Thursday, April 3, 2014

Diary Entry #23: Handheld Trekkin'

               Lately I've been working on an article for, so I've been a little inattentive to my poor little blog. I've been playing Destiny of an Emperor and it's many sequels to gather screenshots, and I don't really feel like writing about here. Don't want to get burned out before I even start writing the article.

               I did take one slight diversion in the past few days. After my extensive look at Star Trek: 25th Anniversary on NES, I finally tried the Game Boy version. I remember an article in an early issue of Nintendo Power boasting about how different they were. The credits indicate that the game was principally designed and programmed by one man/woman: Cary Hammer. Cary formed Unexpected Development in 1990, a company that mostly developed Game Gear and Game Boy ports of random console titles. The only one I've played is Jungle Strike for the Game Gear, but their version of the pinball classic The Getaway: High Speed 2 looks phenomenal. It's interesting that the game is copyrighted in Cary Hammer's name and not Unexpected Development's.

               The game starts with a smattering of side-scrolling shmup sections. None of them are particularly interesting, although I bet they'd be pretty good to pass the time on a long, long, long car ride. These sequences took over forty-five minutes, yielding a handful of exciting moments. The asteroids sections are the best, with tons of debris and strange solar flares coming at a constant pace.

               Finally, I make it to the planet Neural. Doesn't look like a whole lot's going on down there.

               I love the Star Trek style banter in the cutscene. William Shatner's expression is suitably ridiculous, while Spock looks uniformly stoic. The random mention of sci-fi sounding terms like beta particles are also a big plus, giving the game that kitschy Star Trek feel. 

               The game goes down hill from there. While I explore Neural, I quickly discover that the planet's surface is covered in gross looking puddles. These hurt me, so I have to wander around them aimlessly with little direction. Overall, hardly enjoyable.

               Right now I'm cruising through Destiny of an Emperor 2, which is much worse than it ought to be. It gets rid of the great general recruiting system of the original, forcing you to endlessly fight generic units until you make it to the next big battle. This effectively neuters most of the original's intensity, but at least it's more Destiny of an Emperor.

               I've also been playing a lot of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire Second Edition for Game Boy Color. I'll probably cover that and discuss Contra: Legacy of War, which I plan on picking up tomorrow.

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