Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Chrontendo Episode 36 Update

First of all,  it has come to my attention that the video for Ninja Hattori Kun is missing from Episode 7 (The "Zelda" episode.)  I know I played that game, and I know I recorded a video for it.  Somehow, it must have been left out during editing.  When I get a chance, I'll record some footage, splice it into Episode 7 and re-upload it.  However, for those of you anxiously awaiting Ninja Hattori Kun, be aware -- it's a pretty unexciting game.

I was originally hoping to have Chrontendo 36 done by the end of month.  At this point however, that seems unlikely, due to one particular game.  As you may realize, Ep. 36 will be covering the end of Sept 1988 and a good chunk of October, meaning that we will have finally reached the "Official Greatest and Best Selling NES Game of All-Time" -- Super Mario Bros 3.  Yep, that game was released in Japan in Fall 1988, meaning there was almost a 1 1/2 year delay between the Japanese and US release.  Imagine Nintendo pulling that shit nowadays!  "We hope to have Super Mario Galaxy 2 out in the US by early 2012 at the very latest."  Hell, Super Mario World came out in Japan not that long after the US release of SMB 3.

Whoa! There's like, a block way up there!
Anyway, the fact of the matter is that's it's been a loooong time since I've played Super Mario Bros 3.  Playing it after all these years is... well, it's a bit baffling.  I assume most of you have played SMB 3 and know it's jam-packed with crazy secrets, hidden items, alternate routes, invisible blocks, and so on.  I often find myself  at the middle of a level, thinking, "I just know there's something around here somewhere.  Do I hit this block?  Go down this pipe?"   And the game is incredibly long!  By my calculations, if we count the fortresses, the pyramid, that sort of thing, we get a total of 87 levels!  How the hell did we play through this game in one sitting when we were kids?!?*  Playing SMB 3 is not like shooting dudes in Halo; it's actually hard work trying to figure out where everything is!  I play a few levels and then I'm worn out!  Did I really have that much energy and patience when I was younger?

In summary, the good news is this: Episode 36 will feature Super Mario Bros 3.  The bad news: since SMB 3 is the pinnacle of 8-bit gaming, it's all downhill from here.  Shortly after the Japanese release of SMB 3, Sega launched the Mega-Drive and Nintendo demoed an early version of the Super Famicom.  In essence -- the Famicom is dying.   The system's best moment will be behind us by the time we reach Chrontendo Episode 37.  Then we've got another 60 episodes of LJN and Acclaim games to look forward to.

Actually... now that I think about it, we still have Mega Man 2 & 3, Castlevania III and the Capcom Disney games ahead of us, so maybe things aren't so bleak.

*Probably we grabbed a few flutes and warped to the last level.


Chris K. said...

Sounds like a great episode. Can't wait.

qaylIS aka Nicolas Deußer said...

I first finished SMB 3 in the Super Mario All-Stars Anthology for SNES (btw, the Mario 25th Anniversary Wii version is a joke...not even the original versions in it), and in it you could save your state...I can't imagine any kid finish the game complete in one sitting, even the all-stage speedrun on SDA finishes with 1:24:07 (, and thats friggin long.
The levels though were shorter as in previous or following Super Mario titles, but they were more difficult. Especially the forced scrolled levels are numerous, and in and after the 3. World really tricky.
Doesn't change that the game was awesome in the time, and many of the iconic images from the Mario series were recycled cleverly, or created creatively in SMB 3. But I am interested what the good Doctor has to say about the game and its place in Marios history in the next Chrontendo...I stay tuned.

GeoX, one of the GeoX boys. said...

In the RPG department, there's also Dragon Quest IV, Final Fantasy III, and Just Breed. Pretty impressive stuff!

Doctor Sparkle said...

Shame about the Mario Bros 25th Anniversary disc. Everyone was so looking forward to it and then so disappointed once it came out. The reviewer for the Onion AV Club went so far as to give it an F grade.

Is Just Breed any good? I know it has a following, but the name always turned me off. "Just Breed" sounds less like a strategy-RPG and more like a horse racing simulator.

GeoX, one of the GeoX boys. said...

Yeah, the name's pretty terrible, but the *game* is an extremely polished and playable strategy RPG with a few subplots that evince an incredibly surreal sense of humor. I'm sure you'll like it.

Anonymous said...

I completed SMB3 (played through all levels) in one sitting not long ago. I wouldn't do that with many games, but I really love SMB3 :)

But the only levels I find somewhat hard are the ones on the last world. And when I completed it I had like 75 lives or something, I had probably been up to 99 but died alot on the last levels!

Really looking forward to the episode, as usual!

Chris Sobieniak said...

The game nobody would shut up about!