November 21, 2013 by briantshock
Video arcades may be a relic of the past, but there was once a time when arcades were all over the place (or at least in every shopping mall). Kids could rush in with their parents’ quarters and play sophisticated, high-quality games that their Nintendos and Segas at home simply could not produce. As far as I’m concerned, there was only one arcade game worth mentioning, and that, my friends, is the clown called Mr. Do!! (one exclamation point is for the title, the other is for my excitement)
This was back when games didn’t need to try to force some kind of poorly-written story on you. Let’s look at the premise. You’re some kind of creepy clown digging around what I assume is just colored dirt collecting cherries and watching out for these guys trying to kill you. That’s all you need to know. You don’t need to go be a Double Dragon. You don’t need to win the fighting tournament to stop Shang Tsung from eating your soul or whatever. Just get in that dirt and get some damn cherries!
If gathering dirt cherries isn’t your thing then you can win the level by taking the fight back to the enemies. Littered about the stages are a bunch of apples you can use to crush your foes to death. If you can line up a bunch of them you’ll get a lot of points and immense satisfaction. Mr. Do! also comes equipped with a ball that you can fire that will bounce around the tunnels and destroy any monster it comes into contain with, but you can’t rely on that thing; it can take a while to recharge.
Every so often a monster that looks like a TV comes out and you have to kill him so you can spell out E-X-T-R-A. You can also force this event by eating the delicious pastry that’s left in the middle once all the enemies leave their spawn point. Watch out though, because he’s guarded by three ghost things that are clearly rip-offs of Pac-man ghosts. They will chase you down and can eat the apples you try to drop on them so you’ll have to try to snipe the TV guy so they give up and leave you alone. Once you spell out EXTRA you get an extra Mr. Do! NOICE!
Every so often a diamond will appear, giving you an extra continue, but this very rarely happened. I think I’ve only seen this phenomena twice in my Mr. Do! tenure.
Wikipedia claims there were several home adaptations of Mr. Do! but I never saw any of them, which was supremely disappointing. I had cartridges of my other favorite arcade games like Pac-man and Donkey Kong, why not my absolute favorite clown game? One day I decided enough was enough, and I took one of my father’s Commodore 64 floppy disks and wrote in marker on it “MR DO”. I stuck the disk in the computer and tried to load up the game, but it didn’t work. I’m not really sure what I expected, but fortunately I’ve learned quite a bit more about programming since then.
There were a couple of spinoffs that were similar single-screen, level-based adventures, but I did not like those as much. These were “Mr. Do’s Castle”, “Mr. Do’s Wild Ride”, and “Do! Run Run” (something tells me this one did not make it to our shores.) Nothing beats the original though. That being said, somebody needs to remake this for Xbox Live or PlayStation Network. If we can get an updated version of “Burger Time”, surely somebody out there should be working on this!