Earlier today, that huge “Michael Jackson auction” was called off.
This means you won’t be able to get your hands on his Super-Deluxe R360, Galaxy Force 2, original Ms Pacman or Donkey Kong cabs.
But the UPSIDE is… the world will be protected from the lesser-known gaming monstrosities in his collection.
WARNING: Do not read on, if you are offended by poor quality arcade games.
Let’s start with one of the older shockers in the MJ collection..
In 1992, Mortal Kombat was one of the arcade’s biggest games.
Time Killers… was not.
Incredibly poor graphics, fairly dodgy gameplay, and how’s this for a challenge? When you want to perform a “death move” you simply press all 5 buttons at once. Oh dear.
Mind you, (Monty Python fans rejoice) you can win a bout, despite having both your arms cut off…
Revolution X was a 1994 lightgun arcade game (starring Aerosmith) in the style of Operation Wolf. Set in an alternate future, the New Order Nation government has banned rock music, TV & videogames. Sadly, they did not ban Revolution X.
The levels & enemies used digitised graphics (like Narc or Pit Fighter) and the game was a real chore to play. The helicopter boss at the end of level 1 required hundreds of CDs (your special weapon) to bring it down. The game hasn’t aged well.
Sydlexia has lots of screenshots, if you must view them.
I’m not a massive fan of arcade driving games. But I *love* Crazy Taxi. MJ must like it too – he’s got THREE Crazy Taxi machines! But that doesn’t excuse him owning Smashing Drive.
This “game” rips off Crazy Taxi’s gameplay, adding “weapons” but subtracting “graphical quality”. And everything happens the same way each time you play the levels. This sort of thing is fine in a shmup – but not an exploration driving game.
And WHAT led them to having such a bulky cabinet – and such a tiny monitor?
Beach Head 2000 is unrelated. And – not fantastic.
As you can see in the photo above, there’s a 3D helmet to wear. You turn it to face enemies that approach from all directions, and shoot them. And that’s about it.
It’s uncomfortable, and you really look like an idiot playing the game.
MJ didn’t just buy bad videogames. He also picked up a few shocking pinball machines too.
Austin Powers is a game that I hotly anticipated prior to release. Alas, when I saw one “in the flesh” it disappointed before I even put my money in.
The playfield graphics are really terrible, in that “using photographs rather than paying an artist” kind of way. And the game just isn’t fun. It took Stern Pinball a few more years to start making games as good as The Lord of the Rings or The Simpsons Pinball Party.
So – what’s worse than a bad pinball machine… How about a bad FAKE pinball machine!
TAB (an Austrian company) released these arcade pinball simulators in 2007. Unfortunately, the physics programming was bad – which meant the “pretend pinballs” didn’t even move realistically. (Quite an unforgivable problem – considering PC games like Pro Pinball had achieved this over 10 years earlier!)
Sure – pinball simulators made sense on the Commodore 64 (David’s Midnight Magic) and the PC Engine (Devil Crush). But who wants to put money into a pretend pinball in an arcade or pub?
Well, that’s it. I hope you never come across any of the games above in real life.