This week in Your Parents Basement, we are beating the hellllll out of opponents, as we play NFL Blitz by Midway for the Arcade and Nintendo 64! It’s like a less violent version of the current footyball game.
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– According to Price Charting, all of the NFL Blitz games are pretty affordable. You can get most of them for less than $10. The new-ish re-release from 2012 is available for $15 on the Playstation and Xbox networks.
– NFL Blitz‘s announcer is absolutely incredible. You can listen to a full sound clip compilation here, and it’s worth it, even if its 30-plus minutes. Said announcer is Tim Kitzrow, and as mentioned on the show, Vice Sports had a good article with him about how he only got a couple hundred bucks for his original work.
– Vice Sports also has a neat article about how the hell the game got made with the approval of the NFL.
– No timestamps this week, because hey, it’s a holiday! But there is a special Blooperoonie at the end…
– Netflix has confirmed that an animated Castlevania show will be hitting their service in 2017! You can read about it on GameSpot, and a bunch of other sites. Its creator has called it “R-rated as fuck,” and based on Castlevania 3. You can listen to our ‘vania 1 show here.
– Enshrined in Stuff’s Hall of Fame now: The Sega Mega Drive. Read more here!
– From Tristan Jurkovich at GameSpew, a good read on the “bizarre localization” of a fun adventure / platform action game, Power Blade.
– Sweet sassy molassy! Source codes for NBA Jam Extreme and Turok: The Dinosaur Hunter were found on some auctioned computers, according to this Kotaku article, which is based on the fine work of the folks at YouTube channel Silicon Classics.
– On Ars Technica, World of Warcraft gold can now be used on other Blizzard titles like Overwatch and Hearthstone. Also, by the way, we’ve covered a bunch of their games – the original Warcraft series, Starcraft and Diablo.
– A slew of Star Wars games are available in this week’s Humble Bundle, including Knights of the Old Republic and Shadows of the Empire. Check it out here! We haven’t covered those excellent games, but we have played and reviewed Rogue Squadron 3D (included in the bundle!) and Super Star Wars (not including, but you don’t wanna murder jawas anyway).
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– Inexplicably, the director of Die Hard is back with his first project since 1990, and it’s… a trailer for Ghost Recon: Wildlands? Well, there is a long and tangled story behind that, but you can check out the (awesome) trailer here. Also, listen to our Die Hard Arcade show here!
– BOOOOM Shaka Laka! Some fans have updated the old NBA Jam: Tournament Edition ROM for the Super Nintendo. Now included are 2017 rosters, all the league’s new teams since 1993, and new secret characters. (Long live Harambe!) Download it here, before they get a cease and desist here. (And, listen to our NBA Jam episode here!)
– Mark Wilson of Stuff has a good summary of the 3DO, along with a couple short reviews of decent games for the system.
– Kyle Orland has a piece on Ars Technica about how the illusion was created that Super Mario 64 and Portal were “run” on a Super Nintendo system.
– Via Game Informer, and popular on Facebook, there was once a Darth Maul game planned. And, it looked kind of bad ass! Like, a much darker take on the usual Star Wars stuff. And speaking of s’wars, check out our episodes on the SNES game and Rogue Squadron.
– On pretty much every news site, more information about the Nintendo Switch has come out. The good: Price tag under $300, a Zelda game out on release day! The bad: shortages are already being reported, all of the extra devices are overpriced, and Nintendo still has issues with online.
– Via the AV Club, Nintendo had some big band (as in jazz) performances at their Switch presentations. Listen to them here.
– From the Huffington Post, a new kitchen device can turn your radishes into Super Mario Bros. mushroom-shapes. Unfortunately, the Ravanello Radish Shaper still keeps them as radishes. Disgusting. Listen to our Super Mario Bros. episode here!
As always, if you’d like to support the show, do so via our Amazon link.
– Legitimately cool, but some NSFW text and language: Canadian punk band PUP has a ton of re-purposed vintage video game stuff for its music video of “DVP.” Check it out on YouTube! It’s definitely a must-watch for any old games fan.
– James Trew of Engadget has a cool retrospective on the Atari Lynx, which is one of those obscure systems from the early to mid-1990s.
– Are you in the Austin, Texas area on Feb. 21? You’re in luck! You can attend the NBA Jam Invitational Tournament at Empire Control Room & Garage. Find more details here. Also, from FOX Sports and several other sources, the University of Florida used NBA Jam graphics for a promotion.
– In “WTF Sega???” news, The Worldfolio has an interview with the president and CEO of Sega Sammy Holdings Inc., and he said development continues on a live action-animation hybrid Sonic The Hedgehog movie. It’s tentatively scheduled for a 2018 release.
– A hat tip to Friend of the Show Hypermotard, as he passed along this Reddit AMA with Don Rawitsch, one of the co-inventors of The Oregon Trail.
– From the appropriately named This Is Why I’m Broke, it’s a Nintendo console lamp. The price of $95 seems a bit steep to me, but still, it looks pretty cool.
ON THIS DAY IN VIDEO GAME HISTORY…
– In 2014, Square somewhat buried the third installment of Final Fantasy XIII, Lightning Returns, by releasing it in this traditional “dead” period. The game itself is a bit of a mess, but it has some cool concepts, like the ability to hunt enemies to extinction and the setting of the end of the world. Like a lot of recent Square efforts, it’s undone by some meh storytelling in the third act.
– We typically don’t use Japanese dates for “anniversaries” on the old YPB blog, but for whatever reason, Feb. 11 is a banner day for the genre in Japan. In 1990, Dragon Quest IV came out, and as usual it did major business in Japan. It didn’t hit American shores until October 1992, and it was very much a “niche” title with seemingly only 15 copies released. A Nintendo DS remake came out in 2007 and 2008; it tends to be controversial, because while it cleans up some gameplay and “where do I go next?” aspects, it gives all of the characters ridiculous accents.
– In 1998, Xenogears was released by Square in Japan. It has a strong cult following to this day because of its unique RPG system with martial arts and robots fighting, along with a plot that focuses on religion, psychology and identity crisis. The reaction is still mostly positive, even though the second half of the game falls apart a bit for behind-the-scenes budget reasons.
– Square released Final Fantasy VIII in Japan in 1999. It was the second Final Fantasy game for the Playstation, and drastically different from the preceding game, and as a result it’s somewhat a black sheep in the series. Although it has sold more than 8.5 million copies, it’s been passed over for remakes in favor of VII and X, even though its story and “look” hold up somewhat better. It’s not really a game for Final Fantasy newcomers though, as the battle system takes some getting used to, and exploit knowledge on a second playthrough can let you become an all-powerful character within the game’s first few hours.
Would you kindly read these news stories?
– The U.S. never got the SNES game The Amazing Spider-Man: Lethal Foes. Until now! A translation patch is out for the Japanese ROM, which is said to be one of the few 16-bit licensed games that didn’t suck. It was done by kepeb.
– Jacob Kauffman of an Arkansas NPR station has a cool interview with Dona Bailey, one of the few female programmers for the Atari 2600 and the creator of Centipede.
– From Sonic Retro and other sites, a lost arcade game, Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car, is going to be preserved soon via backup means. The game itself isn’t all that good, but hey, it’s a neat bit of history.
– Amanda Bell of MTV.com has a collection of modern songs done by the ole Game Boy.
– The Local Voice of North Mississippi has a piece on Daniel Lee Perea, who’s an expert NBA Jam player and who holds 72 different video game records. You can read it here.
– Jonesing for a modern day version of Myst? Then the long-developed The Witness might be up your alley. It finally has a release date of January 26.
-Hey, speaking of Myst… It was released on this day in 1993. If you didn’t catch our episode on it, along with special guest Jovial Jackee, check it out here.
– In an actual bit of history, on that day in 2002 Rare was purchased by Microsoft for a reported $375 million. Thus began an “interesting” phase for the company, as games have generally slid in quality and sales since that time, instead of being a killer first-party developer for Microsoft.
– Speaking of weird departures from established standards and practices… Star Fox Adventures came out 13 years ago for the GameCube, between Sept. 22 and Sept. 27, depending on the country. It took Star Fox into the area of Zelda games, and away from traditional space shootin’. And another shameless plug! Check out our Star Fox and Star Fox 64 episode here.
– Ico, a well-respected, unique puzzle platformer, came out 14 years ago for the Playstation 2. It was considered one of the games of the year.
Man, July is almost over! Where does the time go? Quicker than the final quarter in a game of NBA Jam! Anyway, here is this week’s news post:
– Dave Voyles is a sturdier man than most, since he’s taken on the technical challenge of turning the infamous Night Trap into a playable online game. For more information, check out his post on Gamasutra.
– There is an awesome new documentary project on Kickstarter, called Insert Coin: Inside Midway’s 90s Revolution. If the project hits its goal of $75,000, it plans to cover all the games of the era: Smash TV, NARC, WrestleMania, and of course, NBA Jam and Mortal Kombat.
– On past episodes, Steve has mentioned how much he liked the book Console Wars by Blake J. Harris, which really covers the rise and fall of Sega. The Mary Sue’s Dan Van Winkle has an interview with Harris here. (And hey, if you want to buy the book, don’t forget about our Amazon link!)
– From Chris Arrant of Newsarama, details on the deal between Atari and Dynamite to publish items on the gaming company’s deep back inventory of items.
– The latest effort from Honest Trailers? The Super Mario Bros. movie!
– A United Kingdom company is now offering retro game mural wallpaper.
– Via Riley Little of Game Rant, a dad has turned his child’s nursery into one with a Mario Kart 8 theme.
– Business Insider has an unwrapping of the new $500 Nintendo Entertainment System. (Warning: Video will autoplay!)
– David Nield of Motoring Research has a list of the best retro tech of the 1990s, which includes the Super Nintendo and the Game Boy Color, amongst other devices like beepers, point and shoot cameras, and Nokia phones.
ON THIS DAY IN VIDEO GAME HISTORY…
– In 2001, Max Payne came out for the PC. According to Wikipedia, the three games in the series have now sold more than 7.5 million copies. It was known for introducing Matrix-style “bullet time” to games.
– And since it’s July, almost nothing else came out. Womp womp womp.
– A slew of old Sega games are getting released on the 3DS eShop in the next couple weeks, according to Nintendo Life. First up is Streets of Rage 2 on July 16, followed by Gunstar Heroes in August and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 in September. Sales on those games will determine whether additional games get pumped out. (The latest Sega-related app game though, Sonic Runners, got a negative review from Touch Arcade.)
– The classic Atari series Battlezone is getting rebooted by Rebellion for the PC and Playstation 4, according to International Business Times.
– Nintendo fans are pissed about the early videos and screenshots from Metroid Prime: Federation Force. It’s supposed to be a multiplayer-focused game on the Nintendo 3DS, which basically means it doesn’t sound like a Metroid game at all. Forbes.com has an article on the controversy. Wired has an interview with the man behind the game, Kensuke Tanabe.
– Speaking of the Big N, their next console could hit stores in July 2016, according to Digitimes.
– The developer of Mario Strikers pitched Nintendo a volleyball and wrestling game, according to Gamespot. It didn’t get picked up.
– From Siliconera, a fan is doing a new indie version of the Mega Man series, Mega Man X: Corrupted. Read more here.
– The Sporting News is doing a best sports video game bracket. They’re down to the final, NBA Jam vs. NHL 94, which might be familiar to Your Parents Basement listeners. Check out our NBA Jam show here, and the NHL series here.
– Pretty much zero games of significance were released in the United States. This is probably because it’s the middle of summer, and on top of that, two days before a major holiday. Even in Japan, this is a traditionally light release day. The only one I ever really played? Nolan Ryan’s Baseball, one of the early SNES sports games from 1991 and 1992, and it isn’t anything impressive.
– July 2 does have one big event from a gaming history standpoint though. Warner sold its home computing and game console divisions, which included a company named Atari, to Jack Tramiel, in 1984. This was after the video game crash of 1983, so Atari wasn’t in great shape, and Tramiel had a spotty reputation in the gaming industry as the former owner of Commodore. Atari and everyone else was run over by the NES juggernaut after the industry recovered from the crash. For more, check out Wikipedia.
In this week’s Your Parents Basement podcast, the gang tackles NBA Jam on the eve of the NBA finals! Like all good sports programmes, they use the game to predict the final of the series, and they also talk about their other favorite basketball-based video games, like Scottie Pippen’s Puzzle Challenge.
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The show notes for this week:
- A download of NBA Jam for iOS devices is free this week. This is the On Fire edition we mention at the end of the game discussion. It’s quite splendid on my PS3, although I’m not sure how well it translates to iOS.
- At one point, Huell mentions a ranking of the “best” NBA Jam teams by Deadspin. You can find that here. It is humorously presented with absolutely no summary information for the decisions.
- Mike Iuzzolino’s NBA career was so short that his Wikipedia entry has a mention to his appearance in NBA Jam. It’s an unplanned career highlight!
- When NBA Jam was being remade for the Wii, ESPN.com ran a good interview with a producer from the game. He gets into how EA Sports procured the rights for making a new version of the game, which evolved from a prototype clone called Bounce. The Wikipedia entry on the series also has some information on the Midway and Acclaim split.
- Unfortunately, Scottie Pippen’s Puzzle Challenge and Space Jam Basketball do not exist (yet). However, Shaq Fu, Michael Jordan: Chaos In The Windy City, and Barkley Shut Up and Jam! do absolutely exist. They are varying degrees of “meh,” although Sir Charles’ game is actually kind of OK… it just features no other NBA players, so why would you ever want to play it instead of NBA Jam? And shockingly, Pippen DOES have his own video game: Slam City With Scottie Pippen on the Sega CD. It is not well-reviewed.
- Finally, a fun list from a blog: The 11 Current NBA Players Who Have Never Dunked.