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Turrican Anthology Vol 1 & 2 Review

Initial release date: July 28, 2022

Developer: Factor 5

Series: Turrican

Genres: Platform game, Shooter game

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4

"Review Copy Provided By ININ Games"

The Turrican franchise is a cult classic for a reason as it offers some of the absolute best run ‘n gun action out there. The series was a major player in the 16-bit era of gaming with a massive following in Europe especially with it’s Amiga releases. The franchise saw its way over to the US in the forms of Super Turrican and Mega Turrican for the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis respectively and those were my first introductions to the franchise which kicked off a desire to track down and play all the games in the Turrican series (a feat that I failed in accomplishing during the 90s). As decades flew by, there was no new Turrican game in sight and it wasn’t until 2019’s Gunlord X from NGDEV and EastAsiaSoft did I get the closet thing to a new Turrican that had been released since Super Turrican 2 released in 1995.

To my surprise, ININ games announced that they would be releasing Turrican Anthology 1 & 2 which would include every Turrican game in the series including even more than the earlier release Turrican Flashback. Salivating at the prospect of diving back into one of my favorite franchises of all time, we’re going to see if the Turrican Anthology Vol. 1 & 2 are worth picking up!

The Turrican Anthology consists of 2 volumes which both offer different games for a total of 10 games total.

Turrican Anthology Vol. 1 consists of

  • Turrican

  • Turrican 2

  • Super Turrican

  • Super Turrican Director’s Cut

  • Mega Turrican Score Attack

Turrican Anthology Vol. 2 consists of

  • Turrican 3

  • Mega Turrican

  • Mega Turrican Director’s Cut

  • Super Turrican 2

  • Super Turrican Score Attack

That’s a lot of Turrican and while there are only 5 actual games in the franchise canonically, a couple of the games got directors cuts and this anthology also includes the various platform releases which often have overlap such as Turrican 3 and Mega Turrican.

I do find it to be a bit strange that we get these games in 2 different volumes instead of one complete package given how these games aren’t very large files to begin with and because of the overlap of the earlier released Turrican Flashback, but I can’t really complain when Turrican is involved.

Each game plays pixel perfect to what they did when they originally released on their respective platforms while offering a few quality-of-life touches to go with them such as a rewind feature and save states that allow players who didn’t grow up in that era and find the games challenging a chance to have some fun as well. There’s also a map that you can access by pressing in the right stick which allows you to zoom and pan all where you’ve previously been to where you are now and is a great tool to keep you from getting lost. If you’re into completing challenges, then this game offers plenty of those with a section in each Anthology called Accomplishments. Each game will have a bevy of challenges for you to complete for bragging rights or in my case, just being able to do what my 6-year-old self couldn’t do all those years ago. There’s also an unlockable Gallery Mode and Jukebox in each which gives longtime fans like me a reason to keep replaying these games over and over to unlock more music and artwork.

The games all hold up well, especially Turrican 1 and 2 as those are ones that surprised me the most with how tight and responsive the controls are and how well balanced the game is in its challenge and enemy placement along with how amazing the scope of the levels tend to be. The SNES games Super Turrican and Super Turrican 2 both hold up exceptionally well and act as the perfect natural progression of the Turrican formula. It’s when we get to Mega Turrican and it’s Directors Cut that I find the most issue as the controls are not quite as tight as they should be and the implementation of the grapple just throws off the flow of the game and feels rather clunky as a whole.

All in all, the Turrican Anthology Vol. 1 & Vol. 2 are exceptional collections that I recommend to anyone looking for some old school gaming action as well as for new gamers to get acquainted with a franchise that blazed a trail in a bygone era. While I do question the reasoning for these games being split into 2 collections instead of on one collection; I nevertheless am overjoyed with being able to relive my childhood at the palm of my hands. Hopefully this leads into a new entry in the series but if it doesn’t then I’m still happy with having the entire franchise in the modern era of gaming. Don’t sleep on these collections!

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