Radical Rex is a game produced at the height of gaming's "Attitude Era", where the heroes would save the world, but were required to act like they did not give a shit about saving the world.
That, of course, is this guy's fault:
|"Are we stopping Robotnik or not man, I got chili dogs to eat."|
This game was also made after Jurassic Park came out and made everybody realize dinosaurs were bad ass, so this game is 90s as hell.
The game begins with a montage of Rex skating it up, which is pretty radical, I must admit.
|It always comes back to Batman. Always.|
Next you're treated to a screen where Rex dances a jaunty jig. You'll recognize this as being extraordinarily not radical.
Now, as a pretty radical dude myself, I'm not going to play just because the man tells me to. Make me Radical Rex! I'll watch these stupid screens all day.
After that it goes to the menu screen anyway, so I lost that battle. Ok. I'll play your game.
The game starts with some weasel guy who speaks only in fruity rhymes floating over and telling all the dinosaurs he controls them and that dinosaurs suck and it's time for mammals to take over the world.
|"Say no more! Let's get to destroying ourselves fellas."|
Radical Rex is sleeping through all this however, so when he wakes up he has to...what...defeat this gopher guy and preserve dinosaur kind for all time? Because, shit, I know how that story ends.
So the game begins and I'm off on my adventure to, like, whatever and stuff. I can kick, jump, and blow fire. Before me is is a skateboard and now it's time to truly test out rad I can be. I ride the skateboard for like 3 seconds until I crash face first into a wall. Normally wiping out like that is totally a bummer, but Rex continues on like it ain't no thing so he maintains some measure of raditude. For the rest of the level I'm just jumping and kicking sleeping animals in the face, the usual platformy stuff. But some of these animals are dinosaurs. When I Van Damme some sleepy saber-toothed tiger in the face it's cool, because fuck mammals. It's us versus them right? Why am I spitting fire all over my fellow dinosaurs? They may be under the spell of that rat guy, but they're not really doing anything evil. Maybe Rex just wants to kill everybody.
|Ohhhhhhhhh. Radical Rex.|
|Not a checkpoint.|
But whatever. I'm not mad. As I beat the level some staticy voice assure me that my actions were "Legendary". I collected enough eggs in the stage to try a bonus game for a chance at a free life (oh yeah, by the way you collect eggs. Like, all the time). The bonus game is a Bomberman looking game involving collecting more eggs and pushing block into bad buys.
|Honestly it's more fun than the main game.|
I lost because I pushed one of the green blocks into an egg, which is a bullshit reason because they never said I could do that.
After that Rex is just casually strolling along and some Pterodactyl picks him up.
The Pterodactyl's plan was to drop Rex into a pool of water a foot high though, so I still don't know if he was trying to kill him or if he thought he was helping somehow. The next level is filled with the same stuff except now it's green. New to this level are vines to climb and swing on, and these only serve to slow the game down. At the end of this level, the staticy voice describes my exploits as "awesome". Unfortunately, I didn't collect enough eggs for the bonus game. So, that sucks.
Next, like a dumbass Rex skates right into a dinosaur's open mouth.
|"Ahhhhhhh I'm so bad at this!"|
It's pretty spacious in this guy's stomach. And skateboarding idiots probably account for a lot of his diet because it's pretty packed in here. He doesn't chew anything, clearly relying on a series of mildly difficult platforming sections to finish off his prey. I die quite a bit in here actually. There's some spikes in here that kill you instantly and there's multiple paths so you can end up going in circles a lot. Also there's some jerk parasite things that try to kiss you to death, and you have to shake them off.
|Oh yeah baby, I like it when you kill me like that.|
The game doesn't ever show Rex leaving the dinosaurs body though. I think it makes it pretty clear that Rex died in that dinosaur, and everything after that level is in his mind as his brain begins to die. This is the next thing you see:
|It's really subtle, but it's there. Maybe.|
The next stage takes place in this ghostly graveyard planet filled with dead dinosaurs. At the end of the stage I'm told this is all pretty "excellent". I don't really agree, but I'll let Rex have his dream. I'm pretty shitty at collecting eggs, as once again I miss the bonus game.
Next is a clip of Rex swimming underwater (somehow) and already I feel pretty anxious. It should be known that I have a fear of drowning in videogames. Not drowning in real life, I'm totally cool with drowning in real life. But ever since Sonic, the idea of running out of air in underwater stages has filled me with worry and panic. And sure enough this stage has plenty of underwater portions. Sometimes, some fish come up to you and spit oxygen all up in your mouth. That's pretty nice. On the day of my Dino Reckoning, fish shall be spared.
But there's also fish that suck air away from you.
|Death to all fish!!|
Also there's some dudes with tentacles that just grab you and kill you instantly. Fuck this level all over. At the end of the level, you meet the squirrel dude face to face. The fight seems pretty hard at first, because every time I spit fire at him, it takes off like a pixel of health. But eventually he gets into a pattern of doing the same thing over and over again, and I exploit it until he dies.
|"How did he know how to avoid my slow moving magical attacks!?"|
So game over, the evil chipmunk is defeated, and dinosaurs continue to rule the Earth. But wait! He's not defeated after all, it was all a cunning ruse. He says the usual "you will not defeat me" stuff and also that you won't get your girlfriend, Rexanne (seriously), back. Of course, it was about a woman the whole time. They're very good at getting kidnapped.
|You know what? No.|
I decide at this point I'm done with all this game's tricks. And by that of course I mean I got a game over.
One last thing that must be mentioned that in every level there are these flies that are everywhere. They're not enemies, and they don't do anything but just get in the way. I have no idea why the hell they are there, or why there are so many of them.
|That one is in the freaking lava.|
My best guess is they can smell the death on him.
HOW MUCH DID THE COVER ART LIE?
It's a T-Rex skateboarding. That pretty much sums up what this game was going for. I take issue with the "shred pre-historic pavement" though. That never happened. Not once.