NeoGeo Pocket Color Selection Vol. 1
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The Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Volume 1 for Nintendo Switch brings a forgotten handheld to the forefront. Featuring 10 games that defined SNK's unique platform, this collection serves as a glimpse into gaming history. Six fighting games, two action games, an RPG and a sports title bring something for everyone, but has age been kind to them? This is an in-depth look into how the collection holds up over 20 years later.
I’d sooner point you to the ACA NeoGeo offerings from the series, that’d be like writing off Link’s Awakening completely just because A Link to the Past exists. That analogy can be applied to the whole collection, in fact, particularly since SNK has made so much of its backlog available. You may be able to pick up a bigger, prettier game but don’t let that deter you from celebrating this unique handheld and its library.
NEOGEO POCKET COLOR SELECTION Vol. 1 is the compilation that includes 10 games from the extinct SNK portable system that was on the market in the late 90's. The selection includes some of the best titles in the system, which is remembered for its conversions of Neo Geo's star franchises. For the rest, a highly recommended compilation for those who were lucky enough to enjoy this laptop, or for all those who could not enjoy it, and are curious about the interesting but unsuccessful Neo Geo Pocket Color.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Vol 1 is a fantastic selection of games, even if it does tilt a little heavy towards the fighting side of things. Given that the title has ‘Vol 1’ in there, I wonder if we’ll see one or two more of these collections (the Pocket Color had 31 games released for it). Assuming you haven’t already picked up all of the previously released fighting games, this is a very worthwhile collection for old school gaming enthusiasts.
Best part is that I don't have to try and find a working NGPC in good condition anymore.
There’s one other feature that is fun and worth mentioning, which is that it’s also possible to play the black and white versions of these games thanks to the color filter options. If you’ve yet to read our history of NeoGeo Pocket Color feature, SNK originally launched a colorless version of NeoGeo Pocket—only to be aghast to learn that Game Boy Color would debut soon after. Not wanting to be instantly outstripped by Nintendo’s latest handheld, SNK swiftly updated to NGPC soon thereafter, and the rest was history. SNK has been doing wonders keeping its back catalogue of games alive through retro hardware and compilations like NGPC Selection Vol. 1, and we sincerely hope that fans take the time to pick this one up for themselves.
Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Vol. 1 will be a letdown for those who've already purchased some (or all) of the fighters released prior. But if you've been wondering why SNK hasn't bundled these handheld games together, wonder no more. While very much a mixed bag, there's enough here for the curious, and more so for fans. Bring on Vol. 2.
If you’ve yet to pick up the six previously-released games on this collection, then Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Vol. 1 is easy to recommend. Packed with hours upon hours of retro-gaming goodness, it’s as close as it gets to a definitive look at SNK’s 16-bit handheld. I only hope that Big Tournament Golf, Dark Arms, and Metal Slug: 1st & Second Mission are added to the eShop down the road so that those who purchased the earlier releases don’t have to shell out another $40 to play these titles.
All in all the NeoGeo Pocket Colour Selection Vol.1 is a fascinating, if not slightly unbalanced look into the history of SNK and its short-lived foray into handheld gaming. What is commendable is the dedication to getting fighting games working well on their handheld project, but also putting out stuff like Dark Arms which was quite unexpected for the market at that time. While this is a A+ emulation collection with some nice extras, filling it with 6 fighting games really puts this title into a niche. If you’re a fan of SNK/NeoGeo history and curious about the Pocket this is an easy purchase. On the other hand for people less versed or not interested in fighting games, it’s a rather pricey lesson in death by excess. It’s a quality product – just laser-pointed directly at a certain audience.
A strong showing for the Neo Geo Pocket Color, this is an eight-game compilation with seven avowed recommendations. That's a pretty high ratio, and that tantalising "Vol. 1" in the title makes us hope and pray that more SNK handheld goodness is to come. Now that Match of the Millennium has been accounted for, after all, there's surely no reason to hold out on us vis-a-vis Card Fighters Clash, the absolute best game on the system. Sonic Pocket Adventure would be ace, too. But that's all speculation – in the here and now, Neo Geo Pocket Color Selection Vol. 1 is a great little compilation and all the better if you didn't buy all the previous standalone releases. If you did, is it worth the money? To this writer, yes, but you can quietly seethe about the financial imposition.