Being one of the few people in the civilized world without an advanced gaming system, I miss out on a lot of the social aspects of video games, such as inviting people over to wiggle around in front of an Xbox Kinect, or having friends. However, the alone time does afford me the opportunity to explore some of the deeper philosophical aspects of video games, such as “Do the games that we choose to play define us in some manner?”, and “Why don’t you ever start a game with 4 lives?”
One of the things that I have figured out is that some video games are based on premises that seem a lot more plausible that others. I’d classify the Mario franchise as rather implausible, as Italian plumbers are rarely sent into combat against racistly-named enemies. On the other hand, I could definitely see a Mega Man-esque future in which we’re forced to take on evil robots named after whatever random piece of crap happens to be fitted to their head. Personally, I’ve been itching to fight Man Man for a couple years now.
In the event that we find ourselves under circumstances that force us to blurt out “This crap this is EXACTLY like a 90s video game!” then I want to be the one that says I called it first, much like the jerk at your office that is going to come in and say that he had Whitney in the death pool this year (hey, it wasn’t me).
Skate or Die 2: The Search for Double Trouble (Nintendo)
Is there anything better than starting up a new game of Skate or Die 2 and going bananas to the title theme? “SKATE…OR…DIE…SKATE OR DIE…DIE DIE DIE DIE!” Holy shit this is awesome. I can’t help but think this theme lead directly to modern NRG. Sometime in the post-apocalyptic future, we’ll all be skateboarding around our own Elwood, fending off rival boarders with paintball guns and eggs. And our reward for survival? Tacos, fries and cassette tapes. I still have yet to figure out whether that’s something to look forward to. DIE DIE DIE DIE.
Jurassic Park (Super Nintendo)
It’s only a matter of time before Jurassic Park. We’ll probably start with woolly mammoths because we really like Snuffleupagus and have some pretty good ones waiting in the freezer. Eventually we’ll get ballsier and move on to something like 5 dollar footlong dragonflies, and then it’s only a hop, skip, and a jump away from a legit-ass T-Rex. The SNES version of the game is realistic because you’re forced to play as a human (Dr. Grant) and you can electrocute yourself before the game even begins, which I could definitely see myself doing in real life. Meanwhile the SEGA Genesis version gives us the false hopes of one day becoming a philosoraptor. And we all know that’s way to awesome to ever happen.
ToeJam and Earl (SEGA Genesis)
I am convinced that there has never been a more accurate version of future Earth rendered since 1991. Funky aliens will one day stop by and note how Earth is covered in cheese and filled with incredibly radical things (like root beer, hula girls, tomato sling shots), yet most of the people are and will remain complete wankers. Except for Santa. Santa is still cool.
Little Nemo: The Dream Master (Nintendo)
So there’s nothing inherently realistic about feeding candy to animals and then wearing them around like super suits but guess what this is DREAM WORLD. I think that this is very close to what actual dreams are like, right down to creepy ol’ Flip scaring the bejesus out of me with his weird green face. Also many of my dreams do involve varieties of insects chasing after me in some form or another. As for the giant toadstools, sometimes you go outside during the spring and you see these really big mushrooms pop up out of nowhere so I wouldn’t discount it as a possibility. Sleep: the great equalizer.
Wing Commander (Super Nintendo)
In a few years when AMERICA THE GREAT gets back on its feet and we are blowing through money like Iverson again, we’re definitely making space a top priority. We’ll set up little lunar colonies and fly spaceships back and forth to make tons of space money until the a race of huge bipedal felines starts fucking up our shit. Then we’ll get very depressed about the whole thing and we’ll sit around and try to drink our space problems away. By the way, welcome to the world of Wing Commander! The very first scene of the game involves you walking around a bar, listening to 8-bit lounge music and interacting with other depressed pilots and an Indian bartender named Shotglass. You know the future is pretty bleak when Indian parents are doling out names like Shotglass. Better drink up.