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Inside the NES Worlds of Power Series 78

If you grew up in the 80s, chances were you'd at least heard of the Nintendo Entertainment System. For those of us that read Nintendo Power, ate Nintendo cereal, and (ahem) for a brief time even wore a Nintendo hat, the NES experience was fairly powerful. As such, reading about Nintendo games is a perfectly logical step. 1up has a long piece looking at the World of Power book series, a series of novelizations of some of the most popular NES titles of the day. Castlvania, Master Blaster, and Metal Gear all received the literary treatment ... with varying degrees of success. From the article: "This trend toward whitewashing death and violence also extended the books' text. In Blaster Master, all the defeated 'underboss' characters that look like mutated animals turn out to be holographic projections placed over formless blobs. In Metal Gear, Solid Snake is described as a 'walking arsenal,' yet he only uses his various weapons to shoot locks off doors. In Ninja Gaiden, Ryu's father is shown losing a duel to the death in the game's prologue, and is said to have passed away in the book's early chapters. Yet he turns up at the very end of the book, very much alive. In Infiltrator, a double agent that is ordered to be sent away to be 'voided' has his fate described as either having his memory wiped, being exiled, or getting demoted." So, how many folks (besides me) actually read these thing?
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Inside the NES Worlds of Power Series

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  • by geminidomino ( 614729 ) * on Saturday August 05, 2006 @02:02PM (#15852786) Journal
    From TFA:

    In Ninja Gaiden, Ryu's father is shown losing a duel to the death in the game's prologue, and is said to have passed away in the book's early chapters. Yet he turns up at the very end of the book, very much alive.

    Tsk tsk tsk. Someone didn't play the game through. Ken Hayabusa IS alive until the end of the game.
  • Just a hat? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Traiklin ( 901982 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @02:04PM (#15852794) Homepage
    pfft, you pussy. Wearing only a Nintendo hat?

    I used to wear shirts, Hats, underwear, my shoes had Nintendo laces, I watched the Super Mario super show, read Nintendo Power like it was the bible, ate the ceral, played my NES like it was a gift from god and was damn proud of it.

    you make it seem like it's an emberassment to of worn a hat. Tell that to the so called "fanboys" of today with their aligent to a system that don't have any of the merchandise that goes with the system to truely define you as a fanboy!
  • nothing beats it!
  • Well? (Score:5, Funny)

    by dido ( 9125 ) <[hp.muirepmi] [ta] [odid]> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @02:32PM (#15852898)

    Power Series huh? But does it actually converge?

  • Corrections (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Bozzio ( 183974 )
    The article summary refers to "Blaster Master" as "Master Blaster" and then the article says it was a Capcom game, when in reality it was a Sunsoft game.

    Blaster Master []
  • I did! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Dial-Up ( 842218 )
    I read the Metal Gear novel when I was very young. I remember it being a very interesting book too, though that may have been because it was my first action novel. I had never even played the game, heh. The book gave hints on how to play the game after every chapter, which I thought was neat. Of course, having never played the game, I didn't know if the tips were actually useful, or just filler to try and push the game. I did eventually play the game Metal Gear with an emulator and was severely disappointe
    • I got a used copy with no instructions tips or anything. It took me forever to get past that screen. You had to run beside the truck into the gate (I think it was easiest if you iced the dogs before the truck got on the screen). It's been a very long time. All I really remember was running around in the forest smoking the cigs.
      • Re:I did! (Score:3, Informative)

        by VGPowerlord ( 621254 )

        Shh, don't mention the forest of Metal Gear to Hideo Kojima. It didn't exist in the original version of Metal Gear.

        Metal Gear's appearance on the MSX2 system coincided with the most successful years of the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). The game later made its way to the NES but in an entirely different form than Director Kojima intended, who thinks of the NES version as an inferior adaptation of his much-loved series. Now you can experience the Metal Gear saga's landmark opus for yourself!

        • That's too funny the part that I sucked at wasn't supposed to be in the game. I really enjoyed the later parts (that I'd played at a friends house. MGS was a blast and was what really sucked me into the game in the first place. Never played Snake's Revenge and am now glad I didn't.
  • What I liked about these (which I read in elementary school) at the time was the promise of Tips and Tricks for the game the novel was based on. Some of them (like being able to pause Blaster Master when a grenade explosion was on the boss and effectively instantly kill them) were quite helpful!

    The only other big difference I recall was that in the Metal Gear rendition, the cigarettes were never acquired or used by Solid Snake -- even though they gave you a significant boost in the amount of time you had t

  • Blaster Master (Score:2, Informative)

    by cashpiles ( 993437 )
    I read Blaster Master along with Castlevania when I was about 12 years old. At the time, I thought Blaster Master was an awesome book. I'd get all pumped up and slightly frightened when I came to a part in the book where a boss battle would be described. From a 12 year old me's perspective, I give the Blaster Master book a 9/10. INTENSE!
    • I probably read 75% of these books, and Blaster Master was by far my favorite. I was absolutely gaga about Eve, and I thought it was so cool how the author managed to elaborate on little things in the game that you never think twice about when you're playing. I mean, you pick up the controller, use the D-pad to move the tank about, one button makes it shoot, another button makes it jump. But in the book, each one of these was a small plot point. The main character had to learn how to make the tank move
      • You know, I completely forgot about Eve, and now that you mention it, I too, thought Eve was a babe. And now I'm remembering a chapter in the book where the hero has to collect bombs from this stone/brick area. And one of the bosses is the hero's mutated frog. Now I'm inspired to find a copy of that book and read it again, just for memory's sake. Cheers.
    • Blaster Master was probably the best of the books. It went a bit deeper and actually had a pretty interesting plot that built on the game quite a bit. It fleshed out the game a lot more (and better than the awful sequel for the game).

      The only one I can think of that I didn't read was Wizards & Warriors. Before Shadowgate was okay for standard fantasy fare, Castlevania 2 had some decent narrative but one of the worst premises possible for a VG novelisation (gamer gets sucked into video game world),
      • I remember liking the Castlevania 2 book the best, though I also read Bionic Commando and Wizards and Warriors. But I remember reading all three of them repeatedly. Good fun, even if they did go astray from the game's plot once in a while. They were still much more fidelous than many of the movie remakes, today.
  • by vertinox ( 846076 )
    Infiltrator?! INFILTRATOR! I'm sorry but that was the suckiest game I have every played on the NES. Maybe I was really bothered by the fact I couldn't even play the copter missions for 60 seconds before dying but having no progress whatsover in the land mission parts.

    Still it was an amazing concept but I think it was doing way too much for the NES console. Just not fun for a kid in the late 80's.
    • Ya, Infiltrator was damned near impossible for me when I was a kid. I never understood what the point of the game was. Spent a half hour running around shooting random people, setting off alarms, and stealing their costumes. As for the helicopter, fogeddaboudit.
  • What irked me about the books was how MegaMan kept using metal blade on everything. Cause you know using that would have you running out before you left the first part of the stage, and some bosses would just laught it right off. I'm looking at you there AirMan.
    • Re:Filthy Mega-Lies! (Score:4, Informative)

      by Firehawke ( 50498 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @07:01PM (#15853635) Journal
      Maybe he used the shoot-two-pause trick. Shoot two metal blades, hit start to bring up the subscreen, and reselect Metal Blade. That resets the shot counter (on each third blade it would drop one weapon power bar) and allows you effectively infinite blades.
      • You get so many shots, I don't think I've EVER run out of them, regardless. Hell, if anything, the fact that he horribly abused the blades shows the author probably played the game.

        What irked ME about the book was that the author pulls all sorts of crap out of his ass. The book starts with Dr. Light putting Mega Man in a machine that's supposed to create a duplicate of him but somehow turns him into a human instead. What the fuck?

        I do like how the book has to work to explain why he'd ever use the ass-usel

        • by Firehawke ( 50498 ) on Sunday August 06, 2006 @06:15PM (#15856509) Journal
          Yeah, it's really uncommon to run out of metal blades in general unless you're a poor shot and waste a lot of them. Still, once you get them, they tend to get a LOT of use in stages.

          On the other hand, Mega Man 2 was the game that taught me an interesting lesson in terms of Mega Man games-- as soon as I get to the final boss, I think to myself, "Okay, what's the most USELESS weapon in my arsenal? That simply HAS to be its weak point."

          Bubble Lead. Top Spin. Electric Spark. Strike Chain.

          It's always the most difficult to use weapon, the one that almost NEVER is effective elsewhere in the game.
    • Metal Blade is one of the most energy-efficient weapons in the series; you get sixty-four blades to a single bar. Even if you don't pick up any energy refills, that's a fairly good amount. And the weapon's fairly effective against quite a few bosses. Especially Metal Man himself.
  • found about five of them at a garage sale about a decade back...
  • Hell, I still have them! Except Infiltrator... I haven't been able to find it in years. My name is Logan, and I am a tremendous dork.
  • More information here: /8-bit-lit-worlds-of-power-series/ []

    I had a copy of the Castlevania II spin-off novel as a child. I was very interested in it, but that may have had more to do with wishing I could play the game than anything else.
  • oops! (Score:1, Redundant)

    by syukton ( 256348 )
    It's Blaster Master.
  • I read the master blaster book. As a kid it was enjoyable.
  • by vistic ( 556838 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @09:06PM (#15853918)
    If you grew up in the 80s, chances were you'd at least heard of the Nintendo Entertainment System.

    Are you kidding me? I don't think there was anyone then who had only heard of the NES. At least for people born around 1979-1981. No one had just heard of it... you had heard of it, seen the commercials, marveled at it at your friends house, begged your parents, seen the shows, talked about it at school, read comics, played with demos at the Captron World of Nintendo store in your local mall...

    The NES was everywhere. It was *THE* toy of my generation.
  • The Megaman 2 novel is also online. Here's a link: pdf []
  • I used to have the blaster master one, the metal gear one, the castlevania one, the wizzards & warriors one and I think the ninja gaiden one.

    Although I dont remember actually playing any of those games on the NES.
  • I mean, how obscure is this? I still have the Castlevania book and one other I can't recall the name of. The Castlevania novel was a great read for me as a kid. I could almost imagine myself in the role of the boy starring in the book (even though I'm a girl...). Maybe I'll go dig up my old books and reread them sometime...
  • on to the.. (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    any book that has "on to the pink caves" can't be all bad.
  • The article makes fun of the "Castlevania II: Simon's Quest" book using a quote that starts with "I will drink your spirit like cherry pop!"

    But this is totally unfair! That quote is from the very beginning of the book when the main character is daydreaming. It's not from the main (and more serious) part of the story at all.

    (Yes, I have all of the books sitting next to me...)
  • I once had an idea to do a short story told from the viewpoint of a soldier on the field in one of my favorite Battlefield 1942 maps, but then I thought it about for a while and realized, "Hey, that's farking dumb."
  • > Castlvania, Master Blaster, and Metal Gear all received
    > the literary treatment ... with varying degrees of success

    Funny. I'd have thought not
  • Read em? I still have mine on the shelf! Books like shadowgate really helped introduce me into the world of fantasy. The pun thing from castlevania was hilarious, and these stories I still find enjoyable to this day!

"The one charm of marriage is that it makes a life of deception a neccessity." - Oscar Wilde