Retro Redux: NES Quest – Updates + New Vote

119-Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II

  • Game: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game
  • Release Date (North America): Dec. 1990
  • Developer: Konami
  • Genre: Beat ’em up

As you can see, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game is up next on NES Quest. I’ve already acquired an original NES cartridge of the game, so I will start playing it this weekend. But what about my progress on Bionic Commando? I’m about to tell you about that in detail…past the break, that is…also, if you have no desire to read about Bionic Commando (or if you’ve never played it), you may just want to scroll to the end of the post for the latest vote, which gives second placers a second chance…anyway…

Bionic Commando – Learning Curve

As a short preface, I really enjoyed learning all the strange quirks of Bionic Commando, even though it was slightly frustrating at times. The game loves to throw curve balls at you! Here follows an account of my early struggles:

106-Bionic Commando Opening

Super Joe?

107-Bionic Commando Area 01

Starting in Area 01. How hard can this be? Very, actually. But only at first. In this game, there’s no regular old jumping for me; rather, I must use the grappling hook to get around. I tinker with this mechanic for a good chunk of time, learning how to swing across gaps, reel up to the end of the line, hop up onto platforms, and more. It’s an adjustment, but once I get the hang of it, deftly using that grappling hook is extremely satisfying.

108-Bionic Commando Life

Enemies don’t drop much more than these delicious-looking green beverages that build and restore health. I come to realize that collecting them is vital to my mission.

109-Bionic Commando Communicate

It probably takes me a lot longer than it should to realize that that triangle is a cursor, and in certain situations, it’s crucial to make a prudent selection.

110-Bionic Commando Elevator

An elevator. About two floors down, I find a door that leads to yet another communication room. Upon leaving the room, however, I find that the elevator has left me! And it’s not coming back… In future visits, I ignore the communication room, even though I find, with practice, it’s possible to use the grappling hook to avoid the death trap waiting at the bottom of this shaft.

111-Bionic Commando Area 01 Boss

I meet with the boss of Area 01. First meeting of many. Once I’ve tried plenty of times, though, I’m pretty much a master at Area 01 and its boss.

112-Bionic Commando Opening Cutscene

I finally figure out there’s a cutscene that explains the game’s backstory if I wait at the title screen long enough. It makes no sense and is rife with strange grammatical errors. But whatever.

113-Bionic Commando Area 13

Okay, here we go with Area 13, the first neutral area in the game. Nice to take a break!

114-Bionic Commando Area 13

Ohmigosh, he’s coming right at me! I run away to the left, trying to avoid taking any hostile action, leaving the area unexplored. After calming down, I enter the area again. There’s the homicidal maniac again, charging me with what I assume is a bayonet. I frantically shoot him. Instead of dying, he simply disappears. A siren blares and, as expected, I am attacked! I fight the white-clad soldiers raining down for a bit before leaving the area again.

Finally, I attempt the area with a new, riskier angle; let the guy stab me. With any luck, he’ll be the one who gets attacked this time. As he makes contact with my person, however, no damage is taken. Instead, he says a rude line and is on his merry way. *Face palm*

115-Bionic Commando Neutral Room

What the heck is the point of these rooms?

118-Bionic Commando Neutral Room


116-Bionic Commando Items

New items. I find I can select only one for each area. I take the flare bomb into Area 04, just because it’s new. I really have no idea how to use it…

117-Bionic Commando Area 04

I just inadvertently used a flare bomb and it’s lighting my way through the caves of Area 04. In later visits, I make my way in darkness, wondering whether my game came across a sudden glitch. Finally, it dawns on me: use the flare bomb with the START button in Area 04 to light the way. All I had to do was to realize that the little green thing flying upward that doesn’t look like a flare bomb at all is, in fact, a flare bomb.

That concludes some of the initial lessons I had to learn while playing Bionic Commando. I’ve actually gotten significantly past Area 04, but the early struggles were the most entertaining. I used a lifeline early on, unfortunately: the internet, in order to figure out how to get past those laser barriers in Area 01. Aside from that, I’d say I’m doing pretty well.

New Vote!

Up to this point, there have only been three votes, but thanks to a second place tie between Super Mario Bros. 3 and Maniac Mansion, I have a complete selection of four “second-placers” to make a new vote out of. You know what to do. Leave a comment below voting on one of the following games:

  • Recommended by Eric Abrams, Metroid.
  • Recommended by Justin Riley, Super Mario Bros. 3.
  • Recommended by Janush, Maniac Mansion.
  • Recommended by Anthony DeVirgilis and XCWarrior, StarTropics.

Once again, the vote will end Tuesday night, August 26th. And in direct relation to this vote, check out Anthony DeVirgilis’s guest post on StarTropics if you haven’t already. Happy gaming, everyone!

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