Riot Zone

Riot_Zone

Riot Zone

You might have heard of a game called Riot City, but because of Sega’s rights to the main characters and bosses, Westone and Hudson Soft had to do some creative reconfiguring and came up with Riot Zone. Riot Zone was released in 1992 for the TurboGrafx-CD and featured two characters out to stop an evil crime boss who kidnapped a girl name Candy.

Riot_Zone

Does this sound familiar or even kind of standard for side scrolling beat em up games? Well, that is because this is pretty standard. The game plays a lot like Final Fight and toss in some Double Dragon just because we can. The gameplay is simple, you walk from left to right fighting enemies that can appear from both sides of the screen. Like Final Fight, you face a boss at the end and move on until the final boss. Unlike Final Fight, there are no weapons, only items for health and points.

Check out the video review for Riot Zone.

Jaws

Jaws - NES - Gameplay Screenshot

Jaws

Jaws: The Revenge was the third movie of the Jaws franchise, seeking to once again capitalize on the monster (no pun intended) success of the original, record-breaking film. The video game that was released for the Nintendo Entertainment System was arguably better than the big-screen version.

Gameplay

The game follows a character that is seeking the kill the giant Jaws shark.

Graphics

Jaws_(NES_Screenshot)

Although the looks of the title were somewhat pixelated and crude, in certain instances (such as the jellyfish bonus levels, etc.) you can tell this is done intentionally to create a comical, cartoonish effect. In a way, this is a brilliant, albeit weird idea: Create a dichotomy between friendly, cartoony under-the-sea creatures against the dark, sharp, jagged features of the Jaws bosses.

Soundtrack

Excellent song tracks here, with atmospheric synths featuring the ever-familiar suspense-building theme of the series. Even the between-levels music is upbeat and catchy. The overworld view, when the boat is directed, drones on repetitively until it becomes aggravating. However, this may have been intentional, simulating the long days at sea.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qh0SC-bVKGc[/youtube]

Innovation

Usually, movie-themed video games are developed too quickly, as they seek to capitalized on a film’s popularity as rapidly as possible. While this may have been the case with Jaws, it does not show; the game is actually decent on its own merits, with some interesting themes. For example, there are a few modes of play: The overworld view, where the boat seeks upgrades while trying to avoid Jaws; the diving scenes, where the diver attacks creatures while collecting items; and bonus scenes, where bombing jellyfish (yes, bombing jellyfish) earns extra points toward upgrades; and a special section, whenever Jaws’ energy is depleted in the diving scenes. There is even a “hidden” mini-sub upgrade for the diver, making him faster and providing more firepower.

Ultimately, this is a fun, quirky, rewarding movie game, worth a respectable three-point-two-five stars out of five.

Eric Bailey is a retro gamer on a crazy quest to write a quality review for every single American-released NES video game over at NintendoLegend.com.