Good thing I never played the arcade version before hand. Four player simultaneous and speech, that was awesome!
Posts Tagged ‘Atari ST’
The Lee brothers were right inside that garage when Maria got kidnapped! What the HELL guys, you didn’t hear her getting beaten up outside?
Maybe they were getting changed or something.
OK, so here’s my Double Dragon story. I loved the arcade game. So much so that I would just watch people playing it whenever I couldn’t afford to play it myself. I had never seen anything like it before and there was no comparable game on my humble C64. So as you could imagine I was thrilled when the C64 home conversion came about – by Aussie superstars Melbourne House no less.
It was terrible. Absolutely terrible. Not even a “well what do you expect for the C64” kind of terrible. The machine could do side-scrolling brawlers quite well thanks very much – Renegade….uh, Target Renegade…er…Renegade 3. Anyway. Having a couple of sprites on the screen moving around 2D scrolling backdrops wasn’t an impossible task.
In the C64 version of Double Dragon, the two sprites that made up each person weren’t even attached to each other. Nothing worked right. It looked ugly. The weapons were crap. The collision detection was woeful. It was a horrible excuse for a game and I was out $30 because of it.
Fast forward fifteen-odd years and I find myself working with a man who, among his many claims to fame, was the producer of the C64 version of Double Dragon. Small world. He said that the deadline was impossibly tight, and the coders had no real practical experience with the game or the C64 but they were cheap and available, and they had no choice but to put in the box whatever they were supplied with. They even had to issue an apology in the box to try and explain away the technical issues. It was a rush job and it showed.
You bet your ass I demanded my $30 back from him.
(There was also an Atari 2600 version, which was actually half decent for the machine! How the hell they did it I have no idea)
This game seemed unnecessarily hard to me when it came out – it didn’t help that I was playing it on someone’s clunky Apple 2 with monochrome monitor and those weird joysticks that didn’t correct themselves. Still! People don’t understand how peanut butter and vegemite could be a good combination, so who am I to judge what turns out popular?
October 2011 Edit: They DID make a Commodore 64 version! IT’S AWESOME!
I keep buying Robocod because they keep re-releasing the darn thing. The MegaDrive version is my favourite, of course, but it’s just so huge and cute and full of hidden surprises that I can’t resist quad dipping.
I bought the Nintendo DS version when it came out and my wife played it while I was out one day. I came home to her livid. “BAD GAME”, she growled, pointing at the Robocod cartridge like it was a puppy that just messed up the rug.
“VERY BAD GAME.”
Forget finances, politics or religion – Robocod is an issue that really tests a marriage.
And man oh man, I think Robocod wins the prize for being the game that got converted to the most number of machines. It was released in that curious nexus where 8, 16 and 32-bit machines all peacefully coexisted and had new games released for them. I know I spent a fortune of magazines at the time keeping up with it all…and now look where all of it got me!
American readers might remember this game as Death Sword. But they would also remember Cricket as Baseball so hey.
You modern people with your fancy book learnin’s might be accustomed to having fighting games with multiple characters, but back in the day we just had the same character fight itself with a slightly different colour scheme and we were happy with it, by golly.
At any rate, Barbarian was a cracker of a game, especially when you pull off the move where you swung around and chopped the other bloke’s head off. Could it have been the first fatality in a fighter? Hmm. Gonna stare out the window for a few hours and think about that one.
I really liked this era of fighting games, with a maximum of 16 moves available since you only had one 8-way joystick and one fire button to control the game with. It made the action slower and more tactical since each move had a counter-move.
The C64 version was the one I spent most hours on, but I have to give special credit to the Amiga version for being one of the few games that made the transition from 8 to 16 bit without somehow sucking in the process. The sound in particular was so cool, using lots of samples to simulate the clanging of swords. Until today I had no idea this game was converted to the Electron…I think it’s safe to say it’ll be the only Electron game on this site.
Oh man, the cloth maps they used to bundle with Ultima games were awesome, but you had to be careful with them.
I played Ultima V an awful lot back in the day. The game just kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger the more I played it, and the idea of playing a small part in an independently functioning world was tremendously appealing. The conversation system was also fantastic and I spent most of my time just walking up to random NPCs just typing in whatever words I could think of in order to get different responses. It was also super cool how if they asked you for your name and you gave them a fake name they acted like they didn’t believe you.
It was a small touch, but damn, what a clever idea.
I never ended up finishing it, but I know I really should one day…
This is a hard game to write about, because I only really remember a couple of things about this game:
- It ended up getting converted to, like, everything.
- We had Turrican while everyone in America and Japan had Metroid
- It was really freakishly hard
- THAT GIANT FIST AT THE END OF THE FIRST LEVEL HOLY GOD HOW DID THEY DO THAT ON THE COMMODORE 64 WOW
Oh man this game you guys, this game.
New Zealand Story is almost exactly like how I imagine every game should be. It’s not quite Rainbow Islands, but it’s bloody close and so you should really make time to play it at some point.
The section where you get eaten by a whale (here portrayed by Peter Jackson for some reason I thought was funny back when I wrote it) blew my feeble little mind back in the day, and it’s a great example of how games with imaginative sequences will always stand the test of time. (They’re also the ones that are easier to make comics about…)
Tiki’s shoes looked awesome, too.
I always wanted to play the PC Engine version. In fact I always wanted a PC Engine. What a cute little console it was! What an awesome little name it had! Shame it never came out here. I made do with the Master System version which was, like most Master System arcade conversions, way better than it should be.
I really liked this game a lot when it came out in the arcades. It was during the late ’80s period where all sorts of random things were appearing in the arcade market because 2D games were dying and pretty much any silly idea could have a coin box slapped onto it. This was the era of A.P.B., Paperboy and Klax.
These days if Toobin’ was to be brought back the two guys would be buffed up testosterone dudes who should mutant nazi crocodiles with space grenades made from dolphin teeth. And they would swear and have sex with aliens for no apparent reason.
Still though, a bit of en environmental message wouldn’t go astray. They just threw a ton of Coke cans down that river.
I even ended up making a clone of this game with the Shoot ‘Em Up Construction Kit, but it wasn’t especially good. Still it was a good way to spend a couple of days. I wonder if I still have the original somewhere…