You're on world 7-4 on Super Mario bros going through that castle on your last leg...a fireball shoots up and bam! You're gone. The game's over. You stare blankly at the screen thinking "Wow...do I have to go through all that again? As for me, I actually could not (and still can't) get that far on that game, or any old school game.

I grew up on the NES all through the 6th grade. SNES and Genesis finally took over from there until I purchased a Playstation. During this time, I had countless games on the list to beat, then brag to my friends like we always used to do. Now, within a couple hours, the game's over, and we're not ready to chuck the controller through the window (even if we were playing the Wii:) ) as things have gotten far easier. We have save points, endless continues and overall shorter/easier game play.



One of the many games that I loved to death but could barely make it through the 5th level was Snake Rattle & Roll. This game was ridiculously hard, and had to 'cheat' my way through to see the rest of the crazy game. Not sure what I can really compare it to with today's games as it was completely original.

Onto Metroid...I never had this game, and played the SNES version beforehand. But the original is where difficulty is at the max. No save points, just a password system that takes us barely to where we needed to be, and having a pen & paper handy to sketch out where we went as it lacked a map and many rooms were identical. Not to mention, we started off having to fill up our energy tanks as we were left at the bare minimum. Today? Let's take Metroid Zero Mission. A recreation of the original with save features and a map system. We can now easily pass this game within 2 hours so we can see that Samus in her bikini.

Lastly, let's talk Zelda. I'm totally in love with the series and the first 2 installments were probably the hardest. The first one left us completely on our own to explore. Sure, we could save (at the cave where we got our first sword) and somewhat had a map. Now, we have fairies screaming "Hey! Listen!!" telling us where we need to go. I do praise this in a sense that if the game isn't played for a while, then we could atleast know where we left off on the long quest. But to be nagged constantly to "Go to this ranch...go to the temple..." Gotten a bit easy if you ask me.

I'm not saying that today's games are bad or anything, but we are definitely spoiled by having a navigation system and save points. If these 2 features were eliminated, we'd be screwed and I don't think we would know what to do other than get frustrated and begin the controller-chucking sessions. Consider this the next time you go to play Ocarina of time and think back to the roots...go ahead and play it as well. And if you are like me and haven't passed the quest, you'll know what I mean.