Staff Bio Week 5 – Mark B.

Name: Mark B.
Nicknames: Rantmaster, Kenny, whatever Kennedy comes up with to replace my last name with for the week.
Location: New Jersey.

Three Favorite Genres:
RPG’s in various flavors.
Fighting Games.
Adventure Games.

Three Favorite Games:
Shining the Holy Ark
King of Fighters ’97
Tetris

Favorite Console: Sega CD, probably.

Other Places Their Writing Can Be Found:
Inside Pulse
www.hotcupofrant.com

Bio: Mark B. has been playing games since before he was able to comprehend that he was supposed to be avoiding the cars in Race or the enemies in Pickaxe Pete. Now old and bitter from a life spent playing crappy games and worse sequels, he’s turned this into a craft by actively seeking out the worst gaming has to offer (usually cheap). When not reviewing games or writing his wildly unpopular “Playing the Lame” columns (whenever that actually happens), he can be found reading books to pretend he’s more cultured than he really is or playing games he enjoys (ssh, don’t tell anyone).

Q&A

#1 – ML Kennedy:

You are going to hit a strip club for a night of drunken debauchery and fornicaion. You may choose one Street Fighter Character to accompany you. Which one do you choose?

(Alternate: Who is your favorite DHGF writer, and what is it you most like about me?)

This one’s easy. Skullomania, baby. I mean, come on, you’ve got this guy in a full-body skeleton suit who parades around as a super-hero, and it’s not like you’re getting laid in a STRIP CLUB. You just HAVE to bring the most ridiculous person you know with you; that way when he gets ridiculously rip-roaring drunk and does a Skull Crusher off the stage into a bouncer you’ve got the story of a lifetime to tell.

My favorite DHGF writer is me, because humility is for pussies. And the thing I like best about you is your complete ability to separate your enjoyment of a product from what’s wrong with it so you can completely abuse everything on Earth. That’s awesome

#2 -Bebito Jackson:

If you could pick one dying / horrible in quality videogame franchise (that used to totally rule) and save it, which would it be and how would you go about restoring it to its former glory?

That’s a tough one; most of the franchises I like either just hit their stride again or haven’t dipped in quality yet. The closest I can think of is the King of Fighters series, so we’ll go with that.

As to how to fix it? Simple: first, strip out all of this extra, unnecessary crap that only serves to make the game a confusing mess and take the control dynamics back to the days of something like KOF 2000 or earlier. Second, update those sprites (I don’t want to see ANYTHING that’s not 800×600 in resolution, period) so they look good on modern systems. Third, it’s time to start balancing out the characters a bit more, so we’ll have to pick and choose from the better versions of each of the characters that have appeared in the franchise (KOF 99 Iori, KOF XI Kyo, KOF 97 Mai and Terry, etc). And finally, we have DVD’s that can handle over 8 gigs of storage space, so I HAVE to believe that we could EASILY fit, say, forty or fifty characters into one game. DO IT.

And there you go.

#3 -Bryan Berg:

What’s your favorite thing to snack on while gaming?

Cheeseburgers.

Some Burger King and a good game, aside from guaranteeing me a myocardial infarction by thirty, is great stuff.

#4 -Aaron Sirois:

Have you ever been so disgusted by a game that you were supposed to review, that you couldn’t even finish it?

Not yet, but almost. I HAVE failed to review games because I couldn’t get into the review for whatever reason, but the only game that came close to making me so revolted by it that I almost didn’t review it was Silverfall for the PC.

I DID manage to finish the review, like two months later, but it took a lot of effort.

EDIT: Guitar Hero: World Tour has since officially claimed this honor. Congratulations to Neversoft and Activision for making a game so soulless I couldn’t even FORCE myself to review it.

#5 – Charlie Marsh:

If you could be Bowser for a day, how would you defeat Mario?

I’d charge up for a Power Shot and aim the golf ball at his face.

Either that or I’d hire all of Sega’s old mascots that always had to stand in his shadow to beat him up. Alex Kidd and Wonder Boy would beat his out of shape plumber ass any of the week.

#6 -Matt Yeager:

Name a game that is technically bad, but that you love to play.

Bad as in “has problems that ultimately make it a niche title”? Monster Hunter. That goddamn camera is a pain in the ass but bringing down a five story dragon is the most satisfying experience I could ever hope for. Bad as in “sucks like it means it”? EDF. That game is a mess on a technical level but OH MY GOD is it fun to play for hours and hours.

#7 -Guy Desmaris:

As the guy who used to write “Playing the Lame”, you probably went through some atrocious titles. What is the absolute worst game you have ever played?

You say “used to” like I stopped. I prefer to think of it as “a hiatus of indeterminate length”.

Anyway, I’m going to avoid the obvious answer (ET) because there’s only so much you can hate a game that’s almost as old as you are, and I’m going to say Universal Studios: Theme Park Adventures. I mean, I’ve played an awful lot of the “really, really bad” games that various and sundry gaming pundits have listed upon their “WORST GAMES EVAR~” lists and really, Drake of the 99 Dragons and Aquaman are simply “uninteresting”, and The Ring: Terror’s Realm is certainly bad but it’s at least based on an interesting PREMISE; Theme Park Adventures seems like it was made entirely by people who hate YOU PERSONALLY, as everything from the idea to the visuals to the gameplay proper make you feel like you’d have more fun hammering a railroad spike into your genitals.

And Woody Woodpecker is nails on chalkboard annoying. Ugh.

#8 -Misha:

After an abrupt career change, you start working as a pimp. Which five video game characters would you recruit as Hoes and why?

Ivy – anyone who dresses in that little of an amount of clothing NORMALLY would have no problems working as a lady of the night.
Rayne – because she knows how to talk dirty and she’s posed nude before.
Mai Shiranui – because she’s good about showing off as much skin as possible, and after her last few KOF appearances I figure she’d be looking for a less demeaning job.
Kasumi – because her creator treats her like a whore anyway, so what the hell.
Benimaru – because Big Daddy B. don’t discriminate, yo.

#9 -David O:

What gaming company has disappointed you lately?

All of them. I hate all game companies with a seething passion because they make a career of disappointing gamers from start to finish. Off the top of my head:

Nintendo disappointed me with a rehashed sequel to a rehashed sequel to a game that once upon a time I thought might have some merit (Metroid Prime 3), crammed the kid from Mother 3 into SSBB but won’t release Mother 3 Stateside or Earthbound on the VC, and removed Luigi from the game outright it seems (which has since proven to not be the case). Capcom disappointed me by not having anything important from Resident Evil 2 in Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles, by announcing they’re re-releasing Okami on the Wii after they disbanded Clover Studios (so even if the game does well it’ll never have a good sequel) and by not announcing a port of Monster Hunter Freedom 2 G yet. Namco disappointed me by announcing they’re releasing the cooler exclusive character on the lamer system. Natsume disappointed me with Puzzle de Harvest Moon. EA disappointed me by disbanding the folks who made Fight Night Round 3 and by buying Bioware after they made a game that I enjoyed. And so on, and so on.

About the only companies who HAVEN’T disappointed me recently are Atlus by announcing a US port of Baroque and Agetec by releasing Fire Pro Wrestling Returns stateside, but give them a couple months and I’m sure they’ll be back to disappointing my inner child again.

#10 -Michaelangelo McCullar:

What’s the best and worst video game movies of all time? What are the best and worst video games based on a movie of all time? What video game do you think could make a great (not good or even decent) film if done right? And what game would you absolutely beg Hollywood never to defile as a flick?

In order: Best game movie: Tomb Raider or Silent Hill (the former was most faithful to the source; the latter was more enjoyable as a film). Worst game movie: Double Dragon (but Uwe Boll makes movies all the time so that could change). Best movie game: probably Goldeneye. Worst movie game: Land of the Dead: Road to Fiddler’s Green (I can’t in good conscience induct all of those old crappy platformers from way back when; people who make terrible games NOW deserve the derision much more). Converting games into movies is a tough task, because they either have too little or too much story to fit into a two hour film; that said, Shadow of the Colossus would be a FANTASTIC film if the right director and writer were assigned to it. And I think that there are way too many games that shouldn’t be movies… but if I had to pick ONE it’d have to be Metal Gear because with all the talking in the damn games it’s like I’m watching a movie anyway.

4 Comments
  1. Mark B.

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