You might remember Arcade Zone's "Legend" for the Super Nintendo, a game that cult magazine Super Play issue #22 reviewed with a conclusion of "Skillfully crafted with cracking graphics and some novel touches (...)", despite failing to bring anything new to the sidescrolling brawler formula. In hindsight however, the game turned out to be very much the closest you would get to Sega's "Golden Axe" for the SNES.
"Iron Commando", a game built on the same engine and with equally impressive graphics found itself in a situation not too different from Factor 5's "Rendering Ranger R2": The game never found a publisher in the West and ended up being released in limited quantities only in Japan back in 1995, ensuring that nowadays a complete copy goes for quite an hefty sum of money. That's a real shame, since Arcade Zone really mixed it up in this game. It included a variety of weapons very much inspired by Capcom's "Cadillacs and Dinosaurs", mixing traditional melee weapons with firearms (and ammunition!). There is even a nod to "The Punisher" grenade toss. One of the ten levels is a mine cart auto scrolling stage, something of a hallmark of every platformer in the 90's, but not so in this genre.
Having missed a chance at success in the West in 1995, Piko Interactive - which has secured the publishing rights for both "Iron Commando" and "Legend" - is giving both games a fresh new worldwide cartridge release this year, even including optional manuals and boxes for those perfectionist SNES aficionados. The crowdfunding campaign is already underway at IndieGoGo and even includes unique rewards such as custom coloured Retro Duo and Retro Duo Portable clone hardware and cartridges with both games. You can check out a bit of "Iron Commando" in the following video.
Did you stumble upon these two games in their original release? Would you like to see more games from the past get the same treatment? Considering recent news, it certainly would seem to be a excellent time to be a Super Nintendo fan… again!