The From A to Z series lets our editors go back and take a look at games from past generations that are classics, overlooked gems, or just titles they remember fondly. The idea behind this is to pick five games from each letter of the alphabet, once a week to showcase. This delivers 26 weeks and tons of games to talk about. Hopefully it sparks some conversation, and of course plenty of memories.
The system everyone has been waiting for, the Super Nintendo.
Let’s continue with the letter “S” Part 1.
Secret of Evermore
Did you know Square had a development branch here in the States? It’s true because they made this oddball of a game. Following the tale of a boy and his dog lost in another world, Secret of Evermore is often considered the bastard brother of Secret of Mana with its similarities in visuals and overall gameplay. However, it had its own unique identity thanks to its sense of humor and various pop-culture references.
Secret of Mana
Also known as Seiken Densetsu 2 in Japan, Secret of Mana is considered one of the best JRPGs on the SNES thanks to its fast paced combat that allowed for up to three players to play at the same time, controller each of the playable characters all at the same time which was quite rare for its time and nearly unprecedented for an RPG. It also featured vibrant visuals with excellent sprite work and some truly excellent original tracks that are still being remixed to this date.
Seiken Densetsu 3
The sequel to Secret of Mana was unfortunately never officially released in the States which is quite unfortunate because it was bigger and better than Secret of Mana in every way with better visuals and refinements to the combat along with some interesting character customization options. It retained the coveted multiplayer option of its predecessor and is also considered one of the best JRPGs on the SNES by those who have played it. For those who are interested in trying it for themselves, just know that the game has been fully fan-translated and should be easy to find.
Adapted from a table-top RPG of the same name, this WRPG took the stage with a cyberpunk setting quite unlike anything else on the SNES at the time. Using the “bank of terms” mechanic, the player was tasked with unraveling a series of mysteries by talking to NPCs with the right words to continue the dialogue. It was a difficult game and I never managed to finish it but at the time, it left a strong impression on me thanks to its memorable setting.
What needs to be said about SimCity at this point? The SNES version wasn’t quite as polished as its PC counterpart but it still had most of the features and I lost hours upon hours trying to build a perfectly sustainable city. After which point, I would have to summon some kind of natural disaster to blow it all up and start another city!
Tune in next week for the next collection of titles.