With most of my retro gaming machines all packed away whilst we redecorate, my Ouya is becoming quite the star with it’s small footprint, one lead setup and some rather slick emulators. Tonight, I’ve got the pleasure of three Playstation One games – two from my own gaming library and another on and loan from my friend (cheers Seb!).
Colin Macrae Rally.
Not my first choice when it comes to rally sims (Colin Macrae 2, 2005, Richard Burns and Rally Trophy please) , but despite the clipped and chunky graphics, CMR1 on the PS1 is bags of muddy fun. There’s eight countries to compete in providing a variety of road and off-road surfaces as well as varied weather conditions and day/night driving. You get a choice of four 1998 WRC cars to drive including Colin’s winning Suburu Impreza and (by far my favourite) Tommy Makinen’s Mitsuibishi Lancer E4. There’s also four novice cars to zip around in including the nippy Golf GTI and the Renault Maxi Megane and, my favourite of the lot, four unlockable historic rally cars including the Ford Escort Mk11 and the (probably) rocket fuelled Audi Quattro S1.
I’ve been a rally sports fan for a long time now and really got in the the World Rally Championships during the late nineties when drivers like Macrae, Sainz, Burns, Gronholm, Auriol and Makinen were all juggling for the win whilst future talent was being introduced with the likes of Solberg, Leob and Martin.
I’ve not really been following it as much these past few years, but after reading about increased live coverage on one of the digital sports channels we get I thought I’d take a look at again this year. I wasn’t disappointed, last weekends Monte Carlo rally was hugely entertaining and the unpredictable weather there brought about some real drama and an ever changing leaderboard. Sweden next, my favourite of them all.
It’s with this renewed interest that I sought out CMR1 from my Playstation collection and with the Ouya’s analogue controls playing quite nicely under emulation (FPse) I’m looking forward too some of my own armchair rally action.
Of all the sports games I’ve ever played, EA’s NHL series has been the one that I’ve purchased religiously each year right from the beginning up to when the EA big wigs decided not continue releasing them on the PC…idiots! NHL ’99 is certainly not the best edition there is but it’s this version (PS1 and PC) that I hold dear for many reasons. I play this and I remember a friend (who happened to play ice hockey for our local team) stopping by and not leaving for hours as we played endless vs. and co-op matches, repeated many many times over the next few years. I play this and I remember leaving my PC on overnight to download the whoppin 56mb demo only to find CRC errors in the archive – back in the days of dial-up internet and billing per the minute, quite an expensive download! I play this and I remember the wow factor when my new shiny Nvidia TNT pro graphics card smoothed out those pre ’99 pixelated hockey players. I play this and I remember the Zamboni which didn’t seem to appear in any of the later editions. I play this and I remember trying to amass a whole host of user mods to update the player gear, ice centre and boards (again, quite a feat on crappy dial-up services). And lastly I play this and remember the very best NHL game intro that in my opinion has never beaten.
Take it away Dave!
and lastly (thanks once again Seb!) – Xevious 3D.
To be honest, I’ve never been much of a fan of the original arcade game, preferring something like 1942 for my vertical schmup fixes back then. The air-air and air-ground weapon systems in Xevious was quite a novel feature but, I dunno, I just found Xevious to be a bit….well, a bit boring.
Whilst wandering around the console area at Play:Expo last year I happen across a Playstation running this rather funky looking 3D(-ish) shooter. I sat down for a while and absolutely loved playing it not knowing that, until my lives had been spent, I was actually playing Xevious 3D.
Unlike the original, this is much more fun to play with plenty of power ups and some truly outstanding boss attacks. Check out the spider robot for example at the 1min:55 mark in this long play video by betamanATstage6.
This 3D version also has the original (and super arrangement) games included to so maybe I’ve been a little too hard on the original game and it’s time I gave it another look?
Just a quick word on the PS1 emulator ‘FPse’ on the Ouya. It can be purchased and installed directly from the Ouya Store, is a breeze to use and supports .iso files directly from either your Ouya (limited space)or directly from a USB stick. It also detects your game files and auto downloads the cover art for you. There’s plenty of options to play around with for graphics and audio and both digital and analogue gamepad emulation is available (including vibration) as well as on screen controls and emulated memory cards for save support. In a nutshell, pretty much everything you’d need from a Playstation emulator and has run everything I’ve tried so far without a single hitch or slowdown.