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Same game, different console discussion
Post Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:41 pm
On the site we link games on the various systems we cover to each other under the heading "Same game, different console". Some examples:

http://www.smspower.org/Games/WonderBoyIII-SMS was ported to the Game Gear at http://www.smspower.org/Games/WonderBoyIII-GG including some layout changes due to screen size differences

http://www.smspower.org/Games/CastleOfIllusion-SMS became http://www.smspower.org/Games/CastleOfIllusion-GG with minimal changes

http://www.smspower.org/Games/MsPacMan-SMS and http://www.smspower.org/Games/MsPacMan-GG are probably not from the same codebase - they are independent ports - but they are very similar

http://www.smspower.org/Games/MortalKombat-SMS and http://www.smspower.org/Games/MortalKombat-GG are likely to have been developed from a shared code base at the same time

These are all clearly "the same game". Now let's come to the tricky ones.
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G-LOC Air Battle
Post Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:43 pm
http://www.smspower.org/Games/GLOCAirBattle-SMS
http://www.smspower.org/Games/GLOCAirBattle-GG

Independent ports of the same arcade game. Quite different gameplay. I think they're the same game.
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Alien Syndrome
Post Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:45 pm
http://www.smspower.org/Games/AlienSyndrome-SMS

http://www.smspower.org/Games/AlienSyndrome-GG

Released 5 years apart, both ports from the arcade original, the second a lot more close than the first, they are really independent adaptations. I vote still the same game.
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Ninja Gaiden
Post Posted: Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:49 pm
http://www.smspower.org/Games/NinjaGaiden-SMS

http://www.smspower.org/Games/NinjaGaiden-GG

There are many different Ninja Gaiden games across 8- and 16-bit consoles which seem to have little in common apart from that they are Ninja based platform games sharing a name. So are the two above the same game? I'm not sure. They do share box art, but the gameplay, graphics and levels don't match. Do they have a common ancestor?
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:01 am
Hi, Maxim, I'm not sure what you're proposing?
Maybe find another term than "same game / other console", something like "other port / other console"?
Because for me, Ninja Gaiden or Alien Syndrome are too different between the master system and the game gear to be considered as the same game
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:21 am
I guess I have two questions: are they the same game, and if not, should we get rid of the link or maybe describe it some other way? We also have a mechanism to list related games in a series but it's not that either. Another option is to simply mention the related game in the description text.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:24 am
I think it's better to have some sort of link between the games.

Maybe we could rename "Same Game, Different System" to just "Related Games" and keep it more flexible?
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:22 pm
It started as a way to highlight games where the page name is identical, typically for the GG port of an SMS game. We also have the game series links, which also falls under "related games". Could the answer be to use that to group related games, albeit more manually, by creating "series" for things like "Alien Syndrome ports"? If so, should we use a different word than "series"?
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:23 pm
Or having "Same Game, different console" and "Related game" (for different ports or different games altogether)
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:25 pm
Note also that the more general grouping loses information about how the games are related. Since we currently only have the linking attribute "same game", it's not a huge loss? For example, the Wonder Boy III page lists the Game Gear port both as the "same game" and as part of the Wonder Boy series.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:20 pm
Maxim wrote
http://www.smspower.org/Games/NinjaGaiden-SMS
http://www.smspower.org/Games/NinjaGaiden-GG

There are many different Ninja Gaiden games across 8- and 16-bit consoles which seem to have little in common apart from that they are Ninja based platform games sharing a name. So are the two above the same game? I'm not sure. They do share box art, but the gameplay, graphics and levels don't match. Do they have a common ancestor?

I recently spent some time trying to group games into series (across multiple platforms), and Ninja Gaiden was a series I had trouble with. It seems that an original trilogy of games was released for the NES, all of which were ported to the SNES and released on a single cartridge as "Ninja Gaiden Trilogy". There was also a Japan-only PC Engine game released, "Ninja Ryuuken Den", which is a port of the first NES game.

Other than that, the SMS and GG games (and the Game Boy's "Ninja Gaiden Shadow") all seem to be different, both from the NES games and from each other.

I actually made a note at the time, that I should edit the wiki and remove "Same Game, Different Console" from the SMS and GG pages.

Maxim wrote
http://www.smspower.org/Games/MsPacMan-SMS and http://www.smspower.org/Games/MsPacMan-GG are probably not from the same codebase - they are independent ports - but they are very similar

I agree that these are the same game. This situation seems to be the same as with Desert Strike: the SMS and GG versions are separate ports but both try to be as similar as possible to the original game.

However, even with these two being "Same Game, Different Console", I think we should add a GameSeries entry for Pac-Man. This should also include Pac-Mania (SMS) and Pac-Attack, Pac-In-Time & Pac-Man (GG).

While on the subject, there are several other series that I think deserve GameSeries entries: Bubble Bobble, Desert Strike, Donald Duck, James Pond, Jurassic Park, Lemmings, Mickey Mouse and NBA Jam.

Maxim wrote
It started as a way to highlight games where the page name is identical, typically for the GG port of an SMS game.

Indeed, that seems to be the default logic behind "Same Game, Different Console". To see all of the pages for which this default is overridden, search for "$:SameGameListParams=-".

Maxim wrote
Could the answer be to use [GameSeries] to group related games, albeit more manually, by creating "series" for things like "Alien Syndrome ports"? If so, should we use a different word than "series"?

I think this makes sense, e.g. the two Ninja Gaiden games are not the same, but they should be linked somehow. Perhaps renaming GameSeries to something like RelatedGames would be good, but I'm not sure it's completely necessary: both Ninja Gaiden games can legitimately be considered separate entries in the Ninja Gaiden series.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 2:50 pm
RetroSpark wrote

I recently spent some time trying to group games into series (across multiple platforms), and Ninja Gaiden was a series I had trouble with. It seems that an original trilogy of games was released for the NES, all of which were ported to the SNES and released on a single cartridge as "Ninja Gaiden Trilogy". There was also a Japan-only PC Engine game released, "Ninja Ryuuken Den", which is a port of the first NES game.


Actually they started as an Arcade game, called "Shadow Warriors" in Europe, that already had plenty of conversions for 8 Bit Computers.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 3:10 pm
kusfo wrote
Actually [Ninja Gaiden] started as an Arcade game, called "Shadow Warriors" in Europe, that already had plenty of conversions for 8 Bit Computers.

You're right, of course. I didn't consider the Ninja Gaiden arcade game because I was only looking at console releases - but even then I overlooked the port of the arcade game to the Atari Lynx.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 3:29 pm
RetroSpark wrote
kusfo wrote
Actually [Ninja Gaiden] started as an Arcade game, called "Shadow Warriors" in Europe, that already had plenty of conversions for 8 Bit Computers.

You're right, of course. I didn't consider the Ninja Gaiden arcade game because I was only looking at console releases - but even then I overlooked the port of the arcade game to the Atari Lynx.


Well, I think that first NES game was released before the Lynx one, if you're talking about consoles only.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:23 pm
I think I'll go tidy all this up then.

By the way, we're happy to have people help with the site - we'd like to have some descriptions in every game beyond the raw data we have, in line with the descriptions you find on Wikipedia and Sega Retro, and these are great places to provide more information on the games' relationships, including outside SMS Power's domain.
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Post Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2018 11:57 am
RetroSpark wrote
there are several other series that I think deserve GameSeries entries: Bubble Bobble, Desert Strike, Donald Duck, James Pond, Jurassic Park, Lemmings, Mickey Mouse and NBA Jam.

I have gone ahead and created these GameSeries pages:


RetroSpark wrote
I actually made a note at the time, that I should edit the wiki and remove "Same Game, Different Console" from the [Ninja Gaiden] SMS and GG pages.

I have also made this change, as well as creating a GameSeries entry for Ninja Gaiden.

RetroSpark wrote
I think we should add a GameSeries entry for Pac-Man.

As I was about to create this, I noticed that the information is already available through the Pac-Man tag (and I now see the Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck tags as well).

In these cases, do we want to group related games via GameSeries, via a tag, or both?
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Post Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2018 2:53 pm
The tags are another way to achieve the same thing but I think they have a wider scope, not only for linking game series (and series imply ordering).
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Post Posted: Sat Mar 17, 2018 6:42 pm
RetroSpark wrote
kusfo wrote
Actually [Ninja Gaiden] started as an Arcade game, called "Shadow Warriors" in Europe, that already had plenty of conversions for 8 Bit Computers.

You're right, of course. I didn't consider the Ninja Gaiden arcade game because I was only looking at console releases - but even then I overlooked the port of the arcade game to the Atari Lynx.


It gets more confusing. The Lynx got a port of the arcade game "Ninja Gaiden" AND the NES Ninja Gaiden III.
I think there was a DOS port of the arcade Ninja Gaiden (or maybe it was a different game?) and a port of the NES Ninja Gaiden II.

As one of the earliest action game franchises with an emphasis on story, it seems odd for them to only port selected pieces of the original trilogy to one console.
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Post Posted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:51 pm
Maxim wrote
The tags are another way to achieve the same thing but I think they have a wider scope, not only for linking game series (and series imply ordering).

So we currently have three ways to link related games: "Same Game, Different Console" (closest relationship), GameSeries entries, and tags.

In that case, I think it makes sense to keep GameSeries as originally intended, rather than replacing it by something like RelatedGames. Could games which are related but don't form an ordered series just use a tag?
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Post Posted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:45 pm
Perhaps it's better to create a tag "Franchise", that way games that aren't exactly related but belong to the same franchise could be grouped?

I don't consider PS Gaiden and PS Adventure part of the Phantasy Star series, but i do consider them part of the franchise.

Same with games like Sonic Spinball or Sonic Drift, which are part of the Franchise, but not of the series, imho.
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Post Posted: Mon Mar 19, 2018 3:34 pm
We need to refrain from making this too complicated and with too many subtleties. I think it's fine to have the 3 Phantasy Star named games in a list (whatever the list is).

I personally like tags because they are easy to maneuver/add and we have a tag cloud in the Games section.
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Post Posted: Sat Mar 31, 2018 8:53 am
Big thank you to retrospark for all the pages yoo have created, great info :-)
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