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Adam’s Retro Showcase: Net Yaroze

21st February 2016 - Games, Retro
Adam’s Retro Showcase: Net Yaroze

Its a sure thing that among the triple-A titles that rest in your console’s hard drive there will be some indie games floating around there too and there should be, as there are some really great games done by small publishers that you need to check out like Fez, Nuclear Throne, Rouge Legacy and many more. Ever since Microsoft allowed indie developers to make games that can be downloaded onto the Xbox 360, you can now download a plethora of games for the Xbox 360, Xbox One, Ps3, Ps4, PS Vita and PC  but while the indie homebrew scene is finally going strong, Sony actually tried to open the door a lot earlier than Microsoft did. Are you ready? Good, because we are going to look at Net Yaroze, Sony’s first push into the homebrew scene.

During the time that the PS1 was fighting for the proverbial throne against the Sega Saturn and the Nintendo 64, Sony decided to give homebrew developers (basically bedroom coders) a chance to develop games for the PS1 with the Net Yaroze Playstation.

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net-yaroze

Even though Sony limited what people could do on the console by not allowing people to burn data onto a CD-ROM, people were still able to make good games that could be run on the console while some were… not as good as while some games were original, most were copies of original games like Pacman and Puzzle Bobble. A good thing about Net Yaroze is that several games were given away on magazines like the Offical UK Playstation Magazine and as someone who still has a lot of the demos that were given out with the mags I can confirm that many Net Yaroze games were also featured. So, lets round this article off by looking at some of the games that were made using the Net Yaroze dev kit shall we?

timeslip2

TimeSlip, an okay Platformer where you control a Snail and have to clear a series of levels while utilising every clone that is generated after 30 seconds to open doors and activate switches and of course, avoiding contact with them in order to not create a time paradox. The game actually got a remaster onto the Xbox 360 and did pretty well too.

 

IncredibleConeman

The Incredible Coneman. Basically a Pacman clone but instead your collecting cones. There’s not much i can say about this game apart from the gameplay being really slow and by the time you’ve completed a level, you’re probably going to want to play another game really.

 

Blitter Boy: Operation Monster Mall was a good twin-stick style shooter where you have to rescue babies and bring them to the center of the screen while shooting Pacman-style ghosts. Weird story aside the developer Chris Chadwick actually won a award in The UK Game Developer competition and its actually one of the best Net Yaroze games.

 

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Terra Incognita was one of the only Net Yaroze games to be developed by a team and while the graphics make it the best looking Net Yaroze game, poor controls and bad Japanese to English translation stops this from being one of its best. Fun Fact: The director of Team Fatal Mitsuru Kamiyama went on to direct the Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles series.

In conclusion, the Net Yaroze Playstation might not have been popular enough to make Sony continue it onto the PS2 but it definitely helped Sony handle things better when it came to the Playstation Store as now it’s able to keep a foothold in the indie scene just like Microsoft and Valve with Steam making sure people can download indie games on the PC. So while you hop on your chosen console and play one of the many indie games out there, maybe you’ll look back at a time when Sony tried to capitalise on it before Microsoft made it easier to play games made by people who just want people to enjoy playing their game. Stay tuned for the next indie showcase next Sunday where I look at 80’s home computers that doubled as consoles? Till then, see you again soon! :D

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