- Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky (Nintendo DS)
- Magical Taruruuto-kun (Game Gear)
- Bleach: Heat the Soul (PlayStation Portable)
- Hills in the Moonlight (WASM-4)
- Pangya Fantasy Golf (PlayStation Portable)
- Clock Tower (SNES)
- Rockman: Battle & Chase (PlayStation)
- Tony Hawk’s Underground 2 (PlayStation 2)
- Punch the Monkey! Game Edition (PlayStation)
- ~Hack~ Pokemon Radical Red (Game Boy Advance)
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Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky (Nintendo DS)
|Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky||Nintendo DS||Roguelike|
I haven’t played that many games here in RA, however, the first set that I really played is (so far) the best one! This set is pretty good, featuring great basic progression achievements as well as nice challenges, like the Zero Islands and the Destiny Tower. It also has grindy challenges, like the recycling and recruit them all achievements, and since the game is pretty great too, this set is gonna give you a lot of hours of playtime! No game here in RA has taken me more time to master so far than this one!
Magical Taruruuto-kun (Game Gear)
|Magical Taruruuto-kun||Game Gear||Shoot ‘em Up|
Magical Taruruuto-kun is a rather fun, not too difficult shoot-em-up style game. The set for the game also provides much fun. In addition to achievements for playing through the game, the set also provides some interesting challenges. These include achievements for deathless stages, damageless bosses, and some more unique ones. One of the tougher achievements is for having 10 items in your inventory, since there’s only 12 chances to obtain an item, and you’ll have to forgo many other upgrades to have 10 at once. Very fun overall, a fun set and a fun game.
Bleach: Heat the Soul (PlayStation Portable)
|Bleach: Heat the Soul||PlayStation Portable||3D Fighting|
Bleach, fun or not depending on who’s reading this, has its own unique style and storyline not about demons or that stuff, but death itself and the souls of another dimension. As for the game and the set, there isn’t too much to do other than beating each storyline about the first arc, time attack, buying cards, and just skipping stuff if you don’t understand Japanese. The gameplay mechanics aren’t that hard to learn and you can always just activate fast forward, making it a nice, fun, and fast set to play.
Hills in the Moonlight (WASM-4)
|Hills in the Moonlight||WASM-4||Arcade|
This is a perfect example of the type of game that WASM-4 does best. You ride a bike over a bunch of hills of various shapes, your only input is pressing a single button when you want to lean forward, and momentum takes care of the rest. Your primary goal is to go as far as possible within the short time limit provided, although a slew of creative achievements provides plenty of other objectives to aim for as well. It’s a simple and elegant game that’s satisfying to gradually improve at, and the achievements are tuned just right to add value to the experience without feeling excessive. If you enjoy chasing high scores and mastering unique control schemes, then I urge you to play this set.
Pangya Fantasy Golf (PlayStation Portable)
|Pangya Fantasy Golf||PlayStation Portable||Sports|
Long ago in the place called Pangya Island, a demon king tried draining all of the life energy there. Eventually this calamity was stopped from launching a magic-infused ball into the hole that the life energy was being sucked into. Thanks to these events, a sport was created to honor the actions of this hero from Earth: Golf… I mean Pangya.
For those unfamiliar with PangYa, it was a Korean golf MMORPG that released in 2004 and later came to Japan, USA (where it was first known as Albatross18), and Thailand. While most of the servers have since closed down (except for Thailand’s), some unofficial servers for the game still exist in other regions. With the original game being an MMO, the game has plenty of items to purchase: consumable items including some that boost one of your stats for a single swing or golf balls that give you stat boosts, outfits for characters that give you a bonus to the Pang you earn from playing the game, and many sets of golf clubs that remind you that you’re not playing golf, but “Fantasy Golf” (baseball bats, umbrellas, microphones, Christmas décor, swords, and spiked maces to name a few). Just make sure you don’t start wondering how an entire civilization continues to run on a currency that has a seemingly endless supply from putting golf balls into holes and you’ll be fine.
But with so much to purchase, you better get ready for everything this game has to offer:
Story – If you thought a story for a golf game would be extremely simple, it’s not. Enjoy seeing the world that solves everyone’s problems not with a children’s card game, but with a round of golf, a love story or three developing… oh yeah, and the plan to potentially destroy the world.
License – Test your golf skills by playing a variety of challenges for each course, like playing specific holes and getting a score of -1 or better, get a hole-in-one in ten attempts or less, and more. Once you’ve cleared enough challenges on a specific course, you can start to partake in the tournaments there.
Tournament – Battle against 29 CPUs across either a 9 hole or 18 hole game on one of the nine available courses. You’ll be spending a bit of time here not just because of the number of tournaments in the game, but also because this is one of the better ways to farm for Pang in the game when working on buying everything and getting enough EXP for the highest rank.
With the game having me play for 60+ hours to master, I don’t recommend trying to rush through the game as fast as you can, (especially since a certain part of the game that gives character outfit pieces will require at least two months to obtain everything if you don’t use certain time adjustment methods). But much like any sport (both fantasy and realistic), this is all about relaxing, bettering yourself, and just having fun. Now go on out there and start swinging some clubs.
Clock Tower (SNES)
|Clock Tower||SNES||Point-and-Click Adventure, Survival Horror|
My first mastery ever here on RetroAchievements. A few months after I knew about the site, I decided to finally link the account to my RetroArch installation and get some cheevos. I had a blast with the game, both because I’m a fan of horror but also because the overall experience on this is really pleasant! Exploration is both enthralling and tense due to the survival horror elements that fill the game, with heart-pounding chases that end up in a sadistic hide-and-seek game.
Clock Tower definitely earns the badge of a game “ahead of its time” in many ways – people often praise both Sweet Home and Alone in the Dark for influencing the genre on the making with Resident Evil, but I think Clock Tower deserves even more recognition on that matter, with both puzzle-solving and surviving violence becoming a staple in this style of gameplay and narrative. Talking about story… oh my… what a rich universe, so hypnotic, even if many aspects of its lore are only slightly hinted throughout the ride, pretty much like the Giallo movies that inspired the game. You can see the touch of Dario Argento (Italian) on this slasher (American) game of Nordic (Norwegian) horror filled with a bit of folklorism but still feeling inherently Japanese – pretty much like Silent Hill is an American horror story with Asian storytelling.
The set itself is simple yet elegant, touching each ending but also the multiple pathways you can take to reach each of them. It’s a grand fine synergy between game and achievements to improve replayability on an unforgettable experience.
Rockman: Battle & Chase (PlayStation)
|Rockman: Battle & Chase||PlayStation||Kart Racing|
The year is 199X. Mario Kart fever has taken the world by storm, and everyone with a mascot wants in on that Kart Kash. Crash Bandicoot? All over it. Sonic? Rocked it. The Muppets? You bet, baby. Capcom, known far and wide for their love of money, naturally hops on that gravy kart.
Capcom’s take actually has a surprising amount to bring to the table, most notably the part system: similar to how Mega Man copies the weapons of busted up robots in the mainline games, winning a race in Battle & Chase allows you to take one of the opponent’s parts and slap it onto your machine. Each part has its own unique effect, from simply boosting speed or acceleration to functioning better off-road than on-road or even granting a speed boost when going uphill. Some of the later races can be real tough, so you’ll need to learn which parts work best on which tracks.
On top of this, every character has their own special ability, which can be freely used or held onto for a charged-up version. Instead of acquiring items through item boxes, you’ll fill a meter by defeating minor enemies that litter the tracks, which creates an interesting balance where characters with spammable attacks like Mega Man and Bass can rack up major points, while robots with utility skills like Quick Man and Guts Man will tend to avoid them.
The set itself is pretty sizable, having goals for getting every set of parts as all 10 characters. If you’re in the mood for a drive and want something that’ll keep you busy, definitely buckle up for Battle & Chase.
Tony Hawk’s Underground 2 (PlayStation 2)
|Tony Hawk’s Underground 2||PlayStation 2||Extreme Sports - Skateboarding|
This is personally my favorite Tony Hawk game of all time, and this set made it even more fun!
The game not only has a Classic Mode where you do the traditional things such as collect the Skate letters and go for a high score, but it has a Story Mode where you must complete Goals, causing mayhem in numerous different places around the world. Both Story mode and Classic mode are not all too long, but you’ll need to beat every difficulty setting for each of them to unlock all of the characters. I recommend starting on Easy Story mode as not only will you get a feel for the game but you’ll then unlock Shrek, who has better stats than Tony Hawk (max stats in fact; this confirms that Shrek is canonically a better skater than Tony Hawk). Stats do not carry over between modes, however. For Free Skate each Character individually has different stats, Classic you’ll need to collect stat points around each map to increase them, and as for Story, you need to complete stat missions such as performing a certain trick x amount of times in a combo.
The stats in Story mode are one of the things that makes this set a different and fun challenge to the original experience, You’ll have to earn every stat point from each category in a single combo! You might try doing this on the Training stage and find the map doesn’t work all that well for some of the categories. But how do you go through the game without raising your stats!? Well, why not find the Pro or Guest character on each level so you don’t accidentally raise your stats? Then you can go through the game and attempt more of the stat challenges on levels you think will work well for them!
Here’s the best part of the set! Remember all those custom levels with goals and gaps that there was no reason going for because it unlocked nothing and didn’t save? Now there’s a reason to - achievements! This gave a fresh new experience to a game I had previously done multiple playthroughs of in the past. Overall I had a blast mastering this set and would strongly recommend it, even if you’ve never played a Tony Hawk game! Why not start here?
Punch the Monkey! Game Edition (PlayStation)
|Punch the Monkey! Game Edition||PlayStation||Rhythm|
Punch the Monkey is an odd one: a rhythm game based on the first two Lupin the Third anime volumes with light gun compatibility. However, it works well, the music is sensational, and the amount of content is serviceable. The set is generally straightforward and challenging in mostly good ways. The only grievance I have with the set is grinding to unlock the videos, but the grind isn’t too bad (Hint: the slot machine with some timing can work excellently).
~Hack~ Pokemon Radical Red (Game Boy Advance)
|~Hack~ Pokemon Radical Red||Game Boy Advance||RPG|
One game I really, REALLY recommend is Pokemon Radical Red. This game has all type of different modes: Hardcore, Randomizer of all things like Moves, Types and Abilities, No EVs Mode for a more balanced and faster gameplay, and many more. It also has all Generations up 8th gen, all Types including Fairy, all Pokémon except a minor few, your HMs are global so you don’t need to teach it to any Pokémon, amongst many other huge quality of life changes. You will also find all Kanto AND Johto Gym Leaders across the whole map. The best part is that you get to play it all in the amazing style of FireRed. The set is pretty good and challenging as it requires you to play in Hardcore, but even if you just want to have fun, believe me, it’s harder than a regular Pokémon game so you are bound to have a lot of fun. Give it a try, you won’t regret it.