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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Wideogames

Today I finally connected my new Xbox 360 (Funny story involved with why I have a new one. I sold me old one to buy my wife her engagement ring, and then she bought me a new 360 for Christmas. Gift of the Magi anyone?) to the internet and set up my gamer tag and such. This allows me to chat with other players, download movies and games, and post my gamer score. For those of you that don't know, a game score is basically nerd bragging rights. Every Xbox 360 game contains 1,000 unlockable gamer points for doing various things. (Such as killing 150 villains with a shotgun or doing 3 flips with your car) I used to have something like 2,300 of these points before I sold my 360 and killed my gametag. I'm now humbly back at 345 points. (I will return) Anyway, enough of my rant, this list will be dedicated to my fondest Videogaming moments.

First off, some honorable mentioned games that aren't going to make my list. 007 Goldeneye for N64 is on so many top 10 lists. I enjoyed the multiplayer experience, but became frustrated with those that looked at my screen and new the maps by heart. Since I didn't have an N64 I usually got poned pretty hard. Halo, although a great game, has been so overplayed by now (and followed up with the disgraceful Halo 3) that I can't even consider it because I can't look back and remember my fondness for it. Megaman was great, but I just can't bring him into the list. This list will be a top 13 list because I just couldn't erase any of these.

-Duke Nukem 3d provided much needed violence, nudity, and cursing for a 12 year old Dan. Witty banter while shooting an alien with the shrink gun, only to stomp on them second later filled the time in between me storming the strip clubs, and throwing cash at the girls while they showed pixelated boobs and Duke Nukem saying "Shake it baby."

-I remember seeing a commercial where Mario punched Link in the face and Donkey Kong threw a barrel at Star Fox, and I thought that is about the goofiest concept for a game I've ever heard. It wasn't until two years later that I embraced the N64 stick and played Super Smash Brothers. I still play this game anytime I find someone with a Nintendo 64 and the cartridge.

-Silent Hill for the Playstation still remains the only game I've ever had to turn off because I was too scared. The part that stuck out was in the abandoned elementary school. I check a phone to call for help, and its dead. The lines been cut. I can see the wire cut in half laying on the table. Then as I'm about to walk out the door to the room, it rings. My kidnapped daughter cries "Daddy, please help me. Come quickly." F-That. I still have nightmares.

-In 1994, my cousin got a Playstation game counsel and he bought Resident Evil. I had always been a fan of zombies ever since seeing Night of the Living Dead on channel 11 in the middle of the afternoon one day. The graphics blew me away and I thought they will never get better than this. (How wrong and naive I was) Two 10 year olds trying to figure out how to beat an adult game was no easy feat. He was the trigger man (in charge of the controller. I still only had a Sega Genesis and couldn't figure out how to move in 3d.) and I was the brain. It took three weeks, tons of saves, but we finally beat it, clocking in for a final play time of 9 hours. (The game took most 5 the first time through, so not too bad for us)

-The one and only time I played Virtual Boy will always stick with me, only becuase it was a horrible concept that was done horribly. I stuck my face into the goggles to see that red, semi-3d world give me a headache.

-The original Zelda was the first Nintendo game I remember posing a huge challenge that I felt I couldn't let go. I spent a whole week drawing out a map, square by square, trying to figure out how to beat the dang thing. (My mom threw it away before it did any good) But it was worth it, because when little Link held up that first piece of the triforce, I felt the world depended on me finishing it.

-Metal Gear Solid still is one of the top games I've ever played. I've never felt like I had to earn a win as much as MGS. The storyline was amazing, still one of the most solid. I think I learned most of what I know about weapons and military tactics from MGS. The first time I saw the credits rolling, I had broke a sweat, tears rolling down my face, and my breathing was heavy. Then they told me I unlocked the stealth suit, and the epic 15 hour journey started again.

-Again in 1994 (it was a big year for video games) It was customery for the Easter Bunny to bring us each one $20 gift, but this fateful Easter morn, while zombie Jesus was roaming the country side, we had one large box staring us down. Tearing the paper, ignoring the colorful, candy stuffed, plastic eggs hidden around it, we revealed a Sega Genesis. We'd been stuck in the NES stage 3 years past what we should have, and the Genesis was a great step up. We got NHL 94 with the system, and that Easter we had a 20 person, family-wide tournament. I picked the Calgary Flames (because my dad had dibs on the Blues) and I beat everyone with the tried and true skate in front of the goalie until he goes down and you score every time.

-Super Mario 3 was the first time I can remember getting to choose what level I wanted to play. The concept was so foreign to me and I think everyone else. Levels are almost nonexistant (at least in the traditional form) in modern gaming, but any games that do have levels usually rip off the Mario 3 format in some way.

-Mariokart on the Super Nintendo started a long lasting addiction. I've played and loved every Mariokart since, and besides the battle mode (the gamecube battle mode was pretty lame) everything has improved. Everyone knows the sound of picking up a weapon, and I think we've all though how nice it would be to have a red shell to take on life.

-Warcraft was the first RTS game I played, but it wasn't until Star Craft that I lost sleep. My friend and I would order a large Imos pizza and play over Battle.net until 5 in the morning. Zerg rush entered my vocabulary for the first time and anyone that's played for more than 3 minutes call the other aliens "the toss." I still play this game from time to time and I basically touch myself thinking of the sequel due out sometime late this year or next year.

-The first time I played Nintendo, my cousin opened up his track and field mat and off we went into an 8bit adventure. I was in the middle of cheating at the long jump (I jumped off the mat like everyone else did and jumped back when I felt I had achieved what I wanted) when we received word that the Princess had been kidnapped by Bowser. We immediately switched to Super Mario Brothers only to find out Princess was in another castle. I still remember finding the secret 1-up mushroom on the first level and the first we warped to another area.

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