The Console Wars Live On As Night Trap Remake Team Holds a Grudge Against Nintendo
Posted by Thomas Whitehead
"There's just too much bad blood between us and them"
We often talk about the Console Wars of the '90s — a term getting plenty of mentions courtesy of Blake J. Harris' Console Wars: Sega, Nintendo, and the Battle That Defined a Generation — as a relic of Nintendo and Sega's past rivalry. The current scene is very different, with Nintendo going its own way, Microsoft and Sony in a battle of resolutions, while iOS (Apple) and Android (Google) hoover up ludicrous revenues on their platforms. Yet still, some lingering feelings from that Nintendo vs. Sega era do linger.
A recent example is a Kickstarter Campaign for Night Trap ReVamped, which aims to produce a remake of the Sega CD's FMV (full motion video) game for HD systems. The title was actually filmed in 1986 for Hasbro's 'Nemo' console that was scrapped, before going on to become a cult favourite among Sega CD fans — it features some comical acting as youngsters are stuck in a house with men in dark jumpsuits. You can get a sense of how the video will be cleaned up in the footage below.
The campaign is certainly ambitious, however, seeking $330,000 in funding — it's reached roughly $11,750 with 28 days to go, at the time of writing. Most intriguing is the list of platforms, consisting of PS3, Xbox 360, PC and Mac, with PS4 and Xbox One as options should there be sufficient demand. Why not Wii U? It seems the development team — this project is being run by those that produced the original — are still rather unhappy with Nintendo's role in the Senate hearings in the U.S that accompanied its original release in the early/mid '90s. Some controversial scenes of scantily clad teenage girls, violence and a bathroom sequence suggesting a particularly grisly attack, all helped to bring the game into the limelight; some credit it as one of the reasons that age ratings were introduced with games.
The developers are still upset at Nintendo for its part in those proceedings; below is what was posted in the Q & A section when asked why no Nintendo versions have been promised.
Ever hear the term "never burn bridges?" Well, Howard Lincoln, the former president of Nintendo US, made our lives miserable during the 1994 Senate Hearings on Video Game Violence. Not only did he quietly suggest to congressman, though the use of Nintendo-supplied and heavily edited footage, that they should demonize Night Trap rather than Nintendo's Mortal Combat[sic], but he also declared publicly that Night Trap would never appear on a Nintendo system. And he was right: as much as Nintendo desperately needs publishers to support their third-place platform, we won't be one of them. There's just too much bad blood between us and them.
That's a 20 year grudge right there, and shows how dirty the console wars were in that period. With the greatest respect to Night Trap ReVamped, however, we think the Wii U can deal with this loss.