Retro/Classic Feed

Super Mario Maker's Worst Kaizo Has Nothing On This Level

I've seen some terrible levels created by the community in Super Mario Maker that abuse invisible item blocks, flood the screen with an unbeatable wall of enemies, and require tricky precision jumps.  I've seen springboards that demand perfection.  I've even seen a stack of Bowsers advancing towards me with nary a power-up in sight.  However, nothing that I've seen in Super Mario Maker approaches the level of contempt and hatred for the player that this Super Mario World hack entitled Item Abuse 3 commands.  Watch as for eight minutes Mario endures impossible jumps, Muncher hordes, underwater hell, chocolate lava pain, and P-switch madness.  To complete Item Abuse 3 demands skills beyond what a human possesses; this performance was a tool-assisted run that makes use of every game engine quirk, glitch, and secret trick that the original game had to offer.  If Bowser ever wants to really stop Mario in his tracks, he'd hire hack creator PangaeaPanga to design his next castle.

(via Reddit)


Power Button - Episode 183: Let's-a Go Play Super Mario Maker

Power ButtonNintendo's Super Mario Maker for the Wii U has been consuming my evenings since it was released earlier this month, so on this week's episode of the Power Button podcast I attempt to sway Blake Grundman into submitting to its majesty, amazing levels and kaizo trash and all.  We talk about what makes for a solid level, elements that just piss everyone off, and much more from the world of the Mushroom Kingdom.  Join us for nearly one hundred minutes of Goomba-stomping, Koopa-kicking fun.  Be sure to play my Mario levels, too!  Download this week's episode directly from PTB, listen with the player below, find us on Stitcher, subscribe via iTunes, toss this RSS feed into your podcast aggregation software of choice, and be sure to catch up on past episodes if you're joining us late. Remember that you can reach us via , you can leave a message on the Power Button hotline by calling (720) 722-2781, and you can even follow us on Twitter at @PressTheButtons and @GrundyTheMan, or for just podcast updates, @ThePowerButton.


Mega Man's Robot Rush

I'm still hooked on the Mega Man Legacy Collection compilation of the first six classic Mega Man titles from the Nintendo Entertainment System era, particularly the challenge mode.  In addition to remixed snippets of the original games, some of the challenges send players on a marathon rampage through each game's Robot Master legion (and a grand finale battle where players face all forty-six bosses one after the next). Watch as I plow through the original Mega Man's six Robot Masters in this clip. Yes, I abuse the famous pause trick.


Take The Mega Man 6 Remix Challenge

Here's another look at a piece of the Challenge Mode from the recently released Mega Man Legacy Collection.  This is a short snippet compared to the last time I showed you how the compilation slices up parts of the classic six Nintendo Entertainment System titles into bite sized objectives.  Have a look at the Remix 1 challenge from Mega Man 6.  It's not a perfect performance, but is it enough to earn a gold medal?  Watch and find out.


The Challenges Of Mega Man

Dr. Wily logoMega Man Legacy Collection for the Sony PlayStation 4, Microsoft Xbox One, and PC offers something besides the first six original Mega Man games: a new challenge mode.  Snippets of the classic Nintendo Entertainment System titles are cut up and rearranged in thematically similar structures and require the player to complete them before time runs out.  Watch as I run through a few of these challenges.  I'm not a time attack fan, nor a speedrunner, nor a perfectionist.  I'm out for fun.  If poor Mega Man dies along the way, so be it.  Embarrassingly enough, I was actually chatting my way through these levels while I was livestreaming this video, but found out after the fact that the microphone was muted, so you'll just have to imagine all of the hilarious and insightful commentary that I had to offer.


The Life And Times Of M. Bison

M. BisonM. Bison is best known as the ultimate villain of the Street Fighter franchise, but there's more to this snappily-dressed warlord's place in history than just as the final challenge at the end of a handful of games.  Gavin Jasper at Den Of Geek takes a look back at the many versions of M. Bison to grace the series from series boss to film star to animated ham.  It's not all Psycho Drive and Tuesdays for this fearsome force.

See, despite Street Fighter’s rather thick storyline (which not only includes the main series, but also Saturday Night Slam Masters, Final Fight, and Rival Schools), they never did explain who won Street Fighter II’s tournament. All we know is that at some point, Akuma showed up and vanquished Bison with his powerful and unfathomable Raging Demon attack. Considering the attack supposedly kills the soul of the victim based on the severity of their sins, that meant Bison was toast.

Funny thing is, before Street Fighter II was re-released into oblivion and we only had twelve characters to play with, they attempted to make various Street Fighter comics in both America and Japan and only had so much to go on. In the Street Fighter II manga by Masaomi Kanzaki, he tried to make sense of the game’s sparse story by putting Bison in charge of some kind of decrepit island called SHAD where fighting tournaments are constantly taking place. Since Akuma hadn’t been created yet, Masaomi had Bison be the one responsible for Ryu and Ken’s master Gouki’s death.

I thought I knew Bison's backstory, but I was surprised at the comic and manga interpretations.  I was unfamiliar with all of the strange ways that writers shoehorned him into the expanded narrative, and there are some confusing but intriguing ideas going on in his past.  While the character doesn't have the intimidation factor today that he once did, he's still an important part of the lore and a Street Fighter game just isn't the same without him.


Original Unreleased Earth Bound Comes To Wii U As EarthBound Beginnings

EarthBound BeginningsThe gaming community talks a lot about its love for Nintendo's 1995 Super NES RPG EarthBound (I know I certainly do), but while that one game has a rabid cult following in North America, the game is the middle installment of a full-blown trilogy in Japan.  Entitled Mother rather than its localized name, the original game was released for the Famicom in 1989 and very nearly came to North America at the tail-end of the Nintendo Entertainment System generation.  It was fully localized with marketing and packaging designed, but with the Super NES era running at a healthy pace and the NES rapidly showing its age, the company shelved Mother (retitled to Earth Bound (note the space)) and instead brought the sequel, Mother 2, to North America instead under the familiar EarthBound moniker.  The NES Earth Bound went into the vault, sales of EarthBound were underwhelming, and those poor sales kept the later Game Boy Advance sequel Mother 3 in Japan despite international fans begging for a release.

Usually that's where the story would end, but that localized Earth Bound prototype escaped the Nintendo vault in 1998 and made its way to the Internet where anyone with a NES emulator could track it down, download it, and play it.  Fulfilling?  Sure.  Violating all kinds of copyright laws?  You bet!  But that didn't really stop those interested in trying the first game in the series from digging into it.  Retitled by fans as EarthBound Zero to set it apart from the 16-bit sequel, the online community has had plenty of time to explore the game and chronicle it.

EarthBound BeginningsAnd once again, that's usually where the story would end, but Nintendo surprised everyone this week by resurrecting Earth Bound, retitling it EarthBound Beginnings to denote its prequel nature, and releasing it on the Wii U's Virtual Console section of the eShop in both North America and Europe.  Now for $6.99 you can buy a legal copy of the game for yourself and see what all the fuss is about.  While the EarthBound faithful seem to have dismissed this release as "so what, been there, done that, blah" with that special brand of cynicism that the Internet breeds anymore, I'm overjoyed to see the game made available by Nintendo itself at last.  While EarthBound Beginnings is not as polished as its sequels (remember, it is a NES-era RPG and is rough around the edges), it's worth your time if you're a fan of the series who has yet to experience it, and if nothing else I'd hope that throwing some money at this release would show once and for all that Nintendo is leaving money on the table by not localizing and releasing Mother 3 for the Virtual Console.  Beginnings is the easier title to release because its localization was completed decades ago, so it's only natural that it would arrive before any thought of the GBA sequel does (not to mention that Mother 3 would greatly overshadow Beginnings if it came first), but I'm more hopeful now than ever that we'll see the whole series available on Wii U before this hardware generation is over.  


Get Funky With This Super Mario 64 Remix

It's a proven fact that the main theme from Nintendo's classic Super Mario 64 (also known as the "Bob-omb Battlefield theme") will make you smile every time you hear it.  This also applies to remixes.  Joshua Milo has taken the snappy song and reworked it with a kicking drum line and some brass band work to get your feet tapping along to the beat on this hot summer Friday.  Slap on your wing cap, grab some red coins, and let's do this!


Power Button - Episode 175: Scarred By Hard

Power ButtonVideo games today are too easy.  Back in the glory days of the 16-bit processors, we knew what a hard game was!  Join us for this episode of Power Button in which we reminisce about some of the most challenging video games that combine those elusive factors of legitimate difficulty and poor design.  Battletoads, Mega Man, Ghosts n' Goblins, Road Runner's Death Valley Rally, Star Wars, and many other familiar titles are offered up on the sacrificial slab.  Download this week's episode directly from PTB, listen with the player below, find us on Stitcher, subscribe via iTunes, toss this RSS feed into your podcast aggregation software of choice, and be sure to catch up on past episodes if you're joining us late. Remember that you can reach us via , you can leave a message on the Power Button hotline by calling (720) 722-2781, and you can even follow us on Twitter at @PressTheButtons and @GrundyTheMan, or for just podcast updates, @ThePowerButton.


Power Button - Episode 174: Double-dipping With Shovel Knight And Mortal Kombat X (Part 2)

Power ButtonLast time on Power Button we started a discussion on buying remastered or otherwise upgraded versions of favorite video games centering around two recent experiences with Shovel Knight and Mortal Kombat X.  This week we finish the conversation by digging into an examination at why we rebuy games and what it takes to persuade us into repeat purchases.  We also take a ballpark look at our own collections and speculate how many of our games are double-dips.  Along the way we talk about the Nintendo Wii to Wii U transfer process and return one more time to Shovel Knight for a look at guest appearances from Kratos and the Battletoads.  Let's do this!  Download this week's episode directly from PTB, listen with the player below, find us on Stitcher, subscribe via iTunes, toss this RSS feed into your podcast aggregation software of choice, and be sure to catch up on past episodes if you're joining us late. Remember that you can reach us via , you can leave a message on the Power Button hotline by calling (720) 722-2781, and you can even follow us on Twitter at @PressTheButtons and @GrundyTheMan, or for just podcast updates, @ThePowerButton.