The Games of the TG-16 Mini: Part 4

As I mentioned in previous TG-16 Mini blogs, the Mini has two different menus you can choose from.  One has US releases on the TG-16 side, and one has Japanese games on the PC Engine side.  Since we’ve gone over all the US releases, now we’ll look at the Japanese ones.  I’ll split these into two blog parts.  In the first one we’ll look at the Japanese games I’m not so familiar with, and then in the final blog we’ll look at the games I’m more familiar with.  So let’s get started!

The Kung Fu

I THINK this game came out in the US as China Warrior or something.  I just remember them really showcasing this game because the character sprites were HUGE.  Like, taller than half the screen!  It plays a lot like Kung Fu Master.  Your Bruce Lee lookalike walks forward, kicks a bunch of robed sleepwalkers and avoids rocks and bees.  Lots of bees.  What, did the bad guy just train bees to fly in formation toward you?  It’s not as good as Kung Fu Master, though, as it’s very hard and when you duck, you can’t kick, which doesn’t make any sense.

Jaseiken Necromancer

This is a standard top down RPG except since all the text is in Japanese, it’s impossible to play if you can’t read the language.  It’s pretty old school, too, like in you have to select ‘talk’ from a menu to speak to anyone.  Gameplay wise it looks a lot like Phantasy Star, just without the futuristic setting.

Appare!  Gateball

Oh wow, you know what this is?  It’s a croquet game!  Of all the sports to make a video game out of!  Have you ever heard of a croquet video game?  I haven’t.  Anyway, you pick from several chibi manga style characters and pick your opponents and gameplay is a lot like other golf video games.  But, croquet?  Weird.


Well had I known earlier that this was the Japanese version of Military Madness, I would’ve mentioned it when I talked about that game on the TG-16 side!  Just one of those cases where Nectaris SOUNDS like a cooler name, but Military Madness is more descriptive.  Anyway it plays just like Advance Wars, and since you can play the English version on here, not sure why you’d want this one.


This is a text style graphic adventure by Konami.  At least I think so.  Since it’s all in Japanese it’s impossible for me to play.  I’ve heard that this game has ties to Metal Gear, but since I’m not a big Metal Gear fan, that’s about all I can say about it.

Super Momotaro Dentetsu 2

This is a board game involving trains and the Japanese fairytale Peach Boy is the main character.  In Japan it’s one of Hudson Soft’s longest running popular series.  You have to know the language to play it, though.  Supposedly it’s a lot like Monopoly.


All right, the last five games on here are shooters.  When you first boot this game up, the first thing you see on screen is “A.D. 2020: Earth.”  Uh oh.  We’ve got a lot of catching up to do if we want to be at the level of technology this game has.  But then, at the rate this year’s going, it wouldn’t surprise me.  Anyway, this is a standard side scrolling shooter where you blast all manner of mech and space craft.  One of the power-ups you can get is a bit different in that you can get two ships that move on their own and shoot at things in front or behind you.  It’s also really hard so I didn’t get very far.

Seirei Senshi Spriggan

After looking at it, you might think this is just a reskinned version of Blazing Lasers, replacing flying craft in outer space with mechs soaring over Earth-like terrain.  But then I saw Compile on the title screen so that explains it.  The backgrounds are so colorful that it makes it hard to see bullets and power-ups, so I didn’t get very far.

Spriggan Mark 2

I’m guessing it’s a sequel.  Compile made it, too, and it has flying mechs.  But it’s a horizontally scrolling shooter, not a vertical one like in the last game.  And the power-up system is different, too, and you can take multiple hits before exploding.  Still hard, though.

Cho Aniki

This is a famous series of weird shooters in Japan that have a lot of homoerotic muscle man images and just general weirdness.  This first game doesn’t go too overboard with the muscle men, but there are some strange bosses.  Such as one that looks like Thomas the Tank Engine but he’s been working out and eating his spinach and has two muscle arms that help him go down the track!  The music is weird, too, and kind of sounds like off-key classical opera music.  It’s just bizarre.

Ginga Fukei Densetsu Sapphire

And last, I think this is my favorite shooter on this part of the list.  It plays a lot like Hudson’s Star Soldier games, but this one has more of an interesting premise and presentation.  From what I can tell, the story involves time travel and you’ll fly though horizontally scrolling stages set in different time periods.  Some include the Dark Ages and Ancient Egypt, but they mix period based enemies with futuristic ones.  So you may be flying down the Great Wall in medieval China while mechs walk across it!  You can choose from four different ships piloted by four different anime lady Tenchi Muyo style rejects with multicolored hair (my favorite is the green one).  It plays so much like Star Soldier that I wonder if it’s supposed to be a spinoff.  It’s brutally hard, but luckily you can put the game on Easy mode and give yourself more credits so I can at least see a few stages!  I also like how they combined sprite based graphics with polygonal ones.  It’s very cool!  I was pleasantly surprised with this one.

And those are all the Japanese games on the TG-16 Mini that I’m not as familiar with.  For the final blog, I’ll look at the Japanese games I have more knowledge of.  You might, too!  Later!  –Cary

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