Publisher: Xseed Games
Developer: Bandai Namco Games
Release Date: TBA 2008
Game Center CX, at least in Japan, is nothing short of a phenomenon. It takes one highly charismatic comedian (Shinya Arino), has him test his mettle against the world's toughest video games, and chronicles his struggle through the usage of epic narration and music. During the off-hours, Arino messes around with other video game titles in a humorous manner, examines old consoles, and goes on field trips to Japanese arcades. Simply put, the show is a video game geek's dream, and a while back, it received a game bearing its name.
Game Center CX: Arino no Chousenjou, in one of this year's most profound "…wait, what?" moments, has been re-christened as Retro Game Challenge by Xseed. It's both a parody and tribute to the 8-bit and arcade era of video games. In the '80s, simpler genres such as racers, space shooters, platformers and primitive RPGs were king, and Retro Game Challenge hilariously apes the best of their kind.
Your job is to perform a multitude of difficult feats in each game so as to ultimately defeat Game Master Arino, an evil, disgruntled version of Game Center CX's host. On your side are strategy guides and secret codes that you will eventually positively need to see your quest through (hey, it's not cheating — after all, if they were coded into the game, then they're fair game) and a young Shinya Arino. Conquer the game, and it becomes available for free play — hilarious gameplay, Engrish and all.
We got some hands-on time with this title on the show floor and were pleasantly surprised to see how much fun these old game homages actually were. Playing every one reminded us of a classic title from our childhood, and gave us tons of laughs besides. The Ninja Gaiden, Galaga and Dragon Quest-inspired titles in particular are guaranteed to turn heads. Between these and the included fabricated "news articles" and "video game magazines" that actually have their basis in history, Retro Game Challenge is a great way to either learn or revisit just what gaming was like back in the day.
The 8-bit madness and the battles against Arino begin this winter. Are you up to the old-school challenge?
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