The PSP turns 15 this week, Sony recently said it isn’t interested in making anymore handhelds right now, and I just realized I’ve never done a post on this site specifically about the PSP. We like to think of Sony’s handheld initiative as ultimately an unsuccessful one, but I don’t think you can say that about the PSP specifically. The 80 million of them Sony sold is nothing to scoff at, but what I keep thinking about in regards to the PSP is how forward-looking it was in the earlier part of its lifespan and how much of its potential Sony ultimately failed to take advantage of. The PSP took some of the first steps towards the game consoles we have today. Continue reading
When I decided to play through Steins;Gate for the first time earlier this year I didn’t actually know the 10th anniversary of its original Japanese release was this year (if I put it on my list of anniversaries for 2019 I forgot). I’d downloaded the PlayStation 3 version through PlayStation Plus and was simply getting it out of the way since I don’t plan to re-sub. In any case, the most interesting thing about playing it in 2019 is that, culturally speaking, it really shows its era. Continue reading
In 2005 I already wrote what I believe to be my own definitive “Dreamcast retrospective” detailing my personal experience with the console, and I’ve edited and reposted it multiple times since. Last year when the 20th anniversary of the console’s Japanese launch brought up some buzz I did another blog post mostly about its flagship games, the Shenmue remaster among them. Even still, this week, the 20th anniversary of the Dreamcast’s famous “9/9/99” North American launch feels like the big one for a lot of people, myself included.
This year, even though I could’ve booted up Shenmue and Jet Set Radio on my PC or even installed Phantasy Star Online on it again, I decided to dust off my Dreamcast and hook it back up to my old CRT. Looking at it now, the big question that comes to me is “what are the best games that you can still only play on a Dreamcast?” Continue reading
The first time I heard about the concept of Super Smash Bros. 20 years ago, it immediately made perfect sense: just take all the stuff people like about Nintendo and throw it together in a fighting game. This was despite the fact that I didn’t even really know how the game was played until had the instruction booklet in my hands. Long before then, reading about the available characters and items like the SuperScope or the laser sword in Nintendo Power already had me hyped.
Japan just crossed its 20th anniversary of that initial game this week, with the North American anniversary being April I believe. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a little over a month old, and sales charts are proclaiming it the most successful game in the series just in time for us to look back on it. Continue reading
As usual, I’m starting the year on this blog by looking back at previous years through gaming anniversaries. Maybe it’s not as big in that regard as last year, which was the 20th anniversary of all the stuff that came out in 1998, but there were still some surprises looking back on years like 1999 or 1994. 1999 in particular kind of gets overshadowed by 1998, which is still one of the most influential years for video games. Continue reading
Like I said in my January post about gaming anniversaries for 2018, 1998 was 20 years ago, and it bore witness to an unusual number of landmark releases. Probably the most critically acclaimed one of all turns 20 this week — The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. By many accounts it’s still the best-reviewed video game ever, and a lot of what’s in modern 3D action adventure games owes something to it.
One game from this year I can’t help but compare Ocarina to is actually Red Dead Redemption II. I see a lot in common between them in terms of both the public perception and the actual characteristics of each game. Continue reading
The original Crysis turned 10 this week and every article I’ve seen observing this event has been a return to the “Can it run Crysis?” meme, perpetuating the myth that the game was only ever about its graphics. Crysis remains one of my favorite modern first person shooters for a very important reason, and this week I went back through it (or at least the good parts) one more time, trying the highest difficulty setting for the first time. Continue reading
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