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Sleeper hits


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Well, figured I would use this time I have with fellow gaming dorks to plug games that not many peolpe have played but definitely should. So first on the plate, knowing how much everyone loves JRPGs I'd start out with a personal favorite of all time, Ys.




Way back when in 1987, a small company called Falcom released an action/rpg style game known as Ancient Ys Vanished - Omen. The game followed the exploits of young swordsman Adol Christin as he attempted to find out what had happened to an ancient kingdom that vanished several hundred years ago. It was wildly popular in Japan and actually got a PC and Sega Master System release in the US, at the end of the day though, the NES was kicking everything's butt, so the game never got very popular. It had a few adherents, but that was about it.


In Japan a sequel was released in 1988, continuing the story of the first game and adding some anime style cinematics. It updated the gameplay system of the original to include magic, and it was aslo one of the first games that was a direct continuation of its predecessor. This game had several ports in Japan, but never came to the US.




That was until NEC came out with a new system, and a CD add on, a company called Hudson worked out a deal with Falcom to port the game to CD, they added voice several anime squences and a remixed soundtrack, that version got released here, and it was a critical smash. Being able to play through the entire story in one game along with that amazing soundtrack and voice was shiny and new in the videogame world.


That version had one of the best soundtracks of all time, composed by such greats as Yuzo Koshiro, and remixed by Ryo Yonemitsu of Lodoss War fame. The difference between beeps and boops of the time and a fully redbook audio soundtrack was simply amazing. This became one of the games Turbografx fans lorded over everyone else in the 16-bit days. The CD version was inducted by Gamespot into its greatest games of all time.




Flash forward several years, Falcom after porting the game to the Saturn for some classics collections, Falcom set out to remake the game for the PC. What a remake it was, the gameplay, while nearly identical was refined, and the storyline was much more fleshed out. The Remake was called Ys Eternal.


The remake for the sequel followed a few years later, and then it was updated slightly again and released as 1 game with a new opening movie, and another remixed soundtrack.




These games are some of the best action RPGs of all time, they are fun, simple, and addicting. The games aren't the longest of all time, but they don't ever really slow down. Not to mention both games have some of the biggest and best final dungeons and any game ever.


The remakes can be found via torrent, and they are well worth it, especially since a group of fans have done complete translations of both games. So, you can get Japanese goodness on the PC.


Here are some screenshots of the PC Remake:








Here is the link for the translation patches as well as more infor on the games:



Also you can find a torrent here: Hongfire


Or if you are crazy enough to want to order it (like I did) directly from Falcom in Japan go Falcom

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Yeah, i played III for SNES, but nothing beyond or before that....how connected is one chapter to the next? Maybe i should finally give this series a go sometime.


ps i like the idea of this thread, you mind if i cahnge the name to somethin like "the best games youve never played"? Id like to add a few as well, lemme know man.

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Zombies ate my neighbors was a Genesis/SNES classic by Konami, the masters of classic gaming. Zombies have taken over, and only your watergun & other items you collect can stop them...and the vampires, chainsaw guys, aliens, giant babies, etc.


Its awesome, and its 2-player: explore frankenstien's lab, save cheerleaders from being chainsawed in shopping malls, swamps, the desert, wherever Konami decides to send you. Game play is pretty simple, but just addicting: its one of those games you just play, never really think of beating it cause youre having fun, like ToeJam & Earl (another one for this list).


B-rated movies were never this fun.


If you dig this game, check out: Herc's Adventures for PS1 - same engine, harder to find.

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Ys III, (not Y's cowboy, ya fucked it up.) was the one that got the widest release here in the US. So a lot of people played it. It's the least Ys-like of the series, kinda like the adventure of link to Zelda.


Still, probably my favorite ost for the series.


Also to Cowboy's earlier question the games all have the same main character nad follow a chronology, but other than 1 and 2 the stories are separate.

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Now that I look at it, it looks almost identical to this other SNES game I played years back called Lagoon. I had always found fascinating how Lagoon and Wanderers from Ys (Ys III) were almost identical in terms of stats, items, and game play. The only major difference was that Lagoon was an ovehead scroller (like this one) and Ys III was a side-scroller. It looks like the older and newer Ys games opted for the overhead scroller instead. But did anyone else ever play both games and noticed the eerie similarities? :)

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Just your average story of a young boy going out for the day, in his home in the center of the earth. Meeting a magical creature. Ushering in all life in earth, developing all life on earth, then finding out you were being played by the bad guys ( or the dark guys whatever) while killing things along the way.


Also known as the Illusion of Gaia 2, ace by any name.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Ok, moving on to what could possibly be the best RPG ever created: Planescape Torment. This game is one of the few that has left an incredible impression on me, everything from the graphics to the music and especially the story are the best the PC at the time had to offer. The story can hang with the big boys and the only one I think comes close is possibly Xenogears. But anyhoo.




What can change the nature of a man?


From the Wikipedia:


The story begins in Sigil - "City of Doors" - a city in which the protagonist (The Nameless One) awakens on a mortuary slab, not knowing where or who he is. A chattering skull named Morte floats over to him and informs The Nameless One of writing on his back instructing him to read his journal, and then find someone named Pharod. The Nameless One then embarks on a quest to resolve two fundamental problems: why he is an immortal and how he can become a mortal again.


Sigil itself is an amazing location, it is the center of the multiverse, and it is said that gates to all of existence are everywhere in the city, all you have to do is find them, and of course, find the key that unlocks them. These keys can be anything from an actual key, to walking through an archway while remembering a sad memory. Anything goes, because the planes are based upon belief.




One idea that presents itself many times during the game is a sort of consensus reality — if enough people believe in something, then it is real, and begins to exist. For instance, when people ask The Nameless One his name, there is usually a response where he tells them that his name is 'Adahn'. If the player tells many people that he is Adahn, Adahn appears, claiming to be an old friend, even though he never existed before. Another example is a recovered memory in which the Nameless One debates a man out of existence.


Which is what makes the game so compelling, as affecting others beliefs change what can happen in the game, and that is just one layer of the freedom that is offered. In this game you do very much choose how your character develops, and not simply in the "I'm evil, so I kill everything." way. If you decide to be evil, it can be a much darker game of gaining advantage over someone psychologically.


Much of the dialogue in the game is text, and this game has a lot of it, 1 million words or so total, about as much as a volume of the encyclopedia britannica. You probably won't see it all in one playthrough, but the game reads beautifully.




In what other game can you have a floating skull, a demon blooded thief, a mage who is engulfed in flames, a celebate succubus, and a chaotic being of order all in one party? None that I know of. Not only are the characters original but they are all compelling as well, you come to care about all of them, and how they fit in to your story.


I'm probably not doing this game the justice it deserves, but man oh man, it is truly one that needs to be played, I know that many shy away from PC style RPGs, but this is definitely a game that cannot be missed. Multiple ways to solve quests, an amazing story, and a wildly original setting make this one of the best games that no one played.

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  • 1 month later...

You know those titles that back in the day were must haves and defined gaming experiances in their time. Sleeper hits, long forgotten titles and games that ya can't find anymore.


Post games you thought were good but have been long forgotten ...







I'll start with




- Just a few months before the Japanese GameCube launch Nintendo gave Shigeru Miyamoto extra time to add some polish to Luigi's Mansion, meaning the intended release date of the GameCube slipped. There's only one games company in the world that would delay its console just so one man could make sure his game played perfectly, and that's Nintendo. The truth be told, there aren't many games that have come out of Nintendo's stable that can be classed as below average. Simply put, we all know there is no way that Luigi's Mansion is going to be any less than great.


The game starts off with a something a bit special - Nintendo's first ever FMV sequence. This short sequence explains the plot, and why this game isn't called Mario's Mansion. In a nutshell - Mario has won a mansion, but after rushing to check it out he's gone and got captured by the resident ghosts and turned into a picture. As you do.


Armed with a Hoover, sorry - Poltergust 300 - and a multi-purpose Game Boy Horror (which lets you view the first person mode and acts as a map) Luigi has to rescue his brother by sucking up the ghosts and turning them into paintings, with the help of Professor Gadd's painting maker. The trick to catching ghosts is the game’s most compelling feature. Firstly, you need to find them, either by rummaging around or solving a simple puzzle, such as blowing out all the candles in a room or stoking up a fire with the vacuum to light up the surroundings. Once discovered, the ghosts stay on the screen for a few seconds before vanishing, and it's in those few seconds that you have to flash your torch in their faces to stun them. Once stunned it’s time to suck them up. As odd as it sounds, catching ghosts is an experience akin to a fishing game, if you "reel" the ghost in too fast or too strongly then you'll lose him, but with some skill and careful aiming with the second analogue stick they'll be as good as yours. Some ghosts take more sucking than others, and the amount of suction required is displayed in seconds above the ghost in question. Luigi's Poltergust 300 can also be used to suck up money and once the correct emblems have been discovered you can then use it to spray water, fire and ice.


Just like almost every console release before it, the GameCube's launch titles all put the new host's hardware to the test in order to wow potential buyers with their graphical prowess. It's not shocking to learn then, that graphically Luigi's Mansion is a step up from almost anything seen before it. The physics engine is of a very high standard for first-generation software. With a vacuum in hand Luigi can suck and blow objects with an alarming degree of realism - even cloth can be sucked from a table, pulled and stretched all in real time. Couple that with some stunning shadow and lighting effects and you have one of the best looking titles on the market bar none. Of course, flash visuals would be nothing without good gameplay and here's where the problem lies.


There's no denying that Luigi's Mansion is a lot of fun. It screams play me. It sucks you in (no pun intended) and won't let you go. But, and it's a big but - the lifespan of Luigi's quest leaves a lot to be desired. We managed to finish the game in just over ten hours, and after returning to the game to find the scant few secrets and collect all 50 ‘Boos’ we hadn't clocked much more than twelve hours of game time. Nintendo have added some extras to the European version however, which at least shows that they are already treating the European market with respect.


The bosses in the game are quite cool, in the sense that the ways you have to defeat them are of typical Nintendo creativity. As you progress there are many smile raising moments, which definitely capture a playful and charming quality that many Nintendo classics hold. Suggestions of greatness is perhaps most apt.


As cruel as it sounds, Luigi's Mansion falls into the novelty game genre along with such titles as Parappa The Rapper, Vib Ribbon and Pokemon Snap... all of which as you may be aware, are decent games. Luigi's Mansion is too, a decent game but it's not quite up there with the excellence of Mario 64, as you're probably well aware already.



Final Word

Regardless of its length, Luigi's Mansion is a genuinely enjoyable and well designed piece of software. Short, but oh so sweet.




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I am certainly no authority on games, but I know what I like and what I miss. Ecco the Dolphin for the Sega Genesis. Ok, great game. Something about a dolphin saving the world, traveling to the future, and all the acrobatics, and really pretty decents graphics for the time just grabbed my attention. They re-made it for the PS2. Tried to play it...but I couldn't figure out the controls. Maybe I just didn't give it enough time cause I'm impatient like that.


And, Super Mario Bros. 2. Anyone play that obsessively besides me? What's the story behind it... I have no clue, but it wasn't your usual chubby-plumber-save the princess adventure. I don't even think it was set in the Mushroom Kingdom. I loved it though and still do. I can't really explain why either. Maybe the colorful graphics grabbed my attention. Or hell, I'll be honest I love the way Peach floats and Lugi kicks his little legs as he grabs some air. :howyoudoin: As a matter of fact, this game is what's sitting in my GBA right now.

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...shit, how'd i miss this thread? good one, MM.


Luigi's was good fun, and helped sell me on the GC. It got mixed revies, but i had a blast with it - truth be told, i think i dug it more than Mario Sunshine, which is kinda sad. The only complaint i had was that it could actually be beaten in one sitting.


Ecco....i remember this comic strip a long time back that pointed out how games like Mortal Kombat didnt make you violent, games like Ecco did. Great game, but fucked if i didnt want to go kill dolphins just for the fuck of it sometimes.

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Yeah I miss the "Ninja" Games...ol' school 8 bit action. Like Ninja Gaiden and the Legend of Kage. Man I wish I had an 8 biter that werked...bummer.


- I can emulate them on the PC ....but it's not the same...











Loved this one too... Hard as a bitch, but excellent, I remember I got it for Christmas one year...those were the days.



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Yeah, I loved Goldeneye and the ol' skool mario games, great picks 2track...


Nick, how 'bout this one for good measure?





oh and on the point you made earlier, I fuckin' loved "Gaiden"...great game but I agree, hard as a bitch. :)


...this game was cool in it's day too...



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...shit. good calls, man.


Contra 1 set the bar for action games for me, back in the day, which would get raised again with Contra III: ALien Wars for SNES.


and mad props for Maniac Mansion, was just telling La Lindsay yesterday how much fun that game was. Its not often consoles get the fun point-and-click RPGs like Monkey Island, Sam & Max, Grim Fandago etc, but i still have Mansion, still need to print up a strategy guide one day and finish it...id get so damn close before i got caught....

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One of the best RPG'S ever The secret of mana



I miss that game. I wish they would re-release it.


Another game I loved (Same goes for bishopcruz) is the Y's games. Those game's were great in every

area. Still waiting for a Classic collection of some kind.

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