Feel the love this Valentine's with an ActRaiser retrospective

Super NES Works arrives at one of the true greats.

The thing about cataloguing an entire video game platform's library, whether new or old, is that the process involves digging into a lot of bad, broken, or just plain boring software. The good games always come as welcome respite after a barrage of mediocrity. And the truly great games, well — those constitute a special occasion. 

So it's fitting that on this day, Valentine's Day, Super NES Works reaches one of the true masterpieces of the platform: Quintet's ActRaiser. Going by social media reactions I've received as I've teased my progress through this retrospective over the past few weeks, I'm not alone in feeling this inventive platformer/simulation/RPG hybrid deserves special love. It truly is a one-of-a-kind game, and while it may not be flawless in its design, the fact that its creators were clearly driven by an earnest desire to make something truly unique counts for a lot.

If you've never played ActRaiser, the good news is that it's still accessible on Wii Virtual Console for the moment. The Wii eShop shutoff date is approaching rapidly, though, so get on that. Otherwise, it's down to either emulation or hunting down a fairly expensive cartridge to play on a Super NES. Square Enix really needs to get this one into wider circulation, you know?

Special thanks to Steve Lin of the Video Game History Foundation for providing access to the packaged copy of the game for this video.