Screenwave brought some interesting games with them to Pax.
During the Penny Arcade Expo, I was able to stop at the Screenwave Media booth, home to such games as Eagle Island and Angry Video Game Nerd 1 and 2 Deluxe. Eagle Island hasn’t released to the public yet and the Angry Video Game Nerd Saga is getting a re-release, so much so that the Angry Video Game Nerd, James Rolf, was on hand meeting the fans and signing autographs.
Eagle Island reminds me of a mix between Zelda 2 and Castlevania. It reminds me of Zelda 2 in terms of the way the map is situated as well as graphically it reminds me of the NES game. Also, you will be able to use magical spells and powers with your Owl and different spells make killing enemies easier. Experiment and see which special attacks work best on which enemies. Each time you play Eagle Island the map resets so if you don’t remember what attacks work best on what enemies, you will have a tough time.
You will be able to collect coins and upgrades as you wonder through the areas, thus my reminder of Castlevania. The different weapons/upgrades also reminded me of Castlevania. You’ll be able to link combos together to kill enemies and if you do, you’ll gain more reward, such as more coins or magic power. There are upgrades you can find during gameplay as well that will be permanent that you’ll have the option to exchange for different upgrades. For example, you’ll be able to find more health or different jump ability and you can exchange the health upgrade for the jump if you see fit. It adds a different element of strategy in a game already full of it.
Next up was the Angry Video Game Nerd 1 and 2 Deluxe Edition that was being shown off. For those who aren’t aware, 1 has a stage select screen and 2 has an over world/map screen for you to select levels which are quite challenging. The gameplay is very challenging in AVGN and feels like an accomplishment just to get to the checkpoints in each part of the stage. In classic gaming fashion, you have a Nintendo-style zapper gun to shoot enemies with as well as other items/weapons to find strewn about the different stages.
There are health items like a keg to heal your health and trust me; you will need it going against some of these levels. To top off the hard-as-nails stages, there are boss fights at the end of the stages and they aren’t pushovers either, but that goes hand-in-hand with just how tough the games are. You have blind jumps, blocks that kill you the minute you touch them, spikes, lasers, enemies that hunt you down and all kinds of other things the Angry Video Game Nerd hates. If you happen to beat a stage, enjoy that sense of accomplishment as they stages will only get tougher as you move forward!