Review by Shady

"It is bad, but it's not the worst.."

Bokosuka Wars, an old side scrolling adventure game, has been widely regarded as one of the worst games of all time since it was exposed to GameFAQs by the legendary Pat Uhler. Curious as to how bad it really was, I decided to give it a try for myself. At first the game seemed horrible but to be honest I almost started to like it after a while. Believe it or not, Bokosuka Wars is not as horrendous as some say, but it is still quite unpleasant.

Once you first start to play Bokosuka Wars, you may be completely underwhelmed by the game screen. The background of the game is pitch black with only the main character, the enemies, and some redundant scenery as the only other objects on the screen. The scenery is completely useless, as you can walk right through the trees that are supposed to block a path. Enemies are a common sight, however, but there aren't very many different kinds of enemies to encounter. All of them have appalling textures with even worse animations. Thankfully graphics don't make a game because this would be of poorer quality than it already is.

Perhaps the best part of the entire game is the sound. While not crushingly great, it is bearable. There are two basic music tracks in the game, the game screen and the ''WOW! YOU LOSE!'' screen. Both of them are incredibly average for a NES game, but that is understandable considering this game was released in 1985. Not surprisingly, the sound effects are also average. The most common sound effect is the one you will hear during battles, especially since you will be fighting quite a bit in this game. As a matter of fact, that is the only sound effect that I remember from the game. More effort should have been put toward the sound, but it is still the best part of the game.

Now, with the audio and visual aspects of the game out of the way, let's head straight into the gameplay. Bokosuka Wars is a side scrolling adventure game. It seems that you play as a knight that is out to kill the king, or something similar. You start 600 meters away from your goal and you must s.l.o.w.l.y make your way to the king. Along your journey, you will encounter dozens of enemies, usually all in one area, and many things that block your path, such as trees, cacti, and bricks. Enemies will often follow you but will get stuck on the scenery, allowing you to get past them freely without having to bother heading into battle.

That leads me into my next point, the battle system. I had heard many stories about how winning a battle just happened at random, but I do not believe those are true. You see, when you start a battle with an enemy, a bunch of weird icons start flashing across the battle along with a B button symbol. By pressing the B button as fast as you can and as many times as you can, you have a good chance of winning the battle. It turns out that battles are really just mindless button-mashers that require no skill at all. Just press the B button as fast as you can and you should be fine. However, if you do happen to lose a battle, the game will end and the now infamous ''WOW! YOU LOSE!'' screen comes up. If you have the patience to make it through a full stage, you will find that the king himself is actually a pretty easy fight if you stick to the button-mashing technique. If you do successfully make it through, you will receive a ''BRAVO! YOU WIN!'' screen and you will go on to the next stage where you do the same thing all over again. Not fun by any means.

Bokosuka Wars is bad, but it is not the worst game of all time. Despite its mindless battles and absurd traits, it is definitely underrated although not by much. If you like bad games, check it out. Even if you don't like bad games, give it a try just so you can say, ''I have played Bokosuka Wars - and survived!''

Final Analysis:
Graphics 3/10 - very plain with little detail
Sound 5/10 - tolerable
Gameplay 2/10 - repetitive and boring; no real skill required
Control 3/10 - jamming the arrow keys down and repeatedly pressing the B button is not good control
Overall 3/10


Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 06/03/01, Updated 06/03/01


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