Sunday, September 2, 2012

"Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles" LCD game, 1989.

Do you consider these things to be video games? Of course not! But Konami sure did, after dropping a mint for use of the TMNT license and helping Kevin Eastman buy Heavy Metal. I mean obviously not -- you could play Pong on these things, and I had one that doubled as a digital watch that turned into a Transformer knock-off! But here you are: Konami even uses the phrase "video game" to describe them. And heck, Nintendo would agree, with its early Game & Watch hand-held LCD games: even if the technology is old or "cheap", if you can have fun with it, it's worth employing. (For further kicks, dig the "Lateral Thinking of Withered Technology" ideology.)

But let's be frank -- these aren't actually as fun as virtually all competent console games. But at least a bad LCD game tended to cost quite a bit less than a bad console game.

THE NEXT TIME YOU'RE BORED,
TWIDDLE YOUR THUMBS.

Pop your knuckles and fire up your fingers, because Konami's coming at you with six awesome new hand held video games.

Based on your favorite arcade and home video hits, these boredom busters are packed with action.

And they're portable, so you can slam dunk a basketball in the car, take the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles out to lunch, or launch a heat seeking missile from Grandma's condo.

Licensed titles available in this little series appear to include not just TMNT but Gradius, Super C, Double Dribble, Top Gun and ... well heck, they actually appear to have made quite a lot of these. I guess there was money in it -- they were Tiger Electronics' bread and butter for gawd knows how long, at least until the Furby came along.

In conclusion -- video games? Well, maybe, maybe not -- but as far as their ads in comics books are concerned, they sure were marketed as video games!