Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Penny Arcade Stuff

EDIT: Went back and fixed some of the RAGE'd portions of this article.

So here we go with Penny Arcade, that video game online comic with those two guys: Tycho and Gabe.  Ok, whatever, I read a lot of their stuff--I guess because I am completely out of touch with video game culture, I find them more annoying than anything, though I do enjoy bits and pieces of it.

And now there's this Penny Arcade Convention coming up...I mean, what's up with all these conventions...  You got E3, Comic-con, Dragoncon, Leipzig, Tokyo Game Show, PAX, Otakon...oh come on, how many times do we need all these good little video game shows with all these things that I don't care about being being announced, all these media orgies, it never ends!  I don't care, just shut up and leave me alone, cause everytime I hear the word "convention," it's like fingernails on the chalkboard.  Hey, why can't we have a Daytona USA convention, or a Sega Racing one?  I'd love that!  I know there's a Sonic the Hedgehog convention though, check it out here (it's in the UK).

And this is what I wanted to post first, in honor of Penny Arcade cause they actually mentioned Daytona USA...but just the soundtrack that is.

I think the comic's good, I'm not bashing it.  Look, I like the music in Daytona USA, but why is that the single lone focus of the entire game?  What about the GAMEPLAY...yeah I'm crazy to bring that up, I know.  The soundtrack is what "hooks" the mainstream gamer, not the gameplay itself--that would make too much sense.

Oh and just for you Penny Arcade nerds out there, a nerd orgy just in time for the big convention!  Oh man, gotta love these guys.  I think it has nothing to do with the covention organizers, but come on.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Now We Know Why Toshihiro Nagoshi Is A Loser

Besides his tanning booth adventures and obsession with his Super Monkey Balls, now we know why he's such a flake...

He's Japan's biggest gaming drunk (according to Suda51).  Congratulations Nagoshi, you bring HONOR to Sega in the form of supporting the wine industry...

FYI if you don't know, Nagoshi-san is the producer behind Daytona USA 1 and 2.  Yu Suzuki was behind OutRun, etc.  Check out this Nagoshi article/interview from 2004 if you want to learn more.

God, who's gonna save Daytona USA now...

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Why NASCAR Is So Popular...And How To Improve Nationwide Series

I was watching some NASCAR race and I got to thinking why this is such a popular sport.  It's been said this is "the fastest growing sport in America," yet you got all these knuckleheads on the Internet talking down, saying it's just for rednecks, etc.  But wait--who said that being a redneck is a bad thing?  At least they go out there and work with their hands while you nerds sit around complaining about your little FPSes and World of Warcraft characters and stuff (I'm pathetic but not because of WoW and stuff).  But here's the three reasons why I think NASCAR is popular (and no, I'm not including the WRECKS):

1. Immense speed, close races.  When watching a Formula 1 race, it is not uncommon to see guys get far ahead and win by a mile.  It still happens in NASCAR, but it's generally top-speed, very close racing, lots of cars in the same place.  Remember, "rubbing is racing."  It's always exciting to see guys within inches of each other battle for position because the tracks are so wide open.

The world is flipping over!  I'm gonna be sick!

2. Drivers with character.  Now you might say, "Well, there's nothing wrong with these Formula 1 drivers, you're mislabeling them," and I don't know a whole lot about them either, but these "good old country boys" just driving their cars around, giving those race interviews, smiling for the camera, etc.  You got Dale Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, whoever--just cool guys.  Unless they've broken the law or have had adulterous affairs, I don't know how you can hate them.

There's a reason they called him the "Intimidator."  Cause I'm feeling intimidated right now.

3. Cars look cool.  Don't get me wrong, it's nice how Formula 1 and Le Mans cars are designed, but with a stock car, it's an empty canvas.  Like the other cars are more pragmatic in nature, but with stock cars, they really catch your eye.  You got all these skittle-colored cars, different logos, sponsors, just a lot of room for imagination.  It's neat to watch all these cars drive around at once, buy Hot Wheels cars, etc.  Just cool to look at.

This is one of the best things ever made.

There's a reason I brought this up.  I know that today, there was a Nationwide Race at Montreal where Boris Said sneaks by Max Papis at the last second.  I've never knew about this Montreal track until now which is strange because you seldom see technical tracks besides Infineon and Watkins Glen.  Drivers not from the States tend to win these races cause they're more acquainted to this kind of racing...haha, real funny.   Said was a car length behind Papis and on the final turn, he just came in on the inside, Papis on the outside, Said got the edge and won by an inch.  Good race.  Check it out (speed up to 3:25 when it gets really good):

To me, and I guess this is how it works--you got Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series.  Sprint Cup is for the "pros," Nationwide Series is for the "noobs."  I don't know what's the real difference is because they race on most of the same tracks, but all I know is that Sprint Cup has more viewers.  Then you got the Craftsman Truck Series which I hardly see on, but it's about driving stock trucks...kind of cool, but as you know, I'm a car guy.

Want to know what would help Nationwide Series, despite the fact you got all these weird sponsors like "Furniture Row" or "Long John Silver's"?  How about using car colors colors other than black, white, red, and yellow?  Ya know, make the cars look a little less bland?  Like look at these examples:



Hey look!  Blue, but still it's "crap blue," might as well be black instead.

Anyway, I don't hate Nationwide Series cause racing is still racing...this is just my suggestion though.  Just because it's not Sprint Cup doesn't mean the cars have to look boring.  If the rules somehow prohibit this, then throw the book in the garbage and let these paint guys have more fun.  That's all I gotta say, so cya later.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

I'm Travelin' Down The Road And I'm Flirtin' With Disaster

Before I post, I would like to point out some changes in the violent video game article I posted a few days ago.  Because I never 100% iterate my thoughts the first time so give me a break.


This Friday had to be the most fun day when it came to driving home.

Picture this.  It's 2 PM and I'm driving alone 40 miles home on Interstate 12 from Hammond to Slidell in my "Mach 5," my rugged car I won't even talk about to keep you stalkers away--I'll tell you it's blue though.  The midway point is Covington, a place I used to go for school, but that was four years ago.  It starts raining really hard.  I go slow, like 50 mph, but people keep zipping by.  When I get near the exit to Covington, traffic comes to a standstill.  Apparently some dumbass got in a wreck and held up traffic.  I could've waited in line for hours but I saw the exit to Covington next to me...so I impulsively jumped off the highway instead of waiting it out, hoping to find a quick route past the wreckage.

At this point, I was driving from a shopping mall into the woods surrounded by neighborhoods following a trail of traffic who had the same idea as I...  I didn't really know where I was--I didn't have a Garmin, Tomtom, GPS device, map, or compass, but in my mind, I knew I had to "Go East."  Like if I took a left or a right, I knew the whereabouts on which direction I wanted to go and hoped that I would end up someplace familiar which would lead me home.  Plus if I followed traffic, I feel that I could get somewhere.

I'm driving through this town--Mandeville, Tangipahoa, Tchefuncte, Lacombe, whatever.  Small town with a lot of tall trees and old houses.  Bumper-to-bumper traffic--I figured I was going the right way and I followed my "compass."  Unfortunately, I was driving along and everyone cut to the left at an intersection.  Thinking that it was against my compass to go left and wanting to dodge traffic, I go right.  How stupid was that.

So I'm driving down little streets with plantation houses, grass fields, and maritime museums, wondering when I'd hit a major road that would take me East to my home.  But no, didn't happen.  After driving around like an idiot, the forest makes way for these weird bushes and a wide open skyline--like those you'd see in a marsh.  So here I am driving down this rugged little two-lane street, going through the brush, puddles everywhere, no traffic, WHERE THE HELL AM I GOING??

If you're here, you're either goin' fishin' or you're hopelessly lost.

So I drive down this three-mile road that I couldn't do a 180 on and at the end is this fishing dock.  DEAD END, GOD HAVE MERCY ON MY SOUL.  So I backtrack to the town, take a few turns down narrow roads trying to follow my "Go East" compass.  I cruise over some bridges, some condos, then the treeline comes back so I knew I was going somewhere better.  So I finally end up in a somewhat-urban area and realize "Yeah, I'm in Mandeville or something."  So I'm cruising down the road, passing by some fancy neighborhoods, a CVS Pharmacy, a Burger King, etc.  By this time, my compass just about failed--I didn't know which direction I was driving so I hoped to come across a highway or a distinct landmark for guidance.

I come across this V-shaped intersection, kind of like in OutRun 2.  I can take a left or a right.  My instincts said go left, but traffic blocked me off from going left, so whatever, I go right.  Driving down this big avenue, faint memories aren't enough to help me know which direction to go.  I spot a highway and drive towards it.  I end up hopping on a road and guess what--I'm on the interstate heading towards a toll booth just before the Causeway (world's longest bridge)!  It connects Mandeville with Metairie (which is by New Orleans).

23.87 miles (38.42 km) long.

I thought besides riding the bridge there and back, I would have to resort to turning around, but there were no accessible lanes going the other way.  Hop the curb?  I was about to do that until I saw this little escape route next to the toll booth.  Take that and end up on a service road and I'm back in business.  I was that close to death.

At this point, I travel back up the road, navigating under highways and biways, dodging school buses and snobby soccer moms, back to the V-shaped intersection.  I take the other route ("left") and start cruising down the road.  Oh look, a bank, a Wendy's, a Chinese Restaurant!  Now I know where I'm going.  I come across a highway, jump on the onramp, and within ten minutes or so, I'm back on Interstate 12 going back to Slidell.

Guess how far up the highway I moved from my shenanigans?  Three miles.  That's right, drive around Louisiana backwoods for two hours just to move two miles up the highway.  Not only that, but traffic was moving fine so I could've bypassed the wreck if I had just waited.  I am the world's biggest idiot.  But I am the world's biggest Daytona USA idiot so that's better than rock bottom.  Plus I got to sightsee around this lovely state, I love this place very much.  We've been through Katrina and BP, Saints won the SB, we have good food, yeah we're badass.

Burnout & Need For Speed?

But really, I feel kind of bad for NFS since I liked High Stakes and Hot Pursuit back around 2000, but Burnout, no pity whatsoever.  EDIT: New NFS: Hot Pursuit and it's good, that's what I heard.  Oh and this is pretty cool:









Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fake Sonic The Hedgehog Mushroom Hill Video

This is semi-old news but still I'm gonna post it anyway since it has moved me enough recently.  WARNING:  This is not a fangame, this is just a video made in 3ds Max.

It's really gorgeous to look at.  This is made by a Sega FAN by the way.  Why is it that the fans do a better jobs than Sega themselves?  I know that there's gonna be a Sonic 4 and Sonic Colors or whatever--I really don't know how those games are going to turn out.  All I know is that the last couple of Sonic games...not really home runs if you know what I mean.

Either way, Sega, step it up!  We're dying here!  We're kicking and screaming for Sega goodness, but we don't get much in return...  I mean, it took a little studio called Sumo Digital to create a Sega racing game that had more Sega character and goodness in it than the rest of the games released in the last five years or so...  I mean, that's why I make this blog, the Daytona 2 Forza 3 cars, the e-mails to Sega, whatever!  You've also got guys emulating Model2 arcade games like Daytona USA and others to be played on the computer!?  What else do we need to do?  Take some pride in your organization!

And while we're at it, go to this Message Board Topic on model3's "Sega Racers Megamix" and go there, sound off, shout as loud as you can, cause I can't take it anymore.  Get the word out.


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Gloves Are Coming Off (Games Are Too Violent And They Suck)

You know, yesterday, I was feeling mellow, alright, school wasn't too bad, but today, I'm really pissed off.  Parking at college is horrific--I literally had to park in the lone corner of the campus because the rest of the spots were taken.  Had to walk fifteen minutes to and from class in the swelling heat.  That's gonna screw me out of a good grade in my first class because we have surprise quizzes that I can't take if I'm late.  What a piece of crap.

But I would like to take the rest of the entry to say this to the Video Game Industry:  All your games suck.  Here's why.  I collected a bunch of articles from that garbage Kotaku site and here we go, time for the breakdown:



I'm pretty sure that everyone knows about the original Motorstorm for the PS3.  It's a rally game where you drive 4-wheelers, rally cars, bikes, big rigs, whatever.  Someone at Sony had a serious mud fetish cause within seconds of the race, your car goes from squeaky clean to absolutely muddy.  Disregarding this, it was an okay game.  But this time around, they decide to rehash the same game, this time taking in the apocalypic badlands of an abandoned city.

Let's put the whole 3D junk out of the way.  WHY DOES THIS GAME HAVE TO TAKE PLACE IN A WASTELAND???  Why does every game nowadays to seem "good" have to take place in some sort of dark, grimy, depressing, macabre-like setting!?!?  Okay, we have FPSes like Gears of War, action like God of War and Devil May Cry, indie games like Limbo, whatever, keep it to yourself.  But now, it's leaking over to racing games as if racing games nowadays haven't been bastardized enough.  WHY DOES THIS NEED TO HAPPEN!?!?  WHATEVER HAPPENED TO GOOD CLEAN FUN!!!??? WHY DOES EVERY GAME NEED TO BE AN EXERCISE OF MY DEPRESSING SIDE!!??!?!

Let me point to UK Resistance's "Blue Sky in Games" campaign cause they're absolutely right.  It's okay to play an emotional little game here and there set in some dreary backdrop, but whatever happened to stuff like "Let the good times roll!"???  I mean, at the end of the day, you can give me this gloom-and-doom BS about how we're all gonna die, but do you think God gave us the emotion of joy never intended for us to use it?


I don't know about you, but I could just stop there and leave frustrated.  But the mutiny continues.  Check this out:


Are video games soap?  Basically, by soap, they're products that you use and are done with.  They don't have any significance in the long run.  My ideas deviate from the article quite a bit.  Look at it this way, you got all these FPSes and action games every which way.  They keep spitting them out and they're all nearly the same.  You got these gritty FPSes with all this blood, you got all these "kill everything on the screen" games, you got car racing with explosions and gorgeous "car violence," I mean, it never ends!  Whatever happened to making games that last for a lifetime!?  There aren't many games out there that don't copy the same-old formula.  Make a game like Halo, like Call of Duty, add lots of guns, etc.

EDIT: I mean, look at Daytona USA, look at OutRun, these are games we never forget about!  They engage me!  After going through a million FPSes and other junk, there's only maybe three I still care about--Goldeneye, Perfect Dark, and Counter-Strike 1.6 (GoldSource).  What ever happened to the substance?  A lot of these games look to sell a bunch of copies, not to leave a lasting impact--that's not to say they all do, but there's not many.


This article claims that as video game graphics become more realistic, they become more brutal and mind-numbing than ever before.  Because games like Halo and Call of Duty are so popular, devs are hauling ass more than usual to make dirty, grimy FPSes and spit 'em out on the market.  To be fair, none of these games are THAT bad but these aren't the kind of games I want to go through like Fig Newtons in the sleeve (see previous article).  It's disturbing because if you take a look at the lineup of the most popular games nowdays, at E3, at Stupid Generic Gamecon that comes out, most of them are M-rated.  It's just "kill, kill, kill."  That's not to say all FPSes are dreary and depressing.  I mean, I like FPSes, but games like Perfect Dark are a farcry from the muck that we have now.  I just can't wrap my brain around this crap anymore.  I mean, 2000 was about when FPSes were at their best, then they just went downhill since, especially due to the fact that they're now undisputably the most popular game genre.

EDIT: That is not to say that every game that comes out is bad.  I mean I still like FPSes, but COME ON, turn down the violence and come up with something new.  If you're going to make an FPS, at least make it somewhat colorful--Team Fortress 2 and TimeSplitters come to mind.  Or at least use someone other than the n-teenth "grizzled space marine," or "elite military operative."  Seriously, let me reiterate this--if I see another Master Chief clone, I am going to snap.  Gotta give props to Valve cause they use scientists and regular joe dudes in their games, much more entertaining.  I love those little Garry's Mod videos--Valve always has funny characters.  I talk about Valve a little bit here (they dodge the bullet just a little).


One more article and I'm not really going to comment on this one much cause I can't take it anymore and I'm sounding repetitive.  One of the main reasons I like FPSes is because of the tactical and excitement aspect.  Contrary to these people who spit out this behavoristic worldview that all human beings are out to rip each other's heads off and suck their blood (and have rough sex with all the women too), I'd like to think that gore doesn't make the game necessarily better.  I like FPSes for the tactical aspect, kind of like how in Pac-Man you eat the dots and in Mario/Sonic, you get to the end of the level.  It's challenging.  Competing against other people can be fun.

But somehow, in the end, it has to be about violence.  Hey, if I want to get excited about something, I'd rather play a good racing game.  And GTA, I play that mostly to drive around, because TBQH, the shooting action in all those games stink.  Give me CS instead--I'd rather kill terrorists instead of innocent AI civilians walking down the street.  At least the T's in CS are a little more settling IMO, plus it's less violent and borders on hilarity (funny death sounds).

So what can we do about it?  Well, the only game company that seems to be making "friendly" games is Nintendo.  But they're only making them on the Nintendo consoles, which means that the Xbox 360 and PS3 are just this wasteland of games.  Remember the movie "Escape from New York" where Manhattan gets turned into a maximum security prison full of gangsters and Kurt Russell has to go in and save the President?  Well I feel like that we 360/PS3 users are in that prison.  We're just in this mire and we're trying to get out.  So Nintendo is practically useless at this point, screw 'em.

And this brings me to Sega...  When I look at the Dreamcast's lineup of games, they were friendly, they were happy, they made me feel GOOD.  That's why I wholly advocate them and wish that Sega had kept up their quirky goodness because I feel that if things don't change in the next few years, consider Sega dead and all these crap games will rule the world.  I'm dead serious.  Sega needs to step it up here, I'm serious.  Cause I can't take it anymore.  Just gonna end it here since I'm out of things to say.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Daytona USA Drama--Why I Like This Stuff

You know, right now I'm not in the best of moods, thanks to school and gaming culture, but I don't want to get negative this time around, let's focus on the good...

I've been doing some thinking about the games I like and why they affect me so much.  I'm come to the simple conclusion--they don't just make racing games fun and exciting, but they also take them seriously.

What do I mean?  When it comes to racing, there is a certain level of excitement.  It's fun, it's fast, but you're also racing.  There's a lot of tension and drama.  You're controlling a two-ton object attached to the road by four pieces of rubber while flying over 200 mph.  If that's not enough to get your heart racing, then I don't know what else will (besides getting shot at or falling without a plane without a parachute).  It takes guts to race, it really does.  You have to focus at all times, you never stop, you never get to rest.  It's fun but it's also a big deal to compete with others, overtake rivals, and get to that Winner's Circle with the trophy.  It really is one of the gutsiest sports there is and it makes me sad that no one can't get the mix between fun and seriousness right.

Well, let's go to one end of the spectrum.  You have games like Cruis'n World and Mario Kart which are, for lack of a better term, meant for the "kiddies."  Burnout, you wreck and blow up and stuff, I've gone into detail about how it's an "in-your-face" racer with good visuals, but come on, this isn't the kind of game that I would grit my teeth and play over and over again to shave off hundreds of a second.

On the other side, you have stuff like Forza, Gran Turismo, Formula 1, whatever.  These games are difficult to play but are very rewarding if you do them right.  However, as one person on the old D2 board pointed out, these aren't really "games," they're simulators.  A simulator is something that recreates real life.  A game is something that plays by its own rules.  Daytona USA isn't the kind of game that a professional race-car driver can master in a day.  Not only that, but sim games are usually lackluster in terms of soundtrack (using licensed music instead of creating their own) and lack that sense of speed in lower-level cars.

Once again, I'd like to highlight Daytona USA 2 because for one thing, it's an arcade racer with ridiculous physics, slidings, extravagant courses.  But it's also a game that requires tons of practice, precision, and even luck.  The sound effects in all these games are superb--Daytona USA, OutRun 2, they all do.  Like they're in your face and they mean business.

About Daytona 2, one thing I really like to point out is the soundtrack.  I love this music--it blends excitement with drama.  This soundtrack used the talents of the band Winger--Reb Beach on guitar and Rod Morgenstein on drums.  The lyrics are rather hokey (they were written by Japanese of course)--one person on YouTube sarcastically compared them to Bob Dylan lyrics.  Okay, but let's look at some of these excerpts, this one's from Slingshot (Beginner Course):

Passion of my spirit
Fusion of the engine
Traction of the tires kicking up road
Overtake your rivals
Can you see what's up the road?
A mirage

This chorus is repeated multiple times.  It's like a race car driver is constantly running laps, waiting for the end, feeling every movement of the car.  The last verse of the song goes:

Passion of my spirit
Fusion of the engine
Emotions I can't control
Drive into the final turn
The checkered flag you'll see is no mirage

I don't care what anyone says--I see this as powerful stuff.  I'm gonna go ahead and say this--Daytona USA 2 is one of the few games that "gets it."  Like I play all these other racing games and they're either too lenient or too serious.  This game epitomizes the most important part of racing games--excitement.  There's a lot at stake, I'm here to win, not to laugh it up and shoot shells at other players.  Also, Slingshot is probably the most beautiful song I've ever heard--with the glory note leading to the climatic ending and Dennis St. James' rising voice pitch, I used to get teared-up over it.

The only other song I'd probably say is as beautiful isFleetwood Mac - The Chain.  Just like Slingshot, it has this climatic ending full of drama and excitement.  Another is Tom Petty - Running Down a Dream , which is another great song similar in nature, awesome guitar solo at the end.

Here is an chorus from Skyscraper Sequence (Expert Course):

Streets filled with lights
Like a stargate from and old Sci-Fi movie
My mind filled with delights
Voyager for the treasure of pleasure
I don't give a glance to the rear view mirror
I know you're all behind me
Grace and elegance, that's what you need
Not only for the race but for your way of life

Remember how in Talladega Nights how Ricky's father tells him "If you ain't first, you're last"?  Well, it's kind of the same thing, except obviously in music form and not as crude.  It's beatiful, not only is the race what's important, but we all have this passion inside of us not to just race but to get up in the morning and go do our thing, to make an impact on the world.  There's a lot to be learned from racing and like I said before, you're not going to get inspirational lyrics like this from anywhere else.

And then we get to I Can Do It (Advanced Course) and Battle on the Edge (Intro) & Selector/Tips to Win.  Here's one excerpt from I Can Do It:

My sight goes fading black
My sense flashes razor sharp
I'd give my life for this excitement
Iron beast, roarinng in front of me
Shaking the crowd, going wild
Shaking the track, even the earth

These songs don't capture as much drama but make up for it in pure excitement.  Like it really doesn't get as intense as this--I mean, even the freakin Selector song is exciting.  Some real-life songs I think are similar are Molly Hatchet - Flirting With Disaster, Motley Crue - Kickstart My Heart, and ACDC - Thunderstruck.  I swear these songs just get me PUMPED.  I mean, there's time to cut the tension with a knife but sometimes, you just wanna let go and kick some ass.  Seriously, like I said, Daytona USA 2 is one of the only games that gets it right IMO.

Because I really don't want to go that much further, I want to talk about OutRun 2 briefly.  I mean, just looking at the footage, all the vibrant tracks, the car pacing forward with the whining engine, and the dramatic music (Shiny World).  It really doesn't get any better than this.  OutRun 2 is really a blessing that we take for granted.  I mean, just looking at footage of the game gives me chills.  This game's easy to learn but difficult to master.  Props to Sega AM2 and Sumo Digital (made the home ports).

As for Daytona USA and OutRun, most of these songs are really just for pure joy.  I mean, here you go--Daytona USA's Sky High and OutRun's Splash Wave (OR2 remix).  They make me just wanna get up and go for a drive--how about you?

I'm going to conclude with this...I'll repeat it again, Sega really is the only racing game developer that gets it right.  I mean, you go driving, but you gotta have fun and understand the intense circumstances of driving a car.  That's probably the major reason why I love these games so much and they make me happy even though I can't play them.  I hope this entry has made your day--it certainly has made mine...

I added a link to this article in the "Why Sega Racing Games Are So Good" page, just worth mentioning.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Brian Regan Standup!

Last night (Saturday), I got back from a Brian Regan comedy show in New Orleans.  It was really good.  He did mostly new stuff but it was good to see him live.  I sat three rows from the front.  Pretty good time.  I yelled out "Free Snow Cone!" and he heard me.

Here's some Brian Regan.  He's a family-friendly comedian, not really offensive, good mannerisms, funny voices, yada yada yada...:

Dumbest Scam E-mail I've Ever Seen?

I got this yesterday in my e-mail inbox.  Apparently the spam filter didn't pick up on it.  Oh man, if I don't reply to this e-mail soon, I'm screwed!  I feel like a dumbass having read this.

Send this jackass back to grade school cause with the grammar and crap visual appeal of this e-mail, he'd have the survival rate of a mosquito in the business world.  Yeah, I guess he learned from all the other jerks to throw in "We apologize for any inconvience," that really softens up the customers a bit.  Overall an F- in effort.  Click on the pic for larger size.

BUT WAIT, IT GETS BETTER....Crap Scam Email, the sequel!!

The big red text in the box is a marquee that scrolls to the left.  OOOOOOO, that really gets my attention, very professional...if this were 1998.  If I see this person out on the street, I'll rip his heart out of his chest and show it to his face before he dies so he can see how black it is...

And yes, I know there's probably worse e-mails out there (i.e. Nigerian prince thing), but this one at least "tries" to make you think otherwise.  I just feel like ripping these jerks a new one right about now. I'm just sick and tired of this crap.  Like my blood boils every time I think about this.


Oh and while we're on the subject of "Dumbass Internet Crap," years ago I had to deal with another computer of mine getting an bunch of viruses and spyware because my brother insisted on playing stupid "free" online games like Adventure Quest and Graal or whatever.  I told him not to but he did it anyway.  Now he just sits around and plays World of Warcraft--at least that's spyware-free (I think).  These are some of the popups that kept appearing in my quest to save my computer so I decided to screenshot them and reveal them for the idiots they are:

Now you know how I feel, but for all the wrong reasons.

I love the irony how spam popups advertize spyware removers.  Would I trust this software to work?  As much as I'd trust a sex offender with my only child.

I'd rather be a hobo hanging out down by the Shell gas station than an airhead Hollywood celebrity so no thanks.

And I could insert a billion "Free Smiley" ads here too.  They all look like ass to begin with so why would I care?  And Ebony, with all your cleavage shots, go play in traffic with Active Enterprises too, I'm serious.  I hate all of you guys.


You know what.  Right now, I've dealt with enough spam, spyware, viruses, e-mails, and other garbage that to be quite honest, I have no tolerance for this crap anymore.  Computers are supposed to be treated like a good thing, but we've got crap like this going on which just insults all of our intelligence, so you should be pissed too.  And there's the reason why I don't allow ads on this blog!  Because I'm sick and tired of looking at this crap wherever I go (yes, they're Google ads but still)!  And yes, there's devices that you can download to get rid of this crap.  I'm gonna take care of that later.

This is a dumb article but I don't care, I'm letting out some frustration.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Rock Band 3 Keyboards!!

Look, right now I'm tired, I don't want to take much time so I'll make this quick.

The Whole Rock Band 3 Setlist.  83 songs that you'll get sick and tired of playing over and over again so make way for the DLC whores online!!!  There's not many songs that I'm enthusiastic about in this list.  I like how we got Foreigner, Dire Straits, The Doors, Golden Earring, Queen, Steve Miller, Lynyrd Skynard, Elton John, Def Leppard, Deep Purple, Stone Temple Pilots, Tom Petty, Jimi Hendrix, a lot of the rest is either unheard of or I don't really care.  No Fleetwood Mac or Aerosmith though, why I'm raged over this traversity.....

Good news is that many of the songs have keyboard tracks that you can play with the new keyboard peripheral.  Two octaves!  This instrument in combination with the vocal harmonies mean you can have six or more people playing at once--guitar, bass, drums, keyboard, main vocalist, extra vocalist(s).  I don't know how that's gonna work with just four control slots and limited space on the screen, but they're gonna do it somehow...

I really don't know a whole about what's going on, but you can expand the size the keyboard depending on difficulty (for instance, on easy you're playing 5 keys, medium 8 keys, etc.).  Anyway, you can play the whole width of the keyboard on "Pro Mode" and "shift" to account for octave changes.  And for songs with brief keyboard parts and mostly guitar and vice versa, you can play BOTH guitar and keyboard on this peripheral, maybe both in the same song.  I'm really excited to play this.  Too bad many old RB DLC songs that have piano don't have keyboards charted.  And to make things more screwed up, Queen's Somebody to Love and Boston's Smokin' have keyboards charted on guitar, so yeah.

RB3 comes out on Oct 26 so I'm stoked--one of the few games coming soon that I really, really want to play.


Ya know what, since we're on the subject of Rock Band, I might as well throw this in here too.  I once talked about getting the Daytona USA 2 songs into Rock Band via this new "Rock Band Network" crap (you can create your own tracks and put them up on the store IF they pass a quality test and you have the copyrights to do so).  Slingshot would have good vocals, I Can Do It would have good guitar, Skyscraper Sequence would have good drums and bass.  But forget about those songs, they're too good to be in a game with a creepy fanbase (you haven't seen the drummers I run into online).  I say throw Initial D songs to the dogs.  They'll eat that stuff up, good drums, funny vocals, whatever.  Ok, not gonna happen but it would be funny to imagine.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Ten Notoriously BBBAAADDDD Driving Games

And when I mean bad, I mean REALLY bad.  Like Superman 64 bad.  And this isn't a hit on Cruis'n World cause it doesn't even fit in this category, it's leagues ahead of this garbage.  This article's just for fun, it doesn't have EVERY bad racing game in it but still, it covers the ones that have YT footage of them...  NOT IN ANY PARTICULAR ORDER.

1. Hard Drivin' (Genesis): This game was quite revolutionary as well as quite good in arcades, but the Genesis version...who wants to play a driving game running at TWO frames per second?  I sure as hell don't.  It doesn't even have the cool instant replay wrecks.  I mean, I hate them in Burnout, but come on, gotta give me SOMETHING to keep me interested in this.

2. Cosmic Race (PSX): I've never really heard of this game until recently but I have no idea what the hell's going on here.  You, uh, fly these weird blimp things and I can't take it (yes I know the still image is some furry dude, don't know what's up with that).

3. Club Drive (Jaguar): While this game has free reign and you can drive around and race against the clock, the fact that the world has no texture whatsoever and that the collision physics are incredibly wonky makes this frustrating to play, much less look at.  And for a 64-bit console, this looks horrible.  Also, what's that at 3 minutes--an orange loaf of bread?  Oh wait, that's supposed to be a cat.  And the music, oh geez, brrrzzzz this, zzzziiippp that...

4. Daytona (Genesis): Part of the Action 52 game for Genesis.  Thank God this isn't the NES version.  Either way, holy cow, a game with the word "Daytona" in it--I'm delightfully surprised.  Is this the Daytona USA sequel we've been waiting for!?!?!?  No, it's an ass-backwards cardboard-cutout Lamborghini Diablo crap simulator thing with crappy OutRun-esque traffic where everyone drives the same damn red jalopy.  Not only that, but the Daytona logo looks like some asinine MS Paint thing drawn by a 5-year old.  What an insult to the Daytona name.

Sega, please save us from this traversity NOW.  Kick Active Enterprises' ass all around for that traversity to mankind that was known as Action 52 on the NES that was sold for TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS.  Poor souls that bought it...  Like you'd rather be violated by your dentist than buy that game when it came out.  Seriously, go play in traffic, you bastards.  The dentist too.

5. Carmageddon 64 (N64): I just loathe the Carmageddon series since the last thing we need is a Postal-like game combined with Driver or something...but this is the worst of the Carmageddon series.  Crap graphics, made by Titus, the same people that brought you Superman 64.  You run over zombies.  Car handling looks like garbage.  This game sucks.

6. Yaris (X360): This is everybody's "favorite" free Xbox Live Arcade game that has unfortunately been removed from the Xbox servers.  I got 200/200 on this game.  I really don't know what I was thinking, it took AGES to do.  Shooting up lucha libres on bikes and floating iPods.  They were on drugs when they made this.  The whole dreary futuristic/sci-fi/virtual-reality angle just murders it too.  I tremble in fear whenever I see a Toyota Yaris on the road--an appendage will protrude from the hood and shoot lasers at me.

EDIT: Had to switch videos.  Ignore the commentary, it's the best video I found.

You have no idea how much trauma I went through to get this.

7. Spirit of Speed 1937 (DC): Oh gee golly willickers...an LJN game on the Dreamcast...OH THE HUMANITY.  80 SECOND LOAD TIMES, WRITE IT DOWN PEOPLE.  It doesn't look too bad, you get to drive "vintage" cars, but the handling's crap and the graphics are incredibly unappealing.  Buy Metropolis Street Racer, Daytona USA 2001, Crazy Taxi, ANYTHING but this.  Oh yeah, and if you think I'm making stuff up, check out the GameSpot review.

8. Cruis'n (Wii): Yes, I know this seems like a low blow to the Cruis'n games.  No, seriously, all other Eugene Jarvis racers aren't as bad as this buggy, clumsy port that has no business spreading to home consoles like a virus.  It looks "tolerable" at first, but looks are deceiving--this game's screwed up, much worse than the arcade version.  Think I'm blowing hot air again?  Check out Alex Navarro's Golden GameSpot review.  I have it printed up on my wall.

9. Desert Bus (Sega CD): Part of Penn & Teller's Smoke & Mirrors, the unreleased Sega CD game.  This is a joke game--it is deliberately terrible, but nonetheless terrible.  You drive a bus down a desert road from Tuscon, AZ to Las Vegas, NV, about 8 hours straight.  There's no traffic, nothing exciting whatsoever (a bug splats on the windshield at about 5 hours), you can't pause the game, and the bus veers slightly to the right.  If you go off-road or stop for a few seconds, your bus fails and a tow truck carries you slowly back to the starting point (in real time I might add).

If you make it to the end, you get literally nothing for your endeavors, no spectacular ending, and then game gives you ONE point and offers you to try again for some "overtime."  I guess if you wanted to tell the world "I beat Desert Bus," then give it a shot, but still, just stay away.  I know it's a joke game but whatever.  Though it has a SWEET guitar solo to get you amped up for some badass bus drivin' action (sound quality is butchered here though).

It's also worth mentioning that a group of gamers are playing this repeatedly to earn money for Child's Play Charity.  Check it out here.

10. Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing (PC): It's not a "Worst Games Ever" list without Big Rigs.  I have no idea how you can release a game like this for sale and show your face in public ever again.  It's a bunch of Russian devs that may have ties to the Mafia, I think.  Oh dear.  Once again, Alex is the man.  I can't find anything else to say about this dreck.  I mean, imagine if they made a Daytona USA-style game like this with stock cars and stuff--I think I'd become a drifter and get drunk in bars all my life to ease the pain.

There's other bad driving games like Pulse Racer (Xbox), the game where you driver literally has a heart attack if you go too fast, and Ambulance Driver (PC), a garbage Crazy Taxi ripoff, but that's it, that's enough crap for me.  You can look up some more bad games, but I can't take it anymore.

If you managed to get through this whole thing, then here's your reward:

Guess What The Cat Brought In...

My younger brother jumps from thing to thing...like That's So Raven to Indiana Jones to Legend of Zelda to Super Smash Bros...well he bought this N64 game he always wanted to play and guess what it is...:

EDIT: Okay, so I actually saw some footage in action.  I didn't play it though, I just watched.  The framerate looks damn fast, there's 30 vehicles on the course, and you can slip and slide.  Okay, sounds like a good diversion.  I didn't like two things though.  First, there's NO detail around the courses whatsoever, no buildings, mountains, anything.  I can tell Nintendo was trying to keep the game running as fluidly as possible, but the game makes me a bit depressed to watch.  Second, the announcer and robot voices are annoying, unintelligible, and should be replaced.  That's about it.  I'm not gonna taze this game, bro.

If you need additional reading material (cause I ain't gonna rant on this any more...not that I hate it or anything) click on this thing.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Uh, More Cruis'n World? Also GT5

Yeah, first and foremost, if you haven't read the Midway article I posted days ago, check it out even to see the new Kenya video of cars maiming animals...if I haven't changed your outlook on Midway or the Cruis'n series, this will.

Because I'm entertained by crap, I found this unique Cruis'n World beta dev interview...ah yes, there is Mr. Jarvis himself.

I don't even get the first 90 seconds of this, like this French dude can't even touch the Most Interesting Man in the World (oucwutididthar).  Right away, you see the Devastator (silver car) from Cruis'n USA which sucks that they took it out (who cares anyway).  I had no idea that they went out to different places to take pictures.  Upping the framerate was a good idea, the sense of speed in this game isn't too bad.  Then the art guy at 5 min says that he wanted to make "fun" tracks.  I agree, we need more interesting tracks in video games, but gimme OutRun 2 tracks if I want to "cruise the world" or some crap like that.

Also what's this about taking gamer suggestions?  Adding all the things you've wanted to do in a racing game?  How about going over 200 mph, using the brakes, making the gameplay more rewarding, shooting bazookas from the headlights, oh hell you know already, I'm just sipping the Hatorade...

I don't always play racing games....but when I do, I prefer SEGA!

Also, if this game couldn't get any damn weirder, check out the ending (speed up to 1:50, btw this is the arcade version on MAME).  Oh Bill Clinton, geez, Midway is obsessed with the man.  He was in Cruis'n USA and NBA Jam too.  And that "We're cruis'n now," line was pretty tight.

This is the part of the entry where I have to put some stupid "I really don't hate this game and I'm not a Sega fanboy" disclaimer but you get the idea.  Really.


Yeah, and I might as well squeeze this in here.  Gran Turismo 5 will have up to 16 cars on track, maybe more.  Get your notepads out Turn 10, that's eight more than you have.  Ok, maybe you already knew that but that's just in case.  Also, here's this B-Spec mode that's not like the other one (set speed to 3x, AI to push, you win).  Instead, you play the pit chief  and can tell the driver what to do.  You "train" him not to screw up by keeping his Physical and Mental meters up.  If he loses control of his feelings, he'll lose the tactical advantage or worse, spin out, so it's a long, drawn-out process to make your own little Michael Schumaker out of 0's and 1's.  Tell him "Try to go easy on the car," and "You can take him," and he'll get the picture quickly.  Oh, and some of these cars are looking damn sexy, I hope this game turns out OK.

I hate Kotaku but I have no where else good to get comprehensive news?  And don't say G4, oh God no.

Obligatory American Football New Orleans Saints Post

Well, I might as well say that I'm a New Orleans Saints fan and that I'm glad they won the Superbowl last year.  I'm from Louisiana.   I'm not a bandwagoner--I've been a fan since I was 10 or so when I could actually understand football.
Drew Brees getting on the cover of Madden is surreal...he's a class act.  Sean Payton, the players, everyone fits in.  I like this team.  But yeah, if you're a fan of another team I really don't mind, please don't boycott me.  It's kind of strange that we're the "King of the Hill" now and we'll probably get taken down and that's sports.  We have almost no control over the outcome of the game so I've kind of burnt out on football.  I'll still watch because it's like chewing gum--it gives me something to contemplate about, I just don't want to get pissed off about it.

Last year's games:

Dolphins Week 7: It's nice to see the Saints rally back when down big.  Great teams don't always play 100% but they find ways to win.  I also got a man-crush on Reggie Bush after he did that leap into the endzone on the 6-yard line.

Patriots Week 12: This showed the NFL we were the real deal.  Getting Bill Belichick to say you're one hell of a team means a thousand times more than some stupid talking heads' opinions on EPSN.

Redskins Week 13: Despite that Brees INT that Meachem took back from the CB, we sucked.  Slipping and sliding all over that soupy field all day.  I got pissed off thinking we were gonna blow our 11-win streak.  Turned off the TV, played some Modern Warfare 2, looked at stuff on the internet, then I see some thing on the MSN website--Saints miracle comeback.  I turn on the game and the Saints kick the winning FG in overtime.  I don't even know how they did it, I'm such a bad fan for turning away.  I'm sorry, I still can't get over that strip, Meachem snatched the ball away like taking a woman's purse...or a marble rye.

Cowboys Week 15: First loss, you can't win that many games in a row especially with mounting injuries.

Vikings NFCCG: Women have child birth, men have sports games.  This had to be the most painful game I've ever watched.  It was close, got some fumbles (DC Gregg Williams emphasized the turnovers), our offense stalled somewhat, had to get a few breaks but tell me what sports team doesn't.  When Favre was moving into FG range at the end, yeah I was sick.  But that pick was a result of Favre not wanting to get hit again.  Surreal moment at the end

And check out Paul Allen's response to the Favre INT.

Colts Superbowl: Well, you know how this one turned out.  The media gave us a 1% chance to win basically and we showed them.  LOL onside kick at the half and it worked.  Peyton Manning said he wanted to throw the game-winning TD in the Superbowl someday.  Well he did...for the other team.

After the SB, we were excited as you can see...  Somehow my brother got the bright idea to go to Academy Sports to go buy a Saints T-shirt...well, everyone else thought the same thing too.  Traffic jams all over the place, people honking their horns, cheering, blasting music.  Saints parades, gear, throwing beads, etc.  The crowd was good-natured, no riots or anything.  And this was in Slidell which is some regular Joe town, wonder what New Orleans was like.  Now that was crazy.  After 40+ years of losing the Saints did it.  I really didn't think they could do it but they did.  I was very happy for everyone, they really enjoyed it (at the expense of Cardinals, Vikings, and Colts fans...but what can you do).

A lot of people couldn't find any good reasons to attack the Saints so they attack our fanbase and call us bandwagoners...well, the Superdome is loud as all hell on gameday, we have crazy fans, we loved to watch the Saints after hurricane Katrina.  Yeah, you're going to see more Saints gear when they win but that's natural of course.  Besides, the Saints are a classy team anyway (except for the late hits on Favre but haters gonna hate)--the Who Dat Nation--so shove it.

The SB wasn't that good for me because it was on a Sunday.  I had Calculus III on Monday and Wednesday.  Wednesday was a test and Monday was the review day.  I missed Monday (not because I was getting drunk, I'm sober) and it didn't help me that much on Wednesday.  So thanks Saints, you screwed me out of an A-test grade.

So, uh, it's really hard for a team to have back-to-back SB's.  The Patriots and the Cowboys did--you can't say the Saints can't do it.  But they may lose.  If they win or lose I'm not going to rub it in.  It's too emotionally stressful and I can't really take watching season after season when, like I said, I really don't have any control over the outcome.  Just hope for the best and remember to have fun, that's about it.  Remember that sports fans, even our "futbol" fans from Europe and ESPECIALLY LA Lakers fans.  Don't get raged, trample people, riot, burn cars and buildings, it's just not worth it.  Find something else to do.

 For everybody, I guess this whole "take it easy" thing when it comes to sports will suddenly vanish when gametime comes.  It's a never ending cycle.  I tried.  Besides, I get more pissed when I lose at Perfect Dark or Call of Duty anyway so sports are a joke as far as I'm concerned.

BTW SUPER DELUXE BONUS, Jim Mora Saints rant (during Dome Patrol era), he's the king of being being mad without going overboard, tons of rants like this, beautiful, my favorite clip:

See more Jim Mora clips here.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Gran Turismo 5 & Virtua Tennis

On the first day of school, I'm hot for my Management teacher--ok I just made that whole thing up.

I'm keeping this pithy.


Gran Turismo 5 will have custom track creation (limited in scope however).  It will also have go-karts.  Cue the "blue shells" crap.  Anyway, I can tell that the devs really, really, really want this game to be good, but the delays are going to kill interest in this.  Is it going to be released November '10?  Maybe, maybe not, but I bet the delay will last as long as Brett Favre's career...  I can only wish them luck, really.  When are we gonna get Forza 4 anyway?


Yes, Virtua Tennis 4 announced for the Playstation 3 used with the PSMove controller.  Sound grand, we could use some more tennis games right about now.  I love it.  Anyway, it's still Sega's baby so you know it's gotta be good.  Hope it turns out ok, it better be good or I'm putting Sega on the bunsen burner again.

From the article:

But I guess we may have to wait to see if SEGA does announce if the game is going multi-platform. It does look promising though, because they haven't stated it as a "Playstation exclusive" . . . yet. Basically, I just don't want to spend £300 on a new console, an extra £100 or so on a couple of Move controllers and then about £2000 on a 3D TV to get the full Virtua Tennis 4 experience.

Yeah, that's about right--the PSMove and the Kinect are gonna bring in this whole new wave of gaming...  Think about Sega--the Sega CD and 32X come to mind adding "new life" to an existing console.  Well guess what--additional, expensive peripherals necessary to play a few games doesn't sound like a good idea.  Plus this whole motion control fad is getting old, although I'd prefer the PSMove to the Kinect or even the Wiimote depending on how good it turns out.  I know how everyone wants us to make the leap into "virtual reality" but I don't care--I JUST WANT GOOD VIDEO GAMES, PREFERRABLY SOME DAYTONA USA SEQUELS OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT.  Although the irony in my statement is that we have Virtua Tennis/Fighter/Racing, oh haha.  Though I hope that Sonic Riders Kinect game turns out well.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Miniature Daytona USA/OutRun Cabinet!

Rather old but still worth mentioning, a mini Daytona USA/OutRun/etc. cabinet.  This is very well done but I can imagine it being hard to play for fast times on.

Also: A glitchy Daytona USA cabinet.  Stuck in the skybox during the Rolling Start and the timer stays at 50 seconds.

Guy merges NASCAR with Daytona USA music...and he deleted his video so I'm just gonna get rid of it.


BTW, I guess it's worth mentioning that I added a paragraph to the Adventures in Daytona USA Part 2 entry so if you already read it, check it out.

Ding Dong, The Witch Is Dead? (Midway/Cruis'n Games/etc.)

Feb '09, Midway declared bankrupcy (which explains why Midway games like Smash TV, Paperboy, and Root Beer Tapper were taken on XBLA).  Apparently, today, all the studios are gone forever or are sold to someone else, as you can tell by the Midway logo in the trash can.  I'm going to say a few words--I'm not going to kick the company while its down but I'm not going to give an eulogy either.

BUT FIRST, let me just say that I'm going into the Cruis'n series quite a bit here.  Before you all call me a fanboy, a whiner, a stupid idiot who doesn't know anything, let me just say that I have played A TON of Cruis'n World and Cruis'n USA in arcades and on the N64.  I sat there with my little N64 racing wheel and got 9,999 points on Cruis'n World, unlocked the Speed Demon as well as all the other cars (except for the Tommy which I think is impossible).  I also set a world record on Cruis'n USA which I think may have been beaten right about now, but since the site that held the record has disappeared, it's really nothing right about now.  What I'm trying to say is that I've spent a copious amount of time playing these games so you can't say I don't know anything about them.

Probably the hardest track in the history of racing games.

Midway has always been a punching bag of mine, mostly because of its IMO mediocre Cruis'n series which has turned Sega racing games into an endangered species as far as I'm concerned.  That latter reason is why I take this a little personally, otherwise it can exist all it wants and I don't care.  But you kind of have to give Midway some credit for they've really pushed arcades ahead in America such as Paperboy, Smash TV, Root Beer Tapper, Defender, Joust, Gauntlet, etc.  They were kind of a "we make whatever games we want and you can't tell us otherwise" developer.  Plus they've released a ton of their arcade games in their Arcade Treasures series (although the emulation wasn't 100% perfect).

Cruis'n Series: There's Cruis'n USA, Cruis'n World, and Cruis'n Exotica, three arcade games that came home on ports for various consoles.  John Marine wrote a pretty good article on this here.  Well, what's my problem with these games?  Well, let me go with what I really don't like about it...

* It's a twitch racer.  Basically, the main difficulty with the game is not hitting the driving lines, instead its simply reacing to turns and oncoming traffic.  Most tracks anyway, some like Chicago and Redwood Forest in Cruis'n USA are insanely difficult.

* No need to use the brake at all.  Very little need for skill and not much room to improve yourself.  Flips, barrel rolls, etc take some skill to do but that's about it.

* Collision detection.  If you're driving along and you make a little love tap with another racer, just flip two coins, one for yourself, one for the other guy.  If the coin lands on heads, spin out.  If tails, lose about 2 mph and keep going.  Basically, it's just like a random integer that causes you to spin out for no reason whatsoever.  For some reason, the likelihood of a spinout is much less in Cruis'n USA which means it got worse then on IMO.

* Rubber band AI.  OH MAN DO I HATE THIS.  You can be in the lead, cruis'n, first place, not doing anything wrong, hitting whatever racing lines may exist, but the computer will still be riding your ass the whole way.  Sometimes when I'm playing this (this is mostly in the arcade version for obvious reasons) I lose and it just makes me want to punch the screen.  And another thing Midway has the kindness to do is offer a "free race" to those who come in first, but you might as well play a light stopper game if you want freebies.

* Time limit is too generous.  Races are too short, some lasting at least 1:30 or longer, depending on how well you drive.

* This one's for the arcade versions of Cruis'n World and Exotica, I'm looking right at you.  When you're on the Kenya track or whatever, little sprite animals like zebras and elephants can wander right out onto the track.  What happens when you hit them?  They explode into blood chunk giblets that fly all over the place.  PETA should've sued Midway for this.  Anyway, I might've found this entertaining...if I were a five year old who likes making farting noises with my armpits and making death threats against Barney the Dinosaur.

About as gruesome as a shotgun-wielding lunatic at a furry convention.

On the other hand, there's a few good things I can say about the Cruis'n games and that is it's got a decent "vibe."  Like it's a game that doesn't take itself seriously.  Good music, good menus, cool cars, a decent sense of speed.  It's not the worse game I've ever played...but at someone whose standards are way up high, I don't know, I just can't take it at all.

Cruis'n USA came out in '94, nearly the same time as Daytona USA and Ridge Racer.

The original Cruis'n USA had a Ferrari Testarossa, '63 Corvette Stingray, a Jaguar XJ220, and some weird '30's Chevy...thing.  The cars were cool and the music was good which IMO makes Cruis'n USA the best in the series.  That was before the series took a dive into Darth Vader territory with a bunch of ridiculous cars like little Beetles, Hummers, that 3-wheel truck thing, as well as flips and stuff which really make zero sense in any racing game as far as I'm concerned.  This game even has drifting which really doesn't make any sense other than to do heli spins moves.

Like I said about the Cruis'n games, they're games that you can't take seriously.  I mean, when I'm playing Daytona USA or OutRun, I always gotta do my best, but here, it's just stupid fun.  But that's the main problem--it's something that NO ONE takes seriously!  It's a game that the average Joe arcade gamer throws money at and then quits because they don't feel like playing a game like Daytona USA and busting their ass to get better at it.  And that's why I think the Cruis'n games are dominating the arcades.  And that's why I have a vendetta against them.

Everything Else: I could've gone into a long list of games but since this article's too long anyway, let's just sum it up quickly.

Mortal Kombat, their most prized possession.  Personally, despite the violence, I never saw it as that great of a fighting series because it mostly ran on the blood gimmick.  The later 3d series has really improved it's visage when compared to serious contenders like Street Fighter, Tekken, etc.  Not going to comment much since fighting games aren't my forte.

NFL Blitz and NBA Jam, not bad.  They got numerous home ports (including a new NBA Jam game coming soon) and they are pretty goofy.  Although I prefer NFL Street, Blitz is basically rugby with QBs and RBs throwing the ball 50 yards with a perfect spiral and late hits and all that crap.  Still, it's good fun and it's pretty easy to pick up.  NBA Jam, fun too.  Decent sports games.

San Francisco Rush, probably their best game IMO.  Decent racing game with low gravity, the tracks are cool, tons of secrets.  And get this, YOU HAVE TO USE THE BRAKES.  Rush 2049 is a good arcade game that actually warrants some replay value (finding coins, gaining miles), but it didn't last long.  Too bad the N64 versions were graphically underwhelming even by N64 standards.

Rampage, basically you play as three Godzilla-sized monsters and go punch buildings and eat people.  Game really makes zero sense whatsoever but I can see little kids getting a kick out of it.  The game basically becomes a "don't lose your HP" game as tanks and helicopters shoot you up and I never really could do anything to stop it.  So yeah, this one's stupid.  BAD.

Area 51 and Lethal Enforcers, compared to Time Crisis and Virtua Cop, this one's just laughable.  There's no way to avoid getting hit so it's really up to level memorization to beat the game.  At least there's a few cool secret items and rooms and crap.

Hydro Thunder, everyone knows about this one.  It's a boat racer which is pretty cool and it's basically in every arcade in the world.  It's one of Midway's best products, but I'm not bombastic all over it.  Check out the new H2O Overdrive for arcades or the Hydro Thunder game for XBLA if you're so inclined.

California Speed, the bastard child of Cruis'n World and San Franciso Rush.  It's basically like Rush but you can't blow up and are glued to the road.  It's got some crazy locales like Silicon Valley and Mojave Desert which leads to environments such as large supercomputers, UFOs, volcanoes, large shopping malls, roller coasters, etc.  It's still a pretty crappy game though.

Revolution X, remember this gem?  It's got Aerosmith in it, but still, not even they can save it.  Why AEROSMITH WHY??

Remember, music is the weapon.

Primal Rage, a bunch of dinosaurs punching each other in a blood bath to the death.  Evo and Major League Gaming is considering adding this one to their lineup.

I could really go on, but that's about it.  After '09, Ed Boon (Mortal Kombat creator) continues to work at the old Midway Chicago studio under Warner Bros.  Eugene Jarvis (Cruis'n creator) bailed out and created his own company called Raw Thrills where he can spam Cruis'n and Area 51 clones to screw us over in the 21st century!  Fast and the Furious = game of the century.  So I guess you can say Midway really isn't "dead."

Anyway, bankrupcy can be bad and there's probably some Midway fans hurting right about now.  But what if something like this happened to Sega?  Didn't they come close to biting the bullet after the Dreamcast?  I don't know, it's just something scary to think about.  If Sega is gone, not only would you lose Daytona USA, but any chance of sequels!  Plus Sonic the Hedgehog, which would make tons of kids and the UK cry.  I'm outta here, adios.