Retro Game Challenge 2/GameCenter CX: Arino no Chōsenjō 2
  • A long time ago I spoke of a video game called Retro Game Challenge for the Nintendo DS. The summary of that is basically this. The game show in Japan called Game Center CX has comedian Shinya Arino try to finish retro games though out an entire day. The game sends you back to the past when the Japanese NES, the Famicom, came out while young child Arino watches you play video games. Durning this time Adult Arino will give you challenges based on the game that your playing. There was a Shoot-em-up, Platformer/puzzle, Racing game, Ninja Gaiden based game and even an RPG. Xseeds game did the translation officially. Now for the very late bad news. It didn't sell enough and we end up with a sequel being released in Japan only.

    GameCenter CX: Arino No Chosenjo 2 or Retro Game Challenge 2 is a great sequel. In the year 2014, there has been a finish Fan Translation. I always felt funny when a game is trapped in Japan. The Namco X Capcom RPG game where they seem to beat up the enemy was an amazing sight. Yet we never got that game. Other games either based on Anime or crossovers that can't be licensed has been happening to this day still. But I think if you ever remembered Game Center CX or Retro Game Challenge on the DS that you should somehow play this game. Now let's get started with just focusing on the games, again.

    [Wiz-Man] Fusion of Pac-man/Games that allowed you to attack and that classical Maze like gameplay.
    This game starts a small little green ghost that has a wizard hat on. By picking up red or blue magic wands, the ghost will be able to defend himself against the random enemies in each maze. Red wands will summon a small burst of fire, while the blue wands will summon a small ice burst. Both wands work directly in front of Wiz-Man and there is a secret gold wand that will destroy both colored enemies. Each level requires you to collect all the dots of red and blue color in order to make the exit door appear. Of course with the game having two different colors, this entire point allows the players to get bonus score if they read the manual and figure out all of the game's secrets. Red enemies need to be defeated by the blue ice wand, while blue enemies need to be defeated with the red fire wand. In my honest opinion, this game does a great job at updating the classical NES Maze games. Pac man players don't have to deal with ghosts and are able to grab a wand to defend them self against the enemies. Which brings up its flaw. The game feels a bit too easy. If you're in trouble, use magic to stun the enemy or destroy them. Long as you don't get boxed in you'll be fine. Just be aware more enemies can spawn in to cause more trouble at each level. It still get's a thumb up.

    [Mutekiken Kung-Fu] A very strong mix of Kung-Fu and Karateka.
    In the classic NES game called Kung-Fu, you control a simple character that can punch or kick enemies away. The sprites for the game are very simple and the enemies damage you just by touching you. In Karateka the character is further animated and the controls are a bit more precise. You also have to defeat a set of strong bosses, before they shove you back over a cliff if you run away too much. Mutekiken Kung Fu takes the Karateka or Prince of Persian style of animation while keeping the combat close to Kung-Fu. This is honestly a nice game. One of the awkward things is that it makes you walk from right to left. Something that not a lot of games ever did. Anyway, the bosses are challenging and you'll have to figure out the game's secrets to allow your self to finish the whole game, or just get really good for a no-hit run. Thumbs up.

    [Demon Returns] A mix of Ghost and Goblins, Adventure Island and Mario.
    Robot Ninja Haggle Man was the main star of the last Retro game. Demon Returns is going to replace him in that department. You play a Prince that has been turned into a Demon, colored purple that can use his powerful claws to knock enemies down, use it again to cause a flip enemy to spin and be able to jump on top of them to ride the spinning enemy through the level. Koopa shells are feeling lucky at this point.  However the now demon prince must eat apples to keep up his strength or else he will lose a life. I keep talking about how the entire Retro Game Challenge line up feels like a fusion of games and it just is. Demon Returns takes plenty of game mechanics from the classic platformer series. It's not a Ghost and Goblins game in difficulty but it contains the plot. It has an energy timer like Adventure Island. Overall with all of these fused together we end up with a masterful game. The end bosses might be slightly too reused but all of these games are based on old retro consoles. The levels are a classical platformer and it's hard to forget if we are not playing some odd Mario level. It just works so well, it gets a thumbs up.

    [Arino Ace Detective Parts 1 & 2] - Japanese Mystery games like Famicom Detective Club series.
    In the west, programmers started to make some type of game where you had to point and click a character around to do tasks. Kind of like in Monkey Island, before that games like King Quest, had you "Grab item" or "Use Item" though a basic text box. In Japan, a series of menus that had [Talk] [Use] [Think] [Move] were being made where the other part of the screens would have large boxes to display characters and locations. To Super Smash Brothers Melee fans you likely know of Ayumi Tachibana, a trophy that was kept in the English released and stated the odd game we never got. Today players will mention something like Phoneix Wright, 999, Danga Ronpa as the sort of text adventure game. That's what Arino Ace Detective is exactly. To not spoil the plot at all, you will use action boxes to tell Arino what to do in this game. This requires a bit of reading which comes to a translation flaw. If the translation is not perfect it can confuse a player on what is being said, who is saying it and what needs to be done. I'll state that this is a VERY early game of its type. Even early Sierra/Lucas Arts game players might get stuck. Heaven forbids the TellTale fans. My best advice is this, do everything, try everything and remember this. Arino does his best thinking during his live performances by using a cooling pad on his forehead. This game gets a sideways thumb from me and I enjoy the early text adventure games. Oh by the way, normally during a Challenge you have to restart the game when a Challenge is done. Arino requires you to "save" in this game so you will be able to keep progress. Also, you will be finishing this game in its entirety. Just to warn you.

    [GunDuel] Most of the advance shoot em ups that flow from bottom to top.
    I love shoot em ups. It's a race against bullets flying everywhere that few and far between making you feel this rush during gameplay. Whether the entire screen is filled and you must maze around the bullets in a hell format, or countless enemies will blast you down all around you. Shoot em ups are, almost easy to play no matter how bad they really are. The game allows you to change weapon type though pickups. With the second pick up being used by your jet in its secondary function. A fire pickup will leave fire wheels around your jet, while the Vulcan will shoot sideways. You can switch between the two weapons to have one as your main and the other as your secondary. It also keeps the end boss design which all shoot em ups should have. The game also allows the AI character of Arino to be your second player. Yes, few a far between do we get a game that gives you an AI player, that's not some gun guy or the President daughter that we have to protect. Anyway, this game is a good shoot em up game. It depends if you like those games. But this gets my thumbs up full way.

    [Tirotos] A falling block puzzle game.
    I feel like I don't need to review this. It's not Tetris, nor Hatrist, nor is it Columns. Never the less this game works like this. You will get either a straight piece that is 3 blocks long. Or an L shaped piece that is three blocks long. The pattern on the blocks must match in a line of 3. It's sort of a weaker Tetris, and the blocks will fall off and not hang in mid-air. You can face the endless mode, against AI to send junk blocks to opponents because of your great combos, and I'm sure you could face against Arino. It's a good puzzle block game, maybe not great but I liked it. I should point out this is played on a game boy console, so enjoy a good old Black and White screen.

    [Guadia Quest Saga] Dragon Quest 2/Shin Megami Tensei
    Again, the RPG returns. Once more, its a team of three and you can have Guadia's join you as Allys. I feel like Lufia 2 should be added to the top list. The enemy that you pact with can gain skills and level up during your gameplay. This allows them to be changed in the first place but also makes the RPG have more depth. No longer is it about finding the ONE Guadia to join your team, it's about leveling them up to learn better skills and picking which one they should keep.  Each of the three characters can have a Guadia and they will get to keep two skills to use. This game outright uses parts of the first game, but I feel that it did add enough new things to make the game fun and enjoyable. Hopefully, you like RPG's, because we will be here for awhile. Weapons have a random Dice feature. They will outright tell you what rolls they can get which can make weaker ATK weapons always hit, but make the heavy super great sword have a few miss dice.

    [Super Demon Returns.] Demon Returns but in 16-bit graphics.
    This is the final game. Technically. It is the Demon Returns game but in lovely 16-bit format and I think they try to copy Mode 7 here an there. Bless them. Anyway, this game adds a few extra things but it's seriously like playing an upgraded game with better graphics. Bigger boss rooms, bigger levels. Background full of color. It's a wonderful thing. My only regret is that they just kind of stopped here.

    Now I'm going to mention a few things. Some of these are repeats some are not. Retro Game Challenge 2 has manuals for all the games. Also, there is a build in fake Video Game Magazine with cheat codes. This is a stand-alone game that you don't need to use the Internet if you get stuck. Thou again the Arino Ace Detective game might fumble you up. There are two major new things that are added to the game. Your able to visit a game store which has a few minor new games and remakes of the older RGC 1 games. You have Cosmic Gate with better graphics, play as the female ninja in Robot Ninja Haggleman, a NEW version of Rally King, a Score Attack mode of Star Prince SA and Triotos in SNES color graphics.  Some of these allow Arino to play as the second player again.

    There is also a large list of Challenges that are placed under the "Daily Challange". Each day that the DS can register a new Challange will be given to you. These are based on all the games and can be labeled as quite easy to quite hard. It overall keeps the game running since there is about most of a year's worth of these things. Finish them and get rewarded in small ways.

    Retro Game Challenge 2 is an oddly. We know how English players have to play this game. Ether though method one, or through the more physical method two. Both leading to the company not getting any funds or support from us. YET. The game is very old. It was very fun and can really showcase to people that want to make a game on how much updates can really make the next game feel bigger and better. The graphical changes over time are a plus, added a few remix of the old games from the first one is good and making us go from NES/Megadrive/Game Boy/SNES is wonderful.

    My final statement is two things. One, you SHOULD, find a way to play this game or the first game. Trust me on this. The second is the sadder news. GameCenter CX: 3-Choume no Arino was released on the Nintendo 3DS, which is Region Locked. Which is, not impossible but harder to break apart. The likely hood of a physical translated fan game being playable on that console is quite low. I know nothing about this game but I await the chance that I might be able to play it. I was not crazy enough to get a Japanese 3DS but with the current "shadow of death" looming over it, maybe it's about time too?

    This is Sandata, Miss you all, take care of your self.
    Noobied by 2sloth Manio