Duck Tales

Time for Adventure!

Duck Tales…now you might be thinking, “What does a kids cartoon show have to do with classic gaming?” Well, it has a lot to do with it. In the days of the NES, there were games made from just about everything. Literally everything, there were games based on movies (such as Terminator), other games (Dungeons and Dragons), sports, McDonalds and even The Noid. So a game based on a popular kids show isn’t really that surprising.

Before i dive in, i should get some nostalgia out of the way. When i was a kid, i used to watch Duck Tales on tv. I loved Uncle Scrooge, he was a jerk but at the same time, completely awesome. He always went on these adventures to become rich, or protect his wealth with his nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie. The show was great and is considered one of the best cartoons of all time! So, it makes sense that Capcom would take command and create a game based on the characters.


The cartridge itself is awesome, it creates a sense of adventure and gives you a good idea of what to expect. Once you pop the game in, you will be struck by the stunning visuals. The level of detail is striking for a NES game. The worlds each have little touches to them, such as there being lines and vines in the trees, instead of flat color, or ice that has a shimmer to it. Scrooge also looks great, his moves have a lot of little details such as the cane movement when he walks or the smile on his face when he jumps. These details aren’t just for Scrooge alone, the enemies have details like this as well. Such as a mummy shaking its head after it moves. These little touches are what sets the game apart from its competition in the graphics department.  However, just because it looks good doesn’t mean that there aren’t issues. Sometimes, the characters will flash in and out or you can see through them. This is mostly an issue with the Nintendo itself and this can be a bit annoying. It doesn’t effect the game play in anyway, which is very nice.

The Himalayas!

Transylvania!

The Amazon! Isn’t this level beautiful?

The game is very simple really, the goal is to lead Scrooge on his greedy quest to become even richer. You run and jump your way through each of the five levels. The goal is to collect jewels which are only revealed if you kill an enemy or touch an invisible spot which will reveal the item for you to collect. They are also in treasure chests as well. However, you don’t simply jump on enemies like you would in Mario. Instead you jump and press down + b then hold b to use the cane as a pogo stick. When you jump on an enemy like that you will kill it and get sent flying. You will have to get used to using this move as its the fastest way to get across the levels, it can be used to travel across spikes unharmed and you can use it to travel to high points in each of the level. There is another move that scrooge has where he uses his cane like a golf club, it can be used for a variety of things such as destroying blocks that you can’t destroy with the pogo.

Another interesting part of the game is the levels themselves. They each are very different and have different tricks and traps. Each of these levels follows a nonlinear style so it encourages exploration which gives the game some good replay value. At the end of each level you have to fight a boss. When you kill the boss you get a treasure worth a million dollars.  One of the best things about this level is that you can select the levels in any order you want on Scrooges computer.  I highly recommend going from the top to the bottom of the list as the lower levels can be a bit more difficult. It is worth noting that the game is rather easy for a NES game. When I first started, I was bad but it didn’t take long to get the hang of it. Now i can go through the game in less than an hour. However, you need to explore to unlock the secret ending. This requires that you have ten million dollars in total. This is tricky and you have to play the game perfectly to make it happen.

One of the many traps found in this game!

The sound in this game is pretty good as well. The pogo has a funny boing sound and the enemies have an over exaggerated scream when you kill them. This I found annoying at first but I became used to it. It could be worse. There are lots of blips and bloops that you would hear in a cartoon which adds to the games charm. I love the crash that comes from destroying a block. Its seriously fun! Finally, i can’t talk about Duck Tales without at least commenting on the music in this game! It is phenomenal and, in my opinion, ranks up there with the Mario and Zelda themes, which are classics in their own right. Its so good that i had to make a playlist of it on youtube…found here

All in all, this game is phenomenal. It has superb graphics, music and game play. The only negative could be the length but I would rather have an amazing short game than a long mediocre one any day. I play this game very often and it has found a welcome home in my game collection. I really hope that you will get the opportunity to play it as well.

10/10

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Super Mario Bros 3

Super Mario Bros. 3, a classic among classics and my personal favorite game on the Nintendo Entertainment System. Its so good that it has become a legend unto itself. It is commonly seen on, “Best Games of All Time,” lists and even spawned its own television series. It took the concept of Mario and perfected it.

Ok, enough gushing, its time for a little history lesson. To begin with, there was Super Mario Bros. a game that needs no introduction. It was packaged with the NES and is a large part of the system’s success. Then came Super Mario Bros. 2 which was actually a different game that was redone to include the Mario characters. While it was a good game, it just didn’t reach the heights of the original because it didn’t really play like the original. However, when Mario 3 was announced and shown in the movie, “The Wizard,” all the game nerds of the late 80’s went crazy. From what i can imagine, the hype for it must have been enormous. Of course, the game was released and it actually exceeded all the hype. Something that very very few games have ever done.

The Mario 3 Cart. Beautiful!

Now to move onto the game itself, let us start with the way the game looks. Actually, look at the cartridge itself, it says a LOT about the game itself.  Yea, its Mario with a raccoons tail and ears, yeah, not really a good representation of the game itself so lets move on into the game. As you can see, the game itself looks pretty good, especially when compared to the older games in the NES library. The character models look fantastic and are fairly detailed. A lot of the worlds are rich with detail as well. However, i can’t help but point out that some of the levels are rather bland as a whole, there isn’t a whole lot of color depth overall. Especially when you compare it to other games like Duck Tales. But it is also worth noting that the game is enormous and is so much fun that you really don’t thing too much about the graphics. And, in my personal opinion, if you are a serious gamer, graphics should not matter. It all comes down to game play.

Before i go any further, i have to explain how large this game is. There are 8 worlds and within each of these worlds are several levels. Each world has different gimmicks that need to be conquered, such as the 4th world known as Giant Land. Here all the enemies are giant and are thus a bit more difficult to eliminate. Other tricks can include ice that causes Mario to slide around or having to solve mazes in order to get through the level. In the middle of each world are castle levels that you must go through. At the end of these, you unlock a door that leads to the later half of the level. And at the end you come to a castle where a toad will tell you that the king has been transformed into some form of creature. From here you go onto an airship and face the hazards there. At the end you fight one of Bowser’s children. Each of them has its own unique gimick as well and can lead to some very fun battles! These add tons of variety to the game and guarantee that it never gets boring. By the time any of it gets dull you will have completed the world and moved onto another trap. The basic principle of the this game is the same as with the other Super Mario Games, try  to get to the end of the level before the time runs out. You collect coins or power ups by hitting blocks with your head…yeah that makes a lot of sense, Mario bashes his head into a block to get a coin, and not just a couple, but hundreds if not thousands of them. On the subject of power ups, there are a lot more this time around. Lets look at them in detail shall we?

First you have the mushroom, yes a mushroom, that Mario eats and grows into Super Mario, which is basically a taller version. You now have two hit points before you die. The next upgrade that you are likely to find is the leaf, this allows you to use raccoon Mario. Which is neat because if you fill your power meter by running you can eventually fly. This allows you to easily traverse a level or even find secrets up in the sky! Other power ups include the Fire Flower, which allows our hero to throw his trademark fireballs. There is the frog suit which allows for faster swimming, the tanooki suit which allows Mario to turn into a statue and ground pound and the hammer bros suit which can be used to throw hammers.

Another major change between this and the first game is in the enemies. There are many many more this time around and some of them require different strategies to defeat. Example, the Spiny’s they have spikes on their back making it impossible to kill them by jumping on them. So thus, you have to try different strategies or just simply avoid them.

Finally, the last thing to talk about in the game play department are secrets. This game has hundreds, there are hidden areas in almost every level, special upgrades to find and even the secret whistles. There are several levels that have warp whistles that allow you to pass through to a different world. A couple of these whistles were actually shown prior to the game’s release one was actually in the movie mentioned earlier. Others were located in magazines and even advertisements.

Overall this game has some amazing game play, but In my opinion, there are some flaws. First off, this game is very difficult in the later levels. It is very unforgiving and presents situations where you have to have perfect timing to get past. It can lead to some frustration. Another thing that i hate is the whole momentum of Mario’s jump. When you jump and land, Mario will take a few steps. So you constantly have to push the back button in order to stop Mario from running straight off the edge and to his death. Its annoying and can make some situations in the game very difficult, especially when the platforms are small.  Really though, these are minor issues and don’t take away from the game too much. Its just sad that it can take away from a game that is so close to perfection.

10/10

Yeah, i still gave it a 10. Just because it is the game play is so perfect! The only issues that I have are of personal taste.

YAHOOOOOOOOOOO

Game Collection

This is everything that I own. I figured it would make it easier for you to find your favorites and give me recommendations on what i should purchase or review.

NES
Astyanax, Batman, Duck Tales, Gauntlet, Golf, Gradius, Gyromite, Kung Fu, Life Force, Milon’s Secret Castle, Ninja Gaiden, Rygar, Tecmo Baseball, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1,2,3, The Guardian Legend, Top Player’s Tennis, Super Mario Bros. 3, Wizards & Warriors, Xexyz

SNES
Final Fight, F-Zero, Mortal Kombat 2,  Samurai Shodown, Sim City, Super Bases Loaded, Super Mario Kart, Super Mario World, Super Tennis.

N64
Banjo Kazooie, Banjo Tooie, Blast Corps., Donkey Kong 64, Fifa 99, Goldeneye, Jet Force Gemini, Mario Kart 64, Mario Party 2, Mario Tennis, NFL Blitz, NBA Live 2000, Paper Mario,Perfect Dark, Pokemon Stadium, Snowboard Kids, Starfox 64, Super Mario 64, Super Smash Bros., The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time, The Legend of Zelda Majora’s Mask, Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1,2. Turok 1 and 2.

Gamecube:Battalion Wars, F-Zero GX, Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, Mario Kart Double Dash, Mario Party 4-6, Mario Power Tennis, Metroid Prime, Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, Paper Mario the Thousand Year Door, Soul Caliber II, Super Mario Sunshine, Super Smash Bros. Melee, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker,

PS1:
Crash Bandicoot Warped, Final Fantasy Anthology (FF5 and 6), Final Fantasy Chronicles (FF4 and Chrono Trigger), Final Fantasy 7, Gran Turismo 2, Metal Gear Solid, Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Spyro the Dragon, Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage, Spyro 3: Year of the Dragon, Star Wars Dark Forces, Twisted Metal 2

PS2: Dance Dance Revolution: Max 2 and Extreme 2, Devil May Cry, Final Fantasy X, Kingdom Hearts 1-2, Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance, Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistance, Mortal Kombat Shaolin Monks, Deception and Armageddon, Resident Evil 4, Silent Hill 2,  Starwars Battlefront 1 and 2, Twisted Metal Black and Head On.

PC (These are just the ones considered classics)
Age of Empires 1,2,3, Baldur’s Gate 1 and 2, Deus Ex, Diablo 1 and 2,Empire Earth, Fallout 1,2,tactics, Heroes of Might and Magic 3: Complete, Neverwinter Nights,Roller Coaster Tycoon, Simcity 3000, Simcity 4, Starcraft, Warcraft 2 and 3

These aren’t all the games i have but they are the ones that could be considered classics. I hope that this list will grow even larger in the future!! If anyone has any ideas of where to get games or wants to make a donation, lemme know 🙂