Thursday, February 23, 2012

Almost There

Thanks to everyone for their patience while I finish up Episode 43. I've been so insanely busy this last month or so. My mother was in the hospital, I was sick, then my wife was sick... it's been hectic. Also, I've been unable to focus lately because I've so excited about the upcoming Hunger Games movie! OK... not really. I'm not even really sure what The Hunger Games is. It's a kid's book that's supposed to be the new Twilight or something? Yet adults are reading it? And its sort of like Battle Royale? I don't understand any of this stuff.

Episode 43 has been completely recorded and only needs to be edited at this point. If I buckle down and work steadily, it might be ready by Sunday. No promises. 

In other news, qayllS has pointed out this link to a post about a Famitsu reader's poll of the top 100 Famicom games. The poll is a few years old, but still quite instructional. You might recall I discussed another Famitsu poll about the top 100 games (all platforms) and was shocked and horrified by Super Mario Bros 3's low showing. Thankfully, the Famicom list corrects that error, with SMB 3 taking the third spot. Other than that the two lists line up pretty well in terms of Famicom games, with both lists agreeing that Dragon Quest III, Final Fantasy III, Super Mario Bros, Dragon Quest II and Dragon Quest IV are among the best 8-bit titles. The kids in Japan just loved themselves some Dragon Quest back then.

There is quite a bit of complete insanity on this list, most notably that Spelunker placed above Metroid. And somehow Castlevania III ranks at #75, below complete and utter crap like Kinnikuman, Ikki and various Dragon Ball games. Hell, Contra placed well below Wagyan Land! I hate to jump on the "Japan, you so crazy!" bandwagon -- but this list is pretty weird. There are some really odd omissions: Ninja Gaiden, Bionic Commando, and Super C to name a few.

So, keep your eyes open for the huge, 20 game, new episode of Chrontendo soon!


Anonymous said...

If I remember correctly, Famitsu is their most popular game magazine, and for years now their review scores have been too forgiving.

What kind of list would we have seen from Gamepro/IGN readers?

Kevin "k8track" Moon said...

I still enjoy watching your Top 10 worst games from 1983-87. Were you planning on doing one for 1988, by any chance? Also, have you thought about doing a Top 10 Best Games of 1983-87 counterpart?

Lewg999 said...

Hey there , Glad i found a decent series on retro games at last :D

Have you considered a top ten of the years you have done? I think that would be great.

Keep up the good work :)

plsburydoughboy said...

Oh my God, Dr. S. You don't have to tell us the specifics, but I hope you and your wife are doing better now. It's easy for us to take for granted retro game reviewers take time off when they get sick (or in one lucky reviewer's case, pregnant :D)

I'm definitely looking forward to the next episode, and glad to know the Japanese aren't as crazy as we thought they were for ranking SMB3 that low this whole time.

Kamiboy said...

When you leave the ordering of best of lists to an indiscriminate mélange of dilettantes whose voting contemplation ventures not beyond their personal childhood experiences you always get a puzzling ensemble of items.

It is perfectly natural too, it is often up to the whim of the fates what most people are exposed to as they just sample a medium effortlessly, just consuming whatever comes their way by chance and sheitgeist.

Most people don't play enough games and are not so interested in a medium to know about and have played all the titles of import that it offers, even the obscure ones, even the ones before their time or from their time which passed them by unnoticed.

Games such as Metroid were never very popular in Japan, and the likes of Super C and Bionic Commando prolly did not enjoy the cultural exposure in Japan that they by chance gained in the overseas markets, so they are underrepresented on a popular list such as this.

The reasons are not likely connected with quality either, more likely it is closer related to happenstance such as being at the right place at the right time.

The Famicom certainly had a lot more titles out for it than the NES ever got, so truly outstanding titles were up against greater odds in Japan to come out at the right time and garner some attention.

That being said, if you were to compile similar lists gauging the average overseas gamer opinion you will most definitely find equally disturbing discrepancies.

I am certain absolute mediocre garbage like Halo will somehow find their way into such a top ten lists. In fact you will no doubt find that many mediocre shooter find their way onto such a list as they are sort of to the overseas market what Dragon Quest RPG's are to Japan.

Anywaste, my point is such lists are only good for gauging the stench of the sheitgeist. If you really want to have a credible list of medium standouts you go to the experts and connoisseurs who are really interested in the medium and all its offerings.

I mean, what would you trust more, a list of top movies compiled by film critics or one compiled by open democratic voting of ordinary movie going public?

Doctor Sparkle said...

My wife and I are fine. I just came down with a bad case of gastroenteritis and she had a cold which she milked the hell out of.

A few people have asked me about a Best 10 for the Famicom list, but I don't think I'll ever be doing one. There are already so many lists out there, and I wouldn't be able to add anything interesting by saying how cool SMB 3 and Mega Man 2 are. The Worst list is interesting because most of the games are so weird and obscure.

There is a top 10 list from IGN readers in the post about the Famitsu list. It has a few modern console games along with the older Zelda/Chrono Trigger stuff.

Anonymous said...

hurry up. you are getting slower and slower. this is how to lose viewers. cant you pass the torch to someone who can do the video capture and you can talk over them with your notes.

Anonymous said...

^ hey man, it's free and awesome content. he can take as long as he wants and that's ok - hell, he can ditch the project alltogether and that'd be fair too considering how many hours of intensive work he's released already. and with what reward but personal satisfaction and a loyal following?

dr. s could decide to put chrontendo on hiatus for a year and i'm sure he wouldn't notice a substantial drop in viewership when he returned.

also it'd be hard to add commentary about a game you haven't played - or to video footage you didn't compile.

sometimes life is more important than 23 year-old video games. don't be a jerk about it.

qaylIS aka Nicolas Deußer said...

Exactly, we are all looking forward for the next episode, but Dr. S doesn't have to do anything. He is not obligated to do it, we don't have any claim on a regular schedule. We all have shit to do in our lives, so does he. Hell, I don't have a clue how you get the time to do such a thing when working fulltime, I want to do a own series on Godzilla movies for quite some time, but I don't know when. Most regular users would donate money if we would get our Chrontendo fix faster, but Dr. S didn't want it the last time, an we all understand that. Or not, as we have just seen.

Kevin "k8track" Moon said...

Dr. Sparkle: Yeah, I was kind of thinking that as well about the "Top/Best of" lists; there really have been quite a few. I'd still love to see an update with "The Worst" list, whenever you have the time and inclination; yours was truly interesting.

I've been rewatching all of the episodes from the start and just marvel at how great they are and what a tremendous amount of time and effort you put into them. We all appreciate it and totally understand that real life always takes priority, and look forward to whenever the new episode is released.

Anonymous: Bad form, very bad form indeed. Dr. Sparkle is doing a great thing here, and an impatient and disenfranchised middle-schooler making churlish remarks really harshes the nice vibe we've got going here. Feel perfectly free to make your own NES video blog.

sean697 said...

I can forgive anonomous posts as he seems to be suffering from classic symptoms of Chrontendo addiction. Irrational behavior, anger at not getting his fix, and not thinking clearly. In all seriousness though I hope the poster does realize that nobody is making money from this and this a really ambitious project. So really you can can't blame a guy for living a life. Admittedly though I lately have been checking the site multiple times a day and eagerly await the next episode. In truth it is one of the few retro series that you can actually rely on. How many of these things have been abandoned in the middle never to be heard from again. If you look at the links on the right hand side you will see plenty. Magwealels turbo chrono blog status: MIA since last May. Presonic genesis:Last blog review of game August, new podcast in October and a promise of a new one around Thanksgiving and then the site has been dead since last year. Juggle Chainsaws: MIA since November. GBA weekly:MIA since 2010. Generation 16: Pumped out two exellent episodes in quick order and then has not seen new content this year. I am fortunate that we get the amount of updates we get from here and realize compared to alot of sites the timliness is great! (Although I do hope new episode comes out this week as I am working Midnight and need something to watch at work. Shame on me.) As far as the hunger games go I read them and I supose it is science fiction that is written for the young teenage reader but really could be read by all, like Harry Potter. Its a post holocost world that is rebuilding and not alot is explained about how they got there and there are great contrasts on the haves and the have nots and it doesnt seem really fleshed out. But the more I read it seemed that maybe, that kind of future is plausible if current trends continue. In any case its an interesting series but by no means a classic. I can't really say there is much like it but the Battle Royale comparison is close I suppose. I will see the movie(s) but hope the keep more of the Dark tone of the books and don't kiddie wash them. (The books did have alot of dark tragic voilent things in them which is kind of suprising considering the supposed target audience. Then again it is kids killing kids...)

Doctor Sparkle said...

Well, yes, this episode is pretty darned late, but I don't plan on this being a normal thing. With any luck Chronsega 7 will get churned out pretty quickly.

As for the other chronogaming guys - yeah, they drop like flies! Hopefully some of those guys will revisit their projects soon. But I know life, etc gets in the way.

There is absolutely 0% chance of me reading the Hunger Games books but I might see the movie if turns out decent. What's funny is that Battle Royale never received a US release, and people claimed this was due to the concept - kids killing kids - being so controversial that no distributor would touch it. Yet, I haven't heard anyone complaining about the content of Hunger Games. Of course, supposedly the real reason for BR not getting a US release was that since it was such a huge hit in Japan, the producers asked for way too much money for US distribution rights. No US distributors could get them to agree to a realistic price.