Sep 7, 2012

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Four Months, Four SNES Gems

Four Months, Four SNES Gems

With the Wii U on the horizon there simply isn’t enough good original software left for me on Wii (except Xenoblade, which I will never have time to complete even in my next lifetime).  Like some gamers I wanted to start working on any backlog Wii titles I might still have, but I then began pondering the holes in my own gaming career and remembered the little purple and gray machine called the Super Nintendo Entertainment System.  I got rid of my glorious SNES machine for a Gamecube when I was just 8 years old, which is hard to believe, considering the incredible amount of time I spent clutching that beautifully ergonomic control pad.  My knowledge of gaming has increased exponentially over the past few years, and I keep discovering games for the SNES that I absolutely need to play.  Over the last few months of this calendar year, I’m going to explore some of the absolute gems of the system via the Wii’s Virtual Console.  I will share the experiences of my adventure, giving my first impressions and some history about the game at the beginning of each month, followed by a full review as the month closes.  I am playing all of these games for the first time, so there is no bias.  By complete chance, my selections are all by different developers, which should spice things up a little. And without further ado, these are the  games that I’ll be looking at:

 Chrono Trigger:

Often touted as “one of the greatest RPG’s of all time” Chrono Trigger was released by Squaresoft (now Sqare Enix) in 1995.  The game features time travel, hence the name, and multiple endings.  I came very close to picking up the DS port a few times, but the price always deterred me.  Fairly recently, it became available on Virtual Console, and I’ve had my eye on it ever since.

Super Metroid: 

Developed and Published by Nintendo, Super Metroid is considered the pinnacle of the Metroid series by many. I’ve had a bit of experience with Metroid, getting hooked on Fusion and Prime, but I’ve never actually finished a game in the series.  Every time I play a Metroid game the eerie environments and intense action get my heart pounding. Anyone who wants to know what the word “atmospheric” means when applied to video games needs only play a Metroid game. I can’t wait to sink my teeth into this one.

Mega Man X:

Mega Man is another series that deserves much more attention than I give it.  Unlike Metroid, there are so many Mega Man games that it’s difficult to know where to start.  Platforming and shooting are two things which appeal to me immensely, and Mega Man delivers in spades in those two categories.  I’ve played a bit of the classic Mega Man games, but Mega Man X appeals to me so much more because of its 16-bit graphics and its deeper story and gameplay elements.

Super Castlevania IV: 

Konami’s Castlevania series took a drastic turn with its first PSone installment, Symphony of the Night. Before that, it was always about whipping the crap out of every undead (and dead) creature your trusty vampire slayer could reach.  Because of the punishing difficulty of the NES titles, Super Castlevania IV seems to be the best slice of classic Castlevania around.

Expect a full introduction to Chrono Trigger within the week.  Hopefully we’ll all learn a little more about one of the greatest consoles over the next few months.

Four Months, Four SNES Gems is a monthly feature that will take a look back at some of the most popular titles to appear on the console. Every month there will be a new preview, history of the title and review for Super Castlevania IV, Super Metroid, Chrono Trigger and Mega Man X.