The LJN Halloween Double Bill – Friday the 13th

Before we get to the most terrifying game I’ve played, let’s get to the…second most terrifying set of games I’ve played, both from LJN, starting with…

Who doesn’t know the hockey mask, machete-wielding murderer Jason Voorhees? The Friday the 13th franchise is a famous horror franchise. I’ve seen bits of some but fully watched the remake which sucked, but not as bad as this game for the NES, developed by Atlus (Yes, THAT ATLUS) and published by LJN and was released in 1989.

So you can pick from one of six camp counsellors, each with special abilities. You go around Crystal Lake, attacking zombies near lakes using rocks, these are very weak weapons and it takes a while to defeat enemies, though you can upgrade your weapons, most commonly a knife. The goal is to find Jason and defeat him three times. You can go around cabins, a lake, caves and forests where you’ll find more zombies as well as crows and wolves.

You can navigate your way through the game using the map, but the problem is the map is like a real map and it makes no sense considering that it’s a platformer. So if you’re going to the right on the side-scrolling part, according to the map, you’re going to the left. This makes absolutely no sense and could completely confuse anyone; because you also need to save any child or counsellor when they need help. A house will flash on the map, indicating that they’re in trouble, you must go to them and save them, so if you don’t make it, the child or counsellor will die. If you do get there in time, you go in the hut, they thank you and before you can leave, Jason pops out and you have to attack him, if successful, he’ll flee, but if you die from him, the current counsellor dies permanently. You do get to pick another surviving counsellor to continue the game.

You can go to the larger cabins to light fireplaces if you have the lighter, lighting all the fireplaces will give you the flashlight and torch weapon and you need this to easily beat Jason. And if all the children or counsellors die, the game is over.

This game is just horrible, it’s boring, it’s difficult to survive and fighting Jason is totally confusing. The graphics are pretty good, there are 3D sections when you go into cabins, it looks dated but for the time, it’s a nice addition. The gameplay is mediocre, it’s not horrible apart from the Jason fight, but trying to attack enemies can sometimes be insufferable. The music is annoyingly repetitive; you’ll hear 2 second chimes on loop and is horrid. But when Jason did appear, it did make me jump so I’ll give it points for that.

Overall, its god awful, what else can I say about it without swearing. It’s another bad movie licensed game and a bad LJN game.

You can get it on the NES.



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