Dexter’s Imagination – Rick V.

If you read the Dexterity manual it says something about how the entire game is made up from Dexter Doolittle’s imagination. Why would this kid put himself and these cute little creatures through so many punishing puzzles? Dexter has issues.

Rick V. helps keep Yokoi Kids afloat and does punk thing.

We Shoulda Stayed in the Sewers – Rick V.

Origin of The Last Ronin?

(The comic is a sequel to the comic I did for Fall of the Foot Clan four years ago.)

I refused to play Back From the Sewers because I hated how the turtle sprites looked. I especially hated how they stared at you on the player select screen. And the weird tippy toe way they walk threw me off too. But when I decided to finally look past the artwork (funfact: I refused to read The Watchmen for years because I hated the artwork. I was a fool), I figured how bad could it be?

Well, it’s not terrible. The animation is nice and the music is not annoying. I like how the Foot Clan soldiers look like scarecrows. Hell! The second level you are riding on a skateboard! I owed the game an apology for treating it like ugly little sibling of the first Game Boy game.

The game decided to get back at me by ramping up the difficulty toward the end of the second level. The bosses in this game are so hard. They move way too fast for your slow moving little turtle. I eventually figured out the patterns and with the helpful rewind button (Thanks, Cowabunga Collection) , I was able to get a little further.

The underground level with the big-ass spikes coming out of the ground is infuriating and from this point on, the game is no longer fun. Just a horrible chore. There are some obstacles where a one of the big-ass spikes comes up while a Foot soldier if shooting a missiles at you. There is a only a very slim chance you aren’t going to take damage on this part. The Cowabunga Collection features a little guide on how to get past these parts but it’s tricky to get it right.

And speaking of the Cowabunga Collection guide, there is a video you can watch to properly beat the giant Robo Cop to rescue one of your “captured” turtles. I tried it and failed multiple times. It’s pretty dang hard and I would just let that mechanical man kill me so I could just get to the next level.

Mousers and little flying robots re-spawn like crazy and are hard to avoid. On some stages Foot Soldiers race right at you causing unavoidable damage. And the lasers in the Technodrome make you want to throw your Switch/Game Boy/Eddie’s Emulator across the room. The wildest bit about this game is that The Shredder is extremely easy to beat and avoid, and the last boss, Krang can be beat without getting a scratch. Maybe that was on purpose?

Anywho, I’m glad I played it but never plan on playing it every again…this week.
–Rick V.

Rick V. doodles comics and does punk things.

Simply Ambitious – Shayne Warden

Wow! Killer Instinct on the Game Boy! What an ambitious port! The graphical hurdles alone would have had me thinking the powers that be were looney tunes, but having to also drop four buttons compared to the SNES game…geez!
Admittedly, I’m not a fan of this game as a game. Playing it as the August game of the month for Yokoi Kids was my first exposure to this version of Killer Instinct, and I found it a frustrating experience to try and combo; the real meat-and-potatoes of KI (could be more a ‘me problem’ and less the game, but I promise I’m good at the SNES game…promise!).
That said…
I really have to applaud this game for its graphical chops and its faithful recreation of the characters (also, those character portraits are awesome!) and to a lesser degree, its backgrounds. Beyond that, the music is equal parts fantastic and impressive; more than once, I’d get thoroughly trounced, sit at the start screen and let the audio loop. In the end, Ken Lobb and company did an impressive job bringing a game that I never thought could make a competent transition to the Game Boy a reality!–Shayne Warden

Summer’s winding down, but ‘bbq + beach = awesome’ is still very much early days here on the island! @JazzyJazzerton

The Third Mercenary – Shayne

When I popped in Fortified Zone, I didn’t expect that I’d be done thirty minutes later. My first thought was, “Blink, and you’d miss it”, but despite the short length, I had a fun time; it can be refreshing to play a game that doesn’t beat you down with difficulty.

I wasn’t sold on the soundtrack until the caves: a sweet track that has more depth and a longer loop than the other stages. Weapons/ammo and medkits were plentiful, and attacks were pretty easy to dodge. The game did a great job of making me feel like a bad-ass, to be honest.

In the end, as I said, I had fun and the game didn’t overstay its welcome. I will absolutely go back to this from time to time as – for me – a compact adventure and quick win can be a nice palette cleanser from the crushing difficulty that some games have on offer. –Shayne

It’s been nice out lately, so I’ve put on shorts a few times. Then, I’d get cold, so I’d put on a heavy sweater. My wife has asked me why I “don’t just switch the shorts for pants”? Good question. @JazzyJazzerton

36 Year Old in the Backseat – Rick V.

This is mostly a true story. I spent a good couple of hours trying to beat the last bit of Gargoyles Quest on a trip to a wedding and finally accomplished it. Except we were also chatting and Charlie introduced Eric and I to her favorite childhood song. I started playing Gargoyle’s Quest years before and kept giving up. Which is kind of like this comic, it kinda sucks. I started it weeks ago, but decided to finish it despite how bad it looks. Lil’ note, never try to objects like the interior of cars or Charlie’s hair from memory.
A reminder that you don’t have to be great at anything to contribute to Yokoi Kids!

Rick V. does punk things, writes/draws for Razorcake magazine, eats tofu, has a music podcast, and draws comics. Check him out.

It’s Not Cheating If The Game Lets You Do It – Shayne

I’ve really enjoyed Gargoyle’s Quest; I found it to be a challenging but fun game
with fluid control, great graphics, and solid music that really feels like it shouldn’t have been possible on a Game Boy cart in 1990. This seems to be one of those games where the stages are more difficult than the bosses and I didn’t really get stuck until Rushifell’s dungeon because it took me many, many tries before I realized that I could have been using potions the whole time…
What ended up making the game more manageable was taking advantage of a
hardware (or maybe software) exploit whereby forcing the screen to scroll
enough could make enemies/projectiles disappear or – in the case of bosses –
reset attack animations; this really clicked for me during the Four-Eyes boss fight. In any case, this game is a treasure and was a ton of fun. I love the Ghouls N’ Ghosts/Ghosts N’ Goblins series’, so I’m glad Capcom decided to greenlight a game that tells the story of Arthur’s foil. Yeah, that, and it’s pretty cool that
Firebrand’s quests started on the Game Boy.

Shayne started a Twitter to keep up with Yokoi Kids; They’re slowly getting with the times. @JazzyJazzerton