Jeremy Jastrzab
01 Aug, 2006

Capcom Classics Collection Remixed Review

PSP Review | Twenty Capcom "classics" on the go.
While gaming has only come to the forefront of audio-visual entertainment in the last few years, there are still enough people who have some very fond memories of the their time spent in the video arcades during the 1980’s and 90’s. The arcades may have died out since then but the existence of the games has not. Companies who are still around from that time have realised the potential goldmine that they’ve been sitting on and are capitalising on their past phenomena in the form of Compilation games. The latest one comes from Capcom, in the form of Capcom Classics Collection Remixed for the PSP.

Gaming compilations are nothing new and Capcom are certainly no strangers to this “genre”. They started back as early as 1998 and last year released Capcom Classics Collection for the PS2 and Xbox. Rather than reproducing the same game, Capcom Classics Collection Remixed has a few of the games that were found in the first compilation and a bunch of different ones have been added in place. The same team that brought us last year’s title (Digital Eclipse) have been handling the PSP version as well.

A new addition to the classics.

A new addition to the classics.
The PSP version has twenty titles in all, each with a varying degree of “classic” status. It’s a broad representation of three of the classic genre, Beat ‘em up, Side-scroller and Top-down Shooter:
  • 1941
  • Avengers
  • Bionic Commando
  • Black Tiger
  • Block Block
  • Captain Commando
  • Final Fight
  • Forgotten Worlds
  • Last Duel
  • Legendary Wings
  • Magic Sword
  • Mega Twins
  • Quiz & Dragons
  • Section Z
  • Side Arms
  • Street Fighter
  • Strider
  • The Speed Rumbler
  • Three Wonders
  • Varth
As we saw in the PS2/Xbox games, the emulation job done by Digital Eclipse is quite a solid one. There has been no exception made to the PSP version. Pretty much every title is preserved in it’s original arcade format. In a very pleasing aspect, every single title on that list has a fully functional multiplayer mode that supports mainly up to two players, with a few supporting up to four. In classical arcade style, players are able to jump in and out of a multiplayer game in the easiest fashion imaginable. It’s the equivalent of putting up a gold coin to be involved in the next match. The only catch is that for multiplayer to function, two or more copies of the game need to be involved.

One area of slight ambiguity comes in the form of some of the game’s “classic” status. The games that came out of PS2/Xbox title include Final Fight, Section Z, Bionic Commando (the arcade version), Legendary Wings and Forgotten Worlds, of which a few happen to be some of the finest titles that have ever come out of Capcom’s studios. Reproducing them in multiple games on multiple platforms would make prefect sense, as a classics collection ought to have some real classics.

Titles that weren’t found in the previous collection include 1941, Magic Sword, Captain Commando, Black Tiger, Strider and Side Arms. These are a few of the titles that can genuinely be considered as “good” or even “classical”. Captain Commando supports four player carnage, Magic Sword and Black Tiger have an uncanny amount of depth, while Strider is, in simple terms, exceedingly excellent. They are a throw-back to styles of gaming that have rarely been repeated in recent years.

Supreme classical gaming.

Supreme classical gaming.
Now for the rest of the titles in the collection, calling them classics is at times, a bit of a stretch. You’ve got a game like Street Fighter, that is just as stiff as it was in the arcades and really hasn’t aged well. Then there are games like Mega Twins, Three Wonders, and Varth which aren’t really memorable for doing anything or just feel too aged. It degrades down to games like Avengers, The Speed Rumbler and Last Duel which are just really poor games. The Speed Rumbler has you playing in a car that is meant to have you shooting stuff at a rapid pace but the gun is pretty much useless.

The last two are an odd pair. Quiz and Dragons is conceptually one of the worst games ever conceived. You fight fantasy creatures by answering quiz questions that were relevant in 1990 and only to a US audience… The less said, the better. Block Block is one of the little games that has you tile breaking. You know, bouncing a ball off a paddle, watching it break a bunch of tiles and you catching it off the rebound and so forth. There is a puzzle element to the game and apparently it was included due to its rarity. However, this type of game has been redone a billion times and neither of these two games would be reasons that you would purchase this compilation.

The majority of the games have been faithfully reproduces in terms of controls as well. For some games it’s a good thing, while for others it’s not. One issue that gets in the way of a sometimes is that the analog nub can, at times, feel a little twitchy or imprecise. Another interesting feature that has been added is that of being able to adjust how the game fits into the PSP screen on the fly. Pressing the "select" button will cycle through numerous screen modes, including one where you’ll be holding you’re PSP on its side to play a few of the shooters. It’s definitely novel but the effect wears off when you get tired of the slightly odd feeling of holding the PSP length-wise.

As in the previous compilation, each game comes with a host of extras. Each starts with a brief history and allows you to unlock tips, artwork and soundtracks as you play through and complete given tasks. The soundtracks are especially challenging because you generally need to complete the game. And these aren’t easy games. Still, you have the option of increasing continues or decreasing difficulty. Some may argue that infinite continues diminishes the challenge that the games once presented. One PSP specific issue that would’ve been nice to have, would’ve been the inclusion of a save state feature. Some of the games can be a quite lengthy when played in one stretch, so the lack of this feature diminishes their portable value a tad also.

There is a line to draw between classic and remnant.

There is a line to draw between classic and remnant.
In terms of presentation, Capcom Classics Collection Remixed retains the same notepad style interface from the previous title. It looks good and is easy to use. The emulation job that has been done is a very good one. Most of the games look like they should and even a little sharper, since they are being crammed onto a smaller screen. As mentioned, the player has the option to change the screen format to suit their needs. Sound-wise, there are little to no issues. The only real concern is that the load times are a bit longer than they should be.

Even if you haven’t ever played any of the games that are on offer, most will appear familiar and your likely to have played similar styles of games before. The difference here, is a few are the absolute pinnacle of their styles. Capcom Classics Collection Remixed works off the strengths of it’s PS2 and Xbox predecessor. It’s quite a collection that is sure to invoke a few memories along the way, especially for those who are able to satisfy the multiplayer requirements. Unfortunately, it’s not as portable as it could be with stretched load times and no save stat, and the collection in general is not as robust as the PS2/Xbox version. You can take this however you want but superior collection, in the form of Capcom Classics Collection Reloaded is in development and set for a release on the PSP later this year. But for now, Capcom Classics Collection Remixed is here to fulfil your retro needs on the go and it does it reasonably well.
The Score
While not as robust as it's predecessor, Capcom Classics Collection Remixed provides a pretty good compilation of retro arcade games on the go.
Looking to buy this game right now? PALGN recommends www.Play-Asia.com.

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7 years ago
I'd buy it just for 3 wonders alone, a fantastic game that lets you choose from 3 game styles.Has platform style(metal slug style without the tanks) , horizontal shooter and a frankly crap puzzle game.
Top stuff.
And love magic sword also, ahh arcade memories.

And portable also...awesome!!
7 years ago
Man I gotta get a hold of Magic Swords but I got more than 1/2 those games already on the Ps2 version and i'm not gonna be able to play 2 player cuz I don't know anyone else with a Psp.

I just can't justify buying Psp games anymore for some reason. Like I need to get LocoRoco....but for some reason I can't bring myself to spend the money.
7 years ago
Your PSP sounds like it being abused....

I'm going to call the RSPPA *Royal Society of PSP Protection Agency*
Clearly that PSP is not getting it's daily rations of gaming and I will have to make a sort of citizens arrest in the best interest of the PSP and take it into my own care. icon_lol_old.gif
7 years ago
Remember, kiddies - a games console is not just a Christmas present. Its a commitment. For life.

7 years ago
I haven't even turned it on since the LocoRoco demo....what's to say it even works?
7 years ago
Revisited icon_lol.gif

This compilation is pretty cool, just for the fact you get 20 games at any moment on a portable (+ whatever demos you have on the memory card). Thats got to be some kind of milestone I guess. Well it would be if you didn't have any roms.

I was gonna write off the sequel 'reloaded' because a lot more of the games were on the console versions, but I know they're gonna get more hours on the PSP. Only another month or so to go.
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