Saturday, 26 October 2013

Mame Hidden Gems - G is for... (Pt1)

Note: Most of this post has disappeared into the void. No idea what has happened but I'll endeavour to get it rewritten soon.

Let me fill you in on a little of the process by which these blog entries come about.

Firstly, about a month ago, I played through every Mame game I could find.
A collection of around 9000 files was weeded out for poker games, Mahjong games, trackball games and just plain old bad games.
This gave me my 'Long List' - about 1300 games.

As I had been whittling down from 9000 to 1300 I made notes of any game that I wasn't already aware of but which impressed me - and it's these notes that I refer to when writing this blog.

I know this sounds like pointless ramblings but I promise you that I'm going somewhere, do bear with me.

For each of the previous letters of the alphabet I have chosen my three recommendations from between 2 and 8 games, from my notes, that fit the bill.
For example I'd noted 4 games originally for A, B had 6 notable entries, E had only 4...

For games beginning with 'G' there were 23.

After eliminating those that that only flew under my personal radar rather the games community's in general (Guwange, seriously, how did I miss that!?) I'm left with 15 'actual' hidden gems.

And I don't want to drop any of them.

So here's what's going to happen:
I'm going to divide them up into categories and the next 4 'Hidden Gem' posts will be themed accordingly.
The first of these categories is, predictably, Vertically Scrolling Shooters.
So - finally - here we go with 3 best slightly obscure V.shumps the letter G has to offer.

First up, G-Stream G2020.
As you can probably tell from that picture, this one is a real beauty, ground and air based enemies are all beautifully drawn and have a real feeling of weight to them.
The game was designed by a guy called Toshiaki Fushino who bloodied some ideas in this that have apparently gone on to become mainstays on the recent hardcore gaming scene.
Primarily, there's a great power-up system whereby the three types of shot fired by your ship are proportionate in power to the coloured cubes that fill the representative bar.
If you manage to fill the bar with a single colour that weapon becomes a super weapon.
It's great system and really adds an extra level to proceedings.
To further as to your arsenal there are two super bomb types.
The first is a standard big-explosion-that-blows-lots-of-stuff-up bomb and is fuelled by simple pick-ups.
This second is a 'black hole bomb' that absorbs enemy fire and is powered by medals that are dropped when enemies are destroyed.
The combination of all these mechanics and the fantastic design make G-Stream a great game, and it's all rounded of by a well pitched difficulty level too.

Note: The post went on to recommend Guardian Storm and Gunnail