Years before I became resident pool skimmer at Paradise I considered myself a bit of an amateur, “fictional war correspondent”. Examining warfare video games retrospectively, weighing the odds of probability for fictional conflicts or double checking historical “accuracies” in games about real war long past. Or sometimes just noticing coincidences or conflicts accurately predicted like today’s entry. For those of you that could give a shit about history, don’t worry – this is a new and sporadic type series and will be few and far between (mainly because it requires one iota of research and I am just heartbreakingly lazy).
I will be back suffering, playing horrible games for your reading pleasure soon enough. But for now, since your here, join me while we briefly discuss the time Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon accurately predicted war.
So today we will cover the very first Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon game and how it predicted (down to the year) the Russo-Georgian War. But first a quick overview for those unfamiliar with the game series and writer, Tom Clancy.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon was released in 2001 for PC and ported to consoles in 2002. While the game series is one of the only games under the Tom Clancy brand umbrella not based on an actual Tom Clancy novel it still does a fairly decent job guessing a geo-political crisis in the near future.
Tom Clancy was a best selling author who more than likely has written something you’ve either read, watched or played. The Hunt For Red October was his first novel. Patriot Games, Clear And Present Danger and The Sum Of All Fears all became commercially successful films based on his novels as well.
The Ghost Recon video game series began development in the late 90’s into the early 2000’s and unlike Rainbow Six is not based on a specific story by Clancy but just his tactical/military based body of work.
Red Storm is an American video game developer founded by Tom Clancy and his manager, Doug Littlejohns (which is one of the most ridiculous last names I’ve ever heard).
Anyways they debuted with, “Tom Clancy’s Politika” and really broke ground in 1999 with, “Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six” series.
It was also published by juggernauts, Ubisoft. The Montreal based company that has also published all other Tom Clancy titles, Far Cry, Assassin’s Creed, Just Dance, Rayman, Prince of Persia, Watch Dogs and many other titles.
Ghost Recon takes place in the near future (at the time) 2008. An ultra nationalist groups seizes control of Russia displacing its current democratic leaders and begins taking back land and countries lost during the soviet collapse. Russia quickly seizes Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan and declares itself the RDU (Russian Democratic Union) and sets aim on its neighboring Georgia.
“The Ghosts” are a fictional ultra elite United States military squad first called in to stop Russian backed rebels in Georgia. The rebels are South Ossetia separatists but what makes this case and game particularly interesting is the coincidence of time between the game itself and the Russo-Georgian War.
But to understand the significance of the coincidence we first have to look into the history of some of the parties involved and what better way to start than examining the modern day history of the gorgeous country of Georgia.
Just south of Russia, Georgia was under Soviet control until it regained independence in 1991. Following the regained independence however a long period of political strife, bloody coup and a civil war erupted.
Noteworthy Georgians include: Joseph Stalin and the best looking chess master on Earth Sopiko Guramishvili.
Considered a frozen conflict zone (Disputed conflicts and territories left over from the Cold War) Georgia has had two internationally recognized territorial disputes. One with Abkhazia and another in The northern part of the country with South Ossetia separatists. Were going to focus on South Ossetia.
In short, South Ossetians helped overtake the Democratic Republic of Georgia and in April 1922 were rewarded their own separate autonomous administration called the South Ossetian Autonomous Oblast. Leading up the collapse of the Soviet Union, Georgian nationalism was at an all time high during the push for independence from the USSR. Tensions flared between the sides – with Russian backed South Ossetia and Tbilisi at odds.
All a powder keg which would eventually explode in 2008 during the Russo-Georgian War. The war lasted only twelve days and is notable that it is considered the first war in Europe during the 21st century. It was also the first war to feature cyber warfare as well as traditional military means.
After almost two weeks the French negotiated a cease fire between the two sides successfully but not unlike Crimea in 2014 Russia has occupied the territory since 2008 breaking the rules set in place for the existing cease fire.
What’s the largest coincidence?
That both the conflict in the game (between Russian backed Ossetian separatists and NATO backed Georgian military) and the real Russo-Georgian war both break out in the year 2008. The game effectively predicting the conflict seven years in advance.
The one thing the game did get wrong?
That it would take a fringe ultra-nationalist political party to oust the Russian administration of 2005. The truth being – there was already a fringe ultra nationalist in office by 2005.
Joyous meeting you here today my dear Island Guests, while it is Steampunk month, I kind of ran out of steam a bit myself last week. Migraines , big energy dips and the likes, so I sometimes turned in early or could not focus on a movie or game enough to build up enough stock! Luckily YumDeku was a pal and tagged me in my eleventh SunShine Blogger award. Maybe I forgot or did not notice a few nominations as I am such a scatterbrain as well.. but well.. while it might not be Steampunk.. I decided to make the questions for you guys Steampunk themed so hey still doing it.
Those introduction things
Anyone who reads these knows I haven’t been keeping up with the tagging rules. I have no idea who is interested in taking on more of these so I do no longer use tag-chains. Instead my rules when I do this tag are as follows. I do display the logo and say thanks to those who nominated me. I do answer and ask 11 questions.. but I do not Nominate 11 people. No! Instead all that support my Kofi or any other form of Donation tools I might have in the future, will all get nominated automatically, and then for those interested in taking on my questions you are free to do so! Just ask me one of my OWN questions in the comments.. and I will answer it there.. and bam you are nominated. That way I will nominate 11 people.. IF 11 people are interested. I call it Sunshine Evolution! I love you all, but I have no idea who still wants to do these.. or answer my very specific and odd questions! So this is the better way!
So here is a copy-pasteable thing of my version of the rules! Let’s call it the Sunshine Blogger 10+ Nominations Ruleset!
1. Put the Sunshine Blogger Award logo somewhere in this post 2. Thank the one who Nominated You 3. Answer their Eleven Questions 4. Ask your readers 11 questions 5. The first 11 who put one of your questions in the commands get nominated to take on the tag themselves.
It’s almost the same! So.. with that said I of course would like to thank YumDeku for the nomination! They did a pretty awesome previous version of the tag before.. and they also did quite a “mechanical” question list themself. Themed around how my blog works! I figured a little peek under the hood fits enough in a steampunk theme to use as a catch up post, right?! Regardless, check out their third nomination and the rest of their amazing blog if you haven’t already! Now let’s answer some questions.
How do you manage or schedule in blogging every day?
So I am not a very healthy person, I have weak muscles which can at times even cause me some heart trouble. Besides that I also had a major burn-out due to finally breaking free from that cycle.. of unemployment and poor income.. just to get stabbed in the back .. from two sides.. which is kinda weird. For some weird reason I can NOT handle being around dominant and pompous energies at ALL.. I freeze up and can even reach near fainting levels of panic. A combination of both the mental and physical stuff has left me with deep fatigue spells and.. to make it easier I have somatic stress disorder.. which means that if I worry.. I project it physically and experience pain, stiffness or even sickness. The stiffness along with the weak muscles can pretty much leave me frozen.. so no work for me.
This also means that my blogging is subjected to that same me. It does help me relax and keep stress down quite a bit.. but I am subjected to stuff like.. “how is my heart” .. “how is my energy” .. so in a way I blog when I feel like it. I do try to at least keep myself from falling behind a lot so at least knock out one days worth of blogging per day.. but I aim for more if I can. As long as I have fun! It does mean sometimes a blogging day can be from 12 to 3, or sometimes I am blogging the entire day with all sorts of interruptions. Blogging bends to my other needs though I rarely bend my other needs towards blogging. Sometimes it feels like a freemium game. I only have so many energy.. and I kind of put that energy to what I feel is most important or whatI feel like most! Chaos Energy at it’s finest!
What is one thing you wish people knew about your blog?
There isn’t a lot that I am not open about, I share a lot.. even from my back office experience. .. Did you know that I need to renew my domain for example?! Honestly though, if there is anything people would like to know they can just ask and I will answer. There is nothing people can’t ask!
What I do want people to know is that I am still looking for STAFF .. which mostly means that I am open for any geeky writer who is to shy for the whole social thing to do their blog, or for who wants to write on an actual domain but can’t afford it. The more the merrier. I do want to make it feel like a Paradise where people just write for their hobby and because it’s fun! If you have a story to tell.. or a review you feel is not good enough for a blog.. it’s all good enough for Paradise. Paradise isn’t about perfect writing or deeply analysing stuff. It’s about having fun with our geeky fandoms. If you want to gush about how hot Natsu from Fairy Tail is but you feel you have nowhere to share it..or can not make it eloquent for people to enjoy it.. Paradise is the place for you. I just want to have fun, meet fun people and show my love for fandoms and other things I hold dear! That is the idea of Paradise and always will be! If you want to know more.. press the link right here or click the staff image.
Another thing I want people to know.. is that my site looks a lot prettier when you visit it as a website than in Reader. I do a lot of video stuff which does not show up in the reader. I don’t make the videos but I share what I love. Like this song that I may have shared once or twice!
Or a little look in my head:
How big would you like your blog to be 5 years from now?
There are two answers for this, my dream is for it to be big. More a R&R platform filled with content and several bloggers in the community working together, just to have fun and share their hobbies. Like a cross franchise Amino as it were. Just a large gathering of geeks having fun.Ideally I would like to make a little bit of money with it by then as well. I would like Paradise to play a role in the community, like how now I Drink and Watch Anime, Jon Spencer Reviews and Lita’ Kino’s Anime Corner are like. A familiarity feeling would be nice.. almost like a special everlasting con. With it’s own Discord, some events, game nights.. stuff like that. A bit of an actual online resort. More bungalows! More pools and more content bars to talk with each other!
However I also believe that is not something I should aim for as an ambition! I should not expect it to be that.. because if it doesn’t turn out to be that, I will be disappointed perhaps even lose my motivation because things are not going as I expected. So in a way.. I expect.. nothing. If I strive for my blog simply to remain existing in 5 years all I gain is extra. Every follower is not a step towards a goal.. it is a treasure to enjoy, something that makes me richer.. rather than something that brings me closer to my goal. I want to see my followers as a luxury. If I only had one pair of sneakers.. I’d look at them and I’d say.. “well I NEED those to get around” .. but when I don’t need them.. I can just get happy for that pair of pink pumps I really like.. not because I need them.. just because they are there. I don’t want to need followers.. I want them to be something I can cherish for who they are! So I expect.. my blog in five years.. to still exist.. and that’s it.
What inspired you to blog?
What inspires me to blog is different from what inspired me to blog! Over the year and almost a half now that I have been blogging, I have learned to let go some of my dreams .. for now. When I first started to blog I just had this need to tell stories.. to put my stranger thoughts on paper.. because I had no geek friends. I had no way to share with how awesome that Episode of FullMetal Alchemist was.. how great the soundtrack to Sonic Adventure 2 is.. I had friends but that was a side of me I had to hide.. I was tired of hiding it so I put it out on the internet for everyone to see.
No one read it.. because back than anime was still way more niche and ani-blogging was kind of in its infancy. Let alone in dutch! So I boldly applied two one of two dutch anime blogs that existed at the time. Like “real” ones.. from there.. I met a dear friend .. who introduced me to my group of geek friends and I could not be happier. That blog died though.. and I got a professional job blogging and doing social media, which wasn’t nearly as fun. The company had no real content direction and one day I had to mimic the style of popular gaming magazines, the other day I had to be classy. It completely cramped my writing style and soon enough I got tossed to the curb. I tried creating a few blogs on my own.. but I never found a style that stuck.. haunted by the bullying my boss did there. He would make all sorts of fake accounts and be super vicious about my typos. He would even involve his boss in the fun.. just to see me turn pale and quite at my desk… just soldiering on. I could not let go of those voices.
My psychologist however was what inspired me to return to blogging. I felt people hated me.. for my shortcomings .. my poverty made some people treat me to a pizza and I felt sick for making them spend 5 bucks on me. Then he asked me.. do you think they have an issue with forking over the 5 bucks to help a friend? Do you give nothing in return.. He asked me if I ever asked a friend if it bothered them that I was limited. I did and they said no! “You listen to my troubles.. you show up smiling every time I host something and I want people around.. that is worth that money 10x over for me” .. People choose what you are worth to them.. if you are not, why would they stick around anyway?! Do they matter if they do not accept you for who you are? Because you can’t be fake your entire life… This talk made me think and realised.. that’s right! I do matter.. let’s meet people who like my uncomprimised self.. and that idea.. started this blog.. (thought it should have been a youtube.. my voice was to weak etc)
Bloggers that inspire you the most?
I feel like a broken record here.. but Irina clearly is my biggest blogging inspiration. I do appreciate so many of you out there.. but there is a charm about Irina’s blog that just really grabs me. I see Irina being Irina. She isn’t trying to create a masterpiece of writing, no super scholarly analogies.. She is talking about something she clearly holds very dear in a very passionate way. There is no rival to her.. in terms of that feeling.
I also admire Lita a lot, she is such a community beast, having her discord, doing her podcast, joining here and there on other peoples blogs! There is just sooo much she does for the community. She’s also in the council of OWLS or has been for a long time. Scott is a guy much in the same vein.. he does not have his own discord as far as I am aware.. but he is in every chat and he is a pretty active guy.. doing those interviews he does on his blog also shows he is trying to keep the community together. A lot of others of you do amazing things as well.. but these are the three that inspire me most! I really need a proper Scott avatar if I keep doing these tags!
If you never had started blogging, how different do you think your life would be?
I honestly probably would be dead. Because I started blogging I found my geeky friends, because I loved my geeky friends so much I moved to the town they used to live in and because of that I was super close to a hospital that one day I had my big brush with death. Had I lived in my old town.. I would have been off pretty badly. I probably would have lived in a town that is pretty far from a hospital.. or would have gone totally depressed from hiding my true self forever and not have the strength to bounce back. Without blogging I would not have discovered cons and community and I would be alone. and I can not imagine me being able to cope with that for as long as I had these friends and amazing people like behind me now.
If you could have something named after you (real or fictional) what would it be?
I would love that little finger on your hand to be called after me.. or my little Pony .. lucky for me .. both are called Pinky or Pinkie.. so the mission is complete. Yet no, my answer is a bit sappier than that. I would love to have a proverb named after me. Like “Pulling a Pinkie”, which could be used for “gather in a crowd of people and getting them excited and engaged by simply being yourself” That is REALLY hard to make an image so my answer will be .. a Planet.. because Planet Pinkie sounds like a great new home! Let’s change Uranus so the lame jokes end! A clock would have been better for Steampunk month though!
What’s your zombie apocalypse plan?
First I’d create a huge suit off all plushies and other soft material to work as my armor.. Zombies can’t touch me if I am a big plushy ball rolling around. Then all I have to do is call Geek Girl Joy and she will send a squad to rescue me! Because she promised she would! In case she would meet her demise.. or she forgets to give me her phone number, plushie ball me would just build a hovel inside my ever growing plushie ball where I drag food into and I ‘d end up making beautiful Katamari out of plushies traveling the world..with a lot of plush friends!
If the story of your blog was turned into an anime, which anime character would you like to be cast as you?
Adult Yuki Takeya from School Live would be my pick! I think she would do very well with directions like “imagine your on a pink fluffy cloud playing with Unicorns.. even though you know you want to be set you kind of push the bad away and try to make it fun” I gave up on trying to create a better world in some ways.. but instead I just try to make my world better. I shut out bad energies and welcome in the positives. The more people I can share my world with the better.. but if you do not fit , I also will not doubt to cut you out! Pragmatic happiness might not be as beautiful as idealistic happiness.. but it is much more achievable. I make my own world! Yuki.. embodies that idea well.
What’s your favourite anime, manga or gaming quote?
I have a few but only one of them is a Pokémon quote and given how I started I think it is only fair to pick that one. This quote is by Grimsley the Dark-Type Elite Four member. As much as I appreciate Agatha’s quote about Pokémon not needing to be strong ones but your favourite ones.. Grimley’s quote hits much of the same notes in a more powerful metaphor.
It’s more important to master the cards you’re holding than to complain about the ones your opponent was dealt.
Grimsley: Pokémon Black and White
Make due with what you got! Don’t compare yourself to others.. just work with what you have. If you can not lift as much bricks as Tommy does.. just carry bricks twice.. or ask for a friend to help.. don’t be bummed out if someone works more effectively then you. I am weak, I am clumsy.. yet I have the power to unite a bunch of friends very willing to help me. My friend Joe.. is a lot more handy.. he is a lot stronger…he can do a lot of things himself that I can’t .. but if we would move at the same time.. I get settled three times as fast.. I might not have the strength and the tech card.. but I have the friendship card.
In the end life is not like a game of Poker.. it’s more like a game of Yu-gi-oh .. or Pokemon TCG.. while I may hold weaker cards I can play them smarter. In Pokémon I have come up with a strategy where my common cards.. can one shot everything.. no matter how good my opponent is.. Cards that do not seem good on their own! I loved them though and I made something out of them. The truth about life is.. it is unfair. Grass IS always greener on the other side. Yet if you can’t have the greenest grass.. make it blue.. make it the shortest grass.. make it the longest grass.. there is always something! Whatever you have.. whatever you offer it always offers something to someone..that is the strength of the cards you hold.. the importance of your life is not measured in how you scale up to others.. but what you can mean for others and yourself.
What is your favourite anime series right now?
As in.. what is the favourite series I am following right now? Probably Hikaru no Go.. Maybe Bebop! I know it isn’t modern.. I am not following much Modern stuff though I am really enjoying the new Digimon series. My favourite anime right now.. has been stable for quite a long time and that is Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, but anime like Flip Flappers and Kyousogiga came pretty close. I really love those shows. I can gush about most of them.. and in fact.. I did .. so use the search function on my website to find stuff about those if you are interested in the full story! I am always happy if someone might suggest a new favourite for me so if you feel compelled to leave suggestions feel free to do so!
My Steampunk Questions
Now time for me to ask some questions and because the theme of my blog this month is Steampunk.. so will the questions be themed like that. Most of them will be in the form of a dilemma.
Would you rather be: A. An Aviator, B. A Spy or C. An Tinkerer and why would you choose that?! (Skills would come with the class choice)
Would You Rather live A: In Steampunk London, B: A Sky City or C: A Junkyard town.. and why?!
What would your sidekick be: A: Steampunk Robot, B: A pet with a metal leg augmentation C: Short Round (from Indiana Jones) but Steampunkified? Why would you choose this
How would you make your money in this world A: Treasure Hunting, B: Stealing from the oppressive Government, C: Working for the oppressive government. Explain your choice!
What is your favourite type of steam: A: Steam coming from the Onsen B: Steam like in a turkish Steambath, C: That stuff James Watts used to power his machines or D: That Steam you buy games on! Why is it your favourite?
Would you rather live A: In a world ruled by magic B: In a rule ruled by technology C: A World ruled by Money or D: A world ruled by strength
If you could invent any gadget what would it do and how would it look like?!
What is your favourite SteamPunk product
What would be your SteamPunk vehicle
What would be your SteamPunk weapon?
Where do you think all that steam in Steampunk comes from.. that sounds like an unreasonable amount of coals.. this must be some dark plot?! Explain that dark plot!
If you want to participate, ask me one of my own questions in the comments and you will earn a nomination! Each question can only be asked once.. but if you are a Kofisupporter/Coconut you are nominated FOR free!.. Well actually for money.. but you already paid.. for other reasons so.. for free?! For Freemium?! Let me know the correct expression ..for free.. in the comments or comment …for free.. on my Kofi wall!
My TALDIG had some issues working for a while but I had it fix. Now that we are ready to travel back to the past that shows us the past again, I find myself asking, is this to weird? Perhaps we should make these things a bit more straightforward?
Altered Beast is a well known classic for the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive. It started out as an arcade title in 1988 but was ported to Sega console the same year at least in Japan. The game then appeared as a launch title for the system for Europe and America and got numerous arcade releases bundle releases and was a part of the Sega Genesis Mini. In this game you play a nameless fighter who gets resurrected by Zeus back in the days of ancient Greece (which roughly puts it at around 1200-900 BC) were you have to rescue his daughter Athena from the evil god of the Underworld Ha… I mean Neff. I distinctly remember that being somebody else though.
Altered Beast is all about changing, it’s a beat them up, the changes up the formula quite a bit. The length of the stage depends on how long it takes for you to gather three orbs that change you to more powerful forms and the final boss can only happen when you acquire beast mode. If you encounter Neff before this happens, the stage .. kind of loops on you. You take the role of “Fighter” .. a guy in a pinkish Toga so clearly I was excited to play this one, but it left me wondering. Should I change as well?
I feel that the ‘A BIT of History’ concept might be a bit too weird to focus on. The history lessons taken from these games might be a bit too flimsy to focus on and best be relegated to a paragraph should I find such a game. So I am thinking of changing this series into “A BIT of Nostalgia’ in which I revisit famous classic games or games that are very dear to me. It offers me a bigger spectrum of games to play and allow me to play the games I would actually want to play, rather than have the time setting dictate which ones I should play. It took me a fair bit to get me to play this one because I wasn’t in a beat them up mood. Yet it was one of the most iconic ancient greece games. So expect some changes to this format soon. Now back to the review, because unlike the era of the ancient greeks, this game has not aged well.
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures
This game features Fighter in Pink.. our hero that we all know and love! Back from the dead he has to stop the evil god of the underworld Neff and not Hadas..who turned Athena into a blue bird, which anime taught me mean she is a lesbian now. Throughout five stages you have to fight classic greek enemies such as cyclops (plural) and …. well there are Satyrs…sort of they have goat heads as well but I guess they are there? Though they are called Gory Goats here… then there are zombies, demons ant wasps and evil chickens with poisonous stingers. So clearly the greek setting is used very well. I can only assume all these creatures died out because Fighter in Pink really disliked them and punched them all to death.
The most important enemy in this game is the three headed wolf though, which came in two colours. The useless brown variant and the all mighty blue variant. Both will make the sound of a paper crumpling when you kick them and die right away, but by killing blue three headed wolves the ancient greeks could call upon the power of an orb, that turned them from buff philosophers into half naked Jojo characters.
Killing another one then turns them into the old Dragon Ball Broly, and after killing a third blue three headed wolf the ancient greeks could turn into beastmen. The buffing up and the whole Neff standing menacing before you, checking out if you are worth his time has a pretty big Jojo feel, this could be a new take on that series and since it’s set in ancient history I decided to name this Fighter in Pink. Jorges Jorda is a farmer who died from being attacked by animals.. now zeus resurrects him and by gathering the power of death…he can channel what caused his death.
The game does feel like a bizarre string of adventures with stages strung together like the graveyard, the swamp, the cave, the Greek building and the underworld/city of the dead. Wait.. if the hero died wouldn’t he already be in the underworld? Would that not be better to start? Now he gets resurrected and has to travel back to the underworld again. One could argue that Jorges would have to find his power orbs but Neff steals them at the end of each stage, assumingly needed to make him reach his final form or something. Hmm.. clearly not all the ancient Greeks were philosophers. Zeus clearly wasn’t the smartest god either, then again that seems to be a bit of a theme with Zeus in games or movies, he tends to get blindsided a lot. So you heard it here first guys! Zeus can be outsmarted by uncle Fester from the Addams family.. because I am pretty sure that is who Neff is.
Too much bits
The Mega Drive was the first sixteen bit console, with amazing stuff like blast processing and an iconic sound chip. Unfortunately it clearly shows that this game was not designed for this console and people were still a bit unfamiliar with the power of this machine. The enemies don’t look very clean. The three headed wolves look more like misshapen bulls to me and for a few other enemies I also had to struggle to look what they are. Now of course this in part is due to the home consoles being less powerful than arcade cabinets, but if we look at Turtles in Time, which although appearing later did it much better. Stages were changed up , difficulty was slightly adapted and visuals and vocals were changed. This games suffers from this being NOT the case in this port. In fact I like the Master System port more because it feels more distinct.
With the speech of Neff included he welcomes players to their doom before the start of each boss fight, and doom you will face , over and over and over and over again. This is a problem with a lot of Beat Them Up ports. Most of these games were designed to be unrelenting so they can guzzle up as much of your quarters as much as possible. Basically in the arcade you have infinite lives as long as you have quarters. Good Beat them up ports thusly either give you infinite lives… as the price of a full priced game should get you infinite quarters or at least a series of lives and a handful of continues. Altered Beast on Genesis asks you to beat the entire game on three lives which basically equals three quarters. If even that!
There are NO healing items in this game so all damage is permanent. You get three “hearts”/blocks of life that can all take 1 to 3 hits depending on the enemies strength. Given that a random chicken enemy (who crossed over from Golden Axe) can take a complete life block away due to you having virtually no invincibility frames after being it.. this game is relentlessly hard.
Luckily by holding A (or 1) plus start in the main menu you can at least continue on the stage you died on. Yet still finishing a stage is a rather herculean feat. Yet like most arcade games this doesn’t really come down to your gaming skills,but more to pattern recognition. If you know where the blue wolves will show up and you can manage to hit them quick and fast and gather your orbs fast enough these stages are fairly doable. Mostly because the bosses once you get their pattern down are actually quite easy. Except for the second boss.. whose tell of damage is so deceptive it took me five times to figure out that I wasn’t exactly damaging it when it flashes red when I hit it.. I needed to hit different hitboxes, which do not flash at all!?It’s things like this that show this game came out so early in the console’s life span, that actually influence how enjoyable the gameplay is.
I really wish I could be more positive about this game, but unfortunately there was very little that I liked about this game. That doesn’t make it is a bad game, just that I review if negatively, if you enjoy this all the power to you! I hope and know people do like this game, which is great, everything deserves love. I did like the variety in bosses and how you have to actually use your beasts powers and some strategy to take them down. I especially like the fourth stage boss, which is like a baby dragon with a huge lava ball. It releases some firebird minions as well as big strings of fire balls and avoiding both felt like a good challenge.
The third boss and the final boss however are total pushovers I beat them first try both without taking a hit just by using cheap tactics. The third boss is a sort of dragonhead stuck on a helix fossil with some gooey egg sack material attached to it.. and it shoots purple balls and blobs. By using the Bear’s (that stages animal) spin jump while on it’s body you can defeat it without any trouble. The third stage itself though has some awkward platform jumps which can be very irritating to get trough.
In the fifth stage we see Neff finally taking his true form, that of a white Rhino. Yet in the Master System it is Cyan and in the Arcade it is pink. It always grinds my gears when pink things are such pushovers. It isn’t much harder than Rocksteady from the first TMNT game on NES. You can easily jump over it and spam damage until it dies. No skill required. However everything else on that stage deals soooo much damage, especially the dark unicorns, so getting there.. is a long arduous process of learning where things spawn and when to punch it to death.
If you miss a blue wolf on your first roulation I found it rather impossible to stay alive long enough to reach the boss. The music is the same in about every stage with fairly little sound effects other as coming from the player so I am glad the fifth stage was the final one. We see Athena standing next to some beastmen.. in the final cutscene and then we are done. In the fifth stage we turn into the wolf again, we turned into the first stage as well..but this time he is golden. So I guess it’s a super Wolf?!
Also why go for choices like the Dragon and the Tiger? I get the wolf and the bear as those might be found in ancient greece but why not make one where you turn into a Bull/Minotaur and one in a horseman/centaur. So much potential here goes away with bad flavoring. I barely learned anything about ancient greece because.. nothing is done with the setting at all. The cutest thing is that they have the chicken enemy from Golden Axe as a homage.
There was so much more they could do with this formula, even for an arcade cabinet. It’s not like the greek mythos is lacking in mystical creatures or cool enemies to fight. Yet according to this game it does, which by the logic of A BIT of History .. now means that I learned that ancient greek had plenty bland video game type enemies.. which in truth I never knew!
While I have no doubt that this game was amazing in 1988 and even in 1990 this game has been surpassed left and right by just about every other beat them up out there. Turtles 2 the arcade game, Turtles in Time, Streets of Rage, Final Fight and Towers of Mystara just to name a few. Nintendo in particular has time and time again shown that this does not need to happen to games. Sega more or less in their original IP’s as well. Yet even when we consider this one in the arcade , the better version it has been surpassed by just about everything. Sure the classic mario has been improved upon but you can still enjoy the original game, this just made me want to play Turtles in Time instead. I guess Sega really does what Nintendon’t . Because Nintendon’t age this poorly.
One of the hardest things to do as a blogger is come up with a nice topic to blog about. At least to me. I do not like doing episodic reviews as I want this blog to be all about positivity. Love (in the non lewd way) is the theme of my blog. In an attempt to structure my writing a bit I am trying to make “columns” or series in my categories to give me some focus on what to do. For example I love Pinkie is looking for a Waifu (new installment coming as soon as i finish Aoi Hana) as it fits the theme of love very well. The temtem journals fit what I love well so that one works as well. While I love catchable creature games there is another category of games I love. Retro Games! I love traveling to the past to relive memories…..hmmmm that gives me an idea.
Back in time …...BUT TWICE!
Since the dawn of time man has dreamed of going back in time! When we play retro games we travel back in time. Maybe to the zero’s maybe to the nineties heck we might even go back to the eighties. I prefer not to go much further than that though. Atari had a LOT of LEWD games and since I am going to ask you on suggestions on what to play.. I prefer to exclude those as much as I possibly can! One of the most infamous ones fits the secondary theme for example. Because going back to the past has been done before! James Rolfe better known as the Angry Video Game Nerd, is one of my biggest inspirations to do my thingies online! He is the one that is gonna take you back to the past. To play some shitty games that suck ass. I am gonna take you back to the past. Then I take you back to the past. Woooo Timeception!
How do we do this you might ask? Well it’s very simple! I will play and review retro games set in different times. For example I’ll start with some prehistoric themed games on the SNES then I will most likely take you back to ancient greece on the NES and than back to the SNES to duke it out with some ancient romans. While not everything is set in (the) stone (age) yet…HA FUNNY JOKE, it seems like a nice way to play the type of games that I love in a structured way offering me a steady amount of content for you guys! Plus I am actually talking about things I love so yay that’s what this blog is all about!
Now I know what you are thinking! You can’t just do that much timeception. Going back while taking us back to the past! That is waaaay to dangerous! But do not worry my friends I have invented something fictional that is totally gonna help me out! It’s a time machine that helps me turn myself into two dimensions..or the third if I ever need to..but in a rather low polygon count. As long as I don’t go over 64 bits in during these travels I shall be fine and this machine helps me do it. I call it the Time and Limited Dimensions in Games device… or TALDIG for short. and I made it look like a crane game! Why? Well no one plays with an empty crane game plus in 2d games those usually where non interactable background objects so it will be safe! It’s not like I’ll find a police box or phone booth anymore… this one is just a bit harder to board. Luckily there is plenty of room for all my Plushies on the inside
A brave time time explore like needs a weapon as well. Since I am Timely Bored of going through the hoops that is capturing retro footage in the classic way. So yes I will be able to use the powers of my Sonic Savestate if needed. However that does not mean these games are not otherwise available to me, so make no assumptions my friends! It just allows us to play some fun hacks as well! Of course I will also try to play as fair as possible. However to make sure I can progress enough for a review I will occasionally use my trustworthy device. Now a lot of these games have multiplayer modes. Unfortunately my companion drew the short straw when testing the less successful prototype of the TALDIG (I cheated) and kind of got lost in time and games. So if you ever encounter a pink arcade cabinet with a purple girl in yelling for help… let me know! Or if you want or be a companion check my about or contact page!… Displacement in time, loss of dimension and death in a game at own risk. Until this situation has been resolved I shall not test multiplayer modes and describe everything from a single player stance.
Looking Forward to go backward when going backward.
So how will our travel schedule look like? Well you have a say in it but the first three destinations in our journey HAVE been decided already. We will start in a time where there where no land creatures yet just to be propelled into the dinosaur age. We shall do this with E.V.O. The Search for Eden on SNES. After we evolved our fish into a strong dinosaur we shall move onto the dawn of man! Flintstones the treasure of Sierra Madrock was a game I loved to rent over and over again as a kid! With hard work I managed to get to the last world just to have to return it right before finishing. Can I complete it this time around? Using my trustworthy sonic tool .. odds are YES! Who knows! Then we move on to a game I have been literally clubbed on the head for! Joe and Mac! Also on SNES. After that one has been done I am still undecided though we may play Turtles in time which does have a prehistoric level or we may leave the SNES behind for a while as we move on to ages where people began to melt stuff.
Altered Beast on Sega Genesis has ancient greek themes and so does Battle for Olympus on NES. I also plan to revisit some of the Asterix games I used to play as a kid. For those who don’t know who Asterix the Gaul is, he is a punchy sort of nordic looking guy that is the titular character of a popular french comic here. Or at least he used to be. Not sure how well he fairs nowadays. Super Ghost and Ghouls can represent the medieval age but I of course will be playing Knights of the Round as well. However time does not have to be a fully linear path, we can bounce around a bit. Every game that has a year in it, like street fighter 2010 and even….. Ho…. ugh… Hong …. I can’t …. .. but I must! Even Hong Kong 97 would be a suggestable stop. That being said..sport games are excluded from the suggestions because of this namesake. Unless it’s stuff Like the Spirit of Speed 1937 (which is a history based racing game) or any future based ones. Yet stuff like Hong Kong 97 or Egypt 1157 AV are still far away into the future.
Rules of Time Time Travel
Now I usually do not get a lot of suggestions and I feel like i might be older than a lot of you, I honestly do not know your ages guys. I estimate my average reader to be like 24 maybe? So to encourage interaction and suggestions, save for the three set in stone. Those being E.V.O , Flintstones Treasure of Sierra Madrock and Joe and Mac, anyone making a suggestion in the comments while have their channel shouted out in the post you suggested. Regardless if I would have come up with it myself. So yay! Free promotion! That’s some love right there! Of course I can not complete every single suggestion, the more recent your request the lower the chance that I will be able to play it (unless it’s for pc for obvious reasons)
I will always write something nice about the games so if you feel like challenging me by suggestion a badly rated one, you are very welcome. Games about time travel are always valid regardless their setting, however I plan to do Chrono Trigger as the end of the series or least of a season if I start doing those. Games set in multiple time periods like Turtles in Time or Day Dreamin Davey are always fine and you can suggest them whenever we are in time. Please do not make me play Bill and Ted’s excellent adventure though! I will play it if suggested but I might not have much nice things to say about that one. Games years are allowed unless they are sports games nor will I for example review the Anno series in one go! Separate entries are still allowed. A game has to be at least 10 years old for you to suggest. Otherwise I am not taking you back to the past twice. Games set in the future are still perfectly okay.. I am perfectly content with taking you back to the past to take you back to the future.
So that is a lot of rules but you can forget them and just shout a game, I mean I invented the TALDIG , I am a mastermind , I can weave your game in my story somehow but it would be fun if we follow the rules just a bit at least. Now since I stopped doing my greetings cards at the end of each both I will leave you with some closing words. You just read a post in the present about a future where I take you back to the past to play games that take you back to the past. However in the future of that future I may take you back to the past to play a game that takes you to the future or the present even. Of course by the time that you are reading that post, that present may already be the past!