Monday, 30 May 2016

Game Time: 1992, "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time"


In the News

It’s 1992. The average UK house price is £68,634. Aladdin, Alien 3, Reservoir Dogs and The Bodyguard are released and bettered by Home Alone 2. John Gotti is sentenced to life in prison for conspiracy to commit racketeering. The co-operation between his Captain Sam Gravano and the FBI sends an irreversible shockwave through the Mafia’s code of ethics. Euro Disney opens in France. Bill Clinton becomes U.S president. The Queen of England is ordered to pay income tax, and a fire rips through Windsor Castle. The Summer Olympics are held in Barcelona. Rioting breaks out in Los Angeles after the acquittal of four white police officers accused of beating black motorist Rodney King. Mike Tyson is imprisoned for rape. Afghanistan’s Communist government is overthrown. Charles and Diana separate and 31 out of 50 coal mines close in Britain.

The Game Times

Street Fighter II wins GOTY at the Golden Joystick Awards. The seminal releases are: Kirby’s Dream Land on the Game Boy; Sonic the Hedgehog 2 with “Tails” debuting on the Mega Drive; Mario Kart, Ecco the Dolphin, Mortal Kombat featuring bloody “fatalities” and, in November, Konami release Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time on the SNES.

The release of TMNT is significant because I’m seven years old and I am a Turtle. My lunch box, school bag, wallpaper, curtains, pyjamas, scrap books, figurines, accent and diet of no anchovies shows it. Until this point my experience of co-op gaming is Double Dragon and, while good, TMNT has my characters and story. Krang has stolen the Statue of Liberty and my friend and I can fight him in Downtown New York, the Sewers and the Technodrome using the innovative ability to slam Foot Soldiers into surrounding enemies.

The Game’s Legacy

TMNT’s legacy is not found so much in its technical innovation but in its pertinent social satire. I’m pretty sure that Krang’s removal of the Statue of Liberty is a prophetic allusion to the impending removal of Bill Clinton’s marital security; The Footsoldiers are the black people who suffer beat downs by rogue law enforcement; and, the Turtles are the unemployed coal miners forced to find night jobs above ground.

Why I Stopped Playing

My dad said it was too expensive to buy the Crash Dummies Test Centre as well as TMNT so I only played TMNT at my friend Will Coombes’s house. By early 1993 I had stopped playing because his mum thought I tried to steal Will’s dinosaur necklace from his bedroom and she didn’t want me coming around anymore. That was majorly tight because I think it was John Langmaid who tried to steal it. She also thought it was me that pushed Will into the school bench (causing stitches in his ear) but Evan Humphries did it.

by Owen J. Batstone. 

What were you doing in 1992? What were you playing in 1992? Why did you stop?


  1. My first ever game was Ecco the Dolphin. Was superb.

    I also put a lot of hours into a game where these 2 lads needed to collect McDonald's M's. No idea.

  2. I spent a lot of time playing Mario Kart on the SNES. To this day it stands as one of the greatest games of all time. Me and Simon Newitt spent so many hours in battle mode.