Reviewed by Downtown Jimmy
Nov. 3rd 2004
Introduction:Midway returns with the next volume in Arcade Treasures. Volume 2 has more great classics from the company which sucked our pockets dry, Midway. If you love the old school arcade action read on.
The Game:Before the ESRB anyone could roll into an arcade, throw in a quarter and enjoy the senseless violence of a game like Mortal Kombat. It's pretty humorous, and at the same time unsettling that this collection of fine arcade games has the label of 'M'ature. When I was a youngster we understood that it's only a game, and I'm not sure anything has changed. I digress from the social rant about today's society and return a time when this where more simple, the classic days of the arcade as sampled in Midways Arcade Treasures 2.
Midway Arcade Treasures 2 (MAT2) has their finest collection of 20 classic games on one disc. All of these games at one time where at the arcade and stem from 1981 (Wizards of Wor) to 1997 (Rampage World Tour). If I had to single out five of my favorites from MAT2 it would have to Gauntlet 2, NARC, Mortal Kombat 3, Wizards of Wor and Xenophobe. Each game on MAT2 represents an era in videogame history and evolution over many different genres including, Shooters, Fighters, Racing, Maze, Sports and Adventure. It's amazing how far we have come and todays standards comparing Wizards of Wor to NARC would be like the Nintendo 8-bit to the Xbox, it's that big of difference.
MAT2 also includes some extras on the disc like cabinet art, old game trailers, design notes and the best part, developer interviews. The developer interviews although horrible in quality give great insight into the old world of videogames when it was more homegrown. You can also customize the options of each game which goes into details such as life of the character and point scoring schemes. It's cool because these old arcade games have no sympathy, and its usually one hit and your dead. Overall the translation or porting of these old arcade classic is done almost perfectly. The Xbox controller works almost flawlessly with all the games. The layout design is great and I'm glad they show you the controls before the game starts even if it usually only consists of a few buttons.
Midway Arcade Treasures 2 also supports Xbox Live. The Xbox Live component is for sharing online scores only, and not multiplayer play. It's pretty righteous to share your scores with other old school gamers just to see who is the master of Primal Rage.
The next section I usually cover graphics, sound and innovation. Considering the concept behind the game it really doesn't work in our normal format. Are the graphics bad? Well "yes" for today standards, but for NARC in 1988 it was the bomb. The Halo of the late 80s. In MAT2 case you take the games for what they where when they where developed, then you have your high graphics and sound scores. It would also all be about innovation. Considering the low tech options these developers had, they sure came up with some brilliant games. You can also easily see game evolution from a few colours in Wizards of Wor to digitized characters (Mortal Kombat > Pit Fighter > Narc). It's actually pretty remarkable that these games are still fun, and it goes to show that gameplay will always be more important then the bells and whistles of today games. That's innovative.
Mojo:Midway Arcade Treasures 2 has one major attribute and that is nostalgia. If you own this disc already chances are that you are an old school gamer and are reliving the old glory days. There is no way to scale the mojo in that perspective, and the mojo fly's off the chart. Midway picked some excellent games which didn't make it into the first disc. This game is fun for some easy multiplayer action and if you really want a laugh. show a younger gamer what old school really is and it's not that n64 gathering dust in your closet.
Lowdown:If you love the old school, then you must add this collection. Midway Arcade Treasures 2 is an impressive line-up of old school games which for their time led the pack. Thank you Midway, and old schoolers. pick this sucka up!
Gameplay: 9, Graphics/Sound: N/A, Innovation: N/A, Mojo: 8. Final: 8.5
- Comes with a documentary about the games
- Includes the original Mortal Kombat, NARC, Spy Hunter 2 and more
- Enjoy classic games on a modern console
- Includes more than 20 games; A.P.B., Arch Rivals, Championship Sprint, Cyberball 2072, Gauntlet 2, Hard Drivin', Kozmik Kroozr', Mortal Kombat 3, Mortal Kombat II, NARC, Pit Fighter, Primal Rage, Rampage World Tour, Spy Hunter 2, Timber, Total Carnage, Wacko, Wizards of Wor, Xenophobe, Xybots.