Retro Game Friday: Gex Enter the Gecko

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m back with the sequel to Gex. It’s Gex Enter the Gecko!

Plot: The plot is just as nonsensical as the first one, with Gex being tasked once more to save the world. It’s not an amazing story, but it was fun as a kid and it’s not the worst plot in a platformer I’ve ever played.

Gameplay: This was the first entry in the Gex series that was in 3D and it did pretty well in making the transition. It kept the feel of the original game fairly well, but was different enough to draw in newcomers. That being said both the GameBoy Color and Nintendo 64 versions were much worse versions, so play the PC or PlayStation versions if you’ve never played this before. The constant pop culture references were great and pretty funny.

Art: Sadly this portion of the game has aged incredibly poorly, but back in the day it was pretty awesome.

Music: The music was okay from what I can remember, but I don’t remember much of it.

Overall: Give this a spin if you love Platformers, as it was a fun game for the younger crowd.

Manga Monday: Blazing Pen by Shimamoto Kazuhiko


This week for Manga Monday I’ve got another Quick Review. It’s Blazing Pen by Shimamoto Kazuhiko!

Plot Synopsis: Hot blooded manga about… writing manga.

Plot: The plot is pretty non-existent, but it’s quirky enough to make me laugh occassionally, like the above page. I probably won’t read the rest of the series, as slapstick isn’t my sort of thing in anything other than very small doses.

Characters: Ohno Akiko is supposed to be our relatable character, while Honoo Moyuru is just plain oddball. His ideas of how to draw Manga are amusing, but also complete nonsense.  We get introduced to these two characters, and one other who is sort of forgettable, but Akiko is probably my favorite for her reactions.

Art: This is an olds Manga made in 1990 so it has the style of the times. It looks quite a bit like Saint Seiya even though they’re done by completely different Mangaka.  I enjoyed the art, as it’s very well done, but it just wasn’t enough for me to overlook the massive amounts of slapstick.

Overall: For those who enjoy random humor, Blazing Pen will probably be right up your alley.

For those who like: Slapstick, Comedy, Impersonations, Dramatic Tension, Great Artwork, Funny Cast of Characters.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Manga Monday: Hayate no Gotoku by Kenjiro Hata


This week for Manga Monday I’m covering a series I sort of enjoy. It’s Hayate no Gotoku, or Hayate the Combat Butler in English, by Kenjiro Hata!

Plot Synopsis: Hayate Ayasaki is an unlucky 16-year-old who has worked since childhood to make ends meet due to his parents’ irresponsible behavior. One day on Christmas Eve, he finds out that his parents shoulder him with a massive ¥156,804,000 gambling debt, the Yakuza (who the money was borrowed from in the first place) plan to settle that debt by using him for their needs. While running away from the debt collectors he ends up meeting Nagi Sanzenin, a young 13-year-old girl who is the sole heir of the wealthy Sanzenin estate, and due to a misunderstanding, Nagi ends up falling in love with Hayate

Plot: The plot seems to be super serious, but it quickly devolves into endless romantic comedy and gags. I’m not one for a series that ignores the plot, but sometimes you just need a laugh and this series is perfect for this.

Characters: Hayate is hilarious, partly because he’s a dolt and because he’s interested in Nagi’s maid. This leads to many fights with Nagi herself and it’s pretty funny. Nagi is also a pretty funny character and most of the gag’s come from her.

Art: It’s been running since 2004, so it’s not as dated as the older One Piece chapters. It’s alright, but nothing super special.

Overall: This is a skippable series, but it is pretty funny.

For those who like: Comedy, Romantic Comedies, Gags, Parodies.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.