Hey Arcaders, just wanted to let you guys know that I am now streaming on Twitch every Sunday night. I am doing some casual playthroughs or just picking up random fun games occasionally. Right now I am playing through the Playstation 2 classic Jak and Daxter: The Precursor Legacy. So come join in on the fun (link below).
As many Arcaders know, after the phenomenal success of Pac-Man, a whole slew of maze games were made, some of which have been covered here on the site. But there was one that also merits mentioning, and that title is Mouse Trap.
Created by Exidy in 1981, this Arcade definitely emulated Pac-Man in many respects, yet it had a style all its own.
In this game Arcaders were placed in the role of a mouse who is trying to collect/eat cheese in a maze. Sounds pretty simple right? Wrong, because there are cats in this maze as well as occasional hawks who are looking for their next meal, and you are on the menu.
But fortunately, you are no ordinary mouse, for you have the ability to open/close doors in the maze to help you, plus there are bones that can turn you into a dog once you eat them. Much like how the energizer dots allow Pac-Man to eat the ghosts, Once you are a dog you can attack the cats with gusto.
In all, it is a really unique Arcade game and one that truly deserves notice, even among all the copycats that came out after Pac-Man, as well as one that stood out among the many Arcade games that were in Disney Quest. So this game definitely gets an okay from me.
And on a lighter note here’s hoping that this title comes to the Switch down the road!
When Independence Day came out in theaters, it was definitely a movie that helped bring back the summer blockbuster, which had been in a bit of slump for a while until the mid/late 90s. Given the science-fiction/action nature of the film – particularly with regards to the dogfight scenes between Earth’s fighter planes and the Alien Attackers – it felt like there was a video game that could be made out of this. Or at least that was the mindset the developers at Radical Entertainment had when they got the call to create a video game tie-in to the film.
Much like the flight simulator games that came out during this time, ID4 puts you in the cockpit of a fighter plane – with Steve Hiller as your wingmate – and you have to complete an objective for the place you are at (destroy Shield generators, protect an AWAC, shoot down X amount of Alien craft) and then once you complete that objective you then have to take out the City Destroyer’s primary weapon to complete the whole mission.
Sounds simple enough, right? Well, there’s the fact that you have to contend with Alien Attackers that will try to shoot you down, to say nothing of everything else the enemy will try to throw at you – gun turrets, smaller transport ships, and other types of attackers besides the one audiences know from the film.
In just about every location you will find yourself confined to flying underneath the Destroyer so you can only go so far. However, the space is large enough to where you can take it all in, while trying not to get shot down, of course. Plus the fact that you can shoot down the Alien Attackers is definitely a plus.
While the fighters you fly can take punishment – unlike the movie – that’s not to say they are invincible, for the life gauge – or shield gauge if you want to call it that – does decrease as as you get hit by enemies weapons or even if you accidentally run into buildings or even get up close and personal with either the City Destroyer or the perimeter shield. Plus the missiles you have will also decrease as you use them, and if you run out you’ll be in quite a pickle because while the cannon you have shoots unlimited tracers, it’s not going to inflict as much damage as missiles will.
But of course, what kind of shooter is complete without power-ups? And this game has plenty. From to missile power-ups to Health power-ups to repair your fighter jet, even one that not only repairs your fighter’s life gauge to the max, but gives you an energy shield of your very own, you’re pretty much set. But’s only the tip of the iceberg, because there’s plenty of other power-ups to discover, from finding other fighter planes to unlock, along with other types of power ups that can range from freezing aliens for a short time, as well as weapons that can either blind alien craft from seeing where they’re going to sending them out of control, and even unlocking portals that can take you to different places, this game definitely wasn’t lacking in material.
(The Alien attackers definitely got my attention more, given their design aesthetic. I wonder if some of these were done by concept artists from the movie but never made it into the final cut)
In all, this game was a decent one to me. While it was no StarFox 64 epic by any means it isn’t as awful as some say it is, and if nothing else it was a game that tried to be more than just a cash-in.
So if nothing else it is a game that will at least keep you entertained for a while.
In keeping with the 20th birthday of certain films, it seems there is yet another film that has hit that milestone, and it is none other than the second film in the Pokemon anime, and that is Pokemon The Movie 2000!
But first, let’s see what was at the end of the first film post-credits:
Now up to this point there had only been the first film Pokemon: The First Movie, but to my 15-year old self, it slipped my mind that that film was only the start of several movies to come, and with this film boy was I blown away, because this one was definitely different from the first. This one had a larger scope, where the secondary characters were more interesting than before, the stakes were a lot higher, and even our usual bumbling antagonists found themselves stepping up and helping our heroes out.
But perhaps one of the best surprises about this movie is the music. The themes used in the film are very reminiscent of what many films both animated and live-action did during the 80s and 90s (a trend that sadly seemed to end shortly after this). The fact that even Donna Summer got involved in the making of the soundtrack along with songwriter/producer David Foster (whose own track record consists of the soundtrack for the movie St. Elmo’s Fire as well as countless other songs for Celine Dion, Michael Buble, etc.) should tell you the quality of talent involved, and a soundtrack that holds up remarkably well.
(But I really have to ask, why didn’t they do a music video for “The Power of One”? They did one for M2M’s “Don’t Say You Love Me” for the previous Pokemon film.)
In a nutshell, put all those elements together and you have yourself a grand adventure that is truly worthy of a cinematic experience.
So if you have not seen the film, fear not, for there’s many ways to do so, whether it be from iTunes or the 3 disc Blu-Ray set that has the first three films.
And when you watch the film, you will definitely believe in the tag line that one person can indeed make all the difference, even one who seems the least likely of all.
Attention Star Wars Fans! Today the new Star Wars animated series ￼has been announced for Disney+. Titled Star Wars the Bad Batch, it will follow the titular￼￼ characters as they deal with the aftermath of The Clone Wars. The Bad Batch will be executive produced by Dave Filoni and other veterans of the previous Star Wars animated series.
The Bad Batch aka Clone Force 99 is a squad of super-enhanced clones ￼introduced in the final season of The Clone Wars. The squad includes Hunter, Wrecker, Tech, Crosshair, and their latest member Echo. Each member of the Bad Batch has desirable mutations that allow them to excel at different jobs and working together they make a formidable squad.
I think this show has a lot of promise and deals with a side of The Clone Wars that I don’t think we’ve ever really explored before: What happened to the Clones after Order 66? Since the start of The Clone Wars series, this has been a question that I keep thinking about. While we got an answer for Rex, Wolf, and Gregger when they appeared in Star Wars Rebels but it didn’t answer what happened to all of them. With this series though we get to make a laser focus on the clones and maybe we get to see how they were affected by the changing galaxy and Order 66. I can’t wait till it premieres next year on Disney+. Stay tuned to this site for more updates on this upcoming series!
For 800 years The Ninja has protected Norrisville. Unbeknownst to the citizens every four years the mantle of The Ninja is passed to a new person, which is ninth-grader, Randy Cunningham. Now he must learn how to use his ninja powers to protect his city from an ancient evil.
Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja has several things going for it; a unique look, a great voice cast, and some truly funny jokes. The unique look of the cartoon is mostly credited to Jhonen Vasquez, the creator of Invader Zim. Jhonen’s design style is very unique which makes Randy Cunningham stand out from most cartoons out there. Another point in its favor is the voice cast, which is stellar. The cast includes Randy himself voiced by Ben Schwartz of Parks and Rec fame, John DiMaggio from Adventure Time and Futurama, Kevin Michael Richardson from Teen Titans and Green Lantern the animated series, and of course, Tim Curry of Home Alone 2 and Clue fame plays the main villain (even though he only does it for the first season). Because of the pedigree of voice actors, the cartoon never feels dull or that comes from the actors are phoning it in. In fact, it seemed that the voice cast had fun with their characters especially Ben Schwartz. Finally in a world where cartoons and animated films seem only to rely on fart jokes Randy Cunningham also does. Though every once in a while the show can have some really funny jokes which made me laugh that wasn’t fart related. These would usually come from Randy and his pal Howard which is important cause it made you like the characters. I also want to make an honorable mention to another weird but fun part of the cartoon which is the unique sayings they have throughout. These include everything being Bruce or calling people a shoob. I like that they added their own kind of popular language to the characters. It gives the world a special feel even if it’s a bit confusing at times what they actually mean.
While Randy Cunningham is an interesting take on the high schooler hero genre unfortunately it isn’t the best example of it. Many shows have come before it and done a similar story better like Kim Possible and Danny Phantom. This doesn’t make it a bad show by any means just a show that had a lot of potential but never used it correctly. Most of my problems with the show stem from there not being any real character growth. Every episode of the series sees Randy learning a lesson but you never see him grow as a character. Likewise the show puts forth a lot of great questions that if answered would elevate the show quality wise while building the world but they never really answer those questions they just kind of leave it hanging. Some of these questions include: why was Randy chosen as The Ninja? Why is McFist, one of the villains of the story after The Ninja when he already owns the town for the most part? Where are Randy’s parents? I believe if they would have answered some of these questions and given the characters some growth through the series it might have made this a classic. Unfortunately, it just falls short of that and with some other classic shows doing it better it can come off as forgettable.
Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja has a lot of things going for it; a great voice cast, interesting ideas, and a unique animation style. Despite these great things the show falls short due to its lack of character development and world-building. By no means is it a bad show and I say check it out on Disney+ if you get the chance. Just know that it’s not as good as it could be compared to other shows that have come before it and use the teenage superhero trope better.