NES Remix

Players: 1 offline
Publisher: Nintendo
Genres: Other
Release Date: December 18, 2013
Developer: Nintendo EAD Tokyo
MSRP: $14.99
Platforms:
Take on lightning-fast challenges based on some of the most popular games of all time in the new NES™ Remix game. Whether you grew up with games like The Legend of Zelda™ and Super Mario Bros.™, or you're playing them for the first time, this is your chance to see what made them legends.

When last month Nintendo released NES Remix on the same day they announced this Wii U eShop exclusive it came as a rather unexpected surprise. The company had not even teased the possibility of a game like Remix being in the works after all which is unusual for company that has been really pushing the self-hype of late. Still this oddness aside, what is important is discovering if NES Remix just another slice of empty nostalgia and as it turns out once again there is very much a method to Nintendo’s madness even if a few flaws do mar their accomplishment times.

PROS Gameplay, Controls, Miiverse, Nostalgia, Remix Stages
CONS No Multiplayer, Controls
WTF?! The lack of third-party or later NES games will leave you wanting more/

The concept behind NES Remix is a fairly simple one: take 16 classic Nintendo-made NES games and break up the gameplay of each title across a combined 204 challenges. These challenges come in two forms: classic and remix. Classic challenges are basically bite-sized chunks of familiar games with a variety of goals ranging from taking down fifteen enemies in a level of Super Mario Bros. before Mario’s invincibility runs out to successfully climbing to the top of a stage in Donkey Kong Jr. within a greatly reduced period of time. Remix challenges meanwhile are similar to Classic ones except they force players to deal with new and often dramatic twists being added. These can include everything from having to complete a SMB stage backwards to Link being the playable character in a stage of Donkey Kong to being forced to race a lap in Excitebike with the stadium lights turned off and the bike’s headlight turned on.

In essence then NES Remix is not really a new concept in and of itself and indeed indie game developers have been playing around with mixing up the assets and gameplay of old-school games for years via such games as Abobo’s Big Adventure and Super Mario Crossover just to name a few. Similarly Nintendo is hardly a stranger to breaking up their classic titles into smaller chunks thanks to the 9-Volt stages in the long running WarioWare series. Indeed, at its core NES Remix is essentially an expanded version of those 9-Volt challenges writ large but this is by no means a bad thing. Not for nothing are the 9-Volt stages the favorites of many a fan of the WarioWare series after all.

The more things change…

I would go so far as to say that NES Remix is about as straightforward of a game as Nintendo has released in sometime and indeed what works about it can be basically broken down into four elements. First of all there is the simple nostalgia factor at play as longtime gamers will get a chance to rediscover titles that for many will have been among their first serious exposures to the medium. Meanwhile newer/younger gamers can get a taste of why the phrase “Nintendo Hard” first entered the lexicon of gaming without investing too much money or time in the process. The second appealing aspect of Nintendo Remix is the chance to see something familiar reinterpreted anew via the Remix stages and I know personally when playing the game I found myself constantly on pins and needles waiting to see what crazy twist Nintendo would unleash next.

Third are the game’s social elements, which consist of a number of Miiverse features including the second use of the image stamps previously introduced in Super Mario 3D World. Unlocking new stamps and competing for bragging rights is certainly an appreciated addition even if it does fail to completely make up for the game’s biggest and most glaring weakness: the complete lack of multiplayer, competitive or corporative. Even something as simple as a mode where players pass around the GamePad and compete for the highest score during a run of stages would have been an invaluable addition to NES Remix. It seems inexplicable that Nintendo failed to include just such a mode since it limits NES Remix to being a single player affair despite its seemingly potential as a sure-fire party game hit.

Remix stages can change things up in all kinds of ways.

Finally players who love a challenge will find plenty of that awaiting them in NES Remix, especially if it has been sometime since they gave any of the classic NES first-party titles a go. That is largely because new tasks and challenges aside, the basic gameplay and controls of the original games that make up Remix are all intact and which may lead to some sticker shock for those not properly prepared. I know for example that I had forgotten that in the original Super Mario Bros. getting hit instantly reduced Mario to his small and unpowered form even if he currently had a fire flower power-up. Rediscovering the little quirks of control and gameplay that these days most Nintendo titles have smoothed over in the name of better game design was certainly interesting if nothing else.

Truthfully this whole accurate recreation of classic NES controls could actually be considered something of a double-edged sword mainly because not all of the games included have aged that well. Ice Climbers, Balloon Fight and Urban Championship stand out as the worst offenders in this regards and only helped remind me why I never owned any of them back in the day in the first place. Thankfully this issue is somewhat mitigated by the nature of Remix itself. After all each challenge is by design a fairly brief affair and the game is also good at presenting players a wide variety of challenges from multiple games to play through at any time. Indeed I ended up managing to unlock the majority of actual gameplay available in NES Remix without having to spend too much time with any of the three aforementioned games.

In the end while NES Remix is not without its share of flaws, overall it feels like a strong new addition to the Wii U’s library of eShop exclusives. The game’s price tag of fifteen dollars feels reasonable for the amount of content present and the ability to play the game entirely off of the GamePad without slowdown or lag is another major plus. NES Remix may have come out of nowhere but now that it is here it feels like the most natural idea in the world. It a concept with plenty of legs and one I genuinely hope to see Nintendo expand on down the line. A SNES Remix for example could be amazing and along similar lines a 3DS release of NES Remix or even a Game Boy Remix both seem like such natural concepts I will be amazed if Nintendo fails to ever explore them. Whether you are looking for something new or a return to some old favorites, NES Remix has you covered and this is one trip down memory lane any Wii U owner should give serious consideration to taking.

A copy of the game was purchased by the reviewer for review purposes and played for about 6 hours. It is a Wii U exclusive.

8/10

NES Remix Review

Is NES Remix just another slice of empty nostalgia or is there a method to Nintendo's madness?
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Shaun K.

Follow my tweets: @bigred_13 and @ihaveissuestv

More Posts - Website - Twitter

  1. January 06, 2014 at 07:38am
    In response to Article
    VN:F [1.9.21_1169]
    Rating: -2 (from 4 votes)

    Only one post again? Geez.

    Good Things.
    The Challenge – to be fair most of the NES games on this list are already difficult enough. However the goals in this game bring out some interesting missions to the player. Think you could beat Donkey Kong in the dark? What about Zelda with the graphics of the map becoming worst and worst? They all have their own difficulty but what the game changes around makes it a new experience.

    The Same Old Nintendo
    Wario Ware – This game could be viewed as a large game of Wario Ware but only with retro games. The time limit isn’t always a few seconds but I think if someone looked close enough they could name Wairo Ware games that have the same kind of gimmick.

    Bad Things
    Price? – Let’s be…honest here. We live in a world where its possible to buy a game that only costs 0.99 cents on a PC or a smart phone/tablet. So let’s ignore this fact. Is 15 dollars a fair price for the effort put into this project? Well Nintendo is a company that thinks all NES games should be around 5 dollars and SNES are 7 bucks. For a few games this is a great price for others however it feels too much. So while we never quite get the whole game in the NES Remix we have to ask our self “How many hours are we gonna get from this” and “is it worth it?”. Personally I think it’s a great idea. It’s fun and it can be viewed as a challenge or major demo of all the games. So I think 15 dollars is a fair price for the coding done on the game and how the game works. Remember they do still need to do a bit of coding for this game to work.

    What should Nintendo have done?
    With no advertising however this game will have to be sold though word of mouth. I think Nintendo failed in this aspect. What’s with company’s and no advertisement? Do they want an idea to fail so they never touch it again? Think about it this way. Nintendo could have done this differently a per-release the game at the next major PAX or E3 and have people play it like a tournament. Bringing back the NES and SNES champions. Also with no real leader-board and with the game having glitches and tricks to fool the time its really a sit down and play with your self or friends kind of games. Overall I could see this becoming a small thing at Cons.

    Looking forward for the SNES Remix Nintendo!

  2. January 04, 2014 at 08:30am
    In response to Article
    VN:F [1.9.21_1169]
    Rating: -2 (from 12 votes)

    I gotta disagree with this score and say it’s more befitting of a “For Fans Only”. $15 is a little high, espicially with the game coming out during a Steam Sale and you can see the changes in deals. And even with the steam sales gone, the game-mixing ideas have been done better with free-ware games out there like the previously mentioned Abobo’s Big Adventure.

    Game choices are also bizarre, you’ve got 3 Donkey Kong games and Urban Champion, but not Metroid or Duck Hunt. It’s also a lot slower than your standard Wario Ware, and less rewarding, Never really hits those manic beats of Wario Ware. There’s a lot of content here to play through yes, but outside of the remix stages not a lot of it is that fun to do. You might as well be playing the actual games themselves in some cases.

    And no Multiplayer is probably the biggest deal breaker. Not even the “Take Turns to survive an endless barrage of Micro Challenges that get progressively faster” mode that the Wario Ware multiplayer modes commonly have and are so fun. It really feels a little slapped together and basic as it can be. And not stripped out enough.

    At present, if your new to Nintendo, you’ll get a better deal buying the original Super Mario Bros, Legend of Zelda and Metroid to play than this game. If your an old fan, maybe wait till it drops to $8-10 dollars? The Stamps system seems to be Nintendo’s Answer to Achievements and Trophies, so there will be more games with them coming out very soon to enjoy getting them in that will be better value for your buck.

Leave a Comment

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NES Remix Review

Posted by [ 3 months, 1 week ]

Is NES Remix just another slice of empty nostalgia or is there a method to Nintendo’s madness?

NES Remix Brings New Twist to Familiar Games on Wii U

Posted by [ 3 months, 3 weeks ]

I doubt anyone saw this one coming.

NES Remix Brings New Twist to Familiar Games on Wii U

Posted By about 3 months, 3 weeks ago

I doubt anyone saw this one coming.

NES Remix Review

NES Remix Review

When last month Nintendo released NES Remix on the same day they announced this Wii U eShop exclusive it came as a rather unexpected surprise. The company had not even teased the possibility of a game like Remix being in the works after all which is unusual for company that has been really pushing the self-hype of late. Still this oddness aside, what is important is discovering if NES Remix just another slice of empty nostalgia and as it turns out once again there is very much a method to Nintendo’s madness even if a few flaws do mar their accomplishment times.

PROS Gameplay, Controls, Miiverse, Nostalgia, Remix Stages
CONS No Multiplayer, Controls
WTF?! The lack of third-party or later NES games will leave you wanting more/

The concept behind NES Remix is a fairly simple one: take 16 classic Nintendo-made NES games and break up the gameplay of each title across a combined 204 challenges. These challenges come in two forms: classic and remix. Classic challenges are basically bite-sized chunks of familiar games with a variety of goals ranging from taking down fifteen enemies in a level of Super Mario Bros. before Mario’s invincibility runs out to successfully climbing to the top of a stage in Donkey Kong Jr. within a greatly reduced period of time. Remix challenges meanwhile are similar to Classic ones except they force players to deal with new and often dramatic twists being added. These can include everything from having to complete a SMB stage backwards to Link being the playable character in a stage of Donkey Kong to being forced to race a lap in Excitebike with the stadium lights turned off and the bike’s headlight turned on.

In essence then NES Remix is not really a new concept in and of itself and indeed indie game developers have been playing around with mixing up the assets and gameplay of old-school games for years via such games as Abobo’s Big Adventure and Super Mario Crossover just to name a few. Similarly Nintendo is hardly a stranger to breaking up their classic titles into smaller chunks thanks to the 9-Volt stages in the long running WarioWare series. Indeed, at its core NES Remix is essentially an expanded version of those 9-Volt challenges writ large but this is by no means a bad thing. Not for nothing are the 9-Volt stages the favorites of many a fan of the WarioWare series after all.

The more things change…

I would go so far as to say that NES Remix is about as straightforward of a game as Nintendo has released in sometime and indeed what works about it can be basically broken down into four elements. First of all there is the simple nostalgia factor at play as longtime gamers will get a chance to rediscover titles that for many will have been among their first serious exposures to the medium. Meanwhile newer/younger gamers can get a taste of why the phrase “Nintendo Hard” first entered the lexicon of gaming without investing too much money or time in the process. The second appealing aspect of Nintendo Remix is the chance to see something familiar reinterpreted anew via the Remix stages and I know personally when playing the game I found myself constantly on pins and needles waiting to see what crazy twist Nintendo would unleash next.

Third are the game’s social elements, which consist of a number of Miiverse features including the second use of the image stamps previously introduced in Super Mario 3D World. Unlocking new stamps and competing for bragging rights is certainly an appreciated addition even if it does fail to completely make up for the game’s biggest and most glaring weakness: the complete lack of multiplayer, competitive or corporative. Even something as simple as a mode where players pass around the GamePad and compete for the highest score during a run of stages would have been an invaluable addition to NES Remix. It seems inexplicable that Nintendo failed to include just such a mode since it limits NES Remix to being a single player affair despite its seemingly potential as a sure-fire party game hit.

Remix stages can change things up in all kinds of ways.

Finally players who love a challenge will find plenty of that awaiting them in NES Remix, especially if it has been sometime since they gave any of the classic NES first-party titles a go. That is largely because new tasks and challenges aside, the basic gameplay and controls of the original games that make up Remix are all intact and which may lead to some sticker shock for those not properly prepared. I know for example that I had forgotten that in the original Super Mario Bros. getting hit instantly reduced Mario to his small and unpowered form even if he currently had a fire flower power-up. Rediscovering the little quirks of control and gameplay that these days most Nintendo titles have smoothed over in the name of better game design was certainly interesting if nothing else.

Truthfully this whole accurate recreation of classic NES controls could actually be considered something of a double-edged sword mainly because not all of the games included have aged that well. Ice Climbers, Balloon Fight and Urban Championship stand out as the worst offenders in this regards and only helped remind me why I never owned any of them back in the day in the first place. Thankfully this issue is somewhat mitigated by the nature of Remix itself. After all each challenge is by design a fairly brief affair and the game is also good at presenting players a wide variety of challenges from multiple games to play through at any time. Indeed I ended up managing to unlock the majority of actual gameplay available in NES Remix without having to spend too much time with any of the three aforementioned games.

In the end while NES Remix is not without its share of flaws, overall it feels like a strong new addition to the Wii U’s library of eShop exclusives. The game’s price tag of fifteen dollars feels reasonable for the amount of content present and the ability to play the game entirely off of the GamePad without slowdown or lag is another major plus. NES Remix may have come out of nowhere but now that it is here it feels like the most natural idea in the world. It a concept with plenty of legs and one I genuinely hope to see Nintendo expand on down the line. A SNES Remix for example could be amazing and along similar lines a 3DS release of NES Remix or even a Game Boy Remix both seem like such natural concepts I will be amazed if Nintendo fails to ever explore them. Whether you are looking for something new or a return to some old favorites, NES Remix has you covered and this is one trip down memory lane any Wii U owner should give serious consideration to taking.

A copy of the game was purchased by the reviewer for review purposes and played for about 6 hours. It is a Wii U exclusive.

8/10

NES Remix Review

Is NES Remix just another slice of empty nostalgia or is there a method to Nintendo's madness?
  1. January 06, 2014 at 07:38am
    In response to Article
    VN:F [1.9.21_1169]
    Rating: -2 (from 4 votes)

    Only one post again? Geez.

    Good Things.
    The Challenge – to be fair most of the NES games on this list are already difficult enough. However the goals in this game bring out some interesting missions to the player. Think you could beat Donkey Kong in the dark? What about Zelda with the graphics of the map becoming worst and worst? They all have their own difficulty but what the game changes around makes it a new experience.

    The Same Old Nintendo
    Wario Ware – This game could be viewed as a large game of Wario Ware but only with retro games. The time limit isn’t always a few seconds but I think if someone looked close enough they could name Wairo Ware games that have the same kind of gimmick.

    Bad Things
    Price? – Let’s be…honest here. We live in a world where its possible to buy a game that only costs 0.99 cents on a PC or a smart phone/tablet. So let’s ignore this fact. Is 15 dollars a fair price for the effort put into this project? Well Nintendo is a company that thinks all NES games should be around 5 dollars and SNES are 7 bucks. For a few games this is a great price for others however it feels too much. So while we never quite get the whole game in the NES Remix we have to ask our self “How many hours are we gonna get from this” and “is it worth it?”. Personally I think it’s a great idea. It’s fun and it can be viewed as a challenge or major demo of all the games. So I think 15 dollars is a fair price for the coding done on the game and how the game works. Remember they do still need to do a bit of coding for this game to work.

    What should Nintendo have done?
    With no advertising however this game will have to be sold though word of mouth. I think Nintendo failed in this aspect. What’s with company’s and no advertisement? Do they want an idea to fail so they never touch it again? Think about it this way. Nintendo could have done this differently a per-release the game at the next major PAX or E3 and have people play it like a tournament. Bringing back the NES and SNES champions. Also with no real leader-board and with the game having glitches and tricks to fool the time its really a sit down and play with your self or friends kind of games. Overall I could see this becoming a small thing at Cons.

    Looking forward for the SNES Remix Nintendo!

  2. January 04, 2014 at 08:30am
    In response to Article
    VN:F [1.9.21_1169]
    Rating: -2 (from 12 votes)

    I gotta disagree with this score and say it’s more befitting of a “For Fans Only”. $15 is a little high, espicially with the game coming out during a Steam Sale and you can see the changes in deals. And even with the steam sales gone, the game-mixing ideas have been done better with free-ware games out there like the previously mentioned Abobo’s Big Adventure.

    Game choices are also bizarre, you’ve got 3 Donkey Kong games and Urban Champion, but not Metroid or Duck Hunt. It’s also a lot slower than your standard Wario Ware, and less rewarding, Never really hits those manic beats of Wario Ware. There’s a lot of content here to play through yes, but outside of the remix stages not a lot of it is that fun to do. You might as well be playing the actual games themselves in some cases.

    And no Multiplayer is probably the biggest deal breaker. Not even the “Take Turns to survive an endless barrage of Micro Challenges that get progressively faster” mode that the Wario Ware multiplayer modes commonly have and are so fun. It really feels a little slapped together and basic as it can be. And not stripped out enough.

    At present, if your new to Nintendo, you’ll get a better deal buying the original Super Mario Bros, Legend of Zelda and Metroid to play than this game. If your an old fan, maybe wait till it drops to $8-10 dollars? The Stamps system seems to be Nintendo’s Answer to Achievements and Trophies, so there will be more games with them coming out very soon to enjoy getting them in that will be better value for your buck.

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