MonkeyPaw Games Prepares for PS1-Centric "Retro Rush" Event

Six formerly import-only PS1 Classics are hitting PSN over the next six weeks, courtesy of MonkeyPaw Games.

News by Pete Davison, .

The humble PlayStation -- the original, that is -- may now be three whole console generations ago, but there's still plenty of games for it that you might not have played. Particularly games that never made it out of Japan on their original release, for example.

It's these former import-only games that MonkeyPaw Games specializes in -- and to ring in the new year, the company has six weeks' worth of new content planned for PS1 enthusiasts, with one new game coming per week between January 14 -- that's tomorrow -- and February 18. Being PSone Classics releases, they'll be playable both at home on PlayStation consoles and on the go with a PSP or Vita.

First up on January 14 is Double Dragon, a one-on-one fighting game spinoff of the Double Dragon movie, which in turn was a spinoff of the original arcade brawler. Double Dragon was originally released on NeoGeo and later ported to PlayStation by Urban Plant, but none of the various releases ever made it out of Japan. Gameplay is fairly conventional for a one-on-one brawler, but the novelty of seeing Double Dragon's characters in a different type of game makes this worth a look.

Next up is Lucifer Ring, coming on January 21. This is a hack-and-slash game in the style of Golden Axe, and a fine example of deliciously chunky, blocky, low-polygon original PlayStation-era 3D models. Look at that dragon. He'd have your eye out.

On January 28, we'll be treated to the release of The Firemen 2: Pete and Danny, a sequel to the Super NES game The Firemen. You can probably work out what you have to do from the title. It offers two-player local co-op for those who have always fantasized about fighting fires with a friend and I'm assured by a former colleague who now works at MonkeyPaw that it is "crazy awesome." But then he would say that, wouldn't he?

A week later on February 4, we'll see Hyper Crazy Climber get a Western release. This is an arcade-style game about, well, climbing, and is notable for offering three different control schemes of increasing complexity, the third of which requires the use of two controllers simultaneously, and is aptly described in the documentation as "weird."

A week after that on Feburary 11 comes Wolf Fang, an arcade side-scrolling shooter that saw a Western release in arcades as Rohga Armor Force. It's the work of Tsuji Jimusho of Data East, and features customizable mechs to take into battle. It also features a Ghosts and Goblins-style mechanic whereby if your mech is destroyed, that's not the end of the game -- your pilot ejects and is able to continue fighting on foot until he either collects enough powerups to get a new mech, or is outright killed, leading to a Game over.

Finally, the game that MonkeyPaw is seemingly most excited about resurrecting is Tomba! 2: The Evil Swine Return, a platformer which did originally see a US release back in 1999, but which hasn't returned to PSN in the West since. Here's 15 minutes of gameplay to whet your appetite:

Excited to give any of these a try, perhaps for the first time?

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  • Avatar for Funny_Colour_Blue #1 Funny_Colour_Blue 4 years ago
    Crazy Climber 2000 is great! Hyper Crazy Climber is even better! If you guys love Katamari Damacy, ( playstation games that use the analog controller in weird, crazy, frustrating but incredibly innovative ways) definitely check it out!!!!

    I am so exciteddd forr thiss!! Aaaahh!!!!11Edited January 2014 by Funny_Colour_Blue
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  • Avatar for whitestreak #2 whitestreak 4 years ago
    Wasn't Tomba made by gamemakers who bailed off a more famous team (Bonk or Megaman or something)? I remember reading previews in C&VG ages and ages ago, but never played it.
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  • Avatar for jeremy.parish #3 jeremy.parish 4 years ago
    @whitestreak Yeah, Tomba was directed by Tokuro Fujiwara, who worked on Ghosts 'N Goblins and directed the original Mega Man (back when Inafune was just a staff artist).
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  • Avatar for Sturat #4 Sturat 4 years ago
    These look great! I did a double-take since I'd never heard of a Playstation version of Double Dragon. It's a little weird seeing double-ports like this on PSN and the Virtual Console...
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  • Avatar for mganai #5 mganai 4 years ago
    They need to make Zanac X Zanac PSP/Vita compatible.
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  • Avatar for jeremy.parish #6 jeremy.parish 4 years ago
    @mganai Yes. Yes they do. And Chippoke Ralph No Daibouken, and Umihara Kawase Shun, and Harmful Park, and....
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  • Avatar for legeek #7 legeek 4 years ago
    Nice to see Crazy Climber! Man, I would love to see Vib Ribbon, though!!!
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  • Avatar for Critical_Hit #8 Critical_Hit 4 years ago
    OMG thank you for talking a bit about these:) Now I know I should pick up Wolf Fang in addition to Tomba 2!.

    I am a big fan of people continuing to support the PS Classics; either the PS2 or PSOne. Sony has done a better job over the years of keeping classics coming than Nintendo did with the Wii Virtual Console where new games dried up after, like, a year. And Sony + their publisher partners actually do stuff like this and bring attention to games on there; I like that.

    I just hope Gungho comes back with something too. I love it when we get some import titles, but it's so weird that the games people want - or games that would work well without being translated - seem to usually get passed over. Once we get Rapid Reload or Panzer Bandits from someone, I'll be totally happy. But I'm definitely going to check out some of this stuff though.
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  • Avatar for SlackMaster #9 SlackMaster 4 years ago
    Firemen 2 and Double Dragon are the two I'll be getting from that lot.

    I wish more PSOne games would be brought to PSN however, as in Europe we're still missing fantastic games such as Suikoden.

    It'd be great to get Vandal Hearts 1 and 2 and Suikoden 1-3 on the PSN in all regions.
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