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Robio's Top 100 of All Time
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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 14:06:18

#87. Professor Layton and the Curious Village

Level 5 is back again on my list with the first game in a series that would go on to represent everything good and bad about them. Professor Layton and the Curious Village was a pretty bold game. It was a weird little mystery where the player doesn't actually solve the mystery. Instead you just walk around town progressing the story by solving little brain teasers that are found in the village or offered up by townspeople and even the main characters. And if you keep exploring, talking to people, and solving puzzles, eventually the story will progress to it's ending. It shouldn't work, and yet the game is offered up with such a warm and charming presentation it totally does.

First and foremost you have Professor Hershel Layton, a true gentleman if there ever was one. He's arguably the greatest original character created during the DS era. He's surrounded by a group of eccentric townspeople who are definitely odd, but never go too far over the top (with the exception of one Portuguese tourist). The score and art style are reminiscent of something out of a French comic book or Belleville-Rendezvous (The Triplets of Belleville). And while the player might be a little too passive in the story, it's still very good. Later stories in the series were way too ridiculous, but this one straddles the line of fantastic and yet believable.  Most importantly, the brain teasers are extremely good (if you're into those sorts of things). Their presentation fits with the style of the game like a glove and most of the time they feel organic.  It's very clear the creators loved every second of making this game and it shows. Sadly, Layton would become successful enough that Level-5 smelled cash and yearly installments of the series started getting churned out, each being worse than the previous. But the original still deserves to be placed on a pedestal and enjoyed.

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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 14:31:01

#86. Madworld

Normally I'm not one for violent games, but for Madworld I'll make an exception all day long (and one day is all you need to play to beat it). Besides it's all so insanely over-the-top it's almost hard to take any of the violence seriously. Basically you're a contentest in kind of a last man standing battle royale. Kill everyone you see and do it with style. Sure you could punch someone to death, but wouldn't it be more fun to punch them, then impale them with a street sign, and then throw them into a trash compactor? There's some kind of story going on, but that's not important. All that matters is lots and lots of glorious death and blood in a glorius black and white graphic novel style, with a few hints of color to make things stand out... like blood. There's also an announce team of Joe Dimaggio (Bender from Futurerama) and Greg Proops (the gay guy from Who's Line is it Anyway who'se just a native San Fransican and not actually gay), who have been given a magnificent (if not limited) script and they're good for a lot of laughs. The one low spot is that things do get repetitive after a while. Fortunately the game isn't too long and a single play-through is really all you need to appreciate all the good things in the game.

Edited: Sun, 19 Aug 2018 13:47:17
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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 15:22:02
robio said:

#88. Dark Cloud 2  (I thought I posted this a few days ago, but it seems to have disappeard. My original copy of it is gone so this will be on the short side)

This could be the Playstation 2's Legend of Zelda. The first time I read a review for Dark Cloud 2, the reviewer made a statement to this affect, comparing the the Dark Cloud series to the Legend of Zelda series. Upon playing it, it has absolutely nothing in common with any Zelda game, so the comparison still strikes me as an odd on. And really there's no need to compare the two, because Dark Cloud 2 stands high on its own merits. Its a solid action adventure game, with beautiful cell-shaded graphics, but what really makes it special is how it is packed with no shortage of things to do.

Lol...no they were saying that about the first game before it came out. "This could be the PS2's Zelda killer!" Just like Killzone was the Halo killer....apparently the PS2 had to have a killer of every big game the competition had. I remember when I played DC1 I was like wtf? How is this anything like Zelda, other than the game character kind of looks like Link? Calling it an ActRaiser killer would have made a hella lot more sense.

Anyway, I plan on playing this one through for the first time in the next few months. Looking forward to it.

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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 16:06:52
edgecrusher said:

Lol...no they were saying that about the first game before it came out. "This could be the PS2's Zelda killer!" Just like Killzone was the Halo killer....apparently the PS2 had to have a killer of every big game the competition had. I remember when I played DC1 I was like wtf? How is this anything like Zelda, other than the game character kind of looks like Link? Calling it an ActRaiser killer would have made a hella lot more sense.

Anyway, I plan on playing this one through for the first time in the next few months. Looking forward to it.


this was a different review then. I never actually had any interest in the original Dark Cloud. It wasn't until the second one came along that I had any interest in the series. I think it was the graphics that caught my eye, and got me into it. At any rate, it definitely seems like people wanted this to kill Zelda or be like Zelda, or maybe they just needed to talk about Zelda.
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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 20:47:22

Someone likes level 5. Never played dark cloud. Layton, ugggh. It's a bunch of brain teasers, and this crazy world is filled with them everywhere like it's the national past time. I feel there is no connection or progression with the puzzles and the story.

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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 21:28:41

Early in their inception I thought Level-5 would end up being just a top tier developer. The Dark Cloud games, DQ8, the early Layton games, Jeanne D'Arc were are excellent. Even Rogue Galaxy despite being a little dull, was a really impressive game on a lot of levels. Once they started doing more self-publishing though they started doing too many games with annual installments and their quality took a big hit. Honestly these days they're not even on my radar. I couldn't tell you the last few games they've put out.

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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 21:40:24

I picked up Madworld a year or two ago for €5, but still haven't gotten around to playing it.  One day though.  One day...

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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 21:40:44
robio said:

Early in their inception I thought Level-5 would end up being just a top tier developer. The Dark Cloud games, DQ8, the early Layton games, Jeanne D'Arc were are excellent. Even Rogue Galaxy despite being a little dull, was a really impressive game on a lot of levels. Once they started doing more self-publishing though they started doing too many games with annual installments and their quality took a big hit. Honestly these days they're not even on my radar. I couldn't tell you the last few games they've put out.

They made Ni No Kuni 2 just recently...I still need to play the first one.

I looked up a list of games they developed on Wiki....holy shit...they pump out a ton of stuff. Lots of garbage it seems like, but also some great stuff too.

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Sat, 18 Aug 2018 21:41:21
SupremeAC said:

I picked up Madworld a year or two ago for €5, but still haven't gotten around to playing it.  One day though.  One day...

That game could use a Switch release.

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Sun, 19 Aug 2018 12:07:31

Madworld's music is also great.

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere  
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst  
Are full of passionate intensity.
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Sun, 19 Aug 2018 12:59:03
+1
Foolz said:

Madworld's music is also great.

You know I had actually forgotten just how good the OST is. I just popped over to Youtube and put in while I did some work this morning. Yeah, it's great stuff. Just one more thing about this game that people have missed out on.

edgecrusher said:

That game could use a Switch release.

I'd be up for it. I think the only real change they'd need to make is create an online leaderboard for each level. With the game so focused on getting high scores I'm still shocked the original didn't have it. I could see the game attracting score chasers very easily. And if they wanted to go the extra mile, go back and take the online mode from Anarchy Reigns and add that. The rest of Anarchy Reigns is better off forgotten, but the online fighting was just epic chaos at its best.

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Sun, 19 Aug 2018 13:21:48

I don’t want to be “that” guy but you have two number 87’s there and it’s got me triggered.

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Sun, 19 Aug 2018 13:30:24
+1

He couldn’t decide on 87.  The rest of the list is easy.

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Sun, 19 Aug 2018 13:48:45
+1
The Dark Cloud 2 posts disappearing kind of threw me off. At any rate, it's been fixed. Hopefully you'll be able to sleep again at night. If not, I recommend whiskey.
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Sun, 19 Aug 2018 14:18:19

Ahh, I can now sleep at night. I’ll still take the whiskey though. Nyaa

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Tue, 21 Aug 2018 10:26:44
I did not make the list Sad


Twitter
: @gameunderphil

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Tue, 21 Aug 2018 14:35:17
You have to insult the list in order to make the other list.
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Wed, 22 Aug 2018 02:08:54

#85. Marvel vs. Capcom 2

Welcome to world of the damn near infinite roster fighting games. Normally I complain when a fighting game's roster breaks 25 or so characters. It's usually a sign that there are a lot of clones, underdeveloped characters, or a wildly unbalanced game. Some of that holds true for Marvel vs. Capcom 2, but does anyone really care? This game is pure insane fan service in the best possible way. There's 56 characters from the two brands ranging from icons to obscure characters that no one ever gave two shits about, and they're all incredibly fun to play. Sure there are players who know this game down to a science and can pick the right team, swap players in-and-out, and do combos attacks that launch the other players into the stratosphere, but they're probably not having any more fun than the guy who picked Cable and just keeps spamming his giant cannon attack over and over and over again. Marvel vs. Capcom is accessible to all and guarantees everyone will have a good time playing it.

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Wed, 22 Aug 2018 02:43:07

#84. Torneko the Last Hope

Good rougelike dungeon crawlers are tough to find. Many critics, we'll call them assholes, have claimed that they are outdated and should be put out to pasture. That was certainly the case in 2000 when Torneko the Last Hope came out. The people who understand how these games are played were in for a treat (those who didn't went back to giving themselves Mountain Dew enemas). This was a great rougelike with a superb soundtrack, a surprisingly good story, and lots and lots of items and new features. These would let you find different strategies for searching the dungeons or allowed you to, with enough time, exploit the crap out of them and become a walking tank. And best of all, it was all wrapped up in a Dragon Quest bow. Familiar monsters, items, and sound effects (and one very important character from Dragon Quest IV) make it instantly appealing for fans of the series and was the first time we got to see some feared monsters in 3-D for the first time. Excellent game for DQ and rouge fans alike.

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Wed, 22 Aug 2018 03:11:01

You have played a strange collection of games.

You inspired me to make a list, I have come up with a first draft. Mine is so boring, its what you'd expect lol.

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