Backlog Summer: 07.26.2014

The staff wrap up some old games and move on to others this week!

By Nintendojo Staff. Posted 07/26/2014 12:00 3 Comments     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 finished Crimson Shroud this week! Overall, I really loved what I played. I thought that the incorporation of dice mechanics to create a tabletop-like experience was absolutely brilliant, making every turn-based battle a ton a fun to play. Like all of the other Guild games, it does something incredibly different from what is established in its genre and executes it well.

I did have a few issues with some of the design choices though. To move around the map, you tap an area on the touch screen and you instantly walk there with your party. However, because all the areas within a level are displayed on the screen at once, figuring out where to go can be a pain. Even after visiting all of the areas, you will still have to revisit places you’ve already been in hopes that something in the story will trigger and let you progress. For instance, the game required me to obtain an item to get past a certain area, yet I wasn’t aware of how I was supposed to get it. Almost two hours later, I found out that a specific kind of monster randomly drops this item, which basically requires you to grind!

Now that I beat Crimson Shroud, I’m at a loss for what I should play next. I’ll have to come up with something for next week!

Nicolas Vestre

I’ve completed about half of Wario Land 4, and it’s been excellent. One level in particular that got my attention was what appeared to be a normal lava-filled stage. But once you step on the frog, everything turns to ice! I got lost pretty quickly because the aesthetics were so different. Since it was so long ago, I forget what they do, but I’ve nabbed the hidden CD in every level so far. Hopefully the boss of the Sapphire Passage puts up a good fight, which I bet it will.

Other than being greedy and collecting mass amounts of loot, I’ve been trying to play Sonic the Hedgehog, which is important for one really good reason: I’ve never beaten a 2D Sonic the Hedgehog game! I remember paying $70 for Sonic Mega Collection on GameCube back in the day, but I never got to the end of any of the games in the compilation. This curse must end soon! If I can finish a Professor Layton game, I’m sure I can finish a relatively short platformer!

Robert Marrujo

Chibi-Robo has been put to bed, and was fun from start to finish. It’s hard to say goodbye, really; Chibi is such an earnest gaming experience that I have a hard time comparing it to other titles. I came to genuinely care about the Sandersons and what happened to them, and Chibi himself, though silent, it such an endearing lead. I will say that the plot started to go in some whacky directions at the end (time travel can do that to a guy), but I was gripped, and the ending was rewarding. Nintendo needs to get a console sequel brewing asap.

I mentioned last week that Bust-a-Move DS would be a one off… but it hasn’t been. I’ve been popping the cartridge into my DS pretty regularly now for a couple of weeks. It’s a shame that the game is sort of languishing in obscurity nowadays. It’s such a fun and simple premise, launching marbles across the screen, matching colors and making chains to clear the playing field– it’s awesome! It was never huge here in the west, and with ripoffs appearing on mobile left and right (I’m looking at you, Bubble Witch Saga), something special will have to happen to get the series in the limelight again. It’s made me a man with a mission; go play Bust-a-Move!

As far as Starfy goes, I’m working my way into world five. The game is fun, but there’s no denying that something holds it back from greatness. It’s a mite too easy at times, I’ve come to find, but the gameplay is so satisfying (much like Kirby) that I know that the lack of difficulty isn’t the issue. I keep coming back to the narrative. It… irks me. It’s just too cutesy. It’s borderline obnoxious. Frankly, Starfy’s story makes Chibi-Robo look like The Godfather. I’m just not feeling it, people. I like the characters, but a little bit of them goes a long way. We’ll see if the last half of the game is enough to excuse Starfy’s storytelling, next week!

Marc Deschamps

I’ve reached the Earth Temple in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker and it seems to be the biggest dungeon I’ve encountered thus far. I have to wonder if the ease with which I’m plowing through each dungeon is based on recollections from the first time I played it ages ago, or if I’ve just gotten pretty good at Zelda titles over the last ten years. Either way, I’ve yet to really find a dungeon that’s caused me to break a sweat. The gameplay is strong enough that it doesn’t really bother me, though.

As for the Earth Temple, I tend to find partner characters irritating in video games, but I’m really enjoying the puzzle mechanics with Medli. There’s something so intuitive about a Zelda puzzle, and that really separates this series from other franchises. I love how the mirror-based puzzles work; they really add to the satisfaction. I haven’t wrapped this one up yet, but I’m excited to finish it and move on to the next dungeon!

Anthony Pershkin

“Conistent” is definitely not a word I’d use while describing the state of my backlog adventure. The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap was put on hold in favor of Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga. I always liked the series, but I never fully committed to any game in it. That’s why I decided to go back and start from the very first one. Needless to say, Superstar Saga is just as charming and wonderful as the rest of the series, despite featuring some very weird sprites of Mario and Luigi.

And speaking of wonderful, I’ve finished my third playthrough of The Wonderful 101. I don’t know how it’s possible, but this game keeps getting better every time. And keep in mind that I absolutely adored it the first time, so right now I don’t even have words to describe my love for it (which, to be honest, is kind of frightening to me). I’m a huge Platinum Games fan and with every project the studio keeps improving. I’m afraid that at some point my body won’t be able to contain the hype and I’ll die of excitement. So, stay tuned for my death when Bayonetta 2 comes out, I guess.

To satisfy my impulse for some platforming, I also beat the last world of Super Mario 3D World (not counting the bonus ones). I’m glad I finally decided to go back and do that, because the jazzy interpretation of the main theme that plays in the credits is simply fantastic. It helped me appreciate the overall quality of the soundtrack and how it perfectly combines the classic style with the orchestra music of Super Mario Galaxy.

Finally, I started playing Battalion Wars. I bought both games a while ago, but never found the time to try them out for more than just 10 minutes. The controls are definitely not very friendly at first and I guess that’s the reason why I was originally not very into the game. Once you learn exactly how to control your units and how you’re supposed to play, the game is a blast. I’m already halfway through the third campaign, so finishing Battalion Wars in a week shouldn’t be a problem.

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

3 Responses to “Backlog Summer: 07.26.2014”

  • 784 points
    Marc Deschamps says...

    Weird sprites? The Mario and Luigi sprites from Superstar Saga are awesome, Anthony! :p

  • 33 points
    Anthony Pershkin says...

    I think they look weird compared to the rest of the series. Like they don’t represent the art style perfectly yet.

  • 267 points
    decoupage says...

    I’ve been trying to finish Golden Sun over the weekend after ending my previous play through after a few hours 13 years ago(I quit so many GBA games that I don’t recall finishing any of them except for Super Mario Advanced).

    Playing these games on the Wii U really does make a difference to my success; between the MiiVerse, and using a full size screen, my older eyes and sensibilities are loving it.

    BTW I highly recommend the game; the story, humor, and graphics all hold up (well it’s a bit pixalated on a 60″ 1080p TV), as well as one of the best traditional turn-based systems that I’ve experienced since FF7.

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