It’s Friday night; it has been a long, sick week. I’m going to take it easy tonight, hook up the Sega Saturn console to the real TV to eliminate lag, and shove through that Batman Forever arcade game. And if I have time, maybe a little Clockwork Knight while I’m at it.
Followup: More thoughts about playing Batman Forever:
- The game is just fine when played on a lag-less setup as it was meant to be, and quite fun. I may also take this opportunity to play Astal, one of the most sensory-pleasing action games ever produced.
- I still don’t understand half of what’s going on in this game. But I guess as long as the action keeps coming fast and furious, who cares? I have, however, figured out that the copious bat symbol powerups are not for health.
- The game action can sometimes wander up to the top of the screen to where it is obscured by the power meter. Bad form.
- Halfway through my continues, the game switched me from using Batman to playing Robin. Not sure if I accidentally chose that. They’re both equally capable in this game. Of getting hurt, at least.
- One level pits you against yet another horde of enemy thugs against the colorful backdrop of a high society party where the people appear fairly unimpressed as though the mighty battle is all just part of the evening’s entertainment. The game portrays this audience with digitized actors, common during the epoch just preceding the interactive movie genre.
- Hey! The audio cut out! Not sure it it’s the game, the console, the TV, the cables, or my ears. On top of that, soon afterwards, the game gets into a state where an arrow is constantly beckoning me to move to the right, but the game will not allow me to go further. I understand that game houses are under tremendous pressure to get these licensed games out by the time the movie is in theaters; perhaps this is the end but the devs had no time to add a proper ending sequence?
Followup #2: Clockwork Knight is even better in a lag-less condition. At its core, it’s just a side-scrolling platform game. But there’s boundless creativity on display. However, there is also a gambling feature that makes typical Vegas games sound sane. You can collect coins throughout the game. For what purpose? I wasn’t sure so when I was first offered the opportunity to gamble them between rounds. So I figured I had little to lose. At one game I wagered 15 of my coins. They call the game a type of roulette but it’s really more of a 7-box Monty. 2 of the boxes have a coin while the other 5 are jokers. Keep your eye on the boxes with coins because all 7 will spin around quickly. The graphics on the Saturn make this pretty much impossible to track visually so it’s basically a game of chance when the “wheel” quits turning. Anyway, I guessed right on this round. Having put 15 of my coins in play, the game offered me a winning of 1 coin or the chance to let it ride and double my winning! Grrrr… Does this have a basis in conventional gambling? Can you win back a fraction of the money you wager on a single game? Is there such a thing as 1-to-15 odds?
I eventually discovered what the coins are good for: 20 are worth a continue, which I would have almost considered priceless in this game. Notwithstanding, Clockwork Knight is a very enjoyable and visually engrossing romp.