Sunday, July 14, 2019


Today’s generation op videogame systems are incredibly powerful in terms of graphical prowess, sound, and programming content, that every title played on them is almost always like an experience of another life. In exchange for that however, gaming device prices, especially for the major consoles, are prohibitively high. In some quarters this has fueled wistful nostalgia to earlier generations, when games both simple yet memorable were played on affordable platforms. This was the advent of the “Mini” consoles emulating past-gen hardware and software. Nintendo, Sega, and Sony have all released mini-versions of their past best-selling consoles. Now it is Hudson Soft’s turn, or rather Konami.

The Verge has it that the TurboGrafx-16 Mini, first teased during the E3 2019 event back in June, is now slated to release in March of next year. This retro console is the miniature reissue of the TurboGrafx-16, known in Japan and France as the PC Engine, which was put on the market by Japan computing giant NEC and designed by Hudson Soft, now part of Konami. It is Konami that is manufacturing the TurboGrafx-16 Mini, which will come in three variants – Japan, Europe and US. But in spite of the aesthetic and display differences, all three mini consoles will carry almost the same games.

Konami has announced that the TurboGrafx-16/PC Engine Mini will have at bare minimum 50 games. This library is divided into 24 TurboGrafx-16-released games for the US and Europe, and 27 from the Japanese PC Engine, with one title each from the collections being exclusive respectively in the Western and Eastern variants. As a result, the mini console will have both English and Japanese versions of action role-playing game “Ys Book I & II.” The Japanese-language “Salamander” (localized as “Life Force”) is an international exclusive while the pioneering dating-simulation game “Tokimeki Memorial” is for Japan only.

The original TurboGrafx-16 from NEC and Hudson Soft was released in 1987, the first videogame console to offer 16-bit graphics before the Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo. Konami, which had developed game titles for all three consoles, had been one of the major creators for the TG-16, helping it to remain relevant in the gaming industry until the console was discontinued in 1994. Hudson would eventually be bankrupted and absorbed by Konami, giving them the right to develop and produce the TurboGrafx-16 Mini in response to the popularity of similar retro mini-consoles. Similar to these devices, the Mini includes a quick-save function to keep one’s game progress, as the titles come from before game saving.

Konami will release the TurboGrafx-16 and PC Engine Minis on their respective markets March 2020.

Image courtesy of VG247


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