Virtua Cop (Sega Saturn)

July 15, 2007 by · 2 Comments 

Virtua Cop - Title ScreenVirtua Cop - Beginner LevelVirtua Cop - Medium Level

Light gun games have something of a linear history.  Virtua Cop may have shaken up the genre by bringing into the 3D era, but its gameplay is not nearly as revolutionary as its graphics were.  In fact, you can trace the gameplay straight back to one of the earliest NES games — Hogan’s Alley.  In Hogan’s Alley, you were a cop, wandering through a seedy area, shooting down thugs while trying to hold back your itchy trigger finger when an innocent appears.  In Virtua Cop, you’re a cop, wandering through a seedy area, shooting down thugs while trying to hold back your itchy trigger finger when an innocent appears.  16-bit light gun games were much the same (see Lethal Enforcers) as are modern ones (see the Time Crisis and House of the Dead series).

But saying Virtua Cop sucks because light gun games are all the same would be unfair.  It’d be like saying Soul Calibur sucks just because it’s a 3D fighter, or Streets of Rage sucks just because it’s a side scrolling beat-’em-up.  The real question is whether or not I have fun playing it.  And, quite simply, I do.  It’s certainly not worth playing with the controller, but get yourself a Stunner, and you’ll be mowing down baddies left and right.

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Marble Madness (NES)

June 16, 2007 by · 3 Comments 

Marble Madness - Title ScreenMarble Madness - PracticeMarble Madness - Beginner

It seems there have been a plethora of marble-based maze games in the last several years.  I think the recent trend started with Super Monkey Ball and was soon followed by Mercury, Marble Blast, Kororinpa: Marble Mania, and others.  Well, they’re all rip-offs.  Every last one of ’em!  Marble Madness is The One True Thing and will always be the game that the others are compared to.  And for good reason, really:  it rocks.

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