Sunday, 30 July 2017

Top Five Amy Adams Outfits

I seem to have found myself on a bit of an Amy Adams kick lately. Not due to her aesthetic qualities you understand - she's a very talented and engaging actress and most of her films are pretty superb too, generally - but it's impossible to avoid acknowledging that she's also a very beautiful woman. I also, coincidentally, found myself accidentally perusing pics of her online (chortle!) and noticed that she often has a tendency to wear somewhat eye-catching attire to her various premieres and award ceremonies and the like as well. Here are (possibly) the five best:

          5... Vanity Fair Oscar Party, 2015

Friday, 28 July 2017

Indie Nuggets #5

Ghosts'n Demons (2013)
By: BonusJZ Genre: Platform / Fighting Players: 1 Difficulty: Medium-Hard
Featured Version: PC First Day Score: 41,800
Also Available For: Dreamcast, WonderSwan Download For: Android, iOS

Capcom have often seemed a little reluctant to return to the Ghosts'n Goblins series over the years which is a little strange considering how popular the original arcade games were. Sure, we got SNES and PSP sequels (of sorts) and a couple of spin-offs in the Gargoyle's Quest and Maximo games but not many 'proper' sequels, especially when you consider how hugely popular they are. Just think of the potential for a proper full-on new adventure on one of the current systems - whether an indie-style 2D game or a flashy 3D example, it could be the most awesome thing ever! Sadly, nothing major seems to be forthcoming but they did release a little-known entry in the series on the WonderSwan called Makaimura, and thanks to talented fan BonusJZ, it had now been coloured-in and released on PC (and Dreamcast) for everyone to enjoy!

Monday, 24 July 2017

Non-Retro News - New Racing Game From Sega!

To be honest, I don't often pay all that much attention to Sega these days. It's a pretty sad thing to admit but they've been slowly declining for some time which is a sad thing to see too. Every now and then, however, some news from them reaches my ears and breaches the security measures meant to filter out the mundane. One thing that's likely to do that is news of a new Sega arcade game.

We've already had a similar announcement from them last year regarding Daytona 3 Championship USA which was mighty welcome - not sure what happened to that actually, the only news since then that I've heard is that they've now dropped the '3' from the title - but anyway, the latest news coming from Sega's arcade division over in Japan is also about a racing game, but this time we're getting a brand spanking new one!

As far as I'm aware, Sega haven't even revealed any screenshots yet nevermind in-game footage, but they have released a few details. It will be called Sega World Drivers Championship and is based on what is apparently the most popular form of motor racing in Japan - the Super GT touring car series. They have already visited this series before with the appropriately-named Sega Super GT (a.k.a. Scud Race), so I guess you could consider SWDC a 'spiritual' sequel to their famously-unconverted mid-90's racer, and like that game it carries an official license which means it will feature all the teams and cars from the real Super GT series including the mental Toyotas, Hondas, Lexuses, Subarus, and Nissans you may (but probably have not) seen on TV hacking around various circuits.

Friday, 21 July 2017

Film Round-Up #21

Crocodile Dundee (1986 - 2001)
Directed By: Peter Faiman, John Cornell, Simon Wincer Starring: Paul Hogan, Linda Kozlowski, John Meillon, David Gulpilil, Reginald VelJohnson, Hechter Ubarry, Juan Fernández, Charles S. Dutton, Jere Burns, Jonathan Banks

Certificate: 15 Running Time: Approx 298 minutes

Fish out of water films are usually quite a reliable source of mirth and one of the most famous ones when I was growing up was Crocodile Dundee. Apparently born of star Paul Hogan's desire to establish an Australian folk hero and inspired by real life 'bushman' Rodney Ansell, Mick 'Crocodile' Dundee was a beer swilling, bar fighting, croc wrestling master bushman and survivalist and all round man's man. Apparently raised by Aborigines and now hailing from the tiny, remote Australian bush town of Walkabout Creek, he has somehow managed to catch the attention of a New York newspaper who want to do a story on him. Enter the reporter sent to get the low-down - Sue Chartlon (Kozlowski) - who just happens to be a blonde hottie ripe to be impressed by Dundee's manliness, obviously. It wasn't just her who fell for his charms though - the first film was a big hit, quickly earning its stars worldwide fame (and fortune, presumably).

Sunday, 16 July 2017

3D Platform Games #1

Ninpen Manmaru (1997)
By: Tamtam / Enix Genre: Platform Players: 1 Difficulty: Medium
Featured Version: Sega Saturn
Also Available For: Nothing

Most retro gamers these days love the Saturn, and with good reason, but in its day owners were crying out for more 3D games, specifically some of the 3D platform games that owners of the PlayStation and N64 had been enjoying. As it turns out, it was receiving at least a few of them, it's just that us poor old Western gamers didn't get to play them! One example that has gone on to prove quite popular with collectors in the intervening years is Ninpen Manmaru. Unsurprisingly for a Japanese exclusive, it's based on a manga/anime series which stars Manmaru, a trainee at a ninja school. He is a blue bird of some sort, perhaps a penguin, while the other students consist of foxes, raccoons, monkeys, and dogs, many of whom you see in the game's intro and frequent cut-scenes. I can't tell you what they're about of course, but it seems that it's down to Manmaru to do... something.

Friday, 7 July 2017

Film Review #100

Deadpool (2016)
Director: Tim Miller Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, Ed Skrein, T.J. Miller, Gina Carano, Leslie Uggams, Brianna Hildebrand, Stefan Kapičić

Certificate: 15 Running Time: 108 Minutes

Tagline: "Wait 'til you get a load of me."

Ever since this recent deluge of superhero films began, most of them have been heavily hyped and eagerly anticipated by fans regardless of which characters were involved, but I don't think this has ever been more the case than it was with Deadpool. I of course knew little about him prior to the hype assault; I'd barely even heard the name before in fact, but it quickly became apparent that he is beloved by his many fans. This is most likely because he's a superhero for 'grown ups' in that he is more of an antihero who makes copious use of profanity, sexual references, and employs extreme violence, usually by way of swords and a variety of firearms, while going about his vigilante-related duties, many of which are carried out in an unusually jovial fashion and injected with lashings of adult humour as well.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Retro News - The Console That Never Was!

As I have no doubt mentioned here more than once previously, my favourite period in gaming is definitely the mid-80's to the mid-90's (roughly), with the odd exception. I have many wonderful memories of this era and most of my favourite games and systems (including, or some might say especially, the arcades) come from it, and it's also where much of my focus goes when planning features for this very blog.

One of the most prolific developers at this time, in arcades as well as on home systems, was Taito who had been one of my favourites ever since my parents had bought me the awesome Taito Coin-Op Hits compilation for my Speccy. In fact, I'd even say they were second only to the mighty Sega in my affections in those days; their generally spiffing titles were nearly always worthy of attention, and I remember thinking on more than one occasion about how cool it would be if they had their own home console. It might not sound terribly realistic for a mere software developer to have their own home system but that's exactly what Sega had done with the Master System, as had SNK with their monstrous NeoGeo 'Advanced Entertainment System'. I still never thought it might actually happen though, so it came as a great surprise to discover not too long ago that they very nearly did have one!