The PC Engine is celebrating its 24th birthday today.
For those of you who are a bit mathematically challenged, that means the sleek little system was “born” on Oct. 30, 1987.
I’m sure I’ve told this story before, but in case I haven’t: I’ve been interested in (some would say obsessed with) this console ever since I laid eyes on it in an early issue of either Electronic Gaming Monthly or GamePro magazine.
Although I acquired a TurboGrafx-16 shortly after it was released, I didn’t add a PC Engine to my collection until two years ago.
It should go without saying that the system is now one of my most-treasured pieces of gaming paraphernalia.
Anyway, please join me in raising an imaginary glass of bubbly to the “little white wonder,” as I like to call the PC Engine, for surviving its awkward teen years and for blossoming into the beautiful 24-year-old we know and love today.
Also, join me in playing a few of its most noteworthy games. Some of the ones I’m planning to spend time with this afternoon: Air Zonk (aka PC Denjin), Bomberman ’94, Final Match Tennis and Parasol Stars.
Like any PC Engine fan worth his or her salt, I’ve long had a fascination with that most mysterious of unreleased titles, Takeru’s PC Cocoron.
Until this past weekend, though, I was under the impression that the screenshots included in the magazine scan below were all that were released of this remake/sequel/whatever of a Famicom game with a similar name.
While reading videogameden.com’s review of the above-mentioned Famicom title, though, I noticed the following screenshot-filled magazine scan.
After a bit of Googling, I came across even more screenshots of this criminally-unreleased game at this site.
These scans and screens have been on the web for some time now, haven’t they? I don’t suppose this means copies of said game have been floating around the web for a while now, too?
On the hand, I love that the most recent issue–the fourth, for those of you who are counting–PC Engine Gamer is available, free of charge, to anyone who has access to the Internet. On the other hand, I don’t love that this online magazine isn’t “bathroom friendly,” if you get my drift.
That’s not to suggest I’ll be passing on this issue (below) because of the above-mentioned negative. After all, it includes lengthy reviews of Monster Lair and Rastan Saga II, a rather WTF-esque “fight to the death” between Golden Axe‘s Tyris Flare and Fantasy Zone‘s Opa Opa, and a “final countdown” that features the 10 best smart bombs in all of shoot ’em up-dom.
Which is to say that this 26-page issue is well worth a few minutes of your time (read it here) if you’re at all interested in the system I like to call NEC’s little white wonder.
Issue three of PC Engine Gamer magazine is now on line. (Actually, it’s been on line since Dec. 2, but that’s neither here nor there.)
As you can probably tell by looking at its cover (below), this issue features an in-depth review of NEC Avenue’s port of Sega’s popular quarter-muncher, Out Run.
It also includes, among other articles, a review of Data East’s Override (a vertical shoot ’em up I’ve never heard of before now), an interview with homebrewer Aetherbyte and a hilarious “Final Countdown” column that discusses the 10 best shopkeepers in all of PC Engine-dom.
If all or even some of that sounds interesting to you, check out–at your leisure, of course–the latest issue of PC Engine Gamer here.
Before I go on, I have to point out that in this instance, “LTTP” means “Late to the Publication,” not “Late to the Party.”
With that out of the way, the publication I’ve foolishly failed to point out to all of you is the second issue of PC Engine Gamer magazine.
Much like this online publication’s first issue, this second issue is short but sweet. It’s also a bit silly, as evidenced by this “Fish and Tips” comment: “If you’re fed up playing [Mesopotamia], why not try this little trick to … play a secret shoot ’em up. It might be crappy but it’s better than Deep Blue.” (Also worth a chuckle or two: the “Translation Fun” section of “Feedback.”)
There’s more to this magazine than batty bon mots, though; there’s also a countdown of the best shoot-’em-up bosses, an interview (with Feena of Ys Book I & II) and a pair of reviews (of Dragon Spirit and Ninja Spirit),
Anyway, I highly recommend checking it out (here) whenever you have a few minutes to spare.
See also: ‘It ain’t over ’til the fat Pithecanthropus Computerurus sings‘
More than 20 years after it was introduced in Japan, the PC Engine is still going strong–in the minds of its many fans.
Case in point: The inaugural issue of PC Engine Gamer, an online magazine that hit the Internet a few months ago.
The 18-page publication (check it out here), produced by the folks behind the fabulous PC Engine Software Bible site, features reviews of Bikkuriman World and The Kung Fu, a top 10 list, tips and tricks and more. (It even includes an ad for Telenet’s sci-fi RPG, Babel.)
Can fans of NEC’s little white wonder expect to see a second issue of PC Engine Gamer? The magazine’s editor suggested in an interview with gamesetwatch.com’s Eric Caoili that it’s a possibility–should the first issue produce an energetic following.
A few weeks ago, I posted the article–pulled from an old issue of Super Gaming magazine–that served as my introduction to Tengai Makyo II: Manjimaru. Today I’m posting the article–pulled from an old issue of Turbo Play magazine–that solidified my obsession with the titular Manjimaru and his magnanimous team.
I’m pretty sure the following sentence was the one that grabbed me by the short and curlies, so to speak: “In the course of the game, you will cover over 20,000 screens of overhead maps, fight 300 types of enemies and 48 boss characters, enjoy more than 90 minutes of incredible animation, listen to three hours of speech [and] hear 24 CD music tracks and over 80 different PSG (machine generated) music tracks.”
See also: ‘My introduction to Tengai Makyo II‘