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There comes a time in many original NES games lives where it is time for a proper remake. Well, Balloon Fight released in Japan in 1985, making it one of the oldest titles in Satoru Iwata’s classic library of programmed games, and I think it would be a great homage to the brilliant game designer and late president of Nintendo.
So is it time for a Balloon Fight remake or sequel? Let’s pop a few balloons and see if this one holds any water.
Balloon Fight released on the NES back in 1985, although it had an arcade port that released the year prior. The joust-like title designed by Yoshio Sakamoto and programmed by Satoru Iwata went on to be one of those popular yet obscure titles that continues to be pumped into our veins year after year.
You see, Balloon Fight has been ported 19 times with the occasional slight variation. Many of the recent ports have been Virtual Control and Nintendo Switch Online, which communicates that Nintendo really does still have a heart for this title and what it has to offer. It has been referenced so many times over the years, including making notable appearances in games like Super Smash Bros, WarioWare, and Yoshi Touch & Go. It even had a fun port of sorts on Nintendo Land for the Wii U.
With all of this love, though, why have we not gotten a proper sequel or a remake? This seems like a game Nintendo could make some easy nostalgia money off of, or it could even be a new competitive game they could introduce to today’s youth. We have seen lots of interesting competitive indie games over the years, and I think Nintendo could really benefit from a proper Balloon Fight remake with some added bells and whistles to bring it into the 21st century.
In addition to it being a great homage to Satoru Iwata, a new Balloon Fight would show older fans that Nintendo still cares about older IPs that many people assume they have completely abandoned. Although abandonment may not be the right word for this title, the fact that Balloon Fight has never received anything outside of a port shows that Nintendo does like the game but not that much.
Which makes me wonder why. Why introduce the world to a funny and entertaining competitive title back in 1985 and do nothing with it afterward? Think about it this way. The original Donkey Kong not only got a proper sequel in Donkey Kong Jr, but it also got an unconventional third entry in Donkey Kong 3. Donkey Kong has since become a major player in the Super Mario world, being in titles like Mario Kart and Mario Strikers, and the Donkey Kong Country series is arguably one of the best platformer trilogies (And more!) ever.
This brings me right back to Balloon Fight. A company that has multiple successful IPs is a powerful one, and Nintendo has a very large library of excellent brands. What harm would be be to give this particular brand one more honest try to see how it works out in the modern age? I mean, it seems like the least we can do for Iwata, and it definitely feels like a remake that Nintendo would drool over.
I think Balloon Fight is an abstract idea that surprisingly worked back when it initially released, but I think it has more potential today than it did back in 1985. What I mean by that is Balloon Fight feels like a 21st century indie game idea, meaning it would perfectly fit into the current gaming climate.
Sure, it may be a wild shot in the dark and Nintendo may not want to use resources on a gamble like this, but I think Nintendo is at their best when they try the weirdest things. Making Balloon Fight originally was weird. Making a remake would be even weirder, and I am all for it.
Thank you for stopping by Nintendo Link for all of your gaming news and updates! What do you think of the idea of remaking Balloon Fight? Are you for it? Against it? Let us know in the comments below! Happy gaming, everyone.
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My name is Jason Capp. I am a husband, father, son, and brother, and I am a gamer, a writer, and a wannabe pro wrestler. It is hard to erase the smile on this simple man.