Torneko no Daiboken: Fushigi no Dungeon (translating as “Torneko’s Great Adventure: Mystery Dungeon“) is the first game in the Mystery Dungeon series from Chunsoft, the developer known for creating the Dragon Quest series. It is a ‘Roguelike‘ dungeon-crawler, with randomised maze-like dungeons and was first released in 1993.
Developed by Produce! and published by Enix in 1995, Mystic Ark was only ever released in Japan for the Super Famicom, although an English fan translation does exist, making the game playable to Western audiences. And it is a very good RPG, well worth playing now.
Mystic Ark has been described by some as “The 7th Saga II“, and while it does share some similarities with The 7th Saga (by having a circular monster radar and also featuring some of the same monsters) it is not really a sequel as it plays quite differently.
Also know as Akumajo Dracula X: Chi no Rondo, Rondo of Blood is a famous entry in Konami‘s Castlevania series that was initially made exclusively for the PC Engine CD-ROM and first published in 1993.
Emerald Dragon is a Japan-only RPG that was developed by Alfa System and published by MediaWorks for the Super Nintendo in 1995. It was given an English fan translation (by Translation Corporation) in 2014, which is great because it is an excellent game!
Royal Stone is a tactical, turn-based fantasy RPG with combat and magic that was released for the Game Gear – in Japan only – by Sega in 1995. Thankfully, an English fan translation does exist, so that we – non-Japanese-speakers – can now understand the storyline and enjoy the game in full.
Splatterhouse: Wanpaku Graffiti is a spin-off from the infamous Splatterhouse series and was a Japan only release, published by Namco for the Nintendo Famicom in 1989.
Rather than take the gruesome approach of the original game, in Wanpaku Graffiti the characters are “super deformed” (and made cute) and the game takes a comical approach to the presentation and gameplay, which was obviously deemed to be more fitting to a Famicom audience.
Yippee! A Goemon game on the PlayStation! This one called Ganbare Goemon: Uchuu Kaizoku Akogingu (in English: “Ganbare Goemon: Space Pirate Akogingu“), and it’s apparently a direct sequel to Ganbare Goemon 3 although Sasuke and Yae are not playable characters in this game. This was the first Goemon game on the PlayStation and it was first published by Konami in 1996.
Thankfully this game was given an English fan translation in 2020 by Adventurous Translations, which makes it playable to non Japanese speakers. According to the readme file on the translation patch the game was not much fun to translate (mostly for technical reasons), and isn’t seen as being a very good game by the person who translated it. That said: I got the translation patch to work fine and am overjoyed that I can now play it in English, so a big thank you to Adventurous Translations for their efforts (they are much appreciated).
Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake is a direct sequel to the original Metal Gear and was first released for the MSX2 by Konami in 1990. It was again written and designed by Hideo Koijima and is much better than the half-baked pseudo sequel, Snake’s Revenge, by Ultra Games on the NES.
Snake’s Revenge is a sequel to Metal Gear that was developed specifically for the North American and European NES markets by Konami and Ultra Games. It first came out in North America in 1990, and in Europe in 1992. Why there was a two-year gap between those releases is anyone’s guess.
Hideo Koijima wasn’t involved in the making of Snake’s Revenge and it is considered ‘non-canonical’, but he did make Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake for the MSX in response to it. I’m guessing that he wasn’t particularly enamoured with the idea of another team working on his signature series, but ultimately he (rather diplomatically) says that Snake’s Revenge is “not a bad game“.
This reworked Nintendo Entertainment System port of the MSX version of Metal Gear first came out in 1987 (1988 in North America), just three months after the original. While it’s considered (rightly) to be inferior to the original MSX version it was a major hit and went on to sell over a million units in the United States alone.