*This post is sponsored by Crank 2: High Voltage. "Truly Crank 2 is a movie intended for the Gods that somehow graced our Earthly presence. I've never seen so many strippers get shot before! - Roger Ebert.
To help Commodores across the nation deal with the pain of fresh losses and the lingering memories of historic ones, we're instituting a new feature; Schadenfreude Fridays. The aim here is to comfort Vanderbilt's faithful by presenting train wrecks even worse than the past 35 years of Commodore football. Schadenfreude is pleasure taken from the suffering of others - and since this year's football season holds all the promise of a thousand awkward prom nights, the joy of watching others fail may be one of the few highlights of 2010. These don't necessarily have to be football related or even sports related - just something so spectacularly terrible that it makes Vandy fans a little bit happier to be cheering for their lovable group of three-star recruits with high GPAs and even higher 40 yard dash times.
This week's installment of Schadenfraude Fridays comes to AoG a bit late, as I was having trouble trying to find things I hated spectacularly enough to include here. After some deliberation, Affliction's foray into the MMA world was put on the back burner in favor of some 8-bit nostalgia that we all can relate to - terrible NES games.
To many, Nintendo's Famicom was the parent we never had, the parent we never saw, or the parent that didn't use their belt to punish us. Its 8-bit glory brought a low-resolution plumber into our homes and into our hearts as a generation of children realized that exercise and fresh air were totally gay. No one element has had a bigger role in our downturn as a society as the original NES, and when America crumbles into a debt-ridden, uneducated, obese third world country, our only solace will be that we finally found the castle that the princess was being kept in. And even that won't feel as good as surviving a three round war against Mike Tyson as a 105 pound midget boxer.
But for all the memorable and amazing titles the NES gave us, there are several turds floating around this punchbowl. As the popularity of the console swelled, game designers pumped out loads of crap solely in the hopes of getting paid, flooding the market with a wealth of awful. Some of these awful things were original concepts that never should have left the mind of the 14 year old autistic child that dreamt them up, while others were quick rip-offs of popular trends, movie tie-ins, or arcade ports that didn't quite understand the 8-bit concept. Regardless of the source, these were the games that crushed our dreams as eight year olds.
(Side note: I was the kid that only got to play Nintendo at friends' houses since my parents refused to buy me one. It wasn't until my freshman year of college that my then-girlfriend got me the greatest gift that any girlfriend - past, present, or fictional [including you Charlize Theron and Summer Sanders] - will probably ever get me; a NES with Tecmo Super Bowl and Little League World Series. Awesome.)
Enough reminiscing, on to the list. We'll pour through four titles today and leave the rest for another Friday:
Fun Fact: Action 52's breakout stars were The Cheetahmen, a ripoff in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Battletoads vein. They were wildly unsuccessful. Also notable, Active Enterprises offered a $104,000 giveaway open to any players that beat level five of the included game Ooze. Of course, Ooze crashed without fail at level three whenever played, somehow pouring more failure on top of this flaming pile of awful.
Fun Fact: There is no fun fact for Bad Street Brawler. That would imply that the game is fun.
Insanely difficult games that led to destroyed NES consoles
This game allowed absolutely no room for error and any wasted second led to immediate death. Compounding the frustration was the fact that players only had three continues to use, and multiplayer stages that allowed for friendly fire - which meant that most games ended in the first level as you and your partner picked up pipes and simply wailed on each other for five straight minutes.
While living with resident photoshop wizard Gumbercules in undergrad, we dedicated a solid semester to beating this game - and even with cheats, warps, and a god-damn notebook full of patterns, still couldn't get past the 11th level. It was a solid 3 months of nerd-dom, wasted. In short, fuck you, Battletoads.
Fun Fact: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy was created after J.R.R. Tolkien beta-tested an early version of Battletoads and said "Fuck it, I can come up with a less frustrating impossible quest than this."