TMNT Turtles in Time (Super Nintendo/SNES & Arcade Retro Game Review)

TMNT Turtles in Time (Super Nintendo/SNES & Arcade Retro Game Review)


Cowabunga, dudes and dudettes! It’s time for another radical Cygnus Destroyer
review! This episode is on a topic near and dear to
me: the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. TMNT has been going strong in various incarnations
since the Mirage comic debuted in the mid ‘80s. Naturally, a huge amount of Turtles video
games have been produced, most of which being of high quality. While I plan on covering some of those in
the near future, I’m going to start with the one that had the biggest impact on me
during my childhood: Turtles in Time! Turtles in Time was originally released in
arcades in 1991, but was ported onto the SNES in August 1992. My introduction to this wonderful Konami title
was through this cart and it was one of my first tastes of what the Super Nintendo had
to offer. I was fortunate to have held onto most of
my collection for that particular system, so what you’re seeing right now is the very
copy that I created tons of treasured memories with when I was a kid. The cabinet was advanced beyond even the original
TMNT arcade, with incredibly detailed and animated sprites and tons of voice samples. It even included “Pizza Power” from the
Coming Out of Their Shells tour and album during
the intro. Much like the topic of my last review, Final
Fight, it would have been impossible to replicate this gigantic arcade powerhouse onto a 16
bit cartridge, so changes were going to have to be made, and these become evident immediately. The “Pizza Power” scrolling montage is
substituted for an opening cinematic that takes more after the original TMNT coin-op,
which itself was working off the formula established by the iconic 1987 cartoon. Both versions of the opening are really good,
but I’ve got to give the edge to the SNES. It does a better job of pumping up the energy
levels and it ends on the perfect note of Leonardo slicing open the screen to reveal
the title. It’s badass! The plot is the same regardless of the platform:
April O’Neal is filming a news report in front of the Statue of Liberty when all of
a sudden… Owing to its advanced hardware, the arcade
features crystal clear voice samples, whereas the console delivers the info in text. The voice-over in general was scaled back
on the port, but this ultimately worked out for the best, because…well…take a listen Fortunately, the stellar music was retained
and it sounds better than ever. Visually, the 16 bit iteration captures the
essence of the cabinet, but in a downgraded capacity. The sprites aren’t as big and the animation
isn’t as fluid, but at least it has every playable character, a co-op and versus mode,
and extras. I’m looking at you, Final Fight. While the majority of the aesthetic experience
was translated faithfully, there were a few minor elements that didn’t make the conversion. For example, the pizza health power-up and
its retrieval effect were more involved in the coin-op. Furthermore, if the player remained idle for
too long, Splinter would continuously run by the screen yelling “hurry!” as he inched
closer and closer to the foreground. On the final lap, a bomb will drop from the
sky, instantly killing our virtual avatar, punishing us for rudely loitering. This amused me, so it’s a shame that this
was replaced with a still image of April O’Neal on the SNES. Regardless, the gameplay is the most important
factor, and luckily both are very solid in that department. The controls are simple, but tight: B jumps,
Y attacks and B and Y together perform a special move, which in true beat ‘em up fashion
takes health away from the meter. The Turtles build up momentum into a run if
the D-pad is held in one direction, and pressing Y during a sprint will result in a dash attack. Pressing B while sprinting will cause the
martial artists to flip around acrobatically, and pressing Y after this will make them slide
into enemies. The heroes in a half-shell also have a couple
of aerial offensive maneuvers at their disposal. Pressing B and then Y in quick succession
will perform a standard jump kick, but pressing Y repeatedly at the apex of a leap will cause
them to float towards the ground below. This is handy in avoiding projectiles and
defeating airborne adversaries. As mentioned previously, mashing Y unleashes
a barrage of slices and pulverizing blows. However, if Y is pressed within close range
of an opponent, then Leo, Mikey, Donnie, and Raph will slam the baddies into the ground
repeatedly like a ragdoll. Not only that, but they’ll pick them up
and fling them over their shoulders and into the screen! Eat your heart out, Battletoads! The initial levels, by and large, are note
for note recreations of those found in the quarter munching cabinet. A wrecking ball demolishes its way through
the construction site and Krang makes an appearance to zap those pesky toitles. It concludes with the battle against Baxter
Stockman. He’ll fly around while raining bullets down
to the ground, and this is the chance to put the jump kicks to use. Both platforms feature the traditional Konami
flash to indicate how much damage the villains have taken, but the home release added a boss
life bar, which is a much appreciated improvement. Depending on the platform, Stockman either
keels over in death or explodes…for some reason…video game logic, I guess. “Alleycat Blues” is a fairly typical TMNT
street stage, complete with breakable fire hydrants and open manholes, which brings Metal
Head into the picture. Metal Head looks impressive, but isn’t that
much of challenge. His pattern is simple: just avoid his lasers
and mash away. Next up…”Sewer Surfin’”, and we reach
the first major deviation. The stage involves the teens hopping aboard
motorized surfboards and fending off the Foot and alien creatures that leap out of the water,
all while avoiding the piercing spikes and crushing gates. As long as I’ve been acquainted with this
game, the Rat King pops up after the bonus section in a jet ski to claim his turf. Apparently this was not always the case. Originally, the protagonists encountered a
horde of the Xenomorph wannabes, and upon eliminating the threat, this would happen… This was mind-blowing to me. “Sewer Surfin” as I’m used to it is
followed by the Technodrome, one of the highlights of the adventure, where the
boys meet Tokka and Rahzar and the Shredder banishes them to the past
after a brief, but fierce tossing section. Since The Shredder sends the TMNT on their
journey in “Sewer Surfin’”, that means that there is no Technodrome segment in the
arcade! It was created entirely for the Super Nintendo,
and it’s sorely missed on the coin-op, so I give another check in favor of the home
system. The turtles’ trip through time spans several
epochs and the remaining level layout is the same in both versions. However, there are still some massive differences
remaining, so let’s continue onward. “Prehistoric Turtlesauraus” introduces
rampaging dinosaurs and rock soldiers into the mix, the latter of which being a huge
pain in the ass, especially in a solo mission. The evil reptile Slash is the boss on the
SNES, but Cement Man originally made a mess of our heroes. I don’t even know who Cement Man is and
Slash is a much cooler character anyway, so I have to give the point to the replacement. “Skull and Crossbones” shifts the scenery
away from the comforts of land to the rough seas of pirate territory. The biggest change, outside of the dropped
rain transition, is that Tokka and Rahzar initially faced off against the ninja teens. As Tokka and Rahzar were already de-mutated
aboard the Technodrome on the SNES, they were substituted with Bebop and Rocksteady, decked
out in period appropriate attire. I very much approve of this change because
Bebop and Rocksteady don’t appear at all in the original incarnation, and while there
are some good TMNT titles without the rhino and warthog, their absence here just feels
wrong. “Bury My Shell at Wounded Knee”, as far
as I can tell, is mostly unaltered. The action takes place on a speeding train
ripped out of Sunset Riders, filled with Foot and rock soldiers aplenty. The Cajun menace Leatherhead is lurking at the finish line, ready to sink his teeth into their green flesh. Leatherhead’s bark is worse than his bite,
and he’ll go down in a few hits after avoiding his advances. Upon his demise, we travel forward to the
now not so distant future of “Neon Night Riders”. The arcade sticks with the horizontal sidescrolling
perspective, but the home release switches to an F-Zero-esque Mode 7 view which I prefer. Krang flies in for the kill, decked out in
his swank suit of armor. Krang is even less of a threat than Leatherhead,
and when his armor is annihilated, another warp is activated. Since we’re rapidly approaching the conclusion,
I’m going to activate the spoiler warning. As always, click on the box art to skip past
them; otherwise, we’re heading towards the finale. The warp leads to Krang’s
headquarters in the 22nd Century, where the recently disembodied villain dishes out everything
in his arsenal to thwart his nemeses. Foot, rocks, robots, frozen floor pads…you
name it, he’s got it. Krang seeks his revenge in a tiny spaceship
via bubbles and tiny robots. After his plans are squashed, the title stars
return to the present for the showdown with the Shredder. The coin-op Shredder wields a green sword
and shoots energy blasts from his hands. He’s quite intimidating and is certainly
challenging, but he’s got nothing on the console Shredder, who takes it up a notch by morphing into his enhanced self as seen in the second TMNT movie. This battle is much more brutal, as the behemoth
moves up and down and all around, dispensing fire, ice and de-mutation rays. Finding an opening can be really tough, but
my advice is to quickly move into his plain after the ice wave a.k.a. the vulnerable spot
in his defense. Also, stay far away from the de-mutation ray,
which counts as a lost life. Remain patient and strike at the right moment. Keep repeating this strategy and Oroku Saki
is toast. The heroes return the Statue of Liberty to
its proper location as the crowd cheers them on. A chiptune of Pizza Power accompanies their
victory and the credits roll. That is, unless it’s completed on anything
except hard on the SNES. If that’s the case, Splinter congratulates
us, but states that we have to conquer the hard setting to become true ninjas. Kind of lame, but this wasn’t uncommon back
in the day. We had to practice and earn that victory,
and once we did, the reward was sweet and satisfying. As should be clearly obvious, Turtles in Time
is a fantastic experience, regardless of the platform, but in my humble opinion, the definitive
version is the Super Nintendo’s. It may be a downgrade in terms of the visual
presentation, but it’s superior in every other category as addressed previously. The arcade original is still excellent and
worth playing, but it pales in comparison to Nintendo’s 16 bit machine. To me, this is flawless and I can’t recommend
it enough. This is a must play and you should definitely seek it
out however you can. I guarantee you’ll love it just like I do. Turtles in Time is an undeniable masterpiece,
but I wonder how it could be improved for the modern gaming scene? What’s this? There already was a remake? Awesome! That must be amazing, right? Oh, no, that doesn’t sound very good. Could it really be that bad? I guess there’s only one way to find out…

100 thoughts on “TMNT Turtles in Time (Super Nintendo/SNES & Arcade Retro Game Review)

  1. Your reviews are very professional. I don't like this game as much as most of the internet. It is good game, with great multiplayer. Some cool boss fights. But combat mechanics are simple. Enemies are very repetitive. It lacks that feel of power when you hit your opponents. Framerate can slowdown a bit sometimes. And overall animation of Turtles is simplified. Auto dash is problematic when some guys can be hit with running attack. Yeah it can be change in options but does not help that much. Last problem a have with this game are stage hazards. Those are cheap ways to take your lifes. Why enemies are immune to those? And I don't like those in any beat em ups. As I said. Good game but nowhere near of being one of the best brawlers. Even on SNES there is Final Fight 3 or Ghost Chaser Densei which are better as beat em ups. I just love beat em ups.

  2. Turtles in Time was nice but i mostly played RPG´s and Mario World on the SNES.
    Secret of Mana and Mystic Quest 🙂

  3. I actually own the SNES version. I use to play it with my two brothers since my parents didn't want to play but now it's my older brother and two of my younger brothers

  4. Hey Matt wondering if you've played TMNT Hyperstone Heist on the Sega Genesis. Would like to see a review/your thoughts on it as it has a HUGE misconception of being a "downgrade" or "rip off" of Turtles In Time (which couldn't be further from the truth).

  5. well this is just my thoughts but I guess the bomb dropping on a player who is idle to long in the arcade is with the mindset that if a player was to be playing then had to leave abrubtly then it might leave the game active without getting more coins so I guess they figured that if a player had to leave suddenly then the bomb dropping creating a game over forcing the next player to walk up to having to put in quarters to play which would be pointless on a home game thus why it was probably dropped and changed to a still version of april

  6. fun fact the super famicom version has some alterations too, Dialogue by villans when you beat them annnnd you get pizza power chiptune ending on any dificulty.

    Some other secrets, one really nasty wtf was someone thinking, whack razzor with a weapon after he is demutated.
    And in the sound test section click on pizza power, hit the button you'd use to cancel sound on any other sound test song.
    Entering the konami code on controller 2 at the title screen with option highlighted gives you the option to have 10 lives
    Entering the konami code save for changing ba start to lr gives you a level select

  7. i loved turtles in time me and my sis spent many nights as kids staying up past our bed time to get to the next level

  8. I love them both. It's a tough choice if I had to choose between the two, the SNES is longer with more levels, BUT for me, it's those great arcade graphics that always win me over. They were so fluid in the arcade and just made for a very fast paced hyper action game.

  9. I own both and would have to agree that SNES is great when running through the game on your own but when you have friends over there is nothing like all four of you playing the arcade version together and pumping in quarters.

  10. im glad i purchased my copy a year ago or more. paid 30$ for it which was kind of high but its a great game. so much fun. the SNES is a great system with a lot of good games. This game is one if the best. 2 player arcade style cant get any better than that. nice video man.

  11. Someone should do a fan remake (or professional, I'm not picky) that has the graphics of the arcade version, but the gameplay/levels and music of the SNES version. A definitive version, if you will.

  12. Is it just me, or is it that the voice acting on the arcade game is done by just two people. The turtles and shredder and other male bosses share the same exact voice. April and Baxter Stockman are the only ones with different voices from the others. April and Baxter have a female voice.

  13. this was a fantastic and in depth review.. i would love to see more videos done in this fashion.. keep up the good work man

  14. Personally, I would've preferred that Konami, and Ubisoft released the arcade version of 'Turtles In Time', but have Konami work some of the SNES features into the original arcade hardware so that's just as long as the SNES game, while still maintaining the 4 player co-op of the arcade original. That would've been the definitive version of 'Turtles In Time' that we all deserve.

  15. You know what would've been awesome? If there was a PS1 port; with the graphics and sound of the arcade version combined with the additional content of the SNES version.

  16. that's what I been trying to figure out who the hell is cement man I don't ever remember from any ninja turtle media mirage idw comics

  17. I loved the Arcade versions of the first one and Turtles in Time, and two of the later PS2 Turtles games have perfect arcade emulations of the two Arcade games within them, I was extatic 🙂

  18. I remember playing this game with my cousins when I was a kid as well. Loved the game, I still do, and it is one of my guilty pleasures to this day. Shame they didn't add it to downloads for newer systems like they did with some other games though.

  19. It's time for useless TMNT trivia! Nobody seems to know this one! "Cement Man" was on a just single episode of the 80's/90's TMNT cartoon. Hardly enough to warrant his appearance as a boss in Turtles in Time! I think Baxter Stockman created him if memory serves.

  20. I TOTALLY agree with everything in this video! I owned the SNES version when I was very young! I enjoyed every minute of it!

  21. the arcade version feels very flat compared to the much superior hard hitting feel you get from the snes handling of combat. Quite why this isn't mentioned is as an improvement is a little odd. Same can also be said for the great megadrive version which retains the excellent tight great combat lacking in the arcade version. Both arcade versions in fact feel like there is no heft to your hits. Very surprised when I got round to playing the arcade versions because despite their being more frames of animation, it's actual feel to combat is very weedy in comparison

  22. Its always great when you realize you've found a new Cygnus Destroyer video that you haven't seen before. Still think this channel needs more subs. Its amazing!

  23. the arcade version due to the better animation , the posibility of play the adventure with the 4 turtles , but the snes version had more bosses , more levels , i lover the two version and sega version too

  24. this is an extremely biased review.. nothing about native resolution sprite limits frame rates etc.. if that is even a vintage screen of either port of the game. the extra levels in the home port versions both nes and snes were tedious and not really an enhancement.

  25. I Recently bought TNMT Mutant Nightmare 3 for the ps2… IT WAS AWESOME because it included Turtles In time (The arcade Version)

  26. I must be only one with a not so high oppinion of this, must I must say it looks and feels like a NES game. The sprites are too small and not the best, the art lacks the SNES grit, shadowing and does not fully utilize the 16 bit palette (falls way short of it) and the animation is woefully limited. Haven't played much of it though, maybe the gameplay makes up for it

  27. I wish TMNT had more Beat'em ups like this and the Arcade Original 1989 Version. TMNT TIT reshelled was A Piece of Crap why didn't they remake the 1989 one first?

  28. I just finished this game a few days ago. One of the best decisions I ever made. I was never a hardcore TMNT fan. More of a casual fan, really, but this game was a blast from beginning to end.

  29. Holy hell where did you get that t-shirt? Since first seeing this video i searched high and low. Like 3.000 ebay articles, amazon, google search, zippo!
    Be honest: it's from the future and doesn't exist yet!

  30. You should try doing a review of the latest Turtles game. I'm convinced that Platinum Games was paid off to make the game terrible. With the well received games they have made, how do you mess up a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles beat 'em up?

  31. good stuff haha. I forgot how great the SNES version was. used to play it all the time growing up B-)

  32. Wait, wait, wait. Did Bebop and Rocksteady just knock each other out? That is all kinds of accurate considering it's those two.

  33. 14:57 Dont look so damn smug Splinter, you are not even supposed to be seen on the streets, even less on television

  34. The sprites of pirate bebop and rocksteady waz on rom of arcade but last minute change they changed it to tokka and razzor cuz of the tmnt 2 secret of ooze movie release…same reason for super shredder added in snes

  35. Its a damn shame that they did not attempt a Ninja Turtles game on the Neo Geo. It would have been something to behold I guarantee it. I wonder what the hardware on the cabinet was in '91 and if it was as strong as an AES/MVS….I'm going to have to research this.

    Hey, your missing Hyperstone Heist from this video.

  36. I am going subscribe to this channel despite the creator of this channel scares my son idk why he just said that man looks scaweee!

  37. The way I see it, the reason for Baxter's exploding when defeated as mentioned at 6:32 is because of the weapon he's armed with blowing up, which is something you'd totally expect to see in the 1980s TMNT cartoon series for sure. 😉

  38. this lookslikeafun turtles beat em up sadly i never played it i played the turtlesarcade game on nes that one i think its ok

  39. Shout-out to Hyperstone Heist on Megadrive, almost as good as Turtles in Time and the faster speed of the Megadrive CPU makes it's presence known in that game!

  40. I prefer the arcade, but I concede that the music and exclusive bosses (except I like Shredder in arcade more) in the SNES are much better than their counterparts. For everything else, I prefer arcade – including cheesy dialogue and Pizza Power intro

  41. 💙🐢🧡🐢💜🐢🐢❤️ Turtles In Time Was My Favorite Turtles Video Game 👍❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

  42. This is one of the few instances when a port was superior to the arcade. I often feel like the arcade version is so short compared to SNES. Well, it is shorter of course. Also, the sound font of SNES makes the music better, too!

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