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VC Alternative, Week Three: The Adventures of Dr. Franken
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


Joined: 26 Aug 2003
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Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:57 am    Post subject: VC Alternative, Week Three: The Adventures of Dr. Franken Reply with quote

You know what's out on the "real" Virtual Console today?



Some kind of lame monkey game.



A game about eating breakfast I think?



haha what the shit



Cutesy cartoon crap!

We don't want any of those! We hate classic games, we only like bad games that never came out! Instead of that stuff, let's play...



The Adventures of Dr. Franken!



Sure, you could play a game about finding your lost bananas or hanging out with snails or whatever, if you're into that baby stuff. You know what Dr. Franken's about? It's about FINDING THE SCATTERED REMAINS OF YOUR DEAD GIRLFRIEND. Some bastards decided to cut her up and hide her various dainty body parts in odd corners of the castle you live in, and you have to find them all.



Being that this game was made in the UK in the early 90s, it involves running around, jumping, and collecting objects in a very particular order, while being given vague clues as to what you should be doing next. See also: every ZX Spectrum game ever.



This game was conceived, drawn, and designed by British developer Movietime Ltd., who are still around today as ELITE SYSTEMS - THE BEST NAMES IN MOBILE GAMES. Movietime developed the game from the ground up for the Game Boy, and outsourced the NES conversion to another developer, Cygnus, a company I know very little about. Apparently they did the Genesis version of Hardball '95, if that means anything to you.



The game is nearly identical to the Game Boy version. In fact, you can basically just plop a Game Boy screenshot anywhere on here, and it will more or less match up. As you can see, there are some minor differences...notice how the recliner looks more natural on the Game Boy version. This is because, I suspect, both the NES and Game Boy SKUs were being developed simultaneously, and the NES version was cancelled prior to completion.

So why was this game canceled? Well, according to this article on NES World, Movietime was not satisfied with the conversion that Cygnus was doing, and pulled the plug themselves.

The port is...well, it's competent, but it really isn't as good as the Game Boy version. Cygnus' choice of colors sucked, a lot of the cool lighting and shading effects from the Game Boy original are missing, and the control is really really bad. Not that it was any good to begin with, but the jumping feels even more hit and miss on the NES.

But enough from me, do you want to play it? Are you sure? Well, okay.

Here's a video I uploaded to Google that plays the game from beginning to end in 25 minutes. It's technically a "tool-assisted speed run," except that I didn't aim for perfection at all. In fact, I accidentally recorded about 40 seconds of me being lost!

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-4459672803253705175&hl=en
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Tongueman



Joined: 27 Feb 2004
Posts: 631
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 3:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I once got this one wrong too, so I feel your shame: It's Motivetime.
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


Joined: 26 Aug 2003
Posts: 4192
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 3:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tongueman wrote:
I once got this one wrong too, so I feel your shame: It's Motivetime.


That's lame. I refuse to acknowledge this.
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ProgrammingAce



Joined: 26 May 2006
Posts: 580

PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 5:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TheRedEye wrote:
Tongueman wrote:
I once got this one wrong too, so I feel your shame: It's Motivetime.


That's lame. I refuse to acknowledge this.


Wait, you can do that?
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's my website.
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GDRI



Joined: 29 Nov 2006
Posts: 352

PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, Motivetime was an "associate company" of Elite's, according to the company website. Elite goes all the way back to the Spectrum and C64 days.

http://vgrebirth.org/games/search.asp?developers=971
Here's some other stuff Motivetime did, in case you're curious for some reason.
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 6:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They also did another unreleased NES game called Grid Grabber.
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Smeg
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Joined: 26 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 12:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fuck a Grid Grabber.
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handofg0d



Joined: 13 Jun 2006
Posts: 455
Location: PA

PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 2:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For some reason I really like the characters sprite animations. Sure, he controls as accurately as blind sniper, but at least he looks good doing it. I found her arm before getting frustrated with the controls.
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KlarthAilerion
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wassa SKU?
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's a more accurate term for "version." Dr. Franken for example had three SKUs: NES, SNES, and Game Boy.

Does my games industry lingo confuse and frighten you???
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kap
Minister of Paranoia
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Joined: 28 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It applies to more than just video games, you fancy man you.
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 12:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a new term I learned a few days ago that I really like:

Barks - this refers to voice cues that aren't necessarily spoken dialogue, i.e. when a character grunts while jumping, or makes a noise when getting hurt.
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Smeg
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

KlarthAilerion wrote:
Wassa SKU?


Spoken like a man who's never had to work retail Sad
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KlarthAilerion
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I worked retail in a new and used games store on and off for two years or so, I've just never seen that term/acronym before.
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kap
Minister of Paranoia
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 4:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The term is a lot more applicable in a more corporate setting than a new/used type place.
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rbudrick
not rubrdick


Joined: 09 Oct 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SKU=part, or part number.

This game was incredibly hard to follow in the video. I got completely lost at every turn and exit. Frank, how long did you play this to figure it all out and how confused were you with that insane mapping system? Reminds me of Rambo for NES.

-Rob
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nixon
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SKU = Stock Keeping Unit
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TheRedEye
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi
The Internet's Frank Cifaldi


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rbudrick wrote:
SKU=part, or part number.

This game was incredibly hard to follow in the video. I got completely lost at every turn and exit. Frank, how long did you play this to figure it all out and how confused were you with that insane mapping system? Reminds me of Rambo for NES.

-Rob


The map works fine. Each room can have four exits, north south east or west, and the map easily shows you which exits the rooms have.

I followed a walkthrough for the Game Boy version, and played through it fast! The video's not meant to show you what the game's like as much as it's there to show you the entire game, since you're going to want to stop playing it after maybe twenty minutes. It's just a public service.
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Nosuch



Joined: 01 Dec 2006
Posts: 107

PostPosted: Wed Feb 21, 2007 7:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So why is this guy running around in his pajamas anyway?
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