Tag Archives: future

FGC #581 NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139…

Note: This post will involve a lot of spoilers for any game with “NieR” in the title. It’s unfortunately inevitable, and if you’d like to go into the franchise “clean”, I would recommend avoiding this article. Or don’t, and realize why you should play all NieR. Regardless, you’ve been warned.

Silhouettes on the ShadeLet’s settle this right now: which is better, Papa Nier or Brother Nier?

I don’t consider myself to be an expert on much (absolute lie), but I do consider myself to be an expert on the subject of all things NieR(s). I even occasionally remember to capitalize that R at the end! But, to be clear, I am not an expert on NieR because I somehow dedicated myself wholly to the game in an effort to make that one video on Youtube with all the glaring errors…

No, I consider myself an expert on NieR because NieR makes you play the game way too much. You have to complete like half the game four times to get the initial four endings?! And now there’s another one that requires even more playing of the same content? Dammit! I don’t know how your memory works, but I can safely say that after playing the same scenes over and over again, I’m pretty sure I’ve got half the script memorized (or at least everything Kainé says. I’m afraid of her calling me a little bitch for not listening). And now NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139… has got me playing it all again! A bunch of times! Bah! I’m going to start waving around a phoenix spear if I have to gather those memory alloys one more time.

But there is a significant difference between the NieR I played in 2010 and the remake released eleven years later: Nier is different. Nier was originally conceived of as a brother to a doting sister, but was remade into a Sad Dad for his visit stateside. This meant that “Papa Nier” became the Nier most familiar to American (and Goggle Bob) audiences, while “Brother Nier” was a wholly Japan-based creature. Now Brother Nier is here in the spotlight, and Papa Nier is seemingly erased from history (again). And that can mean only one thing: it is time for them to fight!

So which Nier fits the world of NieR better? Let’s go head-to-head with Brother and Papa variants!

FGC #471 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 4: Turtles in Time

Cowabunga!Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time was the sequel to the enormously popular Konami arcade title, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. While they were only released two years apart (1989 vs. 1991), home videogame technology had progressed dramatically in the intervening years, and Turtles in Time could be ported to the “revolutionary” Super Nintendo, and not the severely compromised Nintendo Entertainment System. As a result, many claimed the SNES Turtles in Time cartridge was the first perfect port of one of Konami’s amazing licensed beat ‘em ups. This became very important in the years to come, as other popular beat ‘em ups from the era, like The Simpsons or X-Men, would not see a faithful port until approximately three console generations later.

Unfortunately, Turtles in Time for the SNES is by no means an exact port. It is a fun, interesting game, but it is also a failure for arcade purity. So what are the differences between the arcade and SNES versions of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time? Well…

Less Animated

ZAPThis is probably the greatest problem for TMNT:TiT:SNES, and the item most likely to be missed by its young audience. Back in ’92, if you were capable of playing your SNES next to an arcade cabinet, you’d immediately see how so many animations were dropped during the conversion. The turtles themselves lost emotive movements across the board. Each and every boss loses taunting gestures and unique death animations. Foot Soldiers slide from a gang of bullies to identical robots. Even your enemies’ death animations are transformed from teleportation effects to simple, mundane explosions.

And isn’t that always the way? You’re sold on a “perfect” arcade port, but what do you get? A product that is now only south of being perfect, but unmistakably wrong when held up to its remarkable origin. You’re expected to just ignore it. To love it anyway. But you can’t, can you? Now that you know it’s compromised, you’re always going to see the issues, and no amount of extra cannon balls or bonus stages is ever going to change that. Oh, you get Mode 7 on the home port? Bah! Nobody has ever cared about Mode 7, you cop.

Four Players vs. Two Players

Yummy!Four players is the ideal number of players for a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles beat ‘em up. Why? There are four turtles! This is abundantly obvious, but guess how many turtles can be simultaneously playable in the SNES version? Two. Just two. So, like some kind of wretched Battletoad, the turtles are limited to pairs while recovering the Statue of Liberty from the Foot Clan. Where are the other two turtles while a duo saves the day? Who knows! But they could be right there, just like in the arcade version.

Of course, maybe the lack of four players was a boon for the console version. When was the last time you had four people crowded around your Super Nintendo? Hell, when was the last time you got even two people together to play the same game? And, no, Smash Bros. doesn’t count. I’m talking about a cooperative, multiplayer title that was meant to hold everyone’s interest past the first level. Tell the truth: Portal 2’s coop levels are still sitting there unplayed, aren’t they? Ever actually play with a buddy in those New Super Mario Bros. games? Have you ever seen Luigi? Even once? Yeah, I didn’t think so. Sit down, buddy, TMNT:TiT:SNES just saved you having to affirm how you only have, like, two friends, and they both live in Idaho for some reason. They left you. You are alone. At least one SNES game doesn’t rub it in.

A Whole New Stage!

Also a great action figureYeah, that’s right… The Super Nintendo version isn’t a failure. It’s actually better than the arcade original! What further proof do you need than the Technodrome stage, a completely new level that does not appear in the arcade. It’s got two or three bosses, loads of interesting traps and tricks, and what is a TMNT game without the Technodrome? It was an oversight that such an important locale did not appear at your local arcade.

Except… we did already have the Technodrome at the arcade. It was in the previous game. And, unlike the city street from the second level, there really isn’t that much variety available to the Technodrome. There are a lot of streets and sewers in NYC, but only one Technodrome. And did Turtles in Time ever actually need a Technodrome? We already have the space base of 2100, which, complete with a Krang fight, is clearly the Technodrome expy for this adventure. What does that make the SNES Technodrome level? Nothing. It’s bloat in a game that is already limiting your credits to increase replay/rental value. So, sorry Virginia, there is no Santa Claus, just some Konami director that decided they could bleed a few more minutes out of your life with another superfluous challenge. Do you feel good about finishing that elevator level that took seven seconds to render? Hold on to that feeling, you simpleton.

Bonus Stages!

GET THAT PIZZAJust to break up the monotony of your typical beat ‘em up, the SNES version scattered a few bonus levels across the game. In both cases, they are levels that already appeared in the arcade version, but were repurposed for collecting pizza boxes and occasionally dodging enormous pepperoni xenomorphs. Both stages also feature the turtles zooming around on surf/hover boards, so there’s a lovely feeling of speed and urgency, even if you’re stuck in a sewer.

Though these stages aren’t really a bonus, are they? They’re there to break up the “monotony” of a beat ‘em up? What if you actually like playing beat ‘em ups? What if the game you purchased and already played in the arcade was already the game you actually wanted to play? Why would you need some pizza-nabbing mission in the middle of a game about slashing robots to bits? It’s just more busy-work, brought down to the masses so maybe, for one level, you can have a friendly competition with that second (but not third or fourth) player. I’m not even entertaining the possibility that your buddy survived to the second bonus level, 2020 AD. That’s entirely improbable. You’ll be alone again by 2020, just like in real life.

New Bosses!

Watch the hornsTokka and Rahzar originally appeared in the arcade pirates-based stage, but they were transported to an earlier (yet somehow, chronologically, later) level when the Technodrome needed a spare boss or two. And who replaced them on the gangplank galleon? Bebop and Rocksteady! And they’re dressed like pirates! They have unique, epoch-appropriate weapons and everything! Leatherhead doesn’t fit his archaic surroundings, but Bebop and Rocksteady (of all people!) know how to cosplay with the best of ‘em.

Of course, some of the other new bosses found on the home console aren’t as creative. The Rat King now leads in the third stage, and he’s riding the Footski, a sort of jet ski-tank. And where did such a thing originate? Well, this vehicle barely appeared in the animated series (and was pretty far off-model when it was showcased in all of one episode), but it was a pretty popular toy at the time. In fact, the version the Rat King rides here is likely wholly inspired by the toy. And why would the generally independent Rat King be riding a Foot Soldier vehicle? Why, it couldn’t be to sell more toys, could it? It couldn’t be because your entire childhood was a lie, and everything you ever loved and adored was a trick to make your parents spend more money on cheap doodads that would inevitably be destroyed when the next piece of plastic crap came along. And that certainly isn’t the same reason Cement Man, an arcade boss that was miraculously never featured as an action figure, was replaced by Slash, one of the most plentiful TMNT figures out there. Why, it almost seems like these new bosses weren’t added to the game to add variety or challenge, but just as more reasons for you to scream at your parents that you need, “More!” right now. Consume, children, consume.

Super Shredder!

SHRED HEADSpeaking of popular toys, the finale of the original TMNT: TiT is simply Shredder in the Technodrome (hey, you do get there) menacing our hero turtles with ninja magic or some such nonsense. Back on the home console, the fight is exactly the same, but Super Shredder is your opponent. He powered up to super levels, and now you have to defeat the unstoppable beast that appeared at the end of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Secret of the Ooze.

The Super Shredder toy was my holy grail when I was about eight years old. I wasn’t a giant Shredder fan, but, for some reason, Super Shredder was never available in my area, so my doting grandparents could never buy me that one toy I wanted. I would have done anything for a Super Shredder! And I had one chance: my dad worked with a guy that had a part time job at the local toy store. Hooray! Surely he would be able to figure out where magical, nearly non-existent toys come from! And one day he called my dad, because two Super Shredders had finally arrived. I was ecstatic, and my father and I rushed to the toy store. And we got it! Happy ending!

… Almost.

I got my toy, but a time later, there was some other toy I wanted, and I asked if my dad’s friend could help with that acquisition, too. My father sat me down and explained he didn’t talk to this former friend anymore. Why? Well, turns out the guy had been arrested. I pressed my dad repeatedly for more information, and he eventually relented. Turns out this malcontent had been caught exposing himself to customers at his toy store job. I was told exactly why that was a crime, and, if I ever saw the scoundrel ever again, I was to get another adult immediately. I left thinking this guy was just some common weirdo, and it wasn’t until years later that I worked out the exact connection between “exposing himself” and “works at a toy store”.

And now Super Shredder always makes me think of that.

So thanks a lot, Super Nintendo version of Turtles in Time.

Thanks.

All the Bosses Have Life Bars!

Snapping TurtleArgh… I’m… can… can we just take a break? It’s been a while since I really thought about that, and… I… I just don’t feel like talking about… life bars? I’m supposed to be upset about little red squares right now? Don’t they make the game easier? Or at least more transparent? Is comparing the differences between two really similar games all that important at all?

Look, you’re going to finish this article, or next you’re going to review Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Hyperstone Heist, and you’re going to have to talk about how your parents’ divorce meant that you wound up with a Sega Genesis at your father’s house, and you were expected to act like one whole, separate videogame console at each house was some kind of net-good result of your parents loudly and publicly fighting for a decade. Buck up, and brag to all the kids how your life is so great because you can play Mario and Sonic games. You want to acknowledge that this is a direct line to how you still, twenty goddamned years later, hang your own self-worth on how many videogames you own? You want that? You want to go down that manhole?

Like Jesus!Can’t I just focus on something fun from that game? Like how everybody inexplicably walks on water?

No. No, you will talk about childhood trauma, and you will revel in it.

Okay, fine. I’ll finish the damn comparison. What’s next?

The unique Boxing Bots are replaced by Roadkill Rodneys

Um. That’s pretty much the extent of that. Like, one useless robot got swapped for another. Does… anyone care about that? Did anyone actually notice? There are some other Foot Soldiers that only appear on the console, too. Are we going to cover those? No? Okay. Can we move on to the next item and get this list over and done with?

There’s a Throw Move! And You Need it to Beat Shredder!

Toss 'emUgh, Shredder again. I thought we were done with that guy. But I guess it makes sense that you have to fight the Turtles’ ultimate rival twice in the same game. And it makes a certain amount of sense that, rather than figure out a new boss pattern, Shredder would appear as the game’s one and only puzzle boss. Not that a puzzle boss makes any damn sense in a beat ‘em up, anyway. Just one more stupid speedbump on your way to an ending that is equal parts unnecessary and unimaginative. Wow. You won. Here are the turtles on a blimp. Whoopee. We done here?

Time Trials! Versus Mode!

Nope. We’re done. Game over, turtles.

FGC #471 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time

  • System: Arcade and Super Nintendo. Duh.
  • Number of Players: This has been covered.
  • The obvious reason for this articleThat went to some dark places: Okay, full disclosure, I worked out the skeleton of this article while flying economy over the Atlantic Ocean. If you’ve never had the pleasure, it’s about nine hours of inhumane discomfort, and the only reprieve from the overwhelming torture is the occasional lukewarm hot pocket. Playing a once beloved game while crammed into one of those unfortunate little chairs is… a singular experience. It put me in a bit of a mood.
  • But you still like the game, right? Oh yes. Playing the arcade version and SNES version back to back really drives home how the SNES version is objectively better. There’s more content, it has more opportunities for pizza, and it’s pretty clear the “difficulty” was adjusted to be something that wasn’t merely a quarter killer. There’s a real rhythm to the home version that isn’t there in the more chaotic arcade title. And the arcade version at least looks pretty.
  • How About that Versus Mode: Just play Tournament Fighters. This engine was never meant for direct competition. Or, heck, play that Time Trial mode. You can get the highest score! I know you can!
  • Favorite Turtle: If you can’t tell from the screenshots, it’s Donny. That bo staff is the bee’s knees.
  • Did you know? I occasionally vacillate on the plural of “ninja”…

    Go ninja go

    But I know that ain’t right.

  • Would I play again: Certainly. I would like to get some friends over for it, but I could deal with a solo outing every once in a while. I’m quite happy playing by myself, thank you.

What’s next? Random ROB has chosen to sit it out while Wankery Week returns for the annual Valentine’s Day (Week) special! We’re only covering one wankery game this year, but it… Well, I can’t say it’s really any good. But it exists! So please look forward to it!

Gross!

FGC #400.0 NieR

Time to learn about NieR!

Feel smarter now? No? That’s fair.

FGC #400 NieR

  • System: Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. Our neighbors to the East got a different version of Nier (the guy) for each system, but we only got old man grizzled Nier. This is for the best.
  • Number of players: I maintain that this title is the secret gameplay sequel to Secret of Mana, and you should be able to let buddies control your extra party members. But that’s not happening, so whatever, it’s single player.
  • Maybe actually talk about the game for a second: I feel like I talked about the emotional impact of NieR enough during the Automata review, and the plot is covered enough up top, so I’ll just go ahead and say it: I prefer the gameplay of NieR over NieR: Automata. God help me, I’m pretty sure NieR is, from a gameplay perspective, a secret Kingdom Hearts title. And, what’s more, the way NieR deftly weaves in gameplay from other genres across the videogame pantheon… Well, there’s no other way to say it: this hole was made for me.
  • ShinyOther glowing reviews: Nobody ever seems to acknowledge that, aside from the game being good for a lot of other great reasons, NieR is really good at playing with lighting and the difference between its dark and light areas. The fact that all the highly populated towns are bright as the sun when things are good (and not so much later) is a great bit of subtle visual storytelling.
  • I hate everything: In constantly googling for information on NieR, the first “marketplace” recommendation is not the actual game or its sequel, but a nude 2-B body pillow. I don’t like this internet thing.
  • Did you know? A version of NieR was planned for the Vita, but it was cancelled due to the prominence of Dragon Quest X. This… seems kind of poorly considered in hindsight.
  • Would I play again: One reason I keep this website going is that it offers me an excuse to replay videogames I enjoy when I should really be doing something else. This is a roundabout way of saying that I’m glad Random ROB made me replay this title, and I will gladly play it again in another seven years.

What’s next? That’s 400, folks! I’m going to take a week off wherein there will be updates of a different nature, but we’ll pick up the FGC officially again on Monday, April 2, with…. Final Fantasy 3 for the Nintendo DS! Please look forward to it!

(And, on this coming Monday, there will be a very important update regarding the site itself…)

You're hearing the fanfare

FGC #114 Donkey Kong Jungle Beat

So majesticI’ve tried to make these article perennial, I really have, but not even a year has passed since my first FGC post, and already Mark Hamill has made me a liar, Hyrule has produced Linkle, and Super Metroid finally got off its mandibles and went portable. I shudder to think how prehistoric my poor blog will look in another year’s time, when we’re all playing Karnov 2017 and Ecco the Dolphin is the number one game on the Virtual Reality Virtual Console.

Though all that is just preamble for my focus of the moment: the Nintendo NX. As I write this, the Nintendo NX is the topic of much debate, as there are alternating theories on whether or not this new system will bankrupt or save Nintendo. Come to think of it, I’m pretty sure that particular debate will rage on until about twenty years after the release (seriously, have we determined how the 3DS fared yet?). But more particular to my interests, as of right now, is that we have no idea what the NX is even going to look like, left alone its features or capabilities. Some claim it will be a mere Super WiiU. Others believe it to be a 3DS/WiiU hybrid system. Still others trust that it will be a penguin taped to an excitable golden retriever (named Brandy). Point is that no one has a clue what to expect, and other than “it will probably have a Mario game”, we’re all in the dark.

Ultimately, this can all be traced back to the Wii. The Wii (appropriately originally nicknamed “The Revolution”) was a complete and total shift in console creation for Nintendo. The “whacky” wiimote utterly changed the landscape of Nintendo games for an entire generation (I want to say Super Smash Bros. Brawl was the only Nintendo game on the system without mandatory shaking/pointing of some sort), and when the WiiU was released with its screen-controller, no one batted an eye at Nintendo’s latest whatsit. Going up?While you can expect the Playstation 5 or Xbox Two to be the same ol’ “like last system, but better!”, everyone is anticipating another interface shakeup from Nintendo. So when the first shots of the NX are leaked, and it’s a perfectly round sphere with seven incongruous buttons, everyone will claim that that’s exactly what they expected.

But Nintendo has been doing this for a lot longer than we’ve been Wii Bowling. The Nintendo Gamecube was the last (and maybe only) time that the Nintendo system of the day was just another one of three choices. Think about it: the NES had practically no competition, and the N64 required wholly unique programming for its cartridges (in contrast with the joy of CDs on its competitors’ systems). The Super Nintendo was the closest to the “your choice of system” style we have today with Xbone/PS4/PC releases, but, even then, there wasn’t nearly the overlap between Sega Genesis/SNES libraries we see with modern multiplatform releases. The Gamecube, meanwhile, definitely filled the niche of “Nintendo games… and third party, multiplatform releases” that people today claim they want from the next Nintendo system. Gauntlet, Prince of Persia, Spider-Man, Soul Calibur, X-Men (Legends), and even random collections of classic hits from the likes of Midway made their way to the Gamecube just the same as the Playstation 2 or Xbox. Nowadays, we can’t even get a lousy (great!) Mega Man Legacy Collection to grace the WiiU. The Gamecube might have boasted a slightly unusual controller, but beyond some odd button sizes, to the average consumer, the Gamecube was just another video game system choice that happened to have Zelda.

But even at its most vanilla, Nintendo had to try something different.

Going back to the Super Nintendo, Nintendo always had a thing for connectivity between systems. The SNES had the Super Gameboy for playing Gameboy games on the big screen, the N64 had its own add-on for allowing N64 controllers to read Pokémon games, and the Gamecube touted the ability to connect your new GBA as a makeshift controller. Even the Gamecube’s Gameboy Advance Player had a “connection port” so you could potentially play two-player GBA games TV-to-GBA. We really should have seen the WiiU coming.

Similarly, here are the DK Bongos. Like, seriously, here they are:

Beat it

For those of you unfamiliar with ‘em, take a moment to get acquainted with the DK Bongos. There’s a left drum, a right drum, and a straight “button” in the middle. The bongos also have the ability to detect local “noise”, so you can clap and the device will understand that. If you’ve been counting, that makes for five total inputs (left and right drums can be drummed simultaneously). If you’re ignoring the duck option, that’s all the buttons you need to play Super Mario Bros. (left, right, jump, fireball, and start). This is important.

The first and most obvious application of the DK Bongos was its launch rhythm game, Donkey Konga. This was not unprecedented: we were coming off the DDR craze, Guitar Hero was just grabbing a foothold, and even drumming-based games were a thing with Taiko Drum Master. If you were a rhythm game enthusiast, buying some whacky new peripheral was just par for the course. Hell, Samba de Amigo got its own maracas back on the Dreamcast.

Right in the trunkBut no one ever made a Sonic game that could be controlled by maracas, or even Halo: Big Plastic Guitar Edition. So when Donkey Kong Jungle Beat hit the shelves… well, there was a little confusion.

First of all, DKJB is a 2-D platformer. Nintendo is great at those! And DKJB is a pretty good platformer all on its own, with hidden areas and innovative enemies and beautiful environments. Bosses are fun “find the pattern” affairs, and, assuming you know what you’re doing, they don’t take forever to complete. And, like practically every Donkey Kong game, there’s a score system that is heavily influenced by finding the previously mentioned secret areas (not like DKC secret areas, to be clear, more like “there’s a lot of bananas hiding in that alcove”), or playing the game well, like comboing multiple monster homicides. Ninja monkeys need to die, and you should be rewarded for doing your part.

But the significant difference between this platformer and everything released before it was that this game is entirely controlled by the bongo controller. DK runs right when you beat the right drum, and left for the left drum. Hitting both drums together equals a jump, and clapping will trigger DK doing… something, whether it’s stunning an opponent or grabbing a friendly chimp for a boost. Donkey Kong Jungle Beat is the first bongo-based platformer, and it’s better for it.

YummyI will admit that when the idea of a bongo-based platformer was first introduced, I was skeptical. But then I played the game, and, well, I don’t mind admitting when I’m wrong. It is an absolute blast to play this game, and it’s primarily because the game is so… physical. Your bongo playing turns DK into a barreling train, and it’s thrilling to build up BPM/speed and then slap both drums together to send the big guerilla flying. In a weird way, I feel that this gameplay is closest to what minecart stages throughout the ages have been trying to achieve, but failed every time. For practically the first time in gaming, there’s a significant feeling of momentum, that you’re not just pressing a direction on a joystick, you’re hammering that monkey to drum forward. It’s exhilarating, and DKJB offers an experience like none other. The “eat everything” finale of every stage is simply astounding.

And it’s exhausting. And that’s right about when I realized that this game was the Wii prototype.

I’ll be honest, while they were few and far between, I rarely bought the unique Wii version of a game when it was available on other systems. If I bought an Xbox 360 or PS3 game, I could expect a game where I’m thrashing the X/A button a bunch. If I bought that same game for the Wii, I was expected to flail about the room to do the tiniest thing, or break my usual flow and aim the wiimote at the screen, or any other of a number of stupid gimmicks. I know I’m not the first to say this, but so many companies (Nintendo included in a lot of cases) had no idea what to do with the wiimote and its motion sensors, so half the Wii library requires more shaking than a vortexer. Not only does this seem monotonous, but, more often than not, it adds absolutely nothing to the experience, So beautifulother than a wrist so spent your mother assumes you’re going to go blind.

But when you play Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, you can see how the Wii could have been a thing of beauty. Don’t get me wrong, I do like the Wii, and enjoy a number of games for it (Super Mario Galaxy 1 & 2 might be the best two Mario games out there, which is high praise), but with so much cruft in the library (and believe me, I’ve played them all), the whole “wiimote” thing seems to average out to a failed experiment. But DKJB really shows how a more physical play experience can be fun, and its closest descendent, appropriately enough, seems to be the roll mechanic of Donkey Kong Country Returns. Yes, like many of you, I would rather have a button to slow that roll in the game (and thank you, 3DS version), but on more “straightaway” levels, I have to say, shaking the wiimote that your mama gave you like there ain’t no tomorrow is a thrilling way to bowl over banana bandits.

So, you know what? I’m ready for whatever Nintendo brings. It might be something simple, it might be something complicated, but I can safely say there’ll be at least one game that showcases the benefits of the system. Even if the Nintendo NX just winds up being a pair of bongos (or, dare I dream, some sort of… double bongos?), I trust that there will be a good experience somewhere in there, because Donkey Kong Jungle Beat already proved that even the weirdest ideas can be marvelous.

FGC #114 Donkey Kong Jungle Beat

  • System: Nintendo Gamecube, home of the bongos. There’s also the Wii rerelease that relies on the Wiimote, but it’s just not the same.
  • Number of Players: Just one, which is good, as it saves you having to find another pair of bongos.
  • Beat itA brief history of Bongos: There were three Donkey Konga rhythm games produced, though only two saw release stateside. With Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, that makes four games that support the DK Bongos peripheral. There was also supposed to be DK Barrel Blast, but that got ported to the Wii before it could gleam the ‘cube.
  • And I bet you still have four sets of bongos: Well, yeah. I had to have four-player Donkey Konga times.
  • Boss-Out: Oh yeah, while a number of DKJB bosses are typical “dodge and jump” style platforming bosses, there’s a collection of evil Kongs that challenge Donkey in a manner heavily reminiscent of Punch-Out. Dodge blows, then return fire with a left or right hook according to where there’s an opening. Is it any wonder the big ape later battled Little Mac?
  • Did you know? Speaking of Super Mario Galaxy, the Donkey Kong Jungle Beat team went on to design that stellar title, and apparently considered reusing the helpful chimps of DK world in Mario’s cosmos… as enemies. That seems like a jerk move, guys.
  • Would I play again: Probably, but no guarantees. I really like playing this game, but it’s also kind of exhausting, and requires pulling out a peripheral that, to say the least, doesn’t see much use otherwise. Though, oddly, playing this game makes me want to play Donkey Konga again, so… who knows?

What’s next? Random ROB has chosen… Kangaroo for the Atari 2600. Want to see a boxing kangaroo? Well, you know where to look. Please look forward to it!

Paddle