Red-Faced Neckbeard, standing by

Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader (2002)

Well, I’ve officially lost count of all the Star Wars spin-offs. Of course it’s nothing new, once the nerds got hooked in the 70s and 80s, it was expanding faster than Mark Hamill’s waistline in the late 90s. And speaking of the late 90s, I’ll give you a little original trilogy memory that’ll mean nothing to you really, because why would you care about someone else’s nostalgia, but you might find it slightly cosy.

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Middle-aged monkeys moving to Mark Morrison’s music

Donkey Kong Country Returns (2010)

God, they warned me this would happen. I’m 32 this year and, while mercifully I haven’t degraded to a broken down ould fossil like some, and I’ve even managed to hold on to most of my hair, I can admit it – time is speeding up for me at a bloody alarming rate. It won’t be long now until I’ve got tubes up my nice, hairs in my ears and God knows what up my bum, and I’m racing towards the light, thinking “where did my life go…?”

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Within this tired hedgehog beats the heart of a low-res werewolf

Sonic Unleashed (2008)

Alright, are you a day bird or a night owl? I’ve always been a creature of the night for various reasons, most of them either vain or alcoholic in nature. Let’s talk about my day disadvantages – first of all, I work during the day, and when you get to the dead of winter, then daylight hours are consumed by work entirely. I have before threatened to go full Travis Bickle and go cabbing at night-time, but I’d probably just get wound up too much by 200 decibel hen parties and end up on a murderous rampage. You sort of want to avoid that kind of thing, if you care about your social status.

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“You can turn your back on a person, but never turn your back on Wario”

Wario Land 4 (2001)

I’m sure we trust each other enough now to talk about drug use. I’m not on about drug abuse now, or drug problems. After all, I don’t have a problem with drugs – I love them. No, but isn’t it a bit rich to look down on illegal drugs when the majority of the rest of us barely go a week, or a day even, with those more “honest” drugs of caffeine and alcohol?

But then, what of the legalisation of certain drugs? It always scores you credibility points to mention in public about how you really think weed should be legalised at this stage. But then, there are some cities you take a stroll down nowadays and you can’t move for the sickly smell of the stuff, thanks to legalisation. Do you really want that?

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Samus as a Suicide Girl, it’s all I ever wanted

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes (2004)

I shouldn’t ask this for fear of summoning them to my doorstep, like Beetlejuice, but where have all the good goths gone? I’m not talking about your posing e-girls, these days now good for a depraved bit of onanism but not much more. It used to be that you could go to some central location in a city, in Dublin’s case the old Central Bank, and find a gaggle of them hanging about, smoking, not going to school and talking about nonconformity. Bloody great, I say.

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A life in sport – Blitzball, Badminton and Flopping all over the world

Final Fantasy X (2002)

I looked so great during the last Olympics, sat tearing a fart divot through the armchair, wrapping my gob around a chipper and mocking the trampolinists on their poor form, even if I was half-waiting for the judges’ scores before I passed my own judgment, in case I looked silly. I so love being an armchair expert, because let’s face it, what’s the alternative? To be one of them? An Olympiad? Actually, that sounds great, I could add that to my many online bios and lord it over as many people as I could. They don’t have to know that I swam around in circles and fell off the gym horse.

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Look in the mirror, fat little marshmallow, and tell me what you see?

Kirby & the Amazing Mirror (2004)

I reckon I picked the wrong time in history to be unphotogenic, you know. Of course I’m arrogant enough to believe I’m a tera-hunk, but it only takes a rogue camera to catch you at your worst and it’s all over, the entire illusion is shattered – it’s ten chins, my hair’s a silvery mess and the gut is hanging right out.

Worse still if you’re photographed alongside somebody who knew where to look and nailed their pose. I’m surrounded by models, experts at getting papped. It got so that I’d dread those social media notifications, where people would snap a single night out using what’d be the olden days equivalent of ten rolls of film. With that many candid photos of you floating around, there was bound to be a few stinkers in there, for the object of your desires to find and cringe at, and for you to gloomily reflect on. After all, you can’t filter every photo to within an inch of its life, can you?

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There may a time and a place for Wario to recite poetry, but I don’t ever wanna hear it

Wario Land 3 (2000)

I never thought it would come to this, but I’m about to have a disagreement, a spat, a set-to, with my main man Wario. I’d always regarded Wario as the ideal role model, especially for young children. Sure, you could try to be like Mario all upstanding and “wholesome”, whatever that even means. But how far will that get you? At some point in your life you’ll recognise that playing by the rules will get you nowhere fast.

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Come on down to Mineral Town (again) and date 12 lucky contestants

Story of Seasons: Friends of Mineral Town (2021)

If you were suddenly transported into the last game world you visited, what would it be and how would you fare? Bit of a kick in the teeth if you’re a big Dark Souls buff, but you might be in your element if the last one you played was Minecraft, specifically a Minecraft world with a playable Pokémon Red, enormous booby angel statues, and no spiders. Actually, why not go one better? Does anyone have a lend of Dead or Alive Xtreme Volleyball 3?

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An Irish Air Show… it was never gonna be an assault on the senses

Star Fox Assault (2005)

I’m not a World War II historian – you should generally avoid such people like the plague – but I do at least know that Spitfire pilots tended not to disappoint when it came to fulfilling their duties, and the boys in the Hawker Hurricanes didn’t put up a poor show in front of the Bosh either. But I’m afraid to say that they, along with the much vaunted British Red Arrows, have let us all down.

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