Many people intially dismissed Battletoads as a Ninja Turtles rip-off, but that’s not the case (After all, they’re toads, not turtles. DUH). While the former does have some similarities to Ninja Turtles, it’s a game that stands on its own. It is also widely considered as one of the hardest video games ever made.
The game is a platform scrolling beat’em up with varying elements of racing, climbing and vehicle-based combat. Players start with three lives each time the game is started. Lives get replenished every time the player continues once they are defeated. The game doesn’t have a save point system or password feature.
Rash, Battletoads‘ main protagonist can jump and has one combo move: punch, low punch, and a big punch. Despite this lack of variety, levels are fun. The levels are extremely colorful and well-detailed for an NES game. They also have a 3-
Professor T. Bird, Rash, Zitz, and Pimple are escorting Princess Angelica to her home planet using their spacecraft, the Vulture. Pimple and Angelica decide to take a leisurely trip on Pimple’s flying car. They are ambushed and captured by the Dark Queen’s ship, the Gargantua.
Pimple sends out a distress signal to the Vulture, alerting Professor T. Bird, Rash, and Zitz that he and Angelica have been captured. Learning that the Gargantua is hidden beneath the surface of a nearby planet called Ragnarok’s World, Professor T. Bird flies Rash and Zitz there in the Vulture to rescue them.
Between levels, the toads receive briefing comments from Professor T. Bird, along with teasing from the Dark Queen. During the game’s 13 levels, the Battletoads are faced with Dark Queen’s minions Big Blag, Robo Manus, and Major Slaughter as bosses, ultimately facing the Dark Queen herself at the top of the Dark Tower, the game’s final level.
Once the Queen is defeated, she claims it will not be the last they would see from her, later turning into some sort of tornado and flying into space, “retreating into the shadowy margins of the galaxy to recoup her losses.” With Pimple and Princess Angelica rescued, the four are brought back into the Vulture and the game ends.
One of the Hardest Games Ever
The game is so difficult to finish that until now, it is considered as the hardest game on the NES. Battletoads’ 2-player mode is made more difficult by the fact that there’s no way to turn off friendly fire, making it impossible to avoid hitting your partner.
Those who play the title’s single-player mode are forced to bring their A-game to make it to the end. I find this game too hard. It gets even harder as you progress, like in the third level with its ridiculous bike level. In this level, you have to have the reaction time of a God to avoid the walls that fly up in front of you.
Battletoads, despite its difficulty, can still be very addictive because of its graphics, gameplay, and sound. This makes the game one of the greatest games in the Nintendo Entertainment System.