Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive
Can Harry Jr. fill his father's boots?
The two original Pitfall games for the Atari 2600 have become quite dated now – walking across a handful of endlessly repeating screens in the hope of finding treasure has lost its appeal. Activision once tried to "upgrade" the formula by allowing the Japanese developer Pony Canyon to make Super...
This week brings a new western publisher on board - Activision! And they haven't just released one game, but two!
If you bought a DSi you'll be quite glad to hear that there's already some new games available this week. Of course the Wii Shop gets its usual new WiiWare and VC game as well! Mixed Messages is Activision's first DSiWare game. It's pretty simple - First, you enter a sentence. Then, you..
Another week, another 5 releases for Japan.
It's true the Japanese have another week with a mix of VC and WiiWare content, but Wii owners in North America and Europe need not feel the usual pangs of jealousy (well, I guess that depends on how much you've been wanting to see a couple of these...). On the WiiWare front we have a couple of things that will likely stay in Japan and something we already..
Another big developer jumps on the VCA bandwagon!
Before publishers rerelease their old games on VC, they're required to renew the trademarks for them - a bunch of classic Konami trademarks appeared today, which seems to indicate they're going to be releasing arcade games as well! Konami has registered these new VC-related trademarks: Green Beret...
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..
Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo
Look forward to new horizons
Koei released quite an arsenal of strategy titles during the 16-bit era, many of them on the Super Nintendo console. While the original Uncharted Waters laid the foundation, its sequel New Horizons picked up right where it left off and managed to add quite a few new game play ideas to the mix to form one of the most...
A monster DSiWare update to kick off the new North American ‘Nintendo Download’. Worry not, Wiiware and VC fans are not completely forgotten this week either.
As you will see this week’s 'Nintendo Download' update is a bit of a beast as it includes all the DSiWare launch titles (which of course came out on Sunday!). For those thinking about...
There's no just masking how great it still is
Ocarina of Time proved that the Zelda series was even more captivating in 3D than it was in 2D. It is still regarded as one of the greatest games ever made, but despite this, at the very end of the N64's life, it got a sequel that quite a few people missed out on – Majora's Mask. Not counting the...
Another games tsunami hits the Japanese Wii Shop!
You know I just bought 6000 Wii points for the PAL service expecting a ton of new WiiWare and Virtual Console Arcade titles to appear imminently. I may be somewhat impatient, but it's extra disheartening to see two single-release Fridays in a row and then the nearly non-stop flood of content hitting...
DSiWare makes a splash while Link experiences a Groundhog Day
The European launch of the shiny new Nintendo DSi has predictably been accompanied by a smattering of equally shiny new DSiWare games. European gamers can choose from the following downloadable items: Art Style: AQUITE - 500 Nintendo points Art Style: CODE - 500 Nintendo points Birds...
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask graces the Virtual Console
A short while back Japan's Virtual Console forecast list for April revealed that The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask for Nintendo 64 would soon be hitting the service. In a surprise turn of events however, Nintendo is releasing the game first in Europe! Be sure to check your Wii Shop...
Times they are a-changin'
In the history of mankind there have been many great moments. The discovery of fire. The invention of the wheel. The harnessing of electricity. Now we can add yet another achievement to that list - the creation of the new-look Nintendo Life! Yes indeed, what you now gaze upon is the culmination of months of hard work and...
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...
It's catchup week again, as today's new VC release is Super Punch-Out!!, which was recently released in Europe.
Super Punch-Out!! once again puts you in the shoes of Little Mac (Which has finally been confirmed in today's press release - Nintendo previously never said who this boxer was!) as he fights through four increasingly difficult boxing...
Now that the Virtual Console has its very own arcade section, we couldn't help but begin thinking about all of the wonderful classic arcade titles we'd love to see pop up on the Virtual Console Arcade.
Below are ten arcade classics that we would love to see on the Virtual Console Arcade. Keep in mind that these games are listed in no particular...
While Capcom has now fully admitted that they knew about the Virtual Console Arcade long before the announcement was made, they've decided to remain quiet as far as what their plans are for supporting the service.
Below is a statement made by Capcom Corporate Officer/VP of Strategic Planning & Business Development Christian Svensson regarding Capcom's thoughts on Nintendo's recent announcements..
Scale a skyscraper to rescue your lost love in The Tower of Druaga.
The Tower of Druaga is a moderately infamous arcade game. As the knight Gil (Who is really Gilgamesh) you must work your way up a gigantic 60-floor tower to rescue your beloved princess Ki from the clutches of the evil Druaga. Each floor is quite literally a maze - Your objective on every single floor is to locate the key and then..
Lots of big surprises for Japan next month - Multiple famous game series are going to get another installment on their VC very soon. Of course this includes some Nintendo offerings as well!
The full list for April (And the last update of March) in Japan is as follows: Famicom: Takeshi no Chousenjou (March 31st) Castlevania III: Dracula's...
Remember the timeless classic, Galaga? Say hello to its successor, as the arcade version of Gaplus hits Virtual Console!
When Galaga first burst onto the scene back in 1981, it garnered almost instant popularity due to its intense shooting action and almost endless level of variety and challenge. Gone were the days where a fixed group of aliens...
It's a cat-and-mouse game like no other as you take control of Mappy, a brave police-mouse.
Arguably the most popular game in the first batch of arcade releases, Mappy follows the formula of other succesful titles of the time, including Namco's own Pac-Man - Your job is to collect objects while avoiding all enemies. The premise is that a gang of cats, called the Mewkies, have stolen a bunch of..
As you might've been able to tell from the first four arcade games available, Namco's not shy with releasing their back catalogue. That's why they've now revealed about 25 arcade games they're planning on releasing during the coming weeks - That's right, Japan is getting one game every week! No word yet on other regions, but of course we can hope we get the same treatment.
The full list of upcoming..
A huge global hit at the arcades, this classic shooter blasts its way back on Virtual Console!
Star Force was originally released in arcades in 1984 by Tecmo. It was yet another title in the rapidly growing crop of vertical scrolling shooters that were gaining in popularity during the time period. While the game play was still quite basic and didn't show some of the more advanced firepower of later..
You might remember that, quite a while ago, Square Enix said that it was unlikely the Final Fantasy games would be coming to VC, due to the remakes they love to make. It seems they've gone back on that statement now though, because, during Satoru Iwata's GDC keynote, it was announced that the first four Final Fantasy games on NES and SNES are all on the way to VC!
Of course, the catch is that only..
Run your Virtual Console games from an SD card!
It's the news all Virtual Console fans have been waiting for - you can now run all your downloaded VC games directly from an SD card instead of clogging up your Wii's limited internal memory! As the library of downloadable WiiWare and Virtual Console™ games continues to grow, Wii owners have asked Nintendo to provide easy, expanded storage space..
During Satoru Iwata's GDC keynote Nintendo was sneaky enough to release a Wii update for all regions - This features two long-wanted new things for your Wii!
First off, you can now finally do what Nintendo promised months ago. If you update your Wii now you will get a little blue icon of an SD card at the bottom of your Wii Menu - Clicking it lets...
It's the popular vertical-scrolling shooter renowned for its cute and comical world.
The Twinbee series of shooters hasn't seen a lot of action outside of Japan, so it should come as no surprise that this PC Engine version of Detana!! Twinbee was never released outside of Japan and marks yet another import release for Hudson on the Wii Virtual Console. Detana!! Twinbee first appeared in Japanese..
It finally looks like we have unofficial confirmation of the DSi's virtual console.
Check out Kombo for the whole story, but the highlight --as we can all agree, is the revelation that the DSi will allow you to download Game Boy and Game Boy Advance games. Yes, you read that right. But feel free to go back and read it another few times; this news is that good. Also nice the news that the DSi lets..
A recent hands-on event for the DSi yielded some interesting tidbits; who's up for downloadable Game Boy & GBA games to play on the go?
The event was aimed primarily at Gold and Platinum Club Nintendo Members, and a few details on Nintendo's third DS iteration have been re-confirmed; 0, 500, or 800 Nintendo Point costs for games and applications; A...
As was pretty much already confirmed by Hudson Entertainment, today's VC update brings a duo of well-loved PC Engine imports.
Naturally, both of these games cost 700 Wii Points because of import costs! Bomberman '94 is, naturally, the sequel to Bomberman '93. Aside from having quite impressive graphics and sound, the game mostly just expands on what was already there - There's a new story mode and..
Bomberman has arrived to restore peace on the planet
Bomberman has seen a release on just about every console out there over the years, and while you'll definitely get contrasting opinions on which version of the game is the best, it's pretty indisputable that Bomberman '94 is one of them. Bomberman '94 was never released outside of Japan for some...
Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo
Return of the Mac
Punch-Out!! on the NES has plenty of fans. For some reason, though, a lot of them seem to be completely unaware that there’s a second game in the series available on home consoles – this is rather strange, because Super Punch-Out!! is easily as good, if not better than the NES original. The main objective of the game is still...
According to Hudson Entertainment's Virtual Console website, two of Hudson's more popular import PC Engine titles, Bomberman '94 and Detana!! Twinbee, are headed to the North American Virtual Console this coming Monday, March 23.
Both titles were never previously released in North America, which explains their 700 Wii Point price tag, but both are well worth a look. We will have full reviews of..
Just as Nintendo of Europe announced yesterday, today only brings one new game, but it's a great one!
Super Punch-Out!! is the fourth game in the Punch-Out!! series. It's got a total of 16 opponents, both old and new, spread out across four circuits of increasing difficulty. The gameplay is pretty much exactly the same as in previous games, but...
Good news for boxing fans! You won't have to wait until May to get some more Punch-Out!! in your life - You'll be able to get your fix tonight!
As preparation for the new Wii version of Punch-Out!!, Nintendo of Europe will be releasing Super Punch-Out!! on VC with tonight's bi-weekly VC update. Super Punch-Out!! is more like the original two arcade...
It seems the three Commodore 64 games a few weeks ago were just to celebrate the US launch of the system. This week doesn't bring another three, or even two - Just one!
Summer Games II is part of Epyx's "Games" series, which consists of classics such as Winter Games, California Games and World Games. Just like in Europe, Commodore has...
In a move that wasn't completely unexpected, Nintendo has announced that not only will Wii Points change into Nintendo Points for the release of the DSi (In fact, they claim they already changed - Apparently 2000 Nintendo Points cards are already in stores!), but they will release two new cards with different values.
If you ever find yourself...
Yes, the OFLC has rated yet another batch of VC games today!
The least surprising of the bunch is Fantasy Zone II. It was already released in Japan in January, so a release elsewhere was to be expected any time, really! That's not all for the Master System though - Secret Command (Which Japan has had since June last year!) and the first Shinobi are also on the way. All three of these games are..
In this platformer from the 1980s, help Alex Kidd in a race against time to find the 12 missing zodiac signs.
Before Sonic came along and propelled them into the big time, the world identified a big eared lad by the name of Alex Kidd as Sega’s answer to Mario. Alex Kidd in Miracle World was a worthy alternative to Super Mario Bros in the mid 80s...
It's back to Sega games this week, it seems. Today's new game is the second game in the Alex Kidd series.
Alex Kidd: The Lost Stars was the beginning of a steep slope downhill for Sega's original mascot. The first Alex Kidd game was fairly good (We gave it a 7/10), but for the second game Sega made a massive mistake - They basically completely changed the gameplay! Instead of featuring special..
The once quiet town of Xenobia is under attack by fierce, gruesome monsters and no one can stop them!
Wonder Boy III: Monster Lair might seem incredibly familiar to Virtual Console addicts because the game has technically already been released on Nintendo’s download service – in the guise of Monster Lair on the TG-16! The complexities of the...
Let's see how generous Nintendo is for Europe this week - We get a game the US already has and a game which is already available in a superior form!
Clu Clu Land is likely the third-last non-import Nintendo game for the NES (The last remaining likely games being Golf and Pro Wrestling). You play as Bubbles as you float around a maze, grabbing poles...
You must succeed in ousting the evil usurpers - your fate, and that of the entire population, depends on it.
The Ogre Battle series has long been a favorite among hardcore strategy fans and it won't take you long to see why that is once you begin playing any of them. This Super Nintendo release of Ogre Battle has become quite a coveted game cartridge over the years and its rarity has made it even..
You're in for a treat today - Another Square Enix classic will be available in the Wii Shop. Some might say it's one of their best games, but what is definitely a fact is that it's one of the rarest SNES games - Only about 25000 copies were released in the US, meaning the VC version will be much cheaper than actually finding the game.
Ogre Battle: The March of the Black Queen is the first game in..
Remember when the last TG16 games were released in North America? It was way back in October last year. Since then there hasn't been a single Hudson game on VC - A lot of people even thought that they dropped support entirely.
We can now say for sure however that this is definitely not the case - Hudson Entertainments's North American TG16 VC site has updated with two titles to be released in..
Even Japan seems to be getting less and less VC games - Only 7 games will be released in March! There's two surprises this time - One's a great game which was thought to be stuck in licensing hell, while the other's a legendary Japan-only game which is commonly thought to be one of the worst games ever made!
The full list is as follows: Famicom: Clu Clu Land D (A Disk System "sequel" to..
With the popularity of digital downloads at an all-time high, it should come as no surprise that governments are beginning to look at ways to tax them.
The State of Wisconsin just recently signed a bill into law that allows for a 5% tax on all digital downloads spanning music, books, ring tones, and even video games. The state expects to rack up nearly 7 million dollars yearly from the tax once the..
In an interesting move, Nintendo of Japan today announced that they are planning to release an updated version of the Classic Controller, called the Classic Controller Pro.
It mostly seems to be a design change - The cord connecting it to the Wii remote is now on the top instead of the bottom, there are now two grips to make holding the controller slightly easier, and the ZL and ZR buttons are now..
Nintendo of Japan's website has recently had an update which now includes an additional Wii controller, the Classic Controller PRO.
The new controller seems to be extremely similar to the existing Classic Controller but has the additional shoulder buttons (found on Gamecube) and a more Gamecube controller shape. The website states the controller will be available this summer and we'll take a guess..
As many guessed from the hints in last week's press release, the Commodore 64 has joined the North American Virtual Console today. With it come three games - An action game, a fighter, and a racer, so there's got to be at least something for a lot of people. All C64 games cost 500 Wii Points, just like in Europe.
The Last Ninja is the first game in the Last Ninja series. As Armakuni, the last..
The observant among you may have noticed that the scoring system has changed at VC Reviews from a five star system to a far more expressive scale of ten. We have debated making this change for some time as so many classics ended up getting rated with five stars (rightly of course!). Now you’ll notice a lot more 9/10 scores and only a handful...
This is the winter portion of the world's foremost amateur sports competition, matching skills against the top athletes from one hundred countries.
It was inevitable that after two batches of events from the summer side of the Olympic festival that the third entry in the Games series would concentrate on the winter side instead. Offering seven different events, Winter Games features the ubiquitous..
This week offers no real surprises for Europe. One game was released in the US last week instead of ClayFighter, heavily hinting it would hit Europe soon, and the other game was bound to come sometime!
Wolf of the Battlefield: MERCS is the second game in the Commando series. You can take control of one of a number of muscular characters as you trek through jungles, mountains and villages blowing up..
Wii Virtual Console / NES
Use the force!
For those not in the know, Life Force started out life known as Salamander in Japan and was renamed for Western audiences. The Salamander series is a spin off to Konami’s famous Gradius franchise of shooters; the main differences in Salamander are the introduction of a simultaneous 2 player mode, vertically scrolling stages in...
You're no doubt aware that the much wanted EarthBound was ESRB rated quite some time ago. Nintendo has never particularly done much with the Mother series outside Japan, only releasing EarthBound in the US and for the most part just letting people wonder where Ness from Super Smash Bros. was from. Obviously, when the ESRB rating appeared, many people got excited that one of the biggest cult classics ever could possibly be rereleased on VC.
Sadly, it appears that this is not going to happen now. As yo...
Good news for shoot 'em up fans - Arguably the best shmup on the NES is available today!
Life Force is a spin-off of the Gradius series. You once again control Vic Viper (Or Lord British) as you make your way through numerous stages to beat the aliens again. The main difference between Life Force and the Gradius games is the level layout - Gradius always has horizontal levels, but Life Force has..
While there's no denying that Hudson has already enjoyed quite a bit of success on Nintendo's WiiWare service, it's not been all good news for those of us who are still anxiously awaiting more Turbografx-16 Virtual Console releases.
Since they began releasing games on the WiiWare service, Hudson has all but stopped releasing any Turbografx-16 titles outside of Japan and according to our Japanese..
The OFLC has updated once again with ratings for some games which will soon be coming to Europe/Australia.
The least surprising of the lot is Clu Clu Land. It's already available in the US and was released in PAL regions originally, so it's no shock that it's coming to the VC elsewhere. Also not really unexpected is Kirby's Dream Land 3. Also already available in the US, it wasn't released in..
Join a group of professional mercenaries to undergo secret missions, battling through enemy lines to go where no ordinary soldier would dare to go.
Once upon a time, back before Capcom officially started supporting the Genesis/Mega Drive, Sega acquired licence to reprogram various arcade classics produced by the developer. Ghouls ‘n’ Ghosts,...
Instead of ClayFighter, today sees the VC release of another Capcom classic. It's not that surprising though, because Capcom hinted that it would be released not too long ago!
Mercs, now renamed Wolf of the Battlefield: MERCS, as promised by Capcom, is an overhead run and gun game for the Genesis. You can pick one of a number of characters as you run through jungles, villages, mountains and enemy..
ClayFighter is a 2D fighting game in which the characters, as the name suggests, are made completely out of clay.
When Clayfighter was first released on the 16-bit consoles in 1993, claymation had never before been used in video gaming. While television shows and motion pictures had experimented with the technology to varying degrees of success, it wasn't until the guys at Interplay decided to make..
Hanabi Festival enthusiasts have to wait a bit longer, it seems - Due to recent OFLC ratings, many thought one would be right around the corner, but Nintendo seems to have given this VC week to Sega instead.
The first new game this week is ClayFighter for the Mega Drive. Attempting to cash in on other popular games at the time, such as Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat, Visual Concepts created one..
Nintendo's Virtual Console shop has 1 new release this week, Sonic Chaos (SMS).
Sonic ChaosSystem: Master SystemRelease Date: Mon 2nd Feb (US) Play as Sonic or Tails in Sonic Chaos, which was originally made for the Sega Master System. Dr. Eggman (a.k.a. Dr. Robotnik) has stolen the Red Chaos Emerald to create nuclear weapons. This has thrown the remaining Chaos Emeralds off balance, causing them..
Play as Sonic or Tails in Sonic Chaos, which was originally made for the Sega Master System.
For those gamers in 1993 who were still unfortunate enough to not have not upgraded to the Sega Mega Drive / Genesis this third 8-bit Sonic adventure might hold some memories. It is unlikely that many will remember this Master System swansong however. That...
The streak of high-profile releases for the US continues - As Sonic 3 wasn't remade for the Master System, Sega has decided it's time to release the other Sonic games for the system.
Sonic Chaos is the third Master System Sonic game. The Chaos Emeralds have been stolen yet again, so Sonic and Tails will have to travel through six zones to get them...
It's that time of the month again! Time to see what VC games Japan will be getting next month. Not much surprises this time really - Square Enix continues its support with a Japan-exclusive game, while Sega releases another game in their original mascot's franchise. Nothing really too stunning this time though! Two new games which could potentially be released elsewhere are on the list too.
Capcom occassionally makes a blog post about their upcoming VC games - They've done it again today for Mercs. The game was already rated by various rating boards ages ago (And released in Japan not so long ago), so it's nice to finally see it released on VC in the US and Europe.
What's interesting is that the blog post also says they have renamed the game. As you might be aware, Mercs is actually..
It's been quite a while since the last OFLC update, but today they've finally revealed some new VC games again! Both of them are imports, which might mean that another Hanabi Festival for Europe is not too far away.
Bomberman '94 is the sequel to Bomberman '93. If you're familiar with Mega Bomberman for the Mega Drive, this is the same game, although this version is actually usually considered..
Today's US VC update isn't very surprising. This week's new game was released in Europe last Friday.
Wonder Boy in Monster Land is the second game in the Wonder Boy series and the first to introduce more RPG elements. Unlike later games however, it still clearly has some features from the original game, such as the fact it's rock-hard! If you don't count imports and different versions of games..
Wii Virtual Console / Master System
Ale or mead?
Sega’s follow-up to the legendary Wonder Boy on the Master System took our hero Tom-Tom out of his former prehistoric setting into a medieval fantasy world. This game started out life as an arcade machine and also got ports to home computers and the Japanese PC Engine (TG-16) under the name of Bikkuriman World. Wonder Boy II really...
Here's some interesting news - According to those who have already downloaded Wonder Boy in Monster Land, it is possible to press the "-" button during gameplay to open up a special menu containing two options.
The first option is fairly simple. It allows you to swap the functions of the 1 and 2 buttons on the Wii remote. The second feature is rather interesting though, as it allows you..
This week, Europe finally gets another N64 game! Can you believe it's been almost 8 months since the last one? Accompanying it is what is likely to be the last Wonder Boy game on VC.
Mario Golf was strangely already released in the US and Japan months ago before finally appearing in Europe this week. This is the first Mario Golf game, and although...
Some of our readers have informed us that there's another C64 interview available on the Nintendo Channel in select European countries - This one's with Ian Livingstone, the co-creator of Games Workshop, nowadays mostly known for their Warhammer franchise of board and videogames. Ian also created Fighting Fantasy, a popular choose your own adventure book series.
As in the John Rowlands interview,..
Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive
We've got much love for MUSHA!
Mention the name Compile to any serious shooter fanatic and you’re likely to be faced with a barrage of nostalgic ranting. The now defunct company was responsible for some of the finest blasters the video game industry has seen, including Super Aleste (also known as Space Megaforce), Gunhed and Zanac. Surprisingly, MUSHA (which stands for 'Metallic Uniframe Super..
If you live in the UK and you've got the Nintendo Channel installed you can now watch an interview with a popular C64 developer - John Rowlands, the creator of Mayhem in Monsterland, Creatures 1 and 2, and other classics.
Strangely enough the video isn't available in most European countries (And obviously not in the rest of the world either), but not to worry, as a kind soul has already recorded..
Nintendo's streak of good VC games continues this week with a fantastic Genesis shoot 'em up! It's also a super-rare game, so for people who've been longing to play the game this will be a much cheaper option than hunting down a cartridge.
MUSHA is the US title for Musha Aleste, which is, as you can obviously tell from the title, part of the Aleste...