Monday, February 4, 2013

Cold As Balls Game Levels

During the summer, I talked about some hot as hell video game levels in an ill-advised attempt to take my mind off of the hot as hell weather that was at that time deep frying me in my own sweat. Those days are far behind now, and I can only look back fondly on the days when walking outside didn't instantly result in my balls freezing to my leg.

As it turns out, such frigid environments are well represented in gaming. "The Ice Level"(or That Fucking Level That Makes Me Slip Around Like a Greased Dipshit, as it's also known)  is a staple of uncreative game design. The fire level, the ice level, the water level, and the like are little more than a foolish attempt by game designers to summon Captain Planet.

What those fat cat big shot game makers will never realize is that you need heart.

Mega Man - Ice Man's Stage

The Mega Man games ran out of ideas for robot masters right away. In the very first game, they naturally went with the first ideas anyone would have when brainstorming during a meeting. 

"Fire Man and Ice Man. That's two down, let's go on break."

It's only after they exhaust those freebies that they had to resort to more creative (or less good, depending on how you look at things) ideas. What the shit is a Guts Man? Who knows, who cares. Later bosses have been accused of being lazy, thoughtless creations, but I imagine it took more time to think up embarrassments such as Tornado Tonion (a robot onion) than it did to create the first few.

"OK, we're half done already. What do we have in the fridge?"

Ice Man's stage is a real son of a bitch. I hate Ice Levels at the best of times, but Capcom had a real hard on for disappearing platforms here. A block would appear and you'd think "Oh hell yeah I'm stepping on that shit." then it would fade away and another one would appear somewhere else. 

This is what quitting a game to go play Ninja Turtles looks like.

"Just study the pattern" you might say. If I gave a shit about studying I wouldn't have more copies of The Flintstones: The Treasure of Sierra Madrock than I do diplomas.

This level pissed me off so much it didn't bother me that at the end I was electrocuting a baby.

His weakness is electricity, not fire, because *shrug*

Hoth - Super Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back 

(and also every other Star Wars game)

Do you remember that part in Empire when Luke takes down an AT-AT with the tow cable of his Snowspeeder? Of course you do, that part was all sorts of badass. Star Wars game developers want you to remember how awesome that was, and how awesome their game is, by recreating this David and Goliath scenario in every single game to bear the name. It has become a benchmark for how far gaming has come. When the next batch of consoles come out, I don't want to hear a long string of numbers and techno gibberish. Telling me it has 300 Vertex Gigashaders is like telling a hipster about bathing. Just tell me how awesome it can do Hoth.

We've come a long way, baby.

Sonic the Hedgehog 3 - Ice Cap Zone

This stage is great for exactly two reasons: Sonic enters the stage on a snowboard, displaying all the commitment to the 90's idea of X-tremitude that we expected from the Blue Blur, and having a rad-ass soundtrack. A product of a collaboration between Michael Jackson and Sega before both realized that that paring makes no sense, Ice Cap's stage music is a funky cool bass heavy tune. Here it is sped up and matched up suspiciously well with Jackson's "Who Is It".

If chipmunk Michael Jackson singing over a Sonic the Hedgehog song isn't the best thing you've heard today, please send me a link of whatever was better, because that shit must be awesome.

Super Mario Bros. 3 - World 6

The more astute among you will recognize this as not a stage at all, but a collection of them. There have been ice levels before Ice World, but these levels made them what they are today (annoying, mostly). Every Mario will have a few Ice levels just as surely as the likelihood that Princess Peach's security fails her.

Slippery ice paired with instant death hazards, a favorite of the Ice Stage.


  1. Gorilla Kicking Walls, Then Spackling Them With 45 Minute CompoundFebruary 4, 2013 at 7:26 PM

    "Fire Man and Ice Man. That's two down, let's go on break."


  2. Replies
    1. Gorilla Kicking Walls, Then Spackling Them With 45 Minute CompoundFebruary 6, 2013 at 6:59 PM

      Ah whatever

  3. Needs more Star Wars, less Luchalma bullshit.

    1. Star Wars is utter shit. DIAF.

  4. Needs more Phendrana Drifts!

  5. Nice Captain Planet reference.