Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Knowing Is Half The Battle: G.I. Joe Games

G.I. Joe has been around a long time, and much like any toy line, cartoon, etc. that was big in the 80s, there were video game tie ins. Some of them were piles of crap, but there were also some beautiful gems too. I'm going to try to catch all of them.

G.I. Joe: Cobra Strike - Atari 2600 - 1983: Most 2600 games kinda required the player to have a vivid imagination to see what you're supposed to be dealing with in the game world, but there is no question in Cobra Strike what your objective is. Instead of fighting "Cobra: The Enemy", you fight a GIANT COBRA! In addition, you have to protect hostages from the giant cobra's attacks while you fire shots at it. Not a good look for Hasbro, who was pushing the new G.I. Joe cartoon series at this point.

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero - Commodore 64, Apple II - 1985: This is a weird one, as it is basically a one on one shooter. You pick an opponent, then you pick your member of G.I. Joe, then you run around a single screen arena like an idiot shooting at your enemy. Once the battle is over, you repeat the process. There was no ending to the game, and it hasn't aged well at all. It is better than Cobra Attack, though.

Action Force - Amstrad CPC - 1987: In Europe, G.I. Joe is known as Action Force. This game was only released in Europe, and I'm glad it never touched down here, because it proved to be an utter turd. most Amstrad games featured some butt ugly graphics and sound effects. It's on par with a lot of stuff on that system though. I'm not a fan though.

G.I. Joe - NES - 1991: Two publishers made G.I. Joe games for the NES, this one was published by Taxan, and they did a damn good job with it. quality run and gun platforming right here.

G.I. Joe: The Atlantis Factor - NES - 1992: Capcom handled this one, and it was quite nice. The gameplay is quite on par with Taxan's G.I. Joe game, but the levels are much bigger, and there is a good deal of exploration involved. Definitely a must buy.

G.I. Joe - Arcade - 1992: The 90s belonged to a few publishers when it came to arcade games, and Konami did licensed games better than most in the arcades in the 90s. This G.I. Joe game always felt like an expanded version of the over the shoulder levels in Contra. If you ever stumble across an arcade that has this, you owe it to yourself to give it a go.

G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra - 2009: This one was attached as a tie in to the movie of the same name, and sadly, it was just as mediocre. It reminded me a little of The Red Star for the PS2. It could have been a classic run and gun action game that ended up being blah.

That was pretty much every video game adaptation of the G.I. Joe license. Some were good, some not so much, but at least they fight for freedom wherever there's trouble.

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