Latest Reviews

  • Review Zombies Ate My Neighbors (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    B-Grade horror movie action comes to the Virtual Console.

    Every once in a while a game is released that's so unique it garners a cult following and becomes more popular years later than when it was first released. Toe Jam & Earl for the Sega Genesis is one such game, but another prime example would be Konami's Zombies Ate My Neighbors. The game...

  • Review Shinobi (Wii Virtual Console / Virtual Console Arcade)

    Put on your ninja suit and rescue the kiddies once again!

    After treating retro gaming fans to the delights of Revenge of Shinobi and Shinobi III from the Mega Drive / Genesis, it is only right that SEGA bring us back to basics and let us get our grubby mitts on the original arcade game from 1987 where this glorious franchise began. Considered to be...

  • Review Porky Pig's Haunted Holiday (Super Nintendo)

    A Looney Tunes platformer that's actually not too shabby.

    For anyone who's watched the classic Porky Pig cartoons, you know that animators were quite fond of placing our stuttering pig friend into scary situations. Who could forget the leprechaun shoes or the moose head with the gun barrel protruding from its mouth. Well you'll be happy to know that...

  • Review Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap (Virtual Console / Master System)

    It's a trap!

    Wonder Boy III: The Dragon’s Trap marks the end of the Master System trilogy. It’s a direct sequel to the wonderful Wonder Boy in Monster Land with the action starting out in the final lair of the last game. Unlike the original Wonder Boy, though, there are no loincloths in sight. Most Master System fans will consider this game to...

  • Review Final Fight 2 (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Final Fight for two

    The Mad Gear gang are back and out for revenge. This time they’ve kidnapped Guy’s fiancée Rena and her farther, so it falls to Haggar and friends to rescue them from the gang’s evil clutches. The original Final Fight was a classic side-scrolling brawler which received two paltry SNES ports, the first of which is already...

  • Review Final Fantasy (Virtual Console / NES)

    The game that kicked off the most popular RPG series in existence.

    Role-playing games began their climb to popularity during the early 80's on the many personal computers of the time period. These turn-based titles brought a more strategic element to gaming for those looking to use their minds more than their reflexes. Square obviously saw the...

  • Review Banjo Tooie (Nintendo 64)

    Can you bear second helpings?

    Banjo Kazooie was a game that revolutionised platforming on the N64: Rare's off-the-wall-humour, creative level design and sublime controls made it the pinnacle of platforming on Nintendo's console. Fans of the original will most likely remember Rare's lavish promises about the second game, Banjo Tooie, including the...

  • Review Super Double Dragon (Super Nintendo)

    Billy and Jimmy Lee star in Super Double Draggin'!

    The scene is set: grimy, littered streets patrolled by ruthless gangs, whose sole intent is to cause mayhem in the neighbourhood. This urban jungle setting for Return of Double Dragon (Super Double Dragon in the West) is as synonymous with 2D side scrolling beat-em-ups as it was with movies like The...

  • Review R-Type (Virtual Console / Master System)

    Blast off and attack the evil Bydo Empire once again in 8-bit!

    While we applaud Sega for bringing some of its most fondly remembered Master System games to the Virtual Console, we can’t help feeling that on this occasion it is a little bit pointless. After all, we’ve had a near arcade perfect port of R-Type on the TurboGrafx-16 since 2006, which...

  • Review Biker Mice From Mars (Super Nintendo)

    Time to rock 'n ride!

    If you want to know what Biker Mice from Mars is like, think of it this way. Take RC Pro-Am for the NES, change the cars into Harleys, and then throw a bunch of thug-like mice onto those bikes and there you have it. It's pretty much a carbon copy of the ideas and gameplay found in RC Pro-Am, with the over-the-top weirdness of...

  • Review Star Fox (Super Nintendo)

    Pretty Foxy stuff...

    In 1993 the Mega Drive / Genesis was selling well and 2D was the bread and butter of console gaming. "Emergency, emergency… emergency, emergency! Incoming fighters prepare for launch", hailed the 16-bit Nintendo counter attack. For Sega and NEC it was too late: the swooping Nintendo Arwing squadron hammered the early...

  • Review Soul Blazer (Super Nintendo)

    Still one of the greatest action RPGs ever created.

    At a time when action RPGs were truly beginning to catch on with gamers, Soul Blazer came along and offered up an adventure that was as charming and engaging as any role-playing game fans had experienced. Taking many of the unique gameplay elements found in the Actraiser title that came before it,...

  • Review Golden Axe (Virtual Console / Virtual Console Arcade)

    Sega's classic fantasy side-scroller hits the Virtual Console in its original arcade form - but is it any good?

    It would be fair to say that the expansion of the Wii Virtual Console to incorporate arcade releases has been extremely welcome, but it has resulted in one rather unusual side-effect: we’re seeing rampant duplication of titles already...

  • Review Crash 'n the Boys: Street Challenge (Wii Virtual Console / NES)

    It's River City Ransom with a side order of Track & Field.

    What do you get when you combine the River City Ransom theme with Track and Field-style gameplay? You get Crash 'n the Boys: Street Challenge. The game takes the street gang theme and creates some fitting Olympic-style events to go along with it. Sounds like a mouth-watering proposition, but...

  • Review Solomon's Key (Virtual Console / Virtual Console Arcade)

    A near-identical version of a game already available on the Virtual Console

    Way back when the Wii came out in late 2006, one of the initial games available on Virtual Console was the NES version of Solomon's Key. Now that arcade games have been added to the service's catalogue, Tecmo has chosen to release the original arcade version. But is it...

  • Review Rygar (Virtual Console / Virtual Console Arcade)

    Lesser-known than its NES counterpart, but is it still worth picking up?

    When you utter the name "Rygar", many people will instantly think of the NES game with the same name. In it, you played as the bare-chested warrior Rygar, making his way through both side-scrolling and overhead stages using his unique weapon, the Diskarmor, to take...

  • Review Kid Klown in Crazy Chase (Super Nintendo)

    You don't have to be crazy to play this game, but it helps!

    Super Mario World, Yoshi’s Island, Super Metroid, ActRaiser, Ghouls ‘n Ghosts, Mario All-Stars, the Donkey Kong Country trilogy…these games all have three things in common: they’re all platform games, they’re all on Super Nintendo, and they’re all genuine classics that stand out...

  • Review Super Return of the Jedi (Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    The Emperor has been expecting you

    The third and final game in the Super Star Wars series promises more of the same great experience offered as its two forerunners, but did LucasArts give us a conclusion worthy of the series or just a clichéd third act with some kid-friendly Ewoks thrown in? Like the previous two outings, Super Return of the Jedi...

  • Review Super Empire Strikes Back (Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Do or do not: there is no try.

    Following up on the success of Super Star Wars, LucasArts released Super Star Wars: The Empire Strikes back (a.k.a. Super Empire Strikes Back) to an audience already hyped and waiting. As we discussed in our previous review, the story barely paid lip service to the movies, and this release is little better. Even so,...

  • Review Pilotwings (Wii Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Soar like an eagle

    Sometimes games deserve second chances. Let us tell you a story... A long time ago in a television studio far, far away, a member of our team took part in an episode of Games World, Hewland's Gamesmaster clone shown on Sky 1 in the UK. Everything was going great until the semi-final, when the skydiving stage from Pilotwings came...

  • Review Shadowrun (Super Nintendo)

    Computers and magic meet in this overlooked gem of an RPG

    Waking up in a morgue with amnesia it’s clear that your character, Jake Armitage, is having a bad day. Set in Seattle in the year 2050, Shadowrun is a cyberpunk RPG based on the pen and paper game of the same name. Having been gunned down in the streets you must uncover exactly what’s...

  • Review Phantasy Star (Virtual Console / Master System)

    The starting point for a venerable roleplaying legend

    Pity the poor Master System. South America and Europe aside, it just could not compete with the unstoppable NES despite superior technology and some cracking games. Among those titles is what could be considered the machine's killer app - a huge game with a matching price tag, which not only...

  • Review Hybrid Heaven (Nintendo 64)

    The N64's own Metal Gear Solid? If only.

    Back in 1998, Konami's Metal Gear Solid took the gaming world by storm. Its masterful combination of action-packed gameplay and cinematic storytelling was unlike anything ever before seen in a videogame. The only bad news was that unless you owned a PlayStation, you wouldn’t be playing it, as it was...

  • Review Super Star Wars (Virtual Console / Super Nintendo)

    Is the force strong with this one?

    When Super Star Wars was released in 1992, it was an instant success. Offering old-school platforming but set in the Star Wars universe and culminating in the destruction of the Death Star, the video game format fit the movies like Harrison Ford fits the role of a roguish scoundrel. At the time, video game critics...

  • Review The Revenge of Shinobi (Virtual Console / Sega Mega Drive)

    Joe Musashi returns in what is arguably the best ninja game ever

    There’s a common assumption that a console’s best titles come towards the end of its lifespan. This is mainly because developers take time to get to grips with a new machine’s power and as a result you have to wait a couple of years before you see what each console is truly...

  • Review Tecmo Bowl (Virtual Console / Virtual Console Arcade)

    Older. Prettier. Just not wiser.

    In every genre there is one game that stands as a pinnacle to which other games in that genre aspire. Final Fantasy VII, Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Sexy Poker. In their respective genres, these games are the standard by which other games are judged. Tecmo Bowl for the NES is often cited as that...

  • Review Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island (Super Nintendo)

    Perhaps the greatest platformer of all-time.

    When remembering the great games of the past, our thoughts tend to drift towards the revolutionary titles; the literal game-changers. And any gamer worth a darn knows that the indisputable king of these wonderful permutations is Shigeru Miyamoto. The man's M.O. is completely altering the landscape of...

  • Review Smash Table Tennis (Virtual Console / NES)

    Smash Table Tennis delivers a backhand to your wallet.

    Sometimes, you just have to wonder who at Nintendo is in charge of the Virtual Console game selection. Perhaps it's one of those people who, when unable to decide what to do, throws a dart at a dartboard with possible "options" on it in order to come to a decision. That almost has to...

  • Review Rampage (NES)

    Is this monster mash worth all your quarters?

    Today people might look at Midway as the financial disaster that they are and chuckle. In the better days of arcades, however, Midway developed a number of hit arcade games including their hit Mortal Kombat series of fighters. While MK is likely their most famous effort, they also had some respectable...

  • Review Mystical Ninja Starring Goemon (Nintendo 64)

    You know it makes sense!

    Save Japan from a group of stage performers by throwing coins and hitting robots with your trusty kiseru pipe. What do you get if you take a generous helping of Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, mix well with a portion of Mario 64, and add a heavy sprinkling of traditional Japanese culture? The answer, of course, is...