We have now come to the final Nintendo Power strategy guide, published in December of 1990. It weighs in at a slim 77 pages, and is covering games that support multi-tap. Well, there’s not a lot of ground to cover, so we might as well get started. Though I have to admit, for the last guide issue, the cover art… isn’t very good. I’m not sure though what they could do to replace it.
Your Friend the Multi-Tap: We get a run down of the wireless NES Satellite and the wired Four Score, as well as some discussion of multi-tap ethics, and things that can be done to make things run smoothly, such as color coding the player inputs and the controllers (red controller is always P1, etc.) Very useful stuff instead of having to pause the game and having to follow the cable to the system, at least until the PS3 and X-Box 360, where they were kind enough to give you a visual aid on your controller. Anyway, this is really useful device, some of which is obvious enough to have occured to someone else, but not to me.
NES Play Action Football: As I’ve mentioned previously, I’ve played the crap out of this game as a kid. However, I never owned a multi-tap so I couldn’t play it 4 player. For that matter, I never played it 2-player either. We get a run-down of the various teams and their playbooks, as well as some notes on the various types of plays and advice for succeeding with each team.
Gauntlet II: Considering that Atari/Tengen and Nintendo aren’t talking right now, I can’t believe that this game is getting coverage here. Nonetheless, it’s Gauntlet. I’ve played the first one, but not the sequel. I’m probably going to play this one, though I might do the Playstation Network version instead of the NES version, as that version would be more excessible to most people. We get maps of some of the dungeon levels (though, obviously, not all of them – there are a lot of them after all). However, we do get maps up to the first boss, the Dragon, and then general strategies for playing the game with 4 players.
Nintendo World Cup: We get general strategies, as well as reccomended AI settings for the game, and general notes about the strengths of each team in the game. Oh, and it lets you know that there are no off-sides calls in the game, so if you do a bicycle kick right by the goalie, you’ll get a goal every time. However, this can safely be considered a dick move, and if you do this in multi-player with guests at your house, you’ll probably get punched in the shoulder every time you do it.
Swords & Serpents: A four-player turn-based RPG? Before Secret of Mana? I’d never heard of this before. Now, it’s just a Wizardry clone (which is not surprising), but the inclusion of multi-player is certainly different. We get maps of the first few levels, as well as some notes on building a balanced party (hint – Trap Detector, Tank, DPS (Mage), Medic – it works for WoW, it works for Wizardry).
Superspike V’Ball: On to another sports game! This one is a vollyball game, one that looks like it’s got the camera placed properly, but I can’t quite be sure unless I see it in motion. As with the other guides, we give a run down of each of the team’s strengths, and some 4-player strategies.
Super Off Road: We get notes on what items to buy to supercharge your ride, as well as some maps of some of the tracks.
Short Notes: We get some notes on a few other games that support the multi-tap, including M.U.L.E. (which I played a lot of on the Atari 800), Magic Johnson’s Fast Break, Kings of the Beach (another volleyball game), Spot (a variation of Othello with the 7-up mascot), Top Players Tennis, Championship Bowling, and Nightmare on Elm Street.
So, my quality control pick for tomorrow is going to be Gauntlet, though I’m going to play the PSN version instead of the NES version, just due to the availability of the game. Yes, this does mean I can’t get an affiliate link for it, but that’s okay.