Super Mario Land (1989)

As part of the move from Art of Redress, I wanted to bring across my reviews at The Well-Red Mage. In my opinion, it’s some of my best writing (typing?) and I think The Well-Red Mage brings out the best in me, in terms of researching and playing games.

How did I become a mage? I first came across The Well-Red Mage a few months after I started writing on WordPress…say maybe June/July? I was intrigued by the site straight away – I loved the analytical writing, the layout and I’m always a fan of when people use quotes to frame the direction of their writing. Eventually I plucked up some courage and began chatting to The Well-Red Mage himself. Initially it was about Sega, as I’m a big Sega fan and I think Red was a big Nintendo fan growing up…we were kind of on different sides of the same fence, if that makes sense. I really enjoyed (and still do) the Sega/Nintendo conversations and that prompted me to ask if I could write for The Well-Red Mage. Red said yes and so began what has been one of the best ‘creative’ relationships I’ve had to date.

I needed a hook though, a gimmick for my mage name. I decided that I would be The Hopeful Handheld Mage as I wanted to use my 3DS more and this would give me a good incentive to buy more games and play through them. Red agreed and diesgined my mage icon…he’s pretty cool isn’t he?

For my first review, I wanted to review Tetris as that really is the first ‘big’ handheld game. However, Tetris had been delisted so I couldn’t buy it. My next choice was a game I owned and was the original idea for the Game Boy’s pack in game – Super Mario Land. To me, that game symbolised the Game Boy back in the day, most people owned it and it was the first game I bought when I got my 3DS.

Writing the review itself was tough. I was tryinh to be more serious and professional – my blog at the time Retro Redress’ motto was just ‘post something, anything!’ I painstakingly edited the review and moved things around several times. I also had a rage over the pictures…I couldn’t save some of them and was having a meltdown late at night trying to fix them. I don’t remember how I did it to be honest…all I remember was reading the finished post on the way to Cornwall. I was pretty happy with the result. In fact, I’d argue this (or maybe the next Well-Red Mage review) is the best thing I’ve ever written.

Don’t take my word for it though – have a read for yourself. Maybe you could be a mage too? After all, you can never have enough mages….

The Well-Red Mage

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“Welcome, and enter the center
Of my Super Mario adventure
My girl is trapped on the other side of town
So I’m moving in leaps and bounds
Folks around my way think I’m strange
But there’s a villain to blame
Even my ma, she thinks I’m crazy
But I’ve got to rescue Daisy (let’s go)

There ain’t no place like Super Mario Land (let’s go!)”

-Ambassadors Of Funk, ‘Supermarioland

HandheldMage1 “The following is a guest post by the Hopeful Handheld Mage.”

As I accepted my role as the Hopeful Handheld Mage, my first question to myself was ‘Where do I start?’ I knew I had to start with a game that played a big part in the beginning of handheld games. The format had to be be the Game Boy, the most important handheld console of all time, but which game? My first thought was Tetris

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Gary plays…Monopoly Plus

After watching a ton of wrestling, I really fancy playing something. Nothing too serious though. Plus we have a new mattress airing out in the living room, blocking my Pro Evolution Soccer seat (middle of the carpet) and making random springing sounds. So that rules out any Pro Evolution Soccer and anything scary. I don’t want to be jumping every time the mattress expands!

So, why not Monopoly Plus? I bought it a few months ago in a PSN Sale. I don’t usually bother with board games on consoles, but I love Monopoly and have no one to play it with. My kids are too young and my wife hates it. I don’t blame her to be fair, I know how seriously I take Monopoly.

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Gary’s thoughts on…beating your games backlog

As a gamer, you’ll face many enemies. Evil scientists craving world domination, lizards who kidnap princesses, corrupt government agents, just to name a few. However, there is one gaming enemy we all battle against and inevitably lose to.

That’s right, I’m talking about your video games backlog. Every gamer has one. It can be a few games you picked up in a sale from Game. It can be that pile of Sega Saturn RPGs you’ve managed to get from eBay. Either way, most gamers have a collection of games that they want to complete, but they are stuck on a shelf or a hard drive, waiting for the mythical day when there is finally time to play them.

You might be reading this and nodding your head because you recognize that feeling of resigned frustration. That’s cool, I reckon everyone knows that feeling. The question is, how can we make that feeling go away? I’m no expert but I’ve tried a few things that have definitely helped…

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Gary watches…NJPW King of Pro Wrestling

 

Apologies for how late this review is – I spent last week building flat pack furniture for my daughter’s room, felt behind on WWE Super Show-Down due to exhaustion and struggled to catch up with this show as a result!

I didn’t want to miss out on this show as I really enjoyed Fighting Spirit Unleashed. The road to Wrestle Kingdom is under way and it’s going to be a fun journey….

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Gary watches…WWE Super Show-Down

After my little hiatus from blogging and watching wrestling, I’m still trying to get back into the swing of things with WWE. I watched Hell in a Cell last month, but most of it drifted past me. I feel like a lot of these big WWE shows have been kinda samey and state this year.

I’m hoping a change of scenery might help WWE with this show. As the event is being held in Melbourne Cricket Ground with a crowd of 70,000 +, I’m hoping this show might feel different from the usual fare.

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Altered Beast

My original plan for Monday was to post some thoughts on WWE’s Super Show-Down, however I’m running behind schedule because of a busy weekend. I’m hoping to have my WWE Super Show-Down post up on Tuesday, but I didn’t want to miss my scheduled Monday post.

So, I thought this might be a good opportunity to re-visit my first post for GameTripper, a look back at how I first encountered Altered Beast on the Mega Drive. I think everyone who writes about games has a game everyone associates them with and I think Altered Beast is mine. I know it’s not a particularly good game, but I have very fond memories of it – Altered Beast was a game that inspired my love of retro gaming and rekindled my love for Sega. Without it, I’d probably still be only be playing sports games.

Here is the link for my contribution to GameTripperhttp://www.gametripper.co.uk/games/mega-drive/altered-beast/. Do check GameTripper out as there are some great contributors involved as well as Matt, who runs the site. I’m writing another piece for GameTripper at the moment so hopefully I’ll be able to share that soon.

In the meantime, though I’d best get back to watching WWE. I’ve got a bit of catching up to do!

Gary’s thoughts on…attending EGX 2018

When one of my friends said they were going back to EGX and asked if I wanted to come, it was a no brainer. I’d only been to Play Expo 2015 previously (which I really enjoyed) and had been a little jealous of my friends’ previous trips to EGX. So, I bought a ticket and downloaded the app…

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