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Bart’s been grounded and Sideshow Bob has kidnapped Krusty the Clown. What are you gonna do?
If you’ve played Blackthorne, Alien Rampage and Abuse and want to play a platform side-scroller a little on the lighter side definitely give Bart’s House of Weirdness a go. You’re not going to see blood and guts in this one but you will have a lot of fun evading the mall cops, boogey men in the basement, bugs in the attic and anything else that might be the bane of a kid the age of Bart Simpson. You’ll even battle through a couple of not-so-dreamy daydreams that involve aliens and a most bizarre episode of “Itchy and Scratchy”. In the end, if you succeed, you will be deemed “The Coolest” because you will have collected your cool shades, cool shoes, and your way cool cap.
The game documentation would like you to believe that Bart’s House of Weirdness is an adventure game, but let’s be honest here. The game is an arcade game pure and simple. It’s made up of six levels each originating from the vivid imagination of Bart Simpson himself. The entry point to each of the levels (which can be played in any order) is, of course, Bart’s bedroom. While not part of achieving your objective coolness there are also things that can be done in the bedroom but I’ll leave that up to your own discovery (keep it clean please). In the end if you are persistent and skilled enough you will enter Krusty’s Jungle Land where you must defeat the arch villain clown Sideshow Bob. Beat Bob and collect the “all time coolest thing in the universe”. Don’t ask me what that is. You’ll have to discover it for yourself.
Along the way you will collect weapons such as the spray paint can, the slingshot, water balloons, dart gun and burp gun. Each weapon specialized for certain situations. You will also collect health power-ups (donuts) and ammo (rocks, burp balls and super burp balls) and even extra lives. Game play is probably more suited to a joystick or gamepad than a keyboard but I did manage to get accustomed to the keyboard controls after a bit. Bart can walk, jump, duck, shoot ahead, shoot up or shoot down. Mastering the movement controls is always the key in a game like this because things will be flying at Bart from everywhere. Bart starts with 3 lives and his coolness meter is his health gauge. Keep an eye on your coolness. You can become uncool in a hurry.
Bottom line. Any fan of the Simpsons is going to enjoy this game and will recognize a lot of the characters in it. Game play is a little awkward with a keyboard but playable. All in all I would rate this game as …. “Cool Man”.
Run S.BAT to start the game. Runs fine in DOSBox. You can skip the intro sequence with the SPACE bar. You will need the manual to get by the built in copy protection. The game asks you to match a picture from the manual with a number that you are given.