View Full Version : Nintendo's SNES to GBA Ports Adding Voice Samples - Good or Bad?

06-21-2019, 01:44 AM
A lot of games were ported by Nintendo (or their hired associates) back in the day from the SNES to the GBA. Specifically I mean the "Mario Advance" games (Super Nintendo's Super Mario Bros. 2 {USA}, Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario World, and Yoshi's Island) and The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.

One of the reasons that I didn't buy these games back then for the GBA was that I owned the NES or SNES originals on the original consoles and so had no need to repurchase them. But another deciding reason was that they added the yelps, whoops, and other vocalizations to the playable characters, so every time the player told the character to jump, slice, or otherwise move, he'd let out a sound. I found this very distracting and that it, in my personal opinion, took away from the original atmospheres of the games. It was already bad enough when Nintendo "Super-ified" the graphics and sounds of the NES Mario games for the SNES All-Stars compilation with regards to atmosphere, but adding the voices "64-ified" the games, removing them even more from how they "should be." Granted, I write this as someone who played the originals near to their original releases and so that might be why I prefer the originals. Then again, when I see a re-re-re-re-re-re-remade game, movie, or its trailer, I usually dislike it, seek out its original, and like that much more than whatever is new even if I never saw the original before. So perhaps I'm an "originalist" or something, but I just prefer the originals over remakes, remasters, reboots, and sequels.

So with that said, do you prefer the games as they originally were or with these SNES and/or GBA specific changes?

06-21-2019, 05:51 AM
So with that said, do you prefer the games as they originally were or with these SNES and/or GBA specific changes?

It depends on the game.

Not Nintendo, but Breath of Fire 1 and 2 are better on the GBA. I love JRPGs, but I really dislike when the games aren't balanced well and have an unbelievable amount of grinding, and while Breath of Fire 1 is pretty grindy(GBA version fixes this game as well,) Breath of Fire 2 is one of the worst grindfests in the RPG genre, and it sucks because Breath of Fire 2 is a solid game otherwise. The GBA version is of course graphically worse, slight but easily noticeable. However, because the game gets double the experience and triple the GP, the game is actually really well balanced at that point and it makes it a much better game than when the title originally released on the SNES.

Final Fantasy 4 on the GBA of course is a completely different story. They do add extra content and the graphics are identical with a few graphical upgrades due to better background effects. However it doesn't matter which version you play on the GBA, they're both inferior to the SNES version despite being the original Japanese release with extra content added. On the US and Japanese GBA versions, the game has a couple bugs and slowdown. Sometimes when taking a turn with a character, their ATB will not reset and they will immediately be able to go again in an instant. When casting any spell on a group of enemies, the game runs at a third of the normal speed. Edge's long range equipment which allow him to take full damage in the backrow still takes off half damage but other weapons like bows and such still do full damage from the back row. Extra content sure, but incredibly lazy port. The PAL version which I've also played isn't any better, infact it's worse, but not for the same reasons as all the bugs and the slowdown are actually fixed. However the PAL version has input lag within battle which makes the game incredibly frustrating to play and I find it literally unplayable. This version I actually quit halfway through the game because I couldn't take the input lag any longer. It's one of the worst cases of input lag I've ever experienced in a game. Later we thankfully got the amazing PSP version which includes everything the GBA versions had and no gameplay flaws(unless the graphical update turns you off,) but otherwise stick with the original SNES version Final Fantasy 2 or the PS1 version which is the original Final Fantasy 4 version. PS1 version gets falsely accused for longer load times, but FF4's load times are identical to the SNES versions, only Chrono Trigger has the load time issue(FF4 does however have an audio load issue where sometimes the audio will start a second later in battle.)

Final Fantasy 5 considering we didn't get the SNES version, the GBA version is actually the best way to play and it has none of the issues that FF4 or 6 has. FF6 has slightly noticeable graphical issues as well and while there aren't many other instances of slowdown, slowdown will occur when there are two many objects on screen, and it almost exclusively applies to Edgar's auto crossbow when there are a lot of enemies on screen. Almost never do you see framerate drop otherwise. It also has extra content, but I don't know if it's even worth going through as other than the extra espers I didn't access it. In FF6's case though, the SNES version doesn't have the content, but it's got better graphics and unlike Breath of Fire, it didn't have to be balanced to be any good, the game was already good on SNES.

Contra the Alien Wars EX is a joke compared to the SNES release. The GBA can't handle many of the effects that they were just outright ripped out of the game(bombs, levels/although replaced with Contra Hard Corps stages.) Additionally because it's the GBA, the game is zoomed in on the characters nuts, so the lack of visibility compared to the original game is very irritating. Not enjoyable to play through.

06-21-2019, 08:12 AM
While I love some good voice acting in a game, to the point that the inclusion of my favorite seiyuu can be a big selling point, I like voice acting in games that were developed from the ground up to have voice acting. If a game was designed without that in mind, then it usually just feels shoehorned in if they add it to a later released version. (Exceptions being games that are only partially voiced due to budget going fully voiced later.) So I'm not a fan of that GBA trend of adding in voice clips. But it depends on how remade a game is otherwise. If it feels like a different experience overall, I can adjust to the inclusion of voice acting. When I was playing the Secret of Mana remake, hearing the characters voiced was a little weird at first, but it's not like they ported the SNES game and added voice clips on top. It's a fresh enough experience that voice acting in that particular version started to feel natural to me.

As for other alterations, I just judge on a case-by-case basis. I'm perfectly welcoming toward remade graphics, rearranged music, etc. if I feel it's been done well. For example, I love Super Mario All-Stars. It was the first SNES game I ever got, and I got it specifically because I wanted to experience my NES favorites again, which I no longer had access to at the time. I never once wished I was playing the original versions instead.

06-21-2019, 10:12 PM
The Advance Remake for SMB 2 is pretty fun, but for me personally the ones for SMB3 and World aren't quite up to snuff, not because of the voice clips but because the redone flying mechanics and my hands don't cooperate well. What is usually a fairly straightforward challenge on the NES or SNES became frustratingly awkward (I'm looking at you Cheese Bridge).

Most of the RPG remakes tend to be better, even accounting for the downsizing of the graphics and sound. The Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past getting voice clips can get really grating, listening to Link scream at the top of his lungs whenever he goes into a pit (deadly or not) is especially bad. Keeping this for Minish Cap was a mistake.

06-21-2019, 11:21 PM
The SM2 for GBA was a bit more than a port with updated graphics and sound effects. They added things like the ability to switch characters when you die, added a score, coins, yoshi eggs, etc...

As far as adding voices, I don't really see a problem with it, it's just a few simple saying here and there. Though it is kind of fun that they made the bosses taunt you.

None of these remakes, or any remake for that matter, change the original game at all. Because the original is still in your game collection to play whenever you like ;)

06-22-2019, 12:19 AM
Haha I thought I was the only one who couldnt stand the added voices in Super Mario World and A Link to the Past. It reminds me of the changes to the Star Wars movies