Posted on December 5th, 2008 in Flashback, Kenzan, SNES, Video Games by Sasha Kenzan

Go go Power Rangers Go go play something else!

System: Super Nintendo
Year: 1994
Company: Bandai Entertainment
Genre: Licensed beat-’em-up

Armed with nothing more than a cheap plastic sword, the Red Ranger battles a skeletal Frenchman.

In 1993, kids everywhere noticed a significant change in their beloved Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  Michaelangelo no longer wielded his nunchaku, and the show was getting progressively cheesier.  Parental advocacy groups complained of the violence, turning the show into a half-shell of it’s former self.  But with the loss of the violently fun TMNT, a new show cropped up.  Just as cheesy as the turtles, but live-action, violent, and spandex-covered.

The Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers had entered our lives.  And just like every franchise aimed for children, a video game soon followed.  And, in true "let’s get this out as quick as possible to milk this cow before it keels over" fashion, what we got was a game that capitalized on the popular genre at the time; walking to the right and punching stuff.

The game features all five original rangers, and really, it doesn’t matter who you pick, as they all play exactly the same.  You start unmorphed, fighting your way through a level punching and kicking through as many putty patrollers as you can.  Unlike the show, where the putties were only grey, many other colors of putties are in the game, and each colors will determine how tough they are.  When you reach the midpoint of the level, the level boss appears, and you morph into a Power Ranger.  In public.  After you just beat up a billion putties.

Morphing really does nothing aside from restore your health meter and give you a screen-clearing "bomb", which you’ll rarely need as there are, at most, only about three or four putties on the screen at one time.  When morphed, your punch is exchanged for your Ranger’s weapon (for example, Red has a sword, Yellow has daggers, Black has an axe, Blue has a lance, and Pink has a bow, which ironically doesn’t shoot arrows unless you hold Up and tap Y), and does the SAME EXACT DAMAGE.  After you beat the boss, you then get transported to another level, where you pummel more putties, fight another boss, rinse, repeat.

The lack of a two-player cooperative mode, plus the fact that the game is linear (meaning you’ll see plenty of area on the screen, but you can only go left or right, not up or down), really hurts the game.  The controls are stiff, and the movements are slow.  The programming is tight, but in a field of thousands of other beat-’em-ups for the SNES, there is really no need to play this unless you are a MMPR fan and you have no other friends to play games with you.

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