Scripted Particle Effects

April 25, 2013 at 2:24 pm (Games, Processing, Programming, Video games) (, , , , )

This will be a short post (with no screenshots for now), but I recently finished full support for my scripted particle effects engine. This means you can create/modify particle effects entirely using Java Script. I think I need to make a few more modifications so it is more optimal, but it seems to be working great and there doesn’t seem to be any noticeable performance hit from it.

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Review: Might Morphin’ Power Rangers for Sega CD

April 22, 2013 at 8:31 am (Games, Video games) (, , , , , )

So you may remember when quick time events started showing up as a major gameplay mechanic in games. Odds are though, you’re probably wrong. This is a game from the 90’s where the ONLY gameplay was quick time events. If you didn’t get them right, you would lose health and ultimately lose the game. This most likely pre-dates whatever game you were thinking of.

Anyway, you basically got to watch episodes of the Power Rangers and press buttons during the fight scenes. This might not sound interesting, but back in the day it was brilliant! You got to watch a TV show ON DEMAND! Better yet, you got to skip all the boring talking parts and go right into the fighting scenes. The downside of this game though was that it was brutally hard for anybody below the age of a teenager; especially on the harder difficulties, which is where you got to see more episodes.

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Jurassic Park for Sega Genesis Review

April 12, 2013 at 12:49 pm (Games, Video games) (, , , , , )

So after watching the re-release of Jurassic Park in theaters,  I went back took a look at the game for Sega Genesis. After a short while it became evident how brilliant this game is! This is a game based on a movie; as a kid looking to re-experience an awesome movie, how many times have you been disappointed with gameplay that has nothing to do with the movie or bad guys that some developer randomly decided they should go in the game as filler? In the movie, Dr. Grant roams a jungle and has to climb trees and navigate the Park. Sure the game doesn’t feature whiny children trying to get him killed, but nobody’s perfect. Either way, it’s more true to the movie than the NES version of the game. You all remember the scene where Dr. Grant carried a bazooka around the park and collected dinosaur eggs, right?

The Good
When you boot up the game, you will notice out of the gates that you are able to select your character. This is perfect! If you saw the movie and thought “I want to play as this guy as he tries to survive dinosaurs!” then you are just as much in luck as if you said “I wish I was a dinosaur so I could eat all those puny humans”.

Playing as Grant provides you with a variety of weapons for dispatching dinosaurs, ranging from dart guns to smoke grenades, to a taser that lets you fry them. I love games with an inventory; they make it feel like you are playing as a real character instead of some guy that has no pockets and no ability to think ahead. Also, I need to note here that the dinosaurs in this game are actually IN THE MOVIE! There are a couple that you don’t see like the flying ones, but any of the dinosaurs they make a big deal of in the film are all here.

This game essentially lets you play as Batman fighting dinosaurs. If you spent the rest of your life trying to think up awesome things, you probably couldn’t come up with a better idea than that. Grant even has bad-ass animations in the game. In the last level, there are doors in the visitor’s center that you kick open! This guy has two arms and he still thinks to himself “naw dawg, Ima kick this suckah open”. What a guy.

If you choose to be the raptor, the game isn’t quite as long, but it is still interesting. You get to kill all humans. You can even kill other dinosaurs! If you find yourself low on health, there are plenty of tiny dinosaurs running around that you can chomp on. You can even open doors, just like in the film! I found myself thinking “clever girl” every single time I used my claws to open a door. Mostly because I’m awesome.

The music for this game was pretty good. I found myself looking up gameplay videos on YouTube just to listen to it again. I’m a fan of the music in the last level; again, mostly because I’m awesome.

The ugly
This game was CRAZY hard. As grant, you could fall to your death VERY easily, just because the screen couldn’t catch up to you. In addition to this, you’d frequently be sliding down a ramp and it would launch you into spikes or down a pit, or you’d have to know to jump before reaching the end of the ramp to avoid dying.
There were plenty of cheap deaths too. As Grant, you could get stun-locked by electricity. Also if you were dumb enough to upset the triceratops, there wasn’t much of a chance of escape there. As the dinosaur, there is a level where you have to make these crazy-precise jumps or else you’d instantly die. The difficulty here was mostly because it felt like the dinosaur was constantly trying to fight you for control over itself; it was really slippery trying to get yourself in perfect position to make your blind landing. You essentially needed to play through the game multiple times so you’d know all the tricks.

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