Retro Re-release Roundup, week of May 3, 2018

Now this is po—y'know what, let's not.

Wow, early May seems to be a boon period for Star Wars games... I guess it's a Golden Week thing. What other explanation could there be?


10-Yard Fight

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, (worldwide)
  • Price: $7.99 / 6.99 / £6.29
  • Publisher: Hamster / Irem

What's this? A bare-essentials, 9-a-side take on American football, developed and released in arcades by Irem in 1983 and last re-released some twenty years ago on the Playstation and Sega Saturn; this version includes the original single-player, offense-only version and the later two-player revision. 

Why should I care? You're eager to revisit the days when football games didn't burden themselves with playcalling or rules or anything that isn't running, passing and tackling.

Useless fact: The two-player "Vs." revision has nothing to do with Nintendo's Vs. System, in case you're confused.


Stakes Winner

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch, Playstation 4, Xbox One (worldwide)
  • Price: $7.99 / 6.99 / £6.29
  • Publisher: Hamster

What's this? A fast-paced, two-button horse racing game by SNK offsiders Saurus, released in arcades in 1995; one or two players can attempt to earn big (and useless) money by placing high in successive races, nabbing power-ups and earning the occasional stat-boosting training session.

Why should I care? It's a very easy-to-grasp take on an under-represented genre and the two-player mode is very accommodating towards new players. (If you think you might only have space for one arcade horse racing game in your life, it might be wise to wait for the sequel... it's not announced, but we all know it'll show up eventually.)

Helpful tip: Double-tapping forward or back will cause your horse to either bump or brake in front of other horses, impeding or stalling their movement; this technique is essential in placing well and should be exploited as ruthlessly as possible, particularly to pin your rivals against a barrier.


Johnny Turbo's Arcade: Sly Spy

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch (North America)
  • Price: $6.99
  • Publisher: Flying Tiger Entertainment / G-Mode

What's this? A sidescrolling arcade-action game with more than a passing resemblance to the 007 oeuvre, originally developed by Data East and released in arcades in 1989; players shoot, kick, climb, jetpack, parachute, motorcycle and scuba dive in pursuit of a terrorist organisation which, you guessed it, kidnapped the president.  (Don't let ol' Johnny Turbo fool ya: despite what the provided screenshots suggest, you aren't forced to play these games stretched to 16:9.)

Why should I care? It's two parts Bad Dudes and one part Rolling Thunder. What's not to love? (Answer: the auto-scrolling bike chase, it's a little dull.)

Useless fact: Karnov makes his obligatory cameo as "Karnov Sakata", a strange, let's say, "tribute" to Oddjob actor Harold Sakata who appears at the end of the third stage.

Star Wars Episode 1: Racer

  • Platform: PC via Good Old Games (worldwide)
  • Price: $9.99 (15% off until May 8)
  • Publisher: Lucasarts / Disney

What's this? A high-octane, anti-gravity "pod racing" game, originally released for PC, Nintendo 64 and Sega Dreamcast at the turn of the century to coincide with the release of the cinematic juggernaut Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace and re-released for the first time a day or two ago, now with support for modern PCs, higher resolutions, widescreen and a rock-solid framerate, as well as the continuance of eight-player multiplayer support via LAN.

Why should I care? Not only is it a fun and blisteringly fast racing game on its own merits, it's also a successful salvaging of a cool conceit from an awful movie — seriously, hpw often does that happen? (It's also bound to work phenomally in VR...)

Useless fact: At a little over 3 million copies sold, Star Wars Episode 1: Racer still holds the Guinness World Record for the biggest-selling sci-fi racing game of all time, standing tall over the likes of Extreme-G, Tube Racer and even Fatal Inertia


Space Harrier vinyl by Data Discs

  • Format: Vinyl (single-LP)
  • Price: £19.99 (standard edition) £26.99 (limited edtion)
  • Availability: orders begin May 5, shipping begins late May
  • Publisher: Data Discs / Sega

Data Discs' successful partnership with Sega continues with the somewhat inevitable release of the soundtrack to Sega's classic 1985 arcade hit Space Harrier, complete with an additional arranged track by Sega's in-house "S.S.T. Band' and liner notes by composer Hiroshi Kawaguchi; this vinyl will be availble to order this Saturday with plans to begin shipping in June and will be available in three versions, including a limited-edition purple/green splatter disc with an exclusive lenticular 3D cover that's a little too much for this page to handle.


Mega Man 2 & Mega Man X 30th Anniversary cartridge reissues by iam8bit

  • Price: $100 each
  • Availability: 7500 pieces (standard) + 1000 (limited edition, sent at random); shpping begins late September
  • Publisher: iam8bit / Capcom

iam8bit's limited-edition run of Street Fighter 2 anniversary cartridges was such a hit that they're back with another milestone run in commemoration of two of their greatest and most enduring console offerings  the third-best Mega Man game, Mega Man 2, and the original and best Mega Man X game — complete with a colored cartridge shell and tri-fold box using restored artwork from Capcom's archives; they went on sale a day or so ago and are still in stock but even the ever-so-slightly-bolstered run of 8500 units is bound to disappear before long.

Star Wars series sale at Good Old Games

  • Platform: PC via Good Old Games (worldwide)
  • Discount: 66% off all Star Wars games until May 12

If Star Wars Episode 1: Racer doesn't tickle your fancy, GOG's also discounting the rest of their 21-deep Star Wars library for the week of May the 4th, spanning titles as recent as 2011's Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars to 1993's Star Wars Rebel Assault 1+2 and genres from FPS to third-person action to RPG to RTS to space dogfighting.