Tag Archives: Arcade

Nekketsu Kouha Kunio kun

Reviews
Nekketsu Kouha Kunio kun Arcade - Title Screen
Hardware: Arcade
05/1986 (Japan), 12/1986 (US)
熱血硬派くにおくん
Hot Blooded Tough Guy Kunio
Renegade
Delinquent high school students talking tough and beating each other up in school uniforms while sporting distinct hair styles is probably not unfamiliar to those who enjoy Japanese media. This genre, called "tsuppari" (or "yankii"/"yankee" as we got into the 90s), was very prevalent in from the 1970s through the 1990s. Technos Japan's Nekketsu Kouha Kunio kun ("Hot Blooded Tough Guy Kunio") was the video game front runner for this genre, proceeding even one of the most well known representations of tsuppari, a manga series called "Crows". It's unclear how much inspiration was actually taken from other media, but in a 2013 interview director Yoshihisa Kishimoto said that the game reflected his own high school experience. Continue Reading

Double Dragon

Reviews
Double Dragon (Famicom) - Title Screen
Hardware: Famicom/NES
04/08/1988 (Japan), 06/1988 (US), 1990 (PAL)
双截龍 (ダブルドラゴン)
Almost a year after the original arcade hit, Double Dragon was brought home to the Famicom. This is the first of the handful of home ports that Japan would see of this game, and the NES version is probably among the first to be seen throughout the rest of the world (the microcomputer versions don't have exact dates associated with them, other than just 1988). The Famicom port probably didn't deliver the experience that big fans of the arcade version wanted, but it succeeded on its own merits. Continue Reading

Nekketsu Kouha Kunio kun

Reviews
Hardware: Famicom/NES
04/17/1987 (Japan), 01/1988 (US)
熱血硬派くにおくん
Hot Blooded Tough Guy Kunio
Renegade
Famicom ports of early arcade games often turned out to be far cries from their originals, though they meant well. Development on the Famicom just hadn't been refined to the point where truly accurate ports of these titles were feasible, and these were the days where arcade technology was so far beyond home console technology that it was often impossible. Kunio's Famicom port changes up a great many things from the original. The most noticeable is a graphical style that's significantly closer than the arcade version to that which the Kunio series would become so well known for in its next installment. The music is also incredibly faithful to the original version. There's an alternating 2 player mode here, which was typical for Famicom beat-em-ups of the time. Each player can also select one of three levels, which seem to do nothing more than change the stage backgrounds between daytime, dusk, and nighttime. Power ups will also appear periodically that will refill health, or temporarily increase strength or speed. Continue Reading

Gradius

Reviews
Hardware: Famicom/NES
04/25/1986 (Japan), 12/1986 (US), 11/30/1988 (PAL)
グラディウス
Nearly one year after the original, Gradius finally came home to the Famicom/NES. This home port does as respectable of a job as a Famicom game can of replicating the look and feel of the original. Sure you don't get the Big Core boss rising directly from the ashes of whatever thing came before it, or the full depth of music found in the arcade version, but at least this is a game that looks good and still has the original music scaled down for the Famicom. Continue Reading

Makai Mura

Reviews
Hardware: Famicom/NES
06/13/1986 (Japan), 11/1986 (US), 03/23/89 (PAL)
魔界村
Demon World Village
Ghosts 'n Goblins
Despite its high level of difficulty, Makai Mura was an arcade success. And in these days of console gaming, that meant a port to home consoles would be highly sought after. It was generally accepted that (for the most part) because console hardware was still very young it probably wasn't advanced enough to look, sound and feel like it was an arcade game. As long as it captured the essence of the original though, that was usually good enough. The Famicom was no longer a young system in June 1986, at least not in Japan. It had seen its share of arcade ports by this time, and quality had been all over the board. Capcom (who was at this point still a fairly young company) had only had two of its arcade titles ported to the Famicom at this point though: 1942 and Son Son. Unfortunately, neither of them were very good ports at all. Continue Reading
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