Video Works by Jeremy Parish

Taito arrives on Super NES with a splash. Well, it should be a splash... you know, because of all the fish bosses. But they're actually in outer space? Darius is weird. But that's OK, because this Darius balances its quirkiness with the silkiest, smoothest action yet seen on the console. It's the cure for the common slowdown, and all it took was... not using any of the console's unique hardware features. Oh well!

Another Game Boy follow-up to an NES game appears this week, and it's just as compromised and frustrating as you've come to expect. The Rescue of Princess Blobette consists almost entirely of recycled material from A Boy and His Blob, but it's a much smaller game — and a more limited one. And slower. And more cramped. And it sounds a lot worse. But on the plus side, uh… well, it won't melt down your Game Boy, probably. So that's something.

The Makaimura/Ghosts ’N Goblins series makes its debut on a third Nintendo console, and yeah, it's every bit as harsh as you'd expect. But is the beauty of the game's visuals and the intense satisfaction of finally reaching the next checkpoint enough to make it worth the suffering?

And here at last we reach the end of this retrospective saga with a look at how Final Fantasy's fourth installment reworked the raw materials of its 8-bit predecessor to present a new and completely holistic take on the role-playing genre.

The middle chapter of this in-depth Final Fantasy II retrospective leaps from the game's innovative play mechanics to its equally striking approach to storytelling. By using all aspects of the game to relay its narrative, Final Fantasy II changed the way RPGs (and games!) integrated plots and characters into their design.