Articles tagged with: snes

The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening

seanstar on Sunday, 24 July 2011. Posted in Retro Game of the Week

First, thanks where thanks are due. This article would not have happened were it not for the Commonwealth-Edison electric company of greater Chicago leaving me 56 uninterrupted hours to enjoy no games requiring more power than a pack of AA batteries. Way to go.

With that out of the way, let's talk about the game. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening has aged REMARKABLY WELL. Released in 1993, it is the first "out-of-canon" Zelda game in the series. Rather than focusing on gathering eight pieces of save-the-princess/defeat-Ganon hardware, Link finds himself on a mysterious island collecting musical instruments in order to awaken a mythical entity called the Wind Fish ("The Wind Fish in name only, for it is neither...") from within a giant egg on top of a mountain. Along his way, he encounters a cast of unusual characters -- some eerily reminiscent of people he knows from the outside world, some making cameos from other contemporary games, and many simply unique.

News Roundup: April 4 - May 5

mossy_11 on Friday, 06 May 2011. Posted in News

Apple released updates to its iMac line earlier in the week, bumping performance with the latest Sandy Bridge processors and AMD Radeon HD graphics cards. The new iMacs also sport ports -- one in the 21.5-inch models, two in the 27-inch -- for the new Thunderbolt high-speed peripheral connection interface that was introduced with the new MacBook Pros earlier in the year. Tested did a breakdown of the gaming capabilities of the new iMacs, determining that the best choice for many gamers will be to get the 21.5-inch model with a 6770M graphics card.

Apple also released the long-delayed, much-anticipated white iPhone 4 last month. If I may editorialise for a moment, the excitement over what is only a colour change is utterly ridiculous -- it almost makes me ashamed to be an Apple fan.

Arcade emulator MAME has a new project manager. After six years at the helm, Aaron Giles, a legend in the emulation scene, has stepped down to make way for Angelo Salese. Giles will still be involved as a developer on the project, however. The latest version of MAME and its OS X port, SDL MAME, is 0.142u2, which as usual offers a wealth of source changes. See here for the list. Head over to the SDL MAME website for a precompiled version, or grab the source straight from the MAME site.

Super Nintendo emulator Snes9x has received a long-awaited update. Version 1.53 offers a wealth of fixes and improvements, which you can see in the changelog listed here. Downloads are also available at the preceding link.

Nintendo Gamecube and Wii emulator Dolphin now has official Mac OS X builds. The emulator is updated on a more-or-less daily basis, so keep a close eye on its download page for the latest binaries.

Keep reading for more emulator updates.

E.V.O.: Search for Eden

Pixelcade on Monday, 01 November 2010. Posted in Retro Game of the Week

Editor's note: I was playing the game while I edited the article. It strikes me as being just as interesting and fun as Pixelcade says, and I can't help but wonder why Spore was not more like this. Check out the article, then get the game -- evolving your creature is immediately addictive and satisfying. -mossy_11

At some point in my misery called high school, on a good ol' fashioned "I don't feel well" sick day (which was conveniently a Friday), I drove up to the local video store and looked for a few games. Browsing the covers it seemed to me that every game was the same -- I had either played it or had no desire to. Out of nowhere appeared this cool looking box with the letters E.V.O.: Search for Eden (although with all the cool graphics I only noticed the E.V.O. part).

The back of the box had my favorite style of pixel graphics, featuring lots of color and creative designs. I thought, "What the hey, I'll give this one a shot for the weekend." Upon getting home and powering it up I was welcomed by an impressive musical score, which played as the game's title came into view over a space shot of half our planet. I have always enjoyed science and the history of how things came to be, but I had no idea I was about to embark on a creative study of evolution and the geological time scale, as they were understood by scientists at the time.


Civilization 1 & 2

mossy_11 on Monday, 04 October 2010. Posted in Retro Game of the Week

For much of my existence on this earth, I have been an unashamed Civilization addict, Sid Meier's historically-themed strategy masterpiece. The series has done more to cultivate my interests today than anything else, helping to determine my majors in school (history and computer science), my fascination with interactive systems, and my goal of a career in game design.

I was only four years old when the original Civilization came out in 1991, and I knew nothing of the game until a few years later, when my brother entered private school. He came home after school one day with Civilization installed on his laptop and showed it to me. I was hooked instantly -- before I’d even played it. The developers had abstracted an entire alternate history of Western civilization into this simple game that offered so much emergent complexity.


Lufia & the Fortress of Doom

mossy_11 on Monday, 23 August 2010. Posted in Retro Game of the Week

There’s something magical about the 16-bit era of Japanese role-playing games (JRPGs). The sprite graphics had grown just enough in detail to express a wide range of emotions, while the larger capacity of cartridges for the Super Nintendo and Sega Mega Drive/Genesis allowed the creation of huge and highly detailed worlds. Moreover, the mechanics that were in their infancy during the days of the NES had matured and shed much of the baggage that previously weighed them down.

A lot remained to be done to perfect the JRPG formula, but its scope and complexity were no longer constrained by technology -- developers could at last create an epic adventure with a fully-realised story and several core characters, all tied in to a deep gameplay system. It would be some time before the arrival of the true masterpieces of the era -- Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy VI, Super Mario RPG, and a few others -- but a flurry of fine efforts kept gamers more than satisfied through the early 90s, including Final Fantasy IV, Illusion of Gaia, Phantasy Star III, and the topic of this article, Lufia & the Fortress of Doom (Estpolis in Japan), which preceded another of the 16-bit JRPG greats: Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals.



seanstar on Monday, 02 August 2010. Posted in Retro Game of the Week

Editor's note: I never really got into the F-Zero games. I thought they looked cool and knew they had a cult following, but found them too intimidating to seriously try. Nevertheless, I had enough experience with F-Zero on the SNES to admire the series from afar. Seanstar has provided an interesting look at the entire series here, with the biggest take-away being that F-Zero games seldom disappoint (unlike certain other arcade racing franchises). -mossy_11


SNES-F-Zero-OriginalBox-f-smThe year is 2560. Burgeoning intergalactic trade and the social and economic boon that followed created a new class of wealthy investors looking for new and exciting forms of entertainment. And so was born F-Zero, an intergalactic grand prix of high stakes and higher speeds, bringing together characters of all species and cultures from across the universe...

In actuality, F-Zero was the brainchild of Nintendo's EAD studio. It debuted on the Super Nintendo in 1990. From the outset, F-Zero was notable for its technical prowess -- inventing the mode-7 3rd-person racing genre, creating never-before-felt physics that hugged the line between driving and skating, laying out a palette of vibrant and distinct worlds and machines, giving the SPC sound chip a fair workout, and all the while never compromising on fluid gameplay that flew with such speed it would put Sonic the Hedgehog on edge.

Prince of Persia

mossy_11 on Monday, 05 July 2010. Posted in Retro Game of the Week

1197316255-00It’s a simple story that has been told in various guises for thousands of years: the beautiful princess is held against her will by the evil usurper of the throne. The hero must come to her aid and save the kingdom from tyranny, undertaking a gruelling series of trials along the way. Jordan Mechner’s 1989 Prince of Persia added a strong sense of urgency to the plot with a strict one hour time limit. Fail and the princess dies; the kingdom falls to the evil Grand Vizier Jaffar. Succeed and become the champion of the people; the tyrant Jaffar dies.

You emerge in the deepest depths of Jaffar’s dungeons, unarmed and with only your wits to defend you against the many guards and traps scattered throughout. In just one hour you brave perilous drops, retractable spike pits, collapsing floors, armed guards, and several other kinds of traps, all of which can slice and dice your avatar in the most terrifying ways. With the odds so firmly stacked against you, it takes remarkable skill -- and more than a little luck -- to reach the end of the game, where you meet the tyrant Jaffar himself for a fight to the death.

Emulation on the iPad

Niemann on Wednesday, 05 May 2010. Posted in News

Emulation has come to the iPad (you owe me five coins if you didn't see this coming).  TouchArcade has pointed out a great YouTube video showing off an iPad playing Super Mario World using a Wiimote as a controller.  If that's not enough to get you excited, you can enjoy how much the person demoing the emulator sucks at Super Nintendo.

If you're looking for more information on how this feat is possible, check out Gizmodo's excellent coverage of iPad jailbreaking.  There is one slight catch; snes4iphone costs $5.99 .