As impressive as today’s AAA video games are, often sporting complex storytelling and compelling characters to match their bleeding-edge graphics, there’s still just something addictive about old-school games like Super Mario Bros. or Mega Man. Since they’re what I grew up with, some of it is nostalgia, sure, but there’s also something to be said for the comparative simplicity of those games. They weren’t hard to figure out how to play, but to master? That was something else. I have a feeling director/animator Kristofer Ström grew up playing those games, because he’s captured the infectious joy of them perfectly in the video above, entitled Boss Fight.
Ström directed the film and oversaw the effects, but he didn’t handle is the music. That came with the package because Boss Fight was designed as a music video for artist Xilent. And as much as I usually lose interest when things get all dubsteppy, it works perfectly with the frenetic, 16-bit-style action here. Who wouldn’t want their very own homemade mech suit? Okay, actually I would prefer my very own professionally constructed mech suit, because if I tried to homemake one I’m fairly certain I’d blow up my entire neighborhood.
I also love all the little touches, from the low-tech heads-up display to the way objects pixelate into cubes when shot — even human body parts. (Mr. Boss Fight isn’t great about avoiding the whole friendly-fire thing.) But the dude’s face on the front display reminds me of RoboCop 2, and for that I must detract points. He wraps it all up with a nice little punchline, though, so it all evens out.
Xilent is a British “dubstep, electro house and drum & bass music producer.” If you like the cut of his jib, you can see what he’s peddling on his Twitter and Facebook. Here’s another of his videos, this one sadly lacking in 16-bit mech suits.
If you’ll excuse me, Cosmo and I need to go discuss our mutual feelings about dubstep.