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NES Remix Review

See PixlBit's Review Policies

On 07/04/2014 at 12:00 PM by Matt McLennan

I think I now hate Ice Climber even more.

Fans of 9-Volt’s mini-games from the Wario Ware titles alongside Indies/zero’ Retro Game Challenge for the DS will enjoy this WiiU eShop title. Beware though, some of Nintendo’s early NES line-up has not aged that well and could lead frustrating moments.

Fans of the Wario Ware series tend to like 9-Volt’s mini-games the most. Honestly, I can’t really blame them. Unlike Wario Ware, however, NES Remix and its follow-up on the WiiU eShop doesn’t come from the crazy mind of Yoshio Sakamoto; instead, it’s a tribute/mashup of Nintendo’s ‘classic’ NES titles from 1983 to 1986. I put classic in quotes because, let’s be perfectly honest here, a majority of Nintendo’s early Famicom titles have not aged well.

All the NES games presented in this remix are lifted straight from the originals. What's new are the main menu and remixed stages which have been slightly updated with a bright looking gloss. All the menus have a very nice old school aesthetic with red and gold colorings, very fitting for this collection.

NES Remix is comprised of challenges that either remix the gameplay of Famicom games or are challenges listed under each game presented on the main menu. All challenges give you a main objective, or multiple objectives, which you must complete in a time limit or a set amount of lives. After completing each challenge, depending on how fast you finish, you are awarded up to three stars and Bit points to unlock stamps to use in Miiverse.

What makes NES Remix both fun and frustrating is that each game presented is unedited; you are playing the games as how they are portrayed on the Wii U Virtual Console. The 'A' and 'B' button prompts are still the same, as well as the d-pad movement. With games like Super Mario Bros., Balloon Fight, Legend of Zelda, and Excitebike, I had no such issues with doing the challenges even though some of them were a bit hair pulling.  But then you get to games such as Clu Clu Land, Ice Climbers and Donkey Kong Jr.; thanks to the stiff uneven controls, the challenges became a massive pain in the ass when attempting to collect all vegetables in an Ice Climber bonus level, or finishing a bonus level of Clu Clu Land under a very strict time limit.

Its not all dreary though; the biggest stars of the game are easily the remix levels. Imagine if you took World 1-1 from Super Mario Bros. but everything was made to look grey and black, or you had to play as Link to rescue Pauline from Donkey Kong? They had some frustrating challenges, especially the Mario Bros. challenge, but the remixes presented sometimes made me laugh at how crazy they got, especially the ones that play eye tricks on you. Its also very fun to use the Miiverse stamps in messages, but you can only use them from the game itself via the Miiverse icon and only once you have received enough Bit points.

New tracks within NES Remix are quite upbeat, mixing modern MIDI tunes with 8-bit sound effects. The title screen music alone is very fun to listen to. It is a little disappointing that unlike the second NES Remix there are no musical rearrangements within the Remix stages.

NES Remix is a great idea held back by a majority of the Famicom games present in this release. While you get the obvious classics like Super Mario Bros. and Legend of Zelda, along with cult favorites like Balloon Fight, you also have to deal with stuff like Ice Climber. Unlike NES Remix 2, which is fully worth the full asking price, I would suggest waiting for this title to go on sale.

Review Policy

In our reviews, we'll try not to bore you with minutiae of a game. Instead, we'll outline what makes the game good or bad, and focus on telling you whether or not it is worth your time as opposed to what button makes you jump.

We use a five-star rating system with intervals of .5. Below is an outline of what each score generally means:

All games that receive this score are standout games in their genre. All players should seek a way to play this game. While the score doesn't equate to perfection, it's the best any game could conceivably do.

These are above-average games that most players should consider purchasing. Nearly everyone will enjoy the game and given the proper audience, some may even love these games.

This is our middle-of-the-road ranking. Titles that receive three stars may not make a strong impression on the reviewer in either direction. These games may have some faults and some strong points but they average out to be a modest title that is at least worthy of rental for most.

Games that are awarded two stars are below average titles. Good ideas may be present, but execution is poor and many issues hinder the experience.

Though functional, a game that receives this score has major issues. There are little to no redeeming qualities and should be avoided by nearly all players.

A game that gets this score is fundamentally broken and should be avoided by everyone.




07/05/2014 at 10:49 AM

I've considered buying this for a while, but the lack of a leaderboard or substantial achievement system (which is pretty much every Nintendo game) kills some of the excitement for me. What's the point of spending all that time completing these challenges if you then can't show off your accomplishments? The stamps help a little, but still...

Anyway, as you said, I'll wait for a sale, assuming that ever happens.

Matt McLennan Staff Alumnus

07/06/2014 at 11:55 PM

Here's a solution to your problem, since you seem to have this with only Nintendo games and them only and you seem to complain about random shit in my reviews only:

Its called a capture device and YouTube. Hopefully this helps you.


07/07/2014 at 03:18 AM

Are you really criticizing me for posting a (perfectly valid) opinion in the comments section of the game you just reviewed? Isn't that, you know, what comment sections are for?

Anyway, my concern with the game is a legitimate one--why design such an arcadey-style experience based on score, clear times, and other simple objectives but then not allow players to compare their acomplishments with each other? I know Nintendo has this odd hangup about encouraging competition in its games, but for a title like this, a leaderboard-like system only makes sense.

But you're right, silly me. I should just go out and buy a capture device so I can post to Youtube! Sheesh.

Matt Snee Staff Writer

07/06/2014 at 06:35 PM

me and my little brother played ice climber relentlessly.  And that game gets dog-eat-dog man.  Fun times. 

Mike Wall Staff Alumnus

07/07/2014 at 12:38 PM

Looks good Matt. I think I'm going to hold off for the iphone f2p version though. 


07/26/2014 at 10:04 PM

I actually went out of order and bought the second one first only because it had a 1 star higher rating than the first one and I love it! I do wish that there was more of a multiplayer oportunity for it though. The second one only has the backwards luigi mario brothers game, which is a lot of fun AND if you have two people playing you can actually control each others Lugis and mess everything up haha (it's not so funny when you are trying to run from a lakitu)

But over all I really like the second one and planning to get the first one after I get through it!

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