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The Top 10 Manliest Man Moments #6: “Remember Jefferson, 20 Seconds!”

Today we reach the halfway point in the Azn Badger’s list of the Top 10 Manliest Man Moments in movies.

That’s not to say the MANLIEST MAN moments covered today and previously aren’t worth their weight in MANLINESS; rather they’re simply MANLY to a degree that makes them not quite worthy of the Top 5.

That being said, it causes me actual physical pain to rank it below the Top 5, but in any case our 6th MANLIEST MOMENT comes from perhaps the MANLIESTof WWII movies; The Dirty Dozen:

Or if you were on the other side of the conflict: "Das dreckige Dutzend!"

As with seemingly every entry on this list, The Dirty Dozen represents a drastically different school of MANLINESS; namely that of the classic “LEATHER-FACED MEN OF EPIC HARDNESS” subgenre that was prevalent in the 60’s and 70’s.

Whether you blame it on the fairly recent emergence of PC culture, or the government slowly poisoning our water supply with “pussy-fying” drugs; it’s hard to argue that the MANLY MEN of generations past bore a “harder” and more world weary image than those of today.

Drover or not, I'd put my money on Bronson...

It’s this HARD image that The Dirty Dozen thrives on.

As is evident from the title of the film, virtually the entire cast of major players in the film are made up of lowdown dirty bastards that are serving time for war crimes.

The vast majority of the Dozen are impetuous and irredeemable sons of bitches that probably should hang for the shit they’ve done, but at the end of the day; they’re all exactly the breed of HARD MEN that are needed to do what must be done.

In this case, the mission at hand happens to be a (fictional) mass assassination of several high ranking Nazi officials just before the D-Day invasion.

Despite the action-packed conclusion, by far the strongest aspect of The Dirty Dozen, is the fact that despite most of the cast being bigots and murderers; at the end of the day you end up caring about what happens to them:

Pictured: The appropriately named "Maggott," who nearly blew the entire mission.

Well, most of them anyway…

Being as there really are over a dozen fucking MANLY MEN in this movie, there really isn’t time to cover everyone; but at the very least I feel I should mention some of the more prominent heavy hitters in the roster.

First off there’s Lee Marvin, the MAN so MANLY even Toshiro Mifune was forced to acknowledge him as his equal.

Trust me, if this guy says you're cool; you're fucking COOL.

Marvin’s Major Reissman serves as the badass leader of the group.

While not a convicted a man like the rest of the Dozen, Reissman demonstrates, on more than a few occasions; that he’s every bit as SAVAGE as they are, and if anyone wears the pants in their relationship, it’s him.

Like Tom Selleck and his mustache, Lee Marvin made an entire career of being a tough-as-nails army dude; and The Dirty Dozen serves as an perhaps the finest example of his acting method.

Expect maybe The Delta Force. The Delta Force was the shit...

Next up is Charles Bronson as the German speaking Wladislaw, who as we all know can’t help but be a BADASS FUCKING SPHINX of a MAN even during something as sedate as a word association therapy session:

BADASS. FUCKING. SPHINX.

Throughout his lengthy career, Bronson played the LEATHER-FACED HARD MAN bit to the point of self-parody.

It’s not his fault, I mean fuckin’ look at him!

How could you ask a man with a MANLY FUCKING CATCHER’S MITT for a face to be anything but HARD in whatever role you cast him in!?

More importantly, what self-respecting MAN would pass up an opportunity to make use of said MANLINESS in a movie?

Apparently none, hence the reason the world has 5 Death Wish movies.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that…

In addition to Marvin and Bronson, I feel it’s worth mentioning that The Dirty Dozen also featured the EPIC MANLINESS of Cool Hand Luke and The Naked Gun’s George Kennedy, as well as the always awesome Ernest Borgnine and Robert Ryan of The Wild Bunch fame.

Pictured: A DAMN MAN.

It’s unfortunate that all 3 of said EPIC individuals are only in the movie for a few short minutes, but even so; their presence did a lot to bolster the palpable air of MANLINESS that permeates every frame of The Dirty Dozen.

Now, I’ve spent a great long while sucking the cock of this movie, and yet, up until now; I’ve actually made no mention of the MANLIEST MAN moment contained within it.

Said moment belongs to none of the awesome individuals mentioned above, nor any sort of big-time movie star; but rather to football legend turned actor, Jim FUCKING Brown:

Whatever movie this image is from, I haven't seen it. Looks fuckin' savage though...

As the only black member of the Dozen, Jim FUCKING Brown’s Robert T. Jefferson spends much of the movie at odds with the majority of his comrades.

The target of bitter racism during the early portions of the film, Jefferson responds in kind with hate of his own.

Despite this, Jefferson demonstrates a clear sense of duty and commitment to his mission that rivals even the most steadfast of the Dozen, as evidenced by he and Bronson’s Wladislaw going out of their way to prevent John Cassavete’s Victor R. Franko from deserting, thereby scrapping the entire mission.

It’s this sense of duty that ultimately leads to Jefferson’s death, which also happens to be our 6th MANLIEST MAN moment:

At this point in the movie, the Dozen’s forces have been cut down to a mere half-Dozen; and things are starting to get down to the wire.

Having succeeded in forcing the Nazi officials into the bomb shelter area beneath the mansion, our heroes work frantically to throw grenades into the air ducts that lie just above the bunker.

... And based on the big-ass grin on Jim FUCKING Brown's face, I'd say they enjoyed it.

As enemy forces rapidly bear down the mansion, members of the Dozen simultaneously work to provide cover fire to those prepping the explosives, and secure a half-track to use as their getaway vehicle.

Eventually, the half-track is readied and the machine gun crew begin to displace, however one thing remains out of place:

The explosives need to be detonated, and the only man in position to do so is:

JIM. FUCKING. BROWN.

Before he can make a move though, Jim FUCKING Brown is ambushed by a sniper, who proves to be a terrible shot; thusly prompting Mr. FUCKING Brown to dispose of him in decidedly MANLYfashion:

Following this, Jim FUCKING Brown strips off his extraneous gear and steels himself for the task at hand one of the Dozen yells:

“Remember Jefferson, 20 seconds!”

20 seconds?

The man runs 100 yards a game, I would think he can run a Nazi driveway in 20 fucking seconds!

With that Mr. FUCKING Brown clenches a pair of grenades in his hands and steels himself for the task of EPIC MANLINESS that lay before him.

Chucking his first grenade into the air duct beside him, Jefferson breaks out into a trademark Jim FUCKING Brown sprint towards destiny…

Run Jim FUCKING Brown! Run!

With enemy fire incoming all the while, he reaches the 2nd duct and puts a pineapple in there without skipping a beat.

Making his way to the 3rd and final duct, Jefferson fumbles with his last grenade, costing him precious seconds as he struggles to dislodge the spoon.

Looks like somebody got caught with their hand in the cookie jar...

With all of the explosives in place, Jim FUCKING Brown runs down the homestretch of the mansion driveway; when from out of nowhere, hidden just beside a nearby bridge, he is gunned down in mid-sprint by a Nazi soldier.

As his body collapses against the brick driveway, the remaining Dozen members call out to Jefferson in both agony and anger.

Mere seconds later though, all emotions are put on hold as the massive fireworks show that would be Jefferson’s parting gift springs to life, thereby solidifying the exploits of the mission; no matter how chaotic or disorderly, a job well done.

BOOM.

As the of the mansion cuts a fiery swath across the night sky, all the fighting and gunfire seems to pause for a moment.

Despite this, with the memory of his fallen friend and comrade still fresh in his mind, Lee Marvin turns to the bridge and revenge-kills the fuck out of the Nazi bastard that took out the Dirty Dozen’s Ambassador of MANLINESS, Jim FUCKING Brown.

Make that, "Overweight Nazi Bastard."

Pair this immediate revenge/spite killing of the Nazi soldier with the fact that Jim FUCKING Brown is the only member of the Dozen to get a sad music cue as a result of his death, and you have a MANLY moment worthy of the Top 10 MANLIEST MAN moments of all time.

If all that isn’t enough to convince you, I present to you the heap of forlorn reaction shots that show up as soon as our boy Jefferson goes down:

Anyway, thus concludes our 6th MANLIEST MAN moment in movies!

Check back tomorrow for MANLY moment #5!

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Filed under: Movies, The Best Track in the Game, Top 10 Manliest Man Moments, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Deadly Premonition Review

Deadly Premonition is a budget game.

Plain and simple.

Described by Destructoid as a “beautiful trainwreck,” Deadly Premonition is an open world/survival-horror hybrid developed by Access Games.

I first caught word of Deadly Premonition several months ago when I sat down to watch the first part of Spoony’s (Noah Antwiler) Let’s Play of it.

To my knowledge, that first hour or so of gameplay, is the only portion of the game that Spoony has posted any footage of.

Pictured: A man that has better shit to do than play a shitty game like Deadly Premonition.

After having played, and beaten the game over the course of 30 hours of gameplay, it’s easy to see why someone would so readily drop this game.

Deadly Premonition is a game that asks a lot from the player.

It has terrible graphics.

The soundtrack is extremely repetitive and is often times far too upbeat given the seriousness of the story.

The gameplay is equally repetitive, with controls approaching Resident Evil 1 levels of clunky-ness.

Knife vs. Zombie!? Not bloody likely!

For the most part, the only 2 saving graces of Deadly Premonition, are the strength of it’s writing, especially in regards to the characters, and the design of it’s surprisingly expansive map.

While the writing in Deadly Premonition is by no means brilliant, it has a a lot going for in that it’s just so damn quirky.

David Lynch’s Twin Peaks was a huge stylistic influence on Deadly Premonition, and it shows from beginning to end.

Numerous homages are made to the TV series in the form of the game’s setting, (a Pacific Northwestern town) as well as the unexplained abundance of cherry pie.

Oh yeah, and this kind of cryptic-ass fucked up shit:

"THE, SUIT, BURNS BETTER... LOOK!!! BURN'S SUIT! BURN'S SUIT!"

To call the characters in Deadly Premonition “odd,” is to discount the power of that word.

In the game, the player takes on the role of FBI profiler, Francis York Morgan, (his friends call him York) a facially scarred man that has a strong connection to the paranormal, smokes way too fucking much, has prophetic visions by looking into his morning coffee, and has a tendency to speak to an imaginary friend name Zach, often while in the company of others.

Well, looks like we caught him doing all of the above at once. His coffee is in between his legs...

If the above character traits aren’t intriguing to you even in the slightest, then congratulations, you are the snootiest high-brow motherfucker on the planet.

Pictured: You.

The game begins as York arrives at a fictional town in Washington called Greenvale.

Greenvale has recently played host to a gruesome murder/crucifiction, the investigation of which serves as the chief subject of the plot and gameplay in Deadly Premonition.

The closest thing to nudity you'll find on this blog. Except maybe the occasional dirty Donnie Yen photo...

The actual execution of the gameplay in Deadly Premonition, is that of a sandbox-style game, married with the over the shoulder shooting mechanic of Resident Evil 4.

Though I’m not much for sandbox games, I have to say, I was fairly impressed by Deadly Premonition’s take on it.

To be fair, I think most of my enjoyment of the map in the game springs from it’s impressive recreation of a Washintonian town.

Yup, a whole lotta' trees and little else...

As a life long, Seattlite, and one time Olympian, I can say with certainty, that the developers of Deadly Premonition really got the look and feel down pat.

The sprawling country roads, surrounded by evergreen trees, the big ass farms with seemingly nothing growing in them, the not quite picturesque lakes, it’s all there.

Haven’t you ever played GTA and wondered what it would be like if it was set in your hometown?

Then again, if you grew up in South Central, there's a good chance GTA strikes pretty close to home for you.

Well, if you’re from Olympia, Nisqually, or anywhere in Eastern Washington, Deadly Premonition; while not really possessing the vast breadth of sandbox-y goodness that GTA is known and loved for, absolutely gets the look just right.

If there’s any downside to the design of the map though, it’s due to the fact that it requires the player to drive around a little bit too much.

You see, unlike GTA, which offers a myriad of distractions while traveling from point A to point B, Deadly Premonition’s map is pretty sparse.

Pictured: Grand Theft Auto's definition of "distractions."

Sure, there’s fishing mini-games scattered about, as well as the occasional dirt road or hidden item, but for the most part, you really are just driving for minutes at a time.

Pictured: Deadly Premonition's "distractions."

Remember those country roads I mentioned awhile back?

Well, you better get used to them, ’cause if you start playing Deadly Premonition, your gonna’ end up driving up and down them like no other.

Let me put it this way:

The driving in Deadly Premonition is kind of like the sailing in The Legend of Zelda: Windwaker.

It’s boring, there’s altogether too much of it, but if you can force yourself to power through it, there’s actually a pretty good game beyond it all.

A pretty good game that I WILL beat someday...

Which brings me to the review proper.

Deadly Premonition is an okay game.

It’s not great, it has a shit ton of flaws, but if you’re willing to accept the game as being the best that it’s studio could manage with what they had, then it’s actually pretty good.

Trust me, it's a lot easier to appreciate Deadly Premonition when you grew up watching shit like Ultraman.

The murder mystery storyline is fairly well developed with some pretty cool kill sequences and red herrings thrown in for good measure.

The murders in the game involve a psycho-killer cutting out the tongues of young women, stuffing their mouths with red seeds, and then somehow rigging them in Saw-esque death traps for the main players to stumble across.

In all, while actually not very graphic or bloody, most of the murders are quite unique, and indeed even shocking due to the excellent voice work and dialogue.

Pictured: Why we always knock before we go into the bathroom...

The cast of characters is quite vast, with every character in town having a unique voice, personality, and even side-missions offer you from time to time.

Like York, most of the cast are endearingly quirky, such that I found I had no trouble remembering most by name.

The game is surprisingly long, with admirable pacing that sees the first half of the game being a largely sandbox style experience, with important story beats coming at the appropriate times, and the second half taking on a more urgent, and therefore more linear and focused style of progression.

That is to say:

The game allows you the freedom you desire from the outset to get to known the lay of the land, and collect all of those hidden goodies and side-missions, but just before you get tired of slogging through all of that, the game forces you get on track and follow the main storyline.

Deadly Premonition: A Story of Male Bonding.

The storyline has a few holes in it, such that you’re left scratching your head from time to time, but when focus is left on York, or any of the other main characters, it’s actually quite good.

I was particularly impressed by how they handled the explanation for York’s imaginary friend, Zach.

While the actual explanation was kind of muddled, I found it to be effective from a purely conceptual standpoint.

If there’s any one thing that I need to slap Deadly Premonition across the face about, it’s the game’s shooting mechanic.

About half of the gameplay in Deadly Premonition consists of Resident Evil 4 style shooting/adventuring segments.

During these sections, the player is confronted with goofy looking backwards walking ghouls that attack you by shoving their hands down your throat.

"GIMME' BACK MY TIC-TACS!"

There’s only a handful of enemy skins, and only about 2-3 different enemy types throughout the game, resulting in a bland and repetitive experience.

Worse yet, most of the enemies have horribly inflated lifebars, resulting in boring gameplay that takes forever to get through.

No joke, I put a third of a 300 round magazine into an enemy’s head one time, only to find that I had to stop to reload before I finally killed him.

That, my friends, is called padding one’s gameplay.

Pictured: About half of the total enemies in Deadly Premonition. I'm not even joking.

Being as all of these segments take place in a Silent Hill-esque “other world,” the creators of this game may as well have omitted the shooting segments altogether, as I think it would have been more efficient to simply force the player to run away from danger.

Anyone remember Run Like Hell? Shitty game, fun premise...

Which brings me to the quick-time segments of Deadly Premonition.

They were actually quite good.

While the button variations weren’t diverse enough, (B always dodges throwing axes) their frequency and difficulty level are pretty good.

I especially enjoyed the protracted chase segments, as they were actually quite tense, and made impressive use of a split-screen effect showing both York’s and the pursuer’s perspective at the same time.

Pictured: The Bad-Ass Pursuer. Playable at one point in the game!

In all, Deadly Premonition is an impressively detailed game for a budget title.

While it lacks polish in virtually every area, it’s easy to see where the developers had good ideas, but lacked the resources to act on them.

Requiring the player to eat, sleep, shave, and clean their wardrobe regularly was a nice touch that went well with the game, being as it forces you to play out every minute of every day in-game.

Pictured: My favorite suit in the game.

Well, that is unless you’re smoking to speed up time.

I enjoyed the deadline system for the story missions, as I found it fun to cruise around town all day doing side-missions, only to take a look a the clock and discover I only had 5 minutes before I had to be at the old mansion for an important story event.

Despite all of my praise though, Deadly Premonition is definitely only for those who, like me; can find it within themselves to play the game and accept it’s problems.

I picked up the game because I was intrigued by it’s characters and story.

I accept that it’s hideous, often times boring, and only has about a half dozen tracks of music.

Because of this, I simply cannot recommend Deadly Premonition to anyone but myself.

It’s not a game for everyone, but I happened to enjoy my time with it.

I’ll probably never touch it again, but it was fun while it lasted…

Filed under: Games, Movies, Tokusatsu, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Devil May Cry and the Azn Badger

Capcom’s Devil May Cry series is one that the Azn Badger desperately wants to love.

Honestly, I don’t really care much for the Gothic aesthetic of the series, nor do I have any sort of appreciation for the death metal soundtracks and overall overblown nature of the storylines and cutscenes.

So, what exactly is it that I do like about Devil May Cry?

That my friend, would of course be the bombastic, action-heavy gameplay of the series:

My introduction to the Devil May Cry came in the form of the 3rd, and best, entry in the series, Devil May Cry 3: Dante’s Awakening.

Yes, I am in fact aware that he is wearing a nipple-strap. The game STILL kicks ass...

Featuring the highest difficulty level in the series to date, as well as perhaps the best, or at least, most relatable storyline, Dante’s Awakening effectively ruined me from enjoying any of the other games in the franchise.

Let it be known, beginning a game series from it’s highest peak in terms of overall quality, and then working your way down is not the way to enjoy a videogame franchise.

That'd be like going from THIS to THIS.

You see, I really enjoyed my time with Devil May Cry 3 on my PS2.

I played it to death, nearly beating it on the hardest difficulty in the process.

After I finally grew tired of 3 though, I made the mistake of thinking it would be fun to work my way backwards and play through the first game in the series.

I skipped that sack of fail Devil May Cry 2 though, as I’ve heard nothing but bad about that one…

ASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!

From the moment I picked up the controller to play the original Devil May Cry, it immediately became clear to me that I was playing a vastly different, and far inferior game.

The gameplay was slower and less responsive.

The animations were less dynamic and felt very detached.

The attacks lacked the sense of “oomph” that was the highlight of the experience in the 3rd game.

Not only that, but due to the games’ age, the graphics and textures were somewhat lacking.

Yeah, I'd say there's a difference...

Needless to say, I found little enjoyment in playing the original Devil May Cry post-Dante’s Awakening, so much so that I saw fit to return it to Gamestop after only a few days.

Devil May Cry was a wonderful game for it’s time, serving as the progenitor of a new breed of fast-paced action games shortly after it’s release.

You see what you did Capcom!? You gave that piece of fuck Gackt an excuse to star in his own game!

Despite it’s laundry list of credentials though, being the first of something doesn’t necessarily make it the best, or in this case, anywhere near that level of quality.

Recently, I had the opportunity to play through Devil May Cry 4 on the Xbox 360.

Pretty fuckin' spankin' if you ask me...

After the beating the ever-loving piss and shit out of Devil May Cry 3 in decidedly epic-fashion several years back, I found Devil May Cry 4 to be somewhat tame in terms of difficulty.

In general enemies were easier to stun, and more importantly, easier to corral and manipulate, resulting in the gameplay being much more forgiving, and ultimately flashier than ever before.

Since the release of Devil May Cry 3, Capcom went on to reinvent the Resident Evil series, and indeed; much game design in general, with it’s 4th entry.

In the post-Resident Evil 4 world of gaming, context sensitive button functions were very much en vogue, predictably resulting in Capcom’s own Devil May Cry 4 including several instances of said gameplay elements.

In fact, awesomeness can be visited upon most enemies with a simple touch of the “B” button:

Cheap thrills yes, but thrills nonetheless.

Personally, I couldn’t give 2 shits about the new main character of Devil May Cry 4, a frustratingly emo little butt-pirate named Nero, (voiced by Adam the Black Ranger AKA Johnny Yong Bosch)

Pictured: Nero.

I will say this about him however:

His move-list is fun, inventive, and made all the better by the inclusion of the Devil Bringer in his arsenal.

The Devil Bringer is the chief innovation brought to the table in Devil May Cry 4, and for the most part, it’s worth the price of admission.

Trust me, yanking enemies over to your position for quick and efficient beat downs is a pleasure that far surpasses repeatedly Stinger-ing my way across an arena just to get to an out of reach opponent by leaps and bounds.

But then again, being able to do shit like this is pretty fun too:

While the game is a little bit on the easy side when compared to Devil May Cry 3, I’m willing to concede that that may in fact be a good thing.

Devil May Cry 3 was a beast.

It got off on taking eager young player’s confidence and shitting all over it like a fuckin’ pigeon perched above a Porsche.

... Yup, pretty much the visual I was going for.

4 however, is a prettier and more accessible game that even goes so far as to have a storyline (for those that give a shit) that requires virtually no knowledge of the prior games to understand.

Simply put, Devil May Cry 4 serves as a fine example of how to begin a series anew on a new platform.

In fact, I'd go so far as to say that it fared better than Resident Evil 5 in the console transition.

While not as good as 3, 4 was an enjoyable entry in a young series that was desperately in need of a #2 best game in it’s lineup, as up until it’s release, none of the other games could be at all regarded as anywhere near the level of quality of Dante’s Awakening.

I understand that I’m being critical of the series, but as I mentioned earlier, Devil May Cry is a series that I want to like.

So far we’ve got 4 games in the series, and I’ve only liked 2 of them.

I don’t like the art.

I don’t like the music.

I hate the storytelling.

All I play them for is the raw experience of playing the game.

In that sense, 1:2 ain’t a bad ratio at all.

KITTY.

Which brings us to the newest Devil May Cry game, one that, to my knowledge; is intended to be a massive diversion from the core series.

Uh, okay. I see what you did there, very nice... I don't get it.

Going by the name DmC, (Ugh…) this new game features a protagonist of a drastically different design aesthetic, as well as a game world that seems a little more urban, and less castle-like than previous entries in the series.

This would all be fine in my book, as I was never that attached to Dante or Nero as series’ protagonists, except for the fact that this new character’s design is just plain HIDEOUS.

Pictured: An ugly-ass, skinny piece of emo punk-fuckery that I honestly have ZERO desire to play as in a game.

At this point, all we have is a trailer to work from in terms of first impressions, however I for one feel my desire to give this game a shot slipping away purely based off of the character design:

That may sound petty of me, but unless DMC gets some truly fuckin’ incredible reviews chances are I’ll probably sit it out in favor of taking a step back and visiting some of other hardcore action game franchises out there, like the Ninja Gaiden series and Bayonetta.

Every now and again I have to ask myself: Why HAVEN'T I played this game yet?

Anyway, this has been a lengthy and intensely muddled post.

For this I apologize, but thanks for reading.

Filed under: Games, Tokusatsu, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Well let me tell yah’ somethin’ Mean Jean! I just got 5,000 Hits, brother!”

Damn that was fast!

Seriously man, it feels like just yesterday we were celebrating the 2,500th hit on the Azn Badger’s blog…

Anyway, as is turning out to be the norm on these milestone posts, I’d like to take this opportunity to both thank and apologize to all who have read over the past few months.

As many of you are aware, I have recently re-joined the work force, a major change in my life that has served to severely limit the amount of time I have been able to devote to this blog.

Pictured: The Azn Badger's "employment."

Despite that, as you may have noticed, I’ve still managed to post EVERY DAY.

How’s that for dedication?

Anyway, on the apologetic side of things, really the only thing I feel I’ve let you guys down on was in my spamming of the Let’s Play videos.

I (kinda’) like making them, and I hope at least a few of were able to extract some form of entertainment from watching them, however I am fully aware of how long and tedious they can be.

As much as it was pretty obvious that I wanted to talk about Godzilla at length, I was very unhappy with how that Let’s Play went, so much so that I’ll probably stay away from doing Let’s Plays for awhile.

It’s kind of funny, those videos were supposed to be a time-saver for me, but in reality they ended up costing me more hours than sitting down and pounding out a written post.

Go figure.

KITTY.

In the past week or so, I’ve come to realize that movies and comics are easier for me to write about than videogames.

I love all 3 pretty much equally, however my writing is much more lucid when dealing with comics and movies.

I think part of the difficulty in writing about games for me, is the fact that most of the topics I choose to discuss are steeped in nostalgia.

Writing about things that happened 20 years ago can be difficult sometimes, so sue me.

What I mean to say is, don’t be surprised if, for a time, games kind of get shifted to background on this blog for awhile.

Anyway, thanks for all the views, keep reading!

I now leave you with the traditional celebratory Hokuto No Ken victory .gif:

Filed under: Comics, Games, Movies, Tokusatsu, Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Best MAN!!! #8

Click me, I took hours to make...

Well folks, after a week straight of nothing but Mega Man related blogging, we’ve made it to the big finale.

That’s right, today we’re gonna’ be taking a look at the 10th anniversary game of the Mega Man series, Mega Man 8 on the Sony Playstation!

As previously explained Mega Man 8 will be the final installment in The Best MAN series, as I haven’t played Mega Man 9 or 10, and thusly don’t feel qualified to elect a Best MAN for those games.

That being said, let’s dive into Mega Man 8!

8’s story was, much like 7, somewhat more involved than previous entries in the series, largely due to the unprecedented inclusion of hand-drawn anime cutscenes.

At the time of it’s release, Full Motion Video (FMV) was already old hat, however after the release of the Amiga 32CD, Sega CD, 3DO, and other such CD based consoles, many game developers saw fit to include FMV in their games, resulting in the technology being en vogue for much of the 90’s.

Mega Man 8’s FMV sequences were fairly entertaining, and decently well-animated, however the English voice acting was absolutely atrocious.

For real man, Dr. Light sounds like fuckin’ Elmer Fudd after a stroke, no joke.

He also stutters.

Like a fattie.

The end result was a series of fairly entertaining, but often times, all too tempting to skip, cutscenes.

There was 1 scene in particular though that I remember keeping an extra save file (it was a Playstation game, of course you could save!) for just so I could watch it over and over again:

It seems kind of lame now, but when I was 10, that was the coolest thing ever.  Even though my Playstation would freeze during it just about 90% of the time…

Anyway, the story of Mega Man 8 is based around a capsule of “evil energy” that falls to Earth.

EVIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILLLLLLLLLLLLLLL.

This energy grants it’s wielder great power, and multiplies by feeding off of it’s host’s evil intent.

Think the Venom symbiote from Spider-Man.

And now, gentleman, for your viewing pleasure: A T-Rex wearing the Venom symbiote.

Dr. Wily of course gets his hands on this evil energy and uses it to power his latest creations to tangle with Mega Man.

In the meantime however, an intrinsically “good” robot from outer space named Duo (the big dude in Dr. Light’s lab during the video) crash lands on Earth, only to awaken halfway through the game to serve as an ally to Mega Man.

That is, not before trying to kill him, of course.

On the side there’s also a very Dragonball Z-esque “Goku and Vejita” dynamic that plays out between Mega Man and Bass.

Basically, Vejita, I mean Bass; has an inferiority complex, which results in him attempting to use the evil energy to grant him the power to defeat Mega Man.

Oh Bass, we do this dance again and again, and yet you just don't seem to learn the steps, do you?

I like Bass, really, I do; but he’s a total pussy in Mega Man 8.

Haha, get it!? "Bass!"

Mega Man 8 was vastly different from any Mega Man that came before it.

From a presentation standpoint, it was easily the most graphically intense iteration of the series, well, pretty much, ever.

The animations were silky smooth, and the music was excellent all-around, with most of the tracks being quite memorable.

Although from a cosmetic standpoint Mega Man 8 was a drastic departure from the norm, and undeniably, an improvement, the gameplay was merely different, and not necessarily for the better.

One of the comments I received on my Mega Man 7 post from yesterday made note of the fact that the game was slower than the NES games in the series.

I failed to address this in my post, and for that I apologize, however it is an incontrovertible fact.

Mega Man 7 was a much slower-paced game than it’s predecessors, and Mega Man 8 followed suit by being even slower.

THIS FUCKING SLOOOOOWWWW.

The sprites in Mega Man 7 were very large, excessively so, and thankfully 8 addressed this by increasing the screen resolution, while at once one-upping their level of detail.

Despite being a sidescroller like every other Mega Man game, 8 was a much more vertically oriented game.

The screen orientation was “taller,” and Mega Man’s jump controls were changed so that he jumped higher than normal, however, due to his much slower walking speed, his horizontal jumping distance was toned down a bit.

While definitely a much slower-paced, and in-fact, much easier game than it’s predecessors, Mega Man 8 was still quite fun.

TONS OF FUN.

New gameplay features in Mega Man 8 were plentiful (for a change).

The shop from Mega Man 7 made a return, though this time around it was run by Mega Man’s sister, Roll, and the currency used there consisted of an extremely finite, and difficult to acquire, supply of bolts scattered throughout the robot master stages.

Items in the shop consisted of equipment to dampen the “knock-back” effects of getting hit, decrease the charge time for a Mega Buster shot, change the function of Mega Buster, and a variety of other things.

Part of the fun of the shop was the fact that not all of the items were all that useful, such as the one that increases your climbing speed, or the one that disables your Mega Buster!

I greatly preferred this shop system, as unlike 7, where all you had to do was “farm” for money by killing enemies, purchases in 8 felt much more strategic.

A Hummer: THE strategic purchase.

In addition to the shop items, there were also a total of 4 Rush items, all granted to the player after defeating minibosses during the robot master stages.

While virtually all of the Rush items were nothing more than novelty items that could net you a nice item or two here and there, I always thought it was a neat idea to turn Rush into a motorcycle and ride him into battle.

PIMP.

But, that’s just me.

In addition to the changes made to the overall pace of the game, Mega Man 8 also featured some truly inspired level designs.

No longer consisting purely of platforming action, 8 contained a several vehicle segments and a few maze-like stages that couldn’t be completed linearly.

While Mega Man 5 was the first in the series to feature on-rails vehicle sequences, in the form of a jet-ski ride during Wave Man’s stage,

Mega Man 8 took this concept and greatly expanded on it.

Frost Man and Dr. Wily’s tower both featured perilous snowboarding sequences wherein the player would have to alternately jump or slide to survive the course.

JUMP.

Tengu Man’s stage featured an extensive on-rails shooting sequence in the skies.

"FUCK YOU, WHALE!"

This sequence was one of my favorites in the game, as it had you riding Rush while shooting numerous enemies, all while gradually recruiting a huge DEATH SQUAD of Mega Man’s buddies to help you out.

The Mega Man Death Squad in all their glory.

Auto, Eddie and Beat all made appearances in this sequence, with Beat finally redeeming himself as the single most powerful ally you could acquire.

I'm lettin' you off easy this time... Chump.

Sword Man and Astro Man’s stages served as the first maze levels in Mega Man history.

While Sword Man’s stage was not really a maze, but rather a series of trials that had to be completed while making use of specific robot master weapons, Astro Man’s stage was one mother of a maze.

ARRRRRGHH!!!

Seriously, I fucking hated Astro Man’s stage…

Well, I think I’ve said more than enough about Mega Man 8, it’s time we got down to deciding who’s The Best MAN, for the very last time.

The Best MAN of Mega Man 8 is…

Frost Man

FROSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSST MAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNN!!!!!!

Didn’t see that comin’ didja’?

You know why Frost Man’s The Best MAN?

‘Cause Mega Man 8 was the first game in the series to give it’s robot master voices, that’s why.

Okay, okay, that’s not the only reason I picked him, but it had a lot to do with it.

You see, Frost Man’s voice made me laugh as a kid.

His character was supposed to be that of a huge, powerful, dopey idiot, and his voice reflected this very well.

"I will love him, and kiss him, and I will call him George..."

Seriously, when the biggest fuckin’ robot master in the fuckin’ series leaps into the arena, smashing a bunch of Mega Man ice sculptures to show off his strength, only to yell out something retarded like:

“I’m gonna’, crush you! I will…… Beat, you!”

I just can’t help but smile.

Tune to 4:45 for example:

Seriously though, Frost Man has a lot going for him.

His “walking igloo” design is inspired and truly a sight to behold in-game with it’s vivid animations, his weapon, the Ice Wave is fun to use, (although much cooler looking when he uses it) and his stage is lots of fun to play with one of the better background tracks in the game:

If anyone could usurp Frost Man’s position as Best MAN, I’d say it would be Clown Man or Search Man.

Seriously, I actually had to rewrite a big portion of this post on account of me changing my mind about Search Man at the last minute.

The problem with Search Man is that, while he’s got personality up the ying-yang, and a cool weapon to boot, I didn’t care much for his stage.

You see, like Mega Man 7, 8 split up it’s robot masters into 2 groups of 4.

Because I rarely finished the game as a kid, the second group of robot masters were one’s I didn’t end up seeing all that much of.

Sorry Aqua Man, no one likes you...

On top of that, I’ve never actually fought Search Man without having the Flame Sword to pwn his ass with, so I’ve never really gotten to experience a real fight with him firsthand.

Clown Man on the other hand, while one of my favorite designs in any Mega Man game, suffered for exactly the same reason Frost Man was promoted.

His voice annoyed the piss out of me.

EXAMPLE

He had an extensive repertoire of interesting attacks, his stage was cutesy fun, and his weapon was not all that bad, but his voice was just painful to listen to.

Oh yeah, that and he was WAY too fucking easy…

Protip: Sticking your arms into the ground isn't a viable combat tactic. It just gets you shot. In the face.

Well folks, we’ve named our last Best MAN.

Hopefully everyone had fun along the way, I know I did.

See you tomorrow when I (hopefully) think of some other shit to write about…

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The Best MAN!!! #7

Afternoon everybody, and welcome back to the 7th installment of The Best MAN!

Today we’re of course going to be exploring the tragically flat, and only 16-bit adventure in the linear Mega Man series, Mega Man 7.

Ah, I see we've reached the mid-90's era of Capcom's American cover art...

Before we delve into the utterly vanilla experience that is Mega Man 7, I feel it important to address one simple issue surrounding the stigma that seems to have arose in regards to this game.

Case in point:

Now, I can’t claim that this video’s (clever) views on the Mega Man series are at all that of the general public, however I feel that it should be said that Mega Man 7 is far from the worst of the Mega Man series.

*Ahem!* By now it should be obvious that that honor belongs to Mega Man 5

Pictured: Mega Man 5.

Anyway, despite Mega Man 7’s apparent reputation for being a shit-fest of epic proportions, the game actually had a decent story.

Not that that counts for anything in a franchise that puts zero emphasis on story.

In short, after Dr. Wily is thrown in jail at the conclusion of Mega Man 6, exactly 6 months later, 4 robots he had hidden in an underground laboratory wake up and blow the shit out of the city to free him.

Essentially, the plot is a carbon copy of the first half of Dragonball Z movie 7.

This was the coolest shit ever when I was in middle school... I'm not even kidding.

Coincidence?  I think not!

Nah, I’m just Joshing yah’, it probably was a coincidence.

Anyway, like any Mega Man game, the changes to the gameplay made in 7 were small, but fairly impactful.

Just not as much as in most other games in the series…

Several new characters were introduced, including Auto, Mega Man’s burly mechanic buddy:

"Pull my finger."

And Bass and Treble, the series’ obligatory evil clone characters:

PIMP.

While Auto served as little more than window dressing, Bass and Treble engaged the player at several points in the game, initially pretending to be all baby-faced n’shit, only to turn heel and bash Mega Man over the head with a steel chair.

"MY GAWD, WITH THE STEEL CHAIR!!!!"

Gameplay additions to Mega Man 7 included a new equipment store run by Eddie, wherein the player could purchase new items and abilities, and a brand new Rush adapter called “Super Mega Man” that combined the flight and power functions of the adapters from Mega Man 6.

Mega Man, GATTAI!!!!

It was also the first game in the linear series to allow the player to “charge” the weapons of all of the robot masters.

In addition to this, the game also adopted the “Intro Stage before Stage Select” mechanic that had been pioneered in the Mega Man X series, as well as set it’s own precedent by introducing the “Intermission” stage, that is; an unskippable level forced on the player after defeating 4 of the 8 robot masters.

PHARAOH MAN CAMEO!!!

As you can already tell, outside of 16-bit graphics and sound, Mega Man 7 didn’t really bring much to the table in terms of innovation.

In fact, despite the larger sprites and more detailed animations, the games’ musical compositions were actually somewhat weak for the series.

Even so, there were exceptions:

Just goes to show you that technical advancements don’t always mean much in regards to gameplay.

Mega Man 7 was not a horrible game, nor was it the worst Mega Man game, however; due to the hype and expectations surrounding it, the first 16-bit Mega Man game; it ended up being a pretty big letdown.

Even so, the games’ biggest shame is the fact that it is utterly average, serving as nothing more than a mere hiccup in the vast legacy of the Mega Man franchise.

Enough dour bullshit, let’s get down to who’s The Best MAN!

Well kiddo’, that’d have to be…

Shade Man

SHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAADE MAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNN!!!???

This one hurt me.

Physically.

Seriously, Mega Man 7 has a decent roster of robot masters, but I really only like 2 of them.

Turbo Man and Freeze Man, those are the only 2 MEN in the game that come close to being The Best MAN.

ALL THAT IS MAAAAAAAAAAAANNNN!!!!

So why the fuck aren’t either of them The Best MAN in Mega Man 7!?

Well, shut up and I’ll tell you.

Junk Man is the first guy I’d always kill, and c’mon; he’s fuckin’ Junk Man.

More like "Pile of Fail Man."

Cloud Man is a fattie.

Pictured: Cloud Man.

I actually had to look up Burst Man just to figure out what the fuck his gimmick was.

Note: I still don’t know what it is…

Seriously man, what the fuck is his deal?

Slash Man is cool, but uninspired, *cough!* Wolverine *cough!*

I did like the dinosaurs in his stage though...

Spring Man is lame and had one of the most frustrating stages in Mega Man history, right next Astro Man in Mega Man 8.

Pictured: Spring Man.

That leaves us with Turbo Man and Freeze Man, the only 2 MEN that I actually like in Mega Man 7.

Both are my favorite designs in the game, they have pretty cool weapons, pretty fun stages, and are tough cookies when you finally get down to stompin’ a mudhole on their asses.

Despite Shade Man’s relatively crappy design, he trumps both of my boys in every other category, hands down.

He’s got a pimp-ass weapon, he’s tough to fight, and if you hold “B” before selecting his stage, you can play a through his stage with the Ghosts ‘N Gobins intro stage music playing as the stage background music!

Not only that, but his is the only robot master stage that includes a brief story sequence wherein Mega Man runs across an injured Bass and Treble just after they fought, and lost to Shade Man.

Even though it is later revealed that Bass and Treble were in fact working for Dr. Wily, it’s worth noting that Shade Man was considered powerful enough to have believably defeated them.

That’s street cred son, you can’t buy that.

While I don’t really care much for the whole vampire schtick of Shade Man, from a gameplay standpoint, he was a very creative and unique addition to the series.

He had more attacks than most bosses, including a life draining bite and Medusa-like stone gaze.

Clearasil: It's your friend.

More importantly, his weapon, the Noise Crush, was truly awesome, as it would bounce off of walls, growing more powerful as it ricocheted.

Like I said, the thought of declaring Shade Man the best, well, anything, makes me violently ill, however I feel I’d be lying to myself if I elected one of my favorites in his stead.

Just goes to show you, that which you like isn’t necessarily what’s best.

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The Best MAN!!! #6

Get your shit kickin’ boots on folks, ’cause today’s gonna’ be a real slobber-knocker!

That’s right kids, today we’re gonna’ be talkin’ about Mega Man 6!

More specifically, we’re gonna’ be deciding just who’s The Best MAN in Mega Man 6.

Mega Man 6 holds a special place in my heart.

I remember I got Mega Man 4, 5 and 6 as birthday presents from my parents on my 11th birthday.

Keep in mind this was 1998, or, more importantly, 2 whole console generations removed from the days when the good ole’ gray box was at all relevant.

1998: The Azn Badger's mother apologizes to him after his annual birthday movie outing for the first, and only time.

Me being me though, I was very thankful to my parents, and went to great lengths to play the shit out of my new Mega gifts.

At this point in time I had yet to play, let alone of hear of a Mega Man beyond #4, making 5 and 6 a special treat for me.

This guy has one more "special treat" and he's gonna' have a coronary... AGAIN.

Based on some of my harsh words regarding Mega Man 5 yesterday, I’m sure many of you can deduce how I felt about that game as a kid.

Well, despite Mega Man 5 sucking a monster of a Blackanese cock, I really enjoyed Mega Man 6.

In fact, of the 3 games gifted to me, 6 was the only one I beat on it’s original cartridge.

Yup, still got it.

The basic plot of Mega Man 6 involved yet another scenario wherein Dr. Wily is not the villain from the get-go.

THAT EVIL MOTHER FUCKER!!!

This time around, a mysterious man named Mr. X hosts a global exhibition of robot engineering, only to use this event as a means to steal 8 of the world’s most powerful robots to use for his evil machinations.

No way, he doesn't look ANYTHING like Dr. Wily...

Long story short, Mega Man sets out to battle Mr. X, only to later find that Mr. X is actually Dr. Wily in disguise (no fucking duh).

Am I really supposed to be intimidated here, or what?

Mega Man 6 added a decent amount of new stuff to the series.

While this once again served to over-complicate much of the gameplay, unlike #5, many of the additions were actual attempts to try something different.

Most notable among these additions were a pair of new Rush adapters, called “Jet Mega Man” and “Power Mega Man.”

The “Jet” adapter, shown on the box cover, allowed the player to fly to a certain extent by holding the jump button in mid-air.

The “Power” adapter, or “Mega Man Football Pads” as I referred to them as a kid, allowed the player to shoot powerful short range blasts, as well as use charge shots to blow up cracked blocks.

Both of these adapters, while causing Mega Man to become incapable of sliding; served to expand the gameplay by affording the player new options in how to approach each stage.

Consequently, the level design featured numerous branching paths for each stage that often required the player to use these Rush adapters to traverse or reach.

While none of these alternate routes were required to beat the game, clearing 4 out of 8 of the robot master stages via these routes would reward the player with that useless fucking bird, Beat.

Yup, still fat, and still useless...

On a side note, an elementary, but previously unexplored addition to the gameplay of Mega Man 6, was the Energy Balancer, given to the player by Proto Man upon finding him in Tomahawk Man’s stage.

The Energy Balancer allowed the player to pick up weapon power items and have that energy allocated to the weapons that need it most, automatically.

This was a huge time saver, and should’ve been in the series from day one, however Mega Man 6 was the first game to have this feature.

Subsequent titles in the series have since made this a standard feature of gameplay, albeit one that still needs to be purchased or discovered in-game.

Even of this hippie-dippy-gobbledy-gook though, let’s get down to who’s The Best MAN!

Well, that’d have to be…

Yamato Man

YAMATOOOOOOOOOOOO MANNNNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!

While pretty much all of the designs in Mega Man 6 are excellent, determining which was The Best MAN was a fairly simple matter.

Let me walk you through the process:

First of all, Plant Man and Centaur Man are out on account of being fruitcakes.

PUSSIES.

You see, the prime issue is that they lack the MAN factor that is implied when searching for The Best MAN.

Moving on, Blizzard Man and Wind Man = FAT.  ‘Nuff said.

FATTIES.

While a decent enough MAN, Flame Man was always the first guy that I would take on, (either that or Plant Man) so, like Metal Man in Mega Man 2, even though I like his design a lot, he’s too much of a wimp to be true MAN material.

ANOTHER PUSSY.

That leaves us with 3 MEN to work with: Knight Man, Tomahawk Man, and Yamato Man.

While all 3 have great background music and cool weapons, Knight Man was the first cut due to being a truly pathetic challenge when you finally get around to fighting him.

Yes, he is in fact wearing a lampshade while holding a big black dildo.

Tomahawk Man had my favorite background music in the game:

Despite this, my decision ultimately boiled down to who was the most fun/hardest to fight, and that, for the 11 year old Azn Badger; was always Yamato Man.

Both guys only had 2 attacks, but 1 of Yamato Man’s involved him shooting his spear head at you, and then dashing across the room to retrieve it.

Yamato Man used Skull Bash! It's Super Effective!

Tomahawk Man’s moves were both horizontal projectiles that were relatively easy to jump over.

Tomahawk Man used Feather Dance! It's Not Very Effective...

While I could sometimes squeak by Tomahawk Man without the Plant Barrier, I always needed the Silver Tomahawk to take down Yamato Man as a kid.

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The Best MAN!!! #5

After the hootenanny of character design awesomeness that was Mega Man 4, most of us were left thinking, “what the fuck kind of crazy awesomeness can the guys over at Capcom possibly follow this up with?”

The answer, unfortunately, was about 2 thirds crazy, and 1 third awesome.

Ladies and gentleman, it’s time to tangle with the odd bird that is Mega Man 5.

Really diggin' the Mega Man stiff arm.

Mega Man 5 is a really fuckin’ weird game.

The story was some hackneyed bullshit wherein Proto Man was set-up as the main villain, only to have it revealed later that he is in fact innocent, and, guess what, Dr. Wily was the actual mastermind.

THAT EVIL MOTHER FUCKER!!!

In terms of graphics and sound, it was a significant step up from it’s predecessors, and even the gameplay was pretty solid as well.

Yep, they actually gave those little Met fuckers jet packs and space helmets...

It was the design of the game that hurt it.

For the first time in Mega Man history, the player was faced with issue that there were one too many features.

While Mega Man 5 was far from innovative, in fact it was one of the more “phoned-in” games in the series, what little it added was the straw that broke the camels back, the last block pulled from the Jenga tower.

That's right, Jenga mother fuckers!

Some of the (few) features that Mega Man 5 brought to the table were more intricate level designs, a new weapon called the Super Arrow, and Beat, the fighting bird that could be earned after collecting letters in all 8 of the robot master stages to form the phrase “M-E-G-A-M-A-N-V.”

Fuckin' worthless-ass turd burglar...

By the way, despite the level of dedication required to activate Beat, he’s pretty much useless.

He’s like the equivalent of using Zero for 1 third of a stage in Mega Man X3.

The best thing Zero did in X3 was get his ass kicked for me so I could jack his beam saber.

Oh you know you gonna' gimme' 'dat shit son...

For real man, Zero is like the Trunks of the Mega Man X series.

Everybody and their mother thinks he’s the bees knees, suckin’ his cock left and right, but if ever you ask them “why?” they can’t come with anything close to an answer.

Know why he smilin'? 'Cause you suckin' his dick, that's why.

It’s gotta’ be the hair or some shit, I swear…

Anyway, bullshit tangents aside, like I said, while it wasn’t a horrible game by any means, Mega Man 5  was kind of a lazy effort by Capcom, and was also the first in the series to begin to feel over-saturated.

Oh yeah, and did I mention that the character designs were some of the weirdest in series history up until the fuck-sandwich that is Sheep Man?

Yet another reason as to why I haven't played Mega Man 9 or 10...

Good thing “weird” doesn’t necessarily mean “bad,” (it does when you’re talking about sack-donkeys like Sheep Man) ’cause it’s about time we got down to deciding who’s The Best MAN!

Well, among the side-show freaks and fuck-tards that are the cast of Mega Man 5, The Best MAN would have to be…

Gyro Man

GYRRRROOOOOOOOOOOO MAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNN!!!!!

Like Mega Man 3, this one was a toughy.

Unlike that game however, I had no real attachment to any of the robot masters in Mega Man 5.

I mean shit, look at ’em:

TRAIN DUDE!!? MISSILE FACE!? PEARL MAN!!? WTF!!!!!????

Mega Man 5’s cast of robot masters was unique, I’ll give it that.

Even as a kid, I seriously didn’t think they’d actually make a “Star Man,” but hey, I’m not a videogame designer, what do I know…

The real difficulty in choosing who was The Best MAN in Mega Man 5 sprung from 1 simple personal debate:

Crystal Man or Gyro Man?

Really, that’s all it came down to, but I have to admit it gave me some issues.

Pretty much every other robot master in the game is ass-faced failure, to the point in which I was left with only 2 guys I really had any sort of appreciation for.

You wanna’ know how I made my decision?

Well, I started, of course, by looking at their designs.

I liked both, but to be honest I felt I liked Crystal Man just a little bit more.

Sexy...

Something about his color scheme and strong body shape just “did it” for me.

Next, I moved on to their stage music.

Gyro Man:

Crystal Man:

No contest here.

Point, Gyro Man.

Normally I’d insert a comment here about who was the tougher challenge, but seeing as both guys were pussies, I’m left with nothing more to say other than, well, they were pussies.

"Who, me?"

The final deciding factor ended up being my (fragmented) memories of that goddamn Mega Man cartoon.

While Gyro Man’s appearance in the show WAS RETARDED AS FUCK, at least it wasn’t as bad as Crystal Man’s.

If I remember correctly, Crystal Man fought Mega Man on the moon, got his chest bulb shot out, and generally just got shat on for the entire half hour.

What the fuck is up with American redesigns of Japanese shiieeet!!!??

Gyro Man at least got to wear a wig and pretend to be in a shitty 90’s rock band with Gemini Man and Spark Man

Lookit' them pointy shoulders... That's how you know it's the early 90's.

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Best Boss Music #3: Resident Evil 5

*SPOILER ALERT!* Anyone who doesn’t want to know shit about Resident Evil 5 should turn back now!

*Sigh* This might take awhile, so buckle down….

As one who’s been a fan of the Resident Evil franchise since its inception back in 1996, I’d just like to take a moment to say this:

Despite Capcom’s success in completely overhauling the gameplay of the series since Resident Evil 4, now that 5 has come and gone, I’m left wanting to go back to the way things were.

Resident Evil 4 was an amazing game, one that certainly deserves a place in the top 15 of best ever games, but at it’s core, it never really felt like a Resident Evil game to me.

Call me weird, but I actually missed the fixed camera angles.

I missed the stilted controls.

"Don't come any closer yah' zombie muddah' fuckah'! Imma' shank you man, I swear, Imma' shank yo' ass..."

Moreover, I missed having to occasionally run past my enemies due to lack of ammo.

"And on your right is a shaved monkey."

Resident Evil 2 was, and probably will always remain my favorite game in the series.

It was one of those games that just happened to “get” me at just the right time in my life.

I was young enough to actually care about the endlessly pantomiming and retarded sounding characters.

I was young enough to still be scared by the haunting atmosphere and crazy-ass monsters.

Not only that, I was dumb enough to think I was “cool” ’cause I beat the game so many fucking times.

Seriously, I beat that game more times than I’d care to admit.  Yes, I have beaten Resident Evil 2 more than once in one sitting.

Although this guy probably has me beat.

Anyway, the point I’m trying to make, is that, though I respect Capcom’s accomplishments with the 4th and 5th entries in the series, I would hate to see them fully discard the gameplay style of the older games in favor of the new.

Resident Evil 4 and 5 cast you as an action hero, an invincible, nigh infallible character that can’t leave a building without it exploding behind him.

Stallone: Man, Hero, WALKING EXPLOSION.

I’m sorry Capcom, but no matter how many times you tell me Secret Agent emo-swoosh haired Leon S. Kennedy is supposed to be badass, I simply won’t ever believe you.

No. Just, no.

Don’t get me started on Chris Redfield though.  Honestly, whoever designed his character model for Resident Evil 5 should get a big, fat, Blackanese slap to the face, ’cause what they did to him was just obscene.

Okay, so apparently Chris Redfield plays for the fuckin' New Orleans Saints in his spare time.

Remember when Leon got shot in Resident Evil 2?

He was injured so badly that he passed out.

Not only that, he wore bandages for the whole rest of the game as a reminder to the player that their homie done got shot.

"Ada, heads up! OoooooAAAAAAHHH!!!!"

How about that time when Rebecca had to make anti-venom serum for Chris in Resident Evil on account of him being to dumb to make his own?

Oh, I'm sorry. This picture has nothing to do with anything.

Moments of vulnerability in the player characters such as this were what made the survival-horror experience so much fun.

Thanks to savage-ass enemies like the Hunters, and in some cases the giant Ivy plants, players could find ways to drop dead around pretty much every corner.

"You! Human! I demand Clearasil...."

You were in mortal danger throughout the game, and there was little you could do about it except hoard ammo for your strongest weapon and pray you didn’t run out.

Resident Evil 4 and 5 give you money to buy bigger guns.

Good God I hope he's just selling watches.

Resident Evil 4 was great.

It was new, it was different, and everything it set out to do, it accomplished with flying colors.

On the whole, my heart holds no animosity towards Resident Evil 4…..  Although I am still upset with what they did with Leon’s character.

He was loud, naive and dumb in 2, how the fuck did he turn into James-Fucking-Kung-Fu/Knife-Fighting-Master-Bond by the time 4 rolled along?

Artist Rendering: James-Fucking-Kung-Fu/Knife-Fighting-Master-Bond

Anyway, my point is, 4 was good.

Resident Evil 5 however, bothered me.

I played the shit out of it, and enjoyed the experience quite a bit, but I was alarmed by how much content was recycled from the previous game.

Aside from the basic controls of the gameplay, little things like reused animations for the villager enemies were just a little bit strange to see given the platform transition to a whole new console generation.

In general, the game just felt exactly the same.

Even the level design was similar with the temple and military segments occurring at relatively the same point in the story.

That’s not a good thing when one game takes place in Spain and the other in a fictional region of Africa.

Pictured: Africa Butt-Raping Spain.

One HUGE objection I had to the storyline of Resident Evil 5, was it’s over-reliance on “Ouroboros” AKA those goddamn leeches from the decidedly below average Resident Evil 0.

Leeches.  Motherfucking giant leeches.

Remember how fun it was to fight the goddamn Mimickry Marcus in 0?

Wrong Marcus, but at least you're trying.

Well, guess what?  In 5, you get to fight a bigger version of him for virtually every boss fight!

Casting FACELESS giant leech monsters as a number of the bosses throughout the game robbed me of a lot of “wow” moments.

Yeah, not much to look at.

Part of the fun in previous Resident Evil games, was in always wondering what the fuck kinda’ crazy shit was gonna’ pop around the corner to tear off your face and use it as toilet paper.

The few times that Resident Evil 5 surprises you with it’s monster designs, you’re left not feeling blown away, but simply confused, as the unique creatures hardly fit into the game at all.

I'm lookin' at you random fuckin' crab boss...

While the gameplay mechanics one was required to utilize in combating these bosses was actually kind of fun, the lack of unique creature designs in Resident Evil 5 lead to me feeling that the game was a little dull from a visual standpoint.

Don’t get me wrong, the graphics are definitely next-gen, but the art on the other hand feels somewhat limited.

Well produced, just lacking in heart.

Man Lucas, I'm sorry to bring this one up again, but you had it coming.

Resident Evil 5 made a bold attempt at reaching out to its’ fans by inserting classic series villain Albert Wesker as the chief antagonist.

This worked out well for the games’ story by effectively tying together the “Las Plagas” storyline of 4, with the “Umbrella Corp” storyline of the older games, as well as the (crappy) “James Marcus” storyline of 0.

What it didn’t work out for me however, was the gameplay aspect of Wesker’s appearances in the game.

Third person shooters with clunky movement controls rarely benefit from having their final bosses be fast-moving, man-sized targets.

Just ask Syphon Filter.

Now THOSE are fuckin' next-gen graphics.

The problem with casting Wesker as the final boss, was the fact that it took the one real impressive graphical feat that the previous bosses had, namely their incredible size, and shit all over it.

Yeah, whatever. You'd still buy it.

The bosses in Resident Evil 5 are essentially glorified puzzles.

Though shooting them is at times an option, generally the way you are supposed to dispose of them is by finding what the game wants you to do to them, and do it over and over again.

In the case of the Bat Monster, the game wants you to make it walk onto some mines.

In the case of the Leech Monsters, ALL OF THEM, the game wants you to burn them when possible, and then shoot THE GIANT FUCKING GLOWING SPOT.

I ask you, when has it NOT been a good idea to shoot the BIG GLOWING FUCK-ME spots on an enemy?

And, in the case of Wesker, the game wants you to shoot him from out of sight, with a fucking rocket launcher, shoot the rocket (which he catches in his bare hands), and then punch him in the face until your partner can give him an injection.

Hah! You totally thought I was joking when I said he catches rockets, didn't you!?

While it was pretty to watch it all happen before me, the actual doing of fighting Wesker just plain felt dumb.

Requiring you to shoot Wesker from out of sight was Capcom’s lazy way of disallowing the player from simply standing in front of Wesker, taking aim, and shooting him in his noggin.

The way I see, if I can get a guy in my sights, and put a bullet in him, that should be a viable way of fighting, if not slowing him down.

But no, if you do this to Wesker, he simply enters an “evasive maneuver” animation cycle, thusly preventing you from landing any shots on him, even if they’re directed at his immobile legs.

Step-by-steo "shoot the hostage"

Maybe it’s just me being slightly spoiled by the prospect of next-gen consoles and their supposedly limitless potential, but when I see a viable solution to something as simple as shooting a bad guy in a game, I’d like to see the game at least try and give me a little leeway.

Of course, that isn’t REALLY the final battle, but the final battle in Resident Evil 5 sucked so bad that I’d rather not go into it right now.

The one thing in Resident Evil that I thought was TRULY FUCKING STUPID.

The final battles in the old Resident Evil games weren’t puzzles.

True, you had to use special weapons sometimes, or occasionally manipulate the environment a little to get the job done, but for the most part the whole experience came down to the player being forced to stand their ground and put rounds in some crazy, pissed-off mutant.

Pictured: A Crazy, Pissed-Off Mutant

It was simple and satisfying on a visceral level.

In short, it was more dramatic and horrifying, than it was bombastic and exciting.

Resident Evil 4 and 5 represent what happens when you let someone like Michael Bay mess with your franchise.

Actually, THIS is what you get in pretty much every Michael Bay movie. Fuckin' douche.

Wait a minute, this post was supposed to be about music, wasn’t it?

Well, going back to the Wesker battle, despite my general dissatisfaction with the whole experience, especially given the high-profile nature of the characters involved, one thing I will say is that it had some of the most epic and awesomely-good background music I’ve ever heard in a game:

Yeah, wow.

Resident Evil 5 was kind of enough to give us fully orchestrated tracks for most of it’s boss battles, with this one being easily the most impressive composition of the bunch.

Despite this, the majority of the soundtrack, outside of the orchestral work, is hardly memorable.

It was almost as if the music staff somehow exhausted themselves so much doing the awesome boss tracks, that they simply ran out of inspiration for the rest of the soundtrack.

Just listen here:

Personally, I thought this track was good and solid, just nothing to write home about.

In fact, “good and solid” seems to sum-up Resident Evil 5 in my eyes pretty well.

It’s by no means bad, in fact it’s pretty damn good, but the initial “wow” factor of Resident Evil 4 and it’s innumerable imitators, caused Resident Evil 5’s gameplay to become stale years before it’s release.

My gripes aside, hopefully you enjoyed the music, ’cause all this post was really supposed to be about before I went ahead and mucked things up.

Yeah, I do that sometimes.

With that, I leave you with Barry:

The REAL reason the old games are better...

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