At the time of this writing, December is about half over. While it’s obviously a bit late to think of New Year resolutions your made last year, you’ve still got those 15 days to play that one game that you just couldn’t get to or have maybe been ignoring since you picked it up in that 30 game lot a few months ago. Of course, some games deserve to be ignored but here’s a few that just may have slipped under the radar. Don’t worry, you’ve still got time.
Quite the underrated gem here. While the concept may seem generic (cops’-n-robbers), the gameplay is a nice break from the usual hum-drum controls. You play as either Bonanza brother, as you rob various buildings for a mysterious person. The game never takes itself seriously and relies on slapstick humor to good effect. Try hiding with a lampshade on your head! The brothers are equipped for their trade and have a myriad of items that can be used to get the job done. Using your stun cameras, for example, you can take out cops and dogs to get your prizes. But be careful, the game can get pretty challenging early.
While it’s been a while since I’ve even seen a copy (it’s considered quite rare), Junction is a really good game. It starts out with some basic puzzle action, as you move the various tiles around to keep the red ball from various obstacles (mostly from falling). Soon, the game becomes quite challenging and some may really start finding themselves enthralled in it’s gameplay. It’s a nice game, but it’s quite obvious why it would be overlooked by so many gamers. Most people never stray outside of Columns for their puzzle game fix and they are really doing themselves a disservice by missing out on such a unique and fun title.
McDonald’s Treasure Land Adventure
Famed developer Treasure’s first game after their split with Konami, Treasure Land Adventure was once used as a commercial for Japanese McDonald’s restaurants and to tell you the truth, Ronald McDonald’s Genesis debut and swan song isn’t actually that bad. Obviously ignored for its childish look, it plays almost like a dream. There are barely any control problems and the graphics and music are excellent. If it weren’t for the concept, this just may have been one huge success. Sadly, the world will never know.
Don’t just skip past this paragraph after reading the title. Although Pit Fighter may not get the most recognition on the Genesis (or anywhere else for that matter), it’s not all that bad. You play as either kick boxer Ty, Black Belt Kato, and British Bulldog rip-off Buzz. You are sent to various “fight spots” across the city, where you must fight for money, and of course being named the greatest fighter in the city by defeating the Ultimate Warrior, no wait, I mean the Masked Warrior. The controls may seem a bit odd, but when you figure out where you are on the screen, then it gets a bit easier. To be fair, I can see how this game isn’t perfect, but I’ve never seen it as the horrible game it’s been portrayed as. Give this little homeless man a nice Big Mac for Christmas and give it a round, you just may be surprised.
Toki: Going Ape Spit
Damn it, just look at the box. You’re a monkey and you kill things by spitting acidic saliva on them! Not a direct port of the coin-op classic, the Genesis version of Toki is instead a long, well-made original game that both looks and plays great. A reason most gamers have for not playing it yet may simply be that they’re unable to find it and that’s too bad. It’s a basic platformer that can get pretty hard somewhat quickly if you jump to far ahead, but almost on the ridiculous concept alone this game deserves a look.
Obviously not based on the movie but the short-lived cartoon which in turned was based on the Troma trademark. Another somewhat cheap platformer that mostly rides on concept, it was released in 1992 to little fanfare and in typical Sega fashion, almost no advertising. The difference between it and a lot of the other platformers on the system is the fact that this game can be fun once you get through the small learning curve. It might not be a lot to look at and the license may not be the best but there’s a decent game here. Give this a try, especially if you can remember the old cartoon series.
Luckily, most of the Genesis gems are appreciated as such and getting a boot in the right direction is mostly not needed. But as with any product with so many things to do, you sometimes need to be shown everything there is too see. So, get out there, check out some of these games and have a happy new year!