Virtual Console Wrap-up – 11/16

And we’re back once again with the new releases for Nintendo’s download service. This week will excite fans of three different franchises, as we’re getting Street Fighter II’: Champion Edition for the TG-16, Indiana Jones Greatest Adventures for the SNES and for Wii Ware, Pokemon Rumble! Let’s hear what we have to say about these!
Street Fighter II’: Champion Edition
Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom
Original Release Date: 1992
Cost: 700 Wii Points

Christopher Bowen: Oh fuck you, Nintendo. There are FOUR OTHER VERSIONS of this game available via the VC – three on the SNES alone – AND this has a 100pt. premium because it’s an import, despite the fact that the game has absolutely zero need for translation? We’re supposed to suck this up on those merits? Alex says it’s as close to arcade-perfect as the 16-bit games get. Frankly, that doesn’t impress me when I can get the arcade versions on other compilations. I take this as an insult, especially when my personal favourite of the 16 bit era (Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers) is out already. Besides, after playing it for awhile, I can definitively say that I notice almost no difference between the TG-16 version and the SNES version. If there’s a difference, it’s minuscule.

Sorry, I’m passing on this one. I’d rather spend my money on Pokemon Rumble!.

Mark B.: So, this is a first: I actually felt compelled to download a game on the VC instead of recalling my time with it from memory. This is partly because I wanted to see how the VC would handle the controls, since the game was released alongside a special six-button controller and I wanted to be certain that the Classic Controller could properly emulate it (as I believe that this was the only T-16 game to use this controller). Also, I never played the T-16 version of Street Fighter II Championship Edition and wanted to see if it was, as Alex said, close to arcade perfect.

So, the good news is that the six-button controls work pretty much perfectly, and the game plays about as you’d expect it to, so if you like Street Fighter II it’s fine enough. The bad news is that, and I am saying this openly and honestly, EVERY OTHER VERSION OF STREET FIGHTER II with the possible exception of the original game on the SNES IS BETTER THAN THIS. The graphics are more washed-out than the Genesis version, the music is pure midi-mania and is better on BOTH console versions, and the novelty of playing the Turbografx version of the game wears off in about thirty seconds once you realize it’s a crappier version of a game you can get in about a thousand other places.

Bottom line: you can get Street Fighter II Championship Edition specifically in some Capcom compilations, and Special Championship Edition is available on the VC. You can get multiple Street Fighter II versions for just about every console on Earth and then some. This particular release is unnecessary, pointless and not particularly exciting, and it does not make a compelling argument to be purchased. Pass.

M.L. Kennedy: This is some sort of joke by Nintendo. They are obviously making fun of how many different versions of Street Fighter II exist. By my estimate, they could release a new one every week for eighteen years.

Alex Lucard: During the 16 bit era, the TG-16 version was the holy grail for Street Fighter II fans, partly because you had to import it and the special controller to play it, and partly because the controls were so amazingly spot-on it was the original game to coin the phrase “arcade perfect.” Of course it wasn’t, but it was a good deal better gameplay-wise than the second place Genesis version and infinitely better than the SNES version, as the SNES controller was fine for everything but fighting games due to its layout.

I would strongly advise getting this if you have something other than the Classic Controller. For example, I own the Neo Geo Fighting pad for the Wii and use that for King of Fighters and Eternal Champions. I wouldn’t play either of those with the Classic Controller or GCN Controller. There is a pretty massive difference there, and fighting game addicts will continue to rant and rave until we get something similar stateside.

If you’re a pretty anal fighting gamer, than this is your best option by far on the VC for Street Fighter II, as it handles brilliantly. Musically it make your ears bleed, because even though the PC Engine had some amazing musical capabilities, it appears Capcom decided to throw their weight behind the engine and screw the music.

Still, as great as this game was during the 16 bit era, you have many other and better choices for Street Fighter II, including multiple compilations and remakes across various systems. The best home version of Street Fighter II remains the Sega Saturn version in the Street Fighter Collection, but you probably won’t ever be seeing that version unless you own a Saturn. As such, my advice is to either

A) Get one of the compilations Capcom has put it on

B) Download the HD Super Street Fighter II remake if you have a 360 or PS3

C) get this version if you only own a Wii, can put up with a SNES style joystick for fighting games, and you can remember Vega is M. Bison, Balrog is Vega and M. Bison is Balrog.

Indiana Jones Greatest Adventures
Developer: Lucas Arts
Publisher: Lucas Arts
Original Release Date: 1994
Cost: 800 Wii Points

Charlie Marsh: Oh hell yes. In another installment from the “just because it’s hard, that doesn’t make it bad” catalog of gaming, Greatest Adventures is a great collection based on the Indiana Jones trilogy (and it is a trilogy… I’ve never heard of a 4th movie and neither have you).

Anyway, this game is pretty fun, difficulty be damned. You take Indy through levels inspired by all 3 movies, punching and whipping and shooting all manner of Nazis and wild animals, with some cool Mode 7 levels thrown in for fun. It’s definitely your classic tough-as-nails platformer that will almost certainly frustrate you, at which point you should put that rage to good use and show this game who’s boss. Definitely go for it if you’re an Indy fan.

Mark B.: So, what Super Star Wars was for the Star Wars franchise, Indiana Jones’ Greatest Adventures was for the Indiana Jones franchise: a Nintendo-hard platformer with lots of charm, frustrating controls, blind jumps, respawning enemies and other annoying quirks that make it less “fun” and more “punishing”. Indiana Jones’ Greatest Adventures also holds the distinction of being “that game with the giant boulder”, IE there’s a stage with a huge Mode 7 boulder that takes up something like 7/8ths of the screen that you need to run away from, which was mildly impressive at the time, but is now simply horrendous.

As my cohort Mr. Marsh noted above, just because something is hard doesn’t make it bad, but when a game is hard because the controls are spotty, deaths are cheap and frequent and you have to run from a boulder that’s almost as big as the screen, well, that’s a pretty compelling argument that “just because something is hard doesn’t make it GOOD”, either.

If you’re a fan of Doctor Jones and his exploits, Indiana Jones’ Greatest Adventures is inoffensive for a little while, and if you like annoyingly hard platformers it’s probably something of a desirable game for you, but the only really nice thing I can say about the game is that it came out long before Crystal Skull, and thus lacks any Shia Lebouf. So, hurray for that.

Christopher Bowen: Hey, who knew Lucasarts made non-Star Wars games!? This is a bog standard platformer with some tight controls, but also some of the cheapest hits I’ve ever seen in my life. The second level is the boulder run, which sucks because there is literally no margin for error; you have to have memorized the stage to get through it since one hit essentially kills you.

I was frustrated by this game mightily, and don’t recommend it to anyone but people that played it back on the SNES, or huge Indiana Jones fans.

Wii Ware this week includes Pokemon Rumble, a Pokemon fighting game, for 1500 (!!) points. If you do go for it, we’ve got some cool passwords for it right here.

EDIT: 10:26am – Three more passwords for Pokemon Rumble added!



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