07/31/2003

I finally finished uploading all the Nintendo 64 ROMs. It took me quite a while... but it's finally done. Of course, this means that for you, the entire site has been uploaded and should be working properly. I'm going to disable the old URL, so remember, the new one is: www.gamers-tavern.com. The old one will no longer work. This is your final warning.

Recently, it seems Arch Nacho and Tortilla Godzilla's website has been down for a bit. I've e-mailed Tortilla about this, and it seems he doesn't know what's going on, so it looks like there might be trouble. Hopefully, this will be resolved soon.

So far, it seems that my new host, FuitadNET, has not deleted anything or gotten angry. That's a good sign.

As you probably did not notice, I have updated several different little things around the site. The only actual thing of note is the image section. I updated the way the thumbnails work, so it's easier for me to deal with the entire thing. No fancy JavaScript used for it, but it still came out in a very nice way. Now the Image section is no longer a nightmare for me. Sadly, the music section took that place.

As for me, well, I didn't have much of a chance to play Mega Man Network Transmission, so I still didn't find the last upgrade... and several other chips I need to max out.

I'm not sure if I mentioned this before (and frankly, I don't give a darn), but I received Mario Golf for the GameCube recently. I haven't even opened it yet, as I've got Unlimited SaGa to open and play. That's not even mentioning Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter, which I also purchased recently. Why? Well, I thought the game wasn't out yet, but darn, it's already here and old news. The last thing I remember about the game is seeing some screen shots way before its release date. After that, I did not hear a single thing about it. It's as if the game snuck by me. In any case, I've got tons of stuff to do, so I don't need anything more.

I feel like taking a vacation, though. What is my idea of a vacation? Playing some old school games, of course. Right now, I'm in the mood to play some Sonic for the Sega Genesis. I'll do that first, since I deserve it.

07/30/2003

As of this writing, the old server has been shut down. I now have a much faster, newer server. Thus, the URL for my site has been changed. The new URL is: www.gamers-tavern.com. Typing in the old URL will direct you to the new one for a while. However, I'll disable the old URL after a bit, and then it won't lead you anywhere. So make sure you change your bookmarks as soon as possible.

So, FuitadNET has finally activated my services, and I'm almost done re-uploading the entire site to their servers. All I have left right now is the N64 ROMs, really. I've also updated a few things here and there, so check things out, I guess. Thanks to FuitadNET's services (they're my new host, remember?), I now also have an official domain name. Hopefully they won't delete my stuff...

Anyway, I can't say much now; I've got to continue uploading.

07/29/2003

RockNES updated to version 3.01. Woo. Not like anyone really cares, though, since FCE Ultra is the best NES emulator.

07/27/2003

The only thing of interest to report today is that I added a new link to the links section. OverClocked Remix is the name, and music is its game (oh, the horrible puns). Seriously, this site collects good remixes for old SNES games and such. They look very professional, so you should go check them out.

I beat Mega Man Network Transmission a while ago. I'm just trying to collect a few chips and upgrades I missed...

07/26/2003

SNES9X, the second best emulator for our favorite system, SNES, has updated to version 1.40. I've updated the files on this site, so you can go download that right now, if you, for some odd reason, do not use the best emulator in the entire world, ZSNES. Shame on you. Satan will eat your breakfast for such sins. That said, I think ZSNES might update soon, so be on the look out for that...

Some other emulator for the NES, RockNES, has updated to version 3.00. Since I carry this emulator on my site for some inane reason, I updated these files as well.

I signed up for a pay host that seems very cheap, so there might be some changes around here soon. Firstly, I'd like to note that I signed up for a domain name by the same company, and so when the DNS servers finally make the change, I'll give out the address. Hopefully, the new host won't delete my stuff. If they don't, then you can expect me to be using their services for a long time. If they do, however, I've got a backup plan. Recently, a great emulation site has started up again, and they now have a hosting service. Since they're an emulation site, they will accept me. Actually, I've talked to the "leader" of the site, and he says it's ok.

You're probably asking, why don't I just sign up for their hosting plans instead? Because they're more expensive, provide less space, and less bandwidth.

That's pretty much all that I've to say today. So, uh... enjoy the second best SNES emulator?

07/19/2003

I've been playing Mega Man Network Transmission for a little while now, and I think I'm ready to really tell you more about it.

Graphics are great. Usually, cel-shading is either done very poorly, or very nicely. This is a perfect example of it being done nicely.

The music is a bunch of remixed tunes of older Mega Man games, so anyone who's actually been gaming for a while will find some of those tunes familiar. They're pretty good and catchy; just like they were back then. Certainly, it doesn't grab you by the neck, claiming that it's the best, but it's still very good.

The plot is pretty much the same as every Mega Man Battle Network game: you're a boy who has some weird Game Boy thingie which MegaMan.EXE is located in. You then connect this thing into stuff like computers, ATMs, etc. Apparently, the entire world this game takes place in is run on the Internet. Everything has a port that you can "jack-in" to, as they say, to connect to the 'net. So, a boy runs around "jacking-in" to various objects, and using MegaMan to kill viruses (enemies) and such. There's some poor attempt at an actual plot behind this, but other than that, there's really nothing else worth mentioning.

As for the actual game play, think of it like this: it's a normal Mega Man game, but with the chip system. That's pretty much it. I like it, though. I feel the chip system works really well here. Really, that's all you need to know. If you need to know more, then chances are, you won't like this game.

I might get an official host soon, and maybe even buy a little domain name, since it comes with the hosting service and it's so darn cheap. $10 a year? A whole year? This probably explains why so many people buy domain names so often. They think of a good name and they buy it, whether they're going to use it or not.

That's it for now...

07/15/2003

I played Mega Man Network Transmission for several hours, and I'm glad to say, it was very good. I liked it. It's basically the same as all the other Mega Man Battle Network games, but instead of an RPG, it's a platformer. I feel that the system fits much better in a platformer. Maybe that's just me.

In case you don't already know the system in the Mega Man Battle Network series, let me explain. It's similar to those card video games. Mega Man is not strong enough to do almost anything himself, so he must rely on the power of these "chips" (which are basically cards...). Each chip does a certain action. Some do damage, some do a lot of damage, and some heal you. There are also a few that do unique things. The way this works is: you have a chip folder and backpack. The chip folder is basically a card deck. You can have 20 chips in your folder, and the rest is stored in your backpack, which can carry infinite chips.

In battle, (or, for Mega Man Network Transmission, in the platforming bits) there's a little bar on top of the screen. When this bar fills up, you get to select a few random chips from your chip folder. The game randomly chooses 5 chips from your folder, and you then select which ones you want to carry. You can only carry 5 chips at a time. If you don't select all 5 randomly chosen chips from your folder, then the next time the bar fills up, you can choose from more than 5. The max amount you can choose from is 10. That's pretty much the main system of the game.

There's also something else, as little as it may be; an upgrade system. It's very simplistic. Even though Mega Man is so weak that he must use these chips to survive, there is a way to make him slightly stronger, and that's by upgrading. On your adventure, you may find HPmemory, PowerUp, etc. These items can be used to upgrade Mega Man himself. Obviously, HPmemory upgrades his HP, which it does so in increments of 20. PowerUp upgrades one of three stat ratings that Mega Man has: Power, Rapid, and Charge. Power is how much damage each shot of your buster does. Rapid is how many shots you can shoot at a single time, and how fast. Charge is, obviously, how fast you charge your buster. These things make little-to no difference in the beginning, but they add up. Eventually, you can actually take out certain weak enemies without using a single chip.

The system of chips I spoke of is the basic one, which is used in all three Mega Man Battle Network games, and in Mega Man Network Transmission. They have added a few things to the system from game to game. Now, I never played Mega Man Battle Network 2 and 3, so I don't know which game has what improvement, so bare with me.

One of these improvements is the MB system. I only can assume that MB stands for MegaByte, since the game takes place in a future world run by computers. Anyway, each chip has a certain amount of MB. Throughout the game, you get some items that upgrade how much MB you have, I think they're called RegUps, but I'm not too certain, since I only got one, and I didn't pay too much attention to it. If there's a certain chip in your folder that you use very frequently, and you want this chip to always show up after the computer randomly chooses chips, then that's what the MB system is for. Say you simply love cannon chips, and want them to always appear first in a random shuffle. The Cannon chip is 8MB; that means that you need 8MB to set this chip to always appear after a shuffle. You start with 8MB, so that's no problem. Later on, you get chips that happen to be better than the stuff you get in the beginning, and those chips require more MB to be set as your always-appear-first chip. Some need 16MB, some need 24MB, etc. That's the MB system. It's really simple, but it can help you out sometimes.

One more improvement seems to be the ability to stack chips. As you know, you can "stack" items in many RPGs. This means that if you have 4 of the same item, instead of each one taking a different space in your item list, they all take one space and have a number next to them showing how much you have. This system was already in your backpack, but not in your chip folder. Say you have 30 cannon chips and you move that into your chip folder. After a random shuffle, you select the cannon chip, and you'll be able to use it 30 times. Also, chips can get "used up." Think of it as a card game; instead of returning the cards to the deck so you can randomly shuffle for them again, you put them somewhere else. So, eventually, your deck will be empty. This is something that didn't happen in the first Mega Man Battle Network game, but I think they added this to the others. The chips don't go away forever, though. After exiting the platforming bit, all your chips return to you.

Some sort of "MP" system is in this game. Every chip wastes some MP. Oddly enough, since your MP fills up by itself, I never ran into a problem where I didn't have enough MP. MP can be upgraded like HP.

One last thing they added: the backup system. This basically means "lives" for you old school gamers out there. The cool thing about this, though, is the fact that you can upgrade the max amount of lives you can have. So you start out with only one life, but later, you find a backup upgrade that makes the max number of lives you can have to two.

So, yeah, I guess I do like the game. Personally, I feel the game is much better this way than the ones for the Game Boy Advance. Now I'll go back to my gaming. Not even a fish could stop me.

07/14/2003

Yet another link has been added. It's yet another web comic: Movie Comics. It's a comic about movies. I don't really care about movies, but it's still pretty good. It's Penny Arcade but with movies instead of games.

Maybe Arch Nacho didn't receive my e-mail or something? Or maybe he just thought the question was so idiotic that he decided it was better kept deleted and unanswered than the other way around. I honestly don't blame him, though.

I finally collected everything in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut. Yes, that includes: beating the game, acquiring all 130 emblems, getting Metal Sonic's 30 emblems, and last but not least, clearing all 60 missions. I can now painlessly move on to the next game I wanted to invest some time in: Megaman Network Transmission. That's what it is called, right? Meh, I don't feel like checking.

A while ago, many people who visited this site, who I personally know, have told me that it'd be simply radical if I added reviews for the many games my site carries, and possibly more. I'd like you all to know that the "reviews" I supply in the news box is just something for you to return to every now and then, so they're "mini-reviews," if you will. They're not intended to be something you search for in the news archive. People still want me to do actual reviews, though. That'd be a lot of work. Even more if I wanted to supply good reviews that are worth reading. I'll think about it, though. Maybe one day...

One thing that has been on my mind is an extra download that my site can carry: save files. Most emulators use pretty much the same save files (not save state, I mean saving normally within the game at save points and such). That's more work, though.

It's pretty much decided that I'm going to host my comic on Keenspot, or Keenspace, whatever they call themselves. You won't see the comic anytime soon, so don't get your hopes up. I'm still trying to patch up several plot holes, and I'm also trying to find a pratical way of getting stuff on paper onto an image file on my computer. Sure, I definitely need a scanner, which I do have. I just can't think of how I'll do the panels. I'm sure I'll think of something...

Don't sit there; it's bad for your butt.

07/13/2003

I've added several N64 ROMs. They are Bomberman Hero, Diddy Kong Racing, Harvest Moon 64, and Hey You, Pikachu! Not much to say today, really.

Arch Nacho still hasn't sent a reply. He's probably very busy. I'm pretty certain his host won't accept me, though. So it really isn't such a big thing that he didn't reply, since I pretty much know the answer. Assuming that my theory is correct, there really isn't any other thing I can do to host my site. I don't think it's such a good idea to pay for a host, since they're very serious when it comes to legal issues. I might end up in big trouble if I do so...

I... removed the link for The Cult of Kefka. It pains me to do so, but really, that link won't change. We must face the facts; that site is gone. And its webmaster may have gone with it.

Erm... other than that, I've got nothing else to say. I finally got all 130 emblems and 30 Metal Sonic emblems, so all I need to do in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut is to finish all the missions. Uh... well, I guess that's it.

07/11/2003

I added a new link. It's yet another web comic and it's titled "Slackers." I really like the art style, and it's pretty funny, I guess. Yuxman is cool.

I really need a server... hmm. Many of you are probably wondering why I don't just pay for a small server, especially since there are nice servers for only 5 bucks a month that provide about 3GB of space, with 25GB of bandwidth. As of now, my site only takes up 800MB, so chances are, it'll take some time for me to go through that 3GB. And, if I do, I can expand that space for a tad bit more money.

When it comes to web hosting, there is no such thing as unlimited or infinite. If it's free, then it sucks. If it's free and has unlimited or infinite of anything, then it sucks even more. With this in mind, I've found several decently priced hosts that look nice. There's still one problem, though. You see, I host ROMs. Many people don't like that. Many people claim that it's illegal. If I were to pay for a host, they might see this and get angry or scared. If that happens, they might file a lawsuit against me, or will strip me of their services and never let me use those services again. They could also just delete my stuff without stating a reason, like some free hosts already do. Whatever the case may be, maybe hosting a ROM site might not be such a good idea. I'll consider it, though. I may even give it a try. I mean, 5 bucks a month? That's 60 in the entire year. That's like purchasing one game and a players guide every year. That sounds like a great deal to me.

I'm hoping Arch Nacho will get back to me soon, and notify me that his host will not accept me, while explaining why I suck, and that I should just commit suicide or something, since my life seems pointless. Ok, so maybe I don't want him to say all that, maybe none of it, but that's certainly what all people who are not gamers say, which I simply despise. Arch Nacho is a gamer, though, so the only thing he'd probably say from all that is that his host won't accept me.

Moving off of the subject, I simply do despise people who aren't quite fond of gaming. They think they're so much better than us, just because they don't waste their lives playing games. Well, you know what? I don't call sitting in front of a television watching american sitcoms, eating chips, and drinking soda living your life. What, just because you go to a job that you hate makes you better than me? If anything, we're both bums. We both suck, and we're both wasting our lives away.

You can't really say that someone's wasting their life, since technically, you're never wasting your life. You're only wasting your life if you want to do something, and never get to do it. It doesn't matter what it is, the fact that you died before doing it, means you've wasted your life. There is no one sure way of saying that you haven't wasted your life. Some people look at going to school and investing your life in knowledge as not wasting your life, while others disagree greatly.

Really, just spend your life enjoying it, and doing the things you want to do. Invest it in the things you want, and then you can truly say that you haven't wasted any bit of life.

Back to what I was talking about, then... let's look at the facts. The host I'm looking at is the same one that hosts Brian Clevinger's 8-Bit Theater. You see, Brian's little comic is a bit confusing in the legal area, and yet, his host keeps hosting his site. That's why I think they might be good for me... although my site is even worse in the legal area.

Just to set things right, I'm very interested in emulation as a whole. Mostly because I can emulate many of those dead systems and games from long ago, right on my PC. What can I say, I'm a man of the past, I can never get over the SNES. After a good day of gaming on my GameCube, I must return to the SNES, or my SNES emulator, which is ZSNES. Let's face it; SNES is dead. So are many other great systems. The only practical way of enjoying these great systems is emulation. I hope companies, such as Nintendo, don't find that to be a bad thing. I just want to keep playing their older games, not destroy them. And, think about it, how am I even hurting any of these companies? The games we emulate are all not being sold, and no one's making any profit off of them. So instead of just letting these great systems rot in their graves, let's do them justice, and keep them alive. Sure, it's not in their original forms, but at least they'll live for eternity.

I'm not too good at this legal stuff, but I think for ROMs to actually put someone in legal danger, the company has to sue you. If that's the case, then chances are that you're safe. Why? Well, think about it this way: why would a company sue a person who carries less than 20 bucks in his pocket, and is providing absolutely no threat to the company's sales? This will not only be a complete waste of time for the company, but it will also just be a waste of their money. So for them to sue someone like me, you, or maybe even that guy over there, it'd be a complete waste.

Of course, companies like Microsoft just love to throw their money around, and they can go around suing a trash bin and laugh 4 times in a row. Most American corporations and companies like wasting their time and money just to put some kid in jail for vague "copyright infringements."

Whatever... I'll just give this pay host thing a try one day... I assure you, though, that day is not today.

07/10/2003

I may or may not have some good news. I found out that Keenspot is, indeed, a free service. So you're probably wondering, "why don't you just host your entire site over there?" Well, here's the reason; they seem to be pretty serious about this stuff. They have all sorts of legal disclaimers that stay very true to real copyright law, etc. If I were to host my entire site over there, I might end up in serious trouble. I plan to host the comic on Keenspot. That's if I don't find another server, which I probably won't.

In other, more uninteresting news, I got all 130 emblems in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut. It was very difficult, I assure you. I'm now going to get all the Metal Sonic emblems, then finish these "missions."

Server... I need a server....

That reminds me, if any of you people who actually visit my site know of a nice, free server for me, please let me know. I'll even excuse your horrid spelling and grammar... really!

Poom.

07/09/2003

Visual Boy Advance has updated to version 1.6 Beta 2. Of course, I've updated the files on my site. The major thing about this release is the rewind feature, which has only been seen in ZSNES so far. Rewind is a very nice emulator feature; it goes back several frames from where you use it. For example, if you died, and didn't like that, just hit the nice rewind button there. It's got one problem, though: unlike ZSNES (which is bad), you can't use rewind too often. Oh well, we can't have it all.

Good news about my quest for all the emblems in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut; I've got all the emblems except for the last five, which all happen to be Chao races. Hopefully, I can raise a Chao to win me those last five. I never really cared about this Chao nonsense, and I still don't, so it'll be hard getting around to doing that...

I'm in serious need of a new server. A lot of people are beginning to make "attempts" to visit my site, and, well, with a server like this, only a lucky two or three will make it. That's bad. Actually, I never knew that this site would generate more than one hit a day. Because of this, I did not try to acquire a better server. The server the site's on now can barely handle two connections, let alone 11. Yep, 11 people actually tried viewing my site at the same time...

Arch Nacho still hasn't answered my e-mail yet, but I'm pretty sure his host won't accept me. If that's out, then I don't really know what else to do. I was thinking of hosting another site just for the comic at this "Keenspot" place. Most web comic authors host their sites over there, so it might be a good idea for me. I think Keenspot is a free service, but I'm not sure. Actually, I'm pretty sure it isn't, but there's a slight chance, right?

After what happened at Madasafish recently, I'm pretty certain that RandyGophr, the guy from The Cult of Kefka, won't continue his site. He'd have to find some other place to host his site, and that would be enough to tick him off. He never was that interested in his site, and felt it was more of a burden than anything else, so this would just be too much. Remember, Madasafish reduced their web space to 20MB, and I'm pretty sure The Cult of Kefka is much more than that. My site is 800MB and I don't even have as many ROMs, emulators, and pages as he does, so his site must be double the space. It's really such a pitty, because... that site was a classic. Not just because it's one of the few fuctional ROM sites out there, but because the person who made the site really made it. What I mean is, he poured his personality into it. He really did care for his site in the beginning, and still thought about the possibilities afterwards. The site got to a point where it became "complete," and he pretty much did all he wanted with it, and that's why I think he lost interest. Who really knows, eh? It was a good site. It brings a tear to my eye to know it won't be back... ever. Well, we can't say ever, because, you never know. Maybe one day he'll return with a completely new and improved site, like I did. We'll just have to see.

Uh... so, yeah. I need a server; a fast, free, and good one. No, actually, I just need one better than the one I've got now. It's not like 200,000 people come visit my site every single day, so just about any server that can handle more than one person will do.

Server, blah, blah, blah, need server, blah, blah, blah, need server, blah, blah, blah, need server, blah, blah, blah, need server, blah, blah, blah, cough need server. Now.

07/07/2003

Anata wa Amerika-jin desu ka?

I've beaten Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut a while ago. Right now, I'm just making an attempt at collecting all the emblems. A neat thing they added is that you unlock Game Gear Sonic games for every 20 emblems you get. Surprisingly, the GG games play very nicely.

That thing about the game lagging up and clipping with slow downs; you'll eventually get used to it. For some odd reason, the later levels have less clipping and slow downs, so that's good. Usually, mass clipping and slow downs only occur at certain places. Cut scenes seem to be a prime place where this happens the most.

So, enough about that, now for the actual game. First, the graphics; while some of the graphics are outdated, the character models (for the playable characters, mostly) are certainly not. These character models still look great today. The scenery itself isn't so great, but is decent enough in my book.

The music in this game is great, and can even go on par with some of those fancy RPGs that have great, soothing tunes. Most of the music has singing, which is hard for me to say whether that's a good or bad thing. See, if you actually think about what they're saying when they sing, then it's horrible. It's like they can't think of any words to go along with the song, so they just string any word at all to try and compensate. On the other hand, if you ignore what they're actually saying and only pay attention to the beat of their voices, then it's very good.

The story tries to be very deep and has plot twists, and I guess it did well, since this is really the first Sonic game with any plot at all. You can't expect it to hold its own against an RPG's story, though. That'd be suicide.

Game play is pretty good, especially since this is their first 3D Sonic game. The stages are fast paced, have lots of action, and are just basically fun to run through. So, really, it's like any other Sonic game, just in 3D. In the end, it's just another Sonic game. I mean, really, what else is there to say?

I'm thinking the next game I'll play after this one will be Mega Man Network Transmission. To tell the truth, I'm very curious as to how it'll turn out. I don't have much else to say today.

07/05/2003

I've got a small, but interesting update. At least, for you. I updated my contact section. I removed all my instant messenger info and added some rules that you should follow when making a sad, sad, sad attempt to e-mail me.

I have some pretty good news about a certain, obscure SNES ROM: Treasure of the Rudras, as its name is in the translation, has been, well, translated. I briefly played this game in Japanese a while ago, but soon stopped due to the language barrier. So, I'll eventually get to playing that. Oh, and of course, I added the translated ROM to the site, so go get it.

I just beat Wario World with all the secrets obtained. So the game is completely done. I must say, though most of the game was very easy (which I simply loved), the levels become very hard (which I simply despise) towards the end of the game. There were some void levels that were rather difficult, as well. Anyway, I'm done with that game, and I had fun. That's the important thing; fun.

The next game I plan to play is Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut, which in my honest opinion, is much better than its sequel. I'll say more on the game later, once I refresh my memory on it (since I haven't played it for so many years). I've got one thing to say, though: I can't remember if it was like this on the Dreamcast version, but... this version seems to have mass clipping and slow downs. We're talkin' massive; simply massive. Not only that, but the camera is terrible. I mean, the thing gets stuck behind walls while you're running for your life. Unlike most games, instead of this happening every several years, this happens every several minutes. As you probably can guess, this sucks. Watashi wa Amerika-jin desu.

It must be one of two problems:

A) It was simply too difficult to port the game to the GameCube for some technical reason, and they did it anyway because of the extremely high demand from their fans. People start riots over this stuff, you know.

B) They figured, since we want the thing so much, they can just label an empty box "Sonic Adventure" and place a price tag of 500,000,000 yen, and we'd still buy it. That's because we simply want our favorite 3D Sonic game on a system we actually use.

Whatever the problem is, they didn't do a good job. I mean, I could've waited several more months, or even years, for them to get the port slightly better. I'll see if I can get through all that nonsense and beat the game...

As for the comic, well, I want to see if I can get a better and faster server that can handle more connections before I do anything with the comic. I might also need to look up some JavaScript or something to make scrolling between the comics easier for me (maybe not for you, but definitely for me). If I find anything that'll help me with the comic, code wise, it'll probably be useful for the image section, as well.

07/04/2003

It seems that one of the sites I link to is no longer around... so I removed it.

I noticed that Madasafish is back in business. That large update they were doing is now done, and their service is working once again. For some odd reason, RandyGophr's The Cult of Kefka still gives out a 403 error. I actually tried signing up to Madasafish again to see if I could host my site there... and it worked! Bad news, though; they reduced their amount of space to 20MB. I have no idea how much space thay gave before, but 20MB definitely won't be enough for my site. This site alone wastes about 800MB or more. That's nearly a gigabyte.

The bad thing is, the current server my site's on can't handle too many connections. This means that only like, 7 people can be connected to my site at a time. Just with that very number, the site will be so slow, that you'll leave anyway. As you probably know, my server gives out a 403 error when around 7 people are connected to it. The server does this to prevent itself from crashing. So... what this all means is: I better find a good server soon. I'm trying to contact Arch Nacho to see if their host can accept me, as well.

So far, XOOM and Madasafish are crossed off my list. I still hate XOOM, actually. Screw you, XOOM. Fine, I ran out of space, but you guys don't have to be so mean about it! Let's just hope that I can find a nice, fast, and large server soon. So that you all can actually visit my site.

I'm almost finished with Wario World. I told you it's a short game. I even got nearly all the secrets.

Some top secret info to keep you interested: interest in the comic has recently been good. I'm practicing my drawing skills (which still suck, honestly) and I'm trying to think of a practical way of making a hand drawn comic on paper. I've planned out a basic plot, and am thinking about its more detailed parts. I even got to developing the characters, etc. So, basically, I'm actually working on it. I can't say when the first comic will be out, or if it even will be, but it's in sight... maybe.

07/03/2003

I finally got around to playing one of my new games; Wario World. I think I've played enough to say a few words about it. First, let's start with the worst; graphics. I don't know what's wrong, but these graphics just plain suck. They look like really high end N64 graphics, which is really bad, considering this is on the GameCube. Wario himself doesn't look all that great, since you can spot all the pointy edges and such on his polygons. He does have a nice "breath in and breath out" effect that makes him look somewhat realistic, though. Basically, it looks like they didn't care in the least for the graphics.

That's okay, though. Especially since the game play is so good. Let's move on to something else before that, though. The music; very surprisingly, the music is actually very good for one of these "Mario" type games. Not that usual Mario stuff here; we've actually got some good tunes that might be able to go up against the music of certain RPGs. It's definitely not the best music in the world, but it's darn good (for this type of game, anyway).

The plot is basically the same as almost every other Wario game; Wario's greed makes him go out on an adventure to get even more rich and he comes back happy. There's some nonsense about a black evil jewel that turned all his treasure and riches into monsters, but it's still basically the same thing.

Now let's talk about the game play. This is where the game excels (like Excel Saga) the most. It's a very simple game, which is always a good thing. There's a lot of collecting in each level and there are many rewards. The levels themselves are very nicely done, and are so much fun. Was that a nun? Mwahaha! I shall slay you with my bun! No, don't shoot me with that gun! That thing must weigh a ton. You may think I'm crazy, but don't run! Ok, so I dodged most of my review for this game with a rhyme. You must hate me now. Please do not kill that cow! Right, I'll stop this now, so I can avoid being killed. Killed by who, you ask? You.

Anyway, the game is very simple, so I like that. There are things to collect in levels, but it doesn't feel so evil like in those Banjo-Somethings games for the N64. There are several things to collect in an entire level, and they're all generally easy and fun to get. So don't fret! There I go again. Ahem. Moving on. The level design is great; I find myself having fun just admiring the platform elements and scenery. It's just fun jumping from tower to tower, bridge to bridge, etc. These are places I always wanted to platform in; it's every platformer's dream. I'm not that much of a platformer, but it's all the same.

One thing that's great is how easy you can control Wario, and how they made the many platforming tasks feel so easy. For example, it's much easier to jump onto smaller blocks and such. You seem to stay in the air longer, and you feel so "light." This is what I don't get: Wario feels so light in all his platforming games, and Mario feels so heavy in his platformers. I think Nintendo did one mushroom too many. This, alone, makes the game so much better. Also, the levels were designed to be very platform-y. There's a lot of jumping from this to that, from here to that tower, etc. This is what a platformer should be like. The levels are also mostly a "left-to-right" scrolling level. Sometimes, it's right-to-left, and at other times, up-to-down. You can still move freely all around, like most 3D games; the road just always goes from left-to-right. I've always wished for such a platformer, and my gosh, it's finally here.

The void levels from Super Mario Sunshine are back, and they're much nicer this time around. There are still some challenging parts, but mostly, it's much easier. This, of course, is great. The levels are usually just a bunch of floating platforms, and an item or two that you must get. There's several void levels in each actual level, and each void level carries a special item that you need to beat the stage. Sometimes, the void levels also have life upgrades that upgrade your health. This, too, is great.

Another major thing that I simply love, is how easy this game is. I don't know about you, but I love easy games. They're so... fun. Yeah, that's another thing. This game is fun. And that's the important thing; fun. Games should be fun. This game does that to a very good extent. In short, Wario World is a simple, easy, short, but fun platformer. Really, that's all I want right now, and I have it. So I'm satisfied. Of course, there are many other people who despise these things, and will hate this game. As it is, not many people know or are interested in this game. It's such a pitty, since they're missing so much.

Well, that's my review. I hope this little thing I wrote here will urge you to purchase this game. Right at this moment. Now. Go. Make the purchase. If you don't, I shall kill you with my silly puns, you dirty bum (notice how none of these are really puns, I just need the word "pun" to fit my rhyme).

When did Wario like garlic? In the instruction booklet, it claimes that Wario is a garlic fanatic. I've never heard or seen this anywhere else, but seeing how this is official stuff, I'll just say yes. Kids, say yes to garlic and say no to school. Really, a video game a day will keep the doctor at your door, but gosh darn it, it'll be better than school.

07/02/2003

I finally beat Tales of Phantasia. This is actually my second time doing so. I've collected all items, chests, magic, skills, armor, weapons, etc. I also have the best armor and weapons for all characters. I then leveled them all to 99. Uh... I guess that's about it. Oh, and I killed the last boss. Can't forget that, can we?

I think the next game I'll play will be Wario World. I'll probably say a few things about it once I've played enough of it.

07/01/2003

I haven't updated for a while. It's mostly because I've been playing Tales of Phantasia a lot. It's a long, annoying, hard, difficult game. And yet, I love it. Ok, so far, I've only said bad things about the game, so it's time to change that by saying a few good things. First, let's look at the bad things once more, since they irritated me many times, even more so now that I'm playing through the darn thing again. Here's the list:

1) Random Encounters have been pushed over the limit. Every like, 5 steps, there's a battle. Combine this with the fact that each battle can bring you to within an inch of your life, and you've got a problem.

2) Some enemies have very annoying abilities, like being able to paralyze or stone you with their normal attacks. Imagine several strikes shaving off a load of health, and stoning or paralyzing you.

3) There are many enemies like this in various parts of the game.

4) There's also the "stun." See, paralyzing is a status effect that can only be cured by a remedy bottle or recover spell (which both heal all status effects). "Stun" is just what happens to you temporarily when you get hit hard. The thing is, you get hit hard very often.

5) You can only carry 15 of each item. When you open a chest, and have 15 of the item that you're about to receive, you just can't carry it. The thing goes back into the bloody chest. Thus, you can not open the chest. And so, the quest to somehow get rid of that item that you carry 15 of begins. This sometimes takes way too long. It also damages the progress of the dungeons. Why couldn't they just make it easier on themselves and us by letting the item in the chest go to waste? Bah.

6) Later in the game, enemies give you a big problem. They're way too strong. Even with your most powerful equipment, items, magic, and anything else you can pull out of your darn pants, you just can't kill them easily.

7) Also, this game has that annoying thing that Final Fantasy VI had; you must equip an accessory to run. It just wastes a slot. This is a slot that could be used for much, much, much better things. It's such a pitty.

8) There are other annoying things, but I can't think of anything else.

Now, finally on to the good stuff. Firstly, the game is made by Namco. That may be a surprise for many of you. If any of you remember, Namco was the one that created Pac-Man. Many of you probably played it in the arcade ages ago. I must admit, for Namco's first try at an RPG, they did great, even with the many annoying problems. Ok, so that's not actually a good thing. Maybe it is if you consider Namco to be a very good video game company, which I do. Maybe they're not that good, but they're at least decent.

Anyway, the music is very nice. It's very good indeed. The battle music, boss music, mini-boss music; it's all good. Most of the other music is surprisingly good, as well.

The graphics outside of battle are very good for they're time. In battle, they're even better. The frame rate in battle is also simply amazing. The graphics and frame rate in battle all kick Chrono Trigger's graphics and frame rate right in the butt. Out of battle, though, the frame rate isn't as good. The graphics out of battle are very decent, though.

Um, this game actually has a lot of voice acting; an SNES game with voices... that you can actually understand. Yeah. In 1994, I might add. Actually, let's look at this for a second. Chrono Trigger's graphics and frame rate were very good for an RPG in its time (1995). Now here we see a game made in 1994 kicking the other's butt in these departments, and it's also an RPG. That's some good stuff right there. Back to the voices. Yes, there's plenty of them. Almost every character has a voice. They yell out the name of each move they perform. Surprisingly, even though it's all in Japanese, they almost always say the words in English. I'm guessing this is because many of these words don't exist in the Japanese language, and so they use the katakana writing and pronunciation. By the way, this game was translated unofficially by a hacking translation group by the name of DeJap. So understanding what they yell out isn't too hard most of the time. They say it all in very nice Japanese accents, so it's fun hearing it over and over again. At least, for me. The opening theme is an actual, complete song. It's a very nice one, I might add.

Another nice touch is that they have a picture of every item, armor, weapon, etc... it's nice knowing how that long sword you picked up several years ago looks like. The only flaw with this part is that the weapon you equip doesn't look different in battle. There's only three weapons for the main character that look different. Basically, there's an axe, a sword, and a polearm. Other than that, every other weapon looks the same. I guess the pictures of every item, etc, makes up for this.

Now on to the gameplay. The way you play this RPG is very different from others. Well, in battle, anyway. Every other thing is exactly like a normal RPG, except for the battles. The battles are very unique. The battles are seen in a left-to-right, side-scrolling perspective. You can only control the main character, who is a swordsman, and he has many different skills to use. The rest of your party members are controlled by the AI, and are casters. This is good, since all the AI has to do is randomly pick certain spells, which it can do much faster than you. You can select away which spells you don't want them to cast through the menu. Casting firewall in a fire tower is not a good idea. There's only one other party member who does not use magic (besides your main character); it's the main character's best friend, the archer! He just wanders around, shooting arrows at anything that moves. It's pretty easy stuff for the AI, I guess.

Anyway, let me explain exactly how the battles work. Controlling the main character, you run up to the enemy in a left-to-right side-scrolling screen, and slash them. That's pretty much it. Of course, throw several skills into the mix, and you get to do more things. You can have four skills equipped at a time. The actual controls in battle are odd; when you hit the attack button, you not only slash, but you automatically run up to them first. You can walk by yourself, but the only way to run is in this way. What's annoying about this, though, is that after you do the run-to-the-enemy-and-slash thing, you then run back to where you were standing before. This is sometimes good when fighting certain enemies, but most often than not, you'll be hating this. At least, I do.

So, that's basically the battle system. You can open a mini-menu to use items and tell which specific spells you want your party members to cast. Of course, casting is better left for the AI, since it's too much for one man to handle. One weird thing I've noticed is, when you use an item, it doesn't tell you who used it. You don't pick who uses it. It just... gets used by someone. Even when the main character dies, you can still use the item. Somebody uses it, but we will never find out who. Anyone see a plot hole here?

Hmm... the dungeons are fairly long, but that's more on the bad side, since you battle so often, and the battles tend to be very annoying.

The plot... yes, the plot. It's not the best, but it's pretty decent. Nothing deep or anything, although there is a very interesting plot twist at the end of the game... read on if you want to be spoiled. *SPOILER*After killing the main bad guy, you find out that what he was doing was, in fact, the good thing, and thus, you're the bad guys, since you killed him. Yep, that's some plot twist.*SPOILER*

The spoiler ends here. Blah. The story/plot revolves around getting powerful enough to face this one man, who's causing some trouble. That's pretty much the plot. It's fun building up levels, gathering summons, buying gear, just to defeat one guy who is supposely really powerful; especially since the story follows this. The story is still fun, though. Many different things happen, you got to go get this, then get that, something, something, something, you did that, resulting in this, blue, blue, blue, blah, blah, blah...

Overall, the entire game is very exciting and fun. There's really only one glaring flaw, though: it's very annoying. There are just so many things that annoy you in all the wrong ways. I think it's worth enduring it all, though.

One thing I've always wondered... how did they fit it all in one cart? I mean, voices for every attack, an entire song, great music, nice graphics, great frame rate... to top it all off, the entire game is very long, even without side quests. Add side quests, and that's another several hours. Not only that, but this game was made in 1994. So, yes, give Namco some credit for the hard work they've done. Thanks, Namco! We'll love you forever (I think...). Namco has also made some sequels; Tales of Destiny 1 and 2.

This came out rather long, didn't it? Hopefully, this'll last you for a while... I'm almost done with Tales of Phantasia. I'm just finishing up some end game stuff. Well, I'm tired, so that's it.

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