Ecco the Dolphin

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Ecco the Dolphin (1992)

You know me well enough by now to know that I’m just not a man who scares easily. I am a well-oiled machine, fearless and ruthless in my approach. I am the master of my domain, the king of my castle, the lord of my manor. I don’t give chances, I show no mercy, I allow no quarter. That is, until along comes a little spider and off I go, screaming in terror and bowling over anyone in my way like so many bemused skittles.

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Lester the Unlikely

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Lester the Unlikely (1994)

It might seem ridiculously hypocritical, but I simply cannot stand nerds. It’s not that I blindly hate them because it’s my sworn duty as a jock. And it’s not even that I hate them because they’re smelly or that they share some of my hobbies or that their names are Melvin, Cedric and Andrew. It’s more that they have bipolar mindsets. I’m not kidding – we all know that arrogant, obnoxious neckbeard of a dweeb who’s done all the research on athiesm, and God will he let you know about it. You better not open your mouth about sci-fi films or comic book lore either, because he will have all the info, all the knowledge, and he will know everything and you will know nothing. And, of course, he’ll be really loud and annoying about it. Right?

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney

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Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney (2006)

If there’s one profession out there that I’m able to look at with absolute certainty and say “Nup, not for me”, other than moonlighting as a sex slave in the BBW boudoir down the road from me, it would have to be lawyer. Or anything to do with a court of law really. You know, Judge, Judy, executioner, all that. Your every word has to be precise, and there’s no room for made-up hogwash, which sort of puts my potential career as a litigator in chains from the start. No waffling? Forget it! No, I’ll leave all that game to those chosen ones, the type of people called Charles, Edward and Magnus.

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Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town

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Harvest Moon: Friends of Mineral Town (2004)

On the rare occasions when I find myself forced to go rural, it’s no surprise that the whole experience makes me get down on my hands and knees and thank the urban gods that I wasn’t born out in the sticks. Let me explain: in Ireland, there are 4, maybe 5 cities, and the rest is just sheep-infested fields and high smelling turds. Our well-renowned greens are not always full of four-leaved clovers, I’m afraid – it’s far more likely to be hay and mad farmers instead. Drive too far in the wrong direction and suddenly civilisation dries up, there isn’t a streetlight or road marking to be seen and massive tractors are hurtling towards you at seemingly impossible speeds. Welcome to the jungle.

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The World Ends With You

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The World Ends With You (2008)

Have you ever visited the website urbandictionary.com? It’s this fantastic user-generated trove of slang and turns of phrase from regions all over the world. It’s a real eye-opener: I now know that my name means a “huge sarcastic asshole that ends up becoming amazingly sweet”, and that I am in possession of both moobies and a chode. There’s hundreds o’ thousands o’ bits o’ vernacular backchat on there, definitions for just about any colloquialism you’ve ever heard, and racism that I didn’t even know existed.

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Mother 3

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Mother 3 (2006/2008)

It’s one of the most natural and dangerous human instincts we possess: we all want what we can’t have. And we PAL gamers ought to know this – after all, how else was I going to react to the news that Super Noah’s Ark 3D and Mahjong 64 wouldn’t be making it to Dublin? So wrapped up in my carnal desire for these games was I that I didn’t even know what an EarthBound was until I kept getting battered by some tubheaded kid called Ness in Super Smash Bros.

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Final Fantasy VIII

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Final Fantasy VIII, 1999

A year ago, when I was doing up a piece on classic gaming couples for CHUNK.ie and The R.A.G.E. for St. Valentine’s Day, I was actually struggling pretty badly. Yes, there were a whole host of tantalising will-they-won’t-theys like Link and Zelda. There were also friend-zone jobs like Mario and the Princess, and even a rare reversal with Sonic the Hedgehog and Amy Rose. And there’s even pairings that eventually turned sour, like Snake and Meryl. But proper romantic love stories? They were quite tough to shoot my arrow through.

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