Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Introducing the Sega Network

By now you may have noticed a little logo on the sidebar of most of the Junkyard blogs as well as at Sega Memories and SEGAbits. That little logo is for the Sega Network, a new convenient way for visitors of any of our fine blogs to click from one blog to another. It's like the "web ring" of old, but better because it's a "network". As a bonus, postings found at the Junkyards and at Memories will occasionally be seen at SEGAbits, a larger Sega community site that caters to all things new and current.

As mentioned, some Junkyards are not listed in the network yet but I'm working on contacting the others to hopefully get them on board. I'm talking about you Sega Master System Junkyard and Sega CD Junkyard!

In handheld Sega news, check out a write up from Gagaman about the Sega games found on Tiger's abysmal R-Zone. Read the article here, or better yet click the link to Sega Memories in the sidebar!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Revenge of VGNY


Last year I chronicled a trip to New York, specifically the video game motherload that is Video Games New York. Well warm weather has returned and so another trip to New York seemed in order! While the trip consisted of a number of non-gaming related activities (I'll save you from stories of glowing lobster heads), I'll just detail the the video game moments. Unless you'd like to see a glowing lobster head.

Last time I visited the shop, I was overwhelmed by the amount of games. Literally shelves and shelves devoted to each console! Opened games were out in the open, while hundreds of sealed games sat behind glass. The last time I had seen that many sealed Dreamcast and Saturn games in one place was GameStop in 2001. Still, I had a sneaking suspicion that the reason why so many games go unsold is because of another factor. I ruled out ghosts and assumed the games were marked up to insane prices. After checking the tags, I was mostly correct.

VGNY is great, don't get me wrong, but the prices were and still are selectively insane. I can understand why a sealed 'Capcom vs. SNK" is priced at $60, but do they really have to charge $10 for used copies of NFL2k when they clearly have over two dozen of them? For the most part, $10 is the lowest used price, even for the crappiest of crappy games. A disc-only copy of the first 'Tony Hawk' might be $7, but that's as low as they'll get. So forget about picking up 'Razor Freestyle Scooter' for a few bucks as a laugh.

Having this knowledge of inflated prices, I came prepared with a list of games that I had my eyes on as well as the average ebay prices for said games. That way, if I were to spot 'Stupid Invaders' for $25, I'd know that on ebay it can be found for $30 and I'd be making a wise choice to pick it up at VGNY. Unfortunately, I didn't encounter anything from my list at VGNY that I couldn't get for a half to three quarters of the price on ebay.

Fortunately, and this is the HUGE positive I have about VGNY, there is always a treasure to be found. Something that slipped through the cracks and avoided a crazy price. Last year I snagged 'Illbleed' and 'Floigan Bros', this year I found a PAL copy of 'Headhunter' for $25 and the XBOX version of 'Sonic Riders' for $9.

While I didn't leave VGNY with the pirate's bounty I was hoping for, I did leave knowing I was a smart shopper. Not as cool as a pirate though...

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

'Sonic the Hedgehog 2' Plops Onto the iPod

Not to be confused with 'Sonic Advance 2'

Like 'Sonic 1', 'Sonic 2' is now available on the iPod for download. Unfortunately, early impressions sound as though it is the same emulation that was found on all other Genesis ports. That isn't to say the release is awful, it's just "alright". Minor to substantial framerate drops have been said to occur, and the controls can be tricky in later levels. The price, $5.99, is too steep when you consider an excellent full featured port on the XBOX costs a dollar less at $5.

Check out the gameplay video courtesy of TouchArcade:

Must I end every Genesis port article with "of course, you could always play a Nomad"?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

New Sega iPod Releases - Sonic 2 and Soc- er, Football!

Just when things looked bad for Sega retro releases on the iPod, a glimmer of hope appeared in the announcement of Sonic the Hedgehog 2 for the iPod, iPad and iPod Touch (for the sake of this posting and the future I'll just say "iPod"). The game isn't out until later this week or next, yet Appolicious has already scored the game a 5/5. Perhaps Sega has fixed their so-so emulation methods? Images and video have yet to be released, but I'm certain they will look the same as the Sonic 1 screens.

With Sonic 1 and 2 hitting the iPod, could it only be a matter of time before we see Sonic 3 & Knuckles? The rumor of Sonic 4 coming to the iPod just got more valid.

In other Sega mobile news, Sega's popular Football Manager 2010 has quietly debuted on the iPod and user reviews are largely positive. I myself am no sports game fan, especially when it's a sports management sim, but I am very happy to see Sega releasing another quality iPod title. Could this be a part of their new mobile strategy?*

*To not release crap?

Here are a few screens:

It's no SimAnt, but I'm sure it has its fans.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The iPad Debuts with Super Monkey Ball 2: Sakura Edition

Yeah, yeah. So the iPad can do a lot of things. Mapping, web browsing, etc. All those features are great, but they pale in comparison to Super Monkey Ball 2: Sakura Edition! The game is essentially the already released Super Monkey Ball 2 for the iPhone and iPod Touch, but in a higher resolution and with a few new exclusive features. PCWorld breaks down what iPad owners can expect in this upgraded version:

Now Sakura Edition comes to the iPad with even better graphics, four new mini-games (one of which is an iPad exclusive), and ten exclusive new levels. The four new mini-games include old favorites like Monkey Bowling, Monkey Target, Monkey Golf, and the iPad exclusive multiplayer mini-game Monkey Base. Monkey Base allows four players on the same iPad to launch orbs at each other as each player tries to be the last one standing. The ten iPad exclusive levels are from the Far East World and Other Ocean Interactive boasts that they are some of the most visually stunning to date.

Want to see it in action? Check out this video review: