Karate Champ was released during the same year as The Karate Kid, definitely one of the great movies of the 1980s. The game was different from the action-oriented games of the era because instead of trying to beat your opponent to a bloody pulp, you just had to score one hit in order to get a point making the experience considerably more methodical and technical. Matches are played in different areas such as a sparse dojo, bamboo fields and some kind of vacant dock by the sea. The fights are presided by a stoic karate master and his young daughter(?) whose cheers make the victor appear flush with embarrassment. Or something. It's all a little goofy, actually.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Crystal Castles is one of the few games I remember playing on my dad's Commodore 64 but now that I've played the game in its proper arcade form, I have to wonder what the hell I was thinking playing it on a joystick. The Atari developed game casts the player as a bear collecting gems and honey throughout oddly designed geometric levels filled with enemies like trees, skeletons and giant snake/cactus-y things. Unlike other games of its ilk, the goal wasn't so much to kill the enemies but to snatch up jewels before they do. The more you collect, the higher the score.
Monday, October 22, 2012
One of my favorite movies growing up was Disney's "TRON," an electronic adventure about master gamer Jeff Bridges being sucked into the computer world by the Master Control Program and forced to engage in a host of different arcade games that, as he says, look easier on the other side of the screen. As a kid, I would go to Disneyland a lot and spend all my money on the TRON arcade game by Bally Midway. A simple setup, the game was a collection of four events inspired by the film: lightcycles, tanks, entering the MCP core and reaching the I/O tower. After completing these four levels, the game made you do them again but with a significantly higher difficulty level. Instead of racing against one lightcycle, you'd go against three. More spider bot thingies, a taller MCP core and more tanks. Oh, those damn tanks.