Buck Rogers – Countdown to Doomsday on Sega Megadrive/Genesis

Before I did this review I had never played this game. I found it in the bottom of a box full of NES games I got from a thrift sale and when I saw it I was all “Yes! Score!” (Looking back I laugh at my Naivety). I always used to get up on a Sunday early just so I could watch Buck Rogers. I love Buck, the amazing spaceships, star bases and the whole gang, so when I found this game a week ago I was imagining in my head how awesome this game must be… Right? I’m sure right now you are picturing maybe a side scrolling shooter action game with you as buck saving the universe or maybe even controlling a ship flying though the black void, destroying enemy crafts? That’s got to be it… Right? WRONG! This game is an early RPG. Now this game came out in 1990 the same year as Final Fantasy 3 and Digital Devil Story: Megami Tensei 2 (Japanese import) so its not like RPG’s weren’t very good at this point, far from it, speaking of being far from being very good we are back to countdown to doomsday.

buck rogers 2

As you can see the graphics are terrible even for an old machine such as the Mega Drive/Genesis. That small square in the left hand corner is your playing space, even on my 52” TV it was barely big enough to see! There are other levels thrown in (space station, spaceship view) but I am not playing through this game again so I can take screen shots of it I’m sorry don’t make me ever play this again. One of the main reasons I will not put this in the Sega again is the awful sound it makes and when I say awful its only because a word has not been invented for how incredibly bad the sound is. It doesn’t even have the Buck Rogers music!!?? I would rather listen to The Mr Rogers theme on loop for 7 years straight than hear that for another second! The gameplay is no picnic either. You take turns when fighting (like any RPG) but if you don’t pay 100% attention 100% of the time to every move you make then you will die. The first fight, you get into (about 10 seconds of gameplay in) took me 4 attempts… FOUR!?… It’s the first fight! This game does not mess around you either play hardcore or go to bed, oh and when you die, that’s it, if you remembered to save then you can go back but otherwise that’s it D. E. A. D. dead!

You do get to customize your character, change its appearance and train in different skills somewhat, which is a nice touch and I think the only pro about this game the rest are cons including EA arts conning you to buy this game, not to mention the store clerk conning you with his big smile as you walked off after spending that months allowance on something you thought was going to be better than the show it self.

Now I understand why all those NES games were so cheap. It was a small price for the guy to pay in order to get rid of this horribleness!
Your probably wondering why in fact I reviewed this game seeing as its so terrible and I hate it so much but I want to save you the same fate as me, beacause I like ya (don’t dwell on that too much) and plus When I got it I had already decided that I should review it and here we are today wasting everybody’s time!

Well I’m off to play some battletoads now to try and get the taste of poopoo game out of my mouth. Get ready for the podcast that will be coming out on your favourite website (retroist.com) soon!

peachy

Peachy is knee deep in old consoles and has approximately 450 items on his amazon wish-list. Questions?

Subscribe to the Retroist Newsletter

* indicates required

10 thoughts on “Buck Rogers – Countdown to Doomsday on Sega Megadrive/Genesis

  1. Greatest game ever? so you would put this above games like Tetris, DonkeyKong, Mario3, Sonic the hedgehog, Street fighterII, Final Fantasy, PacMan, space invaders, to name but a few? You sir are an idiot, but that is your opinion and even if you opinion is horribly misguided and uneducated with no basis in reality of even a mild explination i respect your opinion and your opinion makes you look like a fool which is absolutley fine by me. I have not problem what so ever with you making a gargantuate tool of yourself so congratulations, pat on the back and beers all round for the Legendery fail that is your comment…. p.s. Name another game and i will review that, love ya :D

  2. William says:

    This game is great. I beat it when I was 11, so the fact that it took you four tries to beat the first fight is hilarious to me. That was the only part of your review I enjoyed.

  3. GRANDAD says:

    I played this game when it was released,and really enjoyed it.I’ve been playing games for a long time now,and have played them on many formats.Of course it’s dated now, but when it came out in 1990 it wasn’t. Along with Final Fantasy, Shining Force,and Zelda for the Snes ,we thought we were blessed.It isn’t the best game I’ve played by far,but for the size it was I made it last for many gaming hours.(It’s nice to see EA are still on the go even for all the crap they try to feed us.)Some gaming companies have Gigabytes to play with and they still turn out S__T.I have been using a PC with a SLI Rig for playing games these last few years and still enjoy gaming.Playing FALLOUT 3 at the moment we are blessed.So let’s cut BUCK some slack cause it’s all we had at the time, and I was born 25-12- 46 ,so I was know young buck when I played it GAME ON.
    .

  4. 3Fsmith says:

    I loved this game. Agreed it does look crap on first inspection but it is incredible when you get into it (you’ll even grow to love the rubbish music and sound effects). I can’t count the number of sleepless nights that were spent traversing the galxy and fighting aliens in this game. 5 thumbs up – it’s awesome!

  5. commentguy says:

    Sorry but this review is utter trash. This is ONE OF THE GREATEST GAMES EVER.

    Also…. it WASNT made in 1990… so you cant compare it to other games of its time. This game was PORTED in 1990… have you even played the original version on DOS? That really does look old.

    And the fact you kept dying in the first fight (and complain about not getting infinitet “lives”) tells me you are a crummy RPG player who wants the game to hold his hand. This game is about strategy and gearing your team to face all challenges… its not that difficult.

    Plus once you get to fly your spaceship you can bomb around the solar system beating people up and stealing their gold so you can buy even more bad-*ss equips. Such a fun game. I dread to think of where your taste in gaming sits… perhaps we have you to blame for the sorry state of modern gaming.

  6. @commentguy you are fully welcome to your opinions even if they are completely erroneous.

    Let me address your fallacious issues with this review:

    1) regardless of when this game was originally made when a game is ported it is re-coded, re-drawn etc. so my opinion on the game looking like total crap when it was made is completely valid.

    2) did i complain about not having infinite lives? I’m pretty sure I did not.

    3) you argument of ‘when you get into the game’ is invalid. It is the same FF13 expedient of ‘the game gets good 20 hours in’ I do not care about how good the game is further on. The fact is that, it is a poor excuse for people who know the game is abhorrent but has some rest bite further down the line. Games that are good, are good from the get go.

    Thanks for reading though! Contradictory opinions are very welcome here but ones aimed at me will be shot down in an instant with a BFG, thesaurus and a spellchecker… maybe some fine cognac and a cigar for afterward when i sit in my wingback chair full of amicable smugness.

  7. Gra says:

    Died four times in the first fight? Oh wow. If you just hit quick combat you would do better. What, did you create 5 tinkers and a rogue or something.

    This game will always be an alltime classic. So immersive.

  8. Averre says:

    Playing a game in which you had no idea what you were doing, no idea about classes, no research whatsoever..so you decide to review it. Classy.

    This is why the majority of internet game reviewers eventually fade away and die. Veteran gamers know better than to listen to such a biased review that doesn’t even talk about the game and most younger gamers could case less about a game that isn’t Halo.

    Enjoy your fade into the forgotten internet obscurity that some many like you have gone.

  9. Averre says:

    Also, when you decide to make a thinly veiled insult about others spelling or attack one’s intellect, it would be wise to double check your own comment(s) first.

    One other thing: I decided to re-install my own copy of Buck Rogers because I remembered something that punches a extremely large hole in your gaming skills (or lack thereof) and sure enough, I remembered correctly.

    On the first battle you get NPC cadets that will help you on your first fight. The amount of NPC’s you get is dependent on your characters Leadership Skill but you will get at least four during the battles.

    So your own crew+NPC help= You dying four times. Oh dear, that’s not very good now is it?

    Perhaps strategy games aren’t for you? Ah well. Perhaps Hello Kitty Online would be more your speed?

Leave a Reply