Sega Roms Information

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Ballz

Ballz is a two player, 3D action, fighting game for the Sega Genesis, the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) and the 3DO. It was developed by PF Magic and published by Accolade in 1994. The 3DO version was released as a director's cut in 1995. Ballz offered three difficulty levels over a total of 21 matches. Its distinguishing quality was that each of the characters were composed completely of spheres.

Though novel and addictive, this game fared poorly in the marketplace due to botched marketing. Accolade gave it little print advertising, but even the ads it did for the game gave little clue as to what type of game Ballz was. One just had an image of a Christmas Tree made of spheres and contained the caption "Tell your mom you want Ballz for Christmas." The box of the game also gave little hint of the type of game it was, since it depicted just a jumbled image of numerous spheres. Most people assumed it was some sort of Tetris clone.


Trivia

The opening of the game PF Magic developed for the game stated "To be the champion, you gotta have Ballz!" Due to its racy double-entendre, Nintendo demanded the wording be changed. Since Nintendo was the only manufacturer that could produce any SNES game, Accolade had little choice but to conceed. So the SNES version of the game states, "...you gotta play Ballz," while the Sega version uses the original version of the intro.

The Sega version of the game had a lot of trouble with sprite breakup, a common problem for many video games. Sega opposed to the great deal of breakup and rejected the game. Accolade and PF Magic fixed the problem by using a DSP chip on the catridge board, which fixed all instances of breakup. However, the chip added to the cost of each cartridge, forcing the developers to remove some features of the game. Therefore, many of the game's sound effects were removed—to save on the cost of the additional memory chip—and as a result some of the characters share sound effects. The entire catalog of sound effects is found on the SNES version.

12:45 PM | 31 comments

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Tactics Ogre

Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together is a tactical role-playing game game developed by Quest. It was originally released in 1995 on the Super Famicom in Japan, and re-released on the Sony PlayStation in 1997/1998. A Sega Saturn version was also released in 1996 along with the original Ogre Battle and both featured voice acting. It's the second game in Quest's Ogre Battle series (preceded by Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen) and the seventh episode in the series' storyline.

The game has a different style from most computer RPGs; the player builds up a team of several characters with changeable classes and fights on an isometric playing field. The gameplay is intermixed with expositional cutscenes revealing a deep plot, and the player has very little control outside of the battles.

Characters
Denim Powell- The main character in this game. He was born in the city of Griate, Valeria. He is the son of the village priest, Plancy. After Plancy was taken away by the Dark Knights and Griate was burned down by the Knights, Denim, his sister Kachua, and his friend Vice plan a vendetta against the Dark Knights.

Lans Hamilton- A holy knight from the Holy Kingdom of Zenobia. His identity is not well-known and he is said to have been exiled from his own country. He brings his men with him to Valeria, who are exiled as well, for a job and eventually meets Denim. Lans agrees to help Denim in his rebellious actions and accompanys him. Lans, Warren, and Canopus were characters in Ogre Battle.

Kachua Powell- Denim's sister. Daughter of priest Plancy. She follows Denim in his quest for revenge.

Canopus Wolff- Lans' companion. Nickname is the 'Wind Rider'. He is from Zenobia and has served in the revolutionary army of Destin and Tristan and restored the rightful throne of Zenobia. He follows Denim and Lans. Lans, Warren, and Canopus were characters in Ogre Battle.

This was the second game known to be directed by Yasumi Matsuno, following its prequel, Ogre Battle, with featured a considerably different game style. It has a few successors in spirit, including:

Final Fantasy Tactics (PlayStation)
Final Fantasy Tactics Advance (Game Boy Advance)
Ogre Battle 64: Person of Lordly Caliber (Nintendo 64)
Tactics Ogre: The Knight of Lodis (Game Boy Advance)
Each of these games shares similar gameplay aspects with Tactics Ogre. Ogre Battle 64 and Tactics Ogre: Knight of Lodis were not created by Matsuno. They were created by Quest after Matsuno was hired away by Squaresoft (Now SquareEnix) to create titles similar to the first two Ogre Battle games. Final Fantasy Tactics and Final Fantasy Tactics Advance are both Matsuno created, and were released by Squaresoft and SquareEnix respectively.

4:41 AM | 2 comments