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Showing posts from June, 2021

'Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D' Turned 10

Hard to believe but Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D for the Nintendo 3DS came out 10 years ago today.  Despite being a pretty fun game at first the game like a lot of big name 3DS games turned out to be fairly disappointing at least for me.  Capcom was attempting to turn the popular high action arcade style side-mode from Resident Evil 4 into a full experience by itself but that failed for the most part... The game currently sits on a 65% metascore which I find to be pretty high honestly.  https://www.metacritic.com/game/3ds/resident-evil-the-mercenaries-3d

GB Operator Looks Like an Interesting Game Boy, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance Cartridge Option

One new product from Epilogue that is on my radar is the GB Operator which is a way to play GB, GBC and GBA cartridges on your computer (Windows/Mac/Linux). If it works well, it could be a great option for backing up saves and playing/storing original carts instead of dealing with ROMs from others on your computer. The primary emulator used is the well-known mGBA.  According to the site, in addition to playing cartridges (through emulation) the device is set up to detect whether cartridges are original or pirated bootleg carts which could be a great tool for collectors for only $49.99. I can't speak to the quality of the device as I haven't got my hands on one yet.  https://www.epilogue.co/product/gb-operator Ships in August, 2021... What Others Are Saying:  RetroDodo GB Operator Review

KT R1 Prototype Housing Looks Thinner Than The Retroid Pocket 2

Progress with the KT R1 appears to be happening as some photos of the housing were shared by 'Lei' on Discord.  https://www.retrokezins.com/2021/05/updated-developments-with-kt-r1-handheld.html While progress has been slow I think we'll be hearing more and more about this device as summer moves along. Originally seen as the probable main competitor to the Retroid Pocket 2 from last year, the KT R1 will now also be competing with the RP 2.5 and RP3. Price will definitely be a big factor and we don't have a clear idea of pricing for any of these yet.  I definitely like the form quite a bit if this is what the final product ends up like: 

Retroid Pocket 2.5 Will Be A Different Version of the Retroid Pocket 3

I was assuming the Retroid Pocket 2.5 would just be an upgraded version of the RP2 but it looks like it will actually be an alternate version of the RP3.  Definitely interesting news although we don't know very much about the RP3 yet other than the goal for launch is in October. The Retroid Pocket 2 is one of the best $ for $ values in retro handheld gaming today so hopefully the 2.5 and 3 are priced well. I'm definitely hoping they change their decision to place the Select/Start buttons on the top of the RP3 because that was a bizarre choice.  Retroid Pocket Official Site   Related Post:  https://www.retrokezins.com/2021/06/retroid-pocket-3-design-screenshots.html

Batocera Now on GameForce Chi RK3326

The GameForce is one of my favorite RK3326 devices. It looks like they've gotten Batocera (test version) up and running on the handheld which is pretty exciting news.  Bacotera Early Build Download You can order a GameForce handheld at:  GameForce.fun If you order a GameForce and are interesting in testing Batocera and providing feedback to Gao Feng, you can note that with your purchase and they'll send you a 64GB microSD card with Batocera loaded onto it.  In other news for the recently released handheld, EmuELEC 4.2 has been released for the handheld which provides some improvements.  https://github.com/EmuELEC/EmuELEC/releases If you haven't, check out my review of the GameForce:  https://www.retrokezins.com/2021/05/review-gameforce-rk3326-handheld-chi.html

Top 100 SEGA Genesis Games: #98 Wardner

1991's Wardner is a somewhat unusual and challenging sidescrolling platformer game that translated well from the arcades to the SEGA Genesis. The game also came out on the Famicom Disk System in Japan.  In the game you play as a kid (who looks kind of like a South Park character in my opinion) who is on a journey to rescue his girlfriend from a warlock. The game received a lot of comparison to Ghosts 'N Goblins due to gameplay elements. While the gameplay elements are very similar, Wardner still stands on its own as a fun and different game. When it comes to challenge, Ghosts 'N Goblins is still a tougher game with more going on but that doesn't make Wardner easy by any stretch. Wardner's biggest challenge is the 1 hit deaths which are hard to avoid at times.  The Genesis version of the game is more difficult than the arcade and Famicom versions with the addition of an extra level.   Over the years, opinions from reviewers on the Genesis port

Retroid Pocket 2 N64 Emulation Profiles

Of all the "budget" sub $100 retro handhelds, I still get the best performance out of the Retroid Pocket 2. Fortunately the Retroid Pocket 2.5 and 3 are coming out later this year which should provide a boost to N64 performance.  'Rickymortal' on Reddit recently went through the trouble of posting a large number of N64 games and the best setting to use: https://www.reddit.com/r/retroid/comments/o045g2/50_n64_emulation_profiles_for_rp2_mupenn64oid/ I've checked out a handful of games using his settings and they seem to check out. If you are just getting started in the retro handheld arena, Reddit communities are one of the best places to start when it comes to getting information on retro handhelds.  My favorite communities on Reddit for information include:  https://www.reddit.com/r/retrogaming https://www.reddit.com/r/rg351v https://www.reddit.com/r/RG351 https://www.reddit.com/r/SBCGaming

Instagram Cosplayer To Follow: @leairis_artsy_stuff

Cosplay and gaming go hand in hand for many reasons. When I worked for the 1Up Network and Ziff Davis Media many moons ago, I often covered cosplay topics. It's more popular than ever and it's great seeing the widespread creativity and explosion of cosplay that has happened in recent years.  If you are looking to follow more creative cosplayers on Instagram, I plan to make a few posts here and there on the topic in the future. My first page suggestion below:  https://instagram.com/leairis_artsy_stuff Follow @leairis_artsy_stuff on IG Leairis Cross has a very very interesting and eclectic Instagram page you should be following. She has 46.6K followers currently and posts regularly. What I find interesting about her work is that she is a cosplayer but also an artist, does unboxings for interesting products and she creates some awesome sketches. Her posts are never dull!  Basically an all-around creative! Of the cosplay I have seen on her page, I'm probably the bi

Retro Games I'm Playing This Week

Not a lot going on right now with SBC handheld releases so I've been spending most of my time playing Nintendo Switch games. I don't anticipate reviewing any handhelds for a little while other than the Gameboy-ESP32 I purchased from Myretrogamecase.com . I should have a review up for this purchase next week.  Just finished playthroughs for BioShock and BioShock 2 on the Switch. Both games are still as great as they were the first few times I beat each on other platforms.  The summer sale is pretty good as usual so I bought Borderlands GOTYE, Borderlands 2 GOTYE, Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel UE, BioShock Infinite, Castlevania Collection, Contra Collection, Dex, Paratopic, Sun Wukong VS Robot, and Super Bomberman R Online all for the Switch over the past couple of weeks. It's not true gaming without buying the same games multiple times.  I also decided to go back and replay a lot of SEGA Genesis Games to fully develop my Top 100 SEGA Genesis Games of all-time list.

Top 100 SEGA Genesis Games: #99 Kid Chameleon

Top 100 SEGA Genesis Games #99 Game: Kid Chameleon Platform: SEGA Genesis Developer: STI Publisher: SEGA Genre: Platformer Year: 1992 I liked Kid Chameleon a LOT when it came out back in 1992 but it has dropped way down on my list since that time.  Back in the day beating this game was a rare feat as it had 100+ stages most of which are really challenging and the cartridge had no save or password feature so it had to be beat in one sitting. More modern gamers are probably unfamiliar with the times when you'd have to leave your game and console running when you left the house to avoid losing progress and this was one of those games that required that strategy. Fortunately today there are ways to play it with saves.  The plot is kind of strange replaying it but probably had a little more value back in the day when the idea of VR games seemed very futuristic. In this game the boss of a VR game called 'Wild Side' is abducting players into the game. It

Top 100 SEGA Genesis Games: #100 Frank Thomas Big Hurt Baseball (1995)

Back in the 1980s/1990s I was more of a SEGA kid than a Nintendo person. I've decided to go back through the entire SEGA Genesis library (replaying my favorites) and adjust my picks for the Top 100 SEGA Genesis Games starting with Frank Thomas Big Hurt Baseball (1995) which comes in at #100 on my list. Stay tuned for several games each week as I replay the best SEGA games and decide which ones have aged well... In addition to the Genesis, Big Hurt Baseball also came out on SNES, Game Gear, Game Boy, Saturn, PlayStation and MS-DOS platforms. The game received mostly average and negative reviews other than the PlayStation version which was universally considered the best version of the game. In my opinion, the Genesis version wasn't too bad amd probably a little underappreciated at the time. While this game will not be on many Top 100 lists, it made the cut for mine.  If nothing else this average but still fun game was one of the first Baseball games to use motion cap

Retroid Pocket 3 Design Screenshots

'Timeisart' recently posted the design screenshots for the Retroid Pocket 3 on Discord and they look interesting. The design appears to have a micro-HDMI out so we can probably assume video out will continue with the RP3 and instead of a weird slider as the right thumb stick, they both appear to be proper thumb sticks this time. Start/Select being on top isn't the greatest choice which could make some old school games awkward but all and all the design looks pretty good.  There's not much in the way of information on the system. I had contacted the company a couple months back who verified the RP3 was in the pre-production phase and should be released at some point this year. (Possibly October)... The main two competitors for this will likely be the KTR1 and "199" Handheld although the likelihood of either of those being released soon seems questionable.  There's also talk of a Retroid Pocket 2.5 being released this year as well. While not everyone loves A

Nintendo Switch eShop Has Tons of Sales Right NOW

The Nintendo Switch eShop has tons of sales going on right now so definitely a great time to check out the offerings.   Sticking mostly with retro and classic stuff myself I just picked up Contra Anniversary Collection and Castlevania Anniversary Collection for $4.99 each. Not Too Bad.  Way too many games on sale to list them all. Great thing about gaming in the summer is all the sales that go along with this time of year.  https://www.nintendo.com/games/sales-and-deals/

Puzzle Quest 3 Impressions (Android)

$$$$$ I was a big fan of previous Puzzle Quest games. The original game pretty much kicked off the "match 3" craze.  While Puzzle Quest 3 is still in Early Access mode, I just don't think this game will be something I stick with. There's really not much to say about it other than it seems pretty disappointing.  The Good : Improved visuals but that's about it.  The Bad :  There's a timer after first match to keep making matches makes things easy.  Enemies just attack randomly without matching eliminating a lot of strategy.  Appears to be a F2P cash bait game where money not skill will determine how good you are. Post battle chests require keys to open which will be problematic unless you purchase the expensive VIP subscription.  In essence the game feels like a very generic match 3 game designed for cash bait pay to win style gaming. Very unfortunate given how great the previous games were.  Unless some drastic changes occur with the official releas

PowKiddy X18S Release Re-Scheduled for August

The PowKiddy X18S has gone through more than one delay and now multiple people are receiving confirmation from PowKiddy that they are now shooting for an August release. Two new photos were posted on Discord by TheOne showing off the interesting look.  The original delay appeared to be software related followed by hardware issues (parts shortages).  The X18S has changed a little spec-wise and might be slightly less attractive than originally thought. If they manage to have a solid Android build on the software side unlike the original X18 it could still be a great option depending on price.  I don't anticipate much in the way of new information on this for a while...

GameForce Chi RK3326 Two Weeks After Review

I reviewed the GameForce Chi (RK3326) two weeks back and my score of 8.3/10 still stands. When it comes to RK3326 devices I'm only using the RG351V and GameForce with regularity at this point.  https://www.retrokezins.com/2021/05/review-gameforce-rk3326-handheld-chi.html While my score remains the same I do have to say I am definitely pleased with my purchase.  I made a couple minor tweaks to the system including adding some padding behind the face buttons which was suggested by others in Discord which has mostly eliminated the button travel issue and added some Vita style thumb grips. I still have future plans to work on the LEDs a little bit and add Vita thumb-sticks (haven't gotten around to that yet) but nothing major planned.  You can purchase the GameForce at GameForce.fun .  GameForce Guides:  So far I've only seen one good guide for the GameForce over at Retrogamecorps.com and it will likely be the definitive guide that covers all the basics:  https://r

Playdate Handheld Pre-Orders Start in July

I'm not sure if I'm interested in Playdate at $179 (Not including taxes and shipping) but it's still an interesting handheld to keep an eye on. It looks like it will finally be available for pre-order in July.  While the price is a BIT steep, the tiny handheld does appear to be well built and well designed.  From everything seen, quality will likely not be an issue. For the price you get the Playdate, a cable, user guide and access to 24 indie type games (2 per week for four months).  A magnetic screen cover will run you $29 and it looks like there is a stereo dock in the works.  A B&W non backlit screen and underwhelming specs doesn't excite me too much at this price point. I think the only thing that could sell me on this system is if the games coming out for it are really good and designing games for it is easy. Buying one once you include taxes and shipping will run you slightly more than a DS Lite. That seems like a tough sell to me. I wouldn't mind having

Amazing Game Boy Advance Mod: Wood + Resin = Fire 🤯

I'm a big fan of all the Game Boy Advance mods that have been hitting the scene lately but this one posted by retrocnc on Instagram might be the coolest yet.  There are some pretty cool aluminum cast face buttons and d-pads on his site as well.  I hope the wood + resin shell becomes available for purchase at some point. I like it even more than all the custom aluminum housings we've seen a lot of for GBA.  https://retro-cnc.com/