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Thread: Games of the Wiik: Another GOTD Countdown

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    Default Games of the Wiik: Another GOTD Countdown

    With things finally calming down around here a bit, I finally have some time to rifle off some theme weeks of GOTD posts. This week, I'll be doing a brief retrospective on seven of my favorite games on Nintendo's Wii, which are games I think will carry some appeal for older players who were never super into the console in the first place. So, here will be 7 of my personal top Wii games!

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    Default Ghost Squad

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    Kicking the week off is an unappreciated little monster of a game, Sega's Ghost Squad, GHOST being a ridiculous acronym, of course... Global Humanitarian...um... ostrich stripper team? Anyway, don't confuse this as an attempt to do some kind of FPS with motion controls; Ghost Squad picks right up where Confidential Mission left off as the spiritual successor to the excellent Virtua Cop light gun games.

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    One of the best things about these Wii gun games is that they allow you to get your light gun fix on a modern TV if you so choose, which is a great thing. Ghost Squad definitely has that Sega flair for the genre as well, carrying over their typical three mission structure, multiple paths, and straight-forward shooting action. No complex scoring system or cover mechanics to force your feet into the action here; just fast paced gun play interspersed with the occasional short form mini game, like brief sniping segments, quick time events, or tower defense moments that last for seconds just for variety. The camera is always on the move, the stages offer constantly changing set pieces, and enemies keep coming from all angles.

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    If you've played any of Sega's light gun games, you pretty well know what you're getting into here. There are, however, a few wrinkles. You can select the fire mode of your gun to single, three round burst, or automatic fire, but you have limited ammo for fully auto in each stage. Unless you're trying to really go for a high accuracy run, the single fire is pointless, and you'll likely stick with burst most of the time. For special events and boss fights, you occasionally use a different weapon such as a rocket or grenade launcher, or a sniper rifle to clear the path in some stages. The game shows you which route you took, and clearing different routes gives you both upgrades to use in future plays and new, more challenging alternate routes through stages. This brings a lot of replay value to the game, making it a good time even in single player to see new areas and unlock new weapons and costumes. You always wanted to fight terrorism in a panda suit, right?

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    For a Sega gun game fan, there's a lot to like here, but there are a few fair criticisms that can be made. For one, it's easy. Like, really easy. You can fire a ton of rounds before needing to reload, and the three round burst is absurdly effective. Bosses are also much easier than most, especially compared to LA Machineguns or Confidential Mission, the first even being a glorified QTE. Also, during the river chase stage, enemies can be difficult to see against the color palettes of their vehicles. Still, this is more than made up for with smooth shooting, fun camera shots like hanging upside down from the ceiling, and tons more replay than most light gun games, as levelling up the stages themselves is possible, giving new exciting areas to prevent over familiarity.

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    If you like a good light gun game, Globetrotter Humping Ops Sensual Team Squad is a treat. It's a blast co-op, has party challenge modes, and the single player game brings surprising replay value along for the ride. It's a slam dunk, and currently costs next to nothing. Play it!
    Last edited by celerystalker; 09-13-2017 at 02:28 AM.

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    Default Games of the 'Wiik'?

    Well, now aren't you the clever one. :^p

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    Default Data East Arcade Classics

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    It's hard to get more "classic" than a compilation of vintage arcade games, and Data East Arcade Classics offers up a nice mix of well-known hits alongside some less popular, yet quality titles. Given the ubiquitous Namco Museums and Genesis compilations, it's a nice change of pace to dig into Data East's back catalog. It may not be as loaded with golden age point play classics like Atari, Taito, Namco, and Nintendo's respective catalogs, but Data East's output in the late '80s and early '90s is wonderfully representative of what made arcades exciting in those days- big, colorful sprites, loud music, and lots of punching bad guys in the dick. What's not to like?

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    So, being a compilation, what really matters here are the games. Included here are Burgertime, Super Real Darwin, Bad Dudes, Secret Agent, Peter Pepper's Ice Cream Factory, Street Hoop, Heavy Barrel, Magical Drop III, Two Crude Dudes, Caveman Ninja, Express Raider, Lock 'n Chase, Bump 'n Jump, Side Pocket, and Wizard Fire. Now, it'd take way too long to go over each game included here, so I'll just touch on a few favorites. Also, as a side note, Caveman Ninja is better known as Joe & Mac, and Secret Agent as Sly Spy. Hell, Secret Agent even vocally says "Sly Spy" on the "Secret Agent" title screen.

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    So, for Starters, Heavy Barrel. It's a top down run 'n gun that originally used rotary controls in the arcade. They were good enough here to use a twin stick mode with the nunchuck, which, while not the same, is far superior to the bullshit controls in SNK's compilations for their own rotary games. It feels slightly slow to me, as I have the actual arcade board as well, but not so much that it's a huge deal. It's a great game, although I personally prefer SNK's stuff. Burgertime is a bonafide classic, and helping a fatass chef make gigantic burgers while being accosted by weiners is a magical homophobic fever dream that's a blast to play for scores. Lock 'n Chase was a pretty popular Pac-alike, and Bad Dudes vs Dragon Ninja is basically Kung Fu on steroids and trickle down economics.

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    Those are probably the best known games here, but there are other winners as well. Street Hoop is like NBA Jam's angry cousin who refuses to get his GED, but can sure dunk! This game killed at my last tournament, and definitely got the trash talking amped up. Magical Drop III is a very fun puzzle game that offers a pretty unique experience compared to other games like Tetris, Columns, Bust a Move, Puyo Puyo, etc. I wish Money Puzzle exchanger was here instead, but Magical Drop is still great. Sly Spy is basically Bad Dudes starring James Bond, but it is very fun, and throws a little more variety in with swimming and motorcycle stages as well. Wizard Fire is a cool isometric beat 'em up that is actually a sequel to Gate of Doom, and Caveman Ninja is a good action/platformer in the Wonder Boy tradition.

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    There is a lot of fun to be had here. As well as you may know the handful of classics here, you may find you really dig a vertical shooter like Super Real Darwin with its bizarre DNA power up system, or maybe you just really like Side Pocket. I don't know why you would, but, hey, that's for you to know. As compilations go, Data East Arcade Classics feels very fresh to me in its variety of styles and in its containing a fresh set of games that hadn't yet been included on countless other discs. Sure, there's a bit of screen tearing here and there, but any Wii fan with a taste for classic arcade games needs this disc.
    Last edited by celerystalker; 09-14-2017 at 09:48 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor Megas View Post
    Well, now aren't you the clever one. :^p
    I have to include a quota of puns and dad jokes in order to create an offset for the bevy of weiner jokes I'll inevitably use.

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    That Data East collection has been on my radar for a while. Bummed I didn't get it at its cheap 'new' price, cause now it is like 50 bucks.

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    Default Rooms: The Main Building

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    One of the real sleepers on the waggle box for me was Hudson's Rooms: The Main Building. An odd amalgamation of point and click adventure and sliding puzzle, it puts the player in a twisted magical world called Rooms Street. Trapped by a cryptic sentient book, you must solve the puzzle of each of the game's rooms via a combination of sliding room tiles and utilizing items and devices to reach the exit. Can you escape the rooms and get back home to reality?

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    Things start out simply enough, just requiring players to perform simple tasks like moving rooms, grabbing keys, and climbing ladders. However, soon enough wrinkles are added, including one way teleporters, flooding rooms, color coded locks, and more, gradually ramping up toward some pretty clever puzzles. You have unlimited lives in Rooms, so your reasoning takes far more relevance than your manual dexterity. Some puzzles do require timing as well as planning, though, which can create some nice intensity when you reach those rooms.

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    Each area has a number of paths to reach different rooms, and your goal is to reach the treasure chest areas on the map, where you will receive key items. These items are used in the overworld in simplistic point and click puzzles that advance tge story and unlock new areas. These segments are not particularly taxing, but they are nice window dressing to keep thegame cohesive while providing a nice diversion after a series of more intense puzzles. The graphics are basic in both areas of play, but have a nice steampunk/noir look that sets a mysterious, fun tone to kick back with. The music suits it well, too, adding to a comfortable, yet interesting atmosphere.

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    Rooms is not a hard game; what it offers is a relaxing, thoughtful experience I'd almost liken to sitting down with a logic puzzle book on a nice day. It does have a puzzle building, versus, and challenge puzzles to add to replay, not to mention a ranking for how few moves you took to solve each puzzle to keep you coming back for more. If you're looking for something to soak in on a weekend, fire it up! As a side note, there's also a DS game if you prefer to play portable. Anyone play this one?

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    Default Fortune Street

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    Years ago, Top Shop for the PS1 was a gateway drug for me, firmly planting a love of video board games deep inside next to my soul and some internal organs. I hadn't kept track of the Wii releases very well, so it came as a big surprise to me when I stumbled upon the newly released Fortune Street at a Wal-Mart, and I bought it immediately. I went right home, fired it up, and learned to play what would become my most played game on the Wii.

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    Fortune Street, at its core, distills to a more varied take on Monopoly with a stock investment addition that adds a considerable layer of skill to a game otherwise steeped in chance. You traverse one of many varied boards, starting at a bank, purchasing properties laid out in color coded districts, and accumulating wealth in order to reach a target value of total combined assets. Owning multiple properties within a common district increases their values, as well as increasing the investment potential of each. Instead of houses or hotels, owners can invest capital in their properties, increasing the values of those properties as well as the tolls collected from other players unfortunate enough to land there. Pretty much Monopoly to this point, right?

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    So, here's where things start to get different. First, you can choose your path through the board, going at opposite directions from other players, changing directions at intersections, and using other transportation such as warp pipes, cannons, and hot air balloons in order to get where you want to go. Secondly, while returning to the bank is a goal in order to receive your payday, you first much pass through four spaces representing the four playing card suits in order to receive your pay. When you land on the bank, whether ready for payday or not, you have the option to purchase stock, which is where shit gets good.

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    Stocks (up to 99 at a time) can be purchased in any one district when you hit the bank, and you can accumulate as many as you'd like in as many districts as you like. Stocks serve two main functions: they appreciate in value when shops are invested in in their respective districts, and owning stocks in a district gains you a profit sharing bonus of up to 20% from tolls collected in that district, whether you own the properties or not. This means that you can earn money faster on your investments, or even more fun, profit off of your opponents' hard work. This adds an excellent strategic wrinkle that can allow a skilled player to win in spite of a cheating CPU or unlucky dice rolls.

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    Add to this framework "arcades" (read: casinos), venture cards, and customizable settings, and what you get is an extremely fun board game that can take a bit long to play, but is very satisfying to play in both single and multi-player modes. You can unlock characters (all from Mario and Dragon Quest games), boards, and cotumes to wear if using your Mii (and actions), creating a fulfilling total package, although the servers for online play are sorely missed... anyway, Fortune Street is a top flight video board game, and one that any Monopoly fan should give a whirl in order to see how a similar game can have improved depth and skill play. Any fans?

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    Just remember that Fortune Street is part of a long-running series of games, so if you aren't importing-adverse, then you have a lot of games to choose from: [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fortune_Street#Games ]

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nz17 View Post
    Just remember that Fortune Street is part of a long-running series of games, so if you aren't importing-adverse, then you have a lot of games to choose from: [ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fortune_Street#Games ]
    Yup. I have most of them myself. The PSP game has an english patch available as well.

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    Default Gunblade NY/LA Machineguns

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    Every now and again, a game comes out that feels like it was just for you, and you're so into it that you'd buy it even beforeyou had a console. That is what Gunblade NY/LA Machineguns was for me. A compilation of two arcade light gun games from Sega, these were both games that I played on the cabinets at Pantera's Pizza in O'fallon, MO and loved. The owners ran pretty much every conversion kit on that cabinet, including the often forgotten Terminator game. Anyhow, when I saw this compilation come out on the Wii to no fanfare and at a budget price, it knocked my socks off... nobody I knew but my buddy Ben and I even knew about these games. It'd be another year before I bought a Wii, but Gunblade NY/LA Machineguns went home with me on the spot.

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    The concept behind both of these titles is Virtua Cop on a helicopter/air bike, and you blast away relentlessly ftom mounted turrets. Gone is shooting away from the screen to reload, as these games are about blistering speed and relentless enemies. Gunblade NY is the earlier of the two, and has that Model 2 Sega look through and through. Robotic enemies and vehicles abound, and everything has that rigid polygon look of many of those early 3D arcade games, looking all the more quaint for it. To some, this will make it look dated, but for me there's a somewhat stylized look at work here. There are three missions as is par for the Sega course here, but the boss fights especially are far more high octane here than in the Virtua style, really utilizing the fully automatic weaponry at your disposal.

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    LA Machineguns is to Gunblade NY as Virtua Cop 2 is to Virtua Cop; that is to say it is an across the board upgrade, not only in graphics, models, and textures, but also in the amount of enemies, crazier set pieces, and an amped up scoring combo system for consecutive hits without laying off the trigger. There us always something to be blasting away at, and whike Gunblade NY was no slouch in that department, LA Machineguns goes practically manic. Enemies move around more, more background objects are destructible... it's just a ton of fun to play, especially cooperatively.

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    Gunblade NY/LA Machineguns is a compilation that almost nobody asked for, but most everyone should play. This is the game that put the Wii on my radar as a console I needed, and cements it as a light gun powerhouse. Further, using the Zapper setup actually replicates the vibrating arcade mounted guns fairly well in feel, which is a nifty side bonus. If you like gun games at all, I hope you didn't miss it, as it costs more now than it did new... but for me, I'd even pay the current prices. Some of Sega's best work in my book!

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    Last edited by celerystalker; 09-17-2017 at 08:34 PM.

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    I was going to unwrap Data East Arcade Classics to play Magical Drop III for the GCC the other week, since the Wii is hooked up and I wasn't sure if the Saturn was, then I did my obligatory 'see what the games goes for online before a open an older sealed game search' and decided to leave it sealed for now. I bought it for like $14.99 and it seems to be going for about three times that at the moment.

    I'm not in sealed games, but if I'm not really fiending to play something and it goes for decent money I always shelf it. I just have too many games in my backlog to devalue any sealed ones I'm just 'meh' about that I might decide let go in a pinch some day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor Megas View Post
    I was going to unwrap Data East Arcade Classics to play Magical Drop III for the GCC the other week, since the Wii is hooked up and I wasn't sure if the Saturn was, then I did my obligatory 'see what the games goes for online before a open an older sealed game search' and decided to leave it sealed for now. I bought it for like $14.99 and it seems to be going for about three times that at the moment.

    I'm not in sealed games, but if I'm not really fiending to play something and it goes for decent money I always shelf it. I just have too many games in my backlog to devalue any sealed ones I'm just 'meh' about that I might decide let go in a pinch some day.
    Traditionally I open my sealed games, but as prices go bonkers, I'm trying to talk myself into selling the new to buy used ones instead of throwing away the difference. Still, I struggle to do so, as they're the games that I bought with my own money, and I struggle to part with things at times, even with immediate replacement as an option. I can give stuff away easily enough, but selling is hard for me.

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    Default Wario Land: Shake It!

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    Over the years, Mario and I have drifted apart a bit. I still love his classic NES adventures to death, and Super Mario World cracks my top 5 all time favorites... even Mario 64 gets regular replays. I haven't begun to hate Mario games; they just don't call to me like they once did (unlike Zelda, which can chug down the fattest... well, you know). I have, though, enjoyed some of those side story games rather a lot. I checked every box in Super Princess Peach on the DS, and Wario Land: Shake it for the Wii offers me just enough win per waggle that I have been able to enjoy it more that Wario's slightly more sveldt doppelganger.

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    Ol' Wario's motives haven't changed much over the years. His fat ass still just wants to rub gold coins all over his hairy body, and this time he's teamed up with a well-endowed pirate captain and her two perky first mates in order to Scrooge McDuck his way to happiness. It's by and large a return to 2D platforming basics, though this time in some rather pretty hand-drawn graphics. Wario's classic dash and butt bombs are back, as well as a few new moves such as tossing enemies like Yoshi lobs his babies, punching the ground hard enough to shake the earth's tectonic plates, and, well, shaking stuff he holds the way you're not supposed to hold children, but rather how British spies prefer their martinis. So, it's time to put on your fat pants and go sit on some bad guys!

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    Unlike Mario, Wario's games have veered away from pure action platforming and embraced a more exploration and puzzle-oriented style. This may be the farthest down that line yet, with the focus moving toward completing objectives and discovering secrets moreso than simply completing stages. Rarely will you find yourself at risk of dying in Shake It!... the challenge comes from discovering the stages' plethora of secrets and completing the challenges, such as finding target amounts of cash, escaping within a time limit, not taking damage, etc. It's not as intense so much as it is thoughtful, and is a more relaxing experience. Fortunately, this all comes in a lovely package filled with colorful backgrounds, atmospheric music, and pacing that allows for sessions as long or as short as one might want.

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    Wario Land: Shake It! is a nice diversion from mainline Mario, and can be enjoyed by both adults and ten year olds obsessed with large-breasted pirates alike (seriously, who designed Captain Syrup?! Was Mai Shiranui's artist bored?). Exploring exotic locales, solving puzzles, and watching Wario jiggle his bulbous bottom directly at the screen feels like a really good handheld game brought to the big screen, and I'd recommend it as a nice palate cleanser after something dark and intense. Somehow, it's been pretty well forgotten since its release, and has remained rather cheap to boot. Fun stuff!

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    Default A Boy and his Blob

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    Well, time to wrap up the week with a game that is very much an anomaly for me. It's a remake of a game I don't much care for in the first place. It isn't particularly difficult or challenging. It doesn't even tell much of a story. It's A Boy and his Blob for the Wii, and of all of the games in the world, it's the only one to ever make me cry.

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    Mechanically, A Boy and his Blob is a puzzle platformer. As in the original game, you meet an alien blob companion and feed him jelly beans of various flavors that trigger his transformations, which allows you to explore new areas and find treasures. Gone is the once open world of the original game, splitting this reimagining into brief stages with less focus on exploration and more on platforming and utilizing blob's abilities more actively. It executes all of these elements gracefully, though the new, dialed-in structure makes the game more objective and unlockable focused, which honestly would typically turn me off a bit. In this case, though, yes, I do enjoy the control and levels... but that just isn't what this game is about.

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    A Boy and his Blob is a game about innocence. Especially if you have a young child or remember well what it was like to be one, the beginning of this game is soul rendering. Seeing the boy wander through a night so magical and atmospheric, seemingly overflowing with mystery the way a dark night did when my world was filled with unknowns, the boy meets the blob... and you just need to experience it. If you have been hugged by a baby for the first time, this game somehow managed to touch that part of me and how it feels. The sense of innocence, trust, and wonder came through to me and blindsided me, and I sat there for a minute and cried happy tears, remembering vividly my own childhood. It was a weird moment. Games don't usually get me.

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    Anyhow, the less said here the better, but know that A Boy and his Blob is beautifully atmospheric, although it is naturally not sustainable to keep such intense emotional impact for the entirety of a platformer. All the same, it's a game I can't recommend enough, just on the off chance it might touch someone else the same way. Just hit up on the D-pad and enjoy. I do. Anyone else have a similar experience?

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