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Takeshi no Chōsenjō

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Takeshi's Challenge
(たけしの挑戦状)
Takeshi's Challenge.jpg
"This game is made by a man who hates videogames." - Actual intro text
Genre(s): Action-adventure
Platform(s): Famicom
Release: December 10, 1986
March 31, 2009 (Virtual Console)
December 25, 2011 (English translation)
Developer(s): Taito
Publisher(s): Taito
Country: Japan
"北野さん、私は本当に大ファンです。 バトルロワイヤルであなたが本当に好きでした。 日本は現代のゲーム発祥の地です。 たけしの挑戦をしたのはなぜですか? なぜあなたは私たちにこれをするのですか? 私のこと嫌い? 誰かがあなたにこれをさせましたか? この封筒には別の封筒と紙が入っているので、私に返信してお詫びします。 私は本当に、実際にあなたにこの手紙を送っています。 私書箱に入っています。 このビデオレコーダーが私をテーピングしなくなった後、私は実際にこれをあなたに送るつもりです。

{Kitano-sama, watashi wa anata no dai fan desu. Batoru Rowaiaru no anata ga hontō ni suki desu. Nihon wa gendai gēmu no tanjō no ji desu. Naze Takeshi no Chosenjo wo tsukutta no desu ka? Naze watashitachi ni taishite hon'an koto wo suru no desu ka? Watashi no koto ga kirai na no desu ka? Dareka ni yara seta no desu ka? Kono fūtō wa fūtō to binsen ga dōfū sa rete imasukara, kore o tsukutte, shazai bun wo eishin shite kurete mo kamaimasen. Watashi wa honkidesu. Majime ni kono tegami wo anata wa okurimasu. Kono tegami wa shishobako atte desu. Dō ka henshin wo kudasai. Koreha-sho no ichibu arimasen. Kono satsuei ga owattara, hontōni ofu shi ni ikimasu.}

(Dear Mr. Kitano, I've been a really big fan. I really liked you in Battle Royale. Japan is the birthplace of modern gaming. Why did you make Takeshi's Challenge? Why would you do this to us? Do you hate me? Did someone make you do this? Enclosed in this envelope are another envelope and paper, so you can write me back and apologize. I am really, actually sending this letter to you. It's in your PO box. I am actually going to send this to you after this video recorder stops taping me.)"

JonTron

Takeshi no Chōsenjō, known as Takeshi's Challenge in English, is a game developed by Taito and released only for the Nintendo Famicom. It is the first and only game to date in which Japanese celebrity Takeshi Kitano worked on as a designer. The game was made available on the Virtual Console on March 31, 2009.

The game was originally going to be an adaptation of Takeshi's Castle until Kitano contacted the developers and took on a designer role.

A mobile phone remake of the game was eventually released on August 14, 2017. (and once again, exclusively in Japan)

Plot

A despondent salaryman seeks to find a hidden treasure on an island. To do this, he must quit his job, divorce his wife, professionally gamble, beat up strangers, and travel the world.

Why It Intentionally Sucks

  1. It has some of the worst, and also strangest, gameplay mechanics that were ever introduced in a video game.
  2. You can punch the guard next to the password screen and get a game over before the game even begins.
  3. The game is notorious for how obtuse it is to solve since the game gives no hints at all and the tasks they require you to do is just plain strange. These tasks need to be done in order to complete the game:
    • Quit your job.
    • Divorce your wife.
    • Get drunk (which is fitting, as Kitano was mostly drunk when he designed the game).
    • Gamble at the Pachinko parlor to get 100 balls and lose them.
    • Avoid touching buttons for 5 minutes.
    • Sing karaoke with the microphone in the second controller, which can be really hard for foreign players, since you need to know Japanese.
  4. It should be noted that an official strategy guide was released alongside the game, but it wasn't enough (it literally didn't contain all the steps needed to beat the game), so another was published not too long after. The company has claimed that this happened because the original guide's author literally died while writing it, though according to later interviews this was a lie they put out because they couldn't handle the volume of calls about the game.
  5. It's a Famicom game with domestic violence. We are not kidding. The English translation also has multiple F-Bombs.
  6. Just one tiny mistake in any part of the game and you automatically lose.
  7. You have very few hit points and you rarely ever recover them. This is made worse by Yakuza thugs that constantly attack you.
    • You can get up to seven from buying tequila. However, you are attacked by one of the Yakuza every time you order one, so you just end up wasting money if you aren't very careful.
  8. Artificial Difficulty: What makes this game very difficult to play is how unfair the gameplay mechanics can be, and this is by design.
  9. There are no extra lives or checkpoints. If you die or get stuck at any part of the game, you start from the beginning every single time. There are passwords, but you need to pause the game and open the menu to get one. And there is a resurrection cheat if you press A repetitively after you die.
  10. You can use any vehicle that you know how to use to reach the treasure island. Except not; the boat and scuba gear can't fly, the hot-air balloon can't move up or down, and the Cessna can't land. Essentially, picking anything besides the hang glider leads to failure.
  11. The hang glider section is incredibly frustrating and difficult. You have to maintain your flight by using gusts of wind (which you can shoot and destroy) and you only have one hit point!
    • To get an idea of how hard this is, Jontron started his review for this game in 2012 and didn't finish it until 2014.
  12. The final section of the game swarms the player with too many enemies to the point where it's unplayable.
  13. The ending. Instead of a proper ending or reward, a message from Takeshi himself has him berating the player for "taking this crappy game seriously". That's right - Takeshi Kitano is mocking you for finishing the game.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. The game's graphics look great for its time.
  2. The idea of the game being so open-ended and taking advantage of things like the second controller's microphone is pretty innovative for its time.

Reception

Takeshi no Chōsenjō is considered one of the worst video games of all time due to its frustratingly confusing gameplay. Takeshi Kitano purposefully designed the game to be as bad and frustrating as possible, due to the fact that he hates video games.

The gameplay was so bizarre and cryptic, that the publisher claimed to have gotten 400 calls each day for questions and two different strategy guides were released. Shortly after, the publisher discontinued the number and stopped taking questions, saying the person who was in charge of those died.

Trivia

  • The game became an internet meme in Japan.
  • When the game was re-released to the Wii Virtual Console, CERO rated the game a B, which that means the game is suitable only for 12 and up.

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