-a rom hack of "Mighty Final Fight" for the NES-
review by: Dr. Boogie
Your typical rom hack can be placed in either one of two categories: genitalia, or drugs. They're the meat (no pun intended) and potatoes of the industry. The standard was established early on in the history of rom hacking, and though we've seen some hybrids in recent years, those are more the exception than the rule.
This latest rom hack is from an author previously featured in the review of the grossly negligent title, Fucker's Quest, a man by the name of Shitdic. Mr. Dic's last title was of the licentious persuasion, and now, he would like to show you what he can do in the field of illicit substances. Prepare to clench and unclench your colons as you read on about a hack of the NES game Mighty Final Fight, entitled "Druggy Final Fight."
Those of you who remember Fester's Quest might recall that Shitdic didn't exactly give that hack the attention it deserved. He changed a few sprites and swapped out a few phrases, but most of the game remained the same. Well, worry not, Shitdic has learned the lessons of the past. This time around, he's made changes throughout the game, starting with the story itself:
So there you have it: instead of Mike Haggar teaming up with his buddies, Cody and Guy, to rescue Jessica, he's off on a PCP-fueled rampage through Metro City. So how do the other two characters fit into this equation. Well, a readme file explains that the whole game is supposed to be about Haggar, and Shitdic doesn't recommend that you play as the other two:
In addition to losing their original portraits, the other two are much weaker, and have significantly reduced health. They would be fairly bad choices for the person you'd like to help "erect" a "prayer".
Haggar, meanwhile, has an incredible amount of attack power. There's just one problem: killing enemies gives you experience points, and that huge bonus to his attack power vanishes if Haggar reaches the second level, which is inevitable since there are just too many enemies to kill. The readme tries to explain this by saying that Haggar is coming out of his drug haze. In point of fact, however, Shitdic has merely neglected to fix the experience tables for any of the characters; once Haggar reaches his next experience level, his strength returns to what it would normally be at that point in the game. The same is true for the other two characters, in that once you beak through that first level, they'll be back to normal.
If you do decide to play as Haggar, and you want to keep his immense, drug-fueled strength, the readme claims that you'll need to allow Haggar to be beaten to death over and over again until you have to use up one of your continues. Sounds like fun, eh?
And where would a hacked rom be without background art readjusted to reflect the new tone of the game:
Ah, the sites and sounds of the big city.
Even the flashing thumb that points you in the right direction got the treatment:
That's about it for changes to the graphics. The rest of the changes consist of alterations to the dialog between Haggar and the bosses, so that you have the bosses trying to reason with him, and Haggar saying things like "get bent, faggot", and "I will smash you right up, fucker." I'll admit that the storytelling in an NES game isn't hacked nearly as often as the graphics, but that doesn't mean you can just forget about the graphics and do little things like write "sluts" on a sign and insert "pcp" into a candlestick.
At the very least, he did keep with his pattern of changing the story right up through to the end of the game. Just look at this heated exchange before the final battle:
And so your "final fight" begins, with the cyborg mayor taking on the drugged-up ex-mayor. Who will win? My money was on Haggar, but to my surprise, no one emerged as the victor.
You see, one of the unfortunate side effects to cranking up the amount of damage that Haggar does is that if you kill the final boss to quickly (like, say, in two hits), you'll be stuck in the final area with nothing to do. Forever. No my friends, not even PCP can save you from bad programming. Shitdic has given us irrefutable proof of that.
But let's say you do manage to beat the game. Let's say, for example, that you chose to play as one of the other characters, and the game began to work normally once you reached level 2 in experience. If you manage to go all the way to the end of the game, you'll get to see Shitdic's all new ending:
Aw, it's like the NES version of Requiem for a Dream.
Perhaps some of you out there recall what I said earlier about Shitdic learning from his mistakes. I'm sure it doesn't look like Shitdic learned anything from Fucker's Quest, seeing as Druggy Final Fight takes the same route of using only a few minor artwork changes, with the rest being text-based changes. That's just it: Shitdic realized that he can't hack sprites for crap, so he gave that up completely, limiting himself to text and background art. It's baby steps, folks.
More importantly, though, this is one of the few hacks where the author has actually screwed with the actual programming of the game. Most hacks just go for the art, and a few play around with level designs, but this hack actually involved changes to gameplay itself. Granted, those changes were just as shallow and superficial as the other changes Shitdic made, but he's learning. At this rate, he'll grow from a doddering dilettante to a full-blown fuckup in no time.
There was one last change that caught my eye:
Shitdic went and inserted a transsexual character into the game. This caught me by surprise, as I was expecting only drug-based changes, and... Oh wait, nevermind. The transsexual character was actually in the original Final Fight. My mistake.
Have any questions or comments about this piece?
*** You too can play Druggy Final Fight! ***
If you enjoyed this article, be sure to check out:
Yeah, be Haggar!
Unless, you know... you want to actually be able to beat this godforsaken hack.
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