Nikkei has reported that Hiroshi Yamauchi has passed away. Known for his no-nonsense style of business at Nintendo, he turned the company around from making just playing cards and other gambling games to creating videogames. He demanded perfection in the videogames his company made.
He was responsible for many of the gears that set in motion what made Nintendo a household name to this day. He brought on Gunpei Yokoi, who went on to create the Game & Watch and Game Boy line of handhelds. He tasked Minoru Arakawa, his son-in-law, to handle the North American branch of Nintendo and to sell arcade units in the region. When that didn’t work well, he looked to Shigeru Miyamoto, who made the arcade hit Donkey Kong. Come the NES days, he realized that artists are just as important to making games as technicians were. If a game was to be made on the NES, he got the final say on its appearance on the console. Many credit the NES, and the presence of Super Mario Bros. on the system, for saving the North Amercian videogame market after the Great Videogame Crash of 1983.
[New to this edition is the addition of the Wii U campaign. Much of what was written from the previous edition is largely unchanged, save for some grammatical corrections that might’ve slipped by. Some parts might also have more info added. So sit back, relax, and read on.]
You have an idea for a product. You make the product. And now it’s time to sell the product. So what’s the one thing you’ll do to sell your product? Advertise it of course. This is pretty much the pattern that most product makers follow. In the game industry it’s no different. With catchy slogans, flashy graphics, and some off-the-wall shenanigans, an ad is supposed to convince you to buy the product they are selling. But ignoring all of the attempts to sell and actually looking at the ad, they always seem to be a product of the era that they were released in. So for this retrospective, we’re going to look at one of the longest living game companies, Nintendo, from when we played with power, to when we played it loud, to two guys asking us if Wii would like to play, to what we will play next.
Looking at the repertoire of games in Nintendo’s portfolio, they had a multitude of genres already under their belt. So their next venture would be sci-fi, and they started with F-ZERO, a futuristic racer. It was launched early in the SNES’ lifecycle. But they wouldn’t stop there. Some years later, Nintendo would tap into sci-fi once again to test drive their latest Super FX Chip. Their creation: Star Fox. They wouldn’t stop there though. A new console was approaching, and they wanted to bring that series there. So strap yourself in as this weekend we barrel roll into Star Fox 64.
Shigeru Miyamoto’s birthday passed yesterday. So I thought going to one of his games would be a perfect fit for the return of Retro Weekends. But which game? Back then he had his hand in many games from Zelda, to F-ZERO, to Donkey Kong, to Star Fox, to Pikmin. But one of his more recognized franchises has to be Mario. And of the mainline platformer games, I’ve played all of them up to Super Mario Galaxy 2, even the original Lost Levels on NES (via Virtual Console). I’m actually leaning on wanting to talk about The Lost Levels. But you know what, let’s tackle a game on a console that I haven’t touched on yet on Retro Weekends. After the break, we’re flying high with Super Mario 64.
This week we went back to the 90s again. This time we covered music that was inspired by what was playing on the airwaves at the time. The streets were cleaned with Street of Rage. Then we jammed to the music of Sonic The Hedgehog 3. We played hard with Killer Instinct 2/Gold. We prowled the urban jungle in Street Fighter III. And finally, we rocked out to Maximum Carnage.
If you want to see the music as it goes up (and not wait every Saturday for these wrap-ups), remember to go to our Tumblr page and follow it. Music for Night-Time Listenings goes up every weekday at 10PM
You have an idea for a product. You make the product. And now it’s time to sell the product. So what’s the one thing you’ll do to sell your product? Advertise it of course. This is pretty much the pattern that most product makers follow. In the game industry it’s no different. With catchy slogans, flashy graphics, and some off-the-wall shenanigans, an ad is supposed to convince you to buy the product they are selling. But ignoring all of the attempts to sell and actually looking at the ad, they always seem to be a product of the era that they were released in. So for this retrospective, we’re going to look at one of the longest living game companies, Nintendo, from when we played with power to two guys asking us if Wii would like to play.
I’m not sure how many gamers there are like me, but I’ll come out and say it: I never owned an N64. Never had one, and not really planning to go out and own one. I grew up as a Playstation kid as the PS1 was the cheaper system when my mom went out and got me one. I think many gamers probably had the same predicament as me: we grew up poor or had parents that didn’t want to spend a lot of money on games (and instead give us lame Christmas socks and notebooks). But I don’t fault my family. I grew up on a console that was getting the RPGs and all the third party games. But still, there were quite a few things on the N64 that revolutionized the way we played videogames (like the joystick and Rumble Pak). I was able to play the N64 in my cousins’ house. But personally, as you already know, I never owned an N64. The only way I can “legally” play the games are on the Wii. But in hindsight, it’s still kinda sad knowing that I missed out on the happenings surrounding the system –in particular, the games. Before we begin, I have to set a criteria.
1) These are games that I have not touched, at all. To this day. As I type this. Never played, at all. Dead. Serious.
2) The “not owning” part is a given. But, if I did play them at all, they don’t count. And also, for other games games I mention “playing”, they don’t necessarily mean “owning.”
3) If I own the original games or enhanced port on the Virtual Console or any other system, they don’t count.
So without further ado, hit the jump button down there to see what games I missed out on.