Tags Posts tagged with "SNES"


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Alright trivia fans! What was the last Super NES game ever released in the system’s storied history? If you answered Konami’s Frogger (1998), then you… probably looked it up on Google. As of today, you’re also wrong. The Super Fighter Team, who previously brought us Beggar Prince for the Sega Genesis, has announced that they are shipping out copies of Nichibutsu’s unreleased SNES gem Nightmare Busters to fans who pre-ordered via their official channels and Kickstarter.

I’ve always had a soft spot for obscure prototypes whenever they’re released, and Nightmare Busters definitely qualifies as one. Originally slated for release back in 1994, the game was shelved indefinitely, and at least the SNES version of the game never saw the light of day until 2007, when it was found, traded for and eventually copied released as a reproduction cartridge. Oddly enough, this charming platformer somehow found its way to J2ME-enabled handsets in the cut-down form called Flynn’s Adventures, released by a company called In-Fusio in 2004. Kinda makes you think—how many other unreleased games eventually made their way out through less-glorious channels?

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If you have played the awesome Secret of Mana on the SNES then you will be familiar with Hirō Isono’s art. Known as Seiken Densetsu in Japan, nearly all of the games in the series feature the legendary artist.

Isono passed away on May 28 due to heart failure. Isono was born in 1945.  The first game he worked on was Squaresoft’s Final Fantasy Adventure which is actually the first installment of the Seiken Densetsu series (Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden in Japan and Secret of Mana being Seiken Densetsu 2). His last game was Heroes of Mana (Seiken Densetsu: HEROES OF MANA) in 2007 for the Nintendo DS.

Source: Anime News Network

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Totally makes sense with anti-violence Nintendo back in the day.

The 90’s was a truly magical time where as a kid I would gobble up whatever game is placed before me primarily because I didn’t have a job or any source of income but my folks. One of the games I played to death before the abomination of a pirate console, the UFO entered our living room and set the precedent for me to drown in games and eventually aspired to legitimately play original software was Faceball 2000. This game was one of the first first person shooters on the SNES and while FPS games today are generally regarded as violent this game was absolutely child friendly. I mean you shot at smiley faces with round nerf-looking balls and your avatar was a smiley too and if that ain’t enough, when you get fragged in this game, the perpetrator says “Have a nice day” much to my frustration and rage back in the day.

If we increased the poly-count of the Gremlin smiloid… it would still look the same

What makes this game so great was the fact that you are roaming in a three dimensional environment, much like how the original StarFox blew my mind in the years to come. Also, in spite of what seemed to be a kiddie-crap-bull-shit game, it’s actually insanely hard especially in the later levels where Smiloids (your smiley opponents) take more hits to kill, move , and shoot faster. I don’t recall whether or not you can actually increase your stats (namely armor, speed, and rate of fire) permanently but I do remember power-ups that can either stop all smiloids from moving, make you invisible to them, or give you invulnerability  for a fixed time period but I do remember whatever perks you have on you will be wiped out after you get fragged (or “tagged” as they are referred to inside Faceball 2000).  The game also allowed two-player split-screen co-op or 1 v 1 head to head combat in the arena mode if you’re sick of your partner hogging all the power-ups.

This ought to be the part where I go all hipster and shit like “oh, I wish games these days would have pushed the boundaries of technology and make something like Faceball 2000 which was sooo mind-blowing at the time of the SNES…” but seriously, a game like this wouldn’t have progressed AT ALL into where games are now. Sure, I had a blast with the game and I would consider it one of the top games for me during the SNES era but now it’s just going to be a piece of video gaming history and a novelty. There is absolutely no value in taking this game “to the next level”… I mean smiley faces were probably used due to technical limitations at the time and it actually turned out great… well not so great. Bullet Proof Software (publisher) and Xanth Software F/X (developer) both sank into obscurity after the SNES era.

Credits to All Video Games TV on Youtube for the  gameplay video.

Screenshots lifted from Moby Games.

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I adore pixel art. I came from that generation of gamers (80s-90s), so it has a special place in my cold, black, evil, un-beating heart. So when indie developer Gamesbymo introduced A.N.N.E. (or Anne, if you prefer) to Kickstarter, I ceased my usual suspicious late-night internet activities to read the details and in less than 5 minutes I turned into this:


Anne is in gorgeous 16-bit, which is about time since the indie scene has been saturated with 8-bit lately. It’s a true 2D game in 720p, so they advised to make sure our monitors supports 1280X720. The gameplay is a generous granola mix: a Metroidvania-Gradius hybrid with physics elements, and to top it off, it’s open world! So basically it’s Metroidcastlevaniagradiusangrybirdsskyrim, all in one pack.


What really attracted me to this game like a whore to Tyrion Lannister is that the Kickstarter pledge awards are even sexier. In particular I took a BIG interest in the $100 level pledge, which is the game, complete in an SNES-themed box, cartridge, manual and the best part, a USB controller that resembles the original SNES controller. I mean, why settle for an original golden PS3 controller when I can have an SNES-like one? I hope they won’t screw this one up. Nostalgia may be overrated but I’m allowed to indulge in it once in a while.

The game also lists a lot of very promising stretch goals, and I quote ad verbatim:

  • $90,000 Milestone: Mac and Linux Versions!
  • $100,000 Milestone: Achievements! Gender Swap Mode!
  • $115,000 Milestone: New game+!
  • $130,000 Milestone: OUYA version. Challenge areas: Disapearing blocks? Alternate ending for completing every challenging areas?
  • $145,000 Milestone: PSN Version/Vita Version
  • $160,000 Milestone: Protect the ship two-player local co-op Mode!
  • $180,000 Milestone: WiiU version
  • $350,000 Insanity Milestone: ???

Yes, if enough money gets tossed their way, we can have Anne on OUYA, VITA and WiiU! It’s like Shovel Knight all over again! What more can I ask for?


If you’re a very awesome individual, you’ll definitely support sexy indies like this. So zoom to Kickstarter now and pledge! While you’re at it, hop on Steam and make sure to Greenlight this game! You may also find Gamesbymo on their Official Site, Facebook and Twitter pages. The game is expected to be released on early to mid-2014, but you can bet that 30lives will be keeping an eye on it, and so should you! Stay tuned for more details as they unfold!


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In my opinion, there’s currently no other video game in existence similar to the premise and essence of Evoland, an indie adventure RPG by Shiro Games. As the name suggests, the game is a history book of the sorts, showcasing the evolution of the RPG genre. The game starts as humble, pixelated and in “black-and-white”, but as you progress, you unlock more features to enhance the game’s various aspects such as graphics and music and gameplay methods. In effect, the game “evolves” before your very eyes.


The controls are simple really: just the direction buttons and an “action” button. Before I wrote this review, the game only uses a keyboard, which is a big letdown. If you’re going to maximize the cash-in on nostalgia, aside from using 8 to 64-bit graphics, the next thing you may want is a controller to complete a more legitimate experience. Thankfully, as I write this review controllers are now supported.

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Unfortunately, what starts off as a seemingly innovative and unique gameplay immediately falls downhill in terms of implementation. The evolutionary “upgrades” come in so fast in a blink of an eye, you can’t get to fully immerse yourself with the nostalgic elements that the game sells itself upon in the 1st place. To make matters worse, the game is terribly short (clocked in at around 4 hours to completion). It would have been better if the entire thing is separated into acts/chapters with each succeeding act getting eventual evolutionary gimmicks. There is also no New Game+, and there is very little incentive to restart or complete the game to 100%, except for completists and achievement whores. On my 1st run of the game I already reached 86% completion, and that’s a lot. There are virtually no perks, nothing to look forward to. Nada. Zilch. Zip. Achievements mean little to me and I got other games to play, so after the end credits finished rolling, I uninstalled it.

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There is a fine line between being a homage from being a ripoff. Evoland irritatingly blurs that distinction. So much that you can’t get yourself to take it seriously (if at all). The game not only suffers from poor execution, but is also arid-dry on creativity. Everything from character names, to design and color are basically copycats of the original copyrighted material with cheap “modifications” such as extra letters on names, hairstyle changes, added/removed accessories, bra stitching pattern, you name it. Some characters were even so unflattering, they kept their names from the original people they were based on, it’s so corny to the point that they look like they’re out of ideas.

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The gameplay gives you the opportunity to try each variation within the RPG genre: you get to play both turn-based and active time battle systems, then later on when the game evolves into an ARPG, it becomes a less-polished Diablo 3. Although experiencing all these different types of gameplays within a single game isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it was ill-conceived: gameplays change depending on the area. One cave is a Zelda-type dungeon, then as you exit to the world map it reeks of Final Fantasy (encounters and battle systems) while another cave feels like Diablo 3. It’s all over the place with no coordination or consistency.

Due to these inconsistencies, items and equipment are virtually almost moot, because you don’t get to utilize them in all areas. For instance, the Diablo 3 dungeon has health orbs and equipment, but no item usages. The Zelda dungeon has heart drops, but no items and equipment. Nothing is ironed out or planned, and you have to force yourself to adjust from one gameplay type to another within seconds of leaving/entering an area.


Setting all the complaints aside, Evoland is good for a few things. For one, they successfully capture the atmosphere of each era of video game in the timeline. The Final Fantasy 7 era comes to mind, where the end-game heavily borrows most of its ambiance. The feeling when playing, brought about by a cunning mix of graphics and music brings about a sensible experience.

For all its worth, Evoland looked good on paper but just not as nice as it shows itself to be. It’s a video game primordial soup, but that’s all there is to it. For its price of $10, it’s not worth it to me. Best wait for it to go on sale on Steam or wait for someone to gift it to you. Such a shame because I had high expectations since the trailer came out and the finished product just didn’t cut it. Should they make a sequel to this game, I hope they consider feedback from players. This game as it is needs a lot of work, and I’m having a hard time recommending it to anyone, even to a casual gamer.

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Okay retro freaks, we need someone to make this happen for North America.  Apparently, Japan has a handheld device called Poke Fami DX which can play SNES carts and can be upgraded to play Famicom, Genesis and Gameboy Advance games with adapter attachments.  This beaut has a 3.5″ screen display for on-the-go play and has an adapter attachment for a second play controller.

Full package includes the system, adapter, controller, connector, AV cable, stand and other accessories.  The console can also work on batteries (lithium) so you can bring it anywhere.  I know, it will not really work in NA because we can all get the PSN / XBL / eShop game releases anyway but, but… it’s so damn cool, you guys.


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The upcoming Android console OUYA will ship with Nintendo emulators pre-installed according to OUYA forum admin Ed Krassentein. The console will be able to run (hopefully legally acquired) roms of NES, SNES, and N64 games. Other emulators will also be available via the official store at launch.

We will have our very own OUYA unit at launch here at 30lives so watch out for an unboxing/review of it soon!

UPDATE! Check out this first look at EMUya, the first NES emulator out on the platform running Battle Kid!

Source: techcrunch.com