Game Name: Data East Arcade Classics
Publisher(s): Majesco Entertainment
Release Date(s): February 19, 2010
ESRB Rating: T
Travel back to a simpler time…where a chef fought giant eggs, hotdogs, and pickles with pepper, saving President Reagan was key to the world’s safety, and running other cars off the road wasn’t considered road rage. Data East is back and bringing its greatest hits to you!
Data East Arcade Hits is a compilation game collecting some of the greatest hits of the company Data East (1976-2003) which was a big producer of games video games. The game was only released for the Nintendo Wii in 2010.
With a huge collection of games, it would be hard to pinpoint “the best” Data East games and with the collapse of the company in 2003, I’m sure the rights to many of the games have gone to other people. There are some big games missing from here that I would have loved to see make it to some system (I also wish that they had released this for the other “next” gen systems instead of just the Wii.
The actual interface of the game is a little clunky with multiple menus and strange ways to get to them. It seems to me it should have been pretty easy to come up with a smoother control pattern for the basic menus of the game, and this feels like you are trying to work a computer keypad for some of the controls.
Before I get into the games that are on the game, here is what I wish had made the collection. Captain America and the Avengers (I’m guessing Marvel now has the rights), BreakThru (the fun jumping car game), Cobra Command (helicopter game), Ring King (boxing), Robocop and Robocop 2 (which I’m betting are also tied up legally), and Commando (which was actually a Capcom game but produced by Data East). I also wish you could get different versions of the games…like maybe the home consul versions which were sometime actually improvements.
The Data East Games Included in the Collection Are:
Bad Dudes Vs. Dragon Ninjas (1988)
Called Bad Dudes on the NES release, this game is actually quite fun. It is also known for introducing the “cut scene” which had been used before here, but became a standard in almost all video games after this game. “Are You Bad Enough, Dude?”
Burger Time (1982)
Worth the purchase price alone, Burger Time was one of my all-time favorite games growing up. I loved Burger Time…but for the Intellivision. Here, Burger Time is a bit more difficult and doesn’t quite have the charm of the consul version…but it still is fun!
Burnin’ Rubber (1982)
This is another great game which makes the game worth checking out. Once again however Bump ‘N’ Jump as I knew it, was really good for the Intellivision…here, the arcade is quite close to the home version and even carries the same fun music.
Caveman Ninja (1991)
Released in the U.S. as Joe & Mac for the Super NES, this is a nice side scrolling game. The controls are a bit jerky and you might call “no fair” on occasion, but with unlimited quarters, you’ll make it through. Not included, however, are the Joe & Mac sequels which would have been a nice bonus for players.
Crude Buster (1990)
Called Two Crude in the U.S., Crude Buster is a bit like Final Fight. The game has player punching and fighting their way through a multitude of enemies and is a quick, fun play.
Express Raider (1986)
Express Raider is a rather weak game and features your character’s attempts to rob trains…it is rather forgettable.
Heavy Barrel (1987)
With no Commando, Heavy Barrel is as close as you’ll get. The game is a top scrolling game characters running toward you shooting. As with Commando, sometimes the targeting and range of your weapons is a bit tough…and don’t even bother trying use those grenades.
Lock ‘N’ Chase (1981)
Lock ‘N’ Chase was Data East’s Pac-Man rip-off with the twist that you are a bank robber (picking up coins instead of pellets), and you can lock gates behind you to protect you from the police…Once again, the arcade port just doesn’t match up to the home game, and is quite hard to play.
Magical Drop III (1997)
The “newest” game in the collection and I’m guessing both Chain Reaction (Magic Drop 1) and Magic Drop II were repetitive. It actually is a fun little puzzle game along the lines of Bust-A-Move.
Peter Pepper’s Ice Cream Factory (1984)
This is the follow-up to Burger Time that nobody wanted. The game involves you kicking ice cream balls around. The controls and goals of the game are confusing. A Burger Time game called Diner was released for the Intellivision. I wish, I wish, I wish this game was available somewhere. It was flawed but fun.
Secret Agent (1989)
An obvious “James Bond” style of game (right down to the Golden Gun), this is a fortunate game to have unlimited quarters. Your agent will die multiple times, but this is another short but fun game you can rush through.
Side Pocket (1986)
A billiard game seems a bit pointless wish real billiards being readily available and simple to play even for beginners. At the time it was nice, but now with even better versions of pool, it can be skipped.
Street Hoop (1994)
It This feels like an obvious rip off of NBA Jam which came out in 1993. The game play is fast and quick, but NBA Jam got it right…Street Hoop did not.
Super Real Darwin (1987)
The scrolling shooter game is a lot like Legendary Wings or Xevious. It isn’t a bad game, nor does it do anything revolutionary.
Wizard Fire (1992)
This game was kind of a fun surprise. The game is a sequel to Dark Seal (Gate of Doom) and almost plays like Gauntlet and Golden Axe. It is quite short and you can play through it in about 20 minutes.
Overall, you can probably live without Data East: Arcade Classics, but if you can find it for cheap, it might be worth it. Games that you can quickly play are always worth wild to me and this game is full of games like this. I do like that the makers built in their own “Achievements” to give you something else to do while unlocking extra content.