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Author Topic: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game  (Read 11845 times)

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Grasshopper

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Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« on: April 30, 2006, 04:15:33 pm »
I bought one of these just before Christmas primarily because I'm a big fan of Ghosts'n'Goblins and I was curious to see how accurate the emulation was. Here are my thoughts.

Physical Appearance

First impressions are that that it looks cool but is badly made. Unfortunately, This seems to be typical of the Jakks units. The joystick is 8-way, with a soft action, and a short throw. It feels flimsy but works surprisingly well. Annoyingly, the buttons are on the left hand side of the joystick. Grrr. Why do Jakks always make this mistake? Almost every important arcade game was laid out with the buttons to the right of the joystick and that is what I'm used to. I can only assume that one of the Jakks designers must be left-handed. However I'm left-handed and I still prefer the buttons to be on the right. Of course the best approach would have been to put buttons on the left and the right as Radica did with their excellent Space Invaders game but I suppose that might have added to the unit's cost.

That being said, once I'd got used to the buttons being in the wrong place, I found the unit comfortable to use.

The unit has a slot for fitting what Jakks describe as Gamekeys. These are basically cartridges that enable extra games to be played. This is a bad move in my opinion. One of the charms of the Jakks games is their plug and play simplicity. Adding a cartridge slot just complicates matters and probably makes the base units more expensive to manufacture. I'd rather they just charged slightly more for the base unit and included more games from outset. Also, if Jakks expect me to invest in a significant library of Gamekeys then I expect the base units to be better made.

Software

The unit comes with three games built in - Ghosts'n'Goblins, 1942, and Commando.

The first thing I should say is that I'm a bit disappointed that Jakks have only included three games. But in their defence these games are more sophisticated than the ones built in to their earlier units. Also, each of the games has a genuine following so none of them can be considered fillers.

I'm pleased to say that Ghosts'n'Goblins is graphically very close indeed to its arcade counterpart. Only an extreme purist is likely to be disappointed. However, the sound is a bit disappointing.

I have no complaints about the gameplay either. Jakks have, in my opinion, perfectly captured the feel of the arcade game. I'm guessing that the programmers must have had access to the original source code. It's that close.

With regards to the other two games, I don't have much experience of playing 1942 and Commando in the arcades or on MAME for that matter, so it's difficult for me to comment on how accurate the conversions are. However, for what it's worth, my impression is that they both seem to be decent enough copies of two well-liked arcade games. One thing worth mentioning is that in the arcades they were both vertical games, but the Jakks programmers haven't modified them to fit better on a horizontal TV, so you end up with large black unused spaces to the left and right of the main picture. I'm in two minds about whether this is a good thing or not. On the one hand it means the games are more faithful to their arcade counterparts, but on the other hand it also means that a lot of the screen area is wasted.

Each of the three games has the following features:

  • Several difficulty levels.
  • The option to continue when you've lost all your lives.
  • Single player, or alternating two player games.
  • The ability to enter your initials when you get a high score. These are then saved in flash memory. Cool!

Conclusion

On balance this is my favourite of the Jakks units I've tried so far. The Pacman unit (my previous favourite) looks cooler but the Capcom unit is more comfortable to play and the included games have more depth and longevity. It's just a pity they didn't include more games and put the buttons in the correct position.
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Grasshopper

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2006, 04:17:05 pm »
I'll also be doing a review of the Radica Street Fighter P&P Game when I get some time. So watch this space.
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bishmasterb

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2006, 04:04:38 pm »
I haven't seen this one in stores yet, although I haven't specifically looked. Where did you buy it?

Thanks for the good review.
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Grasshopper

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2006, 02:40:10 pm »
I bought it from here:

http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/partNumber/3694080.htm

However, as you'll see from the link I'm from the UK. Unfortunately, I don't know where you'd buy them in the States.
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DarkBubble

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2006, 12:38:05 pm »
I'll also be doing a review of the Radica Street Fighter P&P Game when I get some time. So watch this space.

Is that the P&P Genesis clone with Special Champion Edition, two Genesis-style 6-button pads, and the Genesis version of Ghouls & Ghosts built included?

As a Commando fan, I may have to check into one, although I can guarantee some rewiring to deal with the stick and button orientation.  What's the story on these things anyway?  Cheap, good-enough emulation, or just decent conversions using Genesis tech?  Seems like the Genesis hardware is cheap enough to use for all kinds of things these days.

I agree on the GameKey issue though.  It doesn't seem like they actually put add-ons out there.  I don't think I've ever seen a GameKey that wasn't included with the actual "system", as with the Star Wars P&Ps.

Jawadali

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2006, 12:11:48 pm »
I'll also be doing a review of the Radica Street Fighter P&P Game when I get some time. So watch this space.

Hello, do you have any update on this? I don't want to rush your review or anything, as I know other, more important things usually come up during the summer.

I'm just asking because I saw this set for $5 at Gamestop (EB Games), and I kinda bought it on an impulse-buy. I already have SF2 Turbo for SNES, as well as a few SNES Advantage arcade sticks, but for $5, I couldn't pass it up.

If you have any preliminary thoughts on the game system, please feel free to share them.

@DarkBubble (and everyone else interested in the set):

At one of my local Gamestop stores (here in the US), All of the TV games were $4.99. They mostly had "Outrun" and a few others, but there was one last SF2 that I was able to get.

I asked the cashier if these games were on clearance or anything (since I know these TV games usually go for $15-25), and he said they were pretty much trying to get rid of them. The didn't have any clearence signs or red labels on them, but thier price tags were marked $4.99 as if it was the regular price.

I don't know if this clearence was store-specific, regional, or naion-wide, So check your local Gamestop/EB Games stores to see if they also have these TV games on sale.

Grasshopper

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2006, 02:35:36 pm »
I'll also be doing a review of the Radica Street Fighter P&P Game when I get some time. So watch this space.

Hello, do you have any update on this? I don't want to rush your review or anything, as I know other, more important things usually come up during the summer.

I'm just asking because I saw this set for $5 at Gamestop (EB Games), and I kinda bought it on an impulse-buy. I already have SF2 Turbo for SNES, as well as a few SNES Advantage arcade sticks, but for $5, I couldn't pass it up.

If you have any preliminary thoughts on the game system, please feel free to share them.


No problem, but I'll have dig it out of storage and find some batteries for it first. I bought it mainly for the bonus game of Ghouls'n'Ghosts (decent version btw) so I can't tell you much about Street Fighter. But I'll run a few tests and compare it with the MAME version.

To be honest though, you really can't go wrong for $5. I just wish they were that cheap over here.
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Jawadali

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2006, 11:27:13 am »
Thanks for the reply.

No need to rush. Any feedback will be appreciated. Also, is the Ghouls and Ghosts (taken from the Genesis version, which I never played) the same as Super Ghouls and Ghosts that used to be on the SNES?

Grasshopper

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2006, 01:49:39 pm »
Thanks for the reply.

No need to rush. Any feedback will be appreciated. Also, is the Ghouls and Ghosts (taken from the Genesis version, which I never played) the same as Super Ghouls and Ghosts that used to be on the SNES?

Better late than never.....

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=57003.0

AFAIK the version of Ghouls'n'Ghosts supplied is not the same as Super Ghouls'n'Ghosts.
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Jawadali

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Re: Review of Jakks Capcom Plug & Play TV Game
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2006, 02:44:56 pm »
Thanks for the review, it's very much appreciated.

It seems the sound really took a downturn when being converted from Arcade/Sega to P&P TV Game.