing it.

Iain Farrell

We’re due our first baby any second now and Guacamelee was intent on kicking my butt this week so time to play older games has been limited.

That being said, when time is precious and you want to get in some simple pleasures then it’s time to reach for Elite Beat Agents on DS. Sure it’s mental, a group of cheerleading agents who need to dance their way through increasingly cheesy pop hits and a nonsensical narrative. It makes no sense but if loving it is wrong then I don’t want to be right! Things start out simple enough but time away from Elite Beat shows and I always take a little while to dust off the cobwebs before I’m back on full-on cheer form.

Also this week I managed to squeeze in a little Drill Dozer. It’s all Robert’s fault for sticking this belter of a GBA game in his Top Ten: Hidden Gems piece. The pager motor in the cartridge makes it vibrate and means that you get force feedback while you play. It’s brilliant and we won’t see the likes of this sort of thing again unless people suddenly get bored of the convenience of digital downloads. Next week? Well, Drill Dozer just got me thinking about all those other specialist carts from the old days. I’m sure I have a copy of Boktai around here somewhere…

How is your own Backlog Summer journey coming along? Share your progress with us in the comments!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Log In 0 points Log in or register to grow your Ninja Score while interacting with our site.
Nintendojo's RSS Feeds

All Updates Podcast
News Comments
Like and follow usFacebookTwitter Friend Code Exchange + Game with Us Join the Team!