Release Date: 1989
Players: 1 – 2
Alternate Title: N/A
Model #: CX26177
This port of the arcade title is an admirable attempt at bringing it to the 2600.
You are an Ikari Warrior, a member of the elite combat specialist force. Your mission is to go deep into the jungle and murder every single enemy soldier you come across. Sadly your superiors only saw fit to since two of you, armed only with a machine gun and grenades, which makes you wonder who you ticked off up the chain of command.
Both your machine gun and grenades have limited ammo, which is to be expected with the latter but annoying when it comes to bullets. You start out with ninety-nine bullets and ninety-nine grenades, which can only be described as a horrible distribution of resources. Of course carrying ninety-nine grenades explains why you die in a single touch, since it’s obvious you just explode. Since all your ammo replenishes when you die, your best strategy is to just hold down the button as you run through the jungle, constantly sending bullets and grenades flying.
Due to the hardware limitations, there are rarely more than two enemies on screen at any given time. They can be a standard soldier, a tank, or a helicopter. The soldiers can be shot or blown up, while the machinery requires a grenade to take out. There are also other obstacles, like bunkers and buildings, that can be taken out with a single well placed grenade. For those looking for a little more firepower, there are enemy tanks that you can commandeer. Be careful though, because due to some questionable design choices, the tank will explode if it runs out of fuel.
As would be expected, there are a host of hardware limitations that really hold this game back. In addition to the lack of enemies on screen, the single button on the controller means your machine gun and grenades are tied together. In order to throw a grenade you have to hold the button down, which wastes three to four shots. The silver lining is that your character is so big and slow that the fast moving enemy projectiles will kill you long before you run out of ammunition.
Despite the issues, this is a solid attempt at porting the arcade game. However the game came far too late to really make any impact at all, since by 1989 the Sega Genesis had been released so for the same amount of money you could pick up games like Revenge of Shinobi, Golden Axe, and Phantasy Star II. Really difficult to compare the two really.