Thursday, April 7, 2011

A guide for the aspiring import gamer: Part 7

Another day, another guide to help you get into the importing game!

Now we're going even further back, to the 80's to be specific, to take a look at the game console that helped to bring back the game industry after the video game crash of 1983.

The Nintendo Entertainment System

NES (top) and Famicom (bottom)

The main issue here is getting the Famicom cartridges, which have 60 pins, to attach to the NES pinset, which is made for 72 pins. There are a few easy ways to get around this.

1. Buy a Honeybee converter for Famicom to NES. This is the easiest way to play famiom games.

2. Harvest an older NES game for its converter. When the NES was first released, in order to get more NES games out to the people Nintendo decided to use the Famicom chipsets with a converter and put them in an NES cartridge. Now, they only did this for a few months at the beginning of the life cycle, so only cartridges made in 1985 will have them. They are easily distinguished from later cartridges because they have 5 screws in the back, compared to 3 and clips at the top of the cart for games produced later. These cartridges are also noticeably heavier than other cartridges. Some games that have been known to include these are Gyromite, Stack Up, Kid Icarus, 10 Yard Fight, and many other launch titles.

3. Buy a Famicom.

Titles of interest:
Super Mario Bros. 2
That's right, you've been lied to. Super Mario Bros. 2 in the US is really a reskinned version of a Japanese game called Doki Doki Panic, while the official SMB2 is similar to the original game, just A LOT HARDER. Now to be fair, this did make it to the states in the form SMB The Lost Levels, which was in Super Mario All Stars for the SNES. What really makes this game unique is that it was the first ever disc based Mario game. I know what you're thinking, "WTF MrNelson, that ish is still in 8-bit, how can it be on a disk?!". This was released for the Famicom Disc System, which allowed for enhanced graphics and sound by using magnetic discs rather than cartridges (looks a lot better than the original SMB, doesn't it?). Now, this was released ONLY in disc form, so technically the only was to play this would be to have a Famicom so you can use the disc system add-on.

Devil World
While it is a Pacman clone, Devil World has a gameplay feature that helps make it unique. As you move about the maze, the Devil orders his minions to move the maze around, and you have to avoid getting caught by the barriers. Your objective is to collect the dots and crosses, then collect bibles and place them in a seal to get the Devil to leave the maze and progress on to the next area.

The Quest of Ki
Let's get this out of the way, Quest of Ki is HARD. You can't fight enemies, you're stunned if you run into a wall or hit the ceiling, and the game is fairly long. Despite being hard, the game is fun to play, and will keep you occupied for a few hours. Fun Fact: The Quest of Ki is the prequel to the arcade game Tower of Druaga.

Alright kids, that's it for today. Come back tomorrow to see what I've got in store for you!


  1. I like these posts, really makes me appreciate how far gaming has developed in 30 years

  2. I remember some of this games , am I old ? Or games goes long way from past?

  3. I am into Nintendo stuff. Thanks for sharing.