Nintendo 64 Jap | 2002

This game is another action masterpiece from Treasure and an out of the norm title for the N64 as itís actually not looking like itís for 8 year olds.

It is a 3rd person rail shooter a cross between Tomb Raider and Panzer Dragoon. For the most part action takes place running along the floor. but there are some sections which involve flying through the air.

You control 1 of 2 teenagers; Saki or Airan though the plot of the game determines which you will be playing on a level. The story is quite in depth but can be followed as itís in English and showed with cut-scenes.

Throughout each level you will be dodging and rolling intensely as well as trying to shoot everything. Enemies flood the screen in large numbers and some of them are quite large and a boss creature waits at the end.

Graphics are reasonably good. Enemies seem basic in design no doubt to stop the game grinding to a halt because there is loads of them and the sound track is ok.

Unfortunately it was only released in Japan so an import copy will cost about £60. To play it on a UK machine you will need a converter such as a Passport Plus and the run code: E93D0054 003F

Sin and Punishment


Saturn PAL 1997

The ultimate combination of the Saturnís best beat Ďem ups. This game simply puts together the characters of Virtua Fighter 2 and Fighting Vipers into one game along with a few others. In a bizarre twist one character is the Hornet from Daytona USA that grabs an opponent with one tire and uses the other to lay the smackdown on the victims face!

Gameplay is Virtua Fighter; 1 on 1 3D combat and all the sophistication that brings is fully intact.

2 Player games are an essential for this kind of game though a single player game is fun and challenging.

Graphics seem to have been upped a notch in some places and not in others. The music is collated from VF2, Fighting Vipers, some from Daytona USA and from Afterburner.

On a cultural note, Megamix sports Bark and Bean as well as South Island and Aurora Icefield arenas from the little known Sonic The Fighters Arcade game.

Mega Mix is the essential Saturn fighter and is a great game even if you already own VF or FV.

Virtua Fighter and Fighting Vipers have both had sequels since. Virtua Fighter 3 and Virtua Fighter 4 along with Fighting Vipers 2 on the Dreamcast.

Fighters MegaMix


Saturn | 1997

The Virtua Fighter gang appear as they would have in primary school for a bizarre twist on VF sophistication.

There is hardly no departure from the spirit of VF except for the graphics; each character being shrunk having a big head and big eyes ergo classic Japanese anime style. Their voices have been pitch bent upwards as well.

All the moves are the same and the gameplay is faster. A one button combo function is on hand to people useless at this sort of game as well as the Combo Maker allowing players to make 20 comboís and store them to the Saturnís internal memory.

Strangely this version does boast a minor graphical improvement so this is probably down to the simpler graphics and the music is modified VF2.

A fun game but nothing particularly new here unless you like to see kids kicking the crap out of each other.

Virtua Fighter Kids


Master System

A timeless classic to be sure. Taitoís arcade classic landed on the Master System in perfect form and is an excellent piece of 8-Bit nostalgia.

Beyond the simple graphics and sound (the hauntingly annoying background theme) lies a highly addictive and fun platformer of sorts.

You play either Bub or Bob, 2 bubble breathing dinosaurs. Your girlfriends have been kidnapped by an evil wizard and your peruse their captors through 100 levels of puzzling level layout populated by robots out to stop you. You neutralize these robots in your bubbles, burst them and watch them fly off to their doom.

The excellent fun and playability is enjoyed further with the simultaneous 2 player mode.

Bubble Bobble ended up on almost every computer and console there ever was and now you can play it on a mobile phone. The Gameboy Advance has seen a recent version called Bubble Bobble: Old and New.

A sequel Bubble Bobble: Rainbow Islands was created and ported everywhere also.

Characters Bub and Bob are still alive in the Bust-A-Move series of games.

Bubble Bobble