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Retro Game SuperHyper

A new blog about old videogames

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konami

Famously Obscure Consoles

Who makes video game consoles?

It’s typically the heaviest hitters in the industry, like Nintendo and Sega, or major electronics manufacturers, like Sony and NEC. In the early days it was Magnavox, Atari, and major toy companies Mattel and Coleco. Sure, there will be a lesser-known scrapper in there once in a while, like SNK, but their products typically cater to a more hardcore niche.

But remember, once upon a time back in the early 1980s, Nintendo wasn’t a console juggernaut — they just made and licensed arcade games. They were known for Donkey Kong and Popeye, which they licensed out to companies like Coleco and Parker Brothers to get them on the Atari 2600 or Intellivision. Nobody expected them to suddenly enter the market with their own home console. Same with Sega — I recall thinking, What? The company that made Zaxxon and Congo Bongo has their own systems??

With this in mind over the years, I’ve often wondered what it would be like if some of my other favorite software or electronic companies would throw their hats into the ring and produce new video game hardware. What would happen if, say, Capcom made a game console? Or Konami? Or Hitachi? Turns out, many of those companies not only asked the same question, but actually had plans of their own home video game platforms having reached various stages of completion. Some of them even actually made it to market, and I hadn’t even been aware of them until recently!

So what happens when some of the biggest names in the games and electronics business start kicking around the idea of introducing a new video game console?

Continue reading “Famously Obscure Consoles”

That Time I Went to E3

With E3 2019 just about here, I thought I’d finally talk about that time some friends and I weaseled our way into the Electronic Entertainment Expo.

Continue reading “That Time I Went to E3”

Gamers’ Library: The Art of Metal Gear Solid I-IV

I’m a huge Metal Gear nerd. I’ve played almost every game in the series (except for MGS Touch, MG Survive, and the one time I got a chance to play Metal Gear Arcade, I couldn’t figure out what the hell I was doing), have beaten all the main series games (from Metal Gear on MSX all the way through Phantom Pain) and a couple of the spinoffs, and have a small collection of Metal Gear swag. I even have a Fox Hound logo tattoo! (The one from Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, the same one that Meryl Silverburgh has in MGS1.) So it should come as a shock to absolutely nobody that when Dark Horse released this double-volume boxed behemoth called The Art of Metal Gear Solid I-IV, I had to have it. Continue reading “Gamers’ Library: The Art of Metal Gear Solid I-IV”

Video Vinyl: Policenauts on Data Discs

Last month’s announcement of the 17th catalog release from British video game soundtrack vinyl specialists Data Discs was an exciting surprise: Policenauts, Konami’s 1994 graphic adventure game, directed by Hideo Kojima. Available on multiple formats, beginning with the PC-9821 computer, then ported to the 3DO, Sony PlayStation, and Sega Saturn consoles, this spiritual follow-up to Kojima’s classic, Snatcher, never actually got an official release anywhere outside of Japan. Despite this, Policenauts has still managed to gain legendary status among import game enthusiasts and Kojima fans alike.

Continue reading “Video Vinyl: Policenauts on Data Discs”

Triple-dippin’

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I have a lot of favorite games. Who the heck doesn’t? But rare is the game that I love so much that I buy it again. Sometimes they’re remakes, sometimes a Japanese version to complement my US copy, sometimes just different or more convenient formats. And even rarer is the game that I buy again…and again.

Having just picked up the PS4 remake of Shadow of the Colossus — my third version — I got to thinking about which games I love so much that I’ve bought three times…or more! Continue reading “Triple-dippin’”

I have this thing: Salamander Anime VHS

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Did you know this was a thing? A lot of gamers don’t! But it’s true, Konami put out a 3-episode Salamander/Gradius OAV (original animation video, or direct-to-video anime) series in 1988.

Continue reading “I have this thing: Salamander Anime VHS”

In Defense of Castlevania II

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I have only recently become aware of some of the bad press that Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest has gotten. This came as somewhat of a shock to me, as Castlevania II has always been one of my favorite games on the NES, and I guess I thought most people agreed with that. It’s also a direct influence on the modern style of Castlevania games, having been referenced directly in some of the series’ best entries.

So why’s everybody hating on Castlevania II all of a sudden? Continue reading “In Defense of Castlevania II”

Video Vinyl: Snatcher on Ship to Shore

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As you can see, I loves me some Snatcher

Ship to Shore Phono Company’s double LP release of the Snatcher soundtrack is the second of a one-two punch of vinyl videogame soundtrack releases that I was super excited about for early 2017 (the other being Data Disc’s Revenge of Shinobi, which came out several weeks ago and was the subject of my last Video Vinyl blog entry). I had pre-ordered both titles late last year and have been looking forward to them ever since. Well, the Snatcher album finally showed up today, and I am VERY impressed! Continue reading “Video Vinyl: Snatcher on Ship to Shore”

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