As the 16-bit era ended, the best PC Engine games changed the gaming world for players in Japan. While the rest of the world had Turbografx-16, Japan and France had the PC Engine. The name seems cooler but the game console is the same. Marketing was very intense such that the PC Engine game became Super Famicom’s main competitor.
Over 12 years now, more than 676 games have been released for both the pc engine and Turbografx-16. If you love playing games on your handheld device, we suggest you try the PC Engine games. There are various classic titles to enjoy. Here are the top 5 Japanese PC Engine games.
Ever played Tetris? Well, this pinball game is more addictive than Tetris. It has a creepy gothic and occult theme that features skeletons, skulls, and demons. It has a three-screen high pinball table that scrolls. The center of the table has a woman’s head that slowly transforms into a lizard.
A player can push and tilt the table. However, too much tilting costs the player time while the table rights itself and makes the flippers useless. There are several sub-games to spice up the action, several targets to aim for and many critters scooting around.
The soundtrack may be a spooky laugh with one tune playing but it is a masterpiece, the sound tracks are also amazing.
Retro gamers in Japan refer to Ninja spirit as “Saigo no Nindou”.
This game features the journey of Tsukikage through seven stages through the woodlands, wastelands, swamps, temples, and cliffs. As the player, you control Tsukikage who is out for revenge after his father’s death.
The color and graphics of this game are top-notch. The player uses a righteous cloud (sword) to slash all the obstacles that get in the way including a mighty boss at the end of every level. There are Ninja ghosts and Shurikens to help the player in the quest for revenge.
The player can choose among four kinds of weapons to use and gets a chance to upgrade the weapons by the use of bonuses. Other special items can also be collected.
Cadash is a short experience game that allows four people to play at the same time. In the arcade version, you start the game by picking one of the four characters i.e. mage, Fighter, Ninja, or priest whom you can name using three characters. The warriors are tasked with finding the princess who was kidnapped.
Cadash almost looks similar to Rastan, another fantasy game by Taito. Each stage of the game has a vine that you can climb. Each of the characters has a different role to play. The more enemies you kill, the more experience points you earn which increase stats including strength, HP, and agility. You can also use gold dropped by the enemies to purchase weapons.
Cadash has five stages but after the first stage, the progression is not linear. There are cases where you will experience distractions like backtracking. The Japanese version of this game is balanced a little differently making it easy to play.
Only two players per screen are supported meaning the other two cabinets have to be linked. The game may seem difficult at the beginning, you may even try 4-5 times before you complete the game but it is fun and adventurous.
This is a side-scrolling game that centers on a character called Rick. Rick goes on a mission inside a creepy house to save his girlfriend Jennifer. Rick uses punches and kicks, but side attacks are allowed too. For weapons, you get cleavers, spears, and short guns that take down enemies fast.
There are seven stages to go through, each having a dark and moody theme. You will see dead bodies hanging from ropes and deformed babies crawling around the room. The scene at stage four is particularly scary.
There is a shooting at every stage and if you die, you are taken back to the last checkpoint rather than the beginning.
The graphics feature excellent animation, the music is creepy but good, and the soundtracks draw you to the atmosphere completely.
Splatter house is a short game but once you get used to the controls, you will progress through the gory places easily.
Wrapping up our list is Lords of Thunder also known as Winds of Thunder in Japan. It falls in the genre of Shoot ‘em up video games.
This futuristic fantasy game is unique and cool. It features an evil lord who takes over the land using strong strange powers. Six bosses, one at each stage, accompany the lord. You (as the player) have to defeat each of those bosses to save the land.
The game starts with insane moving before you are presented with a title screen to pick the level that you want. There are six levels but you can play in any order. Before you start the game, you are presented with 300 crystals and you have to buy power-ups to boost your success chances.
You are limited to three continuing chances before starting the game over. You can pick from one of the three difficulty levels: normal, hard, and super. You also get to choose among four armors namely fire, earth. Water and wind. The game features 5-minute long glory metal songs that do not keep repeating.
As a skilled retro video game player, I can assure you that no other pc engine video games beat the five we have listed here. Other pc engine games you can try include Neutopia II, Highlander, Bonk’s Big adventure, YS I & II, Magical Chase, Parasol Stars, Castlevania, Alien vs. Predator, and Air Zonk.
PC engine games are no longer being produced. Therefore, the best place you can get all these and other pc engine games are from second-hand sites.