Last month, word came up that a most unexpected thing had happened: Bubsy the Bobcat was on Steam Greenlight. And not for a new game, but a “Two-Fur” game pack which consists of both of his original games.
I’ll admit that I was interested, but only conditionally. I said that I was not interested in a straight port of the originals to Steam, but if they were to tweak and rework them to a better standard at a price that didn’t feel like a big commitment? I’d definitely be in.
Well, according to Jim Sterling’s look at the games (warning: Not Safe For Work), they at least got one thing right… and actually made other things worse.
The part they got right? The price: $5 (and 20 percent off of that until December 24th) for both games is a deal I could happily take part in… if not for the other facts surrounding this release.
Now, I did say that I didn’t want them to do a straight port of the games, and in fairness, they did not do that. However, the truth is perhaps even worse: the games are simply emulated with a SNES9x emulator. So the games aren’t even ported, they’re just emulated, and by iffy means at that.
Okay, so that’s a thing. Granted, Virtual Console releases of games are emulations of a sort as well, and I’ve bought plenty of those. Heck, there are even save states!
But then there’s the bombshell that there is not even any controller support– at least, not for the first game. “Two controllers can be configured for keyboard or game controllers for co-op and competitive local multiplayer in Bubsy II,” says the description. Maybe there is some way to kludge it or something for the first game, I don’t know, but at this point, I’m certainly not willing to throw away $5 to find out.
(Update: The folks from Retroism Games kindly informed me on Twitter that it seems this assessment is mistaken, or at least inaccurate to some degree. “FYI, both games have controller support for two controllers,” they say, noting “the first game simply doesn’t have a multiplayer mode.”)
It’s too bad. I have no idea how this is selling, but if this is their idea of how to jumpstart a Bubsy revival, then I think they may have very well blown it from the word “Go.”
From the Steam Store page: “Bubsy returns in the first authorized digital release of his first two games! What could paws-ibly go wrong?”
Emphasis mine, because now we apparently know.
David Oxford is a freelance writer of many varied interests. If you’re interested in hiring him, please drop him a line at david.oxford (at) nyteworks.net.