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Up from (Super) Obscurity

So, this October I've decided to do something a little different normal, and spend the entire month talking about Halloween-ish things in video games.
But I'm going to take a slightly different run at it: this year I'm only going to focus on relatively obscure Super Nintendo games (natch -- that's how I roll) which contain a character resembling one specific monster.
Yes, October 2013 on is...
Let Me be Pseudo-Frank about Pseudo-Frank month!
I'm going to look at games that kind-of-sort-of contain off-brand ripoffs or homages to Frankenstein's Monster -- or at least, the big green square-headed Boris Karloff film presentation of him.
This means that games that fess up to ACTUALLY using the monster are out -- for example, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein will NOT be covered.
And actually, to be even MORE vague, the first half of the month will cover games that have only the most passing resemblance to Frankenstein's Monster-like creatures, but which I've wanted to talk about for a while but hadn't found an excuse to do so.
So, without furthermore diskarmor disclaimers, let's begin! Let's look at...
Addams Family: Pugsley's Scavenger Hunt, The
I know what you're thinking: the Addams Family should be rampant halloween-fodder no matter HOW you slice it (even in their post-'90s-movie Cartoon re-incarnation, which this game is based off). But where's Frankenstein's Monster? Well, here's the way I'm going to spin it: would you believe they have...
Frankenstein's BUTLER?
Yes, in my second-most-tenuous pseudo-Frankensteinian tie-in, I'm going to say poor old Lurch resembles the big green dead man. Though, in my defense -- just look back up there and review that guy's only line. Can you blame me for thinking he's a shambling hulk made out of expired body parts?
But it must be said -- most of the rest of Pugsley's family seem more intent on killing him than Lurch. Sure, the butler is willing to let Pugsley wander around an attic full of boy-sized rats, cannons and the occasional missile...
But it's his SISTER that's sent him on this death-defying scavenger hunt in the first place,
And his own mother is too damn busy to say something to him.
Yeah, it would have been too much trouble to say something like, "By-the-by, we've had our mansion's main hallway turned into a level-hub, and every single room is now a giant series of platforms, violent animals and death-traps..."
"...Including the bathroom, of course."
His extended family are useless as well: his aunt/grandma/whatever is perfectly willing to warp him into a bizarre crystal-ball-world,
And his uncle has decided to make him the Incredible Shrinking Unappealing Flatulent Blond Kid:
Have I said enough about this game yet?
Not quite! Well, I guess I could say that its a shabby platformer hop-on-em-up-because-you-never-get-weapons-em-up, where you have 3 hit points and 7 lives, then you have to start the entire game again. Never mind that beating any ONE of the 6+ levels before seeing the GAME OVER screen will stretch an accomplished gamer to his/her/Cousin Itt's limits.
But actually, it was THIS unappealing blond pre-teen, with his lousy spinoff-cartoon of a spinoff-movie origins and his thuggish demeanor:
...who got me back in to platformers. It's hard to say what it is about this lousy game, but if I hadn't picked it up, I wouldn't have started buying SNES Platformers again.
...which would have spared the world from the horrors of two damn weeks of Dennis the frickin' Menace; uh, yeah, sorry about that world.
Actually, it's not THAT hard to say what it is about this game. I can sum it up in two words:
Level Hub
Which .. Way .. To .. Die? PUGSLEY!
There's something about a game built out of 6 or 7 different crappy levels...if it lets you PICK which of those levels you want to visit to receive your inevitable ass-kicking, it increases the replay value immensely.
I'm not a great platform-game-player by any means, and I've only ever beaten two of its levels ever (and obviously not in the same sitting -- it takes all my lives just to get by ONE world), but the ability to lose at ANY of the levels means its like having seven lousy games in one!
And that, my friends, is a recipe for both tricks AND treats in one shabby cartridge.
Hot Diggity!
Oh, and also --
The most likeable mansion resident looks kind of like Frankenstein's Monster. If you squint hard.
Tune in next week for more of our Let Me be Pseudo-Frank about Pseudo-Frank month!*
*: Oh, and it's going to get even LESS Frankenstein's Monster-y before it gets MORE Frankenstein's Monster-y. But weeks three and four? Boy-Howdy!
— carlmarksguy, 2013-10-05
Huh. It seems the character designs are based directly on the 90s Hanna-Barbera cartoon. For some reason, I don't think I realized that before now because the previous Addams Family SNES game was based on the movie. Also, Pugsley and Wednesday were always trying to kill each other, so that does make some sense here.
This game looks like it has pretty good graphics.
@FO: Yeah, weird game--I tried it in the store cuz I remembered a complex Zelda-like SNES Addams game--I was thinking of "Addams Family Values"--but after I saw this's level hub I got it anyway. @Crawl: the graphics really are quite good, they picked "cartoony style" to match the show then weirded it up with huge paralex backgrounds you don't even notice when you play. Wish I was better at makin anim-.gifs, he munches a sandwich when you stand still n when u walk his arms flap like an orangutan :D
I actually made progress in Addams Family Values years ago, but got stuck about halfway through it. There was a giant blocking a path at one point and couldn't figure out how to get past him.
It has a very "A Link to the Past" look to it, but then I read online that its punishingly hard and thus no fun. Was it any good, at least before the Giant?
It's been a few years, so I don't remember all the details, but I don't remember it being too difficult, action-wise, up to that point, but sometimes it was difficult to figure out what you were supposed to be doing or where to go, especially if the path forward was hidden.
I have very fond memories of this game. If you asked nicely, the local rental store folks would let you try out games on the store's SNES, and I popped this one in a lot. I sucked at it but I kept playing it.
Thanks for commenting! Ahh, rental places; Good times! When I first played this I thought it was pretty harsh, but I've subsequently played a lot of worse platformers. For me, the Level Hub really makes it hard to get infuriated with this game (though of course I don't think I'd ever be able to win it with the game's limit of lives & continues)
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