We speak to the team, including Wonder Boy creator Ryuichi Nishizawa.
For video game fans who have been playing in arcades and at home for several decades now, the topic of preservation has become a pressing one in recent years. As ageing technology inevitably fails and we sadly begin losing the creators who were there at the dawn of digital interactive entertainment, important works can all-too-easily be lost forever. Source code goes unarchived, assets disappear on degrading storage mediums, and pieces of our cultural heritage — once assumed to be safe forever because digital doesn’t degrade, right? — become not only unplayable, but unrecoverable.
As preservationists work to save video game history before it’s too late, one such piece of software has fortunately escaped oblivion thanks to the combined efforts of passionate developers and publishers, and former Westone staff who worked on the original game. The ill-fated Clockwork Aquario, an arcade platforming gem from the early ’90s — a time when fighting games had taken over the world’s game centres — was developed for Sega System 18 and tested in arcade locations before getting cancelled in 1994.
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