Finally!

Things have been quiet here since the opportunities to go thrifting or buy things in person have been rather limited. A few weeks ago, we finally got out to a shop that has been closed for a long time because of the pandemic, and it just so happened that they had gotten a lot of games in from another store that recently closed. I have quite a few new things to share with you from that, along with a few things I found for a good price online!

First up are some NES games, the first being The Legend of Kage. I’ve seen quite a few videos online showcasing this one, and while it certainly hasn’t swept me off my feet in any way, I do love an action-packed side-scroller once in a while. It was neat to see some decently-priced NES games out and about on a shelf that I could pick up and look at without having to talk to someone to open up a glass box instead.

Power Blade for NES is something I’ve been after for a very long while. It’s one of the games that has kept going up and up and up in price with no signs of stopping, but I was surprised to find a semi-beat up copy available for what I’d consider to be a decent price online. That section of the grip has that letter K melted into the plastic, and the writing further down on the label’s tear is a bit unsightly. All said and done though, aesthetics aren’t something that will make or break a purchase for me, and this was the cheapest I’ve seen this one available in many years. I’m very glad to have it.

I also picked up a North American copy of The Battle of Olympus and a copy of Rygar! It’s Rygtober after all, a fun casual speedrunning event that exists simply to bring attention to the game and encourage people to better their times or attempt a brand new speedrun game. For me, I’ll be trying it out casually on Friday afternoons starting on October 15th, so join me if you want to see a first-time playthrough of a game with one really great song!

I picked up all three of these SNES games at the thrift store I mentioned above, and while I’d heard of Gradius III and Drakkhen, Firepower 2000 was not on my radar at all. Most of my SNES collection consists of RPGs or bright and fun platformers, but it’s sparse in the top-down shooter department. Firepower 2000 is quite different from the usual space setting complete with ships and a million upgrades to work between (I see you there, Graduis III), and while shooters are far from my forte, I’m excited to take it out for a spin sometime. Drakkhen is one of the last SNES RPGs I’ve been meaning to track down, and it’s finally mine. I played through Dragon View (the spiritual successor of sorts) a while back and enjoyed it a lot, and while I hear Drakkhen’s a lot rougher around the edges than that experience, I’m hopeful there’s some fun to be had there as well.

It’s rare to find DS games in good condition or with their cases these days, but I somehow lucked into a copy of Rune Factory: A Fantasy Harvest Moon with its box. No manual was in sight, but the rest of the game was in great condition. I have the sequel on the DS that I haven’t gotten around to yet, as well as another Rune Factory game on the Wii. I absolutely adore Harvest Moon and RPGs, and I understand that these games are a marriage of those two things. I hope I fall madly in love with the series when I finally get around to playing these games.

Bomberman Land for the Wii showed up at a different thrift store than the one I alluded to earlier on in the post, and it was in pretty excellent condition other than a few light scratches on the disc’s surface. I loved Super Bomberman as a kid and used to bug one of my best friends in elementary school to play it every time I went to her house, but I haven’t played many of the games beyond that one. I am looking forward to playing the adventure mode for some of the later games in the series, this one included.

It’s incredibly rare to encounter Sega Master System games in the flesh where I live, and while there were a few other sports games around like Pro Wrestling in the box for the taking (I still love that box art the most just because of how silly it is!), we only ended up taking Great Baseball home. Funny enough, we already had a loose copy that I’d forgotten about completely, so now I have a second one! I try not to discount the fun factor in sports games since I was surprisingly taken aback at how fun World Soccer was. There’s fun to be had in all games if you can find it, so hopefully Great Baseball’s also in that realm of possibility.

Sega was hot and happening at this particular store, and I found quite a few games I didn’t have yet. Taz in Escape to Mars is rumoured to be considerably better than Taz-mania, one of my most-hated games for the Genesis. I was also excited to track down Shadow of the Beast in its 16-bit form since the Master System version that I own is not nearly as refined. Mystical Fighter was something I’d never even heard of but bought because of the slightly higher price tag in hopes I’d chanced upon a gem. Sure enough, it looks like a relatively solid beat-em-up. Socket and Phelios have both been on my list for a long while, and we had a friend looking for Forgotten Worlds to pass that one along to. All in all, this was a wonderful find! All the games in this bunch were certainly well-loved, but in relatively decent shape overall.

There were two games in their boxes I wanted: Jeopardy Deluxe Edition and Warrior of Rome. Neither came with their manuals and Warrior of Rome had a bunch of stickers on the label that seemed impossible to peel up, but as a fan of DOS Jeopardy, I hope to have some fun with this version of the game sometime. Warrior of Rome appears to be a strategy game that is just screaming for manual consultation, so hopefully that’s online somewhere when the time comes to finally play that one!

I know there are a lot of exciting things in this post to gush about, but my favourite new thing is a Commodore Vic20. I had one as a kid with the tape player, a bunch of cartridges and tapes etc. but gave it all away to a friend who was collecting a lot at the time. It turns out he sold it all without asking me if I wanted it back first. I have always really regretted that decision, but he happened to have my childhood Pole Position cartridge, which he returned to me. In the case of this new system, I found it in a heap in the back of the thrift store, and it had no price on it. The store owner said he’d let it go for $5 so we took it home. It was filthy with no hookups, but we took it all apart, cleaned up and sourced a new power cord online. My husband did up a makeshift AV cable just to see if it worked, and sure enough, it does! Here’s a photo of it playing my Pole Position cartridge. I’m so glad to have one again!

And there’s another post come and gone. It’s been a while between posts lately, but I appreciate anyone that still drops by to have a look at what I’ve been finding out there. I’m sure conventions will be back again soon enough, but in the meantime, the slower-paced collecting is just fine by me.

Thanks so much for reading, as always!

-GG

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