Lack of free time much? Lately, absolutely. But thankfully I have had just enough free space to get in some time with Alundra. Now, I did write a review of Alundra waaay back in 2014 based on my own memories of the game, but at this point it’s been almost 10 years since I actually played the game at great length. Great length indeed – this game is huge! Anyway I’m pleased to report that Alundra has won me over all over again. Continue reading
World dominating fish-robots aside, I don’t know if I’d consider G-Darius the weirdest title out there, but as far as gimmicks go “beam-dueling” is certainly unique, not to mention visually arresting.
What does count as weird is the fishy-mechanical nature of these bosses. Something all the Darius games share are aquatic-robotic nemeses. Well, every franchise needs a Unique Selling Point I suppose. Much like what happened in the Megaman series (Sheep Man says hello), G-Darius is the sixth in the series and as a result features some absurdly named fish bosses: Tripod Sardine and Accordion Hazard anyone?!
This particular boss fight featured in the video however is against the slightly more conventionally titled Fire Fossil. Fire Fossil is great because, thanks to a whole lot of laser action, the boss fight allows for the most extreme example of beam-dueling in the entire game, to the point where it’s basically Dragon Ball Z: The Videogame (quite apart from all of those actual DBZ games).
G-Darius, alongside Adventures of Alundra, was one of the first PS1 games I got after picking up the system. I love having an arcade-y game to dig into and explore alongside a longer, more expansive game like an RPG. As a result of that habit, I now invariably associate G-Darius with Alundra, and so the fact that I’ve lavished Alundra with praise more than once makes my silence on G-Darius practically feel like a betrayal. But now I’m saved, and it was all thanks to you, Weird Video Wednesday! Tune in next time for more weird videos. (Weird Video Wednesday is brought to you by Japan.)
The Adventures of Alundra, or just plain Alundra was one of my first “retro” purchases for my then-newly acquired Playstation 1 and it remains one of my most memorable and exciting experiences on the console. Alundra is a rare type of game – an early 2D Playstation 1 game, it closely resembles A Link to the Past with a dose of Final Fantasy. The top-notch localisation of Alundra’s eerie story combined with well-done Zelda-inspired puzzles and mechanics makes for a rewarding adventure. Alundra must’ve seemed an anomaly back in 1997, a throwback game completely out of step with the 3D revolution. The 3D era was just starting and Sony were among 3D’s biggest champions, and here was a 2D game on a Sony platform long before 2D games were old enough to the point they became “cool” again. Returning to it in 2014 though Alundra is a beautiful 2D game, with graphics similar to the best looking late-era Super Nintendo RPGs, such as Tales of Phantasia, Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy VI.
Unlike Alien Hominid (see my previous post), Alundra is not a carbon copy of its biggest influence, Zelda. It borrows much, but it does so selectively, and it adds its own character and charm to create a very different experience with similar mechanics. In particular, its high difficulty, long length and intriguing story distinguish it from the Zelda series. Continue reading