Speed Runs and My Siglemic Obsession

Super Mario 64I’ve never been a guy that gets all that into competitive gaming. Sure, it’s fun to watch some skilled players go at it from time to time, but I’d rather just sit down and play the thing myself. Up until the recent bouts of watching pro StarCraft 2 players, I’ve never understood why someone could sit and watch someone else play a game for hours. I just assumed StarCraft 2 was different because of the level of the players.

All that changed over Christmas break, when I discovered Siglemic on Twitch TV. You see, Siglemic is a Super Mario 64 player. And not just any Super Mario 64 player – he’s the recent world record holder for a 120-star speed run. I watched in awe over most of the break to see him capture this record, and sat there for a number of failed attempts as he dodged, dove and ran impressively through the game’s many challenges in just under 2 hours.

I’m not sure if it’s just the joy of seeing Super Mario 64 in motion again that had me so enthralled, the skill of Siglemic, or both. But needless to say, I’m fascinated with watching people stream themselves playing through old games right now. I think part of the fun of this is just experiencing some nostalgia with thousands of people (Siglemic had up to 7000 people at a time watching him try to beat the record) all at the same time. Ever since then, I’ve been checking out people playing through Final Fantasy VII, IX, X and even Metal Gear Solid 2 and 4. And somehow it’s riveting.

Have you guys ever checked out streaming games on Twitch TV? What game would it take to get you hooked on speed runs? Go!

Gabe Newell’s Most Inspirational Games

Gabe Newell

When it comes to games, everyone’s got that list of a handful of titles that has influenced the way they view themselves as gamers, and to some extent individuals. I know that sounds a bit heavy, but I know that I have movies and music albums that have really affected me, and it’s just the same with games.

Have you ever wondered how your favorite developers feel are their most influential games? In a new feature titled Game Changers, CVG asks Valve founder Gabe Newell what his 3 favorite games of all time are. His answers? Star Trek on a Burroughs Mainframe, Doom and Super Mario 64, which convinced him that games are art (he still considers the controls to be unrivaled).

I’m glad that Gabe Newell and I are in total agreement about Super Mario 64, which still stands as probably the greatest platformer I’ve ever played. Other influential games for me as a gamer would happen to be KOTOR, Final Fantasy VII and Counter-Strike.

So what about you guys? What games have influenced you the most? What movies? Books? No holds barred!

Source – CVG

10 Great Gaming Years

Video Game Characters

We’ve said it a million times (and have even said that we’ve said it a million times), but 2011 is easily shaping up to be one of the best years in recent memory for gamers, if not ever. At least, that’s what we say, because gamers are a fickle bunch and have such a short attention span. It’s true. We’re quick to forget about how good previous decades were to us, because all of it blends together into this big retro blur.

To help jog your memory a bit, GamesRadar has a list of the ten greatest years in gaming history, and I kind of love it. They basically start back in the 80’s and pick out ten excellent years where gamers got spoiled. It’s actually insane to look back and realize that Mario 64, Panzer Dragoon II, NiGHTS Into Dreams, Twisted Metal 2, Resident Evil, Quake and Civ II all came out in 1996. Likewise, 1998 saw Metal Gear Solid, Banjo-Kazooie, Ocarina of Time, Grim Fandango, Baldur’s Gate, Half-Life, Starcraft and Final Fantasy Tactics. Crazy, huh?

One thing to keep in mind is that this list was written several years back, and recently re-published. Still, it’s interesting to look at, and definitely tickled the nostalgic parts of my brain. So what do you guys think? What were some of your favorite years in gaming? Go!

Source – GamesRadar

Where You Thought Gaming Would Be

Back to the Future 2Over the last few weeks, I’ve been on something of a Back to the Future kick. I suppose this may have something to do with the classic trilogy’s recent release on Blu-ray, or simply because I am a science fiction nut that loves awesome movies. Regardless, there is something about the movies that always strikes me when I watch them, especially when dealing with Back to the Future II’s projections about the future.

If for some reason you’re not remember correctly, or a large rock fell on your head and deleted megabytes from your brain, Back to the Future II has some fairly outlandish predictions about where humanity’s technology and sense of style was supposed to be in the year 2015. The notable (and laughable) examples would be that of shoes that tie themselves, flying cars, and home fusion reactors.

While this movie is obviously a comedy, it’s still something that I think that people tend to do in general when we talk about the future: in some ways we wildly over project, and in others we are floored by things we never thought of. The same is true for video games. Continue reading Where You Thought Gaming Would Be

Top Six: Super Mario Games

With the release of New Super Mario Bros Wii for the…uh…Wii, I decided to list my favorite Mario games. Now, this list only covers the traditional platforming Mario games. No Mario Kart (sorry, Eddy), no RPG and no Tennis. I looked at all 13 (including Game Boy games) and this is the list I came up with. It was much harder than I thought, mainly due to much consternation over innovation, originality and replay value. I have already steeled myself for a fan boy beating.
Continue reading Top Six: Super Mario Games

Today’s WTF: Games To Play Before You Die

wtfYikes. While we tend to dissect a lot of other people’s lists a lot, we have established well and good that it is something that inherently is appealing to gamers. We live to tear other people’s gaming favorites apart and interject our own.

Take this list from TheGameReviews, which put together “30 Games You Must Play Before You Die”. The idea of the list is that everybody should play these 30 games before they kick the bucket, obviously. Only, their choices weren’t so obvious. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that their choices are pretty awful in some cases.

There are a shocking amount of games from this gen on the list. And while there are a lot of good games this gen, should someone really play Mario Galaxy as opposed to Mario 64? Or Metal Gear Solid 4 over MGS 1 or MGS 3? And where the heck is Half Life?

So what do you guys think of the list? And what would you have put on it?

Source- TheGameReviews

Has This Gen Lost the “Wow” Factor?

n64One of the defining moments in my life as a gamer happened at a locally owned video game store down the highway from my house. I remember I used to walk there every day, simply to see what used games I could pick up, or what new games they had on display. The owner even let you put in whatever you wanted so you could try it out right there.

One day, I walked up to the counter and saw a game I had never seen before: Super Mario 64. I was fascinated. Watching my favorite plumber fully realized in 3D was like nothing I had experienced. I waited in line and didn’t leave the store for another hour as I shot myself out of cannons and ran around in the lush green Mushroom Kingdom. I remember leaving the store that day fascinated, bewitched even by this game that had simply floored me. I was wowed.
Continue reading Has This Gen Lost the “Wow” Factor?

Debunking Video Game Lies

mk-ermacRemember back in the day, when there was nothing like PSN or XBox Live or Steam for you to monitor what your friends were doing and see their trophies or achievements? Back then, they could say whatever they wanted, and you had to take them at face value. There’s a dude named Ermac in Mortal Kombat, they would say. Or you can resurrect Aeris, they’d report. Lies!

Well, someone has finally decided to put a stop to all of the video game lies with the official Video Game Lies Wiki, which documents the many untruths that people cling to about their old favorites. It’s definitely interesting to scroll through some of the lists and see things that I recognize from my elementary and middle school days.

Definitely worth checking out. So which of these are familiar to you guys? Did you have that one friend (like I did) who always lied to you about things hidden in video games?

Source- Video Game Lies Wiki via GameSetWatch

GamerSushi Asks: Best Gaming Gift?

sm64It’s finally the week of Christmas, and I’m really not sure how that happened. Last I checked, it was like November or something, but here we are, and I’ve now time traveled into the future. Seeing as how it’s that time of the year, I’m almost certain that by the end of the week I’m going to have added some games to my collection, as I’m sure is the case for many of you.

Which begs the question: what is the best game you’ve ever received for the holidays? Not one that you bought yourself, but one that was given to you during the holiday season.

For me, it was probably Mario 64, which came packaged with my Nintendo 64 the year that it came out. I remember ripping that thing open on Christmas Day, and being so saddened that we had to go to my grandma’s, because all I wanted to do was play more of it. Call of Duty 4 last year would be a close second. That is one of the games that shocks you with just how good it is.

What about you guys? What’s the best gaming gift you’ve ever received? Go!

GamerSushi Asks: Desert Island Gaming

Imagine that you wake up on an island. You know, kind of like in Castaway or Lost, minus the smoke monsters and the volleyballs and the weird. And it’s just you there, for the rest of your life. Only, imagine you find a small room (a hatch, if you will) with a TV, and some game consoles, and a small box full of just a handful of games…

Cheesy intro aside, everyone’s got that list, you know? The desert island list. People make them for movies, books, music, other people, or just favorite items in general. You know what I’m talking about: if you were stuck on a desert island for the rest of your life, which games would you like to be stuck with?

Continue reading GamerSushi Asks: Desert Island Gaming