Kick in the Teeth of Bad Guys in Vigilante on Turbo Grafx-16 – Today in History – August 19th, 1989

The Turbo Grafx-16 launched with two arcade titles, Vigilante and R-Type. The Sega Genesis on the other hand launched with several arcade ports (all but two, I believe). Vigilante is believed by many a gamer to be the spiritual successor to Kung-Fu Master (remember China Warrior?). Before you read the storyline behind this one, just remember the late 80’s were a “unique” time to be a gamer.

The setting for Vigilante is New York City and a gang has taken over. This gang goes by the name “Skinheads” and they have taken your girlfriend, Madonna (not kidding folks). That is the story of the arcade game and the Turbo Grafx-16 version is the closest of the home ports (Master System, MSX, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, Atari ST, Amiga, etc).

The fighting takes place on a single plain, much like Altered Beast, China Warrior and Last Battle (it was apparently how fighting games played back in the day). Levels were varied but the enemies weren’t, so prepare to fight the same guys over and over- cloning ran rampant in gaming during this period and to some extent, still does.

Compared to fighting games released later, Vigilante may not hold up all that well for you. The limited range of movement is killer for this type of game as these scrolling brawlers are known for being able to travel up and down the screen to avoid enemies, pick up food/health items, and grab weapons. It is just how things are done in a scrolling brawler. Vigilante does not have that and it is quite noticeable.

If you want a Final Fight or Streets of Rage style brawler, skip Vigilante, and Last Battle, and China Warrior and Altered Beast. These games don’t follow the mantra of Capcom and Sega’s classic series’.

Vigilante is available on many platforms so hit the links below:

Nintendo Wii Virtual Console