Tag Archives: game

Game Review: 10-Yard Fight

Hey guys, it’s Kernook here, and it’s time to talk about a little game that’s hardly remembered these days called 10-Yard Fight. This is a retro sports title that revolves around American football. I really must say, retro sports games like this one are special due to their antiquity. Games like this one only offer a useful look at what gaming used to be.

That reflection is important, but that’s about all 10-Yard Fight has going for it. This is a basic football simulation game. You might get a little fun out of the novelty of playing such an old title, but you’ll also get plenty of little annoyances. More on that later.

When I say this game is old, I mean it is older than the NES itself, type of old. This game is absolutely geriatric by gaming standards any way you look at it. 10-Yard Fight was developed and published in Japan by Irem. It was originally for arcades in 1983, not consoles. It finally came over to the NES in 1985. Honestly, playing the game feels just as out of place as you might expect.

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The sound isn’t the greatest, the visuals aren’t either. Just looking at the field itself, the little players skittering around lack a fair bit of polish even for its time. There’s a lot of important gameplay features missing here too and these days it makes the game even more annoying to play.

The game doesn’t even have the standard playbook or the season modes you might expect from other games of its genre. You won’t get team names, or any detailed customization of the team itself, either. The difficulty settings are also bare bones at best, vague at worst.

Obviously, the game has not aged well under the hood, either. The artificial intelligence in the game (AI), can’t predict even the most basic strategies. On easier settings, you’ll be able to outmaneuver it without much effort at all. On harder ones, sometimes it feels almost random. Once you get used to the learning curve of the game itself, there’s really nothing more to do. It becomes a glorified fidget toy.

I suck at football games (and arguably all games in general), anything besides Tecmo Bowl may as well be me kissing my butt goodbye. 10-Yard Fight is lackluster in comparison, and you don’t need to be a top tier gamer to see that.

Then again, we’ve been spoiled by gaming these days, let’s not forget that. I’m sure that 10-Yard Fight was probably a wonderful game at one time, likely beloved by football fans who got to grow up with it… but therein lies the problem for me.

I was born in 1989, so clearly I missed out on those early glory days. There’s a reason why Tecmo Bowl stands out to me as one of the better retro football games. It was the game I grew up with, and the one I was introduced to in my earliest days as a gamer.

Is 10-Yard Fight objectively a good retro game? Well, the jury is out on that when we put the game under scrutiny… it’s old, and it lacks a great many features that we’d expect these days. We’ve got to cut it a little slack at least. After all, it is one of the earliest first football games out there for a console in the first place. We can’t exactly expect the sun, moon and stars here.

That being said, it’s important to look upon gaming’s history, and to me 10-Yard Fight is one of those historical landmark titles often forgotten about. So, no, it isn’t complete and total crap from a historical standpoint. We could hardly appreciate later iteration of football titles without understanding what we lacked before those things became commonplace.

If the history of games appeals to you, and you are a football fan, it may be worth it to try the game for yourself… but if you actually want a good retro football title, then almost any other game would do you better. Clearly, I’d suggest 1991’s wonderful SNES game Tecmo Bowl.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage – Reignited (Longplay)

Hey everyone, it’s Kern here, back with another long-play from our YouTube channel. Today the name of the game is Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage from the Reignited trilogy of games.

Spyro the Dragon – Long Play

This trilogy is a remastering of the original Spyro trilogy developed by Insomniac Games. The original three games ran from the years 1998 to 2000. These games are platformers featuring the protagonist, Spyro. He’s a young purple dragon with a little bit of an attitude, and a flair for breathing fire, and flying around.

As you may recall, we’ve already done the first game on our channel in a long-play format. As we last left our titular hero, he rescued his friends and reclaimed the dragon’s treasure, all while facing down the evil nemesis of the game, Gnasty Gnorc.

This time, we’re facing down new villains, with a new evil plot. Ripto, along with his two minions Crush and Gulp have decided to conquer Avalar. It’s our job to stop him. We’ll see how that goes.

Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage – Reignited (Long-Play)

Much like the first game, this one received quite the critical acclaim by gamers all around the world. This particular remake was released for the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One on November 13, 2018. The PC and Nintendo Switch saw a release on September 3, 2019.

Spyro 2: Ripto’s Rage, is also known as Spyro 2: Gateway to Glimmer in Europe and Australia. The game was released in 1999. Like its predecessor, this is a platform title, developed by Insomniac Games and it was published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation back in the day. This is the second game in the main series.

This game is kid friendly and therefore, great for young gamers. If you have a child that’s just starting out on platforming titles, this is a good game to pick. Spyro is the spunky dragon we all know and love, and the enemies are the goofy sort. You’ll find a lot of family fun here to go around.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Let’s Talk Gaming: Things Final Fantasy XIV Did Wrong – Starting Cities

Before I begin, let me preface this by saying that I think Final Fantasy XIV does a lot of things correctly when it comes to being a very solid MMORPG. I enjoy the game a lot, and I’ve spent plenty of time (and subscription money) to frolic around in Eorzea. What’s Eorzea you ask? Well, it’s the fictional world Final Fantasy XIV is set within.

A bit of backstory seems prudent. I began playing Final Fantasy XI back when it first released in the USA in the early 2000’s. I played the original Final Fantasy XIV before Square Enix tossed aside the project and went back to the drawing board (more on that game and its countless failings in a separate post). That’ll be a rabbit hole if I ever decide to explain that mess.

Anyway, when the game later released anew under the name “A Realm Reborn” I claimed my free copy offered to those of us who had played on the old game for so long and dove headfirst into my favorite type of MMORPG, the Final Fantasy kind.

For years though, I’ve always thought that Final Fantasy XIV made a few decisions that weren’t exactly wise for gamers like myself, coming from other MMORPG’s with the intent to “static” with other players.

What is a “static” you ask? Well, that’s simple, it’s when you play a game only with a select few people, and you do so regularly. In FFXI, static parties were a commonality among close friends. Many MMORPG’s seem to put systems into place that destroy the “static mindset” and considering that FFXI thrived on that style of gameplay, you can guess how I might feel about that…

Generally speaking, I’m not too happy at all with the concept.

While Final Fantasy XIV has plenty to praise, the story line particularly, it also has one thing I absolutely despise… well, it has a few things I despise, but none more so than they way they start you in a city based on what job you plan to level, rather than where you’d LIKE to start.

Say for example, what’s going on for Kresh and I currently as we plan a stream day around Final Fantasy XIV (yes, we both like the game that much, that we’re going to stream it regularly soon). There’s just one problem, I plan to level WHM (White Mage, a healer for the uninitiated). Kresh plans to level a tank… however, there are no tank jobs that start in Gridania, meaning Kresh would have to start elsewhere.

See what I mean?

It kind of defeats the purpose of friends starting off together on new characters. If don’t start there, I would need to wait to level the job required to unlock WHM, however, if we don’t start in the city Kresh where Kresh can get a tanking job, then it makes for the same problem in reverse. This is a confine of the game directly, and it makes for something of problem that is strangely antiquated despite the fact that the much older MMORPG (FFXI) never had this problem if the first place. Jobs were not implemented in this way.

Final Fantasy XI never had any such issue, because you could choose your job and your starting location. It wasn’t a lose-lose situation. It didn’t have to be. Final Fantasy XIV should have followed suit in my personal opinion, because games that discourage friends to play together based on something as arbitrary as starting cities loses focus on what an MMORPG truly is.

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Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game… that’s what MMORPG stands for, and it should be at the core of the valuable systems indicative of the gameplay experience.

In this particular aspect, and a few others, Final Fantasy XIV failed that concept. The starting cities based upon your job within the game is a key point to make about this.

Now, to be clear World of Warcraft had a similar ideology at one point. It was irksome there as well, particularly during the dark ages when being a druid forced you onto starting as either a Tauren or a Night Elf. However, at least in World of Warcraft that made sense within the wider lore and universe. Final Fantasy XIV has no set player-verses-player standard the way that World of Warcraft did, nor, longstanding lore to draw from. Therefore, I find the “lore” argument a harder one to make or even defend for Final Fantasy XIV.

Now, to be clear, in Final Fantasy XIV this really is just a minor annoyance at best, as you can change your job at whim… however, that’s kind of the point. In World of Warcraft, you couldn’t do that. If you picked say… a warrior for example, then that’s what you were… a warrior… you couldn’t suddenly change your job to a mage or or a priest just because you felt like it. You had to start another character and begin the grind again.

In Final Fantasy XI and in Final Fantasy XIV you can level all of the jobs on one single character, with no need to make a second or a third. With this ideology in mind, surely you can see how it might be just a little reductive and in some ways flat out idiotic to demand a starting location based on your starting job alone.

Some games pull off that sort of limitation more believably than others, but in my personal opinion, Final Fantasy XIV just isn’t one of them… you may actually like this system the way it is, and if you do, that’s fine too. This, to me, is just a personal annoyance, but one that sticks out so perniciously as one very bad idea, and one that just didn’t have any real need to be implemented in the first place.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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Patreon Supporters:
($3) Little Ferrets: None
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Resident Evil – Long Play (Jill)

Anyone who knows me knows for a fact that I love the Resident Evil franchise. I think that the games are some of the best that survival horror has to offer.

Today’s long play starts where it all began, Resident Evil for the PlayStation, in 1996. Alpha Team members are headed for the mountains northwest of Raccoon City. With missing Bravo Team members to locate, and a diabolical pharmaceutical company performing twisted experiments, it’s sure to be a nightmare.

This particular long play showcases Jill’s scenario.

Resident Evil (Jill) Long Play

I really do love this game, flaws and all. Let’s be honest, though. There are a lot of flaws with this old title these days, especially now that we have remakes and also a remastering to compare it to. By today’s standards the game is as campy as it is dated. It isn’t exactly ideal, but it is a historical icon in gaming. That’s not something anyone can dispute and for me, that’s reason enough to play it.

Resident Evil Retrospective Review

Resident Evil features a fairly typical story. A rescue mission is taking place. With a string of murders running rampant across the fictional Raccoon City, it’s up to the police to find out what is really going on. In response to this, the Special Tactics and Rescue Service, or “S.T.A.R.S.” have been sent to look into the issue. Having been sent deep into the mountains, the first team has gone missing.

Tank controls and limited ammo supply is the name of the game here. The antiquated graphics leave much to be desired, and don’t even get me started on the voice acting.

Still, there’s an old world sort of charm to the original Resident Evil, and if you’re a fan of the horror medium, it’s worth a look if you haven’t played it already.

I’ve already done a full retrospective review of the game, so go ahead and give it a read if that interests you. There’s also a properly edited video of the script if that’s to your interest instead.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest, and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll catch you next time. Meanwhile, check out some of our other great content below.

With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier. If you don’t care for Patreon, and don’t care about perks, you can always support us through PayPal too… links below.

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Patreon Supporters:
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The “Bad Writing” of Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin

To start with, we’ve all heard that excuse time and time again from fandom. In our favorite shows, movies, books and other media, there’s always someone who shouts two simple words into the void; “bad writing!”. They shout this before leaving the matter at that.

I’ve seen messy writing in plenty of pieces of media, I’ve seen poorly executed writing even beyond that. However, bad writing is an outlier in such a drastic way that it actually annoys me to hear this turn of phrase more often than not…

Typically a person says this if they don’t agree with a narrative decision within the media presented to them. There’s plenty of discourse to be had about how something could have been done better, sure enough. No story is flawless, after all.

In point of fact, and I say this very adamantly, I tend to find that the “bad writing” argument crops up more often when a person can’t pin down why they dislike the writing so much. That’s why I’m very unrepentant when I say that the “bad writing” argument is a misnomer for greater prevailing issues.

The issue itself could be many things. Perhaps a personal chord was plucked to make someone feel that way. A story could in fact have “bad” moments of “writing” within the material to upset a person. To someone directly and pointedly offended, “bad writing” might be a solid critique of the way a certain theme was handled… I see that argument a lot in the RWBY fandom. Certain subject matters aren’t always handled with care and concern, so that’s why the critique crops up… but really, in that example, the writing isn’t “bad” per-say, just poorly executed.

There are occasions that it could just be “bad writing” though, truth be told, because there are very rare circumstances when what lies before you is actually little more than a pile of irredeemable drivel. The issue is, that’s an oddity, not a rule… but I have located an oddity recently.

As a gamer, I’ve seen poorly contrived plot elements take a back seat for the sake of bombastic gameplay more times than not. In gaming, this is sometimes a serviceable tactic, but not always… a most recent example comes to mind in Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin. You can watch our gameplay of that over on our Twitch channel…

What makes writing bad, generally comes down to how core issues present the themes in the game. To another point, I find the characters themselves generally unlikable. I find this to be the main problem in Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin.

To be pointedly clear though, this really only applies to the beginning and middle of the game. The last hour and a half, two things happen. Firstly, the cut scenes vastly improve. Secondly, the story actually gets VERY, VERY good!

However, the very good part only applies to the latter section of the game, not everything preceding it, and that’s the reason I’m using it as an example today.

In the earliest parts of the game the plot line often comes down to finding a way to cram the word “Chaos” into as much of the dialogue as humanly possible… in some cases, the story itself jumps the shark by doing a fast-forward to skip an event or two that was obviously deemed required by the writing staff.

Let me walk you through why this is “bad writing” directly on its face. Three guys meet, and immediately after introducing themselves, we get a “bro-fist” as they decide to join together. Then, directly after the very questionable act of deciding to become best buddies, we get two throw away paragraphs about what happens after, with no context or plot driven narrative to fall back upon.

That problem is, that jump in content reduces down to explaining the events that took place, without player related input, or even screen splash showing the event. It’s just a black background with white colored words explaining what players should have gotten to experience…

That’s it, just those two plain black images about visiting with the king, who refuses to allow them to take on their intended mission. Instead, they spend weeks together slaying monsters, and that’s it… literally, that’s all you get before the screen fades to black.

Why were they refused? Why do these supposed crystals look like giant cockroach turds? Why are these characters joining forces simply because the crystals can “sense each other” as one of the characters says they can? Why, amid what amounts to be a throw-away paragraph does it seem like a total and complete afterthought?

It feels like either pure laziness, or a decision compounded by some freakish lack of planning, or a budget crisis. Bad design, no cookie for you. Either way, the story goes on from there… a game shouldn’t feel that way, if it could in any way be avoided.

As a player, you return to these characters, who by now know each other, although we the players still know nothing of them. They’re all sitting upon a boat, complaining about how bored they are, and how they want to do the job they came for already, defeating “Chaos”.

We still don’t have a “why” for any of the above that feels reasonable, and you’d be correct to call that “messy writing” by video game standards. You’d be fair to call it lazy in general. In that singular case, where neither gameplay nor firm story-line exists yet, you could go so far as to call it bad writing. You’d even be right to do so… because at this point, we know next to nothing about these characters, or their deeper motivations.

I don’t often care much for the “show, don’t tell” rule in writing. There are times you do have to “tell” an off-screen plot element or two instead of showcasing it… but this use of “telling” is much too flagrant here. It is bad writing, firm and flat out… that’s why I fall to Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin as my foremost example of “bad writing”, because frankly, there was just no excuse.

As I said before though, in gaming, a good story-line typically takes a back seat to bombastic gameplay. To be honest, that game is very bombastic, over the top in the best of times.

According to Kresh, who is playing the game on the stream, it’s also pretty fun on occasion. Perhaps that’s a saving grace, but the story-line and the occasional direct lack of it, does hinder the game too.

I cannot personally comment on how “fun” it is to play. I can only speak upon the theatricality of the combat itself. However, I’ll say this, you’d be hard pressed to call the gameplay itself boring, as even your small, typically encountered leveling fodder have a habit to explode in bright, if ominous colors.

This tends to leave a crystalline residue of their exploded corpses in their wake… and frankly, as I said, it is bombastic. I don’t think you could call it brilliant, or even tangentially metaphorical to the plot-line at all. It has ties to the deeper themes, sure enough… but it doesn’t lend to the world building in a way that feels satisfactory. It just looks cool.

All-in-all if you need a very recent example of bad writing in game design, look no further than Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin. Does it entirely ruin the game? No, not exactly. It’s still a serviceable gameplay experience. It’s interesting enough for me to watch, and for Kresh to play… so there is that at least. That said, if you want a solid narrative, this isn’t the Final Fantasy title for you… far from it.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time.

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With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier. If you don’t care for Patreon, and don’t care about perks, you can always support us through PayPal too… links below.

Those who join via Patreon get special perks, such as extra content, quicker updates, early fiction chapters and more.

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To Our Supporters

Thank you for helping us to enrich our content.

Patreon Supporters:
($3) Little Ferrets: None
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Kern Plays: “Dear Esther: Landmark Edition”

Hey guys, it’s Kern here with a little bit of gameplay. Dear Esther is basically a walking simulator with a heavily laced narrative focus. Due to that I won’t be diving too deep on this one, there isn’t much to explain.

Dear Esther is a first person point-of-view exploration first and foremost. Although you might also coin it an adventure game, I’m hesitant to do that. There’s really no enemies or prevailing threats. All that you’ll find here is a riveting story… 

Kern Plays: Dear Esther

More Information

Dear Esther was developed by The Chinese Room for the PC, PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One. The game was first released in 2008 as a free to play model. Later on, the game was entirely redeveloped for a commercial release in 2012.

As I said above, the game features very minimal gameplay at best, which is why it is often called a “walking simulator” a phrase you generally either love or hate as a gamer.

Personally, I think games like these have their own value, particularly if well written prose is the goal ambition of the design from the start. Dear Esther showcases this perfectly. Really, you only have one main objective here; explore the island the narrator stands upon. While you explore around and get your bearings, a troubled man explains his turmoil and reads a series of letters to his beloved, yet deceased, wife. Details of her death are slowly revealed as you explore around the island.

That’s about it… no really… that’s the basics of the game.

It is noteworthy to state that despite the minimalist style and gameplay, the game was critically acclaimed for the story it tells. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it horror, but if you are the imaginative sort, it can be a bit unsettling.

When 2017 came around, an updated version known as the Dear Esther: Landmark Edition was released, based on the Unity engine. That’s the one I’m playing in the video.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at it’s finest, and level grinds are par for the course. ..

With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier. If you don’t care for Patreon, and don’t care about perks, you can always support us through PayPal too… links below.

Those who join via Patreon get special perks, such as extra content, quicker updates, early fiction chapters and more.

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To Our Supporters

Thank you for helping us to enrich our content.

Patreon Supporters:
($3) Little Ferrets: None
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Artwork: Uncharted

Kern’s Note: hey everyone, Ruka wrote this before the movie came out, but I’m an idiot and life happened, so it got stuck in backlog until now… but enjoy the artistic endeavor!

Hello everyone! This is your friendly Demented ferret’s artist Ruka, and today I will be talking about one of the most acclaimed franchises in video game history and now a major motion picture. That’s right folks I’m talking about the one and only Uncharted.

Thieves by Rukangle

Uncharted is one of the most recognizable game franchises in the last 15 years. With groundbreaking graphics, breathtaking designs, it is one of the best consistent story arcs to offer a fantastic ending in any video game. Naughty Dog made a game that could be loved by all who play it, and in turn, cementing their reputation as a highly respected video game developer in the industry.

Kern’s Resident Evil Retrospective Review

Resident Evil Retrospective Review

Resident Evil features a fairly typical story. A rescue mission is taking place. With a string of murders running rampant across the fictional Raccoon City, it’s up to the police to find out what is really going on. In response to this, the Special Tactics and Rescue Service, or “S.T.A.R.S.” have been sent to look into the issue. Having been sent deep into the mountains, the first team has gone missing.

Keep reading

As an Indiana Jones inspired story, the Uncharted series reminds me of the classic PlayStation games like Tomb Raider, Prince of Persia, and Resident Evil.

Like many games before it, the Uncharted series holds 3 main pillars of gameplay aloft; Combat, area traversal, and puzzle-solving. Set in a traditional action puzzle game the game allows us, the player, to complete a single track series of levels with linear gameplay and in a 3rd person perspective style.

The story follows a wise-cracking, treasure hunter, Nathan Drake voiced by Nolan North. He’s skilled in combat and a knack for history and finding himself in trouble.

With the help of friend and business partner, Victor “Sully” Sullivan voiced by Richard McGonagle, they journey in search of treasures lost to history. On the way, they encounter several other characters to help them along on their journey. Like Chloe Frazer voiced by Claudia Black, is an Indian-Australian treasure hunter and thief for hire with a business and former love interest of Drake and Elena Fisher voiced by Emily Rose, is a headstrong and intelligent journalist, foreign correspondent, and love interest to Drake.

Together they embark on a journey into the unknown and its dangers to try and prove if the stories of legends are more than just stories. The developer for Uncharted is one that surprised me.

Kresh Plays: Crash Bandicoot

I will admit it took me a good minute to realize that the developing studio, that brought us Crash Bandicoot and Jax and Dexter, some of the most iconic childhood games, was behind this masterpiece of a game.

Established in 1984, Naughty Dog managed to create a franchise to join the technology changes that Playstation 3 brought in its wake. Both on the critical and commercial aspects, with well over 50 awards by different gaming publications and have sold well over 41 million copies worldwide and becoming the face of PlayStation.

It also opened the doors to show that they are capable of more than just cartoon-style gaming. From its graphics and storytelling, it helped elevate and ultimately evolve the game experience and how a game should be made. It is because of this that Uncharted is deemed as one of the most successful games of all time.

For years there has been fan-made trailers and videos circulating the internet, from who should play what character and what story should they try and continue the series, but it was actor Nathan Fillion’s 2018 Uncharted a fan film, 15 minutes long live action of the game, that made the loudest noise when it came to the possibility of bringing the game to the big screen.

Now after years of rumors and possibilities it became official, Sony Entertainment has chosen Ruban Fleischer to direct, alongside a star cast to interpret these unique characters. With Spider Man’s: “No Way Home” actor Tom Holland as Nathan Drake and Mark Wahlberg as Sully, it makes us wonder where in the timeline will this movie is taking place, and will it choose to follow the story, the game has provided us or will they give it their own Hollywood twist.

It is no surprise to anyone that such a well-rounded and acclaimed game made its transition towards the big screen. It joins the ranks with other fellow major games like Tomb Raider, Resident Evil among others trying to break into a totally different industry and let me tell you it can be hard at times. It might be because the games have set up the story so well, its transition to the big screen, tends to be a bit difficult.

I believe this has to do when developing the story and characters in a movie form, the time is what makes it difficult. If we were to compare them to let us say, The Witcher series, based on another video game, it makes a world of difference, since they have the time and are able to flush it out with more detail.

What does this suggest to the masses? If the Uncharted movie triumphs on the big screen, we could see a boom of console games-based movies in our future, in hopes to have a market similar to that of Marvel and DC.

Uncharted has a way of keeping you entertained, in a way not many games do, at least for me. This is my kind of game. Entertaining, funny, witty, and with a hint of history. For me, the fate of the movie varies a bit, here are my key questions;

  • Can Tom Holland step out of the shadow of Peter Parker?
  • The chemistry between Drake and Sully is an important part of the series, and in doing so, will Wahlberg deliver on this character? 
  • Will this movie stand on it self or will it hope for the actors to carry the story?

I guess we will have to see when the movie hits theaters on February 18, 2022. Until then, if you guys find yourselves interested or curious about anything I said, please don’t hesitate to leave me a comment below.

If you like this content, please consider supporting us on Patreon, and follow us over on our Twitch channel for gaming-related content, where I make an appearance via chat, well like always, this has been Ruka of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest, and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you around! Until then please be sure to check out our other content below.

To Our Supporters: Thank You!

With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier.

There is a $1 tier, perfect for blog readers, so don’t hesitate. Join today!

Patreon Supporters

At the time of this post there are 2 supporters of our content, in the “Demented Minion” tier and 1 in the “Fluffy Ferret” tier.

($1) Little Ferrets: None
($3) Fandom Ferret: None
($5) Demented Minions: Francis Murphy and Andrew Wheal.
($10) True Blue Ferret: None.
($25) Premium Ferret: None.
($50) Round Table Ferret/Fluffy Ferret: Josh Sayer

Kresh Plays: Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back

Hey everyone, it’s Kern here. Awhile back, Kresh completed Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back (The N. Sane Trilogy version). Below is the archived footage and a bit about the game.

Kresh completed this game on a live stream March of 2021, and you can find our live stream channel over on Twitch. If you like to watch live streams, come check us out when you’ve got some free time. Currently we stream two days a week, and run archived footage on the Saturdays. Be sure to follow our Twitch for more information, and to be updated when we go live.

If you’re a monthly subscriber to our Twitch channel (any tier) you also get access to our official Discord server as well.

Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

For those of you who want a bit more information, let’s just gloss over some of the basics. This is your stereotypical 3D platformer of the late 90’s early 00’s era. Although the remastered version of the game lives up well to its predecessor, it can still be a tad clunky from time to time. Then again, you come to expect that from a game like this.

In general, Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back is a family friendly title as most platformers tend to be, (although when it comes to commentary, Kresh and I certainly aren’t since we swear so much). If you pick this game up for your household it shouldn’t disrupt too many sensibilities.

The game originally came out in 1997 for the PlayStation. It’s the sequel to Crash Bandicoot, a game that came out in 1996. The series is developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Computer Entertainment.

In 2017 the game was re-released as part of the  Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy. Those of you who’ve played a platformer like this know what you’re in for. These platformers were known to be a bit difficult and this game lives up to expectation on that front.

We’ve got a blog post and play-through of the first game in the series that you can find below. You may want to check it out first if you’ve never seen a Crash Bandicoot game before, although I’m sure that’s pretty unlikely. Anyway, if that interests, you, you can find the link to that post, and the gameplay footage below.

For returners of the series, it’s back to the standard formula, more or less. There’s stages to beat, crystals to collect, boxes to smash and the fictional “Wumpa Fruit” to collect. Like always, you’ll gain extra lives when you collect enough of them. Trust me, you’re going to need them.

You play as Crash Bandicoot, a goofy protagonist with an adventuresome spirit. Crash once again is being manipulated by the (hilarious) evil villain named Doctor Neo Cortex. The crystals you need to collect are scattered between 25 different levels. Every now and then, you’ll encounter a boss battle.

Your usual foes are back with a vengeance he demented Ripper Roo, the Komodo Brothers and the ravenous Tiny Tiger make an appearance. Of course, once you collect all of the crystals, you’ll also face down Doctor Neo Cortex himself.

Nitro boxes make their first appearance in this game, and they can act both as boss mechanics and little green boxes of doom scattered around the stages. No, really, these are boxes you don’t want to touch or try to smash. They’ll explode on contact, There’s only three levels that they don’t show up in at all; The Pits, Totally Bear and the Intro, which acts as a game tutorial.

All in all, Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back is a solid game throughout. It has a decent story-line, and although Kresh and I absolutely suck at platfomer style games, we both agree this is one you should try if you’re looking for something to play.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll catch you next time… meanwhile, check out our other great content below.

To Our Supporters: Thank You!

With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier.

There is a $1 tier, perfect for blog readers, so don’t hesitate. Join today!

Patreon Supporters

At the time of this post there are 3 supporters of our content, currently all of them are in the “Demented Minion” tier.

($1) Little Ferrets: None
($3) Fandom Ferret: None
($5) Demented Minions: Francis Murphy, Josh Sayer, and Andrew Wheal.
($10) True Blue Ferret: None.
($25) Premium Ferret: None.
($50) Round Table Ferret: None.

TDF Update: We’re Affiliates!

Hey everyone, it’s Kern here. I’ve got some cool news, we’re now affiliates on Twitch! Yeah, pretty cool, it took a while, but we’re slowly growing.

It’s been a weird year, all things considered. Between my mother’s health problems, and taking that long several month break, we weren’t sure we’d hit that point so soon. We’re there, and it’s kind of like a breath of fresh air. It’s one of those “wow, we’re really doing this” moments where it feels… well, not so much a “milestone” but more like it’s another little step in the grand scheme….

It’s like life is really starting to look up now that my mother is doing a little bit better and we’re now affiliates on top of it. If you haven’t been checking us out over on Twitch, you really should. If you like to hang out, watch gamers, and just have an all around good time you’ll probably have a good time over there.

We’re finishing out Dream Daddy on Thursday, November 4th (today at the time of this post). Come stop by if you want to see us make a mess of that for sure. It’s a goofy little dating simulation, but we’re having fun with it.

So, What Are We All Up To?

Well, you know me, Kern, your friendly neighborhood ferret that breaks things and messes everything up so that Kresh needs to fix it. That’s the same old thing of course. I’m still breaking things, sometimes on a daily basis. I think I’ve re-written this post twice now, trying to find the right words. We’re still streaming over on twitch, of course, and I’m still writing blog posts.

YouTube stands as a weird middle ground, both as a video archive and a place where some of our reviews and other content can be found. Usually I cross embed those bits of footage here too, in the form of let’s plays and what-not, and that goes unchanged. Kresh is working on a project, but I don’t know when that’ll be finished.

It’s funny when I look back to this old image, one of Ruka’s earliest pieces of artwork, I’m a bit nostalgic. It’s been about a year since we started this whole idea. It’s been a learning experience, that’s for sure.

I was supposed to be the ferret tied up and laughing, Kresh the one looking grumpy, and Ruka’s early avatar was that skull and crossbones sitting on the television in the background. We’re all a little rough around the edges, much like that drawing itself is a rough conception of our personalities distilled down into one cartoon drawing.

We’ve come a long way since then. I’m not entirely sure what the future holds, but it seems like a bright one. One of the important things that’s so key to who we are as people is the concept of our diversity. We have an American person, a British person, and a person hailing for Puerto Rico. We’re all on the GLBTQ spectrum, or as Kern (me) would rather call it, GRSM… which is why we’re all so gender ambiguous on the streams and here on the blog. We don’t “sound” as we identify, so it’s just easier for all of us that way. That and gender isn’t everything, we’re more than that, of course.

We do believe representation is important though, and with that, don’t forget to check out Ruka’s blogs when she posts them up.

If you see this icon, that’s Ruka’s avatar over here on The Demented Ferrets. Ruka is writing blog posts now, so if you haven’s seen the first post you really should check it out. Especially if Spanish dubs are important to you.

Anime and Its Translations

Do I believe the Spanish dubs are worth it? Absolutely! Spanish is one of the most spoken languages ranking 4th worldwide and 2nd in Native-speaking countries in the world.

Ruka has been our artist since the start, but the completely unique perspective on anime and gaming that Ruka brings to the table can’t be understated. The blog post above about Spanish dubs is a great example of that. I (Kern) don’t speak Spanish very well (as in I completely butcher the language when I try to speak it/read it) so having Ruka add in those two cents really matters. Usually when we think of anime dubs here in the states, Spanish speaking dubs just aren’t often discussed… or at least, I don’t often hear them discussed at length.

Fun fact, Ruka’s planning to come up for a visit here sometime in the new year, and that’ll be a lot of fun. We’ll probably have some cool footage of that eventually whenever it happens.

Well, that about does it for this post. It’s just a small update. I’ll see you around next time. Ruka’s working on her next blog post, and so am I. Hopefully, we’ll see you there.

This has been Kernook of The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at it’s finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time. Until then, don’t forget to check out some other great content.

To Our Supporters: Thank You!

With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier.

There is a $1 tier, perfect for blog readers, so don’t hesitate. Join today!

Patreon Supporters

At the time of this post there are 3 supporters of our content, currently all of them are in the “Demented Minion” tier.

($1) Little Ferrets: None
($3) Fandom Ferret: None
($5) Demented Minions: Francis Murphy, Josh Sayer, and Andrew Wheal.
($10) True Blue Ferret: None.
($25) Premium Ferret: None.
($50) Round Table Ferret: None.

Game Review: The Static Speaks My Name

Warning: The game I’m reviewing today is called “The Static Speaks My Name”. This game contains mature themes.
Mature Content: This game deals with the concept of suicide… it’s not too overly dark or graphic, but the theme is looming and present.
Kern’s Disclaimer: This is not just a typical little indie title, it has a narrative that needs to be handled with care and respect. Know that going into it. One more time for the people in the back. This game is NOT for young or impressionable gamers. If you have delicate sensibilities regarding the content warnings above, maybe just don’t read this review or play this game. I won’t be held responsible if it triggers the absolute crap out of you.

I enjoy indie content, particularly when it pushes the conventional narrative limitations of media in an interesting way. The game I’m reviewing today does strictly that. Before I begin my review though, I do hope you didn’t disregard my content warning above. If you did, scroll back up and read it first.

The thing that sets this game in a different category from other indie horror titles, is that this game is less “terrifying” and more along the lines of “tragically unsettling”. I wouldn’t call it a horror game per say, because I don’t find it scary in the traditional sense, nor unnerving in the general one. Rather, this game dives deep into the realm of psychological horror in ways I rarely ever see.

It’s not scary, it’s chilling. Thematically speaking, “The Static Speaks My Name” is a short title, but far from a sweet little package. The game is more of a “narrative experience” than a game itself. Actually, I’d hesitate to call it a game because there is a clearly a narrative to be found here, but there’s not a whole lot of “gameplay”. The price is right though. As of writing this blog it is completely free on steam, and the time investment to complete the game is minimal.

The fact that it will take most people about ten minutes to to complete it says enough on its own. Honestly, you can beat in it half that time if you really wanted to rush it. Now, while some people may find the length lacking, the content isn’t. What you’re given in that short time isn’t anything to scoff at.

When you begin the game, a brief prologue begins. Surrounded by a dark space, you’ll see something in the distance and you’ll have to walk closer to it. As you do, you’re given three things. A name, an age, and a cause of death. When you get close enough to what is basically that floating cloud in the middle of a dark expanse, you enter into the body of a man, and you live out is last moments alive.

The beeping alarm drags the man from slumber and he awakens to a home that’s just a little strange. Everything seems just a little out of place and just slightly out-of-sorts.

As a first-person game, you play as a man named Jacob Ernholtz. As a player, you soon put the pieces together to find out more about this man, and his final decision. To be clear though, the game isn’t all doom and gloom. It’s not all awfulness caked in pure and unbridled cynicism. If it was, I wouldn’t have enjoyed it.

Actually, “The Static Speaks My Name” does something else. It attempts to tell a story that has little to do with the event that ended this man’s life, and more to do with his final moments that preceded it. This game is not an analysis nor a deconstruction of the prevailing topic at hand. It’s not even about the physiological nor social conditions at play when ones goes about making such a choice.

Rather the game carries a heavy undertone with the concepts of obsession more than taking one’s own life. As though the pictures hanging upon the wall act as an all consuming focus that Jacob Ernholtz couldn’t possibly escape a fascination with. He isn’t a good man in the slightest, which only further makes it hard to relate with him on any level. I’d say that that fact alone is what makes it a horror title. It isn’t the inevitable end that makes the game so unnerving to me, it’s the character you play as, and just how disturbed he obviously is.

Just take a look at the image below as a hint to just how obsessed he is with that one painting and the painter behind it. I assume you could extrapolate all kinds of meanings from this if you really cared to, but as for me, I don’t care to try at all… really, just playing as the guy is enough for me to be unsettled about just what in the hell could have been going on in his brain.

As for gameplay, it’s just a game about slowly twisting mundane moments in this one man’s life. Cleaning the microwave, admiring his collection of paintings among the wall, or eating his pet shrimp. Simple details, really. However, it soon becomes clear that this is the point of the game, the simplicity beyond horrific spectacle, which the game cares very little for. it doesn’t glamorize it’s core themes, but rather, it seems to spit upon the idea that typical cliche’s about depression needs to be continued on in ways we would normally expect.

They’re tired, they’re dusty, they’re old and we don’t need them. The game seems to say this, to exemplify that notion in every act, The game doesn’t spell things out for you concisely, there is no neat or tidy conclusion, and you won’t be likely to find yourself re-playing the game more than once to pick to pieces every little detail.

Once is enough, and the slow spiral of madness seemingly induced by paintings upon the walls is truly macabre in notion, but not quite in a way that inspires empathy or compassion… especially after you notice just what else this man keeps in his house.

The fact of the matter is, what makes this game notable, is that it inspires a gambit of emotions. There’s dark humor mixed with tragedy and although it is sad, dark and pretty disturbing, I find that it is a fitting end to this short game.

Now, onto the “static” concept and the idea of seeing other “static deaths”. If you look at the reviews, or commentators on Steam you see that notion brought up often enough in their reviews section. Here’s the thing, I’m glad we only have one story. One glimpse, one looking-glass, and that’s all. I don’t want more than this, and I’m glad that we don’t get more than that.

The reason for this is because while I do think that perhaps more “statics” would have been interesting, I believe it would have made the game rather unpalatable in the long run. There’s only so much of this grittiness that anyone can take, and there comes a time when a compelling point to explore these concepts crosses a line too far.

If this game had been any longer, if it had explored too many more deaths or the disturbing minds behind them, it wouldn’t have just crossed the line for me. In fact, it would have trampled all over it and left a big steaming pile of dung in its wake. The solo developer, Jesse Barksdale, was wise not to take this narrative, or this game that far.

So, I guess the final question is, do I think you should play this game? All in all, if you can handle these sorts of themes, it might be worth your time to play it. Keyword being might. Once again, it’s short and it’s free. Those are low barriers to entry, so long as you can swallow down the core themes, which is the much larger, prevailing question. I can’t answer that, and to me that remains the ultimate conflict.

I think “The Static Speaks My Name” is an interesting narrative experience. However, I don’t think most people would “enjoy” playing as as such a disturbed man who eats his pet shrimp and has a nasty little propensity to obsess about a single painting. Honestly, give it a try if you want to take a dive down into that kind of character. If you have no interest in that, then this game is not for you… keep away from it.

This has been Kernook from The Demented Ferrets, where stupidity is at its finest and level grinds are par for the course. I’ll see you next time. Don’t forget to check out our other great content.

To Our Supporters: Thank You!

With your contributions, you make our efforts possible. Thank you for supporting our content. Patreon supporters receive access into our official Discord server, and a few other perks depending on the tier.

There is a $1 tier, perfect for blog readers, so don’t hesitate. Join today!

Patreon Supporters

At the time of this post there are 3 supporters of our content, currently all of them are in the “Demented Minion” tier.

($1) Little Ferrets: None
($3) Fandom Ferret: None
($5) Demented Minions: Francis Murphy, Josh Sayer, and Andrew Wheal.
($10) True Blue Ferret: None.
($25) Premium Ferret: None.
($50) Round Table Ferret: None.