Tag: Nintendo

Nintendo Nostalgia: ExciteBike

ExciteBike

ExciteBike was one of the Nintendo consoles most beloved games, and a favorite of mine too. I killed many hours with this bad boy, and for good reason….it was full of great features!  Racing on a motorcycle! Design your own tracks! Put 100 jumps in a row! This was one awesome game for those three reasons, and why it’s so fondly remembered. That and the fact that you could wreck others by coming down the track with your rear wheel in their front wheel and watch them tumble over and over down the track. With the possibility of using any combination of 19 different obstacles to design your track with, it had great replay value just in designing new courses to race.

I was introduced to this game at my cousin’s house shortly after I got my Nintendo. I was instantly hooked and we spent several hours that night playing it.  I never actually owned the game, but several of my friends did, and a copy of it was at my house more often than not through the magic of swapping games with a friend for a period of time. This game still holds its own in the “fun factor” today against such newer and more complicated games.

I could spend more time playing this title than I could modern titles today.  Just designing courses loaded with obstacles and then racing against friends provided endless fun for us.  Many a Saturday afternoon was spent on a virtual dirt bike in my house, and I’m feeling pretty nostalgic for it right now.

Nintendo Nostalgia: Game Genie

Game Genie

Now I don’t know about you, but the Game Genie did more to change my video gaming experience than any other device with the exception of the Nintendo itself.  Once I got my hands on it, it was in use every single time I played a Nintendo Game.  My best friend at the time, Geoffrey, was one of those kids that got whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted it.  He saw the commercial for this thing and went nuts.  I still remember the conversation we had on the phone that fateful night.  He said he had pitched such a huge fit wanting it, that his Dad drove him the half hour to the nearest department store and bought it for him.

The next day at school, he looked like a hungover zombie, as he had stayed up all night playing Nintendo.  I knew that I just had to make the trip to his house that weekend for a sleepover and check it out myself.  Sure enough, I had the chance that weekend, and was blown away with just how awesome that thing was.

More Nintendo Nostalgia | My Earliest Video Game Memories

I started saving my allowances immediately, and doing chores for folks around the neighborhood to earn extra money.  It actually didn’t take too long to get enough scratch together to go get one for myself.  Man, that thing revolutionized my game play.  Games that had previously had parts that I go so frustrated with that I quit playing the game, were now easily navigated, and I pulled those old suckers out and gave them new life.

It was some of the best money I’ve ever spent in my life.  And yes, I can say that still today.  It was revolutionary to be able to have unlimited lives, or unlimited ammo, or be able to make super jumps.  Now I know in all reality, it was cheating, but it made crappy games fun, and made fun games incredible.  Even now when playing roms on an emulator, I still google those old Game Genie codes and put them in play.

Nintendo Nostalgia: Castlevania 2 – Simon’s Quest

Simon's Quest

When Konami unleashed the first Castlevania cartridge on the Nintendo world in 1987, I was still too wrapped up in Super Mario Bros., Excite Bike, and Rad Racer to pay much attention.  Even though the original game was much loved and had a lot of hype around it, I was still impervious to the franchise’s existence when Castlevania 2:  Simon’s Quest rolled out in 1988.

How much advertising was put into it?  I couldn’t tell you.  All I know is, that one Saturday afternoon I took all the money I had saved up to the local K-Mart when my Mom went to do her usual shopping.  I went straight to the electronics section and starting scanning the available Nintendo games, as I was intent on picking one up that day.  To this day, I’m still not sure what led me to pick Simon’s Quest.  Maybe it was the only game they had, or maybe the box art just got to me.  But little did I know, that I was purchasing one of my all-time favorite games for the Nintendo system.  Matter of fact, when I bought a Wii several years ago, I immediately downloaded Simon’s Quest for it and still play it now.

In Castlevania 2:  Simon’s Quest, you take the role of Simon Belmont on a journey to undo the curse placed on him and his family by Dracula at the end of the original Castlevania game.  

Simon's Quest

The quest of Simon to destroy Dracula was the simple premise, but the much more complicated facet of the game was just where in the heck did you find Dracula, and what weapon do you use on him when you find him? You spent your time traveling through towns, forests, and mansions killing skeletons, wolf men, sea creatures, and everything else that got in your way, including spiders and floating eyeballs.

You earned “hearts” that were like money and you used that money to upgrade your whip and buy additional weapons like Holy Water, Laurel Bushes, Diamonds, and numerous other curiosities. You also had to talk to the townspeople to get clues on which direction to go to find Dracula and how to beat him. All this wrapped into the game made it one heck of a time waster, and I can’t forget the Saturday afternoon that I finally beat this game.

Castlevania II was the first role playing game that I can ever remember playing, and even to this day, role playing games are not my cup of tea.  But Simon’s Quest has stood the test of time, and holds a special place in my heart as one of the best, and most fun video games I’ve ever played.

Castlevania 2:  Simon’s Quest is readily available on the numerous Nintendo emulator and rom sites you find on the web.  If you never played it back in the day, I highly suggest you give it a shot on some rainy Saturday afternoon, and see what you think.

Simon's Quest

Retro Comic Book Ads #3

Old comic books often act as a time capsule.  They’re full of advertisements of products from long ago, and can tell us a lot about the culture of the time in which they were printed.  Some of those products are still with us, while others are not.  I often like to crack open the pages of a long forgotten comic book and just browse the advertisements found inside with which to take a trip back in time to another era.  Let’s open one of those time capsules here today and see what we find….

 

 

This week’s time capsule is Superman #30 from DC Comics, that came out in 1989.  The Superman titles have always one of my favorite books to read, but this is from the era just before I started to read his stories on a regular basis.  I picked up in the summer of 1990, and read consistently up until about 1998.  Let’s see what old advertising goodness is hidden behind this cover.

 

Morning Funnies Cereal

 

How appropriate this is to find an ad for Morning Funnies Cereal since I just did a post detailing my love for the cereal a short while ago.  You can check out the full article here, but I’ll add to it and say that it was a great idea to spend advertising dollars on it to run in a comic book since the whole gimmick to the cereal is that the box is covered with comic strips.  Makes perfect sense.

More:  Retro Comic Book Ads #1

 

 

It wouldn’t be a comic book from the late 80’s without some advertisements for video games, and Nintendo specifically.  These look like some lesser known titles, but Taito was big in the arcade world with Space Invaders and Super Chase H.Q. being two of their bigger titles.  I think Bubble Bobble was a moderate success on the Nintendo, but the other three games I have no recollection of.

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My Earliest Video Game Memories

 

When Christmas day rolled around, I felt this huge urge to hook up the old Super Nintendo and spend the day playing some of my old favorites like Super Mario World, Duck Dogers, Street Fighter II, and more.  Unfortunately I didn’t get to, but I did think back on some of my first memories of video games and shared them with the kids.

The very first memory would actually be about going to the Bristol Mall in Bristol TN and seeing the arcade there that was called The Gold Mine.  However, on that fateful trip, I didn’t get to step inside and relish in all the goodness it had to offer.  I simply got to walk by it and gaze in amazement at all the flashing lights and tingle with excitement from all the sounds coming from within.

 

 

So my actual first experiences with video games in any form would be when my cousin Tim first got his Nintendo.  Somehow, I had missed out on all of the marketing and talk surrounding the Nintendo when it was launched.  I had never seen nor heard of such a thing.  One day while visiting the grandparents, my uncle Ernest mentioned that he had gotten Tim a Nintendo Entertainment System, and that I should come over and play Super Mario Brothers.

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Games I Wish Were Included on the SNES Classic

After the success of the NES Classic Edition,  this Christmas season will see the release of a SUPER Nintento Classic Edition!  Sadly, I missed out on the NES Classic, but if the rumors of an SNES Classic prove true, I will definitely pick one up if the game selection looks good.  With that said, thoughts turn to what games may or may not be included on the system.  I know there are a lot of licensing issues with some games that keep them from being included, but for the sake of this post, I’m going to ignore all of that and just focus on the games I WISH were included on it, whether it could ever happen or not.  At the end, be sure to drop a line in the comments section about what games YOU want to see included.

 

Super Mario World

Super Mario World

I don’t know how you could release a mini SNES classic and not include the flag-ship game of the original console.  Mario IS Nintendo, and Super Mario World was not just the flagship title, but one of the best games on the system.  It’s a shoe-in.

 

Super Mario Kart

Super Mario Kart

Another Mario title, and the last one I’m including in this list.  I know there are plenty more great Mario based games on the system, but I never really got into them.  Mario Kart on the other hand is a classic with a quite a pedigree in the world of gaming, and is my personal favorite racing game on the system.

 

Legend of Zelda

The Legend of Zelda:  A Link to the Past

The Zelda franchise is synonymous with the Nintendo brand, and this game has a reputation as being one of the better incarnations of the game.  I played it a few times, and really hope it’s included in the mini version so I can finally get to sit down and play all the way through it.

 

Mega Man X

Mega Man X

Another icon of the Nintendo era was Mega Man, and any system looking to capitalize on its history needs to include a Mega Man title.  I never played this Mega Man for some reason, but I always loved the various Mega Man games on the NES, so I’d like to see this included to relieve those days.

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