My Top 100: #36 – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time

1991 - Konami (Arcade, Super NES)

1991 – Konami (Arcade, Super NES)


I’ve already shared my more vivid memories about this game (two in one post, actually), so let’s just talk about the game for a change.

I’ve mentioned it before, but the music in Turtles in Time is some of the best I’ve ever heard in a game.  No matter what console, no matter what epic orchestral soundtracks and big budget composers came after it, TMNT4‘s music has stood the test of time.  I can’t imagine it was too difficult to come up with chip tunes to fall under the “radical” or “tubular” moniker, but composer Mutsuhiko Izumi managed to make them all sound like they had a place in the Ninja Turtles universe.



Classic game remakes have been popping up left and right for the past few years, and naturally, Turtles in Time got the treatment with 2009’s Re-Shelled (released on Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network).  It added a fresh coat of 3D paint, brought back a few of the trademark attacks, and……..  that’s about it.

I’m not sure what’s more disappointing with Re-Shelled – the fact that the stellar soundtrack from the original was completely ignored, or that the supposedly “improved” graphics were severely lacking in the colour department.  I know they might have been aiming for something more realistic or gritty, but in a game about mutated turtles who learn Kung Fu from their similarly mutated rat master?  Really?

For serious?


Sewer Surfin' and Prehistoric Turtlesaurus look pretty...  bland and foggy.

Sewer Surfin’ and Prehistoric Turtlesaurus look pretty… bland and foggy.


The only level that actually does look phenomenal is the Skull and Crossbones level on the pirate ship.  That’s the only one that truly evokes that sense of nostalgia when playing the game, and if I’m not mistaken, was one of the main reasons they decided to remake the game in the first place!

A missed opportunity, and a darn shame.

That being said, if there was ever a re-release of the arcade original, I’d be all over that.  Like white on rice.


...or like green, orange, pink or yellow on rice.  Gross.This looks like something confiscated by the cops.  Black market rice.

…or like green, orange, pink or yellow on rice. Gross.
This looks like something confiscated by the cops. Black market rice?

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