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I Hate Moon Patrol

Moon Patrol

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#1 Butt_Rogers OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 5, 2017 8:36 PM

I've tried so hard to like this game. I understand that it's well regarded. I like the idea of driving some kind of space tank that can jump - those are the best parts of Blaster Master on the NES.

But something about the jumping mechanics just infuriates me. I can't get it right, and I've tried using the save state function in stella to really master it. But nope.

It's hard for me to even describe. The jumping is an integral part of this game, and it doesn't feel right. My estimations of when to jump are almost always wrong. Jumping over consecutive boulders is a recipe for frustration.

It's like if the trajectory of your jump was just a little different, I'd love this game, but as it is, it's just a little shallow and it keeps throwing me off.

And the hit detection! I feel like if I get close to a boulder my moon tank explodes.

81lrPCD.jpg

Take the double jump above. This is only the second leg of the game. You're just starting out. And the game throws this at you. Blast the poop then jump? You'll run into the second poop. Accelerate and jump the first poop, then the second? Doable, but requires exacting precision. Slow down, shoot the first poop, jump, shoot the second poop, jump? This works too, but again, it requires exacting precision. There's no farting around with this jump. You can't half ass it. You can't be a little off. You have to nail it or the moon poops will laugh at you. And so many of the jumps are like this. It's almost like the Slow Jump doesn't go far enough, and the Medium & Fast jumps go too far. It never feels right.

I went and downloaded the rom for Moon Patrol Arcade, and I don't find these issues in the arcade game. Jumping is intuitive and I never had a single problem jumping over anything in the first game area (zones A to Z), including the mine area. I did go through a dollar or three in imaginary quarters. Now, the next game area (the second A to Z course), the champion course or whatever, is absolutely impossible. I've been trying to jump a canyon defended by tanks for 10 minutes and I can't figure out how.

But, the first game area is really fun and I enjoyed it a lot.

How come jumping feels intuitive in Moon Patrol Arcade but infuriating and mysterious in Moon Patrol 2600?



#2 StanJr OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 5, 2017 9:09 PM

I really don't know.  I agree that the jumps are unforgiving (wait until the tanks show up...), but they've always been doable for me.  The moon physics do take some getting used to and practice, but I don't find them as game breaking as you do.



#3 bohoki OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 5, 2017 10:04 PM

i like the music



#4 Torr OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 5:32 AM

I myself can NOT get into this game. AT ALL. I know Atari games are simplistic, but when I started this game, I was like "this is it?"

And yes, the jumping is weird, I racked it up as "Moon Physics"... if the game weren't an Arcade Port, I'd think they based the game on the Moon because they couldn't get their jumping physics to work right!!!

 

Never played it before I owned it.

I doubt I will ever play it again... MAYBE now if this thread gathers steam...

 

.. I like that it's a Red Label Cart and I have it with Box and Manual?

It does have nice Box Art!



#5 Flojomojo OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 6:16 AM

It has nice parallax scrolling and a cute soundtrack --that you can turn off.

Surprise! Some Atari games aren't so great, especially three decades later. :D

#6 Flojomojo OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 6:16 AM

Whoops, double post.

Maybe this game (and others like it) can be reworked into the "infinite runner" genre, since the "three lives and you're out" score chaser seems hopelessly old-fashioned?

I have read that Super Mario Odyssey will not have GAME OVER anywhere. At last!!

#7 NE146 ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 7:21 AM

2600 Moon Patrol is one of those games.. I played it for some time thinking there was no music, totally not realizing you just had to flick the left difficulty switch and boom! It has MUSIC.  :lol:

 

Also, FYI the RIGHT difficulty switch affects the movement speed, so dink around with that.  Also maybe you should play the arcade version first (e.g. via mame or something) since it might flesh out the jumping mechanics a little clearer that the VCS version is trying to emulate.  I never had a problem with it. :)

 

image1.jpg


Edited by NE146, Thu Jul 6, 2017 7:30 AM.


#8 iesposta OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 7:23 AM

Sometimes you need to switch consoles  :-o


Edited by iesposta, Thu Jul 6, 2017 7:39 AM.


#9 StanJr OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 8:49 AM

 

 

.. I like that it's a Red Label Cart and I have it with Box and Manual?

It does have nice Box Art!

 

 

There's a red label version?  Mine is silver



#10 accousticguitar OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 8:50 AM

It's a side scroller and as such I don't really care for it.



#11 VectorGamer OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 9:12 AM

I played it in MAME a few months ago and I felt it was requiring me to jump way before I anticipated.



#12 Cynicaster OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 10:31 AM

I think the 2600 version is a very decent port, relatively speaking, but that doesn't help its standing with me very much because I simply don't care for the game at all.  In fact, if I made a list of "classic games that are highly regarded and for the life of me I can't figure out why," then Moon Patrol would easily be in the top 5. 



#13 stephena OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 10:46 AM

@Butt_Rogers, not that it's related to Moon Patrol at all, but I notice you're still using Stella 3.9.3.  This is an extremely obsolete version, since 5.0 will be released in the next few weeks.



#14 Flojomojo OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 11:01 AM

giphy.gif

 

giphy.gif

 

giphy.gif



#15 iesposta OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 11:44 AM

I personally believe that the upcoming Vector Patrol from Kristof Tuts is my favorite game of all time, any home system, arcade or computer. It's the entire Moon Patrol Arcade game, plus a whole lot more options and sounds

It really is quite something when a home console from 1982 gets an arcade port that surpasses the original arcade version by leaps and bounds. 



#16 save2600 ONLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 12:25 PM

Bunch of whiners you guys are! Love VCS Moon Patrol. Yeah, some of the jumps can get hairy, but so was the arcade. Has a great arcadey feel to it. Isn't a silver label Atari arcade port I don't like and think they're all great for what they are. Awesome era for VCS games IMO. :love:

#17 fiddlepaddle OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 6:18 PM

Moon Patrol, in all its many incarnations, has always been a game I've wanted to like.  The concept is great: scrolling shooter, jumper, things coming from in front (reminds me of BC Quest for Tires (CV), Jungle Hunt/Jungle King bolder screen, Back to the Future III (Genesys)), with the saucer overhead...  sounds GREAT!... except the controls always seem kind of slow-motion-y, or sluggish, or something. 

 

I've only recently been giving the 2600 version some time (on the Atari FBP), and I too think it's too hard too early, but thought it was just me.  Even the arcade never seemed quite right to me, though better than VCS or Coleco. 

 

I still try it from time to time, on various systems, but I never really find myself lost in the game; always feel like I'm fighting the controller itself rather than playing the game, for some reason.



#18 Torr OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jul 6, 2017 10:01 PM

There's a red label version?  Mine is silver

 

My mistake... I was looking at Gravitar... for some reason thinking it was Moon Patrol...

 

So yeah... I like Gravitar's artwork!

 

I don't like anything about Moon Patrol.



#19 AtariLeaf OFFLINE  

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Posted Fri Jul 7, 2017 4:01 AM

I've also tried liking Moon Patrol (and Jungle Hunt) and don't care for either. I just don't find them fun. I know I should but I don't and purged both from my collection a while ago. No regrets.



#20 masschamber OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:16 PM

Moon Patrol was one of the 2600 games that my friends kids thought was absolutely fantastic, though they never played the arcade. but subjective things are subjective I think it is one of the best games on the 2600.  I wouldn't read to much into it as not enjoying something many other people do isn't exactly a problem



#21 briwayjones OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:42 AM

I like Moon Patrol even though I'm not great at it.  I remember being really excited to get it as a kid.  I think it was one I saved up for.


Edited by briwayjones, Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:43 AM.


#22 G-type OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:29 AM


81lrPCD.jpg

Take the double jump above. This is only the second leg of the game. You're just starting out. And the game throws this at you. Blast the poop then jump? You'll run into the second poop. Accelerate and jump the first poop, then the second? Doable, but requires exacting precision. Slow down, shoot the first poop, jump, shoot the second poop, jump? This works too, but again, it requires exacting precision. There's no farting around with this jump. You can't half ass it. You can't be a little off. You have to nail it or the moon poops will laugh at you. And so many of the jumps are like this. It's almost like the Slow Jump doesn't go far enough, and the Medium & Fast jumps go too far. It never feels right.

 

In that screengrab you are way too close to the poop - you should  already be in the air. A lot of the jumping requires starting the jump a lot earlier than seems intuitive... (especially to get past the mines). Not every poop needs to be shot, and you can change speed in mid-air.



#23 moycon OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:39 AM

 

In that screengrab you are way too close to the poop 

The real test is when you encounter the moon monster leaving all those poops around. 



#24 Keatah OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:51 AM

I rather liked this game. Could use some more variation in the terrain instead of just different spacing between the rocks and holes.



#25 jhd OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:39 PM

At one point, this was my very favourite arcade game. Unfortunately, I was never able to get past the second set of mines; the spacing was just slightly different from the first, and I could not master the jump timing. 

 

I have not played the 2600 version enough to have an opinion.

 

Moon Patrol drove me to download and install MAME on my laptop; it is the only arcade game that I want to play that has not been featured in a modern emulator collection.   :(







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