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Gradius, Wonder Boy hit the VC

It's been quite a rollercoaster ride for Virtual Console updates the past several weeks. One Monday we all woke up to Romance of the Three Kingdoms IV and that was it. Is Nintendo trying to disappoint us or something? But then to counter that sad, sickly update, today we're getting Gradius III, Wonder Boy in Monster World and Battle Lode Runner, three games that are all worth picking up. What a great way to start the week, eh?

For those who weren't alive when Bush was on his way out to make room for Clinton, Gradius III was one of the Super NES first titles available and also happens to be one of the best side-scrolling shooters ever made. We love it more than a beautiful day in the spring. Its only flaw is the rampant slowdown that occurs when too much starts happening on the screen, which, sadly, is something that happens a lot. The bubble stage in particular is like flying a space brick through space molasses.

Wonder Boy is so worth the 800 points that we can't really think of anything else to say. This is a fantastic RPG with a poppin' soundtrack, memorable environments and a tough-as-hell final battle. It's a little like Zelda II: The Adventure of Link but with better graphics and a lot fewer annoying random battles (like zero). Battle Lode Runner is a follow-up to the original that adds a slew of multiplayer run-n-grab modes, so Wii owners looking to involve more than one other person in their gaming should definitely check it out.

What's next, Nintendo? When do we get our Ninja Gaiden games? And as a random shout out, some of us actually liked The 7th Saga, so let's try to make that happen, k?

April 23, 2007

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