games / Columns

Top 8 Gaming White Whales For 2023

April 25, 2023 | Posted by Marc Morrison
Fortified Zone Image Credit: Jaleco

Welcome all to another edition of The 8 Ball! This week I’m here to talk about my most wanted game stuff, at least for this year. Some of you may remember I did a list like this last year with games like Mega Man 7, Tail Concerto and LSD among it. Well, surprise surprise, I was able to actually get a good chunk of that stuff between then and now. Believe me, I nearly had a heart attack when I saw LSD in a glass case at a used game store for $700, but it’s mine now. So is the PS3 reference tool I just got last month, which set me back a bit. Still, this list is a shopping list of things I want to try and pick up this year if I can. Let’s begin:

#8: Bebe’s Kids

I will be the first to admit Bebe’s Kids is not a good game. In fact, it’s one of the worst games I’ve ever played, back from when I was a kid. That’s kind of the reason I want it though, because I would continually bash my head against it as a kid and could get nowhere in it. I imagine the same would go on today even when I’m an adult as I’ve heard the third or fourth stage is a complete nightmare. But I still want to have it in my collection, just to shake my head at it from time to time.

#7: Cannon Spike/Project Justice

I’m putting both these games on here because they were designed/produced by the same company: Capcom. Cannon Spike is a cool 3D arena shooter where you play various Capcom characters like Cammy, Mega Man, Charlie from Street Fighter Alpha, Arthur, etc. Project Justice, on the other hand, is a 3 vs. 3 fighting game that is the sequel to Rival Schools, with a much better graphical engine and a few new characters to mix it up with. Both games are between $250-$300, which is a healthy chunk of change.

#6: Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne Collectors Edition

I tried to order this once but it fell through because the seller didn’t realize I was in America and it’s largely a Japanese exclusive. Alongside the game itself, you get a steelbook case, a few soundtrack CDs, a book, and a nightlight of the Amala Drum thing. Really, I just kind of collect these types of Persona collectors editions, and this is only like $100, so it’s not a bad value, all told.

#5: Game Boy Light

The Game Boy Light is a Japan-exclusive Game Boy variant that has an indigo backlight. That is literally the only special feature it has, but it just looks neat. It’s basically in the same shape/body of the Game Boy Color, just without the “Color” part. It’s just a regular Game Boy but with the indigo backlight. These don’t go for too much, only for about $100-$150, which isn’t that bad since it didn’t come out in America.

#4: Taiko no Tatsujin (PS4)

This is another game I ordered from Japan but unlike with the SMT set, I got this. The problem is, it was broken. Taiko no Tatsujin is the rhythm game from Bandai Namco with the big drum, where there are two inner sensors and two outer ones, and you beat the drum pad when the notes show up. The drum I got had a bad sensor so it wouldn’t actually register the tapping of the sticks, which is a bit of a problem, so I had to send it back to the ebay seller in Japan. Now, the game is actually available in the States, but not the specific drum, which was only on the PS4, so that’s kind of a drag. The Switch version of the drum is pretty cheap in comparison.

#3: Fortified Zone

This game is NOT common at all and yet I still have been unable to find it for years. Fortified Zone is basically an arcade-like version of Metal Gear Solid on the Game Boy. You control two different soldiers as they infiltrate an enemy base, and you can swap out the soldiers whenever you want. The male soldier has more special weapons and more health, while the female solder can jump (avoiding spikes) and is generally a bit quicker. I know I could buy the game for like $15 on ebay but I really want to just buy it in a local store, however none of the retro game stores around me have ever had it in stock.

#2: Super Nintendo Kiosk

I grew up in a time when store kiosks were a major thing. NES, GameCube, PS1, PS2, Game Boy, Virtual Boy, etc. The two kiosks I always coveted though were the SNES Kiosk and the Genesis Kiosk with the DS-16 module. The DS-16 was a special cart/adapter that could hold 6 Sega Genesis games and it came with a button you could use to select which cart was active at that time. While the SNES kiosk didn’t have this cool functionality, it just was such a pretty unit, able to be mounted on a vertical stand or just placed on a counter for kids to play with. These have gotten crazy expensive, especially over the past few years, and now a good condition used one will run you about $3,000 to $4,000, easy.

#1: Panasonic Q

I’ve been in the presence of this beauty, at least twice, and you would not believe how pretty it is in person. The Panasonic Q is a Japanese-only variant of the GameCube. Unlike the GameCube though, the Panasonic Q could read/play DVDs, so it was both a game system and media device in one, like the PS2/Xbox were. It’s just a gorgeous console though with a chrome faceplate, light up controller ports and a small LCD screen telling you what mode it is in. You can generally get a Panasonic Q for like $800 or so from ebay but they were over-engineered to a degree so finding replacement parts or doing any type of repair work can be a nightmare. It’s a shame as it’s still one of the most beautiful consoles out there.

For comments, list which uncommon, rare or weird game stuff you want to pick up this year and why.

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Top 8 Games based on Anime

article topics :

The 8 Ball (Games), Marc Morrison