Monday 28 August 2023

The Sega Saturn 2 - Top 10 Games of the Sega Dreamcast

This list has changed many times over the years, but there are titles in here that have been there since the very beginning. Remember, just because I didn't have a game you liked here, doesn't mean I didn't like it, it simply means it couldn't fit in the top 10. So, just remember that this is my list and there's always room for suggestion. Just do so nicely.

                                                                10. Sonic Adventure 

Sonic's endevors on the Dreamcast have been complicated in more ways than one, but a lot o people will agree that Sonic Adventure is arguably his best venture into 3D, especially compared to his Wii titles. The free roaming aspects, coupled with the three dimensional gameplay, along with the story make this game a very diverse and engrossing game. It's not perfect and it has a few rough patches where the pacing is very slow, but this is a wholly enjoyable title. 

                                                                9. Marvel vs Capcom 2

Fighting games are where Sega systems excel, thanks in part to Capcom and their astoundingly great library. It was a tough decision between Capcom vs SNK and Street Fighter III, as there has been found new respect for the third SF title. Marvel vs Capcom 2 edges them out by having a grand display of characters, fluid controls, amazing backgrounds and just all around great OST. This choice is subjective among the great array of fighting games the Dreamcast possesses, but if you ever get a chance to play this on the console or the arcade, do it.

                                                            8. Spawn In the Demon's Hand

This was a title, that was very surprisingly good. At first, it looked like a mindless action game with a bunch of random action set pieces. Then it turned out to be a mindless action game with a bunch of random action set pieces, but that made it somewhat addictive. Killing Spawn characters very quickly becomes second nature with this title and unlocking the hidden ones while also testing them out is a highlight. Play this with friends and grind them into Virtua Pulp!!!

                                                                        7. Jet Set Radio

Released in America as Jet Grind Radio, this game came with my system! I was immediately pulled into this strange world where authorities can just shoot someone for graffiti, whether they are just a teenager or unarmed or whatever. The cell shaded graphics, stylistic art, unique character designs and fluid gameplay make this game something of a staple of the system. It symbolizes the Dreamcast as one of its flagship titles and still has a rather large following to this day. 

                                                                    6. Gauntlet Legends

It doesn't matter who you are. If you love arcade style games, fantasy and killing orcs, you should have gotten this game yesterday. This game is perfect for gaming parties because the coop is some of the most legendary of the legends. The gameplay is almost identical to the NES titles, with the top-down view, projectile weapons and party-style gameplay but the graphics take quite a gigantic leap. The artstyle of Gauntlet is very stylistic, as is its many memes such as "Red Wizard is about to die". 

                                                                    5. Virtua Fighter 3tb

A continuation of the series that kept up the standard of greatness for the final title on a Sega system. Team Battle brings about the mechanic of fighting with multiple characters in one match, but honestly, it didn't really need to. It's far better with the standard one on one, three round gameplay, as the matches don't take several minutes more each. With new characters added to the roster and several more game features, Virtua Fighter 3 boasts to be among the greatest fighters on the Dreamcast.

                                                                    4. Skies of Arcadia

High flying adventure with good old science fiction and fantasy mixed. It's really hard to go wrong when you put so much work in all of the right places. The graphics, gameplay, characters, story, just about everything is just rather pleasant all around. It does have a few rather harsh difficulty spikes and sometimes the villains can be downright sadistic with their strongest moves being spammed, but those are nitpicks if anything compared to everything else about this wonderful Dreamcast title. The Gamecube version wasn't enough, this game is still sought after for a port to current consoles.

                                                                        3. Power Stone

Even with all of the fighting games on this list, others like Soul Calibur, Dead or Alive 2, and the honorables mentioned, somehow, this random, brand new title came out along with the Dreamcast and it was majestic. Power Stone has, perhaps, one of the best 3D environment fighting styles, period. The controls are amazingly smooth, the fights are hard hitting, the character designs are gorgeous and the game is just all around beautiful to look at. The mechanic of the gems and collecting them for an ultimate form made this one of the more unique titles for the genre and yet this is another title that got one sequel on the Dreamcast and we have not heard a peep since (unless you count the ports on the PSP, which I don't). 

                                                                    2. Crazy Taxi

Great behind the wheel and try not to hit the people who give you money. Crazy Taxi is hard to pin down when it comes to why it is so popular. It could be the very strange voice of the announcer who is trying to be cool with every fiber of his being, so he succeeds by default, or it could be the fact that the driving controls really are quite crazy. You have a decent control of your car, but not so much that it's a very easy game. In fact, this game takes some practice. Still, what's wrong with a little car-crashing mayhem once in a while? This game is especially good at the arcade with a steering wheel and shift.

                                                                1. House of the Dead 2

This game being my favorite has to do more with its timing than anything else. House of the Dead 1 and 2 have been Sega rail-shooting legends for a reason. The zombie chunks are chunkier and the monsters are bigger here in the sequel. It has wondrously gory graphics but it also has a wonderful sense of humor. Whoever did the voice work on this title should be ashamed but at the same time very proud of themselves. The voice are terrible and it's hilarious to the point of bursting. The bad lines are so quotable and you'll never hear the end of "Don't come! Don't come!"

So, there you have it. As far as Virtua Neptune is concerned, these are the cream of the crop. There are so many other great games, and sometimes it looks like there's no bad games at all on the DC. This is obviously not true, but there is a surprisingly small number of them. It really just goes to show you how a dense library of truly fun and playable games can earn you a legacy and a following as this system has. Do not give these games a miss, they are too awesome! Virtua Dive!

Tuesday 22 August 2023

The Sega Saturn 2 - 10 Worst Games of the Sega Dreamcast

 Say what you want about the Dreamcast's library and how small it is, that's fine. Yeah, it was missing some great games, but it was also thinning the herd when it came to absolute schlock. The process of finding terrible games on this system was monotonous because every time there was a game that was said to be terrible, there was usually something of note that made it either easily playable or just all around fun. Of course, look hard enough and you will find it. There were so many great games discovered in this route, but there were definitely some real stinkers in the pile. 

Some of these games are also liked by Dreamcast fans and there's nothing wrong with that. These were simply games that did not compute as fun to me or were so abstract and boring as to drag. As always, you're welcome to leave a top 10 worst list of your own in the comments. Also, don't forget that if you disagree with my list, be sure to be as petty and condescending in your replies as humanly possible. Some of you are going to anyway. This is my top 10 worst games on the Sega Saturn 2--- I mean Dreamcast!

#10 Incoming

Not going to lie, this game is a serious guilty pleasure for me. I will not defend it. This game is bland, somewhat boring and ridiculously easy to beat with minimal effort. However, it’s still mindless fun to shoot limitless jets and flying saucers out of the sky with reckless abandon. It’s fun, but there’s no denying that it lacks in just about every category, especially the graphics.

#9 D2

D is among my favorite Saturn games, it truly encapsulated the horror puzzle genre in both atmosphere and pace. This game, however, was a horrific attempt at a changeup. This game wants to be Resident Evil so HARD, it’s almost painful to watch. We’re given a clumsy amount of dialogue trying to explain that an airplane crash happened and we’ve lost our memory, blah blah blah who cares. Then a guy walks in and plant monsters come out of his body. It’s comical in how much this video game tries but doesn’t try at the same time. The forced RPG elements, the terrible combat gun controls and the fact that ammo is infinite. Then there’s the fact that you see items in a room but can’t get to them, so you need to leave them! Your survival instincts are stunted because of this! All of these new mechanics are smashed in here to try and fix complaints about the first game while also wiping the game of any identity and originality. It’s still fun in a mindless, repetitive sort of way, but not enough to keep you coming back.

#8 Death Crimson OX

Never would I expect that the worst rail shooter on the Sega Saturn would get a sequel. Now, let’s be honest, this game is far better than its predecessor. It’s still garbage, but they at least upped the graphics and the details of the mechanics. Not to mention, it’s hilarious! The random rooms you pass through without a thought, the random enemies that LITERALLY come out of nowhere and the skeletons. Yeah, skeletons just pop up and creep toward you, falling apart when shot. It’s so entertaining in how terrible it is! That’s honestly why it’s stuck on the higher numbers of this list. You can at least play this game and it feels like a game. It’s got at least some effort put into it. I wouldn’t spend 10 bucks on it, but that’s just me.

#7 Evil Dead: Hail to the King

Continuing on with another Resident Evil clone, we have the Evil Dead tossing their hat into the ring. This game is about as repetitive as it gets. The backgrounds do not even look like they’re part of the game. They look like someone painted the background details inside a cabin. This makes all of the items stick out like a sore thumb and the only other thing you can interact with is a doorway that you walk through. Take one step in a direction, and an evil spirit will come out of the ground for an extensively boring fight. I love Bruce Campbell as much as the next guy, but even Ash couldn’t make this game any good.

#6 Nightmare Creatures II

Where the original actually had some thought put into its mechanics and its combat, this game just says nuts to that! We just need to be able to swing an axe and that’ll do it! That’s the majority of this game. You kick the enemy and you slice them up. Rinse and repeat. This is kind of sad because the game has some awesome set pieces and the tone is just right for a horror game. It’s just a shame it couldn’t pull off the gameplay like the first Nightmare Creatures did. The story is boring and the character you play is a snorefest when it comes to interesting qualities. Give this one a pass.

#5 Alone in the Dark: The New Nightmare

In another Resident Evil Clone, complete with tank controls, we see how not to pace a horror game. While the graphics are decent for the time, especially the cut scenes, the gameplay is laughably bad as we fight off shadow creatures with our flashlight, we’re supposed to figure out what to do with the game itself. As soon as we start, we need to practice the tank controls on the edge of a roof. As soon as we exit the first room, we meet our shadow bug creatures and stand there, shining a light at them. Sounds thrilling, I know.

#4 Urban Chaos

Oh, where to begin with this one. Normally, graphics don’t bother me all that much, but this game looks like the polygons were belched onto the screen and they are ridiculously hard to look at. Then there’s the frame rate that makes those polygons jerk across the screen! Everything about this game is hard to look at. It looks like it was going for an open world feel like GTA 3, but it lacked the resources to pull it off. The gameplay is probably the very worst part. Coupled with the controls, this game is almost impossible to play. The combat is laughably bad and the driving mechanics… just don’t get me started. This game is bland, boring and all around awful. It’s hard to find any entertainment in any aspect of this game. Just, please, give it a pass.

#3 The Grinch

Yes, I have never said that movie tie-in games were off my radar. This is based on the Jim Carrey film from the early 2000’s that some people liked but a lot of people did not. Me, I’d put myself with the latter category. However, the movie was not nearly as terrible as this game is. You may think that goes without saying, but the lack of creativity and effort was palpable. You’re supposed to go around Whoville and pull pranks while dodging unavoidable snowballs being thrown at you by the Who children. The graphics are obviously terrible but that’s just the start of how terrible this game is. I’d recommend watching the movie if it looks good to you, but if this game looks good to you, I’d recommend a hospital appointment.

#2 Sonic Shuffle

When people said this game was bad, there really is no way of imagining it without actually playing this horrific mishmash of Mario Party and Sonic the Hedgehog. It tried to ripoff Mario Party without knowing what makes Mario Party good in the first place. The mini-games are terrible and only serve to screw over the player who plays against the other 3. Getting around the gameboard is a slog and a half and the fact that they had the gall to let Robotnik screw you over further randomly is just the crowning achievement to make a player rage quit. With lackluster battle sequences and random traps to make you lose your rings, it’s really not worth the trouble to play it in the first place.

#1 The Ring: Terror’s Realm

We finish this gaming list out on yet ANOTHER Resident Evil clone! This one is the worst out of all of them! The character designs are just about the ugliest I’ve seen. The uncanny valley is ridiculous! The tank controls are back and the gameplay is so boring, you could sell this as a sleep aid! The story and the dialogue are what sets this apart from every other title on this list. It’s literally nothing like The Ring, let’s get that out of the way. Instead of a video that kills you, now it’s a computer program that makes you dream about killing monsters as part of a task force. Yeah, it makes no sense and is not scary in the slightest. Every scene I sat through was so full of cringe. Whether it be the stupid way people talk to each other and the nonsensical way they progress the story, you’ll find something you hate in this game. In fact, I’m pretty sure this game is universally hated, and for good reason.

It really surprised me how many Resident Evil clones there were that came out in this era. Many of them tried to replace the gameplay with their own mechanics and forgot to make these mechanics coherent or even remotely fun. The worst part about it was when they latched on mechanics that belonged in other genres. The Dreamcast's library is still full of great quality games and is still the true successor to the Saturn!  

Saturday 19 August 2023

Neptune - FMV's Were a Very Bad Idea

If you are not in the know of what FMV's are, they are Full Motion Videos, which was titled very poorly. These videos are about as full motion as claymation, and that's no exaggeration. For some reason, back in the early days of gaming, developers figured out that they could record themselves and impliment the footage into video games. Once CD-Roms and 32-Bit systems, such as the Sega Saturn, were powerful enough, they were able to store a ton of these very stiff, awkward videos to "show off" between gameplay.

Then, there were also games that were nothing but Full Motion Videos. Yes, those exist. The Sega Saturn was not as guilty of wearing out the concept as the Sega CD was. Still, games like Double Switch, Myst, or The Horde have some of the worst cut scenes and gameplay footage on the system. The actors they got for these videos were beyond abysmal. The costumes were cheesy, and there were even a few parts that were absolutely digusting. 

If you would like to see one of those games that relies on FMV's and real people cut-outs, check out my review for Corpse Killer and get a glimpse of the idea at its worst. Even when the video was of slightly better quality, and didn't have that ridiculous amount of grain moving across it, it was still so janky and awkward to watch. 32-bits was still not enough. 

This could also be a case of keeping video games to themselves while also keeping films in their own category. Mixing mediums has bore fruit in the past with Mortal Kombat starting the craze of putting in real-life people into the graphics. The difference there is that the game is still fully controlled and the graphics are not "full motion" for... some reason. I don't know the the grimey details. The point is that putting 2D games into 3D games, making video games into movies, and making video game adaptations of movies can definitely work, so long as you go full tilt into that medium. 

Full Motion Video Games was a lot like taking a movie, and turning it 25% into a game and calling it a day. The aiming is often off-center in rail shooters, the controls are often slow and inaccurate and then there's the fact that the gameplay can often be described as very, very boring. 

Now, are all games that bring in Full Motion Video bad? No! There are exceptions to this, of course. From this standpoint, none of them exist on the Sega Saturn. There is always a chance there are hidden titles or titles that I missed, but by all means, if you have a loved FMV game on the Saturn, talk about in the comments. I know you'll talk about it somewhere.

A good FMV game that comes to mind is Wing Commander 3, which can be seen as campy and fun. The Mortal Kombat Sub-Zero game had some of the worst and most amazing FMV's ever. If you have not seen this video, you are missing out. Of course there is room for guilty pleasures and videos that are just so unintentionally hilarious that they deserve another good watch-through. 

There's always room for a good terrible FMV, but the problem is that these are lightning strikes. There is a fine line between enjoyably campy and absolutely cringeworthy, which is often very hard to sit-through. Making an enjoyable FMV game was a case, like any movie, of actors, directing and camera movement that didn't make you want to vomit. All of these elements needed to be just right and that happened once every other blue moon, it seems. 

Thankfully, FMV's have all but been phased out of existence in terms of recent games. All of them seem to be relegated to the fourth and fifth generations of consoles. The Dreamcast either had no FMV games or they were so few in number that a general search brings up nothing. It's always good to play with technology and experiment with mechanics and features. Full Motion Videos seemed to be something of a failed experiment that they just kept trying at with little to no success.

Even the best of the bunch are usually a one-time play-through, then it can be put away. If there are some favorite FMV games out there, by all means. The 7th Guest had its good points but by no means does it save the concept, nor does Phantasmagoria. If you have an argument for the Full Motion games, you're going to bring it to the table, so go right ahead. There are enjoyable ones but the vast majority were subpar to say the least. I may like to repeat my thesis a lot, but that's mostly because I'm almost finished with college. No, I'm not kidding. Virtua Diploma. 

Tuesday 15 August 2023

Doom Gorefest #7: Romero is The Doom Guy

 Believe it or not, this is an analysis of a book! Doom Guy: Life in First Person by John Romero was just released, and it was very quickly digested. There are many thoughts. First and foremost, I would like to thank John Romero for bringing out a book that is not only an amazing read, but also amends some misinformation that has been released by other sources. He even calls out the biography Masters of Doom by David Kushner on some of its misinformation and misleading terminology. 

It really is a testament to the effort the entire ID team put into this one game that shaped gaming pop culture as we know it. Even its predecessor, Wolfenstein 3D, had a hand in wrenching the status quo and paving the way for Doom beforehand. John Romero did a fantastic job displaying the way they worked together as a team and pitched into the effort of making this game amazing. Even Tom Hall, with his short-lived stint in its development had influence in the final product, whether he saw it at the time or not. It was especially refreshing to see Romero's close friend get his due diligence. 

What got me about this book was how he beared no ill will toward his former colleagues, even the ones who didn't end up being faithful in the long run. He seemed to go out of his way to make sure that if he sounded bitter, it was only because he was telling the truth. Like a stone, however, he allowed the negativity to wash over him and he has more or less seemed to let it go. He makes it clear that holding grudges only wastes energy and eats at the soul. 

His stories about Doom were far better than they were in the Kushner book. This is no insult to Kushner, though I am a little peeved he "exaggerated" a few details for drama's sake. Truth be told, the drama got old. What was delightful were the years at the lakehouse. Those years when they were in the building beside the screaming dentist's office and smashing things. That's the good stuff. John Romero lived it and his descriptions on how they made the models, guns, levels and game mechanics for Doom were in head-spinning details.

Romero even put coding terms in words that those with even a basic understanding of computers and software could follow along with. That is very difficult to do because coding is literally another whole category of languages. You can just hear the flare in his words as he tells stories, my favorite being when he was in the middle of the photoshoot for the coverart. This coverart is very well known to Doom fans, and little did I know that none other than John Romero himself posed as the Doomguy! The model they had doing it simply posed as the demon grabbing his arm. Romero is actually the original Doomguy. 

That's fitting, because, much more well known to fans, John Romero is also the Icon of Sin. That's right, folks, despite the early days of Doom not having a whole lot of lore, the creation of doom definitely has some good material. He not only performed the distorted voice work for the main Doom 2 villain, but he also has an icon of his head on a spike behind the hideously awesome image of the Icon himself. He had no idea they'd done this, but in retaliation, he put in the voice easter egg to get the last word in. That's just how awesome he is. 

There was really no need for him to explain about his decisions back in the day. It was pretty clear what had happened and there are very few people who would do things less impulsive and seemingly nuts. He was handed the keys to the kingdom and he thought he could lead a new team to develop the most awesome game ever by himself. One of the many issues was, he got too ambitious with technology and people he did not know well enough. After having his dreams crushed with the disappointment of Quake, he was ready to load up Dai Katana with every mechanic imaginable. It didn't work. It was way over-budget, passed deadlines and was a worse experience than Quake to make. John Romero made some miscalculations. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. 

I, for one, have nothing but gratitude and respect for this man (hence the impulsive article), and that should be the standard for those who have had hours of fun with one or any of the games Romero had a hand in. Make no mistake, he had his hands in more than just ID software games. His influence and his expertise found its way into Heretic and Hexen, Deus Ex would probably have never gotten made if it weren't for his generosity toward the development team and he still makes Doom levels today. Either Sigil that was released for free or One Humanity where the proceeds went to charity for the Ukraine War. 

If you are a fan of Wolfenstein, Quake, Doom, Commander Keen or any title as such, Doom Guy: Life in First Person is a title that you will most likely, very deeply enjoy. It's an update on his life and it is a gripping tale from start to finish. The beginning is very dark, especially considering he was a child or teenager when some of the less comfortable events happened. Make sure you're okay with the contents before you make the purchase (Drugs, alcohol, child abuse and neglect, etc, it is not graphic). Give it a look and thank you for reading my little spontaneous book report. Rip and tear, dear friends.

Friday 11 August 2023

The Sega Saturn 2 - Enter Dreamcast

 Dreamcast, the next and final step in Sega's evolution, as far as we know it. This is the system that was the swansong, but not by any outward ineptitudes with its game library or selection of high quality games. We're not here to talk about how short lived it was, we're here to talk about how amazing of a continuation this system was for the Saturn and how we can benefit from having both systems in our collections. 

If you are a Sega Saturn fan and have not gotten into the wonders of the Dreamcast library, you are depriving yourself of amazing games. These not only improve on the Saturn ports, but also bring games about that should have been on the system. As small as the Dreamcast library is, it also brought about a wonderful density that allowed for very few bad games. Obviously, there were some pretty nasty titles, but we'll get into that later. 

There are games such as Resident Evil 2 that were marked for a Saturn release, but were pushed back to the Dreamcast. This was either a development problem or the fact that the Saturn did not have the lifespan they were expecting. There were games like Virtual On that had a Dreamcast port that was vastly superior in graphics and controls. These games show such an amazing bump in quality, it's hard not to really admire the hard work behind them. 

Then, there are the games that seemingly came out of nowhere, exclusive to the Dreamcast and blew our minds out of the water! These games could have gone on to become amazing series and games that charmed the pants out of anyone who played them or even looked at them. The sad part is, thanks to Sega's falling out of the console industry, going for games only, a lot of their intellectual properties started to fall into obscurity as a result. 

Crazy Taxi hit arcades in a big way and the Dreamcast port was beyond addictive to play. It didn't matter if the breaking system was awful, that just made for more bombastic, awesome crashes as a result. This game got one sequel and has remained very quiet since then. Skies of Arcadia was an astoundingly beautiful game that dazzled everyone with graphics and open gameplay that was both addictive and beyond fun to play. It got a remake on the Gamecube and then fell right off. 

Jet Set Radio, Power Stone, Ready 2 Rumble, all of these either got minimal to no continuation or recognition in later consoles. Some of them can be found on PC game stores like Steam, but a lot of the time, that's the best we can hope for. Like the Sega Saturn, the Dreamcast has had a very hard time remaining playable by the mass public. If you don't have the original system, a lot of these games are either impossible to find, or require a lot of digging. 

This will be a series of articles celebrating the Sega Saturn's worthy successor and final work of art. It remains a giant among Sega's accomplishments for innovations with console internet gaming and exclusive Sega series games that make it an indispensible time capsule of gaming greatness. So, here's to the Dreamcast and let's give it its due diligence for no other reason than I'm bored and there's a lot of good games I want to talk about. I'd also love to talk about the bad games, because that can be even more fun at times. Does that make me Virtua Evil?

Monday 7 August 2023

Die Hard Arcade - Die Harder Than EVER!


Hey! Are you ready to get punched in the face? Then, once your punching ends, did you want to get punched some more? Then, once that punching is done, did you want that punching to continue? Then, once ceased, did you want the former punching to then elongate in duration?! Then you have come to the right game, my friends! Here in Die Hard Arcade, the punching never ends (or so it seems)!

This is a beat'em up, so there is obviously going to be plenty of punchings in the face, but wow, they use the three dimensions to their fullest extent. This game makes getting the fire beaten out of you quite enjoyable, yes. It also brings about quite the challenge when it comes to keeping up with all of the enemies on the screen, however. The graphics, as the Saturn goes, are magnanimous. This is absolute pure Saturn gold, but that also makes it harder and harder to line up shots!

This game is a very well loved addition to the Saturn library, and for very good reason. A lot of people tend to overlook its flaws when it comes to controls, however. You would think a d-pad would be easier to work with than an arcade joystick, but it really isn't. The three dimensional environment makes it harder to use thrown weapons and projectiles effectively with so many enemies on the screen. This is especially apparent when you're fighting an entire battalion of fire fighters for some reason. This also involves a fire engine spraying water all over a parking garage. I don't know, I just work here!

Is this apparent throughout it? No, in fact, sometimes the firearms can come in very handy with taking out multiple enemies all at once. Even with the pistol, you shoot one bullet and it can pass through three enemies. Logic, am I right? The most fun that comes out of this is grabbing the missile launchers that blast your opponents into a fine powder. It is sooooo satisfying, it's amazing!

Whether it be on the arcade or in the Saturn, this game is really fun to play, especially with two players. It makes it easier, much more fun and it's one of those games that allows for those really fun moments where you take out multiple enemies with one explosion or save your partner, fighting off the thugs while they recover their bearings. It encourages a comradery like any other arcade beat'em up and it does it with a grace that makes it a standout. 

Pop this game in the machine any time. You may not get too far because mistakes can be made with so many opponents all at once. This is not a big commitment of a game, it's really more for the come-and-go arcade player who is just looking for a quick breaking of his jawline before class or work or coma. Just remember to bandage your wounds and don't get sprayed by a firehose. 

Friday 4 August 2023

Neptune - Why do I like old, 32-bit Graphics?

 Many people will roll their eyes. Many more people will complain that the pixelated grass is green. Why would anyone prefer such crude, formless polygons over more sleek, luscious curves of modern game graphics? Nostalgia is not a wrong answer, but it is also about a fraction of the answer. There is a lot that comes with the idea that just because it was part of our childhood, we remember the better moments as a result. While this is not necessarily true, it is also a gross generalization. The first gaming console I had was a Nintendo Entertainment System, and then there was a Sega Genesis after that. The Sega Saturn was the third system, not counting the Gameboy or very short-lived Gamegear.

While these might be some of the ugliest graphics by comparison, they also don't get in the way of the enjoyment. Would you believe me when I say that I really love these graphics? You should, because I do. I know I've said that and hinted at it in reviews before, but I'd like to pinpoint it now. There is a lot that people don't understand when we say this sort of thing. Like the Sega Saturn or the Playstation graphics are somehow superior to the graphics we have today. Can that actually be true?

Well, yes, in some ways, they are objectively better than today's graphics. Not that they're better in the aesthetic sense, not when you are looking at it from the standpoint that they are molded strangely and the 3D polygon with the wirework was shoddy. However, it was also a functional set of graphics for the games and they did not require extended periods of development to develop for games. Yes, they took time and hard work, but compared to today's modern game engines and graphics, it wasn't quite so bad.

Now, I'm not going to harp on the subject of modern graphics being unsustainable, I have already covered that. This is more along the terms of these gaming graphics still having a fairly strong following for a reason. There are still so many people that will play games with lower quality graphics and still enjoy them far more than some of these over developed and understrategized games with flimsy mechanics. It also allows to fill in more story, which can always be a good thing. 

Many will attest that Five Nights at Freddy's is extremely enjoyable, and the games were better when they had lower graphics in the beginning. There is a following behind the new FNAF games, but there is also a lot less enthusiasm behind it than there was back in 2014. The graphics did not do that, shoddy development and rushed publication did that. When it was made by one guy with little to no graphics involved, people ate it up. 

The crude beauty of the old graphics that the Saturn presents can be seen as ugly or an eye-sore, but it works for what we need it. There are times, like in Panzer Dragoon, Burning Rangers, Nights Into Dreams, or Guardian Heroes where the graphics have shown through along with astoundingly good gameplay. These are the games we cherish. These are the games they spent their time and hard-earned money on because the work was put in. The fans could tell that the work was put in and the games have been celebrated for it. 

32-Bits can create amazing looking worlds, it's really just a matter of seeing it for the crude gesture toward a story that it is. There is a lot we can learn from the 3D polygons and the landscapes they were able to etch in such a fine set of wirework and figures. Some of these level designs and character designs have inspired great things in others. Nights Into Dreams can be considered something of an artform all its own, as many have taken to making characters in the same fashion. 

So, all in all, why do I love this? Well, other than nostalgia and some inspiring memories, I really couldn't tell you. They are beautiful in their own way, but if you don't understand that, it's fine. Just so long as you understand that we love them and we will never give them up. Just let us have this for ourselves and remember to drink your water.