Battle Clash FI

SNES A Day 87: Battle Clash


Approximate Release Date: October 1, 1992
Genre: Light gun shooter
Developer: Intelligent Systems
Publisher: Nintendo

Well, I did it. I beat a game. I mean, Battle Clash is a Super Scope game, but it still counts.

Battle Clash has the player face increasingly difficult bosses in one-on-one first-person combat. The game’s presentation is very reminiscent of a fighting game, but the fights are standard for light-gun boss battles. The opposing robot flies around and shoots energy balls at you, and you have to shoot down the energy balls with your rapid-fire shots and use charged shots to cause appreciable damage. The robots have special weak points that you’ll want to aim for, and as robots take damage they’ll suffer cosmetic damage or even lose limbs and armaments. Is that guy’s cannon causing you problems? Blow it up!

The shooting is a lot of fun and I genuinely didn’t realize I was at the end of the game until the credits rolled. Battle Clash lasted about 40 minutes in my playthrough, with only nine or 10 levels and no difficulty options. Even though the single-player mode was over in a flash, I became so annoyed by all of Battle Clash‘s non-stop talking and exposition that I almost didn’t notice that there’s no ending. You kill the big bad and … it ends. There’s a lot of questionably translated dialogue here, with every fight having pre- and post-match scenes that go on and on, so why leave it at a fade-to-credits after the boss?

There’s also a time attack mode where you play through the single player in a random order. It seemed alright, and if the difficulty modes actually introduce new behavior for the enemies, I could see it being a good mode. The robot opponents in Battle Clash tended to have very predictable attack patterns, so any way to mix things up a bit is welcome.

Ultimately, the big issue with this game isn’t a fault of the game at all. Few people will ever get to experience Battle Clash the way it was meant to be played, since not only is the Super Scope a rare and expensive find, it doesn’t work on modern televisions. I played this game on an emulator, which uses the mouse to approximate the light gun gameplay, and that almost certainly trivialized the game. I was able to react faster and more accurately than I would with the shoulder-mounted plastic bazooka. I think Battle Clash might be a very difficult game in the proper, intended circumstances but I have no way to tell.

But it says something I still had fun with Battle Clash, despite that.

Tomorrow: There are no robots in Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf, but there is a lot of shooting.

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