🕹️Thumb Punks 07.01.21: Final Fantasy, Secret of Mana, & Weird NDS Peripherals

Sad News: Near, programmer of bsnes/higan and the genius behind the English Bahamut Lagoon translation, has died. There’s no little controversy about their death - all that remains for us to say is if you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.

Air Raid: A $10,590 dollar game was found by an e-commerce employee at Goodwill. 1982’s Air Raid for the Atari 2600 is no classic, but features a distinctive blue T-shaped cartridge. It’s so rare, only five second-hand sales have ever been recorded. Brilliantly, they’ve documented the find on YouTube.

GOG Pulls Classic Games: Ultima Underworld 1+2, Syndicate Plus, and Syndicate Wars and have all been delisted from GOG.com. If they’re in your library, you’re still able to download them. There’s no news on why they were pulled, but the Ultima games are now available exclusively through EA’s Origin client.

Final Fantasy: Remasters of Final Fantasy I-VI are coming to PC and mobile devices. They include a rearranged soundtrack by Nobuo Uematsu and “improved gameplay, including modernized UI, auto-battle options, and more”. Out July 28th, they’re drawing ire from some for tiny text and a whopping $15.99 pricetag – each.

Secret of Mana: Classic the Secret of Mana celebrated its 30th anniversary on the June 29th. 1999 PS1 title Legend of Mana has been remastered, and is available on Steam for $29.99, and features redrawn sprites and some very nice looking repainted backgrounds.

Nintendo DS Accessories (Scott the Woz, 20 minutes)

It’s easy to underestimate how weird the Nintendo DS was upon release; with two screens, a microphone, and gosh-darn touch controls, it was certainly a novel concept. Even more off-beat were some of the peripherals: of all those in the video, the contraption that converts the handheld into a mouse might be the most wonderful.

Who are Princess Peach's parents? (Thomas Game Docs, 10 minutes)

If Peach is a princess, who are the king and queen? That’s the subject of Thomas’ new documentary, which journeys from Japan to the USA in search of answers.

Dual Heroes, the worst fighting game? (Matt McMuscles, 26 minutes)

Mr McMuscles is on a quest to play every terrible fighting game to see if any are worse than Criticom, his personal nadir. Dual Heroes is first up, and yields some surprising results.

Panzer Dragoon Mini - Sega Game Gear Review (Sega Lord X, 6 minutes)

Panzer Dragoon is an all-time great series, but the Game Gear version is lesser-known. Sega Lord X shows us why.

Hakaiou: King of Crusher (HG101, 7 minutes)

King of Crusher is a PS1 game with dodgy combat, weak sound, and meh graphics. But what it does have is an absolutely bonkers story that’s worth seeing through. HG101 takes a look at the game, but beware: the review is spoilerific.

Army Men: Sarge’s War: The eulogy for an entire series (Destructoid, 9 minutes)

The first few Army Men games are fondly remembered, but the sheer volume of titles saw the series swiftly descend into complete shovelware. Destructoid chart the fall of the little green men.

Irem Arcade Games – 1989 Developer Interview (Shmuplations, 16 minutes)

Reprinted from Gamest #30, this interview with key staff is a must for all fans of developer Irem.

This battle is about to explode! (Kimimi The Game-Eating She-Monster, 7 minutes)

2005’s Namco X Capcom is very much a hidden gem: only released for the PS2 in Japan, it’s one heck of a fighter on a system loaded with them. It’s bonkers, too, sending up characters from both companies (and what a selection of fighters!). Kimimi casts their eyes on this oft-overlooked brawler.

Bahamut Lagoon version 1.2 (SNES, $FREE)

The final, posthumous, English patch for Bahamut Lagoon by Near. Said to be absolutely perfect, it’s the best way to play this lost gem today.

Secret Agent HD (PC, $4.99)

90s Apogee action-platformer Secret Agent has been remastered for modern PCs. The changes and upgrades are tastefully done, it adds a fourth chapter, and has a level editor to boot. It’s also available on GOG.

Dune II: The Battle for Arrakis (ZX Spectrum, $FREE)

A mainstay on early 90s PCs (and the genesis of the RTS genre), developer Demige has somehow managed to cram Dune II onto two floppy discs. Astounding.

Travel Through Time Volume 1: Northern Lights (ZX Spectrum, $FREE)

More Speccy goodness, this time in the form of a Chase HQ-esque racer. It looks amazing for the 128K machine, and is sure to scratch that arcade driving itch.

  • None the more 90s footage of E3 is doing the rounds on Youtube

  • July for retro gamers with Xbox Live Gold is offering two must-play titles: Midway Arcade Origins containing 31 classic titles, and the OG Xbox version of Conker’s Bad Fur Day

  • An early 3D model of the canceled World Heroes 64 for the N64 has been unearthed

  • These NES-themed gashapon have us eyeing up flights to Japan

  • Are you a fan of the Cotton series? We’ve got some good news for you: new sequel Cotton Rock’n’Roll is in development for the PS4, Switch, and PC. And Cotton Reboot!, a remake of the original game, is heading West for the PS4 and Switch on July 20th