You go on holiday and find yourself in an arcade. You wander around and you find a game that looks interesting. You play it, you love it, you have to be physically removed from the machine by your Dad (that last one was probably just me). You go home and discover that the game you spend all your holiday money on is available on your home computer/console (probably the former for most UK people). Off to Smiths (US readers.. this was once THE shop for games, films, books etc. Now it sits on the high street with a massive identity crisis) with money in hand to get the game. Oh look.. the graphics on the box look pretty good don’t they? You get home, load the game….
CRISIS!! Someone has replaced your wonderful game with this ugly, noisy and, in some cases, unplayable… thing!
This was more common than you think. Often a software house would acquire the license to publish a home conversion of a game, only for the end product to be very, very disappointing.
OutRun on the Commodore Amiga
You’re probably thinking that you’ve read the above wrong. Sadly, you haven’t. I always found this to the darkest of gaming ironies: My favourite arcade game on my favourite computer and it’s utter rubbish!
Oddly enough, this was also the first game I saw running on an Amiga, but that’s a story for another time… On with the dross.
The game loads up and you’re treated to.. well… just watch..
It’s okay, it’s over now. Sadly it gets worse as it goes on. The game is about as responsive as an MP when asked about where he got the money from to buy his new Mayfair flat.
So, the game loads up and it has big yellow border around it. But that’s not the worst of it, you have to control the darned car with the MOUSE!! Yes, that’s right, the mouse. Well, this isn’t strictly true. What happens is the game will start up, and you may want to restart the game or change the music. This involves going in to the menu at the top of the screen, using the old ‘right mouse click’ method we all know so well. When you’ve made that choice and go back into the game, the stupid thing sets the game control to the mouse. Therefore, you have to remember to set the control method to joystick before leaving the menu.
Oh, and top it all off, the music is awful. Yes, three of the most iconic pieces of game music ever have be carelessly rearranged by a tone deaf sadist who has never heard of OutRun.
In conclusion, this is the worst conversion of OutRun on any home computer or console. Hell, the Master System version is better than this. No, it really is.
To hire OutRun from us, click here.
Hard Drivin’ on the Commodore 64
Oh god, where to I begin with this disaster? This game was, certainly for me, a massive disappointment.
I loved this game in the arcade (no surprise there) and when I found out there was going to be a version for the good old C64 I was a little chuffed to say the least.
The first picture I saw of it were in (I think) Commodore Format. That first image I’m pretty sure was a colour picture which gave you the impression that the finished game would do it’s best to stay faithful to it’s arcade forbear.
This wasn’t the case. Not by a long shot. This is what the finished game looked like.
I know kids.. I’m scared too!!
Ever the optimist, I didn’t give up on it. I thought “Ah well, it doesn’t look great, but surely the gameplay is good.” So, because I was dubious, I didn’t buy it as a single game, I ended up buying it as part of a compilation that had the excellent Turbo Outrun on it. After spending an entire Saturday afternoon on said game I thought I’d have a look at Hard Drivin’ to see if it was that bad. Again, I thought the gameplay would be decent..
I think the phrase ‘Oh hell NO!’ sums it up quite well.
I remember thinking I was going to break my joystick from trying to get the car to do what I wanted. To this day I think it’s probably one of the most unplayable games on the C64.
You want to see it, don’t you? Really? Fine, here it is. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Well, I did warn you.
That’s it for now. I’m off to write more words in a structure that make some kind of sense, and it’s just for you.
What do you mean ‘Please stop!’ The cheek.