Nevertheless, I spent many hours with this awesome sequel – in the game, the cover model was substituted with a protagonist tastefully clad to the nines in iron plating. But when it's revealed that Wily is indeed behind Cossack's deeds, Mega Man is forced to trek through not one end castle, but two, a trend that is kept up in Mega Man 5 and 6 as well. A total of 715 known licensed game titles were released for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) during its life span, 677 of these games were released in North America plus 2 championship cartridges, with an additional 35 released in Europe or Australia, and one additional game in Hong Kong. Note: the Power Glove will not enhance gameplay, but you'll look pretty darn rad, we promise. I guess since it was an unlicensed Nintendo game, Codemasters had a hard time getting retailers interested in stocking it. Demon Sword's ninja is surprisingly agile, with the ability to hop to tree tops in matter of seconds. What's funny about The Legend of Zelda's title was that the gamer played as a character named Link, who was in turn trying to save the famed princess named Zelda. And you had side-scrolling stages, the core of the game, in which your character ran, jumped and attacked the invading alien hordes with a laser-whip. Along the way, he encounters a v (, Arkista's Ring is an extremely pleasant action/adventure... More game featuring cute enemies, soothing music and an elf girl as the main character. Using your own bubbles to bounce your way up to out of reach platforms takes some serious platforming skills. What an unsung classic this, and the Game Boy version, is. It's an undeniable classic. Yes, Super Mario Bros. 2 is a repurposing of a non-Mario Japanese Famicom game called Yume Kōjō: Doki Doki Panic, but why hold that against it? It wasn't until a decade or two later that I finally understood that a poor localization was responsible for the game's extreme weirdness. Konami's Castlevania was followed up by Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, a game that strayed entirely from its origins. Using a sort of glorified stamp tool, you could concoct you own mixture of bricks, ladders, ropes and baddies, then set it to life. The North American sequel to everyone's favorite game does not disappoint. The ever-flatulent Bub and Bob enter the Cave of Monsters in a blaze of bubble-blowing glory, trapping all manner of beasts in their sticky, spherical emissions. Thankfully, Rad Racer turned out to be a great racing game that was my second-favorite racer of the generation, right after OutRun on the Master System. You were fighting the clock, too, and if you ever ran out of torches then it was Game Over for you. In fact, I liked Willow so much that I'd put it up there on my top list of NES RPG favorites with games like Dragon Warrior, Final Fantasy and Crystalis. Although the NES had trouble tackling some of its arcade contemporaries, games like 1981's Qix were a perfect match for its capabilities. The drama surrounding Tetris is one of the most storied sagas in the history of the NES. Honestly, that still amazes me, it was so much better than all of those it was nuts. Why would you buy Mario Bros. when you can buy Super Mario Bros.? Brawling brothers Billy and Jimmy Lee were once again playable in both single-player mode, but for the first time on the 8-bit Nintendo you and a friend could team up to punch, kick and hair-pull your foes to death simultaneously through an all-new set of side-scrolling beat-'em-up stages. It's a familiar premise, but with a pretty unique protagonist – and his weapon is what makes the gameplay a winner. But if you wait for the axe's power to fully recharge between swings, the individual swipes will pack more impact. Who's Link? Kirby's Adventure was an epic, beautifully colorful swansong for the NES that focused on that new power for its vacuum-suction hero, as Kirby sucked up his foes, swallowed them, and then found that he could wield their signature weapons and powers himself. Punch-Out!! Officially titled The Dark Sword of Chaos, the gameplay remained true to the original, with one notable addition: While Ryu always could (and in many cases had to) grapple to walls to get around, Ryu could now scale up and down walls easily. Despite the unparalleled hype, no one was disappointed. Batman taught me the meaning of "envy;" I went to a neighbor's house and played it all day, mastering the diabolical wall jump platforming challenges, and I wanted the game for myself. From Link and Samus Aran to Mega Man and Bowser, Nintendo's 8-bit machine was the debut platform for countless classic heroes and villains that are still active in the industry today. An arcade-inspired action run and gun starring sweaty shirtless men charging through tropical jungles and blasting everything in sight with an overhead, birds-eye perspective, Ikari Warriors was the definitive videogaming outlet for bottled-up aggression. Overworld puzzle-solving was equally as important – there was even a riddle that you couldn't solve unless you opened up the physical game box and read a piece of paper packaged with the game. Willow on the NES, then, was notable for having the likeness to both actors, as well as many of the supporting cast from the film – it was a movie tie-in adventure developed by Capcom, and was in many ways that company's take on Nintendo's Legend of Zelda formula. The Big N's amazing 1980s home console reinvigorated the videogame market with classic, genre-defining games including Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda. Funny that both of these defining characteristics have carried over through the years into modern day Gaiden sequels. Or you can just skip the work and enter the Konami Code to get fully powered up in a matter of seconds. Nonetheless, the game remains an iconic entry in the NES catalog due to its simple race-or-die gameplay. Shotgun, Mario. A 100% satisfaction guarantee and 90-day No Questions Asked return policy on all games, systems, and accessories. Dracula is the bad guy? I think I've got the same fond memory for this one as everyone else does: skinny dude, medium dude, and fat dude. Or maybe it was just that I died so much. More than any other past gaming console, the NES was the birthplace of long-lived mascot characters. Few franchises in Nintendo's storied history are as famous as The Legend of Zelda. Instead of a game that relied on epic, blind exploration and top-down dungeon-crawling action, Zelda II introduced a completely new idea for the series, and one that hasn't been revisited since. What stuck out most for me about Double Dragon II was how varied the game was. While friends moved on to Super NES, I made do with Kirby. And this time Mario doesn't steal the spotlight. It was integral if you wanted a high score. But it belongs on our NES list as well, for the port of Lode Runner was pixel-perfect and provided something that only Excitebike had done prior: a level editor. An item-based menu allowed you to equip gems, whips and special weapons. VICE: Project Doom is one of the most overlooked and underappreciated third-party game designs to ever hit the NES, even after claiming a cover of Nintendo Power in 1991. When I wasn't burning my eyes in playing 3D Rad Racer on my brother's water bed I was wasting my life away with this shooter. Turned off? After releasing several games for the Atari 2600 and other computer-based consoles, famed Pitfall! Although it is fun to pummel some of Double Dragon's most notorious thugs, Battletoads fan will probably be the most satisfied with this cartoonish, goofy beat 'em up. A uniquely saccharine shooter, Stinger pits two quite capable, but very pastel space cruisers against some deceptively cute enemy forces. DuckTales was probably my favorite show on television when the game hit, yet I could hardly sit through an entire after-school episode before powering on my NES to play it. When I visit my mom today, that sticker is still there, reminding me of a time when I couldn't play every game I wanted to. And it's the insanely crisp gameplay. I felt such a sense of relief every time I returned to the vehicle from an on-foot segment, like running indoors to escape the Boogeyman in the woods. The Tetris cartridge was circulated amongst us and our various neighbors forever after collected dust. The quintessential platformer, it's hard to imagine a video game industry today without Super Mario Bros. Maybe most surprising of all, though, is that the NES was also the first place Americans ever met Solid Snake. You worked your opponent into submission, going for the pin, and victory gave you the chance to take on tougher challengers, but not before training your chosen warrior to be stronger with interstitial mini-games. But while action games on the NES are a dime a dozen, it's this very fact that made Batman stand out amongst the competition. It's like Marble Madness turned into a platformer…and it worked! In the game, players take the role of Amagon, a Marine who is trapped on an island after his plane crashed. It was so much fun to play that we didn't know many people who cared that it didn't look quite as good as its source material. I can't tell you how many hours I left my NES on simply because I wanted to show off my created course to a bunch of my friends. You can collect power-ups by "juggling" bells on heart-shaped beams of pure love, thus altering their colors and endowing you with different abilities. The ridiculousness of the premise was only matched by the difficulty of the game's control scheme, and the superb 8-bit soundtrack that accompanied all the hungry, hungry action. This kiddie Capcom platformer gave Mega Man a run for his money, though, and while I'm still not sure who this Nemo dude is, I had a great time pelting animals with candy all the same. The game is a sequel to Tiger Heli, and it was ported to (. The world powers have decided to initiate operation THUNDERCADE to stop AAT (, Twin Cobra is a two-player helicopter scrolling shooting game published by Taito Corporation, distributed in North America by Romstar, and one of the more popular arcade games developed by Toaplan. was a knock-out even without his celebrity status. Wizards & Warriors is the debut title of a classic, if depressingly anti-climatic NES trilogy. Clouding Dr. Wily's actual involvement in the nefarious deeds coursing through the game's loose story, a Faux Protoman leads Mega Man on for most of the game until – surprise! It's still a blast to this day and Tecmo should bring it back. I was lucky enough to rent Mega Man 4 over and over again before buying it later on. The entire game can be played with a wingman, but make sure whoever it is can appreciate a heaping dollop of cuteness, served Japanese-style (with extra "cute" on the side). programmer and designer David Crane abandoned his traditional Activision backing, formed Absolute Entertainment, and went on to create what has become known as one of the NES catalog's quirkiest games, A Boy and His Blob: Trouble in Blobolonia. Snake parachuted into the jungle fortress of Outer Heaven with nothing but his courage and a pack of smokes, and skillfully avoided detection while sneaking through the enemy encampment to find and destroy the titular weapon of mass destruction – or, if sneaking didn't work, he beat the snot out of the soldiers in his way. As someone who has gone through the effort of tracking down this neglected gem of a Game Pak, I can affirm that Little Samson can hold his own with the Belmonts, Mega Men and Master Higgins' of the era. While the first dozen or so screens will seem like a walk in the park, as you make your way deeper into the cave you'll encounter some puzzling situations. Oddly, I remember the original Mario Bros. as the first game I ever played on a big screen TV. It wasn't even that compelling. The NES Willow game is better than George Lucas' movie. Last, you throw Radical into the mix. I lived in Maine when Mega Man 5 came out, which was an SNES-dominated era in my life. The 125 stages are chock-full of weapon power-ups and other useful items, and each mission is very stra This game was much tighter in control and actually gave a better sense of accomplishment to the player. One of the counter-examples to this argument is Mario Bros., an NES port that's not perfect when compared to the 1983 arcade original, but one that is about as close as can be expected, with smooth gameplay and crisp graphics that do the original proud. I'm a lifelong boxing fan, so being able to "sim" matches this early was something of a breakthrough for me. I used to apply the Konami code to every game from Konami just to see what would happen. We celebrate 100 of our favorites in the pages that follow with our list of the best games for Nintendo's killer system. The Boy was virtually helpless without his Blob and his stash of flavored Jellybeans, making this title an interesting mix of action-adventure and puzzle gameplay. 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