Barkley Shut Up and Jam!

Last updated
Barkley Shut Up and Jam!
Sega Genesis Barkley Shut Up and Jam! cover art.jpg
North American Sega Genesis cover art
Developer(s) Accolade
Publisher(s) Genesis
Super NES
Producer(s) Danny Pisano
Designer(s) Charles Barkley
Programmer(s) Bob Smith
Fred Mack
Tony Hsieh
Artist(s) Kathy Ells
Composer(s) Dominique Messinger
Rick Rhodes
SeriesBarkley Shut Up and Jam
Platform(s) Sega Genesis, Super NES
ReleaseGenesis
Super NES
  • NA: June 1994
  • JP: 30 September 1994 [1]
  • EU: December 1994
Genre(s) Sports
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer (up to four players)

Barkley Shut Up and Jam! [lower-alpha 1] is a basketball video game originally developed and published by Accolade for the Sega Genesis on North America in 1993 and later in Europe on April 1994. It is the first entry in the Barkley Shut Up and Jam series, featuring former NBA MVP Charles Barkley prominently and as one of the playable characters.

Basketball team sport played on a court with baskets on either end

Basketball is a team sport in which two teams, most commonly of five players each, opposing one another on a rectangular court, compete with the primary objective of shooting a basketball through the defender's hoop while preventing the opposing team from shooting through their own hoop. A field goal is worth two points, unless made from behind the three-point line, when it is worth three. After a foul, timed play stops and the player fouled or designated to shoot a technical foul is given one or more one-point free throws. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins, but if regulation play expires with the score tied, an additional period of play (overtime) is mandated.

Video game electronic game that involves interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a video device such as a TV screen or computer monitor

A video game is an electronic game that involves interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a two- or three-dimensional video display device such as a TV screen, virtual reality headset or computer monitor. Since the 1980s, video games have become an increasingly important part of the entertainment industry, and whether they are also a form of art is a matter of dispute.

Infogrames North America, Inc. was an American video game developer and publisher based in San Jose, California. The company was founded as Accolade in November 1984 by Alan Miller and Bob Whitehead, who had previously co-founded Activision in October 1979.

Contents

Featuring arcade-style gameplay similar to Midway's NBA Jam but closely following the rules seen in street basketball, players compete with either CPU-controlled opponents or against other players in matches across various cities of the United States. Originally known as Charles Barkley Basketball during development and initially released on the Genesis, [2] [3] [4] it was later ported to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and first released on North America on June 1994 and this version was released months later in both Japan and Europe on the same year by Den'Z and Sony Electronic Publishing respectively. [1]

Arcade game Coin-operated entertainment machine

An arcade game or coin-op game is a coin-operated entertainment machine typically installed in public businesses such as restaurants, bars and amusement arcades. Most arcade games are video games, pinball machines, electro-mechanical games, redemption games or merchandisers. While exact dates are debated, the golden age of arcade video games is usually defined as a period beginning sometime in the late 1970s and ending sometime in the mid-1980s. Excluding a brief resurgence in the early 1990s, the arcade industry subsequently declined in the Western hemisphere as competing home video game consoles such as the Sony PlayStation and Microsoft Xbox increased in their graphics and game-play capability and decreased in cost. The eastern hemisphere retains a strong arcade industry.

Midway Games Inc. was an American video game developer and publisher. Midway's franchises included Mortal Kombat, Rampage, Spy Hunter, NBA Jam, Cruis'n, and NFL Blitz. Midway also acquired the rights to video games that were originally developed by Williams Electronics and Atari Games, such as Defender, Joust, Robotron 2084, Gauntlet, and the Rush series.

<i>NBA Jam</i> (1993 video game) 1993 video game

NBA Jam is a basketball arcade game published and developed by Midway in 1993. It is the first entry in the NBA Jam series. The project leader for this game was Mark Turmell. Midway had previously released such sports games as Arch Rivals in 1989, High Impact in 1990, and Super High Impact in 1991. The gameplay of NBA Jam is based on Arch Rivals, another 2-on-2 basketball video game. However, it was the release of NBA Jam that brought mainstream success to the genre.

Barkley Shut Up and Jam! received mixed but positive reception when it was released on both platforms, with reviewers praising the graphics, sound and multiplayer, while others criticized the controls, lackluster animations and gameplay, with critics also comparing the game with NBA Jam. Ports for the PC and Atari Jaguar were in development but never released. [2] A sequel, Barkley Shut Up and Jam 2 , was exclusively released for the Genesis in 1995.

Atari Jaguar video game console

The Atari Jaguar is a home video game console that was developed by Atari Corporation. The console is the sixth programmable console to be developed under the Atari brand, originally released in North America in November 1993. It is also the last Atari console to use physical media. Controversially, Atari marketed the Jaguar as being the first 64-bit video game console, while competing with the existing 16-bit consoles and the 32-bit 3DO Interactive Multiplayer platform.

<i>Barkley Shut Up and Jam 2</i> 1995 video game

Barkley Shut Up and Jam 2 is a 1995 basketball sports game developed and published by Accolade exclusively for the Sega Genesis. The game is a sequel to 1994's Barkley Shut Up and Jam!.

1995 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Mario's Picross, Chrono Trigger, Mega Man 7, Rayman, Twisted Metal, Star Wars: Dark Forces, Destruction Derby and Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island.

Gameplay

Gameplay screenshot showcasing a match in Miami (Genesis version). MD Barkley Shut Up and Jam!.gif
Gameplay screenshot showcasing a match in Miami (Genesis version).

Barkley Shut Up and Jam! is a two-on-two street basketball game where players take control of either former NBA MVP Charles Barkley or one of fifteen fictitious basketball players in a progressive series of matches on outdoor courts across different cities of the United States, with the exception of Phoenix, which takes place in an indoor court. [5] [6] Though very similar to NBA Jam in terms of gameplay and controls, [7] the game provides a faster and more aggressive pace by containing less basketball play regulations and never penalizing a player, which emulates the looser and rougher nature of casual, urban basketball. [5] [6] [7] [8] The court locations has no effect on gameplay, while each of the playable characters has a unique set of status skills, encouraging players to figure out which character fits their play style the best. [5] [6] Despite that, Barkley has the best stats overall. [7]

Phoenix, Arizona State capital city in Arizona, United States

Phoenix is the capital and most populous city of Arizona, with 1,660,272 people. It is also the fifth most populous city in the United States, and the only state capital with a population of more than one million residents.

Like NBA Jam, players has access to a turbo function that allows the characters to move faster and steal easier. [5] [6] The player starts with the ability to use turbo six times but must earn each use back by performing well. [7] Unlike NBA Jam, the player can not control their teammate, who is instead controlled by the computer. A stable mechanic in Barkley is that your opponents have a very high chance of performing a difficult shot in the final seconds of the match, scoring their team three of four points, if they have the ball at the time, requiring the player to plan around this as the match is coming to an end. [7] Aside from the main single-player game mode, there is also a series mode as well as a tournament mode that allows up to 16 players. [5] [6] [7] The game has no save feature and utilizes a password system to keep progress through tournament mode. There are no major differences between the Genesis and Super NES versions besides graphics and sound, while each version of the game features support for up to four players with the Sega Team Player and Super Multitap adapters respectively. [5] [6]

Development and release

Barkley Shut Up and Jam! was first released for the Sega Genesis on North America in 1993 and Europe on April 1994 by Accolade, in addition being released in Brazil by Tectoy. It was then ported to the Super Nintendo in North America on June 1994 and was later released in Japan by Den'Z on September 30 of the same year under the title Barkley's Power Dunk, [1] and lastly in Europe by Sony Electronic Publishing on December of the same year as well. A PC port of the game was in development and planned to be released on the same period as with the Genesis and SNES versions but it was never released for unknown reasons. [2]

Tectoy Brazilian video game and electronics company

Tectoy is a Brazilian toy and electronics company headquartered in São Paulo. It is best known for producing, publishing, and distributing Sega consoles and video games in Brazil. The company was founded by Daniel Dazcal, Leo Kryss, and Abe Kryss in 1987 because Dazcal saw an opportunity to develop a market for electronic toys and video games, product categories that competitors did not sell in Brazil at the time. The company stock is traded on the Bovespa.

Sony Imagesoft

Sony Imagesoft was a video game publisher that operated from 1989 to 1995 and was located in California. It was established in January 1989 in Los Angeles, California, as a subsidiary of the Japan-based CBS/Sony Group (CSG) and initially named CSG Imagesoft Inc. Focus at the beginning was on marketing games exclusively for Nintendo consoles.

Atari Jaguar version

Gameplay screenshot from the unreleased Atari Jaguar version of Barkley Shut Up and Jam!, showcasing a match in Chicago. JAG Barkley Shut Up and Jam!.png
Gameplay screenshot from the unreleased Atari Jaguar version of Barkley Shut Up and Jam!, showcasing a match in Chicago.

In November 1993, Accolade signed an agreement with Atari Corporation to be a third-party developer for the then-recently released Atari Jaguar and licensed five titles from their catalog to Atari Corp. in order to be ported and released for the system, with Barkley Shut Up and Jam! (under its original development title) being among one of the five licensed games and it was first announced in early 1994. [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] The port was later showcased by Atari in an early playable state at WCES '95, featuring redrawn sprites and digitized graphics, with plans for a Q2 1995 release but was later rescheduled to be published on September 1995. [20] [21] [22] [23]

Internal documents from Atari Corp. revealed that Ringler Studios was behind the conversion and it was listed as still being developed on August 1995. [24] It was later previewed by Ultimate Future Games magazine in their supplementary issue from October of the same year dedicated to the Jaguar, now featuring digitized sprites instead of the hand-drawn sprites from both Genesis and SNES versions, and was slated for a late 1995 release. [25] Other internal documents from Atari still listed the port as in development on December of the same year and was last previewed by GamePro magazine in 1996. [26] [27] The port was ultimately never officially released during the commercial run of the system, which was discontinued by Atari on April 1996 before merging with JT Storage in a reverse takeover during the same month. [28] [29] According to ex-Atari producer Faran Thomason, the port was almost complete. [17]

On May 14, 1999, Hasbro Interactive released the patents and rights of the Jaguar into public domain and declared the system as an open platform, opening the doors for homebrew development and allowing independent publisher and developers to release unfinished titles from the past life cycle of the system. [30] A beta build of the Jaguar version of Barkley Shut Up and Jam! was released by B&C Computervision on July 2002 for US$60. [31] [32] The Jaguar version of the game features digitized graphics and sprites along with the same gameplay, modes, stages and number of playable characters as with the 16-bit versions, however, the roster (with the exception of Charles Barkley) are unique to the port. [27] This version also features support for up to four players with the Team Tap adapter. [33] Also unique to this version is a Pong minigame that can be played during the loading screen after selecting a court to play due to the compressed graphics.

Reception

Reception
Aggregate score
AggregatorScore
GameRankings (SNES) 64% [34]
Review scores
PublicationScore
Nintendo Power 12.8 / 20 [35]
CVG (Genesis) 56 / 100 [36]
GamePro (Genesis) 16.5 / 20 [37]
(SNES) 15.5 / 20 [38]
Mean Machines Sega (Genesis) 74 / 100 [39]
Mega Fun (Genesis) 77% [40]
Play Time (Genesis) 83 / 100 [41]
Total! (SNES) 4+ [42]
Video Games (Genesis) 73% [43]
(SNES) 73% [44]

GamePro gave the Genesis version a positive review, citing the variety of distinctive playable characters, the multiple gameplay modes, and the "distinctive urban look" to each of the seven courts, though they did criticize the controls as being inconsistent in their responsiveness. [37]

A reviewer for Sega-16 was more critical overall, countering much of GamePro's positive opinions. Sega-16 took offense with the "incomprehensible" voice samples and called the music hit-or-miss as well as too often reused for different locations. They took a stance that the controls were responsive and tight, but were disappointed by the size of the roster, when NBA Jam, the game's foil, had been out already and had more than three times as many characters to choose from. They did agree that the visual details and overall urban-street atmosphere were both surprisingly a treat, and consistent. [7]

Legacy

A sequel, Barkley Shut Up and Jam 2 , was released in 1995 exclusively for the Sega Genesis.

Over a decade later, a surreal role-playing indie fangame under the misleading title Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden was released in 2008 as an unofficial sequel to both the original Barkley Shut Up and Jam! and Space Jam . [45] Due to critical acclaim, coverage by several gaming journalism sites and its novel premise, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden and its upcoming sequel have dwarfed the official series by Accolade in both popularity and relevance. [46] [47]

See also

Notes

  1. Also known as Barkley's Power Dunk(Japanese:バークレーのパワーダンク Hepburn:Bākurē no Pawādanku) in Japan on the SNES.

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