The Works: Complete chronicles of Nintendo consoles
January 2, 2019 10:25 AM   Subscribe

Jeremy Parish is on a quest to chronicle every NES game in order of its US launch date—the good, the bad, and the forgotten gems. He also does this with Game Boy works and Super NES works. He admittedly might be further along in these projects if he didn’t keep breaking out into other consoles, like he just did with Virtual Boy.

The series distinguish themselves from other retrogaming channels on YouTube by really foregrounding the games’ history, aiming to show how even lesser titles were influenced by what came before, and affected what came after. Parish often digs through dark corners of the web to find out who really worked on a game and how they brought their experiences to a title. Some highlights:
  • Final Fantasy II (yes, really Final Fantasy IV) gets a three-part episode. The first part talks about the programmers who brought us the Active Time Battle system, which gave the game a reason to be a console game instead of a pen-and-paper RPG, and defined the series for two console generations. The second part discusses the theater background of its scenario designer and how that informs the game’s presentation and famous melodrama.
  • Rygar and Section-Z came to NES one after another. Both are ostensibly arcade ports, but very different from their forebears, and chart out different paths for how arcade titles should really be adapted for play in the home.
  • Yes, people know that Blizzard made The Lost Vikings before they made it big with Warcraft. But do you know about the game they made before that? It uses a Super NES resolution you won’t see in other titles.
  • Super Metroid is a renowned classic. You’d think a lot of gamers would be keen to play other titles from the same development team. So have you played Galactic Pinball for Virtual Boy?
If you want to watch more, there are playlists for each console split up by release year, or you can just watch all his videos (with some livestreams mixed in).
posted by brett (6 comments total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
This is extremely my jam. Thanks for putting this collection of YouTube videos together, greatly appreciate. :-)
posted by Fizz at 10:27 AM on January 2

Jeremy Parish! That takes me back. Happy to know he's still working hard to earn a living as a games journalist.
posted by subdee at 11:09 AM on January 2 [3 favorites]

This has been an excellent series! I don't know where Jeremy gets the energy to do so many of these so consistently.

I'm always excited when I get a notification when a new one is up. The information in the videos is also included in a series of books that accompany them.
posted by falselogic at 11:21 AM on January 2

I liked how he acknowledged that the virtual boy one is the only one he's likely to finish in his lifetime, though. I mean whatsit, 25 or so games? That's an achievable target.
posted by Kyol at 12:22 PM on January 2

Weird! I saw this and was like "oh I know about that!" but then it was a different YouTube series!

Chrontendo did this up to 1989, not sure if there will be more: Chrontendo playlist
posted by lubujackson at 7:51 PM on January 2 [1 favorite]

I'm not affiliated in any way, but if you're a fan of Jeremy's work, be sure to check out his fantastic Retronauts podcast.
posted by Captain Fetid at 1:41 AM on January 5 [2 favorites]

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