bg rotator

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

In search of GOTY for 1987

The Family Disk System had a amazing lineup in its first year but perhaps it was a fire that burned too brightly, too soon. I don't know if it's because they figured out some new cart technology or what but 1987 is the year that FDS peaked before beginning its quick descent into irrelevance. Besides Zelda 2, Doki Doki Panic (aka Mario 2, thanks marketing!), and a handful of other titles, it's clear that the FDS add-on was losing steam and the base Famicon unit was the way to go for mainstream gaming. Unless of course, you were rich and part of the PC 88/98 fap machine master race but more on that later.


Right out the gate, Enix released Dragon Quest II for the FC in January and while I thought it was a big pile of dookie, the Japanese kids loved the crap out of it (pun intended). Personally, I attribute that to an extremely foggy pair of nostalgia glasses; maybe some of you will disagree. When it comes to Enix, I was far more interested in JESUS, and while that unfortunately turned out to be just so-so, at least I got to fap enjoy some of the nice PC88 master race graphics.

Hell yeah, PC (88) MASTER race!!

The other game I definitely do intend to check out from Enix is Wingman Special. Besides a couple action games that I tend to avoid on PC88 such as Dragon Buster and ガンダーラ -仏陀の聖戦-, that pretty much wraps it up for Enix (also World Golf 2 which, who the fuck cares).


Fake news
Of course, since I'm talking about Enix, you're probably wondering, what about Square? Well it turns out, unlike Enix, Square had essentially given up on the PC and besides one FC port and Genesis, became a Nintendo exclusive 3rd party slave dev.

Besides a bunch of FC and FDS titles I totally don't care about, I do intend to check out Nakayama Miho no Tokimeki High School though the primitive FC graphics is gonna make it tough. I did try Cleopatra no Mahō a bit and the difficulty was brutal so I'll need to reserve some grit for that.

Yeah, yeah, I didn't forget about Final Fantasy, releasing at the end of 1987 in December. Now, I only played the PSP remake but I think it's just too little, too late to be a GOTY contender. I enjoyed DQ more and even though I hated DQ2, I don't feel FF1 is innovative enough to be GOTY. Yes, the ending was original and mildy interesting but the rest of the game was nothing we hadn't seen before.

Phantasy Star

I loved the Master System as a kid growing up because well... it was all I had. As I mentioned, the hardware was solid without all that crazy blowing and pressing reset my friends were doing at the time. Even though the number of games released was quickly dwarfed by the far more popular FC, you at least got Phantasy Star this year. Of course, I was ignorant and poor and never did get to play or own it as a kid.

Finally, 3 decades later, I played the Switch version and it was good. Probably one of the best games for this year. I was tempted to make it GOTY but the ending just didn't do it for me. For now, I'm going to say it's a close 2nd.

Super Wonder Boy

Speaking of the Master System, Wonder Boy is the first game I remember beating as a kid. I don't know all the version differences and have no idea why they put Takahashi Meijin in the other port but this game was a BITCH to beat without a cheat code (which I didn't have cause no internet). I certainly wouldn't be able to do it today. The game is meh but got dayum, I will never, EVER forget this fucking song.


Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei

I did a full write up of the first Megami Tensei game and I thought it was a bit simple but still fun times for an early DRPG. I liked the overall setting and so far have not seen any previous game that so blatantly doesn't give a shit about using religion as source material. I have not played the original FC version but based on my time with the SFC remake, this is my GOTY so far for the unique setting and demon fusion.

It's too bad the PC Telenet version was an overhead action (flicker hell) game cause seriously it looks and sounds SO much better than the kiddie FC graphics and music. Maybe I'll try it one day... maybe.

I COULD have used the naked girl pic but I'm not a click baiter... also I already got flagged by Adsense.

Sierra On-Line

Sierra nerds will recognize the reference to the cover art for Softporn Adventure

Sierra in those days was still undeniably a pioneer in interactive ADV games that doesn't involve endless menu selections. Sure, Enix tried to have a very, very basic walking simulator in JESUS, but it was nothing like King's Quest. Sierra is still a powerhouse in 1987, releasing Police Quest, Leisure Suit Larry and Space Quest II. That's quite a fucking lineup.

Police Quest is undoubtedly one of my favorite series giving you the illusion of being a REAL policeman even though it's totally fake. I even enjoyed that god awful game SWAT cause how else is a kid going to learn about cold barrel shots without, you know, living in the south? #NRA #ColdDeadHands #CantFixStupid #MAGA

A quick aside but can you imagine if you involved company employees for a hot tub cover art today? Boy, I didn't know 1981 was so cool. why didn't they tell me? C'mon, let the baby know what's up!

My pick is Roberta William, hawt and made King's Quest
Still, while these games are laced with nostalgia crack for me, I don't think they stand the test of time for GOTY. All great games for their time but I probably won't recommend for the "30 FPS gives me headache" kids.

Other games I tried

I guess I should mention that the first Ys game was released this year as well. I like Ys, especially the remake on the PSP. But once again, the choppy nature of action games on the PC88 doesn't make this first version exactly what I would call GOTY.

I dig the intro screen ofc, very classy

Tantei Jinguji Saburo Shinjuku Chuo Koen Satsujin Jiken

Another game I also played and for some crazy reason actually finished was the first Tantei Jinguji game on the FDS. It was pretty bad in every department but since it's one of the longest surviving game franchises besides Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy, I thought it at least bears mentioning.

Definitely a rough start for another murder mystery series. I would not recommend anybody waste their time on it. If there was a GOTY category for most contrived setting, this would be a winner. Hmm, maybe I should start a stinker of the year series...


1987 seems like the year the FC finally exploded in mainstream popularity in terms of the sheer number of action and platform titles. They're not really my genre but sure, I enjoyed playing Contra as a kid at my friend's house (FC port was in 1988 but it was on arcades in '87).

I briefly tried the first Rockman via the handy collection on PS4 and while I can appreciate that pattern training can be fun for some, I'm not some sort of fucking Google AI neural network that gets my algorithmic rocks off by learning patterns via repetition. Just not my genre and if you have a problem with it, start your own goddamn blog or YT channel. Too bad there's no money in it no more. What we gonna do now without all that ad money? Play games for fun? Pfft, get the fuck outta here.


Man, that background just looks lazy...

Based on an anime, the Japanese title is Akai Koudan Zillion. I played the English version when I was a kid way back in the day. It's kind of like Metroid but with terminals and 3 playable characters. I only beat this game once and I vaguely remember it being a real pain in the ass. I liked the game but far from being GOTY.

Kung Fu Kid

Another Sega Master System game I played as a kid called Makai Retsuden in Japan though of course I had no clue at the time. I really dug this game, and got good enough where I could beat it in an afternoon when I got bored. It was really fun to jump kick everywhere and throw your Ofuda paper thing. Pretty fun and simple game.

PC Engine

It's also worth noting that the PC Engine was launched on October 30 of this year with a paltry 2 games as launch titles and 3 more released in the subsequent 2 months. One of the launch titles: Shanghai is a simple matching game using Mahjong tiles. I played Shanghai on the Master System a shit ton as a kid because there was literally nothing else to play. It's nothing to write home about.

The other launch title Bikkuriman World is basically Wonder Boy: Monster Land but the characters changed up. It was a bit interesting to finally get to play the sequel to a game I played so much as a kid but the difficulty level is brutal and I'm too old for this shit now.

Thank goodness Hudson released The Kung Fu, probably the only good game out of bunch that isn't a port. It's a pretty fun action game but too simple to be GOTY. The character details are graphically impressive if all you know is the Famicom and you haven't been fapping to PC-88 porn. Too bad kids these days just comment "Hi Score Girl!" because it was briefly shown in the anime.

I watched the anime too, so what?

Games I plan to try later

Too many to list here, there's just so many potentially cool games on PC88, MSX, etc. for example Metal Gear.

ブレインズ 電子脳攻撃司令

No comments:

Post a Comment