Retro Game of the Day! Custer's Revenge
Custer's Revenge by Mystique, for the Atari 2600. Released in 1982.
I could sense the collective groaning as I typed the title for this entry. "Oh great, here we go." It is important to recognize that, just like any other cultural staple, even videogaming has it's darker, seedier moments. Hey wait a second, you can rape hookers in GTA and then there's the whole Hot Coffee thing. Well, before I get too ahead of myself..
This game was released during a period when anyone could release anything for a game system, there were no such things as licensing feed or lockout chips (sigh.. a Golden Age!) Understandably, this meant that much garbage software was released. And of this, a subset of a very particular kind of trash released. But hey, business is business.
And so, into this world Custer's Revenge was born. Telling the tale of an alternate reality where the famously murdered Civil War commander gets to exact his revenge on his would-be killers, by doing the nasty with their women. That's right - you play as the General, naked except for his boots and hat. and you must make deep, passionate love (....) to a captured female Indian. All you need to do is avoid the shower of enemy arrows standing between you two, then once you've arrived, hit the action button for all you're worth.
The game is a pretty shameful idea, tasteless at least - but in hindsight it just seems marvelously ludicrous. Who programmed this, who thought it would be a compelling title and tried to market it with a straight face? The questions are endless, but ultimately no one cares. Custer's Revenge represents a much simpler time in our hobby's history, and even then people were coming up with ways to take advantage of the sleazier aspects of human nature..
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