Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Photos - Asuka 120% Burning Fest. Limited (Saturn)

Once in a while, I get an itching for championing lesser-known video games that deserve to be "classics."  Here, once again, is one of Sega Saturn's best and most intense fighting games, Asuka 120% Burning Fest. Limited.

It's fun to imagine and speculate about a "Sega Phoenix" super-system, that would combine the Genesis, Sega CD, Saturn, and Dreamcast into one console.  And one of its appeals is the idea of sharing the vast software libraries to the world at an affordable price ($10-$20).  Is there much of a demand for Japanese anime girl fighters in the year 2012?  No, probably not, that's just hubris and nostalgia talking.  But a game like Asuka 120% just screams "cult classic," and I can imagine it drawing a fan base.

Aren't you just tired of seeing the exact same video game franchises over and over and over?  Exactly how many Street Fighter games do we need?  Do you really need a Call of Duty 9, a Halo 8, a Zelda 13, or a Madden 22?  How hard would it be to come up with something different?  This is where $50 million game budgets leads you, to a wasteland of dull, derivative boredom.  I miss the joy of being surprised by a new video game, a quirky and out-of-left-field video game.  We really don't get those moments anymore.

Ah, well, Fill-in-Cafe was a little guilty of this bad behavior with their Asuka 120% series.  It's less of a franchise than an endless series of revisions and improvements.  But there's little chance that you'll ever play any of the earlier versions, so it's the Saturn "Limited" or Playstation "Final."  Naturally, Asuka's perfectly at home on the Saturn, looks terrific, plays fast and loose, and just quirky and different enough to feel unique.  It's an addicting contest of never-ending, spectacular beat-downs, with a very simple control scheme and combo system.  I don't feel as though I need to take night classes to figure it all out.  I like that.

Again, bringing this back to the "Sega Phoenix" theme, I'd definitely release Asuka 120% on the super-system.  It deserves its cult status, and would offer a welcome alternative from Franchise Sequel Spinoff #3,452.

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