Wayne’s World

Wayne’s World (not the game, but the SNL skits and movies) was one of those really, really bad parts of the early 90s – like PM Dawn or AoL chat rooms – one of those things that seemed really cool and funny at the time, but looking back seems painfully lame now.It’s one of the reasons people my age – a bit too young for Generation X and way older than the stereotypical Gen Y-er, can’t get too high and mighty when making fun of the 80s.All a person has to do is say the words “Wayne’s World”, and any argument we have about our own cultural superiority compared to the 1980s is shot down.It’s like “Oh, you don’t think fringe jackets and shoulder pads were cool?Well, at least we never thrusted our crotches at each other and yelled ‘Schwing!'” Faced with a counter-argument like that, all we can do is admit defeat, put on our Zubaz pants, organize our completely worthless Pro Set football cards, and think back to better days.

Not pictured:  Better Days

In a weird way, the Wayne’s World game might be one of the most accurate representations of source material in game form.Oh, certainly not because it follows the plot of the movie or skits or anything.But the way it captures the “feel” of Wayne’s World by being a collection of bad early 90s game-making fads.Think of all the “revolutionary” game features from that era that never really worked – digitized graphics, poorly recorded sound bites, level designs and enemies that made no damn sense at all (in the first level, you make your way through a 10-story music store while being attacked by bagpipes… for some reason) – they’re all here.Play this game for 10 minutes, and you’ll be reminded of everything that was wrong with 16 bit platformers.

It also doesn’t help that this game looks like it was made in someone’s basement on a budget of about $9.And for once I’m not exaggerating, I mean that literally.That’s not to say that it actually was, just that it looks like it was.And I say that while having experience making homemade games in my basement on budgets of about $9 (most of which went to Pepsi and Little Debbie Zebra Cakes).Wayne’s World isn’t much more than a ZZT game – a very bad one by the way – with better graphics.And by better graphics, I mean “the worst possible graphics you could put into a Genesis game without making people wonder if their TV is broken.”Games this poorly made are the kind of things you would normally see in bargain bins at, not even a game store, but maybe a grocery store, for about $3 back in those days.And certainly not on a game console where they might have to live up to some kind of quality-control standard – they would run on DOS and the instructions would be written on an index card.I know – my uncle used to get me and my brother games like this for Christmas.Our extended families didn’t really exchange gifts much, so…I don’t know, it was kind of a break-even with all the relatives who didn’t give us anything, I guess.

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