Category Archives: Articles

All the non-Cover Game articles and features in one place.

Waifu Wednesday: Shina Ninomiya

One of the more interesting things about Death end re;Quest, as we’ll discuss in more depth when we talk about its story in detail, is its dual-perspective narrative.

The “real world” unfolds from the perspective of main male protagonist Arata Mizunashi, while the “game” side of things is the domain of trapped director and lead heroine Shina Ninomiya, who initially has absolutely no recollection of how she found herself in a virtual reality game so realistic it’s difficult to distinguish from “reality”.

Shina is an excellent lead for the “in-game” side of things, for reasons that will become apparent shortly. Let’s take a closer look!

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SNK Essentials: Sasuke vs. Commander

Ozma Wars isn’t the only very early SNK title to feature in the SNK 40th Anniversary Collection — we also have an unusual fixed shooter from a year later: Sasuke vs. Commander.

Like Ozma Wars before it, Sasuke vs. Commander is another game of possible “firsts” in gaming — and also a game that doesn’t get much acknowledgement today, thanks to a lack of home ports until it got a PlayStation minis release for PS3, PSP and Vita in 2011.

SASUKE READ ON FOR LEARN MORE. YES  SHOGUN.

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SNK Essentials: Ozma Wars

Well now. Here’s one that doesn’t get talked about all that much: one of SNK’s earliest games, and a title believed to be the second ever fixed shoot ’em up, after Taito’s genre-defining classic Space Invaders.

In fact, Ozma Wars, developed by Logitec (no, not that one) and published by SNK in 1979, ran on the same Taito 8080 hardware that powered Space Invaders, was available as a conversion kit for Space Invaders machines, and even made use of the same coloured overlay on its black and white display to bring a bit of vibrancy to the visuals.

What’s more, it provides a thoroughly interesting early shoot ’em up experience that is markedly distinct from Taito’s title. Let’s take a closer look.

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Around the Network

And so another week draws to a close and we all slide inexorably onwards towards our inevitable deaths.

We may as well enjoy the intervening days, weeks, months and years then! This month I’ve been doing just that with a fine selection of SNK shoot ’em ups plus my continuing adventures in the world of Death end re;Quest.

Let’s take a look at what you might have missed.

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SNK Essentials: World Wars

The loose “trilogy” of vertically scrolling shoot ’em ups from SNK’s early days that began with Alpha Mission and Bermuda Triangle finally concludes with 1987’s World Wars.

Sometimes erroneously described as a reskin of Bermuda TriangleWorld Wars offers an interesting blend between the gameplay elements of its two predecessors, and manages to carve out an identity for itself as an enjoyable, addictive shoot ’em up in its own right in the process.

Alpha mission start! Launch all ZIG!

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Waifu Wednesday: Sumika Tokiwa

Being a Compile Heart game, Death end re;Quest is, naturally, overflowing with colourful, interesting and delightful female characters.

In fact, women make up the majority of the cast… though, again, this is nothing unusual for a Compile Heart game. What is a little unusual this time around is the fact that the game unfolds across two discrete “worlds” — the “real” world and the “game” world.

For today’s Waifu Wednesday, we’re taking a look at one of your companions during your time in the “real” world, as you attempt to uncover the conspiracy that has led to heroine Shina Ninomiya — and possibly others — becoming trapped in the virtual reality massively multiplayer online game, World’s Odyssey.

Continue reading Waifu Wednesday: Sumika Tokiwa

SNK Essentials: Bermuda Triangle

A couple of years after Alpha Mission, SNK put out a follow-up of sorts — if not a direct sequel. (That would show up in the Neo Geo era!)

That game was Bermuda Triangle, and much like Alpha Mission before it, it’s a very creative and unusual take on a genre that, even as early as 1987, was heavily saturated with very similar titles of varying quality.

In order to stand out in such a situation, you need to do something distinctive — even unique. And, well, there are definitely a number of features in Bermuda Triangle that I haven’t seen attempted since!

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