Sunday, March 4, 2007

Road Runner's Death Valley Rally


In the days before video games were as realistic and 3-dimensional as they are now, classic cartoon characters were a very viable source of material for what are now referred to as "old school platform adventures". Some were good, some were terrible. One such game, in this case a good one, came out in 1992 for the Super Nintendo. It was called "Road Runner's Death Valley Rally".

You played as the Road Runner. Your goal? Stay alive while navigating increasingly difficult levels filled with Acme booby traps. Find the finish line of each level, and avoid Wile E. Coyote. After the end of a level, which usually had 3 "stages", you would battle Wile E. in a "boss level". Sounds typical. But this game had a lot going for it that made it fun. It reused animation from a lot of the classic cartoons, and had backgrounds that are STILL impressive looking even today.
















The chase went through a typical desert scene with beautiful purple cliffs in the background. Then a construction site, a circus train, a cavern, and finally Mars...after an abduction by Marvin Martian. Wile E. takes to space technology quite well, and makes it a heck of a challenge, coupled with Instant Martians and Marvin himself. The Mars level also featured the teleporters from "Duck Dodgers".

The final "boss" is a giant Wile E. Coyote robot very similar to the "solid Tin Coyote", and once you destroy it, Wile E. emerges from inside it and falls back down to earth. The fall causes him to get buried up to his neck in the pavement, where he is run over by an Acme truck, which then hits a bump and dumps out a bunch of the explosive devices he has been using on you. They blow up on him, and a fat opera singer (a running gag throughout the game) falls on him and sings...(it's over when the fat lady sings).

Clever game, too bad 2-d games are no longer with us.

7 comments:

J.E.Daniels said...

I used to rent this game all the time!
I loved the graphics and sound FX!
I can't remember if I ever finished the game, I remember the robot coyote but I don't remember beating Wile E.

Mike Matei said...

i use to have that game. i remember the roadrunners controls were really slippery. but i was amazed by the games graphics. they still look pretty good, i think.

Anonymous said...

I have this game on my computer you can download it on this website with an emulator. I also have Taz-Mania another good Looney Tunes game.

http://vimm.net/

Chris Ferguson said...

The Warner Bros. games for SNES were definitely cool. I've still got Duck Dodgers, Bugs Bunny Rabbit Rampage and Tiny Toons: Buster Busts Loose!

PCUnfunny said...

The company that developed "Death Valley Rally" was called Sunsoft. They made some Looney Tunes games for SNES and there best one by far was "Bugs Bunny in Rabbit Rampage". Sunsoft did a good job with the graphics,gameplay,and the music which was simular to Carl Stalling's scores."Death Valley Rally" I didn't care for too much since it was so hard to control the Road Runner when he was at high speeds.The game was decent overall.

BrandonPierce said...

Good gravy, I rmeember this game! There was another Road Runner game I remember for regular Nintendo where you played the Road Runner, and you had to keep eating bird seed to keep having the energy to run. If your energy drained, you'd stop running, and Coyote would catch you. Bad game. Death Valley rocked though.

"Rabbit Rampage" is another great LT video game.

The GagaMan(n) said...

Random fact: There was also a similar Road Runner game on the Sega Genesis/mega Drive developed by Blue Sky, the studio that later started making the CGI movies Ice Age and Robots.

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