A disappointment to some, but Tecmo Classic Arcade is pure fun in a box.
In terms of the lower value, many arcade collections are hitting the shelves at a retail price of $19.99, and many of them have at least 20 arcade games on them. Tecmo Classic Arcade's value is hurt by its lineup of only 11 games for the price of $29.99 It is further hindered by the absence of Ninja Gaiden, which will be unlockable in the upcoming Ninja Gaiden Black, which has frustrated many buyers, and some of Tecmo's other well-known classics, such as Slik Worm. However, the games that are present are thoroughly enjoyable, and when some of the other collections that have been out for a longer time get boring, these games stand as a fresh new set of games for classic gamers to enjoy. Mostly, they are well preserved, though an annoying high pitched sound during Pleiads, which was not present in the arcade version, hurts the collection's sound rating somewhat. Otherwise, the games are well represented in this package, and should delight any gamer interested in video gaming's golden age!
A border picturing an arcade rom board surrounds the game screens as the games are played, and also serves as the border for the interface during the game. The 11 games - Pleiads, Swimmer, Pinball Action, Rygar, Bomb Jack, Senjyo, Strato Fighter, Star Force, Solomon's Key, Tecmo Cup, and the legendary Tecmo Bowl - are arranged in a very well organized interface, complete with a gallery displaying various posters and promotional and instructional materials on each game represented. While the selection of bonus material may disappoint some who are used to the vast amounts of interviews made available on several compilations (witness Midway Arcade Treasures and Mega Man Anniversary Collection), it is still fun to look at once in a while, and serves as a welcome bonus for the classic gaming soul.
All in all, though the collection may be eclipsed by the highly anticipated Capcom Classics Collection and Taito Legends, which are available later this month and next month respectively, Tecmo Classic Arcade remains an enjoyable collection that will entertain many gamers. Perhaps if Ninja Gaiden had appeared on this collection along with the other games present, more younger players who enjoy the more modern Ninja Gaiden game might show interest in this otherwise entertaining package.