Tag: Snes

Retro Monday Returns! Game 89 – Prince of Persia!

OK, It’s been a little while since I’ve done Retro Monday. I believe the last time was back in October 2017 where I played Monster Max for the Game Boy.

So, A long while indeed. I decided to bring back Retro Monday for a few reasons.

  • The first is that I miss doing it, it was a way to give games I may not have played before a try, even if it’s a brief 1 hour. It gives me that chance and I can play it more in my own time if I like it
  • It’s fun, I had loads of fun with the games that were played, even the bad ones because of the chat.
  • Mario Kart Monday and life got in the way before. I can now get Retro Monday back, but the earlier time of 7:45 – 8:45 was too early as my children got bigger, but with Mario Kart Monday not happening anymore, Retro Monday can take its place

That brings us to the newest Retro Monday. I thought Hey, we’ll pick a game a go from there. I forgot about E3 and for the first Retro Monday in about a year and a half, it was Retro Wednesday.

On to the game I got to play.

The game was choosing on The GRcade Forum in the Retro Monday Revenge thread, the rules are the same a person picks 3 games and 1 is picked via a poll. The person who chose this time was Grum and the game that won was Prince of Persia for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Coming out in 1992 it’s a platforming game that originally made for the Apple II in 1989, The game has a timer of 60 minutes where you have to reach the end, fortunately on the SNES version it’s doubled to 120 minutes which you would think would make the game easier, well that isn’t the case, the levels are more difficult and there are double the amount going from 12 to 24. One good thing in the SNES version is that after the timer runs out you can still finish the game, but you fail to save the Princess.

I really liked playing this even though I ran out of time on the second level. The game is tough and requires trial and error, but I think that’s the point, you have to take your time, or if you move quick and get taken out by a trap, you then know when to slow down and think about your approach when you get there again. I found the combat a little irritating. Not because it was bad, but I was never sure about when to attack or parry. Sometimes the enemy would take one swipe at you, you’d parry then attack, other times it was several consecutive attacks, and I’d die. Maybe there are better signals for their attacks that I personally didn’t see, and on a replay, I’ll keep an eye of for that. The platforming is solid, with simple running and jumping over gaps and traps to climbing up and down ledges, there appears to be a sneak, that must be used later in the game to get by things, maybe enemies that are sleeping. I know it’s useful when there are spikes. If you run into where spikes are you get poked, but if you sneak you walk into the fine enough as if you are walking between the spikes and you can progress. Little things like that make it pretty interesting. Oh and then there’s the frog thing which I have no idea what it’s for.

Musically the game is good, there’s great music in the levels and some wonderful sound effects, from the spikes jutting up through the floor noise, to the ARGH of the guy you attack with your sword. It uses the SNES sound chip well.

I’ll be honest, I never played Prince of Persia before Sands of Time, and I think this is a very very good game and should be tried by all, yes it’s difficult and you have a time limit, but it’s fun and learning the game is a part of it that’s done so well it feels like it makes sense.

Verdict: Recommended.

GRcade Twitchcast Episode 6 – Break Ups and Mining

The cast this week is Doom and Pedz with a dose of Jazzem about halfway through.

This week the members of GRcade discuss some of the recent gaming news is, things like Activision and Bungie splitting up and EA cancelling yet another Star Wars game. Along with the news, we discuss the data mining of the Switch and it’s Snes games that may be coming to the online service. We talk a little about each game that is in the data mining information and a little bit of what we’d like, what other systems we’d like, the online service itself and then answer a few questions from the viewers in the Twitch chat.

Audio file

150 SNES games reviewed #40: Acrobat Mission

Once again I am doing a review of a SNES game which started out life as an arcade machine before being converted. You would think it means once again I’m going to be talking about things that were left out and changes that were made.

But no, the main difference here is the game I am writing about today is probably one you have never heard of as it was only released in Japan. I can’t remember ever having seen or played the arcade machine so I’m not going to worry about that and judge it based on itself and to a least some degree its competition on the SNES.

When I tell you that the name of the game is Acrobat Mission you will probably say what kind of name is that for a game? Is it some kind of platformer where you are an acrobat? No, it’s a vertically scrolling shoot ’em up.

The first thing I noticed was that as the game began the story scrolled up the screen and I could read it. Yes, it’s a Japanese game but literally all of the language in it – the options and the story – is in English which makes it pretty cool for importers.

The graphics looked colourful but basic. In fact you could almost believe you were playing a NES game. I pressed all of the buttons and only one of them actually seemed to do anything and that was shoot. The next thing I tried was holding down the button assuming that there would be some kind of charge attack and nothing happened. I carried on playing it not really expecting much from it, then as things went on it hit me this game ran at a nice speed. Even though the player’s ship seems to be a really basic sprite a lot of the enemies seem to be larger and more detailed. Then I began to collect power ups and found not only did they affect the way my ship fired they also allowed me to do charged shots if I held the button. The bombs I collected actually appeared on the ship and disappeared once I worked out the button which you have  to press to fire them (so in the end there are two buttons to use). When you die, which you will because it is a reasonably tough game, instead of instantly exploding or disappearing your ship actually sort of limps along with steam coming out of it. While this is happening you’re still in control and can steer your burning spaceship. In fact you can steer it into something so when it explodes you can take enemies with you. I found this to be a really neat and interesting little idea.

The graphics are not the best but there is a lot of variety. It puts Super Strike Gunner, which I reviewed previously, to shame in this area. It also has large bosses. The first is a large battleship which is so long it is actually about four screens in length and covered in guns. The bullets it fires are larger than your ship and it can be tough because it tracks your movement and shoots at you. Another interesting fact is you don’t die if you physically touch enemy ships. If you run into bullets you’re screwed but you can fly through enemies and get away with it. There is also space debris which can get in the way of your ship and your shots. This is something I like sure it’s another simple touch but the beauty of this game is all of its simple touches.

As for the bad side, by shoot-em-up standards this game has a very limited selection of weapon pick-ups. There is the standard shot and then two or three special shots you can get by picking up letters. Compare this to the tonne of weapons in other shooters at the time such as UN Squadron and it’s a little disappointing.

Another problem some people have with the game is how short it is, this game relies on being very hard after the first two levels to prolong the game. There are only five stages, and when you think that this game was at one point a full priced retail game that seems to be a few short of what I think would be a fair number.

I would give this game a hearty seven out of 10. It’s not perfect but it was a very pleasant surprise. Unfortunately its not available either as a PAL or US NTSC cart, but with its heavy use of English and the fact it ran on both a modified machine and a very simple converter this is not a bad game for someone who wants to start importing. Or at least it would be if you could find a cheap copy. The only copy I can see online at the moment is £25. I bought this from someone as a package deal – seven Japanese carts for £14, all of which were sports games apart from this one.

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