As a huge Godzilla fan, it should come as no surprise that I've played the appropriately named Super Godzilla for the Super Nintendo. It should also come as no surprise that the game is terrible.

Now I'm not exactly sure what was going through the head of the developers when this game was created. When you think of Godzilla, what comes to mind? Destruction? For sure. Giant monsters? Definitely. MAYHEM? Without a doubt. What about blue dots slowly traveling from one side of a spreadsheet like map to the other? Not so much.

Lo and behold, that is exactly what players experience for the majority of their time playing Super Godzilla. Various cities and landscapes are displayed on the bottom half of the screen in a grid, with little buildings symbolized as gray squares, tanks represented by green squares, and the Big G himself starring as a blue dot. The top portion of the screen simply displays Godzilla walking, and occasionally crashing into a building, according to whatever his blue dot self on the bottom half of the screen is up to.

I'm going to cut the developers a little slack. Godzilla has historically been a hard property to translate into video games (for some reason). Few Godzilla games nail the right formula. The most successful games have been the more recent fighting games like Godzilla Destroy All Monsters Melee. A game of that style wasn't exactly possible on the Super Nintendo, but a 2D fighter was. Does it not seem obvious that the best genre for Godzilla would be a fighting game? Back in the old 16 bit days 2D fighters were incredibly popular (and still are for that matter) a trend I'm assuming the developers noticed. What's really sad about this whole story though is they kind of tried to do just that, make a 2D fighter. Except they failed miserably. 

Instead of making a kick-ass 2D Godzilla fighting game, we are given this hybrid mess of a grid traversing crawl and the strangest 2D fighting system I've ever encountered.

Once blue dot Godzilla hunts down and finds pink dot enemy monster, the game warps to a strange fighting game system where players finally get to play as Godzilla himself. Players have one attack -- punch. This punch does no damage, but does allow you to make a special attack. Kinda. After successfully landing a punch, the player must move Godzilla backwards to unlock various special attacks. The further back Godzilla walks, the more powerful the attacks available. After selecting a special ability players are then treated to an anime like cutscene showing Godzilla blasting his opponent with his atmoic breath or tail whipping the enemy. That is all. Punch. Backup. Press A. Rinse and repeat. No action or combos, simply press two buttons and you literally win.

Of course I played this game when I was around 8 years old, so I still have fond memories of it and even play it from time to time. The story is actually fairly well done (for a Godzilla plot) and even introduces a monster villain to the franchise never seen before or since by the name of Bagan. The game can be finished easily in less than 4 hours, and of course must be done in one sitting. It's only now that I realize what a poor representation of the Godzilla franchise this game is, but also just how flat out strange the gameplay is. I have never played anything like it since and I can only hope that I never will.