News Article

US VC Releases - March 17th - Super R-Type

Posted by Darren Calvert

This week’s theme for the North American VC releases is frustration. After getting DoReMi Fantasy last week Nintendo must have been concerned that they had been letting gamers have an easy ride. Not so this week as both of the games on offer this week are devilishly fiendish by comparison!

Super R-Type on the SNES isn’t such a bad game and is welcomed on to the Virtual Console despite being soured by a lack of checkpoints when you die. Yes that right, if you die on that fiendish end of level boss you have to replay the whole level again! It makes what would have been an otherwise enjoyable shoot-em-up blast very frustrating.

The forgotten NES platformer Spelunker is frustrating from the very beginning. Ever wondered how many ways it is possible for a videogame character to die? If so this is the game for you. This is best avoided.

So there you have it, a darkly sinister space war or going deep underground to navigate perilous caves. The choice is yours!

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User Comments (43)



smort said:

Hmm, thanks, I'll save my coins this week. That's too bad, I thought Nintendo was forming a pattern of releasing game from a series when they release a new game from it. So much for that. Oh well, Brawl is good enough.



ribbitking17 said:

I just got a load of NES games from my uncle who left for the army a week ago, and one of them is Spelunker. noted it probly wont get played



Roo said:

Holy smokes! 8 replies in and no one (except me, for the purpose of making a point) has mentioned "Super Smash Bros. N64" yet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

R-Type is cool, but it's hard. Really, really hard.



Serpent said:

Sorry but this week is bad.
One Average game and one game that just plain sucks.



Tim said:

Another two bite the dust. I seriously want to buy something on the vc channel but I won't buy something that is crap for the simple reason that I can't resell anything I don't want to keep. Nintendo sure doesn't want my money this week, lol.



lordbowser said:

Yet another shooter... that has nothing to do with a certain fox (who certainly knows what a checkpoint is).



Viral said:

I still think that Nintendo is letting a lot of people down. I just read in my Nintendo Magazine (Europe) that Earthbound has no means to come to the VC as of yet.



Jockolantern said:

Super R-Type is great news. Incredibly challenging game, but immensely rewarding; it's far from being impossibly frusturating (I'm looking at you, Legacy of the Wizard, Battletoads, and Ghosts 'N Goblins) and features good graphics and a great soundtrack. Besides, with Smash Bros. Brawl still devouring many of our lives and all the amazing WiiWare games right around the corner... who needs the VC for now?



Kawaiipikachu said:

Thanks alot VC-R i was hoping for good comments for a change then you did this .
Well at least you warned people .



Spills said:

Are we ever going to get 3 games again? Super R-Type - A good game but don't we have enough shooters? Spelunker - Thought this would be one of the Commodore 64 releases. Not a good week.



ChocoDK said:

None of these games interest me anyways. And I couldn't download them since I only have four blocks left on my Wii thanks to Brawl. Nintendo needs to release a HDD or something seriously fast because Brawl takes up a crazy large amount of space. But it is worth the space.



Viral said:

Note to self, try hooking up my external hard drive via USB port....



xstrikax said:

Hmm... too bad. was hoping for mega man or river city ransom. Hey konami wheres those old school NES games!!!




Another Shooter! YAY! Clearly we don't have enough shooters or RType games for that matter.




Bass_X0 said:

This is the last R-Type game they can put on VC isn't it? Its strange how intent they are to release all games of one particular series that they can on the Virtual Console yet others have several sequels yet to appear. Example, Streets of Rage vs. Final Fight. Where's Mighty, 2 and 3? Being inferior versions (debatable), not as well known or too similar has never stopped them with other games on VC. And FF3 is a must buy for me.



Viral said:

...If they release Final Fantasy on the Virtual Console, they'd have a goldmine on their hands. Final Fantasy would easily sell for 800 points per Nes game. Nintendo and Square-Enix need to capitalize on this, yet, Square-Enix is too involved in porting games to GBA and DS....what about us Wii owners? I have a DS and I would rather play it on a 42 inch flat screen tv than a tiny DS screen...



Bass_X0 said:

Please go back and look at what Final Fantasy 1 is. Its just not worth 800 points. Its really basic looking and has not aged well. I enjoy playing FF1 and FF2 on PSP and those are worth what I paid for them. I also think that a NES release of FF1 will not step on the toes of the PSP game or the GBA game. The GBA game is so old now that they must have stopped selling it already and the PSP is enhanced a lot that you're not really getting the same experience for less by buying the NES game for 500 points on VC.



Adamant said:

" Its just not worth 800 points."

Yes, it is.

" Its really basic looking and has not aged well."

Yes, it has.

" I enjoy playing FF1 and FF2 on PSP and those are worth what I paid for them."

Those are really really piss poor remakes that completely ruined the original game, just like the GBA ports did. If you must play a remake of FF1 and FF2, play FF Origins for the Playstation.



Objection said:

Adamant, I have to disagree. I find FFI and II to be great on the go. The only difference between the two versions is updated graphics (GBA is better) and CG openings/closings (PSOne) I think S-E should consider putting FFVII-IX on VC for 1000-1200 pts. Don't tell me those wouldn't sell, lying is bad.



That_Guy_from_Faxana said:

Ha ha, Spellunker is rather terrible! So frustrating it´s good for a laugh a few minutes, but really an awfull game.

On FF Subject: Final Fantasy is still entertaining even compared to many newer RPG:s (Looking at YOU, FFX!) and one of the best games on the NES. Graphics are like any NES-RPG: basic. I haven´t played FFII yet, but it´s not likely to be released for VC in the west. Too much work converting the translation.

FFVII-FFIX: Sorry, but keep dreaming. Sony would never let that happen. A Playstation emulator on VC would be amazing ^^




Another week another dissapointment. Nintendo needs to up the anty a little bit with these games. i mean sure we got dor re me fantasy last week but unless you want ANOTHER platformer you outta luck.



Rapadash6 said:

Not a great week at all. I'm sure Super R-Type will please some but neither of these games appeal much to me personally. To be honest I wasn't expecting much because of last weeks import titles, not to mention the US release of Brawl. Next week might be better but I'm not expecting anything major until April really.



v404 said:

What is w/ the VC & shooters? I swear there are more shooters than any other genre. I didn't even realize there were so many shooters in the first place. What gives? Are they the best selling genre or something because I hate shooters. It seems like we get another shooter every week.



Adamant said:

" The only difference between the two versions is updated graphics (GBA is better) and CG openings/closings (PSOne)"

...and the fact that the GBA/PSP games sticks you in "very very very very very very very very very easy mode" and completely ruins the magic system. Yuck. Have you even played these games?

Seriously, what's the point in playing FF1 when you can just hold down a button to win all battles? The original game was about team balancing and battle strategies, make the game have nearly infinite replay value as you tried different teams of warriors every time through.

What's the appeal of the remakes? The (snicker) deep characters? The (cough) involving storyline? Or the fact that the box says "Final Fantasy" on it?

FF1 and 2 are RPGs of the old school, they weren't intended to be played in "hold button to win battle, then be rewarded with cutscenes"-mode like all these newer RPGs. These games were about (gasp) gameplay, and the remakes remove all that to avoid frustrating the kiddies who deem any game where it's possible to die as "too hard".

"What is w/ the VC & shooters?"
Same thing as with modern consoles and FPS games. Shmups were a popular genre, and particularly the Turbografx, whom Hudson seems to want to release every US-released game for on the VC, was widely known for a large library of quality shmups. Don't like them, don't download them, the same way you don't have to buy all the FPS games that are being churned out.



Big_Sexy said:

Adamant, I agree with you that the difficulty has changed between the newer versions and the original. I actually couldn't play the NES FF1 a few years back because it was too hard, (not to mention the lack of original materials to actually play with, FAQS included since no internet at the time) but the GBA one made it more accessible. I don't think they're bad because they were rebalanced to make it easier, but after playing the NES one again, it would have been nice to have a difficulty setting for the GBA.

I'd also like to mention that I am a veritable lusty prostitute when it comes to difficult games - and as a result, I'm a big fan of shmups. Although the VC has a good amount of quality shmups, there are a lot that I'm holding out for - Super R Type having been one of them. Unfortunately, with Brawl in my hands, I won't have time to play it. I'll probably do the same thing I did with Breath of Fire 2, though - buy it and save on my SD, then play it when I have time for it.

Shmups are still rather popular, albeit moreso in Japan rather than in the US. I personally hope the new Star Soldier for WiiWare makes it stateside.



Adamant said:

But the challenge level is important to the game. Would Super Mario Bros 1 be fun to play if someone went into the game and removed the enemies and filled all the pits in order to make it more "accessible"? Making it possible to die is not "too hard".

Seriously, what do you people actually like those FF1 remakes for? The characters? They're simply mute avatars. The plot? Horribly basic and rather uninteresting. The class system? Doesn't matter because everything dies too easily anyway. The replay value? Killed by making the classes not matter at all. Where's the appeal? I see the appeal in the original game, and in Origins, but everything that made those games good was completely nixed from the GBA and PSP remakes.



Bass_X0 said:

The graphics actually. I've always been a fan of seeing retro games being remade in modern graphics. Now if the PSP game had Original (NES version) and Remix (PSP version) choices at the start, I'd go for the Original of course. I played FF3 DS while looking at maps of the original Famicom game; not to cheat but to compare the two versions. I got lost in one cave because a long featureless tunnel on the map was a rope bridge over a chasm on the DS. But yeah, the graphics are the reason why people play the remakes. If they wanted the best gameplay, then they would go with the original NES games obviously.



Big_Sexy said:

Um. I have to disagree with you there, Bass X0. That's not why I play them, anyway.

In fact, one of the things that kill me most about modern games is the whole "well, this game looks great so it should be good" deal. Part of the reason I got a Wii was because it seemed like a return to simpler times, when gameplay ruled all.

The reason I play remakes is because it gives me a chance to see games that I may have missed, or - like in the case of the GBA River City Ransom - because they've updated the engine and made things a whole lot better. FF Dawn of whatever was a play for me because I missed my real chance at playing it on the NES. I had previously purchased FF1 for the NES from a friend for 5 bucks (lol VC price ftw) but because I didn't have any booklet or map or even an FAQ to fall back on, I was easily lost and defeated time and time again. Adamant, having played the original, knows what I mean when you get your boat and go exploring only to get completely annihilated by some monster group you'd never even seen before.

At any rate, said cartridge was later stolen from me - along with many other top-notch games I wish I still had (Megaman X, wherever you are, I hope someone is enjoying you). I didn't have a PS1 until somewhere between year 3 and 4 of PS2's lifetime, so you could imagine how hard it was/is to score a copy of any Square game at that point. So later on, GBA was out, I actually had a living system for the first time in my life, and thus that FF remake was obtained - albeit borrowed from a co-worker, but still.

To be honest, I'm not that great a gamer when it comes to RPG's. I spent a good 20/30 hours completing Super Mario RPG the first time I played it, which is tame compared to practically any other RPG's difficulty. I'm a little smarter about how I play them now, but at the time I played the original, I didn't really know what I was doing. Knowing that it's more difficult than this remake has me interested, and thus it's one I hope to see on VC sometime so I can give it the run it deserves.

And all told, FF games don't have too deep a plot or characters anyway, regarding pretty much any of them. The only one I played so far that I've truly enjoyed (despite not understanding a lick of the story - almost as confusing as MGS) was FF8 - because the battle system kept me going. (Haven't played 12 yet, but from the demo it seemed promising)

But what I'm getting at is this: Remakes are doing what the VC pretty much does - allowing a newer audience to play some of the greatest games in history - games that left a mark in the world, games that went on to become franchise. I think this is great because it lets people know "this is where we came from." And you can't see where you're going unless you know where you came from.



Viral said:

To be completely honest, Super Mario RPG got me into RPGs. That said, I enjoyed Final Fantasy VII, although it's overhyped. I personally think the best Final Fantasy is IV because the characters have depth and the fact that you lose characters that you build up makes the game more challenging. I walked into a room in that game and got completely owned because I went to fight Leviathan and got SLAUGHTERED!



Adamant said:

" Adamant, having played the original, knows what I mean when you get your boat and go exploring only to get completely annihilated by some monster group you'd never even seen before."
Heh, yeah - to survive in FF1 you need to learn what your opponents are capable of, what should be fought, and what you need to run the hell away from if you see (anything that can poison you is a no no to fight). It's not a hard game, it just requires some more brain activity than "Ooh, monster. Kill. Let's press A until it dies." This does, however, make the different monsters stand out a bit more - I can not only list a nearly complete list of monsters in the game, but also tell where they are found, what their relative powers are, and how they should be treated. On the other hand, I couldn't remember the name of a single monster from Golden Sun if my life depended on it - they're all simply hammer A button-fodder you don't pay attention to. And that is why FF1 is a much better game than both Golden Sun and it's own GBA and PSP remakes.

Plus, the Origins versions have upgraded graphics and music as well.



Big_Sexy said:

You know, that's a good point. Some later Djinni and a few bosses make you think, but if you spend even a short while gaining experience - ie you're backtracking for something or are a little lost - you can obliterate practically everything (save the final boss) just by mashing attack without ever taking damage.

Golden Sun is definitely a good primer for people getting into RPG's for the first time, but for veterans looking for a challenge, there's nothing there. I had fun playing it, but once I got used to the ins and outs of it, there wasn't much else for me except pushing through the story. The sequel doesn't get much harder, either - at least, from where I'm at so far.

As far as tough RPG's on GBA go, there doesn't seem to be much there stateside apart from Fire Emblem, which blows my freaking brain. Love/hate relationship aside, don't know if that counts since it's an SRPG. Only thing I know about the PSP's RPG's is that most of them are either lame or ports.



Adamant said:

" Some later Djinni and a few bosses make you think"

Honestly, no. Nearly everything falls to the "unleash defensive djinni then summon your strongst summons" strategy that anyone could come up with. That hidden superboss that can only be reached once you got all the djinni in both games died before I had used all my djinni as summon-fuel even once - that's just sad.
FF1s bosses didn't take a whole lot of damage before they died either, but they could usually kick your ass rather quickly if you didn't watch out.

It took me nearly 5 years of on-off playing to beat both games, and the reason is that I just got way too bored to want to continue every time I had played for a while. I bought Golden Sun around it's release (February 02), and hadn't beaten it at the time the sequel came out. Picked up the sequel once I beat the original, and finally saw the ending in late '06 after finally forcing myself through those final stretches to see how this rather uninteresting story eventually ended. God, those games were bad.

As for "tough" RPGs, there's Phantasy Star Collection, at least. Great games, those, and not toned down like the BoF and FF games were either.

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