Bespoke Arcades

Sonic the Fighters, Metal Slug + Die Hard Arcade

Die Hard Arcade

Modelled on the hit film of the same name, Die Hard Arcade follows John McClane and Kris Thompson as they attempt to save the President’s daughter from terrorists. The game was part of the beat-em-up genre with 2-player capabilities. Fighting their way through waves of minions, players could have used weapons that ranged from a salt and pepper shaker to a missile launcher. At the end of each level, the players would face a boss character.

In game bosses included Hog (a biker), Jocko (Mexican Wrestler), Mr Oishi (Sumo Wrestler) and Mr Tubbs (Army General), a pair of laser shooting Spiderbots and Wolf “White Fang” Hongo. At the end of the game, if both characters are alive then they will continue to fight to win the affections of the president’s daughter.

Sonic the Fighters

Thought to be ‘too-violent’ for the Sonic the Hedgehog brand, Sonic Fighters was only released in a limited run in only Japan and North America. The game is a one-on-one fighter, playing alike the Virtua Fighter series. It was also the debut of 3D Sonic.

The backstory to the game starts with Dr Robotnik building the ‘Death Egg II’ and Metal Sonic. Tails then builds the ‘Lunar Fox’, a ship designed to stop Robotnik’s plans, however there is only one seat available. To settle who will go and stop Robotnik, a tournament is arranged between all the heroes in the franchise.

As with most arcade fighters, the player could win by knocking out their opponent of having the most health at the end of the round. The player would have fought against all the characters in the game, including a greyscale clone of themselves. After defeating the franchises’ heroes, the player would go head-to-head with Metal Sonic and then Robotnik himself (having to defeat the 2nd boss within 15 seconds to win)!

SonicUses Spin Dash. If wins every round before Metal Sonic will turn into Super Sonic.
TailsCan fly while he fights.
KnucklesStrongest of the characters.
Amy RoseKnown in the game as ‘Rosy the Rascal’. Strong defence.
EspioAs a chameleon, uses these abilities to fight.
FangUses long-range attacks.
BeanWeak attacks, mainly uses bombs.
BarkPowerful attack, yet slow.
Metal SonicHarder than the other characters as the 1st boss.
RobotnikMistakenly named ‘Dr Robotonic’ in the game.

Metal Slug

Known for its sense of humour and brilliant hand-drawn animations, Metal Slug is one of the defining games of its era.

The game is introduced as the evil General Morden attempts to overthrow the world’s governments. Trying to stop him are Captain Marco Rossi and Lt Tarma Roving of the Peregrine Falcon Strike Force. Playing as Rossi and Roving 2-players would have fought oncoming waves of enemy soldiers and fight a boss at the end of each level. Numerous upgrades could be found throughout game play, some could be found hidden in the scenery and obtained when objects were destroyed.

There were 6 levels in total set in various locations (forests, garrisoned cities, snowy mountain valleys, canyons and a military base). With a humorous element to the game play, the player would stumble across an enemy in everyday situations such as sunbathing or cooking. The enemy soldier would then scream loudly at the sight of the player and attempt to run away.