Top Racer (originally known as Top Gear in the west) has a long and proud tradition — and it’s a classic vanishing point racer that still holds up super-well today.
When it originally released on Evercade as part of the Piko Interactive Collection 1 cartridge, you could only play it in single-player against the computer. With the advent of the Evercade VS, though, split-screen funtimes are yours for the taking!
Final Fantasy V, despite being one of the most mechanically solid installments in the series, doesn’t get a ton of love — partly because it got localised very late; partly because the quality of those localisations has varied considerably over time; and partly because in the grand scheme of the franchise as a whole, it’s comparatively bastard hard.
After many, many years of saying “I should probably beat Final Fantasy V sometime”, I am finally working on that goal — specifically by playing it on my totally normal, pristine and absolutely definitely completely stock PlayStation Classic that my brother rather generously bought me for Christmas. (More on all that another day, I feel.) And I thought Lenna — or “Reina” as she’s called in the version of Final Fantasy V I’m playing — was deserving of some love.
So let’s give her some love. Our pink-haired princess is one of Final Fantasy’s most capable heroines, so it’s high time she saw some appreciation, I say!
I am bad at pool. Real pool, that is. But also video game pool. Although I am marginally less bad at video game pool than I am at real pool.
Data East’s Side Pocket, seen here as part of the Data East Collection 1 cartridge for the Evercade, at least makes the experience of being bad at video game pool pleasantly entertaining by providing a smooth jazz soundtrack, some pretty ladies and a series of completely unreasonable trick shots with which to challenge yourself. Plus no onlookers who have had a few too many pints laughing at your incompetence. Ideal.
Looking back over past installments of this column, I’m surprised I haven’t given Bianca any love yet. I mean, in Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride, the game in which she first appears, she literally becomes your wife. Assuming you make the correct choices, that is.
Of course, you have two other options for who to wed in that game. But as someone who grew up as whatever the middle-class equivalent of a country bumpkin is, Bianca spoke to me right from the first moment I met her. And I knew right from that first meeting that I was going to wed her.
Them other girls dun’t matter, y’hear? Well, they do, but not right now. Bianca!
With the positive reception the first Earthworm Jim had on its original release, a sequel was inevitable. But how do you follow something as chaotic and irreverent as Earthworm Jim?
The obvious answer, of course, is to make it even more chaotic and irreverent, so that’s exactly what Jim’s original creators Doug TenNapel, Dave Perry and Shiny Entertainment did with the follow-up. The result is very much a game that feels like it’s throwing absolutely everything at the wall in order to see what sticks… for better or worse.
It’s easy to write off Boogerman: A Pick and Flick Adventure as a product of its time that’s not worth bothering with today. A 16-bit mascot platformer from ’90s Interplay featuring deliberate grossout humour and “attitude”? Hmm. Not what we might call a winning combination… at least if prejudice is to be believed
I must confess, I never played Boogerman back in the day and indeed don’t remember seeing much about it at all. So my first real experience with it has been the SNES version, which can be easily found today as part of the Interplay Collection 1cartridge for the Evercade retro gaming system. And you hopefully know by now that one of my favourite things about that platform is the fact it provides us with the opportunity to explore and celebrate some of the lesser-known (or lesser-loved) titles from the land of retro, as well as some of the big names.
So get ready to pick it, lick it, roll it, flick it; we’re heading in for the snotty adventure of a lifetime. Bring a tissue or three.
It’s always nice when your expectations, preconceptions and prejudices are proven wrong — particularly when the result is something you find surprisingly enjoyable.
Such was the case when I first booted up Prehistorik Manfrom Titus, originally released for Super NES and more recently found on the Interplay Collection 2cartridge for the Evercade retro gaming platform. Developer Titus has a somewhat… variable reputation, shall we say, so it was a pleasant surprise to discover that Prehistorik Man is actually a solid, interesting platformer with some fun, varied level design.
Many developers — particularly from the 8- and 16-bit eras — tended to end up primarily associated with a particular type of game. But some, like Data East, proved themselves capable of turning their attention to many different mechanical genres.
Late-era releases on a console are always interesting to look at, because they can often provide a tantalising glimpse of what the hardware was really capable of.
Titus’ Incantationcertainly proved beyond doubt that the dear old 16-bit Super NES was more than capable of beautifully presented games with stunning pixel art, lovely big sprites with lots of frames of animation, and consistently smooth, slick scrolling.
Titus, it’s fair to say, is not one of the most fondly regarded names in classic gaming — though a fair amount of their work was at least memorable for one reason or another.
That doesn’t mean it was a company completely incapable of putting out a good game, however. And in fact, when Titus was on top form, they actually made some really good titles that still hold up very well today.