Saturday, 23 February 2013

1up Blog #37: SNES: Bad Then, Good Now! (12/09/2006)

Now you're probably wondering how that can be possible. Well, the main reason this is so is because SNES was sort of the dark horse in my gaming years. I'm not saying it was a bad system (yeah, I exaggerated a bit on the title), I actually had some pretty good times with it. Though SNES gave host to many of my first game experiences, I can honestly say they could've been better. No, I don't think the Mario's and Zelda's are overrated, the main problem was: I didn't play them (or at least now enough). I got the SNES long before I started reading EGM and thus, wasn't aware of much that was good. Anyway, welcome to my first (and probably only) retro blog!

I have to wonder where I'd be in gaming today if I actually enjoyed the SNES as much as everyone else. Would I have skipped the PS1 and opted to buy the crappy N64 Turoks instead (ultimately missing out on some of my favorite games)? Would I continue to read Nintendo Power like any fanboy, instead of EGM (and not realize NP is the most biased magazine ever)? Regardless, I still sort of wish I'd played more of the better games (I waded through a lot of crappy PS1 games at first too though). Can you believe (though at the tender age of 7) I picked Bart's Nightmare over Super Metroid!? Like I said though, it wasn't all bad. I did play Super Mario All Stars, with SMB, at least, I still adore to this day. After hearing good words of a certain Nintendo series called Zelda from a friend, I stumbled into A Link to the Past for $5 in a local pawnshop. However, this isn't where the smiles come in: this is a very tragic story. Having been all pumped up on the way home to play the game, I popped it in, and though a few odd looking words appeared on the screen, I shrugged them off. I started a new game and I realized this couldn't be anything but foreign: I was playing a French copy of A Link to the Past! We all know Zelda isn't the most text based kind of game, but there are actually some placed in the SNES game where you do have to read... and probably get! I couldn't make it to a dungeon without getting lost (and all the constant help from people never gave me a clear view passed the basics). I never did beat the game. Luckily, one look at Ocarina of Time, and I was a Zelda fan again! (But that's another story...) Still, with a mostly absurd collection of sports games and a French Zelda, once I had gotten a PS1, I went and sold my SNES (though not regrettably, I left my first game, Killer Instinct at home).<Br>

<Br>Come again? (Sorry, I couldn't find an actual French "A Link to the Past" screenshot.)

I'm just going to get to the point now: this past month, after borrowing a SNES, I got to play it for the first time in years, and surprisingly, I love it! Super Mario World was a great start, definitely more addicting than any game I've played on current consoles; a game, I really, really should have played back in the day. I also played some Secret of Evermore (visually impressive!), Super Mario Kart (I like a racing game!), and Kirby (proving that I wasn't wrong about the crappy games on SNES!)... Oh, yeah, and I got to play Zelda: A Link to the Past again! First, let me say the SNES still has its faults... technically. Merely bumping the system can erase the save data on a cartridge! It happened on Super Mario World and Zelda... twice! And I hate to say it, but some games for the SNES graphics-wise, though seemingly nice at first, seem to get bland far faster than many PS1 games.

Suddenly, I only was able to have the system for a few more days, and, without ever removing the cartridge, I decided to have one last go at Zelda. After staying up till 3am the next day, I did a "power-run" through a game for the first time for a very long time, and I haven't been more satisfied to finally beat a game since the last time I can remember! So with my incoming "25 Greatest Games" list (yes, it's still on its way), retro games may not be totally AWOL! This is for you retro games!

Ah, that's better!

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