(Super Nintendo)

Porky Pig's Haunted Holiday (Super Nintendo)

Game Review

Porky Pig's Haunted Holiday Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Corbie Dillard

A Looney Tunes platformer that's actually not too shabby.

For anyone who's watched the classic Porky Pig cartoons, you know that animators were quite fond of placing our stuttering pig friend into scary situations. Who could forget the leprechaun shoes or the moose head with the gun barrel protruding from its mouth. Well you'll be happy to know that not only are they both found in this haunting Super Nintendo platforming title, there's also tons of other classic Looney Tunes spooks thrown in for good measure. Porky Pig's Haunted Holiday might not be quite on par with some of the finer Super NES platformers, but it's got enough solid play control and Looney Tunes charm to make it at least worth a play.

From the moment you begin playing Porky Pig's Haunted Holiday, you'll realize that the game was obviously geared towards younger children when it was developed. The control scheme is extremely simple, and even the objectives in the game feel overly obvious and dumbed-down at times. That's not to say that this isn't a quality platformer, as the control in the game is quite good and generally feels very responsive, but seasoned platforming fans will likely blow through the first half of the game with great ease.

Porky basically has two simple game play moves at his disposal. He can jump and he can toss fruit at enemies. There are other means of traversing the levels, such as swinging from chains and riding on bubbles underwater, but for the most part, it's your typical run/jump side-scroller. There are also boss fights at the end of each area, but they tend to be overly easy to beat and don't offer much in the way of variety. At least the main levels themselves are well designed and offer up enough challenge to offset the weaker boss fights.

While the backdrops in Haunted Holiday are quite solid, it's the animation that seems to shine the brightest. All of the characters and enemies have that trademark Looney Tunes animation style and it proves to be quite an achievement for a 16-bit title. The colors that are used are all soft and give off a very spooky feel that fits the mood of the game perfectly. Although there aren't a lot of bright colors in the game, the blending of these softer color tones is done quite well using the large color palette of the Super Nintendo console. There's also multi-layer scrolling that adds additional depth to the surroundings as well. When you couple these quality backdrops with the already impressive animation, what you get is enough visual charm to make you want to stick with the game just to see what the next level has in store for you from a visual standpoint.

It's difficult to review the music and sound effects in Haunted Holiday mainly because there's not much there to evaluate. The music that plays in the background during each level is basically one simple spooky melody repeated over and over again. These short melodies are quite good, but they're so short and repeated so often that they quickly become annoying when you find yourself playing the same level for any extended length of time. It also doesn't help that these tunes don't really get much better as you progress through the game. The sound effects are also not nearly as impressive as those found in other Looney Tunes titles on the Super Nintendo system. Normally the character voices are quite well done, but Porky Pig doesn't even manage to stutter a single one of his trademark catch phrases at any point in the game. Even the other sound effects come off as more of an afterthought than anything relevant to the game. Considering the solid visuals, it's a bit of a shame that more emphasis wasn't placed on getting the sound effects and musical presentation up to par.

Conclusion

If you love a good platformer and can accept that this certainly isn't on par with many of the top tier Super NES platformers out there, then you might actually enjoy this release. It's a bit on the easy side, but it's got enough charm and personality to make it at least worthwhile. The control proves to be surprisingly good and how can you not love a video game that has Porky Pig in it. Especially one that tosses him into so many hilariously spooky situations. Of all the Looney Tunes releases on the Super Nintendo system, Porky Pig's Haunted Holiday is easily one of the better efforts and a game platformer fans might want to check out.

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User Comments (22)

JamieOStaff

#2

JamieO said:

There's that darn elusive leprechaun sprite in the banner!
I am always up for learning about a little known SNES game, I had never heard of this. 16 Mbits of chunky sprites make for an unusual, but ideal fit for a spooky October review. Cheers Corbie. :)

WanderFan91

#3

WanderFan91 said:

I always love playing a good platformer (Mr. Nutz, ActRaiser, Contra III), especially if it's a licensed product (Hook, The Lion King, Buster Busts Loose!). Great review, Corbie. :) Maybe I'll pick this up someday, if only for one of the reasons being I'm a big Porky Pig fan. Also, because I love to play games that are so obscure, and I love platformers.

WanderFan91

#6

WanderFan91 said:

Well, considering I'm still a kid at heart and is willing to try anything, I'm sold. ^^ "Th th th th th th th th that's all folks!" I love Porky Pig! :)

Knux

#8

Knux said:

Ah-ha! I guessed the right game in the SNES Review Fridays topic! :P
I remember playing this game as a kid! Great review, Corbie! :)

AVahne

#9

AVahne said:

omg, I ACTUALLY REMEMBER PLAYING THIS AS A KID! man, can't believe that i forgot about this game,it was a nice platformer. not as good as Super Mario World but still fun

y2josh

#10

y2josh said:

Nice read. After reading in the forums that this was the game that was going to be reviewed I checked it out on youtube. Looks like a really fun title. Seems like I have played it before, but the past history of drugs have taken a toll on my memory. Keep up with the SNES reviews. There have been some good/interesting picks and fun to read.

Omega

#11

Omega said:

Aww, it looks incredibly cute. I love those platformers with extra big sprites and detailed backgrounds. Unfortunately it was never released in europe. Speaking of games that were never released in europe: As a big fan of Clock Tower and Haunting Ground, I'd like to have a review of Clock Tower for the Super Nintendo here. It seems to be quite good, but as far as I know that was not even released in the US.

WanderFan91

#13

WanderFan91 said:

Actually, the cartoony box art is the best I've seen from all the other cartoony box arts. Looks so atmospheric and brooding and foreboding and ambient and whatnot. :)

JamieOStaff

#14

JamieO said:

@StarBoy91 That is a good point about the box art, it is well lighted and framed, the Warner Bros artists have been used to charming effect for this title. In the UK press it was well reported that Western box art often paled in comparison to Japanese covers, so this is a pleasant example of a US box getting it right. Even the game's title font and moody castle full moon backdrop is well designed.

WanderFan91

#15

WanderFan91 said:

I kinda find the US cover of Chrono Trigger better than the Japanese cover of Chrono Trigger, imo.

You know what? :O The Porky Pig boxart vaguely reminds me of this one 1937 Porky Pig cartoon, The Case of the Stuttering Pig. How bizarre is that? I miss that one episode.

JamieOStaff

#16

JamieO said:

@StarBoy91 I'm sure you know this, but it was the Western SNES box art for high profile games like Street Fighter II, Legend of Mystical Ninja and Super Ghouls and Ghosts that people used to compare to their Japanese equivalents.
Rival Turf was not a high profile game, but it had a particularly abysmal Western SNES cover!
In the UK we compare something which divides people's opinion as being like Marmite (you either love it or you hate it). Phalanx is a Marmite type of cover, it makes lots of 'Worst Box Art Ever' lists, but it is so obviously nuts that some people think it is great!
Do you eat Marmite in the States? (in Australia and New Zealand it is similar to Vegemite).

WanderFan91

#17

WanderFan91 said:

Ironically, I find Super Ghouls'n Ghosts' Western boxart very beautiful and it's one of my favorites; although I will admit there are (rather subtle) inaccuracies in it [why is the font green, why is Arthur wielding a sword and wearing a cape, etc...]. I actually find it better than the Japanese cover, though I will admit the latter is very good type of wicked. :)
Go figure, huh?

CanisWolfred

#20

CanisWolfred said:

I might actually check this out someday. Reminds me of one of my favorite Looney Toons episodes, and I do love platformers.

WanderFan91

#21

WanderFan91 said:

I played this game today (I got it in the mail), and it's one of the greatest licensed titles ever, and from Acclaim of all companies (I was amazed when I saw Aero appear in the Sunsoft logo screen)! :) The visuals are nothing short of amazing, and the gameplay was quite absorbing. Porky Pig is the best Loon in Looney Tunes ever!!!! :)
I still think your review is great, Corbie!

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