We're back to doujin-games. Released at the "prestigious" Japanese nerd-collective, Comiket 69 in 2005, Suguri is a rather unique horizontal shooting-game, featuring clever mechanics that, while not genre-redefining, allow Suguri to stand on it's own as a solid, if not essential shooting experience.



In the early years of the Nintendo 64, Nintendo had time and time again, touted their new Disk-Drive expansion as the second-coming of Christ himself. The 64DD, as it became known, featured a proprietary re-writable disk format that would allow for customization never before seen - in a Nintendo game, that is.

They promised Zelda 64, which would feature a fully interactive, and totally persistent world, where every minute change you make, be it cutting down trees, leaving footprints, or smashing pots, would be permanent. They promised several sequels to Mario Paint, each one focusing on different elements of design, and utilizing the re writable disk format to store mass-quantities of user-created content. They promised new games, not before possible (on a Nintendo console), including SimCity, and Doshin the Giant (which is sort of like SimCity).

Of course, the 64DD was delayed - repeatedly - ultimately launching nearly 3 years after it's initial projected release-date. Because it was pushed back so far, many of it's killer-apps were ported to the vanilla N64, instead. The combination of numerous delays, and a lack of any true attention grabbers (F-Zero Expansion Kit, aside) the 64DD was a catastrophic failure - it was discontinued quicker than the Dreamcast after seeing only nine games - half of which were expansion to base 64DD games. All of it's ongoing projects were either shifted to the N64, or the then impending GameCube, if not swiftly cancelled outright.

Animal Thugs, despite it's quirky and difficult-to-market nature, was fortunate enough to get resurrected on the GameCube, primed for a Japanese release.... where it bombed - hard.

Nintendo decided it was not worth localizing the game for the western market, after all, if a game is too strange for Japan, it certainly stood no chance in football-watchin', jerky-eatin', America. Atlus disagreed, and in 2002, they published Cubivore for the GameCube in the US... where it bombed.



SegaSonic Popcorn Shop

In today's installment of Hedgehogs Never Tell I'd like to do something completely different.

In 1993, as I've said, countless times, Sonic was the hypest shit. His shit-eating grin graced every imaginable product conceivable - transcending typical gaming merchandise, Sonic got his own Thanksgiving Day Parade float, was emblazoned on commercial jets, and had several concurrent television series. This, of course wasn't enough milk for Sega, who decided to throw their IP into the ring, and tackle the exciting, competitive world of....

Vending machines....


Joy Mech Fight

1993 was the golden-age a fighting games. Major classic franchises - Fatal FurySamurai ShodownStreet Fighter, Mortal Kombat, et al - had dug their tendrils into the minds and hearts of the masses. All the while, Sega was innovating in bold new ways, introducing both the genre and its dedicated fans to the third dimension, with their brand-new IP, Virtua Fighter.

But what about Sega's then rival in the home-market, Nintendo? Without the arcade presence they had in the early eighties, surely Nintendo could not compete with the likes of Capcom, SNK, Sega, and Namco, right?

Yes, you are right.



Oh, hey, remember when I said I was going to be writing more?

Ahem.... Well, anyway,  this past weekend an up-and-coming German shmup developer by the name of Infinite Vile released an independently published, dubiously titled  manic-shooter, NYXX. How does one pronounce NYXX? Is it a word? Is it an acronym? After the bump, all these questions, and more...will be rendered irrelevant since NYXX is a damned good shooter.


SYNSO & Squid Harder

Before this blog went on two-year hiatus (sorry about that), I had discussed several shooting games, in rather explicit detail, noting every nuance of their scoring systems, and power-ups. I had also previously reviewed the then unknown predecessor to the PS4 indie darling, OctoDad. As we all know, both shmups and cephalopods alike are pivotal cornerstone gaming conventions. That's why, many years ago, a British programmer by the name of Robert "OddBob" Fearon beat Young Horses to the punch in regards to tentacled-protagonists, going even farther, and combing these classic themes into one, giving the world SYNSO...


Sonic Xtreme

Oh, I didn't see you come in there. Haha.

Welcome, once again, the Hedgehogs Never Tell,  a series where I ramble on and on about Sonic games, and you feign interest. Now, picking up more or less exactly where we had left off in the last installment, would bring us to 1994. Ah, 1994, the year The Scream was stolen in Germany, and everyone wore flannel shirts,  and although Bill Clinton was the president, Sonic the Hedgehog was king, as far as kids, and marketing analysts where concerned.

In addition to being the most relevant videogame series/character of the time, he also appeared in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, and boasted a soundtrack written by Michael Jackson himself. But this wasn't enough for Sonic, who drunk with fame, and surrounded by yes-men, co-launched not one, but two animated television series in September of '93. Why did they need to make two? I don't know. One was a syndicated weekday cartoon, that channeled Tex Avery's coke-fueled slapstick humor, and the other was exclusively broadcast on ABC, trying to paint the series as a much darker affair, despite still being about furries with shiny red kicks.

"Well, that's all fine and well", you must be thinking "But what has this to do with video-games?"
And I would respond with "Shut up. I'm getting there"


Yeti Hunter

Man has forever been haunted by the unknown; for as long as man could communicate, there have been legends and tales of horrible monsters that lurk in the shadows unknown waiting to strike. What do they want? Where did they come from? Who knows? Who cares? All that matters is that they are there, we don't know what they're up to, and we must destroy them, for some reason. This is Yeti Hunter.


Lethal Application

Lethal Application is a doujin-shooter, featuring a female protagonist, and a science-fiction setting. No, no, don't leave just yet. Lethal Application is actually very innovative in it's design, straying far away from standard SHMUP conventions. In it, your primary method of combat is also your chief form of mobility; they are one in the same, and offer different results depending on how you apply them, hence the game's clever title.

It's like Shakespeare. Nothing short of poetry in motion.