Bebopping Nostalgia Week

cowboybebopSay goodbye to another week gone. Will it eventually be remembered fondly, bringing a smile to your face as you think about that thing that happened? Or looking back months and years from now you might think, “What a shit week that was. I’m so glad that’s over.” It may be too soon to say.

While the week before was super-productive on The Table Stacks, this week was significantly less so. Ultimately, I decided to replay Bioshock, but this time playing it on Steam. I have both the “old” version and the remastered “new hotness”, but every attempt I had made to play the remastered version just looked terrible. The graphical glitches just in the opening with the fiery wreckage sinking around you as you work your way to the lighthouse was too painful. Someday it may be better, but not today. I installed the old one and that’s where I’ve been. The first Bioshock game, in my mind, is still the best. The second one was still good, but probably my least favorite. I felt a bit of a disconnect with being a Big Daddy (though a prototype) and getting my ass kicked by whatever I came across. The third one was fantastic, I loved the new setting, the story, but I felt like the ending tried too hard to blow your mind. They wanted to pull a M. Night Shyamalan when even M. Night Shyamalan has a hard time being him now. I hadn’t played the first one again since I played it on 360 shortly after it released. It’s nearing 10 years old now and it’s still a great game. I’m still scared when a splicer is up ahead and all I see are shadows or I do something and turn around to find a statue there that wasn’t there before…spoiler…it’s not a statue. Shoot it in the face.

One other tidbit is Fire Emblem Heroes dropped this week. It’s free (a positive) on your phone (a negative). I’ve not dove in too deeply, but it is straight up a Fire Emblem game in all its turn-based strategy glory. The story revolves around two royal families. One has the power to open gates to other worlds and another has the power to close those gates. Being Fire Emblem, naturally one of those families has decided to go to war. The worlds they have access to are the worlds of all the other Fire Emblem games. As they conquer these worlds they enlist the heroes you know and may love to help fight for them. You as the player are “the great hero” summoned to help turn the tide of battle and you can, in turn, summon your own heroes to help fight. I’m not sure the story is going to have the depth of what most people expect from a Fire Emblem game, but it’s free so you can’t really expect the S-class effort.

One thing I did complete this last week was something else I was re-doing instead of doing something new. I re-watched Cowboy Bebop from end to end, which is probably for the fifth or sixth time. Bebop is one of the anime that really got my attention focused on anime. Prior to that I had watched a few things here and there. Vampire Hunter D, Record of Lodoss War, and then some of the shows Toonami was showing during the grand old days of Cartoon Network first dabbling in Dragon Ball Z and various Gundam. Cowboy Bebop though is something different. It’s this perfect storm of catchy music, relatable characters, action, comedy, and a story that isn’t afraid to punch you in the gut a few times before it’s all over. While there have always been a few episodes like Pierrot le Fou that I watched and they were just kind of “meh”, this time through even those episodes I think I appreciated them a little more. There isn’t what I would call a bad episode in the series.

That’s about it for this week and our fond remembrances of games and anime over a decade old. As I’m about halfway through Bioshock, there might be something new and exciting on the horizon for next week.

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