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The NES Games I Remember Playing:Part 1



I remember getting a Nintendo Entertainment System for Christmas 1987 when I was 10 years old.I previously had an Atari 2600, but the NES was on a whole other level, both in terms of graphics and the games themselves.It really blew my mind how complex a lot of these games were.Take The Legend Of Zelda for example, over 30 years later and i'm still finding new things whenever I play. This article is devoted entirely to NES games that I remember playing.I'll be going over games that i owned, as well as ones that I played at friend's houses.
 

Monster Party(Bandai,1989)

Let's start off with Monster Party,one of my top favorite games for this console and my favorite that I owned growing up.I don't think I knew anyone else as a kid who had this one,but the cover is the whole reason I wanted it.I mean, you've got Creature From The Black Lagoon,Dracula,Medusa, and an Audrey II esque plant.How can you not go wrong?The game itself was great too,it was almost like a fever dream.Some of the bosses were truly bizarre.I haven't played this in a few years,but I always remember that weird Eggplant that shot bubbles at you.I don't know what the developers of this game were on,but I want some of it!
 

The Goonies II(Konami,1987)

Like the majority of people my age, The Goonies and Back To The Future were two of my favorite movies growing up.Mostly I watched horror films,but these were some of my favorites that my parents would be willing to watch with me.Unsurprisingly, both films spawned NES games(Back To The Future had 2).However, I never owned the BTTF ones,and from what i've heard, they're not great.However,I thought that The Goonies II(which is intended as a sequel to the movie) was a great game.This was one that I would just sit and literally play for hours.My mom and step father both worked during the day,so on weekends me and my two siblings had the TV all to ourselves.I actually beat this back in the day and it was one of the toughest for me to do since I didn't have a code or a Game Genie for this game.It wasn't hard inthe same way as Silver Surfer or Ninja Gaiden but hard in the sense that you could easily get lost.I also always thought the 8-bit rendition of "The Goonies R Good Enough" by Cindy Lauper was really catchy.


 

Double Dragon(Tradewest,1988)

Okay,this one was actually a Christmas gift given to my brother(I got Jaws,which i'll talk about at some point in this article.),but I definitely played my fair share of this game.This was based on the arcade game of the same name,although the NES version sadly gets rid of the 2 player simultaneous co-op gameplay.The storyline is also changed as well.In the arcade, Billy and Jimmy Lee were brothers who were the heroes of the game.They're still brothers in the NES version,but Jimmy is now a villain and the leader of the gang.The side scrolling gameplay from the arcade is still intact and this is one where I wish I had played the sequels as a kid,since I enjoyed the first one so much.

Mike Tyson's Punch-Out(Nintendo,1987)

I've never been big into boxing or sports at all,but with this game,you don't have to be!It was more addictive and challenging than other boxing games of the time(In all fairness, Ring King was the only other one I played,so I'm not very well versed in the genre).The characters are really what make thks game,whether it was the morbidly obese King Hippo or the soda loving Russian himself, Soda Popinski (he was called Vodka Drunkinski in the 1984 Super Punch Out arcade game.Nixed in the home console version for obvious reasons).Other than Little Mac, the main star of the show here is famed boxer Mike Tyson.Tyson's legal issues with his wife,as well as his loss of the world champion title, caused Nintendo to re market the game as just "Punch-Out" and changed Mike Tyson to a white sprite swap named Mr Dream.I understand that Nintendo is a family company that doesn't want to be associated with some of Tyson's behavior,but the rebranded version just wasn't the same to me.

Wrecking Crew(Nintendo,1985)

Wrecking Crew is a game that i've never owned,but I remember renting numerous times from the local video store.Shortly after the NES launched in the North American market, Nintendo began releasing games for the console that came in black boxes(which are now iconic).Some of these were original games,but many of them were home versions of Nintendo's arcade games such as Donkey Kong, Popeye, and Mario Bros(Regular Mario Bros,not Super).Wrecking Crew was one of these.It first appeared in arcades a year prior on Nintendo's Vs System,but this was it's main introduction to North America. I think this game is best described as a combination of Mario Bros and Ice Climber,though I prefer it over both of those games.You play as a construction worker(Who looks like if Mario died his hair blue) and go around breaking things and avoid enemies.As the levels progress, you really have to stop and think and plan out your every move.Wrecking Crew is probably tied with Popeye(which i'll get to in the next installment) as my favorite Nintendo arcade port on the NES.

Blaster Master(Sunsoft,1988)

Like with Goonies, Blaster Master is another game that I would just sit and play for hours.But unlike Goonies,I didn't beat this one back in the day.Blaster Master has weird plot where a kid named Jason, follows his pet frog down a hole.Inside the hole,he finds a giant tank that he uses throughout the game.In some parts,you can alternate playing between Jason and The Tank.This game was another of my brother's,I mostly just played this game because I liked the music and thought it looked cool,but I did eventually start really enjoying it.However,as I already mentioned above,I never beat it.Still, this is just such a cool game that should be talked about more.

Pinball Quest(Jaleco,1989)

For some reason, I've always been utterly fascinated by pinball machines, especially ones from when I was growing up.I always thought they were so cool.As to be expected,pinball games in the 80s were not what they are today.They wasn't a game back then that accurately captured a real pinball machine.However,Pinball Quest is the game that made me realize that a good pinball game is not necessarily an accurate one.I really liked the scrolling going on as you moved about the playfield, and the tables were really unique and colorful.This is hands down,my favorite pinball video game from the 80s.

Jaws(LJN,1987)

Jaws is the last game that i'm going to talk about in this article.Some people love this game and some people hate it.I for one,had an unhealthy obsession with beating it,back in the day.It's also very special to me because, other than Super Mario Bros/Duck Hunt,this was the first game I got along  with my NES on Christmas 1987.In Jaws,you navigate around the ocean on a boat.You'll frequently hit things or see a shark fin pop out of the water.When this happens,you move up and down the ocean shooting at jellyfish and other things,which will give you stars,shells, and points.You trade in certain amounts of shells for rewards like a raise of your power level,which will be required to defeat Jaws himself(a.k.a Bruce).Eventually I did beat this game,and I think it was the first game on this console that I ever accomplished.


Well,thank you so much for taking the time to read my article.The 8 games featured here are far from the only games I played on the NES and I have enough memories for at least another installment and maybe even one after that.Like Mario in the above image,I have to run now,but i'll be back soon with more memories of video games,movies,and pretty much anything else I remember.

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Vaporman87 Posted on Aug 17, 2021 at 07:57 PM

@Mr Magic: Yeah, it was intended to act as a sequel to the film. I've never played it, so I'm not sure what happens to the gang in it.

Mr Magic Posted on Aug 11, 2021 at 06:30 PM

There was a Goonies II game? Huh.

Hsering77 Posted on Aug 07, 2021 at 10:25 PM

Thanks for all your feedback.I tend to write another article soon...

onipar Posted on Aug 07, 2021 at 03:42 PM

Really great list! It's funny, many of these were games I used to play as a kid too, and strangely (even though I own them), I haven't revisited many of them in years (like Jaws and Double Dragon). Monster Party I do pop in around October every year.

Benjanime Posted on Aug 07, 2021 at 03:23 PM

ah a fellow monster party player, nice!

Vaporman87 Posted on Aug 07, 2021 at 03:30 AM

Great list you have here! A nice mix of classics, oddities, and licensed properties.

The Goonies II is a title I wish I would have owned back in the day. Knowing now that it was intended as a sequel to the film makes me feel like I missed out on the further adventures of the gang.

I remember bits and pieces of my time playing Blaster Master with my stepbrother. Good times.

Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out and Double Dragon are simply unforgettable experiences. The fights in Punch-Out still give me anxiety!

I would add Ninja Gaiden, Contra, Golgo-13, Bases Loaded, Metroid, and several others to my own list. I absolutely WORE OUT Bases Loaded. Loved that game. Ninja Gaiden opened my eyes to a new type of game… a cinematic style.

Really look forward to what else you may have in store for us!

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