Connect with us

Guides

How to make your own Nintendo Switch Virtual Console

There are now over 500 retro games available on the Nintendo Switch. Here’s our guide to the best titles.

Published

on

Nintendo Switch - NES

There isn’t an official Virtual Console for the Nintendo Switch, but there are now over 500 retro games available through the eShop. Here’s our guide to making your own Virtual Console.

After years of selling classic games piecemeal on the Wii, Wii U, and 3DS, the lack of a dedicated Virtual Console successor for the Switch has been puzzling and frustrating for Nintendo fans. The console’s versatility is perfect for revisiting the hits of the past, and it’s a shame that many classic first and second-party titles are not available on Nintendo’s latest console.

However, although the Switch doesn’t have a Virtual Console in name, it has nonetheless become home for hundreds of classic video games.

With the Nintendo eShop full to bursting, finding a specific title can be tricky. Here’s our do-it-yourself guide to assembling your own library of classic retro games on the Nintendo Switch. We’ll highlight a few of our favourites as we go.

Nintendo Switch Online – NES (40+ games)

Let’s begin the with the closest thing we do have to a Virtual Console. The growing library of games available through a subscription to Nintendo Switch Online.

The lineup includes many NES classics – with Famicom titles also available if you set up a Japanese account – and new games are added to the roster every month. The comparatively cheap price of entry for Nintendo Switch Online – just $20 a year in the US – makes this good value if you want to sample Nintendo’s early console efforts. Each game has been updated to support suspend points and online multiplayer, and there are also rumours that Super NES games could join the service in the future.

Our picks

  • Dr. Mario
  • The Legend of Zelda
  • Super Mario Bros 3

Classic Sega Games (60+ games)

The best entry point for classic Sega games is the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive Collection. The Switch edition oddly omits a few classic Wonderboy titles, but most of the big names you’d expect – Out Run, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Gunstar Heroes, for example – are here. If you’re a retro enthusiast, M2’s Sega Ages series is also worth a look. Released as individual titles, each game includes new visual and audio options, and some useful – but optional – gameplay tweaks.

Our picks

  • Sonic the Hedgehog
  • Out Run
  • Phantasy Star

Arcade Archives (50+ games)

Hats off to the busy folks at Hamster Corporation, who continue to churn out release after release. Many of these arcade classics speak for themselves, with the likes of Bomb jack, Renegade, and Moon Cresta all enjoyable, despite their age. A selection of Nintendo’s early arcade efforts are also included, many of which are based on NES games, such as Excitebike, Ice Climber, and Super Mario Bros. Each title is similar enough to its console counterpart to feel familiar, but they often include subtle gameplay changes that were designed to keep those quarters coming.

Our picks

  • Vs. Super Mario Bros
  • Donkey Kong
  • Double Dragon

Neo Geo Games (110+ games)

Hamster Corporation is also diligently porting the impressive Neo Geo console back-catalogue. Games from the Metal Slug, King of Fighters, and Samurai Shodown franchises are among the treats on offer in a library that is over 100 titles strong, and grows by the week.

Our picks

  • Puzzle Bobble
  • Metal Slug 3
  • Money Puzzle Exchanger

SNK 40th Anniversary Collection (23 games)

More classic SNK arcade games – and a few console variants – can be found in the SNK 40th Anniversary Collection. The quality is as variable, but it’s another well-produced package that will appeal to gamers of a certain vintage.

Our picks

  • Alpha Mission
  • Ikari Warriors
  • Time Soldiers

Atari Flashback Classics Collection (150 games)

Speaking of quality, many of the 150 games included in the Atari Flashback Classics are quite dreadful. However, that doesn’t diminish this collection’s importance as a fascinating retrospective on the early years of console gaming. The absence of some notable licensed games, such as The Empire Strikes Back and the notorious E.T. is unfortunate, however.

Our picks

  • Adventure
  • Asteroids
  • Tempest

Namco Museum (21 games)

Namco Museum is another beautifully assembled collection of games that covers some of the studio’s early arcade efforts, as well as the charming Nintendo GameCube curio, Pac-Man Vs. Comprehensive display options – including Tate mode – make this another recommended package.

Our picks

  • Dig Dug
  • Galaga
  • Pac-Man Vs.

Mega Man Legacy Collections (18 games)

Helmets off to the folks at Digital Eclipse who have lovingly compiled the full series of mainline Mega Man games (through to 2010’s Mega Man 10) across two volumes. A delightful museum of concept art and promotional assets, thoughtful presentation, and some optional new gameplay content sets the bar for all other retro compilations to beat. The two volumes of Mega Man X Legacy Collection are not as consistent, but are still essential for fans of the series.

Capcom Beat ’em up Bundle (7 games)

Capcom dropped this curious compilation of arcade fighters with little fanfare. Titles include Final Fight, Captain CommandoKnights of the Round, and Warriors of Fate, as well as Armored Warriors, and Battle Circuit, two games that were previously unavailable on console.

Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection  (12 games)

Released to mark the 30th birthday of Capcom’s icon fighting franchise, the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection contains 12 arcade games taken from the Street Fighter, Street Fighter II, Street Fighter Alpha, and Street Fighter III series. The underlying gameplay is timeless, and support for single Joy-Cons make it the perfect collection to have on standby to play with friends. Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers is also available separately.

Johnny Turbo’s Arcade (20+ games)

FTE Games are releasing some b-tier 1980s and 1990s arcade titles from Data East under the Johnny Turbo’s Arcade banner. Games released so far include Super Burger Time, Caveman Ninja, Nitro Ball, and Night Slasher.

Final Fantasy series

A bevy of retro Final Fantasy games are heading to the Switch to join the already available pocket edition of Final Fantasy XV, and World of Final Fantasy Maxima. PlayStation classics Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy IX are available now, with Final Fantasy XII to come in April, and the remastered version of the GameCube’s Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles to follow later this year.

Resident Evil series

Ports of the Nintendo 3DS games Resident Evil Revelations 1 & 2 are already available on the Nintendo eShop. They will be joined in the next few months by the remakes of Resident Evil and Resident Evil 0, plus the remastered edition of Resident Evil 4. All are recommended, but the extortionate pricing is a disgrace.

Miscellaneous computer, console, and arcade games

The Switch is also home to a small selection of random one-off games that were originally released on home computer or console.

A few examples are Clive Townsend’s classic ZX Spectrum game, Saboteur!, Delphine Software’s influential 1992 PC game, Flash Back, spy-caper Impossible Mission, and spy spoof James Pond Codename: RoboCod. A significant slice of video game history can also be experienced in the notorious FMV adventure game, Night Trap,

Arcade one-offs include the remastered Dragon’s Lair Trilogy, and R-Type Dimensions EX, which features the first two games in the sci-fi shooter series. Windjammers – which was originally released for the Neo Geo arcade system in 1994 – is also available, with a brand new sequel set for release later this year.

Remakes, remasters, and reissues

We couldn’t finish this roundup with a look at a few of the classic games that have had remakes or makeovers. The obvious title to highlight is Lizardcube’s Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trap, a stunning update to the Sega Master System classic, Wonder Boy III.

The Switch also now has its first Nintendo 64 game with the modest remaster of Turok: Dinosaur Hunter. Its sequel, the much better Turok 2: Seeds of Evil, is also on the way.

Activision’s Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy has been a huge hit, not that you need telling, and Pokémon Let’s Go Pilkachu and Let’s Go Eevee are excellent remakes of Pokémon Yellow.

Depending on your retro cut-off point, other games to check out include De Blob 1 and 2, Darksiders, Lumines, Disgaea 1, Cel Damage, Skyrim, L.A. Noire, and Okami HD.


This list is changing by the week, so keep an eye on our regular Nintendo eShop updates for the latest Nintendo Switch release news.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


Recommended for you


Thumbsticks editor and connoisseur of Belgian buns. Currently playing: Hob, Pokémon Shield and Baba is You.

Guides

How to re-pair a PlayStation 4 controller

Has your PS4 controller stopped talking to your console? Here’s how to re-pair an errant PlayStation 4 controller.

Published

on

how to re-pair a PlayStation 4 controller
Sony / Thumbsticks

Has your PS4 controller stopped talking to your console? Here’s how to re-pair an errant PlayStation 4 controller.

There are lots of nice things about the PlayStation 4 controller. They’re all wireless for a start, which means you don’t have to sit cross-legged in front of the telly like in the good old days. They’re also rechargeable, which means you’ll never need to fumble for a battery.

Also, they light up! (That’s not important, particularly, but the first time you see the light bar react to something in-game is pretty neat.)

You can also use your PS4 controller to wake up your console. That’s ideal because the buttons on the front of the console itself are both hidden and completely baffling. Am I pressing the power button? No, I ejected the optical drive! Am I pressing the power button? No, that’s not, in fact, a button at all! It’s just one of the plastic ridges.

But if your PlayStation 4 controller – or DualShock 4, to give it its Sunday name – becomes unpaired, you’re going to have a bad time.

How does a PlayStation 4 controller become unpaired?

You can pair your DualShock 4 with other devices via the universal standard, Bluetooth. (Interestingly, the name – and symbol – for the technology is after Harald Bluetooth and his written rune, because he united the clans of Norway and Denmark, and Bluetooth unites devices.)

But if you do use your PS4 controller with something else – like your mobile phone or your PC – then you might find it doesn’t want to talk to your console any more.

What’s worse is it can happen entirely by accident. If you plug your DualShock 4 into your PC or laptop to charge it up, because it’s a USB port you have to hand, then it might pair up with your PC and not want to talk to your PlayStation 4 any more.

It can also happen if you haven’t used your PS4 in a while. If the battery in the DualShock 4 runs out and isn’t recharged, when it charges back up, it might struggle to talk to your console.

So if you’re all charged up with nowhere to go, here’s how you fix it.

How to re-pair a PlayStation 4 controller

Unlike the Xbox One controller, which couldn’t be more straightforward, re-pairing a PlayStation 4 controller is a bit more fiddly.

  • If you have another controller that is still paired:
    • Turn on your console with the working controller
    • Wait for your un-paired PS4 controller to go to sleep (if the lights are on)
    • Go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth devices from the PlayStation 4 menu
    • Select the controller you’re having issues with and hit ‘Delete’
    • Plug the controller into the USB ports on the console
    • Hit the ‘PS’ button in the middle of the controller to wake it and pair it up
  • If you don’t have another controller you can use:
    • Power off your console
    • Wait for your un-paired PS4 controller to go to sleep (if the lights are on)
    • Grab a paperclip (yes, a paperclip)
    • Use the pointy end to press the recessed ‘reset’ button on the back of the controller
    • Hold the paperclip in there for a while (let’s call it 10 seconds to be safe)
    • Plug the controller into one of the USB ports on the console
    • Hit the ‘PS’ button in the middle of the controller to wake and pair it up

When the controller turns back on it should both power on the console and re-pair it with your PS4. Problem solved.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


Recommended for you


Continue Reading

Guides

How to know if you have a shiny Pokémon in Sword and Shield

Getting a shiny Pokémon in Sword or Shield isn’t easy. If you don’t know what you are looking for, you might not even notice. Here’s how you can tell.

Published

on

Shiny Pokémon in Sword and Shield
Game Freak / Thumbsticks

Getting a shiny Pokémon in Sword or Shield isn’t easy. If you don’t know what you are looking for, you might not even notice if you catch one. Here’s how you can tell.

The chances of getting a shiny Pokémon are fairly slim, with odds of 4096 to 1 of encountering one. And unlike last year’s Pokemon Let’s Go, Pikachu!, and Let’s Go, Eevee!, it isn’t possible to tell if a Pokémon is shiny before you battle it.

Here’s how to know that you are battling a shiny Pokémon, and how to tell if you already have one in your party or box.

How to know when you are battling a shiny Pokémon

When you encounter a shiny, it will be surrounded by sparkles. It looks, well, shiny. Most shinies can be spotted by a change in colour, but if you’re not familiar with the full Pokédex, looking for the sparkles is the simplest method of identification during battle.

In Pokémon Sword and Shield, there are two types of sparkles to look out for: normal, and square. Square shinies are all new and ultra-rare. If you encounter a shiny there’s a 1 in 16 chance it will feature square sparkles. That means a 1 in 65536 chance overall. Eek!

How to know if you (already) have a shiny Pokémon

If you capture a shiny, or want to know if you’ve already obtained one without realising it, press [X] and navigate to the Pokémon menu. Select Pokémon, then Check Summary. You will see a range of details, including its name, type, original trainer, and ID No. A red symbol comprised of two stars is displayed in the Markings section if the Pokémon is shiny.

Shiny Pokémon symbol

There are shiny variants of almost every Pokémon in Sword and Shield. However, some can never be shiny and others are shiny-locked, meaning they cannot be bred.

None of the game’s Legendary Pokémon can be shiny, and all Pokémon obtained via gifts are locked.

Shiny versions of Sword and Shield‘s starters – Grookey, Scorbunny, and Sobble – can only be obtained through breeding. Unlike previous generations, they cannot be obtained at the start of the game.

Increasing your chances of encountering a shiny during normal play is an art all of its own. Instagram user, shinyinstinct has created this handy cheat sheet to help you get started.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4-b4yvlOKz

Visit our guides section for more useful video game tips, including details on how to get a Galarian Slowpoke. You can also follow Thumbsticks on Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter for daily news updates.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


Recommended for you


Continue Reading

Guides

How to re-pair an Xbox One controller

Has your controller stopped talking to your console? Here’s how to re-pair an errant Xbox One controller.

Published

on

how to re-pair an Xbox One controller
Xbox / Thumbsticks

Has your controller stopped talking to your console? Here’s how to re-pair an errant Xbox One controller.

One of the nice things about modern consoles is wireless controllers. You don’t have to sit three feet from the TV! You don’t have to get off the sofa to turn the console on! We may not have flying cars and hoverboards, but it’s still the future, dammit.

But if your controller gets disconnected from your console, it can be frustrating. For starters, you have to get up and press the button on the front of the console, but it only gets worse when you try to actually play a game.

How does an Xbox One controller become unpaired?

Sometimes, an Xbox One controller will become unpaired from its console purely by accident. Maybe there was just a technical gremlin, or perhaps the battery ran out and the controller hadn’t been turned on in a while. These things happen.

But usually, if your Xbox One controller becomes unpaired, it’s because of something you’ve done.

Sometimes that will be on purpose. Maybe you’ve taken your controller to a friend’s house to play some multiplayer and you paired it to another console. Or maybe you’ve used it to play games on a PC, or paired it with a smartphone.

Or sometimes, it can be entirely by accident. If you have a rechargeable battery pack and you pop a USB cable into your Xbox One controller into a USB port on a PC or laptop to charge, it’ll pair itself up with the computer. Then when you come to hit the button to turn your console on, the controller won’t know which console to talk to, and nothing will happen.

That’s when you’ll need to know how to re-pair an Xbox One controller.

How to re-pair an Xbox One controller

If your Xbox One controller has fallen out with you, for whatever reason, the operation to re-pair it is wonderfully simple.

  • Turn off your Xbox One console
  • Grab a USB cable (that’s Micro USB, not the newer USB-C standard)
  • Plug the big end (the USB-A adapter) into your Xbox One console
  • Plug the small end (the Micro USB adapter) into your Xbox One controller
  • Press the big ‘Xbox’ button in the middle of the controller
  • This will wake up the Xbox One console, and re-pair the Xbox One controller at the same time

That’s it. It’s really simple. Just plug in a USB cable, hit the big button, and let the pairing process work its magic.

(And if you were looking for how to repair an Xbox One controller – that’s repair, as in physically broken, not re-pair, as in pair it up again – then this guide doesn’t cover that. There can be lots of things physically wrong with a controller, far too many for one guide to cover, and if you take it apart you might just make it worse.)

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


Recommended for you


Continue Reading

Guides

How to get a Galarian Slowpoke in Pokémon Sword and Shield

The Galarian Slowpoke is now available in Pokémon Sword and Shield. Here’s how to catch it.

Published

on

How to get the Galarian Slowpoke in Pokémon Sword and Shield
The Pokémon Company / Thumbsticks

The Galarian Slowpoke is now available in Pokémon Sword and Shield. Here’s how to catch it.

January’s Pokémon Direct revealed details of a two-part expansion pass for Pokémon Sword and Shield. The Isle of Armor and The Crown Tundra will be released in June and fall, adding two new areas to the Galar region, plus 200 extra Pokémon to discover.

A new update Pokémon Sword and Shield teases the expansion pass by introducing two new trainers, and a Galarian Slowpoke to catch.

To get your hands on the Galarian Slowpoke follow these simple steps.

How to get a Galarian Slowpoke

  1. Head to Wedgehurst train station
  2. Depending on which the version of the game you are playing, you’ll meet one of two new trainers – Klara in Sword or Avery in Shield – in the station lobby
  3. A Galarian Slowpoke will follow them into the station
  4. You can battle and catch the Slowpoke in the usual way. Use a Quick Ball to make swift work of it
  5. You can now add the Galarian Slowpoke to your team

It’s worth noting that the Galarian Slowpoke won’t be added to the Pokédex. We expect this will happen when The Isle of Armor DLC is released in June 2020.

Following the release of the content expansions, the Slowpoke can be evolved into a Galarian Slowbro in The Isle of Armor and a Galarian Slowking in The Crown Tundra.

Pre-purchase of the expansion pass is not required to catch the Galarian Slowpoke. However, if you do pay up front, you get access to a bonus Pikachu or Eevee uniform. Head to the Mystery Gift menu to redeem your new threads.


Follow Thumbsticks on Flipboard, Facebook, Google News, and Twitter for daily video game news updates. For help with more games, visit our guides section.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


Recommended for you


Continue Reading

Guides

What are the Fall Guys system requirements?

Big, daft, inclusive game cements its place as being inclusive (also big, daft) by having very reasonable system requirements.

Published

on

Fall Guys system requirements
Mediatonic / Devolver Digital

Big, daft, inclusive game cements its place as being inclusive (also big, daft) by having very reasonable system requirements.

Fall Guys was one of the highlights of our E3 2020. Hell, it was one of the highlights of most people’s E3 last year. It was an even bigger highlight if you had a golden ticket to Devolver Digital’s trailer park party, and got to experience the game in the soft play area setup Mediatonic had assembled to show off their goofy video game.

We don’t know when Fall Guys will release, yet, though we have a feeling it might be relatively soon. Especially if these tweets from the Fall Guys Twitter account are anything to go by:

We’ve got Fall Guys in our “most anticipated games of 2020” list, incidentally, so we’re pretty sure it will launch this year, too. But if you needed any more of a clue that the game is approaching release, Mediatonic has today updated the game’s system requirements on Steam.

https://twitter.com/FallGuysGame/status/1215296631060549632?s=20

Once a developer starts announcing these sorts of things, it’s a sign the game is fairly far along in the process. They might be polishing and adding content for a while yet, but they’re reasonably sure the core of the game is not going to change by any substantial amount. (Also, if you’re a student of marketing, you’ll notice that the Fall Guys Twitter account has been ramping up its activity recently. That’s also a clue that a release announcement is coming.)

Anyway. Here are the Fall Guys system requirements, extracted from the above tweet and presented in a nice, Google-friendly format.

Minimum Fall Guys system requirements

  • OS: Windows 10 64bit only
  • Processor: Intel Core i5 or AMD equivalent
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 660 or AMD Radeon HD 7950
  • Network: Broadband Internet connection
  • Storage: 2 GB available space
  • Additional Notes: Gamepad Recommended

That’s it. There are no “recommended” Fall Guys system requirements as yet. But have you seen it? It’s a colourful, low poly bundle of fun. It’s hardly Crysis. The minimum system requirements will probably do just fine.

Support Thumbsticks

We hate to ask, but global advertising revenues are the lowest they've ever been. It's killing the online publishing world. If you like what we do and want to support free, quality games writing, then please consider supporting us via Patreon, buying us a coffee, or subscribing to our newsletter.


Recommended for you


Continue Reading