Yeah, I wasn’t to sure how to title this one. But when it gets to the point, it’s the same thing. Back in 1982, there were a whole lot of games being released in the arcade and not a lot of quarters in my pocket. But that really didn’t stop me from going to the arcade.
Back then, during the summer time, I used to love to go to the Iowa State Fair, which happens to still be one of the biggest fairs around. There are still thousands of people that come to the fair to see the 4-H exhibits, animals, midway, food on a stick and more. If you ever make it to the Iowa State Fair, I highly suggest the Pork Tent. It is totally awesome. But back to the story. I on the other hand, really didn’t care about all of that stuff, except for the food and the flea market. But my one goal when I went was the giant circus like tent with over 100 games. Yup, the state fair arcade.
With all of the games to choose from, it’s weird how I was always drawn toward Jungle King. This game was so easy to play and extremely loud. When you hit that start button, there goes Tarzan with his yell. I swear, I think this was the loudest game there. But the game is divided into four levels. Swinging from vine to vine was the first level. Then you get to swim in the water trying to avoid or kill crocodiles. After that you are running up a hill with falling boulders going down the hill. And then finally you need to jump over some island natives to save your girl. I hated that last level. But for some strange reason, when I see the game then and even now, I am drawn to play it. It wasn’t even the best game there. There were plenty others. Maybe I liked it because it was my height.
But that same year, the game was recalled apparently because of the likeness and sounds are too close to Tarzan and there was a copyright issue. Over a video game? Ok, in todays world, I can understand, but in the 80’s? So they recalled the game and re-released it with a Jungle Hunt title. It is all with a explorer with the cliche’ hat and outfit. But EVERYTHING, is the same. But even that didn’t stop me from playing it. Just no yell of the mighty Tarzan….Oops, I mean the mighty guy who lives in the jungle that can talk to animals.
After the fair was over, I head to the mall to my local arcade, who for some reason didn’t have the game yet. As disappointed as I was, I still played other games. But I went to two other arcades and none of them had it. Did I cry about it? No, but it still got me curious as to why this was. Finally I get to go to Shakey’s Pizza. One of the best pizza places in town, sadly gone, but there it was, right between Tron and Carnival. Now if you want to talk about decisions. Jungle Hunt against these two awesome games? Well I will say that Jungle Hunt did get my money…… One quarter. Sorry, the King/Hunter is dead in this situation. Tron will always get my money first, and also carnival. How can you now play a game with the circus theme playing?
So when I played the Jungle game two weeks ago, I played for a couple times enough to bring back the memories of every place that I have played this game. It’s weird how those memories keep coming back to me. Maybe I should write a blog about it. Oh wait, I guess it is time to…..
Keep Calm and Insert Coin