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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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.


It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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