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The Adventures of Bayou Billy (NES) artwork

The Adventures of Bayou Billy (NES) review

"An eager concept of variables turned ugly on its execution"

Bayou Billy was one of the few NES games I owned as a kid and one I actually finished after so many afternoons of trying out my patience getting through it. I was pretty pleased with the concept of having multiple genres into a single game, even if they were not executed perfectly. I was also amazed at the fact that I did not once tossed it in disgust and anger whenever I was fed up on losing constantly in the same stage over and over.

The story goes that Billy's girlfriend Annabelle gets kidnapped by Godfather Gordon and taken away to his property. Bayou Billy gets on the case, fighting through henchmen, wild animals, and even choppers trying to gun him down. On this game you will transverse the bayou beating up bad guys and local fauna, then tossed into a rail shooting segment where it can be played through with either the zapper or a controller, followed by the arduous driving segments which will test your patience most of it all.

The game suffers a lot with its unforgiving difficulty. It takes ages to beat up a single enemy and more often than not they manage to take a huge chunk of your life away before you are able to defeat anyone else. The shooting segments are pretty entertaining, but you must watch your ammo from running out for you cannot defend yourself if you shoot carelessly, as well as enemies speeding through the screen being difficult to shoot before they shoot you. The driving segments are pretty much the worst of the lot, being some of the most hellish ways to go through. It does not help that said driving segments are back to back and must be completed if you want to continue through the game.

The music is quite engaging and sets the mood accordingly, although the sound effects for punching and kicking come out like using a wet blanket against a wall. I really like the fact that it offers a BGM test in the options menu to enjoy said tunes. The graphics suffer a bit here, with faceless enemies and simplified designs.
Finishing the game really doesn't give you an air of accomplishment, especially with the hard as nails difficulty that it provides throughout the entire thing. Chances are that you would quit at the very first stage out of frustration on how unfair the game's AI is than trying to be patient enough to beat it. On the positive side, the game offers quite a variety of ways to play it through, mixing hand to hand combat, shooting gallery, and driving segments.

In conclusion, trying out Bayou Billy would be more than enough for anyone really. If gameplay were a bit on the easy side enough to compare it to the much playable Double Dragon series then it could really had been something to establish it as a classic in the NES library.


CptRetroBlue's avatar
Community review by CptRetroBlue (August 28, 2019)

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