As gaming moves forward, the perpetual improvement of technology naturally leads to the Gears of War 2 creed: "Bigger, Better, and More Badass." Unfortunately, the trend of increasingly film-like 3D games leads to fewer and fewer 2D titles finding their way to home consoles. Many series, such as Zelda and Mario, have successfully transitioned to 3D. But others never quite recovered after the jump, and were always in their prime in the 2D era.
Take Contra, for example. This weekend, upon curling up with my DS -- a handy shield against things such as responsibility and obligation -- and spending a few hours being brutalized by Contra 4, I realized two things. The first was that I suck at Contra. But the second was that, in spite of suffering several emasculating deaths every minute 10 seconds, I was still having a blast. The game perfectly captures the feel of the series and is a worthy successor to the incredible Contra III, which is now 16 years old (so I guess it's about time, eh?). But the experience isn't quite perfect -- the DS's tiny screens only makes a difficult game harder, and the divide between them compounds the problem. It's been six years since the last sidescrolling Contra made an appearance on a console, and if Capcom's Mega Man 9 is any indication, a classic series like Contra has a home on the Wii. This week Born for Wii attacks aggressively with Bill and Lance.
Every week, Born for Wii digs into gaming's sordid past to unearth a new treasure fit for revival on the Nintendo Wii. Be sure to check out last week's entry in the series, Grim Fandango, and for more great titles that deserve your attention, take a look at Virtually Overlooked.