Retro Re-release Roundup, week of May 30, 2024

With apologies to Stanley.

Allow me to throw y’all a bone with one more release that fits the true definition of retro: PICROSS S NAMCO LEGENDARY edition, an official Picross game themed around classic Namco pixel art, following the Sega Genesis/Master System-themed game from a couple years back.


Cue Brick

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4
  • Price: $7.99 / €6.99 / £6.29
  • Publisher: Hamster / Konami

What’s this?  An action-puzzle game based on the sliding-tile “15-puzzle” toy, originally developed and distributed in arcades by Konami in 1989 as a sequel of sorts to their popular Loco-Motion/Guttang Guttong, with a conversion produced for the Sharp X68000 by SPS (as the confusingly-spelled “Cueb Runner“) and later adaptations for Sega Genesis/Mega Drive and Game Gear, developed and published by Micronet under the title Junction; the player is challenged to guide the rolling balls across the designated paths on each of the 101 stage, which s achieved by quickly and effciently sliding tiles into the appropriate formations.

Why should I care? Well-worn ideas like these are all about execution, and this take has peppy music and a scoring system that rewards those players who are able to blaze through each stage… what else could one want?

Helpful tip: This game boasted the inclusion of a battery backup that allowed players to save and resume progress after registering a player name and password, and the “machine names” seen on the title screen are, as far as I’m aware, indicative of slightly different password encryption/memory routines, and not something the player needs to concern themselves with. (The ACA version does let you specify a machine name, for what it’s worth.)


Valis: The Phantasm Soldier (PC-88 andFamicom), Valis II (MSX2), Valis III (Mega Drive) & Super Valis IV

  • Platform: Nintendo Switch (worldwide outside of Japan)
  • Price: $15.00 each or equivalent
  • Publisher: Edia

What’re these? An assortment of odds-and-ends from the classic Nihon Telenet anime-infused magical girl action game series, Valis: the original PC-88 version of the first game and its Famicom remix, the MSX2 version of the sequel (not to be confused with the console adaptation of the same name), the Sega Mega Drive adaptation of Valis III and the Super Nintendo title Super Valis IV (a remix of sorts of the PC Engine CD title Valis IV). All of these games were reissued earlier this year as Valis Collection III, and these versions are identical to those found in the collection, but now you can buy ’em one at a time; the feature suite includes control configs, a few screen settings, save states and manual, cutscene and audio galleries.

Why should I care? You consider yourself enough of a Valis fan to want to pick over the dregs of the series but not enough of a fan to have already bought the collection… I mean, I guess the microcomputer versions do have some inherent value that might make one want to grab them and them alone, but understand that this series really just coasted on vibes for most of its run.

Helpful tip: If you’re completely unacquainted with this series and have no idea where to start, you can safely begin (and just as safely end) your Valis vacation with the three PC Engine titles available in the first Valis Collection (and if you want to try one for free-ish, check the NSO SNES app: Super Valis IV is in there.)


Clock Tower Rewind (Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, PC) physical editions via Limited Run Games

  • Price: $34.99 (standard) / $124.99 (collectors edition)
  • Availability: from May 31, 10:00 eastern to June 0, 23:59; ETA October/November (standard), March/April (collectors edition)

It’s been a minute since this release was initially announced, but now it seems like it’s finally ready to go: Clock Tower Rewind, an emulated reissue of the first game in Sunsoft’s classic horror series, originally release for the Super Famcom and now presented by WayForward and LRG with a first-ever official English localization, an animated intro and theme song sung by Silent Hill collaborator Mary Elizabeth McGlynn, motion-comic interpretations of the original event scenes, art and music galleries and more. (Do note that the collector’s edition is not available for the PC version.)

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