February 28, 2010

Lazy Sunday – Join The Club

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , — Jamie Love @ 10:21 am

Join The Club
Drifting through aisles of older games is one of life’s more precious delights, one which I ended up enjoying yesterday, while actually trying to take an afternoon off from gaming – an utterly impossible goal. For some reason drowning in new title choices drives me toward seeking out ones I missed, the result being that I came home with Tomb Raider Underworld and The Club.

The continuing saga of Lara Croft is like a disease I willingly infect myself with – the game absolutely aggravates me to no end, but I can’t stop playing it. I’m pretty sure the answer for my illness is that repeatedly dying over simple mistakes makes me desperate to do it right doublefast. If I die fighting the toughest boss in the world, I never find it hard to put the controller down. But when I die because Lara misses a ledge grab, or decides to jump in the wrong direction, well then I can’t leave off looking that inept, even if no one is there to see it. As frustrating as this experience is, I’ll still take its worn-out wares over the stripped down Prince of Persia solution any day.

Now while I didn’t play it as much last night, The Club is a glorious surprise, one of those games that reminds me that I should occasionally pay attention to Sega titles that didn’t just get off the plane from Japan – it’s hard to believe the game comes from Bizarre Creations.

Join The Club
The game mixes in a lot of familiar elements, along with your typical cast of characters, and then throws you into levels where the only objective is to reach the finish line with the maximum number of points. Scoring points is all about chaining kills, killing the next guy within a window after the last guy, scoring more points based on accuracy and finding bonuses around each stage. The real treat is the way the entire experience pulls together, putting an action button to good use by reducing the focus to shooting as fast as possible, so that hitting a single button to smash through barriers only raises the adrenaline and encourages the player to come out shooting and never let up, with accuracy and style serving as the layered challenge.

And since I’m thinking about games I’ve missed, let’s segway into games lots of people will miss, because March begins tomorrow, ushering in what I still insist is a complete release window clusterf**k of games – which is great for gamers, but there just isn’t enough money to make everyone a winner in this scenario. Of the titles I’m pulling for, Infinite Space is the only one that stands a safe chance, since there’s plenty of room on the DS even within Pokemon swooping in for the double punch.

Resonance of Fate
Then there’s Resonance of Fate and Fragile, two titles I can’t say a lot about yet, except that I’ve been looking forward to playing them both for a very long time.

Where the Wii is concerned, coming off the high left by Shattered Memories and No More Heroes 2 leaves me counting on Fragile to make an impression – it’s the reason why even Hudson’s The Calling is on my must-check-out list for March, and another reason why I really need a copy of Project Zero 4.

With Resonance of Fate, I honesty just like the fact that it isn’t Final Fantasy 13, much in the same way I appreciate anything next month that isn’t God of War 3. And if that makes you want to throw a brick my way or shit one out in the comments, go ahead, but it really has nothing to do with declaring any game out-rightly better than the other. I’m just entirely sick of hearing about those two damn games. I’ve put my time into both those franchises, and enjoyed a good chunk of it, but it’s time for something new, and when it comes to catching up on titles I missed later, those are going to be the two easiest to find copies of long after release.

I salute brand power and it’s warm assurances of the familiar, but life’s just too damn short and expensive for overdoses of the expected. In other words, I’m of the opinion that both of those triple A monsters lost sight of the forest for the hardware power in a very straight-forward way that fails to excite me.

What does excite me, for better and for worse?

Bizarre and fascinating uses for DSi technologyhigh-horse words from those entitled to access and wanting to keep it for themselvesand imagining uses for my 32X.

End of Line.


  1. I love buying a bunch of older cheaper games… it’s really neat to be able to haul home 6 new games for the price of 1 regular priced game. I bought The Club shortly after launch at $19.99 at my local Target that had it on clearance, it is a pretty neat arcade style fast paced game. As for Tomb Raider Underworld… I can’t bring myself to even play the first level… I don’t want to jump off the boat… I am a sissy. Which makes me wonder why the hell I bought Endless Ocean 2… hell I was scared to play the underwater levels in Mario 64… :(

    *Ahem* As for titles coming this month… I’ve got Infinite Space, Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey & God Of War III CE on pre-order…

    Comment by Ujn Hunter — February 28, 2010 @ 8:39 pm

  2. Wha? Jump in that water! There’s only a few sharks in there…

    Comment by Jamie Love — March 1, 2010 @ 8:36 am

  3. Haha… while I have yet to jump in the water… this weekend did bring in a lovely cheap gaming haul! Seeing as I received a pretty nice tax return I went out and hit all the local stores in search of bargains! First I went to Toys R’ Us and found copies of De Blob (Wii), SNK Arcade Classics Vol. 1 (PS2) & Soul Bubbles (DS) for $5 each. Next (right next door) I went to Best Buy and found copies of Pikmin (Wii $7.99), Lock’s Quest(DS $7.99), Overlord Minions (DS $4.99) & Lux-Pain w/ Artbook (DS $14.99). Then after not finding anything worth while at Target, I went to Walmart and picked up copies of Heavenly Guardian (Wii $10) & Final Fantasy Chocobo Mysterious Dungeon (Wii $19.99). Not too shabby, even if some of those titles didn’t get very good reviews… the ones that did make up for them. :)

    Comment by Ujn Hunter — March 8, 2010 @ 11:30 am

  4. Jebus Ujn, that’s an incredible haul. Especially scoring Soul Bubbles and De Blob – 2 criminally under mentioned games for sure.

    Comment by Jamie Love — March 8, 2010 @ 11:54 am

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