Leave it to a totally random PS2 game to have me reflecting on what gaming means to me.
Part Dance Dance Revolution, part Pop'n Music, and all Konami.
Though its popularity has waned in recent years, Konami’s Dance Dance Revolution franchise has seen numerous entries on literally every platform on the market. It also seemingly single handedly saved arcades from total annilhilation: or at least it staved off their downfall for a few more years. For myself, DDR was a way of life in high school. A group of my friends and I would play every day (no exaggeration there, we’d literally play every day), oftentimes directly after a swim practice or other school event. We even had a small rivalry going with another group of DDR-players at the arcades and in school! While I deemed myself good at the game, I was never anywhere near a competitive level, with even my friends topping me at every corner. Regardless, Dance Dance Revolution made up a large part of my gaming years. I’ve been thinking about the game recently, after picking up a random game in the series, and that got me thinking about my all-time favorite songs from the series. Now, I’ve written a lot of articles on this blog about top tens and whatnot, but nothing has been as challenging to narrow down to just ten than this list! It was tough, but I managed to whittle down all the songs I’ve danced to to just ten, and here they are, my top ten favorite DDR songs! (more…)
When a game series has been around for the better part of two decades you would expect there to be some standout entries amongst the spread of games. And, undoubtedly, whichever your favorite game is won’t be someone else’s favorite. Final Fantasy is no exception to this, with 14 numbered games in the series and dozens of spinoffs, re-releases, and games in Japan that we’ll never get the chance to play here in America. One of those spinoffs was 2012’s oddly titled Theatrhythm Final Fantasy, a rhythm based game encompassing many of the series’ most iconic music tracks in a somewhat RPG-like experience on the 3DS. Though that game was remarkably fun (read my review and see why!), the sequel, Theatrhyhm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call, literally makes the original game obsolete. (more…)
Werewolves, vampires, mummies, skeletons, and all things that go bump in the night start to jump in the night in Gabrielle’s Ghostly Groove 3D on the Nintendo 3DS. When you get the hiccups and suddenly turn into a ghost (I know, bad luck, right?), the only way to get back your corporeal form and rejoin your grieving mother is to dance and rock out with all variety of Halloween cliches. While the concept is fine and the art style is eye catching, the brevity, repetitiveness, and overly simplistic gameplay keep Gabrielle from being anything memorable.
My excitement was high when I saw this game sitting on the shelf. I thought to myself, “No way! Pop’n Music for only $4! And on the Wii, eh? That just might be able to work.”
Why I thought so highly of the Wii and its controls I do not know, because Pop’n Music this is not. Konami, why did you do this to me? Why didn’t you just release a true version of Pop’n Music here in the United States, with an official 9-Button controller and the actual gameplay the series is known for? I would have greatly played and praised that game, but instead I have this musical tragedy.
Be honest: when was the last time you sat down and played a Rock Band/Guitar Hero game? If you’re like me, and undoubtedly countless other gamers, then your plastic instruments have been collecting dust somewhere, not nearly getting as much love as they use to just a couple short years ago. Well Harmonix, the creators of Rock Band, had that in mind when coming up with the newest iteration of their music simulator. Rock Band Blitz is a dramatic change for the series that gives gamers a different approach to the rhythm genre. (more…)
It’s been a long time since I created the Modern Classics library, and I’ve completely neglected it over these pasts months. With that in mind I set out to reinvent the series, and I wanted to start with a game that easily fit into the Modern Classic criteria:
It has to be a fun, new, innovative, or personal favorite of myself and gamers;
Leaving behind a legacy for the video game world to remember is a plus, and;
There has to be something here that I can teach you about the game.
And what did I come up with? Dance Dance Revolution. And very quickly, actually.