Me, I’m the Memory Cad. Here are the reasons why: a) I’m going to attempt to recount various DC games I liked without looking at so much as a screenshot to jog my fuzzy recollection of them, 2) some of them were PIRATED COPIES that I got off this guy who worked at the Wolverhampton branch of GAME (irony!) and iii) I just need a third thing to establish that the a) and 2) thing is deliberate.
I was a student, so piracy was acceptable practice (“But I WOULD steal a car, provided the circumstances were right,” I’d say during those pre-movie anti-piracy ads), but it still makes me a cad in the eyes of the law.
Cannon Spike (PIRATED)
Everyone was on rollerskates, weren’t they? This had shades of Commando and Mercs, only you could be Charlie/Nash and Cammy from Street Fighter, and I’m pretty sure Arthur from Ghosts‘n Goblins was in it, only he was this sweet medieval-themed mech with a laser lance. I liked the fact it was named after a Cammy special, which isn’t a euphemism for being sat on by someone wearing only bum floss.
Skies of Arcadia (BOUGHT)
Or ‘Random Battles In The Sky With The Odd Bit Of No Random Battles In The Sky’. There was so much to love about this game, none of which I can recall right now, but I had to give up eventually because the random encounters dial had been accidentally knocked up to 140% by a work experience boy (actually the son of the executive producer), which made it feel like the gaming equivalent of King George VI’s speech impediment. “Just going to go ov- RANDOM BATTLE Over ther- RANDOM BATTLE there to collec RANDOM BATTLE”
The House of The Dead 2 (BOUGHT)
“Dogs of the AMS… time they made a move.” It’s the most quotable game ever made, plus the Dreamcast lightgun was the tits. I don’t think I ever played another game with it, but it was a chunky alabaster marvel. Never bettered.
F355 Challenge (PIRATED)
Glad I pirated it, too. I hate driving sims and this was the simmiest of the lot. I liked Yu Suzuki when he poured his love of Ferrari into OutRun, not when he went all Top Gear and created this terrifyingly exacting, utterly dry drivel. I still don’t have a driving license and it’s because of this game, probably. Horrible soundtrack too, if I recall, which definitely makes it the anti-OutRun.
Grandia II (BOUGHT)
Beautiful. Can’t remember a single character, but I did like that timeline-based combat system. Didn’t finish due to some instakill penultimate boss who wound me right up, but I felt like I’d already seen enough and was convinced it was all going to work out well for everyone in the end. This had pretty ropey dialogue too, didn’t it?
I’ll be honest with you: didn’t get it in the slightest. I was absolutely gaga over Mischief Makers (“Shake shake!”) and was familiar enough with Heroes Gunstar and Guardian, so it wasn’t like I was Treasure denier or anything, but I’d got this in a batch with some slightly more immediate, less idiosyncratic gems with English text and everything, so I never went back. You think it’s great to start with, piracy, so you deluge yourself – all these games, at once, for cheap! – but it just makes you impatient and intolerant, so you skip over things you’d ordinarily persist with if you’d paid full whack. Unless it’s Giant Gram 2000, but I’d bought the previous one so I was used to wrestling both Japanese grapplers and their language. I did get it (Bangai-o), eventually, with the Xbox LIVE Arcade version, so you can stop your derisive snorting now, you elitist pig.
What’s that, six? One more.
Crazy Taxi 2 (PIRATED)
This one upset me a great deal; I think I’d acquired a hooky copy out of impatience more than anything. The original Crazy Taxi had become a proper obsession – I was nailing Crazy Dashes, Drifts and Stops (and Limit Cuts) like a pro, had memorised the right fares to perform full circuits around the city without backtracking and could regularly net in excess of $30,000 in fares. It was Sega at its purest and best. Then they chucked in a jump and ruined the lot. It was too clumsy, too unpredictable. I didn’t like the new map. The new drivers were crap. Was Crazy Taxi 3 any good? I bet it wasn’t.
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