Welcome to another edition of Retro Newsflash, the bi-weekly column where we cover news and current events on the retro gaming scene. Y’know, Paperboy was never one of my favorites. Just thought I would mention that. Bring on the briefs.
Retron 4 to be Revealed at Midwest Gaming Classic
Once upon a time, the Retron 3 cloning device enabled gamers to play their NES, SNES, and Sega Genesis cartridges all on one console. But now that machine’s maker, Hyperkin, is upping the ante: On March 23, at the Midwest Gaming Classic (which I am looking forward to attending — are you?), the Retron 4 will be revealed, which is capable of playing the previously mentioned three systems’ games while adding the functionality to play Game Boy Advance titles as well. If you cannot make it to the event, consider stopping by Hyperkin’s Facebook page, where they are slowly revealing the Retron 4 in a series of banner images. While opinions may differ as to the legitimacy, quality, and ultimate staying power of such generic units, they certainly show no signs of slowing down in their popularity and evolution. I just hope we can start the rumor mill about the Retron 5 soon. Everyone loves new-console rumors, right?
“New Super Famicom” Concept Art Revealed
Fair warning: This is not a real product, nor are there any plans to put it into production, so do not get too excited. But a retro gamer can dream, right? This story begins with a tweet, featuring an image hosted by Flickr. The idea is a new Nintendo console, but one that supports gameplay from old systems in a unique way. In theory, you would send in your cartridges/disks, then be able to download the games to this all-in-one, all-downloads New Super Famicom for your enjoyment. Some specifications and other technical details are even shown, along with what might be the sweetest looking theoretical controller ever. Seriously, the controller alone makes this worth some thought.
Dad Hacks NES Version of Donkey Kong With Pauline as Protagonist
So there is this father, and he enjoys playing classic video games with his 3-year-old daughter. That alone is noteworthy and cool, but what caught more attention recently was his efforts to hack the 8-bit cartridge version of Donkey Kong in order to satisfy his daughter’s desire to play as the girl. Apparently, not only did she want to play as someone of the same gender she was, but she was used to controlling the Princess in Super Mario Bros 2, and became bummed out when pops had to explain that this was not an option in Donkey Kong. There is even a video, showing off the fine work that results in an impressively native feel.
New SNES Multi-Cart Gaining Funds on Kickstarter
The homebrew scene and the Kickstarter community are truly becoming the best of friends. One sign of this surefire commitment is the “Super 4 in 1 Multicart for the SNES” project, aiming to release a new Super Nintendo cartridge with four different, full homebrew games on it. This also represents a great act of cooperation among SNES enthusiasts, since the four games are all from different, independent developers. If your SNES still gets play but you are looking for a few new games, you might want to give this a look.
Follow-Ups & Quick Hits
Fist of Awesome is a retro-style lumberjack-themed beat-’em-up coming to PC, Mac, Ouya, and other platforms later this year. A recent update from its developer, however, brings both good and bad news. … In Tokyo, on April 27th, is going to be an art show entirely dedicated to Famicom cartridge art. Neat. … Speaking of art, I have made amends with Mike Black, subject of my biggest mistake in 2012, and you should consider checking out his artwork site.
And that, my friends, is a wrap. If you have any news tips, please send them to me. Seriously, newshounds: If you have a lead on something, let me know, because I want to report it! Remember: It’s dangerous to go alone. Thanks for reading.