Swat Kats

Review by mattyjmania

I love Super Nintendo. I mean, I LOVE Super Nintendo. I am a huge SNES Fanboy, and will defend most games and find the beauty and joy in games that others may overlook and write off as a "bad game"

That being said, Swat Kats by Hudson Soft is NOT one of those games.

Swat Kats is a side scrolling platformer, a genre well loved, respected, and possibly the most common genre on the console. That coupled with Hudson Soft, a well establish publisher, you think you would have a "win" as far as this game is concerned. Well, you would be thinking incorrectly.

SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron was an animated television series produced by Hanna-Barbera and Turner Program Services. The first hint that this might be a bad game? It only ran for 2 seasons. While there are many GREAT games based off of cartoon TV series' like Duck Tales, Rescue Rangers, Bucky O'hare, GI Joe, Goof Troop, and Batman, all these games share a common theme: Likeable characters from a well written cartoon. Now I grew up in the 80's 9and early 90's I suppose) so I may have missed the window when this show ran (1993-1995) but you would think I would have at least heard of it, right? well....I havent.

So, the game starts you out getting to choose from 1 of 2 characters: T-Bone or Razor. THAT alone should say enough. Any game that features a main character called "T-Bone" is probably one you should stay away from. The main problem with the chracters is that they have projectile weapons (i played as Razor on my last go at it) but you need to basically be on top of your enemies to use them! Why even give them a projectile if you basically have to be in punching distance to use? It is extremely misleading. 


The stages are in the vein of ducktales (original nes) in which you can select where you want to start. I will discuss 2 of these levels, as that is all i had the patience for. First: the carnival level...ok...looks fun. It WAS fun, until I got to the platforms. The "land box" or where you can actually jump to and land on the platform is ridiculous. You need to land DIRECTLY on the center of the platform or you will be plummeting to your death. Granted, I have played many a many platforms so it isnt a skill issue. It is a crappy game design issue. You would think landing on/near the edge of the platform would allow you to remain on said platform wouldn't you? So, after wanting to throw my controller through the screen, I selected the "city" level. Not too many complaints as far as the first 1/2 of the level is concerned, other than just an overall cliche game design, but it is the 2nd 1/2 of this level that REALLY did it for me. You see, it takes you to fight a giant monster that is menacing the city. To get to the monster you are in a fighter jet, sounds cool enough? The kicker is the fighter jet is a top-down view that uses mode 7 graphics, as well, you can only move left and right, not wherever you would like which a) makes no sense from the perspective b) is really annoying as far as avoiding the monsters flying at you. The worst and I mean WORST part of it all is the screen is spinning the entire time you are doing this. Slow at first, but as you get closer to the boss, it speeds up. I like mode 7, I like theme park rides (IE: i dont get motion sick etc) but I do NOT like the constant spinning. I challenge anyone to play this part of the game and NOT want to vomit where you sit. Thats right, the game is so bad it made me want to throw up. 

The pretty much sums up Swat Kats for me. A game so bad that it made me want to puke.

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