05/12/2011

Funny Games - Star Paws - Classic ZX Spectrum Game

Star Paws
So what's this game all about then?

Well it was a pretty wacky arcade game from Software Projects and featured the ZX Spectrum programming talents of Peter Gough, S L Cork and Tim Follin.

Peter Gough was pretty well known for inserting a large slice of hunour into his computer games and this one was no exception.

But what was the aim of this classic game?

A classic funny game on the ZX Spectrum

In the farthest reaches of our Galaxy there lives a rare creature known as the Tasty Space Griffin. Long ago this creatue (a bird) was acclaimed as a galactic delicacy, and acquired such value that it came to be used as an extremely valuable unit of inter-galactic currency, traded on the stock markets of the universe.

You played the part of 'Captain Rover Pawstrong' who has been accidentaly sent on the mission instead of Neil Armstrong! Vastly inexperienced and totally unsuited for the task, your mission was to capture or destroy every one of these intergalactic poultry like delicacies.

Catch those space chickens boy!

So there you have it - an arcade game, set in space, where you have to capture what are essentially chickens! (or perhaps Road Runner's meep meep!?)

With it's cartoon style graphics, the dissolving (chicken) energy meter, varying levels and bonus 'eye view' blasting level this was an arcade game that would bring a smile to your face; and all for a meagre £2.99!

video

Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

06/10/2011

Funny Games - MDK - Classic PC Game

MDK
What did it stand for? Murder Death Kill? Mission Deliver Kindness?

Whatever it stood for it doesn't matter. This is one of the most innovative, playable, surreal and humorous PC games ever released.

Released in 1997 by Interplay and developed by the awesomely named Shiny Entertainment, this game was hotly anticipated prior to it's release.

It also made it's way onto Mac and Playstation - but for this article we will feature the PC version. Either way it was a great game on all formats that blended arcade action with strategy and a lot of laughs.

MDK is a bona fide classic game
The game told the story of Kurt Hectic (great name!) and his attempts to rescue Earth from an alien invasion of gigantic mining city-vehicles (called 'Minecrawlers'), that were not only removing all of earth's natural resources, but were also flattening any people and cities that stood in their way. Nasty!

The game combined the alien whupping arcade action with a huge dose of humour and also featured a 'sniper mode' that allowed the player to smoothly zoom in on enemy targets.

The humour in this game began the moment you first opened it; the instruction booklet was packed full of humour and was written in the form of a diary by an eccentric inventor called Dr. Fluke Hawkins.

It is Dr Hawkins that discovered the incoming invasion and who also invented the armour plated 'coil suit' and weapons that you (as Kurt) wear and use throughout the game.

This is a computer game that oozed class from begining to end with it's frantic arcade action, superb level layout, fantastic in-game music and off the wall humour.

If you have never played this game please give it a go - you will not be disappointed. In fact you will 'feel top'!

A classic funny game:


Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

25/07/2011

Funny Games - Battle Chess - Classic Commodore Amiga Game

Battle Chess Commodore Amiga
Ahhh after a nice holiday what better game to get me back into the Funny Games mood than good old Battle Chess on the Commodore Amiga?

Electronic Arts gave us this classic game back in 1988 and it did help to bring the game of chess to those that probably would have never even considered it.

For those that enjoy a game of chess then this game had it all; great AI from the computer opponent, classic chess gameplay, a nicely implemented two player option and a bucket load of humour when your animated chess pieces destroyed an opponents piece.

Medieval battles had never been so much fun...

Battle Chess Loads Up...
All of the rules of chess were present in the game with varying levels of difficulty to choose from.

But - the real hook for this game was the animated chess characters (which were very nicely drawn) and the over the top mini battles that took place as one piece took another.

Sometimes it was worth sacrificing a piece just to see how it would be 'killed'!

Even if you wanted a more 'serious' game of chess then the character animations could be turned off, but for players like me the animations were a huge bonus. It was nice to have the option to disable the animations though if you fancied a fast paced game.

All in all this is a true classic game for the Commodore Amiga (and versions were also released for the CD32 and DOS) that plenty of gamers have fond memories of.

If you have never tried this game then please give it a go - you will enjoy the gameplay and the variety of 'deaths' will never fail to make you chuckle.

Mayhem will shortly ensue...
This game was a great showcase piece for the Amiga back in 1988 and really showed us that 8-bit power had truly arrived.

Classic Gaming


Classic Games and Funny Games

03/06/2011

Funny Games - Boston Bomb Club - Classic Commodore Amiga Game

Boston Bomb Club Commodore Amiga
Ahh now this is a lesser known gem of a game that is addictive, puzzling and above all, funny.

Let's take a look at a funny game for the Commodore Amiga that despite being well recieved, passed many people by back in the day.

Silmarils gave us this classic game back in the early 1990's and it was praised for it's wacky storyline, challenging puzzles and off the wall humour.


Set in the late 19th century, a mad scientist had created the 'Boston Bomb Club' to cater for the more senior gentleman who enjoyed a bit of bomb puzzling. Yep, it's definately something different from the get go.

The game was all about making a path for some famous cartoon style bombs (complete with fizzing fuses) to make it across a table (think of the classic game Pipeline).

What made this game funny was the random events that would happen whilst you were playing.

Jazz musicians would would pop up and obscure part of the playing area, babies (yep babies in a bomb club!) would crawl across the table and mess up your strategy and other patrons would lean across and alter your carefully laid plans.

Annoying? Sometimes yes!
Funny? Most of the time.

The whole setting of the game was dipped in humour, with the stereotyped gentlemen customers, to the busty maids announcing which level you were on and the cartoon styled graphics.

For fans of puzzle games it pretty much ticked all of the boxes and gave you a right old jolly laugh along the way.

Please give this game a try, it's well worth a play and you will no doubt chuckle a little.

It's a famous bar in Boston - I wonder if it was renamed to 'Cheers' in the 1980's? - Classic Gaming



Classic Games and Funny Games

27/05/2011

Funny Games - Brian Bloodaxe - Classic ZX Spectrum Game

Brian Bloodaxe ZX Spectrum
Now this really was a funny game from The Edge back in 1985.

With one of the most hilarious game intro's ever (I'm sure it must have fooled some Spectrum users back in the day) to set the scene - you just knew this classic game was going to be a laugh from the beginning.

This game was a very good platformer in the vein of Technician Ted, Jet Set Willy and Fahrenheit 3000 and perhaps does not recieve the recognition it deserves.

But back in the day it did make me laugh a little...


What other game would have you playing the part of a Viking lord with plans to conquer Great Britain? What other game allowed you to impale enemies with your horned helmet?
What other game had you replenishing your energy by drinking pints of beer?

With weird and wacky sprites to contend with (including Daleks!) this game had the right blend of funnies and arcade action.

But for me the whole intro scene is one of the best ever on the ZX Spectrum...

The humour began in this classic game as soon as the game was loaded...



Classic Games and Funny Games

25/04/2011

Funny Games - Worms: Directors Cut - Classic Commodore Amiga 1200 Game

Worms: Directors Cut Amiga 1200
For me this is the DEFINITIVE version of the classic two player game Worms and Team 17 software peaked the Worms franchise with this one.

All of these games have been extremely funny with the right blend of cartoony backgrounds, game characters that you actually feel for, brilliant character voices and a superb range of weapons to choose from.

The mid to late 1990's versions of the Worms games were for me, the best (with the DOS versions being great fun too) but this version for the good old Amiga 1200 is for me, the best.

This classic game was not only fun for two (or more) players, but it also made you laugh too.

With it's vicious weapons, simpering deaths and cute little voices it had it all - you couldn't help but laugh as 'Oh Dear' echoed from your speakers as another little blighter bit the dust.

With back chatter from the in-game characters such as 'You'll regret that','Watch this','Revenge','Perfect', 'Bye Bye' and 'Perfect' it made for an all round superb gaming experience.

The inclusion of a level designer kept the humour and gameplay fresh, and the varying weapons and voices wrapped the whole package nicely.


If you like two player games and a laugh please give this one a go.

Not only is it a truly funny game it is also one of the last ever titles released for the Commodore Amiga and made use of the cleaner looking AGA chipset. The backgrounds were very nicely drawn and designed and fitted the games humorous atmosphere perfectly.

Worms: Directors Cut will still make you laugh after all these years. Perfect!

The Amiga 1200 version of this classic funny game:


Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

21/03/2011

Funny Games - Mean Arena's - Classic Commodore Amiga Game

Mean Arena's Amiga
A classic game that was set in a bleak future (2093 to be exact) where TV is the prime form of entertainment to the masses.

In this classic title for the Commodore Amiga you had to take part in a game show where your life, as well as pots of cash and big prizes, was on the line.

No, it's not Smash TV and you are not called Ben Richards either - it is the legendary funny game, Mean Arena's.

Mean Arena's - Amiga

This title was a funny game due to it's cheesy hosts 'Buzz' and 'Bob' who welcomed the player to the game (show). They hit the nail firmly on the head with the presenters and backdrop - right down to the wonky Channel 27 sign.

Throughout the game there were sampled sounds of a baying crowd and the Buzz and Bob would weigh in with little snippets of commentary which really added to the atmosphere.

Enter those mean arena's...

The game was actually a nice mix of puzzle and arcade action, which borrowed heavily from the likes of Pacman and Gauntlet.

It looks a little like Pacman eh?

All in all the Amiga was blessed with some good 'gameshow' type titles, such as this one, the great conversion of Smash TV and also Fiendish Freddy's Big Top 'O Fun.

If you like classic games such as Gauntlet and Pacman then give Mean Arena's a go - it'll make you laugh at the same time.

The intro set the scene for this funny game:


Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

03/03/2011

Funny Games - Cannon Fodder - Classic Funny Game

Cannon Fodder Game
Ahh, war never been so much fun eh?

Sensible Software's 1993 action game for the Commodore Amiga garnered a lot of controversy due it being seen as slightly tasteless.

This game turned out to be a cracker which had everything; arcade action, superb gameplay, character in spades and a huge dollop of humour.

As soon as the game started up you just knew you were in for a real treat...

Cannon Fodder On The Amiga - Gameplay and Humour

The intro tune to this game has gone down in the annals of gaming legends - it really was that good and younger gamers may not realise just how amazing it was to have an entire song playing from a game installed on a floppy disk - on a machine with 1MB of RAM.

Funny and brilliantly done - I'll let the tune speak for itself:


Enjoyable if you have a slightly sick sense of humour perhaps? (Like me)

Anyway - the funnies didn't stop there. The game generated a cartoony type atmosphere and mixed it in with arcade action, violence and plenty of blood n guts.

Nicely Drawn Intro Screens In Cannon Fodder

This game was the perfect mix of arcade gaming, strategy and level design.

With different weapons to collect, buildings to destroy and slow agonising deaths the game could become really intense. The tension was broken by the jolly end of level ditty though, and watching the new recruits come through the gates was great fun.

The Sensible Crew Dressed In Cannon Fodder Gear For The Amiga

The sensible team even when the whole hog and dressed up in military gear for the game - another move that was seen as a little bit 'bad taste'. It never bothered me anyway.

Cannon Fodder - a classic game that could also make you laugh.

The melancholy recruitment music:


Classic Gameplay:

24/02/2011

Funny Games - Smash TV - Classic Funny Game

Smash TV Arcade Game
The classic arcade game from Williams was released back in 1990.

This game combined fast paced arcade gaming, humorous voice overs and over the top violence to create a gaming experience that was addictive, great to play and also made you laugh.

The game was also converted to a host of home computers such as the ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC 464, Commodore Amiga and Atari ST. These home conversions were published by Ocean Software.

Smash TV

The arcade game 'plot line' borrowed heavily from the movie 'The Running Man'; in this game you took part in a futuristic game show based on ultra violence, mass weapons, destruction, big prizes, lots of cash and 'total carnage'.
(We LOVE it!)

This game was a total laugh (in a slightly sick way) from beginning to end. With it's cheesy game-show host, voice over samples shouting 'Total carnage... I love it!', over the top violence and crazy body count that John Woo would be proud of, it was graphical humorous eyeball popping deaths whilst you won yourself a new toaster.

For one or two players (best fun with two players) you took part in this futuristic game show laying waste to hordes of 'bad guys' collecting money and prizes from the game arena.

Armed with powerful weapons such as grenade launchers, spinning discs of death and three way firing handguns you could mow down the masses relentlessley.

Each end of level boss was funny (check out Mutoid Man at the end of level one) and took a fair amount of killing.

Greg Wallace Gets Caked To Death?

Gruesome deaths saw footwear and eyeballs flying through the air, and the fact that you earned tons of cash and a countless amount of white-goods for basically murdering people was always worth a laugh.

This is one of my favourite arcade games of all time (and I also loved Amiga Smash TV) - to sum up; 'I'd buy that for a dollar!'

Classic Arcade Action:


Classic Games and Funny Games

17/02/2011

Funny Games - Rise Of The Robots - Classic Funny Game

Rise Of The Robots
This game was never supposed to be funny - but it was so bad it was almost good.

Hyped up more than the next release from Ultimate, this was supposed to be the best ever fighting game featuring advanced opponent AI, a huge variety of game characters, superb backdrops, adrenaline pumping arcade action and the ultimate animated ray traced characters.

One out of five wasn't bad I suppose...

Rise Of The Robots - One Of The Worst Games Ever

The characters looked cool when they were stationary.

Anyway - this game was released on the Commodore Amiga, A1200, Amiga CD32, SNES, Megadrive and more. It was even given the classic arcade cabinet treatment - how this happened I'll never know.

Here is a 'teaser trailer' for the game hyping up just how great this was going to be:

The latest development in arcade game technology:


As far as I remember the game ended up being pretty similar to the 'work in progress' screens shown in the video above.

There was no enemy AI (which had been done years earlier in Karate Champ and Way Of The Exploding Fist), no real variety of moves (each move pretty much did the same thing and it was a lottery if a blow was landed or not)

I played it on a friends SEGA Mega Drive - and you guessed it, I laughed my ass off. I found that pressing the same joypad and buttons repeatedly got me through round after round as I defeated each opponent with ease.

I was either I was the greatest ever arcade gamer or the game was extremely sh*t. I vote for the latter.

An All Time Turkey - Rise Of The Robots This game was sooo bad it was funny. We've all played some dross over the years (Flight Path 737 anyone?), and this one is up there with the best / worst of 'em.

Of course this (now classic game for all the wrong reasons) has been slated to the max over the years (and rightly so) - and for me it's the video game equivalent of a golden raspberry. A real funny game - no matter what system you played it on - they were all equally as bad as each other.

There were poor games, there were crap games, there were sh*t games, and then there was RISE OF THE ROBOTS. To this day it remains funny.


Classic Arcade Action (ahem) on the Amiga:


Classic Arcade Action on the Megadrive:


Classic Games and Funny Games

11/02/2011

Funny Games - Fiendish Freddy's Big Top O' Fun - Classic Funny Game

Fiendish Freddy's Big Top O' Fun
Ahh now Fiendish Freddy's Big Top O' Fun was a hilarious arcade game, no matter what system you played it on.

It originally appeared on the Atari ST, IBM PC and Commodore Amiga, before later being converted to 8-bit machines such as the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, and Amstrad CPC 464.

For the purposes of this I think the Amiga version is the best to look at - the machine had the qualities to create the right sort of cartoony and carnival atmoshpere. It's a real funny game...

Fiendish_Freddy's_Big_Top_O'Fun - Amiga
Basically the game was pure slapstick from start to finish - and you had to perform six acts to perfection. The reason why was shown to you in a humorous opening scene that was straight out of Warner Bros Cartoons with the 'contract' shown and the speedy way the characters exited the screen.

The game was similar to many of the multi-event sports games of the time (such as Hypersports).

However, Fiendish Freddy differed not only by its surroundings (circus events) offering a comedy element, it also offered a loose plot and a clear goal of winning $10,000. Bring it on!

Enjoy the carnival with Fiendish Freddy - Amiga It's all slapstick action for each event. Watch your high-diver being blown off course by a giant hair dryer, check out your tight-rope walker as his fingers are removed from the rope one by one (even if you win you loose!), see the ridiculous items you have to juggle whilst riding a unicycle and so on.

The funniest thing for me in this classic game was the judges. Instead of giving accurate scores for each event they resort to poking each other in the eyes, punching each other, choking each other and flinging custard pies across the screen. Still, they are more sensible than Louis Walsh.

All in all this is the type of game the Commodore Amiga was built for; the graphics, sound effects and music are all spot on - and it ran even better on an A1200 with a hard-disk as the amount of disk swapping got a little annoying on a single drive machine.

Make sure you see the end of game sequence, it'll make you chortle.

Classic Game Action - Funny Stuff (Amiga Version):


Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

03/02/2011

Funny Games - Terrormolinos - Classic ZX Spectrum Game

Terrormolinos ZX Spectrum
Another funny game on my beloved ZX Spectrum (don't worry I'll be covering other formats, honest!) that really did make me laugh back in '86.

This classic game from Melbourne House was a text adventure based around the classic British package holiday abroad. It was released towards the end of 1985.

The aim of the game was to survive a two-week family package holiday (in the fictional resort of Terrormolinos - note the play on words in the title) with your wife Beryl and the kids Doreen and Ken.

They even got the characters names just right for a Speccy game like this.


Terrormolinos ZX Spectrum
This classic game was completed by taking ten photographs - allowing for a variety of snaps depending on when and where you chose to take them.

This is where the real character and humour of the game stood out. At the end of the game your snaps could be viewed in a slide-show style giving you reminders of your trip.

At points during the game you were bound to make a fatal mistake, and a nice snap would appear (perhaps of you being burned to a crisp by the sun) showing your error.

Even the cassette inlay had a suitably cheesy design:

A Funny Text Adventure For Your Spectrum
Terrormolinos was a funny game from beginning to end. From your house in Slough with it's tacky wallpaper, paintings and ornaments, the typical resort hotel, the nightclubs complete with dancers throwing their 'moves' and so on.

The developers paid a lot of attention to detail and got the tone, jokes and atmosphere of the game just right.

In fact, you would probably have more fun playing this text adventure than the real thing!

Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

28/01/2011

Funny Games - Cobra - Classic ZX Spectrum Game

Cobra ZX Spectrum
I'm kicking off this blog with an arcade game by perhaps the greatest ever programmer to grace my favourite 8-bit computer, the Sinclair ZX Spectrum.

Jonathan Smith programmed the game of the movie back in 1986, and it was as hilarious as it was brilliant.

As soon as this classic game loaded up you just knew you were in for a real treat.

The impressive loading screen to Cobra- ZX Spectrum If you elected to redefine the keyboard controls you were asked to choose Up, Down, Left, Right... and 'Murder'! Not the usual 'Fire', but 'Murder'. Genious!

From the 'Rocky' inspired music ditty on beginning the game, to the cartoon style sprites (moving across perhaps the most impressive scrolling ever on the Speccy) this game was funny from the word go.

Prams would make our hero go weak at the knees, your lives were represented as boxing gloves, baddies were headbutted away (sending them flying across the screen) and eating hamburgers gave you a temporary weapons powerup.

Your weapons powerup time limit was represented by a slowly dissolving rubber duck - once again nothing to do with the movie but utterly funny!

Rocky/Cobra headbutts some bad guys
The incidental little tunes were lively and fitted the style of the game superbly.

When all of your lives were gone it was 'game under' and you could enter your name in 'the morgue'.

This game was a rarity. It was better than the film it was (loosly) based on, was very playable, a technical marvel and made the player laugh. Funny stuff and a true classic game from Ocean Software.

Classic Arcade Action:


Classic Games, Arcade Games and Funny Games

26/01/2011

Welcome to Funny Games

Hello all.

This blog will look at funny games from the past and present.
For those that read my other blogs you will know that I am a huge fan of retro gaming and retro computers.

This blog will feature games across many formats, from the 8-bit era, the 16-bit era, online browser based game and modern consoles.

There have been many funny games over the years and I aim to look at as many of them as possible. Suggestions welcome!

Cheers,
The Retro Brothers.