Chill Box: Battletoads

Written by: Karen Benitez

Games | Jul 19, 2018

Battletoads Classic games Hardest games NES

If you haven't played Battletoads in the NES, you haven't gamed at all.

Known for its notorious difficulty, Battletoads has gained legendary status as among the hardest games ever. Dark Souls ain't got nothing on this. 

Well, to be precise, what gave Battletoads it's notoriety is the second half of the third stage called "Turbo Tunnel."  It's where you navigate a hovercraft, dodging obstacles and jumping over gaps. There are indicators to let you know if you need to dodge or jump. Sounds simple enough until the game picks up speed. The speed keeps picking up, faster and faster, until the indicator itself couldn't keep up. That stage has been a road block for many players in the past, myself included, and has been conquered a few weeks ago after re-discovering my old NES intact.

For an NES game Battletoads is really polished. There are various attacks with animations that go with them, including an uppercut with a giant fist - Ms. Marvel-style. You can pummel your enemies with standard 1-2-3 combos, or you can smash them and then finish the job with a giant kick. Death animations are plenty as well, such as getting thrown off your hovercraft and getting squashed like a pancake.

There are also a solid number of variety in the game that helps keeps it fresh. There will be standard beat 'em up levels, to a level you rappel downwards while kicking enemies in the face, the hovercraft segment, and a stage where you climb a tower by following a giant snake that's functioning like an actual Snake game, the one you see in old Nokia phones.


The different approach to gameplay is pleasant but also frustrating as you need to learn what you can and cannot do. And in classic NES games, you only get a set number of continues before starting over. At least you get continues here unlike in Double Dragon III. There are secret warp zones you can take to skip a level or two, which is always awesome.

Microsoft's presentation at E3 2018 will see through a new Battletoads game for Xbox and Windows with a 2019 release window.

About the author: Karen Benitez

Skater, musician, carpenter, gamer. Karen is interested in culture, science fiction, and Cthulhu. She participated in MMA bouts, got her ass kicked many times, and ended up with broken bones. Life is good.


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