Song Spotlight: Hilltop Mausoleum (MediEvil)

Time for the last post of my Octobering spree. I know it’s a bit late, but come on, it’s Halloween! If you’re not still up, you’re not a Halloween person. Yes, that is a type of person.

I bring you one of the greatest Halloween songs in gaming. The theme of the Hilltop Mausoleum from MediEvil, a game that in my eyes embraces the Halloween spirit in full force. This song, along with another from the game, showed up on the October playlist, and while I’m featuring that version too, I’d also like to talk about the mostly improved, orchestrated version that shows up in the remake. I complain about MediEvil: Resurrection a lot (and you’ll definitely be hearing about that at some point), but one thing it did not fail at was the music. These are epic, orchestral re-imaginings of the original soundtrack, which is a dream come true when you realize that the creators originally wanted an orchestral sound, but were sadly limited by the PlayStation’s hardware. This is what it was always supposed to be: Continue reading

Slender: The Eight Pages Review

Originally titled just Slender, Slender: The Eight Pages should be pretty well-known at this point. You’ve probably heard a lot about the game, but these are my thoughts and my verdict on the game. Indie games are rarely of fully professional quality, and you can bet I can see room for improvement with Slender, but we’ve been in need of a minimalist horror game for a long time, so we’ll see what we got. I first decided to play Slender when I heard that the game was supposed to be scary as hell. I expected a spooky game. So what did I get? Read on to find out. Here’s the game’s official site. Download is still down, but you can find mirrors all over the internet. Continue reading

Creature Spotlight: Dark Thorn

I’ve always been a huge fan of the Heartless since the first day I saw them. There was a brief period of my life sometime long after Kingdom Hearts had come out, where I started looking up all the different Heartless that existed at the time and became mildly obsessed with them. This was what made me scramble to finally pick up the series for the first time. Yes, my life revolves around monsters this much.

Then Kingdom Hearts II came around and introduced even more Heartless, but I didn’t like a lot of them quite as much because they seemed more simplistic and silly overall. There were plenty of gems in there, though, and among them is my favorite Heartless of the entire series and one of my top monsters of all-time: Dark Thorn. I know there’s a gaggle of literally Halloween-themed Heartless thanks to Halloween Town, but excluding them, I think Dark Thorn is easily the most Halloweeny Heartless because of his gothic feel and location in Beast’s Castle. Let’s have a closer look at this guy:

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Majora’s Mask Dungeons: Snowhead Temple

The Snowhead Temple review went up today on Zelda Dungeon. Again, totally just played through the dungeon to be familiar with it before I wrote this editorial. I actually thought it was a fairly forgettable dungeon in a lot of ways, not being particularly noteworthy or flashy in any respect… though it doesn’t really have specific flaws that make it forgettable.

The dungeon can be frustrating, though. It was the first dungeon of the game that I needed a walkthrough to complete when I first played through it. Anyway, you can read it here. Enjoy!

Zombotron Review

It’s been a while since I did a game review. I intend my reviews to be a notable section of this site at some point, so I thought I’d get back to it and review a game or two for October. However, we’ll be doing two indie games. The first is a humble Flash game called Zombotron.

Zombotron is a shooter-platformer with zero story aside from the basic premise (you’re escaping a zombie-infested mine on an alien world), and it’s crafted as one of those highscore-based games for an online Flash game arcade. However, unlike many such games, it’s the sort of game that’s a worthy experience on its own. Continue reading for the details, otherwise you can play the game here, here, or here. It seems to also be available on other sites if you search for it.

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Great Gaming Moments: Twilight Town (PM: TTYD)

I wasn’t really expecting a lot when I first played Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door — I’d heard it was a good game, but that was about it — so it came as a surprise when it hooked me as much as it did. It was a game I thoroughly enjoyed. But among all my moments with it, one in particular stands out to me because of how perfect it was.

Twilight Town was an awesome location in the game, as I’m going to get into. But what made it perfect is how I, completely by chance, stumbled into it right during October on the year that I played it. So for me, exploring Twilight Town and its surrounding spooky areas is literally a Halloween memory, and I didn’t plan it to be that way at all.

It really is a perfect Halloween area; more so than most games or areas in games I can think of, it personifies Halloween in almost all respects, with a great balance of whimsy and spookiness. Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door did a great job of building an interesting world in general, and with an area like this in the game, it’s no surprise that it ended up being my favorite location in the entire Mario series, and I’m going to talk about it at length and you’re going to sit down and listen to me. I mean… please?

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Creature Spotlight: Scaldera

What’s this? A Zelda-themed post that isn’t a link to Zelda Dungeon? I wanted to feature one of my favorite Zelda monsters, and a post like this wouldn’t really fit in over there, so here you go. Scaldera, boss of the Earth Temple in The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. During all the pre-release info about the game, I saw Scaldera and thought he was going to be awesome. I ended up predicting that he would be one of my favorites of the game… and in the end the only boss I enjoyed more was Lord Ghirahim. But Ghirahim isn’t a monster! Scaldera is! Clearly this was not obvious enough to prevent me from saying it! Continue reading

Great Gaming Moments: The First Zombie in Resident Evil

I’ve talked a lot about Resident Evil for October, but there’s one more thing I want to cover. It’s one of my favorite scenes from any Resident Evil game: The appearance of the first zombie. Not exactly gameplay, at least not right away, but it’s an extremely important moment for setting up the foe you’ll be facing the entire game, making it ultimately impact the game in an extremely significant way. And that’s the question every horror game needs to ask itself: How do you introduce the monster that will scare the player for the rest of the game? Well, this is how: Continue reading

Major Presence on Z-Talk #26 (Halloween Podcast)

I appeared a lot on the latest Z-Talk podcast on Zelda Dungeon, #26, a Halloween-themed podcast. This is obviously a podcast I would insist to be on a lot, dur. I actually didn’t mean to have this many segments, but I was brainstorming and I had a lot of ideas. At least they’re short! Three Wandering Beast segments and a blooper appearance of sorts. The segments discuss my dissatisfaction with horror themes in Zelda and then the idea of having actual Halloween themes in the games. I actually wrote and recorded these MONTHS ago, not long after I did the Epona one. Anyway, check it out here (alongside the other segments of course!)

Song Spotlight: Shade Man’s Theme

Yeah that’s right, a Mega Man song for one of my October Spotlights. Mega Man 7, despite the criticism it gets from the fans of the 8-bit Mega Man games, was one of my favorite games for a long time and out of all the levels found within, I don’t think any appealed to me more than Shade Man’s. I remember when I finally beat the first four Robot Masters in the game, it came as a surprise to me to see there were four new ones, and at the time I thought they were all immeasurably cooler than the first ones. I might have liked Slash Man better at the time, but as a fully-grown lover of the creepy, I now understand how misguided that was.

So in order to make up for that youthful transgression, I’m going to write a short post about his stage theme, one of the neater songs for me in my Super Nintendo days. Check it out here or keep reading for the embed.

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