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Video Game Rankdown Pt. 2

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Oops I have another write-up left to send.. will do it today

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I’m into my 8th day of quarantine and I gotta say I’m very bored even though I have a thesis to work on. Plz Dee post.

 

I also started Animal Crossing and I am very much in love with it. Though I was excited to play and be on a sunny island because it’s cold and rainy where I am but my first day was like entirely rain! 😂

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i love animal crossing, at the end of day 1 now and cant to shit.  Blather taking his sweet ass time to set up.

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I’m still struggling to name my island. Why did the developers force us into such a tough decision?

 

I am almost done with Doom Eternal. Flawless game. 
 

Four more DWTS write-ups to go before I start posting these write-ups. Or what I actually

have from people. 
 

Sola, Victoria, Rei, and Megan are accounted for.

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15 hours ago, NGM said:

I sent everything on Monday

 

14 hours ago, Steven_ said:

I sent my rankings.

 

Oddly enough, I have nothing from either of you. IDK what happened. Can you both resend?! I'm sorry!

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40 minutes ago, Deeee said:

 

 

Oddly enough, I have nothing from either of you. IDK what happened. Can you both resend?! I'm sorry!


Sent it again.

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Just now, Steven_ said:

Sent it again.

 

Got it! Thank you!

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32. Banjo-Kazooie (N64; 1998)

 

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Banjo-Kazooie is without a doubt my favorite game of all-time. Vibrant, charming, humorous, adventure-filled, gratifying, challenging, complex, innovative, creative. There is a reason that this title occupied so much cultural space upon release in 1998, and still remains one of the most widely beloved video games ever made. The deep exploration, colorful world, and insanely memorable cast of characters really set this game apart as a unique take on the platforming genre. Banjo-Kazooie ushered in a new wave of video games: open-world exploration. Games that are not confined to a space, but instead envelope you in a world that feels like a never-ending reality. A game with a fully realized world, character, and heart. Banjo-Kazooie has more heart, character, beauty, fantasy, and fun to be found than nearly every other video game ever made. That is a big and bold statement, but a statement that I stand by with conviction. A masterpiece game with my favorite bear-and-bird duo at the forefront. So happy to see this masterpiece come so far in this Rankdown. Truly deserved.

 

On 3/10/2020 at 10:11 AM, totes4totes said:

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I'm not the biggest Banjo-Kazooie fan. But I enjoy it. Most of my time spent with it when I was younger was watching my then best friend play through it on their N64 so I didn't really get a chance to play the game myself until I got Rare Replay for free with my XBox One purchase a few years back. But even though it's not my favorite game, I'd be a real dummy to ignore the cultural space it took up 1998 and still occupies today (even if I'm firmly in the Super Mario 64 is the better and more important game in history). Especially as nostalgia comes around for these 3D platforming collect-a-thons (ex: A Hat in Time, Yooka Laylee). 

 

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Banjo-Kazooie is one of the many Rare developed games released for the N64. If not for games like Mario Kart 64 and Super Mario 64 and Super Smash Bros, Rare probably would have been considered the premier developer for the N64 over Nintendo itself. Unfortunately Rare games did not necessarily age as well as the first party Nintendo games. The exception to that is probably Banjo-Kazooie. 

 

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If you read my original write-up on DK64 you know how I think the N64 collect-a-thon is done poorly. Too long, not enough reward for exploring and collecting, too much back-tracking, too many things to collect, etc. Well, take all the opposite of all those and you have pretty Banjo-Kazooie, pretty much the perfect collect-a-thon. 

 

The game was released a scant two years after Super Mario 64 and the extra time Rare had to get a handle on the limits of the N64 paid off. While Mario 64 is perfect in just about every single way, it really cuts back on the detail of the world. The only things you see are the necessities. Rare created a much richer, more detailed world for Banjo-Kazooie and it looked incredible for the time. 

 

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This graph is from this Ringer article: https://www.theringer.com/2018/6/19/17476536/banjo-kazooie-rare-mario-nintendo-98-video-games

 

And I'm inserting it because you can see the precipitous decline of platformers once the 3D era hit. Banjo-Kazooie came out at the lowest point for platforming games and I think showed the world what a non-Mario 3D platformer could look like. And what it could look like was a game focused on exploration. Super Mario 64 has you accomplish a task and bounces you right back to the beginning. Banjo-Kazooie lets you collect everything seamlessly and lets you really explore. Though it's not an open-world game, it paved the path for those games in a 3D space. 

 

Microsoft famously bought Rare in 2002. And I think Nintendo really let that happen because they saw that Rare's approach to platforming wasn't their idea of what the future of Nintendo would be (there are very few Rare-like games on the GameCube). And that's partially due to the failures of DK64 which took collect-a-thon way too far. But with Banjo-Kazooie, Rare found pretty much the perfect balance that wouldn't really be achieved again until A Hat in Time or Super Mario Odyssey. I don't know if I'd necessarily recommend Banjo-Kazooie to a brand new gamer looking to get into games, but for somebody who had already played Odyssey and wanted to explore a slightly more frustrating game in terms of mechanics and limitations of the era, sure Banjo-Kazooie is a great place to go. 

 

 

 

On 3/17/2020 at 11:42 PM, .Rei said:

Banjo-Kazooie

 

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Banjo-Kazooie is simply a master piece. Along with Super Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time, is a game that helped the Nintendo 64 to establish itself as one of the best consoles ever if not the best. 

 

Banjo-Kazooie is a single platform game where the player controls Banjo and Kazooie, a bear and bird, as the try to stop the plans of Grutilda the witch, who is trying to steal the beauty of Banjo's little sister, Tootie. The game is full of originality with beautiful and creative worlds,  fun puzzles, cool abilities and a great pace of story that makes you just want to keep playing and playing until you are able to complete the game. This game is seriously really amazing and even if I have not played in a long long time, I'm pretty sure it would still be great to play right now. I think that Banjo-Kazooie always get overshadowed by Super Mario 64 and Ocarina of Time, but I think the game is as amazing as those other two.

 

 

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I would have preferred this game to last longer but it was still a great run and I'm happy it wasn't cut before reaching the finals cause it surely deserved to make it here.

 

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Banjo Kazooie is one of the all time greats and one of my favorites ever. Best soundtrack of all time, fight me. I did a replay of it in 2017 and it still holds up. Just pure quality.

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24 minutes ago, FrogLenzen said:

Banjo Kazooie is one of the all time greats and one of my favorites ever. Best soundtrack of all time, fight me. I did a replay of it in 2017 and it still holds up. Just pure quality.

 

ILY.

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9 hours ago, Deeee said:

 

 

Oddly enough, I have nothing from either of you. IDK what happened. Can you both resend?! I'm sorry!

I also sent my rankings and a few write ups a few days ago. :thumbs: Did you get them? 

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3 minutes ago, ~Tom~ said:

I also sent my rankings and a few write ups a few days ago. :thumbs: Did you get them? 

 

UGH NO. I literally do not know why IDF ate this stuff up. Can you do a quick resend please?!

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Posted (edited)

31. Mother 3 (GBA; 2006)

 

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Well done Megan. LOL. Mother 3 really is a fantastic game that deserves a proper release in the West! Nintendo + Inoue need to give us a proper Mother 3 re-release for the Switch because that would be amazing.

 

The third and final entry in the Mother/EarthBound series, this game sat in development hell for quite some time. Development on the game began in 1994, with hopes to release the title for the N64 upon seeing the success of Super Mario 64. The hopes were for a 3D title, but over time, the production team realized that their hopes for Mother 3 would far exceed the technical capabilities of the N64 system. The developers set their sights on a launch release for the 64DD, the expansion feature for the N64 system. Except the 64DD was a commercial failure, so production of Mother halted again. Itoi finally announced the cancellation of the game after so many significant delays, despite early demo plays receiving a ton of praise and stoking the flames of anticipation. Iwata + Miyamoto changed their minds, and then shifted resources and focus on to a GameCube title release. Then the plans for the game were scrapped altogether because the 3D gameplay system proved to be too complex. A few years later, the game restarted development for the GBA and eventually was released in 2006 after a shift from 3D to 2D graphics. 

 

The gameplay is that of most top-down 2D turn-based RPGs, but of course with the flare of an EarthBound title. New to this entry is the musical combo system, which allows characters to attack enemies multiple times in a row if the attacks are timed with the beat of the background music. PSI abilities make a return. Odometer health. Power points. Hit points.

 

The story picks up an unknown amount of time after the events of EarthBound. The story follows Lucas and his party of friends Kumatora, Duster, and Flint as they search for Claus, Lucas's twin brother, after his disappearance and the murder of their mother at the hands of the Pigmask Army. The story is told across eight chapters. 

 

Mother 3 is notoriously dark and gritty in terms of story and thematics. Itoi sees the story as a duality between lightheartedness/wackiness and the darkness of a world that will inevitably end. All of these themes are explored in one of the most complex video game scripts ever written, as well as through the amazing soundtrack composed by Shogo Sakai. "Love Theme" is honestly one of the most heartbreaking tracks in video game history. 

 

This game is easily the biggest "cult classic" in video game history, partially in part due to its limited release in Japan only. Same with the titles before, Mother 3 received critical acclaim for the depth of its script and story, unconventional art and gameplay style, the wackiness of the world, and the level of detail found within the game's direction. The cutscene animations are incredible and unexpected for such a simple, 16-but 2D JRPG. The heavy thematics focusing on chimera, dualities of dark and light, and mothering are just so brilliantly explored in this game. The gameplay mechanics and game difficulty could be improved upon, but those are minor details to pick at in comparison to the large deal of perfection this game serves.

 

1 minute ago, Solaris said:

This took so long because Mother 3 is the one game I didn’t want to do a write up on.  See Megan’s write up, it’ll be infinitely better then mine because she actually cares.

 

On 3/12/2020 at 9:42 AM, totes4totes said:

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At this point in time, Mother 3 is probably the most famous game to never come to the west. It's so famously not coming to the US that it's a meme at this point. Every E3 and every Nintendo Direct wish lists throws on a "Mother 3" to the West joke because we all want it and it's never coming. It's so famously never coming that there's an INCREDIBLY good fan translation for the rom that took thousands of hours to make and has its own Wikipedia page. It's probably the most famous fan translation of a game in existence. 

 

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Mother 3 was first released in Japan in 2006. To say that it had a troubled development would be an understatement. A follow-up to Earthbound (or Mother 2 in Japan), Mother 3 started development in 1994 and was supposed to originally be released on the Super Famicom. Then with the release of the N64 and inspired by the 3D Graphics of Super Mario 64, Mother 3 then was planned to be a N64 game named Earthbound 64. This got so far in development that a demo was shown off. However, sometime between 1999 and 2000 Earthbound 64 was cancelled OR moved to development on the GameCube. Finally in 2003 with the release of the GBA and a move back to 2D graphics, development for Mother 3 picked up again and was finally released in 2006. 

 

There are many games with troubled development cycles and when they are finally released the product is sub-par or just never happen. So the fact that Mother 3 exists at all is nothing short of amazing. The fact that the game is as fantastic and as high quality as it is is astounding. 

 

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I'm guessing that a lot of you haven't played Mother 3 and that it was dragged this far by my own will. But I'm sure a lot of you are familiar Lucas from Super Smash Bros. 

 

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Anyway, I'll summarize Mother 3 so you know the game he comes from. Without spoilers I guess? So just the basic plot points. Usually I wouldn't worry about spoiling a nearly 15 year old game, but since it never came to the West I will avoid that by just pulling the first paragraph from Wikipedia, it pretty much sums up the prologue of the game:

 

"Taking place in the fictional Nowhere Islands an unknown length of time after the events of Mother 2, Mother 3's story is told in eight chapters, including a prologue. The game begins with twins Lucas and Claus and their mother Hinawa visiting her father, who lives in the northern reaches of the Islands. During their stay, their residence, Tazmily Village, is invaded by mysterious forces known as the Pigmask Army. Hinawa's husband, Flint, is awoken by the Pigmasks' forest fire: Upon learning his family has not returned, he searches for them, and discovers that Hinawa has been killed by the normally docile Dragos protecting Lucas, and that Claus has disappeared. As Hinawa is laid to rest, Flint attempts to search for Claus, where he is nowhere to be found."

 

The game kind of proceeds in one part trying to determine where Claus is and another saving the world. The themes of modernization and mechanization of the world and destroying its natural wonder are still important today.

 

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If you've played Earthbound or really any other 2D RPG you know pretty much how Mother 3 is played. A unique thing about Mother 3 is that its battles feature a system where if you tap the buttons to the beat of the music you can score better more powerful hits. In random enemy encounters this is pretty easy as the beats won't really throw you off. But the battle in the second gif actually uses a 29/16 time signature. 

 

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Mother 3's silly humor (similar to Earthbound) and very cute graphics kind of hide the fact that it's one of the most emotional games I've ever played. I mean the game starts out with the Mother dying. I played it my first year in undergrad and it was probably the first game that really made me cry. Now I cry at everything. 
 

If you like JRPGs, especially Earthbound, Mother 3 is definitely a game worth playing. It's not too long and it's overall a really good game. I would not have brought it this far otherwise. 

Edited by Deeee

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@Solaris - I accidentally deleted your PM though. Will you please resend your PMs with all your stuff when you get the chance? Thank you!

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13 minutes ago, Deeee said:

 

UGH NO. I literally do not know why IDF ate this stuff up. Can you do a quick resend please?!

Resent! :thumbs: 

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6 minutes ago, ~Tom~ said:

Resent! :thumbs: 


Still nothing...

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, Deeee said:


Still nothing...

Oh you deleted our previous PM conversation. Anyway I started a new one and sent again. :thumbs: 

Edited by ~Tom~

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6 minutes ago, ~Tom~ said:

Oh you deleted our previous PM conversation. Anyway I started a new one and sent again. :thumbs: 


Maybe this is why everything disappeared. Because they were in the conversations and I didn’t see any new notifications, so I though stuff was safe to delete? IDK.

 

Thank you though for resending! Everybody is now accounted for, and once Sola has the chance to re-send everything, I will finish this off tomorrow and post our Top 8! Hopefully this should all be finished within the next few days.

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On 3/21/2020 at 9:16 PM, Deeee said:

I’m still struggling to name my island. Why did the developers force us into such a tough decision?

Be like me and at 11:30 at night just name it after yourself.

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17 minutes ago, totes4totes said:

Be like me and at 11:30 at night just name it after yourself.


My name is cheesy, but it’s what I landed on after debating furiously for like an hour. LOL.

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My copy of Animal Crossing: New Horizons hasn’t arrived in the mail yet.

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10 hours ago, Steven_ said:

My copy of Animal Crossing: New Horizons hasn’t arrived in the mail yet.

I went digital for that reason. Even though I almost always go physical for Nintendo first party and the Nintendo published titles.

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