Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Wolverine (NES)

This is Wolverine's first ever starring role in a video game, though he's been in a few crap X-Men games before this, including Uncanny X-Men on the NES.

No introduction cutscene or even a screen of text, I'm just thrown right into the game with no clue where I am or what I'm doing here.

It seems like a pretty straightforward platformer. The graphics are passable, Wolverine moves around well, and the music's alright. For whatever reason I thought I might be able to grab onto walls, Ninja Gaiden/Batman style, but nope.

And then I immediately manage to fall off the ledge and slip down the bottomless pit. Killed by the first hazard in the game... I'm definitely not the best there is at what I do.

Nice energy ball mate, but you missed! Why do I get the feeling I'm going to be spending a lot of this game crawling on my hands and knees?

I grab the handy burger for extra 'strength', then crawl over to beat up the enemy disappearing and reappearing over on the right. The attacks in this are the opposite of responsive and satisfying, with a tiny range and a big delay between pressing the button and the punch connecting. Plus it doesn't help that the enemy dies with the same effect he's been using to disappear, so I can't be sure I even killed the bastard.

There's no knockback or invincibility frames if I hit an enemy. I just turn grey and quickly lose health until I can kill him or get some distance. There's only room on this ledge for one person, so it's going to cost me health to kill this guy.

It wouldn't be so bad, except I don't seem to regenerate health after I take damage. If any game should have regenerating health, it's a Wolverine game.

I'm not even going to try hitting these guys. They seem pretty harmless though, for flying enemies. They just hover over there and shoot at me.

Bullets I can crawl under, but I do less well when the enemies just walk into me and sap all my health. I suppose it's my own fault for standing still and trying to hit him with my crappy punch.

I've got to be careful here, I'm down to my last life and I'm still on level 1. At least I restart at the place I was killed.

Time to pop my claws, see if that helps any. Actually it doesn't seem to help much... plus every time I slash with them I lose strength. Just by tapping the attack button a few times I've already drained most of my health.

Am I playing as backwards Wolverine or something? He's crap at fighting, even more useless when he's got his claws out, and he loses health instead of healing!

It sure would be nice if I could actually make this punch connect. I'm starting to think I'd have more luck just dodging the enemies. I should try that actually... after I've killed this guy.

Damn, I got game over'd on the very first level. Well that's just awesome.

No saves or passwords but at least it seems that I have infinite continues. Or possibly just the one. Infinite would be better.

Damn, the exit was right next to where I died too. Assuming this featureless black gap in the background pattern is the level exit.

Okay, I'm surprised, now what? We going to have a boss fight or something?

Actually it seems that Sabertooth just came by to make me jump, because he's nowhere to be seen on the next level.

I've no idea how I got onto this airship, the game's been a bit light on story so far. For all I know I could have been inside the thing on the first level.

Wow, putting a magnet next to the exit is a pretty lame trick to pull on a guy with a metal skeleton. I'm not sure why an airship needs to have magnets hanging underneath it anyway, though I should probably be more confused about the mysterious door in the sky.

Well I can't see anywhere better to go, so I might as well check it out. Apparently there's also a secret character hidden on this level but I've blown my chances of finding him.

Oh, the mysterious sky door leads to some kind of temple filled with traps waiting to spring out at me. Of course, it all makes sense now.

Okay okay, I get the hint! I should stop trying to attack enemies. I have to walk right up to them for my punches to connect, and that means they can just step into me and drain all my health. Like that.

At least I've got infinite continues.

Oh, I guess I only had the one continue then. Damn.

Well, uh, I feel like I should give the game another shot. I have no idea why though, it's not like it's going to get any better. One last time from the start then.


That's a cruel trick. A spike plate on the ledge I need to jump on to reach the exit. Or maybe there's another way around...

Screw it, I'm here now. On my next life I'm just going to run right through it and take the damage.

Hmm, I thought there might be something over here but I guess it's just another path to get up to the exit.

I'm not even going to think about how impossible that water looks, because if it was any less impossible I'd never be able to reach that door...

...assuming I can actually reach the door from the water. Come on you bastard, jump! I don't care how much extra weight you're carrying with all that metal on your skeleton.

I really hope that doesn't mean I've got more swimming to look forward to on the next level.

Son of a bitch! Turns out these harmless looking screw things on the walls are actually razor sharp blades that cut me to shreds if I touch them. And it's really not easy to steer Wolverine away from them in water, he's crap at swimming.

I was tempted to go swim down there and see if I could punch the bubble machine to get an extra life. And that's how I lost my only continue two seconds after this screenshot.

Wolverine can only hold his breath for so long, so I need to come up for air whenever I get the chance.

Oh SHIT that was a door wasn't it? This game must be sending me half to sleep or something.

And now I have to swim back around.

The door wasn't the level exit, but it did get me a health refill and a device to give me more time underwater. Jubilee didn't seem interested in teaming up with me, so I left her in the bonus room and headed back out the door.

I don't even get what I was supposed to do here. I don't think I'd be able to reach that ledge on the right.

Not that it matters much any more because I'm out of lives and continues and there's no way I'm playing this again. It's just not a very good game.

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Semi-Random Game Box