NESNewsWarp Zone

Ed Semrad Warms Up To The NES

Ed Semrad, a writer for the Milwaukee Journal, has been critical of Nintendo’s new system over the past few months. In fact, he ranked it third behind the Atari 7800 and the Sega Master System citing poor controllers as one of his main concerns. It looks like he’s finally coming around with the latest batch of third-party licensee games showing what the NES is capable of.


The Dec. 20, 1986 issue of The Milwaukee Journal.


His favorites of the bunch are Gradius and Commando, both of which he gives perfect scores (10 out of 10). We have our full reviews up of Gradius (we gave it 8.5 out of 10) and Commando (it received 7 out of 10) as well. It looks like we’re a little more critical of both games, but it must be said that our review metrics might scale tougher than Ed’s and both games are fun.



He also really enjoyed Ghosts ‘N Goblins from Capcom, giving it a very nice 9 out of 10. He says the game has “superb graphics and top-notch game play”. Two other games earned 9s: Ninja Kid and Tag Team Wrestling, both from Data East.

The rest of his reviews can be found in the article. It seems like he’s impressed with many of the newer games for the system, so it will be interesting to see how he likes the games coming out next year. Right now the title selection and promise of more games from more companies is making the NES look like THE system to own for sheer variety and quality of games. We’re hearing Nintendo had a blow-out holiday season and expect to hear more (hopefully sales information) in the new year.

Did you get a NES for Christmas? If so, what games are you having the most fun with? Let us know in the comments below!


Craig Majaski

Craig has been covering the video game industry since 1995. His work has been published across a wide spectrum of media sites. He's currently the Editor-In-Chief of Nintendo Times and contributes to Gaming Age.

2 thoughts on “Ed Semrad Warms Up To The NES

  • Blue Hedgehog

    I got a Nintendo for Christmas for myself! I bought it a few days before Christmas, and I originally intended to open it on Christmas Eve, but I just couldn’t wait, and opened the box as soon as I arrived home with it.

    I chose the Nintendo Control Deck package which comes with Super Mario Bros. and two controllers. I bought a few other games with the system: Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr., Mario Bros., Ice Climber and a new game made by CapCom (a third-party company), called Ghosts ‘n Goblins.

    I am very happy with my purchase so far, and I enjoy all the games.

    The three arcade classics (Donkey Kong, Donkey Kong Jr. and Mario Bros.) are very easy to pick up and play, but really hard to master. If you have friends over, these Game Paks are probably the best choice to pop into the Control Deck. They look much better than anything on the Atari 2600, but when it comes to the gameplay, these classics feel a little bit dated compared to the newer games. But still, it is always good to have the classics in your collection.

    Compared to the Arcade Classics, Super Mario Bros. (the game that was bundled with the system) feels like a new generation of video games: the graphics, the characters, the secrets, the sense of adventure… it really feels like something new, a beginning of a new era. It has some elements of the Atari 2600 game Pitfall (the sense of adventure and the feel of being on a journey), but Super Mario Bros. is just on whole another level.

    In some aspects, Ghosts ‘n Goblins is very similar to Super Mario Bros.: You go on a journey to save a princess, your character (this time a knight) moves from left to right, you jump on platforms and try to avoid or defeat enemies. Graphically the game looks just as good as Super Mario Bros. and the music is fantastic! My only problem with the game is that it is extremely hard: I barely can make it to the second level.

    The biggest surprise for me was Ice Climber: I wasn’t expecting too much, I just picked it up to have a game with two player simultaneous co-op mode, but it turned out to be my favorite game on my new Nintendo. Objectively seen both Super Mario Bros and Ghosts ‘n Goblins are more advanced games, but there is just something about this game that makes me play it again and again. I already finished all 32 levels multiple times but I still enjoy replaying them. I like that I can start at any level at the beginning so I can always continue where are left of last time. Usually Ice Climber is the game I pick up first when I turn on my Nintendo, play it for 20 to 30 minutes, and then I switch for something else.

    • I’m happy you got your NES! It truly is a wonderful time to be a gamer. It’s been way too long since video games were cool. I agree that Ice Climber can be a great deal of fun – especially in co-op mode. Don’t forget you can leave your review score on games too by going to the review page and selecting your user score. It works better on desktop than mobile at the moment, but we’re working on it.

      I also agree with you about Ghosts ‘N Goblins being very difficult. It’s quite the challenge, but it’s nice to see such a different setting in a video game. It’s not too often you get to take down the undead!


Join The Conversation!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.