Tag Archive | Mega Man

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the traditional way: by beating the crap out of these snake enemies

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner, and you know what that means: It’s time to beat up on some snakes!

“But Nate,” some of you might say, “aren’t you forgetting about the REAL point of St. Patty’s Day–the drinking?”

Your collective point is well taken, but I am a traditionalist, and (at least if I’m reading my Wikipedia correctly) the most important part of St. Patrick’s legacy is that he was a reptile-rouster, a herpetological herder, a real asp-kicker.Yes, like our friend Samuel L. Jackson, St. Patrick had had it with those monkey-fighting snakes on that Monday-to-Friday plane island.

And so I propose that in the spirit of the holiday, we march forward, controllers in hand, and do a little python-pummeling of our own. Allow me to humbly suggest some select serpents to squash.

image

1. Midgar Zolom, Final Fantasy VII.

The “Midgar Zolom” is the obnoxious creature that will chase, slay, and devour you with nary a second thought if you venture out into the swamps near the Mythril Mine–at least, unless you’re astride a chocobo. When you first encounter it, it’s about ten levels higher than you, and you pretty much don’t stand a chance against its absurd, nuclear-explosion-causing magic. To top things off, on the other side of the swamps, you run into one of the creatures impaled upon a tree–the handiwork of your quarry, Sephiroth. Talk about intimidating!

It’s worth it to circle back and seek your revenge once you’re equal in power to the creature, though–you can learn that handy nuclear-explodey-spell for yourself, and besides, you’re not going to let a giant snake get the better of you, are you? On St. Patty’s Day, All Snakes Must Die.

image

2. Snake Man, Mega Man 3

By the third Mega Man game, it seems that Dr. Wily had already begun to reach toward the bottom of the robot barrel for ideas. One can understand the usefulness of a robot who is very quick, for instance, or one who throws bombs. One can even imagine the utility of a robot who… has guts. But what plans did Wily have for a robot whose head is a snake, and who also shoots snakes? Was he going to open a reptile farm and finance his evil robot empire that way? Did he anticipate being attacked by Indiana Jones, perhaps?

Regardless, Snake Man deserves to die.

image

3. Killer Snake, Dark Cloud

Dark Cloud is a game that seems to have fallen off a lot of people’s radar, which is a shame–it, and to a larger degree its much-improved sequel, offered some pretty compelling dungeon-crawler/town-building gameplay. The second one even let you travel in time! I don’t think it let you beat up a giant snake, though, and so the original is the one that earns a spot on this list. Of snake enemies. That you can beat up.

Fun fact! If memory serves, this snake boss requires you to pass a loathsome Quick Time Event in order to slay it for good. So it totally deserves to die.

suikodensnake

4. Two-Headed Snake Boss, Suikoden II.

Two for the price of one! Suikoden II offers you this unsettling monstrosity, which can be a real pain in the butt to fight if you don’t know it’s coming. You’ve got to kill it, though–you must–if for no other reason than the fact that… can you see? Look really closely. At its mouths.

That’s right. This snake has human-like teeth. If that by itself ain’t enough to give you nightmares, then you’re a braver man than I. I bet St. Patty and his whole army of leprechauns would’ve had a hard time with this sucker. Did St. Patrick have an army of leprechauns? My research for this article was cursory at best.

32-SoM_9_33

5. Matango Snake, Secret of Mana.

Secret of Mana is a game with a lot of delightful bosses, but this snake! This is a pretty sorry snake, if you ask me. Why, it’s just a bunch of orbs that move in tandem! This faux-slitherer is an embarrassment to all of its herpetological brethren. If it were to unhinge its jaw (if it even can, the phony), how would its gruesome meal pass through its digestive tract? Its head isn’t connected to its body, and I find the biological implications of such an anatomy highly suspect. I would rate this snake two out of five, at best. You should probably put it out of its improbably-configured misery.

And finally…

Mgs-liquid-snake

6. Liquid Snake, Metal Gear Solid.

Because duh.

I hope that’s a good list to get you started. Let’s all work together to ensure that come St. Patrick’s Day, there are no more snakes left in all of gaming!

image

Well. Perhaps we could make one exception.

Ten 8-bit Ringtones, and What They Say About You

In this modern day and age, when almost everyone has a communication device with access to a global, mostly-unregulated data network, we are confronted with an existential quandary which our forebears could not have even imagined: How to ensure your phone’s ringtone matches your winning personality.

This is a humdinger, make no mistake: Leave your phone on one of the default sounds, and people might think you lack imagination. Select the incorrect pop single, and people will think you shallow. You don’t want your friends and relations to cringe every time you receive a call and Justin Beiber’s “Girl Hair Blues” plays, do you? (Full disclosure: I do not know any Justin Beiber songs.)

With that said, there is a source of simple tunage to which all gamers may turn in this time of need: the Nintendo Entertainment System. NES music is chippy and simple enough to function well as a ringtone, and by necessity the songs’ melodies usually assert themselves quite clearly in the first thirty seconds of play–perfect for using as an alert sound on your futuristic communication devices!

Here, for your consideration, are a sample of some excellent ringtone choices from the 8-bit era, with an explanation of how they might be right for you.

1. Mega Man 2 — Stage Select

Why this is a good choice: Simple, effective, and with a loop no more than a few seconds long, this tune is immediately recognizable to an old-school gamer and won’t make you inclined to let the ringtone play for thirty seconds so you can get to the good part.

What this says about you: “I’m going to check the Caller ID before I pick up to make sure I’m properly equipped for this conversation.”

2. Castlevania — Vampire Killer

Why this is a good choice: The first incarnation of a theme that appears throughout the entire Castlevania series, “Vampire Killer” is the most recognizable of the bunch and will help you to keep your cool in stressful situations.

What this says about you: “I am an unrelenting badass.”

3. The Legend of Zelda — Overworld Theme

Why this is a good choice: Hearing this music coming from your phone will remind you that there is adventure and freedom to be found in all aspects of life, even in the midst of a boring work day.

What this says about you: “I do my best work when I’m at full health.”

4. Ducktales — The Moon

Why this is a good choice: The Ducktales Moon Theme is the pinnacle of all human musical creation.

What this says about you: “You would be impressed by my extensive collection of precious gems.”

5. Ghosts ‘n’ Goblins — Stage One

Why this is a good choice: Another track whose melody is prominent right from the get-go, the main theme from Ghosts ‘n’ Goblins is packed with tension and is up-tempo while still feeling ominous. When your phone rings, you will at once be alert for spooks, spirits, and haints in your immediate vicinity.

What this says about you: “I can get the job done in my underpants.”

6. Final Fantasy — Prelude

Why this is a good choice: The Final Fantasy prelude is possibly the piece of 8-bit music best able to transport the listener to another world, and it can do so in just a few seconds with a handful of simple arpeggios. By putting this on your phone, you will make each call you receive feel magical, mysterious, and possibly even epic. Even if it’s from your Mum.

What this says about you: “I have a close-knit group of friends with whom I have gained a lot of experience.”

7. Ninja Gaiden — Basilisk Mine Field

Why this is a good choice: It’s highly likely that hearing this song coming from your phone will get you so pumped up that you will kick bystanders in the face.

What this says about you: “If I don’t take this call, it’s only because I’m too busy slicing someone in half.”

8. Dr. Mario — Fever Theme

Why this is a good choice: Despite the fact that this piece of music goes through a couple evolutions in a minute or two and you won’t get to hear all of it as a ringtone, the first thirty seconds are still enormously chippy, peppy, and happy. This is the kind of music that gets you going in the morning, like a good cup of coffee or the news that school has been canceled due to snow or chemical leak.

What this says about you: “I’m high on life, or perhaps psychoactive medications.”

9. Super Mario Bros. — Starman Theme

Why this is a good choice: Never has a tune so simple conveyed something so clearly.

What this says about you: “I am invincible.”

10. River City Ransom — Running Around the City

Why this is a good choice: This is a piece of music that clearly suggests that you are on a mission, but that you’re going to take your time getting around to it while you pummel the crap out of anyone who deigns to get in your way. A perfect ringtone for someone who spends a lot of time in malls, someone who likes to twirl a metal chain menacingly, or someone not afraid to throw their best friend’s prone body into a crowd of thugs.

What this says about you: “I am going to spend all my pocket money on a book that will teach me to spin-kick people in the face.”