2

Author Topic: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s  (Read 28730 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #30 on: August 07, 2013, 08:31:36 PM »
#40 –X-COM: UFO Defense

(33 Points) 2 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #2 - Compound
Warning. Warning. UFO Detected.
Release Date:  March 1994
Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
UFO: Enemy Unknown (marketed as X-COM: UFO Defense in North America) is a science fiction strategy video game developed by Mythos Games and MicroProse. It was published by MicroProse in 1994 for the PC DOS and Amiga computers and the Amiga CD32 console, and in 1995 for the PlayStation. Its European PlayStation release is titled X-COM: Enemy Unknown.
 
Originally planned by Julian Gollop as a sequel to Target Games' 1988 Laser Squad, the game mixes real-time management simulation with turn-based tactics. The player takes the role of commander of X-COM – a clandestine, international paramilitary organization defending Earth from alien invasion. Through the game, the player is tasked with issuing orders to individual X-COM troops in a series of turn-based tactical missions. At strategic scale, the player directs the research and development of new technologies, builds and expands X-COM's bases, manages the organization's finances and personnel, and monitors and responds to UFO activity.
 
The game received strong reviews and was commercially successful, acquiring a cult following among strategy fans; several publications listed UFO: Enemy Unknown as one of top video games ever made, including IGN ranking it as the best PC game of all time in 2000 and 2007. It was the first and best received entry in the X-COM series, and has directly inspired several similar games, including UFO: Aftermath, UFO: Alien Invasion, UFO: Extraterrestrials and Xenonauts. A remake of the game, XCOM: Enemy Unknown, was created by Firaxis Games and published by 2K Games in 2012.

The game takes place within two distinct views, called the Geoscape and the Battlescape. According to GameSpy, "Playing it again in 2012, it comes off as both completely brilliant and slightly insane. In effect, X-COM melds an SSI Gold Box RPG with a highly detailed 4X game like Master of Orion, making it in some ways two entirely different games."
 
The game begins on January 1, 1999, with the player choosing a location for their first base on the Geoscape screen: a global view representation of Earth as seen from space (displaying X-COM bases and aircraft, detected UFOs, alien bases, and sites of alien activity). The player can view the X-COM bases and make changes to them, equip fighter aircraft, order supplies and personnel (soldiers, scientists and engineers), direct research efforts, schedule manufacturing of advanced equipment, sell alien artifacts to raise money, and deploy X-COM aircraft to either patrol designated locations, intercept UFOs, or send X-COM ground troops on missions using transport aircraft.
 
Funding is provided by the 16 founding nations of X-COM. At the end of each month, a funding report is provided, where nations can choose to increase or decrease their level of funding based on their perceived progress of the X-COM project. Any of these nations may quit, if the nation's government has been infiltrated by the invaders. Through reverse engineering of recovered alien artifacts, X-COM is able to develop better technology to combat the alien menace, and eventually uncover how to defeat it.

Pak's Thoughts – I completely missed out on X-COM. I had heard of it, and it was exactly the kind of game I loved playing at the time, but I never got around to picking up a copy until just a few years ago, when I picked it up during a Steam sale. It’s a hard game to get into when you don’t have the manual right in front of you. Compound actually wrote up a wonderful walk-through that I will totally print out and use someday soon. :^) http://forum.rifftrax.com/index.php?topic=17856.msg543274#msg543274


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #31 on: August 07, 2013, 08:32:42 PM »
#39 –Final Fantasy IV

(33 Points) 3 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #11 - goflyblind
You spoony bard!
Release Date:  July 19, 1991

Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
Final Fantasy IV is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square (now Square Enix) in 1991 as a part of the Final Fantasy series. The game was originally released for the Super Famicom in Japan and has since been rereleased for many other platforms with varying modifications. The game was re-titled Final Fantasy II during its initial release outside of Japan as the original Final Fantasy II and Final Fantasy III had not been released outside of Japan at the time. However, later localizations used the original title.
 
The game's story follows Cecil, a dark knight, as he tries to prevent the sorcerer Golbez from seizing powerful crystals and destroying the world. He is joined on this quest by a frequently changing group of allies, several of whom die, become injured, or are otherwise incapacitated by an unfortunate occurrence. Final Fantasy IV introduced innovations that became staples of the Final Fantasy series and role-playing games in general. Its "Active Time Battle" system was used in five subsequent Final Fantasy games, and unlike prior games in the series, IV gave each character their own unchangeable character class.
 
With its character-driven plot, use of new technologies and critically acclaimed score by Nobuo Uematsu, Final Fantasy IV is regarded as a landmark of the series and role-playing genre. It is considered to be one of the first role-playing games to feature a complex, involving plot, and is thought to have pioneered the idea of dramatic storytelling in RPGs. The various incarnations of the game have sold more than four million copies worldwide. An enhanced remake, also called Final Fantasy IV, with 3D graphics was released for the Nintendo DS in 2007 and 2008. A sequel, Final Fantasy IV: The After Years, was released for Japanese mobile phones in 2008, and worldwide via the Wii Shop Channel on June 1, 2009. In 2011, both Final Fantasy IV and The After Years were released for the PlayStation Portable as part of the compilation Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection, which also included a new game, set between the two; Final Fantasy IV: Interlude. An iOS port of the Nintendo DS remake was released on December 20, 2012, as well as an Android version on June 4, 2013.

The game's script had to be reduced to one fourth of its original length due to cartridge storage limits, but Tokita made sure only "unnecessary dialogue" was cut, rather than actual story elements. As the graphical capacities of the Super Famicom allowed Yoshitaka Amano to make more elaborate character designs than in the previous installments, with the characters' personalities already evident from the images, Tokita felt the reduced script length improved the pacing of the game. Still, he acknowledges that some parts of the story were "unclear" or were not "looked at in depth" until later ports and remakes. One of the ideas not included, due to time and space constraints, was a dungeon near the end of the game where each character would have to progress on their own—this dungeon would only be included in the Game Boy Advance version of the game, as the Lunar Ruins.

Pak's Thoughts – A lot of people cite Final Fantasy VI and VII as the best of the series, but this one is my jam. I was hooked on the melodrama from the beginning and the soundtrack remains one of my favorite video game soundtracks to this day. It also features one of the most confusing battles of all time, where when you’re in a battle where you should totally be fighting your opponent, a voice keeps interrupting and telling you not to fight him.


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #32 on: August 07, 2013, 08:33:47 PM »
#38 –Sam & Max Hit the Road

(37 Points) 2 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #5 – Pak-Man
Sam: Aw, it's a cute little hypercephalic kitten.
Max: I'll call him "Mittens", because I think he'd make a fine pair of them.

Release Date:  November 1993
Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
Sam & Max Hit the Road is a graphic adventure video game released by LucasArts during the company's adventure games era. The game was originally released for MS-DOS in 1993 and for Mac OS in 1995. A 2002 re-release included compatibility with Windows. The game is based on the comic characters of Sam and Max, the "Freelance Police", an anthropomorphic dog and "hyperkinetic rabbity thing". The characters, created by Steve Purcell, originally debuted in a 1987 comic book series. Based on the 1989 Sam & Max comic On the Road, the duo take the case of a missing bigfoot from a nearby carnival, traveling to many Americana tourist sites to solve the mystery.
 
LucasArts began development of the game in 1992 with the intention to use new settings and characters after the success of the past Maniac Mansion and Monkey Island adventure titles. Series creator Steve Purcell, then a LucasArts employee, was one of the lead designers on the project. Sam & Max Hit the Road is the ninth game to use the SCUMM adventure game engine, and also integrated the iMUSE audio system developed by Michael Land and Peter McConnell. The game was one of the first to incorporate full voice talent for its characters; the two titular characters were voiced by professional voice actors Bill Farmer and Nick Jameson.
 
The game received critical acclaim on release, and was praised for its humor, voice acting, graphics, music and gameplay. It is now regarded as a classic point-and-click adventure game and is often listed in publishers' lists of top games of all time. Several attempts to produce sequels were cancelled, ultimately resulting in the franchise moving from LucasArts to Telltale Games.

Sam & Max Hit the Road was developed by a small team at LucasArts, many of whom had previous experience working on other LucasArts adventure games. The game was designed by Sean Clark, Michael Stemmle, Sam & Max creator Steve Purcell and his future wife Collette Michaud, all of whom had worked on Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis. Sam and Max first appeared as video game characters as internal testing material for SCUMM engine programmers recently employed by LucasArts; Steve Purcell created animated versions of the characters and an office backdrop for the programmers to practice on. Soon after, Sam & Max comic strips by Steve Purcell were published in LucasArts' quarterly newsletter. After a positive reaction from fans to the strips and out of a wish to use new characters and settings after the success of the Monkey Island and Maniac Mansion franchises, LucasArts offered in 1992 to create a video game out of the characters
 
The game was based on the 1989 Sam & Max comic On The Road, which featured the two on a journey across the United States. Several of the game's tourist traps were based on real locations experienced by the developers; Steve Purcell recollects a childhood visit to a "Frog Rock"—one of the locations featured in the game—and remembered thinking "That's it? It doesn't even look like a frog!" A chain of "Snuckey's" roadside stores and attractions was a tribute to the Stuckey's chain which Purcell and his family often stopped at during road trips.
 
Sam & Max was one of the first games to include a full speech soundtrack and music, which for Steve Purcell was a "dream opportunity" to hear his creations speak. Steve Purcell describes casting Bill Farmer in the role of Sam as his audition tape "was very dry; he wasn’t trying too hard to sell the lines". Actor Nick Jameson was cast to voice Max. The game's jazz score was composed by LucasArts' Clint Bajakian, Michael Land and Peter McConnell, and was incorporated into the game using Land and McConnell's iMUSE engine, which allowed for audio to be synchronized with the visuals. High quality versions of four of the game's tracks were included on the CD version of the game. Sam & Max Hit the Road was released simultaneously on floppy disk and CD-ROM; only the CD version of the game contained full in-game speech and music. Fans of the game have since recreated the game's MIDI soundtrack in higher quality MP3 format.
 
As the Sam & Max comics had a more adult tone, Steve Purcell expected LucasArts to cut back "the edgier material" from the game. However, he expressed that he was pleased with how LucasArts allowed him to stay close to his original vision for the game. The game's various minigames were included to allow players to take a break from solving the main game's puzzles and play something "short and silly". Sam & Max Hit the Road also signified a major change in development for games on the SCUMM engine. The user interface was entirely rehauled from that introduced in Maniac Mansion and built upon in subsequent games. Instead of selecting a verb function from a list at the bottom of the screen and clicking on an in-game entity, Sam & Max Hit the Road compressed all verb functions into the mouse cursor, which players could cycle through using the right-mouse button. The inventory was also moved off the main screen to a sub-screen accessible by a small icon on the screen. According to Steve Purcell, this cleared space on the screen to "expand on the excellent backgrounds and also made interaction much quicker and less laborious than LucasArts' previous adventure games" The conversation trees were also affected by this; Michael Stemmle proposed removing the text-based selection menu used in previous LucasArts' adventure games in favor of icons representing topics of discussion as "nothing would kill a joke worse than reading it before you hear it". Several of these innovations were retained for future LucasArts adventure games.

Pak's Thoughts – I was a Sierra purist for a very long time and purposely avoided the LucasArts games. Sam and Max looked interesting enough to make me break that self-imposed rule, and it showed me how very wrong I’d been. A lot of games succeed at being funny, but very few succeed in making me laugh. This is a game that makes me laugh to this day.


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #33 on: August 07, 2013, 08:35:05 PM »
#37 –Gran Turismo

(38 Points) 2 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #2 – goflyblind
Vroooom!
Release Date:  November 1993

Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
Gran Turismo (abbreviated GT, commonly abbreviated GT1) is a racing simulator designed by Kazunori Yamauchi. Gran Turismo was developed and published by Sony Computer Entertainment in 1997 for the PlayStation video game console. The game's development group was established as Polyphony Digital in 1998.
 
After five years of development time, it was well-received publicly and critically, shipping a total of 10.85 million copies worldwide as of April 30, 2008, and scoring an average of 95% in GameRankings' aggregate. The game has started a series, and to date has spawned over 10 spin-offs and sequels.

Gran Turismo is fundamentally based on the racing simulator genre. The player must maneuver a car to compete against artificially intelligent drivers on various race tracks. The game uses two different modes: Arcade Mode and Simulation Mode (Gran Turismo Mode in PAL and Japanese versions). In the arcade mode, the player can freely choose the courses and vehicles they wish to use. Winning races unlocks additional cars and courses.
 
However, simulation mode requires the player to earn different levels of driver's licenses in order to qualify for events, and earn credits (money), trophies and prize cars by winning race championships. Winning one particular championship also unlocks a video and a few additional demonstration tracks. Credits can be used to purchase additional vehicles, and for parts and tuning.
 
Gran Turismo features 140 cars and 11 race tracks (as well as their reversed versions). Two Honda del Sol cars from 1995 were included in the Japanese version, but were removed from the North American and European versions. They can be found in the North American version's code (and are unlockable via a GameShark cheat device). In addition to the hidden del Sols, there is also a 1967 Chevrolet Corvette and a 1998 Mazda Roadster exclusive to the Arcade mode. The Corvette and Roadster can also be accessed via GameShark.

Pak's Thoughts – I’ve got nothing. I never played it. Racing simulators aren’t interesting to me, unless you’re piloting a rocket car of some sort in the future, or maybe a go-kart. :^)


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #34 on: August 07, 2013, 08:36:11 PM »
#36 –Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness

(40 Points) 3 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #10 – goflyblind
Work Complete.

Release Date:  December 9, 1995

Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness is a fantasy-themed real-time strategy (RTS) game published by Blizzard Entertainment and first released for DOS in 1995 and for Mac OS in 1996. The main game, Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness, earned enthusiastic reviews, won most of the major PC gaming awards in 1996, and sold over 2 million copies.
 
Later in 1996 Blizzard released an expansion pack Warcraft II: Beyond the Dark Portal for DOS and Mac OS, and a compilation Warcraft II: The Dark Saga for the Sony PlayStation and Sega Saturn. The Battle.net Edition, released in 1999, provided Blizzard's online gaming service, Battle.net, and replaced the MS-DOS version with a Windows one.
 
Players must collect resources, and produce buildings and units in order to defeat an opponent in combat on the ground, in the air and in some maps at sea. The more advanced combat units are produced at the same buildings as the basic units but also need the assistance of other buildings, or must be produced at buildings that have prerequisite buildings. The majority of the main screen shows the part of the territory on which the gamer is currently operating, and the minimap can select another location to appear in the larger display. The fog of war completely hides all territory which the gamer's has not explored, and shows only terrain but hides opponents' units and buildings if none of the gamer's units are present.
 
Warcraft II 's predecessor Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, released in 1994, gained good reviews, collected three awards and was a finalist for three others, and achieved solid commercial success. The game was the first typical RTS to be presented in a medieval setting and, by bringing multiplayer facilities to a wider audience, made this mode essential for future RTS titles. Warcraft: Orcs & Humans laid the ground for Blizzard's style of RTS, which emphasized personality and storyline.

Pak's Thoughts – Wow I wish I had saved a copy of this the first time I posted it. I’m pretty sure my original thoughts were that this game holds up extremely well, thanks to its awesome cartoony graphics, and that the action confirmation sound bites were very annoying to those who were not playing the game.

That’s it for today! We’re back on track! Expect 5 more tomorrow!


Offline BBQ Platypus

  • Bilbo Baggins Balladeer
  • ******
  • Posts: 4201
  • Liked: 59
  • SURF'S UP, SPACE PONIES!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #35 on: August 07, 2013, 10:27:41 PM »
Huh.  Missed this list.  Wonder if anybody voted for Daggerfall like I would have.  (Would have missed #1 on account of the bugs, though - Descent would have taken that spot).
Correction: the coat hanger should be upside down.


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #36 on: August 08, 2013, 07:00:07 AM »
I have to say, the hard part of this list has been doing write-ups instead of actually playing the games I'm writing about. As soon as this list is over, I'm going to start up a game of Rollercoaster Tycoon, play some ToeJam and Earl, maybe get into X-COM and Star Control, playing through Sam & Max again would be fun... And we're not even half-through yet. :^)


Offline Thrifty Version II

  • Big Montana
  • *****
  • Posts: 984
  • Liked: 556
  • Now with 30% Less Fat!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #37 on: August 08, 2013, 07:55:48 AM »
Damn.  Starting to wonder if much of anything on my list made the big list.  Warcraft 2 is the only thing so far.


Offline Thrifty Version II

  • Big Montana
  • *****
  • Posts: 984
  • Liked: 556
  • Now with 30% Less Fat!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #38 on: August 08, 2013, 08:01:49 AM »
One thing I'll always remember about Link's Awakening was that in those days, the portable games didn't have color.  I played it on my Super Game Boy, the attachment that let you load Game Boy games on to a Super Nintendo.  Super Game Boy allowed you to play on a bigger screen but also let you add colors to the games.  Games released after the Super Game Boy (such as the early Pokemon games) made use of the device and had their own preloaded colors that you couldn't modify, but older games like Link's Awakening did not.  You could choose from some presets or define your own, but the interface to define your own was pretty rigid.  I think what the Super Game Boy did was basically turn the whole game into a big paint-by-numbers kit, but there were only 4 different numbers and hence four different colors.  You could customize your colors either by selecting colors manually or by entering a code at the bottom of the screen.  The code basically let you "save" a color set that you liked, since it could be difficult to fine tune it.  Link's Awakening was the only game I ever really found a color set that I thought looked nice, and I wrote that code down and put it in every time I played.


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #39 on: August 08, 2013, 08:13:30 AM »
Damn.  Starting to wonder if much of anything on my list made the big list.  Warcraft 2 is the only thing so far.

Don't despair. You have a lot coming further up the list. Your list had a lot of popular choices, actually. :^)


Offline Thrifty Version II

  • Big Montana
  • *****
  • Posts: 984
  • Liked: 556
  • Now with 30% Less Fat!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #40 on: August 08, 2013, 08:21:02 AM »
The original Warcraft was good, but it suffered severely from poor control.  In most RTS games, you can double click on a group of similar units to select them, or drag the mouse to enclose a group in a box.  Then you can assign them to digit groups to call them back up with the press of a number key.  And you can move them around with a right click.

In Warcraft, you had to hold down control to get the box to come up for dragging.  You had to hold down shift to select individual units, and you couldn't assign them to number groups.  Also I think the group size was limited to 4.  Also you had to explicitly tell units and groups to move (instead of just right clicking).

I wish they hadn't replaced the orc wolf raiders with ogres in the sequels.


Offline Relaxing Dragon

  • Bilbo Baggins Balladeer
  • ******
  • Posts: 4200
  • Liked: 1218
  • I raise my eyebrow at you, sir.
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #41 on: August 08, 2013, 04:57:58 PM »
#45 –Rollercoaster Tycoon

(30 Points) 2 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #7 –Relaxing Dragon

Wow did this game consume my life for a good chunk of elementary school. It was one of those games that just well and truly absorbed me, to the point where I was thinking about it when I wasn't playing and fretting over doing every little thing right when I was. I made at least one lifelong friend via the fact that I was at his house one day (he was the friend of a friend at the time) and had this game on his computer. I got my babysitter totally hooked on it, and we ended up swapping strategies on the ride home from school sometimes. I'd get legitimately excited every I got a new research update in the game, since it meant a new something or other to mess with (that little light-blue text just brightened my day, even if whatever I'd just researched was something I didn't particularly need). I'd put loads of work into stuff that didn't do make much of a difference as far as game mechanics were concerned, but which still made a difference to me. Because dammit, when I design a park, I want it to be one that I or anyone else here in the real world would enjoy when they visited it. I'd be tinkering with the landscaping and ornaments, where the food court was situated compared to the rest of the park, how the paths circled around, everything. And then I'd try to rebuild the coasters from the theme parks around my house (Great America and Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, if anyone's curious). Trouble was, I always seemed to have trouble building coasters because they'd turn out to be far too intense (although I just think my park patrons were a bunch of babies). Other than that, I generally stayed successful in making a solid park that worked in and out of the game.

Except for the hedge mazes. I'd go overboard on those, to the point where I had one that covered a good third of my park. I don't think a single guest ever managed to make it out, but damn if that line didn't take up the whole rest of the park.

I still love and play RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 from time to time, although never got into the third. I honestly greatly prefer the old-school 2-D, 4-view graphics to the fully 3D ones. The game had considerably more charm (and, in my opinion, detail) that way, especially when looking at the designs of the coasters. And RCT2 has all the right amounts of upgrades, add-ons, and new additions, while still retaining that old-school charm. One of my favorite games ever, it is.

Come to think of it, I don't think I've pulled it out for a while. I'll have to change that when I get home today...
« Last Edit: August 13, 2013, 10:50:47 PM by Relaxing Dragon »


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #42 on: August 08, 2013, 11:42:31 PM »
#35 –You Don’t Know Jack

(41 Points) 2 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #2 - ColeStratton
Well, look at you playing "Jack" all by yourself. Here, I'll let you in on a little secret – You’re gonna win!
Release Date:  September 12, 1995

Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
You Don't Know Jack (commonly abbreviated YDKJ) is a series of computer games developed by Jellyvision and Berkeley Systems, as well as the title of the first game in the series. YDKJ, framed as a game show "where high culture and pop culture collide", combines trivia with comedy.

In 1991, Jellyvision's former identity, Learn Television, released the award-winning film, “The Mind's Treasure Chest,” which featured lead character Jack Patterson. When Learn Television sought to use new multimedia technologies to create a more active learning experience, the company teamed up with Follett Software Company and developed "That's a Fact, Jack!", a reading motivation CD-ROM game show series covering young adult fiction, targeted to 3rd through 10th graders. The game would give a title for a child to read, and then ask questions related to that title.
 
The idea for You Don't Know Jack began while That's a Fact, Jack! was still in development. The game's title comes from the less vulgar version of the phrase "You don't know jack shit." Jellyvision's website has this explanation as to why You Don't Know Jack was made:
 
"Way back in the early 90s, Jellyvision decided to test the waters of mainstream interactive entertainment by beginning a partnership with Berkeley Systems, of "Flying Toasters" fame. Berkeley Systems asked us if we could apply the concepts of a game show to an adult trivia game. Since no one at Jellyvision at the time actually liked trivia games, we tried to figure out how to make trivia questions fun and engaging to us. When we realized that it was possible to ask about both Shakespeare and Scooby-Doo in the same question, YOU DON'T KNOW JACK was born.”

The game can be played by one, two, or three players. The game opens with a green room segment, in which the players are prompted to enter their names and given instructions for play. The audio during this segment includes rehearsing singers, a busy producer, and a harassed studio manager/host. The only graphics are a large "On Air/Stand By" sign in the middle of the screen, visual representations of the players' button assignments, and a box for name entry.
 
YDKJ offers the choice of playing a 7- or 21-question game. There is a brief intermission after the tenth question. Most questions are multiple choice, with some occasional free-entry questions, or mini-games.
 
Before each question, one player is given a choice of three categories. Each has a humorous title that has some connection to the topic of the corresponding question. After a short animated introduction, which is often accompanied with a sung jingle about the question number, the host asks the question. Typically, the question is multiple choice, and the first player to "buzz in" and give the correct answer wins the money for that question and gets to choose the next category. If a player answers incorrectly, he or she loses money, but not before the host wisecracks about it.
 
In multi-player games, each player is allowed one chance to "screw" an opponent in each half of a full game, or once in an entire short game. Using the "screw" forces the opponent to give an answer to a question within ten seconds. If the player who is "screwed" answers correctly, he or she wins the money while the player who "screwed" him or her loses money.

Pak's Thoughts – I always wanted to get a multiplayer version of this game going on, but was a bit short on friends in that phase of my life and my brothers were a little too young for the snappy banter. I loved playing single-player, though, and was always impressed at what a good job the game did at making it feel like there was a living host.


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #43 on: August 08, 2013, 11:43:33 PM »
#34 –Pokémon Red/Blue/Green

(41 Points) 4 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #11 – Relaxing Dragon
A wild Jigglypuff appears!
Release Date:  February 27, 1996

Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
Pokémon Red Version and Blue Version, originally released in Japan as Pocket Monsters: Red & Green, are role-playing video games developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo for the Game Boy. They are the first installments of the Pokémon series. They were first released in Japan in 1996 as Red and Green, with Blue being released later in the year as a special edition. They were later released as Red and Blue in North America, Europe and Australia over the following three years. Pokémon Yellow, a special edition version, was released roughly a year later.
 
The player controls the main character from an overhead perspective and navigates him throughout the fictional region of Kanto in a quest to master Pokémon battling. The goal of the games is to become the champion of the region by defeating the eight Gym Leaders, allowing access to the top four Pokémon trainers in the land, the Elite Four. Another objective is to complete the Pokédex, an in-game encyclopedia, by obtaining the 151 available Pokémon. The nefarious Team Rocket provide an antagonistic force, as does the player's childhood rival. Red and Blue also utilize the Game Link Cable, which connects two games together and allows Pokémon to be traded or battled between games. Both titles are independent of each other but feature largely the same plot and, while they can be played separately, it is necessary for players to trade among the two in order to obtain all of the first 150 Pokémon. The 151st Pokémon (Mew) is available only through a glitch in the game or an official distribution by Nintendo.
 
Red and Blue received strong reviews; critics praised the multiplayer options, especially the concept of trading. They received an aggregated score of 89% on Game Rankings and are perennially ranked on top-game lists including at least four years on IGN's Top 100 Games of All Time. The games' releases marked the beginning of what would become a multi-billion dollar franchise, jointly selling millions of copies worldwide, and in 2009 they appeared in the Guinness Book of World Records under "Best selling RPG on the Game Boy" and "Best selling RPG of all time."

Red and Blue are in a third-person, overhead perspective and consist of three basic screens: an overworld, in which the player navigates the main character; a side-view battle screen; and a menu interface, in which the player configures his or her Pokémon, items, or gameplay settings.
 
The player can use his or her Pokémon to battle other Pokémon. When the player encounters a wild Pokémon or is challenged by a trainer, the screen switches to a turn-based battle screen that displays the engaged Pokémon. During battle, the player may select a maneuver for his or her Pokémon to fight using one of four moves, use an item, switch his or her active Pokémon, or attempt to flee. Pokémon have hit points (HP); when a Pokémon's HP is reduced to zero, it faints and can no longer battle until it is revived. Once an enemy Pokémon faints, the player's Pokémon involved in the battle receive a certain number of experience points (EXP). After accumulating enough EXP, a Pokémon will level up. A Pokémon's level controls its physical properties, such as the battle statistics acquired, and the moves learned. At certain levels, the Pokémon may also evolve. These evolutions affect the statistics and also the levels at which new moves are learnt (higher levels of evolution gain more statistics per level, although they may not learn new moves as early, if at all, compared with the lower levels of evolution.
 
Catching Pokémon is another essential element of the gameplay. During battle with a wild Pokémon, the player may throw a Poké Ball at it. If the Pokémon is successfully caught, it will come under the ownership of the player. Factors in the success rate of capture include the HP of the target Pokémon and the type of Poké Ball used: the lower the target's HP and the stronger the Poké Ball, the higher the success rate of capture. The ultimate goal of the games is to complete the entries in the Pokédex, a comprehensive Pokémon encyclopedia, by capturing, evolving, and trading to obtain all 151 creatures.
 
Pokémon Red and Blue allow players to trade Pokémon between two cartridges via a Game Link Cable. This method of trading must be done to fully complete the Pokédex, since certain Pokémon will only evolve upon being traded and each of the two games have version-exclusive Pokémon. The Link Cable also makes it possible to battle another player's Pokémon team.
 
Pak's Thoughts – I became a fan of Pokémon during the very brief period of time before Pokémania kicked in. Before the cartoon caught on, and before the merchandising blitz that would follow, there was nothing to distinguish Pokémon from other RPGs other than its rock-paper-scissors mechanics and the monster-catching aspect, and that was enough to hook me. The anime wasn’t bad, really. In fact it might have been one of the most accurate video game to cartoon translations ever made. But then it exploded and suddenly Pokémon was viewed as this evil merchandising juggernaut for little kids. It never spoiled the game for me. I was already hooked. It just means that I’ve had to explain myself to every other adult who has ever discovered that I still play Pokémon games. I caught all 150 of the original Pokémon on my Pokémon Red cartridge (Never made it to an official distribution to snag a Mewtwo, though) and even though the game is happy to remind me that it took 100+ hours out of my life, I never felt like it was a waste.

Incidentally, Microsoft Word knows that there’s supposed to be an accent mark over the “e” in Pokémon. That’s gotta be worth some cred, right?


Offline Pak-Man

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 17975
  • Liked: 3850
  • Insert $0.25 to Play!
Re: LoC 73 - Top 50 Video Games of the '90s
« Reply #44 on: August 08, 2013, 11:44:06 PM »
#33 –Star Wars: TIE Fighter

(42 Points) 2 of 16 Lists - Highest Ranking - #4 – Gojikranz
This rebel stronghold has no hope of escape! Commence the attack! 
Release Date:  July 1994

Just the facts/Stuff I wiki'd:
Star Wars: TIE Fighter, a 1994 space flight simulator/space combat computer game, is the sequel to Star Wars: X-Wing. It places the player in the role of an Imperial starfighter pilot during events that occur between Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back and Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi.
 
Lawrence Holland and Edward Kilham's Totally Games studio, which released X-Wing the year before, designed TIE Fighter. Based on X-Wing's game engine, TIE Fighter supports Gouraud shading and adds gameplay features and craft not available in X-Wing. TIE Fighter was updated and re-released several times, and it was a critical success.

The game's plot begins soon after the Empire's victory on Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back. As with X-Wing, the player's character is unnamed in the game; however, an included novella and Prima Publishing's strategy guide name the character Maarek Steele and provide a background narrative. In addition to fighting Rebel Alliance forces, the player flies against pirates, combatants in a civil war, and traitorous Imperial forces. The original game ends with the player preventing a coup against Emperor Palpatine and being personally rewarded during a large ceremony. Subsequent expansions focus on Admiral Thrawn's efforts to stop an Imperial traitor; the final mission of the second expansion concludes just before the climactic battle at the end of Return of the Jedi. Despite playing on the side of the Star Wars saga's villain, the game presents Imperial forces as maintainers of peace and order in a tumultuous galaxy.
 
The storyline is divided across several battles, each of which has four to eight missions. Although some of the battles can be played out of order, individual missions within each battle are played linearly. Mission briefings and debriefings, cutscenes, and in-flight communication advance the story.

Pak's Thoughts – I was already into space combat sims when this came out thanks to Wing Commander, and the Star Wars setting just made the game a thousand times more awesome. I also remember this game as the thing that introduced me to the concept of the “Expanded Universe.” Darth Vader? And it’s not set during the movies? They can do that!?