Last night’s Nintendo Direct contained some very exciting news for retro game fans; though some titles featured were already known, there were some genuine and very welcome surprises throughout too. Let’s take a look at some of these announcements!
Front Mission 1st
First appearing on the SNES way back in 1995, mech-based strategy title Front Mission has been ported to a number of formats (even the underrated and lesser-known Wonderswan – with Front Mission making it onto our list of the Best Wonderswan Games), but the only version to make it outside of Japan was the Nintendo DS version. That’s all set to change, however, with the Nintendo Switch remake of Front Mission, named Front Mission 1st, due to arrive in Summer 2022. It’s also been confirmed that Front Mission 2 will also be getting the remake treatment, though no release date or other details have been announced at this stage.
Chrono Chross: The Radical Dreamers Edition
As one of the games to feature on our very own Best JRPGs ever list, the news that Chrono Chross is getting a remaster is hugely exciting. Chrono Cross also made it to our list of the Best PS1 RPGs and the Best PS1 Games ever – we’re not kidding when we say that this news is exciting!
Though ‘only’ a remaster rather than a full-blown remake, this edition of the excellent PS1 RPG nonetheless has a few enhancements, such as a refined soundtrack and the ability to turn off enemy encounters. Along with this, the previously Japan-only text adventure Radical Dreamers is also included – making this edition an absolute must-have for retro game and RPG enthusiasts everywhere.
Earthbound and Earthbound Beginnings
So to see it announced as an addition to Nintendo’s Switch Online service alongside SNES sequel Earthbound – which earned itself a place on our Best SNES RPGs list, as well as featuring on our Rare SNES games list – is very welcome indeed.
Even more surprising is that these two titles are available immediately – so what are you waiting for? Go check out these classic titles as soon as you can!
Klonoa: Phantasy Reverie Series
As one of the titles on our Rare PS1 Games list that’ll cost you a pretty penny these days, the news that 2.5D platformer Klonoa is making its way to Switch will be something your wallet will thank you for (especially as the first game is also on our Best PS1 Games list!).
The fact that this enhanced version also contains PS1 sequel Klonoa 2: Lunatea’s Veil is the icing on the cake. Featuring updated visuals, new difficulty settings and two player co-op, Klonoa: Phantasy Reverie Series is arriving in July, to coincide with the first game’s 25th anniversary.
Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp
Though not a new announcement, more details have been announced for the remake of GBA classics Advance Wars 1+2, which is due to be released on April 8th 2022.
Handled by 2D masters WayForward Technologies, the colourful, addictive turn-based strategy game is in safe hands. Which is excellent news, as the beloved titles are highly regarded as two of the finest video games of all time to this day (as you’ll see from the appearances on our Best Game Boy Advance Games and Best Multiplayer GBA games lists!).
With enhancements such as voiceovers for the various commanding officers, a rewind function (which is very welcome indeed!) and even a fast forward option to speed up the sometimes lengthy battles alongside higher resolution visuals, Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp looks like it’ll be the definitive version of both GBA games.
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed
Lastly, the game most remembered for its feature of allowing players to force choke and throw legions of Stormtroopers around – using a hilariously implemented physics engine – Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, is also making its way to Switch in April.
Though it’s a remaster of the Wii version, which featured slightly gimmicky motion controls, the option is there to use a more traditional control scheme (but if you want to swing your Joy-Cons around like a lightsaber, that’s entirely up to you – and why wouldn’t you?). Star Wars: The Force Unleashed even featured on our list of Best Nintendo Wii Games!
Live A Live
Originally published for the SNES in 1994, Live A Live is a relatively obscure Square JRPG that never made it out of Japan. With multiple protagonists and action taking place across different time periods, Live A Live was an ambitious concept that was likely prohibitively expensive to translate upon its original release.
However, with the popularity of JRPGs these days, it’s great to see Live A Live get a remake. It’s been revealed that it’ll be using the well-received ‘HD-2D’ visual style of fellow Square Enix RPG, Octopath Traveller.
With many of the above titles being made available to players who may never have had the chance to play them before, 2022 is certainly going to be an exciting year for retro enthusiasts who have access to a Switch!
Jason – who lives in the UK – has had a lifelong interest in video games, which all started when he discovered Space Invaders in the early 80s. The first game he ever completed was Wonder Boy in Monster Land on the Sega Master System – which remains one of his proudest gaming achievements. Jason is a passionate writer – and has been writing about gaming since the late 90s. He currently runs pop culture blog midlifegamergeek.com, which he updates on a daily basis (and has written more than 700 articles on the blog alone!).
Outside of video games, Jason is a keen tabletop gamer, film buff and comic book fan.