Archive for December, 2008

Retro Remakes 2008 Competition

Every year, Retro Remakes runs a video game remake competition. There are typically about fifty completed entries or so, all in a handy list with download links. It’s like Christmas in July! I mean, December.

New this year there were two new categories which allowed for mashups of existing classics and “remakes” of games which didn’t actually exist. In my humble opinion, some of the best entries this year fell into those categories. Allow me to present three of my favorites.

Blast Passage


Very little to say about this one; it’s exactly what it looks like. It’s Gauntlet mixed with Bomber Man, complete with LAN play. Tell me that’s not an amazing concept. It’s Java and runs in a web browser, so it should be fairly cross platform.

Download: Page 4



Metroid meets Tetris. The heart of the game is classic Metroid, but all the powerups are now tetris pieces. You have to fit them into block segments which seal off new areas in order to advance. It’s rather clever; I especially like how some sections require the player to shoot the right piece into the wall to serve as a platform. The music is also brilliant.

Download: Page 4



This is an extremely interesting entry. It’s very simple; just a run and jump platformer with one enemy type and simple graphics. The genius is that each individual enemy unit is more powerful than the player, and it has an AI system. If the player opens fire, the enemy will either retreat and take cover, or jump and counter attack. If the player starts running away, enemies will emerge from cover on lower platforms and pursue their target like carnivorous rabbits. Yet, the AI is just unpredictable enough to keep things interesting. I love all the applications of game theory here.

Retroman is relatively difficult. An individual enemy, while comparatively easy to outwit, takes several hits to destroy and can kill the player in a single shot. I spent twenty minutes or so attempting to pass the first level; I’ve got no idea if there are any others.

Download: Page 5

Of course, your tastes will certainly differ from mine, and I haven’t had the time or inclination to play all of the entries. If you find something exceptional, feel free to call it out in the comments. 🙂


The Hitchhiker’s Guide on Zombies

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has this to say on Zombie combat

Zombies typical and primary means of attack are their talons; ideal for pulling their body across miles of scorching Saharan desert, capturing lovely fishes, and obtaining brains from various locales. A secondary attack is the deadly bite which, for dramatic purposes (27), is frequently hidden by the biteie so that he may turn in front of all his remaining friends at the climax of the story.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has this to say on Killing Zombies

The zed may be defeated by severing the connection between the brain and body. Alternatively, the brain may be perforated repeatedly to inhibit natural functions, customarily with a large gage ceremonial shotgun; the sort which is chronically low on ammunition.

A lesser known (though arguably more effective) weapon is the Earthdate 1990 era music video “Never Gonna Give You Up“, performed by Earthman Rick Ashley. While a low-grade weaponized edition of the song was tested with satisfactory results on a small selection of lone zeds, it is currently unknown what effects it would have on an entire horde.

A well known rumor holds that distinguished researchers of the Runge-Kutta star-system once produced an atomic dance remix of the tune. Further, it holds that the galactic council was thrown into an uproar at it’s premier and, in a rare fit of ethics, immolated it on the spot for the good of the universe.
It is the opinion of The Guide that such an outlandish rumor is untrustworthy and should be put to rest. The council is not renown for it’s ethos.

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