For my second blog, I'm going to list my current favorite imports. Imports are my favorite items to collect and I've collected a lot over the years, so it makes sense that I make a blog about them.
MegaMan52's favorite video game imports
20.Mario Party 4 Event Disc
An obscure Japanese Mario Party 4 promotional disc. I didn't find out about it until 2018, when I came across some sealed copies of it on eBay. Before buying, I did a Google search. The only information I could find at the time was the name of the disc, and a single picture. Because of my interest in imports (and because the GameCube is underrated), I had to buy it and find out more about it. I'm not going to say how much it cost, but it was far more than a regular copy of Mario Party 4.
The disc contains Mini-Game mode. All eight playable characters are available, and up to four players can play. Four player and Battle mini-games can be selected.
I don't know much more about this disc. The name seems to imply that it was used (or planned to be used) at a Tournament, like Super Smash Bros. Melee. It might be a demo disc. Maybe it was a giveaway. Unfortunately, not a whole lot more is known. Hopefully someone out there who has this disc can look at the discs data, and find out more about it.
19.Kirby's Dream Land
I like Kirby. I really, REALLY like the Kirby games. Of course, importing the Japanese version of Kirby's Dream Land was a priority. The box art for the Japanese version proves that Kirby was pink all along.
It doesn't differ much from the American version, but it has a nicer-looking title screen and some other minor differences. I made a video (above) comparing the American and Japanese versions.
18.Super Smash Bros.
The Japanese version of Super Smash Bros. has more realistic punching and kicking sound effects (similar to Melee). Some of the voice clips are different too, while others are the same. There are no Congratulations screens shown at the end of the One Player mode; they were added to the American version.
17.Super Bust a Move All-Stars
This is basically the European release of Bust a Move 3000, but it has two major additions. It adds a Four-Player mode, and a Space Invaders style Shoot Bubble mode. The Japanese version (Super Puzzle Bobble All-Stars) also has these additions. If you like this series, it's worth importing the Japanese or European versions (or both).
16.Nintendo Puzzle Collection
Nintendo Puzzle Collection includes Dr. Mario 64 (yes, it's a Japanese version of the N64 Dr. Mario), an updated version of Yoshi's Cookie, and the unreleased N64 version of Panel de Pon. It's unfortunate that the American release of Nintendo Puzzle Collection was canceled, but at least it came out in Japan. If you like the Dr. Mario and Yoshi's Cookie games for NES, SNES, and Game Boy as well as Tetris Attack for SNES, this is definitely worth importing.
15.Donkey Kong Land 3
While Donkey Kong Land 3 was released in America and Europe for the original Game Boy in 1997, it was released in Japan for the Game Boy Color in 2000.
There are two revisions of the original Game Boy version, with the differences being the title screen and a slight change to the ending of the Tundra Blunda level. The Game Boy Color version released in Japan is based on version 1.1 for original Game Boy. It also has some changes besides the color display, which are shown in my comparison video above.
Until the Arcade versions release on the Switch as part of the Arcade Archives series and Pac-Man Museum+ earlier this year, the Famicom version of Pac-Land (released in 1985) was the only Nintendo version/release of the game.
The game predates Super Mario Bros. as one of the first side-scrolling adventure games. The Famicom version mimics the controls of the Arcade version, with A and B used for movement and any direction on the Control Pad for jumping. A more traditional control style can be used by plugging a Controller into port 2.
It has fewer levels than the Arcade version and the visuals were watered down significantly. While not as good as the Arcade version, it is decent for an earlier Famicom game.
13.Elevator Action EX
This is probably my favorite game in the Elevator Action series. It has three characters, the music is awesome, and some cool cutscenes/images are shown before a level starts.
Elevator Action EX was released in America as Dexter's Laboratory: Robot Rampage, with the only differences being the characters and some changed graphics. I'd still recommend importing either the Japanese or European versions.
12.Kuru Kuru Kuruin
One of my first Game Boy Advance imports. Screenshots of it were shown in Nintendo Power, but the game wasn't released in America. It did come out in Europe though, fully playable in English. It was followed by Kururin Paradise (also for GBA) and Kururin Squash! (GameCube).
11.Tomb Raider (Sega Saturn)
Right from the beginning, Lara Croft appeared on more than just the PlayStation systems.
The Saturn version of Tomb Raider got a re-release in Japan, as seen in the picture above. Apparently, the American and regular Japanese releases of the Saturn version have framerate issues. The re-release shown above was apparently optimized for the Saturn hardware, though I can't confirm this since I've never played the American and regular Japanese releases of the Saturn version. From what I've noticed playing this re-release, it looks reasonably good for a 3D Saturn game and plays almost as well as the PlayStation version.
10.Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards
For some reason, I overlooked Kirby 64 when it was released. I rented a lot of games during that era, and had Super Mario 64, Mario Kart, Diddy Kong Racing, Mario Party 2, Paper Mario, Mega Man 64, etc. I knew about Kirby 64 and remember seeing pictures of it, but for whatever reason I didn't play it. I finally played the game in 2009, but on the Project 64 Emulator. Over twenty years after the game's release, I finally bought a copy.
I bought the game at a local game store last year. The store sold a lot of imports, and I found the Japanese version of Kirby 64 with the box, manual, and inserts. I decided it was time to finally buy it.
I beat the game 100% earlier this year.
9.Pac-Man World 2 (PS2)
As of this writing, this is my most recent import. Pac-Man World 2 has been one of my favorite games on the GameCube since first playing it in 2003. However, only the PS2 version was released in Japan.
Earlier American copies of the PS2 version are a little different and more difficult, such as the beginning of the B-Doing Woods level lacking the safety net that is in other versions. All other versions of the game, including later copies of the PS2 version, made some minor changes to some of the levels to make them easier. The Japanese release appears to be based on the revised American release of the PS2 version, with many of the same changes made to the GameCube version.
8.Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell (GameCube)
While considered best on Xbox, I enjoy the GameCube versions of the Splinter Cell games (which are ports of the PS2 versions). The European release of the GameCube version of Splinter Cell is interesting. First of all, the cover art is different (and looks cooler in my opinion). There is a Making of Documentary that was left out of the American release. And, of course, it has a Language selection (which would later be included in the American releases of SC: Chaos Theory and SC: Double Agent). However, it lacks Progressive Scan support (which the American release has). Also the Random Facts and Michael Ironside Interview included in the American release were removed, likely because there wasn't enough space on the disc after including the different languages.
As with the American release, the European release of the GameCube version has GBA Connectivity that displays a map and guard locations on the GBA, enables a Sticky Bomb weapon, and unlocks levels in the GBA version.
This game is notable for being re-released as a Player's Choice game exclusively in Europe.
7.The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (GameCube)
The last game released for the GameCube in Japan, released in December 2006 and only sold online unlike the American and European releases. Once again, we're treated to a different cover and a beautiful image on the back.
Despite coming out before the American release, the Japanese release has a later build date and some bug fixes.
6.Bubble Bobble 4 Friends (Switch)
The Bubble Bobble 4 Friends collector's edition package from Europe, released by Strictly Limited Games. I don't buy collector's edition releases very often, but I hadn't played very many Bubble Bobble games prior to buying this. I have the NES and Apple II versions of the original and the NES version of Rainbow Islands. Those were the only Bubble Bobble/Bubble Bobble related games I played before buying this. I really like both games, so I felt it was necessary to import this Bubble Bobble 4 Friends collector's edition package. The game includes the Arcade version of the original Bubble Bobble, and works on an American Switch since it is not region locked.
5.Super Mario RPG
I happen to like Super Mario RPG more than Super Mario World. It is my favorite Mario game on the SNES. Like Kirby 64, I bought this last year at a local retro game store. A picture of it was shown on the store's Facebook page, so I visited the store and hoped the game was still there. It was, and I was more than happy to add it my collection of imports.
The Japanese version of Luigi's Mansion is less polished than the American and European releases, but that's what makes it interesting.
First of all, it lacks the Pikmin video that's included in the American version. It has less music, less sound effects, and Luigi has fewer voice clips. Again, these differences make it interesting because you get to see and hear what the game was like before it came out in America (like the original 1996 Japanese release of Super Mario 64). Luigi's "whoa!" voice clip from beta versions of the game (heard when he's hit) is used in the Japanese version. The music that plays when Luigi looks through the Telescope in the Observatory plays twice in the Japanese version (both during the cutscene and right after). The music that plays during the battle with "Bowser" sounds a little different than the American version.
I imported Luigi's Mansion last year, just in time for the GameCube's (Japanese) 20th Anniversary.
There are several versions of the original Animal Crossing: the N64 version, the Japanese + version for GameCube, the American version, and the Japanese e+ version released for GameCube in 2003 (shown here).
Many features that were included in other Animal Crossing games, such as SD Card support and the Reset Surveillance Center, first appeared in the Japanese e+ version of the original. Another addition to this version is being able to enter Tom Nook's store during the night by hitting the store three times with a Shovel, and then being able to enter the store. NES/Famicom games appear as NES consoles instead of the Famicom consoles used in earlier Japanese versions. e-Reader cards are used at the Well. The title screen music was also updated. Some copies of the e+ version include an e-Reader (the e+ version that's based on the American version, not the original Japanese version of the e-Reader) and six cards.
2.Super Mario 64
I have both Japanese versions of Super Mario 64: the original 1996 Japanese release and the Shindou version. The original version has several differences, including less voice clips, some different sound effects, more glitches (like one that causes a star to appear instead of a key after beating Bowser), and the early version of the Jolly Roger Bay painting that was used in beta versions of the game and later used in the Nintendo DS remake. The Shindou version has nearly all of the changes that were made to the American version, but adds Rumble Pak support, has an easter egg on the title screen, and fixes the backwards long jump glitch. Also, Mario says "buh-bye!" when he throws Bowser (he says "here we gooooo!" in the original Japanese version).
The Shindou version was one of the first games I showed in the "what's new in your collection" topic in 2019. I found the original 1996 version at my local retro game store last year. Both are some of the best imports I have.
The video above is a private video that is part of my "A look at Imports" series, and was made shortly after I retired from YouTube last year (I may have retired from YouTube, but I haven't given up the hobby of making videos).
1.Mega Man 4
Since the original Mega Man/Rockman is my favorite video game character, it makes sense that Rockman 4 is my current favorite video game import.
Like a few of the games mentioned above, I bought this at my local retro game store last year. A picture was posted on the store's Facebook page showing various imports they had just got in. There were Japanese copies of Mega Man 4, Super Mario Kart, Donkey Kong Land, Mega Man Xtreme, and New Super Mario Bros. Naturally, I got excited and visited the store. I bought the Japanese copies of Donkey Kong Land, Mega Man Xtreme, and New Super Mario Bros. I saw Rockman 4 behind the counter, and told the owner I was interested in buying it. He couldn't sell it to me because it didn't have a price yet. I asked him if he could put it aside and let me pick it a few days later. He said yes. He cleaned and tested the game, and I came back to the store a few days later and picked it up. The orange color stands out, and that is a really cool picture of Mega Man on the label.
Hudson Selection series (GameCube)
New Super Mario Bros. (Nintendo DS)
Adventures of Lolo (original Game Boy)
Mario Party (N64)
Tetris Version 1.0 (original Game Boy)
If it weren't already obvious by looking at the pictures I've posted in the "what's new in your collection" topic (and social media sites) and the 50+ Charm, I really like imports and I'm going to keep collecting them for years to come. I have almost one hundred imported video games, so who knows...maybe I'll be getting that 100+ Charm in the near future.
As with my GameCube blog, I'll be updating this blog to fix typos and add pictures and videos.
Also, check out my A look at Imports series on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/MegaMan52/playlists?view=50&sort=dd&shelf_id=2
Edited by MegaMan52
Fixed typos and added pictures and videos