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Virtual Console Mondays: March 12, 2007

by Steven Rodriguez - March 13, 2007, 7:38 pm
Total comments: 9

Yeah, we're a day late with this week's recommendations. But we know you were waiting for us.

Three more games showed up for download on the Wii Virtual Console service yesterday. Two out of the group might be worth a look, but we looked at all of them anyway. It's what we do.

Enough chit-chat. Here are our fashionably late picks for this week. Don't forget to jump into our talkback thread if you have a different opinion. That's what it's there for!

Tecmo Bowl

SystemVirtual Console - Nintendo Entertainment System

Cost500 Points
ControllersWii Remote,Wii Nunchuk,GameCube
ESRB RatingEveryone
ReleasedFeb 1989

While crude by today's Madden-era standards, in 1989 video football

got no better than Tecmo Bowl. Players pick from twelve teams with

most major cities represented, including Los Angeles, Washington, New

York and San Francisco. The original game featured an NFLPA license,

meaning that all teams had their actual 1988 rosters (with legends

like Joe Montana, Walter Payton, and Bo Jackson). However, due to

licensing issues the player names have been removed from the VC

version (boooo!). Players are referred to by number, meaning you'll have to do a little research to figure out who's who.

The field is presented in an overhead view with games played from side-to-side. Offensive and defensive gameplay is incredibly simplified, but that's part of Tecmo Bowl's charm. You only have four plays to choose from, and guessing your opponent's play results in an all-out blitz of their quarterback. This makes two-player games a blast. You can play a season using a password system, or play a Coach mode that has you calling plays against a buddy while the computer plays the game for you.

We can't recommend Tecmo Bowl for everyone, since gamers weaned on the flashy intricacies of Madden may be turned off by its lack of complexity and 8-bit graphics. The removal of real player names also kills any

nostalgia one might have associated with the game, and is a major drawback with this version. Some may also want to wait for Tecmo Super Bowl, TB's vastly superior sequel that appeared on both the NES

and SNES. Despite these drawbacks, anyone looking for a simple football game might want to give Tecmo Bowl a try.

Recommended for Fans

- Jon Lindemann

Sonic Spinball

SystemVirtual Console - Genesis

Cost800 Points
ControllersWii Remote,Wii Nunchuk,GameCube
ESRB Rating
ReleasedNov 15, 1993

Sonic plus pinball equals Spinball. That's pretty much what you'll get when you play Sonic Spinball. Sega's mascot character finds himself in a maze of pinball boards, each with multiple levels and lots of secret nooks and crannies to bounce to and explore. What makes Spinball different than a traditional pinball game is that you have some control over Sonic's movement while he's flying around through the air, making it somewhat easier to stay alive.

I don't think that an $8 price tag makes this a game for everyone, but if you like pinball games and/or blue hedgehogs you'll get your money's worth in Sonic Spinball. Oh, and as is the Sonic way, you can turn up the game speed to a faster level. Sonic would do it. Shouldn't you?

Recommended for Fans

- Steven Rodriguez

Double Dungeons

SystemVirtual Console - TurboGrafx-16

Cost600 Points
ControllersWii Remote,Wii Nunchuk,GameCube
ESRB RatingEveryone
ReleasedJun 1990

Don't let the similar name fool you, this game is absolutely nothing like Double Dragon. It's actually an old-school dungeon crawling RPG. You wander around a 3D maze finding slimes and bats and birds and everything else you'd expect to find in a dungeon, and then hope that your stats are better than your enemy. The "double" portion of the game's name comes from the fact that two players can wander around the same dungeon co-operatively, which is actually quite impressive, all things considered.

Remember how I said it was old-school? Scratch that. It's just plain old. While you'll get a laugh out of text prompts like "Zounds!" and "Did he learn his lesson?" the game here is just too simple and boring for it to be worth a download. So don't download it!

Not Recommended

- Steven Rodriguez


that Baby guyMarch 13, 2007

Is "Zounds!" a reference to Spaceman Spiff, Calvin's imaginative astronaut alter-ego?

I could never, ever, ever, ever stand to play Sonic Spinball for very long. I don't like it. I've tried very hard to like it, too. I just don't. Out of all the Sonic games I've played, including several of the Game Gear ones, I have to say it is my least favorite.

GoldenPhoenixMarch 13, 2007

A bunch of slackers you guys are, I could have bought some of the trash that came out on Monday! The nerve of you guys to hold us in such anticipation, possibly letting one of us slip up and actually buy something like Double Dungeons.

KDR_11kMarch 13, 2007

Who but Kairon was seriously considering that anyway?

And do you really expect this to stop Kairon?

NephilimMarch 13, 2007

sonic spinball, over hyped mid 90s game that I returned to the movie shop, the day I hired it :/

planetidiotMarch 14, 2007

Considering I actually enjoy Sword of Vermillion and other sorta first person 8/16 bit dungeon games, I have to wonder if Double Dungeons really is crap, or if this is just an anti-old RPG bias.

Smash_BrotherMarch 14, 2007


Originally posted by: planetidiot
Considering I actually enjoy Sword of Vermillion and other sorta first person 8/16 bit dungeon games, I have to wonder if Double Dungeons really is crap, or if this is just an anti-old RPG bias.

"...The pungent stench of bias emanates from the wet NWR forum walls..."

BloodworthDaniel Bloodworth, Staff AlumnusMarch 14, 2007

Honestly, I liked some of those first person RPGs from the 80s, but going back to play them is only for the most hardcore fans. I can't comprehend how I ever completed them without using graph paper to make maps.

Most old-school RPGs at least had an overworld and a cool backstory (Questron, Ultima, etc.). This is a straight dungeon crawler with next-to-no backstory, which is uber-boring. Not to mention pointless.

KDR_11kMarch 14, 2007

You find yourself in a maze of bad RPG reviews, all alike.

It is dark. You are likely to be eaten by Bloodworth.

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