Retro Weekly Roundup – 4th September

Another week has passed and at Rings & Coins that means there’s more retro news to report. So here’s this week’s Retro Weekly Roundup.

First up is news that is not really news to anyone who loves gaming, as for all intents and purposes Hideo Kojima’s legendary Metal Gear series finally comes to a close this week, with the release of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.  Despite being titled Metal Gear Solid V, The Phantom Pain is actually the eleventh main entry in the series.  Whilst the Metal Gear Solid series began with the iconic 1999 PSOne release, the series’ roots actually lie within the 1987 MSX2 release Metal Gear.  Metal Gear laid the foundations for the series, and introduced the characters of Solid Snake and Big Boss.  And now The Phantom Pain finally brings the series full circle by setting up the events that cause the twist that occurs in Metal Gear, whereby Big Boss is actually revealed to be both a traitor, and a villain.

Big Boss in The Phantom Pain

Despite what can only be described as a troubled development, especially in the final stages, the game has gone on to receive critical acclaim.  This follows the precedent set by many of the games in the series, and is only to be expected from a game directed by Hideo Kojima and his team at Kojima Productions.  A team that sadly following Konami’s restructuring, will probably be broken up.  Nevertheless, the series is a testament to Hideo Kojima and his team, and shows how a series with retro roots can continue its legacy.  Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is available now worldwide for PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360 and Steam.  Look out for upcoming features on Metal Gear from Rings & Coins soon.

Next up is the news that SEGA’s much loved brawler Golden Axe, may be heading to cinema screens in the future.  Golden Axe is one of those series that despite being widely loved, has fallen somewhat into obscurity over the years.  Simply being rolled out for endless re-releases, much like the phenomenal Streets of Rage series.  As such the news from Heroic Hollywood that Universal is planning to bring back Golden Axe is very welcome news indeed.  Even more interesting is that this article has now been removed, which could either point to the fact that it was only rumour, or that they were onto something.

Golden Axe
Golden Axe

Nevertheless, whilst this may only be rumour at present, it does back up earlier statements from SEGA last year.  This came when SEGA announced via Stories International (their joint venture alongside Japanese advertising agency Hakuhodo DY Group), that they were

looking to partner with the major studios, A-list producers and filmmakers to adapt these properties.

These properties that they mention include some of their franchises considered classic and retro.  Such as Shinobi, Streets of Rage, Altered Beast, Virtua Fighter, and importantly for this story Golden Axe.  At the time they also said that these ventures could include films, TV, and digital series.  Let’s hope that not only is this story true, but that SEGA has plans for all these retro classics, especially the Rings & Coins favourite Streets of Rage.

On the topic of digital series, the long forgotten and thought dead documentary titled 8-Bit Generation has resurfaced with a Kickstarter campaign.  The documentary is looking to document the home computer revolution, featuring consoles such as the Commodore 64.  Most of the the groundwork and filming for the series has already been done, with it planned to feature interviews with key veterans of both the home computer and video game industry, such as Nolan Bushnell, Jeff Minter and Steve Wozniak.

8Bit Generation

The campaign which has already been given a Kickstarter Staff Pick award, is looking for €25,000 in order to complete the documentary’s final stages.  Currently the campaign stands at €22,216 with a massive 22 days to go, making this one look like a dead cert.  Sadly this is not the case for all, as the recent Retro Fighters 8-bit controller, has failed in its quest to get backed.  Nevertheless, the team how vowed to continue towards their dream of a modern retro controller.

Finally, SEGA’s long forgotten original mascot Alex Kidd, is being brought back to the 8-bit world thanks to the homebrew community.  Despite being remembered most by the Master System generation, this is not the 8-bit world Alex Kidd is returning to.  Instead, Alex Kidd on Miracle Island will have a homebrew release on the ill-fated Texas Instruments 99 / 4A.  An odd and very knish choice by any stretch of the imagination. Yet from first glimpses, the soundtrack, gameplay, and graphics, clearly bring back memories of Alex Kidd’s first adventure, the 1986 Master System game Alex Kidd in Miracle World.  Alex Kidd may not be Sonic the Hedgehog, but it’s nice to see a retro face not forgotten.

Alex Kidd Homebrew
Title screen for the homebrew Alex Kidd on Miracle Island

Well sadly that’s it for this week’s Retro Weekly Roundup.  Check back next week for all the latest going-ons in the world of retro gaming.

Sophia Aubrey Drake

A lifelong gamer with a fanatical love of all things Nintendo and Japan. So much so that she's written a thesis on one and lived in the other. Currently on a quest to catch every last Pokémon. Follow me on twitter via @DivaXChill or @RingsandCoins.

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