Show Some Love

Posted on Sep 12th 2010 at 12:57:31 PM by (Crabmaster2000)
Posted under Journey to Silus, NES, Platform, Action, Sci Fi, Terminator, Unloved, Sweet Tunes

Were diving back into one of my favorite libraries for this one, the NES.

Journey to Silius plays like a slower paced version of Contra, with a hint of Mega Man, but has some jumping physics that helps make it its own game. Journey to Silius also has one of the absolutely best soundtracks for any NES game. No exaggeration at all there.

When you first star Journey to Silius you'll get to watch a great, Ninja Gaidenesque, opening movie sequence. It looks great, but the rest of the game is anything but story driven so donít feel guilty if you just skip over it.

The game was apparently supposed to be a licensed Terminator game originally (late in development licensing problems I suppose) and so you find yourself in a post-Judgment Day style sci-fi setting. The levels are quite nice graphically and definitely varied from each other.

Each level consists of running to the end and fighting a pre-boss. After defeating the pre-boss you'll be awarded with a new gun. I like this idea because it means that your new weapon is available to use on the boss your just about to encounter. You'll notice that your character (whose name is Jay if you watched the opening movie), has 2 energy bars at the top of the screen. The orange one is a health meter and the blue one is your gun energy. Using your regular pistol doesnít drain the gun meter at all. Only using any of the 5 other "special" guns will drain the meter. This is very important to remember because most bosses are insanely difficult without some extra firepower.

It is rightfully so that each boss is challenging. With the exception of the last boss they are huge monstrosities that take up nearly the entire screen, or even 2 screens in one case. The last boss is obviously a left over from the Terminator License.

Look familiar?

One of my favorite features in Journey to Silius (besides the freakin' awesome music) is the jumping. Unlike most NES games of the time when you jump forward, you have to keep moving forward. This takes some getting used to at first since you canít correct your jumps after you've leapt. The game seems unforgivingly hard at first, but after you get the hang of this style of jumping the difficulty goes way down.

So if youíre looking for another excellent action platformer for the NES at a budget price, definitely grab this beauty. Also did I mention that the music kicks ass!

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I played through this one several months ago. GREAT game!
This is an excellent game and certainly a worthy addition to the unloved.

The cover was always a favorite of mine, mainly due to the games excellent graphics being showcased. 

Good stuff.
Great game. Learned about it after watching the Happy Video Game Nerd review it. Indeed, it was, atleast according to him as well, suppossed to be a Terminator game. If you wanted to watch. I suggest his channel in general as he does some VERY good reviews.
I played through the first level last night. It felt to me like a slower version of Mega Man. It seemed like half the enemies didn't even do anything other than walk toward me. The graphics and music were nice though. I don't really see what's great about it yet, but a lot of you seem to really like it. Of course, like I said, I've only played one level.
Now THIS is an 'Unloved' written for me.  Journey to Silius is one of the mainstay favorites of my youth.  I remember renting it as soon as it released and playing it to near completion over the weekend.  The music still gets my top spot for the NES, just past Batman: Return of the Joker and Battletoads.

Despite having excellent music, great graphics, and responsive controls, it can still be tough to sell it to someone who didn't grow up playing it.  Sure, it doesn't have the replay-ability of a Mario, the complexity of a Megaman, or the straight pieces from a Tetris, but the level of polish and attention to detail can't be beat.

Its the little things, really; Enemies don't repeat between levels and get more outlandish further in, the animation is smooth, mortars from the background visibly fire before landing on the same plane as the player, the character's main gun (visible in the weapon select screen) is modeled after the NES Zapper, the detail on the levels is exceptional for the time, the bosses are interesting (with takes/homages from Contra, Robotech, and even R-Type), the pacing is slow but builds steadily until a frantic force-scrolled final level, even the story- cobbled together after the loss of the Terminator license- feels right and has a bit of a darker tone than typical 8-bit fare.

As a teen this was my favorite NES game, and it still sits somewhere in my top twenty overall.  Better games are out there, but anyone who hasn't finished it (the hidden menu accessible by tapping 'B' 33 times on the title screen before pressing start helps a bit) deserves to go back and spend the few hours it takes to get through this classic.

And yeah, that music, especially the solo work in the second, third, and forth levels (youtube 'em!) will always stick with me. Smiley
Tap B 33 times you say? Okay, well... I'll give it another shot.

Lets you select more continues and more importantly...a sound test!
Wow Slackur, you make me feel like I was talking about a completly different game. I dont have the notalgia driving my enjoyment of the game though so that probably makes a bit of a difference.

Its definately one of my favorite NES games though. I cant believe more people dont talk this one up. Glad there is a least a few others who agree with me!
@ Noiseredux, the first level is a little bland, but they get vastly more interesting the further you go. The last level doesnt even have any bad guys!
I've never played this game, even though I have owned it for quite some time and have seen it for sale many more times. In fact, I seem to remember selling a copy of the game to someone on here Tongue

I'll have to add it to my "play when I have time to game again" list.

Thanks again Mike!! I've gotten quite a few NES gems from you!
I tried again, and got thru level 2. But I can't seem to enjoy this one. I feel weird cuz a lot of you like it. But I just don't really seem to get it for some reason.
Everyone has different tastes Noise, I wouldnt worry about it. At least you gave it a chance (twice even). I dont undertand how millions can enjoy GTA or Halo so much, but for some reason they do.
@Crabmaster2000: Because Halo is awesome?  (LOL) Wink

Don't sweat it, Noise.  It is one of my all time favorites, but that doesn't mean much for anyone else.  We can all talk about the technical, artistic, innovative, insert adjective here reasons why a game is great for us, but at the end of the day some things are fun for some people, and for others it just doesn't 'click'.  Nothing wrong there.  Popular games that never 'clicked' much for me include the GTA series, Resistance series, The Tekken series, and Call of Duty multiplayer.

Like Crabmaster said, at least you gave it more than one chance- that's really as much as anyone should ask.

If you enjoy 8-bit music, I do recommend some time in the sound test though.  Journey to Silius is often listed in the top five NES soundtracks, so it builds your nerd cred to be familiar Wink
This game is awesome.  Starts getting hard near the end if I remember correctly.  Love this game.

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