So, we've reached the final part of this year's update to the collection, and I'm still quite amazed at how many games I've actually bought this year. I predict next year will not be nearly as reckless, as this year's been all about building up some size of collection, especially for the Xbox 360. I can't come up with too many games of this generation I'm sorely missing. A couple of upcoming games are under pre-order at the moment, however. IF particularly big bucks are going to be invested in games in 2013, most of them will very likely be invested in games for the following, final platform. We'll see what fate lands in my grubby little hands.
NINTENDO ENTERTAINMENT SYSTEM (11)
13 years ago, I sold all of my NES games, FOR BEER (I was a 15-year old idiot), with the exception of the 3-in-1 cartridge that I just couldn't bear to part with, since it was my first game. Seven years ago, I let that one go as well, along with the long-broken system. My (now ex-)girlfriend got me a new, recently maintained and modded NES for a Christmas present, along with all of these games, and hell will freeze over before I'm dumb enough to part with the system again.
IronSword - Wizards & Warriors II | Zippo Games | 1988
Notes: Cartridge | NES-IR-USA
Comments: The second game in the Wizards & Warriors series I dug quite a lot as a kid - especially the third one - and the one that took the longest time to ship to Europe, three whole years, AND the frustrating, bouncy side-scroller which had a ridiculous pic of Fabio dressed as Conan the Barbarian on the cover, in case you're wondering. IronSword was one of many NES games with a cover that didn't relate to the game in any way - not quite as famous as the first Mega Man title, though. The game was very well received, and is considered the best game in the Wizards & Warriors series - it's quite OK, not as good as Wizards & Warriors III in my books, but OK, and has David Wise's soundtrack to compensate for a lot of frustrations.
Kings of the Beach | Konami | 1990
Notes: Cartridge | NES-VH-USA
Comments: A beach volleyball game originally created by EA for the Commodore 64 and DOS systems in 1988, with remote ties to their legendary Skate or Die franchise. Just like Skate or Die, Kings of the Beach was later ported to the NES by Konami, but it's not nearly of the same quality as the first Skate or Die game. It's an endearing, simple game, but I guess you'd have to be a serious beach v-ball fan to truly enjoy it.
Kirby's Adventure | HAL Laboratory | 1993
Notes: Cartridge | NES-KR-USA
Comments: I've reviewed only one Kirby game thus far and I have access to everything Kirby-related before the release of the GameCube, so what gives? He's one of the most beloved Nintendo characters ever, and surely his games are of great quality. Yeah, but he's pink. Pink and fluffy. My dislike for the character being stated, Kirby's Adventure is one hell of a platformer - innovative, fun and appealing. I can't avoid acknowledging the greatness of these games sooner or later, especially since now I've got my first legal copy of a Kirby game - ever.
Mission: Impossible | Konami | 1990
Notes: Cartridge | NES-U4-USA
Comments: An extremely frustrating top-down action game. Made by Konami exclusively for the NES, but you wouldn't know by playing and looking at it. It definitely isn't of standard Konami quality when it comes to gameplay. It's got a fancy opening sequence influenced by the legendary show it's based on (the 80's version, a.k.a. the superior one), an awesomely adapted theme song, and of course, the "This message will self-destruct in five seconds" schtick on its side.
Monster in My Pocket | Team Murata Keikaku | 1992
Notes: Cartridge | NES-1Y-NOE
Comments: A ridiculous monster game starring miniature versions of Frankenstein's monster and Dracula attempting to stop their former partner in all things frightful, the evil Warlock, from taking over the world. I hear this game is based on some toyline I've never heard of. It's thoroughly laughable, but not a bad game.
Ninja Gaiden II: The Dark Sword of Chaos | Tecmo | 1990
Notes: Cartridge | NES-NW-USA
Comments: The second game entitled "Ninja Gaiden II" I've added to my shelf within two weeks! Now, I could bitch about getting stuck with the worst (or should I say, least inspired) game in the original Ninja Gaiden trilogy, but I'm not that much of an ingrate, and secondly, being stamped the worst Ninja Gaiden game is not the worst judgement ever, it's such a quality franchise, or at least used to be in these times. What's best about this copy is that it's got "Ninja Gaiden II" written on the cover instead of "Shadow Warriors II"; some collectors may find my infatuation with the original title odd and ironic, 'cause the European version is actually very rare, and worth a fortune.
Solstice: The Quest for the Staff of Demnos | Software Creations | 1990
Notes: Cartridge | NES-LX-USA
Comments: Most definitely Software Creations' most popular game, and the game I find the most intriguing one out of this whole bundle. I never played Solstice as a kid - I played the SNES sequel Equinox for a while and kind of liked it, and I remember people saying that game had nothing on the original. I'm taking this for a thorough spin next year, along with the sequel, to uncover the truth behind the short-lived series.
Super Mario Bros. / Tetris / Nintendo World Cup | Nintendo | 1990
Notes: 3-in-1 Cartridge | NES-ZZ-NOE
Comments: It's back, and it's never leaving again! I was afraid I'd never see this cartridge again, or that I'd get the SMB bundle with Duck Hunt which my LED-TV would've rendered absolutely useless. This fabulous 3-in-1 cartridge includes Nintendo's all-time best-selling game, a fantastic adaptation of a classic puzzle game, and a recently released soccer game with River City Ransom characters that could've gone both ways, but ended up becoming one of the most entertaining sports games of all time. Nintendo World Cup also utilized the NES Four Score multitap, which also came in the original bundle (just remembered it), which might've been one of the reasons the somewhat unknown game was released in the 3-in-1. Either way, glad it was. It's a great game - all of these three are. Being the first video game I ever owned, this 3-in-1 deserves an additional piece of interesting trivia: although the game was called Nintendo World Cup, and published by Nintendo in the U.S. and Europe, Nintendo didn't have anything to do with the Japanese game. It was developed and published by Technos Japan, who had no exclusive deal with Nintendo - that is why Nintendo World Cup was also released on the Sega Mega Drive (Genesis) in Japan, under the mouthful title of Nekketsu Kōkō Dodgeball-bu: MD Soccer-hen. The Sega version was poorly received, while the NES version became legend.
Top Gun | Konami | 1987
Notes: Cartridge | NES-TG-EEC
Comments: This game is famous for a lot of things, but not for its great quality; it's probably the most panned first-hand Konami game ever, one of the most pointless movie licenses that was not touched by LJN in any remote way, but from the somewhat positive side of things in terms of innovation, it was (one of) the first fighter jet simulators for any console. It'll be a long while before I get familiar with this game enough to review it.
Total Recall | Interplay Productions | 1990
Notes: Cartridge | NES-L4-NOE
Comments: When it comes to every other game on the list, I don't understand the buyer's strategy, but in the case of Total Recall, I understand it completely: we went to see the 2012 remake of Total Recall on our first date (bad movie, awesome date). I also might've mentioned that I owned the NES game once, and it was one of the most terrible games I've ever played. Well, not quite one of the most, actually - but it is terrible indeed. It's still part of my original collection, and I've taken it upon myself to own all of it once more, so Total Recall is welcomed with open arms despite its awful quality.
Who Framed Roger Rabbit | Rare | 1989
Notes: Cartridge | NES-WL-USA
Comments: Yep, it's got the LJN logo on the cover, but it's not one of the most non-sensical or even the worst licensed games they laid their reverse Midas touch on. It's bad, sure, but none as bad as Friday the 13th or Beetlejuice. Actually, it's kind of innovative in its action-mixed-with-adventure kind of ways. And hey, Who Framed Roger Rabbit is one excellent movie. A game that simply looks like it is cool to some extent.