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Thursday, December 29, 2011


First of all, I'd like to say a massive "Happy New Year" and an even bigger "Thank You" to the people who've joined me on my year of retro gaming. It's not over yet, but this is the final update for this year, so it's time to reflect... But first, the new episode. This is (thankfully) the last time I'll have to play 4 games at once, and (sorry) the longest episode I've made all year. Enjoy! ^_^

So here's the games and how they fared this week.

Apologies to Kombat fans. Just my opinion, you can have yours as well.

Now here's a few stats...
I have played 133 retro games this year.
73 stood the test of time.
45 sat the test of time.
15 fell the test of time.
So it looks like for the most part, it's been a good year! :-)

 I'm very happy to be playing Secret of Mana over the summer holidays, since it was over summer that I played it the first time. What a great summer that was! Let me know if you're keen to play it as well over the next week or two. We can exchange notes.

See you next year, gamers! Stay safe! :-)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


Welcome again, young and old!

As the year draws to a close, let's cast our minds back about 17-and-a-half years ago (I think my maths is right...) and see what was happening in the world of gaming.

Remember, if you want to see the scans full-size you'll need to click on them. This then takes you to Blogspot's dumb picture-viewer, which still scales them down. So you'll either have to paste the picture's URL into your browser's Address Bar, or else save the image and just view it from your computer.

The 32-bit "Virtual Reality" machine talked about here is, of course, the Virtual Boy, one of Nintendo's most notorious flops. I've never seen one in the flesh; after its crash-and-burn status in Japan and America, a European and Australasian release just never happened. I've heard all the horror stories, but I'd still love to see one for myself. Perhaps when I'm over in the States next year I might be able to find one somewhere...

The hidden character in Super Street Fighter II X wasn't Shen Long, it was Akuma! But since he was a brand new character, it could easily have bene guessed that he was the urban myth made flesh.

Poor PAL gamers. The entire Final Fantasy series eluded us until it hit the PlayStation.

The first whispers of Donkey Kong Country and the Advanced Computer Modelling that would revolutionise the aging 16-bit games industry.

And the next generation is REVEALED! It sounds like people had an inkling that the PS1 might have been successful, but I don't think anyone could possibly have imagined HOW successful. Who would have thought that both Nintendo and (especially) Sega would be completely hung out to dry by the newcomer? You have to admit though... The PS1 was an ugly machine. Looks like it was ripped off a starship console in the first Star Wars movie or something.

I was never into the whole "cheating" scene. I knew that Game Genies and Action Replays were around, but I always kind of turned my nose at them. It seemed unethical to change the game's code to cheat! Even still, it's very clever (and beyond my pitiful technical understanding) as to how it actually works.

New episode in a couple of days. (I hope) If not, happy new year!!

Saturday, December 24, 2011


It's just clicked over into Christmas morning and I've got a present for you! Episode 45! Enjoy!

I hope you have a wonderful festive season and hopefully a relaxing break. I'm going to try to get one more episode out before the end of the year, but no promises!

Stay safe!

Sunday, December 18, 2011


Wow, what an awesome game. Super Metroid's still amazing.

Well, that's the end of Metroid for this year. Hope that was a fitting enough tribute to one of the greatest games in history!

Apologies if you're a big Shadowrun fan and you think I shortchanged it. If I was playing it at the start of the year, I probably would have held on for longer. Problem is, we're in the second half of December now and I'd reeeeeally like to play as many of these games as I can get through before the new year. 

Did anyone else get the 3DS Ambassador GBA games? Very nice collection. I already own most of them in cartridge format anyway, but it's nice to have them ready-to-go on the 3DS. I'm sure they'll come in handy during my overseas holiday next year!

Saturday, December 17, 2011


Good news, everyone!

I finished Skyward Sword!!

Wonderful game, but definitely not the greatest in the series. It just doesn't reach the greatness of A Link To The Past or Twilight Princess. I might detail some more of my thoughts another time. I managed to kind of cheat my way through the last boss fight by using the invincible potion. Minimum skill required FTW!

Anyway, back to retro gaming, and back to Super Play!

To see the pictures full-size you'll need to click on them. Blogspot's crappy new image viewer doesn't seem to let you view them in their full size, but if it's showing up too small, just save the picture and view it outside of your browser.

These next two pages are part of the same article.

Man, how lucky was that kid? That would have been such a surreal experience! The "Sound Fantasy" game that they discuss here was never released, although it must have come close, since Wikipedia has pictures of its Japanese and North American box-art!

It's also funny that the writer was relatively underwhelmed with Super Metroid. I suppose it's not completely surprising. The first two games were good, but hardly all-time classics. No one was quite prepared for the brilliance that the third game would show. 

Also interesting is what Miyamoto says towards the end of the article. They were probably working on Pilotwings 64 in the building that day, but it hadn't officially been announced yet! I'm also guessing that "sort-of-sequel" to Super Mario World he was hinting at was Yoshi's Island.

Speaks for itself, really. We know where all of those stories and games ended up.

Rumours, rumours, so many rumours! 

Did anyone ever have a Super GameBoy? I borrowed a friend's once, and thought it was cool, but I remember not really seeing the point, since the reason for HAVING the GameBoy was that it was PORTABLE. At any rate, I got the GameBoy Player for the Cube, and I loves it! ^_^

I've never seen one of those N.E.S. convertors, but I'd kinda like one...

There's another couple of issues of Super Play. The next episode should be up in a couple of days (hopefully) and now that Zelda's out of the way I should have a bit more time to fit some more retro gaming in. Hope your 2011 is drawing towards a happy and successful close!

Monday, December 12, 2011


Hi everybody! (Hi Dr. Nick!)
Here at last is the long-delayed Episode 43. Enjoy! Hope it brings back some memories!

I always thought it was weird that Capcom chose the underwater level for the cover of Mega Man X. I mean, it's not like he's underwater for much of the game, is it? Oh well. I'm pretty sure I'm approaching the end of Skyward Sword so hopefully the next update won't take as long. ^_^

Saturday, December 10, 2011



Working on the new episode now. Should be up in a couple of days. Sorry it's taken so long. I've been a bit... distracted... by a sword... that's skyward...

My original idea for this year was that I would play nothing but retro games; that anything beyond 16-bit would go on the back-burner until 2012... Yeah, that didn't really happen. Among the games I've played (and mostly finished) this year...

* Heavy Rain
* Portal 2
* Dragon Quest V DS
* Kirby's Epic Yarn
* Batman: Arkham City
* Legend of Zelda - Ocarina of Time 3D
* Starfox 643D
* Xenoblade Chronicles
 (25 hours in, put on haitus until I can give it my undivided attention)
* Super Mario 3D Land
* Mario Kart 7

And, most certainly, Skyward Sword will be added to that list before the year's out.
Retro indeed! Bah!

Sunday, December 4, 2011


Welcome, one and all. I'm feeling generous, so here ya go, you can have two issues of Super Play for the price of one! Bargain!!


Love that Issue 18 cover. One of my favourites. Let's see what was happening in the pages of early 1994...

As it turns out, that isn't how the ratings ended up here in Aus. We had G (general, meaning everyone could play), G8+ (similar to G, but recommended for older kids), M15+ (for mature gamers) and MA15+ (restricted... you had to be 15 to buy the game.)

Since then it's had a minor change. The G8+ rating has been changed to PG (parental guidance recommended) which makes sense, because the games ratings now match what we have for films. There's still no R18+ rating here, but it's an ongoing debate and we seem to be getting closer and closer to having it. It's the stupidest thing, these high-horse politicians claim that by allowing R-rated games into Australia we'll be exposing our kids to inappropriate material. The fact of the matter is, these games are already being released into Australia, getting an MA-rating and being sold to 15-year-olds! Anyways, enough ranting.

(You'll have to click on these two pages to see them bigger)
Ahhh, the wacky Japs. I'm super-excited to finally visit Japan next year and hopefully get to see all these crazy vending machines and arcades that I've heard about for so long!

Continuing on from the ratings story in the previous issue, Europe got its ratings system in early 1994 as well. WTF is with that TV mascot? Looks like a 10 year-old designed it!

Ever played Nintendo on an aeroplane? I haven't. :-( Well, excluding when I bring my own onboard...

(Click to make it bigger)
Ahhhh, Japanese culture! Bring on June 2012 when I can see it all with my own eyes!

So there you have it. Once I finish playing through Wario Land I'll post up a new episode, but... well, y'know, I'm still going pretty heavy with Skyward Sword, and Mario Kart 7 just got released. Too... much... gaming... Must be about time to take a holiday from work! Ciao for now!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Here it is.

Thoughts or memories on any of these games? Okay, back to Skyloft I go then. ;-)

Monday, November 28, 2011


This is the latest "update" on my Legend of Zelda Collection. Yeah, I know A Link To The Past is in there twice, but the GBA version is there for Four Swords.

Loving Skyward Sword. It's epic! The scale seems so much bigger than any of the previous games! And the art style is beautiful.

P.S. I just logged on and saw this...

While I swear sometimes I'm just talking to myself on this blog, the counter suggests otherwise. Thanks for visiting! ^_^ New episode should be up in a day or two.

Saturday, November 19, 2011


A little belated, but better late than never. What's happening over in the Super Play Corner this week?

Ah, projectors. I seem to remember video games being bad for projectors, because static images burnt the lenses. To view the next picture in large format, click on it to open the gallery.

The Super Mario Club was apparently a big Japanese TV show. I remember around this time the first Aussie gaming show started, and it was called The Zone. Looking back, it wasn't great, but I thought it was awesome at the time. Remember, this is pre-internet, so you could see screenshots of games in magazines, but by watching a TV show, you could actually see the game in action!

Here's an-hour-and-a-half of Super Mario Club that I found on YouTube. (I just watched bits and pieces, it's pretty entertaining!)

... And here's some of The Zone. It's almost painful to watch nowadays. Were the 90s really that daggy? I think Adam, the host, was just trying way too hard!

I can remember the dilemma on those Saturday mornings. The Zone was on at the same time as Ren & Stimpy. I always had to tape one of them to watch later. Ah, memories. Hmmm, where were we?

This edition of "Fantasy Quest" is notable for the fact that it's the first big reveal of Final Fantasy VI! ... Actually, it's not that big, is it? I don't think anyone realised at this stage how much that single game would change the face of R.P.G.s...

Kinda random look at how a 90s ad campaign was made. I wonder if they found it was successful.

So there you have it. Catch ya next time!

Friday, November 18, 2011


And thus concludes the Mega Man saga on the N.E.S...

I've only got one more N.E.S. game to play this year now.
Here's a can of worms to open... Mega Man 1-6... Which is the best and why?
I'm pretty sure I'd have to say MM3. Although I have a soft spot for MM4 as well... Maybe that's just because they used my Robot Master...

That's also the final Castlevania that I'm playing this year. Phew! There was one more 16-bit game released, which was the Super N.E.S. "Vampire's Kiss" kind-of-remake of "Rondo of Blood." But I don't think I need to play that.

Very excited about "Zelda Skyward Sword" and "Mario 3D Land" coming out (on the same day!) on Thursday. I've made the executive decision that I'm going to get Zelda first. So by next week the retro gaming might begin to slow down just a little bit... Usually when a new Zelda game comes out it owns my soul for a week or two, and I've heard this new game is one of the greats. Can't wait!