Tuesday, March 25, 2008

I Am 8-Bit

http://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gifWhile my wife comforts our teething, snotty 10-and-a-half month old, I'm taking refuge in the living room. I'm not getting away from the crying though - the baby monitor is in full voice, booming out the screaming to FULL RED OVERDRIVE. It's a horrible situation to be in.
While I sit here, I'm looking across at pictures on our walls. Framed newborn baby pics, wedding day, mates on the lash, etc. Upstairs there's some from IKEA - the usual downtown Manhattan, deserted beach scene and so forth. But what I really need to get my hands on is some I Am 8 Bit art. This stuff should be on any true gamer's den. I remembering an old colleague running a feature on this in NOM a few years back, based on their annual art exhibition. The paintings on show are classic. Let Google images show you some treats.
Snapping back out of dreamworld, Harry is still crying. Back in dreamworld and I'm sniping enemy in Call of Duty 4 and wondering whether I should pre-order GTA IV. This is the next triple-A title I should probably get for my 360. Hell, I hardly have time to play the ones I do have. But this woman makes it too enticing. I'm off to GAME to pre-order any day now and get me those Xbox Live points, or indeed some of these ace Kubricks.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Up on the roof

I love my loft. The ladder's a pain in the arse to get down at times and the hatch has this really annoying catch that never locks properly, but inside nests some classic videogames from the last 20 years or so.
Going up there the other day to fish out some dodgy photos of my baby brother for his 30th birthday party, I rooted through the dusty boxes and found some right gems, memorabilia and other such tat, including:

Super Smash Bros.
I've never been a huge fan of the franchise but I can see why fans go nuts for beating up Mario, Pikachu, Donkey Kong, etc. It finally sorts out the argument as to which Nintendo character is the greatest and I'm sure the new Brawl version is gonna rule on Wii. And this box is signed by one Shigeru Miyamoto. Pzzzack!

Perfect Dark
I remember busting my hump Easter Weekend 2000 to write the review for Rare's GoldenEye 007 follow-up (97%, for the record). I remember giving away my copy to some kid way back when, so bought this version on eBay a few years ago. I've never had the heart to play it, maybe because it brings back too many memories of that weekend.

For me, one of the greatest games ever, made when Rare could do no wrong. The Christmas level was sheer class, though I never did make it to that board-game-quiz at the end of the game.

Just three highlights of what's in my loft, but I'll be going back up there soon so will dig out some games and get pictures on here. Right now though it's Tuesday Night Club on the 360 so there's some shooting to be had on Call of Duty 4. While I'm playing that I'll be making a mental note of what retro classics I'll be buying on eBay. So far I've got:

James Bond (Game Boy)
Revenge of the Gator (Game Boy)
Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (360)
Zelda: Majora's Mask (N64)
Zelda: Oracle of Seasons and Ages (Game Boy Color)

Oh, and here's a link to Dan's site. He's been making some good posts and his blog is eye-opening.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

The new Friday…

… is Tuesday. Xbox night if you must know. Me, some mates, my brother, all on Call of Duty. Leave a message if you want to join the fun. Clips at the ready from 8.30pm (GMT).
Over the last week I've been contacted by two old friends of mine on Facebook. One works at Nintendo of Europe who I last saw at the Europeans Nintendo DS launch at a hotel in Paris, another edits Game Life over at Wired. The latter, a well-known games journalist called Chris Kohler, posted a funny TV show on YouTube. Watch it, I think you might like it.
Back on the home front, Zelda and CoD4 are taking up my playing hours. The Rise of the Machines, also known as 14-year-old Americans, blowing me to dust on COD4 is really starting to get on my tits so I've opted for more Private Matches, even if you don't get the XP to increase your level.
Zelda is everything I hoped it would be. The boomerang is quality on the DS as you draw the arc you want it to take around dungeons, while blowing on the screen extinguishes candles to unlock doors. It's clever touches like this that really make me love my DS again.
But one game you've GOT to try is N+, one of those Flash games that's been made into an Xbox Arcade title. I took apart the demo last night and it's mint, using inertia and timing to guide your ninja through trap filled rooms to a switch that unlocks an exit door. So simple, yet already one of my games of the year. I'm serious. Get those Points and get this!