Back to the Future is a 1985-1986note Licensed Game for MSX & PC-88 computers, published by Pony Canyon & released only in Japan. Like most early Japanese video games, it was made by a single person, one Makoto Ichinoseki.
Based off the first film in the series, the game is a simple action game with only ten levels & primitive graphics. Playing as Marty, you must search buildings in each level to find George & Lorraine, and lead them to the Dance Hall.
Back To The Future provides examples of:
- A Winner Is You: Complete the game, and all you get is Doc walking to the Clock Towernote , a few seconds of the Delorean going off, leaving fiery residue on the road, a high score tally, and a "Congratulations!" message from the developer, in which he/shenote says "YOU HAVE A GREAT TECNIC".
- BFG: The huge rifles the Biff clones wield.
- "Blind Idiot" Translation: Averted for the most part, as the English is fine, just a little stilted... until the ending screen, which reads "YOU HAVE A GREAT TECNIC" and "THANK YOU FORM PONYCA AND PROGRAMMER MAKOTO ICHINOSEKI".
- Escort Mission: The entire game is this, with you navigating Lorraine & George to the Dance Hall to beat the levels. In the last level, you have to escort Doc to the Clock Tower as well.
- Everything Trying to Kill You: Standing in your way are bullies with machine guns, miniature airplanes/birds (?), ridiculously tiny cars, and the weather itself (yes, really).
- In Name Only: The only things remotely connected to the film are taking George and Lorraine to an unspecified dance, the presence of a skateboard, and a brief cameo by Doc & the Delorean in the final level, and that's about it.
- The game is based on a quintessentially American film, yet it was only released in Japan.
- Similarly, despite being a Japan-exclusive release, all the in-game text is in English.
- Licensed Game
- Not Drawn to Scale: Inexplicably, Marty is taller than the cars on the streets.
- Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Well, Pink Girl, Green Boy, in Lorraine and George's case.
- Send in the Clones: The many copies of Biff that terrorise you throughout the levels.
- Shout-Out: The singular background track is extraordinarily similar to fellow barely known, yet widely ported arcade game City Connection, which was also released on MSX.
- Surprisingly Good English: Most of the English in the game; it's a tad stiff, but it works.
- Timed Mission: Every level is timed. If you don't get to the Dance Hall in time, you lose a life.
- Timed Power-Up: A skateboard, which Marty can ride to move faster. It lasts about 20 seconds.
- You Don't Look Like You: None of the characters look like their movie counterparts, with the sole exception of Doc. Rather amusingly, the bullies, who are presumably supposed to be Biff, look more like Griff from Back to the Future Part II, which wasn't released until 1989.