The Top 7... Spin-off games you've never heard of

Golden Axe, Street Fighter, Sonic... everyone's got a skeleton in the cupboard

5) Virtua Quest (from Virtua Fighter)

The Virtua Fighter series was always meant to have its own RPG entry. Akira Yuki was going to be the front man, in fact. But he was busy that day, so Sega switched him out for some darts player called Ryo Hazuki and Shenmue was born. But everyone's heard of Shenmue so it would be pointless putting it on this list. Which is why we haven't. What we're looking at here is the other (wut?) Virtua Fighter RPG: Virtua Quest.

Surprisingly, the main characters aren't the usual Virtua Fighter roster. They're anime-styled teenagers who fight in a virtual realm, a bit like Star Trek's Holodeck, only without ending up in some part of USA history every other week. They find data chips with ghost data containing moves from the Virtua Fighter games, which lets them perform throws and backflips with pleasantly familiar animation routines. There are, of course, cameos from the Virtua Fighter cast too.

Above: "Hadouken! I mean... erm... oh, what the heck, it's virtual reality. HADOUKEN!!!"

The game was never released in PAL territories, so we never got to see it here in the UK. Not that we really mind, to be honest...

4) Gargoyle's Quest (From Ghosts 'n' Goblins)

Oh, right! Gargoyle. Yeah, know him well. So well, in fact, I didn't even pick him out as a fan-pleasing moment from the GnG background from Marvel vs Capcom 3 in my Super Review. Look:

Above: Obscured by a label that says 'Moneybags', the poor guy meant nothing to me.Oh,Vienna

Such indignity. Let's get edumacated then, eh? He originally appeared at the end of the first level in Ghosts 'n' Goblins, and was such a runaway hit with everyone who saw him, he got his own series of games. His first outing was on Game Boy, in Gargoyle's Quest, followed by an NES prequel before his most famous game - Demon's Crest on SNES. His name is Red Arremer, or 'Firebrand' to US audiences. Cute little fella, don't you think?

Above: "Aww, can we keep him? Huh? Huh? Can we? Please?" "NO! He'll set the curtains on fire"

But perhaps the best thing about the game is the wonderful sound. If only modern videogames had fanfares like this:

Granted, the battles look a little repetitive, but given the limitations of the hardware, the level of control over the character is excellent. Wall jumping, hovering, projectile attacks... and all with two face buttons. Good job, Capcom - can we have this on 3DS' download store, please?


The longest-serving GR+ staffer, I was here when all this was just fields. I'm currently Reviews Editor but still find time to speedrun Sonic levels and make daft Photoshop articles.
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