Sunday, 13 October 2013

Retro Review - Dashin' Desperados (Mega Drive / Genesis)

Three's a crowd

Dashin' Desperados is a peculiar game indeed. Essentially an on-foot platform racing game, you are put in the boots of a cowboy named Will who must race against a rival gunslinger who goes by the name of Rick. The point of this competitive racing? Why, to get laid of course - what greater accomplishment could there be? For waiting at the end of each course is a slut named Jenny. I have deemed her to be a slut due to the fact that she doesn't seem to care who wins the race and will happily make out with the victor. She also starts each race by beckoning the two cowboys with a sultry "come on", while showing off her cleavage in a low cut dress. I think she just wants a threesome, but is hoping the two guys take the initiative.

She must be pretty good in the sack, as these two knuckleheads will try any dirty trick up their sleeves in order to win a night with the tart. Bombs, electricity, ice and barbells are all used in the race to slow your opponent down. Not only this but even the wildlife seem intend on putting a stop to your plans for coitus, with birds and the like swooping down to knock you on your ass, losing you valuable time. Items such as skateboards and mine carts can also be jumped on for a quick boost in speed, but usually ends up with you crashing into something.

The game is always split screen, with the computer controlling Rick on the bottom half in one player mode. Multiplayer is far more enjoyable though as it's far more satisfying to race against a human player - swearing and laughter will usually ensue. The constant stream of obstacles in your way and slightly confusing routes, coupled with the fact you are both lobbing weapons at each other throughout, results in some madcap antics that will have you cursing each other throughout the race. You can never be sure who will win, and races are usually extremely close contests - often the other player will suddenly appear from a high platform or manhole in the floor to steal victory from you. The single player mode also features a kind of boss battle, which sees you chasing after Rick who is now driving Jenny away in a car. To stop him you have to lob bombs at the vehicle until it is destroyed - unfortunately it goes on for far too long and is a bit of a chore to be honest.

The graphics are perfectly acceptable but certainly nothing special. Some of the choices of location are a bit odd too - you would think a game with cowboys would be set in the wild west, but here you start in a city environment that seems completely out of place. The scrolling is not as smooth as it should be though, and due to the fact the screen is always split, you never feel like you can see enough of the world around your character to fully enjoy the levels. Sound is also merely acceptable, with forgettable tunes that go on and on as you race.

It's good fun in small doses, though the single player mode is quite frustrating as it often feels cheap and unfair, and the jumping doesn't feel as responsive as it should in a game that requires such quick reflexes. I would only really recommend Dashin' Desperados if you have a friend who will play against you, and even then it will only keep you entertained for a few goes.

Title : Dashin' Desperados
Developer : Data East
Year : 1993
System : Mega Drive