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Apollo Chungus

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About Apollo Chungus

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    Member
  • Birthday 01/29/1996

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  • Interests
    Writing, playing music (especially piano), video games, Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Gender
    Male
  • Country
    Ireland
  • Location
    The middle of nowhere

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    FrDougal9000
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    https://www.youtube.com/user/FrDougal9000
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    @FrDougal9000
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  1. I've had this rumour on my mind the last couple of days, or the reaction to the rumour to be more exact, because it's gotten me pretty fascinated. Maybe I've not been keeping tabs in the right circles, but this is the first time in a while where there's been something of a controversy about a game existing (not here specifically, but in general). It's not a controversy about shitty business practices, or overly hyped, poorly executed ideas, but just that a game could possibly exist. And I'm not saying to shit on the people who have a legitimate grievance with Star Fox Racing; most folks do have a good reason for being annoyed (which I'll get onto in a bit). But is it me or is the nature of the reaction a bit... well, hyperbolic? To preface this post, I'm not a fan of any of the series being discussed. Star Fox, Donkey Kong, F-Zero, even Diddy Kong Racing depending on which circles you move in: they do the square root of sod all for me, so these opinions are more just observations from an outsider who just finds an aspect of this discussion rather intriguing. See, the thing that bugs me about this whole discussion is how the existence of Star Fox Racing is being treated as a zero-sum game: either this game is happening at the expense of a potential new F-Zero/DKR, or Retro Studios is making this instead of Donkey Kong Country Returns 3 or some other game and that the games not being made now will never be made. Okay, I get that the 'AAA' gaming industry has had a really extremist attitude in regards to producing games lately, where publishers with countless franchises under their belts only make anything from a couple of those series (EA, Ubisoft, Activision...), but Nintendo has always been in its own strange reality in that regard. As discussed in this video by Game Maker's Toolkit (along with sources), Nintendo largely make games that have something new to offer. Whether or not that franchise is popular doesn't matter too much: if there's nothing unique they feel they can do, they won't do anything with it. This is why there hasn't been a new F-Zero game since 2005, since it wasn't felt that the series was evolving in any meaningful capacity. The only Punch-Out!! made in the last twenty years was the Wii game, and it was because the system's motion controls could be used to create a new, interesting way to play a boxing game. And on the subject of Star Fox, this was why the series took a decade long break after Command, and only came back for Zero when the Wii U's gamepad provided the opportunity to do something with the arcade shooter gameplay that hadn't been done before. This can sound a bit weird and esoteric, especially if you're not really interested in innovation but just want a new game, but because Nintendo are financially well off, they can afford to not make certain series for years because they simply don't want to. That can get frustrating, especially when you remember how many studios can't produce a new game in X, Y and Z series because they wouldn't be profitable enough and could risk the studio's continuing existence (see: SEGA, who are something of a poster-boy in this regard), but that's just how Nintendo operate. I bring all this up because if Nintendo wanted to do a new F-Zero, or even a new Diddy Kong Racing, there's nothing in the world stopping them from doing so (or having done so over the years) beyond their own lack of interest. There's no reason they couldn't make those games themselves, or delegate the development duties to another developer who they deem worthy enough for the job. And the idea that multiple racing games existing at once would be seen as an unnecessary resource drain or anything negative is pretty silly - otherwise, there's no way that Mario Kart 64, F-Zero X and the original Diddy Kong Racing would have been made within the span of two years if that was such a concern (I know it's twenty years ago, but not enough has changed on Nintendo's side to make that comparison invalid). The fact of the matter is that Nintendo, at least as far as we know, don't seem interested in making a new F-Zero/Diddy Kong Racing right now and the possible existence of Star Fox Racing changes nothing about that, for better or worse. Meanwhile, when it comes to Retro Studios making this game instead of something else, can I ask a question: how many people work in Retro Studios? Granted, I couldn't find any definitive numbers on their staff size (not even on their own website), but I bring this up because I doubt every single person in Retro is working on this game. Unless they're a paltry-sized team with every employee performing multiple important roles, there's no reason that a portion of the studio couldn't be working on another project at the same time as this. Game development studios tend to be pretty good at tackling multiple projects at once, and with a team as good as Retro, I have no reason to doubt their ability to do the same. I reckon that if they are making this game, Retro also have something else in the works. It could be a new Donkey Kong, or maybe it's something else altogether, but they're definitely not just working on Star Fox Racing. Hell, even if they were, it doesn't mean that we'll never get DKCR3 or whatever from them: it just means that we might have to wait a little while for that next game. Just to reiterate, I get the frustration that people have with the idea that this game exists. It's yet another Star Fox game that completely changes the gameplay type, meaning that Star Fox has officially had no game-to-game consistency since 1998. It's a racing spin-off for a series that has absolutely nothing to do with that genre, when there are other Nintendo series that are about racing and could do with a new game. It would be awesome for Retro to put the cap on their DK games with a third game (one that would hopefully do better than Tropical Freeze originally did), but they're making this weird spin-off instead. And the reasons go on... But I feel that it's worth pointing out that things aren't as doom-and-gloom or extremist as some people make them out to be. At worst, it's pretty dang annoying, but it shouldn't warrant vile hatred or vicious arguments (especially when it's still a rumour). If any of this comes off as patronising or insulting, I apologize in advance for that.
  2. LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH SUGGESTIONS FROM DK VINE, TWITTER, OTHER WEBSITES AND BOOKS I'VE BEEN READING, AS OF 10:54 - 27/APRIL/2018. Hi, everyone! I hope you're doing well! This update's another big one, with a little under 100 new suggestions being added to the list - which brings us past 3500 films and very close to breaking the 3600 FILMS THRESHOLD! Considering the limit I imposed some time back at around 4000 films, that means we're getting quite close to that limit, and the possible end of the suggestions gathering. It's crazy to think how that's taken just over a year to happen, and I thank each and every one of you for contributing once more, but we're not there just yet. There's still a while to go, and who knows what could happen along the way? In the meantime, I've only uploaded one new YouTube video to promote the channel since the last update (been busy and all), and it concerns the troubled production of Dragon Ball Super - but with a positive angle. I've also recently become a member of the World Animation Discord, which is a community full of folks who care about and happily discuss the world of animation. If you'd like to get involved, follow this here link: discord.gg/nAMqZH5 And that's about it for today! If you have any suggestions for films to consider for the list, questions about the project, or general feedback, please let me know and I'll do my best to address it! If you like what you see, share this project around to like-minded friends! Thank you for reading, I hope you decide to check out one of the latest additions and enjoy them, and until we meet again, have a great day! -Jim McGrath/FrDougal9000
  3. LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH SUGGESTIONS FROM DK VINE, TWITTER, OTHER WEBSITES AND BOOKS I'VE BEEN READING, AS OF 18:52 - 5/FEBRUARY/2018. Has it been a year already? Blimey, that was quick. Yes, you read that right. One year ago today, I decided to start a series of threads based on an idea I'd been kicking around for a couple of weeks. I thought it'd be pretty interesting to get other folks involved, see how it would go. As it turns out, "pretty interesting" was something of an understatement. Over the last 12 months, through taking people's suggestions, visiting recommended websites, reading books, watching shows, films, shorts and more, I've come to realize how bafflingly huge the world of animation is. Whenever I think there's nothing more to see, I'll check out a website or book and uncover several dozen animators and films that I'd never heard of before, but still doing all manner of inventive and incredible things. There are so many films, shorts, videos, episodes and other types of animation that I would have never otherwise seen, and I am happier for having seen them. These include, among countless others: -Mickey Mouse (the 2013 series) -Gauche the Cellist -Sita Sings The Blues -A Boy Named Charlie Brown -Hotel Translyvania -Gurren Lagann -Rex the Runt -Student Shorts from GOBELINS -Diamond Jack -Just about every Aardman short from 1977 to 2000 -Little Nemo -Early Betty Boop shorts -Underrated Looney Tunes from the 30's and 40's -Tony del Peltrie, one of the earliest CGI films with a human character -Music videos by the surprisingly versatile Koji Nanke -Pixar's first dozen short films In addition, I've started to interact with people on the internet again thanks to this project. I'd been staying away from places like Twitter and Facebook, but this whole venture got me into talking with people about animation in a bunch of different ways. I've gotten new perspectives, learned about fascinating animators and films, and have made internet friends who I'm always happy to see post something or to talk with. It's even gotten me back into making YouTube videos, which is how I first started doing things on the internet, funnily enough - talk about coming full circle. I want to give back to the animation community, even if only in the smallest of ways, by providing my own perspective on certain areas and helping to inform people with what I've come to know. Hopefully, I'll be able to do that. With all that in mind, I want to thank everyone who helped to contribute to this project over the last year. Even in the most minor way, you've helped me to see how wide and wonderful the world of animation is, and you've given me a reason to keep moving forward; even on the days when I feel like I can't do anything. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for everything. I'll do whatever I can to make you feel the same, if not tenfold. In the meantime, please check out anything from the list of suggestions that grabs your interest - I hope you enjoy it. If you have any ideas for films to go on the list or possible video ideas I could do, please suggest them. If you know anyone who would be interested in a project like this, please share it with them. Thank you again, and until we meet again, have a great life! -Jim McGrath/FrDougal9000
  4. Now that the trailer's out, and I've watched it a couple of times (along with CrystalFissure's analysis of it), part of me feels like I should do a video on my issues with the visual direction. Not just what I originally said, but I'd also like to cover a couple of other things, such as: 1. The nature of Toys for Bob's intent (which is to faithfully recreate the games), and why this is presents a bit of a quandary given the vast changes. 2. The difference between remasters (which this is being advertised as) and remakes (what this actually is), and how that's important to understanding and acknowledging these changes. 3. The fact that since they're not the original developer, what they're presenting in the remakes as a recreation is actually more of a reinterpretation (e.g. the brighter, less depressing makeover they've given to what seems to be the Beast Makers world, which was originally inspired by Apocalypse Now of all things) of the source material, and why that matters. 4. The overly aggressive lighting and the new skyboxes being very literal and removing that abstract feeling that helped make the original levels so memorable or distinct. But my question is: should I cover it? Or should I do so right now? We've only got one trailer and a bunch of screenshots, and I'm not sure whether it's the right idea to go critiquing the game when we know so little about it. At the same time, with the footage and screenshots they've put out with the announcement, this is them putting their best foot forward to show us what they can do, and I feel like it shouldn't just be blindly praised because of nostalgia or some other such feeling. Again, I don't mind these changes out of principle, but I do want to be sure (or at least 75% sure) of what I'm doing. Can y'all let me know what you think? Thanks. (Also, for those who didn't see my initial thoughts, they're in the spoiler below.)
  5. This will be a bit of a long post, since there's a lot to get out, so bear with me on this. For context, the original Spyro the Dragon trilogy ranks as one of my all time favourite game trilogies, damn near as much as the Mega Drive Sonic the Hedgehogs. I love how good the controls are, Stewart Copeland's music is one of the quintessential PS1 classics, and I especially love how simple, but beautiful the graphics are. It's still impressive after all this time how the games even run to begin with, considering that free-roaming 3D environments were impossible to do on the PS1 (at least, compared to something like the N64). However, I've never been on here to discuss the PS4 remakes. This was for two reasons: 1. If they weren't outright confirmed, I didn't want to get involved in an eternal session of speculation where we'd keep taking guesses over random points of potentially meaningless evidence. 2. I have no interest in these remakes. Ignoring the fact that I already have all three games, so this wouldn't have meant much to me as is, I'm worried that these remakes will get things wrong. And I'm calling this, and the N-Sane Trilogy, a REMAKE - because that's what it is. It may be an attempt to faithfully recreate the originals by as close an approximation as possible, but that is a remake - making something from the ground up. The 2011 version of Sonic CD is a remake, since it is made within a new engine. Shadow of the Colossus on the PS4 is a remake, since the assets are brand new. And this new Spyro trilogy is a remake, since there will be changes made. And that's what had me worried since the possibility of these was first brought up. That like the N-Sane Trilogy, the developer (presumably Toys for Bob, but I'll leave it blank for now) will try to create the closest equivalent to the original games as they can, and will therefore be off with a few things. I don't mind changes or deviations from the source material, but when it's attempting to be a very faithful remake of a certain game, they risk hitting an uncanny valley effect where it's close enough, but not close enough that I wouldn't be able to stop thinking about it. I had no interest in discussing these remakes unless asked, but then I saw those screenshots. And we need to talk. First off, the character models are pretty good. Spyro's a bit chunky at the front (reminds me a bit of a pregnant cat), but I think it works, and he's quite expressive. The enemy designs in Spyro 1 were not that game's strong point, so any change is already going to be an improvement. They look expressive, and could work quite well. No, my problem is with the environments, and how unappealing they look. Yes, I said unappealing. They don't look bad, in the sense that they're well constructed approximations of the original level designs, but my problems stem from their use of aesthetics and colour. For a start, they remind way, way too much of those fan remakes where someone takes a level from an old game, sticks it in a new engine, and leaves it at that. (Or they add details upon details upon details until the aesthetic is overly cluttered and busy.) There's so much focus put towards using all this new technology to add little details and cool effects that they don't realize how washed out the colour palette looks, or how its clean design has been utterly swamped in more miscellaneous details than Jim Lee's artwork. Yes, it can look impressive in a comparison to the original visuals, but that eventually fades into the back of your mind and becomes meaningless. Secondly, the original games had a very strong consideration for colour theory in how it influenced the look of the levels, their mood, and the level design. Most famously, colour theory was used in making Spyro purple - he was originally green, but it blended in too well with the green hills of early levels, so Insomniac went through many different colours until they found one that stood out against any of the game's backdrops. Colour theory was very important in creating levels that had a particular feeling, while still having every element be easily identifiable to the player (which helps them to orient where everything is, and makes things less strenuous for players with impaired vision). And this isn't coming from someone with a very strong knowledge of colour theory: this was the subject of a Gamasutra feature written by the game's original artists back in 2000. This shit's been public knowledge for nearly 20 years! But these screenshots imply a disregard for that colour theory, with the standard washed out colours, pale sunlight for no particular reason, lighting that blends levels in with the skyboxes, and the other aesthetic problems that plagued the N-Sane Trilogy. Again, when it's trying to be as faithful a remake as possible, the idea that the developer seems to be disregarding the use of colour theory that made the original games so visually appealing is just... bothersome. Like, there's more to faithfully recreating a game than just getting the gameplay right, you know? If you're not going to do the visuals justice, or you replace the iconic soundtrack with a meaningless wall of noise, or you ignore the pacing and mood that made the original so distinct (to name but a few of the countless things that go into remaking a game) - then why bother? Why not do something different; something new that you can call your own without forcing people to make comparisons? These decisions don't have to be bad (and sometimes aren't; the Magic Crafters world looks quite good), but these are decisions that should be held under greater scrutiny if the intent is to recreate something to the best of one's ability. I know there's not much that can be done about this - this looks quite far along, and I'm not aware enough of game development to know how long it would take to adjust the environments until they were a PS4 equivalent of what the originals' simple and clean designs, so there might not be enough time to do that. And with how pleased people are as to how the game looks (which, like the N-Sane Trilogy, I'd chalk up to the excitement of an old franchise coming back being a strong influence), I doubt the developer will feel much incentive to bother. I hate that this bothers me so much (particularly since I'm doing that whole "complain about a game that's not out yet" thing that I once criticized - in a shitty video I made back when Skylanders was first announced, to boot!). But I just feel like these visuals could be so much better than they are, especially when this will be the definitive (or most easily accessible) way to play the original games for quite some time. I hope the remakes are good, but this combined with my prior lack of interest has just got me as turned off as I possibly could be. To everyone who's excited for this, I hope you enjoy 'em, and I hope they do well enough to bring the series back. I'm just not interested. Sorry.
  6. LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH SUGGESTIONS FROM TWITTER, THE ANIME ENCYCLOPEDIA AND CARTOON BREW, AS OF 15:06 - 13/MARCH/2018. Hi, everyone! I hope you're all doing well! This next update isn't quite as big as the previous one (though it's large enough to take us over the 3300 FILMS mark), and that's because I've been pretty busy these last couple of weeks. One of the things I've been up to is getting that old YouTube channel of mine back into action, and I've begun producing videos on a semi-regular basis again! Here are the first three so far, for you to check out and enjoy: I've decided to make a focus on producing videos about animation, as both a supplementary to the 1001 Animated Films You Should Watch project and also a way to help spread awareness and get people talking about all the many wonderful things that exist in this medium. If any of these videos take your interest, subscribe to me on YouTube (the channel name is FrDougal9000), share my videos around, and provide feedback or suggestions through the comments or otherwise. In the meantime, thank you all once again for contributing to the project in whatever way you've done so for nearly the last year, and I'll see y'all for the next update. Share the project around to other animation fans, provided feedback and suggestions if you have any, and have a great day! -Jim McGrath/FrDougal9000
  7. LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH SUGGESTIONS FROM TWITTER AND CARTOON BREW, AS OF 12:49 - 18/FEBRUARY/2018. Good afternoon, everyone! I hope you're all doing well! This update's the biggest one in quite some time (taking us a bit over the 3200 FILMS mark), largely due to me taking recommendations from Cartoon Brew's Cartoon Brew Pick, an almost daily section of the site where the site runner recommends a music video, episode, animated short or anything in general that is worth checking out. I've not listed every short that has been recommended back to mid-early 2015, since they are live-action films with an interesting use of video FX (CGI, basically) but otherwise could not be considered animated films, but there are a lot of cool or amazing works that I otherwise would have missed out on, and I urge you to check out any that catch your attention. As well as this, I'm uploading a video later today on my YouTube channel, in which I announce the fact that I'm back and am planning to work on videos discussing animation, as something of a way to help promote this project. If you have any suggestions for videos or animated works I could look at, please let me know! I really want to get back into the game, and would love to hear as many ideas as I can to give me inspiration! In the meantime, thank you all again for your support. Share this project with your friends, contribute with suggestions/feedback/questions, and until we meet again, have a great day! -Jim McGrath/FrDougal9000
  8. LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH SUGGESTIONS FROM DK VINE, TWITTER, OTHER WEBSITES AND BOOKS I'VE BEEN READING, AS OF 18:52 - 5/FEBRUARY/2018. So that update came a bit more quickly than I thought it would, thanks to some free time I happened to find today. That makes yesterday's post a little redundant, but I think it can be forgiven considering the big news that comes with today's update. Now, there is over 3000 FILMS, TV EPISODES, SHORTS, MUSIC VIDEOS, FAN ANIMATIONS AND MORE listed under consideration for the 1001 Animated Films You Should Watch List. It is baffling to think that in just under ten months (not even a year!), I've been able to accumulate so many works; and it's thanks to everyone who has contributed to this project and beyond. To everyone who gave recommendations, feedback, ideas, and all manner of support, I thank you. And to every animation fan, enthusiast, historians and more whose blogs/books I've read and whose videos I've watched to get a better understanding of the wide and wonderful world of animation, I thank you as well. Like I said some time back, I'll continue to work on gathering suggestions until we're in the realm of 4000 films, which I reckon will happen sooner than I think, and that's because of all of you. I'll also try to get back to updating the Facebook page, and to try and make animation-centric videos on YouTube in the near future, but I just want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Y'all are amazing. Have a wonderful life. Thank you.
  9. AN EXPLANATION FOR MY ABSENCE: It's been nearly a month since the last update, and I apologize for the delay and my lack of explanation as to why there is such a delay. I've had a busy few weeks in which I've been doing work experience for my college, and subsequently working on the paperwork I had to do afterwards. It's left me pretty tired by the time I get home, and writing a post about the new update, rewriting the opening post to include all the new updates, and so on is a bit too much for me to want to do at the moment. Don't worry, the next update is done; I just need to have the desire and drive to upload it online and then write about it. I'm sorry about that, and will strive to work on it as soon as things quiet down. Thank you, and have a good day.
  10. What type of fanservice is next?

    I was going to suggest a visual novel dating sim where you play as Tails, and have to figure out which one of the sexy boys you want to be with (the options would be, of course, Sonic, Knuckles, Shadow, Espio, Scourge, Ray, and Antoine). But then I realized that's probably not what you meant by 'fanservice'. Never mind.
  11. happy birthday!

    WgvV0.gif.6cf67b9c9c4b3db6063ae6fb496aa787.gif

  12. No, they're not, and the reason for that is that there's one ENORMOUS difference between the two: Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles are both great games that also form two halves of the same experience. Meanwhile... Sonic Mania is a fantastic game, and Sonic Forces is a mediocre nothing of a game that have pretty much sod-all to do with each other (apart from minor connections that don't go anywhere or affect anything).
  13. Anywhere in the UK to get Archie Comics? :-)

    If you've got an Android phone, you can still get them on Google Books (I haven't checked to see if they're all on there, but the singles a couple of bucks apiece, and they have quite a few of the collected arcs).
  14. LIST HAS BEEN UPDATED WITH SUGGESTIONS FROM DK VINE, TWITTER, OTHER WEBSITES AND BOOKS I'VE BEEN READING, AS OF 13:52 - 9/JANUARY/2018. Hello, everybody, and Happy New Year! (Plays slightly odd, but somehow fitting celebratory music) I hope you're all doing well! Today marks both the first update to the 1001 Animated Films You Should Watch project for 2018, and the nine month anniversary of this project. To ring in the occasion, we've got another big update to kick off the year! This update contains 182 films, which means that the total number of suggestions has gone a little bit over 2900 FILMS! It's baffling to think that in just nine months, we've nearly reached 3000 suggestions of movies, shorts, episodes, music videos, and all manner of subjects that define why animation is such an excellent medium, but here we are! I thank you all once again, and to the various websites and books I've visited as of late; I don't know where I'd be without you. I haven't been updating the Facebook page since the last update, so I don't have any recommendations or write ups to offer you. Sorry about that. As for any possible plans for 2018, part of me does want to get back into video making (I used to make YouTube videos once upon a time, doncha know) but with a particular focus towards animation. However, we'll see. In the meantime, please contribute with any suggestions/questions/ideas you have, share this project around to friends, and check out anything on the list that takes your interest! Thank you very much, and until we meet again, have a great day y'all! -Jim McGrath/FrDougal9000
  15. Which games should I buy?

    I figured it might be a good idea to make a forum thread where people who can't decide what game to get can ask on here and get a few answers to help them out.With that in mind, I've thinking about getting a game on the 360's XBLA, but I have no idea what to get. This is largely because XBLA game prices never depreciate (meaning something that cost €10 back in 2005 STILL costs €10 now), XBLA games are only ever priced at €5, €10 or €15 (the latter two are what most games cost), and there aren't any sales to offset that problem.So I thought I'd ask y'all about what to do. Here are three games I've got my eye on:Lumines Live (€10, a really addictive puzzle game with a Rez-style synesthesia and a lot of content)SEGA: Monster World Collection (€10, contains three platform action games; Monster Land, Monster Lair and Monster World IV)Banjo-Tooie (€15, played the demo and I really liked it - I want to know far this exploration expansion goes)If y'all can give me a good recommendation, I'd really appreciate it!
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