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    • There are TONS of issues with the XBLA ports of BK, BT and PD that make me absolutely hate these ports. Just a few that immediately spring to mind... All of the new re-drawn HUD elements are ugly as sin and are not accurate to the original at all. The camera system has been reworked and all for the worse.  4J Studios tried to make it work like a "modern" game, but it actually works significantly worse than the original as it loves getting stuck and never gives you a decent view of the action. All of the game's cutscenes are broken and none of the timing matches up correctly anymore. The enhanced draw distance completely breaks the level design with a lot of the hidden items since you can now see them from miles away (the Honeycomb in the ocean in Treasure Trove Cove immediately stands out to me in that regard). All of the music has been pre-recorded and has been given a massive dose of reverb for some godknowswhat reason; making all the music sound like it was recorded in an underground cave. The absolutely cack-handed and disrespectful change to the music note collection system by 4J Studios completely breaks the intended gameplay loop and level design; especially in the later stages (Rusty Bucket Bay and Click Clock Wood are supposed to be gruelling gauntlets and tests of endurance where you have to struggle to stay alive long enough to collect all 100 notes in a single life... now all of that is gone, rendered limp by the fact that notes stay collected on death/exit from the level)... As an added bonus, this stupid change also introduces a nasty bug whereby any notes collected in the Attract Mode & Bottle Bonus Challenge videos remain collected PERMANANTLY; forever locking you out of 100% completion.  Great job! All of the new re-drawn HUD elements are ugly as sin and are not accurate to the original at all. The camera system has been reworked and all for the worse.  4J Studios tried to make it work like a "modern" game, but it actually works significantly worse than the original as it loves getting stuck and never gives you a decent view of the action (to be fair though, this isn't AS big a problem in BT as it is in BK mind you). All of the game's cutscenes are broken and none of the timing matches up correctly anymore (this is especially noticable and egregious in Tooie, which has a lot more cutscenes, which are all a lot more dynamic than the original BK). The enhanced draw distance completely breaks the level design with a lot of the hidden items since you can now see them from miles away (the Honeycombs in Cloud Cuckoo Land immediatley spring to mind). All of the music has been pre-recorded and has been given a massive dose of reverb for some godknowswhat reason; making all the music sound like it was recorded in an underground cave.  Actually, sound in general is pretty glitchy overall in this version; the stereo balance constantly goes haywire whenever music transitions take place (especially underwater). The first-person section controls are, in two words, completely fucked.  For some idiotic reason, 4J Studios thought it'd be a great idea to have the aiming reticle snap back into the centre whenever you let go of the stick.  This makes strafing impossible now and makes these sections an absolute nightmare to play (the final boss is almost totally impossible now!). For all intents and purposes, the cheats have been removed; as they ALL disable saving now! No more SUPERBANJO   The Banjo Kazooie carts were all removed in favour of having the BK save file enable the Stop N' Swop features.  While this sounds like a good idea on paper, it actually renders these hidden areas completely pointless now (also the additional unlocks are physically painful to look at... a fucking Gamerpic!? Seriously!? THAT'S the best you can do!?) The "enhanced" visuals are ugly as fuck; pretty much everyone looks worse than the original.  Technically better, but artistically bankrupt (Elvis is the biggest offender however!).  Amazingly enough, the cutscenes in this version are somehow NOT broken though! So I can at least give 4J credit for that. All of the weapons have been rebalanced and fucked around with, and NONE of them play like they do in the N64 original.  This is defintely a case of 4J Studios overstepping boundaries here and outright fucking around with the intended game design.  The Laptop Gun is absolutely shit now & barely does any damage or knockback, Knives can no longer cause motion blur to dead bodies (which is most of the bloody point of them!; actually, motion blur is basically crap now as it only lasts for a mere fraction of the time of the N64 original.  Dragons and rocket weapons are all shit now... there's just too many changes to list here.  Quite frankly, the weapon balance is nothing like the original at all, and that's unacceptable. NONE of the included control schemes match the original at all and all of them feel unnatural.  Because having the ability to hold down the A button to pull up the weapon menu was just too complex for 4J Studios to figure out, instead, the controls have been tweaked to play like Halo or Call of Duty (The "Spartan" and "Duty Calls" options respectively - of course the "classic" option plays absolutely nothing like the original at all, because of course it fucking doesn't).  Obviously 4J Studios felt that PD had to be "updated" to play more like a "modern" FPS and the game is all the worse for it; all of the control schemes feel awful in this version! Also the aiming sensitivity is all kinds of fucked, the manual aiming mode (holding down R on the N64 original) is basically completely useless now and the auto-aim is complelety fucked beyond recognition of the original game.  Whoopie!   Gimme the N64 originals over the XBLA versions any day of the week.  Hell, I'd take them over the XBLA versions even without a resolution or framerate bump!
    • I actually have this cart! That's how I got these two games originally! (They were already stupidly expensive and hard to come by by the end of the GBA's lifecycle, so I was stoked to get the two for the price of one!) These kinds of compilation carts were very common on the GBA.  It's quite simple really.  It's literally two seperate GBA ROMs on one cartridge. The GBA could support cartridges up to 32MB (256mbit) in size; but these cartridge sizes weren't available at launch.  Most GBA games (including all three Castlevania GBA games) are only 8MB (64mbit) in size; so the Castlevania Double Pack uses a 16MB (128bit) cartridge to fit both games on. Most publishers avoided using the larger cartridges unless they had to because larger capacity cartridges are more expensive than smaller capacity ones.  But the cost of the larger cartridges come down over time, so you started seeing publishers use these larger capacity cartridges to package multiple games together as a cheap re-release.
    • I have some pretty serious misgivings with both Banjo games on XBLA. Banjo-Kazooie has a pretty severe game-breaker where if you played Bottle's Challenge and the AI controlled Banjo in the puzzle collected notes, you could no longer complete the game 100% because the tweaked note mechanic meant that note was gone forever and because you didn't collect it, the game doesn't recognise it as collected. But Banjo-Tooie was even worse, simply because the controls for Breegull Blaster (The First Person Shooter segments) were changed so that Banjo resets his vertical aiming when you let go of the stick. This made any of these segments much harder then intended because you need to aim upwards a lot! It all comes to an infuriating head in the final battle, which I literally couldn't beat because the controls were so awful. I could do that fight in my sleep on the N64. But constantly missing because I couldn't keep the sights steady meant I could never beat Grunty before the Mustard Gas killed me. And another thing, using any cheats that aren't learned from Cheato disables the ability to get on to the Leaderboards. Which is fine. What isn't fine is that it also disables the ability to save the game, rendering them completely pointless. Banjo-Tooie without "SUPERBANJO" is not a Banjo-Tooie I want to play. That cheat is loads of fun to mess around with! And this isn't exactly the XBLA's version's fault, but trying to beat Canary Mary was physically painful on a 360 controller.
    • Not sure if this belongs in this thread, or if there's something obvious I'm missing, but... with the recently announced Castlevania Advance Collection, I was reminded of something: Harmony of Dissonance and Aria of Sorrow, the two latter GBA Castlevania games, were once re-released as a collection within a single cart. But I never quite understood, how the heck did they ever fit two games - that were already quite large by themselves - into one cartridge? Surely if it were easy, we would've seen a lot more collections like this?
    • First of all, thank you very much for letting me know about this game. I imagine its release is far away (since all we have is concept art), but it's excellent to know that one of Goemon's creators is working on something whimsical like this. Second, most companies didn't give much to the NES/SNES service. All that Capcom gave was games from Ghosts&Goblins and Breath of Fire (two series they barely care about), whereas Konami only gave Gradius and the Twinbee series (pretty much long-dead franchises). Not a single Castlevania, Contra, or Metal Gear. This makes me think that no big franchise was ever making it to that service. The fact that Goemon was absent supports the idea that Konami still has some respect for it. However, the Mega Drive service does include Castlevania and Contra, which is quite a leap. Also, Banjo Kazooie is certainly a big get. I'm thinking 3rd parties are a smidge more motivated to get some games in the Expansion Pack than they were for NES/SNES (likely a hefty deal), which means that, at least for now, there's hope that Konami might give us something more. Maybe it's just silly optimism, but I do want to believe.
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