Episode #62 - Long before every summer was filled with big-budget comic book adaptations, there was Tim Burton's Batman. With an all-star cast that included Michael Keaton, Jack Nickolson and Kim Basinger, this adaptation of the Dark Knight set box office records and kickstarted an era full of comic book films. But what about the video game? Were critics interested in the Nintendo Entertainment System game back in 1990? We dug through old issues of Electronic Gaming Monthly, Nintendo Power and GamePro to find the answers.
Episode #61 - Street Fighter II may have popularized one-on-one fighting games, but Pit-Fighter took it one step further with a three-person melee. It featured a kick boxer, a wrestler and martial arts expert, all fighting for cash prizes in an underground fight club. It's an interesting concept, but were critics interested in this Sega Genesis conversion? We flipped through old issues of GamePro, Mega Play, Sega Force and Computer + Video Games for the answers.
Episode #800 - PixelJunk Shooter Ultimate combines Q-Games' two previous shooters into one neat package. While not the deepest shooting experience, this PlayStation 4 (and PS Vita) release has a lot of content and some fun suits to fly around in. And with hundreds of scientists to rescue and hidden gems to collect, you'll be at this game for some time to come.
Episode #60 - Released only a few weeks after the Super NES, ActRaiser quickly became the system's surprise hit. By mixing 2D side-scrolling action with Populous-style simulation, Enix managed to create a fantasy game that felt fresh. But were critics into this pairing, or was ActRaiser too complicated for its own good? We dig through issues of GamePro, Electronic Gaming Monthly, CVG and Super Play for the answers.
Episode #797 - A fun concept and addictive gameplay cannot make up for a short single-player campaign and lack of variety. Z-Run has all the right elements, but is over far too quickly. On the other hand, I cannot deny having a great time running through the urban wasteland dodging zombies. Hopefully this leads to a fully-featured sequel.
Episode #799 - Based on one of the best PSP games ever made, OMG HD Zombies is yet another stellar update for Sony's PS Vita. This HD upgrade offers new stages, enemy types and improved visuals. You'll also find intuitive touch controls and a bunch of new endings. And did I mention that all this is only $4.99? Regardless of whether you own the original or are discovering the series for the first time, OMG HD Zombies is a must-buy!
Episode #59 - From the mind of David Crane comes A Boy and His Blob, the delightful open world puzzler for the Nintendo Entertainment System and Game Boy. This 2D title sees players feeding their Blob jelly beans to advance through an onslaught of tough obstacles. Were critics into this type of adventure game at the time, or was A Boy and His Blob too niche back in 1990? We dig through old issues of Nintendo Power, Raze, Electronic Gaming Monthly and Nintendo Magazine System for the answers.
Episode #796 - JoJo's Bizarre Adventure All-Star Battle is as baffling a fighting game as you will ever play. With a large cast of eccentric characters and some of the most stylish moves you'll ever see, Namco Bandai have finally released a good anime game. It's not without a few problems, but JoJo has enough charm to warrant taking the risk.
Episode #47 - If the streets have been more violent than usual, it could be because it's Final Fight week here at Defunct Games. This week the Review Crew looked at Final Fight 1, Final Fight 2 and Final Fight 3, all on the Super NES. Did critics fall in love with these brawlers? Are the sequels forgotten gems? And how did the release of Street Fighter II affect Final Fight? We turn to classic issues of Electronic Gaming Monthly, GamePro, Super Play and CVG for the answers!
Episode #58 - Haggar is back ... again. After a two year break, Capcom decided to bring the brawler out of retirement for one last 16-bit adventure. Did Final Fight 3 send the beat-em-up off on a good note, or was it the final nail in the coffin? I have turned to old issues of Electronic Gaming Monthly, Die Hard Game Fan, Super Play and Next Generation to find the answers. See what critics thought of Final Fight 3 back in 1995 in this new episode of Review Crew.
Episode #795 - 1001 Spikes joins a growing list of retro-themed games made for modern consoles. This PSN release (also available on every other system you own) will test your resolve through a series of increasingly sadistic stages. With deadly obstacles at every step, this is one game that never lets up. But fans of this type of punishment will enjoy the clever level designs and rage-inducing traps. Good luck.
Episode #794 - Fans of competitive puzzle games will eat this up, but Magical Beat is marred by questionable gameplay mechanics, a barebones presentation, no online modes and an annoying soundtrack. If you can get past some of these problems, you'll find an interesting puzzler that doesn't quite meet its full potential.
Episode #57 - Haggar is back in Final Fight 2, the sequel to Capcom's popular Super NES launch game. Learning from the first Final Fight, Capcom has added new characters, locations and a two-player mode. But was this enough to please the critics back in 1993? We dig through old issues of Die Hard Game Fan, GamePro, Super Play and Nintendo Power for the answers.
Episode #1 - Are you a game developer or somebody who works in game PR? Do you have a game to promote? Then we need to get you on Defunct Games' newest show: "Should I Buy Your Game?"
Episode #56 - Before Street Fighter II changed everything, Final Fight was the biggest brawler in the arcades. So when Capcom announced that the beat-em-up was headed to the Super NES, fighting fans were understandably excited. But then they realized that this 16-bit launch game wasn't all it was cracked up to be. With missing stages, characters and no two-player mode in sight, gamers were disappointed. But did the game critics agree? We dig through old issues of GamePro, Computer + Video Games, Electronic Gaming Monthly and Super Play for the answer.
Episode #46 - Good news everybody: We all survived another E3. Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft all announced new projects and the consumers seem excited about the next two years of gaming. But instead of looking towards the future for LittleBigPlanets and Master Chief Collections, we're going to take you back in time to the very first Electronic Entertainment Expo. For five days straight, Defunct Games chronicled what old school magazines thought of the first E3. Now is your chance to relive the memories by reading all five episodes of The First E3. See what Nintendo Power, Electronic Gaming Monthly, Die Hard Game Fan, Next Generation and GamePro thought of this annual event back in 1995.
Episode #55 - Overshadowed by Night Trap, Sewer Shark was the other full-motion video game to make the Sega CD launch. Featuring endless corridors and bad acting, this on-rails shooter wowed audiences with its unique visuals. But were the critics impressed, or did they turn them nose up to another FMV adventure? We turn to Electronic Gaming Monthly, GamePro, Sega Force, Mean Machines and other classic magazines for the answers.
Episode #35 - E3 may be over, but our week-long look at the very first Electronic Entertainment Expo is sticking around for one more day. For our final episode, we'll see the very first E3 through the eyes of Nintendo Power. Find out what the magazine thought of Sega's Saturn, Sony's PlayStation and Nintendo's own group of Super NES games in this final episode of The First E3!
June 12, 2014
Episode #34 - E3 week is almost over, but our week-long look at the very first Electronic Entertainment Expo rages on. Today's episode sees the E3 1995 through the eyes of Electronic Gaming Monthly, one of the most popular video game magazines of all time. Find out how they carried themselves in this brand new episode of The First E3.
Episode #54 - While many consider the Atari Jaguar to be a mistake, the "64-bit" system did have a number of worthwhile games. Perhaps the best was Tempest 2000, the long-overdue sequel to one of Atari's greatest shooters. Were critics enthusiastic about a brand new Tempest game, or had they written the system off entirely? We dig through old issues of Electronic Gaming Monthly, GamePro, Die Hard Game Fan and Next Generation for the answers.
Episode #33 - Are you overwhelmed by the usual E3 news? Then join Defunct Games as they take a look back at the very first Electronic Entertainment Expo in 1995. This is day three of a week-long series that sees E3 through the eyes of different old school magazines. How did the up-and-coming Next Generation magazine cover this brand new convention? Find out as Defunct Games takes you back to the very first E3.
Episode #32 - E3 week is here. But instead of looking at the newest and hottest games, Defunct Games is taking a look back at the very first Electronic Entertainment Expo. This is day two of our week-long series that will see E3 through the eyes of old school magazines. How excited was Die Hard Game Fan to cover this brand new convention? Find out as Defunct Games takes you back to the very first E3.
Episode #53 - F-Zero has the distinction of being the very first racing game on the Super NES. It's a fast-paced single-player racing game unlike anything you've seen before. But was F-Zero well received when it first came out, or were critics turned off by the high-speed gameplay? And how did it compare to Pilotwings, which launched on the very same day. We turn to Nintendo Power, Electronic Gaming Monthly, GamePro and other classic magazines for the answers to these questions.
Episode #31 - E3 week is upon us. But instead of looking forward to the big game announcements, Defunct Games is taking a look back at the very first Electronic Entertainment Expo. This is the first part of a week-long series that will see E3 through the eyes of old school magazines. How did GamePro cover E3 back in 1995? Find out as Defunct Games takes you back to the first E3!
Episode #52 - Phantasy Star IV was not just the End of the Millennium, but also the final 16-bit entry in the role-playing series. And with a $100 asking price, the end came with a steep barrier for entry. Were critics able to get over the high price and enjoy Phantasy Star IV, or did they turn on this long-running series? We dig through old issues of Die Hard Game Fan, Electronic Gaming Monthly, Mean Machines Sega and Game Informer for the answers.
Episode #1 - This is a blog. Okay, so it may not look like your typical blog, but I am choosing to call it a blog nevertheless. I genuinely hate the term "blog;" it has always felt like a backhanded compliment. It's right up there with "you have such a pretty face" and "you're such a fun drunk." I don't want my work to be good for a blog; I want it to be of regular website quality.
Episode #51 - Few role-playing games are as epic as Phantasy Star III on the Sega Genesis. Spanning 100 years and three generations, Sega's 16-bit RPG was a big deal in 1991. But did the game live up to its lofty ambitions or simply confuse the critics. We turn to Electronic Gaming Monthly, Mega Play, GamePro, MegaTech and other old school magazines to find the answers.
Episode #92 - After nearly a decade, the PlayStation Portable's life is finally coming to an end. But some media outlets seem to think it's the PS Vita that is disappearing, not the 10 year old PSP. In this article, Defunct Games tries to figure out why the Associated Press doesn't know the difference between the PSP and PS Vita.
Episode #793 - Even if you're not completely sick of the LEGO formula, you will be by the end of LEGO The Hobbit. This is a simple action game with light puzzles and an overwhelming cast of characters. It's also a disappointing retread of games you've probably already played. There are a few memorable moments sprinkled throughout this adventure, but this newest LEGO game covers too much familiar ground.
Episode #50 - Forget dungeons and dragons, Phantasy Star II takes role-playing gamers out of the high fantasy world and throws them into a distant future. After a successful Master System installment, Sega decided to make Phantasy Star II one of their big 1990 releases. Was this Sega Genesis sequel well received at the time? We turn to Electronic Gaming Monthly, Raze, Sega Pro and MegaTech for the answers!
Episode #62 - Is it possible that a canceled video game for the Nintendo Entertainment System is secretly responsible for some of the world's most notorious conspiracies? Could the very contents of this game be enough to take down the President of the United States of America? Somebody contact Alex Jones, because he's going to want to hear about Voltramax.
Episode #45 - Defunct Games is proud to present a week of Phantasy Star coverage. We'll be spending the entire week seeing what critics thought of Sega's old school role-playing series. Was there one Phantasy Star the critics liked more than others? Did everybody hate Phantasy Star III at the time? Was the original Master System game heralded as a masterpiece? This week you'll find out, thanks to Defunct Games and Review Crew.