Lazy Jones (c64) review by Honorabili
One Sentence Review:
“One of the trippiest games from the c64.”
8 out of 10
Lazy Jones is a classic c64 game that’s one of a kind. You are stuck in this mad hotel/building, roaming the hallways that have wandering carts that kill you and weirdos, and you go into rooms to play other video games within the video game. Sounds like a crazy dream and the game plays exactly as crazy as that sounds.
The game has this feeling almost like the movie Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, like the character is having a bad drug trip and only video games are his salvation.
You play as Lazy Jones, the janitor for a very strange hotel. The story of the game goes something like Lazy Jones is so lazy that any work will kill him. His cleaning cart and visitors at the hotel touching you instantly snuff you.
Here is a video showing you how crazy the gameplay really is:
The video has some music as well by the remixer Instant Remedy, but some of the original music as well. See below for more details on the sound score.
Most of the games in the rooms are parodies of existing arcade games from its time. If you love classic arcade games, the game will bring you a feeling of nostalgia. Fun Factor gets a 7 out of 10.
The difficulty is rather the same overall, although most of the enemies do kill you if you touch them once. I’ve had instances where I die simply by the game spawning an enemy as soon as I leave a door, which is pretty rough. You can set the game to give you from 1 – 9 lives. In the terms of Diablo, you can be “hardcore” and set the game to only give you 1 life if you really want a challenge. Since you set your mortality, difficulty versatility gets a rating of 7 out of 10. I find the game easy myself but it’s still nerve wrecking when you’re down to your life (or only) life.
You can play the game if you have the diskettes and a working c64 but for every else, the game is free via emulation.
The full game can be downloaded here: http://www.c64.com/?type=1&id=149
Click download now on the right column and save the ZIP file, extract the D64 file to a folder you will remember.
Now you download the emulator to run the disk image of the game. You can download the emulator CCS64 at this link: http://www.ccs64.com/CCS64%20V3.7%20Install.zip
The main link to CCS64.com is http://www.ccs64.com/
in case the version file I posted gets taken down and replaced with a newer one. You can just scroll down to downloads and get the latest one (with installer you want).
Load up the emulator. Go to the File menu, select Load and Run, point it to the Lazy Jones D64 file. Let it load. Press space after the loading lights. Hit ESC to simulate the RUN/STOP key from the c64 that would let you continue. You’ll only have to do this once: go to Options, input, use the arrow keys and set control port one mode to key set 1 (go left arrow a bunch of times and control port 2 mode to keyset 2. You can control the character using the numpad arrows. Enjoy the game!
Since this is a great game and it’s free these days, Value gets a score of 10 out of 10.
This game is a classic and I’ve played it over 400 times as a child and into my early teens. I fire it up once in a while when I feel in a nostalgic mood. Replayability get a score of 7 out of 10.
The sounds are pretty nice for this c64 game. In some of the mini games, the sounds are just annoying in some others they are pretty unique. Overall, Sound gets a score of 7 out of 10.
The music for this game is legendary and by David Whittacker.
It has many covers/remixes of early 80s music, including Visage – Fade to Grey and some others.
One of the songs is so catchy that everybody knows it now as Zombie Nation – Kernkraft 400. The song even became huge in the US, which often doesn’t happen for an electronic song.
If you love rare 80s music and want a trip to the past, you must play Lazy Jones. It even has Nena – 99 Love Ballons (Luftballons)
The c64 and its SID chip have a unique sound and this is one of those soundtracks that is one of the most famous for the machine and its fans. To this day it’s remixed often, more than 20-25 years later. The music is a solid 10 out of 10.
The game is well drawn for an early c64 game. The graphics of the mini games are sometimes better than the actual graphics of the real c64/arcade games that they parody. Graphics are an 8 out of 10 for Lazy Jones.
This is a c64, not Windows 95. The game never crashes. Not even the pirated warez versions. Stability/Reliability deserve a 10 out of 10.
Simple is perfect.
For the real c64 version, you move around with your joystick. The controls are pretty self explanatory. The fire button fires, up makes you move up or jump and so on. Controls get a 10 out of 10.
For the PC emulated version through CCS64, once you set it up like I recommend (look up in the Value section as to how to get the game, and configure it), the controls are simple. The number pad arrow move you around, with 8 (up) making you jump or move up in game and enter being the fire button (used for going into rooms, the elevator, and firing in games). The only part where the control is picky is that you have to be standing in the dead center of a door to enter a room.
Under CCS64, for this game, P pauses and M mutes the music. Once you set it up, the controls are simple. I won’t rate this version because setting it up might be too complicated for some people and it might be simpler under other emulators, but that’s the emulator not the game.
Native c64 game gets perfect performance on the system. The emulation is also spot on. Performance gets a 10 out of 10.
My history with this game:
This is one of the first games I remember vividly from the c64 as making it stand out from Atari (which my friends all owned). I have fond memories of playing this game for days at a time with my older cousin, back in Argentina. We thought it was one of most original games we had yet seen. I still think that it’s unique for its time and if you’ve never played it, you should give it a try and just have a trip back to the 80s.