All Together Then: Four for N64

Nintendo's Outré 64

The Nintendo 64 Mini is a thing that seems as though it is probably not happening, but I really wish it would. The N64 is a much-maligned and misunderstood thing, and while the library is quite small, the quality ratio is extremely high.

Putting aside all the accepted classics like Banjo-Kazooie, Goldeneye and Zelda, let's take a look at four of the lesser-known, perhaps lesser-loved N64 games.

All Together Then!

Mischief Makers

There are Treasure games and then there are Treasure games, and this is very much a Treasure game. You control super-android Marina as she shake-shakes her way through myriad side-scrolling levels, replete with hidden objectives and fervently insane set-pieces. This one tests your platforming skill as well as your lateral thinking and it's a great time with superb, memorable boss fights. The central mechanic of shake-shaking everything is brilliantly bizarre and surprisingly versatile! As with the other games on this list, though, I just wish it would get re-released on something. Anything.


A lot is said about how the second N64 Castlevania, Legacy of Darkness, is basically the completed version of the first one. And that's sort of true, but because I'm Stuart Gipp I prefer this earlier, jankier one. I feel like its stiff controls match its stiff graphics and the atmosphere and feeling of vulnerability is very evocative of the NES Castlevania titles. Plus, Legacy of Darkness opens with a rubbish pirate ship level where you climb incredibly finicky masts and poles, and the original opens with an atmospheric forest leading to a mausoleum full of motorcycle skellingtons. Original wins.

Duke Nukem Zero Hour

Because I can't get through a single article without mentioning Duke Nukem. Zero Hour is a third person shooter with tons of exploration, a great, chunky game feel, strong level design and a cute time-travelling theme. It controls rather wonderfully, and captures the playfully exaggerated atmosphere of Duke Nukem 3D while successfully transplanting the varied, toybox-style gameplay from FPS to TPS. Like Andrex toilet tissue, it's soft, strong and very, very long. Except it isn't really soft, so ignore that bit entirely. It's also worth considering the PlayStation equivalent, Duke Nukem: Time to Kill.  Really good stuff.

Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero

Okay, this is a bad game. I'm not stupid, this is very much a failed experiment. But experiments are interesting. Car wrecks, for better or worse, turn heads. And Mythologies is the worst car wreck imaginable. Blues Brothers tier. It's a side-scrolling action-adventure based on Mortal Kombat's favourite chinese-ninja-warrior-with-a-heart-so-cold son, Sub-Zero. It's more or less inept, but there's real ambition there if you can wrestle past the insanely high difficulty and none-more-awkward control scheme. There are some cool ideas and enemies, the plot is genuinely quite engaging and some nice-looking aesthetics. It's worth a play with friends just to laugh at if nothing else. It feels like the developers put their all into it, which is astonishing given how it turned out. I reckon they really thought they had a winner here.