Retro News

September2014

  • Nintendo 64x64 Killer Instinct Gold

    Wisely held back from the Snes; giving gamers a further reason for a N64. Subsequently, better fighters did arrive but this became one to saviour as Rare never produced its own sequel. Instantly, the killer soundtrack stands out as well as great backgrounds, fresh new characters and team battles. Pitched perfectly to novices and experts; a rare...

  • Book Review Boss Fight Books - Super Mario Bros. 2

    Subcon-text

    For how unique it is compared to other games in the Mario line, it’s amazing how easily Super Mario Bros. 2 is taken at face value or glossed over entirely. Many fans are happy to share the fact that the game is actually a reskin of Japanese title Doki Doki Panic after the original Super Mario Bros. sequel was deemed too difficult...

  • Nintendo 64x64 F-Zero X

    The best F-Zero

    F-Zero had abundant stand-out features, leaving even the strong competition tailing. Although graphically divisive, fans hailed Nintendo for capturing the Snes essence - choosing speed and frame rate over unnecessary graphical overhaul. Persevere with completion - the ground breaking random track generator ensures longevity almost...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Gauntlet Legends

    While a multiplatform release, the N64 version of Gauntlet Legends benefited greatly from the system's four built-in controller ports. Ported over from the arcade, Gauntlet Legends' simplistic hack n' slash gameplay makes it accessible to players of all skill levels. It's a solid, button-bashing adventure which is best enjoyed with three friends...

  • Nintendo 64x64 F1 World Grand Prix

    Solid racer but one only suitable for the niche F1 gamer, not a casual lover of the racing genre. The F1 'feel' is realistic and racing from the bumpy cockpit view is awesome. Accurate track layouts yet backgrounds are dull and racing them doesn't engage like a F-Zero or MK64 track. Advice: conquer the challenges but turn down that incessant...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Wave Race 64

    18 years on and the wave physics still mightily impress; capturing the essence of jet skiing is WR64's finest achievement, yet not its sole one. Firstly, eight tracks that are so well-constructed the replay value moves into decade three. Secondly, it's immensely challenging - myself yet to win at expert! If the PAL version hadn't suffered and...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Extreme-G

    At a popular period for futuristic racers, Extreme-G was certainly not ground breaking... nor terrible either. Pace is extreme indeed; developers allowing this by misting the upcoming track, luckily not spoiling your ability to race. Admirable scenery (dystopian industries, Aztec past / future fusions) and fitting soundtrack rescue it because track...

  • Developer Interview How Two Graduates From Nottingham Are Bringing Robin Hood To Life On The SNES

    "We'd absolutely love to be able to do a cartridge release"

    Indie development has never been more popular than it is now, with each of the major console makers bending over backwards to accommodate bedroom coders in the hope of finding the next Minecraft. However, while most small-scale devs favour the likes of iOS, Android, Steam and the digital...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Excitebike 64

    Excitebike 64 serves as yet another prime example of Nintendo's sheer mastery when it comes to developing technical racing games. A fully 3D sequel to the NES classic, this title requires players to pay particular attention to the topography of tracks. Features some of the best quality visuals and audio on the N64, although Hi-Res mode comes at the...

  • News Hyperkin Responds To Accusations Of Infringing On The Rights Of Emulator Creators

    "We have not been as quick as we could have been"

    Last week, we reported on accusations that Hyperkin had infringed on the right of emulator authors with its RetroN 5 console, and at the time we gave Hyperkin the chance to put across its side of the story. We've now had an official response from Hyperkin developer Lawrence Lee: It has always been...

  • News Super Mario World Speedrun Record Is Broken

    Beating the game in under 10 minutes is an artform

    Super Mario World is a big game — so big it put other 2D platformers to shame when it launched alongside the shiny new SNES back in the early '90s. However, while many of us will have happy memories of wasting countless hours finding all those levels and secret routes, speedrunner linkdeadx2 has...

  • Video These Mario Games Have More Secrets Than You May Think

    And it's not even Easter

    Continuing the series of discovering hidden Easter eggs in games, Did You Know Gaming has released the final part of its dissection of main series Mario games. It's always a joy to see hidden little details and secrets in video games, it shows just how much developers care about the creations that they make. Unsurprisingly,...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Banjo-Kazooie

    Rescue you he will not dare, there's many dangers in my lair!

    Its Mario 64 comparison was always inevitable and which is better is divisive. BK's biggest strengths lie in its 'Rareness': game engine crafted excellently; splendidly contrasting worlds of increasing challenge; Grunty's surprise quiz; and Rare's unique humour injection. Does it have...

  • News Mother 4 Is On The Way, But It's Not Being Made By Nintendo

    Fan project is aiming for a release this year

    The Mother series — perhaps better known in the west as EarthBound (AKA Mother 2) — is one of Nintendo's most enduring franchises. However, it has been dormant since 2006, when Mother 3 hit the Game Boy Advance in Japan. Rather than wait for Nintendo to start work on a fourth game in the series —...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Beetle Adventure Racing

    Arcade-style racing from the creative minds behind N64 launch title, Pilotwings 64. What makes Beetle Adventure Racing so enjoyable is that it feels fast and doesn’t punish you too much when you make mistakes. It looks pretty good too, with its decent lighting effects and accurate VW Beetle models. The multiplayer battle mode makes for a nice...

  • News Mitchell Corp Is Keen To Bring Strider's Spiritual Sequel To Home Formats

    Along with many of its other arcade titles

    Mitchell Corp might not be a household name with most gamers, but the more astute among you will recognise the name from such hits as Pang, Puzz Loop and Polarium. Founded by former Data East staffer Roy Ozaki, the firm has enjoyed a very close relationship with Nintendo in recent years, with its last title...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon

    Your friendly neighbourhood ninja

    A platforming adventure that takes place across Feudal Japan, Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon focuses on a kiseru-wielding hero and his friends trying to prevent the country from being turned into a westernised fine arts theatre. Rich in Japanese folklore, yet stuffed with anachronisms such as giant robots, the...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Pilotwings 64

    On target

    Released alongside the N64, Pilotwings 64 delivered a sense of scale and open-world exploration that easily rivalled that of Super Mario 64. While it may not have been as revolutionary, it arguably did a better job of showcasing one of the N64's major unique selling points: the analog joystick, which provides a level of precision that...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Chameleon Twist

    Chameleon Twist is the game that Yoshi's Story should have been. Playing as an anthropomorphised chameleon, you're tasked with traversing a range of 3D environments, using your character's remarkably long tongue to reach otherwise inaccessible places and defeat enemies. An innovative idea that uses the control stick to its strengths, and one which...

  • Book Review The Untold Story Of Japanese Game Developers: Volume 1

    Charting a golden era

    When journalist and novelist John Szczepaniak launched his Kickstarter campaign back in 2013 to record the hitherto undocumented story of Japan's game development community, there were a few raised eyebrows around the web. His funding goal was a lofty one, and the task seemed almost herculean in scope — he planned to travel...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Mario Tennis

    Quite the smash

    It wasn't the portly plumber's first outing on the virtual court, but Mario Tennis was nevertheless the first smash-hit in the franchise. The simple control input is easy to understand, yet allows for advanced techniques too; the control sticks enhances accuracy greatly. The single-player tournament mode is a bit drawn and...

  • News Hyperkin's RetroN 5 Console Allegedly Infringes On The Rights Of Multiple Emulator Authors

    Team behind RetroArch says Hyperkin is using emulators without permission

    Hyperkin's RetroN 5 console is a fantastic way to enjoy old classics, and offers plenty of benefits over existing clone retro systems, largely because it uses advanced software emulation to offer HD visuals and other benefits. However, it would appear that Hyperkin can't...

  • News First 4 Figures Unveils Running Mega Man Collectibles

    Oh my...

    While they're a purchase typically too extravagant for many, including this humble writer, we at Nintendo Life nevertheless enjoy gawking at the latest efforts from First 4 Figures, the prominent purveyor of lovely but unaffordable game-related collectibles. Enter two new iterations of a Running Mega Man for us to gaze upon. Portraying the...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Mario Kart 64

    3... 2... 1... GO!

    Despite some memorable moments from this game, it disappoints compared to its predecessor. Level of challenge almost non-existent; 150cc is comparatively a walk in the park. Rainbow Road is laborious and let's not get started on Battle Mode... Agreed, tracks are beautiful, with varied locations and their own challenges and quirks:...

  • News You Need To See This Amazing Hand-Sculpted Donkey Kong GBA SP Case Mod

    Good luck trying to play a game on it, though

    If you follow the hardware modding community then the name Vadu Amka will be instantly familiar to you. A seasoned pro when it comes to taking existing systems and making them even more attractive, Amka has recently released another new creation: a Game Boy Advance SP which is based on the model used...

  • Nintendo 64x64 BattleTanx: Global Assault

    Madison's Militia

    BattleTanx: Global Assault is one of those games that deserved far more attention than it actually got. Incorporating fast-paced gameplay based around tank warfare, the game's sense of scale and all-out action is surprising for an N64 title. The campaign mode is a tad repetitive, although more enjoyable when played cooperatively;...

  • News Missing Super Mario Philips CD-i Game Comes To Light

    How Mario almost took America

    When Nintendo ditched Sony at the altar and decided not to proceed with the SNES-based PlayStation console, it quickly inked a new deal with Dutch firm Philips. That agreement also fell through, but Nintendo sweetened the divorce by allowing Philips to create games based on its characters for its CD-i entertainment...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Cruis'n USA

    They see me cruis'n...

    An arcade port that never used the N64's true capabilities and looked easily at home on a PSOne with its pop-up cardboard scenery. Although there are finer racers on the system, it's an enjoyable arcade-style racer: plenty of tracks with recognisable locations, and unlockable cars. It's slightly average but as a Brit who's...

  • News New Hardcore Gaming 101 Book Takes On Konami's Classic Castlevania Series

    Physical and digital versions available now

    Remember Sega Arcade Classics Volume 1? Well Hardcore Gaming 101 founder Kurt Kalata is taking a break before starting Volume 2 and has put together another fine tome in the form of Hardcore Gaming 101 Presents: Castlevania. Kalata will be famous among seasoned Castlevania fans as the man behind The...

  • News The GameCube is 13 Years Old

    Happy Birthday to the handled innovator

    The GameCube, the system with a look like no other, is now 13 years old. Released in Japan on 14th September 2001, it holds a special place in the hearts of many Nintendo gamers, and was memorable not just for the fact it had a handle, but due to its line-up of exceptional games. While it holds the...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Hybrid Heaven

    "Mr. Diaz, a synthetic human hybrid created by aliens"

    Hybrid Heaven was certainly an ambitious game from Konami and felt widely ignored at a time of MGSs, Final Fantasies, and Zeldas. It deserves praise for trying to revolutionise the norm: a unique battle system; an outlandish plot; claustrophobic playing areas rife. Faults? Much like M:I and SOTE...

  • Weirdness Here Is A Super Famicom On Top Of Mount Fuji

    Reaching new heights since the '90s

    The Super Nintendo goes down in history as one of the greatest video game systems of all-time, for a variety reasons – be it the at the time revolutionary controller design, the cutting edge graphics and audio, or the stunning library of games. So how do you make one of the most legendary Nintendo consoles to...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Doom 64

    An exclusive to the console in what is a relatively small-scale franchise, Doom 64 has been unfavourably compared to Rare's masterpieces when it's a great FPS in its own right. An abundance of well-designed levels, monsters, secrets, and weaponry is wonderfully coupled by the haunting soundtrack and dark, atmospheric scenery. This is still a joy to...

  • Weirdness Modder Recreates Donkey Kong Country In Doom Engine

    Scary in a different way!

    Rare’s Donkey Kong Country was a huge feat in itself when it was released on the Super Nintendo in 1994. Now imagine recreating the iconic jungle-based platformer within an entirely different game engine from around the same era. Enter Doom, and insert the reminder here of just how crazy modders of the classic...

  • Feature Meet The Unsung Pioneer Behind The Most Reviled Zelda Games Of All Time

    Charting the life of Dale DeSharone

    The Legend of Zelda series is home to some of the most critically-acclaimed video games ever made, and the franchise is without a doubt one of the most important in Nintendo's illustrious catalogue. However, there a few titles within the lineage which stick out like a sore thumb — the trio of Zelda games...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Diddy Kong Racing

    Despite obvious comparisons to Mario Kart 64, DKR was a unique experience: platformer elements (explorable world, bosses and collectable items) were unique for its time, ensuring one-player longevity. Three vehicle types presented new areas already explored / raced. Vibrant storybook colours may have put off mature gamers but many challenges and...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Buck Bumble

    Stop the evil Herd Army!

    Featuring the most annoying theme song to have ever graced the medium, Buck Bumble is an aerial combat game in which radioactive waste has transformed the insect world into a high-tech war zone. Playing as a gun-wielding bumblebee, the task of completing garden-based objectives is unusually appealing, yet a lack of polish --...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Star Wars: Rogue Squadron

    I'm Hit! Rear shields down!

    Taking everything that is loved about the grand battles of the original Star Wars trilogy -- the dogfights, the scale and the classic theme of good versus evil -- Star Wars: Rogue Squadron delivers an authentic aerial action experience with its own bespoke storyline. Produced with astonishingly high production values --...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Lylat Wars

    Do a barrel roll!

    Nintendo: excellent decision. Ditch Starwing 2 and go for a next-gen sequel. Lylat Wars delivers on many fronts. Corneria is a perfect opener - capturing Starwing’s feel yet graphically upgraded. From then on levels are superbly varied: corridor levels, dogfights, numerous routes to Venom based on mission success. Not just a...

  • News Motorola's New Smart Watch Features a Goldeneye-Style Interface Option

    Dr. No way to resist

    Who in their life hasn't pretended to be a secret agent on a daring mission to uncover and foil the plot of a notorious villain whose greed surpasses their humanity? Well now you can take one step closer thanks to a clever little Android developer. The Moto 360 smart watch from Motorola is one of the more traditional-looking...

  • Video Which 8-bit Version Of Ghostbusters Are You Gonna Call?

    Sega or Nintendo? There's only one way to find out...

    Back in the mid to late '80s, North American gamers were hooked on Nintendo, and prior to the launch of the Genesis / Mega Drive, Sega was very much locked out when it came to getting all of the juicy third-party titles. However, there were a handful of games which made it over to Sega's 8-bit...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Body Harvest

    A hugely underappreciated gem, Body Harvest was DMA Design’s (later Rockstar North) first attempt at a 3D open-world game. Playing as a genetically enhanced super-soldier, you must travel across time and thwart a race of sinister aliens before they can harvest mankind. Ambitious, yet buggy and lacking in polish, Body Harvest is greater than the...

  • Video Watch These Teenagers As They're Exposed To The NES

    "I have an iPhone case like this"

    Gaming is becoming more and more mainstream with every turn, and sometimes we have to take a step back to realise just how far we've come, and depending on your age that could go back anywhere between the GameCube and the ZX Spectrum. To give you some perspective of the progress we've seen, take some typical modern...

  • Video If You Love Mario Easter Eggs, This Series is for You

    Covering Super Mario Bros. to Super Mario World, so far

    One of the delights of retro Nintendo games is in discovering their secrets, little snippets of interesting features that can only be spotted with close attention. Hunting 'easter eggs' is a major part of retro gaming. A current series on the Did You Know Gaming channel is looking to reveal...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Bomberman 64

    It didn't sit well with purists at the time, but Bomberman's first outing in 3D was nevertheless a valiant effort on Hudson Soft's part to ensure its explosive star remained relevant in gaming. To its credit, the single-player mode delivers an engaging experience based around puzzles and exploration; the multiplayer, however, fails to retain the...

  • Feature The Nintendo 64 Controller and the Rise of 3D Gaming

    The three-handled situation

    The Nintendo 64 controller is one that has fallen out of favour with some gamers – its outdated control stick and limited number of buttons leaves it and its parent system in a state of being old but without necessarily being seen by the general public as 'retro'. You could easily say the same for Sony's original...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Mario Party

    Aside from being the first release in Nintendo's long-running party game series, Mario Party's biggest claim to fame is its stick-spinning mini-games, which left many eager players with blisters on their palms. The series may have come a long way since 1999, but this title nevertheless features a diverse range of timeless mini-games and every...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Castlevania

    A divisive first foray into 3D for the franchise as it suffers from mixed fortunes. The feel of 2D versions was captured well through music, locations, enemies and plot. Its controls are quite tight and graphically impressive. It’s a challenge; albeit, for the wrong reasons. Certain areas, bosses and gameplay choices leave one extremely...

  • News Pokkén Tournament's Concept Even Shocked The Game’s Creators

    “The entire office was dumbfounded”

    In an announcement that could be described as hard to fathom, it was less than a week ago when it was revealed on NicoNico that a fighting-title by the name of Pokkén Tournament for arcade would be co-developed by Bandai Namco, with involvement from Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada and Soul Calibur producer...

  • Nintendo 64x64 ISS 64

    Revered as the N64's favourite football game despite (in technical terms) not being the best. Yes, it had bugs, no FIFA licence and comedic commentary but ISS64 shone because it was the ground breaking next-gen football game. Gameplay bettered FIFA 64, multiplayer so addictive it caused sleep deprivation and, solo, it still had scenarios that kept...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Blast Corps

    Few games outside of the horror genre get the heart pounding quite like Rare's Blast Corps does. It’s a race against the clock: playing as a demolitions expert, you must clear a path for a nuclear missile carrier that's out of control -- not too much pressure then! The range of real-life and absurd fictional vehicles on offer ensures that...

  • News Mega Man Legends 3 8-Bit Fan Demake is Available Now

    It's more than Capcom's giving us

    Last year we told you about an 8-bit demake of Mega Man Legends 3 being produced by a group of fans; it promised quite a departure from the original 3D adventure, naturally, as it was taking the characters and setting for a more typical 2D action Mega Man experience. It's taken quite some time, but it's finally...

  • Nintendo 64x64 1080° Snowboarding

    Almost Wave Race on snow; 1080° recreates the feel of snowboarding via the realistic sound effects and beautiful backdrops. The developers have worked hard to create engaging, differentiated tracks despite the constriction of snow. To master the game, time needs to be invested in learning the tracks but the true fun of the game is pulling off...

  • Project Nintendo 64x64

    Celebrating 64 Nintendo 64 games over 64 days in 64 words

    Today we bring you something a little different, Nintendo 64x64 - a collaboration project between @N64Memories and Nintendo Life. Now, if you've been a reader of Nintendo Life for a while you'll no doubt be aware that some of our team are huge Nintendo 64 fans, so you can imagine their...

  • Weirdness Hear Nintendo's Classic Themes Played on Kazoos

    Marginally too cool for school

    Nintendo has arguably some of the best music in the gaming world, causing different groups of people to take the music from the games they love and perform it themselves. It's no surprise that certain individuals take it upon themselves to somewhat reinvent tracks in order to give them a fresh and interesting feel...

  • News Trust Us, You Need This Super Famicom Box Art Collection Book In Your Life

    Update: Kickstarter now cancelled

    Update: The Kickstarter has now been cancelled for the reasons explained by Stuart here: Hey folks. Firstly, I’d like to say a huge heartfelt thank you to everyone who has supported this Kickstarter project. I’ve had a whirlwind of a weekend with my inbox literally breaking with messages of support from fans...

  • Nintendo 64x64 Super Mario 64

    The most sublime platformer and yet considered Nintendo / Mario's peak; Mario games never really replicating that unparalleled innovation again. Free-roaming worlds to explore truly gave the gamer control over the game's destiny. A perfect control system and camera demonstrated the console's capabilities from its release, setting the bar...

August2014