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Behold the Magic That Is “Rambo” The Arcade Game

Behold the Magic That Is “Rambo” The Arcade Game (photo)

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It’s been around in Japan since 2008, but it’s just recently started popping up in American arcades over the last couple months. Last weekend, I got to play it for the first time. My life will never be the same. I give you: “Rambo: The Arcade Game.”

Released by Sega, “Rambo” is the horrifically violent video game every child of the ’80s dreamed of when they watched Stallone win the VIetnam War or save Afghanistan from the evil Soviets (want to see the game we got instead? Watch this). Two players wielding two massive plastic machine guns (or plastic Uzis, depending on the model) play as Col. Trautman and Rambo, as they sort of reenact iconic scenes from the “Rambo” movies. Notice I say sort of; as you can see in the video, the game dips in and out of full motion video clips that form the backbone of the “story” (please add your own air quotes). So Trautman and Rambo will be in a ditch surrounded by enemy fighters in a scene from “Rambo III” when the game kicks in and the duo kills about 3,000 Soviets in a row before jumping in a jeep and escaping.

Remember that scene? Remember when Rambo and Trautman killed 3,000 guys without running out of ammo?

Actually, it was “Rambo III.” That did kind of happen.

In fact, “Rambo” is probably the most accurate video game adaptation of “Rambo: First Blood Part II” and “Rambo III” ever made. Even the gameplay feels right. To reload, you just aim your gun offscreen, but you don’t even need to release the trigger for the reload to take effect, so, like the onscreen “Rambo,” you basically never runs out of ammo. Plus, there’s no way to take cover or evade enemy fire so the only way to survive is to adopt the movie’s ultra right-wing, pro-war politics: kill everything on the screen as quickly as possible, shoot first and ask questions never. They even built combat shock into the game’s structure: the first level’s from “Rambo III,” the next is a “Counterstrike Flashback” from “Rambo: First Blood Part II.”

The game is so impossibly, cartoonishly violent, it almost seems like a parody of a light gun shooter. Slap Charlie Sheen’s face on the cabinet and update a few of the cutscenes and you could believably call this thing “Hot Shots: Part Deux: The Arcade Game.” Within seconds, you murder enough soldiers (and Geneva Conventions) to make Joe Lieberman cry. Within minutes, you decimate the population of a small country. Later, you get to shoot things with explodo-arrows. Is this thing a joke or such a straight-faced but totally deranged male power fantasy that it just feels like a joke? Either way, it couldn’t be much funnier.

Rambo even has a “Rage Meter” that steadily fills based on the awesomeness of your murder spree. When it fills all the way up and you press a button, you activate “MAXIMUM RAGE!” giving you stronger, bigger bullets, and invincibility for a short period of time. In other words: roid rage. But that’s nothing compared to how mad I’m going to be if I don’t get to play this stupid, amazing game again soon.

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.

Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.


Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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