If you have been listening to the Nerdcorp podcast recently, then it should be of no surprise to you that retro gaming has taken over my life nowadays. One of the big reasons why this is happening has to do with the Evercade, a new handheld system that gives retro gamers the best of both of worlds, physical game preservation, and the opportunity to relive some classics from back in the day as well. In celebration of this awesome achievement, I would like to share with all of you my favorite game from each collection in a new segment called Evercades Greatest Hits.
1. Atari Collection 1- Ninja Golf for the Atari 7800
Starting things off on a weird very weird note, we have a unique mixture of two genres, side scrolling beat em up and sports, with a ninja theme thrown in for good measure. As weird as all of that sounds, the idea surprisingly works well for what it’s going for. The gameplay is fun and addictive, the visual presentation is impressive for the system that this initially released on, and the level of challenge is balanced enough to keep players from becoming frustrated too quickly. My only gripe is that as nice as the overall visual presentation is, there isn’t much variety to each stage. That small issue aside, this is the most unique title on the collection by a wide margin, and is definitely something worth checking out.
2. Namco Collection 1- Mappy Kids
When I was initially making the list, I wanted to stick with the tried and true as my favorite pick, but after playing more of this game recently, my opinion has changed on it in a big way. What you have here is a straightforward platformer with a unique twist that has you collecting enough money to rebuild your home. This idea forces the player to be more careful with how they approach each stage, and makes each and every decision that much more important in the long run. Toss in some catchy music, and a cute visual presentation, and you have the most addictive title on this collection by a wide margin.
3. Data East Collection 1- Magical Drop II
Our next selection has a very Tetris Attack sort of vibe to it, and if anybody out there has paid any attention to our review of that game, you should know that if something comes along that even comes close to recreating just how fun and addictive that experience was, it will definitely have my attention no questions asked. The only difference here is that it took a moment for me to figure out how to play it, primarily because it moves in the opposite direction of what I’m used to. That minor gripe aside, the gameplay is extremely addictive and challenging, but in more of a fun than frustrating way, and while the presentation may be a bit on the simplistic side, it certainly doesn’t take anything away from what is truly the most enjoyable experiences I have ever had with a puzzle game. Fans of the genre, please don’t pass this one up, it is well worth your time, trust me.
4. Interplay Collection 1- Earthworm Jim
While my opinion of the Namco collection changed over time, the same can’t be said for the first collection from Interplay, as the only true standout here is a familiar face from a popular franchise. Does that deter in any way from the quality that this game offers on its own merits? absolutely not. This is still one of the most fun platformers I have ever played. From the tight responsive controls, to the the unique level design, to the over the top sense of humor, this game is the entire package that has held up over the years, and it definitely earns the top spot on this collection by a wide margin.
5. Atari Collection 2- Centipede for the Atari 7800
Wrapping things up for today we have a title coming from a collection that represents an era before my time, which makes this decision a hard one to make because I don’t have a connection to it in any way shape or form. That being said, sticking with this addictive shooter was definitely the way to go, as it has two things I always look for when playing games, a simple premise that is easy to wrap my head around, and addictive gameplay that is accessible for players of any skill level. If you can ignore the fact that graphics were still a primitive idea in this era, then the other two categories should stand out just enough to make this something worth playing.
Pick of The Week: Mappy Kids
While there were numerous titles on here that appealed to my favorite genres in gaming, there was just something about this one that made it a true standout amongst the rest. The combination of ideas thrown together here had me worried at first, because I thought it was going to get confusing quickly, but it didn’t, and turned out to be an enjoyable experience from beginning to end. For all of these reasons and more, this is without question my pick of the week.
That’s all for the first of Evercade’s Greatest Hits. Check back again soon to see what’s up next for the series, and be sure to follow me on twitter (link on the site) to read about what games I am currently playing on the system as well, see you next time.