Ian Hill’s Top 99 8-Bit Games of All Time!
Kabuki Quantum Fighter (NES, 1990, Human Entertainment)
When you press start at the title screen on Kabuki Quantum Fighter, the screen turns black, and (what appears to be) computer code goes scrolling up the screen, followed by our hero Kabuki bursting into the middle of the screen…then the game starts.
The first time I saw this, I assumed my cart was glitching out…until I realized what a stupid thought that was - I've seen hundreds of cartridges get wonky on me over the years, and none looked at all like that!
I later learned that the game starts like this because it takes place inside the programming of a super defense computer, and you are a badass government agent who is uploading himself into the computer's binary code to take it out from the inside.
Your primary mode of attacking is to hair whip enemies by head banging through the levels like it was a mosh pit.
There's more going on here - you also get projectiles, and there's plenty of platforming to be done. But I like to think that the headbanging hacker premise is enough to get someone in the door to check it out.
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