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Some (somewhat obscure) NES games I recommend

edited February 2006 in Video Games
So there's a couple games I would like to recommend to you, because they're ones that I don't hear too much about and I wanna pitch them out there. Now my love for them might just be nostalgia talking so you'll have to judge for yourself:

First up is Arkista's Ring. It's a fun little top-down Zelda-like game where you play as an elf chick, armed with a bow and various magic items, who is on a mission to get back the treasures stolen from the elf kingdom by an evil shogun lord. It's not quite Zelda-like because it has a linear stage format but it's fun all the same. The difficulty isn't too bad until later in the game, when enemies speed up and ninjas start kicking your ass. Rym has seen it, briefly I believe, as he saw me playing it some months ago and he seemed interested. If I remember correctly it was mostly a European release and so it was pretty rare here in the US but the cartridge and/or ROM is pretty easy to get now.

Second is Astyanax. It's not the easiest game around but it's interesting. The story is kinda generic, with a kidnapped princess and a lone hero and whatnot but it is told with very nice cutscenes, dialogue, and graphics. Plus, each level has a unique look but no explanation so it's fun to try and think up explanations for what you're going through.

Third is Silver Surfer. Scott mentions this one relatively often, specifically referencing its difficulty, and he does not exaggerate. It is horrendously difficult. To this day I have only legitimately beaten one of the six 3-stage worlds and a single stage of a second world, and that was only by playing them over and over as a kid until I memorized the enemies and such. The real reason I am listing this game is for the graphics. They are so incredibly varied and interesting that I consider it fun to just turn on invincibility and let the game go by like a little museum. The things you'll see range from cool little monsters and robots to things that I am amazed ever made it onto an NES game and past the censors. Picture this: a severed, still-living elephant head hanging the from the ceiling by massive chains in its bloody half-torn flesh as it stares blankly at you and spits deadly projectiles from its trunk. How could they let that slip by back then? But anyway if you would like to take the little tour, here's the miracle code that makes NOTHING (not even the walls) harm you:

First, hold select on both controllers (could be up on both instead, can't quite remember) on the title/score screen and enter KJTTJK and press start. Simple as that.


  • Arkista's Ring is so obscure I haven't heard of it.

    Astyanax is a fucker. I remember that game. I had a friend who lived down the street from me as a kid. He beat many levels of Astyanax, quite scary. That game might have been cooler if they shrunk the size of everything by half. I remember you controlled this gigantic guy who took up half the screen so it was nearly impossible to dodge stuff.

    Silver Surfer had great music didn't it? Is KJTTJK a game genie code or something? I don't see anyh K, J or T buttons on my NES controller.
  • When you do the two controller thing it gives you a little entry box
  • And yeah, the size of stuff in Astyanax was an issue but I was able to get thrugh a majority of the game. Though the creators seemed to get off on sticking enemies in that would appear suddenly and ruin your jumps.
  • Oh god yeah, nothing I hate more than getting hit by something mid-jump in any game. Especially if you are trying to jump over a pit of death. Zelda 2 had that really bad in a few places. Like the bridges with fireballs coming at you and holes in the bridge.
  • And the stupid bone-fish that love to hang around bridges
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