Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Alphabet of Cronies: M-N

M is for Monsters

Yeah, "monsters" is a pretty general term, as pretty much every enemy in most games can be considered to be some form of monster. However, I'm talking about actual scary movie-style critters.

And what better game series to start up a chat about such monsters than the Castlevanias? Castlevania is known for its ensemble of freaky creatures to battle through...many of them mythological, some derived from literature, and others just completely made up for the game. Such adversaries include skeletonized dragons, possessed suits of armor, plain ol' ghosts, haunted books, half-eviscerated bulls, and even Frankenstein's monster. Hell, the main enemy over the course of the series is Count Dracula himself, so even if you know only that fact alone you can pretty much think of what other shit you're gonna be whipping to death.

A Diplocephalus from the Castlevania indeed.

Another game series that dishes out classic monsters in spades is Ghosts N' Goblins (or Ghouls N' Ghosts in the later games). These games put you in the steel boots of a heroic knight named Arthur who simply needs to rescue a princess...but legions of monsters stand in the way. These can range from plain old zombies to sea monsters, and from axe-wielding ghouls to wall-mounted Cockatrices. It's very much a case of where Konami has Castlevania, Capcom has GnG for the same purpose, but they're both very different from each other and unique in their own awesome respects. Perhaps the best thing they both share though is that they're tough as hell.

And of course there are tons of other cool games with classic-style monsters in them. Final Fantasy has its fair share of scary critters, particularly in the older entries. There's a pretty cool game for the NES called Monster Party which isn't really the best game out there, but it's worth a play and has a bunch of cool monster enemies. The Resident Evil series has its fair share as well! I guess the best thing about these creatures is their recognizability, which in itself makes them iconic enemies to have a go at. Really, how often can you say "I slapped fuckin' Frankenstein's head with a garlic-drenched magical whip until he exploded and shit out potion bottles everywhere"? Not that often, man!

N is for Nazis

Ohhh, I shouldn't even have to write about these assholes, but I'M SURE AS HELL GOING TO! If I have to explain what a fuckin' Nazi is at this point, then you should probably just...go and drink a whole can of paint or something.

There's an equation that should be going through your head almost instantly at the moment. I am talking about Nazis on a blog about classic video games.

Video games + Nazis = Wolfenstein 3D

If you don't know what fuckin' Wolfenstein 3D is, please go and consume another can of paint this instant. One of the very first FPS games, Wolfenstein has you in control of a soldier named B.J. Blazkowicz who is pretty much a Nazi-killing machine. The entire point of the game is to shoot Nazis until they die, get bigger weapons, and then shoot more Nazis with your bigger weapons. Those assholes are trying to use their paranormal division to conjure up some undead and spiritual creatures for use in their army, so you'd better stop them! If you're asking yourself who the final boss is...I'm gonna ruin it for you right now:

Of course! The Fuhrer himself in a robotic killing suit!

That's right. Fuckin' Mecha Hitler. Nazis continue to be the main adversaries in the Wolfenstein series to this date.

Another game that used Nazis (although in North America it might not be as obvious) is Bionic Commando on the NES. If you haven't already read my entry about BC (for shame!), then I'll fill you in. The enemies of the game are called the Badds in North America, but in the original Japanese release they were blatantly Nazis and swastikas were all over the place, and the title was "The Resurrection of Hitler: Top Secret". So you kill Nazis and try to prevent them from doing two things:

a) Bringing Hitler (Master-D in the NA release) back from the dead

b) Making a flying tool of destruction called the Albatross

At the end of the game, you blow up Hitler's head at which point the game shows you the most fantastic pixelated art composition I have ever observed...but you'll have to go to my Bionic Commando review to see that!

So why are Nazis such good bad guys? You just don't fuckin' feel bad for killing them! They're fascist pricks that had a retarded and horrible agenda and they did horrible, horrible things to people for no good reason. As far as I'm concerned, pump their guts full of lead!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

In Defense: Hydorah

So you say you've played've played R-Type, you've played Darius, you've played Twinbee. You've played Ikaruga and Galaga, and Salamander and Life Force and Raptor and Mutant Space Bats of Doom. You've even played Zero Wing and Parodius, and maybe a little bit of Phalanx.

Well you probably haven't played Hydorah. That in itself is the biggest fucking shame in the whole world.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Alphabet of Cronies: K-L

K is for Koopa Kids

This is another more specific crony entry, but one that I'm certainly not about to back down about.

Somehow, Bowser managed to spawn 7 children as of Super Mario Bros. 3. I'm not quite sure how he did it...maybe he managed to bone Princess Toadstool one of the times he kidnapped her and she had her offspring in secret (God help her poor, tattered vagina, assuming Bowser's spiky, scaly skin is a constant...). Maybe the fucker's a giant fire-breathing hermaphrodite...or perhaps he even has a wife that he keeps locked in some fuckin' basement somewhere, sliding morsels of Blooper calamari with a side of fried Goombas under the door and only visiting solely for procreation. Either way, he wound up with 7 children.

More like being AWESOME!

Larry Koopa, Iggy Koopa, Wendy O. Koopa, Roy Koopa, Morton Koopa Jr., Lemmy Koopa, and Ludwig von Koopa are all of their names, and he gave each of them their own fucking airship AND a magic wand that disfigures old royalty into freaky monsters. How cool is that?? That's more than my damn parents've ever done for me! In Mario 3, each of these bastards has to be fought at the end of each world, excluding world 8, and they all have their own tactics. Wendy fires bouncing rings around the room, for example, while Roy and Ludwig both stun you when they land on the ground. And this is all after getting through their respective airship levels, which are some of the most epic creations of Mario Bros. history.

In Super Mario World, he gave each of them their own damn castle! Lucky bastards...they've made a few other appearances since then, such as in the recent New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga, but otherwise have been largely shunted to the side to accommodate a little prick called Bowser Jr. I dunno where this 8th idiot child came from, but the Koopa Kids are far, far cooler than Bowser Jr. as far as I'm concerned.

Oh, and apparently they're all named after famous people, such as Ludwig van Beethoven and Iggy Pop. Not to mention, if the one Koopa Kid's name is Morton Koopa Jr., then Bowser's full name may be Bowser Morton Koopa Sr. Pretty neat, huh?

L is for Lizards

Let's face it. Lizards make awesome enemies...a fact that can be argued alone by the existence of dragons in many, many video games. There's something about tackling a gigantic, flying, fire-breathing reptile that just screams "Awesome"...but there's a multitude of other lizard-like foes that certainly deserve mentions.

Lizalfos are a good one to start at...the reptilian knights from the Legend of Zelda series starting at Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link. These things walked on both legs and were able to wield weapons and armor, generally proving to be quite capable foes. Dodongos are another good little enemy to mention, which "dislike smoke" (that means you need to cram a bomb down their throats).

Lizard codpieces go for about 67 bucks on Ebay these days!

Dinosaurs are another obvious entry, such as in Joe and Mac. Sure, cavemen and dinosaurs didn't exist at the same time, but who gives a fuck when you're clubbing them to death and riding them through levels as if they were cattle? Not to mention the giant dinosaur bosses at the end of each level, which were certainly epic at the time.

Wyverns and dragons in the Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior series, as well as the terribly irritating Brachosaur in FF3/6...Kraid and Ridley, Mother Brain's henchmen from the Metroid series...Mermen and Orphic Vipers from Castlevania games...and the Mecha-Drago from Mother 3...there are tons of lizard enemies out there. They make good foes because they're scaly and awesome. 'Nuff said!