The complete history of Nintendo arcade games

A couple of days ago Nintendo streamed its latest Nintendo Direct presentation.

For many the most notable announcement was that Doom and Wolfenstein II are coming to the Switch, while the five minutes of new Super Mario Odyssey footage was a great way to wrap things up and get people talking after the Direct had ended.

For massively nerdy Nintendo historians (like me), though, the biggest news of the Direct was that Hamster Corporation – the studio currently responsible for the regular Neo-Geo games appearing on Switch and other consoles – will be bringing some of Nintendo’s old arcade games to the Switch as part of its Arcade Archives series. Continue reading “The complete history of Nintendo arcade games”

E3 2017 – The 45 trailers you may have missed

E3 week is slowly coming to an end, and while it may not have been the most dramatic in terms of big reveals it certainly clarified one thing: over the next 18 months we’ll be getting more great games than you can shake a Joy-Con at.

Of course, the main events during E3 week are the numerous press conferences, many of which I covered with podcast recaps. Most people are happy enough in the knowledge that if they watch every conference they’ll see the best of what E3 has to offer.

What you may not have realised, though, is that there are a wealth of other games at E3 that aren’t part of the conferences: either because they’re made by third-party publishers who aren’t showing presentations, or because they’re first-party games that for whatever reason have taken a back seat (sorry, Gran Turismo Sport). Continue reading “E3 2017 – The 45 trailers you may have missed”

10 characters who should be in ARMS

Nintendo’s latest original game is ARMS, which is coming to the Switch on 16 June.

In case you don’t already know, it’s a fighting game in which all the characters have extendable arms, meaning they can attack from a distance. I played it way back in January: here were my obscenely early hands-on impressions.

Nintendo has promised that, as was the case with Splatoon, ARMS will be supported after launch with a bunch of free downloadable content updates.

This will include new stages, new types of arm and – most interestingly – new playable fighters.

Now, if you ask me, this opens the door to a bunch of new possibilities. Friends, I’m thinking crossovers. Continue reading “10 characters who should be in ARMS”

The 30 best Nintendo 64 games

This is the ninth in my ’30 Best’ series of articles in which I discuss my favourite games ever on a system-by-system basis for the first time in my career. In case you missed them, the full list of other ’30 Best’ articles can be found at the bottom of this page.

’30 Best’ will now be a regular series, thanks to my lovely Patreon followers helping me reach a stretch goal. If you want to contribute, please visit my Patreon page.

Few retro games consoles are as fondly remembered as the Nintendo 64.

The history books list it as the system that was thoroughly trounced by the PlayStation, but with over 32 million sold – more than the Sega Mega Drive – its influence was still notable.

Nowhere was this influence clearer than in some of the games exclusive to the system. The N64 marked Nintendo’s first proper foray into polygonal gaming (I know, the Super FX chip, but whatever), and with it came a bunch of new concepts that would go on to shape the games we play today. Continue reading “The 30 best Nintendo 64 games”

The complete history of Mario Kart

The arrival of a new Mario Kart is always a big event in the gaming community.

For nearly 25 years Nintendo’s racing series has been considered one of the best local multiplayer experiences gaming can offer, and new titles regularly sell in the tens of millions.

Today is a little different, because it marks the first Mario Kart release which is an enhanced version of a previous game rather than a brand new entry.

The reason for this is clear: Mario Kart 8 Deluxe gives Switch owners a taste of console-quality Mario Kart in handheld form less than two months into the system’s life, while also giving those who skipped the Wii U a chance to finally play it.

This is only the latest chapter in the saga, of course. This series has been going for even longer than Arsene Wenger’s been at Arsenal, so what better time to look back at the history of Mario Kart?

Well, I mean, the 25th anniversary in August would be a better time. But fuck it, we’re doing it now. Continue reading “The complete history of Mario Kart”

ACA Neo Geo (Switch) review directory

This isn’t the first time a Nintendo system has been graced with the presence of the once-great Neo Geo.

In late 2007 the Wii’s Virtual Console service started getting Neo Geo titles. By the time the Wii died, over 50 of the beauties were available to buy.

While (at the time of writing) the Switch has yet to get a Virtual Console of its own, that doesn’t mean you can’t still get stuck into some retro goodness.

Enter the brilliantly-named Hamster Corporation, a Tokyo-based studio which has acquired the rights to a bunch of Neo Geo games. Continue reading “ACA Neo Geo (Switch) review directory”

The complete history of Bomberman

bomberman-character-art-from-bomberman-online-on-sega-dreamcast-2001In just a few days, the Nintendo Switch will finally be released.

It’s an exciting time for many gamers, because the launch of new hardware is always a thrill.

But it’s also an exciting and nerve-wracking time for a group of gamers who have had a rough time of it in recent years: Bomberman fans.

On the same day the Switch launches, Super Bomberman R will be sitting on the shelves alongside it. It will be the first new physical, boxed Bomberman game to appear in stores in more than eight years.

For people my age (30 and up if you must know, you cheeky prick), Bomberman is one of the classic video games series.

These days when you think of big, popular multiplayer games you think of Call Of Duty, Destiny, Overwatch and FIFA.

In the early ‘90s, it was Bomberman.

Because it’s been nearly a decade since the last retail Bomberman release – and because even then it wasn’t really as popular as it had been – there’s a generation of gamers who aren’t too familiar with the series as a whole.

That’s where yer man Scullion comes in. Continue reading “The complete history of Bomberman”