This was my first video game console, and I have so many good memories of it. I even still have vague memories of being at Toys ‘R Us when we bought it. I remember the first game we bought with it, Spy VS Spy of all things. This system made me (and millions of others) a gamer, it helped bring the industry out of the crash of the early 80s. It also launched so many amazing and legendary franchises.
I remember having this weird ass game called MagMax, released in 1988.
This was the year after the original Mega Man came out. If my memory is right, I got it for Christmas that year The problem is, to this day I SWEAR I wanted Mega Man instead. But considering how freaking hard Mega Man is, I probably never would have beaten it back then. I’ve beaten it a couple times more recently though.
I of course played The Legend of Zelda back then as well, I don’t think I owned it until later on but I do remember renting it and maybe borrowing it from friends. I remember the commercials for it, the nerdy kid rapping and the crazy guy who was supposed to be Link I guess running around yelling “Zelda? Zelda!”
Then there was the Super Mario Bros games. I think I might have had a SMB/Duckhunt cart. I played Super Mario Bros 2 mostly through renting it or borrowing it like a lot of games. But Super Mario Bros. 3 I got right away, I loved that game so much. I even saw The Wizard just for a glimpse of it. Back then I could actually beat it, believe it or not. Old age has really done a number on me I swear lol. The commercial for it is a memory I’ll never lose, hopefully.
Another favorite of mine, was Contra. A friend had this game and anytime he’d come over or we’d go over to his house we’d play this game in 2 player mode. Of course we always used the classic Konami code, because why not? And speaking of Konami, I had that nightmarish Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game they put out under the “Ultra Games” name.
That game is AWFUL.
Thankfully the NES port of the arcade game (which I owned) and the third game are both much better.
Then of course there’s the Castlevania series, I think I played CV2 the most out of the 3. I had this VHS tape full of “tips and tricks” and that game was one of them. I might have beaten it by using a password, at some point. But my memory is fuzzy. I also had Rush ‘n Attack but I could never beat it, some things never change.
I for some reason had BreakThru, which was a Data East game that was also in arcades. I don’t remember how or why I got that game.
I never played it in the arcade, I may have gotten it from someone as a gift or something.
Other NES ports of arcade games I had included Spy Hunter by Sunsoft (Midway in arcades) and Commando by Capcom (back when they made sure their name was spelled correctly on their game’s boxes.)
I wish I had owned the Mega Man games, but I was really only able to rent them. I remember when I started getting Nintendo Power, that Mega Man 3 was on the cover of the first issue I got. I knew someone who had issues of the Nintendo Fun Club, before Nintendo Power even started.
Like a lot of people, I was a big fan of Tecmo Super Bowl, which was the second Tecmo Bowl game released on the system. This one had both licensed team and player names unlike the original (it was only licensed by the NFLPA because the NFL at the time had an exclusive agreement with another game…seems familiar.) It was actually the first game to be fully licensed by both the NFL and the NFLPA. The Bucs sucked in this game so it was very true to life. But I still played as them anyway lol.
The NES also helped get me into RPGs, as I remember renting and liking both the original Final Fantasy and the Dragon Warrior (now known as Dragon Quest) games.
So like I said before, the first game we got with our NES (I don’t remember if it came with SMB or not when we got it) was Spy VS Spy. I played it quite a bit since I didn’t have much else at the time. Sometimes I get the music stuck in my head,
I had a Power Glove. I even tried to use it with Punch Out (Mike Tyson’s, not that Mr. Dream nonsense.) It was bad. But Punch Out was awesome, even though I could never make it to Tyson without the code (007 373 5963). Nowadays…I still can’t make it to Tyson. And still can’t beat him. Worst of all, every year I actually get worse and worse at that game. As my reflexes get more and more shot to hell. I still love that game though, that won’t change even if I’ll never beat Tyson.
And last and most definitely least…
No, Konami. Just no.
Up! Up! Up! Down! Down! Down! Speed Up! Slow Down!
Fuck you game!
Thankfully that horrible, terrible, worthless, god awful disaster of a game was left at my Uncle’s house at some point. I never tried to get it back, I never wanted to get it back. And whatever landfill it likely ended up in was made worse by it’s very presence.
The NES was a huge part of my life back then. Like I said before, it turned me into a gamer. I didn’t even have a PC until late 1995, so console games were all I was able to play. It’s not just the system that I have great memories of, I still remember watching the Super Mario Bros. Super Show in the morning before school. And on Fridays, the Legend of Zelda cartoon.
Everything about what I am as a gamer started with this awesome system.
And as soon as I’m able to find one, I’m gonna get an NES Classic Edition.