Retro - News

April2009

  • Talking Point Copyright and Video Games

    What is stopping us from experiencing the entire history of video games?

    Last year Taito issued Space Invaders Get Even on the WiiWare download service as well as multiple versions of the original game on the Japanese, PAL and North American Virtual Consoles. This was in celebration of the 30th annivesary of the release of Space Invaders in arcades worldwide. Similarly Namco is due to celebrate..

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    VB

    Review Insmouse No Yakata

    Because everyone knows spooky mansions are the safest place to be…

    Insmouse no Yakata, apparently based on a film that’s based on a story by H.P. Lovecraft (The Shadow Over Innsmouth - how they got 'Insmouse' from that is anyone's guess) is a first person shooter that sees the player work through maze-like floors of a mansion as they try to escape. But with a variety of monsters, not much ammo..

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    GameCube

    Review Odama

    The mightiest weapon of the medieval battlefield is at your disposal.

    Towering over your soldiers, the mighty Odama rolls a path of destruction over all it touches - friend or foe. Direct your soldiers with voice commands, and guide them out of harm’s way on to victory. Let the battle begin! This is a pretty epic game, so allow us to set the scene...

  • News 20 Years On, The Power Glove is Still Awesomely Bad

    “I love the Power Glove. It’s so bad.”

    When Lucas Barton uttered those immortal words in the 1989 movie The Wizard it made every single Nintendo fan on the face of the planet want one. The reality was a little less impressive, but thankfully modder Matt Mechtley is ensuring that this iconic peripheral isn’t forgotten; he’s tinkered around with it to add additional functionality, although..

  • News Original Gameboy turns 20 years old!

    Where were you when you first got ruined by a girl in Tetris? holding a Gameboy back in 89, no doubt!

    You already know this if you had your first kiss while playing a Gameboy, or perhaps you passed your first drivers ed test while playing a Gameboy, or fought your first battle with a Gameboy under your flak jacket. Twenty years ago this month the Nintendo Gameboy was released so if you’re..

  • News Former King of Kong to Appear at E3

    Steve Wiebe to make another record attempt this year

    For those of you that haven’t seen the brilliant King of Kong yet, stop reading this post, grab your coat and run down to your DVD store. Purchase the film, watch it, and then resume reading. Done that? Good. Steve Wiebe – the ‘good guy’ of the movie who triumphed by beating the ‘evil guy’ Billy Mitchell’s Donkey Kong world record..

  • News April Fool Jokes – The Dust Settles

    We select our favourite Nintendo-related pranks from the big day

    April 1st is a day feared by regular inhabitants of the internet. It’s the one day of the year when you can practically ignore all amazing and outlandish news stories as rival sites attempt to out-do each other with their attempts at humour. However, putting aside the more pathetic jokes for one moment (anyone here still think the..

  • News Modern Games Get a NES Makeover

    Gears of War 2 on the humble NES? You wish

    Imagine if video game console technology stopped at the NES and never progressed to the 3D powerhouses we have today. A scary thought, perhaps? Not for the people at video game comedy site the-minusworld (yes, that is how it’s spelt); they’ve posted up some fake box art for some seriously cool ‘modern...

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    GCN

    Review Ikaruga

    Ikaruga might not be quite as intricate as its predecessor Radiant Silvergun, but its added intensity more than makes up for it.

    There are very few shooters that can bring a smile to a shooter fan's face quite like Ikaruga can - which brings me to my quandry. What can I say about Ikaruga that hasn't already been said a hundred times before. It's...

  • News Interview with Brian Fehdrau - Secret of Evermore

    We recently got a chance to talk with the lead programmer of Secret of Evermore and found out some very interesting information regarding the development of this unique Super Nintendo RPG title.

    Brian Fehdrau was the lead programmer on the Squaresoft USA team that developed the Super Nintendo rpg hit Secret of Evermore. We were recently able to...

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    Nintendo 64

    Review Banjo-Kazooie

    Platforming perfection…

    Back in the days of the N64’s prime, there was one firm that still managed to stand out from the rest, Rare. The UK based outfit were responsible for some of the greatest games the world has ever seen – Goldeneye, Diddy Kong Racing, Perfect Dark, and not to forget, the classic Banjo Kazooie... Staring Banjo, the placid...

  • News Is Game Design Art? Great Designers Say 'Not Really'

    At a GDC 2009 roundtable with renowned designers, Art seems to be a dirty word

    It’s a debate that has raged for centuries: Do video games constitute art? Ok, maybe not centuries, but it seems like a while. Personally, I say ‘yeah, of course it is!’, but I’m not the creator of games that have been hailed as art by so many. At this years...

March2009

  • News Super Mario Beans

    Meet the beans from the Italian Maro Valley

    We’re always suckers for a fun Nintendo themed video over here at Nintendo Life Towers, and this one is no exception. The talented guys over at GnamSpot have recreated the whole of level 1-1 from Super Mario Bros. by using a bit of stop motion wizardry and some beans on a plate. Amazingly it turned out pretty good, look at that Mario bean go!

  • News Super Nintoaster gives you a slice of the action

    I like my SNES games slightly burnt, thanks

    If you thought that the Nintoaster was cool, wait till you see its big brother – the SUPER Nintoaster! Here we have a device that looks like your common breakfast-producing kitchen item but in fact plays everything from Super Mario World through to The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past; truly, this is the ultimate tool for gamers who need something a..

  • News Deranged NES Rom Hacks

    Ever wondered what it would be like if Luigi had to overcome racism instead of Birdo and Mouser?

    The ROM hacking community can sometimes bring the world some real gems such a translation for a classic RPG which never made it outside of Japan, or adding extra levels to Super Mario Bros for those who like a more extreme challenge. Not that we condone this sort of naughty behaviour here at Nintendo..

  • News Wossy's Amazing Nintendo Themed Ceiling

    He just can't stop Twittering about it!

    When not harassing Manuel from Faulty Towers cheeky-chappy TV presenter Jonathan Ross likes nothing more than to sit down with a nice cup of tea and play a bit of Mario Kart on his Wii. Listeners to his Radio 2 podcast will be used to hearing good old Wossy excitedly babbling about his adventures in the mushroom kingdom to some confused B-list celebrity who..

  • News Stupidly Cool Portable Famicom Mod Surfaces

    Shame we don’t know how to use a soldering iron...

    The stuff these crazy modders seem to dream up never fails to surprise us, and this latest endeavour is totally off the chart in terms of sheer genius. Modder ‘goteking’ has taken a business card holder shaped like a Famicom cartridge and skillfully inserted a media player with a Famicom emulator installed. The result? Portable pleasure and..

  • News A Boy and his Blob Gets the Remake Treatment

    NES classic is coming to the Wii, thanks to the creator of Contra IV

    Those of you old enough to remember the days when kids TV presenters weren’t covered with tattoos and Right Said Fred dominated the Top 10 will no doubt have fond memories of a NES game called A Boy and his Blob. Coded by the legendary David Crane (co-founder of Activision and the creator of numerous classic games) and released..

September2008

  • News Hardware Focus - NEC SuperGrafx

    In 1989 the PC Engine was still selling quite well in Japan, but Sega's 16-bit Mega Drive system was beginning to pick up steam and Nintendo's Super Famicom console was looming just around the corner. Sensing this, NEC decided that they needed a true 16-bit console if they were to have any hope of continuing their success in the Japanese console wars.

    The successor to the PC Engine was originally..

March2008

  • News Hardware Focus - Commodore 64

    In 1982, TIME magazine named the home computer as its annual "Man of the Year".

    It was a non-specific award, given to home computers in general, but looking back, it could be argued that the Commodore 64 deserved the accolade more than most; although TIME had no way of knowing it back then, the C64 went on to become the best-selling home computer...

February2008

  • News Five GameCube Games That Should Come To Wii

    Wiivival

    Given the GameCube's wonderful back-catalogue, here are five games we'd love to see come to the Wii. The PlayStation 2 had already run away with the “console war crown" a good year or so before the GameCube's launch and Nintendo's box never really packed any kind of punch worthy enough of denting Sony's dominance. With Microsoft...

  • News Hardware Focus - Sega Master System

    When Nintendo announced that the Virtual Console would be supporting the Sega Master System console you can bet that there were a fair few American gamers scratching their heads in a rather quizzical manner.

    The console was a complete failure in the US thanks to a combination of poor marketing, terrible distribution, woefully misjudged software...

January2008

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    GCN

    Review Doshin The Giant

    Let love be your energy in this forgotten Gamecube gem

    Initially a game on the ill-fated 64DD add-on, Doshin the Giant puts you in control of the titular yellow fellow, and charges you with the care of an island of tribesmen and women. How you care for them is left entirely up to you. As a friendly sort of god, Doshin is capable of gently raising and lowering land to enable his subjects to live..

  • News Pac-Man Munches His Way To The US Virtual Console

    Another fun-filled week in retroland

    First, allow us to have a grumble. Since the New Year started Nintendo seem to think VC gamers are happy with less rather than more; the usual policy of releasing three games each week has been thrown out of the window and we're lucky to get two some weeks. Shame. Anyway, rant over. This week's North American VC releases are a bit underwhelming, if we're honest..

  • News Euro VC - Alien Storm And Startropics

    A weather report concerning xenomorphs?

    European Virtual Console fans expecting the normal ‘three game’ service to be resumed this week are likely to be disappointed by the news that only two (count ‘em) titles were made available for download today. Startropics (which was released on the North American Virtual Console on Monday) is an interesting NES adventure that sees you exploring a..

  • News Goldeneye Not Coming To Virtual Console After All?

    N64 fans, look away now

    Since the Virtual Console appeared there's been one game that Nintendo fans have called for at the very top of their voices. Rare's Goldeneye is rightly seen as a classic N64 title and, for a while at least, it seemed like the chances of it appearing on the download service were actually quite good. Until now, that is. A leading Xbox fansite has recently posted a story that..

  • Movie Review The Wizard (1989)

    Forget all you've been told. This film kicks all kinds of ass

    In a world where everyone seems to have an opinion and they’re all too happy to force it upon others, it’s worth remembering that when judging something (be it a book, film or videogame) it all depends on your connection with that particular piece of media. For example, watching a...

  • News King Of Fighters '94 And StarTropics Hit US Virtual Console

    Fighting or island exploration - the choice is yours

    It’s Monday and that can mean only one thing – more Virtual Console games to enjoy. Thankfully US Wii owners have two brilliant titles to download and enjoy this week. King of Fighters ’94 is the first in the long running series and represents one of the best 2D fighters of the era. The concept of selecting teams of fighters as opposed to..

  • News Castlevania: The Nintendo Years

    Fangs for the memories

    Although Konami’s influential vampire slaying franchise has since gone on to find success on several different hardware platforms, the association with the Nintendo NES is arguably what made the series so famous worldwide. The trio of 8-bit Castlevania titles remain highly regarded by fans and still stand up to scrutiny even by today’s standards. They also laid down the..

  • News Harvest Moon Is Sole Euro VC Release

    Time to get your hands dirty with Natsume's classic farming simulator

    If crop rotation, livestock breeding and getting up at the crack of dawn seem like entertaining concepts to you, then you’ll no doubt be over the 'moon' (ho ho!) with the latest serving of retro goodness on the European Virtual Console. It’s hard to believe that a game about farming could be so popular, but Natsume’s..

  • News Virtual Console Coming To The DS?

    Reggie speaks about the upcoming game download service on the DS

    The rumours have been circulating for quite some time but the concept of downloading ‘complete’ games to your Nintendo DS is becoming a reality, if a recent interview with Reggie is anything to go by. Nintendo’s main man spoke to the New York Times recently about the new ‘Everybody’s Nintendo’ channel and how DS owners..

  • News 10 Games We'd Like To See On The Wii

    Is it too late to ask Santa for these?

    The runaway success of Nintendo’s Wii has granted many publishers and developers a bit more freedom to experiment with their software. With such a massive installed base of users, software houses can be a little bolder with their ideas because chances are even brave failures will shift a few copies. Here at NintendoLife we applaud fresh and original..

  • News SNES CD Prototype Pad On Ebay

    Totally useless but historically interesting all the same!

    We don’t usually get too excited about ‘prototype’ items but this caught our attention here at NintendoLife Towers. Some lucky chap is currently selling a SNES CD joypad prototype on eBay. For those of you that don’t know, the SNES CD never actually existed; it was supposed to be a wonderful collaboration between Nintendo and Sony..

December2007

  • News Euro Virtual Console - 21st December

    Admit it - you were expecting Super Mario RPG, weren't you?

    With Christmas just around the corner you might have expected Nintendo to release something really special for download on the Virtual Console. Sadly, they've pushed out three titles that don't exactly get pulses racing. Here's the lowdown from our friends at Virtual Console Reviews: Our pals at Nintendo haven't exactly pushed the boat..

  • News Lords Of Thunder Coming To The VC

    Superb retro-style 2D blasting action is coming to a Wii near you!

    Although we don’t usually do individual updates for Virtual Console releases, this latest bit of news is so special we think it’s warranted - Lords of Thunder is VC inbound, people. The Australian Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC for short) has rated the game, which is usually a rock solid indication that it..

  • News Hardware Focus: SNK Neo Geo

    Of all the machines covered by the Virtual Console service, the Neo Geo is easily the most coveted and unattainable.

    Never before had a console screamed 'elite'; when it was first released it comfortably outstripped the performance of rival machines and made good on SNK's promise that you could have an arcade in your living room. Then again, there was a reason the company could make this proud..

November2007

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    GCN

    Review The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker

    The Legend of Zelda is one of Nintendo's epic franchises. Can the Wind Waker do the legend justice?

    Ten years ago, "The Ocarina of Time" raised the bar of gaming standards to a new, unprecedented height - Its unique battle system, innovative "Z-Targeting" system, and utterly captivating storyline stunned gamers worldwide. Millions waited for another...

  • News A Brief History Of The Light Gun On Nintendo

    With the imminent launch of the Wii Zapper here at NintendoLife we've gotten a little nostalgic as memories of the NES Zapper and Super Scope are brought flooding back.

    Light guns were around in the 1930’s beginning with Seeburg’s Ray-O-Light arcade shooter all the way back in 1936. The game involved a moving duck which must be shot in order to achieve a point. Arguably this early arcade title..

September2007

  • News NES Music Man Does It Again

    Ah the wonders of retro gaming, Alex Mauer has done it again, releasing his second album in the now popular-with-the-retro-junkies NES Cart format.

    Alex Mauer, creator of the first Nintendo cart music album, has already come out with his second cart. The new album features more songs (10) and larger graphics (full screen stills). Songs on the new album were composed by Alex Mauer and Phlogiston (a..

August2007

  • News Hardware Focus - Super Nintendo

    Though Nintendo's domination of the 8-bit era - attained through a combination of the company's business acumen in entering the market when most other were hesitant at best and the practices employed post-success to ensure the monopolistic domination of said market - had, in terms of units sold, been their most successful, the 16-bit era brought...

July2007

  • News Hardware Focus - TurboGrafx-16

    It's Turbo time!

    The history of the TurboGrafx-16 system is basically a tale of two countries. Electronics giant NEC and game developer Hudson joined forces in 1987 to design and release the PC Engine game console to compete head to head with Nintendo and Sega's 8-bit systems. Offering a nice step up in terms of visuals and audio capabilities, the...

  • News Hardware Focus - Nintendo 64

    Since the 80's Nintendo's name has been synonymous with gaming, the company's current market dominance highlighting how attuned they have become to the requirements of the market, and providing the buyers with the very things they need.

    However, given the current success of the DS and Wii, it is perhaps too easy to forget that it was achieved...

June2007

  • News Hardware Lookback: The Virtual Boy

    Headache-inducing monstrosity or misunderstood classic? Whatever the answer, the Virtual Boy represents Nintendo's biggest cock-up. We investigate the history of this strange console.

    ‘Failure’ is not a word you’d usually associate with Nintendo. Sure, there have been some crushing disappointments in the company’s illustrious history – the...

March2007

February2007

  • News Starfox 2 Footage Hits The Net

    The unreleased sequel to Starfox has had a number of bits of footage floating around on the Internet just lately and I thought you might like to share it with me.

    Whether this is old news or not I'm not totally sure but I wasn't even aware of a Starfox 2. I'm sure the geeks will be flying over here to set me straight on the record but I'll just be on Youtube drooling over the footage I have never..

January2007

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    GCN

    Review The Sims 2: Pets

    Can there really be a more time consuming game than this?

    The Sims is a franchise renowned for its cross-gender popularity and appeal to a large portion of gamers- many care for their Sims more than themselves! When it comes to console versions, the series have always struggled to entertain the masses to the extent that the PC titles have. The past two GameCube installments were merely a shadow of..

November2006

  • News Super Star Soldier On VC

    More content added to the Virtual Console.

    Nintendo have said that the initial 12 virtual console games would grow and it has again. More Virtual Console games will become available weekly every Monday following launch and by year’s end, gamers will be able to pick from a library of 30 or more classic games The first two additional games released on the VC were Bonk's Adventure and Bomberman '93..

October2006

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    GCN

    Review FIFA 07

    Competition is good, but it hasn’t been kind to Electronic Art’s squillion-selling football title.

    FIFA soccer’s fall from grace as the number one football title in the 16-bit generation has been well documented. Sure, it has always sold well, usually remaining in the top 5 games well after its release on a yearly basis, but it’s no secret that for the football purist, despite FIFA’s..

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    GCN

    Review Sonic Mega Collection

    When Sega and Nintendo had their rivalries in the 90’s some people never got a chance to witness some of the best that gaming had to offer due to owning only one of the two machines.

    Fast forward fifteen years and how things have changed! What better way to begin new friendships than bringing out one of the best compilations to date.. Sonic Mega Collection Sonic Mega Collection to sum up has..

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    GameCube

    Review LEGO Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy

    Is the force with this one?

    New Gamcube titles doesn't grow on trees these days, in fact Nintendo's current generation console is almost completely abandoned, by both third party companies, and Nintendo them self. Therefore we're always glad when a new quality game launches for the Gamecube. The original game, Lego Star Wars, was a smashing success...

September2006

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    GameCube

    Review Resident Evil 4

    Resident Evil 4 is the best game on the Gamecube.

    There, it has been said – that’s my stance on the latest in Capcom’s self proclaimed ‘Survival Horror’ genre. Action games, hell, most games in general will feel sluggish, dull and ultimately underwhelming after the onslaught of this games opening salvo (the first 20 minutes will become the...

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    GCN

    Review P.N.03

    After a Computerized Armament Management System (C.A.M.S) malfunctions on a planet and all of the defence robots start to destroy and attack the colony, what is the contingency plan? To send you of course!

    You control the character of Vanessa Z. Schneider, a strong sassy sarcastic female mercenary who kicks arse. Girl Power! Well, she is not really...

August2006

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    GCN

    Review Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 4

    Tony hawk is back!

    Only eleven months after the release of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3, the Hawk is back in this sequel to the award winning skateboard game. Over the years the Tony Hawk series have managed to get a huge fan base, and there is no doubt that this was a highly anticipated title. If you're interested in the skateboard genre, the sport...

  • News Super Mario War

    Mutiplayer fan-made Mario game surfaces on Interweb site, 72dpiarmy.com

    The game which seems to be available for PC and Linux has also been published with its entire source code available for download. The creators claim that the game is in tribute to the great giant N in the sky, Nintendo. "Super Mario War is a Super Mario multiplayer game...

July2006

  • News Retro Nintendo Power

    RacketBoy uncover the first ever edition of popular US magazine, Nintendo Power.

    For those of you that enjoy nostalgia your in for a treat today, the guys over at RacketBoy.com have recently scanned and uploaded the very first issue of Nintendo Power. "I'm following up on the first issue of Sega Visions magazine with the first issue of the beloved Nintendo Power. I can still remember when this..

June2006

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    GCN

    Review Mario Party 4

    Mario. Game board. Dice. Party games. All you need now is a keg.

    The Mario Party franchise has been running for years and no doubt will continue to be present on all future Nintendo consoles; it even appeared on the sparsely known GC e-reader. The N64 had the original and two sequels in its lifetime, now it is continuing to evolve on the Gamecube...

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    GCN

    Review Aggressive Inline

    Aggressive Inline adds new depth to the extreme sports genre, extreme-ly well.

    Aggressive Inline is an extreme sports game and bears resemblance to the popular and long running Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater series. So the opinion that this is just a clone using blades instead of a board and is cashing in on the thriving extreme sports genre is a common, but very wrong view. This thought is especially..

April2006

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    GCN

    Review Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance

    Dark days are rising and mercenary Ike...

    Not long ago Fire Emblem was one of those cool looking Japanese games that we never got the chance to play over here. Thankfully in the past few years gamers in the west have been graced with that latest 3 (the 7th 8th and 9th instalments), 2 for the GBA and one on the GC. The one featured in this review is...

March2006

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    GCN

    Review Mario Smash Football

    Mario steps out onto the football field and is ready for some hi-octane arcade fun, this beat-em-up sports title is certainly action packed.

    With a recent wash of Mario sports titles, its hard to justify them all. Mario Smash Football or Super Mario Strikers to the Americans is an action sports title, developed by Canadian outfit, Next Level Games...

January2006

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    GCN

    Review SSX 3

    Board one massive mountain with 3 peaks, pull off insane tricks and race your rivals.

    SSX3 is the 3rd instalment in EA’s series of break neck snowboard super cross games, it’s the best one to date. This is one of the few snowboarding games that are on GCN. The 2 main events in this game are tricks and races, both are highly addictive. In the previous games you had a menu to select your races,..

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    GCN

    Review The Simpsons Road Rage

    The Simpson’s go Crazy taxi but it is a shameless cash-in or good game?

    Most people like the idea of Crazy Taxi, drive around really fast dropping people off at their destination before the timer hits 0. It's simple pure arcade addiction. The question is did Radical Entertainment manage to make the Simpson’s Road Rage a similar success. Take a...

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    GameCube

    Review Star Fox Adventures

    Play as Fox McCloud as you liberate the inhabitants of Dinosaur Planet and uncover the sinister truth.

    Fox McCloud, unrivalled Arwing pilot, takes his first steps on land when he visits Dinosaur Planet. Our hero receives a distress call and — like all good foxes — decides to investigate, discovering the planet's evil ruler, General Scales. The...

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    GameCube

    Review Samurai Jack: The Shadow of Aku

    Play as Cartoon Network star Samurai Jack as you strive to defeat Aku and restore the world to how it should be.

    Samurai Jack started life out on Cartoon Network where the show became highly popular; as a result we now have the game Samurai Jack and the Shadow of Aku to show for its success. Jack lived in a Samurai village long before modern...

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    GameCube

    Review Beyond Good & Evil

    Hillys, a world under constant threat from the DomZ, needs help, and this help comes in the form of the tenacious female photojournalist, Jade.

    Beyond Good and Evil will either be a game you have played (and loved) or never even heard of. Unfortunately, it seems like the latter is the common answer: this classic Ubisoft gem never received sales that...

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    GameCube

    Review Wave Race: Blue Storm

    Waverace 64 was one of the biggest new IPs on the N64; how does this Gamecube sequel fare?

    Starting off in Waverace: Blue Storm is noticeably more difficult than the N64 original, but with more stunts to learn and the new boost feature it's much more rewarding when you get the hang of it. The majority of the tracks are updated from the original game; which is no bad thing as they've had a..

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    GameCube

    Review Super Monkey Ball

    Sega's first game on a Nintendo console is a ball!

    Super Monkey Ball comprises 6 mini-games on top of the main game with over 90 stages. What more could be packed into Sega's first game on a Nintendo console? It's one of those rare games that keeps you up late into the night so that you can just get past one more tricky level. The graphics are nice...

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    GameCube

    Review Animal Crossing

    Nintendo's Animal Crossing, is a unique game. An RPG, without much of a story but so much more...

    Animal Crossing is a unique game with no overall aim or any way to complete it. You start out on a train heading towards a village. You start talking to an animal who eventually puts you in contact with a friendly racoon who can sell you a house in...

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    GameCube

    Review Pikmin

    Filled with Nintendo magic, Pikmin will enlighten your life while it lasts.

    Pikmin is a game like no other we've played before, and we've played a lot. You control Captain Olimar, a space traveller who has crashed on a strange planet. During the crash 30 parts of his ship have been spread across the world. What makes this worse is that your life...

December2005

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    GameCube

    Review Tales of Symphonia

    Ever wondered what would happen if the core of an RPG was merged with a fluent combat system? Namco did.

    If there is one genre of games that has been weak on the GameCube it is most defiantly RPG’s. Many gamers are deterred by the Final Fantasy style turn based systems and plentiful random battles -- there is just not enough action. Back in early...

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