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GBA-Based Classic NES Series Confirmed For States 78

Thanks to IGN for its article revealing that Nintendo has confirmed their Game Boy Advance-based classic NES conversions for U.S. release on June 7th. According to the article: "The collection [already released in Japan as the Famicom Mini Series] will be called [the] Classic NES Series, and will begin as a limited edition NES Game Boy Advance SP as well as a line-up of eight classic games", with the specific titles being Donkey Kong, Pac-Man, The Legend of Zelda, Super Mario Bros., Excitebike, Ice Climber, Xevious, and Bomberman. The piece also notes: "Each game in the series will be priced at $19.99, and will be packaged in a standard Game Boy Advance box featuring the classic artwork of the original game."
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GBA-Based Classic NES Series Confirmed For States

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  • All right! (Score:3, Funny)

    by josh glaser ( 748297 ) on Friday March 26, 2004 @11:39PM (#8686936)
    With any luck, we'll get that NES controller seat cushion too. ;-)
    • ..but I got FP, so I'm above the law.

      Anyways, click on the article (I wish I that went without saying) to see the rad retro boxart and the special GBA SP. I was pumped for it, and I'm glad it won't be as rare as the Famicom one, but it's just kinda...ugly. Rumor has it that Nintendo is coming out with new SP colors, though. I'm holding out for yellow ;-)

      $20 does seem a bit steep for a NES game, though. I mean, you could get Card-E versions of some NES games for $5 a pop. I'll still end up buying them
  • Please please please, make a portable version of Super Dodge Ball. That game freaking rules.
  • by shadowcabbit ( 466253 ) <(cx) (at) (> on Friday March 26, 2004 @11:56PM (#8687004) Journal
    I'm all for a re-release of the classics-- especially the original Legend of Zelda (stupid save batteries dying... grr...)-- but I am also very much of the opinion that $20 per game is WAY overpriced. Fortunately for me I still have my e-reader and copies of DK, Excitebike, and Ice Climber, and I also picked up Pac-Man Collection a few months back for $10... let's see, $30 for the e-reader, $15 for the card sets, and $10 for Pac-Man is $55 for eight games (Pac-Man Collection has four games on the cart, and the e-reader bundle I bought had DK Jr.) We're looking at a little over $7 per game. I'd find that to be a fair price... but then again, let's assume that $15 is the absolute lowest a "new" GBA game can be and set the price to that. I'd buy Zelda for $15; maybe Xevious, too. Never got a chance to play it. So the question is then what extra goodies and incentives will Nintendo offer for US gamers?

    This post differs from the similar troll post below from the anonymous coward in that, to the best of my knowledge, I'm not being a total asswipe about my complaint. Please moderate accordingly.
    • I agree that $20 is totally too much. They were just recently *giving* away the classic Zeldas for free with new GameCubes (or two game purchase).

      There's manufacturing overhead costs of course, and with each game being packaged seperately they can't sell them too cheap. They should of done a bundle package, even if not all 8 on one cartridge they could of done 4 and 4.

      I don't have a GBA yet, I am almost on the verge of buying the Game Boy Player that attaches to the bottom of the GameCube. As I underst
      • by Troed ( 102527 )
        You hardly notice the GB Player once it sits under the cube .. I don't anyway.

        Come to think of it, time to boot it up and finish Metroid Fusion before Zero Mission appears in Europe ...

        (It's amazing that a game written for the small screen of the GBA actually _works_ when displayed on a 110" projector screen)

    • by AvantLegion ( 595806 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @04:23AM (#8687936) Journal
      Yeah, these aren't Metroid: Zero Mission.

      These should be, like, all on one cartridge.

      Imagine an "NES Sports" GBA cart, with Excitebike, Ice Hockey, Tennis, maybe even something later like NES Play Action Football... easily worth full price.

      Then maybe an "NES Adventures" with Zelda and some others. You know, group a bunch of NES games together in that vein. Those would be the must-have GBA carts of the year.

      See, this is why Nintendo is less than loved (at least as loved as they could be). They could take a very profitable yet consumer friendly approach, but they opt for the "fuck the customer" approach instead. A bit less customer screwing would certainly breed more brand loyalty in me. I just don't really feel compelled to jump on Nintendo stuff immediately - I pick up a lot of stuff second-hand, after the fact.

      • Petition failures (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        "They could take a very profitable yet consumer friendly approach, but they opt for the "fuck the customer" approach instead."

        This is why companies don't listen to people on Slashdot. Before companies started doing this, we all whined about how companies weren't making classic games available. We all had to pirate them and emulate them... we had no option. Poor us.

        "Windwaker to be cel-shaded," we whined. "I'd rather the original Zelda any day, but they won't sell it to me!"

        Now Nintendo is offering its

        • by AvantLegion ( 595806 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @05:39AM (#8688111) Journal
          If you don't see a problem in trying to sell games that are as much as 15 years old at near full price (for GBA games) with a straight face... well, something's wrong.

          And in case you're not ousted for a fool yet, your logic falls apart when I point out that nobody's complaining about the collections of Atari or Activision or Intellivision games - which usually bundle anywhere from 5 to 20 games for about $20. Not one game.

          Those collections are doing it right. No complaints. Nintendo is not. Complaints.

          Can you wrap your brain around that?

          • Re:Petition failures (Score:1, Interesting)

            by Anonymous Coward
            I have a couple of problems with this attitude. First, $20 is not "near full price." It's 33% less than full price. That's about as low as "new in box" GBA carts go.

            Second, I'm not sure why you think a game should automatically be worth less in 15 years. The gameplay is still good. The graphics have aged, but they get the job done. The original Legend of Zelda is a much larger game than, say, the latest Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen adventure. Super Mario Bros. will take a gamer who hasn't played it far long

          • by Lobo42 ( 723131 )
            If you don't see a problem in trying to sell games that are as much as 15 years old at near full price (for GBA games) with a straight face... well, something's wrong.

            Dude, no one's holding a gun to your head and FORCING you to buy them. It's called free-market economics, and it means that things are priced based on what a SELLER is willing to give it up for and a BUYER is willing to pay. Nintendo owns these games, they sold them once at $60 a pop on the NES, some of them once again as e-Reader cards o

          • Re:Petition failures (Score:3, Informative)

            by scot4875 ( 542869 )
            your logic falls apart when I point out that nobody's complaining about the [$20] collections of Atari or Activision or Intellivision games

            And your logic falls apart when I point out that these things sold extremely well in Japan, outrageous price and all.

        • "Windwaker to be cel-shaded," we whined. "I'd rather the original Zelda any day, but they won't sell it to me!"

          Now Nintendo is offering its old games in a variety of formats. What happens? More whining. First, we whine that it's only releasing them in Japan. "Bring them stateside!"

          Now they bring it stateside. "They aren't selling it cheap enough," we whine. "They should be bundling more together," we whine. And worst of all, "they already gave this to us free!"

          Please do not make the mistake of thinking
      • These should be, like, all on one cartridge.

        No kidding.

        If I can get All four of the NES and SNES Zelda games on a single Gamecube disc for $20 [], how can they sell individual NES games for $20 each and keep a straight face?
    • Yes, but - will you actually be able to save your custom track in Excitebike?
  • Nintendo will release eight games for starters, all accurately emulating the NES games...

    If they're actually using their own emulator to run the old ROM data for these old games, I wonder how hard it would be (if at all possible) to 'modify' one of the game cartridges to run other NES ROMs.

    I dont own a GB, but I'd consider owning one if I could relive my addiction of the original Metroid.

    • All the e-Reader NES games have used an emulator and as far as I know nobody has managed to "separate" the emulator from the ROMs. Not that it matters sicne there's already very good NES emulators available for the GBA.
    • by josh glaser ( 748297 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:08AM (#8687065)
      Buy Metroid Zero Mission. It's a GBA remake of the NES version. Perhaps best of all, you can unlock the actual NES game. In related news, GBA SPs are *only* $99 ;-)
    • Actually, this leads me to an interesting legal question. If I own the original NES carts to the games being re-released (and I do) does this mean I can legally use a gba NES emulator and dump the re-released NES game onto a single flash rom cart?
      • That depends on who you ask. Nintendo says no, but I don't know of any court decisions that discuss the legality of such a thing.

        In any event, it would be of about the same legality as running the game in a emulator on your computer, albeit you have to consider the emulation patent that nintendo was granted recently.
    • Or get yourself a flash cart and PocketNES. PocketNES is the one and only reason I bought a GBA.
    • I've seen the GameCube NES emulator extracted from the Zelda Collector's disc. It runs games either perfectly or not at all.

      The hard part of NES emulation is the custom chips in the cartridge. The NES could only address 64k of ROM. To get more than that, you had to put an extra chip in the cartridge that would switch memory banks, kinda like expanded memory in the 8086 days.

      Just about every company had their own custom chip to do that, if not multiple chips. Odds are Nintendo's emulator only supports the
    • Play and beat Metroid: Zero Mission. If that doesn't cure your addiction, the original Metroid becomes playable after you beat Zero.
  • 20 Bucks? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by redfiveneo ( 692968 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @12:05AM (#8687040)
    I would buy all 8 for $20... The prices are a bit steep.

    And they didn't include Punch-Out!....
    • I would buy all 8 for $20... The prices are a bit steep.

      And they didn't include Punch-Out!....

      Good. Because if it's not Mike Tyson's Punch Out!!, then it's wrong.

      "Mr. Dream".... pshh, crap!

    • Re:20 Bucks? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Quietust ( 205670 )

      And they didn't include Punch-Out!...

      The trouble is, [Mike Tyson's] Punch-Out!! uses a rather peculiar memory mapper (the Nintendo MMC2), one that takes a lot of extra processor power to emulate properly (each time it renders one of two particular background/sprite tiles, it needs to *immediately* switch to a different set of character data). Properly emulating the MMC2 would likely not be easy on a system as slow as the GBA, so they probably gave up on Punch-Out!! (the *only* game to use the MMC2).

  • by 2Flower ( 216318 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @01:16AM (#8687349) Homepage
    I gots me a hankering for the classics one day, and went on a crazed eBay spending spree. Got an NES and a bunch of good titles: Contra, Mario 3, Zelda, Ice Climbers, etc. Nothing beats the original hardware playing the original games on the original controllers...

    Except that I can't get the blasted thing to work. It's got Grey Blinky Syndrome, a common ailment because the pin connectors are too lose... I cleaned my carts and got a shiny new 72-pin connector, but after installing it, now the thing's got a vice-like grip on my carts to the point where a grown man can't pull them out without yanking the 72-pin free. Agh.

    A) Anybody got any suggestions?
    B) Maybe getting them emulated on your GBA isn't such a crazy idea...
    • Well I hafta let you know the following always worked back in the day:

      1) Blow in the cart, that long high pitched blow where you start at the top of the cart and move down vertically to the bottom.

      2)When the cart is in the NES, push it a little to the left, try the power. Then try pushing it a little to the right, power on, then nudge it a little left or right of those and try that.

      3)Last ditch effort: Jam another NES Game in on top of the other NES game over the metal bar holding the game down. Use

    • by redled ( 10595 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @05:00AM (#8688028)
      A few suggestions:

      1) Use a fine grit sand paper to clean the contacts on the games as well as the pin connector

      2)(This is for other readers, I guess). You don't need to buy a new connector. Take your nes apart, and use a small screwdriver to pry all the pins up slightly.

      3) Use a game genie. It's a tighter fit, and usually solves the problem (you don't have to use the codes if you don't want to). This might be a good solution for you since you can leave it plugged into the nes always, instead of pulling out your pin connector trying to remove it. It's ugly because it sticks out though

      4) Find one of those rare top-loading nes machines.

      5) Find one of those ultra-rare arcade nes machines

    • Get a top-loading NES []. They were solidly built and basically blinkey-free.

      You can also get a new NES out of China, if you can find one of the myriad [] of clones []. They generally have better connecters than the original, and are still being produced new to this day.

      The NES is a system that really needs to be played in hardware, not emulated. Ironically, it was it's relative simplicity that made games focus on the physical interaction aspect... something that just doesn't come across as well with the compute
      • I used to have two top-loading NESes, now I have none and I emulate on Xbox but I don't do it much anyhow. Anyway I forced a Game Genie into one of them (I understand that some versions go in easier than others, I used my foot to press mine in) and then I'd swap the rf and power between the two units when I wanted to use the game genie or not. I got them at the flea market in santa cruz, ca, usa.
  • a joke? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    not to troll, but this seems a little fishy. not the fact that they are being released, but the quote from kaplin. she is always well spoken, and that quote is out of character. plus the box art is off. take a good look at that dk box. since when is luigi taking on dk?

    i need not remind you all that april 1st is comming up. this isn't quite as fishy to me as the ati radeon 9500 built for ascii gaming, but there are inconsistancies.
    • Re:a joke? (Score:4, Informative)

      by DarkZero ( 516460 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @02:27AM (#8687576)
      not to troll, but this seems a little fishy. not the fact that they are being released, but the quote from kaplin. she is always well spoken, and that quote is out of character. plus the box art is off. take a good look at that dk box. since when is luigi taking on dk?

      I believe that Perrin Kaplin was simply making a joke, using lame '80s slang to kick off their new retro release. This either soared far over the head of the IGN writer or they simply forgot to point out the joke.
  • PocketNES (Score:3, Informative)

    by triiiple ( 643933 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @02:19AM (#8687548)
    What about PocketNES? [] It's not "official Nintendo" stuff, but it works. Ok, not all games - here's the compatibility list [], anything tagged [P] is good to go. And, yes, you do need the ROMs, PocketNES won't provide them for you... But that what we have the Internet^W backups at home for!
  • by Mupp252 ( 263650 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @02:30AM (#8687584)
    If they were polished versions of the games (ala Metroid: Zero Mission.. I'm too lazy to link) I'd be more then happy to shell out the $20. Hell, I'd shell out full GBA price for that.

    Until that happens I'll be just as satisfied with Zelda on my emulator. (I own the original copy so don't hound me out.)
  • My concept image from March 3rd: []

    The Nintendo image: ion_032604_000.jpg []

    I missed labeling the A and B buttons, but other than that, they look pretty similar. I like mine better though :-)

  • Europe (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Vexware ( 720793 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @04:58AM (#8688024) Homepage

    This Game Boy Advance Famicon/NES with NES games package has first of all been released in Japan, which I read the said series would be exclusive in, and it is now America which is granted with its release. I truely hope Nintendo seriously consider releasing it on the European market, as over here, it would sell like hot buns. Why is the European gaming market always the last one considered when a game is released? On the Nintendo France forums, people are crying and even writing petitions to have Baten Kaitos and Naruto (also Animal Crossing, which is not planned to be released in France) sold over here. There is a real gaming public over here and for some reason, it does not seem to be taken seriously, at all: in the majority of cases, we are always the last to get a bite on the good games; a number of awesome video games products and gimmicks stay exclusive to Japan, when I am sure that they would be a real success here.

    Of course, there is the difference in culture, which I know plays the main role in this game of releases and exclusivities. Whereas in the 'land of the rising sun', video gaming has become a cult phenomenom, a true subculture, to the point of having been banalized, here in Europe we seem to have been somewhat "late" in on the market, or so that is what it looks like. Japan has known a real growth in the technology market and America is not far off (if not on a par with) the Japanese technology market, but this does not mean Europe is not ready to be the host to new kinds of technology, which seems to be the constructors' perception of the situation. Their is a real and serious gaming audience in Europe and one that could be of profit, which is, let's not forget, why companies sell games. How could they not understand us being frustrated on being left out on some products which we will never get our hands on excepted in the pages of our favorite magazine? The culture difference is a big factor in this game, as you can notice if you compare the prices of games in Japan to those of the same games in Europe, but I am pretty sure that one can affirm that Europe is ready for the new games and gimmicks, and that there is a public here which can be taken seriously.

    Now don't get me wrong, I never said we would want all Japanese releases over here, become some are seriously quite dodgy (what's with the manga whorehouse puzzle games?), but some have true appeal over here and not only to an "elitist" bunch of gamers, but also to a genuine and expanding public which is ready to hand over the cash to get these gems. The best I can hope for is one of the major Japanese companies of the industry seeing the potential of this market; I am conscious this is something which shall not happen overnight, let alone happen at all perhaps, but we over here need to be seen as gamers now, and not only as 'hobbyists'. Whoever knows, maybe one day video games will be as banalized over here as they are in Japan, but as long as the European public is not seen as a serious one, that will not happen... Though will it ever?

    • Easy Explanation (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Syncdata ( 596941 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @01:55PM (#8689659) Journal
      Japan gets the games first, because the japanese companies code it with Japanese text.
      The US market gets it next, because we're a large market which only speaks one language (theoretically).
      You get games last, because they have to be localized in several languages, plus you have a different TV standard (not applicable in the case of GBA games).
      Why is animal crossing probably not going to make it over there? I don't think that it sold that well in the US, and given the sheer ammount of text that needs to be translated into french/spanish/german/Italian, NOJ probably won't release it.
      In short, Europe gets games last, or not at all, because the number of languages spoken on the continent fragments the available market for each translation of the game. More effort, less reward.
  • Nintendo is crazy. They have the worlds most advanced handheld, and they continue to pump out older game titles on it, and, expect us to pay 20 to 40 US dollars for it. I dont see the logic in it anymore. I am through waving their flag. They can go down without me.
    • The logic is simple. People will pay good money for nostalgia. The development costs for releasing these games are close to nothing. Whether they sell a million or a handful, it makes perfect economic sense for Nintendo to do this. And it's not like new titles aren't being released for the system.

      I'm sure there are people out there who are happy to see some older games released. I'm personally considering picking up Ice Climbers and Super Mario Bros.
  • Just a Thought (Score:3, Informative)

    by Gothic_Walrus ( 692125 ) on Saturday March 27, 2004 @09:56AM (#8688606) Journal
    From what I've heard, the main reason that the games are selling in Japan is as a collector's item. Why? The packaging and game carts themselves are reproductions of the originals. [] People have been buying them not because of the game itself, but because of the nostalgia value that comes with the presentation. Nintendo of Japan has acknowledged this, issuing a special (and collectible to boot) storage box to hold your games []

    Nintendo of America may have removed one of the biggest selling points of the series by using standard GBA packaging and carts. Americans won't pay $20 for these games, and the retro appeal that made the Japanese versions collectors items is gone.

    Way to go, Nintendo.

    • Not only that, but they aren't releasing all the titles over here. Mappy Land and Mario Bros. aren't going to see the light of day.
      • Mario Bros? Unless I'm mistaken, isn't that the game that come with every Super Mario game for GBA? I think I've got 2 copies of it already and don't need to buy another version that comes alone.
        • There was an arcade game by the name of Mario Brothers [] that's completely different than the Super Mario Brothers [] that was released for the NES.

          Odds are you've played the arcade's been on the cart with every one of the Mario GBA games, including Mario and Luigi. It was also included in Super Mario Brothers 3 for the NES - remember that spiffy little game you get when you select a spot that the second player is on?

  • According to some contacts I have at Gamestop, River City Ransom is being remade for GBA.


    Are we having fun yet?
  • It's 2004. In 1993 Nintendo released Super Mario All Stars. You would think you'd be paying less in 2004 for these games than in 1993. That is not the case! In 2004 Mario Bros. 2 and Mario Bros. 3 on GBA cost the same price ($60) as Mario Bros. 1, 2, 3 and Lost Levels in Mario All Stars did. You gotta love Nintendo.
  • I suspect that, if they wanted to, N could include maybe 30+ games on a single cartridge rather than making a single one for each classic game. Maybe you would be more willing to pay 20 if they stacked games onto the cats - EG having all 4-5 (?) Mario games on one, etc.
  • My wish list: Mike Tysons Punch Out Crystalis Doctor Mario. Almost makes me want to by a flashcart for my GBA. But the price aint right.

Our business in life is not to succeed but to continue to fail in high spirits. -- Robert Louis Stevenson