Retro Wreck Room Box Review – January Subscription Box
There’s a new retro game subscription box that any fan of school gaming should be aware of. We will be reviewing them for you so you can decide if which box is right for you. This is our first Retro Wreck Room box and our first review for them. Full disclosure we were given a discount on our first Retro Wreck Room box. Check out the end of our review to save yourself some money on your first month’s subscription.
Retro Wreck Room is different from the others like Video Games Monthly and Retro Game Treasure. When you get started you fill out a form about the kinds of games that you like. You can even list your favorite games overall. With this information, Retro Wreck Room curates a custom box of 4 to 6 retro games for the consoles that you choose.
You get to try out and play the games you get for the month. At the end of the month, you keep any games you like. Simply send back the games you don’t like in the included pre-paid envelope. The games all come labeled with how much they retail for. By being a Retro Wreck Room subscriber, you get a sizeable discount on any games you decide to keep. Your total for the games you keep will be charged to the card you have on file for your subscription.
It’s refreshing to come across a retro subscription box doing something different and trying to improve the subscriber experience. With the boxes where you pay a flat fee and keep all the games, you end up getting games that are worth much less than your monthly subscription cost. They have to make money to stay in business. As they grow it is harder to get enough copies of great games to send to everyone and still make money. That’s why they typically are medium to low-end games with a few interesting titles from time to time.
What Makes Retro Wreck Room Different?
Video Games Monthly and Retro Game Treasure are a great fit if you want to build your collection. Especially if you are looking for quantity over quality. Retro Wreck Room is built for those that want to play and experience great retro games that they may have never tried or would pass over at first glance at the retro game store. These boxes are built to help find retro gems that are fun and exciting to play.
If you aren’t into collecting retro games, you can use this as a rental service of sorts. There is no obligation to buy the games. So, you can try out a lot of different and fun retro games. Constantly keeping a new flow of games in your house on a monthly basis.
Only Pay For The Games You Want To Keep
Once you factor in the cost of shipping back and forth, the price per month is really good. From there you get a month to try out the games. Each game is clearly labeled with what the regular retail price is and what the RWR subscriber-only price is. I crossed referenced the retail prices listed on the games I received and some were exactly spot on. Only a few had just a slight variation over current averages on Game Value Now and Price Charting. So it evens out pretty well. Getting an exact price to match all the time is pretty impossible as they fluctuate often for certain games.
What’s in the January Retro Wreck Room Box
Immediately when you open your first box from RWR you’ll know that this is going to be different from what else is out there. Each game is individually wrapped like little Christmas or birthday presents. It really helps extend the excitement and surprise of opening your box for the month. While it doesn’t sound like that big of a deal at first, it is really nice to not see everything you get all at once. Knowing just about anything could be waiting for you in your next RWR present is a lot more fun than it sounds.
Like previous box reviews, I’ll go through each game with a mini-review and any background information I know about them to give you a better idea of what the games are like. The first game that I opened was…
SNES – Final Fight – Retail Value $13 – RWR Subscriber Price $8.99
This is a great game and one that started the whole series on the SNES. I did not own this growing up but spent a lot of my parent’s money renting it multiple times from the video store. While some might find side scrolling beat em ups repetitive and maybe even a little boring by today standards they were far from it back in the day. The Final Fight series of games definitely still holds up today as a great example of the genre that everyone with a SNES should experience.
There were a couple sequels in the franchise and some cross over between it and Street Fighter. I’m not well versed in the lore but something that I always found interesting with the game, especially as a kid, is that Mike Haggar, one of the playable characters is the mayor of the city the game is set in. This incredibly huge ex-wrestler with no shirt and a truly unique mash-up of suspenders and a belt that is slung over his shoulder to keep his pants up is just a wonderful concept for a mayor of a crime-ridden city.
This originally was an arcade game that was ported to the SNES. It’s missing a character from the arcade named Guy, but he appears in later games. For me and many others, this SNES game was our first exposure to this franchise and this game along with the Ninja Turtles beat em ups solidified my appreciation for this genre of game that I continue to have to this day.
If you’ve never played this game or any in the Final Fight series you should change that as soon as you can. The cartridge and sticker are both in pristine looking condition with the shine I love to see on my SNES cart stickers. This is a great first game for me to open out of my retro wreck room box and it definitely had me excited to see what would be the next one to open.
Sega Genesis – Sonic the Hedgehog 2 – Retail Value $11 – RWR Subscriber Price $6.99
Next, I chose the largest of all the presents in the box that was still unopened. In it was a complete in box copy of Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Now, if you owned a Genesis back in the day most everyone had at least this game along with the first Sonic game. Both games are great but 2 definitely is the better of them. Personally, it’s my favorite of the Sonic games. However, I fully admit I may be biased as I never got Sonic 3, or a Sega CD so I never had the pleasure of playing Sonic CD. Those games may be better now that I’ve been able to play them but Sonic 2 will always have a special place with me as it was one I spent lots of time playing over and over again as a kid.
I’m sure I don’t need to go into too much detail about this game as most are familiar with Sonic. This one introduced Tails and the second controller could control Tails for a bit while on screen but he had a hard time keeping up with Sonic. This was best used to keep siblings at bay who would whine about when it would be their turn. You could trick for a little bit into thinking they we playing before you would have to give up your turn as Sonic.
The game, case, and booklet are all in really great shape and would be a good addition to anyone’s collection of complete Genesis games if you don’t already have this. It’s good to know that RWR will also give you the possibility to help expand your complete in box collections too and not just the games themselves. Next up…
SNES – Secret of Evermore – Retail Value $24 – RWR Subscriber Price $18.99
The Super Nintendo is full of many great 16 bit RPGs. While many are well aware of titles like Final Fantasy 3, Chrono Trigger, and The Secret of Mana this game might be new to some of you. It does share a similar title and gameplay to The Secret of Mana but it is not a sequel or set in the same universe.
This is actually the only western RPG developed by Square. If you are a fan of any of the other RPG games on the SNES then you should definitely give this one a try. It can be divisive in that you’ll likely either love it or not be into much at all. The story basically is about a boy and his dog who get trapped in the world of Evermore. Your dog will have shapeshifting powers and is your other companion in your party fighting alongside you.
You spend the game working your way through variously themed realms which have historical themes. It has real-time combat so if you are not a fan of random encounters this is a good one for you.
I think this is a perfect game to be included in this type of subscription box. It’s not exactly a cheap game for you to pick up and find out shortly after you really do not enjoy it. But for those that this game clicks with it is a great find that not everyone has experience with. It’s also neat to see what a western developed square game from the 16-bit era is like. Lots of fun references can be found throughout the game.
N64 – Gex 3 Deep Cover Gecko – Retail Value $11 – RWR Subscriber Price $6.99
Gex the Gecko is a series of N64 and Playstation games and Gex 3 is the last in the series for the N64. On the surface, it seems like the typical N64 game with different worlds to explore and collect things as you work your way to a certain end goal. Similar to Banjo-Kazooie and Mario 64. However, that is where all the similarities with those games end.
This game has elements of greatness in it but it just falls short of everything working. Gex is voiced by Dana Gould and has lots of one-liners to say throughout the game. While back then it may have been novel to have the audio like this it gets old pretty quick now. They do try to add in some adult-themed humor but don’t fully go that direction like Conker does on the N64. So at times it just feels a little awkward while playing the game.
There are some interesting graphics including Gex’s girlfriend who is a live action model but nothing really stands out as super memorable here. The gameplay feels very meh, and that is probably a good description of this game overall. It’s not a horrible game by any means, but it’s not a great one either.
This is a good example of the benefits of a retro wreck room box. If you are looking for a new N64 game to try you will definitely come across the Gex games. I would imagine that if you like this one, you can rest assured you’ll most likely enjoy the others. For those that liked the first or second Gex game as a kid, it brings some nostalgia. This could be a good treat to have in your box as you’ll get the last game in the trilogy.
N64 – Hybrid Heaven – Retail Value $12 – RWR Subscriber Price $7.99
This is just the type of game I was hoping I would get from a subscription like this. While I have a lot over experience with a variety of N64 games, this is one that I have never come across before. After playing around with it some and reading about it on Wikipedia it’s a really unique game for the system. I had no idea a game like this existed on the N64 and that is what makes RWR wonderful
Hybrid Heaven is a mash-up, or hybrid so to speak, of a variety of game types. It’s a game unlike anything else on the N64. It’s an action-adventure exploration game, that also has a lot of RPG elements. As well as puzzles to solve. The combat system is a mix of a fighting game set up with turn-based controls and in menu inputs.
It’s confusing to explain without seeing it in action and still, images won’t do it justice so check out this YouTuber Kratos Spartan doing a playthrough of it.
The story in this game starts out with a long cinematic cut scene. The game involves aliens, clones, conspiracies and much more. I don’t want to read too many spoilers for this game and I haven’t completed a playthrough of it yet.
I’m excited to really play through this game for the first time ever. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this is the greatest N64 game of all time. It’s just a truly unique find for me that has slipped under the radar. Thanks to RWR, I’m able to experience it now though and that is the magic this box can provide.
Get A Better Value Out Of Your Subscription Box With Curated Games
Since Retro Wreck Rooms allows you to try it before you buy it. You can build out a retro game library that is both impressive to see and also impressive to play. As every game you keep will be a game you actively want because you know you enjoy playing the games. Also, the discount on the games is appreciated as well. It’s hard to find great deals on these retro games anymore.
Save $2 On Your Subscription With A Retro Wreck Room Coupon Code
The kind folks at RWR have a way for Gamesncranes readers to save a bit on their subscriptions. Just use GAMESNCRANES as your Retro Wreck Room discount code and get 2 dollars off your box.
After my experience with my first box, I can say I would recommend this box over the others. While other retro game subscription boxes let you keep the games at no extra charge. Those boxes can’t really include 4-6 great games of any value each month. Retro Wreck Room’s subscription model allows it to be able to provide a great value in the games they send. You and your collection will be happy with it.
Thanks for checking out this Retro Wreck Room box review for January.