Retro Re-release Roundup, week of April 2, 2020

Antipodean adequacy, now on the go.

There's one big sort-of-omission from today's update: the Final Fantasy VII remake, which Square-Enix officially permitted to be sold ahead of street date and thus may or may not be available at your local store right now, should you be willing to venture outside to procure a copy. Personally, I'll be cooped up at home with my government-issued copy of Ty the Tasmanian Tiger HD, but you do you.


The Tin Star

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 (worldwide)
  • Price: $7.99 / €6.99 / £6.29
  • Publisher: Hamster / Taito

What's this? A western-themed fixed-screen shooting game, developed and distributed in arcades by Taito in 1983; the player aims to dispatch all the enemies from each of the three screens — outside the saloon, inside the saloon and in a... barn, I guess?, plus a bonus horseback shootout stage — by shooting them and/or the environment, with your character's aiming and shooting controlled via a pushable rotary dial not unlike the one used by Taito's more popular Front Line.

Why should I care? There aren't many games of this vintage with such strong environmental staging, and the control mapping for the Arcade Archives version makes independent aiming and shooting a little more intuitive.

Useless fact: Y'know what, I got nothin' for this one.


Ty the Tasmanian Tiger HD

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch, (North America, Europe, Australia/NZ)
  • Price: $29.99 or equivalent
  • Publisher: Krome Studios

What's this? The first entry in a three-parts-and-change series of extremely Australian 3D mascot platformers, developed by extremely Australian studio Krome Studios in 2002 and originally published by Electronic Arts for PlayStation 2, Xbox and Gamecube; this HD version, which originally launched on Steam Early Access a few years ago and was successfully crowdfunded for consoles last year, adds a revised camera, high-definition textures and post-processing effects, uncut music, a new optional hardcore mode, extra character costumes, gyro controls for the boomerang moves and more. (There are PS4 and XB1 versions coming, too, but they're a little ways off.)

Why should I care? Ty the Tasmanian Tiger was a perfunctory amalgam of many of the popular 3D collectathons of the day Rayman, Spyro, Banjo-Kazooie, etc — and by all accounts, Krome's remaster goes above and beyond what one might expect for such a second-string game.

Useless fact: If you have vague memories of Ty but don't recall anything about the game itself, you might be more familiar with the commercial that saw Ty visiting a hospital full of all the other platformer mascots he'd bodied.


Indigo Prophecy (PS2 Classics on PS4) disc release from Limited Run Games

It'll take more than the impending collapse of civilization to get me to say anything nice about a Quantic Dream game, I tell ya what.


Blind Spot IV digital/streaming release

The new album by Blind Spot, the band of Sega alumni that's carrying the torch for the legendary S.S.T. Band, just hit all the digital services you'd want it to hit, and it contains a decent handful of classic Sega covers alongside original tracks, including new vocal versions of Daytona USA's "Sky High" and NiGHTS... into Dreams' "Dreams Dreams", and a cover of an Outrun series tune not from the original Outrun, which is a far rarer occurrence than it ought to be.

Romancing SaGa 3 Original Soundtrack Revival Disc from Square-Enix Music

  • Format: bluray (1-disc)
  • Price: ¥5500
  • Availability: available

True to their word, Square-Enix have delivered the remastered bluray soundtrack to the recently-remastered Romancing SaGa 3 in Japan; as with the other "revival" blurays, this disc includes vignettes of in-game footage, short developer interviews and other commentary from the original developers, as well as a digital version of the soundtrack that can be downloaded via home wi-fi.

Rush'n Attack (NES) vinyl from spacelab9

  • Format: vinyl (7")
  • Price: $17.99
  • Availability: ETA July 2020

Konami's home conversion of the relatively music-free Rush'n Attack (or Green Beret, depending on where you're from) featured a modest selection of original tunes from a variety of composers who'd later come to prominence at companies like Natsume and love-de-lic, so this vinyl not only commemorates the music from a cult favorite action game but it's also a snapshot of some of the lesser-sung composers from an extremely bountiful era of Konami music. This record is limited to 250 copies and includes a NES-style slipcase with early purchases.

Snowboard Kids merch from Fangamer, round 2

  • Items: scarf, beanie, shirt, pin
  • Price: from $10
  • Availability: available, I guess

I don't know who at Fangamer keeps pushing for more Snowboard Kids merch but they should be commended for their heroism.