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NextGame 33

(Written 1999-2000)
Review Info
Super NES
Nintendo 64
About Matt
Awards and Praise


A Boy and His Blob
Rating: 65%
Genre: If I knew, I'd tell you
Appeal: Kids with imaginary friends
In this bloberiffic game (did I just say that?), you play as a boy who must feed his large stash of jelly beans to a blob.  Doing so will turn the blob into all sorts of useful things.  Now honestly, how likely is it that this could happen in real life?  If you ask me, the blob is nothing more than a figment of the boy's imagination...  He's probably on LSD.

The Addams Family
Rating: 75%
Genre: Games inspired by movies inspired by TV shows
Appeal: Most gamers, except the die-hard Munsters fans
I remember first hearing about this game on television, Thanksgiving, 1991.  There was a news report showing just how much movie-licensed stuff had come from the Addams Family film.  The news lady showed a two-second clip of the video game.  That's when I knew I had to rent it...  Oh, and by the way, it's pretty fun.

Adventure Island
Rating: 60%
Genre: Gilligan's Island without the whole nutty gang
Appeal: Probably Gilligan himself, because the game brings back fond memories...
Ya mon, it's an island adventure, or something!  While Adventure Island is relatively fun, the gameplay is pretty repetitive.  The gameplay is standard platformer stuff, complete with the ol' one-hit-and-you're-dead Mario attitude.

Adventure Island 2
Rating: 65%
Genre: Hudson Soft games before the Bomberman thing got blown way out of proportion
Appeal: Women with a "thing" for Master Higgins and his hula skirt
The Higgins-meister is back, and his game has gotten a bit better since last time.  Once again, he has to save his moron girlfriend who gets kidnapped too often, and once again, he forgets to wear a shirt.  I guess I should be thankful he wasn't in Dead or Alive, or I'd have had to witness the blubber in his chest get "bouncy".

Adventure Island 3
Rating: 70%
Genre: Island adventures
Appeal: Chubby midgets stranded on islands full of dangerous snails
AI3 is the best of the NES AI games.  However, the gameplay is so similar to the previous two that I have nothing more to write!  What a crying shame!

The Adventures of Bayou Billy
Rating: 45%
Genre: Many genres, actually
Appeal: Anyone who saw the commercials with the Paul Hogan-looking crocodile hunter guy
Alright, so you're this crawcadile 'unter who also beats up bad guys.  That would be cool if the play mechanics weren't so horrendous.  With a bit of tweaking, the Double Dragon style scenes could have been cool.  As they stand, they're not.  There are also some driving and shooting scenes, which also suck.

Rating: 80%
Genre: Brick-busting
Appeal: Demolition workers
Chances are you've played this game in some form or another, whether it be the ancient 286 game "Bricks" or 1991's lovely "Bananoid".  Basically, your objective is to bounce a ball upwards and try to destroy all of the bricks on the screen.  This NES version actually came with a special controller.  Before bloody first-person shooters, people went on brick-shooting rampages in high schools.

Rating: 5%
Genre: Games for girls... the stupid ones
Appeal: Little girls and disturbed little boys
Many years ago, my parents rented this game for my younger sister so that she would have something to play.  Well, I decided to try it out, just for kicks.  From what I could see, the gameplay mainly involved charming little animals into doing the dirty work for you.  Plus, Barbie had different outfits!  Oh gosh!

Rating: 75%
Genre: Side scroller with big movie name!  Let's all run out and buy it!
Appeal: Michael Keaton, because it stars his character.  I hear he plays it on a daily basis
Many NES enthusiasts consider this a classic platformer.  While I wouldn't go that far, I can tell you that it's pretty good.  The cool, dark graphics look really nice.  You'll begin to believe that Tim Burton had a hand in the art direction.  That is, if you'll believe anything.

Batman Returns
Rating: 45%
Genre: Final Fight with a vengeance... and some killer clowns
Appeal: Maniac torch-juggling stiltwalkers and insane circus midgets
Konami gained the rights to publish Batman Returns games for the Nintendo systems.  Unfortunately, they obviously poured all their efforts into the Super NES version, which turned out good, leaving NES owners to find jobs at McDonalds in order to scrape together enough cash to buy a 16-bit system.  Shame on you, Konami.

Rating: 50%
Genre: Froggy-fragging
Appeal: Toads with 'tudes...  I'm really, really sorry, it's just hard to think up stuff sometimes
I can't believe the BattleToads series was created by the same company who did Donkey Kong Country and GoldenEye.  Then again, probably (and thankfully) very few of the original Rare guys remain.  BattleToads is far too cheap and frustrating for anyone sane, yet game reviewers always gave the series high marks.  Before Next Generation, magazines just plain sucked...

BattleToads and Double Dragon: The Ultimate Team
Rating: 60%
Genre: Beat-'em-ups that are a bit too original for their own good
Appeal: The publisher, because after all, two franchises means twice the sales, right?
I assume that the team at RARE did this final BattleToads title against their will.  It was their last title before the Donkey Kong Country series, which was far better than the BattleToads series.  Still, I'll bet that one day, RARE will try to resurrect the toads in 3D... and then, the frustration will begin again...

Bionic Commando
Rating: 80%
Genre: Unrealistic appendage-related games
Appeal: That guy in Mortal Kombat with the metal arms
By the way, this game is in no way related to Capcom's other NES game "Commando", or the Hulk Hogan movie "Suburban Commando".  Instead, Bionic Commando is a really cool side-scroller in which you have an arm.  A mechanical one.  It extends and lets you hook onto stuff.  Great fun, really.

Blades of Steel
Rating: 80%
Genre: Pucking cool games
Appeal: Those people who only go to see hockey games for the fights
Wow, it's like, hockey, except you can also beat the crap out of people!  That rules!  BOS plays just like Ice Hockey on the NES until the gloves come off and the beatings begin.  Unfortunately, the all-too-realistic N64 BOS "updates" bore little resemblance to this NES classic.  And they sucked, too.

Blaster Master
Rating: 85%
Genre: A Boy and His Frog
Appeal: That Willy Beamish guy
As the master of blasting, the fate of the world rests on your weak shoulders.  That's why players have a big ugly vehicle to control.  These fortunate souls can get in and out of the vehicle, in and out.  Never underestimate the power of that thing, for it can save your life.  But only if you don't call it ugly, it seems to get offended.

Bubble Bobble
Rating: 70%
Genre: Trapping your enemies in airtight bubbles, suffocating them
Appeal: A couple of cuddly dinosaurs and the guys who want them dead
Many of you young 'uns only know Bubby and Bobby from the Bust-A-Move series.  This was where they got their start!  Now they have been reduced to the unimportant role of "bubble aiming boys", popping bubbles mindlessly until you decide to turn off the power on your machine...

Bucky O' Hare
Rating: 70%
Genre: Games based on TV series that I can't remember too well... ughh...
Appeal: In 1992, lots of kids.  Today, those same kids, who are now too old for it
I think I remember some music from the show or from commercials that went something like this: "Toad, and animals and birds beware-- BUCKY!  They've got Bucky O' Hare!"  I probably got half of that wrong, anyway.  I really wanted to hear that sweet song again when I played the game on Nesticle, but sadly, this was not to be.  What a shame.

Bump 'n Jump
Rating: 65%
Genre: Bumping... and jumping
Appeal: I dunno, but this is definitely not for kids
Though the graphics suggest that this is a lighthearted kids game, the action quickly turns dead serious.  Basically, there are two ways to destroy other cars: bumping 'em into walls, or jumping on 'em.  Either way results in a deadly explosion that can undoubtedly traumatize the kids.  Keep them far away from the cartridge.

Rating: 80%
Genre: Trendsetting platformers
Appeal: Vampire hunters around the world
Believe it or not, Castlevania was one of the first games where you would make your way through a level avoiding traps and killing small monsters before taking on a big boss.  It's still fun to play, though it gets a bit frustrating by level 4.  There was actually a PC version made.  I can remember buying it in 1992 for $5 and thinking I got a good deal.  Should have stuck with the NES version...

Castlevania II: Simon's Quest
Rating: 75%
Genre: Adventure games that include the gruesome murders of many an unfortunate skeleton
Appeal: Dogs like this game.  Lots of delicious bones...
Hello, what's this?  Castlevania becomes an adventure game!  While the first game took place entirely in Drac's castle, this one allows players to explore the Transylvanian countryside.  In fact, the giant Draculian castle has been reduced to the equivalent of 3/4 of a stage in Castlevania I.  That poor old vampire...

Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse
Rating: 85%
Genre: 2D NES Castlevania games from 1990.  That about sums it up!
Appeal: That guy who runs The Castlevania Dungeon website
This third game in the NES Castlevania trilogy returns to the series' roots: straightforward platform action.  Adding to the replay value are four playable characters and a whole bunch of different paths to the end of the game.  Challenging and fun.  Plus, the thief character looks like a hunchback monkey!  Pretty amusing stuff!

Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers
Rating: 80%
Genre: Platformers for the elementary school set
Appeal: Uhh... the elementary school set
This game doesn't appeal to me quite as much as I used to, but then, I stopped watching the series when I was 7.  Still, I have to give the designers credit for creating a game that's at just the right difficulty for its target audience.  If you're 8 or younger, I have a message for you: Play Chip 'n Dale, and then run away from your parents to join the circus.  C'mon, kids!  You know you want to!

Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers 2
Rating: 75%
Genre: Chipmunk-related games, which is a very small genre
Appeal: Your younger brother
Years after the release of the original, when the flow of new NES software was about to come to a halt, C&D2 was released... and it played EXACTLY the same as the first game.  It's still fun, but I'd be willing to bet that the designers could have whipped this game up in a few months.  The level design just doesn't seem as good, either, but maybe it's just me.

Rating: 90%
Genre: Shooter!
Appeal: Those who knew up up down down left right left right B A start
A truly great shooter that most people couldn't finish without using the 30-lives cheat code, though I can finish without using a single continue.  You play as some kind of Rambo guy who has been sent out- alone- to kill an entire army of aliens.  The game climaxes with an epic battle against the master alien's heart!  Awesome, man.

Contra Force
Rating: 50%
Genre: "Disgraces to the family"
Appeal: Everyone who didn't run away crying after the first level (like me)
Oh my god!  What were they thinking?!  Not only did Konami add an actual storyline to a Contra game, but they also replaced Contra's excellent action sequences with significantly more crappy action sequences!  And the aliens are pretty much gone!  I can just hear the original Contra saying "I have no son."

Rating: 85%
Genre: RPGood
Appeal: Purple-clad hero types
While Crystalis's gameplay is similar to Zelda's, it's actually closer to the SNES Zelda than the NES one.  Very nice work, and just slightly ahead of its time.  Don't count on SNK to do any sequels, as they're too busy working on the three-hundredth King of Fighters game.  Look for the Crystalis rerelease on Game Boy Color.

Darkwing Duck
Rating: 75%
Genre: Duck-related games.  The NES had a few of them
Appeal: Former Disney Afternoon fans
Back in the 8- and 16-bit days, Capcom had a habit of releasing generally good Disney-based video games.  Darkwing was just another in the long line.  There isn't much that separates this from any other NES platformer, but it plays fine, which means that if I were a teacher, it would get at least a silver star.

Defenders of Dynatron City
Rating: 30%
Genre: Something about a bunch of superheroes?
Appeal: Uhhhhhhh...
To tell you the truth, I'm probably not qualified to write this review (or any review, for that matter), seeing how I played the game for all of five seconds.  But hey, I need to fill up space, right?  Anyways, the only things I know for sure about this are that it's from Lucasarts and it came with a free comic book.

Dick Tracy
Rating: 45%
Genre: Crime-solving with Warren "Bulworth" Beatty himself!... and Madonna
Appeal: Fans of bright colors and old comic books
One day, I sat down to play the Dick Tracy rom, and it was decent, if not anything special.  Then I went on the internet and used a few search engines to look up the name "Madguy".  It seems that Madonna, who costarred in the film, has a company called MadGuy films.  And I hate her for it!  10% off just for that!  Madonna is going to pay for stealing my name!

Die Hard
Rating: 55%
Genre: Top-Down, pixel-laden action starring Bruce Willis
Appeal: Fans of the film who haven't got a Playstation
If I remember right, this game was decent, if unspectacular.  Still, it wasn't Die Hard Trilogy.  Of course, it couldn't have been, since there was no trilogy on which to base a game on when this was released.  One of the many reasons why I would not like to go back to the '80s.

Dizzy the Adventurer
Rating: 75%
Genre: There are so many Dizzy games that they should have their own genre
Appeal: Gamers in the UK, where Dizzy was popular
Dizzy the Adventurer is a cool game, but it would have gotten an extra 10% if it didn't suffer from the same problems as all the other Dizzy games: Aggravating control (Dizzy often continues to roll after landing a jump), and the lack of some sort of save feature.  The game designers probably figured that if it ain't broke, don't fix it.  Unfortunately, Dizzy did have a few cracks.

Donkey Kong
Rating: 65%
Genre: Arcade translations... bad ones
Appeal: I guess anyone who couldn't afford the arcade machine
Wow, what was Nintendo thinking?  In this NES conversion of the classic arcade game, not only were the cut scenes left out, but so was an entire stage of the game!  That's one full screen!  I guess all that moving stuff in the pie factory level would have pushed this all the way to 1/6 of a megabyte.
Still fun and addictive, but Nintendo could have done better.

Donkey Kong Jr.
Rating: 70%
Genre: More bad arcade translations
Appeal: All those kids who loved DK Jr. before that horrible Diddy stole the show
Ohhh, it seems Nintendo didn't learn its lesson after the first game!  Once again, the cut scenes and extra level of the arcade game have been removed.  However, there are four levels rather than the three that were included in the first DK, and thus, I hereby give it an extra 5%!

Donkey Kong 3
Rating: 50%
Genre: Weird arcade translations
Appeal: That perverted kid down at the arcade
Donkey Kong 3 wasn't very popular in the arcades, which was probably because everyone was too embarrassed to be seen playing as an exterminator and shooting bug spray right up DK's @$$.  I'm serious, that's what the game was about!  Not terrible, but I'm a little worried about the game designers...

Donkey Kong Classics
Rating: 75%
Genre: Two- that's right- TWO games in one game pack!
Appeal: Well, if you're like me, you like it because you got it for free!
Yeah, alright!  Now you can play both Donkey Kong Classics without ever having to remove the cartridge!  Thanks, Nintendo!  This was probably one of the first games that had the word "classic" in its title.  After all, it was only the late '80s.

Double Dragon
Rating: 65%
Genre: Beat-'em-ups before beat-'em-up standards were established
Appeal: Abobo... he's tough
DD plays like the arcade version, but the levels are completely different and a system of experience points has been added.  This is actually a good thing, because a straight port would have meant a very short game.  Still, I'd rather play Mighty Final Fight or River City Ransom.

Double Dragon 2: The Revenge
Rating: 70%
Genre: Improved Dragons
Appeal: The Brothers Lee
The levels in DD2 are more interesting than the ones in DD.  One scene even has you fighting in the back of a helicopter, trying to avoid getting sucked out.  I just wish the controls weren't so ridiculous.  The A button makes your character attack to his left, and the B button makes him attack to his right.  Try to guess why this was never implemented into a beat-'em-up again...

Double Dragon 3: The Sacred Stones
Rating: 60%
Genre: Third games in trilogies
Appeal: The same people who liked the other two games, DUH!  Moron... :)
The arcade and Genesis versions of DD3 were terrible.  Like trilogies of anything, quality eventually goes down the drain (look at the Scream and Poltergeist films).  Luckily, the NES developers must have realized how much the game they were porting sucked, and made it NOT suck.  The gameplay is there, but the difficulty level is a bit much, especially at first.

Dr. Mario
Rating: 75%
Genre: Hospital simulations
Appeal: Medical students
Since when did Mario become a doctor?  After killing hundreds of innocent turtles and goombas, it seems that the former plumber has turned from evil to good.  He might be able to save people's lives, but it's probably a bit late to save Luigi's career.  Mario should make sure he keeps those giant pills away from his brother...

Dragon's Lair
Rating: 30%
Genre: Laserdisc arcade to NES conversions... great...
Appeal: Those who enjoyed the arcade game and are not very picky about their NES games
Horse sh*t, this is crap!  The barely interactive laserdisc game was much more fun!  Nice animation, but that's about the only good thing here.  The character control is unbearably sluggish, the levels are few, and you only get five lives where one hit kills you, making Game Genie a necessity for playing this.  Even then, it's still not much fun.

Dragon Warrior
Rating: 70%
Genre: Very early console RPGs
Appeal: D&D fans who lacked friends or a computer
If I'd known that Nintendo Power was giving away free copies of this game with every subscription for a time, I'd have subscribed to that crapmag in a second!  When I did subscribe years later, all I got was a $15 strategy guide.  And as for the game, it's a pretty generic console RPG with a decent storyline and a lot of evil Red Slimes.  Fun stuff.

Rating: 80%
Genre: Duck, quickly!... heh heh heh...  But seriously, this is in the "duck games" genre
Appeal: Ducks young and old, and the humans who shoot at them
Bless me bagpipes!  DuckTales is part of a long line of cool Disney-themed games created by Capcom.  As in the TV series, Scrooge McDuck must use his cane as a pogo stick, and bounce off the heads of his enemies.  Actually, I lied.  Scrooge never did anything like that on the show, but this new power of his definitely makes the game better than it would have been if he was defenseless.

DuckTales 2
Rating: 80%
Genre: Duck Duck Goose, only more complicated and without the geese
Appeal: The game programmers, because practically all the code was done for them
Four years after the original DuckTales was released and even longer after the series was cancelled, Capcom decided to lure in their dwindling NES audience with this sequel.  It plays almost exactly the same as the first game in the series, which is cool.  If ya liked the first one, you'll like this one.

Duck Hunt
Rating: 45%
Genre: Wild animal hunting before the whole Deer Hunter phenomenon
Appeal: Many people like this game, but I'm guessing ducks don't
I always thought this original NES light gun game was a tad too simplistic.  The only things that impressed me were those digitized dog bark and duck quack sound effects.  For vegetarians, there was always the skeet shooting mode, but it just wasn't the same.  Most Duck Hunt cartridges also include Super Mario Bros.  It is a better game.  Play it instead!

Dyno Warz
Rating: 70%... no, 60%... oh, forget it
Genre: Side-scrollers that have big dinosaurs and small humans (Rampage also fits this description)
Appeal: This friend of mine who had it?
Uhh, lemme see, when was the last time I played this?  1992?  Well, honestly, the only things I can remember about Dyno Warz were that you could play as either a godzilla-style monster or a tiny, tiny professor guy.  And it was tough, but I was in second grade at the time.  I don't know what I'm talking about, do I?

Rating: 80%
Genre: Motorcycle "simulations"
Appeal: Budding biker gang members
ExciteBike: It's all the fun of a day at the races, only no one gets killed!  For those of you looking for some Road Rash, this game might be right up your alley.  A really keen track editor makes for a fun, evil time.  See how many ways you can get your guy to smash his head.

Rating: 85%
Genre: Hudson Soft. games that aren't Bomberman
Appeal: Giant one-legged hopping skulls
Before Hudson Soft. went Bomberman-crazy, they produced a little game called Faxanadu.  As the hero, people depend on you to save the world from destruction.  This game also pioneered a technique that many designers of first-person shooters use today: respawning.  Even the toughest of badniks would respawn if you walked off the screen and came back...

Fester's Quest
Rating: 55%
Genre: Games based on antiquated shows the golden age of television
Appeal: Christopher Lloyd, because this game reportedly helped him prepare for his role in the film
The Addams Family: What a Munsters clone!  The show's horrifying lack of originality doesn't translate to Fester's first video game, but that might not be a completely good thing.  Unoriginal, proven gameplay would have probably resulted in a better game.  Fortunately, Fester manages to be reasonably entertaining.  Nice try.

Final Fantasy
Rating: 75%
Genre: Very basic console RPGs
Appeal: Red slimes... no, wait, that's #%&@ Dragon Warrior!
I once read that Final Fantasy received that title because game designer Hironobu Saka-whatever thought that it would be his last foray into the world of video games.  It wasn't.  As for the game, it's pretty standard RPG stuff.  Still fun, but you'd probably rather play something more recent...

Friday the 13th
Rating: 65%
Genre: Horror movie conversions from LJN (AKA Acclaim)
Appeal: Kids who were too young to watch the films
Unlike LJN's NES game based on Jaws, Friday isn't half bad.  However, the game designers were lucky that it turned out to be so strangely engrossing.  The graphics are puke-a-licious, the six characters are unbalanced, and you have to kill Jason three times to see the real (yet still bad) ending.  Yet, there's something about this platform adventure game that keeps you playing...  Dunno!

Ghostbusters II
Rating: 30%
Genre: Exercises in torture
Appeal: Bill Murray, probably
The film Ghostbusters definitely did not need a sequel, but that's not how writer Dan Aykroyd felt.  Thus, Ghostbusters II was born, and along with it came a ton of merchandise.  Too bad the video game is more merchandise than game.  An unfortunate tragedy...

Ghosts 'n Goblins
Rating: 65%
Genre: Ghostbusting the old-fashioned way, without those wussy proton packs
Appeal: Crotchety old gamers who enjoy a REALLY good challenge
It seems that the brave knight Arthur's lovely girlfriend Guinevere has been kidnapped by the forces of darkness.  To save her, he'll need to contend with all sorts of creepy monsters who want to knock him out of his armor (!).  This is considered to be a classic by many, and though there's a great amount of gameplay in the title, it's one of the most frustrating games I've ever come across.

The Goonies II
Rating: 80%
Genre: Big, open side-scrolling adventure games (I can't get enough of 'em)
Appeal: Kids who saw the movie back in 1985... only now they're ancient hags!  :-)
Not to be confused with The Ghoulies, The Goonies was a great adventure flick about a bunch of kids searching for a dead pirate's treasure.  The Goonies II is a great adventure game about one kid searching for his kidnapped pals and a dead pirate's treasure.  The similarities are shocking.

Heavy Barrel
Rating: 60%
Genre: Shooters of the arcade-ish variety
Appeal: Contra fans who are bored
Heavy Barrel is a decent conversion of a decent arcade game.  Think top-down Contra, only a whole lot duller.  Contrary to what the title forces you to believe, there are no actual barrels that are heavy in this game, which was a great disappointment to me.  The gameplay ain't really that bad, so I recommend that shooter fans give this a whirl.

Home Alone
Rating: 25%
Genre: Family video games without the family
Appeal: Children not old enough to stay home alone who aren't very discriminating
Before TH*Q gained major success in the 32-bit era, it published dozens of crappy titles licensed from films and TV shows.  In this particular "effort", young Kevin McCallister must pick up and "set" (read: just throw down somewhere) traps for the bumbling burglars.  If he fends them off for 20 minutes until the police arrive, you'll win the game.  The PC version from Capstone was much better.

Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
Rating: 15%
Genre: The world's cheesiest games
Appeal: If you got it for $3 like me, you might get a good laugh.  For $50, you'll get a good cry
Well, it just don't get much worse than this.  The art is absolutely pitiful, and music is annoying, the levels have a strange, cheesy, unbalanced feel, and the dialogue in the cinema scenes between levels is totally incoherent.  The credits state that this game is dedicated to the memory of one of its late designers.  He must still be rolling over in his grave.

Ice Climber
Rating: 70%
Genre: Uhh, ice climbing?
Appeal: Sylvester Stallone, 'cuz he played this game to train for Cliffhanger
Ice climber was released at the same time as the NES.  This means that it is very, very old.  Possibly older than God.  But like God, this game is good.  Especially with two players.  Basically, a couple of little eskimos try to climb all the way to the top of an ice structure.  Reminds me of Kid Icarus in some ways, actually...

Rating: 20%
Genre: Fishing, only this time, you are the hunted
Appeal: The fish, because they are given a good chance to do some killing
I couldn't make heads or tales of this game, but I'm pretty sure it sucked.  It seemed to revolve around the exploits of some guy who gets chased by sharks.  For a decent (and slightly easier to understand) movie-based game from LJN, Friday the 13th is a better choice.

Rating: 75%
Genre: Jousting on ostriches
Appeal: Those nutty guys who buy the Namco Museum packages
Joust is a pretty cool game.  Simple to get into and hard to put down.  The object is to stab all of your fellow ostrich riders to death with a javelin.  There's only one catch: getting an ostrich under control is TOUGH.  I hate those birds!  Expect to die a thousand deaths before becoming a Joust "pro".

Jurassic Park
Rating: 70%
Genre: High-tech films that meet low-tech consoles
Appeal: Those of you who still bought full-priced NES games in mid-1993
While it looks similar to the SNES version, this near-last-generation NES game ditches the adventure elements in favor of level-based gameplay.  However, Dr. Grant's objective is still the same: collect all the eggs on the island of Jurassic Park.  Mr. John Hammond would do it himself if he didn't need to walk around with that cane all the time.  He's probably faking his bad back.

Karate Champ
Rating: 30%
Genre: Fighting games before fighting games were invented
Appeal: God, for once, I've got no idea
Well, it's been many years since the release of Karate Champ.  Since then, we've seen dozens upon dozens of fighting games.  Who really wants to play this one?  Sure, participating in real karate matches (where one hit equals 1 point) is kinda cool, but the coolness factor wears off once you realize that you're not having any fun.  Nothing to see here, folks.

The Karate Kid
Rating: 60%
Genre: Incredibly accurate karate simulations
Appeal: That guy who played Daniel-San in the film.  The "kid" was about 23 the time!
Okay, so I lied about this being an incredibly accurate karate simulation.  The first level is a karate tournament, but the next three have Daniel running from left to right, presumably killing many of his "opponents" (certainly not what Mr. Miyagi taught him), and participating in some oddly placed minigames.

Rating: 65%
Genre: Games that base their appeal on the main character
Appeal: Ladies who have a "thing" for ol' Karnov
Karnov is a fat, bald, mustached, shirtless guy, and he's got magical powers.  He apparently uses some of that magic on women, because from what I've heard, they love him to death.  The Neo-Geo "sequel", which was actually just another 2D fighting game, sent some of Karnov's biggest fans over the top.  They accidentally trampled the poor man to death.

Kid Icarus
Rating: 75%
Genre: Early Nintendo cult classic stuff
Appeal: "Bob" from Shiny Entertainment's Messiah, because he can "relate"
Remember the old Captain N cartoon?  Remember how Kid Icarus would follow every other word he spoke with "-icus"?  "That eggplant-icus is trying to kill-icus me!"  This game doesn't reveal where the whole speech problem began, but it's fun anyways.

Kirby's Adventure
Rating: 90%
Genre: Underappreciated (sniff) NES classics
Appeal: Pink marshmallows tired of being overlooked in games
If this game had been released a year earlier, it might have gotten the attention it deserved.  Unfortunately, it wasn't, so it didn't.  Not only is the gameplay improved over its predecessor, but it takes longer than 20 minutes to finish, which is more than I can say for Kirby's Dreamland.  Fun fact: Kirby's Adventure filled a whopping 6 meg Nintendo cart!

Knight Rider
Rating: 40%
Genre: NES forward-scrolling racing.  In other words, crap
Appeal: A few people who have yet to try anything better than Pole Position
They may have been kind of fun in their day, but now, NES forward-scrolling racing games are just no good.  On the other hand, I don't remember this being very much fun when I first tried it, either!  Get out of your rocking chair and play any given polygon-based racing game!

Kung Fu
Rating: 45%
Genre: Less notable NES launch titles
Appeal: Early NES adopters who hadn't yet heard of Mario
It's karate at its finest!  Our hero dispatches of hordes of enemies followed by big, stupid bosses by punching and kicking each and every one of them into water.  After saving his girlfriend, she is promptly kidnapped again.  And again.  And again.  The goons just won't give this guy a break!  Not a very good game.

Legacy of the Wizard
Rating: 80%
Genre: Broderbund games that aren't Prince of Persia, Myst, or Carmen Sandiego
Appeal: Magician families of the world
The wizard has a legacy all right.  And it's a good one!  Players can assume the roles of any member of the featured magician family (including the faithful dog) and venture out into a huge underground world.  The design of this world could have been better, but like I said, it's huge and it's fun to explore.

The Legend of Zelda
Rating: 90%
Genre: Old Nintendo standbys
Appeal: Everyone but the original five people operating Nintendo's free hint line phones
Zelda was the first game I ever owned.  It launched a series that has sold many a Nintendo machine.  The original can't really compare with later games in the series (unless you're an ancient hardcore gamer), but most anyone should at least get some enjoyment out of this classic.  And who could forget that gold cartridge?

Rating: 85%
Genre: Games in which players save lives rather than kill stuff... preposterous!
Appeal: NES players who hadn't yet discovered the joys of a computer mouse
Lemmings is definitely better on the PC (and supposedly even better than that on those crusty Amiga computers), but it's still the same experience.  Gameplay involves solving puzzle after puzzle to save the primitive, savage beasts known as the Lemmings.  My personal favorite Lemmings title: 3D Lemmings for the PC.  Reviewers who refer to it in a negative light (Daily Radar) haven't played it.

The Little Mermaid
Rating: 70%
Genre: Decent Disney fun
Appeal: Your sister, or something
Most guys were probably too embarrassed to play Capcom's NES conversion of Disney's The Little Mermaid when it was sold for more than 50 cents.  I'm here to tell you how it was, and don't worry, because the fact that you're reading this is confidential.  None of your friends will ever find out!  And if they do, just tell them it was for a science project on marine biology.  Oh, and the game was fine.

Lode Runner
Rating: 70%
Genre: Gold-collecting
Appeal: Miners
I didn't know what a lode was before I played the Apple IIe version.  Now I do!  You can really learn something from games.  Lode Runner will always be fun, but like the Windows and PSX versions, this NES rendition of the famous oldie loses something.

Maniac Mansion
Rating: 85%
Genre: Wacko adventure games
Appeal: That family from Texas Chainsaw Massacre
MM was the first adventure game published by Lucasarts.  Luckily, the NES conversion didn't lose much, except some of the more, uhh, objectionable content (mainly Nurse Edna's dialogue).  The plot revolves around three high school students on a mission to rescue Sandy the cheerleader from evil Dr. Fred.  Fun puzzles, a choice of characters, and multiple endings make this a real treat.

Marble Madness
Rating: 70%
Genre: Kinda like that maze game where you get the marble to the finish by tilting the board
Appeal: Those who weren't entirely baffled by it
MM is certainly a fun game, but I never quite got the hang of it.  Since Next Generation magazine once rated it as one of the greatest games of all time, it's probably better than I'm giving it credit for.  Of course, that was the arcade version, and the NES controller probably takes a lot away from the experience.

Mario Bros.
Rating: 80%
Genre: Plumbing simulations
Appeal: Turtles, crabs, and Luigi, because he was Mario's equal here
Before Mario earned the right to use the word "super" in his name, he starred in this fun little single-screen game with his taller, slimmer bro.  Get ready to bump dangerous pipe creatures from below, and then kick them down to hell.  You kind of have to play it to fully understand it.

Mega Man
Rating: 70%
Genre: Mega Man games
Appeal: Not the guy who did the box art.  He obviously didn't want the game to sell
To be honest, I've never been a huge Mega Man fan.  However, I did enjoy seeing him on the Captain N TV series.  I tell ya, he sounded just like Smithers on The Simpsons, and that can only mean one thing...  You know what I'm talking about!  Wink wink!

Mega Man 2
Rating: 75%
Genre: Sequels that are completely undiscernable from their predecessors or follow-ups
Appeal: Capcom, 'cuz this sold, like... a lot!
Mega Man returns for a second outing in all of his gayness.  I was trying to be subtle in my description of MM1, but the time for subtlety is over.  Mega Man probably prefers the company of other Mega Men, and that's a fact!  I don't know what was going through Dr. Right's head when he created everyone's favorite automaton, but I'm sure he wasn't thinking "straight"!

Mega Man 3
Rating: 75%
Genre: "Alternative" games
Appeal: Seems like everybody likes Mega Man and his ten billion games
Though Mega Man is blue for most of the game, using special powers turns him pink.  Methinks this is when he is most comfortable.  As for the game, it's the same as all the other ones.  Absolutely no description should be necessary.

Metal Gear
Rating: 65%
Genre: Games that just get worse and worse over the years
Appeal: Spy wannabes who would rather play this than the PSX version
Metal Gear was kind of cool in its day, but play it now and you'll realize just how flawed this was.  Annoying little quirks like reappearing enemies and bad spelling ("I feel asleep!") really hurt a game that had a neato concept.  Play Metal Gear Solid, it's more FUN!

Rating: 85%
Genre: Nintendo classics, 'nuff said
Appeal: Female gamers, who rejoiced upon learning that Samus is a woman
Yeah, Metroid was one of the very first video games to feature a strong heroine.  Samus wasn't afraid to break a nail.  She wasn't even afraid to break her arm.  The creepy thing was that once you finished the game, it was revealed that Samus had purple hair!  Ridiculous, it almost ruins the game!

Mighty Final Fight
Rating: 80%
Genre: Beat-'em-ups for the younger set.  Meant to teach valuable lessons.
Appeal: Hopefully, not too many young kids
Mighty Final Fight may look like a "cute" game.  All of the characters seem to be little kids.  However, there's nothing cute about what these little kids do.  Basically, they beat the crap out of each other!  I once heard about some kids who killed another kid, believing he would be alive the next day.  The media blamed Power Rangers.  I blame Mighty Final Fight.

Rating: 80%
Genre: Graphic adventure.  On the NES?
Appeal: NES owners who couldn't afford a PC
NightShade is a sort of comic-bookish adventure game, complete with item-based puzzles and quite a bit of character interaction.  There are also some fighting sequences, the first of which involves NightShade beating up on a fat butler.  Two terrible flaws hurt this game: No save feature, and it's #$&* hard to figure out how to continue once you've lost all of your health (it's a puzzle in itself).

Ninja Gaiden
Rating: 75%
Genre: Games that every gamer born between 1976 and 1984 has played
Appeal: Fans of ninja stuff who were sick of those turtles
Ninja Gaiden was a straightforward action platformer, but it also had an actual plot!  Cut-scenes provided incentives for players to get to the next area, just as they do today (Quake II needed 'em badly).  Those crazy Europeans renamed this game because they believed that the word "ninja" would make children evil.  I'll bet it was Prince Charles's idea, or something.

Ninja Gaiden II
Rating: 80%
Genre: Ninja games better playing (and better looking) than Eidos's PSX "Ninja"
Appeal: Experienced ninjas (it's a tough game)
Ninja Gaiden II is a worthy successor to the original-- just about every aspect of the game has been improved.  One of the power-ups even creates a phantom double of the hero.  He kind of reminds me of the sidekicks in Daikatana, only without AI.  Neat.

Ninja Gaiden III
Rating: 70%
Genre: Ninja Turtles minus the turtle part
Appeal: Uhh...  People who are really good at games?
Upon its release, Ninja Gaiden III got blasted by the critics for being too hard.  This was fixed in the Ninja Gaiden Trilogy collection on SNES, but I'm not reviewing that version, now, am I?  The plot also got kinda screwed up.  Still fun, though.

Operation Wolf
Rating: 60%
Genre: "One-man-against-entire-army" games
Appeal: Fans of the film "Commando"
Decent light gun shooter.  Only problem is, the small enemies and inaccuracy of the Zapper make the controller a better choice.  By the president's request, you must battle through five stages, rescue five hostages, and kill a lot more than five bad guys.  Losing the hostages means that you get to see an ending screen featuring the president in a very bad mood.  It's funny!

Rating: 60%
Genre: Maze with ghosts and power pellets... it's Pac-Man
Appeal: Pac-Fans
Hmm, they didn't even bother to make Pac-Man the right color in this Tengen conversion.  Very nice.  Pac-Man has always been and will always be fun, but there's no reason to recommend this over other versions of the game.  Besides, everyone knows Ms. Pac-Man was better.  Every dude I know used to have a crush on her, until they found out that SHE ISN'T REAL.

Rating: 80%
Genre: Paper delivery simulations
Appeal: Paperboys for local newspapers aspiring to be... paperboys for citywide newspapers
Yee-ha!  Nothing is more thrilling than delivering newspapers on your bicycle while being chased by killer bees and rabid dogs!... as long as it's just a game.  I once read about a couple of kids who set up an obstacle course trying to emulate the thrills of Paperboy.  Needless to say, they were hospitalized.

Rating: 30%
Genre: WarGames
Appeal: A few people who went crazy during the Vietnam war and WWII
I've heard that the film "Platoon" was very sad.  This game is also very sad, but in an entirely different way!  I honestly don't think I cried once while I was playing.  Well, except for when my character died, but I do that during every game.

Rating: 50%
Genre: Unnecessary arcade game ports
Appeal: Representatives from the spinach factory
If the arcade game had been a bit better, this port might have been better.  A bit of history: The Robin Williams Popeye film was released in the early 1980s.  So was Popeye: The Game.  Was this a Popeye conspiracy?  We may never know...

Prince of Persia
Rating: 80%
Genre: 1001 Arabian Deaths
Appeal: Fans of the PC version who were stupid enough to buy the NES version as well
Expect to die a lot in Prince of Persia, hence the genre.  However, the deaths are often funny enough that you simply won't care.  PoP for NES is a pretty good port of the PC version, but not good enough to warrant the 85% rating that the Genesis version got.  Still, at least it's better than Prince of Persia 3D.

Princess Tomato in the Salad Kingdom
Rating: 70%
Genre: Adventure games targeted at vegetarians
Appeal: Vegetables of the world
Really weird stuff.  Here's how I think this game came into being: The game designers all brought salad and beer for lunch.  They got drunk, came up with the idea for this game, and told their plans to the also-drunk higher-ups at the company, garnering approval.  Everyone eventually recovered, but the damage was already done.  The lesson here: drink responsibly.

Rad Racer
Rating: 35%
Genre: Really old racing games (if it's not OutRun, it probably sucks)
Appeal: Really old... people.  No, wait...
Yeah, it's rad alright, if you replace the "R" with a "B".  Big deal if it's from Square and it included 3D glasses.  The other cars are all perfect drivers, and they'll crash into you at any opportunity they get.  Yippee.

Rating: 50%
Genre: Godzilla-inspired mayhem
Appeal: Strange young children who don't tire of repetition easily
Rampage is a fun game, but only in short bursts.  Once you've seen one level, you've seen 'em all.  Unfortunately, there are dozens and dozens of levels to play through.  After awhile, you start to feel like the rampage is going to last forever.  When it does end, you are presented with an finale that can only be described as "crappy".  25 cents got you all the rampaging you needed at the arcade!

Ren and Stimpy: Buckeroo$
Rating: 45%
Genre: Cash-in City
Appeal: Ignorant Ren and Stimpy fans like I was!
Ren and Stimpy: good show, mostly bad games.  The title is exactly the same as that of a SNES game, and, though different, it's just as putrid.  It seems like the designers at TH*Q saw a couple of episodes and based about a billion games on them.  They should be hung.

Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
Rating: 85%
Genre: Stuff from Kevin Costner that's not crap (a small, small genre)
Appeal: Merry men
Games based on movies usually suck, but think of all the Robin Hood lore that the developers had to work with. Robin Hood spends a good portion of the game going out on missions with his band of merry men in this adventure RPG.  There are only two major problems: three continues and no passwords.  But then, that's why we have emulators.

Rating: 75%
Genre: NES games that are respected very much by old fogie gamers
Appeal: I liked it, so I'd say that it appeals to Madguy
NES action-adventures are pretty rare...  Wait a minute...  Alright, I officially retract that statement.  Rygar is definitely one of the better ones, though.  Side-scrolling and top-down-scrolling segments combine for an epic game that NES lovers just can't seem to get enough of.

Sesame Street ABC's
Rating: 40%
Genre: Kiddy games that look like they spent two days in development
Appeal: Future spelling bee champions
Why should young children go to elementary school or watch PBS's fine programming when they can play crappy, half-hearted NES games like this one?  There just wasn't enough here to warrant a $25 price tag (which used to be incredibly cheap for a video game)...  Oh, who am I kidding?  Before I played this game in third grade, I was completely illiterate!

The Simpsons: Bart vs the Space Mutants
Rating: 50%
Genre: Lame games from Acclaim
Appeal: Die-hard (and I mean DIE-HARD) Simpsons fans
Bart vs the Space Mutants was the first of Acclaim's Simpsons games, but unfortunately, it was not the last.  What Simpsons watcher would want to play as Bart rather than Homer?...  Oh, right, the little kids who this game was targeted at.  Avoid it.

The Simpsons: Bartman meets Radioactive Man
Rating: 25%
Genre: Who cares, it got a 25% rating, you don't want to play it
Appeal: Who cares, not anyone with enough brains to read this sentence
Now this is just ridiculous.  Bart somehow gets sucked into his Radioactive Man comic book, and he must punch and kick a lot of crappy things to do whatever the hell it is he was going to do.  Extra 10% off for trying to kill the Simpsons license.

Snake's Revenge
Rating: 65%
Genre: Sequels where someone nearly forgot about the original concept
Appeal: Venomous animals
While this Metal Gear sequel is better than its predecessor in some aspects, the gameplay doesn't involve as much stealth as it did before.  Not cool, since that was the ENTIRE POINT OF METAL GEAR.  The side-scrolling segments... stupid!  The graphics... much improved!  The rating... exactly the same.

Stanley: The Search for Dr. Livingston
Rating: 50%
Genre: Historically inaccurate video games
Appeal: Some of your stupider history teachers
This could have been a cool action adventure, but the graphics, sounds, and play mechanics just hold it down.  Wait a minute, that's pretty much everything...  Okay, this could have been cool if it were a totally different game.

Rating: 70%
Genre: Fun in the sun that doesn't require you to actually be outside
Appeal: That gay Nav-Com robot.  He and Mega Man should hook up
StarTropics is kind of like Zelda with dialogue, a tropical island kind of atmosphere, and an absence of overworld battles.  I would have given the game an 80% if it weren't for the absolutely pitiful controls.  It's as if you're standing on a bunch of tiles (and in many cases, you are).  This isn't $*#@&% Chip's Challenge!

StarTropics 2: Zoda's Revenge
Rating: 80%
Genre: Sequels that are actually improvements
Appeal: That crazy doctor in the game, 'cuz he gets to relax with Nav-Com while you do all the work
ST2 was released in 1994, a full four years since the original, and a full year since everyone stopped caring about the NES.  Bargain-priced copies sat on my local toy store's shelf for years.  The control issues that I had with the first game have been mostly resolved.  The main character is sent through time where he visits historical figures such as Sherlock Holmes and King Arthur.  It's a baaaad plot.

Star Wars
Rating: 60%
Genre: Side-scrollers with plots revolving around space combat... nice choice of gameplay style
Appeal: Anyone who runs or visits one of those psycho-geek Star Wars fansites!  Sorry...
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...  Some crazy bearded guy and a bunch of college students working on a very low budget held up a bunch of spaceship models against blue screens and managed to do some pretty keen special effects, leading to box office success and a lot of merchandise.  Like video games.

Super Contra
Rating: 90%
Genre: Worthy sequels
Appeal: Players who could stand having a 10-life cheat code instead of a 30-life one
The game designers took a winning formula and improved upon it.  Super Contra has better graphics, slightly better weapons, and better bosses.  Too bad the music isn't memorable.  Once again, this Contra title is far superior to its arcade counterpart.

Super Mario Bros.
Rating: 90%
Genre: Mario
Appeal: Do you like video games?  Then Mario is for you
Well, if you haven't played this one by now, then it's time to go beat yourself up.  No, I mean it.  I'm not even going to describe this game at all, because every gamer in the universe has played it.  All you young 'uns should at least buy the Game Boy Color version.  And I mean right now.  If I had a GBC, I would.  And it's 9:00 at night...

Super Mario Bros. 2
Rating: 90%
Genre: Stranger Mario titles (though not as strange as Hotel Mario and Yoshi's Cookie)
Appeal: Kids who read the first issue of Nintendo Power ever and got their free Mario 2 poster
Many of you probably know that Mario 2 is actually just the Japanese game Doki Doki Panic with altered graphics.  What most people don't know is that Mario is actually a Doki Doki who had plastic surgery.  Rumor has it that this particular Doki Doki had a panic attack after spending too many hours at the office, and decided to get into a more relaxing profession: plumbing.

Super Mario Bros. 3
Rating: 90%
Genre: Jeez, do you really need to ask?
Appeal: Probably people who like videogames!
It's like Mario 1, only this time there's a map screen and Mario can fly and he's got different suits... Nintendo really added a lot to the series with this game.  Unfortunately, the one thing they didn't add was a save feature, and playing through in one sitting is impossible (well, unless you use those cheap warp whistles).  Play the version in Super Mario All-Stars instead.

Super Pitfall
Rating: 40%
Genre: Games ruined by drunken programmers
Appeal: The evil animals in the game, because no matter how hard you try, they end up eating you
Super Pitfall is a side-scrolling adventure game along the lines of Legacy of the Wizard.  Unfortunately, lousy incredibly control ruins the experience.  I can just imagine the level designers working diligently on the game while the programmers had beer parties going on in the next room.
"Heyy Bill... *hic*... whyn't youse get crackin' on that 'gyptian level sorta thing... *thud*"

Rating: 45%
Genre: Christopher Reeve-based games
Appeal: Wheelchair-bound folks
Superman bounds onto the NES!  And he resembles Mario!  Too bad this game isn't more fun than it is dull.  Personally, I think that when Christopher Reeve first played this piece of lousiness in 1995, he tried to kill himself.  One thing led to another, and look at him now!  I guess we'll never see a Superman V.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Rating: 55%
Genre: Suspiciously popular games that everyone's played but no one enjoyed
Appeal: Those who forced themselves to believe that they were playing a really good game
Konami must have sold at least half a million TMNT cartridges.  Back then, gamers never bothered to read reviews because all of the magazines kinda-sorta sucked.  Nintendo Power probably gave the game a lot of promotion, those lying weasels...

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game
Rating: 60%
Genre: "Tonight I Dine on Turtle Soup!"
Appeal: Ignorant kids (like me)
I was in the first grade when I bought this game, and being seven years old, I expected it to be exactly like the arcade game.  When I brought it home (and finally realized I needed to press the start button to begin playing), I still thought it was a direct port.  A few months later, I played the real arcade game again...  I would have been like "What the crap?!" if I had known that word at the time.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project
Rating: 70%
Genre: Games with small puns in their titles (ha ha, so funny I forgot to laugh)
Appeal: Turtle fans dissatisfied with the TMNT2 conversion
While those kids with $200 were off playing TMNT4 on SNES, the rest of us were having considerably less fun with this game.  Who says money can't buy happiness, I would've been a lot happier with a SNES!  Actually, this game isn't half bad, and while I don't like the levels as much as the ones in TMNT2, the play mechanics are a whole lot better.

Rating: 85%
Genre: The puzzle game
Appeal: Your mom... no, I'm serious, moms like to play this game
Played Tetris before?  I prefer to play the Game Boy version when there's absolutely nothing better to do.  Here's a bit of history.  There were actually two NES versions, one from Tengen and one from Nintendo.  Nintendo forced Tengen to stop selling their non-licensed-but-superior version shortly after it was released.  Copies go for big bucks these days...

Tetris 2
Rating: 65%
Genre: Sequels?  Naah
Appeal: Everyone who saw those funny Tetris 2 commercials with people spontaneously blowing up
They call this a sequel?!  Tacking a "2" onto the end of Tetris guaranteed sales of more copies than, say, Mickey's Magical Tetris Challenge, but it's impossible to remake Tetris.  This game is supposed to be better because it has bombs.  In order to teach him a lesson, I sent a letter bomb to the lead designer, but from what I've heard, it blew up a bus full of Italian plumbers on its way to Japan.

Tiny Toon Adventures
Rating: 80%
Genre: Good Tiny Toons video games
Appeal: Anyone who watched the show and wondered "What if I was Buster Bunny?"
They're Tiny.  They're toony.  And I think you're a little loony if you don't like this game!  What's the matter, scared to play games meant for elementary schoolers?  Afraid of being subjected to taunts such as "Hey, you just play Tiny Toons because you have a 'thing' for Babs!" and "You're a baby!"?  Well, don't be.  It's fun.

Tiny Toon Adventures 2
Rating: 30%
Genre: Minigames for the feeble-minded
Appeal: I'm guessing no one.  Anyone who bought this drivel probably regrets it deeply
Ohhh, what happened?  Tiny Toons 2 includes four "amusement park rides" most of which are crappy, and a final stage in which Buster infiltrates Montana Max's castle.  This segment reminds me of the first game, but it's still not much fun.  I bought this game for $10 while looking for a copy of the original.  I was kicking myself for days since $10 was two weeks allowance.

Wally Bear and the NO Gang
Rating: 70%
Genre: Games that strive to keep America's youth from unsavory things
Appeal: Your local D.A.R.E officer
Well, the game kinda really sucks, but it gets an extra 30% for being so incredibly funny!  Watch as Wally Bear's parents remind him to "Stay smart!  Don't start!"  This game brought back lots of memories of elementary school.  Unfortunately, word has it that Wally Bear is now known as Heroin Grizzly, a name which he gained not long after his best friend Timmy Tortoise's suicide.

Wayne's World
Rating: 40%
Genre: Movie cash-ins, plain and simple
Appeal: People whose vocabulary is limited to "righteous" and "tubular"
Players must guide Wayne and Garth through all sorts of totally bogus levels and fight hopping musical instruments.  The cut-scenes consist of static pictures and dialogue from the movie that just don't make sense from the player's standpoint.  Maybe the guys at TH*Q had a contest to see if the design team could finish this in a single night...

Where's Waldo?
Rating: 25%
Genre: Where's the fun?
Appeal: Only Waldo and his girlfriend Wenda could appreciate this "game"
Years of gaming and television has not done wonders for my appreciation of books, but in this case, the book is definitely better.  What's more fun than using your controller to point to tiny Waldo?  Anything.  Unfortunately, this must have sold well, because "The Great Waldo Search" appeared on the NES and Genesis.

Rating: 70%
Genre: Movie-based games that don't suck
Appeal: Midgets and dwarves, of course!
Warwick Davis, who played the lead role in the film that this game is based on, is second only to Verne Troyer on my "Favorite Short Guys" list.  He was also in all 50,000 Leprechaun films.  From what I've heard, the process that was required to digitize people into games actually hurt quite a bit.  Warwick has my sympathies.

Zelda II: The Adventure of Link
Rating: 80%
Genre: Controversial sequels
Appeal: Those who "got it"
People seem to either love this game or hate it.  The gameplay is very different from that of the original, and while this might not have worked for some critics (Next Generation magazine once referred to Zelda II as "near-awful"), there were plenty of gamers who didn't mind all the side-scrolling