Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Spy Fox in "Dry Cereal" (PC)

Developer:Humongous Entertainment|Release Date:1997|Systems:Windows, Mac OS, Wii, iOS, Android, Linux

This week on Super Adventures, I'm taking a look at a Junior Adventure about a fox who does intelligence work, designed for 5-10 year olds! Because it appeared as a gift in my Steam library one day, and I want to know if I should be grateful.

Spy Fox in "Dry Cereal" is apparently the first of three Spy Fox adventure games, and I've never played any of them at any age, so I have zero nostalgia for the series. I've managed to go my entire life so far in blissful ignorance of what any of Humongous Entertainment's games are like, but I am very slightly optimistic because I know that it's where Monkey Island creator Ron Gilbert disappeared to for a while after Monkey Island 2.

The Steam download comes with ScummVM so that it runs on modern systems, but I don't know if they've given me the US or the UK version. I've read that there's a few small differences between the versions, the main one being that the game was redubbed with British accents! Spy Fox sounds like a suave English agent in the UK dub, but in the original game he's more like Don Adams from Get Smart. I've no idea why they did this, half the cartoons on British TV come from America and we'd been listening to Don Adams' voice come out of Inspector Gadget's mouth for years, but I guess they were concerned some references would fly over young kids' heads. They'd have never heard of Get Smart for one thing.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Tales of Symphonia (PC)

Developer:Namco Tales Studio|Release Date:2003 (Jp)|Systems:GameCube, PS2, PS3, Windows

This week on Super Adventures I'm looking at this title screen wondering what 'Custom' does. Is that the 'Options' option maybe? Now I'm wondering if that other Tales game I played a while back did this as well; is it a Tales tradition, or are they rebelling against standard video game terminology for the sake of being weird?

I've only really played one of these games before, Tales of Destiny II on the PlayStation, so I went back and checked and it turns out that it has 'Customize' in place of 'options', so I see what they've done here. It also turns out that I played that six years ago now, so that explains why I've forgotten everything about how Tales games play. All I remember is that the trees looked very nice and by the look of this title screen that definitely is a Tales tradition.

Here's a fact that'll shock absolutely no one: Tales of Symphonia here is the 5th game in the long running Tales series, and yet it's the first to have been released in Europe! I'm surprised to learn that they've already reached game number 16 since then though. It's kind of hard to keep track of where they're up to as they don't usually put numbers on the games, and when they do you can't trust 'em. If you're curious, Tales of Destiny II is the 3rd game... and Tales of Destiny 2 is the 4th.

(Clicking pics will make them big.)

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Skyblazer (SNES)

Skyblazer SNES title screen
Developer:Ukiyotei|Release Date:1994|Systems:Super Nintendo

One thing I like about consoles like the Super Nintendo and Mega Drive, is that they had seemingly infinite games released for them during the 90s. Sure its actually closer to a few thousand, but when you only play 50 something games a year, that may as well be infinite. Every time I think that I must be running out of interesting games to play, there's always something else in the library to check out.

Which is why I'll never be tempted to do a Chrontendo-style project of my own for the SNES, as that'd be one hell of a mountain to dig through.

Anyway, today's semi-buried SNES gem on Super Adventures is Star... Skyblazer. I keep wanting to call it 'Starblazer' and have to correct myself, because this isn't a black & white sci-fi anthology comic or the US adaptation of 'Space Battleship Yamato', it's the Western version of a Japanese game called Karuraou. I'm not sure what that means exactly, but a quick Google search tells me that Karura is an alternate Japanese spelling for 'Garuda', a Hindi god with the head and wings of an eagle. Garuda's also what the game's hero was called in Japan, until it was changed to 'Sky' for the Western release.
 

Saturday, 31 December 2016

Super AiG Screenshots of the Year: 2016

It's New Year's Eve once more, so I feel obliged to give you the sixth annual Super Adventures Screenshots of the Year gallery, showcasing some of the most interesting screenshots from the last 12 months of my site! Also GIFs, lots of GIFs.

Clicking the highlighted game titles will take you to the original article so you can see the screenshot in context. If it's a more modern game then clicking the picture itself will likely open it up in its original resolution.

Sunday, 25 December 2016

Batman: Arkham Origins (PC)

Developer:WB Games Montréal|Release Date:2013|Systems:Win, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U

This week on Super Adventures, a game about punching people at Christmas!

It's been ages since I've played a Batman game, in fact I think the last one on the site was probably Return of the Joker for the NES, back in April 2015. Though it still seems too soon to play Batman: Arkham Origins, because of how similar it is to the other two. In my Batman: Arkham City article I joked that I'd be able to copy/paste parts of my Arkham Asylum post and save myself some work, and here that's doubly true! But it's a Christmas game and I feel like playing it again, so I am.

I love these beautiful tableaux of frozen Batviolence behind the menu by the way. Batman's so gritty in this one with his tactical Bat-armour and his permanent bad mood, that I keep expecting the camera to pan across blood and displaced teeth flying through the air.

This used to be the black sheep of the franchise, due to it not being developed by Rocksteady, and the bugs, and the fact that they prioritised releasing paid DLC instead of fixing them all, but I think Arkham Knight's claimed that position now (at least on PC). There's still a bit of an issue with the multiplayer, seeing as it was switched off forever earlier this month, but I didn't even know it had multiplayer, so that shows how much I care about that.

(Click on the images to view my original full size screenshots. DX11 mode, all settings on full... resolution at 1280x720).

Monday, 19 December 2016

Disposable Hero (Amiga)

Disposable Hero Amiga logo
Developer:Euphoria|Release Date:1993|Systems:Amiga, CD32

This week on Super Adventures I'm finally getting around to playing classic Amiga shoot 'em up Disposable Hero! Not Disposable Heroes, that's a Metallica track from the album Master of Puppets (and a cartoony indie game on Steam).

This has been on my list of games to play since before I even had an actual list of games to play, so it's strange that it's taken me so long to get around to it. Oh right I remember now, I was trying to stick to playing games I haven't seen before, and I used to play the demo of this all the damn time back in the day. Well, probably more like three times, but that's still a lot for me.

You could probably call the game a Euroshmup, as it's by a developer from the Netherlands called 'Boys without Brains' (who were going by the name of 'Euphoria' at this point... I think), but I wouldn't because that's a horrible word. I mean it's ugly to look at and it's ridiculous when you say it out loud. Plus Shmups sound like something you'd find living down at Fraggle Rock.

The developers were also responsible for the platformer Hawkeye, which is one of the games that inspired me to make this site in the first place, way back in 2011. Well its title screen did anyway. All I remember about it now is that it wasn't great, but I'm sure this will hold up a lot better. For one thing it didn't start out as a Commodore 64 game.
  

Saturday, 10 December 2016

The Rocketeer (SNES)

The Rocketeer SNES title screen
Developer:NovaLogic|Release Date:1992|Systems:SNES, DOS

This week on Super Adventures I'm playing a licensed tie-in SNES game! Because I've got more curiosity than sense.

The Rocketeer is based on the 1991 comic book action movie... probably. He has the same logo, the suit looks right and it's got 'Disney' written on it so I'm assuming there's a connection. But I haven't really seen the movie, so I don't know the characters and I've only got the vaguest idea about the plot. I'm coming into this with a good amount of ignorance.

Though one thing I do know is that the SNES version is actually a port of a DOS game and those are the only two systems this particular Rocketeer game came out for. Sega owners missed out this time, though I doubt they were missing much. But hey I'll give it a fair chance to win me over, it might surprise me.

Semi-Random Game Box