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Konami Beat-em-ups

Bayou Billy

S.P.Y. - Special Project Y

Crime Fighters / Vendetta

The Simpsons

Bucky O'Hare

X-Men

Batman Returns

Metamorphic Force

Gaiapolis

Violent Storm

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by Bobinator - March 12, 2015

Bucky O'Hare (バッキー オヘア) - Arcade (1992)

Japanese Arcade Flyer

American Arcade Flyer

By the early '90s, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles craze that had spawned so many games from Konami was quickly dying out. New Super Fighting Animal Team cartoons, for lack of a better term, were popping up by the dozen. Konami snatched up a surprising number of them, like Cowboys of Moo Mesa and Biker Mice From Mars, and made some pretty good games out of them. Bucky O' Hare was another such property, which spawned from an '80s comic book before hitting TV in the early '90s. Besides the arcade game, Konami would also put out an NES game, a pretty respectable NES platformer that's also worth checking out.

The cartoon itself was a pretty average show that spawned in the wake of TMNT. Somewhere in the Aniverse, the evil Toad Armada is conquering planet by planet, under the control of the evil AI Complex. Besides Bucky himself, you also have the choice of three members of his crew: Blinky the robot, the four-armed Deadeye Duck, and Jenny, who's some kind of psychic cat creature. They also carry around some human kid named Willy DeWitt, but you can't play as him. And so, the four heroes go on a murderous toad killing spree that they all seem to enjoy far, far more than they really should, going by the cutscenes.

Bucky O' Hare plays a lot more like something like Mystic Warriors or Cowboys of Moo Mesa, mostly since the focus is on projectile combat. Every character comes with a laser pistol, which means that you'll be doing most of your combat at long range. While every character does have a melee attack, done by moving close to an enemy and hitting the attack button, this generally puts you at a range you can get hit, meaning it's not something you want to use often. Every character also has a supply of smart bombs, which in fine shooter tradition, inflict damage on everything on the screen. You don't really have to be frugal with these at all, since you get two just for dying, and they do stack. With enough credits, you'll have enough to beat pretty much any boss, if you're feeling particularly cheap.

While every character is mostly identical in terms of stats, they each get a unique "gimmick weapon", which is basically a special move you can use an unlimited number of times. Bucky shoots an exploding sphere forward, while Deadeye Duck lets off a rotating energy shot that drifts outwards, for example. There's no alternate weapons aside from those, although you can find power-ups for your gun that make it shoot faster. Generally, though, your basic gun is so effective that that's all you ever really need.

The pace feels a lot closer to something like Contra than your average brawler, as well. There aren't that many points where you're forced to stop and kill enemies unless you're faced with a particularly big target, so you're generally always moving forward. Most enemies also only take one to a handful of hits to kill, meaning you're usually free to keep moving forward and shooting to make progress. What's also different is that while a lot of enemies have melee attacks, for the most part, you'll be dodging big, glowy bullets that look like they came straight out of your average shoot-em-up. This actually makes the game a lot easier than your average Konami brawler, so much so that a one credit clear would probably be feasible.

There are a lot of midbosses you'll go up against besides the main encounter for the stage. There's also a lot of times the game changes from the standard run n' gun action, like points where you maneuver around on a jetpack, shooting enemies and dodging electric rays. The game always manages to keep itself interesting, since you're generally moving forward, and it's short enough that it never really gets boring at all.

Much like The Simpsons, the game does a really good job of being authentic to the source material. For one thing, there's actually a lot more plot than most of these games have, with fully voiced cutscenes appearing between stages. In a really nice touch for fans of the cartoon, the plot basically serves as what's basically the finale of the cartoon series, with the game ending with the final confrontation with the evil AI, Complex. It's generally a pretty great looking game, too, with big, colorful sprites, and a ton of scaling used that never ends up looking too hokey. While the music isn't all that memorable, the game uses a lot of voiced lines, presumably coming from the show's actors themselves.

As unknown as it might be, Bucky O' Hare is certainly one of Konami's brawlers, even if it barely qualifies for the term. It's just so unique from everything before it that it stays new and fresh throughout the whole game, and it's generally a lot of fun the entire way through. It's sad that it never got some kind of home port, although, as said, the NES game of the same name makes a pretty good consolation prize.

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Bucky O'Hare (Arcade)

Bucky O'Hare (Arcade)

Bucky O'Hare (Arcade)

Bucky O'Hare (Arcade)


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Additional Screenshots


Konami Beat-em-ups

Bayou Billy

S.P.Y. - Special Project Y

Crime Fighters / Vendetta

The Simpsons

Bucky O'Hare

X-Men

Batman Returns

Metamorphic Force

Gaiapolis

Violent Storm

Discuss on the Forums!

Back to the Index


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Next Page >>>

Page 1:
Arcade

Page 2:
NES

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