Game Feature

Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: Starfox 64

Happy birthday, N64, you ol’ gray bastard!

Well, yes, if you’re going to be pernickety, we missed the party a bit. The console hit these United States of ours eighteen years ago last Tuesday.

But hey, nuts to birthdays. They’re no big deal. I forgot my wife’s birthday last year, and she forgave me just fine. Well, forgave, divorced, one of the two. I forget. But we’re getting off topic. We’re here today to pay homage to one of the N64‘s finest offerings: Starfox 64.

The Weekly WTF: ‘Beat ‘Em and Eat ‘Em,’ the Most Porntastic Game You Ever Saw

If you’re a retro-head and/or general old bastard, you might remember Chef. Or Oil Panic. Or Parachute. Or umpteen freaking others. These decrepit Game and Watch titles revolved around one core concept: grabbing things.

Said things, whether they be flecks of oil, cement, low-flying bacon or dudes parachuting into shark infested seas, cannot hit the ground. That way lies shame, doomily doom-y doom, and a GAME OVER screen. This, you don’t want. So get your shit together, and catch your things.

Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: Super Smash Bros. Brawl

Gentlemen, you’ll probably need to be sitting down for this revelation. Against all odds, Wii U has a second game to be assed about on the horizon. After the success of Mario Kart 8, Smash Bros. is now coming. Who knows, the console may not die in a defeated heap of gimmicky shame after all.

The acclaimed party/brawler is due to arrive this holiday season, with the 3DS version released this very week. So it’s a good time to take another big ol’ steaming dump on the word ‘retro’, and take a look back at the previous installment in the series.

The Weekly WTF: ‘Revolution X,’ the Aerosmith-Branded Shooter

Ricky Wilson, frontman of Brit-tastic shit-tastic pop prattlers Kaiser Chiefs, once exclaimed that he would “…wank off a tramp for success.” This probably tells you all you need to know about the depths celebrities will sink to. Hulk Hogan appeared in the worst breakfast cereal commercial ever in the eighties. Arnold Schwarzenegger hawked questionable barbecues on the shopping channel. And Aerosmith?

Well, those hairy bastards are (kinda sorta) responsible for Revolution X. It would’ve been better if they’d just gotten their hoboeroticism on, like good ol’ Ricky.

Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: Medieval- Total War

As 80‘s New Wave shit-tacular Tears for Fears once sang, Everybody Wants to Rule the World. What ‘everybody’ forgets, though, is what a pain in the ass that would actually be. All paperwork, board meetings and huge fancy-ass lunches on expenses. Who the hell has time for that?

Fear not though, gentlemen. There’s a non-tedious (if slightly historical, but don’t worry about learning anything) way to work off your megalomaniacal tendencies. Namely The Creative Assembly’s Total War series.

The Weekly WTF: Damn, ‘Soul Sacrifice,’ Why Do You Have to Creep Us Out So Freaking Much?

Since the inception of the PS Vita, there’s been a lot of bitching about it. Its lack of ball-busting exclusives, the complete lack of shits Sony give about it at trade shows, all of that sorry stuff.

In Sony’s eyes, the handheld has become a pervy little family secret. Like Cousin Joe. The one nobody talks about, until Great Aunt Hilda gets drunk at Christmas and the whole ‘getting his wang out in the pet store’ thing comes to light again.

But we’re getting off topic. As far as unique exclusives go, one thing the Vita does have to offer is Soul Sacrifice. Buckle up, gentlemen, because that’s unique in the sense of batshit crazy.

Soul Sacrifice 2

Our ol' buddy, floaty book-face.

Some games are a little strange. Some are a lot strange. And some are strange enough to make Doctor Strange himself say things like, “what the balls? This is just too much effing strange, right here.” This is one of those mothers.

This is the brainchild of Keiji Inafune, who has been kicking our asses all over the place for decades with Mega Man. It’s a macabre kind of hunting game, like Monster Hunter but with attacks involving ripping out your own freaking eyeballs and throwing them. Not to mention a cast of hideous demons from the depths of the devil’s ass, who look like they forgot to put their skin on before getting out of bed and leaving the house.

So, y’know, not too much like Monster Hunter at all.

The setup is that you’re the slave of a megalomaniacal and all-round uncool sorcerer, who is about to sacrifice you to fuel his magical bastardry. In your creepy prison you find a talking book, bound with human flesh, staring at you with the actual freaking eye embedded in its cover (nothing screwy so far, then). It is the journal of a past mage, and serves as the game’s hub. Reading its pages, you relive the other non-evil dude’s memories, which become the stages of Soul Sacrifice.

Soul Sacrifice 3

Sacrificing the very soul of some dying rats. Because that's just how we do things around here.

It’s an arena combat game, which pits you against some fancy-ass beasts known as Archfiends. These are fellow sorcerers who have transformed, their souls corrupted by greed, lust or whichever sin it happens to be. You whup their asses using different spells, from throwy/explodey ones to big ol’ magical swordy ones.

Your huge, eff off, now-I-kill-your-face-right-in-the-face attacks are known as Black Rites. This forbidden magic wrecks all kinds of shit, in exchange for savaging you as well. That eyeball-ripping deathly death beam, the fiery explosion that burns you effing skin off… it’s just not a good time.

The concept, the setting and the gameplay itself is brilliantly bizarre, and probably among the creepiest thing games have ever seen. It’s like something Tim Burton would come up with in one of his more demented cheese-fuelled nightmares.

Then there are the Archfiend designs themselves. That’s where it all gets a little too much for us, and we need to lie down awhile.

Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: Alone in the Dark

Before there was Resident Evil, before there was Silent Hill or Fatal Frame or any of the other ball-busting horror superstars, there was Alone in the mothereffing Dark. If you’re of stout heart and steely scrote, join us in the most piss-poor looking little slice of hell you ever saw.

Back in the mists of time, survival horror wasn’t even a thing. This was 1992, after all, and we all had more important things to be assed about in 1992. Like Ice Cube having his ‘Good Day,’ the release of Aladdin, and the Pope deciding that Galileo wasn’t a massive bastard after all. What a year it was.