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What the Smerd? - Classic Game Talk (Battletoads)
Editorial by 
April 09, 2011, 05:48:54
I’ve mentioned Battletoads (NES) before in previous threads with me wishing it was on the VC etc but I wanted to actually talk about the game and what it meant for me as a gamer.

I first played Battletoads at a friends house - and we couldn’t get past the speeder bike level. Yes we played it together..yes we got mad at each other but yes, I wanted this game for Christmas.

Needless to say, I got it, and had a wonderful (insert several curse words, frustration fits, and the occasional tossed controller) time playing this game.

Battletoads did something unique in the gameplay department - something only a handful of games have truly done (and I mean done well) in the history of videogames. Each level played a little differently - it wasn’t just the same thing with more obstacles in the way or tougher enemies like most games did to throw you off. You would finally master beating up those Psyko Pigs in the 1st level, then you were plummeting down a pit with little blue electric boxes and big crows that threatened to cut your rope. After you beat that, you were back beating enemies up but ...what’s this?? A bike?

Holy S#!^ !!

After flying by the seat of your pants - and dying many times over by falling into the pit or hitting a wall going a million miles an hour, this is the moment when you either give up on this game, or keep trying. Each level was different so far...what’s the next one bring? What about the level after that?

Surfs up!!.... oh wait.. "Snakes...why does it have to be Snakes?"

Battletoads did have some secrets to help with the challenge. There were various places where you could gain infinite 1-ups which were handy because you didn’t have unlimited continues in this game. Warp Zones were handy too but were difficult to find unless you knew where to look.

At the end of all the chaos - the memorable boss fights, the obstacle courses, the frantic race to the bomb in level 10 (how many times did you DIE when your big oversized boot was just millimeters away from the bomb before the rat hit it?) you come across the Dark Queen and played an anti-climatic battle that ended with one of the worse endings ever. Oh well. For those of you who couldn’t beat the game, I pity you. Keep trying.

Not the best boss fight in the world..but when you made it this far, the battle was really tense - simply because the tower (level 12) was hell...

Even though the ending wasn’t the best, the fact that you beat this very challenging game was satisfying enough to most players. It never said “Thank you for your playing” or “A Winner is You!” at the end which would have made it worse (and funny) but it did convince me to play it again....and again. Love this game.

How about you?


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Posted: 04/09/11, 05:48:54  - Edited by 
 on: 09/21/12, 03:55:31    
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This was by far one of my favourite games when I was a kid. It was hard as heck and just dang frustrating. BUT it had that something that kept me going back until I finally DESTROYED that Dark wench.

For lots of people I assume the speeder bike level was their stopping point, but I powered through (and dammit, the game got HARDER!) I feel like playing it now. Yes, even in co-op.

I used to play this with a friend of mine and we'd often just beat on each other with walker legs in the first level. Good memories!

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 07:43:08
You guys have beaten this monstrosity!? Nice job!

One day, I WILL complete Battletoads. That and TMNT. For awhile I was whittling my way through the game, slowly but surely. I think I reached stage 9 or so last time I played. I need to get good at it again...

The Speeder Bike is the first brick wall, so to speak, but the game does indeed get even harder after that. I usually warp past the horrid ice level, struggle through the pain-in-the-butt snake stage, stumble across the nightmarish shmup-type level, and crawl on my belly up that vertical spark level with the boss...but by that point, I've just used up too many lives.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 07:49:01
Smerd said:
Oh well. For those of you who couldn’t beat the game, I pity you. Keep trying.


Awesome thread, though personally, I don't care enough about Battletoads, and am not enough of a masochist, to try to beat it.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:08:51
I don't think I ever got past the speeder bikes. Actually I know I never did. I didn't own the game though, so I didn't get to play it much.

I did beat Battletoads in Battlemaniacs for SNES though. Albeit it's probably nowhere near as difficult. But the speeder bikes in that one are also a bitch. Probably the toughest part in the whole game, though there are certainly some other tough parts.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:16:40
What an asshole of a game.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:20:49
One of the best damn games I've played on my NES. I was the only kid in my neighborhood who could actually best the speeder bike level. Now... the buzzball stage busted my balls badly.

Super Battletoads was also fantastic... as was Battletoads and Double Dragon. Even the Battletoads Arcade game (hard to come by), which is much like the SNES version, 'cept you can play all 3 Toads and it's gory as hell, was badass. Really wish Rare would've done more with the series though.

EDIT: I decided to look up Battletoads on the net, and what do I find? A Wikia page. Oh yeah!

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:40:52  - Edited by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:55:57
I remember the HUGE coverage this game got in Nintendo Power, the number of pages they dedicated to this game was unheard of at the time.

And I truly enjoyed playing the game. It just seemed so advanced, in graphics, sound, and gameplay.

And count me in as another person who never got past the speed bike level. My friends and I tried many times but could never get past it. It always looked like we would make the jump, and we never did.

Ah, if it were only on the VC.

Incidentally, I greatly enjoyed playing the Game Boy version as well. In fact, I would say I have fonder memories of that game since I actually owned it, while I did not own the NES version. That game was so advanced too, being a Game Boy game. And I made it really far, but I don't remember if I beat it or not.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:44:06  - Edited by 
 on: 04/09/11, 08:44:57
My brother and I rented Battletoads/Double Dragon when we were little, think we made it to the speeder bike level before we had to return it...which I'm pretty sure was like the second stage.

A friend gave me Battletoads for the Game Boy, though, and I remember finishing that game while on a band trip. I would guess that it's much easier than the others, though, if only because there was no speeder bike stage. Barely remember it, though.

As it stands, I'm really not that big a fan of classic beat-em-ups, and that combined with the games' frustrating difficulty keeps me from dipping further into the series. That said, there's something amazingly badass about the Battletoads and the games' tone. And, as you said, each game have tremendous variety in its stages.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 18:52:22
Smerd's word, eh? I like the sound of that!

Never finished Battletoads, I think I only made it to the motor bike stage. I've played more of the arcade version, though. That was really fun.

Posted by 
 on: 04/09/11, 23:27:40
I only ever beat this game with the aid of a Game Genie, solely for infinite continues. I usually got stuck in level 9, could make it to level 11 on occasion, and only got to level 12 ONCE without cheating (and I'm pretty sure it was one of the times when I managed to get 50+ lives in level 2)


My friend and I would play together, and we could make it to level 9 quite easily, but level 9 did not lend itself to two players on the screen whatsoever. Grrr.

Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 01:35:02
Fun fact: I played on a hockey team that used the Battletoads name and logo.

Different colors, though. Wish I still had that shirt...

Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 01:53:46  - Edited by 
 on: 04/10/11, 01:54:12
chrisbg99 said:
What an asshole of a game.

Hah. Well said.

Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 02:40:03

It isn't even that I dislike the game, it is rather fun to play, but damn is it hard. I think the farthest I ever got was the surfboard level and my nerves were shot.

Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 04:01:50
I make fun of people now who couldn't beat it (Frankly the bike level wasn't too much of a challenge for me - I always looked forward to it..but levels 6,9,11 and 12 were just brutal....10 was tough too but it was just so much fun cause you were nervous as hell running down the tower) but if given this game on VC, I wouldn't have the time or the patience to go through it again. NES ROM is a different story though..Save States rule..

Ninja Gaiden (1 and 2) was tough..I only rented the game so I didn't have time to get very far. I always wanted to see the next cut scene. Are they harder then Battletoads? I saw AVGN's Ninja Gaiden series and it made me think "man I'm glad I didn't try too hard at those games.."

NP's coverage of the game really amazed me. It quickly became one of my fav. NES games ever. I bought Battletoads in Battlemaniacs with no hesitation and was dissapointed in it. It was much easier to beat, and the levels closely mirrored that of the NES one. It was like a 16bit remake. I enjoyed it though, the ending was a bit more refined but it still doesn't hold a candle to the original. I haven't played any other BT game other then the first level of the 16bit Battletoads/Double Dragon ROM.

I have this weird feeling that I've done this all before....hmmm

It's Interesting to hear everyone's opinion on BT... thanks guys!


Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 06:43:21

Oh, I'm with you. haha. I was much more persistent with games as a child, though.

Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 07:43:04
Smerd said:
Ninja Gaiden (1 and 2) was tough..I only rented the game so I didn't have time to get very far. I always wanted to see the next cut scene. Are they harder then Battletoads? I saw AVGN's Ninja Gaiden series and it made me think "man I'm glad I didn't try too hard at those games.."
I think (any) Battletoads is way harder than Ninja Gaiden. At least the first NG, that's the only one I've played. It helps to have infinite continues on the VC, though.

Posted by 
 on: 04/10/11, 07:52:24
Battletoads was the best worst game ever. Or maybe the best worst game? I don't know.

What I remember about this game is it came out around the same time as the Game Genie and I've always had the theory that this is no coincidence. Battletoads contains a dozen levels that are all quite different. And yet, no one could get past the third level. How could one experience the entirely different levels when you could never get far enough to access them?

Imagine that poor programmer who programmed the level where you are chased around by the orb. Surely less than 1 out of every 10000 players would ever get that far without cheating. What's the point? Why spend so much effort making these levels that no one would ever see?

Game Genie. Level select. Infinite lives. And you were off to see how different and awesome each level truly was.

If any game deserves an in-depth documentary about its inception, it's Battletoads.

Posted by 
 on: 12/20/13, 11:27:01
I'm the only person I know that can still beat the game legit (no warps, no extra lives trick at the beginning). Battletoads is one of the hardest games that I've ever played.

By the way, level 11 was broken with two players.

Posted by 
 on: 12/20/13, 15:35:40

Yeah I heard , but my friends long gave up on this game so I pretty much experienced this game myself after level 3. For the longest time I never knew about the glitch.
This game was hard but fair. I didn't have the game genie but the reason why I love this game is because the satisfaction you got from beating it legit was beyond huge.

Posted by 
 on: 12/20/13, 16:33:12

I wouldn't call it "fair". It had a "fair" number of cheap deaths if that's what you mean.

Battletoads was a really, really fun game back in the day. I'm sad the franchise died almost 20 years ago. If Rare rebooted that, it would tempt me to get an XBox One...but only a little bit.

Posted by 
 on: 12/20/13, 17:21:07  - Edited by 
 on: 12/20/13, 18:21:01
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