April 10th, 2007 | Feature
The Game Center CX Episode Guide
The front-to-back tribute to the Japanese TV show that flies in the face of Nintendo's epilepsy warnings.


Game Center CX Season 6 – Back to Contents
Warp? Save!? "Mighty Bomb Jack"


Following in the steps of Solomon’s Key and Ninja Gaiden another Tecmo classic sets the stage for this episode’s challenge: Mighty Bomb Jack. Arino starts off rather neutral about this one. Understandable, since Mighty Bomb Jack was a game without much fanfare; nor much of anything that’s memorable. But that’s about to change.

Unfortunately, in just the first stage Arino gets hit with the game’s "YOU ARE GREEDY" warning when he collects nine medals. He’s sent to the "torture room," where Jack must avoid all the enemies in a small room for 49 seconds. Arino fails and restarts. He manages to do the same thing over again, but finds out the "seconds" actually correspond to the number of jumps he needs to take before he can escape. He finds a safe spot and jumps rapidly to run down the counter and succeed.

He restarts again and narrowly makes it through, and then gets caught in the next "inbetween" stage. Round 2 scrolls vertically, and here Arino learns of Jack’s various power-up colors. He gets through here and Round 3 fairly easily, but trips up hardcore on Round 4. This sends him into a spiral of Game Overs, never quite getting past Round 4. So early into the game and the stress is already mounting. Inoko MAX steps in and offers his help.

Arino learns from Inoue that if he collects all the bombs in the "inbetween" Royal Palace rooms except saving the "fire bomb" for last, the exit door will warp him to the next round’s inbetween. He makes it to the rather simple-looking Round 5 room and dies. Much to his surprise and dismay, Arino starts over from Round 1. This time he makes it up to Round 6 but makes a dumb mistake. On the next attempt he passes and makes it to the "regular" room of Round 7.

Round 7 contains a Save Coin which will bump him back to that round if he dies again later on. He makes it to Round 8, but ends up in the torture room and dies, ending it all with a Game Over. A series of missteps keeps Arino from reaching Round 8 again, but after a while he finally gets back to it and passes it, entering Round 9. Unfortunately he dies with a Game Over and starts all over again for the umpteenth time. It’s now been about 8 hours since he started, and without even breaking through to the double-digit stages, things look bleak.

Inoko MAX steps in again: he has information regarding a 1UP loop. Starting in Round 5, one must jump repeatedly on one of the totem poles, which will reveal a special sphinx medal, that opens up a secret room with a 1UP coin inside. Arino fails a few times in his attempts, but ends up stocking about 15 lives. Frankly, this doesn’t bode well.

The night drags on. Inoko MAX steps in to play for a little while, and the producer tells Arino this is his last chance for tonight. Inoue gets through rounds 5 and 6, and hands the controller back to Arino for Round 7. A couple close calls later and he gets to Round 8, but dies, sending himself back to Round 5. MAX asks for the controller back. He gets to Round 7 but accidentally slips up and gets the fire bomb too early, negating the warp. He and Arino press on through the action section of World 8, but consistently get tripped up. Their lives have dwindled down to seven by now. Arino manages to warp to Round 9 and successfully gets past it, frayed nerves and all. "This game is scary!" he says with a whimper.

Round 10 is even luckier: an extremely close pinch is saved by grazing the Power coin, which renders all the enemies into collectibles. Arino is shocked and proud. "That’s Talent Power!" He then dies immediately in Round 11 and is sent back to 8. Inoue takes over but keeps screwing up with the bombs — at the very least, he’s "saving" his progress as they go along.

He gets up to 13, but dies and gets bumped back to 12. By now there’s only two lives left. Another dumb death, and the last life is left to Arino. He scrapes by to the Palace room, but dies again. The game will have to continue tomorrow — Arino calls his manager to shuffle his schedule, and then heads home for the night.

Day 2 begins. Arino and Inoko MAX reconvene. Inoue reports that he stayed up getting 26 lives! The two men head to the whiteboard and discuss their new plan: warp every two rounds, then "save," cancelling the warp. Keep up the "warp, warp, save" rhythm and things ought to go a little more smoothly. We’ll see.

Arino loses the first few lives, but climbs back up to Round 8. He forgets about the "save" but manages to stay alive until Round 10, when he finally does save and goes on to 11. Round 11 opens a strange trapdoor of sorts, that leads Arino back to the Round 6 Palace room. Silent confusion crosses his face until Inoko MAX tells him what happened. Arino asks MAX to go back up through the stages, and so he does. He goes up through Round 9 (scaring the bejesus out of Arino in the process) and lets Arino finish up, but he dies admist the screams of the staff. Many deaths later, the two finally make it back to Round 12, but Inoue keeps dying. Nine lives left! Arino jumps up and gives Inoue a quick shoulder rub.

But the poor kid just doesn’t have it in him anymore. The rest of the lives are run down in Round 12. An agonizing defeat… or is it? The producer lets Arino take the game on to a third day, but he must go into another game immediately after: Red Arremer II! Arino agrees, and the next episode will be a double header… for the ages!

Romantic ga Tomaranai

The Tecmo theme carries on with this week’s Romantic scene. It’s Tsuppari Ozumo for Super Famicom, the premier 16-bit sumo wrestling game. Playing and winning as a female wrestler earns you a breast-bounce animation, but that’s about it. Arino snaps a pic of the wrestler’s crotch, instead.

Game Collections: 1987: December

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