#296 – Ikari Warriors II: Victory Road

A victory for sadness.
Sorry Paul, the power of your pecs will not repel the creatures.
No amount of squinting will fix this screenshot.

PLAYERS: 1-2 simultaneous


DEVELOPER: Micronics

GENRE: Action

RELEASE DATE: April 1988

Paul and Vince, the Ikari Warriors (not to be confused with Paul and Vince, the gay nightclub owners), liked destroying creation so much in the first game, they decided to thunder down Victory Road and take on the entire galaxy or something. Story is not why you jam an Ikari Warriors cartridge into your aging NES console (or sprightly legal knockoff, whatever the case may be). Here’s a solid question: why would you jam an Ikari Warriors cartridge into your NES? The original Ikari Warriors was a sorry excuse for an arcade port that nobody liked. Apparently, everyone’s distaste for the first game was music to SNK’s ears, thus Victory Road‘s quick release only eleven months after the first Ikari Warriors.

What’s changed: Paul (or Vince) must have been hittin’ the protein powder pretty hard because his sprite is incredibly large. The alien enemies are larger and faster than previous enemies as well, which means the chances for you to get hit are much greater. Despite your increased girth, your life bar is as puny as it is every was, and you still only have one life. The controls are not your friend either. While the slowdown is thankfully missing here, the controls account for your larger size and so you move slower. Also, the D-pad still feels clumsy, compared to the arcade’s original rotary controls. To summarize: because you are large (but slow and weak) and your enemies are large (and strong and fast), you will die often and you will have to start over from the very beginning every time. This ensures that you turn this installment of Ikari Warriors off more quickly than the previous one. Paul and Vince may have aspirations of turning the galaxy’s denizens into furious mulch, but in order to do that, they need to figure out how to move and aim accurately. Godspeed, boys.


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7 replies on “#296 – Ikari Warriors II: Victory Road”

It seems as though many reviewers do not know that you, in fact, can continue in this game. When you die, simply tap A,B,B,A and you will respawn.
Now don’t ask me why it isn’t an automatic respawn, but it doesn’t matter. You CAN spawn and it’s pathetic seeing all of trade reviews giving this game terrible ratings because of the lack of continues.

If you’re going to review a game, play it a little first, and also you should probably do some research so you don’t miss how to play the game.

“Trade” was supposed to be “these”. My keyboard and autocorrect are giving me an incredibly hard time typing coherent sentences.

Anonymous, I played the game again, and lo and behold, you are right. I appreciate you telling me this code.

What I don’t appreciate is this game. It’s slow, it’s boring, it’s terrible. While the infinite continue knowledge might change my rating a little – say, from an F to a D- – it does not make IW II good in anyway.

Also, please don’t tell me how to review games. I’m not sure how many games (if any) that you’ve reviewed, but stuff slips past even the most stalwart of reviewers. We’re all human. Chill out. It’s an NES game.

The problem with that code is that the developers cruelly disabled it during the final boss battle. The continues get taken away once that battle starts. If that doesn’t infuriate players, nothing will.

You know what? I remember having found a way to keep playing in the arcade booth at the local bowling alley when I was 9 or 10 and that alone made me like the game.

The trick worked only sometimes tho, and my strategy consisted of mashing all the buttons and rotating the joystick around. Might’ve been a feature all along.

So there’s a secret code to continue after dying? How was anyone supposed to know this in 1988 without the benefit of our good friend
Were there gamers out there that loved Swedish pop music so much they’d press ABBA every time they tried a new NES game just to see if their love of Dancing Queen would be rewarded by a developer who shared their enthusiasm?

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