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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Nintendo’s NES Mini System Re-releases

In 2016, Nintendo brought out a new version of its classic NES (Nintendo Entertainment System) Famicon (katakana Japanese for Family Computer), an eight-bit video game system that was filled with a whole bunch of the classic Nintendo video game titles that most of us grew up with.

Or in my case as an adult when it originally came out - refound my inner child.

That reissue sold out immediately. I stopped by my local video game shop (EB Games) one day after its release and was disappointed to find it was sold out.

Now… you would think that Nintendo, knowing it had a sold out system in North America, would think about building more of the damn things and and sell more of the things a month or two down the line would help explode its coffers—but no.

It was one and done.

Now, imagine my surprise when Nintendo announced it was going to reissue the old Famicon in 2018 with a different set of video games!!!!

And then imagine my disappointment when I found it it had NONE of the video games on it that I knew about or even wanted to play.

Yup… on July 7, 2018, Nintendo is bringing back the Nintendo Classic Mini: Famicon for sale for 7,980 yen… with a whole bunch of video games it released between 1985 and 1993…  an all Japanese anime/manga series of video games.

This version is called the Famicon Mini Weekly Shonen Jump 50th Anniversary Version. Yup. That’s it’s full name. Catchy, not.

The system comes complete with 20 games… not one of them actually made by Nintendo… and all of them are basically Japanese releases.

Here’s a list of the video games:

    •    Kinnikuman: Muscle Tag Match (1985)
    •    Dragon Quest (1986)
    •    Hokuto no Ken (1986)
    •    Dragon Ball: Shenlong no Nazo (1986)
    •    Kinnikuman: Kinniku-sei Ōi Sōdatsusen (1987)
    •    Saint Seiya: Ōgon Densetsu (1987)
    •    Captain Tsubasa (1988)
    •    Saint Seiya: Ōgon Densetsu Kanketsu-hen (1988)
    •    Sekiryūō (1989)
    •    Famicom Jump: Hero Retsuden (1989)
    •    Sakigake!! Otokojuku Shippū Ichi Gō Sei (1989)
    •    Ankoku Shinwa: Yamato Takeru Densetsu (1989)
    •    Tenchi o Kurau (1989)
    •    Hokuto no Ken 3: Shin Seiki Sōzō: Seiken Retsuden (1989)
    •    Dragon Ball 3: Goku Den (1989)
    •    Captain Tsubasa II: Super Striker (1990)
    •    Dragon Ball Z: Kyōshū! Saiyajin (1990)
    •    Magical Taluluto-kun FANTASTIC WORLD!! (1991)
    •    Famicom Jump II: Saikyō no Shichinin (1991)
    •    Rokudenashi Blues (1993)

Just effing kill me now.

Okay… Dragon Quest was fun. North Americans might know the game better as Dragon Warrior. It was a RPG (role-playing game)… and it was fun enough, I suppose… though I was doing the far-better Ultima series of RPGs on my computer beginning in 1981 and stopped at Ultima VI in 1990 or VII in 1992.

As for the rest of these Nintendo games listed above? Snore.

I suppose it5 might be exciting for the Japanese player who knows the characters, but outside of Japan, unless the game made the leap to North America, it’s pretty much a Japan-only market.

… Just as it will be for the re-release.

For the folks at Nintendo who are shareholders… I just have one thing to ask… why would Nintendo NOT continue to make MORE  Nintendo Classic Mini: Famicon filled with the Nintendo titles as per the 2016 re-release?

You could have made MORE money if you had actually fulfilled the market demand for the product.


But wait!!!! They are re-relaseing the original: The NES Classic Edition returns on June 29, 2018.
 It will come with the following games:

    •    Donkey Kong
    •    Pac-Man
    •    Excitebike
    •    Balloon Fight
    •    Ice Climber
    •    Galaga
    •    Yie Ar Kung-Fu
    •    Super Mario Bros.
    •    The Legend of Zelda
    •    Atlantis no Nazo
    •    Gradius
    •    Makai Village (Ghosts n' Goblins in the US)
    •    Solomon's Key
    •    Metroid
    •    Castlevania
    •    Adventure of Link
    •    Bumping Sumo
    •    Super Mario Bros. 3
    •    Ninja Gaiden
    •    Mega Man 2
    •    River City Ransom
    •    Double Dragon Ⅱ The Revenge
    •    Super Tamashito Luo (Super C in the US)
    •    Final Fantasy Ⅲ
    •    Dr. Mario
    •    Downtown Nekketsu March Soreyuke
    •    Mario Open Golf
    •    Super Mario USA (Super Mario Bros. 2 in the US)
    •    Kirby's Adventure

Yeah, there’s a few games there you might never touch, but there’s plenty there that you will.

Okay… my real question is, to the Nintendo people: what the hell took you so long to make more? Two years?

If I got my hands on this, all I would play is Donkey Kong, Galaga, Super Mario Bros., Legends of Zelda, Final Fantasy III…

… okay… I’m lying, I’d play them all.

Thanks to Vinnie for the heads up in looking at the story about the Japanese anime/manga NES re-release, which enabled me to discover that there actually IS a Classic NES re-re-release.

Andrew Joseph

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