If you’re a fan of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the video games the iconic comic book and cartoon franchise has spawned over the years, 2022 continues to be an excellent year for you.
We’re still playing Tribute Games exceptional TMNT: Shredder’s Revenge, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make time for nostalgic Ninja Turtle fun. Arcade collections are nothing new, but Digital Eclipse definitely put their foot in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection, making it a must-have for those into video game nostalgia and fans of the TMNT franchise.
The Collection Is Shelltastic
There is no shortage of TMNT games for fans to dig into with this collection. Whether you’re into the classic beat ’em up games that you pumped out quarters for in arcades or played with your homie at home on the couch, or those fighting games not many were into but you loved, it’s all there.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection features a robust collection of 13 games that appeared at your local Chuck E’ Cheese or bowling alley or on NES, SNES, Genesis, and Game Boy consoles.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Arcade)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time (Arcade)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (NES)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game (NES)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project (NES)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters (NES)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time (Super Nintendo)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters (Super Nintendo)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Hyperstone Heist (Sega Genesis)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters (Sega Genesis)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of The Foot Clan (Game Boy)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Back From The Sewers (Game Boy)
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: Radical Rescue (Game Boy)
Yes, some games are the same but differ in subtle ways. For example, you can play both the arcade and home versions of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time. Players will experience things like different level placements, bosses, and other different gameplay differences between the arcade and home versions of the game.
It’s impressive what Digitial Eclipse with this collection and thought they put into when it comes to selecting what games would be in it. Before booting up The Cowabunga Collection, we had never played the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: Radical Rescue on the Game Boy. We were surprised at how meaty the game was and appreciated its “Metroid-like” feel.
Some games in the collection are ridiculously hard, and thankfully Digital Eclipse kept that in mind when developing The Cowabunga Collection. Before you press start on the game you want to play, you can add “cheats” like extra lives or even skip some levels in some cases.
There are even strategy guides for each game that you can view that could help you conquer a part of the game that was once an issue for you when you were a young gamer.
Another GREAT feature is “watch mode,” which allows you to watch the AI play the game and will let you jump in and take control at any point during the playthrough. “Watch mode” is extremely useful for NES’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles because we are all familiar with how difficult that underwater level in the game was.
Revisiting the frustratingly difficult NES Ninja Turtles game and Tournament of Fighters titles was fun and not as much of an annoying experience.
A Virtual Museum Dedicated To The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
If you ever wanted to visit a museum dedicated to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Cowabunga Collection is your ticket to one. Outside of all the great games, it allows you to play, The Cowabunga Collection’s “Extra Menu” is a fantastic collection of all things Ninja Turtles.
Inside the Turtle’s Lair, players will have an example of all of the game’s box art, instruction manuals, and music. You can even see the ads publishers made for each game that lived in video game publications at the time and even press releases. Incredibly, Digital Eclipse went all out to gather all of this gaming gold.
You can even go through the history of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle’s cartoons throughout the year.
If any collection of classic games needs a blueprint for building an extras menu and what it should have, developers need to take a page out of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle: The Cowabunga’s book.
We have played plenty of collections, but The Cowabunga Collection is one of the most well-put-together ones we have enjoyed in a long time.
Digital Eclipse took its time in putting together Ninja Turtle games spanning years and wrapping it up in an excellent package that all fans of the heroes in a half shell will love and appreciate. Instead of having to go out and buy each of these titles separately, gamers now have one primary destination if they have the itch to play a classic TMNT game, and it’s only going to cost you $39.99.
That’s a hell of a bargain.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection is now available on PC, PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
Photo: Konami / Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection
*Xbox Series X review key provided for use by Konami*
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