Following the success of Mega Man Legacy Collection, Capcom put together yet another great collection of 6 NES gems. Here we have a bunch of 8-bit Disney games so get your homework done, tune in to channel 3, and let's check them out.
Disney + Capcom = success!
The Disney Afternoon Collection contains 6 games that were released on NES every year from 1989 to 1994. Each one of these games is a classic in its own way with a few being obvious stand-out titles. I'll get into the specific games soon but I just wanted to discuss the collection as a whole first. As someone who has an extensive retro gaming collection, I've always been blown away by how rare and pricey a lot of these Disney NES games are. Therefore, being able to play them on a modern console for such a small price provides consolation for the fact that I'll probably never own them all. Anyway, when you first dive into a game, you'll notice that you can simply tap a button to rewind time whenever you mess up which should be welcome for modern casual gamers (and also very tempting for retro fans such as myself). Finally, the menus are slick and present the collection in a very fun way. Overall, this is an impressively put together package.
DuckTales / DuckTales 2
Gamers who enjoyed 2013's DuckTales: Remastered can now see what the original games were like. It may come as a surprise but the originals are just as enjoyable as the modern interpretation. You play as Scrooge McDuck who runs and jumps around non-linear stages in order to collect treasure and beat bosses. Unlike most 2D platformers, Mr. McDuck doesn't have an attack button. Instead, you have a jump move where his cane is used like a pogo stick. It's similar to Link's down thrust but Scrooge bounces all over the place. It's an absolute blast to play although it sure isn't the longest game ever made. DuckTales 2 is a whole new adventure with slightly enhanced gameplay and puzzles that will put Scrooge's cane to use. It has a Metroidvania feel to it because you can now revisit cleared stages with upgraded abilities in order to uncover additional treasures. In the end, these 2 games are clearly the highlight of this collection.
Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers / Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers 2
Interestingly enough, I included Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers in my Top 10 Capcom Series That Need to Be Revived list back in 2015. Anyway, I used to rent these games all the time. There's something about controlling little chipmunks who pick up objects and throw them at enemies that makes for a rather addictive formula. It's also one of the first fully cooperative games that I've ever played. Whereas DuckTales 2 had a more open world than the first game, Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers 2 is actually more linear as there is no map like there is in its predecessor. Besides that, it's a very similar experience but that's by no means a bad thing.
Considering many of these games were made by some of the developers of Mega Man, it's great to see that Darkwing Duck plays very much like it. Running, jumping, and shooting through the stages to stop evildoers is 2D platforming action in its simplest form. A cool aspect is the ability to use your cape as a shield but watch out for banana peels; they can make Darkwing Duck fall flat on his beak. Overall, the beautifully-rendered graphics and animations combine with the fun gameplay to craft one solid 2D action game.
Although I haven't played this version of TaleSpin, I unfortunately own the subpar Sega Genesis 2D platformer. However, this one is a basic shoot 'em up. When I started playing it, I honestly didn't understand how it could be fun. After realising that you can flip your plane upside-down in order to weave through enemies and shoot behind you, I can now say that it's a pretty cool little game. That being said, the fact that you're basically just slowly flying around and can only shoot directly in front of you or at a 45 degree angle up or down makes it quite a generic shmup. I'd say that it's a solid game but definitely the weakest offering here.
When it comes to bonus content, you can browse many interesting images in the gallery complete with entertaining descriptions as well as listen to each game's soundtrack. On top of that, every game has a time attack and boss rush mode for gamers who want to show off their skills. This is a good amount of content to work through but I would have liked to see a similar selection of challenges to Mega Man Legacy Collection. Instead, just playing time attack and boss rush can get rather boring. Another downside is the fact that every single game featured here except one is a 2D platformer. I would have loved to see more variety in this regard but I guess this is the entire collection of NES games based on The Disney Afternoon cartoons so there is little room for anything else.
The Disney Afternoon Collection is yet another fantastic six-pack of 8-bit Capcom classics. Playing through these adventures is such great fun that I'm looking forward to seeing what retro gems Capcom puts together for their next compilation.
- + Awesome selection of enjoyable classic NES games that mostly hold up very well
- + Decent amount of extra content
- + The originals' rarity adds loads of value
- - Could use a list of challenges like the ones featured in Mega Man Legacy Collection
- - Lacks variety (most games are platformers)
- - TaleSpin hasn't aged well