Latest Reviews

  • Review Psychosis (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    This is a side-scrolling shooter played in a world created from the mind of a twisted demon.

    The PC Engine/TG-16 is a machine that is famous for its wide and diverse range of shooting titles, but Psychosis (also known as Paranoia in Japan) is one title that you might not be familiar with, despite the fact that it was deemed worthy of a Western...

  • Review River City Ransom (NES)

    Big trouble in River City

    Street Gangs — known as River City Ransom in North America — is a strange game. It's one of many in the extremely popular Japanese "Kunio-kun" series, which started in the arcade and is still going strong today, with the latest instalment being on the DS. Every game in the series has the same main character, Kunio, but...

  • Review Ninja Gaiden III: The Ancient Ship of Doom (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    One sequel too many

    Ninja Gaiden is practically a household name now thanks to the fantastic Xbox title and the very promising (not to mention gory) next-gen sequel. The NES original is still fairly well known and fondly remembered, but the two 8-bit sequels are more obscure. If you’re one of the many people that weren’t aware of this third NES...

  • Review Phantasy Star II (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Hailed as one of the greatest games of all time by fans

    The original Phantasy Star never really had the impact it deserved, mainly thanks to the fact that its host platform - the Sega Master System – failed to sell in significant numbers in the US. The series would have to wait until the introduction of the Genesis/Megadrive before it would gain...

  • Review Lords of Thunder (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    Lords of Thunder is a side-scrolling shooter that has you take on the role of a legendary warrior, blasting enemies to heavy-metal tunes.

    TG16 fans thought they’d died and gone to heaven when Gate of Thunder was published for the system. A shooter of truly epic magnitude, it rocketed the underrated machine to the top of the pile when it came to...

  • Review Columns III: Revenge of Columns (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Oooh it's the revenge of Columns - I'm really scared!

    Sega’s answer to Tetris is back once again. The first Columns has already been released on the Virtual Console and Sega never bothered to port the Columns II arcade game to the Megadrive/Genesis, so we swiftly move on to Columns III. While not terribly innovative in terms of concept, the...

  • Review Operation Wolf (Virtual Console / NES)

    Operation initiated! Rescue the prisoners!

    Operation Wolf was a massive hit in arcades when it was released in 1987. Although the concept of light gun games wasn’t a new one, Taito’s imposing arcade cabinet (replete with uber-cool replica Uzi) certainly made a lasting impact on gamers worldwide. Predictably, it was ported to pretty much every...

  • Review Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Street Fighter made super

    Gazing back into the mists of time, you can’t help but be amazed that Capcom managed to get everyone so excited about each new Street Fighter II update. On the Virtual Console alone we’ve already had two versions of the game, and now here’s the third! Thankfully, the improvements between the first SNES release and the...

  • Review Adventures of Lolo 2 (Virtual Console / NES)

    Lolo and Lala are back in this sequel to the popular puzzle game Adventures of Lolo.

    So you liked the original Adventures of Lolo and want more? Well, look no further. The sequel's basically the exact same. Like the first game, the objective is to collect all the Heart Framers in a room to open up a treasure chest. Then you enter the next room, and...

  • Review 1080° Snowboarding (Virtual Console / Nintendo 64)

    Thrills and chills

    1080° Snowboarding is a title that divided gamers when it was first released. Here was a game that mixed Nintendo's usual penchant for killer gameplay with a more serious subject matter than the company was used to dealing with. It got lazily compared to fellow N64 stable mate Wave Race and came out looking worse, because it was...

  • Review Pac-Attack (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Watch your back or Pac will attack, you don't want that!

    Not even Pac-Man escaped the 8 and 16-bit eras without a spinoff puzzle game to his name. Pac-Attack was an obvious cash-in by Namco on games like Tetris, Dr. Mario, and Puyo-Puyo, but it's actually quite good! The game is an edited version of the arcade game Cosmo Gang the Puzzle (based on...

  • Review Riot Zone (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    I predict a riot!

    Released back when the scrolling fighter was still seen as a massive money-spinner, Riot Zone (AKA: Crest of Wolf in Japan) was Hudson’s attempt at muscling in on the territory traditionally presided over by Capcom (Final Fight, Captain Commando, Knights of the Round, etc) and Sega (Streets of Rage, Golden Axe). Now let’s not...

  • Review StarTropics (NES)

    Embark on an extraordinary adventure

    On first sight, StarTropics looks eerily like Zelda (in fact, when you start it up, there's the same name entry screen!). So you might be thinking, what's all the fuss about? StarTropics is about a typical American teenager, Mike Jones, who heads to the tropics to meet his archaeologist uncle after receiving a...

  • Review Harvest Moon (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Farm life

    Harvest Moon, a role-playing game based around the noble profession of farming, was one of the later Super NES releases when it arrived in 1997. If you are not familiar with this series, stay with us — it's not as bad or as boring as it sounds on paper This is basically The Sims on a farm. So, if you're a fan of simulation and RPG...

  • Review Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble! (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Double the trouble, double the fun?

    After the stellar Donkey Kong Country 2, people were wondering if the third game would be even more amazing. It was released very late in the SNES's lifecycle, so naturally it was expected that Rare would be pulling out all the stops. In DK Country 3’s storyline, both DK and Diddy have been kidnapped. You're...

  • Review Skate or Die! (Virtual Console / NES)

    Hop on your board and take part in five extreme skate events!

    Long before the Tony Hawk’s franchise made skateboarding games mainstream the cool kids got their kicks on Skate or Die for the NES. The action begins in Rodney Recloose’s skateboard shop. He’s a crazy middle-aged dude with a blue Mohawk who organises different event such as...

  • Review Blades of Steel (Virtual Console / NES)

    With sharpened blades and a lethal stick, you slash into a rink surrounded by thousands of screaming fans.

    Blades of Steel, much like one of Konami's other NES sports games, Double Dribble, was loved all over the world back in the day. Double Dribble didn't hold up that well, so you may wonder how its ice hockey has fared. Actually, it has aged...

  • Review Alien Storm (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Shape-shifting aliens have infiltrated the city, creating chaos and panic!

    There’s an alien invasion. Save the people! Kill the aliens! Not the most original premise for a game, granted, but Alien Storm carries its heart on its sleeve. Pretensions of artistry and greatness are laid aside; the story serves only as fodder to introduce baddies that...

  • Review Monster Lair (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    Join young Adam and Laura as they embark on a fantastic adventure in this comical action/shooting game.

    Before you get excited, this isn’t your traditional Wonderboy adventure. Although we’ve already been blessed with Virtual Console versions of the quite frankly sublime Wonderboy in Monsterworld (Genesis / Mega Drive) and the exceptional...

  • Review Mega Man 2 (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Can Mega Man save the world again?

    Surprisingly, the original Mega Man (or Rockman, as the series is known in Japan) did not perform very well. Initially reluctant, Capcom allowed its creator Keiji Inafune to create a sequel as a side-project in his own spare time, however, and with the effort of a few colleagues and a lot of time, he created Mega...

  • Review Top Hunter: Roddy & Cathy (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Take on the role of either Roddy or Cathy, bounty hunters in this side-scrolling action game set far in the future when humans have colonized space.

    I'm sure many have played at least one game in SNK's awesome shoot 'em up franchise, Metal Slug. But did you know that SNK also created a game that's similar, yet at the same time quite different? They...

  • Review Pokémon Snap (Virtual Console / Nintendo 64)

    Playing this is a snap

    Pokémon Snap's an odd one - it's not an adventure game like the handheld versions or a fighting game like those on the console. Instead, you have to take pictures of Pokémon! You play as Todd, who you might know from the anime. He has been asked by Professor Oak to take pictures of the various Pokémon around the island for...

  • Review Ghosts 'n Goblins (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    Arthur's first ghostly quest

    You thought Ghouls 'n Ghosts and Super Ghouls 'n Ghosts were hard? The NES original, Ghosts 'n Goblins set the bar. The main focus of the game is pretty much the same as in the sequels. Princess Prin-Prin has been kidnapped by demons and Arthur, the one-man army, sets out to rescue her. He's armed with only a lance and...

  • Review Rolling Thunder 2 (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Bring the thunder!

    Rolling Thunder 2 is a conversion of Namco’s 1990 sequel to its original James Bond themed Shinobi-like game. The Megadrive home version is faithful to the arcade original in terms of gameplay and features a few improvements, including cut scenes between levels that feature some lovely artwork, 3 additional stages and some new...

  • Review Cybernator (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Don't be a Cybernator hater

    The Japanese have a real love for big robots that hasn't entirely crossed over into the West. Thankfully Cybernator (AKA: Assault Suit Valken) - a follow up to the Megadrive Assault Suit Leynos/Target Earth - made the jump from East to West and remains one of the more memorable SNES shooters. After the mission-based...

  • Review Light Crusader (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Take the role of Sir David in this action-RPG and get to the bottom of the mysteries of Green Row.

    After dazzling Megadrive/Genesis owners with the likes of Gunstar Heroes and Dynamite Headdy (let’s forget Ronald’s McDonaldland Adventure for now), Treasure turned its talents to the Action RPG genre with this 1995 release. Published in the...

  • Review Eternal Champions (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    This 2-D fighting game introduces a cast of different characters that met untimely deaths in their lives on Earth.

    Released at a time when Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat were both selling like hotcakes, Eternal Champions may have had players thinking it was an exploitative cash-in to make Sega a quick buck. This could not be further from the...

  • Review Zanac (Virtual Console / NES)

    Take control of the state-of-the-art fighter, Zanac, with the objective of destroying the bases of the mechanized enemy forces.

    When you’ve got shooters of the calibre of Gate of Thunder, Soldier Blade and Super Star Soldier to choose from, it’s not unreasonable to question the sanity of downloading a NES blaster; surely anything available on...

  • Review Baseball Stars 2 (Virtual Console / Neo Geo)

    Lace up your cleats and step onto the diamond with the pros of Baseball Stars 2.

    Are you getting sick of all the sub-par sports games on VC (excluding Kirby's Dream Course, Punch-Out!! and, to some, Ice Hockey)? Yeah? Well, here's Baseball Stars 2 - a game breaks every rule in the book and delivers a completely crazy experience filled to the top...

  • Review The Dynastic Hero (Virtual Console / TurboGrafx-16)

    Take control of Dyna as he battles through action-filled stages.

    Dynastic Hero is basically identical to the Megadrive Wonderboy in Monsterworld. Anyone who has played this MD classic will know that this is no bad thing - it's one of the strongest titles in the Wonderboy series. However, this version features different characters. I can only guess...