Despite its rough edges, we're still fans of WaterMelon Games' faux-retro RPG Pier Solar here at Nintendo Life, having followed the development of the game from its release on the Sega Genesis / Mega Drive all the way up to its eventual launch on the Wii U eShop. When we heard that the company was producing another 16-bit title, modelled after belt-scrolling fighters like Streets of Rage and Final Fight, our interest was well and truly piqued.
That was way back in March 2017, however, and Paprium has endured a rather torrid development period since then. In 2018, the game's co-creator and lead artist Luis Martins spoke exclusively to us about the lack of transparency and poor communication skills of WaterMelon boss Gwenael "Fronzie" Godde, and that he was, at that point, still awaiting payment for his work on the game.
Later that year, the story became even more strange as a 'launch party' for the game revealed that the title wasn't even in a finished state.
Despite all of this, it would seem that the troubled project is finally nearing its conclusion:
Amazingly, even though the Paprium saga has left a bad taste in the mouths of many, WaterMelon has just announced another Genesis project – but it's expecting people to lay down cash before even seeing a single screenshot.
Entitled A(...)M(...)96, it's another scrolling fighter for Sega's 16-bit console, and will cost you $169 for the standard version and $229 for the limited edition. WaterMelon clearly expects this to become something of a collector's item, as it is only creating a single batch, and warns buyers "if you miss it now, you miss it forever!" It is also encouraging people to buy in bulk, stating that a discount will be applied to orders of more than 7 units, and that any order over $4999 will get a "free arcade cab, custom-made for the game."