A blog about tabletop hobby and or strategy games, with a side order of electronic turn based goodness here and there. Now with tons of retro gaming content both electronic and tabletop. Also with 20% more self loathing douchebaggery!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Game Collection: Look What I Did to my Id. (Also: NINTENDOOO SEEEXTEEE FOOOOR)

No, sadly this is not about :

Even if it is a really awesome movie and in some ways superior to the previous film about Brad and Janet.  (If you don't know what I refer to please get out from under that rock.)

What I refer to is: ID SOFTWARE.  The legendary software house who both saved PC gaming and destroyed electronic gaming with their perfection and popularization of the First Person Shooter. (FPS)

Starting off as some genius game programmers making Apple II and DOS games for magazines, they eventually got into the Shareware scene where their Commander Keen platformer showed how powerful the PC could be with a good team, and then they made Wolfenstein 3D, which started the FPS craze that has mostly taken over video gaming it seems.

Mostly ahead of their time, Wolfenstein didn't stand a patch to Ultima Underworld but was a bazillion times more accessible proving what modern publishers do with making "dumbed down" games for the masses is a good way to make some scratch.

And then the legendary Doom took the world by storm and started showing that FPS games were also great multiplayer experiences.

But my first experience was with Commander Keen.  It was a fun little platformer the berthing commander in Navy Fire Control A School tried to get me into instead of Wolf as their best game of the time.

Later on I would download the shareware version of Wolf 3d from America Online while it was still a dial up DOS application and endure a high phone bill as their access number closest to me came to be found out (to my mother's dismay) was not a local call.

It was fun but it was the shareware version of Doom I purchased and played at the Norfolk Navy base's rec center Wind and Sea for an hour at a time on their 386 PCs with no sound card and in lower res mode that would make me a fan of it all.

Let's see what Id did to my idiotic self!  (Besides me buying a 32X add on for my Sega Genesis.  160 bucks was cheaper than upping my PC's RAM.  Bad decision that...)

(Please forgive me not posting a picture of the third Doom novel I have since I somehow lost the first two novels in that line.  The third one was WEEEEIRD.  The second was kind of rad for light reading though.)

I bought this bad box for 100 bucks in 96.  All the Id titles released up to that point plus their few Mac ports all in one box.  I only had Ultimate Doom at this point so this was a really good buy.  Not counting the ugly Tee Shirt I ended up using as a dust rag I still have everything that came in this box.

(Though one piece spent much of its time hanging out in this glass cupboard with other videogame and retro friends.  Who is he and can you name everyone in the picture without doing a Net search?)

 Everything comes packed in this sweet foam insert.  Silly dog tags.  A poster.  The metal Cyberdemon sculpted by Reaper Minis, the "Book of Id" where all the games are, and the infamous Doom comic book.
The book has 4 CDs packed in the hard outer cover, with the book in the middle.  Listing all the Id games would take forever.  Just go look up their work on Mobygames or something.  Pretty much all their stuff up to 1996 is on here.  The symbol was also the image on the dumb Tee shirt.  No loss.  Plus the space it took up gives me room for.. stuff you will soon see.

 The booklet also is a mixture of silly serious horror fiction plus a history of Id.

 One of the less crazy pages in the comic book.

 The old ratings system before the ESRB system we see on software today came on a slip explaining it in the box.  Plus the Pentium Pro 150 PC order I placed in early 1997 so I could properly run Quake.  No Overdrive CPU could make my 486 SX handle it at any decent framerate.  Not even the Cyrix P5 133!

 Doom was so massive this 630+ page book with CD merely covered making your OWN levels plus contained the best Doom 2 map pack ever: Head2Head Christmas Doom 2.  The CDR is stuff like ports of Doom to run under modern Windows and the like.

 While my copy of this version of Doom was given away much like I offloaded the 32X Doom before I became the moronic collector I am now, I still have the poster and manual for the game.  Originally Doom like Wolf 3D was mail order only.  Ultimate Doom changed that.

 Spear of Destiny came with that Ultimate Games suite Spectre VR did in a previous post.  Heretic is Raven's Fantasy mod of Doom with all new levels, monsters, and tweaks.  Computer Game Review had some awesome support guides released with some issues.  I have the Blood Bowl guide as well.  Its a bit beat up because it wasn't in this Id box like it ought to have been.

Quake 2 was a superior follow up to Quake, and one of the first games I would use with a 3D graphics card.  It also was a killer of sleep after work Friday nights.  I would get out at 2-4 AM at the time, drive home, and play a couple hours of Quake 2 online over dial up, then get up around Noon to go play Warhammer 40,000 2nd edition and then head straight to work for another 8 hours!  Quake 3 Arena was really the end of my Id fandom.  Its just... eh.  I like solo gaming more than multiplayer and Q3 was 90% multiplayer focused.  Doom 3 BFG is like the 10th Anniversary edition of Doom 3 with numerous fixes to the original game.  (Plus making it a Steam title.  And requiring modern graphics cards.  Soo.. half upgrade half hosejob.)

It will replace Doom 3 on the X Box with its sweet ass metal case and plastic slipcover.  I never bought the expansion sadly.  It works on the 360 as well.  Its a fun and tense game but it got annoying after a while.  Maybe BFG Edition fixes it?

 Doom was so huge it got a boardgame with expansion.  I own both, though I think I got the Expansion on clearance.  Its a fun Space Crusade sort of game.  Lots of minis I should finally finish painting one day too!

 See?  Its neat.  I really should do a comic review of this game one day.

Now this collection leaves out the turn based RPGs Id made for IOS.  I have the Wolfenstein and Doom 2 titles which I have completed.  I just don't count digital downloads as something one collects.  

But I have one more Id thing (Until I go back and get Hexen, a version of Hexen 2 that works, and maybe some of the other Id/Raven Software co productions cheaply anyhow..) that leads into a short and sweet collection:

My second Nintendo 64.  I sold off my previous one because honestly.. the Nintendo 64 kind of sucks.  An expensive cartridge based system in the days of deep PC games and lots of long CDROM titles on the Playstation and Saturn.  Plus the normally lauded Goldeneye with that ugly controller didn't have anything on Aliens vs Predator or Half Life with a proper mouse and keyboard.

Yet for some reason I traded an older PC for this one, and grabbed a couple games on the cheap (only Ogre Battle I bought loose.  Zelda, WWF, and South Park were my friend's.  Zelda is overrated as hell IMHO).

The reason it is with Id here is of course due to Doom 64 which is practically an entirely new sequel to Doom with all new graphics and levels.  Its hard but pretty good.  Starfox 64 is a fun but short experience.  Perfect Dark is the unofficial sequel to Goldeneye and is only slightly less inferior to PC FPS in gameplay and speed.  (The developers who broke off from Rare and who made the PS2 launch era title Timesplitters would more than make up for it with a system and a controller that could actually make the first and possibly only great console FPS.)  Pokemon Puzzle League is Tetris Attacks with the Pokeymans.  If you love that puzzle game this is a really good follow up to the SNES title in reference.  (Kind of like how Starfox 64 is a follow up to an SNES game but generally better while not removing the appeal of the original.)  Conker's Bad Fur Day is a 3d platformer mostly known for being one of the few "Adult" games on a Kid Friendly Nintendo system.  Its ok.  Paper Mario is the absolutely AMAZING RPG that is really the best reason to own an N64.  Harvest Moon 64 is.. Harvest Moon the farming/dating simulation RPGish thing.  On the N64.  Yay.

For me and my generally PC Strategy and RPG loving self the N64 was just an inferior machine.  It didn't have the depth and breadth of titles the PC and Playstation had.  I have never really loved Nintendo the way so many electronic gamers do.

Paper Mario and Ogre Battle are really the only two "proper" RPGs on the machine in the US!

This picture is also what got me started on this now long running series of blog posts.

I have so many more sights to show you.

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