Earlier this week, the sad news
came down that Nintendo Power
was ending its run with its upcoming December issue. Since 1988 the publication has been the best source for new release news, hints, cheats and pretty much any and all information about the world of Nintendo. While this news is being taken especially hard by gamers who came of age with the magazine (most of whom still know that pressing up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A, start was a free pass to 30 extra lives in Contra)
, for everyone else it serves as the latest reminder that print publications are dying because of the web, cell phones, Kindles, iPads, etc. But let's face it, the zine had a tremendous and unprecedented run. For over 280 issues and nearly 25 years it was the definitive source of Nintendo news, making it arguably the most successful video game publication ever. So for today's Daily List, Topless Robot
will be paying tribute to the legacy of Nintendo Power
by looking at its ten coolest covers. In the interest of fairness, we will also be looking at ten covers that were misfires for reasons ranging from odd graphic design choices to strange sexuality the likes of which you usually see at this very site on Friday afternoons.Here then is a look at the best and worst of what Nintendo Power
had to offer. It will be sorely missed.The Coolest:10) Kirby's Dreamland 2
Full disclosure: I have never played a Kirby
game. You see, it was always something I meant to do but never got around to -- like having a checking account with more than three cents in it or an orgasm with another person. Sigh. Anyways, while researching every Nintendo Power
cover for this list, I stumbled upon the above image. Basically, what we see here is the promise that Kirby's Dreamland 2
is so much goddamn fun that players will vomit stars. I realize this probably isn't the case, but I'm going to grab a used copy on eBay just in case.9) Duck Tales
To promote Capcom's awesome Duck Tales
game, the magazine offered up this cover that inspired many a reader to solve a mystery or rewrite history for hours on end in front of their NES. Ooh woo woo!8) Dr. Mario
Before Dr. Nick Riveria and Dr. Leo Spaceman, Dr. Mario
was pop culture's first dubious physician. (With constantly having to snake Donkey Kong's toilet and rescue the Princess from another bath salts-fueled escapade there was no way Mario had time to attend med school). On the above cover, the good doc stands idly by with a smile on his face while viruses wreak havoc. That's big medicine for you. Still, the plasticine renditions of the characters presented here are superb, and light years away from the amateurish clay Mario that graced the cover of Nintendo Power'
s first issue. More on that later.
7) Super Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Man, even this drawing looks more realistic than Yoda in the prequels.6) Hey You, Pikachu!
This site has done a lot to ruin Pokémon for you
, so let us remember a more innocent time for the franchise with this adorable cover from November of 2000. Poor Pikachu, he doesn't know what he's in for
. The poor bastard.5) Epic Mickey
There's no doubt that this subscriber's only cover of Nintendo Power
featuring Fred Gambino's Epic Mickey
concept art is jaw-dropping -- regardless of what you think about the finished product.4) Tetris
This illustration from a late-1989 issue takes a cue from the trippy art of old Atari 2600 box covers to depict a player who is so obsessed with Tetris
that he actually becomes part of the game. We've all been there.3) 25 Years of the NES
In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Nintendo Entertainment System, the magazine published two covers -- one featuring avatars of the system's most iconic characters and another replicating the art for the best-selling Super Mario Bros. 3.
Both of these are a nostalgic reminder of how amazing the NES was...and still is.2) Castlevania II
"Yeah, I beheaded Dracula. CAUSE THAT"S WHAT SIMON BELMONT DOES, BITCHES!"
1) Maniac Mansion
The journey that brought Lucasfilm's Maniac Mansion
to the NES is a fascinating one
. Despite the headaches the development team at Jaleco faced, the finished game still remains amongst the most complex and fun titles ever released for the console. When it was originally released in 1990, Nintendo Power
did a story on it that came complete with cover art depicting the creepy old Edison house and characters like Bernard and Weird Ed. Even though the TV series spinoff was terrific, this cover gives a frustrating glimpse at how great a project based directly on the game and its characters could have been. Speaking of which, could someone convince Andrew Stanton or Dean DeBlois to make a CGI Maniac Mansion
Hit the jump for the lamest Nintendo Power covers ever.
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