The Nintendo eShop marketplace has become a notable place for Nintendo to give long-service fans plenty of fan service, providing numerous re-releases of classics for those who grew up playing Nintendo-branded games and consoles decades ago.
Compilation releases have been less prevalent – it’s been easier for Nintendo to simply put old games back into digital circulation than to create frameworks for them to be housed and repackaged – but NES Remix 2 marks the second time in the space of a year that Nintendo have ‘remixed’ a batch of classics together in a polished collection and you can expect more to follow.
Remix To Ignition
The NES Remix series is the side-project brainchild of Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario 3D World director Koichi Hayashida, who helped to create something which gives fans bite-sized renovations of fan favourites, but in a way that lets the new generation of gamers who missed out on the NES era the chance to experience chunks of games that form important parts of gaming history.
The success of the first Remix collection, coupled with the sheer volume of games that would have been considered for addition but ultimately were rejected, meant that a second collection would inevitably follow. Where the first Remix predominantly housed Donkey Kong titles and very early-day NES titles, the second Remix is more Mario-oriented, with no less than five of the twelve titles included being Mario ones.
Some would maybe question whether every title across the series deserves the ‘classic’ accolade, but there’s no denying that many of the games included are worth playing, even now. While most will look at Punch-Out, Kid Icarus, Kirby’s Adventure, Super Mario Bros. 3 and Metroid as the more definitive classics in the collection, games like Dr. Mario, Zelda II and Ice Hockey merit inclusion, at least for their individual legacies.
Hot And Fresh Out The Kitchen?
Legacy is perhaps what we should focus on. NES Remix 2 is a continuation of the ideal that Nintendo games of old have defined games and gamers alike and this well-packaged collection showcases in part where games today came from. There’s a Demon’s Souls-esque ‘stamp’ message system included that lets players leave helpful hints for others on how to complete challenges, along with time-based online leaderboards.
The challenges form the basis of the game collection, but you don’t quite get to play through the games included to do these challenges. They’re more excerpts from the game, little snippets of game spliced together to introduce time trials and links to chain-unlock more challenges from the other games. It’s not so much twelve remastered NES games in the Remix 2 collection as it is a series of challenges showcasing what the different games had to offer. Glorified demo collection? Maybe, but there’s a lot of content included both familiar and new.
NES Remix 2, like the first Remix collection before it, offer gamers old and new something, but not everything they perhaps want. For older gamers, they may want to just buy the full digital versions of the games on the eShop; for newer gamers, they may want more than just a series of challenges. Nonetheless, NES Remix 2 feels like a labour of love. This quality forms the basis for the whole thing and ultimately makes the collection feel like something worth investing in.