Thursday, April 6, 2017

Retrospective: 2D Died



i.

Anybody who truly knows me knows that I love to sing; in fact, I frequently torture serenade my employees using the public address system at our offices. (By "public address system," I mean the microphone that I plugged into our television.) I'm what they call on the deep web a "Top-40 Glee-er," in that I believe that all of life's problems can be solved through crooning the wisdoms of the poet Drake - anytime, anywhere. 

Maybe it's a repressed memory, or maybe it's all of the bowls of Oxycodone drenched in Screaming Eagle Cabernet, but I had forgotten that, ten years ago, I had, in fact, written the lyrics for a song that was recorded by the legendary chiptune band 8 Bit Weapon. "2D Died," is a song about The Golden Age of 2D Gaming, and, like the social media-savvy kids say, I'm going to throwback Thursday by finally publishing the lyrics, and also by offering a quiz to see how much you, dear reader, know about the great old days of video games ...




ii.

A long, long time ago,
I can still remember
how that console made me smile.

And I knew that if I had my chance,
I’d ride an ostrich, wield a lance, [Joust]
and maybe I’d be happy, for a while.

The late-nineties made me shiver,
with every game that got delivered,
more first-person shooters,
Brit-chicks with big hooters. [Tomb Raider]

I can’t remember if I cried
when I read about the arcade’s demise,
but something touched me deep inside
the day that 2D died.

So bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset when we die.
We’ll hit reset if we die.”

Did you raise the Master Sword?
And did you put down the Dark Lord
with a Silver Arrow? [The Legend of Zelda]

Do you always play to win?
Can you pull off Shoryuken?
and can you teach me all
those cool combos? [Street Fighter II]

Well, I know that you finished him,
‘cause I saw you rip off his limbs. [Mortal Kombat]
Now the match is through:
A WINNER IS YOU! [Pro Wrestling]

I was a lonely dark knight
when trouble struck,
carried by a yellow bird
who had lots of pluck. [Final Fantasy IV]
But that was no Duck Hunt [Duck Hunt]
the day that 2D died.

I started playin’!
Bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset when we die.
We’ll hit reset if we die.”

Near 20 years hedgehogs have ran, [Sonic The Hedgehog]
and that plumber is still the man, [Mario Brothers]
but it’s all in 3D.

When at last the aliens all were dead,
the bounty hunter revealed his head,
and it turned out that he’s really a she. [Metroid]

Oh and while the blocks were falling down, [Tetris]
the Saxons were defending the crown. [Defender of the Crown]
the missile command turned, [Missile Command]
while we hit the afterburner. [After Burner]

Oh and while Simon whipped vampires, [Castlevania]
my excitebike needed new tires. [Excitebike]
Everywhere World War II barbed wire [Call of Duty II]
the day that 2D died ...

We were playin’!
Bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset when we die.
We’ll hit reset if we die.”

Up, up, down, down,
left-right, left-right
might just get you 30 lives.
Don’t forget B, A, Start. [Contra]

Winning over Marion’s heart
with your mastery of the martial arts, [Double Dragon]
back before heroes stole cars … [Grand Theft Auto III]

Our lunar landers neared the moon, [Lunar Lander]
while the pig popped the wolf’s balloon. [Pooyan]
Three kingdoms were romanced, [Romance of the Three Kingdoms]
But they never thought to dance dance! [Dance Dance Revolution]

‘Cause the centipede was coming fast, [Centipede]
the tanks were ready for combat ... [Combat]
Oh man, the TV got smashed [Smash TV]
the day that 2D died.

We started playin’!
Bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset when we die.
We’ll hit reset if we die.”

And there we were all in one place,
blasting invaders from outer space, [Space Invaders]
with no quarter left to play again.

So break out, [Breakout]
beast be altered, [Altered Beast]
axe be gold … [Golden Axe]
We’ve lost the joystick
and control,
a reset generation. [Reset Generation]

Before opening the black gate, [Ultima VII: The Black Gate]
I battled through those streets of rage … [Streets of Rage]
The chief loaded his guns! [Halo: Combat Evolved]
The duke yelled, “Come get some!” [Duke Nukem 3D]

And as I lived out my half-life, [Half-Life]
I missed out on the final fight … [Final Fight]
We were doomed all right [Doom]
the day that 2D died.

He was playin’!
Bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset when we die.
We’ll hit reset if we die.”

I met a princess dressed in blue,
and I asked if she needed rescue,
but she just smiled and turned away. [Reset Generation]

So I went down to the miracle world
where I’d saved my brother years before …
Paper, scissors, rock won the day. [Alex Kidd in Miracle World]

In the streets, paperboys delivered, [Paperboy]
frogs were flattened, [Frogger]
zombies ate my neighbors. [Zombies Ate My Neighbors]
The fallout was unwanted; [Fallout]
Spies were being hunted. [Spyhunter]

And I was being chased by ghosts.
Got a pellet when I needed one most.
Then those nasty ghosts were toast [Pac-Man]
the day that 2D died.

And they were playin’!
Bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset when we die.
We’ll hit reset if we die.”

They were singin’!
Bye, bye Mr. 16-bit Sprite;
flew my TwinBee and my WinBee [TwinBee]
looking for extra life;
and bitmap boys swung over pitfalls with vines, [Pitfall!]
singin’, “We’ll hit reset if we die..”