Cult-classic card game Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean is a pretty big game, especially if you want to collect everything there is to find. A 100% speedrun takes over 300 hours to complete, and even a single mistake could spell disaster. World record holder “Baffan” learned this the hard way during a recent speedrun, where a strange programming quirk caused his run to end in failure…almost four days after he started.
Update 5:20 PM: A previous version of this article used Baffan’s birth-name. It has been removed at his request.
Completing a 100% speedrun of Baten Kaitos requires extreme patience and dedication. There are countless cards and items to collect in a process that can take about two weeks to complete. The current record, held by Baffan, was set two years ago when he completed the run in 341 hours, 20 minutes, and three seconds. Baffan was in the middle of a new attempt this week. At the 97-hour mark, he ran into a problem that made it impossible to collect one of the items he needed. Unable to proceed, he was forced to end the run.
It happened during a quest to help some street orphans in a town called Azha. Players can help the children by giving them items called Quest Magnus. There is a reward for giving them 13 Magnus and another for handing in 21 total. There is a unique item reward for each step of the quest. Baffan, presumably seeking to be efficient and save time, decided to complete the quest after acquiring 21 Magnus. There’s a problem with that: Handing in the higher sum skips the initial reward. Normally, players receive a cloak for handing in 13 items and then unlock a secret recipe for handing in 21 items. Baffan’s efficiency accidentally meant that he could no longer receive the cloak.
This is not the first time that Baffan has encountered trouble speedrunning Baten Kaitos. The chief reason for the speedrun’s length is due to an item called Splendid Hair. Acquiring it requires the player to first find the Shampoo item. After having the item in-game for about two weeks of real time, the shampoo transforms into Splendid Hair. To unlock this item, runners like Baffan often leave the game running overnight in an idle state so that items like the Shampoo can change. In 2016, he received a temporary suspension from Twitch for “non-gaming content” after leaving the game and his stream on idle so that he could go to sleep and rest.
In a Reddit post, Baffan noted that his last backup save was nearly an hour before this point and that it would be too difficult to achieve a new personal best. “I lost the mood entirely anyway,” he added.
Resident Evil 3: Nemesis is one of the more difficult Resident Evil games to get a hold of on current consoles. If you wanted to play it today, your only real option—short of tracking down a hard copy of the original game —is dusting off a PlayStation 3 or Vita to download the PlayStation Classic version. Regardless of the format, you’re going to run into the same problem: The game has never been remastered or optimized for modern displays. So some fan modders got to work.
Resident Evil 3 Seamless HD Project is an attempt to make the survival horror classic look better in high definition, and the results, as you can see on this showcase video, are pretty impressive.
Even in a YouTube window you can appreciate the clarity a remaster like this one provides: Sure, everything looks crisper, but you can also clearly read the faded signs and posters on walls and appreciate the work of Capcom’s background artists that much more.
It’s exciting to see this, since Nemesis shook up the Resident Evil formula in one memorable way. The sequel, first released on PlayStation in September 1999, was built around the eponymous Nemesis–a recurring boss that stalked protagonist Jill Valentine during certain portions of the game. Unlike other monsters in Resident Evil games, Nemesis could follow you into other rooms, and this made him absolutely terrifying.
Considering how influential it was—nigh-unbeatable monsters that stalk players are now a horror game staple—it’s bizarre that Nemesis has not been re-released on current consoles, especially since most classic ResidentEvil games are readily available.
The fan remaster uses machine learning to upscale the game’s graphics, a common technique in unofficial remasters of classic games and cutscenes. The Seamless HD Project team—programmer Mathieu Phillipe, quality assurance tester Saeed, HD texture artist Kayael, and an artist who goes by FrankWesker—goes a little bit further than just using an algorithm to improve the game resolution, manually retouching a few in-game screens and building a custom version of the popular Dolphin Gamecube emulator for running their remaster.
It’s also not perfect. A FAQ section on the remaster’s download page notes that some things, like the inventory screens, aren’t able to be upscaled using their current process. Algorithms are also prone to leaving lots of rough edges that can take “thousands of man-hours” to clean up by hand, something that’s clearly outside the scope of a free fan project.
While the Resident Evil 3 Seamless HD project is free, it does not make the game any easier to get a hold of. The remaster’s product page indicates that it includes the aforementioned modified Dolphin emulator combined with the new texture packs. Actually running it requires an ISO image file of the Resident Evil 3 Gamecube port, which of course means a user would either need a pirated copy of the game or the software necessary to rip a Gamecube copy they own.
It is a shame that it’s not easier to play Resident Evil 3 given how widely available the series’ most popular entries are. Perhaps Capcom’s next plan for Resident Evil is a full-on remake of Nemesis akin to this year’s Resident Evil 2. That’d be nice. It would also be nice if we could play the game on current hardware.
The EarthBound, or Mother, series took a lengthy hiatus between the releases of Mother 2 and 3, but that didn’t mean Nintendo wasn’t interested in keeping the series going. In fact, at one point, the developer that would eventually create Xenoblade was asked to pitch Nintendo on a sequel to the beloved role-playing game series for GameCube, and created some adorable craft-style concept art for it.
Those images, created in 2003, were shared yesterday on Twitter by artist and developer Yasuyuki Honne, who had worked as a designer at Square during the 90s where he contributed to a number of now classic games like Chrono Trigger and Xenogears. He left with other Square developers to form Monolith Soft in 1999.
Yesterday, inspired by the recent news about an upcoming book collecting interviews with the late Nintendo president Satoru Iwata, the designer recalled the time when he first met Iwata and EarthBound director Shigesato Itoi at the offices of Namco, which owned Monolith, in 2003. At the time, Honne was directing the GameCube role-playing game Baten Kaitos, and according to him, Nintendo was toying with the idea of a new EarthBound game.
“With pleasure I did up some visuals and went to Aoyama,” the location of the office, Honne said, according to a translation of his tweets by Kotaku. “Iwata-san was there as well.” Honne showed the two men his concept art, which used felt and cloth to update the game’s simple graphics into something more befitting of the GameCube but still nostalgic and unique. “Itoi-san didn’t seem enthusiastic,” he said. “I thought, ‘that’s strange,’ and kept the conversation going, until Itoi-san suspected something.”
Iwata, playing matchmaker, had apparently set up the meeting without Itoi knowing he was about to be pitched on a sequel.
Honne went on: “Itoi-san: ‘Iwata-kun, you arranged this, didn’t you?’ Everyone went dead silent. Iwata-san made an ‘uh-oh’ face. Eventually the conversation was able to proceed. Itoi-san even seemed interested in the images of 1980s America I was able to evoke in the felt-like art I’d made. I never would have thought these pictures would appear in public. My 2003 summer memories.”
While the game industry has no end of stories about games that might have been, the two pieces of concept art Honne shared on Twitter make this hypothetical especially heartwrenching. The “felt-like” look of the characters and the rest of the world’s tactile aesthetic are remenscient both of the clay-looking character sculptures originally used to promote Earthbound and Nintendo’s recent turn towards textile-inspired design with Kirby’s Epic Yarn and Yoshi’s Wooly World.
EarthBound originally came out in Japan in 1994, where it was called Mother 2. While Nintendo did eventually make a sequel in 2006 called Mother 3, it was released for the Game Boy Advance rather than the GameCube, and to this day has never been officially released for audiences outside of Japan. We’ll never know if the potential collaboration would have yielded another cult classic or a dud, but with only three games in the Mother series and nothing new in over a decade, I would have been content either way.
For years, the “Barrier Skip” was the holy grail of speedrunning tricks. The trick, which would allow passage through a seemingly impenetrable barrier in The Wind Waker, became a reality in the HD version in 2017. Meanwhile, the trick still couldn’t be performed in the original GameCube “SD” version. A new glitch has finally made that possible, allowing players of both versions to perform the trick and potentially cut a significant amount of time from their speedruns.
Early in The Wind Waker, Link arrives in the underwater kingdom of Hyrule to retrieve the Master Sword. In that same area is a bridge that leads to the final area of the game. It is, however, blocked by a massive barrier. Skipping this barrier cuts out large portions of the game and radically alters speedruns. In 2016, two speedrunners broke through the barrier but didn’t know how. It took until early 2017 for players to find a consistent means of performing the trick. The catch was that it was only possible in the HD version of The Wind Waker, as it required a trick to move incredibly fast which wasn’t available in the original game. Now, speedrunners have found a different way through the barrier in the GameCube version: mess with the game’s memory until it removes the barrier entirely.
That sounds like a dramatic solution, but thanks to a new trick that allows Link to fire an infinite amount of arrows, it is possible to despawn the barrier. A video released by the ZeldaSpeedRuns community last Friday outlines the trick and shows it in action. Long story short, players fire enough arrows inside Hyrule Castle that the game starts to remove other entities to free up memory for the arrows in the game world. The arrows don’t despawn when players head outside to where the barrier is supposed to be, making it possible for Link to walk across the bridge.
Solving the puzzle of Barrier Skip in both versions of The Wind Waker feels like the turn of a page. Following the discoveries that came after barrier skip, times for The Wind Waker HD have reduced dramatically, and now the original version will possibly see similar developments should this trick be used in a speedrun. As Zelda games like Skyward Sword and Breath of the Wild also expand thanks to new glitches, there’s something of a mini-renaissance in their speedruns. It’s a reminder that given time and persistence, very little is impossible in games, especially in the mind-bending realm of glitch hunting and speedruns.
Pikmin is a weird, but beautiful, 2001 game for the Nintendo GameCube where you play as a villainous alien intruder, Captain Olimar.
Olimar is from the planet of Hocotate and has crash-landed on a strange planet that has high levels of oxygen. Unfortunately, oxygen is poisonous to the captain and his life support will fail in 30 days. A lot of unfamiliar creatures inhabit the planet and many of the areas are inaccessible to Olimar. Coming to his aid are the eponymous Pikmin, which are half-plant, half-animal creatures that look like walking flowers with two beady eyes stuck on their heads. They’re totally obedient, but also totally helpless without someone to guide them. Olimar eventually accumulates an army of hundreds of Pikmin to help him recover his ship parts so he can escape.
There is a serenity to the real-time strategy of the game in that there’s not the typical adversaries that are at the heart of most RTS games: no grand army to fight, no malevolent evil to overthrow. The principal enemy is time. Pikmin is about survival and warding off the threats of nature.
The Pikmin come in three vividly-colored variants. The Red represents the majority of the working force and are the first you encounter. Shortly after, you meet the Yellow Pikmin who can be thrown higher and can also carry bomb rocks. But as the captain soon finds out, the effect of the bombs can be devastating. “Oh, horrors! A bomb-rock explosion engulfed my Pikmin! That last horrified facial expression is burned into my memory.”
While the two other Pikmin types can’t go into water, the Blue Pikmin have gills so they can survive underwater. Together, the three types allow Olimar to explore the world and collect his ship parts. The controls are smooth as Olimar guides the Pikmin like a herd with his whistle. He can toss the Pikmin to areas they can’t access by themselves and use their cumulative numbers to overcome most obstacles. No matter how tense the situation, the music is calm and almost meditational in contrast to the violent conflict surrounding them.
The Pikmin designs are super cute, reflecting their whimsical nature, while their voices are very endearing. They sound like curious babies and their helplessness without Olimar reinforces how much they need him. It’s a symbiotic relationship where both appear to benefit each other. A lot of that assistance comes in the form (at least on the Pikmin side) of carrying heavy objects or moving things out of the way, like in the introductory chapter where 10 Pikmin have to move a cardboard box so Olimar can access his engine. In turn, Olimar helps their numbers grow, saving them from extinction. Many Pikmin do die in the process. They let out weak cries as they do and their tiny souls ascend from their bodies, wracking me with guilt after each death.
Captain Olimar struggles with his guilt as well and his actions haunts his subconscious, as he notes in his voyage log: “I had a horrific dream last night. I was home. My wife was cooking the Pikpik brand carrots I love so much, and I was eating them. Though I had eaten my fill, she kept bringing more fresh carrots until my mouth was full. I awoke gasping for breath. I am certain it is because these Pikmin remind me of these carrots that I had such a dream.”
But who exactly are these Pikmin? Are they as helpless as they seem? Olimar struggles with the question: “At times, these seemingly emotionless Pikmin act with a blind urgency. For instance, the Pikmin who so tirelessly dig up grass… What could be driving them to do so? Is it merely the promise of a sweet taste of nectar? Or is it some base instinct that is beyond my capacity to understand? Will I ever know?”
From the perspective of the indigenous life forms, Captain Olimar is the evil force disrupting their natural order thanks to parts from his ship that have crashed all around their neighborhood. There are entire families of Bulborbs who are minding their own business until hordes of Pikmin come stomping their way and annihilate them. But death isn’t enough. Even though their souls escape, their corpses are carted to the Onion ships where they are harvested and recycled into more Pikmin that do the bidding of Captain Olimar. Even Olimar has doubts about his actions as he wonders in one of his logs: “No matter how many of their compatriots fall in battle, the Pikmin fight on. Would this have been a peaceful planet had I never come?” He replies to the negative and tries to justify his actions. “Surely the Pikmin lived like this before my arrival. They MUST have. In any case, I must not waver if I hope to return home. My task now is to do whatever I can to recover all of the Dolphin’s missing parts.”
The more of the areas I explored, the more I slowly begin to realize that the planet Olimar crash landed on is Earth. In the Final Trial, you have to gather your Pikmin, go across a fortified area to track down the Emperor Bulblax. He’s the final boss and by far the toughest opponent in the game. He’s also totally innocent, just chilling in his place and relaxing by himself until the Pikmin invasion force arrives. What’s worse is that his defeat isn’t essential to the ship’s function. It just allows Olimar to retrieve the Secret Safe, where he stashes his money. In Olimar’s greed, he’s upset the meticulously crafted ecosystem that has evolved over time.
That made me wonder: What happened to the humans? Did the Pikmin have anything to do with their disappearance? If animals can be recycled and turned into more Pikmin, did that hint at humanity’s fate? Is it possible Pikmin are recycled humans (they have their own language, have more than basic intelligence, and also follow strong leaders without question even if it might mean death)? Had I unleashed a parasitic force, similar to the Tribbles of Star Trek, that the Earth creatures had fought so hard to vanquish? Just after Olimar finds all his ship parts and returns home, a bunch of Pikmin attack a wandering Bulborb without provocation. In the Earth’s atmosphere, numerous Onion ships appear, ready to take over the planet.
I had gone into Pikmin believing it to be a fun real-time strategy game that evolved from the Super Mario 128 demo, but I realized it was a horror game masquerading as a kid’s game. Only the monsters weren’t vicious looking with obvious visual indicators. They were cute colorful flower-like creatures, bent on global domination. All along, we thought Olimar was the conductor. But in reality, he was the one being manipulated to do the will of the Pikmin.
We always joke about what it would be like if we were to grab our old 3DS or GameCube, boot up a now-ancient Animal Crossing town, and visiting our poor abandoned villagers and the chaos they’ve been left to in our absence. But for at least one player of the original 2002 Animal Crossing, his village is just like he left it. Because he never did.
We completely devote ourselves to our little virtual worlds, obsessing over each fruit-giving tree and animal friend, until the moment we get a little bored and abandon it all. Villages we once meticulously cleaned are now weed infested and unkempt, all with a swift sense of betrayal in the air. It’s a cruel fate for the animal pals we once adored, but it’s the natural progression as we move on to other games.
One player, named Jeff, has never known this feeling. Ever since the original Animal Crossing released on the GameCube back in 2002, Jeff, also known as “jvgsjeff,” has maintained his original town, called “Forest,” for the last 17 years. Even though his playtime fluctuated over the years, from daily check-ins to monthly to weekly and so on, at no time did Jeff ever outright abandon his town. It’s a mind-bending amount of time that spans at least 10,000 hours, multiple console generations, and 16 E3 press conferences. If his town were a child, it would be licensed to drive.
“My towns are like links to the past that I can revisit at any time,” said Jeff. “My GameCube town still has most of the same villagers that it had 15 years ago. The villagers are almost like old friends, or in some cases, annoying neighbors that you’ve grown to like… sort of.” Some of Jeff’s favorite villagers include Lolly, Bob, and Rolf, but he’s not too fond of others. “Yuka is one of the worst.”
While it was originally released for the Nintendo 64 in Japan, Animal Crossing didn’t come to the West until the GameCube version. Jeff remembers the first time he saw screenshots of the then-upcoming GameCube game circulating the web back in early 2002. “They put a lot of emphasis on the included NES games, and they basically described it as a NES game compilation,” he said.”I got the game shortly after its release and it didn’t take long until I was hooked.”
“The real-time clock was something new to me, and it definitely changed how I played the game,” he said. “With Harvest Moon, you can keep going, saying ‘one more day, one more day’ and play for hours at a time. Animal Crossing was different, and playing a little bit each day certainly had its own charm.”
Nintendo wasn’t initially sure if the series’ non-traditional gameplay would work outside Japan, but it was a hit and spawned numerous sequels, one on each Nintendo console thereafter. While most players moved on, leaving their old town behind to start a new one, Jeff compounded his virtual villages.
Once City Folk released on the Wii in 2008 and New Leaf on the 3DS in 2013, he started playing them regularly without dropping the others. Although he didn’t own a DS to play Wild World when it released back in 2005, he eventually followed up with that game’s Virtual Console release on the Wii U in 2016, bringing the total number of consecutive Animal Crossing games being played to four.
“I think I’ve pretty much accomplished everything,” said Jeff. “My catalogs aren’t 100 percent complete, because there are things that would take many years, unless you time travel (like the annual zodiac animals in New Leaf or the New Year’s shirts in City Folk).” Other than that, he’s just missing a few things in each game, like the rare mushrooms in the GameCube version that only spawn during a single early hour in a two-week span in October. “I’ve never been much of a morning player,” he said.
Jeff currently has 3,018 hours logged in New Leaf, according to his 3DS. The GameCube and Wii didn’t feature similar play time trackers, but but Jeff estimates the hours he put into his GameCube town to be similar to his New Leaf hours, with City Folk sitting significantly higher due to the game’s online play. At best, a dedicated Animal Crossing fan might play through a full year, maybe even two, before quietly slipping the cartridge or disc back into its case. Only occasionally do you find a player who’s racked up thousands of hours over years. For many, playing so long eventually loses its appeal.
“I wouldn’t say it makes it lose its charm, but like with anything, you can get burned out after a while,” explains Jeff. “Taking a break from a certain game can help. But setting new goals for yourself (or your town) can also help, whether it’s redesigning a room, creating a new pattern, or making a new path around town. Finding that spark of creativity can reinvigorate your interest.”
Sometimes your villagers need to be reminded who is really in charge. Taking a more aggressive outlook can be just what you need to inspire some more interest. “Animal Crossing can get boring after long periods if you’re just going through the motions, but add some of your own ideas and your own creativity and that’s where it shines,” said Jeff.
One of his ideas is known as “pitfall pandemonium.” It’s a death trap designed for the worst of neighbors. “I’ll dig holes to trap all of the outside villagers in a certain area. Then, I bury a large field of pitfall seeds. Set the villagers free into the field of pits and enjoy the mayhem.” It’s as fresh as when he first popped off the shrinkwrap.
In 2011, Jeff started his own blog featuring posts going over a day or week in each of his towns. “I had seen a thread on Animal Crossing Community where people had shared their blogs and journals,” said Jeff. “I checked a few out, and I liked the idea.” Blog posts make the day-to-day activities intriguing and engaging, while highlighting cool finds and ridiculous villager musings. The blog currently features over 2,500 posts completely dedicated to Jeff’s ongoing adventures in Animal Crossing.
Some of the rarer events and tasks are opportunities for Jeff to guide other players, but it’s also a look at many of his accomplishments. “The first time I shot down the UFO in City Folk was a really cool moment, and the Metroid may have been my most prized possession. I had to shoot down 19 UFOs before I got it.”
While Jeff only started his own blog in 2011, he was part of an America Online forum discussing the series back in 2006. “I think that’s what the Animal Crossing bug bit me, so to speak,” recalled Jeff. “One day everyone was discussing how they had their houses decorated. Rather than just describe my house, I used a TV capture card I had on my computer to record a video and I uploaded it to YouTube. That was the start of me sharing my town with the world, nearly five years before I started the blog.”
Committing to such a lengthy project speaks to the temperament of a person. “I’m a quiet person, not very social, and I keep to myself most of the time,” said Jeff. “I think the game is a great fit for introverts like myself.” With the blog and YouTube channel, Jeff has created his own online community that actively enjoys his content. “Some may feel an attachment to my villagers or town, and just enjoy keeping up to see what’s new,” he said. “It’s an overwhelmingly positive fan base overall. That’s a big part of what makes it so fun to share my town updates.”
Repetition can be a challenging hurdle to overcome, especially when you’re someone like Jeff who has saved 113 million bells in his New Leaf bank. “Sure, there have been times where I may have been in a rut and perhaps didn’t feel like playing on a certain day but did it anyway for the blog,” Jeff said. “But following a schedule keeps me from going too long without playing a certain game. And without that, it would be easy for one week to turn into a month or more.”
When asked if he had considered stopping the blog— or quitting playing Animal Crossing in general, Jeff remained confident that he could carry on. “There have been times when I was doing too much and needed to scale back,” he said. “My New Leaf blog was updated daily at first, but after a while, as you’ve seen more and more of the game, it’s harder to find interesting things to write about. Most of my blogs are just weekly updates now, but I’m sure I’ll be back to daily updates when Animal Crossing for Switch comes out.”
With Animal Crossing set to debut on Switch this year, Jeff has a few thoughts about what he’d like to see. “I’d also like to see automatic bell stacking, I’d like to see grass wear eliminated or at least made optional, and I’d love to see a path-making tool,” he said. “New Leaf was a step in the right direction but I’d like to see things go further. One suggestion I had is to have a fossil-identifying class (or part-time job) that would let you eventually learn to identify fossils on your own, instead of having to take them all to Blathers. A separate tool menu would also be great. As for more adventurous changes, I’d like to be able to roam town in full 3D.”
With E3 2019 right around the corner, the full unveiling of Animal Crossing on Switch is likely just a few days away. Jeff, as you might imagine, is excited for the future. “I don’t think I’ll ever stop playing Animal Crossing completely,” he said. “I think I’ll be a fan for life.”
But sometimes, things do come to an end. “I think my most cherished moments have been in online play in City Folk,” the Wii game, Jeff said. “I had so many good times and late nights spent playing until the wee hours of the morning. If I had to pick a single moment, I might go with the final night before Nintendo pulled the plug on online play. I had some friends over for one last hurrah in my town. We tried to do lots of the things that we had done many times in the past (play museum tag, sumo, word games, taking a tour of town) and at the end, we said goodbye at the town fountain as I closed the gate for the last time.”
Michael Koczwara is a freelance writer who fears for the impending time sink of Animal Crossing on Switch. He can be found on Twitter @SuperZambezi.
Let’s take a look at video games’ favorite scene from the Star Wars series: the battle of Hoth. Developers have been trying for over 30 years to get it right.
Which is your favorite?
(This post was originally published in May 2010. We’re bumping it today in celebration of Star Wars Day.)
1982: The Atari 2600 presents The Empire Strikes Back with the abstract-painting level of technology gamers were stuck with back then.
1985: Atari’s follow-up to the 1983 Star Wars Arcade Game, The Empire Strikes Back, used vector graphics to recreate the epic battle.
1992: The Empire Strikes Back for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Hoth’s looking good here. Impressive snow-speeder turning radius
1993: What a difference a year makes. Let’s take it to the Super Nintendo for some Super Empire Strikes Back. This is, I believe, the least-authentic Hoth level we’ve seen in a game. Or were there actually floating hearts in the movie and I missed them? (Warning: NSFW language in this clip.)
1993: This year also saw the release of Star Wars: Rebel Assault for the PC, Sega CD, Mac, and 3DO, the first CD-only game published by LucasArts, with one of the best looking on-rails Hoth battles to date.
1996: Here we see Snow Speeders battling AT-ATs in one of the first Nintendo 64 games, Star Wars: Shadow of the Empire. Note the verrry simple radar. But I remember this level blowing my mind. It was like I was playing the movie!
1997: And then there was Star Wars: Masters of Teras Kasi, a fighting game that featured a Hoth stage.
1998: Sega’s Star Wars Trilogy Arcade marks Hoth’s return to the arcade, keeping the action on rails but filling in the wire frames.
1999: Back to the Nintendo 64, three years later. This is Star Wars: Rogue Squadron. The AT-ATs look better. The radar is way better. And we’ve got some voice acting.
2000: Luxoflux of Vigilante 8 fame developed Star Wars: Demolition, a vehicular combat game that featured the Hoth battle as a backdrop to fights between “vehicles” like Boba Fett and the Rancor.
2001: New console. Nintendo GameCube. But same development studio as the previous one, the now-defunct Factor 5. This is video game Hoth and this is a leap up.
2001: And who can forget the real-time strategy take on Hoth from Star Wars: Galactic Battlegrounds?
2003: Factor 5 does Hoth again, and does it with Luke on foot and on Tauntaun. Madness.
2004: First Star Wars Battlefront. Hoth on foot. On Xbox, PS2, PC
2006: But what if Hoth was a Lego playland? What if the battle there was just a tad more cheerful? Lego Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy answers those questions.
2006: In the same year, we had Star Wars Battlefront II doing Hoth on foot.
2008: The Battle of Echo Base went massively multiplayer as an instance in Sony Online Entertainment’s Star Wars Galaxies.
2009: The Hoth expansion for Star Wars: Force Unleashed takes the battle to a more personal level.
2015: Disney Infinity’s Battle of Hoth surprisingly features one of the better control methods yet seen for keeping your speeder steady while flying around a walker’s legs.
2015: EA’s Star Wars: Battlefront brings us the most “realistic” version of Hoth yet.
noclip is a very fun website which has extracted levels from a bunch of excellent Nintendo games and exists solely to let you fly around them like a joyful, nostalgic God.
Made by JasperRLZ, there are levels from games like Wind Waker, Super Mario Sunshine, Ocarina of Time, Luigi’s Mansion and even a broken, experimental flyover of Breath of the Wild’s main map.
It’s fun to just scoot around looking at stuff, but there’s also some more structured entertainment to he had if you’ve got the time/inclination, like playing solo Mario Kart time trial at about 900cc: