Showing posts with label Wii. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wii. Show all posts

Samba De Amigo: Wii vs Dreamcast

As you may know, Samba De Amigo was released on the Wii last week. It's been eight years since the Dreamcast version came out and now Sega are giving the game a second chance with this remake developed by Gearbox, who you may know as the guys that ported Half Life to the Dreamcast, amongst other things. In case you're wondering why a developer who mainly works on first person shooters like Brothers in Arms are producing a new Samba De Amigo, it's because they begged Sega to do it for the love of the original game and the potential to finally be more than just a hardly known expensive game. Now that I've had the game for a couple days and have given it a good going over, how does it compare to the Dreamcast releases?

Well it's certainly not just a straight port. Gearbox hacve reworked the game from the ground up. It's all familiar but at the same time completely different. The graphics have been given a major overhaul and the presentation is far more expansive. Mind you, this should be expected when the game is a whole eight years apart from the Dreamcast one. Either way you can tell they loved what they were doing as the presentation is stunning and does the classic justice. No slapped together rubbish here. They've even included stages where you dance alongside Sonic in Green Hill Zone and Ulala from Space Channel 5, which is a lovely bit of fan service.

They've added quite a bit of new content too. There is at least 20 new songs on top of what was already available before, and every mini game from the first version and version 2000 are intact along with a couple more new ones. They even have downloadable content on the way with song packs of three for 500 Wii points (about £3/$5). So far the only songs that seem to be missing from what I can tell are all the Sega music that you could download 9for free) in the DC one, and a song called S.O.S which I was stuck on in version 2000. Maybe they'll be downloadable in the near future.

So everything appears to be great so far, but there is one area to this remake where it doesn't quite match the original: the controls. While the Wii remote and the DC maracas are both motion controlled devices, they both work entirely differently, and so Gearbox has had to adjust how the game works to play it. While the DC game worked based on the height you were holding the maracas, the Wii can not currently do that, so instead the game relays on a hard-to-describe tilt positioning type system that sadly isn't quite as accurate or as responsive. You have to completely re-wire your brain to play this new version. At first I really struggled to nail certain poses and going from one height to another quickly but after a bit of tinkering with the input settings and playing through the training parts I figured them out, unlike these guys in this video below by game Reactor who are clearly doing it wrong.

Still, it's not as good, and can sometimes be frustrating at it takes a lot more thought and perfection than the DC one did. From what I've read on forums it seems to vary from person to person: some people have nailed it and are beating superhard, while others cannot get the hang of it at all. It's definitely not as intuitive as before. personally, I've just started working on hard mode but keep getting my arse kicked with D's and E's. The Dreamcast maracas were not perfect by any means (especially in superhard where it often couldn't keep up with you), but it seems the Wii version is a lot harder to get good at. Maybe if they had waited until the Motion Plus attachment comes out next year, we could have got a more accurate and enjoyable game. Oh well, if this one sells good enough we might get a sequel that uses it.

If you mainly play the game as a party game to play with mates though, it's perfectly fine. With the Wii version it's far easier to set up, and you don't need to blow tons of money to get a two player game started. Once you get used to it Easy and Normal are just as good as the DC version, it's only when you start to handle hard upwards it suffers from problems. With the Wii version you also don't get the problem of wires flying up and smacking you in the face as you can play it with two remotes if you want to (although one remote and a nunchuck works just as fine). As for the sensation of holding two bright red maracas: you can get plastic attachments that make it feel like the DC ones again. Many look a bit shit but this pair by Speedlink look the part, and Sega will be releasing their own official maracas in a months time (why not now I don't know.)

So while the new Wii release is worth a look, it's by no means perfect just yet, mainly because as much as Gearbox tried, the Wii remote's technology is currently not quite good enough to recreate what Sega already did all those years ago. Once again proves that they were ahead of their time. Hopefully Sega will do the right thing and give us an update using motion plus in the near future, but that will only happen if people buy this one.

New Samba de Amigo adds familiar character

Pulled from UK Resistance.

Ulala+ Samba de Amigo = Good

They just need to add some more Dreamcast characters and games and I am probably gonna buy a Wii in a few years.

Plus that new House of the Dead game is looking pretty promising as well.

Dreamcast vs. Wii

I really liked this video, though I don't actually agree with it's stance. I think that both the 360 and the Wii have a LOT to thank our favourite console for in terms of innovation, but you'd have to be some sort of luddite to think they are inferior systems. Both are great and have a lot to offer current gen gamers, but their roots in Dreamcast soil are glaringly obvious for all to see...

What the above video does very succinctly though, is highlight beautifully what an amazing system the Dreamcast was (is!) I think the fact that the Wii seems to be a platform for Dreamcast re-issues (see last but one post) is not something that damns the Wii, but something that celebrates the Dreamcast.

Hopefully those peeps who are enjoying downloads of Ikaruga on the 360, or loving the re-issue of HOTD2, Sega Bass Fishing, Samba De Amigo etc. on the Wii, might at some point check out eBay and score themselves a Dreamcast for peanuts. Then they will be like me. I got my first Dreamcast three years after it's demise. I've spent the last four years revering it's splendour and buying as many pieces of Dreamcast software and peripherals as my family budget would allow. I've got one Wii, one 360, one PS2 and one Saturn. I've got eight Dreamcasts, (three 'boxed as new') in reserve. I have one next to my 360 and Wii, and in another room one next to my PS2 and Saturn. Guess which console receives the most attention?

Plus I'm waiting for brand new Dreamcast game DUX to be posted through the letterbox as we speak... As gamers, we should reap the benefits of whatever console can satisfy our gaming needs. As Dreamcast lovers we should feel smug to see how the seeds sewn by Sega's last gasp are still reverberating through the current generation. I'm confident that the love shown towards the Dreamcast may well be rewarded. Dreamcast 2 may well become a reality if we all pray hard enough!!

Hands On Samba De Amigo Wii!

This is straight from the excellent Sega Nerds website... It's making me wonder whether I should just go out and buy it right now, instead of saving my hard earned sterlings for Soul Calibur 4. I've got the original DC version, plus two sets of third party maracas. I've also got the PS2 Sega Superstars version. But it looks so great! I might sneak out and get it right now... Is it released in the UK yet? OK, my PC is being really shit and I cannot present this post as I want it... So I'll just post the video...

Online Videos by

Chin up, the Dreamcast continues to live on through other consoles!

After hearing that horrible rumour about Gamestation destroying most of their retro stock to make more room for modern games, you may need some cheering up, so here's my crack at it: while you won't be able to buy Dreamcast games in any UK chains anymore (excluding the odd second hand shop you may be lucky enough to live close to), Dreamcast games seem to keep invading the current generation of consoles.

Most recently we've had REZ HD and Ikaruga on Xbox Live Arcade, giving HD gamers the chance to play two of the greatest shooters the Dreamcast ever conceived, and news has been released that Namco plan to release the original Dreamcast Soul Calibur on Live Arcade in anticipation for the upcoming forth installment. Have they really made that many already? It only feels like yesterday that Soul Calibur was rocking my world. Oh wait, that because it was, because it's still arguably the best in the series, and playing it on a 32" TV with a VGA cable is still an absolute wonder to look at, despite not being in HD.

On just about every system most recently we were treated to Sega Superstar Tennis, a Virtua Tennis spin off that salutes Sega's history of great characters (and Shadow), particularly the Dreamcast era that gets a huge representation in it with the inclusion of characters and locations from Jet Set Radio, Space Channel 5, House of the Dead and Samba De Amigo.The game is great fun and already quite cheap to buy if you haven't already. The games developer Sumo Digital seems to know why we love Sega more than Sega itself.

Speaking of Samba De Amigo, the upcoming Wii version of the game was shown off at a recent Nintendo event, along with some wonderful looking screenshots (but sadly no footage yet) and impressions that were mostly positive (except some complaints from people who can't play the game properly). It is looking beautiful and gives you the option to play the game with two remotes instead of a remote and a nunchuck, the first game to even do this on the Wii so far. While there is nothing quite like shaking two big plastic maracas that rattle, this new game will finally give this much over looked classic a second chance and this time it has the potential to be BIG.

Even the handhelds are not safe from the Dreamcast invasion, with a DS sequel to a personal favorite of mine, Bangai-O, on it's way to the DS, and the PSP getting ports of Crazy Taxi and Power Stone.

These alongside Sega Bass Fishing, House of the Dead 2 + 3 Return, Trigger Heart Exelica on Xbox Live and the Milestone Shooting Collection (Chaos Field, Radilgy and Karous) on the Japanese Import Wii, show that the Dreamcast's amazing library of games is spreading across all formats even today, years after the console stopped production. Be happy in the knowledge that those that never played the Dreamcast are only just now catching up with it's greatness, and that we were years ahead of them. =)

Dreamcast Attention Hotting Up...

For those of us who love the Dreamcast Junkyard, Sega's final console never died. But for those gamers in the mainstream, the Dreamcast was written off as a failure, when Sony's PS2 outstripped it in sales and became the dominant console of it's generation.

However, there seems to be a resurgence of interest in our beloved console of late, largely due to it's most comparable current gen system, the Wii. Why comparable? Well, a quick scroll down these very pages will reveal the Gagaman(n)'s most recent post about how the Wii's motion sensor controls were actually pioneered on the Dreamcast, even though Nintendo are loathe to admit it. This post simply serves to show some video of, and links to, the topics Gagaman(n) has already so eloquently flagged up...

Sega are currently referencing some of it's finest Dreamcast games in new releases or actual straight ports of it's back catalogue. Take Sega Superstar Tennis, running on the Virtua Tennis engine, Dreamcast favourites Ulala (from Space Channel 5) Beat (from Jet Set Radio) and Amigo (from Samba De Amigo) will all be playable characters within the game. Lovely! Look at the intro scene for the game in the video above and weep tears of joy.

But Amigo's star continues to rise with the inevitable re-release of Samba De Amigo for the Wii... As suggested some time ago by DCJY's G-Man, this was a no brainer for the Wii, with the Nunchuck and the Wiimote replacing the maracas. Official Nintendo Magazine had the bloody cheek to gush recently (and I quote...) "It's as if this game was made for the Wii!" Deluded fools! Nintendo have no plans to release maraca peripherals either! BAH!

Oh and by the way, did you receive any royalties for this Gagaman(n)? You bloody should have!

Then there's the Wii release of Sega Bass Fishing. According to the most excellent Sega Nerds blog:

"The game will feature four modes - arcade, tournament practice and nature trip; 15 stages, seven of which are brand new with four from the arcade and Dreamcast versions; and finally, you’ll be hunting down four different types of bass - Florida Large Mouth, Red Eye, Small Mouth and Northern Spike Large Mouth." Fishtastic!

Then for all those Wii Zapper fanatics we see the release of House Of The Dead 2 for the Wii with the imaginatively titled "House Of The Dead 2 & 3 Return" (finally I mention something Gagaman(n) hasn't already!) I've got a couple of copies of the original which I still play regularly... I've never completed the game, maybe I'll have more luck with the Wii version!

Apart from recycling my good friend's posts and (hopefully providing you all with some nice video and links) my point is this... The Dreamcast lives on... And who knows? Maybe some of the Wii generation will be inspired to grab themselves a Dreamcast themselves, to see where all these classics came from and experience some of the 200+ other games that graced the little white box... Any publicity for Sega's finest creation must be good!

Now! What if I were to tell you that Sega were (finally) showing some love for the Dreamcast, after cruelly stopping GD-Rom production, closing down the PSO servers and withdrawing technical support... Well according to Sega Nerds, Sega want to make Border Down an official 2008 Dreamcast release! Read on...

"Earlier today we reported that the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis isn’t quite dead yet all these years later a new game will release on our beloved old friend console. Well I’m happy to report that Sega doesn’t think the Dreamcast is dead yet either!
That’s right, Sega have decided that they want to rerelease Border Down on the Dreamcast, The game which is a Shmup (shoot em up) developed by G-rev was originally released on the Sega NAOMI Arcade board and later ported to the Dreamcast.
It appears the game will be available on the Dreamcasts GD-Rom disks and I assume will come in a DVD style case. It will probably be available from Sega Direct and other Japanese Import websites.
The game will be available from January 17th, 2008. At the price of 7,140 yen."

Big thanks to Sega Nerds and The Gagaman(n) for all the information that I so shamelessly plagiarised in this post!

I called it!

I'm sure many of you remember this article I wrote about Dreamcast games that could be re-worked into motion controlled Wii games. Of course, it didn't take that article for anyone else to think that the maraca rhythm game Samba De Amigo would be a perfect match for the Nintendo system: everyone was thinking it. Luckily, it looks like Sega heard us, as they officially confirmed it today.


LONDON & SAN FRANCISCO (October 25 2007) - SEGA of America, Inc. and SEGA Europe Ltd. are excited to announce that they are bringing back Samba De Amigo, the Dreamcast classic that helped to create the now-popular rhythm music genre. Created exclusively for the Wii home video game system, this vibrant and addictive new game lets players shake to the beats of a samba-infused soundtrack comprised of popular new songs as well as fan-favorites from the original game.

Playing as the grinning, sombrero-topped monkey, Amigo, players shake the Wii Remote and Nunchuk like maracas, in time with the visual beats of the music on-screen. The perfect party game, Samba De Amigo is packed with lively stages and a host of colorful characters. More details about this exciting new title including a full song listing as well as new special features will be revealed over the next few months.

“The Wii’s controllers enable players to enjoy Samba De Amigo’s unique gameplay without having to purchase an expensive peripheral,” said Rick Naylor, Director of Marketing at SEGA. “Between the music, the quirky art style, and the maraca-shaking players, Samba De Amigo is as much fun to watch as it is to play.”

Developed by acclaimed developer, Gearbox Software, Samba De Amigo will be exclusively available for the Wii in spring 2008. For more information, please visit

There has been rumors about this spreading like wildfire for a while now, but Sega have finally let the cat (or should I say monkey) out of the bag. The one odd part to it is that the Wii version is being developed by Gearbox, who are mainly known for first person shooters, including the unreleased Dreamcast version of Half-Life, funnily enough. They're also developing another game for Sega based on the Aliens franchise. Hmm.

Still, this is great news for everyone who missed out on the original, rather expensive Dreamcast release (and by everyone I mean 99.99% of the worlds' population) and great news for those who did play it but want more of it!

But there's more! Just a few weeks back another Dreamcast game was reveled to be getting a re-make on the Wii! Sega Bass Fishing! Ha! Looks like Sega is starting to show that they still have som,e brains left and are bringing back the great Dreamcast franchises they left for dead! This along with the upcoming X-Box Live releases of Ikaruga and Rez HD, as well as a follow up to Bangai-O on the DS and Seaman 2 on the PS2, shows just how great the Dreamcast line up was as studios are falling over each other to bring them back to life to excite a new generation of gamers.

(P.S to Sega: Now give us ChuChu Rocket as a Wii Ware title, please!)

Another Game using the Fishing Controller!

Despite not being able to read most of it, Sega Support Site is a very handy resource site with a lot of screen shots of unusual Japanese Dreamcast games (including the dodgy hentai games, so this site isn't completely work safe) and all sorts of other bits and bobs. On my weekly trek of anything with the keyword "Dreamcast" on Youtube I discovered this video that links back to the website, a video of yet another game being played with the fishing controller! Can you guess what other game could possibly use the motion sensing of the Fishing controller? How about the little known Japanese fighter Psychic Force 2012? Yeah, bet you didn't see that coming! To be honest, neither did I, so as soon as I saw the video I went to give it a shot for myself.

Going straight into the game won't give you any results though; you have to tinker a bit with the control settings first. All you have to do is Set the L Trigger to "Light Attack" and the R Trigger to "Strong Attack" and you're all set! Seeing as the motion sensors in the fisher replace those buttons, it makes perfect sense really.

So how does it work? Well, it's not in par with Soul Calibur and Virtua Tennis, that's for sure. In fact, where those games almost felt like proper Wii games (though not quite), this feels more like one of those lazy PS2 ports with rubbish "waggle" controls slapped on. Nothing that you do really translates into the game properly, and it doesn't seem to make a difference which direction you shake the thing, they'll always do the same attacks (of which they're not many in this game anyway). Just about the most satisfaction you'll get from this is swinging to throw projectiles. So I wouldn't exactly go out of my way to buy this game just for the motion controls if I were you, but it's interesting to see another game working none the less.

(Oh yeah, and on the front page of Sega Support Site at the moment is a hell nice Chu Chu Rocket port for the...Mega Drive! Yeah, I'm not kidding! Download the demo ROM and stick it through Gens. Also, here's a link to the website for the new follow up to Dynamite Cop that has just been released in Japanese arcades. Just because.)

Seven Years Too Late.

I reported a while back that, after trying out dozens of games with it, I've discovered another game that uses the motion sensors in the Fishing controller, and while Soul Calibur's fishing compatibility had been known by a select few since it's release (see the review of the game in Official Dreamcast magazine #2), as far as I know no one has never uncovered this one, and you smack yourself other the head like I did when you see what it is, especially as we could have known about this SEVEN years ago...

Yes, Virtua sodding tennis. With motion controls. In the year 2000. I kid you not.

"So what you're saying", I bet you're asking, "is that we could of been playing Wii tennis seven years ago?". In a sense, YES. Now, I was testing my way through though as many games as I could one night for a laugh to see what would maybe work, and while most didn't work at all, and others didn't work very well (most racing games will, using the reel, only let you move at 2 MPH) but then it hit me, what about Virtua Tennis? Like Soul Calibur, it's a game where all the buttons more or less do the same thing in different ways.

Lo and behold, it works like a charm. Swinging the rod in certain directions will do exactly that, and the speed of which you swing effects how hard you hit the ball. UNLIKE Wii Tennis, in which you could simply be lazy and shake the remote to hit the ball, giving the fishing rod a small shake will lob th ball (which is the B button normally). Also, UNLIKE Wii tennis you have control of your character and can move him around with the analogue stick on it. The best way to do this is to hold the rod in one hand, and keep your thumb on the stick. After a while it becomes second nature.

A disadvantage other Wii tennis however is comfort. While the Wii remote is a tiny, light, comfortable little thing with no wire, the Fishing controller is bigger, about twice as heavy, and not very compatible to grip (of course, I'm just going by the unofficial "fisson" controller I own so I'm not sure if the official Sega model is any better), so if you thought Wii tennis wore you out, this will bring some REAL PAIN to your wrist, especially as the game is less forgiving than Nintendo's counterpart. The thing also has a wire, so you wanna make sure that thing doesn't fly up and smack you in the face while playing.

So here's a quick summary:

Wii Tennis: Forgiving sensitivity, so can be played without to much welly.
Virtua Tennis: Unforgiving sensitivity,makes you really swing that rod hard.

Wii Tennis: Character movement? We do that shit for you!
Virtua Tennis: You have a thumb stick don't you? Get to work!

Wii Tennis: Create custom character in the Mii Channel to play in-game, or play a generic Mii made by the CPU.
Virtua Tennis: Create custom character in the World Circuit mode to play in-game, or play as real-life pros (and Tim Henman).

Wii Tennis: Train your custom character up in mini games.
Virtua Tennis: Train your custom character up in mini games, championship tournaments, and buy new gear for him/her.

Wii Tennis: Deliberately simple graphics that do their job..
Virtua Tennis: Realistic characters and beautiful backdrops that still hold up well today.

It's pretty amazing just how much in common with the Wii Tennis game this has considering it was sitting there as a un-noticed feature since 2000. I sometimes wonder if Sega put in features like this and the Dance mat compatibility in Space Channel 5 on purpose, but kept these secrets to themselves for some twisted reason, and that they are probably burying their heads in shame for not taking these motion controls further after seeing the success Nintendo have had so far with them. Nintendo have, in a sense, taken the best elements of some of our favorite novel controllers: the gyro sensing of the fishing controller, the pointing features of a light gun (sort of), and the 3D-space recognition of those maracas. There are so many "what ifs" about the Dreamcast it keeps me awake at night sometimes (well, not really).

(Note: I'm guessing Virtua Tennis 2 can use the fishing controller too, but like so many copies of Virtua Striker 2 before it, it has mysteriously stopped working. It's not too scratched up or anything, it's just died. Unlike Virtua Striker though, this game as isn't easy to find cheap ;_;)

So why do you think I held off a few weeks to tell you this? Well, coursework aside, this video below is why. It's the first proper Video Feature for the Dreamcast Junkyard Video site! As Caleb has proved, hiding off screen and not making a peep is a boring way of showing of a game with motion controls, so for he first time, here is your hairy , spotty hunch-backed presenter the Gagaman (optional extra n), showing you how it's done! There's also a bonus piece of game play from another game using the fishing controller at the end. Sorry it's so long!

Speaking of Virtua Tennis with motion controls, take a look at these rather ridiculous optional Sixaxis controls for Virtua Tennis 3 on the Playstation 3. If you thought swinging about like a tennis racket looked daft, I can't even begin to imagine how deranged playing the game like this would be..

Dreamcast Love On The Eve Of The Wii...

Well it’s about time I put ‘pen to paper’ (so to speak), and make sure I don’t find myself sacked off from the Dreamcast Junkyard team for lack of effort, in the wake of the Gagaman(n)’s recent Herculean posting odyssey...

Much has happened since my last epistle. Man Utd. saw off Man City in an embarrassing 1-0 Derby defeat at the City Of Manchester Stadium, which I had the misfortune to watch in an Australian Bar in Barcelona. It was full of Reds and there was a bigger cheer when City missed their penalty, than when United scored theirs.

Man Utd of course went on to win the Premiership, whilst City managed to clock up their first record in many years... fewest goals scored at home in one season. DOH!
This has ultimately lead to the sacking of Stuart ‘Psycho’ Pearce, whilst Fergie and his boys strolled triumphantly around Old Trafford last Sunday. BAH!
I have solved one Man United mystery that had always puzzled me though… Apparently the letters "A.I.G" on the United shirt stand for "Almost In Greece…" :)

But I digress… It’s at dark times like this, that one seeks solace in the little box of wonders that is the Dreamcast. I’ve been feeling super-love for my Dreamcast recently, since I committed to buying a Wii. (I’m getting it tomorrow, May 16th , for my almost top secret 40th birthday….But DOn’t tell anyone, I DOn’t want a fuss.)

It’s as if I need to prove my love for my DC, as if I’ve been caught by my significant other, with a pert young super-model on my arm. I need the Dreamcast to know it’ll always be ‘the one’, even if there’s another in my life…

So here’s a quick round up of some of the games I’ve been playing over the last few months, in a sort of "micro-review medley" type thing…

Last Hope: This fiendishly difficult side scrolling 'Shump' (I’ve become a bit of a shump fan of late…) comes to us courtesy of Germany’s NG:Dev team and is a 2007 release. That fact in itself, is one which fills me with a rosy glow, knowing that there are still brand new Dreamcast releases coming out. Then my rosy glow dissipates into icy water flushing through my bowels, as I remember that the announcement of the cessation of GD Roms, that could put pay to Dreamcast development forever…

Still the game is fantastic. Originally and (very costly) developed for the Neo Geo, the game was ported to the Dreamcast and released this January. The graphics are fabulous and the gameplay somewhat hypnotic. As your ship glides smoothly into the oncoming landscape, you must blast away at alien foes whilst, attempting to fly through power-ups and avoid the oncoming mines and missiles pitted against you. I’ve only managed to get as far as the first boss, but I’ve enjoyed it so far. One of the most enjoyable aspects of the game is its musical score, (available as a limited edition CD release bundled with a special game pack). The music is like ambient-trancey Kraftwerk and builds as your ship progresses through the game. Quite beautiful really. Oh and its region free. Games TM Magazine reviewed it recently and gave it an 80% score and I’ll agree… 8/10 Why not buy it here?

In total contrast to this frenetic kill-fest is Virtua Athlete 2K. This decathlon based sorts sim is a more serious update of Sega Sport’s ‘Athlete Kings’ which appeared on the Saturn. The gameplay involves a lot of speedy button mashing and split second timing as you power your athlete through a variety of track and field events. This is not a game to be played on your own, but is an ideal party game for up to four players. It must be good, as it has even enticed the two biggest Gingers to pick up and play. The ideal game for non-gamers and a great laugh after a couple of drinks! For the fun factor alone, 9/10. For a more considered review look here…

Moving on to Silent Scope, the best Light Gun game that never was… This arcade port was made for the Light Gun, but due to the legacy of the Columbine shootings, it was only released to be compatible with the standard controller. A shame, because this really is a great shooter! As the name suggests, the scope is the key, allowing you to ‘nail far away targets with pinpoint accuracy’ (according to the back of the box…)

You play as a former special operative in the British Anti-Terrorism force (very adept at killing innocent Brazilians no doubt…) currently residing in Chicago. Your foes include the quite wankily titled: Cobra The Iron Man, Hornet The Sniper, Tom & Jerry ( the genetically spliced mutated Killing Machine), Scorpion The Butcher and… Wait for it… Monica The Armoured Secretary… No shit! Un-fucking-believable!
What tosspot came up with these characters? I don’t bloody know… This game is excellent arcade style shooting fun, but I’m only going to give it 7/10 because it screams out to be played with a gun… So there! Wanna know more? Look here…

Head Hunter: The moment I started to play this game I knew it would become a lifelong favourite, up there with the likes of Shenmue 1 & 2 and Resident Evil: Code Veronica… Graphically lush and with fabulous gameplay, this game is something of a futuristic bounty hunter odyssey, set in a bleak, corporate, fascist America. (A little like today's USA then...)

Spanning two discs and with a brilliant storyline (interspersed with fake video news bulletins and product commercials), this game has been likened to Metal Gear Solid due to it’s stealth missions. However, it’s fusion of motorbike riding and assassination had me thinking of the Vice City franchise and the untapped potential of the Dreamcast…

The character you play is Jack Wade, a cross between Dirty Harry and Snake Plisken. He’s quite literally “cool as fuck”! Having lost his memory it’s your job to train him up again using the L.E.I.L.A virtual training facility, gain experience in riding your bike and regain your bounty hunter license and then go out an kick motherfuckin' ass in the criminal underworld…

It’s an utterly fabulous game, but can be a little frustrating when it comes to bike riding, as the streets are cluttered with other vehicles which you inevitably hit… this then causes your experience points to drop, which is a killer when its taken you so long to build them up… I’m not the first one to notice this, have a look here… Overall Score? It would have got a 10/10 but due to the bike crashy thing, it only gets a 9/10. Still very definitely recommended…

Resident Evil: Code Veronica- This is an excellent game, but one with which I definitely have a love-hate relationship with, that has oft been chronicled on my other blogs. Like Marmite or Shenmue, you’ll either love it or hate it. At times I felt both emotions about the game… I played right through the whole thing and then left it unfinished with about 40 minutes to an hour (if that) of gameplay to go. I ended up watching its conclusion on Youtube, I just couldn’t be arsed any more. ( I also bought RE:CV Survivors Guide and Light Gun for the PS2, enabling me to whizz through the stages of the game AND shoot Zombies in House Of the Dead Style… Which is nice...

You see the problem with this horror survival classic, is that failure to pick up items at the start of the game, can impact on your ability to succeed, way into the second disc (even with a walkthrough). Still fabulously plotted, stunning graphics and some great gameplay make this one of my all time Dreamcast favourites… 8/10! Intrigued? Look here… and here… (and I know the video is from the PS2 port, but it shows the graphic spleandour of the original and goes very nicely with the music!)

As well as these games I’ve also been playing some classic Dreamcast lovelies, oft discussed on this hallowed forum… Soul Calibur, Powerstone, Crazy Taxi, SWWS (Euro Edition) and Jet Set Radio. This is because I’ve sneaked a Dreamcast into the traditionally console free ‘little living room’, where we have a 60HZ TV, and I’m currently enjoying the improved graphics and smoother frame rates (or whatever it is that a 60HZ TV does for your DC). It’s made me think of investing in a new scart lead or even a VGA adaptor…

Finally to offset a disastrously poor purchase of three Japanese games from Play Asia, (I’m no Gagaman(n) when it comes to making wise choices…), I was delighted to receive my own copy of Half Life from the wonderful Gary from This legendary piece of un-published vapour ware was first brought to the DCJY’s attention by the great Tomleecee a while back. To own my own copy however is a sublime experience. The quality of the packaging is just amazing, coming in a PAL Dreamcast case, with glossy front and back cover, printed disc and even a glossy covered manual, replete with cheats! I cannot recommend Gary’s work highly enough! Check him out and BUY STUFF… Like a Dr. Feelgood of Dreamcasting, he can get you what you need… Have a look here

Well that’s me for now! I’m off to enjoy my last evening of being 39 and anticipating a new Wii flavoured chapter of my gaming life….

Goodnight dear children… wherever you are…

Wii slowly becoming Dreamcast 2?

The Wii hasn't exactly proved itself to be Nintendo's Dreamcast just yet. Yeah, it's daring to be different and unlike the Dreamcast is actually selling, but to date it hasn't had a whole lot of games, whereas the Dreamcast had dozens of Dreamcast games almost from the get go. Hell, it wasn't around long enough to have a drought! Coming back to what I was saying a few weeks back, the Wii should hopefully become a peek of Nintendo's creative career, but only if Nintendo 9and the third parties) gets their arses into gear and DO SOMETHING. Mario, Metroid and Zelda is all great and everything, but what we need to see is new IPs and new ideas being thrown out left right and center if it even wants to come close to the Dreamcast's legacy of AWESOME.

Sega had ever since being successful with the Mega Drive had been down a rocky road with consoles. The Mega Drives add-ons were a mistake and the Saturn rushed out of the door with not enough 3D power to compete and clearly unfinished hardware that was difficult to program for. They finally got it right with the Dreamcast. If the world was a better place, there was no chance it cold of possibly lost, because it did almost everything right. Plus, it was Sega at their creative peek. Within just a couple years they had pumped out a huge supply of original games that made their mark. Space channel 5, Samba De Amigo, MSR, Jet Set Radio, and countless others.

Now what I would love to have before I can die happy? A NEW Dreamcast. I'm talking backwards compatible, with a download service a lot like Live Arcade, and all the Sega games in one fucking place again. I don't want to buy every single system to play your games, Sega!

For now, we have to do with sequels of Dreamcast games elsewhere, such as the 360 (Virtua Tennis 3) and the Wii.

So what games have been recently announced for us to wish there was a new Dreamcast? Oh yeah, Soul Calibur Legends, for a start. They say it's gonna be more of a adventure title, but with all the fighting elements we all know and love intact, but how will it play? At least vaguely like the Dreamcast installment did with the fishing controller, I bet. Only more responsive, of course.Finally playing Soul Calibur with waggle will be a feature on the back of the box!

But what else? Ready 2 Rumble, that's what! Ok, I'll say this now, but I'm not a big fan of R2R. Sure, the graphics and characters were great but the game play was really, really simple. Far too simple for my tastes, and I was raised in the arcades (technically speaking, not literally, although that would of been pretty sweet). Still, seeing these characters being brought back from the (un)dead (console) should be fun, especially if it manages to expand on Wii Boxing, which was hardly accurate, but hella fun.

As you should all know by now, the Wii is also getting a new NiGHTS game. While the original was a Sega Saturn game, many believe that this new installments is a revival of a idea Sega planned for the Dreamcast called Air NiGHTS, which was to include a very Wii-remote like controller, which you may of seen the concept art for before, but here it is again for comparison:

Now come on, Nintendo, make us proud. For too long we've had systems that were good, but not Dreamcast good. I've been disappointed with the gaming available ever since the DC vanished. I've just blown £180 on this thing, and want to be given my money's worth! SAMBA DE AMIGO PLEASE. Your not the closet thing to a Dreamcast 2 just yet.

(Also, your still not as good as the Dreamcast because your SEVEN YEARS TOO LATE. You'll see what I mean when I finally reveal my fishing controller mystery!)

(Oh, and make your Virtual console games cheaper.)