Hungry Goriya Used Acquire: Art Books, Game Guides, and Posters

This is the nineteenth post in a series called “Hungry Goriya Used Acquire” that serves to highlight the contents of a large game collection I procured from an old high school friend of mine, Joe.  Read here for the backstory.

Along with the bounty of games we received from my friend back in April, I think one of my very favourite parts of the collection were the books and posters that came along with everything.  As a bit of a completionist, there was always a part of my younger self that wanted to 100% every game I played, and I always found myself attracted to game guides as a result of this. Unfortunately the guides were always too pricey, and I bought games instead of guides.  Since those times I’ve managed to collect quite a few used guides, but nothing I had up until this point can quite compare to the huge pile of paper I got in this collection acquisition.  It would have been completely overwhelming to sit down and itemize every single one of them with photographs, so instead I’ve highlighted some of my favourites and the ones that mean the most to me or my boyfriend.

I’ll start with the art books.  There were plenty of these, many of which are for games that I haven’t gotten around to playing myself by this point.  There were art books for some pretty solid games like Mass Effect and Half Life 2, both of which my boyfriend was very happy to take a look through.  He is also a tremendous fan of Doom, so reading “The Making of” was a pretty fun venture.

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Some other art books that were more up my alley were for RPGs on various consoles.  I haven’t played any of these games yet, but when I do get around to trying them out, these will definitely be something I’ll come back to.  Much of the art work in games from this era is strikingly beautiful, and I’m proud to have a way to enjoy it in a different way outside of the games themselves.

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There were at least 50 game guides in total.  I added a few new Zelda guides to my collection (yay for The Wind Waker!), as well as many of the other Final Fantasy ones I was missing.  I’ll have to double check, but I think I’m pretty close to having a complete guide set for Final Fantasy games.  I’m especially excited about the one for Dawn of Souls.  Though I don’t own that particular iteration of the game, I’m sure that it’s similar enough to the PS1 version (Origins) that I can see if I’ve missed anything when I finally do decide to go back through FFII again.  I also won’t complain about owning a guide for Super Smash Bros. Melee since in the few times I’ve indulged in Smash, I could never quite seem to figure out how the finer points of the game worked.  What are the percentages about?  Why can you go well over 100% before you get blasted into the atmosphere?  So many unanswered questions that I might now have the power to answer!

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There were so, so many full-size posters to be had here as well.  Some were from store-front displays, and others were probably just packed in with games when they got shipped out to stores (Joe used to work in a game store back in the day, which is where many of these things came from.)  Again, with the number of posters there are in the bunch, I only picked and chose a few that I personally liked or thought might be interesting for people to take a look at!  Many of them I picked are for Working Designs games, and as far as I’m concerned, Working Designs can do no wrong in the world.  These are a real treat to personally own, but I need about a million more walls in my house to fit all of these beautiful works of art!


Hopefully you’ve enjoyed this visual treat!  I’m not sure if this will be the last entry in this series because there is some more stuff left, but I’m not entirely sure how to categorize it or chronicle it in a meaningful way.  For example, there are press kits from E3 2005/2006, lots of merchandise from those events, as well as demo games and other miscellaneous things of that sort.  A lot of it I don’t have any personal context for since I wasn’t at the events myself, so I’ve been struggling trying to think of a way to present that here.  For the time being I will leave it be unless there’s a huge stir of interest here to see some of it.

I will likely do a wrap-up post in the near future about what this entire experience was like for me, so stay tuned for that!  In the meantime, I truly hope you’ve enjoyed this trip through a venture that essentially doubled my game collection in a day.  There are some real great things here that I’m so blessed to be able to eventually experience, and I’m greatly looking forward to the challenge of working through my now ridiculously backlogged game collection.

Happy Thanksgiving to you all! I will be celebrating with various turkey dinners over the weekend, followed by The Soup-ening, 2017.  Thanks for reading, as always!

-GG

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Moving Sale

Once in a while, great shops come and go.  One of my favourite local shops was at risk of picking up and skipping town, but I was very grateful to hear that they found a new home for their storefront within city limits.  As a result of the move, the store is being forced to massively downsize, which meant for a huge liquidation of much of their stock, video games included.  All of the games/gaming accessories were half price, and we definitely made out pretty well on a few games I’ve been wanting to buy, but never wanted to pay his prices for.  The store-owner’s son bought up all his NES and Sega games, but I had picked over most of those in the recent past anyway.  Here are some of the games I got for screamin’ deals!  I love discounts!

The first were some Sega CD games.  Unfortunately the discs for all three games are pretty beaten up, but for a few dollars, I didn’t see a risk in buying them and trying to get them resurfaced at some point.  We already have a copy of Sewer Shark, but the Sega Classics and the Ecco game are both new to us.  Hopefully the resurfacing will restore them to a useable condition.  You can never go wrong with Sega CD games, though some of the ones I acquired recently just don’t work.  Deterioration of disc media is something I’m really nervous about when collecting disc games, but thankfully many of the disc-based systems I own are modded to play burnt discs, or do so without requiring a mod (Sega CD, Dreamcast, etc.)

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This copy of Dragon Age II is something I had been eyeballing at the store for months.  I’ve never seen it anywhere for less than $10, and this copy had been no different until the sale.  It was half price at $5, so I snagged it.  Unlike the Sega CD games above, this one is in nearly perfect condition and game with all its goodies inside.  I’ve played through the first game and liked it quite a bit (thinking of you, LightningEllen), so I am pretty excited to finally add the second game to the collection.  I’ve heard it’s not as good as the first, but heck – I can bring my Grey Warden into this next world now if I want to!

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It was apparently LightningEllen day at the store because I also got my hands on Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Lightning Returns.  These, along with the Star Ocean game were also only $5 each.  I almost passed on XIII-2 because it didn’t have its manual, but for the price, I couldn’t say no.  These discs were also in excellent condition.

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Another PS3 game I stumbled upon was Tales of Xillia in its Limited Edition form.  I’ve always been interested in collecting this series and have a reproduction of Tales of Phantasia for SNES as well as the GBA version, and Tales of Symphonia for GameCube.  The Limited Edition of Xillia was $10 after the discount was applied, so I figured I’d bite the bullet and go for it.  My tiny PS3 collection is slowly expanding.

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This copy of Final Fantasy II for PSP was calling my name!  It’s one of the loathed games of the series, but I have a soft spot for the underdog in this case.  It’s good!  It’s a fresh take on the typical for turn-based RPGs, and if I can love something as punishing as Miracle Warriors, FFII is like an angel descending from the clouds.  I’ve never gotten around to finishing this one, but it’s something I’d like to play through again from the  beginning one of these days.  I’ve got the Final Fantasy Origins compilation for PS1, but I’d like to see what changes were made for the PSP.  I was thinking of CheapBossAttack when I found the Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions game just sitting there in one of the huge game stacks.  It’s apparently quite good from what I’ve heard, and though I’ve only ever dabbled in one tactical RPG (Warlocked for Game Boy), I think this game will be really good.  These were also $5 each.

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Taito Legends 2 with its adorable Bub (or Bob?) on the front was like a siren in the rocks.  This collection has lots of great arcade games of old, many of which I do not have for another system at this point in time.  I love compilations like this – the Sega Genesis collections are some others I would like to own for various consoles.  Though there are three different Space Invaders games on this disc, the rest of the games look pretty great (Rastan 2, anyone?)

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Another PS2 game I actually had to go back for on another day was Arc the Lad: Twilight of the Spirits.  I don’t own any of the earlier Arc the Lad games, though I’m hoping to get my hands on them eventually.  Two summers ago someone was selling the PS1 collector’s edition but wanted something heinous like $200, so I passed.  I know the series to be interesting and held in generally positive ranks, so I couldn’t stop thinking about this later installment when I had passed on it the first time.  I’m glad I went back for it since the disc and book were nearly perfect.

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I never like to pass up on boxed Atari or Intellivision games, especially in this condition.  I already had a copy of Frog Bog loose, but this game box and its contents look practically untouched.  The controller overlays are immaculate, and the game looks as if it’s never been inserted into a system at all.  It was refreshing to see this since many of the boxed games I own for these older systems are quite beat up.  Also, I love the cover art of this game.  Someone really put a lot of effort into making it realistic!

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There were a fewMagnavox Odyssey 2 games on the shelves as well, without manuals, and I grabbed them before another person looking at that shelf did.  Since I was trying to move quickly to maximize my purchase potential (the store was flooded with people!) I didn’t take too much time to look at the titles.  Unfortunately these are two of the same five games we already own for the Odyssey 2, but maybe I can pass them on to someone that wants them!

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It was strange to find an Atari Lynx game tucked away in the shop.  It was high up on a shelf behind the cash, and even though I’d scanned those shelves hundreds of times, it’s a game I never seemed to see before now.  We don’t own a Lynx, but given the condition of the box/game/instructions, it was another thing I wanted to pick up for the future, or to maybe pass along to someone that really wants it.  This is the first example of a game that I’ve personally seen with a poster for an instruction manual.  I love the art style of the panels.

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Lastly, we got a Game Gear Game Genie!  This was right after I watched the AVGN’s Game Boy Accessories video and was surprised to see the GG version sitting around in the emptied Nintendo cabinet.  It had the super tiny codebook in a super tiny compartment in the back of the unit, so it was a no-brainer to pick it up.  By the time I found this, I had a huge stack of games and I kept almost dropping the Mickey Mouse game, so I put it into the Game Genie for safe keeping.  I think we accidentally got the game for free since I forgot I had stuck it in there until after we got home.  I figure when the owners have moved, I just won’t haggle with them sometime and pay an extra few dollars to make up for it.  If I am remembering correctly, this contraption only cost us $10.

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Sometimes you just happen to stumble upon these kinds of deals, and boy do I ever appreciate a discount when it comes around!  I’m sorry for the slow posting rate these days, but there’s just not much out there.  I scour the classifieds several times a day, and people just aren’t posting as much anymore!  Do not fear.  My collecting quest is far from over 🙂

Hope you’re off to a great weekend!  Thanks for reading!

-GG

 

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Game Boy Games

The Game Boy was my childhood companion console alongside the NES and Sega Genesis, though I only had a handful of games for the system.  I had Super Mario Land, Super Mario Land 2, Tetris, and my most favourite game of all: Link’s Awakening.  I spent many an hour tethered to various power outlets in my parents’ house trying to wake the Windfish (I didn’t actually succeed until I was well into my 20s), but nothing else on the console ever felt like a must-have in those days.  I’ve picked up the occasional Game Boy game here and there when I’ve come across them for a good price in my adult life, but it wasn’t until I got a bunch of games from my friend back in April that I got super interested in anything outside of the mainstream, popular games for the system (Pokemon, for example.)  What began what can only be described as an obsession with Game Boy games was Bomberman Tournament.  At first glance, I wrote it off as another Bomberman installment, but much to my surprise, it is an RPG-style game that actually looks adorable and fun to get into.  Wondering what else I had misjudged or missed altogether, I took a long, long tumble down the rabbit hole that is the Game Boy library, and I’ve been incredibly pleased with what I’ve discovered.  There are so many notable games that I hadn’t even heard of.  I’ve been on a bit of a buying spree to find a lot of them, and I wanted to share them with you.  Here we go!

Because I’ve been buying up game lots online most of the time, I’ve been acquiring some random games along with the ones I’ve truly been after.  One pleasant surprise in the photo below is Wario Blast where you are essentially Wario fighting against Bomberman in bombing matches to the death!  The music is probably some of the catchiest I’ve heard on the system so far.  Despite being generally horrible at the moment, I hope to improve and play it through to the end one of these days.  Obviously it was nice to find extra copies of Super Mario Land and Link’s Awakening in the mix, but some of the other games are leaning far on the side of meh.  Toy Story 2 and Monster’s Inc. felt horrible while I was testing them, but the Construction Zone and Genie Barbie games looks like they have some potential.

Snoopy’s Magic Show was lumped in with this photo even though I found it locally.  It was at a hock shop for ages and I finally remembered to do some price comparing to see if the pricing was reasonable.  I got a no-tax deal on it and a bit of a discount because of its crappy label.  It’s a puzzle game that I can play all day long for its cuteness and pleasant distraction from everyday life.

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Now for some RPGs!  I found a bunch of titles on a really old forum post for must-have Game Boy RPGs and started watching some gameplay videos of the chosen ones soon after.  Though some games on the list were a bit too expensive for my tastes, there were a bunch that I got for what I felt was a reasonable price.  Rolan’s Curse was the first one I found, and I ended up playing it for about two hours while testing it because I was intrigued by the gameplay and its cuteness.

With Link’s Awakening being one of my favourite games ever, For Whom the Frog Tolls (blue reproduction cartridge in the bottom row) was a no-brainer to pick up.  It’s a translated Japanese-exclusive action RPG made in the same engine as Link’s Awakening, but before Link’s Awakening was released!  In the same vein, James Bond 007 was a great recommendation to me from TheDeviot. It’s another game I ended up “testing” for an hour before putting it down to do other things, and its gameplay style is also reminiscent of Link’s Awakening.

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I had been looking for Dragon Warrior I&II for a very long while, and though I have the NES version of the first game, I’ve never been able to track down the second one for a reasonable price.  I have a beautiful complete in box copy of Dragon Warrior III for GBC, so now all I have left to find is Dragon Warrior IV.  Another game here I’m looking forward to a lot is Magi-Nation whose graphics remind me of Earthbound for some reason.  Warlocked is honestly really good too.  It’s a real-time strategy game and is my first kick at that particular genre.  I liked it so much that I streamed it recently for several hours and was not even remotely tired of it.  I’m hoping to do a full playthrough at some point.

The two games I’m probably the most excited about from this bunch are Metal Walker and Knight Quest.  Metal walker is Pokemon-esque where you have robot fighters that you pit against enemies in a battle arena.  It’s turn-based, but there are a few unique aspects that use the physics of the arena to change up the combat from a traditional menu-based turn-based RPG.  Knight Quest is one of the rarer games in the bunch and looks to be so, so lovely.  It’s a traditional turn-based RPG with cool battle sequences where you see animations of your hero attacking the enemies rather than just implied damage infliction with sound effects.  It looks like a great little game!

There were a few other games I wanted to find.  I got a copy of Legend of the River King 2 from my friend Joe and I wanted to find the first game as well.  It reminds me of Harvest Moon games, and that’s always a plus in my books.  It didn’t take me long to get a copy of that one pretty cheap, but did it ever take me a while to find Survival Kids!  I checked every single table at the last swap I went to and tried to win a few eBay auctions, but no luck.  I finally gave up and ordered a copy of the PAL version called Stranded Kids, and guess what?  Two days after I ordered Stranded Kids, Survival Kids showed up locally, and for $10!  I jumped on that, so now I have a copy of both versions of the game.  Woohoo!  I like the PAL cartridge art much better.  It reminds me of Secret of Mana for some reason.

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Along with the Survival Kids game, I also got my hands on a bunch of Game Boy Advance titles.  There’s nothing in particular in the bunch that calls to me, but according to the woman selling, the Spiderman game was particularly good.  Either way, I have a bunch more games to try out, none of which are doubles for me!

The Game Boy Advance SP in the photo below is one of the AGS-101 models with the back-lit screens.  These are rumoured to be significantly better in image quality than the AGS-001 version, which is front-lit. I haven’t done a side-by-side comparison myself, but at least I’ve got one to try out sometime.  Maybe on our next roadtrip, which might be a little sooner than I thought!

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I’ve been on a handheld roll lately, so expect a few more posts with that theme to tumble out in the next little while.  Between things being a little slow on the collecting front and work becoming a whirlwind out of nowhere, I’ve been slow to post.  I’m still here, just idly waiting for more games to descend upon me!

Happy almost-weekend!  Thanks for reading!

-GG

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Tradeshow Triumphs

I found myself at another swap a few weekends ago, and what a sight it was to behold!  After not getting out to any since May-ish, it was a welcome change of pace from the slow-as-molasses-going-uphill-in-January pace of game hunting locally.  Some scheduling conflicts have made it quite difficult to get out and about to all the events that I would’ve liked to this summer, but what can you do?

Instead of splurging on early access as we usually do, we chose to be super casual and show up about 30 minutes after the show had started to avoid the lines, and have a more relaxed travel morning.  I can’t express how much nicer the trip was.  Because we sometimes have to travel quite far for these swap events, it takes a bit of the stress off when we’re not held to a strict deadline for early entry.  I’m sure we will do this again in the future, without question.

Between a few great swaps and from buying up my friend’s video game collection, I’ve checked a lot of big ticket items off my “to-get” list.  Don’t get me wrong – this particular event yielded some fun stuff, but it was the first time ever that I felt a little… bored?  I walked by bins and bins of games for all the consoles I collect for and didn’t find too much that I still needed to find.  It makes me wonder how much more I truly want to collect, and what the hell I’ll do with myself when that final day finally does come.  Hopefully that’s not for a little while.  I have a blog to write after all!

I only picked up a handful of games this time around, and the first one I’ll show here is Zillion for the Sega Master System.  I’ve really rounded out a lot of what I want to own and play for that particular system, but Zillion caught my attention when it was brought to my attention several times by people asking if it was part of my SMS RPG Quest I’ve been working through at a snail’s pace.  I almost bought the game at a game store a few months ago, but they wanted $35, and the salespeople pissed me off after they tried to persuade me to buy Sailor Moon reproduction cartridges.  I was insulted on several levels, but I digress.  Zillion was in excellent shape, came complete, and I snagged it for $20.  What… uh… wonderful boxart this game has.  It looks like a fancy microwave.

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The last few games I picked up were for the NES: Battletoads, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project, and Legacy of the Wizard.  As a huge fan of Faxanadu, Legacy of the Wizard is another game in the Dragon Slayer series I’ll likely enjoy despite its apparent high difficulty level and obscureness at times.  The TMNT game was more for my other half than myself, but it completes our collection of those games for the NES.  I’ve never even seen gameplay of Manhattan Project, but I’ve heard it likened to the second game which I’m horrible at.  Beat ’em ups are not at all my forte.  Finding Battletoads felt like a personal victory for me.  My cousin had given me a complete in box copy of the game when I was younger and then later decided he wanted it back.  I foolishly gave it back to him without a fight and had been missing it ever since until now.  I’ve been looking for this game for at least five years and have had no luck finding a deal.  Vendors have tried to sell me loose copies at around $60 a few years ago, but for some reason the price has come down quite a bit in the last year.  I managed to get my copy of Battletoads for $20, Legacy of the Wizard for $10, and Manhattan Project for $30.  Not too shabby!

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As a lover of art and manuals, I couldn’t help but pick a few of them up for myself.  I actually forgot to include a few in this photo, and those would be for Golden Sun (GBA) and another for Warlocked (GBC).   I was really happy to find a copy of the Oracle of Ages booklet.  I have an absolutely beautiful copy of Oracle of Seasons complete in box, and I only had the cartridge for Ages until getting the manual here.  The manual for Kirby’s Adventure was a great purchase too since it’s the only part I was missing for my copy of the game – I’ve got a box and cartridge awaiting the final piece!  I don’t own Castlevania II Belmont’s Revenge for Game Boy, but I thought it would be a good idea to pick up the manual.  It’s about five pages long in total, but if I ever find the (fairly expensive!) game, it’ll be nice to have the book to go along with it.

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In a pile of manuals, I started sifting through some Atari booklets.  Among them I was really excited to find two of the Swordquest comic books that came with the Swordquest games back when they had their infamous game contest.  They were in absolutely pristine condition, and I’m really looking forward to reading them sometime soon.  I regret not getting some other Atari comics that were there, but maybe there’ll be some at the next one.

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So yes!  Nothing at all groundbreaking here, but I am certainly happy with the bunch of things I brought home.  As usual, here’s a group photo (minus the two manuals I mentioned above and with my boyfriend’s copy of Samurai Shodown for Neo Geo MVS I forgot to take an individual photo of.)

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I’ve been pouring over eBay for a few games I couldn’t find at the swap, especially Game Boy RPGs.  I’m a bit obsessed with those and have added a few to my shelves over the last month or so.  I’ll have another post for that once the last of them show up in the mail!

Hope you’re all off to an excellent start to the week.  Thanks for reading!

-GG

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Hungry Goriya Used Acquire: GameCube

This is the eighteenth post in a series called “Hungry Goriya Used Acquire” that serves to highlight the contents of a large game collection I procured from an old high school friend of mine, Joe.  Read here for the backstory.

I’ve been putting off putting this part of this series together purely because of its length.  The amount of GameCube stuff in my friend Joe’s game collection stretches into over 100 games with a ton of different accessories.  It took a very long time to get everything for this blog post photographed and edited, so hopefully you enjoy what will be one of the last posts about this topic.

As usual, I’ll start with the console itself!  The silver GameCube came complete in its box with lots of manuals and inserts, and barely looked used at all.  We actually received a second, empty box for a silver GameCube, so I will be looking for a cheap one to put into that box to sell at some point.  Interestingly, we got two Game Boy Players as wel.  One is the usual North American black one you might expect, but the other is silver!  In North America the GBPs were only released in black but in Japan, a variety of colours were available to purchase.  This other boxed one is a Japanese version, and from what I understand, though the player itself isn’t region-locked, you need to have a region-specific disc for your region-specific player for it to work properly.  I haven’t had a chance to test it out yet since I have a North American GBP set up and ready to go, but one of these days I’ll hook that up and give it a go.

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Along with the console came a variety of accessories.  Logitech released a racing wheel controller with its respective pedals, and we’ll be able to give this a spin with the bunch of racing games we also received in this lot.  If there was ever any paperwork included in these boxes, it’s long gone, though the box for the pedals did come with its cardboard insert.

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Speaking of interesting controllers, we have the pleasure of owning a chainsaw controller for the GC release of Resident Evil 4.  You’d be right if you’re thinking we got other chainsaw controllers in this game lot purchase, and they’re for the PS2.  The chainsaw controllers for the GC are rarer and were released in limited quantities.  I’d like to play Resident Evil 4 at some point down the road, and though I’ve heard this controller is bulky and difficult to use for the most part, I’d be interested to see for myself.

The DK Bongos were also here with two games to go along with them: Donkey Konga, and Donkey Kong Jungle Beat.  I had only ever seen the bongos in the flesh at hock shops with heinous price tags attached, so they were never something I thought I’d pick up for myself at all.  I’ve heard they’re an absolute hoot to play with though, but my percussion rhythm skills are abysmal.  I haven’t looked much into how the bongos work or what is required to play games using them, but if it has to do with rhythm, I might be out of luck.  They game boxed with a bit of the paperwork, but the  box is a little crushed.  It’s hard to see in the photo, but the top panel is smooshed, making the box difficult to open.

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Another accessory is the Dance Dance Revolution mat for the Mario Mix game.  This is a pretty fun thing to have, though my lack rhythm skills and non-compliant 31-year-old body might not enjoy a jaunt with this particular game.  There was a second mat for some two-player fun, but I’m not sure I’ll be able to convince my other half to play this one with me.

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And now for the games.  As you’ve likely come to expect if you’ve been following this post series, there are lots of shooter and stealth games here.  I’ve heard many praises sung for Killer 7, Serious Sam and Time Splitters, and though these are not games I’d usually pick up, I’m going to try them out at some point.  Oddly enough, I’ve amassed a substantial Metal Gear Solid collection from this big game lot.  Funny how that happens, eh?

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There were a whole pile of games here based on television and movies.  I narrowed my eyes suspiciously at this bunch, wondering if they’ll be at all better than licensed games on other consoles.  My guess is no, but considering I haven’t seen at least half of the media related to these games, I might have some catching up to do before I can accurately judge these ones.

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Among the many, many sports games, there was a true gem: NCAA College Basketball 2K3.  This is shockingly the rarest game for the GameCube and at this point in time is selling for well over $100 in many different places online.  There are lots of titles here that I have very little interest in playing through, but I might try out a few.  I surprisingly had some great times playing NBA Jam with my boyfriend, so who knows if I’ll fall a little in love with sports games?

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Fighting, horror, and action games were plentiful here as well.  I got to “upgrade” my Super Smash Bros. Melee from a Player’s Choice to a regular label here, and the rest of the games were new to me.  I especially love that there are several robot fighter games.  I’m becoming mildly obsessed with robot stuff for no good reason, and these games (Custom Robo and Metal Arms) look to be loads of fun.  I don’t know much about some of the other games here.  Maybe tell me your favourite of this bunch so I have a place to start!

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I’m not sure how many Star Wars games were produced for the GameCube, but we landed in a pile of five of them.  Though some of them have to do with the prequels which I am mainly unfamiliar with (I’ve only seen them once), I still love the Star Wars universe and want to dive into these.

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I dipped my big toe into real time strategy games recently, and I am really enjoying that sort of gameplay.  Of all the GameCube games here, there were only a few RTSes.  I’m generally not a big fan of games that take place in real war history, but these games look far removed enough that I might enjoy them.  I was intrigued to see that Odama comes with a mic and wonder how that’ll integrate into the gameplay.

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Lots of puzzle-based and arcade games were here as well.  I’m not sure why I lumped Mega Man’s Anniversary Collection and Luigi’s Mansion in with this particular group of games, but I’m awfully excited about them both (specially Mega Man.)  I only have 2 and 3 for NES, and X for SNES.  I’m excited to try out the other games in this particular collection.  It’s so funny that people are currently getting the Mega Man Legacy Collection, and I’m just now getting my hands on long-ago remakes of the originals.  It sounds like that’s par for the course for me! Chibi-Robo is a game I know nothing about but have always wanted to play.  See my above commentary on robot love.  It looks awfully cute.

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Among the spoils were more adventure games with a cartoon-y style rather than the more serious bunch I’ve already mentioned.  Of obvious interest to me here are the Phantasy Star Online games which I do not own for the Dreamcast, as well as the Viewtiful Joe games.  Star Fox Adventures is supposed to be a mediocre RPG-ish adventure game, but I’ve only dabbled a tiny bit in the earlier games in the franchise.  Maybe I’ll actually like that one since I don’t have much of a comparison or nostalgia attached to the earlier installments.  I’ll also have to practice my French a little to partake in the Rayman games, which seems to be a French language copy of the game.  I’m by no means even close to being fluent in French, but I can order a hamburger with a questionable Canadian French accent.  Hopefully there are lots of hamburgers in those games!

I’m also excited about Wario World.  I just received a copy of Wario Blast in the mail not long ago, so my affinity for that character is growing a little.  He’s becoming far more to me than the Mario Kart character with a fart horn.

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Racing games were abundant!  There were two copies of Kirby Air Ride, one of which I was able to use in a trade at a swap a few months ago to get some other games.  Lots of these racing games look absolutely awesome, and I am particularly intrigued by Tube Slider.  It might be a case of misleading cover art, but I don’t know that I’ve ever played anything involving what appears to be luges, racing or otherwise!  Mario Kart Double Dash is also a nice addition.  I found a copy of the game at the thrift store a few months ago so this is now a double Double Dash, but it’ll make for a good trade down the line.

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When I mentioned a few posts ago that I am now really close to having a complete Metroid collection, I wasn’t kidding.  I ended up with several copies of Metroid Prime and Metroid Prime Echoes, and even a compilation with Prime and what might be a demo of the latter.  I’m shocked that this game, being as well-loved and highly praised as it is online, doesn’t cost more money like others that have become subject to the strange retro game inflation problem sweeping the world.  Either way, I’ll likely start the Metroid series from the beginning and work my way up to these eventually.

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RPGs were a-plenty here as well, with the Baten Kaitos games, a Tales game, as well as a few others that I’m not entirely familiar with.  This is another case of games being “too new” for me to have much knowledge about, and given how many games are here, my research to find out what is worth starting out with has barely begun.

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I also received a collector’s edition of Robotech Battlecry, but the t-shirt was long, long gone by now.  I don’t know if I like the cut of boy t-shirts anyway, but the rest of the stuff was there in the box. Though I haven’t played or even heard of the game before, I’m sure the art, dog tag and lithographic art will feel more personal to me when I do get around to it.  More robots!

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There were also a few Japanese games in the mix.  It’s interesting to me how different the packaging is between North American and Japanese GameCube games.  The boxes are so tiny and small compared to the DVD cases!  The games are Castle Shikigami 2, Radirgy, and the Nintendo Puzzle Collection.  We also conveniently received a copy of Free Loader, a region unlocking disc.  I’m not entirely sure how it works, but I’m glad that I’ll be able to try these Japanese games out without having to jump through too many hoops.

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I wanted to keep the Zelda games for last because it’s one of my favourite franchises.  If you read my post about completing my Zelda collection up to and excluding 3DS some time ago, you might be scratching your head and wondering why I’m so excited about these.  In truth, there were a few variants I didn’t have yet, but getting my hands on these doesn’t make my collection any more complete in terms of new games.   It just means I have more variants of games I already owned.  It was really neat to find a cardboard box copy of Four Swords Adventures with the DVD case and a GBA link cable included.  I don’t know how many of those types of packages were released for other games, but it was neat to see something different than the plastic snap cases!  Of the games here, the only ones I was missing were the Ocarina of Time Master Quest, and the Windwaker variant that also has a disc for the OoT Master Quest.  I didn’t even know that variant existed, but it’s neat to have!

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In addition to all of these games, we got a few extra goodies.  The first bunch of things I wanted to mention were some demo/preview discs.  Each disc has a few demos on it that were meant for in-store play.  Though I never played a demo disc for the GameCube specifically during its run in stores, I do remember trying out some demo kiosks in my youth.  The specifics are pretty fuzzy.  These are really neat to have since they’re not something you run across every day!  I know that you can search versions online to see what they contain, but I’m curious to just pop some of them in and see what happens.

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Another thing that absolutely blew my mind in this lot was a development tool consisting of a hard drive called an NR Writer, and a Memory Card Emulator.  I’m not entirely sure how this stuff works, but I was told that it gives you the ability to burn GameCube game discs, as well as write different game states to a memory card to do testing.  We have a little bit of research to do.  I’m pretty sure this sort of thing was not meant to be available to the public, so I’m not sure where to start.  Hopefully I can find some information!  More on this when I have a better idea of what it’s all about.

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If you’re still with me here at the end, thanks for sticking it out.  This post was certainly a lengthy one, but I hope you’ve enjoyed my tour through all this GameCube Goodness.  Considering I had only about 10-15 GC games prior to picking this game lot up, I can certainly say that it was quite shocking to receive more than 10x that many games here.

I have one more post planned, so stay tuned for that one.  Thanks for reading!

-GG

 

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Some Gnarly Atari Games

Am I allowed to use the word gnarly?  I think I was a bit too young in the 90s when that was popular.  Visions of Bill and Ted are flashing before my eyes now…

Though retro game pickings have been mostly dismal over the past few months, I did see a classifieds ad for some Atari games pop up.  As a relatively casual collector for that system, I wasn’t quite sure whether or not any of the seller’s games would be worthwhile for my tastes, or whether any were particularly sought after that I could snatch up.  TheDeviot over at Comma Eight Comma One recommended I check out AtariAge for some information on rarity, and it was incredibly helpful (thanks again!)   After doing some research and watching some gameplay clips online, there were definitely a few gems in the pile, so I negotiated what I thought to be a reasonable price for 8 games, and actually went back on another day to pick up a few others to round it all out.

Of the games I picked up there was only one double in my current collection, and that was Frogger.  The rest were entirely new to me!  It was obviously great to find a copy of some Nintendo games like Mario Bros. and Donkey Kong Jr., but I was even more intrigued by Pitfall II.  It’s not a game I had known very much about before owning it, but after trying it out and seeing that it was like a little adventure title, I was very surprised to find that it has an ending!  That’s a bit of a rarity on a console normally geared towards racking up points, and I played that game for two evenings straight just to listen to the great music and get to the end of all the obscurity of collecting what might have been a bunch of glowing cheese and a shaking monkey – I didn’t have an instruction manual after all.  I even went so far as to record a playthrough of it, but though my voice and the game’s audio were captured fine, there was so little detail in the video’s picture that it’s going to take some tweaking of the setup before I try that one out again!

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The two games I ended up going back for on a separate occasion after doing some more research were Crackpots and Radar.  Crackpots honestly looks like a game I can get behind and involves smashing spiders with flower pots as they try to ascend your apartment building.  Radar I picked up for the simple fact that it was a Zellers-exclusive game, meaning that it was a Canadian-only release and likely has a higher rarity than some of the others here.  I know that most of the games from that set are just blatant copies of other games, and this one is no exception: it’s a copy of Cruise Missile.  Either way, it was great to find a third game in that bunch, with the other two I currently have being Dragon Treasure and Earth Attack.

In other news, I’m heading to a swap event soon, so hopefully I’ll find some more really great stuff there and report back with that in the next few weeks.  We recently had some new shelving custom-built and installed for the Nerd Room, and it’s looking fantastic.  We have so much more storage that’s quickly filling up with all the things we didn’t previously have room for (mostly all the stuff from Joe’s collection I picked up a few months ago), so who knows how much more collecting I can realistically do before we need to have shelves built on the ceiling in there?  I am hoping to do a post in the next bit showing the before and after of that space.  That will be something fun and a little different!

I hope your weekends are all off to a lovely start.  As always, thanks for reading!

-GG

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Hungry Goriya Used Acquire: Nintendo DS

This is the seventeenth post in a series called “Hungry Goriya Used Acquire” that serves to highlight the contents of a large game collection I procured from an old high school friend of mine, Joe.  Read here for the backstory.

I mentioned in my last post that one of the main reasons I had stayed away from the handheld gaming phenomenon (which also includes Nintendo DS/3DS) was mainly because there were no TV-compatible adapters to play the games with.  Regardless of the neck pain and stress headaches being hunched over a tiny handheld screen would usually cause me, I’ve never been much of an “on the go” gamer with the exception of a few road trips in my 20s.  Even in my youth playing my original Game Boy was spent tethered to the wall with an adapter cord rather than running wild and free in the light of day, trying to figure out how to increase the contrast so I didn’t go blind from all the squinting and straining.

I suppose in my stubbornness, I’ve actually missed out on a bunch of really excellent games.  I have regrets, but at least getting a few games from Joe’s collection can ease the pain, and I can start seeking out some other great additions to the handheld game library.

We received a black DS Lite with all its fixings.  Like everything else we got in this acquisition, it was in really great shape with no scratches on either screen like it had never been used.  The DS Lite is my personal DS of choice because of its ability to play GBA games too.  I’m sure many of you have already figured out that I’m a huge backwards compatibility fangirl.

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This collection has been a little stash of special edition or anniversary release paraphernalia, and that certainly didn’t stop here.  Among the many boxes of things, we found a Legend of Zelda stylus fashioned in the shape of a feather, along with a special Castlevania 20th Anniversary game carrying case.  These are pretty neat to have, and I definitely plan on using the stylus to finish Kirby Mass Attack some day.

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Another accessory we got was a rumble pak.  This was something neither my boyfriend or I had ever heard of for the DS, and I’m actually not quite sure how many games would be compatible with something like this.  I’ve never used any type of rumble feature on a handheld, but I’ve experienced it on the Playstation.  It definitely does add some depth and immersion into a game, but I wonder if it shakes the whole screen and makes things hard to see on a handheld.

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Now for the games!  I finally have a copy of Nintendogs.  I think when I finally get around to playing it that it’ll become a guilty pleasure of mine.  I used to absolutely obsess over pet care games.  I had a discount dinosaur Tamagotchi-like device growing up which almost got me sent to the principal’s office several times in the 6th grade because I didn’t respect the school’s ban on them.  Rebellious!  Getting the demo for Metroid Prime Hunters was also great.  I actually realized last night that through this collection purchase, I own nearly all the Metroid games out of nowhere.  I used to only own two: the original Metroid for NES, and Super Metroid.

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There were also lots of the usual shooters/horror/adventure games to be had among the spoils.  I watched a trailer this morning for Dementium: The Ward, and I’ve had goosebumps and the willies ever since.  I’m truly hoping I can get into some of these horror games because I now own so many of them and wouldn’t want to see them sit on a shelf forever.  I’ll just have to keep a teddy bear and a blanket close at hand I guess.

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In brighter and less bloody news, there were more Space Invaders games here!  I thoroughly enjoy the use of the world “revolution” to describe the newest and shiniest iteration in an old series brought back to life.  Electroplankton actually seems like a really relaxing time where you adapt different environments to make music with tiny aquatic beings.  It’s hard to explain, but you might consider checking out some gameplay of this one.  I can see it being a good afternoon-waster.

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More puzzle games were abundant in this set, including the usual fare with Tetris, matching games, music games, and drawing games.  I don’t have much else to say about these except that in the reviews I’ve watched of many, people praise the touch interface of the DS as a revolutionary change in the original gameplay (see what I did there?)

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Unsurprisingly, there were some Nintendo franchise staples in the mix.  Super Mario 64 DS’s box was missing the game cartridge, so I found a loose copy of it for $8 locally to make that one complete.  I was very excited to see Yoshi Touch & Go here.  The original Yoshi’s Island for the SNES is one of my favourite games despite the fact that it makes the completionist in me scream in agony, but this lighthearted mini-game compilation seems like just the type of relaxing gameplay I’d be interested in undertaking after bashing my head against the wall trying to perfect playing the original.  A strange part of me is also desperately wanting to know how they made Metroid Prime into a pinball game.  It’ll also give me a chance to try out that rumble pak…

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I bet that you are not surprised to see that for last, I kept my personal favourite game genre type: traditional and action-adventure RPGs!  And boy were there some goodies!  I personally can’t get enough of FFIV, and having a portable version of FFIII is also nice.  This is the only cartridge form of FFIII that I own.  I ordered a reproduction of it for the NES ages ago so I could eventually capture some gameplay, but there were some issues with the order so it still hasn’t arrived yet – I digress.  Either way, the Castlevania and Lunar series are both excellent, so any additinoal games I can add to my library are welcomed.  I did a bit of research about Orcs & Elves, and it doesn’t look to be half bad!  It’s reminiscent of games like Doom or Wolfenstein on DOS, so there’s likely hours of fun there to be had.  I didn’t previously have any Rune Factory games, and given my love for Harvest Moon, I was glad to see that one pop up into my welcoming arms.  I even got a squirrel plushie from the game hanging around somewhere.  I’ll have to see if I can find the other games in the series if I like this one.

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And there it is!  Many excellent titles for the DS are mine to be enjoyed casually during my travel escapades.  Maybe I’ll start bringing a DS to work and play during my lunches.  I just eat alone in my office anyway…

Enjoy the weekend, everyone!  Thanks for reading.

-GG

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