The Series X|S Is So Good at Backwards Compatibility it Transcends Platforms

I have finally secured a Playstation 5, meaning that my gaming setup is fully armed and operational, with an Xbox Series X, Playstation 5, and Nintendo Switch. Looking at my setup fills my heart full of joy. Only the birth of my children and my wedding day rivals it… just barely.

I am impressed with both the Series X and the PS5, but if I have to give any next generation console an edge, it has to go to the PS5, for now. The PS5 feels next-gen from the moment you boot it up and handle the impressive DualSense controller.

The Xbox Series X feels like a caged animal currently. Powerful, but unable to truly show off as there are currently no exclusive next gen titles to showcase what the hardware can do. That will change in time no doubt.

However, if there is one thing that the Series X|S can do remarkable well is backwards compatibility. The X|S can pretty much play every Xbox game ever made with the exception of a handful of titles and Kinect games, which are garbage anyway. Meanwhile, the PS5 can only play PS4 games.

The Series X|S are so good at backwards compatibility and emulation that it can even play Playstation 2 games, if you’re willing to put in a little effort, like the folks at Modern Vintage Gamer.

That’s pretty funny. As powerful and impressive that the PS5 is, it’s the $299 Series S that can play PS2 with relatively straight forward.

Netflix Launches New Documentary The Video Game Industry

Netflix has been killing it lately on original content and has really stepped it up on documentaries. If you’re all caught up on Tiger King, then you should definitely check out High Score that covers the early years of gaming.

Holy shit it John Romero!

I’m so jelly of his long salon quality hair.

High Score was released on Netflix on August 19.

[Source: Netflix]

The NEOGEO Arcade Stick Pro is a Retro Fighter Lover’s Dream

There is officially a glut of mini retro consoles out there. There is the good, like the NES Classic and the Genesis mini, and the supremely shitty PlayStation Classic. Now we have the NEOGEO Arcade Stick Pro, which looks to be good, as long as you love retro fighters.

SNK revealed the NEOGEO Arcade Stick Pro earlier in the month, but they finally release details on the games today.

The NEOGEO Arcade Stick Pro,with 20 selected titles pre-installed, can be used as a controller for NEOGEO Mini. It is designed for all NEOGEO fans.Connecting the NEOGEO mini or NEOGEO mini PAD to the NEOGEO Arcade Stick Pro, you can enjoy a fierce gaming experience.The size is W430mm×D214mm, similar to other arcade sticks.It can be put and played even on your knees stably.

At the moment, we have plans for a world-wide release. (However, please understand that the specifics may change based on the country.) Please wait for more updates concerning launch date and price.

THE KING OF FIGHTERS ’95
THE KING OF FIGHTERS ’97
THE KING OF FIGHTERS ’98
THE KING OF FIGHTERS ’99
THE KING OF FIGHTERS 2000
THE KING OF FIGHTERS 2002
FATAL FURY SPECIAL
FATAL FURY 3
GAROU: MARK OF THE WOLVES
SAMURAI SHODOWN Ⅱ
SAMURAI SHODOWN Ⅲ
SAMURAI SHODOWN IV
SAMURAI SHODOWN Ⅴ SPECIAL
ART OF FIGHTING
WORLD HEROES 2
WORLD HEROES 2 JET
WORLD HEROES PERFECT
NINJA MASTER’S
THE LAST BLADE 2
KIZUNA ENCOUNTER

SNK

That is a literal shit ton of fighters, most of them high quality. If fighters are your thing then maybe the NEOGEO Arcade Stick Pro is your bag.

Old and Overrated NES Game Sells for $9000 at Auction

I dream of finding something rare and valuable at a garage sale. You hear about it all the time. Some jerk goes to a garage sale and unknowingly buys a fucking copy of the Magna Carta. Then its all champagne, caviar, and coke parties ever after.

Well, some lucky prick from Nevada is up $9,000 because he had some very forgetful parents. Scott Amos of Reno, NV was cleaning out his childhood home’s attic when he found a sealed copy of Kid Icarus for the NES along with an accompanying receipt from December 8, 1988.

How the game got there, no one knows for sure, but it’s possible that it was an forgotten Christmas gift.

Mr. Amos shared his find with Heritage Auctions who confirmed that he’s one lucky S.O.B.

“Kid Icarus is one of the hardest NES titles to find in sealed condition... To find a sealed copy ‘in the wild,’ so to speak, not to mention one in such a nice condition and one with such transparent provenance, is both an unusual and rather historic occurrence. We feel that the provenance will add a significant premium for serious collectors.”

Valarie McLeckie, Video Game Consignment Director at Heritage Auctions (Reno Gazette Journal)

That rarity, translated into $9,000 for Mr. Amos.

All joking aside, Scott Amos plans to share his windfall with family.

“I have an older sister, too. We’re splitting (the proceeds) 50-50. We’re going to do a Disney World vacation next month. Instead of doing something responsible, we’re going to have some fun with it.”

Reno Gazette Journal

Now I feel like the asshole, because he seems to be a nice guy.

[Source: Reno Gazzette Journal]

Mortal Kombat Writer to Take on Script for Space Invaders Flick

Script writer David Russo is developing a reputation as the go to guy for video game movie adaptations. Russo recently completed the script for the Mortal Kombat reboot, as well as worked on Saints Row and Resident Evil adaptations. Next up, an adaption of Taito’s arcade classic Space Invaders.

This is still a ways out, if this even materializes into something. We’ll have to wait and see if this stays generally true to the source material or goes in a new direction.

Space Invaders was one of the early arcade successes with not a lot of backstory, so Russo can take some creative liberties.

[Source: Deadline]

Relieve the 90’s Console Wars With TurboGrafx-16 Mini March 19

On March 19, 2020 you will be able to complete your axis of 90’s awesomeness and add the TurboGrafx-16 Mini to your collection. Provided you still have a SNES Classic and Genesis Mini by then. I find that the nostalgia wanes quickly after a few playthroughs, but whatevs.

Konami, who owns the rights to the TurboGrfx-16 brand, will start taking pre-orders on July 15 through Amazon.com, who is the exclusive retailer.

The American games line-up is below:

  • Air Zonk
  • Alien Crush
  • Blazing Lazers
  • Bomberman ‘93
  • Bonk’s Revenge
  • Cadash
  • Chew-Man-Fu
  • Dungeon Explorer
  • J.J. & Jeff
  • Lords Of Thunder
  • Military Madness (Nectaris)
  • Moto Roader
  • Neutopia
  • Neutopia II
  • New Adventure Island
  • Ninja Spirit
  • Parasol Stars
  • Power Golf
  • Psychosis
  • R-Type
  • Soldier Blade
  • Space Harrier
  • Victory Run
  • Ys Book I&II

Solid list to relieve the 90’s to. Grab your flannels and crank the Pearl Jam.

[Source: Amazon]

Long Lost Donkey Kong Game Now Playable for the Masses

Devoted Donkey Kong fans rejoice. The long lost Donkey Kong 3: The Great Counterattack can be had by all, provided you don’t mind playing the game via emulator.

There is actually an interesting bit of history behind this title. Back in the early 80’s, Nintendo licensed out some of their franchises to Hudson Soft, which then released versions for Japanese PCs, like the PC-8801. Many of these machines couldn’t replicate the play mechanics of the original hardware, so certain liberties had to be taken.

Over time, intrepid fans were able to get their hands on the majority of these oddball Hudson Soft titles, but Donkey Kong 3: Daigyakushuu (The Great Counterattack) eluded for over 30 years. Then, In December 2017, a group pooled their funds together and purchased a rare version for the Sharp X1 computer and were able to ROM dump the game.

So if your’re a fan, or simply curious, you can finally get your hands on this elusive title, but beware, the game is apparently incredibly difficult, and I can imagine that the years have not been kind.

Commodore 64 is Hopping onto the Mini Console Nostalgia Train

Not to be outdone by last year’s NES Classic Edition, this year’s current hotness the SNES Classic Edition, as well as entries for the Sega Genesis and Atari 2600, a mini Commodore 64 is in the works from Retro Games.

The C64 Mini will be available in early 2018, with a price point of $70. The original Commodore 64 was launched in 1982.

Like the NES and SNES Classic Editions, the C64 Mini will come preinstalled with 64 (see what they did there) games. A full list of the games can be viewed at their website.

The console will ship with a wired joystick, a charging cable, and will connect to your TV via an HDMI.

Just like the NES/SNES Classic Editions, the C64 Mini will include filtering options such as CRT, pixel perfect and scanline emulation.

And not to be outdone by the competition a full-sized version of the C64 is planned for late 2018, because…. I’m sure they will provide a logical reason.

For a Time, I Was a Gamer that Didn’t Play Video Games 

Hi folks. Remember me? Wait, come back. Don’t be that way. I had a lot going on. All good things really, just been very busy. Don’t be upset, you’re still my number one. I won’t pretend that we can pick up right where we left off, but maybe you can give me the opportunity to win back your hearts. 

The past 6 months have been a whirlwind. A lot of life changing events occurred since my last post. I can’t say that none of the things that happened were unplanned. On the contrary, they were all planned, so there is no one I can blame, other than myself. As my wife is more than willing to remind me, time and time again, I am not an intelligent man. 

While I have been away, I left my previous employer, which apparently was a company that was a front for intergalactic Lizard People bent on world domination. In turn, I started at a new company. The transition has been a challenge, but worthwhile and rewarding.  

I have also sold my first home and purchased a new one. This was by far, one of the most stressful things I have ever done. Purchasing a home, when you’re a renter is easy, compared to selling a home, then trying to time things just right so that you can roll in funds from the sale into a new home purchase. Of course, once you get through all the paper work, mortgage applications, lawyers, realtors, you then must pack up and actual move, which used a form of torture in the less civilized world. 

Oh, and those aforementioned lawyers. Fuck these people. I hope the Lizard People pretending to be the humans that are my former coworkers enslave all the lawyers first. I despised the sellers’ attorney’s attitude and lack of intelligence and MY attorney an even lazier nickel and diming piece of shit. Does being a lawyer make people miserable or do miserable people become lawyers? I actually have a friend who is an attorney and he actively tells younger people who are considering a profession in law to consider something else. 

Perhaps the biggest change in my life is that I became a dad again. That’s right folks, my ding dong is still strong and my loins have spawned fruit again.  

Now this was a planned pregnancy, so that’s fancy talk for being treated like a piece of meat by the wife. Sounds great a first, but it really isn’t. She had iPhone apps, and timetables, and best practices that must be followed. No wining, dining, and romance this time around. This pregnancy was going to be cold, clinical, and efficient like German S&M. It was all worth it in the end, as it resulted in a healthy, happy, and perfect little girl. I’m actually typing this from the hospital right now, as my wife and newborn rest. 

So, to say that I have been busy is an understatement. One may ask when do I even have time to play games, and the answer to that is I really don’t. Matter of fact, I have had very little time to a lot of things that I enjoy lately, which has been taking quite a toll on me.  

Gaming, along with exercise, reading, and writing is what keeps me grounded. I suffer from anxiety and depression, and when I feel like I’m going down to a “bad place,” my pastimes keep me grounded and normalize me. As one can imagine, changing jobs, moving, and having another child, even though all good things, can really mess with a person’s psyche. 

Then one day, while I was lurking on some gaming related blogs and catching up on news, I had an existential crisis.  Am I even a gamer anymore, since I haven’t played an actual video game in months? Then some panic and anxiety began to set in. Will I even have the time to play games in any extended capacity anymore?  

I mentioned in the past that I have been on this quest to create my optimal gaming space. At the new house, I was able to get damn near close to my ideal. It was one of the first things I set up in my move, and then for weeks, I hardly spent any time there. My new job is demanding and time consuming, my older daughter is starting kindergarten, and there is now an infant in the house. Add all those things to my regular day to day tasks and I was starting to think that my gaming days are over. 

This is a painful thought. I have always considered myself to be a gamer and the idea of no longer being able to actually play video games, because of my career and family was terrifying. I was also feeling like I was being selfish. Should I even be worrying about my lack of time to play video games because I had so much more important things to do? 

The answer to that question is yes, I should be worried about it, because I enjoy playing video games, they are part of my identity, and they allow me to be centered. Sometimes you have to be selfish and make time for yourself. That sounds like something Sigmund Freud would say, right before snorting a huge line of cocaine. 

In all seriousness though, you can be a gamer that doesn’t play games. Being a fan or a follower of gaming makes you a gamer in my eyes. For those months where I wasn’t playing any games, I still considered myself a gamer and even if I don’t play as much as I used to. In much of the same way, I consider myself an auto enthusiast, who drives a hum drum boring ass SUV, I still can appreciate a Ferrari or a Lamborghini when I see one.  

I’ve written in the past on how getting older and having more responsibilities has a tendency of stripping away the free time available for casual pursuits. Well friends, it only gets worse. If you’re in school, classes will become more and more challenging and require more study. Buying a house? Well, houses will always need to be fixed and updated regardless of how new they are or in what condition they are in. Thinking about having kids or already have them? Well as kids get older they begin to have activities of their own, like swim classes, soccer practice, play dates, concerts, plays, and recitals. Lastly, you work hard and move up the corporate ladder getting paid a lot more, but then you find that you’re working 80 hours a week and so stressed out from the amount of responsibility you, hardly have the energy to do anything. 

However, even with all of the above, you need to make time to do what makes you happy. I’m going to continue playing, reading, and writing about gaming even if it’s just for minutes a night, because that is what gamers do and doing those things brings joy and balance in my life. I’m not going to let life get in the way of my favorite pastime. 

Maybe when the kids are in college I will have the opportunity to play more games. I reckon 13 years from now, which, in the grand scheme of things, is not that long off and just imagine how great the games will be by then. That’s something to look forward to. 

Castlevania Animated Series Coming to Netflix

If you live in the northeastern United States, you’re experiencing prime Netflix binge watching weather. Too bad the Castlevania animated series is not out yet, so I’m forced to watch bad daytime television as I wait for things to calm down, so that I can go out into the elements and throw out my back clearing the snow from the driveway, like an animal.

Adi Shankar, who produced Dredd and The Grey has announced via his Facebook page, that a Castlevania animated series in indeed in the works.

Castlevania is a Netflix Original Series with Season 1 launching in 2017 and Season 2 in 2018. Furthermore, I personally guarantee that it will end the streak and be the western world’s first good video game adaptation.

P.S. A.V. Club, stop saying mean s*** about me.

P.S.S. Kevin Kolde is the man and Seasons 1 & 2 were written by Warren f’ing Ellis.

I have high expectations for this. Netflix has been on a roll with their content, but we’ll have to wait a to if this new animated series continues the trend.