Latest Reviews

  • Review Clu Clu Land (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Clu Clu a choo

    First, a lesson in linguistics – ‘Kurukuru’ in Japanese means ‘turning around’. Why are we telling you this? Well, it neatly explains Clu Clu Land’s rather unusual title, and also gives some insight into the mechanics of the game. You assume the role of a funny-looking fish called Bubbles, who due to some cruel...

  • Review Ys Book I & II (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    Ys Book I & II chronicles the first adventures of Adol Christin, a young, red-haired swordsman on a quest to unlock the secrets of an ancient kingdom.

    Even the most hardened TG16 fan will admit that the machine wasn’t exactly a massive success when it was released in the States. It struggled against the Genesis and SNES despite having some great...

  • Review Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars (Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Mario + RPG = WIN!

    What do you get when one of the best RPG creators in the world decides to build an RPG around one of the most recognizable video game characters in history? What you get is a video game that is considered one of the greatest ever made and an RPG that's not only unique, but extremely playable as well. Many were skeptical when the...

  • Review Pitstop II (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    Pitstop II is the first racing game that brings you the thrill of battling an opponent, the excitement of fighting for the lead out on the track and the suspense of struggling to be the first out of the pits.

    Racing games, as a whole, haven't exactly aged as well as games from other genres over the years, but there's still something to be said for...

  • Review Samurai Shodown II (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    First released in 1994, this fighting game follows 15 samurai in their individual quests.

    Let's face it, the majority of SNKs existence is based around their unrelenting quest to come up with a fighting game for their system that could stand toe-to-toe with Capcom's immensely popular Street Fighter II arcade game. Samurai Shodown has the unique...

  • Review Sonic the Hedgehog (Virtual Console / Master System)

    Sonic's back in 8-bit style.

    Following the undoubted success of Sonic The Hedgehog on the Mega Drive it seems only fitting that a version of the game was created for the Sega’s 8-bit wonder, the Master System which still had strong support in Europe at the time. This game was also something of a swan song to North American gamers who had took a...

  • Review Splatterhouse 2 (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Rick, once again encounters the Terror Mask and must use its powers to rescue his beloved Jennifer.

    Rick is back! After the Terror Mask from the first Splatterhouse comes back and tells him his girlfriend (Who seemingly meets an unpleasant fate in the first game) can still be saved, Rick puts on the mask again, and goes back to the remains of the...

  • Review Chase H.Q. (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    Let's go Mr. Driver!

    Back in 1988 Taito released Chase HQ into arcades around the world. It took the driving aspects from many other racing games of the time period and coupled them together with the intense action of a high-speed police pursuit. While this offered a nice change of pace from the typical and often redundant racing experiences found...

  • Review International Karate + (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    Karate fighting has never been so much fun.

    After the original was released as one of the two debut C64 titles on the VC, we didn't have to wait too long for the even better sequel to appear. At heart the same game, the plus in IK+ refers to a key difference - a third fighter. Whilst you could previously compete against a friend or the computer one...

  • Review Neo Turf Masters (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Golf in Neo Geo style.

    There are basically two good golf games available for the Neo Geo. Top Player's Golf was released in 1990 and is a solid and playable golf game in and of itself, but Neo Turf Masters, which was released 6 years later, is clearly a much more refined and enjoyable golfing experience. The game features some very playable game...

  • Review Donkey Kong 3 (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Bug off

    Poor old Stanley the Bugman, not only have all the bugs got into his greenhouse, there’s a big ape pestering him too. To add insult to injury, he would never feature as a playable character in another Nintendo game again and be forgotten forever, whilst Mario went on to international stardom. Donkey Kong 3 started out life in the arcades...

  • Review Art of Fighting 2 (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Garcia is back

    The original Art of Fighting may not have threatened Street Fighter II in terms of gameplay but it certainly turned a few heads and stole some of the trade away from Capcom’s seminal 2D fighter. This second game takes the core concept of the first title and gently refines several aspects to create a far more enjoyable (but sadly...

  • Review Ninja Commando (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Ikari Warriors with ninjas - awesome!

    Ninja Commando is often confused for Ninja Combat or even its sequel, but in fact, it's neither. Ninja Commando is basically an overheard run 'n gun game that feels a lot like the arcade classic Ikari Warriors at times, although it doesn't quite have the same level of playability. While the game is an earlier...

  • Review Summer Games II (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    The pinnacle of athletic achievement. The Summer Games.

    The second Epyx sports title (and third Virtual Console release) provides eight entertaining events, of which half can be enjoyed split-screen with another player. As usual, you have a choice of which events to compete in (or practice) and how many players there are – each represented by...

  • Review Super Fantasy Zone (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Take on the role of Opa-Opa, who is on a mission to avenge the death of his father.

    Given that the original Fantasy Zone achieved quite a cult status in arcades and on the various 8-bit consoles of the time period, it's certainly no surprise that the game spawned a few sequels and spin-offs. Super Fantasy Zone represents what many fans of the series...

  • Review King of the Monsters (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Monster mash

    King of the Monsters is one of those titles that, despite being a very mediocre game overall, enjoys a fairly strong following around the gaming community. The game takes the classic "giant monster stomping through cities" made famous in the King Kong and Godzilla movies, and somehow builds a one-on-one fighting game around it. But...

  • Review Cybernoid: The Fighting Machine (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    Federation storage depots have been raided by pirates, taking valuable minerals, jewels, ammunition and the latest battle weaponry.

    Part shooter, part maze game, you are tasked to track down and retrieve stolen cargo from pirates, returning it to a storage depot at the end of each level (of which there are 3) before time runs out. Not that the...

  • Review Fatal Fury 2 (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Street Fighter 2 it ain't

    Although the original Fatal Fury was undoubtedly one of the best challengers to square up to Capcom’s Street Fighter 2, many would argue that SNK’s franchise didn’t really get into its stride until the sequel was released. Improving on the first title in practically every way possible, Fatal Fury 2 was one of the...

  • Review Nebulus (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    Weird things are happening on Planet Nebulus.

    Nebulus (known as Tower Toppler in the US and Castelian in its NES and Game Boy incarnations) is another title from Hewson that is memorable largely due to its idiosyncratic presentation. The game is particularly noted for its striking visual design, and justifiably so, as it takes the basic structure of...

  • Review Last Ninja 2: Back with a Vengeance (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    The Ninja, known as the Mystic Shadow Warriors, were the elite fighting force of Ninth Century Feudal Japan.

    The second instalment of the Last Ninja trilogy transports Armakuni to New York, where he must confront the evil Shogun Kunitoki once more. Your travels are once again displayed in a flip screen isometric format, as you explore the...

  • Review Alex Kidd in Miracle World (Virtual Console / Master System)

    In Miracle World you'll have to contend with the evil Janken the Great, who will send his henchmen and monsters at you to thwart your progress.

    Following the incredible success of Nintendo’s Super Mario Bros series, Sega decided that it too needed a platform game with an identifiable mascot. The result was Alex Kidd in Miracle World, which...

  • Review Dig Dug (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Do we dig it?

    Pac-Man wasn't the only popular arcade game Namco made. Aside from Galaga, Mappy, and others, there was also Dig Dug. In Dig Dug, your objective is to dig through the earth's soil and eliminate the monsters lurking within it. You can move through the soil (Thus creating tunnels) by simply moving around, but defeating the monsters is...

  • Review Bio Miracle Bokutte Upa (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Oh baby!

    Let's be honest, a platformer built around a tiny baby and his rattle doesn't exactly beam with potential from the start, so it's no small wonder that this game was originally rejected by Nintendo of America at the time it was submitted for release in the US. But if you look at screenshots of Bio Miracle Bokutte Upa and prematurely dismiss...

  • Review Ninja Combat (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Ninja Combat is a scrolling beat 'em up featuring, as the title suggests, ninjas.

    One of the first releases for SNK’s Neo Geo console, Ninja Combat is unsurprisingly a little rough around the edges. Graphically it’s not really a massive leap up from the likes of the SNES or Megadrive/Genesis (bear in mind that when this game was first published...

  • Review Burning Fight (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    A poor mans Final Fight

    In the early days of the Neo-Geo SNK tried its hardest to cover all of the potential money-making bases of arcade and home console gaming. Fatal Fury catered to the one-on-one fighting crowd, NAM 1975 was an Operation Wolf clone with a difference, and Burning Fight clearly looked towards Capcom’s Final Fight for...

  • Review Samurai Shodown (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    VICTOLY!

    SNK became something of a fighting game factory in the early ‘90s, releasing titles like Art of Fighting and Fatal Fury to capitalize on public interest in the genre that had been kick started by a certain 2D fighting title from Cacpom. However, Samurai Showdown (or Samurai Spirits, as it was known in Japan) marked a real change of pace...

  • Review City Connection (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Driving round a bend

    City Connection was a moderately popular arcade game in the early '80s. The game stars you as a rather strapping young man driving around the world to paint the roads white in order to prove he's been there. Doesn't make much sense to us, but hey, whatever floats his boat! While doing so you must watch out for cars (including...

  • Review Paradroid (Virtual Console / Commodore 64)

    The droid crew of a galactic space freighter have turned against their masters and eradicated every human crew member!

    Legendary amongst C64 fans, and one of the highest rated games of the time, Paradroid’s depth of gameplay has kept it a firm favourite over 20 years later. Loosely categorised as a shoot-em-up, this description belies the subtle...

  • Review Sky Kid (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    We're not kidding

    Sky Kid is a NES port of the arcade game with the same name. You play as the Red Baron or Blue Max, both famous World War I pilots. Your mission is to fly through hordes of enemy formations, pick up a bomb, and drop it on the enemy's headquarters or main weapon. It is noteworthy that in this game, unlike most shoot 'em ups, you go...

  • Review Gley Lancer (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    In the year 2025, a war breaks out between humans and a hostile alien race.

    The Virtual Console certainly isn’t short of 2D shooters. We’ve seen some excellent (and not so excellent) examples of the genre come and go, but most of the games we’ve experienced so far are retro classics and will have been familiar to fans already. Gley Lancer, on...