"A video game comic and blog that would have been awesome and relevant 10 years ago. Maybe." -Famous Website
Today's comic features a great old favorite of mine, Blaster Master for the NES. The "story" of the game is that your pet frog escapes you watchful gaze, only to stumble upon the family's stash of radioactive material, resulting in one super-sized frog. He jumps down a man-sized hole that just so happens to be an unattended bat-cave, complete with a bad-ass ride and a form fitting suit, ready for use by the first passerby. And so begins the all-American classic tale of a boy, a frog and their search for the meaning of life.
Okay, so that last line is me embellishing a bit, but the rest of it is true. I remember when I played the game that it was a little odd, but I was young and didn't really pay it any mind. I do remember feeling a little weird having to kill said frog later on for tank parts, but hey, do you really need a froggy friend when it could mean an awesome tank upgrade? I would say not.
It's funny looking back at the game now and showing it to Pie, who thought the intro was rather funny and out of place. I told her not to think too much about it and just enjoy the game for its neat elements. When we were gathering some references for this comic, we ended up finding out that the "story" of the game was added by Sunsoft specifically for the American release. There was no intro in the original, and everything was meant to happen in space, which makes the game make a whole lot more sense. I have no idea why Sunsoft America decided that adding a silly little narrative was important, but I suppose that teenage and mutant things were very "in" at the time, so they should roll with it.
I could go on and on about how silly it is to see American specific edits made in games - it's always been a huge pet peeve of mine. This edit to Blaster Master seems harmless, but I was more upset when censors felt it necessary to shield our fragile little minds from sex, violence and religion. When I was young, I always hated the idea that somewhere, someone was convinced that we, as kids, couldn't handle adult topics. Of course I know now that it was more to protect themselves from a backlash of angry parents. Luckily, there seems to be less of these pre-emptive edits being made and more emphasis on exercising freedom of speech and promoting parent responsibility and awareness.