Sunday, July 27, 2008

Greatest Game of All Time

Sometime within the last few months, Game Informer magazine quietly discontinued the Greatest Game of All Time feature, which I usually enjoyed reading. Every month, a Game Informer reader would pick his or her choice for the greatest game in the history of the world, and it was fun to read about each contributor's personal fave. I was sorry to see the feature go, but at least the Classic GI section of the zine (where the Greatest Game of All Time feature would appear each month) is still going strong.

Back in September of 2002, my pick for Greatest Game of All Time was published in Game Informer #113. What did I get for my trouble? A GameStop gift card? A free subscription to Game Informer? A check for $100? A cup of coffee and a donut? Nope, just the pleasure of seeing my name and article in print and the satisfaction of knowing that others were reading my work. Such is the writer's life at times. Sigh...

(click on the image to read the article)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Recently published in...

Video Game Collector #10, where I review Bowling for the Microvision (the first handheld video game system).

The issue also contained a surprise. In his guest editorial, Bill Kunkel, the legendary co-founder of Electronic Games magazine, writes: "It's been a lot of fun working with...a group of exciting young game writers including Scott Alan Marriott, Brett Weiss and Aaron Auzins."

Of course, I was pleased to read that Bill has enjoyed working with me, but I was even more pleased with the adjectives he chose. I haven't been called "young" or "exciting" in a very, very long time. ;)

Recently published in...

Comics Buyer's Guide #1645, where I review the following:

Marvel Adventures Fantastic Four #31 (2.5 out of four stars)
Superman #671 (2 stars)
Action Comics #866 (3.5 stars)
Marvel Spotlight: Iron Man Movie (2.5 stars)
Green Arrow/Black Canary #9 (2 stars)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Now reading...

Nintendo Power!

Nintendo Power is essentially a monthly $5 advertisement for all things Nintendo, but I thought the August 2008 issue was worth mentioning. It's the 20th anniversary of the mag and includes a listing (with commentary) of the best 20 games for every Nintendo system (other than the ill-fated Virtual Boy).

My favorite NES game, Super Mario Bros. 3, came in at #2. The Legend of Zelda, which is easily in my top five, came in at number 1. Predictably, some of the old school NES titles I spend the most time with--Popeye, Mario Bros., Bump N Jump--didn't make the list.

My favorite Game Boy/Game Boy Color game, Tetris DX, was listed #1, so I can't argue there. My second fave, The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening came in at #2 while my third fave, Donkey Kong, was listed at #8.

My favorite Super NES game, Mr. Do!, didn't make the list (no surprise there), but my second favorite, Super Mario World, was #2 (The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, which is in my top five, was #1).

One of my two or three favorite Nintendo 64 games, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, was first on the N64 list. The game I've played most on that system--Wave Race 64--came in at #9. Not surprisingly, Super Mario 64 was #2 (can't argue there).

Metroid: Zero Mission took the top spot on the Game Boy Advance List, which it may deserve (all the 2D Metroid games are great), but I spend more time with Gunstar Super Heroes and the Mario Bros. portion of Super Mario Advance.

My favorite GameCube title, Resident Evil 4, took the top spot for that system, with Soul Caliber II (my second fave) coming in at #5. The great Mario Kart: Double Dash was a relatively disappointing #12.

I don't have a DS, but I suspect I would agree with the high rankings of New Super Mario Bros. (#2), Mario Kart DS (#3), Tetris DS (#5), and Contra 4 (#7). I've barely heard of the #1 game, Elite Beat Agents.

Super Mario Galaxy, which my son Ryan and I both beat, was #1 on the Wii list, with The Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess (which I haven't played) coming in at #2. Wii Sports, which I thoroughly enjoy (especially Tennis and Bowling), was listed at #8. Ryan was a little disappointed that Guitar Hero III was only ranked #20.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Now reading...

Video Game Trader!

Issue #7 of Video Game Trader, a free PDF format magazine, is now available.

Features include:

* Nuclear Green - The TRS-80 Color Computer
* Life, the Universe, and Network Gaming
* Legend of the Pink Panther
* Highlights from the Too Many Games convention
* NWCGEs Jet City Retro & Why Video Game Shows should be Important to you
* Atari XE: A closer look
* NES Archives
* The Video Game Trader Price Guide.
* And Much More!

The issue also contains a very nice looking ad for my book, which my lovely and talented wife designed:

(Click on the image for a closer look).

You can read Video Game Trader #7 here.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Now reading...

Entertainment Weekly! (click on the images for a better look)

The June 27/July 4 Special Double Issue of Entertainment Weekly lists their opinion of the best 50 video/computer games of the last 25 years. Without breaking it down game by game, here are a few observations I made about the list:

*There are five Super NES titles (including three in the top 10), but no Sega Genesis games
*One of those SNES titles is Street Fighter II, but they probably (or should have) meant Street Fighter II Turbo
*There are only three games from the 1980s (Tetris, SimCity, and Contra)
*There are two NES games on the list (Contra and Tecmo Super Bowl)
*Guitar Hero ranks #5--great, revolutionary game, but it's ultra-high ranking is partly based on current popularity
*God of War (PS2), a game I'm thoroughly enjoying right now, is ranked #26
*Resident Evil 4, one of my favorite modern titles, is #14
*Not a single game from an obscure platform made the list--Soul Caliber for the relatively unsuccessful Dreamcast did make the cut, though, at #27
*It appears to be an American list, though Final Fantasy III for the Famicom (the Japanese NES) made the cut at #29
*Notable games that didn't make the list: Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3 (Super Mario World made the cut, which probably explains why the other 2D Mario platformers aren't on the list), The Legend of Zelda (though Ocarina of Time is #2), Castlevania III (though Symphony of the Night is #32), Super Mario 64 (though Mario Galaxy is #12)

Later in the issue, in the section called "The 25 Innovations that Changed Entertainment," the PlayStation2 was listed as #14 and Nintendo's original Game Boy came in at #20 (the DVD player was #1)