BigJoe91 : Heeeeey… Screwattack. You’re still here? Sorry I didn’t call.
Anyway, enough babbling. Noble Team approached me and asked if I wanted to join him in another console review, so I did. Seeing as you people seem to have an awful lot of attachment to that 5th generation, we decided to stray away from it and move on to better and bigger things. By that, we mean the Gamecube. Are you ready for this?
NobleTeam1: I guess I'm ready (P.S. THIS CAT IS MAKING ME TALK ABOUT VIDEO GAMES THE MOST EVIL THING EVER), anyway, yes, I'm here to help co-review another console that maybe part of one of the best generations in gaming the 6th gen, specifically the Gamecube. So I guess we should get this started stat or else...
BJ: Video games are evil? Wow, you read too many Facebook comments.
NB1: THINKING BE HARD...I MUST LET THE INTERNET HIVE MIND MAKE MY THOUGHTS FOR ME INSTEAD! Anyway, I can assume that you do have some history with the system we are reviewing, and maybe you like it more than me or maybe not. Stay tuned, and find out in the next couple of paragraphs.
BJ: I quit Nintendo home consoles after the SNES, choosing the Playstation in the 5th gen and the Xbox in the 6th. As a teen, I felt like I needed a more mature experience in gaming and, like many others still do, labeled the Gamecube as a kiddie console. Long story short, I didn’t play it much around release. A friend of mine had it and I managed to dabble with a couple first party games, like Mario Sunshine, Metroid Prime and Super Smash Melee. I also touched on that fantastic Eternal Darkness. However, local multiplayer Halo, Timesplitters(On 2 PS2 consoles with multiports) and Dynasty Warriors just consumed most of our time.
I got a Gamecube fairly early when I started collecting though. With it, I managed to give the deserved time to Mario Sunshine, Paper Mario : The Thousand Year Door, Metroid Prime and dig deeper in Viewtiful Joe, Eternal Darkness and, of course, Windwaker. With that in mind, I think it’s fair to say I like the console a lot. There are still a lot of games I want for it, but I believe it held its ground to the Xbox and PS2. How about you?
NB1: I think I share a similar experience to you as I grew up on the Snes, and Pokemon during my childhood years, and just like you the Gamecube just seem like the kid console in its heyday (which lead me to calling it the Gaycube, since dumb teen logic). Ultimately, my experience with the Gamecube would be limited for a while as I didn't know anyone that had one for some time, So my initial experiences with the system came “a la” demo station at a Hollywood Video that had Melee setup. Eventually someone I knew grabbed a Gamecube, and I was in awe when I saw Wind Waker for the first time, but that would be the last memory I had with it.
You'd think seeing Gamecubes for twenty dollars would be enough for me to get one after its initial run, but nope even though they were cheap I didn't want one till its predecessor. Yes, I ultimately skipped a Gamecube in favor of the Wii. Having one that played GC games lead to me just buying any game I could for that system. So what made me want a Gamecube was that I found a Gameboy Player for 15$, and well I needed the system.
BJ: So, we both established that we do have experience with the console, though limited. Still, even with limited experience, there’s a lot that can be said about the Gamecube. Not being expert in hardware, we can only base our comments on the performance we see. One thing I can say upfront is that, being at their first disc-based system (Yes, I do know the 64DD was a thing), the loading times weren’t too bad on most Gamecube games, weren’t they?
NB1: Yes, if I can give one thing to the Gamecube was that it had relatively short loading times for its games, which is always nice especially coming off the previous generations which weren't exactly quick in that area. One thing that still sucks about Gamecube games (well in general) is disc switching as games like Resident Evil Zero would make you swap between discs in part due to the disc format that Nintendo went with, or features would be cut from the GC version of a multiplatform game instead. Finally, and personally I have to say I'm not to fond of the hardware design, as it just looks lazy aesthetically.
BJ: To be honest, I like the Gamecube physical design. Although other companies went more towards a machine or even PC look, you could count on Nintendo to remind you of a toy box complete with the little handle to carry it to your friend’s house. Sure, it’s a bit lazy, but it’s different from the others, at least. The discs were fairly unique and short on storage, but I didn’t come across many games in which I had to switch discs, so I didn’t mind. As for the power it was pumping out, I don’t want to go into the specs aspect of the console, but Metroid Prime, Wind Waker and even multiplatform titles like the Prince of Persia series really held their own against the competitors. In fact, I don’t think 3D Nintendo games have compared this good to competitors since.
NB1: One last thing worth mentioning about the Gamecube is how relatively quiet it is, which is always a plus when it comes to any disc base system. And also if you want to play GC games in 480p, good luck with that, as those Component cables are expensive for the GC, but at least they are relatively easy,and cheap to attain for the Wii.
BJ: Well, there’s one accessory that was cheap to find and fairly popular on the GC and the Wii. In fact, it’s still popular for the WiiU thanks to Smash Bros. Of course, I’m talking about the controller. What do you think of it, Noble?
NB1: I actually find the controller to be pretty comfortable in my hands, but it does have a few issues to me. First one, and most importantly is the C-Stick which in many games acts like the second analog stick, too bad its awful in contrast to the GC's standard analog stick, and it's really noticeable in Timesplitters 2 for me. Secondly the Z button aka the menu button doesn't feel good in part to its size, and form to me, but at least it wasn't given any primary control in most games I've played. Lastly just a start button,which is just strange to me in any console.
BJ: The Gamecube Controller does have a fairly unique layout. In fact, it almost feels like it’s been designed specifically for first party games, because it works wonders when playing Metroid Prime, Wind Waker and, of course, Melee. I absolutely love the layout of the A, B, X and Y buttons because you’ll end up pressing A more often in most games, if we’re being honest. I agree that dual analog shooters suffer from the lack of thumb space on the C Joystick, but at least it remains comfortable. I admit that I’m not a fan of fighting games and I’m glad, because I don’t see how that controller would work for those. Strangely, I love big controllers like the Xbox Duke and the Dreamcast, but this small one managed to be comfortable, especially with the great shoulder buttons.
NB1: I guess even with my issues with the Gamecube controller, it doesn't matter as much since the controller works well enough. Though sometimes some Gamecube games got a little gimmicky,and required their own special controllers like that Donkey Kong game with the drums, speaking of the GameCube sure did have some wacky accessories.
BJ: Compared to the other consoles, the Gamecube did have some special accessories. While the next generations would see plastic instruments and fight sticks, the Gamecube generation didn’t really know what accessories to put out. The DK Bongos, that weird keyboard controller and the microphone are good examples of accessories that didn’t get much use on the console, but there were some good ones also. Anything in particular you enjoyed?
NB1: Yes, I can think of one accessory that I really enjoyed from the Gamecube, and that is that strange chainsaw controller Res...nah, who am I kidding, I mean the Gameboy Player. To this date, this is the best reason to own a Gamecube, since well you can play Gameboy/Color, and Advanced games on your television, and with a relatively comfortable controller as well. Sadly it doesn't support the heavily compressed video format known as Gameboy Video, so no Shrek to get rekt with on your Gameboy, well besides the movie tie in games. As for me, if it wasn't for the Gameboy Player I honestly wouldn't have bought a GC, as the Wii does pretty much everything a GC does.
BJ: As much as I also consider the Game Boy Player my only reason to still own a Gamecube, I did enjoy one other accessory for it, the Game Boy Advance connector. While it was mostly used for bonus connectivity (the Amiibo’s ancestor, you could say), some games did innovate with it. The most notable was Final Fantasy Chronicles, where you could play co-op locally with friends and each would have a different information on their GBA. I never managed to get 4 people together who owned a GBA, but I saw the end result and found it interesting enough. My favorite use for the GBA connection however was for Pac-Man Vs. If you haven’t played that game yet, do yourself a favor and pick it up. Three people with GC controllers act as the ghosts navigating the maze with limited vision and the other uses the GBA and sees the whole stage as Pac-Man. I can’t really explain it properly, so check out a video.
I guess it could be considered a third party accessory, but the Dance Pad made its Nintendo dayview on the Gamecube. I didn’t get the chance to play Mario’s DDR game and I guess I could still play it on a Wii. I did play with the microphone in Mario Party 6. I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it, but Mario Party game, to me, have gotten worse after 4. Speaking of Mario games, what about the First Party software support for the console?
First Party Software
NB1: When it comes to first party support the Gamecube had some pretty great games, with some rather quirky entries in some of Nintendo's series. To me, the two personal favorites Gamecube titles have to be Wind Waker, and Double Dash, which are not only incredible games to this date, but also my personal favorite entries in their respective series. Also who knew Luigi was a part time Ghostbuster, well Nintendo did with Luigi's Mansion, and they made Kirby stop his murderous campaign to make him race. Then on the meh end of this you have games like Chibi Robo, aka little robot garbageman simulator, which certainly fitted Nintendo quirky nature during that era, but I'll assume Senor Cat is more fond of these games than me?
BJ: Whew… looks like it’s confession time. I never played any Luigi’s Mansion, so I can’t comment on it. I’m also not a fan of Double Dash, which I always felt was tedious and tried to innovate too much over a functional idea. That being said, I did play a lot of GREAT first party games on the Gamecube. Wind Waker, though I have yet to finish it, falls among my favorite 3D Zelda games along with Ocarina of Time (that was also released on the Gamecube). While Super Mario Sunshine wasn’t my favorite Mario game due to the tediousness of many collectibles (mostly the blue coins), it remains a great game with solid gameplay mechanics and great visuals for the system. Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door remains many people’s favorite Paper Mario game and while I’m still debating if I agree or not, I can’t deny its greatness. Since we’re talking about fan favorites, might as well mention Super Smash Melee, a game still played heavily to this day. Also, while it could be considered a second party game, no horror game have an impact on me as great as Eternal Darkness. The last time I tried to play, I considered calling a friend over so I wouldn’t play it alone. The hallucination mechanic needs to be reused. But, even these games fail to dethrone Metroid Prime as my favorite on the console. I can’t tell you how pessimistic I was of a 3D Metroid game after the stellar Super Metroid. I’m glad Nintendo waited for the Gamecube to present this game, alongside Retro Studios. To me, it’s still one of the best looking game on the console, especially when you get to Phendrana Drifts.
NB1: While I disagree on Metroid being the best looking game on the GC, as that honor belongs to Paper Mario 2, also my favorite Mario Rpg, I can't deny that Metroid Prime looks, and plays well (which is impressive considering that it was a shift in dimension as well). Also worth noting if you dislike motion controls you can always play the Gamecube version of Twilight Princess. Alas not every Nintendo series would continue on console at least, as both Star Fox, and F-Zero would have their currently last home console releases on the Gamecube, but at least one is returning on the WiiU properly. So when it comes down to it Nintendo had some good first party support, third party well that varied as I rarely got the GC version of multiplatform games, though I can say this was different for you Joe?
Gamecube Non-first party Library
BJ: I can’t say that I ended up getting a lot of multiplatform games on the Gamecube, but I really wish I did. The 6th generation gave way to a lot of games on the three platforms. While I can’t emphasize on a lot them, I can swiftly gush over the Prince of Persia trilogy. Now, originally, I had and played this collection on the Xbox, but I did try the Gamecube version and loved the controls. As for the other non-Nintendo games on the Gamecube, I guess we could include the follow ups of Sega after the Dreamcast was officially declared obsolete. Though Sonic Adventure 2 remains a controversial title, the remake of the original Sonic Adventure is worth mentioning as it remains a great game. If you enjoy RPGs, I also highly recommend Skies of Arcadia which also saw a gamecube port. What’s more awesome than a pirate RPG anyway? Maybe a bullet hell Shoot ‘em up? Well, Ikaruga saw its only North American release on the Gamecube. It’s more of a cult classic, but you get my drift. To round things off for the Sega game, I’ve always been a fan of the Phantasy Star Online games and, though the Nintendo Gamecube connectivity wasn’t as popular than the other systems, the single player was enough for me. I mentioned Pac-Man vs. and Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles, but my favorite third party game was probably the Viewtiful Joe beat'em up. I’m not such a fan of the genre, but the button mashing, fast paced, gameplay matched the Gamecube hardware and controller perfectly. While we’re on Capcom front, you can’t forget Resident Evil 4, though it was ported to other platforms later. I prefer the Wii version, but that’s just me. Speaking of preferences, any fighting games worth mentioning on the Gamecube, Noble?
NB1: Since Smash Bros Melee has already been talked about, and this section is about third party Gamecube games one does come in mind, specifically Soul Calibur 2, or as I refer it to the Legend of Zelda edition. Now like many of you here I wanted the Gamecube version of this game, since it had Link, whereas the Xbox version had Spawn, and the PS2 version had Tekken guy (that should tell you how much I "love" Tekken), but those didn't matter as the Hero of Time beating the shit out of non Nintendo characters was a dream come true to me. Outside of that I would say my experience with third party GC games is rather limited, as I own like 5 of them, but at least they are pretty good. To me, the best launch title of the Gamecube wasn't a Nintendo game, it was Star Wars: Rogue Leader as, holy crap, did it have the best home console versions of some of the most iconic battles in Star Wars. And that game still looks amazing to me to this date. While its follow up, Rebel Strike wasn't as good it did have some great missions that were mostly better than previous entries, but the game sadly forced you to some horrible on foot sections. The only other major third party games that I've got are the Resident Evil remake (which you can get for far cheaper now digitally), and Resident Evil Zero. Now out of those two games I've only beaten Zero, which I liked a lot more in part due to the partner system, and the game being a bit less big than RE remake, which just made a it an easier experience for me to get used to than the constant backtracking in other classic Resident Evil games. Well that is about the end of my Gamecube experience as I rarely buy Gamecube games that aren't first party titles, so yep...BYE!
BJ: That’s probably because you prefer your Xbox, fanboy. *shameless plug for your Xbox review post*.
BJ: Anyway, I think we’ve looked at most facets of the Gamecube. Keep in mind that this is a general appreciation only. We are not Gamecube experts and, by the discussions above, you can see we don’t have the deepest experience for it. But, I think we can both appreciate the Gamecube’s merits. What do you think, Noble?
NB1: I do like the Gamecube and the small library of games it had, especially its first party ones, which honestly hold up pretty well for the most part (insert jab of the previous gen here). Having some of my favorite entries in some of Nintendo's series certainly make me warrant to recommend its games. I just think that you'll be better off with Wii that plays GC games instead, unless you really care about playing old monochrome games on a T.v. that isn't a Super Gameboy, and I can say Senor cat feels a bit differently different than me on this?
BJ: Well, I do think owning a Wii makes the Gamecube less relevant as a console since most accessories will work with the Wii (I haven’t tested GBA connection though). However, the Game Boy Player isn’t compatible with the Wii and, until all of the good GBA games end up on the Wii U virtual console, you should get a Gamecube to stream or record footage of these GBA games. As NobleTeam said, the library is highly recommended, especially for the first party games, but I do recommend trying to pick up some of these Dreamcast remasters and ports if you can. As for the release of the Gamecube back in its prime, I guess it ended up being slightly overlooked. Looking back, I don’t regret going with the Xbox, but I would’ve preferred the Gamecube. To be honest, however, I still prefer the PS2 library. Any closing word for the people who already left comments without reading to the end?
NB1: I THINK VIDEO GAMES ARE DUMB! I AM SO SMART..SMRT.