Category Archives: Platformer

Remake Roundup: Super Mario Bros. – Part #2

Welcome back to part 2 of our Remake Roundup feature looking at redo’s of the classic 1985 turtle-smashing game Super Mario Bros.

Last time around, we looked at some pretty straight-up remakes that, for the most part, took the original formula and merely spruced it up with better graphics or gameplay elements, but kept things mostly the same.

This time around we dive deeper into the abyss to look at games that take the original Mario concept and start to alter it in more interesting ways. There were no hard rules on what fits for this round, but I generally looked for games that added something innovative but kept the implacable Mario spirit.

Let’s a-go!

Read the rest of this entry


L’Abbaye Des Morts: Megadrive Port

Retro is surely a relative term, since the last event I went to considered Mario 64 as being particularly old-school and anything earlier than that as “ancient school.” That felt jarring to me, but then again, Locomalito’s excellent horror-tinged chapel platformer L’Abbaye Des Morts‘ ZX Spectrum look’n’feel always felt a bit too ancient for me to really get into. Luckily, they’ve shifted things up 8 gears and released a Megadrive port, enabling me to slip seducitvely into a more comfortable bracket while still maintaining enough decrepitness to maintain snarky comments about “kids these days.”

If you want to go the extra level, they’re also appeared to go ahead and make a physical cartridge release for playing on an actual Megadrive (curses mum for giving it away…), though from what I can tell on the Spanish-only page, it’s some sort of Kickstarter campaign at the moment.

Apart from that, as far as I can tell, nothing else has been changed about the game aside from the graphics and sounds, but if you haven’t already played the original version then this just might be the last push you need to dive into a church full of demonic horror.

L’Abbaye Des Morts | Download

The game is a Sega Megadrive ROM file (.bin) so you will need an emulator to play it. I recommend KEGA Fusion.

You Have to Win the Game: Steam EGA edition

You have to win the game… Again! Minimalist indie classic You Have to Win the Game was a sweet little hit back in 2012. If there were an alternative universe with a DOS-based 286 metroidvania, this game would have been it. It was one of the first games I posted about, and I loved what it managed to pull off with the otherwise eye-gouging CGA graphics limitation.


At some unknown point, YHtWtG moved onto Steam, and then added a bunch of new features including an equally lovely EGA mode, boasting a whopping 16 colours! It also includes more difficult remixed campaign and a playable cat character, you know, for people who are into that sort of thing. And best of all, it’s still 100% free (note: there’s a $1 option on if you want a permanent Steam key, which is otherwise not available for free games.)

You Have to Win the Game | download steam /


The Lost Cover Disks: Elf


Back in the day elves were seen as cheery little bastards, known for helping lost travelers find their way, constructing toys for old fat men in subzero temperatures, or being Will Ferrel.

Elf, a 1991 game developed by Nirvana Systems and published by OCEAN, is not about those kinds of elves. Elf hates you and your family and wants you to die a confusing, pointless death, again and again. But it looks fantastic while doing so.

Read the rest of this entry

ROM Mod: Super Mario 64 Odyssey

Being mired in relative poverty, I never even owned a N64, let alone the Switch or whatever it is called. But I know well enough that the newest Mario Odyssey game grants the chelonaphobiac plumber disturbing Kirby-like powers to consume and become his foes.

Thanks to Free Game Planet, I found out about an enterprising modder who maybe could only afford an N64 has decided to bring Odyssey to the N64, with Super Mario 64.

It brings Super Mario Odyssey’s enemy possessing gameplay into Mario’s N64 shenanigans, meaning you apparently consume and control of any character in the game now. Sure, why not. I have no idea how such a mod is possible, but it’s a darn impressive feat.

Remake Roundup – Super Mario Bros. (Part 1)

It’s been a long time coming but we’re finally back with another Remake Roundup, where we examine an arcade classic and unearth modern remakes!

This time around we take a look at the venerable classic Super Mario Bros. franchise and see what sort of remakes are lurking around. This will be a two three-parter: the first part will focus on more straight-forward remakes, while the second will look at remakes that take the Mario concept and apply it to different gameplay styles (Mario as a metroidvania? Sure, why not) and then finally, we take a cautious gander at some of the more… esoteric interpretations.

Grab your fire flowers and, in some cases, axes, bombs or megablasters, and see how deep the green pipe goes.

Read the rest of this entry

Clash Force

Back in the late 80’s, cartoons seemed to be based solely around the idea of grabbing everything a 10-year-old thought was awesome and merging them together into a force of protagonists who fought overtly evil bad guys who try to take over the world for no more reason than because it’s there. It worked well enough for a while, endowing us with gift like Transformers, He-Man, and erm, Dinoriders, before we all got totally sick of it and the too-cool-to-care 90’s emerged.

Clash Force is sort of like traveling to a world where this never happened, and an endless stream of colourful robot-animal hybrids continued to beam into our television sets and game consoles. It also harks back to a simpler time for games, gifting us straightforward running-from-left-to-right, shooting everything that moves, and kicking the odd bosses’ face in as you move from forests to deserts to caves. It’s a simple arcade affair to be sure, but sometimes that’s all you need.

Read the rest of this entry

ROM mod: Super Mario Land 2 DX

Happy New Year! To celebrate something new, New Retro Games style, we take something old, and make it new. The 1992 gameboy game Super Mario Land 2, is just such a candidate today. It was the shroom-addicted plumber’s second outing on the vintage Gameboy console, and a pretty decent one to boot. As much as I loved the game, though, a complex platformer was hard to see on the tiny screen, especially thanks to the lag/blur  effect every time you move– which was always.

Luckily, now there’s a colourised mod to the ROM of the game that also fixes the lag/blur issue runs on making everything less ear-tearingly blurry. Nor does Luigi have to remain in Mario’s shadow, either, as he’s now a playable character. It’s-a about time.

Enter: Super Mario Land 2 DX.

Read the rest of this entry

Nightkeep (demo)

Nightkeep is, well, as its indiegogo page puts it: “an action RPG platformer inspired by such classics as Castlevania Bloodlines, Demon’s crest and a variety of JRPGs” – yes, please. Ture, it’s yet another retro-style game wearing its influences strongly on its sleeves, but the demo here is polished enough in its own right that Nightkeep looks to be shaping up to serve an interesting mixture of platforming action.

Read the rest of this entry

The Lost Cover Disks: Electro Man

Welcome to a new featurette – a more in-depth series of retrospectives where we dig up old coverdisk games from our dusty basement and take a look at these forgotten heroes of digital history. And of course- their modern legacy and remakes. Remember Titus the Fox, Cosmo the Alien, or Baron Baldric? No? You soon will! Welcome to The Lost Cover Disks.

In a world… where everything is full of empty polish factories and teleport puzzles… In a world… where upgrades were not always upgrades… In a world.. where you kind of look like Robocop but not really… An Electro Man will rise. But then also die in one hit.


That’s the basic premise behind Electro Man, an early 90’s shareware game that littered many obscure coverdisks of the day. The awesome graphics belied the mediocre gameplay, enough so that the game was relatively well-respected at the time. As it turns out, the hindsight of nostalgia doesn’t hold up so well, however.

Read the rest of this entry