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”

The Tired Old Hack NES Mini stream (REPLAY!)

nes-miniThe NES Mini is finally with us, even though that isn’t really what it’s called (it’s the NES Classic Edition in America and the Nintendo Classic Mini NES in Europe).

Over the past couple of weeks you may have seen all manner of YouTubers and website journalists giving their takes on the system. Now, as someone who paid legit cash money for the privilege of having to wait until launch day to get it, it’s my turn.

This Saturday (12 November 2016) I streamed all 30 NES Mini games in a massive five-hour Twitch stream. Continue reading “The Tired Old Hack NES Mini stream (REPLAY!)”

Retro Vault – Mega CD VHS promo, 1992

Retro Vault is my video series looking at vintage gaming from back in the day – both popular games and those forgotten over time.

In the first of a number of VHS-themed specials, today’s Retro Vault takes a look at the Sega Mega CD promotional VHS tape that was given away with the first issue of Mean Machines Sega magazine in the UK. Continue reading “Retro Vault – Mega CD VHS promo, 1992”

15 games that sound ruder than they actually are

It’s hard work getting your game spotted on shop shelves sometimes, what with all the other titles vying for the public’s attention.

Sometimes you need something to catch their eye: a strong cover image, some positive magazine quotes from reputable publications, something like that.

This one isn't in the list but it was a strong contender
This one isn’t in the list but it was a strong contender

And sometimes you just need a title that makes people stop, do a double-take and say: “hang on, what?”

A few games over the years have had names that caught me off-guard and made me think: “They can’t really mean that, can they?”

Of course, most of the time they don’t mean that at all, and it’s just an unfortunate coincidence that their game’s title also happens to mean something offensive.

With that in mind, here are fifteen of my favourite examples of classic “did they really call it that?” moments. Continue reading “15 games that sound ruder than they actually are”

The day the console war stopped

You may have heard the World War I story about how, on Christmas Day in 1914, British and German soldiers stopped their fighting for one day, opting to toss their differences to the side and instead play football and exchange gifts on No Man’s Land.

In my school, we had our own war. It was far more frivolous – lives weren’t lost and we used words, not weapons – but it still mattered to us. And on one special day, we had our own truce too. Continue reading “The day the console war stopped”