You know, there’s a common misperception about our little site here among certain corners of the Internet — namely, the sort of slow-witted corner that doesn’t have much going on in the way of reading comprehension. That gross misinterpretation of the site shakes its fist at the way the writing here is so hateful toward games, because look! It’s called “game spite”! It must be full of contempt by people who don’t even like the medium, right?
Well, no. Actually, the majority of the articles published here are full of effusive love for the medium and the specific titles called out. But hey, those portions of the Internet aren’t known for getting facts straight or welcoming corrections, so I figure why fight it? Thus Issue 10 is official The Spite Issue, full of venom and criticism for games.
Mega Man 9
Of course, into every life a little exception must fall, and we begin this issue of vituperation with a tiny parcel of love for Capcom’s freshly-released return to Mega Man’s roots. My advice would be to come back to this article once you start feeling heartburn from the acidity of the rest.
The Games of Nippon Ichi
The spite begins in earnest, though, with Bob Mackey’s calling out of the emperor’s lack of clothing. Nippon Ichi’s games are darlings among a certain set of gamers, but the fact is that the company has been riding the good grace’s of Atlus’ fortuitous work with Disgaea for years now. And that just ain’t right.
Then Kirin continues his journey through the Suikoden series by looking at the worst game ever to bear the name. I suppose it’s possible that the card game or Suikogaiden graphical adventures were worse, but those had the decency not to pass themselves off as full chapters of the series. Not Suikoden IV, though!
24 thoughts on “GameSpite Issue 10.1: Writin’ and spitin’”
The best thing in Suikoden IV–spoilers, I suppose–is near the beginning, when you’re stranded on an island with just a few other people. At one point you get the option to choose whether you want to try to escape (or something like that; it’s been a while), and if you choose not to, all the characters’ portraits change to weird little chibi-type sketches, and days will seem to pass as they normally do, only events will not proceed. The first day will just repeat over and over. There is nothing you can do. You’re trapped in a seriously bizarre little existentialist hell.
Full disclosure time: to what extent has the author of the Disgaea 3 actually played the game?
bobservo ignored Soul Nomad, Nippon Ichi’s different and original tactics game. That makes me sad, as Soul Nomad is wonderful and avoids a lot of problems the others games have. So of course everyone, even the people that said they wanted something new, ignored it.
One thing about Megaman 9, I know it may be too futuristic, but do they let you change powers on the fly with the shoulder buttons, instead of making you pause and go to menu? I will buy it either way, but it would be nice.
“Nothing is random. Unavoidable deaths are almost non-existent save for a few surprises designed to catch players off-guard”
A FEW suprises? I’ve spent all morning getting sideswiped by *all manner* of roboticized bullshit from out of the blue (the grabby helicopter things you pictured from Galaxy Man’s stage being a prime example), but Christ, am I ever having fun.
Thanks for the lengthy and thoughtful writeup on MM9, Jeremy. It’s says everything I’ve wanted to say about the game but haven’t been able to do so due to my inability to string together more than a few words without degenerating into a cloud of incomprehensible swearing.
There are corners of the internet that actually know we’re here?
Kishi’s Suikoden IV review mostly seems to focus on it not being Suikoden III… due to the complaints made about it and changed in IV. But this also means that people who were not satisfied with Suikoden III may have liked Suikoden IV much more, like me. Also, the unmarked rune affinity system was in place in Suikoden II atleast, it wasn’t just whipped up for IV.
Er, kirin, not Kishi.
The need to play Mega Man 9 is nearly unbearable. Methinks I will purchase it for a friend. :)
Er, kirin, not Kishi.
Don’t worry; I make that mistake all the time, and I’m Kishi!
Hey yo–Bob here. I just wanted to say that I’m adding a correction to my article; Nippon Ichi may have published Phantom Brave, but Atlus was contracted to do the localization. My point still stands, but I think that’s an important bit of information. Thanks to Tomm for the update.
It’s true that my fondness for Suikoden III colored the way I reviewed IV. But while I think III’s willingness to show a little ambition was a good thing, I’m not saying every Suikoden has to go out in left field. Suikoden V was much more a “traditional” Suikoden game than III, but it was still miles better than IV.
Also, the mistake is understandable, since Kishi is about ten times as prolific as I am…
I think the point of the Suikoden IV piece wasn’t “Oh no, it’s not Suikoden III!” but rather “Oh no, it’s not a very good game because it abandons everything that made Suikoden unique without adding anything to compensate.”
That Mega Man 2 was used as the basis for the “back to basics” method because it was the most widely adored is as unsettling as it is reassuring. Most widely adored doesn’t always mean objective best, even though it was applicable here.
Parish, why the heck didn´t *you* write the MM9 review on 1up?
I think it´s an affront, you´re like the Roger Ebert of classical and retro gaming.
Because the reviews editor wanted to, and frankly I’m glad. I hate writing official reviews and greatly prefer the flexibility (and lack of scores) this site affords me.
Well to be fair, the random rooms in Soul Nomad sucked.
MM9 is such a surprise! I guess those of us who were able to play MM2 back when it was released have had it and MM3 and maybe even MM1 practically memorized for so long that nothing really felt new anymore. MM4 and above really don’t feel the same–first the charge shot messed up the experience, as I think you may have pointed out before, and then level design went out the window. I forgot what a pleasure it was to use the old MM tricks: the little tap-jumps just at the right time to hit metools on slightly higher ledges (see: third screen of Tornado Man’s level), the hair’s-breadth steps to the edges of platforms to prepare for the perfect jump. All the little things you have to remember to do that pile up through the various levels (don’t walk too far here or the claw will pick you up and shove you into the spikes; it’s okay to get hit by the green UFO things and fall on the spikes IF you jump right back off of them, etc.) really are a lot of fun to learn. Bastardry is exactly the right word. The first few Mega Man games were full of stuff like that, and they were so goddamned sadistic!
Incidentally, I wonder if anyone ended up quitting out of the game thinking there would be a save state waiting when they got back, as with Virtual Console titles (which MM9 thoroughly resembles)? I probably would have done this myself, except that I died more times than I can count tonight, and every single time the game kindly offered to let me save. Save, quit, renew, retry.
There are vinyl recordings of Famicom games that sell for $600 or more in Akihabara! I like to drink in the irony, myself.
BTW, did anyone notice the option in MM9 that switches button 1 to “jump” and button 2 to “shoot?” Is this for, um, people who learned to play Mega Man on Gamecube?
The default option is the bass-ackwards shoot/jump reversed on the Classic Controller.
oooooh! I’ve been playing sideways wiimote style.
I’m loving Megaman 9! One of the best games of the year to be sure.
Not sure why all of the N1 hate though. Yes the battle system is mostly the same in each Disgaea game, but unlike sports games at least the stories are different. I’ve put more time into Disgaea 3, despite it’s glass-shard-in-the-eyes visuals than any other game this year, HD or no. As Megaman 9 has proven, it’s MUCH better to have a great game with dated visuals than a great looking game that completely sucks and has no soul.
Well, work’s gonna be long for me today, ’cause I don’t want to do anything today except challenge Dr. Wily’s fortress again! Man this game is hard.
For an article on the “Games of Nippon Ichi”, that certainly didn’t talk about many… Like… two. Disappointing.
The Suiko4 one’s good though. I picked it up preowned but haven’t started playing it yet. Now I think I have a better feel for what I’ll be getting into.
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