Mega Man Nine

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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Baba O'Riley » Sat Jan 24, 2009 8:21 pm

This is not a new phenomenon.

Incidentally, Megaman's been kicking me in the teeth since I was eight, so I expect it at this point.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Green Gibbon! » Sat Jan 24, 2009 9:03 pm

How's come I never saw that video before? That was the coolest thing I've seen this month.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sat Jan 24, 2009 11:13 pm

When I was a kid, I love challenging games. Now, with college, I don't have the time to replay through Level 8 to get the perfect time and powerups so I can finally beat the ridiculously difficult boss that spawns bullets on every inch of the screen. So yeah, I play games to get a fun, interactive experience in an interesting world with interesting characters. I hardly ever play RPGs anymore because of the level grinding, too - the only RPGs I've really spent any time with lately are Pokemon and Disgea, which have tons of grinding but manage to make it fun, at the very least.

Though I'm sort of interested to see how Blue Dragon and Suikoden DS turn out.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Majestic Joey » Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:50 am

I'm pretty shallow. I like games that are really hard that I can make look easy and cool. When me and my cousins where younger we used to play alot of hard genesis and snes games and they were always impressed by how good at games I was. But now they are older and no longer care about games or watch and appreciate how I can beat games like megaman 9. Honestly the biggest thrill I get is when I'm at the arcade playing street fighter and defeating a opponent in such an awesome way that all the spectators say, "that was teh shit."

So yeah my favorite games now are games where people can watch and praise me.
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Postby Isuka » Sun Jan 25, 2009 10:08 am

Zeta wrote:Now, with college, I don't have the time to replay through Level 8 to get the perfect time and powerups so I can finally beat the ridiculously difficult boss that spawns bullets on every inch of the screen. So yeah, I play games to get a fun, interactive experience in an interesting world with interesting characters.

See, this is what happens when people mistakenly go and play games when they actually just feel like watching a movie or reading something.

Joey's da man. We all really need more arcades at bus stops or subway stations to get a hold of the good old ways of gaming, like this dude said.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby j-man » Sun Jan 25, 2009 11:18 am

You're doing it again.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sun Jan 25, 2009 12:09 pm

See, this is what happens when people mistakenly go and play games when they actually just feel like watching a movie or reading something.


No, I don't. I feel like playing a video game. I just want it to be short and sweet or something I can invest several small chunks of playtime into it instead of sitting there practicing for 3 hours to finally beat a boss while I'm covered in sweat and twitching from cursing for 30 minutes straight. I want an interactive experience that makes me feel BETTER, not worse after I'm done with it.
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Postby Isuka » Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:10 pm

Zeta wrote:No, I don't. I feel like playing a video game. I just want it to be short and sweet or something I can invest several small chunks of playtime into it instead of sitting there practicing for 3 hours to finally beat a boss while I'm covered in sweat and twitching from cursing for 30 minutes straight. I want an interactive experience that makes me feel BETTER, not worse after I'm done with it.

See, this is what happens when people mistakenly go and play games when they actually just feel like watching a TV series or reading something...


No, seriously.

Alex Kierkegaard wrote:Understand that arcade operators want the player to die (and as quickly as possible).

Understand also that players do not want to die.

Understand finally that the developers, whose job, as we have seen, is to please these two sets of demanding customers, have to strike a compromise, and the only satisfactory compromise that could be struck under the circumstances is:

Only the skilled may live -- the rest will die.

This harsh statement may as well have been engraved above the entrance of every arcade joint that ever existed. It is a direct consequence of the arcade industry's business model, and it forms the core of a formula around which all arcade games are built. It is responsible for the magic of arcade gaming.

But this magic cannot be recreated outside the environment that gave birth to it -- at least not without conscious and disciplined effort on the part of both developers and players. Because outside the arcade environment there are no arcade operators, and hence the compromise that led to the above formula is not necessary anymore. Without the operators to balance the demands of the players there's no reason for developers to try and challenge the players. Almost imperceptibly at first (as with Choh Makaimura and with many other titles released around that time), but with increasing boldness and disregard as time goes by, they move away from the arcade philosophy. They start to pander to the players: they flatter them, they play to their vanity, they give them elaborate cutscenes and ending cinematics and little useless trinkets (unlockables and the like) to trick them into feeling a sense of accomplishment -- the kind of feeling that they used to earn before by overcoming a difficult challenge.

And so the games become easier. And they lose their focus. And they degenerate.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby gr4yJ4Y » Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:17 pm

Cuckooguy wrote:Have... have you never played MM2 or MM3? I'd say 9 is harder than 2 but easier than 1.


I find this interesting since MM1, while not exactly a cake walk, is the only Mega Man game I've beaten. Wiley's Castle is just too hard on MM2. I think I got up to replaying all the bosses in 3, but have never gone back.

I think there is merit in the folks at Insomniac's idea of more complex and difficult games being for more advanced (or "true" as Isuka said) gamers. But I think even the most hardcore can get enjoyment from something "simple" and "easy" as Super Mario Galaxy. I don't think the fact that you don't have to do an analysis of bullet trajectory or spinning bird kicks to beat Galaxy makes it any less of a good game. It's just one without much replayability. Sometimes it's good to just sit back and play a game you don't have to put much effort into.

On the other hand, old-school games like Mega Man and Ghouls 'n' Ghosts are meant to follow this 1-credit rule. (I've actually tried it out and it makes games last longer and are somehow easier while giving me a better sense of accomplishment.)
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Crazy Penguin » Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:33 pm

If you're not a leather fetish masochist with a thing for hot candle wax and having your genitals whipped then you're not really a fan of sex, you just want a hug!
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby P.P.A. » Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:34 pm

Zeta wrote:I want an interactive experience that makes me feel BETTER, not worse after I'm done with it.

Doesn't it feel a lot better to finally overcome and incredibly challenging task you have mastered at last than getting the victor handed to you by the game without posing any challenge whatsoever?

Green Gibbon! wrote:How's come I never saw that video before? That was the coolest thing I've seen this month.

Old.
エアーマンが倒せない(TEAMねこかんversion): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1183279182
こいつはホントに協力する気があるのか?: http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1190620807
『クリアまでは眠らない!』(てつくずおきば×Team.ねこかん[猫]): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1196485873
『Can’t Beat Air Man』(「エアーマンが倒せない」英語版): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1198412152


I will write up on what kinda games I like later, I am currently not motivated the slightest.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Baba O'Riley » Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:44 pm

P.P.A. wrote:
Green Gibbon! wrote:How's come I never saw that video before? That was the coolest thing I've seen this month.

Old.
エアーマンが倒せない(TEAMねこかんversion): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1183279182
こいつはホントに協力する気があるのか?: http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1190620807
『クリアまでは眠らない!』(てつくずおきば×Team.ねこかん[猫]): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1196485873
『Can’t Beat Air Man』(「エアーマンが倒せない」英語版): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1198412152


I have to give an e-mail address of some sort, or perhaps register and log in.

And who cares if it's old? Not everyone has seen everything on the internet. It's a big place, with lots of catchy musical numbers.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby P.P.A. » Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:04 pm

Baba O'Riley wrote:
P.P.A. wrote:
Green Gibbon! wrote:How's come I never saw that video before? That was the coolest thing I've seen this month.

Old.
エアーマンが倒せない(TEAMねこかんversion): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1183279182
こいつはホントに協力する気があるのか?: http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1190620807
『クリアまでは眠らない!』(てつくずおきば×Team.ねこかん[猫]): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1196485873
『Can’t Beat Air Man』(「エアーマンが倒せない」英語版): http://de.nicovideo.jp/watch/1198412152


I have to give an e-mail address of some sort, or perhaps register and log in.

And who cares if it's old? Not everyone has seen everything on the internet. It's a big place, with lots of catchy musical numbers.

Yeah, but saying "Old." gives me an ego boost and makes me feel clever. Or something.

I forgot to include the band's website in my above post though.

http://blog.livedoor.jp/nekonekokankan/?blog_id=2406327
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby DackAttac » Sun Jan 25, 2009 4:22 pm

I agree with the time-management thing. If I'm going to be spending two or more paychecks' worth of leisure money on a game, then I don't want it to entertain me for an afternoon of anti-social-extreme levels of immersion. I'll put several chunks in, and when the game truly benefits from immersion because it's gripping (like a good book), I'll put in extra time.

Crazy Penguin wrote:If you're not a leather fetish masochist with a thing for hot candle wax and having your genitals whipped then you're not really a fan of sex, you just want a hug!

Dammit. Spot-on point, but my legs won't uncross now.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sun Jan 25, 2009 6:14 pm

Doesn't it feel a lot better to finally overcome and incredibly challenging task you have mastered at last than getting the victor handed to you by the game without posing any challenge whatsoever?


I don't want either, I want something in the middle. Generally I find that if a game causes me to die in the same spot 10 times with me trying various different things, than the game doesn't want me to win and it's obviously not worth my time.

Understand that arcade operators want the player to die (and as quickly as possible).

Understand also that players do not want to die.

Understand finally that the developers, whose job, as we have seen, is to please these two sets of demanding customers, have to strike a compromise, and the only satisfactory compromise that could be struck under the circumstances is:

Only the skilled may live -- the rest will die.

This harsh statement may as well have been engraved above the entrance of every arcade joint that ever existed. It is a direct consequence of the arcade industry's business model, and it forms the core of a formula around which all arcade games are built. It is responsible for the magic of arcade gaming.

But this magic cannot be recreated outside the environment that gave birth to it -- at least not without conscious and disciplined effort on the part of both developers and players. Because outside the arcade environment there are no arcade operators, and hence the compromise that led to the above formula is not necessary anymore. Without the operators to balance the demands of the players there's no reason for developers to try and challenge the players. Almost imperceptibly at first (as with Choh Makaimura and with many other titles released around that time), but with increasing boldness and disregard as time goes by, they move away from the arcade philosophy. They start to pander to the players: they flatter them, they play to their vanity, they give them elaborate cutscenes and ending cinematics and little useless trinkets (unlockables and the like) to trick them into feeling a sense of accomplishment -- the kind of feeling that they used to earn before by overcoming a difficult challenge.

And so the games become easier. And they lose their focus. And they degenerate.


This is a steaming pile of shit. Challenge does not equal fun or entertainment, which is the purpose of a game. And console games are far more complex and satisfying now than anything the arcades ever offered. The arcade experience is transitory and ultimately unsatisfying. You never progress in a world, you only progress in skill while your wallet becomes lighter. There aren't interesting characters or settings in arcades, there's only a brief experience of challenge with no substance besides raw difficulty. Console games are like little miniature worlds you peer into and become a PART of. It's like what Shigeru Miyamoto says - a good game is like your own private garden, some place that is both interesting, intricate, creates a personal experience for every player, and fun.

Arcade games are NOT like that. Arcade games are more like old carnival games. Step right up and try to knock some milkcans down. Take hammer and try to swing it down as hard as you can to ring the bell. There's no world or depth here, simply people desperately trying to prove themselves worthy of a brief challenge. They got slightly better, but there was no way to win. And as they continued to challenge the unbeatable game, their time slips away and their wallets get lighter with no tangible award. Nothing to take away from the experience but sweat, frustration, and perhaps a fleeting sense of victory.

And that's why arcades are dying, and why nobody goes to them anymore. They were fine when the technology only allowed programmers to portray a brief section of a world or challenge in a few minutes on a single screen, or a tournament featuring 12 static opponents in front of backdrops. Games have evolved beyond that now. It's like the difference between getting to see a couple of seconds of a black and white silent film and seeing 2-hours of story and sound. I'm not saying those old arcade style games are bad. They were perfect for the time, and they'll remain classic (although possibly more for nostalgia than anything else), but their time has passed.
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Postby Isuka » Sun Jan 25, 2009 6:14 pm

Crazy Penguin wrote:[Astoundingly bad analogy]

If by "leather fetish masochism, hot candle waxing and genital whipping" you mean A-cing the shit out of Sonic Adventure 2, parrying a 15 hit Super Art and delivering an incredibly amazing finisher to someone in Third Strike, 1CC-ing Mushihime-sama, milking RS's stages for all they're worth, or heck, even getting all stars in Super Mario Galaxy, and by "hug" you mean beating some random sudoku crap in Brain Training and somehow feeling smarter, or joggin' on place on your balance board for one hour and a half with Wii Fit and somehow feeling healthier/ slimmer, or wasting a cumulative total of 20 hours on random battles in, say, Final Fantasy X...

... then yeah, I take the intense S&M, thank you, and most probably every sane person with a taste for good sex should, too.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sun Jan 25, 2009 6:19 pm

If by "leather fetish masochism, hot candle waxing and genital whipping" you mean A-cing the shit out of Sonic Adventure 2, parrying a 15 hit Super Art and delivering an incredibly amazing finisher to someone in Third Strike, 1CC-ing Mushihime-sama, milking RS's stages for all they're worth, or heck, even getting all stars in Super Mario Galaxy,


But did you actually have fun by doing that, or were you just trying to prove you had a big video dick?

I got all the stars in Mario Galaxy, because it WAS fun. Fun is subjective, but when you're playing a game for the challenge so you can brag to all of your GameFaqs pals, instead of fun, then you may have some self-esteem problems that need to be addressed.
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Postby Isuka » Sun Jan 25, 2009 6:33 pm

... Now, what kind of argument is "are you having fun mastering the game and getting the spectacular results of your efforts"? Some kind of lack-of-an-actual-argument, perhaps?

No, really.
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sun Jan 25, 2009 6:53 pm

... Now, what kind of argument is "are you having fun mastering the game and getting the spectacular results of your efforts"? Some kind of lack-of-an-actual-argument, perhaps?


Actually, the meat of my argument - that games in which achievement and skill-grinding is the sole focus and point are shallow time-wasters is above, and you skipped over it.

And you can study math for days and ace a math test. You'll get spectacular results, but that doesn't mean you had fun doing it. Games should not feel like work. When I experience that, I want to be paid in money, not a congrats screen or people fellating me in YouTube comments in broken English.
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Postby Isuka » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:03 pm

The experience is intense and most definitely fun per se, much in the way that fucking around little asteroids and collecting crap or maybe even smoking weed is, too.

Oh, and consoles didn't kill arcades. Read further in the link:

Alex Kierkegaard wrote:Why the East is the best

The official explanation for why arcades are dead in the West is that the consoles killed them. This is what most people will tell you.

But if this is the only reason, then why are arcades in Japan still alive, and in certain genres (fighting, shooting, rhythm) even thriving and leading the way? Consoles mauled arcades in Japan too, but they didn't quite manage to kill them dead. Why is that?

Some of the more knowledgeable people will have an answer to this. Arcades are still alive in Japan, they will say, because of the way cities are laid out, with game centers to be found in every sizable neighborhood, next to coin laundries, subway stations, etc. Students and salarimen have developed a habit of going to the arcades before and after school or work, and during breaks, and they are the ones who sustain them. In the US, in contrast, arcades are usually in malls in the middle of nowhere, and people have to go out of their way to reach them.

Now this explanation certainly accounts for the larger part of the US, but it doesn't account for European cities, which have more in common with the tight layout of Japanese cities than with the downtown/suburbia model of many American ones.

So let me provide the last piece to this puzzle.

Arcades survived in Japan because far more players there came to realize the essence of arcade gaming, and knew very well that those new-fangled full-motion-video wankfests that started appearing during the 32-bit era could never provide them with the rush that only an unforgiving arcade game can. So even though many were seduced by the cheaper, easier, better-looking console games, many others were not, and these are the ones we have to thank for the survival of the arcade form.

In the West, though, the one-credit rule never really took hold, and as a result the vast majority of players never managed to get good at anything -- many of them in fact being so ignorant as to regard 1CCing as impossible. Going back to my childhood I remember that in the arcades I frequented there were always a couple of guys who were said to have 1CCed this or that game, but I rarely ever saw such a feat in person, and pretty much everyone around credit-fed games when they could afford to.

Credit-feeding was never looked down upon in the West, and therefore the vast majority of players never got a chance to become skilled in any particular genre. So when the consoles overtook the arcades in the technical specs, and when, for the first time, home games started looking better than arcade ones, the masses were seduced by the high resolutions and pretty colors and CG cutscenes, and there was nothing that they missed from the arcade days -- indeed, they were happy to be finally rid of all those "shallow quarter-munchers". They never knew the buzz one gets from ruthless high-level competition (as in all kinds of versus games), or from that of high-level performance requiring immense concentration (as in shooting games), and so they never missed it.

Why did this ethic take such a strong hold in Japan, to the point where credit-feeding is now considered unthinkable, and not in the West, where credit-feeding is considered normal and everyone who objects is labeled elitist?

Doubtless the answer has something to do with cultural differences, and doubtless part of it is that Japan has produced 99% of arcade games worth mentioning, so I guess it's only natural that they understand these games better than we do.

And before that:

Alex Kierkegaard wrote:But to be this good doesn't take ages

Really, it doesn't. Arcade games may be like sports in some ways, but we are not talking about synchronized swimming here, where athletes must be in tune with every single muscle of their body, and where they have to train since early childhood if they are to be any good. Once upon a time people like me could boast that our skill at arcade games was due to our superior reflexes, which had been honed by playing these games for decades, but these days there are enough nineteen-year-olds winning tournaments and dominating high-score boards to expose our empty posturing for what it was.


So it doesn't take years to get good at arcade games, but it still takes something. It takes a different mindset. Because as long as you approach Metal Slug the same way you approach Onimusha, you will keep sucking. Modern action games require almost no skill whatsoever (and yes, this includes DMC 3 and the 3D Ninja Gaiden and anything else you'd care to mention). They are designed to be finished within a more or less set amount of time -- sometimes it even says so on the box! The player is supposed to run through them -- not struggle against them. You spend a couple of evenings in front of your TV, you get to the end, and that's it.


But do the same thing with an arcade game and you'll get nowhere. Sports analogy time again: no one gets good at tennis or swimming by training for two days straight: the way to do it is by short practice sessions several times a week, and keeping this up for long enough to see results.


The arcade environment even facilitates this, as people drop by on their way to school or work, playing a few credits and then going about their business, and coming back later that same day, and the next day, and the one after that.


And there is yet another aspect of the arcades that is relevant here, and that is completely lost on those who have never experienced it. An arcade is a highly social environment; those of its strengths which are not due to the pay-per-play business model stem from this fact.


If getting past a certain stage in a game or figuring out a scoring mechanic is giving you too much trouble -- in other words, if you get stuck at some point -- all you have to do is hang back for a while, and before long someone will come by and do it all for you right in front of your eyes. He will show you how to best use your weapons, which power-ups to pick up, where on screen to place yourself at the crucial moments, how to avoid the bosses' attack patterns and when to launch your counter-attack: dude, he will show you everything. And you can even ask questions when he's done!


Remember when I said in the beginning that an arcade has this quality of turning whiny kids into ninjas? Yeah, this is what I meant.


As long as you make the decision to never continue again and concentrate on a couple of games at a time, playing a few credits a day or every other day, getting advice from others, and keeping this up for a couple of months or so, you will begin to see dramatic improvements.


And for total arcade noobs, who've never 1CCed anything in their lives, it's important to note that things get much easier (and a whole lot more fun) once you've mastered the first couple of games. Once you've managed to get to the fourth or fifth stage in a Cave shooter, doing the same on most others will take you less than half the time the first one did. Once you've mastered a character in a 2D fighting game for the first time, memorized his whole moveset and learned the workings of the system so as to get past the button-mashing stage, doing the same thing for another 2D fighter becomes infinitely easier. In every arcade genre: light gun, platform, rhythm, whatever, there's this initial hurdle to overcome, after which you are no longer the credit-feeding, shell-shocked noob, but someone who's been there and knows what he has to do and how to go about improving.


But of course if you are sitting at home by yourself, trying to play some arcade game on your laptop's tiny screen with a keyboard or some punkass flimsy pad, loading up the game with a dozen credits at a time -- games designed to be played on appropriate displays, with at the very least decent arcade sticks, in an environment that rewards mastery and fosters competition (not only in versus games, but also through the use of high score tables) -- yeah, is it any wonder that people who first come in contact with these games in such a miserable way end up calling them "quarter-munchers", shallow, boring, stupidly difficult, a dying breed...


If only ignorant and stupid gamers were a dying breed!
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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:18 pm

I read it, and it still sounds like they're trying to turn fun into a job. I don't want to be an athlete, I just want to have fun. And if a bunch of nostalgia-ridden elitist pricks have a problem with it, too bad. It sounds way too much like MMORPG players - you're not a TRUE gamer if you don't pwn something. You're not a true gamer if you don't study the game every day like you're preparing to take an SAT. Best summed up thusly: "You're not a true gamer if you like anything developed in a style that was invented after my 13th birthday."

And most importantly: You're not a true gamer if you don't give me the opportunity to prove to you how much better I am than YOU! :twisted: You can still find the "social aspects" of arcades on Xbox Live or World of Warcraft. The elitist achievement gamers just migrated to a place where they could wave their E-peen at people around the world instead of the mall.

Rassin-frassin kids getting their durn FMVs on my lawn! In my day, we didn't get any continues! We had to walk 13 miles in the snow uphill both ways to get the arcade! And we enjoyed it! These kids today with their hiphop and their hula hoops and their narratives and their character development and their dialogue and their cutscenes and their dungarees!

Why won't anyone look at my high score! Isn't it awesome?

Anyobdy?

Please?! ;_;
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Re:

Postby Ritz » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:31 pm

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Re: Mega Man Nine

Postby Zeta » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:40 pm

I'm not saying that I want those games to stop, or that you should stop having fun with them. What I AM saying is that people shouldn't use those games as an excuse to look down on people who don't play them. There should not be a hierarchy of video games. We get enough of that shitty fake social status crap in real life. Please keep it out of the gaming community. I know it's futile to ask, but when people start trying to beat their chest and go "Oook ook! Arcade games am real games! You loser if you play game with cutscene! I told u I wuz hardcore! OOOK!", I'm not going to stand down and let them do it - because in the end, you're still waving your ego around because you play with a SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT KIND OF TOY THAN ANOTHER PERSON.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to play a new game on *gasp* EASY MODE. What a loser, am I rite?
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Postby Isuka » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:44 pm

Yeah, a boring, lame baby toy that does less stuff.

Ritz wrote:Speedrunning Alien Soldier. Right? Right?

Well, AS lacks a scoring aspect so it's pretty much the only way to go with it, unless you wanna try taking out the fodder between boss fights. But then there is the limited ammo and the difficulty of getting it back.

Zeta wrote:Why won't anyone look at my high score! Isn't it awesome?

Anyobdy?

Please?! ;_;

Alex Kierkegaard wrote:The arcade takes up two basketball-court-sized floors and is packed with a couple hundred cabinets. Right now most of them are in use, and around the newer, more popular games there are lines of three or four, or sometimes as many as a dozen people waiting to have a go.
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Isuka
 
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Re:

Postby Ritz » Sun Jan 25, 2009 7:56 pm

Isuka wrote:Well, AS lacks a scoring aspect

It doesn't, it's just pointless.
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Ritz
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