The cover for issue 2 of Nintendo Power was quite the controversy for the time. Video games were still a kids hobby so a picture of a severed head on a magazine that was aimed at kinds did not go over well with parents in America. Looking at it now, it’s a very dramatic cover and another cover like this wouldn’t grace the magazine for a long time.
Beyond Castlevania 2, more NES classics like Bionic Commando, Life Force and a further in-depth look at Super Mario Brothers 2 are all highlighted in the magazine this month. They all can’t be great though so we also get a look at Renegade and Golgo 13. The number of pages dedicated to each feature game in the early days of the magazine was pretty amazing compared to what readers were accustom to in the Nintendo Fun Club News so you can easily see why the magazine appealed to the masses of Nintendo fans.
In another part of the magazine, Counselors Corner provides tips on Metroid, Legend of Zelda and Super Mario Bros. At first I was surprised they were spending time giving tips on games that has been out since the early days of the system but they had so many new subscribers coming in to the magazine that many of them may not have seen the info in the previous newsletters. A big announcement was slipped in to the Pak Watch section with the news that Zelda II would only get a limited release in 1988 and wouldn’t see a full launch until 1989. Games in those days did not have hard release days so consumers were at the mercy of Nintendo and when they wanted to release a game.
In the issue we also got a nice feature on Rare and the two brothers who started the company. Rare would later come to more fame in the US as the developer of Donkey Kong Country for the SNES but Rare’s relationship with Nintendo started very early in the life of the NES. Finally, there was a pretty cool calendar included which had some interesting dates including October 11th as being Mario’s birthday!
Enjoy this issue and remember to Play with Power!