Blizzard Arcade Collection (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Athanasios 09.05.2021

Review for Blizzard Arcade Collection on Nintendo Switch

Blizzard, like all giants of the gaming industry, wasn't born in a day. Like all software companies it has gone through phases. Young gamers barely got the chance to see the American developer before World of Warcraft, and the transformation its success would bring to it. Some, a bit older, experienced Blizzard at its best, with PC gems like Diablo and Diablo II, Warcraft III, and the magnificent StarCraft. How many remember its earlier days, though, before it even got its name? Blizzard Arcade Collection is basically a Phase One bundle; a selection of four games from the SNES era, and one that's probably one of the best retro collections ever made.

Blizzard Arcade Collection offers four Blizzard/Silicon & Synapse SNES games. The vehicular, isometric, combat-based racer Rock n' Roll Racing, the puzzle-platformer The Lost Vikings, plus its sequel, and finally the cinematic platformer Blackthorne. All of them can be considered classics. Major league, flawless classics? Not really. They are all very good, competently-crafted games, enjoyable and all, but they can't really compete with the "real" classics of their time. This is the 16-bit era, after all, so it's hard to compete with the likes of Super Metroid, and so on and forth.

Some titles are better than others, of course. Rock n' Roll Racing for example, is the least exciting of the bunch. Isometric racers with tank controls were born out of necessity, so the only two reasons to try this out are nostalgia, and maybe an interest in gaming history. The Lost Vikings has aged much better, mainly because its concept is more innovative, as you need to escape a variety of locales, using three Viking warriors, with each one having a different set of skills - just don't expect much action. Blackthorne is also a neat title; basically Blizzard's version of good 'ol Prince of Persia.

Screenshot for Blizzard Arcade Collection on Nintendo Switch

So, no, while most of the titles on offer have aged gracefully, there are far better games out there - these aren't must-haves. The great thing about this collection, however, isn't what's in the package, but the quality of the package itself. Blizzard Arcade Collection might be one of the best of its kind on the Nintendo Switch - a platform which has already seen many great bundles of old-school fun. For starters, like any self-respecting retro set, it has all the expected buttons and levers for players to push. A time rewind feature, save states, a variety of monitor filters, etc. The real greatness of this collection however, is that it's a very… well, complete collection.

All available games include a variety of versions. Apart from their original, SNES iterations, the Mega Drive ports have been included, which in some cases are even better. Moreover, this includes some updated, brand new iterations, with wide-screen support, better sound or music, or, like in the case of Rock 'n Roll Racing, a 4-player, split-screen mode. The cherry on top is an assortment of extra material, like BTS artwork, the complete OSTs for each title, interviews from the developers, and plenty of photos that will send people back into the distant past of Blizzard; at that time where it was a company comprised of a bunch of nerds who just wanted to make some good games. Kudos to them!

Screenshot for Blizzard Arcade Collection on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

The price of admission might be somewhat high, as the games on offer are good, but not really that good, yet these remain classics in one way or another, even if there were far better alternatives, even at the time of their development. Having said that, they are definitely enjoyable; a bunch of titles that have stood the test of time. More importantly, the quality of this collection couldn't be any higher. It's basically a fantastic bundle of nostalgia, with lots of different versions of each game, plus plenty of behind-the-scenes material, excellent for those who are into the historical preservation side of the industry.

Developer

Blizzard

Publisher

Blizzard

Genre

Other

Players

4

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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