Nine Virtual Boy games the 3DS can completely redeem

Once they were laughing stocks. Could Nintendo's newest handheld change their fate?


Essentially Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! with robots instead of humans, Teleroboxer focused more on pattern recognition than actual boxing techniques. And just like Punch-Out!!, this unique approach turned what could have been a bland, back-and-forth fist-off into a complicated series of counters, tells and last-minute wins.

Above: A promo video (narrated by Cam “Liquid Snake” Clarke) shows off some gameplay

A remake would have to be heavily altered though – Teleroboxer becomes insanely difficult early on, which is partly due to the small number of opponents; with only nine enemy boxers, of course it’s going to get tough by the third or fourth fight. That means we’d want to see an expanded cast of ‘bots in a possible remake, plus a challenge level that steadily increases, not spikes. As for the 3D effects, the boxers’ fists would pound right into your eyes, and their actual bodies seemed far away, so all we’d really want added is a crowd and arena to really sell the atmosphere.

Above: This isn’t saying much, but this did have the best graphics on the system

While we loved Wii’s Punch-Out, the 3DS would be a perfect chance to turn Teleroboxer into a whole new franchise. It certainly seemed like the last Punch-Out!! came and went without much fanfare, so maybe it’s time to revisit the idea of super-stylized robots pounding the hell out of each other… now in 3D!

Mario%26rsquo;s Tennis

Would you believe this is the first real Mario sports game? Before the N64 golf and tennis entries, there was Mario’s Tennis, which also happened to be the Virtual Boy’s pack-in game. Gameplay was rudimentary, and lacked all the flash and silliness that came to define the Mario Sports series, but as a 3D showpiece it worked fairly well.

Above: The court really did appear to stretch into the background. But that’s impossible to illustrate with screens

There’s no reason to remake this exact game, as it’s frightfully bare-bones by today’s standards. The sport is a perfect fit for 3D gaming though, with its long court and bright, identifiable ball offering an easily grasped 3D sensation. Nintendo’s already shown it can make fun, accessible tennis titles, so don’t be surprised if this (or some variation) makes its way to 3DS before too long.

Nester%26rsquo;s Funky Bowling

Who’s doing what now? I’m not sure if Nintendo Power’s comic book mascot is known outside the US, but for those who read the magazine from 1989 to 1993, he was the co-star of a “Howard & Nester” comic that essentially just advertised new games (but some of them really stick out). After a few cameos in other NES games, he was finally allowed to “star” in his own Virtual Boy title, Nester’s Funky Bowling.

Above: Congratulations?

There’s no way in hell Nester will receive top billing again. But the idea, of a solid bowling game to launch a new 3D system, is still a smart move. Or more likely, a sports compilation that combines bowling, tennis and uh, let’s say golf, into one cart. Wii Sports made it work – why not try it again with a 3D system that doesn’t fry your synapses?

Above: Strange that it’s not “funky” at all. It’s regular bowling

As with Mario’s Tennis, this is way too sparse to exist as its own game, and even if Nintendo did clean it up and add some extra bells and whistles, people have become accustomed to 3-in-1 sports packs. Sure, a Mario-specific tennis or bowling game might stand alone, but perhaps a simple “3D Sports” game, done like Wii Sports, would be a quick way to lure in the mainstream.

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