[MAME Monday] Hyper Sports


Hyper Sports header

There was a time, like ten years (or more) ago when I spent a whole year doing the ambulance man. Not really a male nurse but something like that. I had other friends doing this job with me and everytime we had the night shift we used to pass the time in front of the PC we had in one of the offices just to make sure not to fall asleep.

This PC had MAME installed on it and one of the game we played the most was Hyper Sports (along with Track & Field/Hyper Olympics, but this is a subject for another review…): for us was like having a real arcade machine even though it was a computer (a veeeeeery old computer, moreover with limited internet access…) and we kept playing it all night long until our tendos were exausted and our fingers broken.

Here’s the 1-Minute MAME Mini Movie where you can see me playing Hyper Sports.

Hyper Sports is the second game after Track & Field featuring the mustachioed athlete that for me has always been Super Mario’s cousin. Having been released the same year of Los Angeles Olympic Games, in Japan the title is also known as Hyper Olympics ’84 even if this is not an olympic licensed game. This time the game is less focused on atheltics and more on other olympic disciplines: we have freestyle swimming, skeet shooting, long horse, archery, triple jump, weight lifting and pole vault.

Well, regardless the difficulty of each event (being paule vault an triple jump the betes noir of 90% of players) it’s very common that for the first 20 times you won’t fo after the third event (long horse) since nowhere in the games is explained how to perform a good jump. If this is not a big issue in the emulated versione, try to think about a young boy wasting tons of quarter dollars (or 10 pence or loved italian 200 lire) without succeding. It could have been way disappointing…

By the way this game is absolutely awesome. Starting from the almost perfect base of Track & Field, Hyper Sports shows us other disciplines, usually not so well known (for example the weight lifting). The graphic compart is always excellent even if the gameplay for the reasons already mentioned could be a bit tricky.

Hyper Sports was available in upright and cocktail cabinets but the upright was the most common.

Hyper Sports cabinet

Hyper Sports cabinet cocktail

I don’t know how many coin-ops have been smashed by people playing this game but I know for sure sometimes tend to be very upsetting.

One of the geekiest thing Konami has ever made is the control set designed for this game, the Hyper Shot Controller. Wonderful!

Konami Hyper Shot Controllers

Every single game have some special feature once is completed with the highest score: for example during the skeet if you hit all the clays a rabbit appears and and you can earn 3000 bonus points if you hit it.

There’s no possibility to choose the difficulti level of the game. You will always start from the easy one, where the time/score to qualify is extremely easy to achieve and after claring all the events the game will restart on medium difficulty and then the thrid time with high difficulty: clearing all the stages on the last level it’s a challenge that need lighspeed fingers and a lot of training, since the limit to qualify is incredibly tough.

Here are some screenshots of the game

Hyper Sports 2

Hyper Sports 3

Hyper Sports 1

Final score 85/100

85%

A huge thanks, as always, to the guys of Arcade Museum.


Year: 1984

Developer: Konami

Publisher: Konami (J), Centuri (USA), Ocean (EU)

Genre: Sports, Olympics

Games Mode: Single Player, Multiplayer

Original Platform: Arcade

Cabinet: Upright

From the same developers:

  • Castelvania (1986) and sequels
  • Metal Gear (1987) and sequels
  • Contra (1987) and sequels
  • International Superstar Soccer (1995)
  • Silent Hill (1999) and sequels
  • Pro Evolution Soccer (2001) and sequels

From the same publishers:

  • Moon Cresta (Centuri, 1980)
  • Phoenix (Centuri, 1980)
  • Donkey Kong (Ocean, 1981)
  • Time Pilot (Centuri, 1982)
  • Gyruss (Centuri, 1983)
  • Daley Thompson’s Decathlon (Ocean, 1984)
  • Arkanoid (Ocean, 1986)
  • Robocop (Ocean, 1988) and sequels
  • Toki (Ocean, 1989)
  • Lemmings (Ocean, 1991)
  • Lethal Weapon (Ocean, 1992)
  • Soccer Kid (Ocean, 1994)
  • International Superstar Soccer (Konami, 1995)
  • Silent Hill (Konami, 1999) and sequels
  • Pro Evolution Soccer (Konami, 2001) and sequels

Inspired to:

  • Decathlon a.k.a. The Activision Decathlon (1983)

If you liked this game you can also try:

Other chapters of the saga:

  • Track & Filed a.k.a. Hyper Olympics (1983)
  • Konami ’88 (1988)
  • Track & Field II (1988)
  • Hyper Athlete (1996)
  • Nagano Winter Olympics ’98 (1998)
  • International Track & Field 2000 (1999)
  • ESPN International Track & Field (2000)
  • Konami Sports Series (2004)
  • Track & Field 2006 (2006)
  • New International Track & Field (2008)
  • Hyper Sports Winter (2010)

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