A trio of PS1 games on the Ouya.

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.

Colin_Mcrae_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.

NHL 99

NHL '99

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.

xevious

 

 

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.

ouya_icon

 

Advertisements

Retro Gaming: R-Type Delta – Sony PSX

If you ask a retro gamer to list their all time favorite coin-op shooters, I’d hazard a guess that R-Type would probably make their list.

Irem’s classic shooter, R-Type is one of those games that I kinda grew up with and have been shooting the crap out of the Bydo Empire since the original arcade cabinet was released in 1987. It set the standards for many classic shooters and remains as addictive in it’s original incarnation and beyond with  numerous conversions and sequels.

In 1998 (1999 for our European release), Irem released the fourth in the series on Sony PlayStation called R-Type Delta.  At a time when full 3D graphics were becoming the norm, Irem thankfully retained the original 2D side scrolling aspect of the original and used 3D polygonal effects on the PlayStation to enhance the overall look without affecting the gameplay or nostalgic 80’s appearance.

R-Type Delta introduced for the first time in the series,  three new ships to select, the enhanced R-9A, based on the original R9 fighter, the R-X Albatross and R-19 Ceberus. Each with it’s own unique weapons systems and Force Power that can be enhanced even further with power ups. In addition, new to R-Type Delta is the DOSE weapons system. By charging your ships Force pod either by contact from enemies or enemy fire, the DOSE  systems increases the overall attack capabilities of your ship  and once fully charged can release the almighty ‘Delta’ weapon.

Graphically, it’s stunning with the 3D rendering and lighting capabilities of the PlayStation put to good use over seven beautifully crafted stages. Starting on  Earth as you repel the invading Bydo intruders until the  final showdown at the Bydo core, it’s the great level design that really shines above all others.

Gameplay is on par with this predecessors, fast and furious without being frustrating thanks it’s steady learning curve and tactical approach to the weapons systems.

R-Type Delta definitely has that ‘just one more go’ factor and is a worthy edition to the series and  well worth tracking down a copy to add to your PlayStation or indeed your shooter collection. Likewise, such is the popularity of the R-Type games that many have been re-released on the PS3 network, Apple iPhone/iPad and Wii Virtual Console.