Shantae: Risky’s Revenge Review

While it may be hard to believe now, there was a time when Shantae was relatively obscure. Released in the Gameboy Color’s twilight years, Shantae’s first game failed to get a foothold in a market that had already advanced on to Nintendo’s next iteration of the Gameboy line. That said, WayForward was confident in the I.P.—partly thanks to the cult following that had formed around the half-genie’s debut title—and were eager to develop a sequel. Eight arduous years and a few false starts later, Shantae: Risky’s Revenge was released as a download title for the Nintendo DSi. In the years that followed, the game would see updated ports on several systems, including: iOS, Steam, Wii U, and now—of course—the Nintendo Switch. Read more Shantae: Risky’s Revenge Review

TBC Table-Top R.P.G. Podcast 11 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.  With the boss key in hand, Trouse, Oscar, and Sigil prepare to face off with the Spring Shrine’s final challenge.

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Oscar: Simeon

Sage: Glen

Music Credits

“Divinity”
Nostalvania
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

“Boss Battle”
Koji Kondo, Toru Minegishi
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask Original Soundtrack
Nintendo

“Boss Clear”
Koji Kondo, Toru Minegishi
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask Original Soundtrack
Nintendo

“Link’s Epic”
Joshua Morse
25 Year Legend: A Legend of Zelda Indie Game Composer Tribute
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

TBC Table-Top Podcast 10 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.  Our heroes have overcome their toughest opponent yet!  What could the Diara have been guarding?  And how will it help the team as they continue to explore the ancient ruins?

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Oscar: Simeon

Sage: Glen

Music Credits

Divinity
Nostalvania
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

“This Cave Is Creepy”
Obtuse
Legend of Zelda: Threshold of a Dream
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

“Inception”
Mustin
Legend of Zelda: Threshold of a Dream
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

“Monkey King”
Koji Kondo
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Original Soundtrack
Nintendo

“The Guru”
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

TBC Table-Top Podcast 09 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.  Our heroes now have a taste of the dangers that await them in the Spring Shrine.  Our heroes have bested many foes and are now ready to delve into the depths of the dark, dank, and dangerous dungeon.

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Oscar: Simeon

Sage: Glen

Music Credits

Divinity
Nostalvania
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Full Moon Cello
Theophany
Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening: Threshold of a Dream
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Middle Boss
Koji Kondo
The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask
Nintendo

The Guru
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Emulation vs. Porting

As some of you may recall, A few months ago, there was a lot of hoopla about an unofficial P.C. port of Super Mario 64. Fans had managed to decompile and reverse engineer the source code of Mario 64 and made the necessary changes to compile and run the game on Windows. So why is this such a big deal when we can already play N64 games using emulators? Conversely, what’s it matter that the games in the Super Mario 3D All-Stars Collection are emulated and not ported? What’s the difference between porting and emulating? And why would developers choose one over the other? Read more Emulation vs. Porting

TBC Table-Top: Episode 08 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Now available in high quality Vorbis audio!

Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.  Our heroes now have a taste of the dangers that await them in the Spring Shrine.  They’ve defeated the chuchus, but how will they fair against the lizalfos awaiting them in the next chamber?

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Oscar: Simeon

Sage: Glen

Music Credits

Divinity
Nostalvania
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Thelonius Temple
MC
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

The Guru
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

TBC Table-Top: Episode 07 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Now available in high quality Vorbis audio!

Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.  After being led to the headwaters by a pair of friendly fairies, the party now delves into the mysterious Spring Shrine.  What dangers lurk in the dark, dank depths of these forgotten ruins? Read more TBC Table-Top: Episode 07 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

TBC Table-Top: Episode 06 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Now available in high quality Vorbis audio!

Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

After camping for the night, our heroes make their way to the headwaters of the river.

Read more TBC Table-Top: Episode 06 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

TBC Table-Top: Episode 05 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

After dispatching their bokoblin assailants, our heroes continue delving even deeper into the woods.  Will they find the river’s headwaters or more trouble? Read more TBC Table-Top: Episode 05 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

Hideaway Island An Animal Crossing: New Horizons Narrative Let's Play

Day 1

I arrived at the airport around 9 A.M. Upon entering, I was greeted by two young raccoons who immediately got to work arranging my trip. We boarded the plane not long after that. Once finished suffering a long, boring flight during which there was nothing to do except watch an informational video and avoid eye contact with the other passengers, we arrived on the island. The two young raccoons informed the other residents and me that there was an orientation meeting nearby and that our presence was requested. Needing to retrieve my tent and other supplies, I begrudgingly followed the others to what appeared to be a construction site. There a middle-aged raccoon delivered a droll and poorly-rehearsed corporate monolog. Read more Hideaway Island An Animal Crossing: New Horizons Narrative Let’s Play

Virtua Quest That Was a Thing

I’ve mentioned it a few times on the podcast, but I love the Virtua Fighter series. Unfortunately, as a Nintendo fan, that puts me in a difficult position. See, the Virtua Fighter series has been absent from Nintendo consoles. There is, however, one noteworthy exception to this history of Nintendo exclusion: the action-R.P.G. spin-off game, Virtua Quest.

Virtua Quest was developed jointly by Tose co. and Sega AM2 and published by Sega. It was released in Japan under the name Virtua Fighter Cyber Generation: Ambition of Judgement Six on August 26, 2004 for the PlayStation 2 and GameCube. It was later released in North America on January 18, 2005. As mentioned before, it was a departure from the standard Virtua Fighter series in that the game is a beat-em-up with R.P.G. elements.

My history with this game is a little different than previous installments of That Was a Thing, as I’ve never actually played this game before. Well, not the full version at least. I knew about it way back when it first came out, due it being playable at the GameCube demo kiosk at my local Target. At the time, I thought the idea of a martial-arts-based action-adventure game was intriguing, but after seeing the middling review scores it received in the now-defunct Nintendo Power magazine, I ultimately decided to pass on it.

It wouldn’t be until a few years ago once I got into the Virtua Fighter series that I developed a renewed interest in this title. After over a year of searching, I finally stumbled across it while revisiting the GameXChange in my old, grad-school stomping grounds. Read more Virtua Quest That Was a Thing

TBC Table-Top: Episode 04 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

After losing their way in the woods, our heroes run afoul of a band of bokoblin bandits.  Will the might of their arms be enough to fend off their assailants?

Read more TBC Table-Top: Episode 04 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

Mario’s Express Ticket to Subcon An Examination of Mario's Sleep Habits

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor nor an expert on sleep disorders. This article is for entertainment purposes and should not be consulted for medical advice. If you are suffering from a sleep disorder, please consult a specialist.

It’s January again, a time of year when many people resolve to improve themselves and their lives. Long-time Nintendo fans are no strangers to the subject of self improvement. From the Brain Age games to the recent Ring Fit Adventure, Nintendo has a history spanning over a decade of releasing products to improve the health and cognitive well-being of their fan base. There was even a time not too long ago that the Big N toyed with the idea of building a third pillar to their business around the idea of quality-of-life consumer electronics. The only product in this line that we fans ever even heard about, however, was a device that was supposed to improve the user’s quality of sleep. As someone who has trouble maintaining a healthy sleep cycle, I was disappointed when they announced that the project had been canceled.

Now that I think about it, though, I’m not the only one with an odd circadian rhythm. One of Nintendo’s most iconic characters has exhibited strange and potentially worrisome sleep behaviors on multiple occasions: Mario. Ever since his landmark 3D debut, Super Mario 64, Mario has often been depicted as nodding off in a matter of minutes if left inactive. This leads to me wonder: how does he do it, and is it cause for concern? Read more Mario’s Express Ticket to Subcon An Examination of Mario’s Sleep Habits

TBC Table-Top: Episode 03 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Simeon, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

After making their preparations, our heroes relax with a little arm-wrestling before venture into the woods.  Who or what will they encounter in the forest? Read more TBC Table-Top: Episode 03 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

Super Mario Odyssey Spit Shine

Back in August, I finally managed to complete Super Mario Odyssey. While I found much to love about it—the gorgeous and eclectic visuals, the fast-paced story, the fact that Mario is weird again, the myriad of accessibility features, etc., etc.—there was a reason it took me nearly two years to complete. While I definitely intend to replay the game’s story someday, I can say with confidence that completing it is a task I will never undertake again.

As the number of remaining moons dwindled, so too did my enthusiasm. In fact, by the end of my run, I was having more fun grinding for coins in Luigi’s Balloon World so that I could afford the last few moons needed to max out the counter than I did hunting for the ones populating the game’s various worlds. Why was that, and what could Nintendo have done differently to avoid the slog? That’s exactly what I intend to answer in this edition of Spit Shine. Read more Super Mario Odyssey Spit Shine

River City Girls: Review

Product provided for review. Thanks WayForward!

Please note that I played the P.C. version of the game. The following review is for the game itself, and does not cover platform specific details such as performance or glitches.

Developed by Wayforward Technologies and published by Arc Systems Works, River City Girls is, as the name would imply, a spin-off of the N.E.S. classic River City Ransom. Much like its 8-bit predecessor, River City Girls is a blend of side-scrolling beat-em-up combat and open-world action-adventure exploration with a sprinkling of R.P.G. elements on top. The game follows the adventures of the tough, temperamental, and sarcastic Misako and the cute, bubbly, and emotionally unhinged Kyoko as the two set out to rescue their respective boyfriends from being kidnapped. Read more River City Girls: Review

TBC Table-Top: Episode 02 A Zelda Table-Top R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Ryan, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

In this episode, our heroes continue their preparations by swinging by the general store and searching for armor.

 

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Noire: Ryan

Sage: Glen

 

Music Credits

Divinity
Nostalvania
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Hawaii Shoppi’n
NoppZ
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Battle (Field)
Manaka Kataoka
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild Original Sound Track
Nintendo

The Guru
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Does “Indie” Still Mean Anything?

Perhaps one of the greatest movements in the history of the game industry is the rise of indie development in the late 2000’s. With the advent of widespread digital distribution, increase in instructional content available on the internet, and the introduction of affordable game development software suites, such as the Unity or Unreal engines, game development opened up to be available to the general public, and not just those lucky few who managed to get hired at an established studio. Likewise, said established studios were freed from the need to secure funding from large publishing companies to keep their doors open via crowd funding services such as Kickstarter or the topically named Indie-Go-Go.

But what exactly is an indie game? Read more Does “Indie” Still Mean Anything?

TBC Table-Top: Episode 01 A Zelda T.T.R.P.G. Adventure

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Join Scott, Ryan, Glen, and Nathan Blake of Nathan Blake Games on an adventure through the backwoods of Hyrule as the crew plays a table-top R.P.G. inspired by The Legend of Zelda.

In this inaugural episode, our heroes learn that the town that they’re passing through is in trouble: the river that’s vital to their lumber trade is drying up.  They then band together to discover the cause and begin preparations for the journey ahead.

 

Cast

Sigil: Scott

Trouse: Nathan Blake

Noire: Ryan

Sage: Glen

Music Credits

Timeless Journey
Sam Dillard
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

Heart Home and Hearth
Rebeca Tripp
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

The Guru
The OC Jazz Collective
OverClocked ReMix (http://ocremix.org)

 

The rules used in this podcast can be found at: https://1d4chan.org/wiki/Legend_of_Zelda_RPG