You might remember this week’s essential play from Monday’s Game #14: Bionic Commando.

Since I already did the write-up on this game, I won’t re-invent my own wheel here. Suffice to say, Bionic Commando combined many aspects of side-scrollers along with the unique mechanic of the grappling arm to merit its inclusion on my list of Essential Plays for the NES. It fills in the spot the covers many other games that, while also good and worth playing, fill in the genre in a more generic way. Games such as Contra, Strider, and Castlevania are all based on the same side-scrolling mechanic, and are all similar to each other while presenting their own unique twists. However, in playing all those games, I keep coming back to Bionic Commando as the best game to represent of the lot. It combines intuitive play, a unique gimmick, and a classic side-scrolling package that cements it’s place as a representative of the genre, rather than just a member of such.

-Confusion is a state of mind, or is it?

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