If you ever wondered what to play while bored one night, or were just curious what games we tackled in our youth, look no further then our Review Section, which is now open! Aside from Retro Gaming reviews, we are also tackling newer games that are remakes, or new games done in a retro style. Basically anything that would appeal to the retro gaming crowd.

Check them out today.

Product: SF30 Pro Controller
Developer: 8Bitdo
Price: $49.99 (USD)

Reviewed by: Metallic Joe

(NOTE: Before I get into the meat and potatoes of this review, I do need to clarify that I only got a chance to test this controller on PC and the Nintendo Switch. It boasts compatibility with both a Mac and a Raspberry Pi system. It also works with Xbox, Android, and Steam (also heard rumors it can be used with an iPhone, but I haven't seen it in action). )

Chinese-based and Amazon mainstays 8Bitdo are best known for producing assorted wireless retro-styled controllers. Despite being more pricey then most USB alternatives, the company's offerings have been very high quality (as high quality as a 3rd party product can be). The NES30 Pro was a replica NES controller souped up to have all the buttons of a PS3 controller, plus awesome LED lights. Based on how that controller performed, I invested immediately in the SF30 Pro, a SNES-type controller with dual shoulder buttons and R3/L3 joysticks. Plus rumble and motion controls.

Now then, the first thing that one has to absolutely do when taking this controller out of the box is to go on the 8bitdo website and download the latest firmware and follow the instructions on how to update. If you're not tech savvy, you may need to get someone to set up the controller so all you need to do is turn on the power button. This was a slight knock on the overall score but it's understandable as not every system is the same obviously.

After all is said and done, I fired up some emulators and tested it out. First thing I noticed about this controller was that it weighed almost the same as an original SNES controller, It even looks very similar (I got the SF30, which is the Super Famicon version with the brightly colored buttons). It also didn't require a long charge (VIA USB 3.0). Very responsive, and it just felt natural playing Super Mario World. To push it to the limits, I tried a round of Super Metroid, which requires a certain way to hold the X, A, B, Y buttons for optimum dashing and speed. Needless to say it held up and I was definitely impressed.

It's not without faults, though. I've tested it out on Final Fantasy for the NES and had occasions that the down button seemed to work on it's own and occasionally the controller locked up. It hasn't happened on the Nintendo Switch (during a marathon Mario Kart 8 Deluxe session) and it so far hasn't happened on any Steam games (Cuphead seemed to work just fine). It did make for an interesting Twitch session one time. Also pairing it via Bluetooth took a little trial and error, though it wasn't ridiculously hard. The controller supposedly has a way to set up turbo, but aside from the turbo switches on most emulators, I haven't figured out how to set it up on other platforms. I have decent finger speed and the only game I ever played where I felt turbo wasn't cheating was Track & Field II, so this wasn't all that important.
Speaking of the buttons, I've had a few USB controllers over the years and had the buttons wear down after some abuse, without fail. This one hasn't after a few months of use. It's somewhat durable as well, though I wouldn't recommend too much abuse.

One other fault with the design I felt was the most annoying was the battery light. It's literally a small LED light at the top of the controller, some place that is seldom looked at as the shoulder buttons are rarely looked at before pressing. The NES30 Pro had a bright LED on each side that glowed red for almost dead battery, this controller had no such thing and was annoying when the battery died mid game.

It's flaws, however, haven't taken away from the fact that it just feels more natural to play retrogames and even some of the newer platform games with a controller that feels exactly like a souped up SNES paddle. I'm sold, and you should be too if you have the funds to purchase. Just watch that battery light occasionally.

Rating: 8.5/10

It may have been a little while but we're finally back with the newest edition of the podcast!!

Welcome back! On this newest edition, the 240p Club Podcast tackles swatting on the first part of our latest podcast, covers a wide variety of controllers released for the various systems of yesteryear, and finishes off with a roundup of retro-gaming related releases for the next gen systems. And remember N64 affectionados, direct all N64 controller love to Metallic Joe and his hatred for that system's first-party controller.

As usual, available as well on iTunes and Google Play! Please leave us a review if you use these medias to connect to us.

Of course, you can also listen right here:

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the founding of Japanese game designer SNK, the company will explore their back catalogue by releasing a mini version of their seminal 1990 arcade cabinet loaded with Neo Geo software. The system is indeed mini (registering a 3.5 inch display) and will have an HDMI port to play these games on a modern TV as well as external controller ports (no word if these are USB based or otherwise).

No release date has been announced but this looks to be a wonderful thing for those of us that missed the first go of the Neo Geo (mainly due to the $650 price tag in 1992 and $200 games). No word of a retail price yet but it's safe to say the system's going to be significantly cheaper than the original full-sized model.

-Metallic Joe-

iam8bit, the company that brought to us the special edition of Street Fighter 2 for it's 25th anniversary, is at it again. For Mega Man's 30th Anniversary (apparently being celebrated all year by Capcom), the companies are teaming up to release $100 collector reproductions of the classic Mega Man 2 and Mega Man X.  Both carts will work with the original NES and SNES hardware respectively and will feature 1000 limited edition blue "glow-in-the-dark" carts chosen at random.

Also included is an "expanded instruction booklet" and a few other "surprises" packed in. If you're a serious collector and have the cash to lay down for an awesome collectors item, these may be worth purchasing.

Keep in mind both will also be available to play on the next gen systems when Mega Man Legacy Collection 1 & 2 (available now) and Mega Man X Legacy Collection 1 & 2 (July 24th) get released.

-Metallic Joe-

Happy May the Fourth!

In celebration, the 240p Club will all be playing the SNES games that make up this fine trilogy! Join us this month for an epic playthrough.

-Metallic Joe-

The Mega Man X Legacy Collection 1 & 2 has a release date finally! July 24th, 2018 the collections will be launched for all systems for $20 each, $40 for a physical 2-disc copy (the Nintendo Switch version comes with a cart and a code for a free download of part 2).

Mega Man X Legacy Collection 1 will feature Mega Man X and X2 (originally released for SNES), X3 (Playstation version) and X4 (released for the original Playstation and Sega Saturn). Legacy Collection 2 will feature X5, X6 (both for Playstation and Saturn) X7 and X8 (Playstation 2 original release).

 In related news, the Mega Man Legacy Collection 1 & 2 will see a Nintendo Switch release May 22nd (physical release comes with a download code for the second part). This features the original Mega Man 1-10 games split between 2 collections.

-Metallic Joe-

A few months after Todd Rogers was stripped of his records on Atari's Dragster, another record holder has been stripped of his title.

Twin Galaxies has stripped Billy Mitchell's high score of 1,062,800 on Donkey Kong set between 2005 and 2007 and banned him from future attempts due to achieving his score allegedly on MAME (an arcade emulator for the PC/Mac). Also stricken was a Donkey Kong Jr. score of 1,270,900.

To add some more controversy to this story, Mitchell supposedly achieved these scores at an arcade on Florida. However, the only referee in attendance was none other then Todd Rogers.

Kids, if you're attempting a world record, make sure you have a buddy with a camera recording said scores. And don't attempt these at home (unless you indeed have one of these arcade machines at home).

-Metallic Joe-

Some of the last titles anyone would expect to get a reissue have, indeed, gotten a reissue. Kemco classic point and click titles The Uninvited, Shadowgate, and Deja Vu are all making their way to PS4 and Xbox One on Halloween in one collection.

Shadowgate is a castle-invading adventure infamous for it's torches, and trying to figure out how to get through the blasted door in the first scene of the game. The Uninvited is a present-day search for your older sister through a haunted mansion. Deja Vu is a detective story set in 1940s Chicago. All three were considered scary in the 1980s when they were released but may seem a bit dated these days, especially if you're not familiar with the point and click genre. However, don't let that stop you from digging into these classic titles from yesteryear like an old horror film and enjoy your Halloween.

-Metallic Joe-

The next in a series of reissues, the classic Mega Man X series is getting a release for all the current systems July 24th. If you can't wait until then, fear not! Pre-orders are now available for all systems. While this wasn't the first reissue of these classic titles (Mega Man X Collection for the PS2, Gamecube, and Xbox in 2005), chances are you may not have one of those older systems to play said collection (or the originals).

Twitch playthroughs of said titles will be coming shortly.

-Metallic Joe-

If you're near the Philadelphia area in the US, a brand new exhibit debuted at the end of March called Game Masters at the Franklin Institute. The interactive Game Masters exhibit showcases arcade and console games from yesteryear and is fully interactive.

According to the press release:

Game Masters, a landmark exhibition celebrating five decades of the world’s most ingenious video game designers, and featuring a remarkable 100+ playable games debuts Saturday, March 31 at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. The 14,000 square-foot exhibition explores the evolution of gaming from arcade classics such as Space Invaders and Pac-Man, to iconic console-based games featuring Sonic the Hedgehog and Rock Band, through to today's indie hits like Real Racing 2, Fruit Ninja, and Angry Birds.
The Franklin Institute’s highly-anticipated spring/summer exhibition will be housed in the Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion and the Mandell Center, and feature an additional 1200 square feet of interactive programming space within the exhibit developed by The Franklin Institute to explore topics such as coding, robotics and technology, gamification and learning, and problem-solving.

Due to licensing, Nintendo products will not be featured during the exhibit. However, Sega is in full force and many of their games have made their way to the display!

To get tickets to the museum exhibit, head to The Official Franklin Institute Page or stop by in person at 271 N. 21st Street Philadelphia, PA 19103. Parking is limited, so do as us Philadelphians do and take a train or bus down to enjoy the sights!

-Metallic Joe-

Metallic Joe, Nikki, and Ray are back for Podcast Episode 31! Today we discuss portable technology and how it's taken over our lives and caused people to lose focus on even things right in front of them. We're also covering the Game Masters exhibit at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. We look back to 2016 and remastering our first podcast for YouTube (as well as recording Podcast 6), say "Happy 25th" to the original Breath of Fire game for SNES, and end up on Nikki's adventures in the Fire Emblem series. Just remember, don't play Game Boy and drive at the same time!

As usual, available on iTunes! Please rate us if you like what we're doing.

Happy 25th Birthday to Capcom RPG classic Breath of Fire! Released in the US by Squaresoft in 1993 for the SNES, the game lives on as an all-time classic.

-Nikki Tuonela-

Get ready, Nintendo pugilists! Ancient Nintendo arcade game Punch Out!! is making it's way to the Switch as a download-only title. The arcade port should be available as you're reading this, so pick up your Switch and play today, Mac!

-Metallic Joe-

A Podcast a day in April will be uploaded to our YouTube channel, including one that's already available as of today! Podcast 1 was of course our first one and the only one to this day to have 2 entirely separate takes recorded for it. The YouTube remaster is an EXCLUSIVE! The original is still up and available, but if you go to our Youtube channel you'll see the remastered version that I edited from an entirely different take (plus edited out the fluff and the Oregon Trail playthrough, which would have been much better on our Twitch page). It was definitely a blast down memory lane editing that and I gain more perspective when bands remaster their older albums.

Enjoy it!

-Metallic Joe-

Starting on April 1, we’ll gradually be uploading all of our past podcasts to YouTube, one for every day of April around 12pm Eastern. Not to mention, all future podcasts will henceforth become available on our YouTube channel at the same time they go live on here and iTunes. So if you’re not following our channel yet, this is definitely a good time to do so!

Click Here for our YouTube Page!

-Lord Kuddy-

"I don't wanna grow up... I'm a Toys "R" Us kid..."

If you've grown up in the era of NES or SNES, there's a good chance you've heard that famous jingle on television sometime, or even hummed it somewhere. Toys "R" Us was an important part of our childhoods and it's announced closure this year brought back a flood of memories for anyone that's been inside it's colorful doors or ever picked up one of those paper slips in front of the video games and brought it up to the counter to exchange it for your purchased game.

The chain was founded in 1948 by Charles P. Lazarus and evolved in the late 50s into Toys "R" Us. It was headquartered in Wayne, New Jersey. Lazarus passed away at age 94 on March 22, 2018, and the company he founded is expected to go with him in June 2018 after liquidation.

Times Square Ferris Wheel (taken by me in 2003)

There are a number of reported reasons the chain is going under. A shift in shopping to online retailers, expensive products, a shift over to a lot of digital content, bad money management, bad restructuring deal... there's a lot of blame going around. Kids these days are content ordering their favorite games online and waiting as long as the download finishes to play them as opposed to going to a brick and mortar store and picking out a physical copy. Kids these days are content ordering their favorite toys off Amazon or other retailers, or there's a Wal-Mart or Target in shorter distance. We've even heard the ridiculous statement on social media that "Millennials aren't having as many kids" as a reason for why the chain is going under.

Fact of the matter is it's going under. Whatever the reason, we're left with the memories of what was once the go-to for any toy or video game. Kids in the 80s dreamed of a shopping spree there. Kids in the 90s eagerly awaited the toy catalogue in November to browse what they wanted for the Holidays.

I don't wanna grow up!
Toys "R" Us is synonymous with my video gaming experience. There was one close by, and equal distance away a Kiddie City chain (smaller version of a Toys "R" Us). Both had the same layout for video games. But Toys "R" Us had something special. It's colorful columns in the 1980s made it feel like a kid was walking into a magical world. You walked in, past a clearance section, into the store proper. For a kid obsessed with Nintendo in the 80s, the video game section seemed to glow like Willy Wonka's magical front gates into the Chocolate Factory. There were no games on display, just covers, and a pouch underneath with tickets. You brought one of those tickets to the front counter, paid for the game, and exchanged it in a glass encased booth near the exit for your purchased title. Same thing for video game systems.

As a kid my family used to purchase a small pool every year for the backyard (city living meant a 1 1/2 foot pool was sufficient to get cool in the summer time). Friends from school would come over, we'd play in the pool for a few hours, then plop in front of our NES and play video games for hours. Snacks were provided, games were played, it was a more innocent time. Rainy days were spent with action figures, cartoons, and of course, head first into Ninja Gaiden, or Double Dragon, or even Mega Man 2. After school allowed a brief period of snacks, playing a game, and watching a cartoon or 2 before tackling homework. And of course that feeling during the holidays of tearing open those Toys "R" Us purchased goodies and spending the day enjoying the holiday haul before and after dinner.
I got me a Game Boy from Toys R Us! (1990 Metallic Joe)

Toys "R" Us was a huge part of my childhood. Even if you sub out the chain with Kay Bee, Caldor or even one of the early Target stores, chances are you may have had a similar experience growing up. Watching the liquidation is like a part of my childhood being gone for good, even if the store has long been remodeled and changed, and of course not even closely resembling the 80s incarnation.

Almost every person involved in the Retro Gaming scene will more then likely say they're into it because it brings them back to their childhoods. People much younger into the same scene may say it's to bring them to an era before they were born that's been described by a lot of bloggers as magical. It can be argued as well that a lot of the older generation would claim their childhoods were in fact the best era and the following generations just don't know how to have fun properly. Regardless of what era you claim as your own, chances are Toys "R" Us was a huge part of it, and that's the real, actual tragedy of this corporate entity's downfall.

-Metallic Joe-

Are YOU a bad enough dude (or chick) to purchase this title? One of the all time classic arcade beat-em-ups is making it's way to the Nintendo Switch this week. The arcade version of Bad Dudes vs. Dragon Ninja (and not the weaker NES Bad Dudes port) is making it's way to the Nintendo e-Shop on March 21st.

Developed by Flying Tiger Entertainment, Inc. the arcade port was originally developed by Data East for the arcades in 1988. No information has been released yet on extra features, if any.

-Metallic Joe-

Sonic Mania players shot the trusty blue hedgehog straight up the charts last summer with what was critically hailed as one of the best Sonic titles in years. Designed by longtime fans of the series, it was a huge hit. Now this summer, Sega is doing more with their iconic mascot.

Sonic Mania Plus was announced for a Summer 2018 release and will feature a few new features to the game, including Encore Mode (which will change a few levels and add some special challenges) two new characters (Ray the Flying Squirrel and Mighty the Armadillo, which appeared in the Japan-only arcade title SegaSonic the Hedgehog first appearing in 1993) and most importantly feature a physical release (supposedly including a reversible cover that allows the game to look like a Genesis title) that comes with an art book.

Those that purchased the digital version of Sonic Mania will be able to purchase this upgrade, though no price has been discussed yet. The physical release is said to retail for $29.99. Look for Sonic Mania Plus in the warm summer months to come! Game will be available for Steam, Xbox, Playstation 4, and Nintendo Switch.

-Metallic Joe-

Continuing on with his celebration of the 30th anniversary of the release of Final Fantasy for the Famicom, Metallic Joe picks up the controller again and takes on the Lich (The Earth Fiend) and Kary, the Fiend of Fire in combat. Check it out below:

-Metallic Joe-
Previous PostOlder Posts Home