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SNK Arcade Classics: Vol. 1
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that SNK Arcade Classics Volume 1 is loaded with 16 classic arcade titles from the 1990s and features all the stylized violence and action that went along with that era. But the violence in these games is far less graphic than current games and generally involves enemies disappearing or sinking into the ground when defeated. There are some references to alcohol and a few drunken characters. Kids will hear some mild swearing and see some female characters in skimpy outfits.Some of the titles in this compilation are also available on the Virtual Console the Wii offers, but at a steeper premium.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
SNK ARCADE CLASSICS VOL 1 is exactly what the name describes; a collection of old SNK arcade games that were played on the then highly powered NEO GEO arcade system. For the time, the NEO GEO was the leader in great looking titles, and SNK was behind a lot of the more entertaining titles – some of which are featured on this collection. With gems like Baseball Stars 2, Metal Slug, and Magician Lord, the collection covers a wide selection of titles with side-scrolling fighters like Fatal Fury, beat-'em-ups like Art of Fighting and King of Fighters '94, and run 'n' gun titles like Metal Slug and Shock Troopers.
The title is organized through a main menu, with the games appearing in alphabetical order and represented on the main title screen as they originally appeared in arcades. Along with this is some basic information on the type of game, the number of players that can play, the year it was released, and a list of the medals you can unlock by playing the game. Each of the 16 titles has multiple challenges to meet, ranging from finishing the game with a particular character or playing a full game of baseball. Oddly enough, unlocking a challenge from one game may open up move lists or artwork from other titles in the game. While this is a good way to encourage playing all the titles, it seems strange to have to play a game of soccer to unlock the move list for a fighting game.
Is it any good?
The emulation of the titles is actually very well done on the Wii; yes there were some graphical glitches and slowdown of the onscreen action, but compared to the PS2 version of this title the Wii takes the lead in ability to remake older games. Each title in the collection can be controlled with one of many controller options, but due to sometimes complicated control scheme, a classic controller is a very highly recommended accessory for playing this game, as the buttons on the Wii remote itself can be tough to get to in the heat of battle.
While parents may remember these titles from the days of throwing quarters into a machine endlessly, the novelty factor does wear thin fairly quickly, and younger gamers who were weaned on games of today may tire even faster.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what arcade used to be like and what made arcades so much different than playing at home. They can discuss the reason why arcade games seem to have a very high difficulty level compared to console games, and why sports titles in arcades were time limited. They can also discuss what games may be like in another 15 years, and will the games that occupy so much time now be just as entertaining then?