Ristar (Sonic Team, Mega Drive, 1994)

Not only do we get a bit of stargazing here, but it’s regional difference time again! The US and European version’s on top, and the Japanese version’s below. The Japanese version has that extra text box that names the planet and the system, but beyond that, it also covers up a mini-galaxy in the top-right which, er, I thought was an extra level when I first played this as it’s not hidden in the US/EU version. Whoops.

There’s a lot of other differences between regions for this one, so I highly recommend reading this page on The Cutting Room Floor that lists them. The only other one relevant to the map is that all the planets are renamed- what’s called Planet Neer in the Japanese version is Planet Flora elsewhere. 

Ninja Clowns (Incredible Technologies/Strata, Arcade, 1991)Uh… OK, seriously, I can’t follow this map at all. Anyone know where we’re heading to?Anybody?

Ninja Clowns (Incredible Technologies/Strata, Arcade, 1991)

Uh… OK, seriously, I can’t follow this map at all. Anyone know where we’re heading to?

Anybody?

Chase H.Q. (Taito, Arcade, 1989)

A very strange use of minimaps here- rather than appear in-between stages or at the start of new ones, these maps only appear during the attract mode (and Round 5 never appears), or after you get a Game Over on a stage and let the criminals escape. It’s not that knowing the map will really help you out next time, but it’s the thought that counts.

While I’m here, when you do get a Game Over, Nancy will either give you a grilling (‘Your time’s up. We think you picked the wrong job. Better check the classified ads!’) or a little encouragement (‘Your time’s up, but we think you’ve got a future, kid.’). Bless ‘er.

Super Burger Time (Data East, Arcade, 1990)True burger artisans practice their craft in the forests, the lakes, the mountains. Also, it’s nice to see Peter Pepper got back into burgers after his ice cream factory closed down.

Super Burger Time (Data East, Arcade, 1990)

True burger artisans practice their craft in the forests, the lakes, the mountains.

Also, it’s nice to see Peter Pepper got back into burgers after his ice cream factory closed down.

Street Fighter (Capcom, Arcade, 1987)Not quite as iconic as the one from Street Fighter II, but it’s still got that little plane! That’s the important part, right?

Street Fighter (Capcom, Arcade, 1987)

Not quite as iconic as the one from Street Fighter II, but it’s still got that little plane! That’s the important part, right?

Alien Syndrome (Sega, Arcade, 1987)

A bit of before-and-after here- after each round’s cleared, the ship you were just in explodes. That’s why each round has a time limit. It’s the only way to be sure, I guess.

While it looks like the ship in the middle is your home base, it’s also where the final battle against the aliens takes place, as they threaten all the hostages you’ve spent the entire game saving. Don’t let them ruin all your hard work!

Metal Slug: Super Vehicle-001 (Nazca/SNK, Playstation, 1997)Bit of a history for this one. The map you see above first appeared as a Mission Select screen in the Neo-Geo CD port of the first Metal Slug, and was reused for the same purpose in the Saturn and Playstation ports. While the Saturn port has the grenade-juggling monkey on the loading screen, the Playstation version uses this map instead. So it sort-of becomes a minimap! It’s a neat use of it, don’t you think? Then again, this port has mid-game loading and animation frames cut everywhere, so, you know, watch out for those.Anyway, because I know you’re wondering, the Mission titles are as follows:
Mission 1:ABSOLUTE THICK FOREST On Villeneuve Mt. System
Mission 2:A WISH FOR A MORNING GLOWIn Ronbertburg City
Mission 3:IRON CAVALRYMEN IN HELLIn Kärthehirt Valley
Mission 4:DEATH VALLEYOn The Ridge 256
Mission 5:THE CITY UNDER DESPOTISMIn Gerhardt City
Mission 6:THE MEMORIAL SEAIn The Straits Of Traven

Metal Slug: Super Vehicle-001 (Nazca/SNK, Playstation, 1997)

Bit of a history for this one. The map you see above first appeared as a Mission Select screen in the Neo-Geo CD port of the first Metal Slug, and was reused for the same purpose in the Saturn and Playstation ports.

While the Saturn port has the grenade-juggling monkey on the loading screen, the Playstation version uses this map instead. So it sort-of becomes a minimap! It’s a neat use of it, don’t you think? Then again, this port has mid-game loading and animation frames cut everywhere, so, you know, watch out for those.

Anyway, because I know you’re wondering, the Mission titles are as follows:

Mission 1:
ABSOLUTE THICK FOREST 
On Villeneuve Mt. System

Mission 2:
A WISH FOR A MORNING GLOW
In Ronbertburg City

Mission 3:
IRON CAVALRYMEN IN HELL
In Kärthehirt Valley

Mission 4:
DEATH VALLEY
On The Ridge 256

Mission 5:
THE CITY UNDER DESPOTISM
In Gerhardt City

Mission 6:
THE MEMORIAL SEA
In The Straits Of Traven

Haunted Castle (Konami, Arcade, 1988)Continuing the fine Castlevania tradition of a good ol’ minimap on a real scroll and everything.<insert standard comment about Haunted Castle’s ridiculous difficulty level here>

Haunted Castle (Konami, Arcade, 1988)

Continuing the fine Castlevania tradition of a good ol’ minimap on a real scroll and everything.

<insert standard comment about Haunted Castle’s ridiculous difficulty level here>

Bubble Bobble (Taito, Arcade, 1986)A reverse minimap! Instead of showing you how far you&#8217;ve got to go between stages, this map (which appears after a Game Over) shows you how far you made it before giving up. Round 32 is the default record, by the way.Also, this is the only part of Bubble Bobble where the background isn&#8217;t a black void. That&#8217;s what it must be like outside the Cave of Monsters.

Bubble Bobble (Taito, Arcade, 1986)

A reverse minimap! Instead of showing you how far you’ve got to go between stages, this map (which appears after a Game Over) shows you how far you made it before giving up. Round 32 is the default record, by the way.

Also, this is the only part of Bubble Bobble where the background isn’t a black void. That’s what it must be like outside the Cave of Monsters.

Lethal Weapon (Ocean, NES, 1992)
"The game seems to pride itself on how many locations it has with every level offering like three different settings to explore." &#8212; 1 More Castle

Lethal Weapon (Ocean, NES, 1992)

"The game seems to pride itself on how many locations it has with every level offering like three different settings to explore." — 1 More Castle