Hidden Gems: R-Type Final

With the Wii’s GameCube compatibility and the PS1 and PS2 compatibility of some PS3′s, it opens new possibilities for gamers who passed on these consoles and past fans alike to play some great games, and normally dirt cheap. In the Hidden Gems segments, I will review some of these titles.

Any ShMUp (Shoot ‘em up) fan has heard of R-Type. It is one of the games that laid the trail for shmups to follow.
Fans of the genre will not be disappointed by this title. With 101 ships to unlock as you play (99 plus 2 bonus), the bydo lab, war chronicles, gallery and awards serving as an equivalent to current trophies, the game has a pretty good replay value.
Fans are treated to a fully 3d R-Type with mini cinematic entrances to each level. While the game does get rather repetitive, the variety of ships to unlock with the different weapon schemes for each ship will make you try out different strategies for each ship.
The R Museum shows you what ships you have and gives the history and basic info for the ships you have unlocked. The ships from past games make appearances as well as plenty of newcomers.
The five difficulty settings make sure you can find a good mix of fun and challenge.
The levels can vary based on how you play and what ship you use, so you can see a variety of stages and a few different endings.
Like many past shmups, there are some slowdowns with some of the more graphically intensive weapons at times, but not horrendous enough to detract you from playing.
Not really a game you can pour more than a few hours into at a time, but it is a good change of pace and great fun.
The game currently sells for $10 used, and at this price, it is more than worth it.

Volcano Ecigs

Hidden Gems: Crazy Taxi

With the Wii’s GameCube compatibility and the PS1 and PS2 compatibility of some PS3′s, it opens new possibilities for gamers who passed on these consoles and past fans alike to play some great games, and normally dirt cheap. In the Hidden Gems segments, I will review some of these titles.

Crazy Taxi was originally released to the arcades in 1999 and can still be found in many places today. I myself have it in my normal game rotation while having a few at Dave & Busters.

It’s amusing to think that a $13 game (from gamestop) elicits squeals of delight from grown men, but thats exactly what happened when i popped the disc in. The simple gameplay managed to keep us amused for hours.

There were a few changes from the arcade version. You still have the same four drivers to choose from, albeit I’m fairly sure the voice actors have changed. The arcade mode is there as well as an “original” mode set in a different city layout. A stunt mode has been added, and while the stunts can be done after a little practice, they require playing with the gearshift which doesn’t make much sense as far as real world mechanics goes.

The control is good, using the analog triggers for gas and brake, a and b for shifting. I highly recommend a wheel for this game as playing it with a controller after getting used to the arcade version, using a joystick can be a bit wierd.

The graphics are smooth, and while they are a bit dated, the framerate is nice and smooth, perhaps better than the arcade box.

The rocking arcade soundtrack is still there and the sound effects are good.

There is no multiplayer, which would have been a good addition. The upside to this is that you only need to buy one gamecube controller.

While the game is great fun, I couldn’t see myself playing it solo. A group, now that’s a different story. The game is perfectly suited for group play, especially when drinking. The average play time of about 5-10 minutes for most players gives plenty of drinking time and it’s pretty entertaining to watch too.

I wholeheartedly recommend this game for groups and parties, but if you’re playing solo, you might want to pass on this one, unless you’re a fan of the game.