This is Picklemoose's Blog. A small section of Pixelated Cardboard dedicated to topics outside of digital board game ports. Posts here will be less formal & cover a range of topics.
Further proof that my hoofs don't feel the same without a phone or remote in betwixt the fingers, I've now begun to enjoy games on my television through the Amazon Fire stick. With hundreds of newly ported & many many retro classics, this format is very popular within the PickleMoose cult. I mean clan, not cult. They can leave whenever they wish.
Like most of us, I could probably remove an appendix using only my remote. My fingers are so accustomed to the device and where the buttons are located, that I don't need to look at the remote in order to record "Real Moose Wives of Toronto," or switch between Hulu, Netflix & Amazon Prime with ease. So, playing games with the fire stick came easily. Then, I realized I can order a true gaming controller and play a ton of other classic gems. B-b-b-b-bingo!
What I've Been Playing
To call this Moose nostalgic is gross misuse of the term. Maxo-Super-Stalgic is better. So naturally I tried to find the original Dig-Dug right off the bat. No dice. Darn. However, the next best thing popped up - Double Dragon in a sweet trilogy package. I went on to discover a SEGA Classic game pack, Grand Theft Auto - Vice City, R-Type II, and Crazy Taxi. Game on.
How I Play
I play these fantastic retro masterpieces with a reckless abandon of strategy, and huge leaf eating grin on my face. I immediately purchased the Amazon Fire TV Game Controller which many if not all of the games I'll talk about here require. $16.00 and two days later, I was thumbs deep in the new and exciting world of Retro Fire Stick Game apps.
I play Fire Stick games like there are no decent games ever made after 2002; like pixelated graphics and synthesizer theme songs are the gold standard of gaming. When I roundhouse kick a bad guy, I want his stiff body to hit the ground, blink thrice and disappear like the piece of code he is.
After #1, the list is not ranked by best to worst games, just the ones we've played recently and enjoyed. If you're a fan of street fighting games not called street fighter, this post is right up your alley.
Some of the Games I've Played
1) Grand Theft Auto - Vice City
I've spent entirely too much time playing this greatest installment in the GTA family. As you know, the game takes place in a pseudo-Miami world full of bad bad things. Drugs, guns, porn, murder, extortion and a complete disregard for traffic laws define the game play. Warning! this game is not for children unless your kids are terrible people with no scruples. Scruples - that's a funny word. At only $4.99, Vice City is a steal.
Before you begin playing make sure to adjust the graphics to the best available settings. Draw Distance = 100%; Screen Resolution = 100%; Visual Effects = High; Dynamic Shadows = On; Frame Limiter = Off.
Now you're ready to stab, shoot, beat with a golf club, or light on fire any citizen or police officer in Vice City with style. Grand Theft Auto - Vice City is madness, complete chaos; an exercise in evil. The sheer joy of killing everyone in sight with shotguns and automatic weapons while driving like a maniac through the city is intoxicating.
2) Double Dragon - Trilogy
Three Double Dragon Games for three bucks; yes please. As soon as I saw that jerk punch my girl in the gut, throw her on his back an walk away at the beginning of the game , I knew I had to save her - 8 bit style. This game is hard - always was. My girl is still out there waiting for her Billy to save her. Sorry, babe.
While the original DD will always have a place in my heart, I truly enjoy playing Double Dragon II. Much Like DDI, I haven't made it very far because it's super hard, but the challenge is why I keep playing. This sequel is better looking, faster and smoother than Double Dragon.
On the other hand, DDIII is a double dumpster fire of a game. within Double Dragon III are weird bodega like stores asking for coins that I'm not sure if I possess or not. There are times when your character is just walking for screen after screen with no purpose in life.
Download this game app for the pleasure of kicking the snot out of bad guys with whips, crates, knives, fists, and bats. Take the time to re-adjust to the jumpy, non-fluid movements and soon you'll be back in love with the DD.
3)Sega Classics - 25 Game Pack
There’s a lot to like about this. You get to play Sonic and Streets of Rage without the ridiculously small retro-systems of late with the 2 foot long wired controllers. There are 4 Sonic the Hedgehog games, 3 Streets of Rage games, and 3 Golden Axe games to name a few.
The Streets of Rage Trilogy really sold me on this pack. There's something so gratifying and fun about beating people up in the streets. The Grand Theft Auto and Double Dragon parts of this page are a testament to that. And of course, Altered Beast is included. It's basically beating monsters up on un-paved streets. Oh yeah.
Other retro fun-ness include: The Revenge of Shinobi, Alien Storm, and Bonanza Bros.
4) Crazy Taxi
Whoa. This one is intense. The punk music coupled with the crazy fast, break neck taxi action makes for a wild ride. Crazy Taxi makes our list thanks to the quick game modes and the sweet sweet air time you get performing jumps. For a real, heart pounding challenge, select the Arcade mode during setup. This way your game is over if you don't make your pick-ups and drop-offs within the allotted times. Great for a back and forth challenge with a buddy or lover.
For a more relaxing, but still wildly entertaining and fast game-play, choose to play for a period of time. The graphics are really good considering when the game was released, but controlling that taxi is taxing. Quite difficult to switch between Drive & Reverse using the game controller. However, in time, it gets easier.
5) R-Type II
Gimme that old time side-scrolling nonstop shooter rock & roll! Before you even start, do yourself a favor and set the game type to limitless. This allows you to pick up where you left off after you die; and you will die a lot. So many space deaths. Much like other games developed before Y2K, R-Type II is a little jumpy and pixelated. Deal with it. This game is fantastic. You never stop shooting!
There are so many ugly alien bad guys to destroy! If you enjoy moving up and down and back and forth, then R-Type II is your Space Shooter game. Upgrade your weapons by shooting weapon pods, and marvel in the destruction you cause. FYI - The original R-Type is also available!!
Twas a Blast from the Past
you are going to love these, even if just for a few hours before something new and shiny appears. Here are some other great retro games available for download on the fire stick:
I hope to break away from the games to bring you another Fire Stick game write up very soon. Next time, I'll fill you in on the most recent games to hit the platform rather than commenting on these golden oldies. It must be said that Stranger Things: The Game was left off of this list intentionally. We'll visit this masterpiece in the next round of fire stick game reviews.