Video Works by Jeremy Parish

A brief break in the SG-1000's strong run of final releases with a set of titles that will remind you of the not-so-good ol' days when the console's library was generally pretty rough. This trio earns most of its points for effort from Ninja Princess, which converts an arcade game quite convincingly save for one massive technical hitch that has a hugely disruptive effect on the action. Unfortunately, it's followed up by Super Tank, a much less enjoyable game that basically uses the same basic shooter-action premise as Ninja Princess, but poorly. And finally, Champion Kendou, the final original "Champion" sports creation for this console. It's not good, but as a game about kendou, it has the novelty of being... unique.

The SG-1000 didn't have much going on during 1986, with Sega's attention focused primarily on the shiny new Mark III console, but what little did make its way to the older console was pretty strong. After an indifferent shrug of a vintage-style single-screen arcade-format MSX port with Compile's C-So!, we get to the good stuff: ASCII's The Castle and Compile's Gulkave.

The former, also an MSX port, is a game so demanding and expansive Sega had to bust out the cartridge format again. The Castle simply wouldn't fit onto a MyCard. And as for Gulkave, you may have trouble believing it fit onto the SG-1000, period. Definitely Compile's swansong for the platform, and the culmination of several years of development work for this hardware and architecture, and unsurprisingly a highly sought-after collector's piece.