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EU VC Releases - 21st December - Blades of Steel

Posted by Darren Calvert

Our pals at Nintendo haven't exactly pushed the boat out this week with festive spirit sadly. Still it could be worse! We finally have Blades of Steel on the NES, even before North America! For those not in the know this is one of the best, if not THE best ice hockey game from the 8-bit era. Very often NES games feel tired with age but the gameplay is still as much fun as ever with this one!

Another NES game in the shape of Skate or Die is also up for grabs on the VC today. It's quite a fun skateboarding game but unlike Blades of Steel it has aged less well. The controls feel a bit clunky by today's standards and the gameplay gets repetitive after a short while. Still childhood fans will no doubt be ecstatic to play this again - I would advise waiting to see if California Games comes out instead!

To complete the non-festive trio is a TurboGrafx-CD game: Monster Lair. This is a part of the Wonderboy series indirectly but shares little in common with the original arcade platformer or the RPG-lite incarnations of the games. Instead this game is more of a cutesy shoot-em-up and shallow platformer rolled into one. It gets repetitive quickly and compared to other similar games from the era it doesn't have much to recommend for today's audience sadly!

Check out this week's reviews:
Blades of Steel - NES - 500 Points
Skate or Die - NES - 500 Points
Monster Lair - TurboGrafx-CD - 800 Points

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User Comments (31)

tnk4god

#1

tnk4god said:

Wow, too bad for you guys, I would have thought n64 for christmas, but blades of steel is a cool game, but it is dated no matter what they say.

tnk4god

#3

tnk4god said:

Makes me wonder what kind of games we might be getting, I think my hopes have been dashed though

diablos79

#4

diablos79 said:

ah well, i guess after last weeks 2 great releases it was expecting too much to hope for another good week straight after. they could have at least made an effort for christmas tho but maybe theyre saving it for new years week, we can but hope anyway. HAPPY CRIMBO EVERYONE!!

Bass_X0

#5

Bass_X0 said:

Hmm. i'm predicting donkey kong country 3 and king of fighters 94 for america's games on monday. maybe we'll get our christmas games next thursday?

DrakeStaff

#6

Drake said:

Remember that this isn't necessarily the Christmas update - Christmas is closer to next week's update than this one, so I expect next week to have some good games.

__Deity

#7

Deity said:

Thanks a lot nintendo for these crap games, merry christmas to you too -.-

Bass_X0

#8

Bass_X0 said:

well i've finally decided to download sin & punishment this week. its downloading right now. i had a card ready for tonights releases but none interested me. i've been putting it off, downloading old favorites first but i thought its about time i should. I'm trusting that its as fun as everyone says it is.

__Fami

#11

Fami said:

Umm...think about what games we got last week europe whiners.

aphexbr

#12

aphexbr said:

I wonder why we keep getting the games based on American sports (that have little popularity here) before the Americans? Surely there's better games for them to add that we haven't got yet!

wii-c-kid

#13

wii-c-kid said:

Hmmm... not the best VC lineup but I might get Blades of Steel. I haven't got many sports games on VC and the last one I got was the dire World Sports Competition on PC Engine (Turobgrafx)

__Dark_Jedi

#14

Dark_Jedi said:

Dear Ninty,

All I want for xmas is Rondo of Blood, Next Thursday would be fine.

Thank you.

Kelvin

#15

Kelvin said:

Drake, yes, that's what I'm hoping; that we'll get the a really good Christmas update on the 28th. Fingers crossed...

Happy Chrimble, all!

johnhood

#17

johnhood said:

No Rondo of Blood, but I'll wish everyone Happy Holidays and a peaceful New Year! Next year should see VC go from strength to strength!

MorikaWeb

#18

MorikaWeb said:

"I wonder why we keep getting the games based on American sports"

How is hockey an amarican sport? Granted they own most of the teams simply becuse they have mor money... But the players are mostly canadian. Not to mention the fact the the game was invented in canada. Heck even the Zamboni was invented in canada.

__Michael

#19

Michael said:

Wow I'm hoping US doesnt get coal in it's stocking like EU just got on Monday.

__LazerGun

#20

LazerGun said:

Not great, but hey Im liking the EU stuff more than ours. They get Skate or Die and Blades of Steel two classics... While we will get another stupid Pokemon game and two games noone has ever heard of.

__ante

#21

ante said:

Why does they name it wii shop channel. The real name should be trashcan channel.

__MonarK

#22

MonarK said:

Mortal Kombat on VC? I do not think so. Mortal Kombat II, III, and the rest were rated mature, thus a 7 year old could go to the store and purchase a WiiPoints card and buy mature games. I do not believe Nintendo will let that happen, so No mature games for VC....

__Matt

#23

Matt said:

On NSider2 it says that on christmas eve we will get DKC3, Blades of Steel, and Rolling Thunder 2

Kawaiipikachu

#24

Kawaiipikachu said:

How come theres an MA (OFLC-MA=ESRB-M) rated game on the channel .
And as a response to those complaning about this weeks release they may not be gems to you or me but they are to somebody so in fact i dont have any complaints on what's been released in the VC .

koolkitties

#25

koolkitties said:

To MonarK. IF you set your Wii to E-rating only, T games don't show up in the shop, so parents technically wouldn't have to worry assuming they had brains. (Which sadly many do not)
Anyway, you EU guys got some good stuff. I do think America got better stuff recently, but I really do think that Blades is a great game that I hope us americanos get soon.

Atlantis1982

#26

Atlantis1982 said:

MonarK, the real problem is getting western publisher games onto the VC. We have yet to see anything from the likes of EA, Midway (MK), Acclaim, or Ubisoft.

Jogurt_the_Yogurt

#27

Jogurt_the_Yogurt said:

Warsong, River City Ransom, and Shining Force II would be my Christmas wishlist for NA on Monday.

But absurdly lofty hopes and dreams aside, I don't see why people complain about the VC releases every week. Nintendo doesn't "owe" us a certain type of game, no matter how much revenue they reap off the VC. It's a moneymaking venture, and it's been pretty successful so far. As long as people will shell out the dough for something like Urban Champion, then they can release whatever games they want, and we should just be thankful for the rare gems we get.

Super Metroid alone is enough to make me tolerate 100 terrible VC releases.

__Delay

#28

Delay said:

No surprise that Nintendo couldn't keep up with the last week.
Still Blades of Steel or Monster Lair will find some fans.
Maybe next week will be better... Maybe...

Adamant

#29

Adamant said:

"How is hockey an amarican sport? Granted they own most of the teams simply becuse they have mor money... But the players are mostly canadian. Not to mention the fact the the game was invented in canada. Heck even the Zamboni was invented in canada."

Canada is in North America.
But yeah, the sport is pretty popular in Europe too, particularly here in Scandinavia. And Blades of Steel IS a great game.

__Hairy Garcia

#30

Hairy Garcia said:

just imagine if they were to pull the virtual console because everyone's complaining about the games they release....the fact that they release 3 games weekly is DAMN good, even if they aren't always 3 of the best games for the systems.....have faith that, and even though it might not be right away, all of our favorite games will be released.....i mean realistically how many garbage games can they STILL have yet to release? and even if they have a lot of garbage they CAN release....they're doing it 3 a week....i don't remember THAT many terrible games available for the systems on VC....so have faith my fellow gamers!

Kelvin

#31

Kelvin said:

I think the point is more that Nintendo didn't seem to make much of an effort for Christmas. Given that we've seen special releases in the past, tying in with new games like Metroid Prime 3, or the Hanabi festival, a lot of people were expecting some kind of special event for Chrimble too. Perhaps next week, as Drake says.

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