Home > Chronological Challenge > Chronological Challenge – Clayfighter 63 1/3

Chronological Challenge – Clayfighter 63 1/3

December 1, 2015 Leave a comment Go to comments

So last week didn’t see the daily updates I promised because I got sick and it threw me for a loop. So let’s try and improve on that this week!

Clayfighter 63 1/3

Publisher: Interplay | Developer: Interplay | Released: October 1997 (US)
Played on: Nintendo 64

Goal: Clear the game with any character

Actual Outcome: Cleared the game with Earthworm Jim (of course I picked Earthworm Jim)

Like Pilotwings 64, I got this when I got an old N64 gifted to me, and I knew even less about it than Pilotwings (which I mostly knew about because of the stage in Smash 4). I knew that it used sprites utilising stop-motion animation, but that was about it.

Clayfighter 63 ⅓ is a very wacky and very limited fighting game. There is one mode – you play through a series of matches as a character and…that’s it. There are a couple of characters to unlock, but beyond that, this is your lot. It doesn’t even have the decency of giving you a training mode to learn the characters’ moves. Poor show there, guys.

It’s also very WACKY. You have offbeat character designs that are silly but slightly horrifying. There’s an evil snowman, there’s a pumpkin ghost thing, there’s a mad scientist, and so on, and…is that Earthworm Jim? I know who I’m playing as!

As fighting games go, Clayfighter is firmly in the average camp. It’s not a bad game, but it’s not memorable or exciting like the Tekkens and the Street Fighters of the world. Characters have a nice range of moves, but the lack of a training mode means that more often than not you’re just hitting buttons at random hoping for something good to happen. There are numerous times where I did something cool but then had no idea how I’d pulled it off so I couldn’t repeat it. I didn’t know how to block. I didn’t know how to do the flashy super stuff my opponents kept trying. I managed to battle my way through to the end, but most of the time it was just by flailing around and hoping for the best.

Graphically, this game feels very dated. It’s hard to tell that these characters are supposed to be stop-motion plasticine things, and the arenas wobble like nobody’s businesses as you move around the stage. In terms of sound, things are better than I expected. There are a lot of repetitive voice clips being thrown around, but they’re decent voice clips, as all the VA talent are veteran voice actors known for a ton of cartoon work (EWJ was played by Dan “Homer Simpson” Castelleneta, for instance, his VA from the cartoon). So that was a nice plus.

It seems like I’m being fairly harsh on Clayfighter 63⅓ but I didn’t dislike it. It just feels so barren of content that it doesn’t set the world alight. It’s a decent game, but decent is about as far as it goes.

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