Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Nerdicus NES Review #80 : Battletoads & Double Dragon

Title : Battletoads & Double Dragon

Publisher : Tradewest

Genre : Beat Em Up

Players : 1 / 2 Player

Release Date : 1993

Estimated Value (as of today's date) : $60-$70

You may be asking yourself, what can make one of the best NES games even better? How about adding another one of the most difficult Beat 'Em up's into the mix? That's right. You've got Battletoads, probably the hardest Beat Em Up on the NES, mixed in like a cocktail of pure insanity with the characters from the Double Dragon series.

Can you say, "EPIC"?!

This game was also released on the SNES, which I won't be reviewing since I figured I should give it some justice first on the NES. After all, it's where the classic was born. But still, I played the SNES version and it wasn't half bad. It's basically this one, just prettier. 

I'm sure all of you had just as hard of a time beating Double Dragon as you did Battletoads, and that's okay. These games were impossible. Well, not impossible. But definitely some of the most difficult to ever grace the NES console. If you beat these games, you remember the the exact moment in your childhood. Luck was finally in your favor.

Now to take two classics such as Double Dragon and Battletoads, and actually merge them together, you would think that's a bit of a risky situation in today's gaming standards. They usually never work out like they're supposed to. But luckily for Rare and Tradewest they seemed to actually know what they were doing. They didn't try for any gimmicks. They kept the tradition alive, and made Battletoads & Double Dragon one of the best, and the most difficult beat em ups ever.

Join me, as we take on the Shadow Warriors and the Dark Princess again in BATTLETOADS & DOUBLE DRAGON.

Damn straight this is THE ULTIMATE TEAM!

I really want to know how this development came about. Did these two companies just sit in a room and say to each other, do you know what would really kick ass? If we join forces and make an UBER beat em up. Pure genius, I say.

So in this sequel, you're not just limited to the two Battletoads, Rash and Zits. Now you have access to Pimple as well as Jimmy and Bimmy...I mean, Billy. (get it?) Since I can't resist playing a toad, I'm going to ahead and play through this game as Pimple since he gets shafted in the first game.

Visually, the game makes some minor improvements from the first game. You've got some cool 3D backgrounds going on, and the animations appear to be a bit more fluid. It also seems as if they had a larger color palette in this one, and better designs for the enemies and characters. It gives the game a semi-fresh feel from the first one on the NES, but if you're looking for a real visual treat you have to look toward the SNES version.

The music is also very fitting for the game. Feels like you're in an 80's beat em up movie. Gotta love that early 90's chiptunes.

If you're expecting major changes to the gameplay, you'd be disappointed. But then again, why would you? The first game was fine as it was, so I'm glad to say that they were smart enough to keep things traditional in terms of Beat 'Em Up standards. The goal is simple. Punch and Kick (or mega punch and kick) your way through each stage, and battle the end boss to move on to the next level. 

Nothing beats the MEGA PUNCH.

Bosses are pretty bad ass, and do a good job of making your life difficult. They hit hard, and they have some of the cheapest attacks in the game. Did you ever notice that bosses in these type of games ALWAYS know what move you're going to do? It must be some button tracking system or something coded into these games. Damn quarter eaters. The NES should have had a coin slot for these games. Make it even more realistic, ha.

That brings me to the difficulty level. I found this one to be a tad easier than the first one. I'm not saying by much, but it also may be because after playing the first game so much along with Double Dragon, I may have gained a bit more experience and know-how in how to beat these games. Don't get me wrong, you're going to die. A LOT. But you're more likely to beat this game using less continues than you did the first one.

Maybe they felt bad? Who knows.

It's no surprise. This game is another masterpiece. Sure, it doesn't do much to differ itself from the first game, but it doesn't need to. Why change perfection? Good luck finding this game for the NES though. It is pretty rare, and pretty expensive. The one version I have is a cluster of a mess in terms of the label, but at least it works.

Final Score (out of 5) :

Until next time. Keep on gaming!



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