Three years went by with the Neo Geo Pocket Color (NGPC) (at least if you include the monochromatic first model). That is about half of the average length of time a console lasts. Even though it was only around for a short time, the NGPC was able to build up a great collection of games.
The fact that SNK is so focused on arcade games shows in the games it makes. There are a lot of great sports games that play like arcade games, classic puzzle games, and a big focus on 2D fighting games, which are SNK’s main focus. Even though the system didn’t last as long as it should have, many of its best games can be played on newer consoles.
Ogre Battle Gaiden: Prince Of Zenobia
Ogre Fight Gaiden: Prince of Zenobia is like Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen, but it is a different game (an excellent fantasy-themed, strategy RPG originally released on the SNES). But Gaiden is not just a copy of March of the Black Queen. It tells the story from the other person’s point of view, which is pretty cool.
Ogre Battle Gaiden is also fun to play. It has the same real-time placement of troops and automated turn-based battles as its predecessor. Even though this game is very unique, it was never translated into English. Even if you don’t know how to read Japanese, you can still get through it, but you won’t understand the story. There are, however, unofficial translations out there for those who are interested. This is a wildly ambitious title; and that ambition alone makes it worth your attention.
The Last Blade
Even though it has a lot of buttons, the NGPC has a number of great fighting games (a paltry two). The Last Blade is a cousin to the Samurai Shodown games; as such, it doesn’t have the same focus on combos that some other titles in the genre do. Because of this, it is a great fit for NGPC.
The Last Blade’s gameplay is more focused on spacing your attacks and hitting for big damage. Here, the bigger your sword swings, the longer you hold down the button. A few short combos can and will kill in this game. The Last Blade is one of the best fighting games you can play on the go.
Cotton: Fantastic Night Dreams
You can’t have an underappreciated console without a Cotton release that is hard to find and always expensive, and the NGPC is no different. This old-school shoot-em-up game with a side-scrolling view is back on the NGPC.
Cotton does a great job here. It isn’t complete because there aren’t as many enemies on the screen and the mid-bosses aren’t there, but it is still a very fun shoot-em-up on a portable console. Also, even though this game is easier overall, the bosses feel harder, so it seems like the developers tried to make things fair. Overall, Cotton’s NGPC adventure is a new addition to the series and a great start to the portable genre.
SVC: Card Fighters’ Clash 2 Expand Edition
The first SVC was split into two parts: one for characters from Capcom and one for characters from SNK. It was like a simplified version of Magic: The Gathering, but the creature cards were played by well-known characters from Capcom and SNK.
SVC: Card Fighters’ Clash 2 Expand Edition combines both games and adds a lot of new cards. It was only ever sold in Japan, but there is a translation for fans who want to read it (there is also a DS version that is mostly the same). If you think it would be cool to play Magic: The Gathering on the go with your favourite characters from Capcom and SNK, then this game is for you. By the way, it’s a great idea. This game is really cool.
Baseball Stars Color
Baseball Stars is one of the best baseball arcade games ever made. These games were once arcade games, but now you can pick them up and play them anywhere. So, it goes without saying that the fact that the NGPC has its own version is a pretty big deal.
In this easy and fun baseball game, you can swing away. Baseball Stars Color has bright, colourful graphics that are fun and expressive. The game looks lively and keeps the player’s attention with its fun gameplay. Baseball Stars Color is a home run, even though it comes in a small box.
The favourite puzzle game from the arcades is back. Bust-A-Move, or Puzzle Bobble as it is known in Japan, is one of the most popular SNK games. It is always found in the red SNK arcade cabinets. Try to match bubbles of the same colour. If you get the angle right and can sneak around stacks that stick out, you can kill a lot of them with one shot.
Bust-A-Move Pocket is fun and cute at the same time. Almost anyone can learn how to play Bust-A-Move quickly. In the later stages, it can get very sneaky, though. Bust-A-Move Pocket is another example of a classic arcade game that has been ported to a new platform well.
Big Tournament Golf
Some people have a hard time getting excited about golf, which is understandable. Most of the time, golf is not a fast-paced sport. But SNK’s Neo Turf Master proved this wrong by having easy-to-understand and fun gameplay wrapped up in a fun package.
Big Tournament Golf is an official portable version of Turf Master, even though it doesn’t have the same name (fun fact: Big Tournament Golf is the name for Neo Turf Master in Japan).
Big Tournament Golf is fun, fast, and keeps you interested. Using a simple method to figure out power and accuracy, there is no learning curve. It is also a game that pushes the system in terms of graphics because it is so beautiful. The hole-in-one is Big Tournament Golf.
Metal Slug: 2nd Mission (2000)
The first game on this list of the best Neo Geo Pocket games of all time is Metal Slug: 2nd Mission.
The second Metal Slug mission for the Pocket is a lot like the first, but that shouldn’t come as a surprise. It does talk about some important things, like how silly it is to switch between grenades and guns in the middle of a battle.
I liked the first game a lot, and I still do, but the graphics are better in the second one. I’m a tough critic, so that didn’t stop me from putting it at the top of my list.
Like the first game, if you beat all the levels in this one, you can unlock a third fighter. Tequila is a soldier who can go to any level and use any weapon.
He’s pretty much the golden gun in the form of a nasty-looking guy!
From the original 5 levels in the arcade game to the 17 levels in Metal Slug: 1st Mission, the 2nd Mission now has a whopping 38 levels and 8 bonus stages to play through. It gives players a lot more for their money and a lot more firepower as well.