Retro Redux: NES Quest – StarTropics Report Card


Before I dive into my StarTropics report card, I’m going to get the most recent vote out of the way. Leave a comment below with your pick out of:

  • Gun.Smoke, recommended by Darren.
  • Punch-Out!!, recommended by Brad.
  • Rygar, recommended by Cliff.
  • Final Fantasy, recommended by Justin Riley.

Super Mario Bros. 3 won the last vote, so that’s what I have been and will be playing! But with all of that done and dusted, here’s how I did at StarTropics…


Bosses Defeated:

  • A Snake
  • An Octopus
  • A Lava Man

Lifelines Used: 1 – Ask a Friend. Why? To figure out how to get the fortune teller’s crystal ball in the cemetery dungeon. Didn’t yield results.

General Accomplishments

As usual, I didn’t have a manual for this game, and, like most NES games, StarTropics doesn’t have any in-game tutorials either. So I figured out the basics on my own. This has become easier and easier with each game I play; I feel like playing the NES is actually honing my video game skills in general, which is pretty fantastic in my book. As far as StarTropics goes, though, I found out how to navigate dungeons and discovered a few hidden goodies here and there, so I’m calling that good for now. Hey, don’t judge! I played the game for a good long time. Of the dungeons I completed, I had to re-try many times each to get through, so I got a pretty good sense of the overall game.

Impressions on the Game

When I think about what StarTropics gets right, music pops into my head first. The dungeon theme in particular never gets old, even though it’s the same from dungeon to dungeon. The gameplay is also very good. It gets its inspiration from the original Legend of Zelda. I felt the action to be even quicker and better than in The Legend of Zelda, though. In terms of puzzle-solving, StarTropics also excels; Mike, the game’s protagonist, has the ability to jump onto platforms to get past obstacles and find hidden switches. I found myself hopping around while dodging and attacking enemies quite often, which was not a bad thing. I can definitely see now why StarTropics has such a following.


Even though I felt like I got pretty far in StarTropics, a quick online search told me I didn’t even make it half-way through. And since I also used a lifeline, my final grade might not be the greatest. It is:


In addition to being a girl gamer, Holly prides herself on being a red-head. Consequently, the blue shell in the Mario Kart series is her natural enemy. Don't worry, though: she still loves Mario Kart and is very good, despite the occasional blue shell-sabotaged race. Like any Nintendo fan, Holly also loves Zelda, Pokemon, Mario, Donkey Kong, Metroid, name it. But she'll try just about anything (besides horror games) and has a soft spot for unique, little-known rhythm games like Rhythm Heaven and Samba de Amigo. NNID: Aeroweth