December 6, 2011

Sweet’N Low – The Adventure of Link

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , — Jamie Love @ 1:50 pm

sweet n low zelda 2 the adventure of link
Faithful Sugarfiends have likely noticed the slack in activities of late. In truth, I have a to-do list that spirals out the door, and hardly an ounce of interest in tackling any of it. In particular, there are some 3DS games we should be talking about this month, but countering my productivity is the fact that I can avoid a full 3DS game by using the handheld to play Zelda 2.

But it hasn’t been the short nostalgia kick I was looking for – in fact I enjoy the game more now, as if I had to go and age for twenty more years to really “get it”. That said, the experience is proving merciless – I’ve died so many times that I wake up hearing Ganon laugh at me. And yet, with every death comes some small increment of progress – I grab the candle to light the way through caves but die, only to return and score another stat increase before dying, only to again return and discover that after dispatching some troublesome knights, that horse-headed boss wasn’t nearly so hard as everything guarding him within the first palace.

There are no helpful arrows pointing out that I should discover a trophy within a cave to earn the high-jump – everything I earn is a reward for perseverance, and convinces that lost feeling of really having suffered in order to gain, which seems to make even the smallest moments more memorable as Link proudly hoists swag over his head.

The frustrating and at times incomprehensible game from my childhood is now the shining star that tests the player in equal measure with Link, convincing the elements of his adventure in a way largely taken for granted within Skyward Sword.

Rather than slip into an essay on the subject however, I’d prefer to put the call out to you and ask if you’ve ever had a similar experience with a game.

So you know, have at it below.

May 7, 2011

Refresh Rate – Snake Rattle ‘n’ Roll

Filed under: Archives — Tags: , , , , — Nathan White @ 12:28 pm

Refresh Rate Snake Rattle N Roll
As much as people discuss the emergence of casual audiences today, the 8-bit Nintendo era was the perfect casual crossroads in videogame technology from my nostalgic vantage point. It was far more cost efficient than the computers of the day, with the savings far out-weighing what those computers could offer the casual consumer for entertainment. It also offered the potential for more complex types of games than the vastly inferior blocks and bleeps of the earlier Atari 2600 and other contenders prior to the infamous crash of the industry.

And as the NES found its way into more living rooms, it became an ideal platform for the ultimate casual player time-sink; puzzle games.

From my own childhood, I can comfortably say that the release of the NES version of Tetris caused a massive influx of casual gaming interest. Different from the Wii boom, this was still a time when videogames were viewed as little more than children’s toys, and as a result this first casual revolution did not serve to sell more Nintendo consoles to casual players but instead saw game time on your own Nintendo eroded, chiefly by your parent’s newly sparked interest in your toy.


December 9, 2010

Refresh Rate – Crystalis

Filed under: Archives — Tags: , , , , , , — Nathan White @ 5:49 pm

It’s funny how growing up with video games can fragment your perception of them in retrospect. I vividly remember my mom picking up a game for me on her way home from work from Acme Video on a regular basis, and hastily grabbing the most visually pleasing box from the shelf devil-may-care, as she always did.

That habit led to my introduction to Crystalis, which I remembered really liking, but when the time came for the game to return to the store it fell away to new anticipation – would the next game to come home be another Crystalis, or merely a Captain Comic?

Crystalis must have left an impression on me, because later in life, being a grown up and able to pick my own games, my thoughts drifted back to that particular weekend, necessitating a trip to my local video game haunt to find out if my memory was playing tricks on me.


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