Friday, July 15, 2011

I can't quite put my finger on it, Link, but there's something different about you these days!

Oh, wait, I know what it is! It's the facial hair, right? Yeah, that must be it...

Anyway, I can't say I'd like to play a version of The Legend of Zelda that features such a sinewy Link, but I don't have any qualms with looking at fan art that depicts the Hyrulian legend in such a fashion.

To see more of Chilean artist Gonzalo Ordóñez Arias' work, check out his deviantART gallery at your earliest convenience.

The Great Gaymathon Review #32: Engacho! (PlayStation)

Game: Engacho!
Genre: Puzzle
Developer: NAC Geographic Products Inc.
Publisher: NAC Geographic Products Inc.
System: PlayStation
Release date: 1999

Looking at its cover--which features a quartet of slimy, smelly and even snotty grotesqueries--I'm quite honestly shocked NAC Geographic Products' Engacho! never made its way to the States. Then again, this Japanese import, released in 1999, is a devilishly difficult puzzler and not a dark and dreary FPS, so maybe I shouldn't be surprised by its lack of localization.

Anyway, enough about that--you're probably curious as to what makes this game so challenging. Would it be rude of me to suggest checking out this post, which explains the game's premise more fully than I could here?

If that description makes the game sound something less than devilishly difficult, maybe this will do the trick: so far, I've only successfully traversed the first 10 of this turn-based puzzler's stages. I believe there are between 50 and 100 stages in the game, but I can't say that with any certainty since I'm hopelessly stuck on the tenth and there doesn't seem to be a way to skip troublesome stages.

That's my only real quibble with Engacho!, to tell you the truth. It isn't cheap (it's your fault when you fail to complete a stage), it controls well, its sprite-based graphics are colorful and nicely drawn and its soundtrack is surprisingly catchy. (I especially like the theme song, which recalls Rhythm Heaven's "DJ School.") And then there's that cover art. Sure, it's gross, but it's also funny and more than a bit intriguing--or at least it is to me.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Well, I guess I know what I'll be playing this weekend (and probably next) ...

There are two reasons I've been wanting to play the import-only-until-now GameBoy title, Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru (aka For the Frog the Bell Tolls), for some time: 1) Its protagonist, the Prince of Sable, is tasked with rescuing someone named Princess Tiramisu (she lives in Mille-Feuille Kingdom, by the way) and 2) Its engine was later used to make The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening.

Well, it seems I can stop wanting and start playing, as someone calling himself RyanBGSTL (catchy name, I know) has just completed an English translation of this Intelligent Systems-developed title. (Download RyanBGSTL's patch at

In case you'd like to know a little more about the game before giving it a go, here's a video of its first nine minutes:


More steamy shots of the Super Studly Mario Bros.

Do you remember this post about the upcoming issue of MUTO Manifesto magazine that will feature on its cover two rather attractive men dressed in form-fitting Mario Bros. drag? Of course you do. (If you don't, re-acquaint yourself with it by clicking on the link embedded in the previous sentence.)

Well, that issue, the online magazine's second, is now available (here) for your reading and viewing pleasure. The photo above is just one of 16 included in the cover story, titled "Kiss & Tell," by the way. (Full disclosure: Most of the others probably wouldn't be considered safe for work.)


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Five more commercials for Rhythm Heaven Wii

My first thought upon watching the five commercials--for Minna no Rhythm Tengoku (aka Everyone's Rhythm Heaven, aka Rhythm Heaven Wii)--included in the video below: Man, that monkey game looks fun!

My second thought: The lady playing the monkey game looks like a Japanese version of my aunt Joanne!

My third and final thought: This game is going to sell a ton of copies (in its homeland, at least) thanks in large part to these commercials, isn't it?

Minna no Rhythm Tengoku hits the streets in Japan on July 21, by the way, while it'll hit the streets elsewhere in the world ... sometime later this year? Early next? Sigh.


Pretty pink pads

I've owned a number of controllers over the years, but not one of them has been pink. The same can't be said of Abby Elaina Hall (aka A Bit Disarrayed on Flickr), who owns a trio of bubblegum-colored controllers (current-gen ones, no less).

I won't hate on her too much, though, since she was nice enough to take a snapshot of said controllers and then share the resulting pic (below and here) on her Flickr photostream.

That salmon-y Wii wheel is especially snazzy, isn't it? If I were still playing Mario Kart Wii (I gave it up at the suggestion of my shrink), I'd pick up one of them along with a pink Wii Remote Plus.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

'Adventure is on the horizon!'

You've just got to love this "classic" Game & Watch commercial.

I mean, it features the Mary-oh brothers (I've always gotten a kick out of that pronunciation), twins dressed in matching outfits and a reminder that the multi- and wide-screened systems can be used to tell time. (I guess that's where the "watch" part of Game & Watch comes into play, huh?)

See also: 'The Great Gaymathon Review #31: Game & Watch Collection (DS)'

The Great Gaymathon Review #31: Game & Watch Collection (DS)

Game: Game & Watch Collection
Genre: Action
Developer: Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo
System: Nintendo DS
Release date: 2008

It's a good thing Game & Watch Collection is "free" (to those who have earned enough Club Nintendo points). I don't say that because I think it's a crappy game; I say it because I don't think it includes enough content to be worth whatever the folks at Nintendo surely would have charged for it had it been sold in stores. As it stands, though, 800 Nintendo Points (or whatever they're called these days) is an acceptable enough price to pay for this package of three rejiggered Game & Watch titles: Donkey Kong, Green House and Oil Panic. The first one's probably the best of the bunch, but each of them are worth a few minutes of your time if you're a child of the 1980s (or earlier) and if you have a fond recollection of Nintendo's pre-NES--or pre-Famciom, if that's how you roll--era. Everyone else should stay far away, as the games included on this diminutive DS cartridge require a healthy dose of nostalgia to be fully enjoyed.

See also: Previous 'Great Gaymathon' posts

Monday, July 11, 2011

'I don't know, but the important thing is that they should be able to get married'

A follower recently asked Zac Gorman, the extremely talented artist behind the Magical Game Time tumblog, if he preferred Crash Bandicoot or Rayman? Gorman answered with this comic:

Anyway, be sure to check out Magical Game Time when you have a chance, especially if you're a fan of Chrono Trigger, EarthBound, Final Fantasy VI and/or The Legend of Zelda--each of which have been featured in recent Gorman illustrations.

Fabulous flash game alert: Fat Wizard

I'm sure I've said this before, but just in case I haven't: I rarely play games on either of our computers. For a number of reasons that I won't go into here, I prefer to play games on the good ol' boob tube while sitting on our oh-so-comfy couch.

That said, every once in a while a computer game--usually of the online variety--catches my attention to an extent that I break down and give it a go. A few past examples: Haunt the House, Robot Unicorn Attack, Treadmillasaurus Rex and Winterbells.

Well, today I'm adding another game to that list: Fat Wizard.

If I were forced to describe it in as few words as possible, I'd say this Adult Swim title is a real-time tower defense game.

Basically, players step into the shoes of the titular wizard and help him fend off advancing hordes of baddies--birds, pigs, snakes and more--who have their beady little eyes on the pudgy protagonist's precious dragon egg.

As for how you keep those baddies at bay: Left-clicking on or near an enemy sends a fireball in its general direction, left-clicking and then drawing a line creates a stationary lightning bolt that stops most creatures in their tracks (i.e., it fries them to a crisp), and clicking and holding the left mouse button for a few seconds causes a field of icicles to pop up from the ground and impale any and all on-coming adversaries.

As is usually the case with such games, things begin at a rather leisurely pace but quickly pick up speed. Don't let that warning keep you from checking out Fat Wizard, though; even if you're like me and you tend to check out around the time the action becomes a bit too frantic, you're still sure to have a grand ol' good time with this comically cute game.

Play: Fat Wizard