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Vaguely Heroic

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  1. Vaguely Heroic

    The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

    I'll admit I'm not a regular visitor to the Legend of Zelda series, but I've recently bought BOTW and it's an absolutely incredible game. In fact, it's gripped me enough that I feel compelled to buy some Amiibo for it (and I've not tended to buy them in the past) but - after browsing online - I now realise I'm late to the Amiibo BOTW party, and they're only available at extortionate prices. I have a question that has probably been asked a million times online (apologies!) but when an Amiibo range shows as "out of stock" on the official Nintendo store, what are the odds of there being a subsequent re-release? Is it unlikely that the Breath of The Wild Amiibo collection will be on general sale again? I'd even settle for unboxed secondhand ones, but there doesn't even seem to be many of those on eBay.
  2. Vaguely Heroic

    Stardew Valley

    Help me out guys. I've had a little play around with this game (on Switch) but I feel too daunted to properly dive into it. Can I literally play it at my own pace, or if I haven't introduced myself to specific characters after a certain number of days, does that limit potential opportunities in the future? I realise that the sooner I plant things correctly, the sooner I'd reap the rewards, but does it really matter how long you take to achieve certain things, as long as you get there in the end?
  3. Vaguely Heroic

    20 years ago today - PAL N64 Launch

    It was Goldeneye that originally persuaded me to buy my first Nintendo console, but as soon as I loaded up Super Mario 64 I realised the error I had made in not having Mario in my life sooner. Here's my sticker-covered original boxed SM64 game from 1996. Wave Race still plays magnificently; those water effects still look great in 2018. I've written a new blog post about Mario right here - please do give it a read!
  4. Vaguely Heroic

    Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

    The bit where Yondu was using his magic arrow to slaughter everybody on the ship... Were we meant to be cheering him on? It felt a bit jarring to me. It kind of reminded me of A View To A Kill when Christopher Walken is machine-gunning all his employees.
  5. Vaguely Heroic

    Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

    Can I offer my modest film review: The original film is one of my favourite super-hero movies of all-time, although generally speaking I’m not into super-hero movies (particularly Marvel’s current saga, which weaves the various films into each other using an on-going story arc within the same universe). But the original Guardians of the Galaxy was a lot of fun, had some great set-pieces, a superb soundtrack and a selection of very likeable characters. Nine out of ten! My expectations were high for the sequel. The opening credits sequence is a major highlight: the camera focuses on Baby Groot whilst an epic battle between the other Guardians and a huge hideous beast plays out in the background to amusing effect. This is the exact tone Guardians should have; it should be a film that dissects and plays with the conventions of what is expected for a super-hero movie. Unfortunately however, the film becomes a little too bloated and wayward. If the first film was about throwing together the ensemble that is the Guardians of the Galaxy, then this second film gives the impression that it wants to explore their backstory more, and to identify the inner demons that each character is living with. And so we find ourselves (in a film series that seems to identify itself as wanting to play with convention) in a situation where – in the middle of the film – we have outpourings of inner turmoil from most of the key characters, in scenes of sentimentality that are layered one after the other until you could be forgiven for thinking you’re watching EastEnders In Space. I can completely understand the film wanting to explore the Star-Lord’s (our main hero) tragic backstory, but do we need all of them? Did The Empire Strikes Back need to highlight the tragic past of Han Solo? I see what the film is trying to achieve; it’s highlighting that the collected Guardians are essentially a “family” who can rely on each other for support in times of need. But this felt a little like overkill. There are humour misfires too. Scenes featuring Baby Groot running errands incorrectly soon wear thin, as does an entire scene in which a villain character’s adopted name (Tazerface) is mocked for being a bit rubbish. Funny for five seconds, but not for five minutes. Additionally, for every great comedic line that Drax has, there is another that is too forced. However. Despite all the above, it is an entertaining film. The special effects are incredible (I saw it in IMAX 3D) and the Guardians are still a likeable bunch. It’s a roller-coaster of crash bang zap spectacle, and there is only the odd occasion when I had the impression I was watching a video-game rather than a film. It’s essentially a film with a worthy heart-felt message, but it’s not up to the standard of the original. I can’t help comparing the Guardians films to the recent Star Wars releases, probably because I haven’t watched that much sci-fi in the past decade or so. With the first Guardians, I felt that it had a lot of the freshness and fun that was lacking from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. This sequel however isn’t quite as endearing. They can still save the galaxy, but these Guardians need to do it in a more entertaining way next time.
  6. Hmmm, tough decision. I can't decide whether to buy the Dreamcast with SNES controller or the SNES with Dreamcast controller.
  7. Vaguely Heroic

    Star Wars: Rogue One

    Do you mean Riz Ahmed? Watch Four Lions.
  8. Vaguely Heroic

    Nintendo Switch

    I'm really sorry Nintendo, but I'm holding off for a limited edition colour (a Famicom-styled Switch would be nice). However, if you release a Switch Metroid game and an Advance Wars game (ideal for multiplayer local gaming!) I will make a purchase sooner.
  9. Vaguely Heroic

    Edge #298

    What is it with the sudden increase in games that place you in control of a protagonist who isn't aware of who they are, or where they are, or why they are doing what they're doing? In the Edge Hype section this month, the game Prey puts you in a space station in which "you don't know why you're on the station, how you got there or what the hell is going on", and Get Even puts you in control of a man who awakens in a dilapidated asylum "with no memories other than an attempted rescue he was once involved in". I'm sure there are many other games that fit the description too, and sometimes I can't help thinking it just feels like a too convenient way to set up a game that tries to push the player to immerse themselves "into" the role of the game character. A cleverly written film or TV series gradually reveals snippets of information about a character as the story progresses. I don't know how often that happens in videogames; how often do we get to learn more about a character we are controlling as the game progresses? (Their hopes, fears, phobias, sexual orientation, prejudices...) Anyway, I look forward to the next Mario game, in which the moustached plumber awakens in a mysterious kingdom full of mushrooms, and finds himself surrounded by ghosts and piranha plants, and your job is to help him work out what the f*ck is going on.
  10. Vaguely Heroic

    Dear Esther

    I received an email for a Dear Esther event for Guardian Members (you can be a "Guardian Member" for free): Join us for a special gaming night to celebrate the new release of Dear Esther, plus enjoy a copy of the game on us. The 2012 release of Dear Esther was a critically-acclaimed success that challenged the status quo of the gaming world. This year see’s the release of Dear Esther: Landmark Edition. To celebrate we’ve gathered together its creators for a special one-off evening and we’ve thrown in free copies of the release on PlayStation4 or Xbox One, plus a strictly limited edition set of postcards. Join the team with Guardian journalists Keith Stuart and Jordan Erica Webber on Friday 30 September here at the Guardian. It's an unmissable chance to find out more about one of the most influential independent video games of the last five years. Link: https://membership.theguardian.com/event/gaming-series-dear-esther-26635208626?CMP=
  11. Vaguely Heroic

    Greatest Game Boy Advance Games Of All Time

    10 pts - Advance Wars (my favourite game of all-time, on any system) 9 pts - Yoshi's Island (Super Mario Advance 3) 8 pts - Metroid Zero Mission 7 pts - Metroid Fusion 6 pts - Castlevania - Aria of Sorrow 5 pts - Fire Emblem 4 pts - Warioware Twisted 3 pts - Mario Kart Super Circuit 2 pts - Doom 1 pt - Qwak
  12. Vaguely Heroic

    DOOM - Rip and Tear... Anywhere

    Spoilers!!! Now I know that there's a level in Doom based on hell... :-)
  13. Vaguely Heroic

    Classic Gaming bookazine

    To be honest, I'm amazed it's taken this long for Future to do a retro gaming magazine/book. I had a quick flick through today, and it certainly highlights a lot of classics, although the coverage is brief compared to Retro Gamer magazine. While we're on the topic, I wish Future would do more File magazines (the Edge compilation volumes that covered one year in each magazine).
  14. Vaguely Heroic

    Ratchet & Clank (PS4)

    I'm only an hour or so into this game so far, but it reminds me of the quirky charm of Beyond Good & Evil (that's a HUGE compliment). Bizarrely it also reminds me a little bit of Metroid Prime, even though its in a different perspective. I like the upgrading tree that's used for weaponry, and of course these weapons are some of the most inventive I've ever used in a game like this. (This is my first experience of a Ratchet & Clank game.)
  15. Vaguely Heroic

    Behold the Kickmen

    "Congratulations! You've done a goal" is a brilliant statement (used in one of the clips above). I'm not particularly a football fan, and haven't played a footie game since Sensible Soccer, but this looks absolutely superb.
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