Cave Story Versions Tier List

Jun 29, 2020 at 10:54 PM
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I personally believe CSE2 is the best way to play Cave Story (given you know how to compile it for the way you want to experience the game), but here's my ranking for the Nicalis ports.

S - Cave Story+ (Switch), Cave Story (3DS eShop)
A - Cave Story (DSiWare), Cave Story+ (Steam)
B - Cave Story (WiiWare)
D - Cave Story 3D (3DS)

Though I put CS+ on Switch in S-Tier, one huge drawback in my eyes is the lack of scaling options. I like to play CSE2 in a resolution that cleanly upscales to 1080p in order to get sharp pixels, but that's not possible at all with CS+ for Switch. I put the DSiWare port lower than the 3DS eShop port due to lack of extra modes and lesser audio quality, and Cave Story WiiWare and 3D should probably speak for themselves.

EDIT: I've streamed every single port of the game on my Twitch channel and archived the footage here, so you can use it as a reference if you want.
 
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Jun 30, 2020 at 6:56 AM
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What are these game breaking bugs with CS+ on Steam? I've never encountered them. Hwhaaa?

I'm not kidding, either, I know nothing about this
I mean I guess I'll just ask again... Whaddaya want me to do, dress in drag and dance the hula
 
Jun 30, 2020 at 7:25 AM
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Jun 30, 2020 at 10:24 AM
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im seeing a lot of love for the awful Dsiware port
but it's unwarranted
cave story eshop is the optimal way to play, featuring 4 new challenge modes including wind fortress, and the game is literally in 3D
you can upload your screenshots to miiverse

sorry but DSIWARE sucks.
the only worse version than DSIWARE is the inferior vanilla port which doesn't even have character select
 
Jun 30, 2020 at 2:52 PM
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You did read them, right?
... I could swear that those posts were not there when I looked before replying again

Ok, sorry
 
Jul 2, 2020 at 6:00 AM
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Where does NXEngine rank?
 
Jul 2, 2020 at 3:59 PM
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Jul 2, 2020 at 5:06 PM
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Hi, my IQ is 7, what’s CSE2?
It is a reconstruction of Cave Story made from the original code for the game. You can learn more about it here.
 
Jul 2, 2020 at 5:16 PM
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It is a reconstruction of Cave Story made from the original code for the game. You can learn more about it here.
Ah thanks! It's a newer project so no wonder I didn't know what it was. I didn't really pay attention to this site in 2019 at all. I'll try that out, seems good.

I have Cave Story on my PSP. I believe that's a NXEngine port. How perfected has that been?
 
Jul 3, 2020 at 7:11 AM
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I'll try that out, seems good.
Honestly, I felt like the best part (of Cave Story Engine 2) was the more robust options menu, accessible at the touch of a button which is configurable in the controller configuration. Snazzy.
 
Jul 3, 2020 at 7:25 AM
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How functional do you like your Cave Stories?
I like them barely functional. very unpopular opinion unfortunately.
 
Jul 3, 2020 at 12:14 PM
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Ti-84 version master race. By far the best version.
 
Jul 3, 2020 at 6:14 PM
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my tier list of unofficial versions:
cse2: best
psp: good
nxengine: literal garbage
 
Jul 4, 2020 at 12:02 AM
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I know this is slightly off-topic, but I actually play the psp version on my Vita. Vita CFW lets you install an app that's basically the PSP on the Vita. It's pretty cool.

I always liked the extras personally, which is why I put the original below some of the newer editions. Boss Rush and shit like that was actually fun. I also liked doing difficulty playthroughs (Hardmode + Snake is my personal favorite) with them. Never got past Monster X though.
 
Jul 4, 2020 at 1:04 AM
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I always liked the extras personally, which is why I put the original below some of the newer editions. Boss Rush and shit like that was actually fun.
My main issue with the extras (barring the Jukebox from the DSiWare version and Curly Story, though the latter has an issue of its own that I also have) is that they're all focused on one thing: speedrunning. I've never been one to speedrun things, speedrunning the Sacred Grounds is the most I can tolerate, not just because it is required to do that for Toroko's Song and White (makes playing them on the Jukebox more special), but it is the most customizable challenge you can do (be it through the Time Attack challenge or just playing Cave Story and working your way up to the Third Ending with your weapons of choice).

Considering how modding was encouraged by Tyrone for making the challenges, it really would've been cool if there were bonus side stories (Wind Fortress, but without speedrunning as the main focus), an endless mode similar to that in Mega Man 9 and 10, or maybe even a brand new story altogether (something that can be used as an excuse for the statement saying the extras are all canon). Or maybe the game can take the VVVVVV route and allow mods (with the set limitations originally provided by Tyrone for the challenge modes) made and submitted by CS+ players.
 
Jul 6, 2020 at 12:55 AM
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Is speedrunning really the focus though? I never really saw what you were saying about that, unless you're referring to the timer that they put in, and maybe the ranks (I might be remembering wrong) they had for different times. The level design of the extras also didn't seem like they really encouraged speedrunning as much either, nor hinder it. You can really just play the extras and ignore the timer, to be honest. I never paid much attention to it.
 
Jul 6, 2020 at 3:04 AM
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Is speedrunning really the focus though? I never really saw what you were saying about that, unless you're referring to the timer that they put in, and maybe the ranks (I might be remembering wrong) they had for different times.
That is exactly what I meant, yes. I mean, if we are to go by the logic most challenge mods from the past couple years went, also featuring the Nikumaru counter and having a community scoreboard in their respective threads, (and the fact that almost all of the bonus stages in CS+ have the word "Challenge" in their names), it is more than enough to assume that they are meant for speedruns.

Come to think of it, mods like The Air is Spikes could also bring variety to the challenge mix, since their goal sticks to how long you can last in a level, rather than how fast you can complete it.
 
Jul 6, 2020 at 3:12 AM
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Yeah, fair enough. I never played them much for the speedrun value though. I always saw them as a catch-all sorta thing, where it's just as easy to start speedrunning them as it is to just, enjoy the levels and shit.

I also didn't know these challenges were fanmade; I thought Nicalis put them in themselves. Or at least now I think they were fanmade?
 
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