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Casey Scheld ReviewsGame ReviewsPC Reviews

Gimmick! Special Edition Review

Official Score

Overall - 65%

65%

Gimmick! Special Edition still holds up after all these years, but there’s just not enough beyond the main game to entertain players. This little green guy deserved so much more, resulting in what is a one-and-done type of title with little reason to go back.

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Featuring roots dating back to the Famicom, CITY CONNECTION and Bitwave Games are pulling a SUNSOFT deep cut out of the vault with the release of Gimmick! Special Edition. Designed to push Nintendo’s 8-bit console to the limits, does it manage to still hold up today?

Gimmick! Special Edition Review

Putting the spotlight on the cutesy green Yumetaro, this 2D platformer has players using this saccharine star to create star projectiles of their very own. The 8-bit days weren’t exactly known for their advanced play styles, but players can do some incredible things with this system. Not only can players use these stars to defeat swaths of foes, they can also be used to traverse areas and reach new heights.

As a result, this star hook manages to be Gimmick!’s shining light. There’s nothing too out-of-the-ordinary otherwise; players will defeat foes, avoid spikes, and defeat the boss at the end of each level. However, much like other heroes like Mega Man, this hook manages to make the little green fellow unique in its own right. Finding the right trajectory to launch said stars can be entertaining, as each part of its side-scrolling world hosts speedrun shortcuts and even treasures that can ensure a true ending.

Don’t expect to play this one for too long, however; we were able to finish our run at around 30 minutes. While this is a bit disappointing for those looking for something longer than the length of a sitcom, it is still an entertaining experience nonetheless.

Unfortunately, what you see is what you get with Gimmick! Special Edition. This version of the game does feature some quality of life improvements like basic achievements, online speedrun leaderboards, the ability to rewind with a fun little filter, and some gallery items like cartridges, art, and manuals, but it’s just not enough. Most of its content can be seen in an afternoon, and there is little to experience outside of the main mode, which is a bit of a disappointment.

There are some different modes that can be chosen, but even this is not taken enough. One can get serious with its Serious Mode, which allows players to get achievements in lieu of the quality of life improvements. The Speed Run mode is also time registered, but even this does not change the core formula too much.

The same goes with its emulation functions. There are six different bezels to choose from and a zoom function, but the filters commonly seen in collections like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection are missing in action. It just could have used more, and as a result it feels more like a straight port than a tribute.

Gimmick! Special Edition still holds up after all these years, but there’s just not enough beyond the main game to entertain players. This little green guy deserved so much more, resulting in what is a one-and-done type of title with little reason to go back.

This review of Gimmick! Special Edition was done on the PC via Steam. The game was purchased digitally.
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Casey Scheld

Casey Scheld has more than 15 years of experience in the gaming industry as a community manager, social media director, event specialist, and (of course) gaming editor. He has previously worked with gaming start-ups like Raptr, publishers like Konami, and roller derby girls at PAX West (check out Jam City Rollergirls)! Gamers Heroes is a passion project for him, giving him a chance to tap into the underground side of gaming. He is all too eager to give these lesser-known heroes of the indie space the attention they so rightly deserve, seeking out the next gem and sharing it with the world. Previously making appearances at events like CES, GDC, and (the late) E3, he is all too happy to seek out the next big thing. For those that want to talk shop, send over a tip, or get an easy win in a fighting game of their choosing, be sure to check out his social media channels below.

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