Thumb Punks 12.17.20


Happy Thursday! In this week’s retro gaming round-up we’ve got bizarre Japanese imports, a new Dizzy game, and some Mario manga. A bit of housekeeping – we’ll be back after the festive period and will return to your inbox on January 7th 2021. Happy holidays!

Stay safe out there

Benjamin @ Thumb Punks

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Japan Only PS2 Games (ThorHighHeels, 39 minutes)

We’re big fans of obscure imports, and this video doesn’t disappoint. From a JoJo game with incredible visuals, to a knockout open-world Ridge Racer, there’s bound to be something to tickle your fancy.

Is Skitchin' Worth Playing Today? (SNES Drunk, 5 minutes)

A close cousin of the Road Rash series, Skitchin’ see you racing other players on skates, grabbing the backs of vehicles to give you the speed edge. It’s wheelie good (sorry).

Rick Dangerous Xmas - How to Have a STRESSFUL Christmas (Kim Justice, 12 minutes)

Tough as nails but with a big influence on the Spelunky series, Kim Justice unearths a forgotten Xmas spin-off from an unreleased GBA port.

Looking Back At Mortal Kombat With Paul W.S. Anderson, Linden Ashby & Robin Shou (SYFY WIRE, 11 minutes)

The director of the original Mortal Kombat movie (still a prime cut of shlocky 90s movie magic) and the actors who played Johnny Cage and Liu Kang get together to reminisce about the film. It whets the appetites for the new movie, out April 16th 2021.

Nox Archaist, the long-waited Apple II RPG, is out now. Grab it digitally, as a box set, or a super-duper collector's edition here.


The making of Frankie Goes To Hollywood (Eurogamer, 11 minutes)

A deep dive into the C64/Amstrad CPC/ZX Spectrum game of the band of the same name. Featuring interviews with the key players, relax, and read it.

Neuromancer DOS - A classic game, a classic Cyberpunk review (Retro Freak Reviews, 6 minutes)

While a certain other Cyberpunk game is getting all the attention, Retro Freak Reviews take a look back at a dystopian adventure released in 1988/89 for the C64/Apple II/Amiga/DOS).

Capcom Retro Station is, frankly, baffling (Retronauts, 3 minutes)

This is a real head-scratcher: a bizarre looking mini-console, an odd selection of games, with no option for multiplayer. Stuart Gipp puts the gaudy device through its paces.

Aero the Acrobat (Hardcore Gaming 101, 13 minutes)

The 90s saw a slew of mascot platformers. Forgotten by time, the Aero the Acrobat series contains several solid games, with the third being somewhat of a hidden gem. Check out part two of the series here, with part three coming later in the week.

Take a look at the 19 best gifts for the retro gamer in your life (or a Xmas treat for yourself)


Wonderful Dizzy (ZX Spectrum)

Everyone’s favorite retro gaming egg returns tomorrow (December 18th) in a new adventure by original creators The Oliver Twins. Cracking.

Outrage (C64)

30 years in the making, C64 run-and-gun Outrage is released this week on disc, cartridge, and as a digital download. Springing from a demo for a competition back in the mists of 1990, it has been quite a journey.

Manic Panic (ZX Spectrum)

A fan-made follow-up to crowd favorite Miner Willy, Manic Panic features new levels and music, and is completely free.

NBA Jam 2K21 - Tournament Edition (SNES)

Much more than just a roster update, eskayelle & Double Z’s patch adds a slew of improvements to the game. BOOMSHAKALAKA!

This wooden Nintendo merch is eye-poppingly gorgeous. Check it out at


Super Mario Manga Mania’s English Translation Will Take You on a Wild World Tour (Gizmodo, 2 minutes)

Available in English for the first time, Yukio Sawada’s collected manga about the two plumber brothers reaches our shores early next year. These preview pages are packed with charm; for many reasons, 2021 can’t come soon enough.

The Spy Who Loved Me N64 WIP - Demo Playthrough (Graslu00, 22 minutes)

Someone is working on a sequel (or should that be prequel?) to Goldeneye 64, and the footage looks mighty impressive.

Lost Game Paprium Finally Coming Out!? (Radical Reggie, 7 minutes)

After that trailer caused quite the commotion, Genesis beat ‘em up Paprium vanished. It looks like it’s back and coming out for real – Radical Reggie explores the history of the game and gives the lowdown on its release.

Modified Cartridge Gets Ray Tracing Working On A Super Nintendo (Kotaku, 2 minutes)

You can’t read about modern gaming at the moment without hearing about ray tracing jiggery-pokery, and here it comes, unbelievably, to the SNES.