Cyber Stadium Series: Base Wars

Overview / Review of Ultra’s 1991 NES game, Cyber Stadium Series: Base Wars.

At the turn of the 24th century, American baseball team owners are fed up paying the astronomical salaries demanded by even the worst players on their teams. At a board meeting, the owner of the Boston Banshees suggests robots as a replacement to traditional human participants, confident that cheaply produced players that do battle… Continue reading

Rollergames

Overview / Review of Ultra’s 1990 NES game, Rollergames.

Rollergames, Konami’s contribution to the blitz of marketing and merchandising accompanying the first (and only) season of 1989’s television show Rollergames, brings all of the cheese and drama of extreme skating home to the NES courtesy a cartridge officially endorsed by WAR (World Alliance of Rollersports). Bearing a number of similarities to Konami’s Skate or Die – Bad ‘N Rad released the Continue reading

Metal Gear

Overview / Review of Konami’s 1988 NES game, Metal Gear.

Metal Gear, the inaugural entry into a series that would come to receive worldwide acclaim with the release of the Playstation’s masterfully executed Metal Gear Solid, was originally brought to life by the now infamous game-designer Hideo Kojima on the 8-bit MSX2 computer platform in 1987. The NES version, ported in-house by Konami (though without the blessing of or input from anyone on the original development team) is a significantly changed version of the original Metal Gear, and as such has been savagely criticized by Kojima in the years since its release, going so far as to exclude it from series’ canon Continue reading

Contra Force

Overview / Review of Konami’s 1992 NES game, Contra Force.

Contra Force, the fourth American console title bearing the revered Contra name, proved to be an unexpected NES release late in the system’s life cycle. Following Contra (NES), Super C (NES), and Contra III: The Alien Wars (SNES), Contra Force was initially announced in Japan as Ark Hound (アークハウンド / Aakuhaundo), an original concept bearing no relation story wise to any other existing Konami franchises Continue reading

Castlevania III – Dracula’s Curse

Overview / Review of Konami’s 1990 NES game, Castlevania III – Dracula’s Curse.

Konami’s final chapter of their classic NES trilogy, Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse is a true 8-bit technological tour de force, constantly pushing the hardware to (and occasionally beyond) its limits. Staged as a prequel to the first two Castlevania games, the player assumes the role of Simon’s ancestor, Trevor Belmont… Continue reading

Castlevania

Overview / Review of Konami’s 1987 NES game, Castlevania.

The first of a legendary series, Konami’s Castlevania was one of the first games to truly prove the worth of third-party developers to Nintendo. As an extraordinarily well polished first offering in what would become one of the most prolific series of all time, Castlevania stands as a testament to the skill and sheer willpower of the crew at Konami; not only is the game aesthetically light years… Continue reading

Castlevania II – Simon’s Quest

Review / Overview of Konami’s 1988 NES game, Castlevania II – Simon’s Quest.

Reprising his role from Castlevania, Simon Belmont (renamed to fix the awkward and semi-correct Japanese transliteration of the name Berumondo Shimon used in the first game) sets off once again in pursuit of pure evil. This time, however, the adventure is much more personal in nature: Simon was badly injured in his fight with Dracula seven years ago… Continue reading

The Adventures of Bayou Billy

Overview / Review of Konami’s 1989 NES game, The Adventures of Bayou Billy.

Set in New Orleans and its surrounding environs, Konami’s The Adventures of Bayou Billy presents a violent love story through a curious amalgamation of several different game genres, including the classic beat ’em up, car racing with combat, and the first person light gun shooter… Continue reading

Lone Ranger, The

Overview / Review of Konami’s 1991 NES game, The Lone Ranger.

The Lone Ranger follows Konami’s penchant for quality licensed action titles, joining ranks with other notable Konami titles like Mission: Impossible, Monster in My Pocket, and Tiny Toon Adventures. The Lone Ranger founds its premise on the 1981 western film, The Legend of the Lone Ranger, which was in turn based on The Lone Ranger, a radio serial (running 1933-1954) and television series (1949-57). Continue reading