This Week in Gaming – 14th February 20218 minute read

Mario Party, Alex Kidd and Total War all celebrate anniversaries this week in another edition of This Week in Gaming. Read further for controversies, retro classics and imperial legions to boot.

8th February

Mario Party (image credit: Nintendo)

I had to use kid gloves when I was researching Mario Party that was released in 1999 in North America and Europe..literally. After the game launched there was controversy in the media (yes, over a Mario game). The reason being that over 90 complaints were received by New York’s attorney general office. These were complaints stating players were getting blisters, friction burns and lacerations after rotating the analogy stick on certain games instead of using their thumbs. Nintendo of America agreed outside of court to supply gloves to anyone who had hurt their hands playing. The total cost to Nintendo is only estimated but could have been up to $80 million. The game was since not released on the Virtual Console and skipped in favor of Mario Party 2. Regardless of this the game was a critically acclaimed phenomenon, spawning nine sequels as well as variants for the Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo eReader.

  • 22 Years
    • Mario Party – Nintendo 64
  • 16 Years
    • Death by Degrees – PlayStation 2
    • Shadow of Rome – PlayStation 2
    • Shonen Jump’s Shaman king: Legacy of the Spirits, Soaring Hawk – Game Boy Advance
    • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II – The Sith Lords
  • 14 Years
    • Luminous Arc – Nintendo DS (Japan)
    • Virtua Fighter 5 – PlayStation 3 (Japan)
  • 11 Years
    • Star Ocean: The Last Hope International – PlayStation 3

9th February

Dante’s Inferno (image Credit: Visceral Games)

Sticking on the controversy bandwagon, Dante’s Inferno was too victim to bad media. In October 2009, four months before the launch of the game, the game was announced to contain an Xbox 360 achievement and PlayStation 3 trophy called “Bad Nanny”. The pre-named award would be given to the player for killing monsters that resembled children – unbaptized souls of infants. It actually sparked a conflict with INA, The International Nanny Association whereby they rallied supporters to oppose the games launch. After stating the game was offensive to nannies, and actually promoted violence, a request to ESRB was made to have this content censored. The request was denied due to ESRB making appropriate labels for games and not being able to censor them and the game was released intact.

  • 33 Years
    • Contra – NES (Japan)
  • 25 Years
    • Bahamut Lagoon – Super Nintendo (Japan)
  • 19 Years
    • Super Mario World: Super Mario Advance 2 – Game Boy Advance
  • 17 Years
    • Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles – GameCube
    • Metroid: Zero Mission – Game Boy Advance
  • 15 Years
    • Forbidden Siren 2 – PlayStation 2 (Japan)
  • 11 Years
    • Bioshock 2 – PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
    • Dante’s Inferno – PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
    • Shiren the Wanderer – Nintendo Wii

10th February

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle (image credit: Sega)

Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle (アレックスキッド 天空魔城, Arekkusu Kiddo Tenkū Majō) is a game that had no controversies. It was developed and published by Sega for the Mega Drive and Genesis consoles. Japan saw a February 1989 release while the US received their launch in August of the same year and Europe in November 1990. The titular Alex must fight his way through the planet Paperock, in search for his lost father King Thor. Similar to other Alex Kidd games the player must use several vehicles along the way, use several familiar items and beat each stage with a round of “Paper, Rock, Scissors” before finally finding Alex’s lost father.

  • 34 Years
    • Adventures of Dino Riki – NES (Japan)
  • 33 Years
    • Dragon Warrior III – NES (Japan)
  • 32 Years
    • Alex Kidd in the Enchanted Castle – Sega Mega Drive/Genesis (Japan)
  • 27 Years
    • Wolfenstein 3D – Super Nintendo (Japan)
  • 24 Years
    • Mario Kart 64 – Nintendo 64
  • 21 Years
    • Vagrant Story – PlayStation (Japan)
  • 18 Years
    • .hack//Infection Part 1 – PlayStation 2
    • Command & Conquer: Generals – PC
  • 17 Years
    • Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance – Game Boy Advance
    • Champions of Norrath – PlayStation 2
    • Nightshade – PlayStation 2
    • Pokemon Colosseum – GameCube
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship Tournament 2004 – Game Boy Advance
  • 16 Years
    • PoPoLoCrois – PSP (Japan)
  • 15 Years
    • Tales of Eternia – PSP

11th February

Final Fantasy VIII (image credit: Square)

Final Fantasy VIII followed in the footsteps of Final Fantasy VII by using pre-rendered backgrounds along with 3D graphics. Released in 1999 you control a group of mercenaries, led by Squall Leonhart, that are all drawn into a conflict sparked by Ultimecia – an evil sorceress. She has traveled from the future and wishes to compress time. Along the way Squall experiences various struggles of being a leader, somewhat similar to Cloud’s emotional battles in Final Fantasy VII, before falling in love with his comrade Rinoa Heartlilly.

  • 31 Years
    • Dragon Warrior IV – NES (Japan)
  • 23 Years
    • Xenogears – PlayStation (Japan)
  • 22 Years
    • Final Fantasy VIII – PlayStation (Japan)
  • 19 Years
    • Maximo: Ghosts to Glory – PlayStation 2
    • Sonic Adventure 2 Battle – GameCube
    • Star Wars: Racer Revenge – PlayStation 2
  • 18 Years
    • Capcom vs. SNK 2 EO – Xbox
  • 17 Years
    • James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing – PlayStation 2 (Japan)
    • Samurai Warriors – PlayStation 2 (Japan)
    • Spellforce: The Order of Dawn – PC
  • 12 Years
    • Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story – Nintendo DS (Japan)
  • 11 Years
    • SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Fireteam Bravo 3 – PSP (Japan)
    • Tennis no Oji-Sama: Motto Gakuensai no Ouji-Sama – More Sweet Edition – Nintendo DS (Japan)

12th February

Super Mario Bros. 3 (image credit: Nintendo)

31 years ago today on of the greatest Super Mario Bros. titled launched in North America, four months after the Japan release date. Super Mario Bros. 3 is often listed as one of the greatest video games of all time. This is with great reason. Not only was it the most acclaimed on the NES, becoming the third best selling NES game of all time, but is was also brought elements that were to become series staples. New elements such as The Koopalings and a world map transition level are to name a couple. The game sold 18 million copies, only outsold by Duck Hunt and Super Mario Bros which sold 28.3 million and 40.2 million copies respectively.

  • 31 Years
    • Super Mario Bros. 3 – NES
  • 22 Years
    • Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri – PC
  • 19 Years
    • State of Emergengy – PlayStation 2
  • 18 Years
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! Dungeon Dice Monsters – Game Boy Advance
  • 14 Years
    • Gurumin: A Monstrous Adventure – PSP
    • The Warriors – PSP
    • Wii Play – Nintendo Wii
  • 13 Years
    • Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements – Xbox 360
    • Innocent Life: A Futuristic Harvest Moon (Special Edition – PlayStation 2
    • Lost Odyssey – Xbox 360
    • Penumbria: Black Plague – PC
    • Wipeout Pulse – PSP
  • 12 Years
    • Kidou Senshi Gundam: Ghiren no Yabou – Axis no Kyoui V – PlayStation 2, PSP (Japan)
    • Street Fighter IV – PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 (Japan)
    • Tenchu: shadow Assassins – PSP (Japan)
    • flower – PlayStation 3

13th February

Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner (image credit: Konami)

Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner, known in Japan as Anubis: Zone of the Enders, is a third person hack and slash game and the sequel to Zone of the Enders. The player has to control the Orbital Frame Jehuty a mech suit in the story line which is set two years after the original title. The game received a critical response with favorable reviews, however it was criticized for it’s short length.

  • 18 Years
    • Resident Evil: Dead Aim – PlayStation 2 (Japan)
    • Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner – PlayStation 2 (Japan)
  • 14 Years
    • Ghost Rider – PlayStation 2, PSP
    • Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters – PSP

14 February

Rome: Total War Gold Edition (image credit: Creative Assembly)

Activision published Total War in 2004 from the development of The Creative Assembly with the Gold Edition being release in 2006. The game is a strategy video game set in 270 BC – 14AD. It showcases the rise and the subsequent fall of the Republican period alongside the early decades of the imperial period of Ancient Rome. As part of a larger series it has sold more than 1.3 million copies in America alone and received a platinum sales award from the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association which indicates at least 300,000 copies sold within the United Kingdom.

  • 18 Years
    • Final Fantasy Tactics Advance – Game boy Advance (Japan)
  • 17 Years
    • Classic NES Series: Bomberman – Game Boy Advance (Japan)
    • Classic NES Series: The Legend of Zelda – Gam eBoy Advance (Japan)
  • 15 Years
    • Grandia III – PlayStation 2
    • Rome: Total War Gold Edition – PC
  • 13 Years
    • Digimon World Championship – Nintendo DS (Japan)
  • 10 Years
    • Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation – Nintendo DS
    • Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together – PSP

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