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Action 52




Copyright Active Enterprises 1992

Review by: Blue Protoman

Website: www.bpsdomain.b1.jcink.com


I’m so in awe about how bad this game is, I wrote not one, but THREE witty introductions.

1. Take a dump. Now, mold it into form of an NES cartridge. Insert the cart and play. You’ll have more fun with your turd-cart than with this game.

2. This game is proof that there is a Satan, for only he could concoct a game as bad as this. Ladies and gentlemen, I present you the worst game on the NES, Action 52!

3.Whenever there’s a review for a Colecovision game with bad controls on this site, Hawanja always goes on about Coleco playtest monkeys. Well, Active Enterprises borrowed said monkeys during the four hours they developed this game. But before AE tested the game, they killed the monkeys. I guess that’s why Nintendo never licensed this game on account of it sucking so much.

So yeah, in Intro #2 above I said Action 52 was the worst game on the NES. Not kidding.

Action 52 is a compilation of 52 games. All games were made for this cart and this cart only. (I believe there was originally supposed to be 60, but I’m not sure.) They all suck. Since there’s 52 games, I’m not going to describe each game. Instead, I’ll just include more pictures here than usual.


-You cannot get AIDS from this game. I think.

-This game will not beat you up or rape your girlfriend.

-It’s too expensive to make you even think of buying it. (More later)


There are three major flaws with this game. I’m going to write them in the form of several paragraphs, rather than a list.

First con: There are more bugs in this game than an exhibit at a museum. I’m serious. Some games crash, others are incomplete, all of them have shitty physics and collision detection; hell, two of the games don’t even work on real hardware. That’s right, Active Enterprises was so lazy, they probably didn’t even bug-test. But two of the games not working is madness. What is this, Sparta? *shot*

Second con: Not in the game itself, but the marketing. Action 52 is so terrible, it’s now rare because it didn’t sell to well. You can get it at about the same price that it was originally sold for. Wanna know why? Because Action 52 was originally sold for $200. That’s almost as much as the NES itself sold for. It didn’t even come with a fancy accessory that took up an eighth of your bedroom like the Rock Band drums. Their idea was that since 52 games were in one cart, you’d be paying “less than $4 for each game”. Yeah, but each game’s worth 4 cents. Also, a special promotion was held. If you beat level 5 of “Ooze”, you’d be entered in a contest to win $104,000. Problem was, level 3 was unbeatable. Lots of kids were probably crying over that one.

Third con: This game plagiarizes music from other sources. That’s right, that technically makes Action 52 illegal. Here’s a quote from Wikipedia clarifying this;

"Several of the songs from the NES version of Action 52 were plagiarized from example tunes included in Activision's The Music Studio for Atari ST. The games with plagiarized music include Fuzz Power, Silver Sword, French Baker, Streemerz, Time Warp Tickers, and Ninja Assault. Those songs were composed by Ed Bogas. In addition, the intended theme of the first level in Lollipops was taken from Somethin' Stupid by C. Carson Parks (though only when not accessed from level 3, as the music programming malfunctions on that level due to one of the many glitches plaguing the compilation).”

So, would I recommend this game? If you haven’t guessed my answer by now, you’d better transfer to a “special help” school. If you really want to play it, I would recommend pirating the game (which I did). Overall, I give Action 52 a 2/10. Three words describe this game; DO NOT WANT.

But wait, there’s more!

I’ve decided to include two interesting things about Action 52.

  • There is a Sega Genesis version, with different games. It’s more common, but equally bad. There was also going to be a SNES version, but it didn’t happen.
  • Someone actually made a drinking game for Action 52! I wish I could include it, but I’m writing this on my school laptop, and the laptops they give out have GameSpot on their block list. You can find it in the FAQ section of GameSpot. (I believe it’s the longest one.)

(Click here for the Action 52 Faq on gamespot, which includes the aforementioned drinking game - Hawanja)

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