If you're reading this, then allow me to welcome you to Guess that Game, a monthly feature loosely based off of the game of 20 Questions. The first thing you might want to do is make sure you are viewing this with the website lights turned on (the switch is located at the top of the website near the search box). If you don't...the clues and answer might be inadvertently revealed as you read this.

I started the series last year and posted three or four episodes before I had to leave the website for awhile. But its a new year and I always kind of fancied this feature, so I thought I'd bring it back. Last episode seemed to go very well - there were some who thought it was easy, some who thought it was hard, and some who thought it was just right. Even if they are too easy, I hope they still provide an opportunity to learn something maybe you didn't know before. I'm not sure how this one will do. I thought the clues were easy, but since it is an older game there may be some who have never heard of it.

(ta da - the light switch)

Twenty Questions is a spoken parlor game which encourages deductive reasoning and creativity. It originated in the United States and escalated in popularity during the late 1940s when it became the format for a successful weekly radio quiz program. In the traditional game, one player is chosen to be the answerer. That person chooses a subject but does not reveal this to the others. All other players are questioners. They each take turns asking a question which can be answered with a simple "Yes" or "No." In variants of the game multiple state answers may be included such as the answer "Maybe." The answerer answers each question in turn. If a questioner guesses the correct answer, that questioner wins and becomes the answerer for the next round. If 20 questions are asked without a correct guess, then the answerer has stumped the questioners and gets to be the answerer for another round.

However, instead of each of you asking me 20 questions, I have come up with 20 clues about a game whose identity you are trying to guess. The clues start out rather generic and progressively get more revealing, so if you have to read all of the clues, the answer should be fairly obvious by the end (or if you read only the 20th clue, you have a fairly good chance of guessing it, but that kind of defeats the purpose). Your goal is to guess the game after reading as few of the clues as possible starting in numerical order with Clue #01.

NOTICE: Of course I have no way of verifying the integrity of your answer, so should you choose to leave a comment with your score, it is based off of the honor system. I'll take you at your word.

Long time readers may remember last year I did a similar feature called Guess that Gamer that posted 20 questions and answers from a member of the community, and those who chose to participate tried to guess who the mystery member was based on their answers to the questions. It was generally received with positive results, but one of the biggest issues with the way the series operated was when and how guesses were made, and the influence it had on other members' guesses. The other problem was you were either right or wrong - and if you piggybacked off of someone else's answer, you were just as right (or wrong) as the person making the initial answer.

Using this new and improved process, not only will you find out the answer at the end of the questions, your performance will also be determined by how many clues you needed to  guess the correct answer. Now, you might notice that except for Clue #1, the rest of them are blank. How are you supposed to read the rest of them? Ah, using the magic of technology...the clues are there, however the font is white so the text appears invisible. In order to view them, all you have to do is highlight the text by clicking and holding the cursor on the text and dragging the cursor over each clue. This is an extremely easy process that most of you are undoubtedly familiar with. Oh, as a reminder - if you're viewing the GI website with the lights off, obviously this isn't going to work since the font color is reversed. I recommend turning the lights on when viewing this blog.

The same concept applies to the answer which is found at the very end of the blog.

Well, I think that's it. I've stated the goal and provided the instructions, all that's left is for you to read the following clues, in order, and guess the mystery game in as few clues as possible.

Good luck, you'll need it!

GOAL: Guess the game by reading as few of the clues as possible, starting at #1.


1. The original game was released in 1987.

2. The game is a platformer.

3. The series consists of five games spanning three decades.

4. You can find games from this series on everything from classic arcade cabinets to the PSN and XBL Arcade.

5. In October 2007, a version of this game was developed by Swedish developer GRIN, and featured gameplay inspired by the NES version.

6. The music for the NES version of this game was created by female videogame music composer Junko Tamiya, who was credited under the pseudonym "Gondamin.

7. This game is one of the featured books in the Worlds of Power series, a set of video game novelizations for NES games from the 90s.

8. This game shares a unique feature also found in Earthworm Jim and Tomb Raider.

9. The Japanese arcade version of this game is titled - Toppu Shīkuretto (which translates to Top Secret).

10. The game is created by the developer whose name is a portmanteau of "Capsule Computers" - coined to describe the arcade machines it produced.

11. The original arcade game was advertised in the United States as a sequel to another game that starred Super Joe.

12. In the NES version of this game, the antagonist is named Master-D, but it's fairly obvious who he really looks like.

13. The Japanese NES version of this game is titled - Hitler's Revival: Top Secret.

14. The game is regarded as one of the only platformers in which the player cannot jump.

15. "Your number's up! Monster!"

16. When you finish off the last boss the game shows Master-D's head explode in a series of slow-motion frames.

17. This game is often attributed as one of the first games to feature a grappling gun.

18. The protagonist of the game is named Nathan "Rad" Spencer.

19. In the 2009 version of the game, Nathan "Rad" Spencer was voiced by Faith No More singer Mike Patton.

20. You might find yourself "swinging from the ceiling".


So, how did you do?

Lucky Dog (1-5 clues)

Veteran (6 - 10 clues)

Commoner (11 - 15 clues)

Rookie (16 - 20 clues)

You might've noticed the first five clues were very generic and could fit any number of games, so if you managed to get it in five or fewer guesses, then you just got lucky. The next five clues include some obscure facts and more specific information about the game, so if you got it in 6 - 10 clues, you really know your video games.  All of the clues after number 10 are fairly specific to the game, so if it took you 11 - 15 clues you're a commoner. The final five clues are very specific to the game with some hints that people naturally associate with this particular game. If it takes you 16 - 20 clues, better luck next time...NOOB! (I'm only kidding.)

I hope you've enjoyed this installment in my Guess That Game series. I tried striking a perfect balance with game choice and difficulty and think it's a fair contest. Perhaps a bit on the easy side, but I'll let you all be the judge of that. Good luck and enjoy.


Bionic Commando