Thumb Punks 02.11.21 - Earthbound, Die Hard, TMNT, & A Strange Skateboarding Game


Happy Thursday! In this week’s retro gaming round up, we’ve got Earthbound, Die Hard, an offbeat skateboard tycoon game, and much, much more!

I’m thinking of adding a section covering collecting to the newsletter. It’d be a round up of the best hauls and collections on Reddit, Instagram, and Twitter. Would you like or loathe that? Hit reply and let me know!

Thanks for reading

Benjamin @ Thumb Punks

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Japanese Earthbound Should Be Rated M for Mature - Region Break (Shesez, 18 minutes)

A fascinating look at the differences between Earthbound and, as it was known in the Far East, Mother II, from the box art to some very significant changes in-game.

Die Hard Arcade review (SNESdrunk, 6 minutes)

Yippee-kay-yay! The first beat’em-up to have texture-mapped polygonal graphics, Die Hard Arcade was released in 1996 in the West. It was ported to the Saturn (and later the PS2 in Japan), where it’s reviewed by SNESdrunk.

The ambitious Skateboard Park Tycoon games (minime, 25 minutes)

Well, this is weird – an early 00s tycoon game where you can build your dream skate park… and then skate around it in 3D, Tony Hawk-style. Rough around the edges, for sure, but quite the curio.

10 Super Nintendo Games I Wanna Talk About (Sega Lord X, 20 minutes)

Covering some games you may have heard of (Biker Mice from Mars), and some you maybe haven’t (The Peace Keepers?), Sega Lord X talks us through some of his favorite lesser-known titles.

Former Nintendo employee Howard Phillips is releasing a tell-all book about his time at the big N. Check it out on Kickstarter!


Someone actually hit every Smash Bros. Melee credit after 20 years (Polygon, 3 minutes)

Smash Bros. Melee challenged you to zap all 190 names in the credits and, incredibly, no-one had recorded themselves completing it before. That all changed last week, just in time for the March 2021 deadline.

Quake (Hardcore Gaming 101, 11 minutes)

HG101’s retrospective of legendary FPS series Quake has begun, covering its conception as a DOOM spin-off, to deathmatch king, to eventual disappearance. Click for part 2, part 3, and part 4.

The Real Story Behind Rare's Cancelled GoldenEye 007 Remaster (NintendoLife, 9 minutes)

Why the recently leaked Xbox 360 version of GoldenEye 007 never saw an official release is a mystery, one which NintendoLife attempt to unpick. ‘I can’t see it happening, unless Microsoft buys Nintendo’. Ouch.

Birthdays! (Various)

A belated ‘HB’ to Street Fighter 2, which released on February 6th, 1991. And it’s the 20th anniversary of the death (sob) of the Dreamcast. Square Enix have a new website up celebrating 25 years of the Tomb Raider, too, with a whole Lara content.

These new wall-mounted Polycade arcade machines are a tremendous twist on a cabinet (and a huge space saver, too). Read a review here.


Bahamut Lagoon Translation (SNES)

And speaking of birthdays, 25 years after Bahamut Lagoon was released, its translation patch leaves beta. Now may be the time to play this stellar ‘lost’ RPG.

KenJu & Force Five Atomiswave Ports (Dreamcast)

Megavolt85 has been converting Atomiswave games to run natively on the trusty ol’ Dreamcast. Following Metal Slug 6 and Dolphin Blue, one on one fighters KenJu & Force Five have been ported over.

Taxi II – The Game Translation (Dreamcast)

Sticking with Sega’s little grey box of tricks, here comes a translation of a (and possibly the only) French-only game based on a very fun series of movies. While not a hidden gem, racing to pick up and drop off passengers under a strict time limit is still pretty fun. Here’s a gameplay video.

TMNT - The Streets of Rage Project (Genesis)

What more needs to be said? The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles transplanted, moves and all, into Streets of Rage 2. It plays very differently to the original, with added or changed mechanics, and you can watch a teaser of the bedlam here.

Would you like your retro video game, website, zine, or other project featured here? Just hit reply and send us the details!


Super Mario Restored (The Brickster, 22 minutes)

The Brickster has been hard at work, using information from Nintendo’s gigaleak to identify and then source the original synths used to produce the music of Super Mario World. He’s then reproduced everything from the ground up. Like HD for your ears.

I bought a $1500 GPU to play Super Mario 64 with RTX (Dario, 3 minutes)

Yahoo! Super Mario 64 now runs with ray-tracing, the new-fangled tech that makes the Xbox Series X and PS5 games look so pretty.

Sonic The Hedgehog Lego Set Announced For 2021 Production (RetroDodo, 5 minutes)

The NES and Mario Lego sets were near the top of our shopping lists, and now along comes Sonic, looking fantastic in brick form, with secrets and bounce pads galore.

Classic UK series GamesMaster getting a 'social first' reboot (Destructoid, 2 minutes)

While lesser-known in the USA, GamesMaster was ‘the’ TV show for British youngsters in the UK. It’s now getting a ‘social first’ reboot – we haven’t a clue what that means, but have high hopes for the E4 TV show.