About halfway through 2020 I decided to start tracking how many games I had picked up within the year, and wow, it was a lot. Assuming I didn’t miss anything, it looks like I picked up 428 physical games in the year! That’s 1.17 games a day! Absolutely nuts! The craziest part of this is that I probably only played about 10 of these games so far. I’ve decided in 2021 to severely reduce the amount of games I purchase and dedicate a good chunk of time to playing through these 2020 PickUps.
I will be playing, streaming and discussing a lot of these games over the next few months (if not years) as I try to get through this massive pile of games. I will likely break them down into categories, maybe by system, AAA, Indies, genres, etc. It should be fun to go through this.
I also feel the need to clarify, despite picking up 428 physical games in 1 year, I am not rich, nor am I broke either. Most of my games were picked up for a few bucks each at thrift stores and yard sales, I also had a friend who no longer plays games, let me pick through his XBox, PS2 and XBox 360 collection really cheap. Black Friday/Holiday sales were huge in pumping up my PS4 collection and some of the Switch collection. Still I know this was a lot of money when it’s all added up, but not quite as costly as it seems.
Full List BelowRead the rest of this entry
Punch-Out!! is one of my favorite franchises of all-time and it simply doesn’t have enough entries in the series or games that try to copy it’s formula. When I found out about Pato Box, it looked like Punch-Out!! with a Mad World-esque art style, I was very interested.
You play as a boxing Duck that just lost a fixed fight, and you are out for revenge against your management team/mob that backstabbed you and set you up to lose. The story is kinda goofy, but you can tell the developer had fun creating it. As you go through the Casino’s floors you will have to punch office chairs into a storage room, dodge gigantic swinging blades, play some casino games and navigate various other situations to spread out the fights. I respect the attempt at a campaign and some of the puzzles, and again, the goofiness is a bit entertaining, but any puzzles and challenges mechanics are similar to what you’ve seen in many games before.
My biggest complaints and problems with the game unfortunately is the fighting. There are 6 fighters, a machine (which is like a rhythm based fight) and a final boss that replays all previous fighters Shang Tsung style. This is by far the most important aspect of the game, and the controls are simply not responsive enough to handle the dodging and quick strikes that are necessary for a boxing game like this. Some of the opponents also had inconsistencies in their recovery time for attacks, they would throw a barrage of power punches and miss, but the opportunity for me to counter them never opened up, sometimes missing a combo didn’t phase them. I can appreciate the attempt here, but I simply would not recommend this to anyone unless they are truly dying for another Punch-Out!! type of game. I grew a whole new appreciation for Punch-Out!! after playing this.
- Interested because of the unique art style and I’m a Punch-Out!! fan
- Made it to the final boss (which is just replaying all of the previous fights) and didn’t feel like finishing.
- Got stuck on some fights, but finished through trial and error
- Felt like the controls weren’t as responsive as they needed to be
- Physical Limited Edition [Asia Import – PLAYasia Exclusive] (Switch)
- Digital Copy (Switch)
Yoshi’s Crafted World
Crafted World is a casually fun 2D platformer with a vast amount of hidden items and reasons to replay each level. Besides your standard red coin and flower collectibles, after completion the levels are flipped and played in reserve with a task to chase down hidden Poochy Pups. To add even more, you’re given a scavenger hunt of unique items to find in each level when you’re all done, it’s impossible to 100% a level in one play through. These hidden collectibles are the main draw of the game and is where you’ll find most of the challenge.
The platforming, combat and boss fights are fairly simple, the game is very laid back as previous Yoshi’s and Kirby games are. The level design is well done, but being able to hover jump infinitely undermines some of the maps. The game’s creativeness shines in the crafting styles, everything in the game looks like a hand crafted diorama project, it’s very charming. The music is repetitive and mostly the same recycled tunes, but the level’s actually have a good amount of variety, controlling a giant “mech”-Yoshi, Jet-Planes, Race Cars, and other ways that change up the gameplay. I very much enjoyed this game, it’s the only Yoshi I’ve ever beaten, and my favorite of the non-Island Yoshis.
- Played it consistently for the first few weeks after release until completing the campaign
- 100% completed close to half of the levels, I’ve collected over 350 flowers
- Only played the first couple worlds of Yoshi’s Wooly World and hadn’t played Yoshi’s Story until 2019
- I believe Yoshi’s Crafted World is the best non-Island Yoshi game.
- Physical Copy
Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins
This is one of the best games for the original Game Boy and it’s a big step up from the original Super Mario Land. Bowser is again absent as the main antagonist, but in his place we get the debut of Wario! The visuals and music are up to par with the Mario series, and we even get some new power-ups like the Carrot.
The carrot gives the player Bunny Ears and lets Mario fly over a level easily (a little too easy). As a GameBoy Mario, this game was incredible for it’s time. Compared to the rest of the Mario series, the levels are a bit short and easy (besides the final level) and the game itself is short enough it can be completed 100% in a 2 hours or less. Still a great GameBoy game.
- Mario is my favorite franchise ever.
- I played and beat this when it originally came out, and I replayed it to the end again in March 2019
- I previously looked back at this as a possible top 3 side scrolling Mario game, but after my recent play through I recognize that is untrue due to limitations of the GameBoy and the shorter/easier levels.
- Physical Copy (Cartridge Only)
- 3DS Digital Copy
Super Mario Odyssey
Super Mario Odyssey delivers greatness that goes right alongside the best games in the franchises’s history. I personally believe Super Mario Odyssey is the best game available on the Switch. The worlds are stuffed with moons to find and other challenges to do. After “beating” a world, more content unlocks within that world, and when you beat the game, even more content is added to those worlds. This is probably the largest Mario game ever.
There are no regular power-ups, no fire flowers, no raccoon leaf’s etc, but you use your hat to possess over 50 different things. These possessions fill the void of no power-ups, as they will enable you to do abilities like fly and shoot fire among other things. The range of abilities, puzzles, platforming and the large amount of content are everything a Mario fan would want. This is a must-have for all Switch owners.
- Super Mario series is my favorite game series/franchise
- I’ve beaten every Super Mario game
- I own all of the mainline Mario games
- Picked this up at launch, took me a little over 2 months to beat the main campaign. I recently picked it back up to do the post-game content and finished the final-final level. I still have about 400 Moons to get!
- Super Mario Odyssey (Switch) – Physical
I Need To Play My PS4
The Playstation 4 was easily my most played console between 2014 – 2016, but for the past 18 months, I haven’t even turned it on. In the 6 months before that, I had played it for less than 10 hours. So what happened in 2017 that affected my Playstation 4 time? My tastes in gaming changed, I wasn’t happy with what I had been playing recently, and then around this time, Nintendo released the Switch. A few things in my personal life had also changed, and in respect to my privacy I’ll just say I had a career change, and I also had a some family events occur that reduced my playing time. But I still managed to play games these past 18 months, I just shifted away from the bigger titles on PS4.Read the rest of this entry
Let’s Play Super Mario Week
All week I’m going to be playing various Mario games from my collection! I’m going to keep a list of the games I’ll be playing, and expected play schedule up here. My twitter feed will also have updates to the schedule
- Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins (GameBoy)
- Super Mario 64 (Nintendo 64)
- Super Mario Kart (Super Nintendo)
- Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour (GameCube)
- Super Mario World (Super Nintendo)
- Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Wii)
- Mario Kart 64 (Nintendo 64)
- Super Mario Odyssey (Switch)
Achievements & Trophies: Addiction Unlocked
When Microsoft introduced Achievements with the XBox 360, it changed gaming, it changed the way developers made their games and it changed the way we played games. Sure there were games with collectibles, tasks, and a completionist % design to them, but now every game incorporated it. When I first bought a XBox 360 (Elite model in July 2007) I didn’t think much of achievements, when I played and they unlocked I shrugged it off and didn’t think much more. One night while playing through Gears of War online with a friend, he got excited that he unlocked one, I noticed how it meant something to him.
As months went on, I had played a variety of games, I’m usually picking something up new to play every couple of weeks. I had started to notice achievements more, after they’d unlock, I’d pop-up the menu and see what exactly I just accomplished. A few games later, I started looking through the list and seeing what else there was I thought I could possibly do without getting too off-track and wasting too much time. Eventually, it reached a point where I was looking at https://www.xboxachievements.com/ before a game released, or before I rented it at GameFly and seeing if the achievements seemed obnoxious, time-consuming, and possible. If a game required several play throughs, or online specific goals, such as getting a high rank, I would avoid them. I specifically remember being interested in the game Lost Planet by Capcom, but I avoided playing it because it required 4 – 5 playthroughs to get 100%.Read the rest of this entry
With a retro style, a creative concept and a familiar feel, Bomb Chicken seems like a hit early on. You play as a bomb laying chicken that stacks and kicks bombs to maneuver through the levels and solve puzzles. While the mechanics feel like a mix of other older games, I don’t believe there is anything else like it.
In the first half of the game, I thoroughly enjoyed the challenges and clearing each level. I was actually thinking this game had 5/5 potential. But as I reached later levels, I started to encounter flaws in the level design and mechanics. Some of the later levels challenges relied more on luck, being thrown into a room full of hazards while trying to open a timed gate seemed nearly impossible. I knew I’d eventually get it, but I also felt like my strategy wasn’t bad, my skill wasn’t poor, it was just too much for the limited abilities of the Bomb Chicken. When I’d finally clear these later challenges, I only felt like I “finally” got lucky that things worked out in my favor.
The game is still a fun experience, it’s not expensive and it’s not long either. The end levels exposed some weakness, and left me with an “average” feeling but I’d still recommend it to those interested in it.
- Purchased it at launch for $14.99
- Played it periodically over a 6 month time frame
- Beat all of the levels, but did not 100% it, nor do I want to
- Took under 5 hours to beat all the levels
- Bomb Chicken (Switch) – Digital
Nintendo Switch: Year 2 In Review
The Nintendo Switch just finished it’s 2nd Year of availability, and it is undoubtedly a huge success. We continue to hear about the device breaking sales records and it seems like every week new games and more support are announced. But besides sales, how was Year 2 for the Switch? I wanted to go back and Grade the releases by Nintendo, the support and releases by Third Parties, the Indies games released, and the Services and Systems Updates the system got throughout the year.Read the rest of this entry