The Blaster Master Overdrive Story, I Swear This Isn't A Photoshop

On Blaster Master 2

In my December 28 site report, I found this search query:

because people have vastly different blast master tastes codiekitty

I'm guessing this is in response to my inquiry about why people hate Blaster Master 2 so much. Come on people, I have a message board. If you have something to say, then come say it to me personally. Also, cute how the person didn't even finish writing "blaster".

Whether this is referring to something I said on Blaster Master 2 or some other Blaster Master, I'd still like to take this opportunity to rant about something; why do people hate Blaster Master 2? All I really hear anyone says is "It's not as good as Blaster Master!" What game is? Hell, I'll toss out some reasons people might hate Blaster Master 2.

- It's easy.
A good point, except the only time I've seen somebody mention the difficulty, they actually called it "cheap" and "frustrating".

- It's linear.
Now this one I actually have heard somebody say. What's wrong with linearity? If it's because Blaster Master was nonlinear, I'll consider maybe accepting this holds any water when people start saying Blasting Again sucked because it was also pretty linear, and Blaster Master 2 didn't have your sister or dead mother telling you where to go all the time.

- The overhead tank bits.
Fair enough.

Come to think of it, Dire51's Bottom 10 list basically says it has "average" graphics and "slightly" wonky controls but is otherwise is an okay game, but it's a sequel to Blaster Master and therefore is comparable to Tax Avoiders. I'm not saying it's wrong to think Blaster Master 2 sucks, but it'd be nice to see some reasons other than "It just does!"

Something I really wish I had delved into in my Blaster Master 2 article is another reason I have a fondness for it is that it focuses more on Jason, and readers of the site should know by now I quite like him. But he was pretty outclassed by SOPHIA in Blaster Master. Aside from the part of Area 5 where you have to venture out when the tank sinks, Jason was totally tied to SOPHIA, and only left it because he couldn't take her into the boss fights. But Blaster Master 2 gives him the jumping power of a jackrabbit, equips him with homing missiles and lightning bolts, straps a jetpack on him, and lets him kick some ass.

And another question: why do I seem to be the only person on the planet who hates Boy? Or at least is vocal about it?

Yet More Blasting Again Stupidity

A couple of posts made in response to the Blasting Again Stupidity article back when I first posted it. First, MaskedShiek:

I don't know what I'm more ashamed of; that I didn't think to make the Team Rocket joke myself, or that it took me a couple readings to get it.

As for making Blaster Master serious, I wouldn't have minded it as much if it were, you know, competently done. I mean, 2 and Enemy Below are more serious than the first game, but they only went as far as not having anything as absurd as the frog, and even the first game got pretty morbid in the final area, though I don't know what to make of Boy and its dancing cricket enemies and that infernal smiling sunflower boss when the game opens with a forest getting nuked.

But Blasting Again is a jumbled mess of bad dialogue and stupid writing that did nothing but completely screw up the existing canon, and the more I think about it the more it pisses me off and the more I want to throw the whole thing in the garbage and pretend Blaster Master ended with Enemy Below. When I first played it at the young, naive age of 15 I accepted Eve coming back as a ghost without so much as an eyebat and somehow missed or forgot that "SOPHIA's power corrupts her pilots" and "Roddy's alien half makes him more vulnerable to evil, but he should be okay with his human half" nonsense (or maybe it's not so much he's half human but who specifically his father was), but now I'm at the cranky, cynical old age of 24, and my reaction to all this is "What the bloody hell?" I guess the reason they started over with a new guy and canon in Overdrive and took it back to its cornball roots (c'mon, the evidence is at the top of the page) is because they realized what a horrible spaghetti mess Blasting Again left the previous storyline.

Secondly, while I still subscribe to him being 15, Flying Omelette made a decent case for Jason being as young as 13 in Blaster Master:

And if you take Blasting Again's timeline at face, he would have been knocking up Eve when he was just starting puberty. Yikes.

More Question and Observations:

- If Jason didn't have the pendant when he went on his final mission, he would have run into a dead-end. Again, Blasting Again is really muddy on the conditions Jason died under and maybe his final mission had nothing to do with the Kaiser. But if he was going through the same place Roddy did, eventually he would have come to the second cave area and not have been able to proceed because he couldn't open the emblem doors.

- And hell, if Roddy hadn't taken the pendant as a memento of his mother, he also would have been boned.

- Remember the two fossilized Plutonium Boss pets you find in the first level? Well, I never can, strangely enough. Also, why are there two of them? I guess the second could be the "Dinosaur" from Enemy Below.

- Did it strike anyone else as odd that somebody would go through all the trouble of making that prerendered Jason model, only for it to only be used once for a few seconds that you can barely make out, and you never even see his face?

- In my Overdrive review I called Roddy a "whiny bitch". Well, that's actually a bit harsh. Yes, he can be kind of whiny, but he means well, generally keeps his mouth shut, and Elfie is way more irritating than he is.

- Why is Elfie wearing eyeshadow? She's sitting in front of a computer and the only person who's going to see her is her younger brother. Maybe she really did read the script, and figured she'd pretty herself up for when the Kaiser kidnaps her.

- You have no idea how tempted I was to include a sound clip from the scene in Akira where Kaneda chews Kei out and calls her a cold bitch in the section about Elfie's confession, and really the only reason I didn't is because, long story short, I couldn't be bothered to sort out my brother's idiocy.

- I'm really impressed with how well everyone takes Eve as a ghost. When she materializes in front of Roddy, he reacts like she just walked into his room when she saw him sulking over his math homework, when a more suitable reaction would have been "WAHH!!" You might be thinking, well, he didn't care when it was implied he was a lightning being, why would he be bothered by a minor thing like his dead mother's ghost? Yeah, but Elfie and the Kaiser are also pretty casual with phantom Eve.

Meta Fight Boss Names

From the Meta Fight strategy guide:

Area 1KuramitouruCramitor
Area 2GizaaraGizarra
Area 3Z-88Z-88
Area 4GerouruGerorr
Area 5RobusugaataLobsgarta
Area 6Neo GizaaraNeo Gizarra
Area 7Faiaa GerouruFire Gerorr
Area 8aSukerubenonSkelevenom
Area 8bGouzuGoez

Assorted Notes:

- Well, that answers my question as to where "Cramitor" came from.

- Z-88 is written in English "Z-88" in the guide.

- It took me a while to figure out what the frog's name was supposed to be, and I'm still not sure. Partly it was the way the page header wrote the "ge" too much like a "gu," and for a while I was trying to figure out what "Gurouro" was. The main text was written clearer and I realized it was "Gerouru", which must refer to "kero-kero", the Japanese version of "ribbit" or "croak". "Geroer" - as in "one who 'gero's" - crossed my mind but that would be written "Geroaa". The "ru" might actually come from the last mora of "kaeru", the Japanese word for "frog", so it really doesn't "translate" into English. An English equivelent would be "Groakog".

- "Gizaara" is also weird and I don't have the slightest clue what it could be derived from, but maybe I shouldn't worry too much since some professional translators can't figure out what the Japanese are saying, like how every freaking version of Ys 3 calls McGuire's castle something different.

- Goez's name on the header of his page is missing the quotation-mark-like mark that turns "su" into "zu", leaving his name "Gousu", which left me confused for a bit because everyone on the Internet called him "Goez". Well, every other time he's mentioned in the book, it is written "Gouzu", so it was clearly a typo on that part.

- I wouldn't demand anyone refer to the Blaster Master bosses by these names what with all the other name changes (Goez became the Plutonium Boss, Metal Attacker became SOPHIA), most people call the frog "Fred" (and readers of the book, the crab "Plutarch"), and I still think "Cramitor" is a dumb name ("Skelevenom", however, is kind of cool). I just thought I'd throw this out for the curious, or people who were sick of calling the bosses things like "the brain" or "the area 6 boss".


I think everybody looks at the Boss' pet/Skelevenom as having tusks above its mouth and really funky looking eyes. In fact, I do believe the fossils in Blasting Again even have clearer eyes put on them there, while the Dinosaur in Enemy Below has a single eye in that general area. But based on some art in my Meta Fight guide, I think those "tusks" are where its eyes are supposed to be, and the fleshy folds are the top of its head.

But then again, in that first piece of artwork Goez has an elongated head which I never read him as having in the game, and combined with his mandibles makes him look like a Halo Elite.

I think in-game Jason and Roddy have the same kind of armor in Blasting Again. It's hard to say what Jason's supposed to be wearing in the intro movie, but on the TV you can at least make out a triangle on the back of his hand, which you later see on the back of Roddy's when he goes to grab the pendant in cutscene after the cube boss. But in their artwork, they're wearing two completely different outfits.

Roddy's is bulkier and less colorful, but there's an easter egg here that probably went over the heads of most Americans.

Jason is wearing what Kane is on the Meta Fight cover (this is actually from the cover of the strategy guide, but it's the same image of Kane as on the game's box). Jason has a yellow stripe going down the middle of him, but you'll note the collar, the green chest ornament on the left of his chest, and the patterning of the red and white on the right side. By the way, that large plate on Kane's right shoulder is actually part of the gun.

Whereas Roddy is wearing what Leonardo is on the Meta Fight EX cover. The Meta Fight EX version is a lot simpler (the Blasting Again artist probably took some liberties because Leo's armor is more generic than Kane's), but you have the general idea and actually Roddy's in-game model looks more like Leo's armor except both the pre-rendered and real-time models are lacking the incomplete belt. The helmet is also the same, except the red stripe is an upside-down T on the EX box, while it's an upside-down Y in Blasting Again. Whether Leo's wearing a red headband or not, I can't say. On a side note, since when has the tank had headlights?

What's funny is that Enemy Below was still Jason. I guess you could say that portrait of him was from the first mission (going by Blasting Again's account that he was an adult), but by his final mission he had upgraded to the EX model, which is what we (barely) see him keeling over in in the opening movie. I also also feel like bringing attention to Leonardo being the only person wearing a helmet in his artwork.

While we're on the subject of what people are wearing, anyone else notice that Blaster Master 2 is the only game where the character has armor around the groin area instead of just the red material (except maybe Boy, where the armor seems to go from head to toe)? Well, Jason's probably very thankful for that when the final boss punches him in the nuts.

Stupid Pointless Question Time:

- How come Jason can die from falling too far when at the beginning of the first game he jumps down that hole and lands without so much as a scratch? Do his bones actually become more brittle when he's wearing armor? Or is it because he landed on his backside instead of his feet?

- What kind of pets did Roddy keep? I think it's safe to say Jason didn't allow anymore frogs in his house.

- Does Roddy ever use SOPHIA to impress girls at school? Or is he sterile and doesn't bother?

- Is "Roddy" a Scottish name? Two other Roddies I know about were both wearing a kilt and obsessing about bagpipes, and "McDowall" certainly sounds Scottish. If that's the case, wouldn't it have made more sense for Jason to have gotten it on with the red haired Eve? Then Roddy would have been an SAB with Adol Christin (who seems to be coming up an awful lot in these Blaster Master writings) instead of Chaz Ashley.