I have a confession to make. While I’ve been playing video games for as long as I’ve been able, I’ve only ever beaten one game on the original NES. Here’s my (admittedly small) game collection: 

I only had about half of those when I was a child. When you’re unable to buy your own games and don’t realize you can try to ask for them, your collection grows very slowly. It didn’t help that my parents didn’t seem to give my Christmas lists to any family members, resulting in clothes for me while everyone else was getting toys. I also had a copy of Super Mario Brothers 3 which has since vanished.

Anyway, as a kid, I wasn’t able to beat any of those games before the Super Nintendo came out. Super Mario Brothers always managed to vex me, and even through warping (which was then a hard-won event) I only managed to get to level 8-1 a handful of times. I did slightly better at the sequel, and was able to zoom around the third with reckless abandon. Darkwing Duck usually stopped me cold before I could beat the first round of bosses, and even after practicing, I was never able to defeat Steelbeak. And don’t even talk to me about Top Gun 2 and The Hunt for Red October.

I was very bad at Nintendo games, you see, but only when playing them on the NES. I could eventually get through the three Mario games on their various ports with speed and skill, at least, and the Mega Man games I would rent and borrow have all fallen to me. I haven’t even tried playing most of those games in years. Anyway, the only game I clearly remember beating the NES? This one.


On easy mode, in what must have been 1998 or 1999. That is my shame. I think it may have had something to do with the controller. It was responsive and all that, but it just didn’t work well in my hands. The Super Nintendo controller on my RetroDuo fixes that, so maybe I’ll try to beat Darkwing Duck again. Maybe even try to record it, if I can figure that out? Anyone know how to do that?