Thursday, May 24, 2007

New games for the Wii Console Still Sorely Lacking Rainbow Islands

As of May 21st, three more games were added to Wii’s virtual console—Streets of Rage 2 (800 points), Blazing Lazers (600 points), and Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy Kong’s Quest (800 points).

For the uninitiated, Streets of Rage 2, the best of the batch, was the progressive step Sega took to outdo Super Nintendo’s Final Fight, which it did with flying colors. With an excellent soundtrack by Yuzo Koshiro, beautiful (at the time) graphics, and a beefed-up combat system, the bare-knuckle brawlers came out swinging and hit every target right on the money.

Next on this list is Blazing Lazers, a Turbo Grafx-16 outing. With its hardcore gameplay and intense waves of attackers, this is the kind of shooter your daddy used to play. Probably most noticeable for its weapon upgrades feature, next to Gun Nac for the NES, this is my favorite shooter of all time (I never did much like that 1943 game).
And finally, SNES’ Diddy Kong’s Quest is yet another ho hum “adventure” in the DK franchise that peaked with the first game and petered out at Diddy Kong Racing for the N64. Now that the once state-of-the-art graphics have been outdone many times over, there’s nothing much to see here other than boring platforming segments and spotty gameplay. Buy only if you have Wii points to spare.

But while most of the games already released on the Wii console are certified classics, I’m still very disheartened to find that many of my old time favorites don’t look like they’ll ever be making a dramatic entrance anytime soon on the Virtual Console. Most notably, I’m talking about Rainbow Islands, the oft-forgotten sequel to Bubble Bobble.

In this bizarre platformer, you build little rainbow bridges and work your way to the top of the screen in an effort to…I really don’t even know. But the infectious music and excellent gameplay pinch you in just the right places. It’s really a shame that we’ll probably NEVER see this gem turn up on the Nintendo console. Not unless, of course, enough people demand it, which is just about as likely as people demanding Milon’s Secret Castle, which just ain’t gonna happen.
Other games I’d like to see turn up that don’t have a chance in hades: T&C Games 2: Thrilla’s Safari, Splatterhouse 3, and Contra: Hard Corps. Good news, though: According to wikipedia, Zombies Ate My Neighbors is actually scheduled for a release. I guess I’m not the only one who totally loved that game.

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