Saturday, March 19, 2016

Games of frickin freezing Spring 2016 part 1

Yep, yer boned!
March has been super rainy so far. That, or sunny and cold as hell! I've been preoccupied packing and moving, and even ventured outside for a walk or two. This month started with a renewed interest in StarWars Battlefront with my good friend Jacob. Other than that, gaming this month has been pretty sparse: I'm finishing up the 100% trophies on Guns Up, and the plan is to try and finish Dishonored by the end of the month.



March: Super Metroid (SNES/Wii U Virtual Console).

Kraid.
This month, I went 20 years back with Super Metroid (1994). For those of you who don't know of this gem, it's a action/adventure platformer. Your heroine, Samus Aran, gets a distress call to a science lab in space. She investigates to find everyone has been killed off by brain-sucking jellyfish called metroid. Just then, the lab starts to detonate, and as she's escaping the blast, her ship gets damaged and you end up crashing on Planet Zebes.

These games are paced excellently in terms of difficulty and complexity. You start off being able to jump to platforms, then you get the ability to "morph" into a ball to explore smaller passages. Next, you find heavier firepower, which also opens new kinds of doors. When you hit a barrier, you often have to head to another part of the map to find a powerup that lets you access the previous point. You do this for all of the Metroid games, and it's no wonder that Samus's standing animation shows her panting.

The music has many memorable music tracks, a few of which are really atmospheric, and others are actual themes. I never thought about it until my recent playing of Metroid Prime (the 2002, next generation sequel,) when I realized just how cleverly these games handle the blend of background noises and setting with music. The item theme is an example: it's been the same in all games, and is certainly a distinct pattern, but not really music.

And now I leave you with Smooth McGroove, who does acapella versions of video game themes.


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