What if movie tie-in games never stopped being weird?
LJN's infamous Jaws for the NES
LJN's infamous Jaws for the NES

What if movie tie-in games never stopped being weird?

Keyboard Geniuses is our weekly glance at a few intriguing, witty, or otherwise notable posts from the Gameological discussion threads. Comments have been excerpted and edited here for grammar, length, and/or clarity. You can follow the links to see the full threads.

Play Ball

Anthony John Agnello look at an odd adaptation of the movie Major League that never made it to the US. The game was nothing more than your typical NES-era baseball game with sparse Major League-themed accoutrements. Anthony argued that not only was it a bad way to represent this particular movie, but it went against the majority of NES-era movie tie-ins, which often took strange liberties with the source material. Unexpected Dave lamented the death of bizarre film-to-game adaptations and came up with a couple ideas for how today’s movie games could be made a bit more fun:

I’d love to see some modern non-violent movies get the LJN-style treatment.

Her is a top-down game in which you control Theodore Twombley. The OSes have rebelled and turned the city into a dystopian nightmare. Twombley must sneak through the city, avoiding mobs and evil robots, and find his cell phone before the battery runs out. Only Samantha can bring peace between the OSes and the humans.

Saving Mr. Banks is a light-gun shooter from the perspective of P.L. Travers. You must destroy all the animated penguins that Walt Disney keeps trying to slip into his adaptation of Mary Poppins.

And ItsTheShadsy recommended something that might fill the NES-comedy-baseball-game-shaped hole in all our lives:

If you’re looking for a good NES comedy baseball game (specific enough?), Base Wars will do you no wrong. All players are replaced by robots who can hit balls impossibly far and fire off pitches at unfollowable speeds. And any time there’s a disputed “safe” call at a base, the two players duke it out in a crude fighting game that can leave the loser dead. It is fully possible to win by murdering the other team.

For The Birds



One of the games we highlighted in August’s new release roundup was Hatoful Boyfriend. It’s a game about the first human accepted to a high school for talented pigeons. This isn’t the first time Hatoful has been released. It’s been around for a while, but this latest version has been cleaned up and expanded with the support of Devolver Digital, something of a boutique video game publisher. There’s a whole other side to this game, though, that I had no idea about. For those who are unafraid of spoilers, jynxed has a quick rundown:

Hatoful Boyfriend is an incredible experience, but you have to commit to it. I think it started off as a joke by its author, and at first, it does play like a joke, with some pretty funny dialogue and situations that play with common anime tropes. That’s amusing enough, but after playing a few routes, you unlock a secret story path that becomes a visual novel murder mystery. It reveals itself to be a completely twisted post-apocalyptic future, and it’s one of the most compelling stories I’ve ever played/sat through (“played” is sort of a stretch with these types of visual novel games).

After doing a little research, I can confirm that this alternate storyline is totally nuts. You can find more info on it at the Hatoful Boyfriend wiki.

Stumble Upon



For today’s What Are You Playing This Weekend, I talked a bit about some crazy Super Mario 64 videos about a YouTuber who came across a previously undiscovered Goomba and the laws of the game’s world that made it so hard to spot. It’s fascinating stuff. Down in the comments, we heard about a serendipitous discovery made by a young PugsMalone:

Twenty years ago, I found a password in Gargoyle’s Quest that I’ve never seen documented anywhere else. I was pretty shocked that no one else seems to have found it.

If you enter “BANC-HOU” in the password screen, you immediately get taken to the last village in the game but without any of the items or abilities that you don’t have at the start, so it’s impossible to get any farther in the game. It’s weird because you normally need to enter all eight characters of the password (the hyphen doesn’t count) before you get taken anywhere, but BANC-HOU has only seven. This must’ve been hard-coded into the game.

I got the idea because I was reading a Nintendo Power book with lots of passwords in it, and “BANCHOU” was a secret password in a game called Spud’s Adventure, and I decided to see if it worked in Gargoyle’s Quest. It’s Japanese for the leader of a group of delinquents.

And it’s true. I wasn’t able to find this password on GameFAQs or any other cheat code website, and it does work. I’m not sure if it’s the last village that you’re warped to, but the level I came across after departing was nearly impossible.

That does it for this week, folks. As always, thanks for reading and commenting. We’ll see you next week!

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