Virtual Console Wrap-up – 2/23

Can it be? Can it possibly be, that more than one game is being released on the VC this week? Holy testicle Tuesday! It had to happen sometime. So what’s the occasion? Well, this week Nintendo is releasing 3 games from the old Commodore 64, so I guess they’re starting that off with a good handful of titles. Now, if you were born in 1987 (like me) or some time thereafter, you might be asking yourself, “What is the Commodore 64?” Well, since I was rockin’ the NES at this time, I have no experience with these games, but here are some people that do!

The Last Ninja
Developer: System 3
Publisher: System 3
System: Commodore 64
Original Release Date: 1987
Price: 500 Wii Points

International Karate
Developer: System 3
Publisher: System 3
System: Commodore 64
Original Release Date: 1987
Price: 500 Wii Points

International Karate
Publisher: Epyx
System: Commodore 64
Original Release Date: 1984
Price: 500 Wii Points

Christopher Bowen: I’d say there are about three game systems that I am not intimately familiar with. In every case but one, I can’t say they’ll be missed; it’s not like the words “hey baby, I’ve played the Fairchild F” are EVER going to get me laid. There’s only one system that’s achieved any level of fame that I can honestly say I’ve never touched.

That’s right: I’m a Commodore 64 newbie.

I have no familiarity with any of this latest crop of Commodore games. While I’m sure I could go onto my Gametap subscription and play them, that’s besides the point; unlike most Virtual Console games which have been released and re-released over the years, here are three games that I have NO idea about, much like, I’m sure, about 85 – 90% of Nintendo’s current userbase.

THIS is what the Virtual Console was made for! I recommend grabbing these games, if only as a museum piece and a novelty; I sure know I will be later, once I hook my Wii up for the first time in months.

Charlie Marsh: Hey, here’s an idea, how about Nintendo 64 games? That section could use a little attention. But seriously, I know I can’t really give a recommendation to any of these, having never played them myself, but I will say that I’ll be giving Last Ninja a look, since ninja’s are freakin’ awesome. So I’d suggest keeping an open mind if you have no experience with these games.




Alex Lucard: This is probably where I once again show my European leanings as it’s great to finally have the C64 games here in the States. Come on Reptar!

International Karate is probably the game known best to non-C64 fans as it was actually a pretty big arcade hit when it first came out. I remember nearly every airport had one and I could count on a series of quarters from either parent to play this while they had a break from my hyperactivity. This was Street Fighter before Street Fighter as it was just a one on one martial arts beatdown.

To be fair, it’s not a very good game. Controls are spotty, collision detection was god awful and the MIDI music would hurt your ears after a while. This game is really for only fans of the game when it first came out and you are in need of nostalgia. Everyone else should really wait for the eventually release of the three player International Karate +

Pit Stop II is a two player split screen racing game for the C64. It’s no Pole Position, but it’s fun for what it is. Again, another pass unless you grew up with it.

Now The Last Ninja is the game to get out of the three of these. It reminds me of an early precursor to the now forgotten awesomeness that was Wrath of the Black Manta. This is a nice little action game, although the controls were a bit awkward for the day. The music and graphics still hold up today and for five bucks, you could probably do a lot worse.

All in all, not a bad start for the Commodore 64.

Nathan Birch: Whoa! 3 games for the Virtual Console this week! Good work Nintendo. Oh wait…they’re Commodore 64 games? Hmmm, I see.

Actually I do have some nostalgia for the ol’ C64 as for some reason 2 of my best friends in elementary school owned them in instead of the NES. The only one of the current crop of 3 that I’ve played is International Karate, which I recalled being fairly entertaining. It’s different than most fighting games in that it actually takes an Olympic style approach to things, with you having to score points for solid hits instead of wearing down a lifebar. In my young mind that made it more authentic and thus awesomer.

Anyways, a lot of the reaction on the Interwebs to the C64 coming to the Virtual Console seems to be pretty lukewarm, but it actually opens up the possibility for a lot of pretty kick-ass games that never hit the NES. Ultima 1 through 6? Bards Tale? Elite? The impression seems to be that everything on the C64 was light disposable stuff, but there’s some real meaty experiences available for the system.

So that’s what we think. Personally, I have a feeling most of the younger Wii owners are more likely to look into our Wii Ware release for the week: Onslaught, a pretty awesome looking FPS for 1000 points. Whatever you choose, either enjoy your nostalgia trip or enjoy blowing the bejeebers out of aliens.

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