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Review

NES Remix 2 Review

  • First Released
  • Reviewed:
  • WIIU
Jeremy Jayne on Google+

Remixed shopping list.

NES Remix was a good idea when it launched without fanfare in late 2013 and reintroduced you to some of the greatest gaming moments from the 8-bit era, but NES Remix 2 is even better because it boasts a superior roster. Borrowing from a fresh assortment of classic games, this second retro bundle is a treat even though it doubles as a virtual salesperson.

In NES Remix 2, you find a total of more than 150 bite-sized challenges carved from 10 different NES games. Typically, you are offered a series of three or four objectives, and you can make three attempts. Sometimes, there are extra steps, in which case you're provided additional lives. Elsewhere, you face only a single objective, but it's more difficult and time-consuming. At the end of a given challenge, your performance is awarded anywhere from one to three stars (with a special rainbow flourish also appearing for the truly adept), depending on how long you took and how often you failed. You also receive in-game currency called bits that unlock stamps you can use on your Miiverse posts. The game saves a video record of your run, for easy embedding and sharing, which adds a competitive side that these games once mostly lacked.

Metroid has aged well. Ridley, on the other hand, really needs some Botox.

Many of these challenges present you with a chunk of yesteryear, but freshened up. For instance, Mario will run at full speed through a renowned Super Mario Bros. 3 stage, and you must choose when to jump and with how much vigor. Elsewhere, Link navigates a perilous series of ledges patrolled by mobile octopus enemies, all with a life meter that is nearly exhausted. These stages may be familiar to you, but they pose a new challenge if you're not used to hurrying through them. The most interesting diversions, however, are those that combine elements from multiple series, because you're especially likely to be caught by surprise by a setup you've never encountered before. Link might need to hack his way through bricks to collect coins in the Mushroom Kingdom, or Pit from Kid Icarus might have to try to collect fairies while avoiding flying ghosts in an environment that was ripped from Link's Adventure.

Fragments of 10 key NES games are included in NES Remix 2. The star of the pack, Super Mario Bros. 3, is available to sample immediately. Once you complete challenges and start earning stars, you gain access to Dr. Mario, Super Mario Bros. 2, Kirby's Adventure, and more. Had NES Remix 2 included complete editions of the selections it sort of compiles, the result would have been difficult to ignore. However, the only game you can completely explore here is a reworked version of Super Mario Bros. known as Super Luigi Bros. That addition lets two players take turns running through the classic platformer game, but with the experience modified so that the screen now scrolls from right to left, and the protagonist is Luigi. The less famous sibling slides and skids like a kid in socks on linoleum, but he jumps higher and further as compensation. When combined with the unconventional orientation, the altered physics make a stranger out of familiar terrain. Muscle memory and time-worn technique are no longer your allies. They're more likely to land you in a pit or send you flying headfirst into a patrolling goomba or koopa's personal space.

You've been to these places before, but have never experienced them quite like this.

Although there's more than enough content to keep you busy with NES Remix 2 for a good while, the package sometimes feels like the world's greatest glorified demo and not a distinct new experience. There's even a handy link to the eShop, which conveniently sells full versions of each excerpted game. A fair number of the objectives provide an overview of those selections and their most iconic hooks and gameplay mechanics, which is enough to whet your appetite. Other inclusions, however, are inexplicable. One challenge involves watching the Wario's Woods opening tutorial, for instance, and another screens a training montage from Punch-Out. The ending sequences for the various games are also shown, so it's a good idea to finish them ahead of time if you were saving such things for a surprise.

NES Remix 2 is a highlights reel that you pay for, but that's not as bad as it sounds provided you are interested in challenging yourself while you reminisce and sample. Old conventions have been modified to offer enough variety and genuinely interesting challenges that they manage to prove fresh all over again. Nothing here works as a replacement for the original material, but this is still a delightful experience whether you remember blowing the dust out of 8-bit cartridges or not.

The Good
Challenging new takes on old mechanics
Surprising mixes make you rethink favorite strategies
Collectible stamps add a nice nostalgic touch
The Bad
Sometimes feels more like a sampler than a main course
7
Good
About GameSpot's Reviews

About the Author

Jason Venter has spent dozens of hours with most of the games that were reworked for NES Remix 2, and he happily spent most of another dozen hours chasing after three-star ratings and stamps for the sake of his review. He has clearly caught the Nintendo bug.

Discussion

22 comments
Fantasy721
Fantasy721

I'm still waiting for the Remix game with "Battletoads" and "Paperboy."

abcdefgabcdefgz
abcdefgabcdefgz

Having grown up on these games these challenges are way too easy for me

Duckynevada
Duckynevada

Gamespot loves showing me that creepy Mr.Clean commercial with him as a baby.. The stuff of nightmares!

dbene
dbene

I think this would be sweet to do for PS1 as well. 

Necrotron
Necrotron

I think I keep hoping for more from this series than they seem to want to provide, though this release seems to live up to more of it's potential than the first.

thanticore
thanticore

Is Jason Venter a South African or not?!

hochstreck
hochstreck

This game reminds me of Wario Ware, and it's surprinsingly fun to play - even if you are not keen on nostalgia.

quickshooterMk2
quickshooterMk2

who wants to return to that era? the best era was the dreamcast to the xbox era 

so many good titles to play both on console and PC 

Gelugon_baat
Gelugon_baat

At least whoever compiled these games together changed some gameplay mechanics. I thought that the compilation would be a straight nostalgia trap.

Superzone
Superzone

First one was great.  Getting this for sure.

PikminWorld
PikminWorld

Glad the second remix got a better score the second time around. Looks interesting none the less.

YearoftheSnake5
YearoftheSnake5

I've been on the fence about NES Remix. Eventually, I'll get around to checking it out.

omgmike23
omgmike23

If I had a wii u I'd definitely get this! Sweet deal!

mariokarthero
mariokarthero

@dbene  I could imagine that going something like this: PS1 Remix for the PSN!!! Contains challenges from your favorite PS1 games, such as: Metal Gear Solid, Crash Bandicoot trilogy, Parappa the Rapper, Final Fantasy VII and many more!!! PS1 Remix is out now on the PSN for PS Vita, PS3 and PS4!!!


Something like that.

jerusaelem
jerusaelem

@shinjuki  Be grateful it wasn't reviewed by Tom McShea. It could have been a 2. 

iamllamapie
iamllamapie

@shinjuki  7 is good. In today's standard it'd be hard to see it as great (an 8).

NES Remix 2 More Info

  • First Released
    • Wii U
    Take on rapid-fire challenges from classic NES games remixed with mind-bending twists.
    8
    Average User RatingOut of 4 User Ratings
    Please Sign In to rate NES Remix 2
    Developed by:
    Indies Zero
    Published by:
    Nintendo
    Genres:
    Miscellaneous
    Content is generally suitable for all ages. May contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.
    Everyone
    All Platforms
    Mild Fantasy Violence