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♫ What do you get when you take Godzilla, Ultraman, Kamen Rider, Voltron, Saved by the Bell, and put ’em all together? You get Power Rangers! It was like an extended toy commercial, with action figures being staged in epic shots. It was martial arts, it was comedy, it was giant Japanese rubber suit monsters!
It was mechanical dinosaurs! It was robots coming together to make bigger robots! A turtle with a traffic light on its head! Monsters that would make wisecracks! And rap! And written around all these Japanese action scenes was an American teenage sitcom.
Power Rangers uses stock footage from a long-running Japanese show, Super Sentai, a tradition which still continues to this very day, with two separate franchises both going on at the same time. Adapting a show that’s crazy to begin with, and then making an American-Japanese hodgepodge, taking the insanity of both cultures and putting them together may seem like overkill, but no, it went over big! In fact, in its prime Mighty Morphin Power Rangers was so popular it was like the successor to Ninja Turtles! And of course that meant video games.
Video games up the ass. It’s so far up the ass it would be impossible for me to play every one of them, so here’s just a sampling of SOME of the Power Rangers games, and I’m counting on at least one of them to get my blood boiling! Let’s start at the beginning, I have a couple Super Sentai games on the Famicom.
Keeping in mind, this is the show that spawned Power Rangers. The first game, released in 1991, is Super Sentai Jetman. This is based on the 15th season of Super Sentai, basically before Power Rangers came into existence. You pick your character and then have to beat five stages in any order you like. It’s a simple, mediocre side scroller. The controls are smooth enough, and there’s nothing too dumb here, except the pause button is Select instead of Start, which I’m used to.
Start is the special move – every time I try to pause the game I end up wasting the special move. Two of the characters use a sword, two of them use a gun, and the other does something different. It’s like they tried giving all the characters unique attacks, but got only halfway before they ran out of time. And why wouldn’t you pick the character with the long-range attack anyway? When one of them dies, you lose that character, sort of like Ninja Turtles on NES, but the levels are so short and easy. You’re more likely to die on the boss, and in that case you start the stage over anyway.
The boss battles are the most awkward, frustrating parts of the game. It’s like two toasters boxing! You just mash buttons, then block, then mash more buttons, hoping to land some hits. it does look cool, I’ll give it that, but what’s up with the jump-punch?
I am not a fan of jump-punching. How do you expect to hit something like that? And why does one of the legs shrink? Like matching a frog’s leg with an elephant’s leg. Huh. Every now and then you can charge up for a special move, and that’s where it’s at!
Yeah, psshhh! Psshhww!! The next game, released in 92, was based on Zyuranger, which was Super Sentai’s 16th season and the one which became the basis for the first season of Power Rangers. And listen here, it has the Zyuranger theme song! ♫ ZYURANGER, ZYURANGER ♫ ♫ DENSETSU NO SENSHI-TACHI YO ♫ ♫ ZYURANGER ♫ This game is more linear, you go through the stages in a set order, each stage you’re a different Ranger.
Once again it’s pretty self-explanatory, you just run to the right and fight off enemies with a gun. Halfway through you get a new weapon, but what kind of attack is that?! You’re just blindly swinging a knife around, like Michael Myers at the end of Halloween 2.
The 1981 version of Halloween 2 https://mycasinoindex.com/game/happy-halloween. What the hell? I have to say, I barely got through the first stage. With this platform-jumping, spikes and lousy short-range weapon, I almost gave up. But now I’m at the boss!
And I almost got it… Alright! Yeah, sometimes it takes a while to succeed, but if you keep trying… … what just happened? No… No, tha- that wasn’t real… So I beat the first stage – again, and sure enough, it drastically switches as if you’re suddenly playing a different game. A game called Megazord and Dragonzord Play Ping Pong!
It’s Megazord and Dragonzord playing ping pong! Oh my god… Imagine if when the new Godzilla vs. King Kong movie comes out, if it’s just them playing ping pong.
Yeah, King Kong plays ping pong! And then fuckin’ Forrest Gump shows up! Would you be disappointed, or would it be the most historically amazing thing you’ve ever witnessed? As you progress through the game, you take control of the different Ranger characters, and surprisingly, it gets much easier, probably because the other weapons are so much better. I can’t think of any other game where all the difficulty is in the first stage and then it goes downhill!
Is that the Blue Ranger, or Mega Man? In between each stage there’s these weird mini-games, like ping pong as I mentioned, also there’s a bomb toss game, which is basically hot potato, except it’s hot bomb, blows up in your face. Then there’s a trivia game.
Unfortunately I can’t read Japanese, so I’ll just pretend I got it right. But anyway, the password system is perhaps one of the strangest I’ve ever seen. It’s three images of a Ranger, each with three selectable poses, so it’s not really a password, it’s more like a “pass-pose”. And if you try different combinations, you have a good chance of guessing. Unlike the show, there was no American adaptation of this game for the NES.
There’s an unofficial cartridge that changed the title to Power Rangers, but the only difference is the label and the title screen, which glitches like crazy. But could you imagine if there was a Power Rangers NES game that took stages from the Japanese game, and added American stages, just like they did with the show? To simulate this experience, just play something else like Family Feud, and then switch it to Super Sentai Zyuranger. Yeah, it’s pretty amazing how much mileage you can get from using stock footage. You know what, to get through this video, I might as well just use stock clips from past Nerd episodes.
ASS! FUUUCK!!! DIIIIEEEE!!!! [screaming] The Famicom games are mediocre, but not terrible, so let’s step into 16-bit territory. Next up, Power Rangers on Super Nintendo. Well hot damn, it has the theme song and it sounds pretty good!
It even has vocals! ♫ “Go Go Power Rangers!” ♫ You can select anybody from the initial Ranger lineup, each one of them has their own fighting style, their own special moves, which actually makes it fun to try out all the different characters! It’s just an average beat ’em up game, all you do is run around and punch people, and it can get monotonous, but for the time period, it’s good! Like Robin Hood. You start out in your regular clothes, then you power up in the Ranger suit.
The only thing they slacked on was the Rangers all have the same exact body type, which is surreal to see Trini, for example, turn from thin to muscular. Each Ranger has their unique weapon, and a grand sweeping power move that wipes out everybody on-screen. Yeaaah! But the game fights you back on it eventually with a giant laser that comes out of nowhere.
Augh, it’s just like a giant middle finger, saying “FUUUUCK YOOUUUU!!!” I hate this thing! Oh wait, it kills enemies too?
Now I like it. And you power up your health with chicken legs. Save some for Simon Belmont!
It ends with a Megazord battle, which is clunky and only a slight improvement over the battles in the Famicom game, but it looks great! For the time this was very satisfactory. It was just like playing an episode of the show. Nothing much to get angry about here.
There’s another one on Super Nintendo, Power Rangers: The Movie, the game. Featuring Ivan Ooze! Remember that, because otherwise it has nothing to do with the movie.
It’s another beat ’em up, but there’s this weird jumping thing you do to alternate between the background and foreground plane, like you have two separate two- dimensional planes that you walk on. Couldn’t they just take a hint from all the other beat ’em up games? But the big problem with this – It’s way too hard! I had no problem finishing the other game, so why here can’t I get through the first stage? Let’s check out Power Rangers on Sega Genesis.
Okay, so it’s a Street Fighter-style game. A shitty one that uses only two of the buttons! Yoga Fire! The problem here, once again, is the difficulty.
The game just punishes you over and over again! It forces you into using cheap moves. Yeah, I’ll just keep spinning around, how do you like that? There’s not much to say here. Back in the day, if you had nothing better to do, this wouldn’t be so bad, but now it’s just like finding an old, dried turd on a playground.
Just forget about it. It no longer smells, it’s not hurting anybody, it doesn’t need to be tended to, just walk away. Then there’s the Sega CD game. Well, if you felt like watching the show in shit quality with a bunch of button commands on-screen, then this is the game for you.
It’s trying to be like the Dragon’s Lair arcade or one of those type of games, but in Dragon’s Lair, if you fail to press the button at the right time, you see a different outcome. A different video is loaded to show the character dying, or whatever. Here, no matter what you do, the episode continues to play normally. You’d think if you missed a button, the Power Rangers would get hit or something. They actually do get hit sometimes, but that happens either way, whether or not it syncs up with what you’re doing is pure coincidence. All they did was take the show and put a little button game on top of it.
This is the cheapest way possible to turn a show into a game! That would be like watching an episode of Green Acres with button commands! What sense does that make? Wanna play Power Rangers on Sega CD? Just watch the show while playing Simon Says!
At least it’s not Simon’s Quest. Alright, let’s crank up that diarrhea dial, here’s Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue on Nintendo 64. Okay, first of all.. I’m not trying to be vulgar… … but what does that look like? You shoot laser projectiles out your vagina!! Yeah, I had to double-check that it was the Yellow Ranger, because it looks more like the Mustard Shit-Stained Ranger.
The objective is to clean up green slime. Nice, that’s appealing, I thought Superman had it bad having to go around flying through rings all day, the Power Rangers have to clean up nasty mucus! At least there’s enemies to fight, but even that is boring. All you do is run and shoot, most of the buttons do nothing, there’s no jump, no crouch, no sidestep, nothing like that. This is a game that was designed to be played on an Atari controller.
You can even run through enemies! Yeah, mow ’em down! Oh look, they’re coming out of the walls.
It’s like the Twilight Zone. And when you run behind the buildings, they vanish from reality! But not completely, they become a shadow of their former existence. Yeah, ever had that happen? Happens to my house all the time.
It’s a very spacious game, there’s no hallways or boundaries to guide you around. If you run in any direction it’ll be minutes before something eventually blocks your path. How far do these boundaries go? I just keep running and running and running and running… And for whatever reason they didn’t know how to loop the music, so instead it abruptly stops and starts up again. [music quickly fades out, then fades back in] It’s a very jarring shift in tone, not to mention it’s the same music the entire game!
Oh, except the title screen, which is repeated for the cutscenes and all that, so only two music tracks total! After that you get this awkward driving stage where you rescue people. “Ugh!” “Over here!” “Alright!” Love hearing those voices over and over again!
“Over here!” “Alright!” “Over here!” “Alright!”
Over here! Alright! Over here! Alright! Over here!! Alright!!
OVER HERE!!! ALL RIIIGGHHT!!! Next there’s an awkward Megazord fight where you battle against a semi-invisible monster. It’s all in first-person view, except when you manage to get close it switches to third-person, but it’s hard to stay close, so it always switches back and forth.
Ugh… it’s morphine time. I need some morphine. Then you get these flying stages. Again the goal is to rescue people, not much to say. “Awww!”
Overall there’s only four types of stages, at least from what I’ve seen, and the problem with this game is that it’s too simple! N64 was capable of a lot more. [sigh] It’s bad, but in a boring way. I’ve seen worse, see, my standards are much lower.
It’s not making obnoxious screeching sounds, you don’t die in one hit and have to start the whole thing over, it doesn’t glitch so bad you can’t play it, you don’t have to drive a bus for eight hours, it’s not bright red and you have to hold it up to your eyes! It’s actually like a game, just a real boring one. So, I dunno, I’m not really feeling the anger too much with this one. I wasn’t gonna stoop this low, but let’s try out the Game Boy versions.
So here’s Power Rangers on Game Boy. Well, it’s basically the same thing as the Super Nintendo version, so I’m not really gonna pick it apart. And what’s the point?
Of course it’s going to be worse on Game Boy. And don’t get me wrong, there’s lots of great exclusive games on Game Boy, like Link’s Awakening for example. The key word here is “exclusive”. I need to find something that isn’t trying to be like the Super Nintendo version, something different.
But okay, that’s weird. That’s the most confusing continue screen I’ve ever seen. So I punch the word “NO” away, so tha- that means I picked “YES” because “NO” got punched away, or does that mean that the word I punched is the word I p- — yeah, yeah, I picked “NO”… fuck.
Okay, so let’s try out Power Rangers: The Movie, the Game Boy game. Alright, this one is different. An exclusive game, but is it exclusively bad? Well, let me ask: If this follows the movie, the Yellow Ranger would be Aisha, not Trini, which means they got the skin color wrong.
But it IS Game Boy, and the only reason I even know it’s the Yellow Ranger is because these games were optimized for the Super Game Boy with their own color design and border graphics. Otherwise, take a look at the Rangers. Which one’s your favorite? The Dark Green, Dark Green, Dark Green, Dark Green, Dark Green or Dark Green Ranger? Mine’s the Dark Green Ranger. The gameplay is pretty much the same as most of the sidescrolling Ranger games.
You choose a Ranger, choose a stage, take out enemies, move to the right, get in the Ranger suit, fight a boss, and so on. But the shit-factor skyrockets when you get an assful of bad hit detection, unresponsive jumping, awkward jump-punching, cheap boss battles, and randomly changing rules. Let me explain here: There’s a stage where you get in a mine cart… … or stand on top of it.
Classic. Imagine this Ranger doing his grocery shopping, does he stand on the shopping cart? Let me know if you ever see anybody doing that. Anyway, when you’re standing on the cart, the D-pad controls the cart’s movement from left to right, but as soon as another cart shows up, it changes! Now the D-pad makes you walk OFF the cart, which results instantly in death! I fell two feet from the ground!
How do you die?! Couldn’t it just take a little bit of health away? Why does it have to kill you?!
You’re supposed to jump to the second cart, which requires precision, timing, and distance. Naturally you’re gonna push right while you’re jumping, but pushing right will make you walk off the cart and die! Your sudden instincts make you want to control the cart to get to the correct distance, you’re so used to controlling the cart it comes unexpected when all of a sudden you walk off and die! If you’re still touching the D-pad when that second cart shows up, you die. If you let the carts touch, you die. Jump too soon, you die, jump too late, you die, you fuckin’ die, and now you know the type of anger I’m talking about!
Hey, name one game where the punch and kick alternates back and forth automatically. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie on Game Boy. When you hit the button, it’s a punch. Hit it again, it’s a kick. Then it’s a punch, a kick, a punch, a kick, you try to attack but you end up doing the wrong move!
You’ll never know if it’s going to be a punch or a kick! Unless you keep track the whole time! This problem escalates when you get to the sand… oh god, the sand!
Let me tell you about this: You have to punch and kick all the sand out of the way, and it’s a race against time because there’s a machine following close behind you. If it touches you, it’s a one-hit death. You have to get rid of that sand as fast as humanly possible. You can’t afford any wasted hits, which means you have to master the science behind this “punch-kick” phenomenon.
The top square can only be taken out with a punch, the middle with a kick or a ducking punch, the bottom only with a ducking kick. So not only do you have to know when it’s going to be a punch or a kick, but you also have to know when to be standing or ducking! The only successful pattern I found is duck-stand-stand, duck-duck-stand. I can’t even do it without saying it out loud!
Duck-stand-stand, duck-duck-stand! Duck-stand-stand, duck-duck-stand! Fuck-shit-shit! Fuck-fuck-shit!
Fuck-shit-shit! Fuck-fuck-shit! FUCK-SHIT-SHIT!! FUCK-FUCK-SHIT!!
FUUUCK!!! Oooh, now I’m angry! Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about, you fuckin’ game! Is that the way you like it?
That’s the way you’re gonna get it! Power Glove Power! Power Pad Power!
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♫ ♫ Go Go Angry Game Nerd! ♫ ♫ Go Go Angry Game Nerd! You Very Angry Video Game Nerd! ♫ Yeah… you fuckin’ game.