Saturday, August 31, 2013

The return of the PC Engine

Sadly, the header above doesn't refer to the return of NEC's PC Engine--quite possibly my all-time favorite console--to Japanese store shelves. Rather, it refers to the return of that system's relevance to my far-too-regular eBay excursions.

That's noteworthy because it's been many months since I last purchased a PC Engine game. In fact, I can't remember the last one I bought. Is it possible that it was Gokuraku! Chuka Taisen (read about it here), which I picked up last November? I think it is.

Anyway, that's neither here nor there, is it? Much more relevant to this particular discussion is the pair of PC Engine games I acquired a few weeks ago: Naxat Soft's Star Mobile and NEC Avenue's Splash Lake, both of which can be seen in the photos below.

Star Mobile, a CD-ROM2 game originally released in 1992, has intrigued me for ages thanks to the fact that it's a Zodiac-themed puzzle game that challenges players to stack stars of different weights on a gilded scale without dumping them into the intergalactic void.

Splash Lake, on the other hand, is an action-puzzler that puts players in the shoes of a legless ostrich (wait a second...) that's tasked with destroying various bridge planks--by pecking them--and sending each stage's baddies into the titular body of water.

I actually owned the North American version of this game, which hit the streets in Japan in 1991 and jumped the pond a year later, way back when, but I stupidly sold it along with the rest of my TurboGrafx-16 collection so I could buy a Japanese Sega Saturn at launch.

I really like the simple-but-cute label that's affixed to Splash Lake's CD, by the way. You can see it in the not-so-stellar photo above, or you can see an appealingly clear scan of it here.

Splash Lake's instruction manual is pretty nice, too--not to mention short--so look for a "Manual Stimulation" post devoted to it to be published sooner rather than later.


RetroKingSimon said...

Some nice purchases there sir! I've played Star Mobile before (a different version though) and couldn't really work out what I was doing! Splash Lake sounds cool too, although I doubt I'll get to play it anytime soon (unless there's another version). Keep up the Engine buys though, it's a fantastic little machine :) said...

Thanks, Simon! Also, does this mean Star Mobile was release for other platforms? If so, I didn't know that! Which other version have you played, by the way?

Also, I'll definitely be keeping up the PCE purchases. I already have a ton of games for it, but my purchases have slowed down in the last year or so as I've focused my attention on the 3DS, DS and PS1. I'll get back to the PCE later this year or early next, though :)