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Video Review: Konami Collector's Series: Arcade Advanced (GBA, 2002)

Video Review: Konami Collector's Series: Arcade Advanced (GBA, 2002)


An Armchair Arcade Video Article


Author and Media Credit: Mark Vergeer
Transcript editing and Online Layout: Bill Loguidice


Do a “Save Target As…” or similar to download the .WMV video file above to your local system
File size: 3.51MB
Running Time: 3:44 minutes



Addendum
: a video showing off hidden features (right click & save as)

Transcript from the Video File:
Hi, this is an Armchair Arcade videogame review, this time by Mark Vergeer, featuring Konami's Arcade Advanced for the Nintendo GameBoy Advance (GBA), yet another attempt by the industry to breathe new life into some old games.

It features no more than six original arcade games, and this time Konami tried their best to create almost arcade perfect conversions of the old games, and I must say I like the result. It's nothing more than that though, no fancy graphics, no enhanced graphics, just something that looks very close to the original sprites and sounds very much like the original arcade. Not only the looks and sounds are similar, but also the gameplay itself actually feels like the arcade originals. It's much unlike other classic rehashes I've played where the games might look and sound similar but the gameplay doesn't really feel the same.

So what games are we talking about?

- Frogger
- Gyruss
- Time Pilot
- Scramble
- Yie Ar Kung-Fu
- Rush'n Attack

You select the games from a fancy game selection screen...

Frogger
As you can see the sounds and even the weird color scheme of the original arcade is preserved. The graphics are almost full size and the screen has to scroll vertically to be able to accommodate the entire playing field on the tiny GameBoy Advance screen. All-in-all a very fine Frogger conversion...

Scramble
The first time I played this game was on the GCE Vectrex game system, then I was exposed to it in the arcades. I must say I prefer the Vectrex version over the arcade. But here you again have a perfectly playable conversion of the arcade original. It plays exactly the same, but to me does feel a lot faster than the original arcade. A game that has multiple levels featuring the same high standards that we saw in the Frogger game...

Time Pilot
I bought this game for my C-64 (Commodore 64) and it was virtually identical to the arcade. I have played this game a lot and I was amazed to see how good the conversion to the GameBoy Advance has succeeded. Everything is there from the parallax scrolling clouds in the sky to the various fighter planes of the different eras that you need to shoot and the parachutists that you can save. Despite the tiny controls of the GameBoy Advance, a very playable experience...

Gyruss
Now there is a game that I truly have played a lot. I bought this for my C-64 when it came out and I was pleasantly surprised to find out that I could play the arcade machine quite well with the skills that I learned on the C-64 version. This is my favourite game on this cartridge and it features all the goodies found in the arcade. Gameplay truly feels identical to the arcade game!

Yie Ar Kung-Fu
One of the first fighter games out there. Not one of my favourites, but this title also features graphics and gameplay that feel the same as the arcade. A very good conversion.

Rush'n Attack
Rush'n Attack is also known as Green Beret and is another fun game that was released on this. I have played this game at the video arcade, the C-64 and on the NES (Nintendo Entertainment System). The C-64 version is a tough game and so is this arcade conversion.


All games feature a multiplayer-mode where it is possible to link up two GameBoy Advance systems and play together. I wasn't able to test out this feature, but I also believe it is possible to connect to systems when only one person uses the cartridge.

I was pleasantly surprised by this arcade collection, perhaps because the games are kept so very close to their original versions.

Graphics 8/10
Sound 8/10
Gameplay 9/10


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Rating
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Comments ...
bullet deshrill | 29 Jul : 10:39

Comments: 72

Nice to see a video review from you, Mark!

Rush 'N Attack is a hard, hard game... As are most games from that era.

bullet Bill Loguidice | 29 Jul : 12:49

Comments: 307

Rush 'N Attack is indeed hard. I enjoy side scrolling action games like that, though (my favorite is probably Rolling Thunder).

I have this GBA title myself and must say that I enjoy it overall. I'm a sucker for compilations and will be getting the Namco anniversary one (yet another one from Namco!) for the PSP when that comes out.


bullet Spin | 29 Jul : 13:19

Comments: 2

Registered: 16 Jan : 08:07
This is such a great cartridge!
What you may not know is that your review is only half done.
The most amazing part of this game pack is what is not advertised.
Cheat code (not sure what else to call it) press on the opening screen of each individual game this sequence. Up Up Down Down Left Right Left Right B button A button.
Should you do it correctly you will hear the coin sound of Frogger.
Now depending on the game you have selected you get a wonderful surprise.
Frogger Enhanced graphics and sounds
Gyruss Enhanced graphics and sounds on new levels
Time Pilot One new level Prehistoric after the space level
Scramble Enhanced graphics and sounds
Yie Ar Kung-fu extra men when you play
Rush’n Attack extra men when you play

The 2 player modes are very fun Frogger is a great 2 player race.
Yie Ar Kung-fu 2 player fight (street fighter like)
Rush’n Attack Play against each other to save captive men.


I highly encourage you to do yet another addition as I am sure this will shock you as how well it done.

The mechanics of the games that have been altered is not changed only the graphics!
I had this game for months loving it without the knowledge of the “Extra” mode.
I had this rated 9 out of 10 before once I found the cheat (I think it was these forums or RGR) I now rate it 10 out of 10.
Truly one of the best made compilation / remakes!

bullet Mark1970 | 29 Jul : 13:24

Comments: 114

Wow, I have had this game for years not knowing about this. Thanks for the added information Spin!

bullet Bill Loguidice | 29 Jul : 14:23

Comments: 307

Whoa, thanks, Spin, I can't wait to try it either!!!

bullet Mark1970 | 30 Jul : 09:15

Comments: 114

I have created an addition to the review that shows off some of the enhancements found in the cartridge.



bullet Mark1970 | 30 Jul : 09:20

Comments: 114

The Enhanced Gyruss graphics have some wierd sort of 'Loony Tune'-effect on me. I wonder why....

bullet Rowdy Rob | 30 Jul : 13:16

Comments: 21

Registered: 18 Jan : 13:02
Great article. I loved all those games when I was younger. As a matter of fact, I'm going to go out and buy this cartridge today, thanks to the review!

bullet Spin | 01 Aug : 09:42

Comments: 2

Registered: 16 Jan : 08:07
First and foremost thanks for the mention in the review.

But I have to disagree with your summation.
The enhanced graphics are perfect.
Now I am sure that point strikes a nerve.
What is perfect about them? The fact that the graphics have been updated and the play mechanics are preserved. Often programmers go overboard trying to enhance the look feel and play.
This is a title that achieves my desired results, preserved play and new look.
Keeping the ability to play the preserved original version or the new look.
I play both versions of these games, and would be horribly unhappy with only a “NEW” version.

The biggest improvement is time pilot. This game has only one new feature. A new level. What classic gamer does not desire a new level in a favorite game? I often plot and plan to hack the code of my favorite arcade classic and add that new level. Who would not like to see Donkey Kong with new screens?
The best part of Time pilot is that you can either play it with or without the level. Something to breathe new life into a game.

Time pilot does have a flaw though. When you finish a level the ship instantly begins the warp. On the arcade you would have a second or 2 before this would occur. Now I do realize this is petty but I got into the habit of ensuring my ship was flying upwards to have the warp field encompass the whole ship. (OK I really played this game a lot)
Nuance in a game remake is the key to happiness

Over all I am very impressed with this title.

New graphics are not the key to success the play mechanics and the little nuances are what make a title excel. A new level now that’s what I truly want. Keep the fancy look and give me something to play further with. Give me both with a preserved version perfect!

Spin

bullet Shane R. Monroe | 01 Aug : 15:13

Comments: 2

Registered: 27 Jan : 17:04
I would like to point out that this version of Frogger (like so many others) suffers from the 'incorrect first level' music. I'm still trying to figure out WHY every home version seems to ditch the actual first musical score from the arcade game.

Check it out for yourself ... I think the Sega version of Frogger on the C64 is one of the few that actually has the right music.

bullet Mark1970 | 02 Aug : 08:49

Comments: 114

Wow, that bit about the music is something that I didn't catch myself. I'm definitely going to check out the sega C64 version and the arcade.
Thanks Shane!


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