GameCube Week continues on In Third Person! Did you know that launch versions of Mario Kart: Double Dash came with a demo disc? Let’s explore its contents!
If you were fortunate enough to put in a pre-order for Mario Kart: Double Dash prior to its release, you got a special edition of the game that came with a Bonus Disc. Despite being a key selling point for me to pre-order in the first place, I would ignore the demo disc for over a decade before finally deciding to give the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles demo a try on stream. The ensuing fallout of that stream and the wonderful friendship that grew out of it is a well-documented tale that we don’t have to go over again (despite how much I’d love to).
At this point, nothing in my heart will be cooler than that Ninja Turtles demo for reasons that have nothing to do with the quality of the demo itself. But there’s more content on the disc than that. Let’s see what else it has to offer!
SpongeBob SquarePants: Battle for Bikini Bottom (Trailer)
At this point in history, I was already too old for SpongeBob. This looks like an unremarkable 3D platformer at best. Don’t think I missed much here, though IGN gave it a pretty good score at the time. On top of that, the game is getting a remaster, which caught many off guard.
Kirby’s Air Ride (Trailer)
Never played Kirby’s Air Ride, but it seems like a racing game with some open world elements? The lack of music in the trailer I posted doesn’t do the game justice I think, as it looks kind of cool to me. You can watch the full trailer here.
Pokemon Colosseum (Trailer)
Until right this moment, I had no idea that Pokemon Colosseum was a lot closer to a full Pokemon experience than I thought. I thought it was another Pokemon Stadium style game that was just battling only. While it doesn’t quite go all the way to be a full-blown Pokemon RPG, it looks neat for what it’s trying to do. Granted, I can imagine a ton of people being disappointed in this half step, especially with regards to how far the trailer goes to make this look like the real deal.
Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles (Trailer)
Never had an interest in the Final Fantasy series, but I remember this requiring players to use their Gameboy Advance systems with the GameCube in order to play it. Of course, the trailer doesn’t tell you any of that. This game is coming soon to the Nintendo Switch, so maybe I’ll try it out there instead!
1080 Avalanche (Trailer)
The sequel to Nintendo’s hit snowboarding game still looks pretty decent to me. Sure, the graphics have aged, but it looks like something that would still be fun to play now. Note to self, pick up 1080 Snowboarding on the Nintendo 64 someday.
Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup (Trailer)
Quidditch is quite possibly the worst fictional sport of all-time. With the scoring around the Snitch being what they are, why even bother throwing the balls through the hoop when you could just catch the Snitch and win instead?
In any case, this CG trailer makes the game look pretty cool. Never played the final version, but IGN seemed to like it at the time.
NBA Live 2004 (Trailer)
The last trailer on this list, the trailer for NBA Live 2004 is the one that gets me the most excited today. A combination of Twista’s tongue-tangling rap flow, along with some pretty impressive moves from players that were immediately recognizable in their blocky glory made for a trailer that got me in the mood for hoops. Who would have thought back then that EA would get wrecked by 2K in basketball not long after this?
Star Wars: Rebel Strike – Rogue Squadron III
Finally, something playable! My play of this was a disaster. A combination of not being able to hear the game sound, along with the up direction on my GamCube controllers crapping out made for a demo that was basically unplayable for me. Not fair of me to pass any sort of judgment on this one.
Probably the best of the demos on the disc, F-Zero GX looks and plays great. That said, the demo only confirms that the AI continues to be way too hard. That, or it just confirmed that I still suck at F-Zero.
Another disaster of a playthrough. Much of the demo requires you to be adept at switching between the stances, which I failed to do effectively. I died a bunch before giving up. I remember my brother liking this game a lot back in the day though.
Mario Party 5
What a clunker of a demo. This showcase for Mario Party 5 only features a handful of mini games, of which only one is good. At the very least, show off the parts with the board in a trailer or something!
Special Items for Fire Emblem
If you were able to connect Fire Emblem from your GBA to your GameCube, you could unlock a bunch of special items in Fire Emblem. Didn’t get to try it myself, but this is a neat bonus if you’re into the series!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
I’ve talked it up to death, but in a post where we talk about the contents of this demo disc, I have to touch on it at least a little bit. It’s an awful demo. Just a slice of gameplay where you walk from point A to point B and mow down an army of mindless foot soldiers. The catchphrases get old quick. Unless I have a certain group of friends with me, I don’t ever want to play this again.
In the end, I guess it’s perfectly fine as a demo disc. You get a bunch of trailers and get a taste of a few games. Even if these are bad demos, and the demo games generally aren’t that great. But it’s still a neat slice of history for anyone that has it! And in my case, the circumstances it created have forever left an imprint on me.
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