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 Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts

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Balladeer
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyMon 26 Oct 2020 - 20:29

I should try and play Super Metroid again at some point. Last time I tried (on the Wii I think?) I couldn't get past the second (I think?) boss. Embarrassed
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The Cappuccino Kid
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyWed 28 Oct 2020 - 21:09

Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 30721-title-Donkey-Kong-Jet-Race

I thought I'd try something different for these GameCube reviews. Foolishly, I started and finished Donkey Kong Jet Race. I got addicted to it, but I can’t explain why. Maybe I was kept going by the fact that the end was always in sight.

This was kicking about for years before it eventually came out in 2008. Someway into its development, it changed platform from GameCube to Wii, which was fair enough seeing as the GameCube was on it’s arse and the Wii was selling like crazy. However, that switch meant that Nintendo ditched Jet Race’s original and natural control scheme, which centered on GameCube's Donkey Konga bongo controllers. In its favour came the waggliest of Wii remote and nunchuk setups, having you shake them up and down to gain speed and flinging them left and right to turn, and it’s absolutely knackering. Shitely, Jet Race doesn’t let you plug in the bongos as an alternative control scheme, even though all Wii’s at the time of it’s release had the ability to support GameCube peripherals.

The kicker is that the controls don’t add much to the game. They’re a bit of a novelty, aye, but there’s no point to them. They feel tacked on, whereas the bongo controls would have at least provided entertainment. And on that note, there’s nothing about Jet Race that provides entertainment. The tracks are generic and much too long, the power-ups are annoying and are rarely helpful, the layout of the on-track obstacles is pure amatuer hour, and the lack of speed and intensity just makes it all massively boring. Even still, Donkey Kong games almost always have good graphics and sound. Sadly - albeit predictably - Jet Race is the exception to that. It’s equally poorly designed and poorly executed. 

In the old Simply The Best thread, I described Jet Race as “shallow, slow, frustrating and a wee bit broken; it's not only Donkey Kong's very worst, but one of Nintendo’s very worst too”. Sure is, 3/10.
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Balladeer
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyWed 28 Oct 2020 - 21:10

I remember NGamer dumping all over that too. What can you expect from a game that has Tiny Kong staring into your soul on the title screen? No
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Jimbob
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyWed 28 Oct 2020 - 21:12

Why Cappa, why?
Also, why Nintendo, why? They really should have just ditched that whole game, considering the stuffed they've canned in the past. I can't even bear looking at the screenshot...
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gjones
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySat 31 Oct 2020 - 15:05

@The Cappuccino Kid wrote:
I've got no Metroid thoughts, sorry.

Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 Virtua-Striker-3-ver.2002-Kapak

FIFA 21 was baws, so instead I went and won the European cup with Scotland in Virtua Striker 3 Ver.2002 on the GameCube. I can’t say that it’s an especially great game, and the reviews from the time of it’s release echo that. A quick look on Metacritic shows that it got a load of scores around the 50% mark, which in games journalism means that it's the videogaming equivalent of shiteing yourself with your trousers on. I’d played versions of this in various arcades a very long time ago, but on GameCube and next to contemporaries like Pro Evo, This Is Football and FIFA, I felt that Virtua Striker is too dumbed down to be worthwhile.

Here’s the thing though: they really don’t make them like this anymore. It’s definitely an acquired taste, with gameplay that's limited to eight directions of movement, three types of tactics, two ways of passing and just one sort of shooting. But that’s the charm. That simplicity belies what’s actually a solidly made game, one that’s rich with content and options. It’s elevated furthermore by it’s presentation. Virtua Striker was always an attractive-looking arcade game, and that’s still the case here. As it should, it looks, sounds, feels and plays like an arcade game, and I’ve always got time for that. They've added new modes to justify it's GameCube port, adding value where it was needed.

It’s refreshingly different from the other football games that you can get nowadays, or even on your GameCube and that. Just as was the case in the arcades, Virtua Striker is worth chucking a few quid into, and happily Ver.2002 is one of the cheapest GameCube games going. For how much it costs these days, it’s got enough going for it that I think it’s worth a place in anybody’s GameCube collection. 7/10.

Oh boy, I remember having Virtua Striker 2 on the Dreamcast! The chunkiest game ever made, where the players had thighs like tree trunks and played like they did too. It was pleasant enough but one that definitely didn't feel comprehensive enough to warrant playing all night like PES or ISS did. I think I played this version in the arcades, but the arcade stick never felt right for a football game. Footie is a slow, passing game whereas the arcade cabinet always felt wrong, as it was better suited to twitchy fighters or shooters. Even Virtua Tennis felt odd in the arcade. Didn't this version have mad unlockables like a Sonic team? I associate this game with Scully - pretty sure he wrote about it at some point.

I also had Spyhunter on the PS2 and really enjoyed it at the time. Remember reading PSW magazine and it reviewing well, and at the time, the car transforming into a speedboat seemed impressive. Simpler times.

Mario Kart DD is, like Toadstool Tour and Power Tennis, a beautiful game with a satisfying, almost Virtua Striker-like chunkiness to them. But everything is smoother. For the time, Nintendo nailed the look and feel of the Gamecube Mario titles and the jump from Mario Kart 64 to Double Dash is insane, looking back. Shoddy 2D sprites wedged into 3D environments suddenly became Pixar-level jaw-droppers with oddly exaggerated rear-end physics. I always remember the second driver stuck their arse out when navigating corners. When I lived in Bristol I joined a retro game club there and Double Dash was the most popular game with a "Hot Lap" contest on that Sunshine beach level. Six blokes spent a whole Sunday afternoon trying to outdo each other and I beat them all. Good times, and a somewhat underrated entry in the MK series. I wonder if there'll be a 30-year celebration in 2022 with 64, Double Dash and Wii re-released. Mario Kart 8 is wonderful and clearly the best Mario Kart, but Double Dash is my favourite one.
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Buskalilly
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySun 1 Nov 2020 - 4:09

Huh. I remembered Jet Race releasing for Gamecube and then being rereleased on Wii as a New Play Control thing, but I guess I just imagined that.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyTue 3 Nov 2020 - 21:36

"Chunkiest game ever made" would be an all-time thread. Aye, Virtua Striker has Sonic and that in it, but unlocking them would've taken more perseverance than I could give it. That's because I was off playing utter toot like this:

Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 Hqdefault

2001's Smashing Drive didn’t make it outside of North America, and for good reason: its keech.

On paper, it sounds like exactly my sort of game, and ideal weekend rental fodder for anybody else. You control a taxi and race against another cabbie through New York City, finding all sorts of shortcuts and power-ups so that you can beat your rival to the finish and collect your fare. There’s no complexity to it, and in theory Smashing Drive should make for decent, throwaway fun.

I think every aspect of Smashing Drive’s execution lets it down though. Graphically, it’s a manky looking game, definitely one of the GameCube’s ugliest. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but there’s something about its blockiness and muddiness that I especially dislike – it just makes me think ‘who designed this crap?’. The audio is just nondescript car noise, but with a soundtrack that makes Cruis’n USA sound like Ridge Racer Type 4. It’s just awful. There’s nothing special about having this on GameCube either, it does nothing out of the ordinary with the hardware. It plays like it’s running on the PSone. Then there’s its lack of longevity. There’s nine courses in all, and once you work out where the shortcuts are in each of them, you’ve pretty much mastered the game. I think it took me two-and-a-half hours to get from the point of loading it up to sussing it out and seeing everything Smashing Drive had to offer. And yet…

You know how they say that ‘even bad pizza is still pretty good’? I think that’s true for arcade racers, and there’s precious few of them of this ilk on GameCube. As completely rubbish as most aspects of Smashing Drive are, there’s still something weirdly entertaining about it. Don’t be mistaken, it’s still utter mince next to something like Eighteen Wheeler, and it’s no travesty that it didn’t come out in the UK. I don’t really recommend that you bother yourself with it, but I’ll maybe look back on Smashing Drive as one of those games that’s ‘crap but amazing’. 4/10.
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Balladeer
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyWed 4 Nov 2020 - 21:41

Fair enough about Smashing Drive, but I have had genuinely bad pizzas. No The one I remember the most was the Surprise Anchovy Pizza, where I was served a pizza that had had all the anchovies taken off, so the whole thing tasted slightly wrong in a salty way (no) but was still just about edible... until I bit into a slice and spat it out, to find an anchovy hiding under the cheese.

Years of therapy. YEARS.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySun 8 Nov 2020 - 11:02

Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 48836-title-Intellivision-Lives

Presumably out of sheer boredom and for a rock-bottom price, I imported Intellivision Lives! sometime ago. There’s quite a lot happening here, with over sixty games across the usual combat/sports/space types of genre. Special attention has been paid to the lot of them, as they’ve all their own little extras, such as promotional artwork, TV adverts and interviews with the developers. This stuff would be great for the folk who were around for the Intellivision in the early 1980s, but even if you weren’t, the game’s menu layout (which has you moving around a old-school American pizza parlour to play arcade cabinets) gives you a warm, homely kind of feeling. It does a cracking job of trying to scratch a retro itch, and be the best Intellivision collection it can be. A massive thumbs up for it’s soundtrack too – I’ve had this song in my head for days:



More effort was put into Intellivision Lives! in 2004 than was put into Super Mario 3D All Stars this year, but alas, Intellivision Lives! is no Super Mario 3D All Stars. Of course, that’s because the games aren’t as good. Really, of the forty-or-so I could access, there were only a few that stood out as something I’d choose to play again. Some others were fine for a couple of minutes, but there were plenty that were just worthless – Math Master, anyone? The other twenty-ish games were multiplayer only, and I think that’s just too many. I doubt I was missing much, but still, it needlessly lessens the number of good games I’ve got access to. The controls are a bigger problem though, as they make loads of the games virtually unplayable. At times that’s because the Intellivision controller’s buttons are poorly mapped to the GameCube pad, but at others it’s just because I can’t get them to start. Honestly, I’ve got no idea what to do, and I can’t find out how you start some of these games in either the instruction manual or online. Surely being unable to straightforwardly begin a game is a bit of a flaw…?

I’ve got no nostalgia for the Intellivision, and I’m not that interested in finding out about it. Getting a flavour for it and it’s supposed “classic” games via this cheapo GameCube package was fine enough for me. Folk who are really hardcore into their retro gaming would maybe discover more to enjoy here, but I don’t think there’s an audience for it on the GNamer Forum. Even for me, Intellivision Lives! offerings were a bit old, awkward and clunky. 4/10.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySun 15 Nov 2020 - 8:50

Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 ScanImage_041398

Digging into another game that’s been gathering stour in my collection for years, I played through R: Racing Evolution. You never see anybody talking about this, despite it’s pedigree. R: Racing Evolution is a spin-off of the Ridge Racer series, except with licensed race cars and real-life circuits. It’s all story-driven too. There’s all sorts of shenanigans about illicit gambling and jealous rivalries going on in this storyline, as well as some mild swearing, lots of cleavage, and even a shower scene. Remember, this is technically a Ridge Racer game. It’s properly odd.

‘Properly odd’ sums up R: Racing Evolution for me. It aspires to be a halfway house between a simulation game and an arcade one, but it doesn’t really pull it off successfully. The big issue is that it attempts to be the be-all-end-all of racing games, taking inspiration from Gran Turismo’s presentation, Project Gotham Racing’s Kudos awards system, MotoGP’s precise physics, even the WRC games as a whole, as it even bungs a few rally courses in there for shits and giggles. It goes hard at work to be like the best aspects of all of these games, bringing them together as one, while consciously remaining true to it’s Ridge Racer roots. It’s ambitious, and fair play to that. In the end though, it winds up being a jack of all trades but a master of none. The fact is that all of those aforementioned games do R: Racing Evolution’s things better than R: Racing Evolution does itself. 

Being nice, I’d describe R: Racing Evolution as an interesting curio. However, if you’ve got no desire to see what a Ridge Racer spin-off with a PEGI 12 rating would be like, then all it is is a passable Gran Turismo-alike from the early 2000s and nothing more. Maybe it’s relative averageness was already common knowledge - after all, you’d maybe better know R: Racing Evolution as that game which randomly came bundled with Pac Man Vs. back in the day. That was a far bigger selling point than anything R: Racing Evolution itself had to offer. 6/10.
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The Cappuccino Kid
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySat 21 Nov 2020 - 8:42

Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 SI_GCN_Pikmin_image1600w

Thought I'd be best to post about something folk have heard of, so here's my thoughts about my recent Pikmin playthrough.

I vividly remember NGC Magazine’s review for this. They rated it as a brilliant game and scored it appropriately, but quotes such as “not enough anything” and “never has a game so much felt like it’s there to pave the way for a sequel” still come to mind when I think about Pikmin. That’s because they’re still very true.

Happily, we’ve had three more Pikmin games since it debuted in 2001. So with that context and foresight, it should be easier to reassess my thoughts on the original Pikmin and laud it for what it is, rather than critique it for what it lacks and requires in future. However, it’s still really hard to come away from Pikmin and think that you didn’t want more.

Don’t get me wrong, this is still a really strong and massively entertaining start for the Pikmin series. It’s a really inviting game in so many senses - I don’t think any developer had ever made the RTS genre so easy to look at, or to understand or to get into. That’s in large part due to the controls making total sense and being simplified to a point where even an idiot like me can wrap his head around them in a couple of minutes. Without easy-to-master controls, I think Pikmin would have found even less appeal than it eventually did (because let’s face it, even nineteen years in, it’s still probably one of Nintendo’s less popular series). Even so, Pikmin has got so much personality and imagination that I think it would have had a large cult following anyway, even if it was to prove to be the end of the line for the series.

It was too good of an idea for that to happen though. Much of the game’s design is brilliant, with five really memorable and packed maps, many intelligently crafted and behaved enemies, a likeable and quietly emotive spaceman lead character. Of course, then there’s the Pikmin themselves. They’re the highlight: they’re so bursting with character that you can’t help but form a wee bond with them, and feel a bit sad when you’ve got no choice but to sacrifice dozens of them to quickly get a tricky piece of your ship back.

It was a fun playthrough. However, I’ve come away from it wondering if my time would have been better spent on Pikmin 2 or Pikmin 3. Granted, I chose to play Pikmin because it’s quicker to beat than it’s sequels, but is it as good? No.

My main issue with Pikmin is that I don’t think it’s experimental enough, and doesn’t go far enough with any of its ideas. Case in point, the strategy and tactics weren’t really fully developed yet. While the three coloured Pikmin have their own characteristics, I found that you can get usually away with just bringing the powerful red ones to overwhelm most of the predators the game throws at you. That’s how I beat the final boss – with little thought involved, just by brute force. Also, there are some puzzle elements to retrieving Captain Olimar’s ship parts, but they’re almost always either glaring obvious or just a bit short of ingenuity. At least the attack-minded enemies give the game some challenge, but as said, you can easily overwhelm most of them. Once you’ve killed all those enemies, Pikmin is just too easy and, arguably, too straightforward. I don’t really feel that the 30-day time limit that the game imposes on you really adds any threat either – if that’s what it’s designed to do, then I think that it doesn’t really work.

Pikmin feels like a proof of concept, and it feels like it’s too modest in it’s ambitions. But it’s the gameplay that counts, and Pikmin still holds up well. It probably holds up better on Wii though – that version has some very helpful pointer controls. Even then, Pikmin 2 and Pikmin 3 are plainly the superior games. Either way, I found Pikmin to be at least as much fun as Super Mario Sunshine and Wind Waker, so an 8/10 it’ll be.
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Buskalilly
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySat 21 Nov 2020 - 8:49

Interesting. When I first played them, almost ten years ago now I think, I definitely came away from Pikmin 1 feeling immensely satisfied and in love, while Pikmin 2 felt like it added more for the sake of it.

Perhaps if I were to go back now, having played the sequels and with the atmosphere and emotional impact unable to surprise me, I'd notice the simplicity issues or the lack of content you mention. At the moment though, Pikmin is a masterpiece in my head with two admirable but less special sequels.
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Buskalilly
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySat 21 Nov 2020 - 22:51

Polished off Mario 64 last night

I'll have a video about this soon, but it's an odd one. The first few worlds are so fun, the controls and the level design are right up there. Later it does get a bit frustrating, but the final level and the boss fight were a nice conclusion. I even did them with an audience, as Matt was in my apartment waiting for a guest to join us to discuss Highlander.

Good game.
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Kriken
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySat 21 Nov 2020 - 23:31

I also liked the first Pikmin game more.

I dabbled a bit in all the entries, but only a couple of years ago did I sit down and play Pikmin 1 all the way through. As a kid, I think I got stuck at one point and then just forgot about it - I liked it, but not enough to not trade it in for something else at the time.

I liked everything about it, the world and the gameplay and the way it slowly unfolded with the log entries and areas. It was surprisingly dark in some ways.

At the time, and still probably even now, the critical consensus seemed to be that Pikmin 2 was just better, with praise in particular being directed at the removal of the day limit. I have to be honest, even though you say the game was pretty easy, I did feel a bit of pressure to complete the game in time. I did end up beating the game with a few days to spare but I did feel accomplished. But in Pikmin 2 there's no incentive to do things quickly or efficiently. Losing a lot of pikmin didn't matter that much since there was infinite time to raise some more.

After I beat Pikmin 1, I played through Pikmin 2 and at some point it started feeling like a slog. Didn't bother with the post-game after the first set of credits. Pikmin 3 seemed pretty cool and I'd like to get through it at some point - my impressions of it were more positive than with 2 - but I guess it didn't innovate enough in a way to grip me.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptySun 22 Nov 2020 - 10:57

Thanks for these write-ups Cappa. I have no experience of the Intellivision so not arsed about that collection either, but the Ridge Racer spin-off always intrigued me. It never got that magic 85+ score that my teenage self was obsessed over (thanks N64 Mag) so I never bothered trying to pick it up, but it sounds right up my street. I doubt it will ever get a remaster so I'll have to check that out.

Pikmin is a so-called classic that I've largely ignored because of that 30-day time limit. Judging by the reviews at the time, it was a short game and that time limit feels like it was added to encourage multiple playthroughs. I just don't like being rushed! I had to get Pikmin 2 on GameCube after some friends at college were gushing over it in late 2004, and I'm glad I did, as it remains one of my favourite games ever. An underrated aspect of the game is the atmosphere and I think that lack of a time limit adds to that - it's so wistful and charming. A game I like to take my time with and explore every nook and cranny. I love it, and 100%-ed it when it released on the Wii (them motion controls were perfect), yet I still have no real urge to visit the first game. I should really, given I get so hard over the sequel, but then I love Resi 4 and have no desire to play the previous Resident Evils. Maybe I'm a weirdo.
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyMon 23 Nov 2020 - 21:28

@gjones wrote:
Pikmin is a so-called classic that I've largely ignored because of that 30-day time limit. Judging by the reviews at the time, it was a short game and that time limit feels like it was added to encourage multiple playthroughs. I just don't like being rushed!

Same! That and the paralysis that came with losing some of my beloved plant people meant that I started Pikmin, played a grand total of two days, and never continued. I hate time pressure in games.


Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective

I'll have a longer Gintendo piece on this at some point, but this is absolute gold dust. Such a bloody tremendous game, and perhaps even better on a replay. Everybody here, regardless of their taste in games, should have played this, probably twice. It is that good. (And maybe available on iOS still?)

10/10 Top Five Games of All Time
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PostSubject: Re: Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts   Last Retro Game You Finished And Your Thoughts - Page 11 EmptyYesterday at 7:14

Balla and GJones, I can see how that would be off-putting, but for me all the things you disliked are what made it such an immersive and emotional and memorable experience. It's one of Nintendo's most characterful games!
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