December 4, 2013

Mario Galaxy 2 and the Lost Essence of Video Games

Playing through Super Mario 3D World really made me appreciate what makes a game good, which got me thinking about how fantastic the Super Mario Galaxy series is. Then I remembered a piece written by my good friend RaiderBear30 a few years back that was seemingly lost to the ages. Well, I found it. I think it's a great piece that really captures the meaning of what makes a quality gaming experience. I haven't been able to speak with my friend in almost a year, and I'd like to post this in honor of a recent birthday he had. It's too good to have been ripped from the clutches of the internet. Below the break, you will find the original article in its entirety. Here's to you, buddy!

Super Mario 3D World Review

I want to love this game. I really do. I can only assume it's for this reason that I picked up the game at all. See, 3D World is the sequel to 3D Land on the 3DS, a game which I also didn't care for. I guess a part of me wanted that game's problems to be fixed, because I really wanted to love 3D Land in the same way. Reading other reviews, you'd think Super Mario 3D World is one of the best games ever made. Sadly, this isn't the case. 3D World is, for lack of a more eloquent way to put it, not very good. Of course, I realize that I am in the minority with maybe about five other people on earth, but hear me out.

October 31, 2013

When Zombies Attack (draft)

It was a dark and stormy Halloween eve, as is typical for this sort of event. Two friends, Steve and Jon, were watching a Twilight Zone marathon at Steve's house, mere blocks from the old cemetery. Jon sat glued to Steve's couch that was so old it had butt indentations and smelled like burnt cheese. Steve was up munching on his favorite snack, a hot dog with steak sauce, as he watched the rain beat down outside. 

October 1, 2013

Building the Ultimate Smash Roster: Trimming the Fat

I literally finished writing this in June before any characters were announced, and never posted it. Well, here's what I thought would happen then. I'll update it shortly, and every time a character is announced. No, I'm not going to format it.

Brace yourselves, Smash Bros is coming. And with it come roster changes. But this new set of games may have the biggest shakeup yet. Previous installments built upon the old roster while cutting few characters and replacing those cut with new ones. This time around, Sakurai has confirmed that some old characters just won't make it. A while back, he stated something to the effect of the new roster having the same (or roughly so) amount of characters. With that in mind, I aim to build the ultimate roster. In the first part of this ongoing feature, to be updated until the final roster is confirmed, I will try and assess who of the current cast will stay and who will go.

August 15, 2013

Pikmin 3 Reveiw

Every so often, you play a game that reminds you why you love video games in the first place. Pikmin 3 is one of those games. Brimming with Nintendo magic, Pikmin 3 instills a sense of wonder and discovery into every moment that few games today can achieve. If you own a Wii U, you're going to want this game. If you don't, well maybe now's the time to buy one.

June 26, 2013

E3 2013 Final Grades

Console war. Console war never changes. When you were a kid, you were either Team Nintendo or Team Sega. These days, you're either rooting for Nintendo, Sony, or Microsoft. Except Microsoft has lost most of its supporters recently. Who will dominate the next generation? Whose side are you on? Who won E3? Take a guess...

June 7, 2013

E3 2013 Day -1

Plenty of stuff starts trickling out the week prior to E3. Here's the roundup so far:

  • In my review of Metal Gear Rising I called the game a "badass simulator" and concluded "I doubt I'll have more pure fun with a video game this year." Looks like I might have to eat those words.

May 22, 2013

Xbox One: The Good, The Bad, The Wut

Microsoft has developed the world's first floating entertainment box.
The time has come. Microsoft has heard Sony and answered back not with a mighty roar, but a wimper. Granted, they only took up an hour to Sony's several, and they've promised E3 will be all about the games, but things are not looking so good thus far.

May 17, 2013

The List: best shows within (cartoon) shows

The Angry Monkey Show- Invader Zim
The show where a scary looking monkey just stands there doing nothing in particular. And you love it.

May 13, 2013

Review: Mutant Mudds

Available for 3DS eShop ($8.99), iOS ($4.99), PC ($9.99), Steam (coming soon), Wii U eShop (coming soon)
Mutant Mudds is a game I really want to love, but I hate it. I hate that I hate it, but that's just the way things are.

May 11, 2013

Review: Metal Gear Rising

I don't know about you, but I play action games to feel like a total badass. By that standard, Metal Gear Rising is the greatest action game ever made. It's certainly my favorite ever. Action games have had a great legacy in the 21st century from Devil May Cry to God of War to Bayonetta. All of those feel like the appetizer compared to this game. Platinum has a reputation for being the best action game developer for a reason. Bayonetta was some great, crazy fun (and I'm looking forward to the sequel) but Revengeance takes it to the next level. It's crazy, it's over the top, and it makes you feel like a badass in ways you've never experienced before. In fact, I'd say that Metal Gear Rising isn't even an action game. No, it's a badass simulator. 

April 29, 2013

BOOTYs: Top 5 of 2012

My experiment in revamping the BOOTY awards was a failure. The result is not an in-depth post per category, but a top 5 and (maybe) some extra awards thrown in. What's that you say? April is almost over? What better time to look back at the best games of 2012? Having played almost every major release, I've found that there were actually a lot less games that blew me away than I thought. Last year saw a lot of big releases, but it was the smaller titles, mostly released earlier in the year, that stood out to me. I've decided to do a top five this year because I think some great games get unfairly excluded if you just do the three best. So, for those of you way behind with your games, I present the Best Offerings Of The Year for 2012. My recommendations for must-play titles are:

April 1, 2013

Crowdfund ALL the shows!

Three years ago, I did an april fools gag about a fake tv channel started by a couple of guys that were upset about their favorite shows always getting cancelled. I called it ResurecTV, and it was backed by JJ Abrams' company Bad Robot. Fast forward to today, and that's basically goddamn happening. I sure have a way of calling these things. 

In development for several years (Show Must Go On), just exited beta on Saturday. The purpose of the website is to take to crowdfunding in order to resurrect cancelled tv series. The process works like this:

  • Suggest a show. If it gets a good number of suggestions, it goes to voting.
  • The voting stage gauges how may people are actually willing to donate, after a minimum is reached, they get in touch with the production company.
  • Next, the show goes into the funding stage. This part works like Kickstarter, with rewards and everything. If the show meets the minimum budget, it goes to the next step.
  • The show goes back into production for one season, then it can be watched online at If you backed the show, you get to watch commercial free!
Basically, this is the best thing ever. I can't believe somebody actually did this. There's a number of shows up for voting now that I don't give a crap about, but I'm pleased to see the excellent Motorcity is not only included, but 40% away from going into funding! Apparently, during the beta, both Young Justice and Green Lantern got such overwhelming support that SMGO is already in contact with Warner Brothers about crowdfunding the show. These two will no doubt go straight to funding relatively soon.

So tell your family, tell your friends, and tell all the random strangers you meet! I want this to take the hell off! Lets bring back ALL the shows!

Real talk for serious times

As you know, today is April Fools' Day. In the past, I have trick, duped, and outright lied to readers. This has been a tradition every April of the blog's existence, all the way back to 2005. Today is no laughing matter. Today is no joke. I have finally had time to think and I've concluded that I just don't have the time for this any more. You may have noticed that I'm not posting as much as I used to. As much as I'd like to get great content out to you, the readers, on a timely basis, I just can't. The older I get, the more complicated life gets. So I will soon be shutting down Installation 04 as you know it. It sure has been a good run (over 8 years!).

But don't cry many tears my friends! I04 will live on in spirit. You may have noticed that, for a brief period, I04 was known as Installed Base. That was a test. Since it's hard to get out articles in a timely manner, I've decided to switch to a new format: the magazine. Going forward, Installation 04 will be a magazine available both digitally and in print. This way, I can work on things when I have time and offer a big old stack of awesome content whenever it's done. I've been working on this in secret since January, and I think you'll agree it just makes sense. Why bother with the internet, where no one can find your content, when you could have a magazine instead? It's always been a dream of mine, and now it's finally coming true. I'm sure you'll agree this is a great decision. The first issue is actually available right now! Below are a few preview pages. Hope you enjoy. Head on over to the brand new right now to download the first issue or order a physical copy!


March 24, 2013

Review systems reviewed

So, just how the hell do we review video games? What's the best way? Every method seems to suck, but there's got to be some kind of answer, right? Yes, I think there is. Let's figure this shit out once and for all.

March 13, 2013

The List: 10 reasons to give ponies a chance


"I say, old bean. These ponies are quite the conundrum."
"Quite. The cause of much rabblrousing discussion."
"Indeed, It's quite the kerfuffle." 

Confession time. I watch My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and love it. Should I really be confessing that? It is something worthy of confession? Wouldn't that imply that it's bad? A lot of people would say that. Those people are idiots. Friendship is goddamn magic!

February 24, 2013

PlayStation 4: The Good, The Bad, The Wut

Never in my life have I seen a console reveal that doesn't actually reveal the console. It was weird, to be sure. Instead, Sony took a significantly different approach from the usual "here's the box and some tech demos". I wasn't blown away, but now that the whole thing's had time to stew, I feel better about it.

January 12, 2013

BOOTYs 2012: 5 or Less Best- Audio

Funfact: The audio aspect of a game is 1/3 of the experience. The other 2/3 are visuals and gameplay. In this all-important category, I'll award the five or less best games in a number of eartastic categories. Eartastic?

January 8, 2013

I heard you like Pokemon...

So we're going to release a new game every year for three years in a row! I guess Nintendo thinks letters are colors now. And the starters continue to get stupider. But on the bright side, it looks like they've spent the whole budget on the Pokemon models. They look good.

January 4, 2013

Announcing the 2012 BOOTY Categories

Like I said before, this edition of the BOOTY awards is going to be different. Instead of making one long monster post, I'll be doing one for every category by naming the Five Or Less Best games in each category. Below, you'll find the awards I'll be giving out.

Review: Halo 4

Folks, it's the moment you've all been waiting for! The very first game critique, and for Halo 4 no less. Prepare your body.