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20 Years of NES

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the now-you're-playing-with-power dept.

333

Twenty years ago, the NES changed the face of U.S. gaming. All this week, 1up.com has a series of features celebrating the anniversary of the Nintendo Entertainment System. From the site: "When the NES launched, America hated videogames. Well, sort of. The Atari 2600 had upset folks by flooding the market with bad software and, at first, retailers were reluctant to sell another system. But the NES was a hit, controlling a healthy 90 percent of the U.S. home videogame industry at the peak of its popularity."

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where's the article? (4, Insightful)

conJunk (779958) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884328)

Is it just me, or was the target of the link devoid of anything except ads?

I thought I'd found the path to the rest of the story when I got to this sentance:

And take a minute this week to unpack your dusty NES from its storage closet and go for a run-and-jump trip down memory lane.

there was link on "memory" (which has since disappeared) that went to dell.com's RAM catalog. Ugh.

Re:where's the article? (4, Informative)

op12 (830015) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884357)

The images below that last line link to the different articles. Try this: http://www.1up.com/do/feature?cId=3144996 [1up.com]

Re:where's the article? (1)

conJunk (779958) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884376)

Heh heh. I'm the dumb-ass. I see brightly colored shit and my first thought is "advertisement" and I stop looking.

Cheer, danke, etc. for the tip.

Re:where's the article? (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884365)

Is it just me, or was the target of the link devoid of anything except ads?

Click on the images. They're a form of navigation, not ads. You'll note that they say "monday", "tuesday", "wednesday", etc. The series is only half complete.

Re:where's the article? (3, Funny)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884491)

Click on the images. They're a form of navigation, not ads. You'll note that they say "monday", "tuesday", "wednesday", etc. The series is only half complete.

Damn! And I was waiting for them to put Saturdays up for sale. I don't have nearly enough of them.

ArticleS (yes, plural) Here (2, Insightful)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884412)

Monday [1up.com] - The comeback kid: Commemorating 20 years of playing with power
Tuesday [1up.com] - NES turns 20: EGM celebrates two decades of NES Mania
Wednesday [1up.com] - Solid Gold: You picked 'em, we praise 'em. 1UP's top 15 NES games.

And for the bandwidth savvy:

Monday [nyud.net] Tuesday [nyud.net] Wednesday [nyud.net]

Ah, Good Times... (5, Funny)

MudButt (853616) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884329)

But the NES was a hit, controlling a healthy 90 percent of the U.S. home videogame industry at the peak of its popularity

And I still have the bad report cards to prove it!

Re:Ah, Good Times... (4, Funny)

op12 (830015) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884381)

But the NES was a hit, controlling a healthy 90 percent...

...which weren't healthy for much longer!

Re:Ah, Good Times... (1)

carguy84 (897052) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884511)

And I, the nintendo thumbs :(

Re:Ah, Good Times... (1)

deepcameo (840450) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884611)

Agreed, we all deny video games effecting our performance... But deep down,we all know they do. I have owned.... oh I think around 3 or 4 of them now, I still have all the classics. Mario 1,2,3, zelda, link, metroid, tetris, and the rest. Its an expiriance every gamer should be forced to go through.

THAT'S IT... (5, Funny)

ferrellcat (691126) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884335)

I'm officially OLD! :(

Re:THAT'S IT... (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884448)

YOU think you're old? I played Commodore 64 games!

Re:THAT'S IT... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884469)

Let's not start this again...

Re:THAT'S IT... (5, Funny)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884502)

Oh yeah? When I was your age, we didn't have these new-fangled vee-dee-oh games! For fun, we had real gorillas throwing real barrels at us!

(Seriously, though, my first console was ColecoVision, so I've already felt old for a while.)

Re:THAT'S IT... (1)

BlogPope (886961) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884500)

Whats worse, my reaction to this was to criticize the articles summary.

The Atari 2600 had upset folks

What about Intellivision and Colecovision? Way cooler and more powerful than Atari. And while bad games had been an issue, it was hardly the reason for the game recession

NES (5, Interesting)

readin (838620) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884337)

I went from Atari 2600 straight to GameCube. Both are (were) great! I'm looking forward to my first experience with Zelda!

Re:NES (4, Funny)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884425)

How did that happen ?
Did you try to complete ET and loose 20 years through a nervous breakdown

America hated video games... (5, Funny)

Winckle (870180) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884342)

Woah... (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884583)

does it make me weird that I liked that game? Well I wasn't terribly good, I could never get that far on anything higher than easy. Come to think of it, I do recall it being buggy and sometimes it was impossible to finish. And ET opening his mouth to fly.... hmm Ok now that I think about it, it sucked.

Trip down memory lane (5, Informative)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884346)

Ah yes, the good old days of gaming. Back when games had to be fun rather than bloody. I always found it nice that Nintendo took a solid stance about the family playability of games. It meant that the games had to be sold on the basis of something other than blood and gore. While there were quite a few Nintendo games that sold because they were either a) cheap or b) had a movie license (Karate Kid anyone?), a large number of the games for the old system were just good. Nintendo's "Seal of Quality" program came out, it helped keep the overall quality of games high, again because they had to be competitive on something other than shock factor. Not that the graphics of the time allowed much of that anyway...

When the SuperNES came out, it wasn't long before the issue of blood and gore came up, especially in the light of the SuperNES's new graphics capabilities. But Nintendo pushed back at game creators and kept that era of gaming fun. Even more so because Nintendo didn't approve games that didn't meet their playtester approval.

Then the Playstation came out, and despite its technical superiority, it sucked. But they had the Blood and Gore (and Loading...), and plenty of boring 3D games that only sold due to shock factor. But eventually Sony pushed long enough and hard enough, and now we have the games of today. Even Nintendo gets into the whole "adult" thing with their postively revolting Conq the Squirrel game. Thanks Sony. :-(

Re:Trip down memory lane (4, Insightful)

jandrese (485) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884382)

Uh, the "Seal of Quality" was just a measure to stop pirates, it was by no means an actual indication of a game's quality. There was plenty of crap out there with the Nintendo Seal of Quality on it.

Re:Trip down memory lane (1)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884434)

At least in theory, it also meant that games had to meet Nintendo's expectations for content. Of course, it wasn't until the SuperNES days that Nintendo *really* cracked down on game quality. :-)

Re:Trip down memory lane (2, Interesting)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884446)

If by "pirates" you mean "people who wanted to make NES compatible games without paying the almighty N for the privilege" then you are right.

Nintendo has always amused me with their business tactics. They are as conniving and controlling as Microsoft or Sony, but since they only seem to want to rule their corner of the video game world with an iron fist (rather than using that control as a lever to get into every aspect of the electronics world, like the other two) it has seemed more amusing than disturbing. Plus they have always been dedicated to making good, fun games.

I still am a proud owner of Gauntlet for the NES that was one of the classic examples of a game made without the Seal of Approval. Ultimately a frustrating and boring game, still better than a lot that did carry the Seal (such as, say, Donkey Kong 3). I got my copy of Gauntlet from Toys 'R' Us, so I doubt it was "pirated".

Re:Trip down memory lane (1)

Tyler Eaves (344284) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884585)

If by "pirates" you mean "people who wanted to make NES compatible games without paying the almighty N for the privilege" then you are right.

The thing is, the whole point of a console is that it Just Works. If some non-authorized 3rd party releases bad code that causes problems, that would reflect very badly on the make of the console.

Re:Trip down memory lane (5, Informative)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884555)

The seal wasn't used to stop pirates, it was the lock-out chip. Witness Tengen.

If you'd read Game Over, you know the seal was part of a program to keep publishers from flooding the market; it wasn't to keep bad games from getting through, it was to to keep a metric fuckload of crap games from getting through (ala 2600). The seal was Nintendo's PR way of telling potential consumers that it wasn't going to be the cause of another Dark Age of Video Games.

Nintendo also had a strict policy of limiting the number of titles a publisher could release in a year. They could still get away with crap games, but then they'd have to rely on that crap game for income before they're allowed to have another shot at finding player love.

Re:Trip down memory lane (1)

gotkube (912919) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884422)

AMEN! Gaming has never been the same level of quality as it was back in the 16-Bit days (hell, I'd rather play Genesis games above almost anything out on consoles today). When Sony (and subsequently Microsoft) got involved in the industry, they took gaming from the hands of the elite/nerdy and made it a 'pop culture item' >. After the 16-Bit era, I went from buying a game at least once a month, to once or twice a year (and there were a few years I went without anything new entirely). I learned a while back that if you want to play a game that you'll have *fun* playing, make it yourself.

Re:Trip down memory lane (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884423)

The first game I had for Nintendo was two murderous games in one:

One where you leave a trail of death behind as you fight to rescue the human oppressor that subjugates the indiginous fungo-sapien population.

And the other where you blow the crap out of ducks and, after missing a few times, attempt to blast the smartass dog.

I don't even want to think about the mass genocide in Metroid...

"Adult Gamers" (4, Insightful)

kevin_conaway (585204) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884438)

I think the influx of high quality sports games attracted a whole new class of people to gaming, the "Adult Gamers." These are the folks that have money to spend but only play games casually with their friends.

Whichever system had the best NBA 2K or Madden game won the pack. The others followed suit.

Re:Trip down memory lane (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884507)

The issue of blood and gore truly hit a head with Mortal Kombat. The Genesis version of the game contained as much of the blood from the arcade version as the Genesis could render. The SNES version had "sweat" flying all over. Even though the SNES version was better, people were buying the Genesis version for that reason. I didn't play the SNES version much, so I can't remember what they did with the fatalities. It'd be pretty funny if they just colored the blood grey.

While I can understand N's reluctance to release an uncensored MK, it was somewhat hypocritical since the SNES version of Street Fighter II (which came out earlier) features the fighters vomiting blood in big streams. Maybe since that wasn't the main feature of the game it slipped by their censors.

Anyway, Nintendo getting into the whole "adult" thing brought us Eternal Darkness, and that by itself makes the loss of whatever innocence was presumed before worth it.

Re:Trip down memory lane (2, Informative)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884552)

While I can understand N's reluctance to release an uncensored MK, it was somewhat hypocritical since the SNES version of Street Fighter II (which came out earlier) features the fighters vomiting blood in big streams.

Actually, Nintendo forced them to recolor the blood as vomit in the first version, then relaxed their requirement for later releases based on fan pushback.

At the time it was considered that Nintendo was being far too strict. If only we could have seen the slippery slope ahead of us.

Re:Trip down memory lane (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884624)

The version of SF2 I had (which I would have no idea which release it was) had both vomit-colored vomit and blood-colored vomit. But in both cases it came spewing from the mouth of the fighter.

As if just having the characters puking all over wouldn't be bad enough. I thought that was more disturbing than the blood! :)

Heh. If I could have seen the slippery slope and where it would lead us, I would have been cheering them on. No, really. I liked Eternal Darkness a lot and want them to make more games like it. Games where the blood and guts are there for a reason -- to instill horror!

Re:Trip down memory lane (1)

slashdotnickname (882178) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884606)

Ah yes, the good old days of gaming. Back when games had to be fun rather than bloody.

What is it with old people and their constant condescention when comparing eras of time? I, and a lot of others, find today's bloody games to be fun and exciting. Sure the market's flooded now with 3D FPSs, but that doesn't mean that there aren't any gems out there. Doom3 had me on the edge of my seat for hours, I can't say the same thing about some chubby plumber busting rocks...

Re:Trip down memory lane (1, Insightful)

grungebox (578982) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884610)

This gets brought up all the time, and it's an incredibly myopic statement to make. I mean, you have this horribly inaccurate view of NES as this rosy, wonderful system that didn't have any crap on there. Like with most things, time has filtered most of the shit out of memory. Here are some horrible games that are off the top of my head: Adventures of Lolo, Kid Niki: Radical Warrior, Bayou Billy, Commando, Trojan Warrior, Snake's Revenge, TMNT 1, Baseball Stars 2, Mach Rider, Athena, Bobsled, Any sports game that was "Pro [x]", x being a sport, X-Men. Are there more games that realistically depict blood today? Yes, of course. Welcome to technology and the lack of censorship. You know, plenty of game makers wanted blood in those old NES games, it's just that Nintendo censored them or the tech limited them. That was almost worse. Instead of seeing an enemy bleed and die gruesomely in Bayou Billy, he just hopped back, made a "bloop!" and vanished. Hey, guns make people invisible, kids! In the Nintendo era you had the violence without the bloodshed, the real crime without the real result. Of course, this also makes the assumption that a game which features blood is inherently bad. If, for example, you are playing a murder mystery game like Indigo Prophecy, would you not expect to see blood when your character has stabbed a guy? I'm guessing from your post that these aren't your type of game, which doesn't mean that games are worse now, just that you have a particular taste. Now, to counter the argument that there are no longer any quality, "fun" games since the NES era...Here are some off the top of my head, none of which feature a shred of blood or gore beyond what could be found in the NES era: Mario 64, Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Katamari Damacy, Smash Bros Melee, Super Monkey Ball, Final Fantasy V/VI/VIII/IX, Final Fantasy Tactics (not Advance, though), DDR, Donkey Konga, NFL2Kwhatever, Advance Wars, Marvel v. Capcom and its variants, Worms, Megaman 8, Ico, Beyond Good and Evil, Animal Crossing, Harvest Moon, the list goes on. And on. So, in conclusion, get off the nostalgia train, man! The next stop isn't "reality", it's "middle-aged curmudgeon-ville." You're one cane and rocking chair away from being Crazy Ol' Man Pete at the corner that the kids are told to avoid. The games aren't any less or more fun, it's just that we have a lot more options. In fact, go ahead and go through the list of all 576 NES games or whatever and write which ones are great and truly "fun" to you. I'll bet there have been way more in the current generation, let alone the SNES and PSX generations.

Ahh! NES! (2, Informative)

mister_llah (891540) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884349)

Top 5 Favorite NES Games

Final Fantasy
Solar Jetman
Super Mario 2
River City Ransom
Super Dodge Ball

===

I can't count how many hours I spent playing these games, sadly... mostly because I wasn't keeping track when I was 8-14, but also because it was a godawful long time.

NES is dead! Long live NES!

Re:Ahh! NES! (5, Funny)

HebrewToYou (644998) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884396)

How in the world can ExciteBike be left off your list?

Re:Ahh! NES! (1)

KingVance (815011) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884520)

uhh....excuse me?

Where is Kung-Fu mister?

Re:Ahh! NES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884401)

Super Mario 2? Don't you mean Doki Doki Panic [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:Ahh! NES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884428)


It was still fucking fun.

A hell of alot moreso than the "lost levels" game that was on the SNES compilation.

Re:Ahh! NES! (1)

MageWyn (6983) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884421)

Ever tried the Dragon Warrior Series? That's one of my favorites of all time.

Also, try playing Duck Hunt when you're drunk. It is a hugely popular game at parties.

Re:Ahh! NES! (1)

dogmatixpsych (786818) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884427)

You can't forget NARC. There was something refreshing about blowing up drug dealers and their dogs (the dogs were the best).

Uhh...Blaster Master?? (1)

LanMan04 (790429) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884472)

Dude, Blaster Master has got to be the best NES game ever, hands down. Even beats Mario 3, which was amazing.

Blaster Master was the best.

Also, numbers 2-5:
2. Mario 3
3. MegaMan 3
4. Metroid
5. Zelda I (or maybe II, they were both great)

Anyone remember 3-D World Runner, with the 3d glasses? What a tripped out game that was...

Re:Uhh...Blaster Master?? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884517)

I thought Zelda II was craptacular. On the other hand, The Guardian Legend is one of the best games ever made. Solomon's Key may be the best action puzzle game, ever. And of course, Tengen's unlicensed (by Nintendo, not by Elorg, which did license it to them) version of Tetris is the best. Tetris. Evar.

Re:Ahh! NES! (1)

calbanese (169547) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884535)

Any list must begin and end with R.C. Pro-Am.

Still Got Mine! (3, Interesting)

MageWyn (6983) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884353)

Gotta love the NES. Mine has been hooked up ever since I got it for my 7th birthday.

It actually gets more play time than my Gamecube, PS2, or PSP...

Boo. (5, Interesting)

Seth Finklestein (582901) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884356)

"By the end of the 1980s the courts found Nintendo guilty of anti-trust activities because it had abused its relationship with third party developers and created a monopoly in the gaming industry by not allowing developers to make games for any other platforms." -- Wikipedia

All the fanboys seem to ignore that Nintendo broke the law repeatedly. When Microsoft does it, you guys pee your fake-lawyer trousers. When Nintendo does it, you pee your fanboy pants.

Frankly, Nintendo did more to destroy proper homebrew gaming than a thousand Ataris helped to establish it. I look forward to their doom thanks to the GamePark open handheld gaming platform.

Re:Boo. (4, Insightful)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884444)

Main difference is that Nintendo did it 15 years ago and now don't do it .
Microsoft still are doing it .

Re:Boo. (1)

pappy97 (784268) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884457)

"Main difference is that Nintendo did it 15 years ago and now don't do it .
Microsoft still are doing it ."

Yes, but Nintendo paved the way for what M$ does now. You should blame and bash Nintendo, but nooo, you all have your "bias blinders" on and unconditionally love anything Nintendo does these days.

Re:Boo. (2, Insightful)

Agilus (471376) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884556)

Maybe if Microsoft reformed, these people would be happy to support them, too.

There's nothing wrong with liking someone who was once a criminal, and has since reformed (I won't get into the merits of punishment). It's also silly to say that I should blame one person for another's crimes, i.e. the reformed person, because "he did it first!"

Re:Boo. (1)

Agilus (471376) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884603)

I should add that it's also okay to have a grudge for 15 years, but I figure it's better to eventually forgive, assuming the person/entity has reformed. If I held a grudge for that long, I'd hate a whole lot of people, corporations, etc.

Re:Boo. (2, Interesting)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884594)

What about IBM , I think they were a far bigger influence on MS or Bell even ;)

User base? (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884460)

Frankly, Nintendo did more to destroy proper homebrew gaming than a thousand Ataris helped to establish it. I look forward to their doom thanks to the GamePark open handheld gaming platform.

Where can I buy GP2X at retail in Fort Wayne, Indiana (pop 200K)? How many hundred thousand GP2X units will be sold in North America? Is it worth it to port a game to GP2X given the system's expected small user base?

Re:User base? (1)

Seth Finklestein (582901) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884532)

Dear American,

Please go to www.lik-sang.com. I strongly recommend that you buy your gaming equipment from www.lik-sang.com. They have the shit that Wal-Mart doesn't want you to buy. If someone in Fort Wayne can put his Milwaukee's Best Light down long enough to play a video game, he can visit www.lik-sang.com to buy it there.

You don't have to buy all your stuff from Wal-Mart. You can even get portable DVD players at www.lik-sang.com, though I don't know why you would ever want one when you could have a DivX video player for your brand-new GP2X with an industry-standard SD card slot.

Re:User base? (1)

smcallah (861614) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884628)

I think you missed the point being made that the GamePark is not going to be selling well enough to doom Nintendo in any way, shape, or form.

If you can't walk into a store in Ft. Wayne and pick it up off the shelf, alongside every other mainstream game machine, then there is no doom to speak of.

Thank you, play again.

Re:Boo. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884572)

What year was this story posted? Why is it showing on the top of Slashdot? Gamepark was a failure. Gamepark 32 was a failure. Yet, they're going to open up the handheld scene? Okay... welcome to 2001, is Dreamcast still the best system?

Re:Boo. (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884602)

"All the fanboys seem to ignore that Nintendo broke the law repeatedly. When Microsoft does it, you guys pee your fake-lawyer trousers. When Nintendo does it, you pee your fanboy pants."

Because what Nintendo forced us to buy in the 1980's and 1990's was actually good, perhaps not even needing market coercion.

Yeah, we're whipped, but Nintendo is that fine-ass chick that makes being whipped oh so worth it (think of a certain Bill Withers song, if you're old enough). Microsoft... isn't.

"I look forward to their doom thanks to the GamePark open handheld gaming platform."

Who's calling whom a rabid fanboy?

GamePark? Never heard of it. Let me know when they make Wario Ware for it.

Still Kicking (1)

gotkube (912919) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884366)

Although I don't play it often (that's what emus are for), I still have my NES hooked up, and still plays flawlessly. Oh the fond memories I've had throughout the years with that system. Only system better was the SNES in 1991. Ah memories.

Top 15 games as posted by 1up: (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884379)

Top 15 games as posted by 1up:
15. Dragon Warrior
14. Duck Hunt
13. StarTropics
12. Bionic Commando
11. Zelda II
10. Duck Tales
9. Super Mario Bros. 2
8. Final Fantasy
7. Mega Man 2
6. Contra
5. Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!
4. River City Ransom
3. Super Mario Bros.
2. The Legend of Zelda
1. Super Mario Bros. 3

Re:Top 15 games as posted by 1up: (1)

Stargoat (658863) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884475)

There are some pretty good games that didn't make it up there.

Silent Service
Rampart
Crystalis
Metroid
Castlevania III
Skate or Die
Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

Nevermind. Some of those sucked. I like my PC better.

Re:Top 15 games as posted by 1up: (1)

fishybell (516991) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884524)

That list is, not surprisingly, missing the most underrated, unkown game of all time; Destiny of an Emperor.

Re:Top 15 games as posted by 1up: (1)

OzPhIsH (560038) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884593)

Wow, I rarely see a "Top N Things" list that I agree with, but I'd say this is pretty spot on. There are so many NES classics though, it's hard to fit them all in a top 15 list. I'd say these a few more A+ titles that should be considered as top NES games.

Metal Gear - This was the premier 'stealth' based game. And who can forget "the truck have started to move"?

Castlevania. (I'd say 2 and 3 of the series were equally awesome, but in different ways. 2 with the RPG elements and open map, and 3 with the multiple paths and characters.)

Earthbound - I belive the original Earthbound can be found English translated as Earthbound 0 in ROM form

Tecmo (Super) Bowl - Greatest football games EVAR!

Kid Icarus - I can't belive there hasn't been an update to this classic

Metroid - I really thought this would have been on 1up's top 15.

Kirby's Adventures - I really think this game was ahead of it's time. Current generation platformers still lack the depth of this of this title. Almost every enemy can be eaten, giving Kirby a different skill. Genius game design.

Dr. Mario, Tetris, RC Pro Am, Ninja Gaiden, Battletoads, TMNT, the list goes on and on...

Hrm..Why is it I have such a hard time thinking of such a great list for the current generation of systems? Is Nintendo right when it paints a bleak picture about the current state of the games industry?

NES #1? Ignorance. (3, Interesting)

ziggy the zagnut (639592) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884380)

It's foolish, revisionist history to say that Americans hated videogames. Does anyone remember Pac Man fever? The album? It was a phenomenon. There was a veritable ton of Pac Man schwag (cheesy merchandise like bubble gum dispensers, keychains, Rubik's cube knockoffs, etc.) showing strong evidence of video games' pre-Nintendo dominance in American culture.

I'm very weary of articles, especially on boingboing.net, that pitch Mario Bros. as the original videogame. You all should be making fan art of Yar's Revenge, Pitfall and River Raid.

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884466)

...hated game consoles... should have bene the text. Look at the 2600. With like 3 ok games none even came close the the arcade equivilant. Up until the NES there was nothing good.

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (2, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884537)

2600 games didn't have to be like the arcade because our expectations were not yet so damned high. I had great fun playing the 2600 versions of frogger, missile command, pac-man, river raid, jungle hunt, and others.

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (1)

mmusson (753678) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884481)

Buckner & Garcia have an official site [bucknergarcia.com] for the Pac Man Fever album. They sell a CD that is a newer recording of the original material. I bought it for nostalgia value. I have the original LP also but I no longer have a way to play it.

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (1)

pappy97 (784268) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884490)

I know this is blasphemy here, but watch G4's Icons episode about the Video Game Industry. They discuss the crash of the Video Game market in the early 80's, and how the release of the NES brought the industry back to life.

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (4, Insightful)

AKAImBatman (238306) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884497)

PacMan was prior to the Video Game Crash. After the Video Game Crash, all the people who'd spent MegaBucks on Atari, Intellivison, and Coleco systems were left out in the cold with highly expensive hardware and no software to buy. A LOT of consumers became rather despondant over this, thus the line "Americans hated video games." It was so bad that Nintendo called the console an "Entertainment System" and marketed a Robot with it to keep people from thinking of it as Another Video Game Console(TM).

Originally, Nintendo was also going to market a disk drive (which was available for the Fanicom in Japan) so that people could use it as a home PC. As it turned out, the market accepted the Nintendo well enough that they eventually ditched the whole "home computer" idea.

NES robot (1)

k98sven (324383) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884620)

It was so bad that Nintendo called the console an "Entertainment System" and marketed a Robot with it to keep people from thinking of it as Another Video Game Console(TM).

Yeah.. What was up with that robot?

As a robot-crazed geek kid, I was hugely impressed by the Nintendo robot in their TV ads back in the 80's. I never owned one though, and never met anyone who did. Did anyone here have one? Was there more than one game for it? And how much fun was it? Or, as my adult mind tells me.. how badly did it suck?

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884523)

You and your fancy Pac-Man, friggin Pong was the first out-of-the-door smash hit.

In the book "High Score!: The Illustrated History of Electronic Games" [amazon.com] , Nolan Bushnell recalls taking the prototype Pong unit to a local bar, the bar called him back the same night and told him it was broken, when the problem was investiaged it turned out that the coinbox was full and was jamming the game.

Pong went on to make millions (1 quarter a pop, in the early 70s yet) way before consoles became successful.

Dang kids n' their Pac-Man revoloution crap!

Circus, Circus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884591)

Atari 2600 sucked?!

Pac Man. Asteroids. Frogger. Donkey Kong. Enduro. Yes, Circus Circus.

'nuff said

I've got Pac Man Fever! (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884604)

Everyone get on <name of p2p network> now and listen to it!

I've got Pac Maaaaaaan Feeeever! YEAH!

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (4, Informative)

nunchux (869574) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884613)

It's foolish, revisionist history to say that Americans hated videogames. Does anyone remember Pac Man fever? The album? It was a phenomenon. There was a veritable ton of Pac Man schwag (cheesy merchandise like bubble gum dispensers, keychains, Rubik's cube knockoffs, etc.) showing strong evidence of video games' pre-Nintendo dominance in American culture.

I was 14 or 15 around the time and remember it well. A few years before, everyone loved games. Every family had an Atari. Every mall had an arcade. EVERYONE played games. Even parents. And girls. Then, there was a crash, for whatever reason-- most likely because even the best games were limited and got boring fast. In 1984-5, if you liked video games, you owned a Commodore 64. The days of families-- or really anyone but pasty-faced geeks-- buying consoles and games was very much over. That is, until Nintendo revolutionized the market. Their games were light years beyond previous generation because they weren't just three screens of action that repeated until you died, they were fun and interesting worlds that could be explored. And unlike the typical Atari game that just got faster and faster on the same screen until you inevitably died, Nintendo games could be beaten and won.

As for revisionism-- I don't think there's any shortage of Pac Man or Atari nostalgia, especially on the web. 32-in-1 Atari joysticks sell by the millions and I see 20-somethings in vintage game shirts all the time. Are you really trying to suggest that no one remembers that era?

I'm very weary of articles, especially on boingboing.net, that pitch Mario Bros. as the original videogame. You all should be making fan art of Yar's Revenge, Pitfall and River Raid.

I haven't seen many articles like that, but I'll believe you. But I think this is a key to why Nintendo is so beloved-- you don't give a shit about Yar and why he wants revenge, or what the River Raid plane's mission was. You don't really even care why Pac Man does whatever he does. Nintendo's games and characters-- Zelda, Mario, Metroid, etc.-- have a story and a soul. They may look primitive now, but at the time they felt like cartoons brought to life.

Re:NES #1? Ignorance. (2, Insightful)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884621)

"It's foolish, revisionist history to say that Americans hated videogames. Does anyone remember Pac Man fever?"

You named everything that had to do with Pac-Man other than the 2600 port, and it was that game that helped America to learn to hate video games.

Pac-Man for the 2600 sucked long hard pixelated bars.

Tribute (1)

Chaotic Spyder (896445) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884389)

Actually just got this link in an e-mail about 2 min ago.. Nintendo Choir [big-boys.com]
cheesy but well done

SNES (4, Funny)

killermookie (708026) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884400)

While the article details about NES (which I owned including the Atari 2600), I remember the day I went out and bought the SNES.

I faked a sickness and fooled my parents, allowing me to stay home from school. Once they left, it was a quick ride to the local Woolworth store (remember those stores?) and a $200 purchase later I was at home playing Super Mario World.

My parents didn't have a clue.

I love the old NES! (1)

GecKo213 (890491) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884402)

I got the NES for Christmas. It came with Super Mario Brothers and I also got Zelda. I must have played those games for 100+ hours the first Month. I spent so much time with my NES that my parents would make me go out and play with my friends and even signed me up for sports and swimming lessons etc so I would get outside. I thank my parents that I didn't just veg out, but still enjoy a good marathon game time from time to time. Ahhh, the good old days!

Super Mario Bros. Super Show (4, Informative)

antdude (79039) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884406)

I noticed the article mentioned the cheesy lame cartoon series, Super Mario Bros. Super Show [tv.com] . You can watch that online on Yahooligans! TV [yahoo.com] for free. Even The Legend of Zelda [tv.com] cartoons are there.

Huh? (4, Insightful)

Vellmont (569020) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884430)


The Atari 2600 had upset folks by flooding the market with bad software

What? I had an Atari 2600 and I don't remember being "upset at bad software" at all. Was everyone else upset and I just somehow missed it?

Re:Huh? (1)

maynard (3337) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884503)

Rotton 2600 games lived somewhere between ET and Custer's Revenge in the plane between unplayable and outright obnoxiousness. The system just didn't have enough oomph for Pac Man, Defender, or Star Raiders, but the 2600 version of Asteroids rocked.

Re:Huh? (1)

acvh (120205) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884548)

"Was everyone else upset and I just somehow missed it?"

must be, because near the end of its life there were oodles of crap games out there. granted, it didn't take a PhD to guess which games would suck, if you played games, but for parents trying to buy games for kids it was a nightmare. keep in mind, also, there was no ign or slashdot to clue anyone in on game quality. ET wasn't alone in its suckitude either. PacMan was just as evil, maybe moreso given its arcade cousin. come to think of it, just about ALL the arcade ports sucked - Donkey Kong, Qbert, Centipede....

Tecmo Super Bowl? (2, Interesting)

elbenito69 (868244) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884433)

I find it hard to believe that Tecmo Super Bowl didn't make their top 15 list of games. Despite being the most unrealistic sports game I've ever played, it also manages to be the most pure fun.

Re:Tecmo Super Bowl? (1)

MudButt (853616) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884501)

Speaking of that game... I was playing last year and noticed that Jerry Rice was still an active player for Seattle at the time. It blew my mind!

Antitrust (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884443)

But the NES was a hit, controlling a healthy 90 percent of the U.S. home videogame industry at the peak of its popularity

But 90%!?! Clearly they had a monopoly and should have been shutdown! Where were the Antitrust advocates then? My guess is playing video games. Even Microsoft doesn't have a 90% market share of personal computers.

Re:Antitrust (2, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884550)

Dude, nice troll, but they did get nailed in anti-trust action.

As always, the reason they got nailed was not because they were a monopoly, but because they abused that position to eliminate competition.

Re:Antitrust (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884567)

I think they did get in trouble for some things-- I have a very hazy recollection that the FTC nabbed them for price fixing at one point, for keeping the NES Advantage joystick price artificially high for years. You couldn't find that fucker for less than $40 *anywhere*, even a few years after it debuted.

A+B (1)

Sweep The Leg (925950) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884445)

To this day I am still wondering why I need more than A, B, Select, and Start. Anything else is redundant and useless. And on that note... up-up-down-down-left-right-left-right-b-a-b-a-sele ct-start. Let's go mates!

20 years later...who has forgotten... (1)

carguy84 (897052) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884458)

UP UP DOWN DOWN LEFT RIGHT LEFT RIGHT BA BA SELECT START or if you had no friends: UP UP DOWN DOWN LEFT RIGHT LEFT RIGHT BA BA START

Call me in another year (0)

Bingo Foo (179380) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884462)

I can't wait until next year, when my NES can finally play Tapper! [emuconnect.com]

20 Years of Keith Curtis! (1)

Keith Curtis (923118) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884484)

Kicking your Irish ASS into SPACE!

Jaws..... (2, Funny)

Sweep The Leg (925950) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884492)

Did anyone ever beat Jaws? It's like almost 20 years later and I still can't kill Jaws at the end. Everyone I know has experienced the same. It's impossible. I've even tried looking up walkthrus and still he doesn't die. We've tried 15 different cartridges, still same. I can't die happy until I beat that game. Time to go summon the game genie.

20 Years of NES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884506)

20 Years of NES [geocities.com]

NES inspired music (3, Interesting)

Neva (630016) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884521)

There are quite a few people nowadays, who have grown up with NES systems in their time, keeping the music alive in various forms. For instance:

Minibosses [minibosses.com]
Redefined - Nintendo A Cappella [slashdot.org]
All Your Bass A Cappella [www.iki.fi]

..and as a side mention:
http://www.pressplayontape.com/ [pressplayontape.com]

Anybody else notice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13884526)

that the user review of Zelda 2 got replaced by the review of StarTropics?

No Games? (3, Interesting)

miyako (632510) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884551)

I was expecting to see a list of reasons why the NES was great...like yet another top 10 list or something, so I'll post one, here are my top 10 NES games I think everyone should play if given a chance (in no particular order).
  1. Dragon Warrior - the game that started the JRPG.
  2. Blaster Master - the first game I remember playing that had something like an Isometric view
  3. Super Mario Bro's 3 - perhaps the finest mario game ever.
  4. Bionic Commando - Robotic Zombie Hitler and a huge bionic claw, what more could you ask for?
  5. The Ledgend of Zelda - A classic by any definition
  6. Kirby - one of the prettiest games for the NES and a fine platformer- too bad they changed the formula so much for later games
  7. Castlevania - the first survival horror game, the controls are a little clunky but it's still a classic platformer
  8. Megaman - I've never actually beaten any of the Megaman games, but a classic if you like HARD games
  9. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II The Arcade Game - This is one of those games that's probably not great, but I remember it fondly
  10. Final Fantasy - The first in the series, a solid game but definitely different than today's FF games.

Unhappy with Atari? (2, Interesting)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884557)

The Atari 2600 had upset folks by flooding the market with bad software and, at first, retailers were reluctant to sell another system. But the NES was a hit, controlling a healthy 90 percent of the U.S. home videogame industry at the peak of its popularity.

I don't remember anyone being upset by the quality of games on the Atari. Everyone I know, myself included, was amazed they they could have Pong, Pitfall, Frogger, Centipede, and Asteroids right on their own TV. It didn't matter that they sucked, because we had nothing to compare them to! They were new, innovative, and best of all you didn't need a pocket full of quarters and a ride to the mall. Maybe adults were unhappy, but I distinctly remember my friends and I having to wait (im)patiently while their dads would finish that last game of Pong (before the inevitable throwing of the paddle and the obligitory "God damnit, piece of $#@% fsking...!").

Link's first adventure... (1)

CyanDisaster (530718) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884559)

...Link's first adventure on the NES was a milestone for home game consoles, offering the deep gameplay of a computer game with a more streamlined interface...

...and yet the image shown above the caption is that from his second adventure.

Hope be with ye,
Cyan

Hot Air? (3, Informative)

jimbonics (885295) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884569)

Some people blew into their cartridges when they didn't work to "clean" them to work again.

The smart folk simply breathed hot air into them, thus forming a little condensation mositure onto the cartridge slot contacts.

worked every time.

My Mother (3, Interesting)

DrugCheese (266151) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884571)

still begs me to find her a NES system so she can play her Dr.Mario and other games she was more addicted to then I being addicted to Final Fantasy or Dragon Warrior. Although I've set her up with nesticle and a generaic d-pad, it's not a Nintendo controller so she doesn't like it.

NES was a family tradition with us, after dinner we'd all sit around and play duck hunt or Mario Brothers.

Hated? What hate? (3, Insightful)

SpiceWare (3438) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884575)

Nobody stopped gaming, they just changed where they gamed. The early to mid 80s was when home computers first became affordable. Everybody I knew turned off their Atari/Coleco/Intellivision game console and started gaming on their Atari/Commodore/TRS-80 computer system instead.

How the NES ruined my life (1)

deep_zeus (926001) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884580)

I had a normal childhood until the NES came along and ruined my life. Specifically the introduction of the Legend of Zelda franchise. I would play that game until the controllers were stripped from my tiny cramped fingers. I would play with the sound off when my parents fell asleep and fall asleep in school thinking about it. That system started me on a life long video game obsession that continues today and always seems to hack at my GPA thank the heavens I ever got to college, now I just have to finish.

Hot sex scene. (3, Funny)

red990033 (847260) | more than 8 years ago | (#13884597)

When I was 7, I figured out how to unlock the hidden sex scene inside of Super Mario Bros.

That three-some between Mario, Lugi, and the Princess was hot.

Needless to say, my mom threw out my NES system.
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