At first you might be taken aback that there were only two new games released on Virtual Console this week. However, these games are special. They are both games that have never been released in North America before, in their original form.
That’s right, Nintendo finally decided to give import gamers a break, and tossed them a couple bones in the form of Super Mario Bros. 2 for the NES – not to be confused with our Super Mario Bros. 2. You might know this new one as “Super Mario Bros. The Lost Levels” since that’s what it was called on the SNES Super Mario All Stars compilation. Most people know the game in this form, and now is their chance to play it with original NES graphics, and with all the bugs and glitches intact.
As you may recall, Lost Levels was almost impossibly difficult. With unforgiving level designs, poisonous mushrooms, invisible platforms, and wind, only the hardest of hardcore Mario fans make it through this game. Play it only if you plan to play through and memorize parts of every level, because you will not be able to ‘wing it’.
Interestingly, Lost Levels was released on VC for Europe and Australia a few weeks ago, but has been pulled from the listings as of today.
The second is an N64 game that is highly sought after by import gamers – Sin and Punishment: Successor of the Earth. This rail shooter was released in Japan in 2000, and never came to North America or Europe, despite its voice acting being in English (with Japanese subtitles). The Virtual Console version features translated menus, and the original English with Japanese subtitles remain. Check out the original reviews at Gamespot and IGN for more details.
It’s great that we are getting even more value from Virtual Console this week. While it has always been good to buy and replay our favourites from the past, as well as discover new games we may have missed, there is real value in being able to play games that we otherwise would have never been able to play (without emulators, which just don’t feel right). Note that these import games cost 100 points more than their respective console titles.