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Messages - SlowPokemon

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1
Just asking, but wouldn’t this sheet make more sense in 9/8? It’s kind of awkward to read eighth notes against triplets in this case, since the third triplet and second eighth are going to line up, which isn’t reflected by the sheet’s appearance

(This is just my feeling after I lurked onto this thread and tried playing the sheet)

2
Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: July 27, 2022, 04:43:08 AM »
:000

3
Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: June 26, 2022, 03:58:18 PM »
:0

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Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: June 19, 2022, 06:15:07 PM »
Harvest, I used to think you were so old. I can’t believe you’re only three years older than me. Funny how things change.

5
Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: June 03, 2022, 05:24:52 AM »
Not sure what made me open the forums tonight, but I’m guessing it was to answer you. Doing well. My gf and I gave a recital in her hometown. It was a great program

6
Nintendo / Re: Slow Reviews Games: A NinSheetMusic Column
« on: January 05, 2022, 04:47:46 PM »
Very nice. BDS recommended the same thing right before you did in this thread, so I’ll have to check it out.

7
Nintendo / Re: Slow Reviews Games: A NinSheetMusic Column
« on: January 01, 2022, 04:24:04 PM »
Static—thanks for the recommendation! I was never a Monkey Ball kid, so that one slipped by me.

BDS—thank you, I love single player card games. Will check it out.

I wrote this list kind of early and have since beaten another game (Celeste) but maybe I’ll put it on my list next year.

8
Nintendo / Re: Slow Reviews Games: A NinSheetMusic Column
« on: December 20, 2021, 07:58:34 AM »
Favorites of Video Games 2021

2021 was quite a refreshing year of gaming for me. I had numerous experiences with my Nintendo Switch that surprised and delighted me. Last year was rather dominated by Animal Crossing, and even this year I racked up another 330 hours on the damn game, but it wasn’t quite anything compared to what it was in 2020 (and, fingers crossed, I think I may have shaken that game for good by this point).

As an introduction, per tradition, here is an older game I played in 2021 and really enjoyed.

Retro Corner
Super Mario Sunshine (2002) on GameCube (played on Nintendo Switch in the Super Mario 3D All-Stars game)

I don’t think I’ve ever had to eat my words as much as I’m about to. Last year, despite trying and failing to get into Super Mario Sunshine (for the second or third time in my life), I awarded “Best Gameplay” to Super Mario 3D All-Stars, purely on the virtues of Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Galaxy. Early in 2021, before tackling Galaxy a second time as Luigi, I decided I really needed to get all the way through this Mario game so it could stop hanging over my head. It’s always baffled me: a Mario game that seems designed to perplex and frustrate, with controls that don’t appear in any other title, and a hover function, which seemingly negates the fundamental premise of Super Mario.

And you know what? All of that is still true. But as I undertook the task of 100% completing Sunshine, I was shocked to find myself enjoying the experience even more than I had enjoyed revisiting the other two titles. This is a strange game, one that offers you a more freewheeling, exuberant control over Mario than most others. (If I was uncharitable, I’d say he’s rather slippery.) I was surprised to find that it had a few key things in common with 2017’s brilliant Super Mario Odyssey. Namely, that the moveset is complicated, touchy, and takes several hours to fully master; and that the game world itself doesn’t fully satisfy or open up until you take it upon yourself to explore every nook and cranny. Sure, collecting blue coins is frustrating when there’s no way to track them in-game, but the process of hunting and collecting them is every bit as engaging and fun as the purple coins in Odyssey. You have a really great unifying theme in the tropical setting, and as opposed to what I expected, each location felt unique and fun despite the many beaches. (The haunted resort hotel and tricky Pianta Village hot springs were standout settings for me.)

Certain missteps absolutely can bring the player down. For instance, there’s the absolutely infuriating fact that you can’t obtain 100 coins in every level, meaning you might spend a long time collecting only to realize you’re locked out of the 100-coin shine. Ricco Harbor is a death-defying platforming hell that will get your palms sweating and take years off your life, but the thrilling terror comes at the price of unfortunate repetition if you happen to fail at important points. The hardest level in the game, a lily pad trip down a toxic river, is locked behind a frustrating and tedious journey taking Yoshi on a boat, which the player is bound to fail numerous times because of the touchy controls and Yoshi’s instant death upon touching water. I spent nearly an hour just getting to the island where Mario can access this level–and the unpleasant truth is that this is the level of the game which will rack up more deaths than anything else. And a game over means you’ll have to start the Yoshi boat ride all over again. These and similarly idiotic design choices, as well as the lack of unique missions compared to 64, do keep Sunshine from perfection–but not from greatness. It’s unfortunate that Nintendo couldn’t polish the game to a sheen, or perhaps we’d have gotten a more experimental, less linear style for the Galaxy series that was to follow. But either way, shockingly, and completely contrary to my first impressions, this game holds up.
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That’s all for this year’s retro corner. Here are my 2021 picks!

BEST SOUND DESIGN
Famicom Detective Club: The Missing Heir & Famicom Detective Club: The Girl Who Stands Behind

The Famicom Detective Club games on Nintendo Switch are remakes of older titles for the NES (hence the name) which are considered pioneers of the mystery adventure game. Nintendo has never quite forgotten these cult classics, with one of the protagonists apparently considered as a playable choice in Super Smash Bros. Melee. These versions of both The Missing Heir and The Girl Who Stands Behind come with a fully voice-acted cast and the option to swap between a rearranged soundtrack and the original 8-bit music. The Girl Who Stands Behind was previously remade for SNES, so there’s a 16-bit option there as well, which is just fantastic. However, the small, Nintendo-esque detail that really sells this award for me is that swapping to the original soundtracks will also change the sound effects that play for dialogue and menu options. It really lets you immerse yourself in the game however you want, as a new visual novel or a retro experience. These kinds of touches really make a game fun for me.

HONORABLE MENTION: World’s End Club
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BEST MUSIC
The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles (Yasumasa Kitagawa, Hiromitsu Maeba, & Yoshiya Terayama)

There were some great soundtracks on Switch this year, but the long-awaited return of Capcom’s legal franchise–this time a new set of character practicing law at the turn of the 20th century–presented a compelling case for a purely classical video game score during a time when many modern games are turning to more atmospheric scoring. Though the themes and styles remain in the style of classic video games, the instrumentation gives the impression of a small chamber orchestra accompanying the player along the entire ride. A prominence of accordion and an overall lack of electronic effects do a great job of immersing the player in the Victorian England setting, and the sheer number and variety of music pieces gives this an edge for me over some other excellent competitors this year. Definitely give these two albums a look if you get the chance–they’re available legally to stream, in what’s becoming a nice trend from Capcom.

HONORABLE MENTION: Bowser’s Fury (Daisuke Matsuoka & James Phillipsen), DELTARUNE Chapter 2 (Toby Fox), New Pokémon Snap (Hiroki Hashimoto), Pokémon Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl (Shota Kageyama & Jun’ichi Masuda)
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BEST GRAPHICS
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BEST STORY
The House in Fata Morgana: Dreams of the Revenants Edition

Let me start off this section by stating that this is one of the toughest years I’ve ever had of awarding a best storyline. And that’s a good thing! I played so many interesting, fun story-based games this year, and it gives me hope that the visual novel and adventure game genres will continue to expand their horizons. But it was a really tough call. I’ll have a slightly more extensive Honorable Mention section down below, but for now, let’s talk about my pick: The House in Fata Morgana.

This is a straight visual novel, released in Japan in 2012 and in various different forms on PC and PlayStation worldwide the last couple years. The storyline is unlike anything I’ve seen in a video game before. Part horror, part tragedy, part romance, part historical drama, the only thing consistent about Fata Morgana is that it’s dark as hell. A somewhat off-putting first act plays out like a Twilight Zone anthology, where different occupants of a haunted house engage in reprehensible behaviors and run into supernatural curses and entities. Then things get weird. By the time you hit the end of the game (about 30-35 hours, depending on how fast you read), you’ll have a new understanding of everything you’ve seen so far, and a really deep appreciation for the entire cast of characters–something this genre doesn’t always do effectively. This game got some notorious attention earlier in the year when a technicality briefly placed it as the number 1 game on Metacritic (it has since fallen). While it’s certainly not the best game of all time, it’s unquestionably one of the best visual novels of all time. The Dreams of the Revenants Edition available on Switch includes two extra games, a prequel and a sequel, both of which are interesting and add a lot of depth to the storyline. But it’s that base game that really wows you and earns this spot. It’s not going to change any minds on the visual novel genre, but for fans, it’s an easy recommendation.

HONORABLE MENTION 1: Famicom Detective Club: The Missing Heir

Famicom Detective Club ended up being two of the most charming releases of the year for me, and somewhat surprisingly, a really engaging reminder of why I fell in love with the mystery adventure genre in the first place. As a tween, I was captivated by the Professor Layton series, and it was almost touching to experience a game that so clearly inspired it. I was intrigued by the storyline throughout, and the clear-cut chapter breaks made for a great hour or so of gameplay every day for a couple weeks. The Missing Heir gets slight preference over The Girl Who Stands Behind because of the more classic “murder mystery in a mansion” setting, as well as a really fun feature toward the end where the player has to type in actual words to solve the mystery–the latter seemed a bit more streamlined by comparison. Definitely check this out if you want a game equivalent of a Sherlock Holmes story.

HONORABLE MENTION 2: The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles

No surprise here: I’ve been an Ace Attorney fan for a long time, and this newest release bundles together two spin-off titles penned by series creator Shu Takumi himself. (For those not in the know, Takumi more or less departed the series following the trilogy, working on the Professor Layton crossover but not much else.) A Victorian setting, multiple simultaneous witnesses, and new jury system aside, there isn’t much that’s experimental about these entries; rather, Takumi interestingly doubles down on themes that were explored in the first couple Ace Attorney titles with Phoenix Wright and Miles Edgeworth. This isn’t a slight: this game feels completely focused on what it wants to do and say, and manages to weave in a really interesting cultural interplay narrative in between murders. The only downside is that the game really doesn’t know when to shut up: At about 80-90 hours, these two games take longer to get through than the entire original trilogy, and there’s simply too much filler text and repetition of points the player already knows. That’s really the only thing holding this game back from greatness; hopefully the next entry can dial it down a bit.

OTHER HONORABLE MENTIONS: DELTARUNE Chapter 2, GNOSIA
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BEST GAMEPLAY
Metroid Dread

Let me start by saying that this is the first Metroid game I’ve ever played. As I’ve probably mentioned once or twice in the last few years, the Switch has been my platform for trying Nintendo franchises I’ve missed out on before, such as Fire Emblem, Pikmin, and Donkey Kong. Metroid is the latest in line, and I haven’t been so hooked on a game in ages. The design is very classical, with intricate areas that require backtracking and liberal scouring of maps if you want to get absolutely everything like I did. But the thing that impressed me is just how good it feels to play. Whereas Mario is the gaming equivalent of joy and weightlessness, Samus Aran is all adrenaline. She’s deadly fast, and the game is rather unforgiving in its expectations of how you use that speed. Boss fights are genuinely satisfying because they require so much precision and stamina from the player, and Samus’s absurdly large move set means that you’re unlocking new ways to fight and get around every half hour or so. Though the end game sections rely a little too much on repetitive miniboss fights, I had an absolute blast pretty much every second of this game. It’s harsh and very difficult, but never unfair–and it’s constantly teaching you in the way that Nintendo games do. Absolutely killer game.

HONORABLE MENTION: GNOSIA, New Pokémon Snap, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury
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BEST REMAKE
Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury

At first glance, this appears to be a straight port of Super Mario 3D World, which, you know, would be standard operating procedure for Nintendo. But a closer look shows that they tweaked the mechanics, particularly when it comes to speed: all characters move significantly faster than their Wii U counterparts, which made this surprisingly feel like a brand-new game to me. I had a really great time revisiting this modern classic, and the inclusion of Bowser’s Fury, a completely new mini-3D Mario game using 3D World’s engine and moveset, only solidified this as an absolutely stellar package. I had high hopes for a certain other pair of remakes this year, but this came out as the clear winner.

HONORABLE MENTION: Danganronpa Decadence, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD, Pokémon Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl
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BEST eShop GAME
GNOSIA

As usual, although The House in Fata Morgana is probably my true pick this year, I’ll take this opportunity to highlight something otherwise unmentioned. GNOSIA is a Werewolf-style game where one of your crew is actually a GNOSIA–an alien life-form disguised as a human. The catch is that there’s an overall plot, which is reached by playing randomized games of Werewolf over and over, to reach different conclusions and character scenes. These take anywhere from 5-15 minutes depending on your settings, and can be quite fun in unique scenarios where you take the role of, for example, a lone GNOSIA, or a special psychic role. As a functioning Werewolf simulator, it’s hours of fun, despite some repetition in dialogue. But adding a full sci-fi storyline to the background is really ambitious. With more variety in the soundtrack and better implementation of the narrative, I’d be really interested in a sequel.

HONORABLE MENTION: DELTARUNE Chapter 2, Famicom Detective Club: The Missing Heir, The House in Fata Morgana
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BEST GAME OF 2021
Metroid Dread

This was pretty surprising to me, in a year where I got a new Mario, Ace Attorney, and Pokémon (not to mention all the cool story-based games that dropped). But for the reasons I stated above, Metroid Dread really did it for me. I’m very interested to see if the series has another Switch release coming soon–I’ll definitely be on board if it does.

HONORABLE MENTION: Danganronpa Decadence, Famicom Detective Club: The Missing Heir, The House in Fata Morgana, The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles, Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury
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Do you have any 2021 recommendations for me that I missed out on? Do you have any questions or comments for me? I felt bad that I didn’t end up directly calling attention to World’s End Club or DELTARUNE Chapter 2, which were both absolutely charming and unique releases this year. Let me know if you’ve played any of my picks, and as always I really appreciate any discussion. I really enjoy doing these yearly write-ups.

9
Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: April 21, 2021, 10:56:14 PM »
My signature quote is pretty much exactly five years old

10
Since this piece is a waltz, which is written in 3 but felt in 1, “presto” feels a little odd as a tempo marking. It’s actually not a particularly fast waltz tempo. It is technically accurate when you’re talking strictly metronome markings, but something like “Moderate waltz” might be a more informative thing—especially since you’re providing the BPM “presto” isn’t quite necessary. It could also draw attention to this music’s connection to the “waltz of the Boos” track, basically noting that the way they’re representing the haunted levels in this game is by putting the music into a triple meter. (This is also their tactic in Super Mario 3D World)

Not at all a necessary change, just throwing my two cents in.

11
This is by far the best April fools event this site has done. Bravo. You outdid yourselves.

Special mention to the sheets for Ace Attorney and Super Mario Bros. Laughed myself out of my chair at those.

12
Off-Topic / Re: Jokes
« on: March 06, 2021, 05:03:03 PM »
When is a bus not a bus?
When it turns into a parking lot.

Why were the pirate’s parents so disappointed with his report card?
Because of the seven Cs.

What do you call it when you eat filets on an airplane?
High steaks.

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Off-Topic / Re: The Post Your Thoughts of the Moment Thread 2
« on: January 28, 2021, 05:09:09 PM »
There is absolutely nothing wrong with getting paid for your work. Never let anyone tell you that your work, music, writing, or any other kind of art should be free.

The exception, of course, is when your work is USING SOMEONE ELSE’S COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL IN AN UNOFFICIAL CAPACITY. This is not a brief quotation, this is straight using the entire musical material.

14
Nintendo / Re: Slow Reviews Games: A NinSheetMusic Column
« on: January 01, 2021, 04:01:07 PM »
Oh yeah, reading during college semesters is impossible. But it gets easier after that

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Nintendo / Re: Slow Reviews Games: A NinSheetMusic Column
« on: December 31, 2020, 07:53:08 PM »
That’s great! Yeah, Animal Crossing has just dominated my life this year. It’s been really odd.

Side bar: I read 24 books this year and I was thinking about making a “favorite books I read this year” post even though it’s not really related to gaming. Would anyone be interested in that? I genuinely have no idea how many people here are readers.

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