MACH RIDER / Nintendo / NES (1986)


Ugh. This was Nintendo's attempt at a clone of Sega's Hang-On, but with some weird dystopian Mad Max overtones that added a gun to your bike and had you shooting aliens or something. There's three modes of play, but they're basically all the same game - drive down twisty road in this ugly brown desert wasteland, trying to get to a checkpoint within a certain time, while dodging oil slicks and water puddles ahead of you and watching in your rear view mirror for alien bikers sneaking up behind you. The enemy bikers are really what kill this game, when they get close they suddenly veer sharply towards you and unless you go completely off the road there's almost no possibility of dodging them. They also tend to come in these long chains, so if you dodge one, another is hot on his heels while you're trying to get the first one in your sights, and it just never stops. That's how the first two modes of play work, the third is just a standard racetrack with no enemies, but this drops the game from being way too hard to having almost no difficulty at all. The only other thing in this game worthy of mention is that there's a track editor, but there's not much you can do with it - lay out some spaghetti noodle roads, but once you drive on them you're still playing the same craptacular game with the same craptacular crazy biker enemies. Also, the NES really wasn't meant to do 3D, and the choppy scrolling during the hairpin turns might actually be enough to give you a headache (literally, it did it to me). This is one of the worst games Nintendo ever put out and by no means should you ever consider paying money for it.

   Even in the demo mode, it only takes the dude about two seconds to die.

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Gameplay Video