<table> <tr> <td class=headerlogo> <p class=image><a href="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net" target="_parent"><img src="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/logo/hg101logo.png" alt="Logo by MP83"></a></p> </td> <td> <table class=headerright> <tr> <td class=headermenu> <a href="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/alpha.htm" target="_parent">Articles</a> | <a href="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/features.htm" target="_parent">Features</a> | <a href="http://blog.hardcoregaming101.net" target="_parent">Blog</a> | <a href="http://hg101.proboards.com/" target="_parent">Forums</a> | <a href="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/about.htm" target="_parent">About</a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="http://www.facebook.com/pages/Hardcore-Gaming-101/109837535712670" target="_blank"><img alt=" " src="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/facebook.png"></a>&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="http://twitter.com/HG_101" target="_blank"><img alt=" " src="http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/twitter.png"></a> </td> <td class=searchbox> <form action="http://www.google.com/cse" id="cse-search-box" target="_parent"> <div> <input type="hidden" name="cx" value="partner-pub-5230184257141993:xfg3mydy24k"> <input type="hidden" name="ie" value="ISO-8859-1"> <input type="text" name="q" size="30"> <input type="submit" name="sa" value="Search"> </div> </form> <script type="text/javascript" src="http://www.google.com/coop/cse/brand?form=cse-search-box&amp;lang=en"></script> </td> </tr> </table> <table class=headerad> <tr> <td> <script type="text/javascript"><!-- google_ad_client = "pub-5230184257141993"; /* HG101 */ google_ad_slot = "4961941287"; google_ad_width = 728; google_ad_height = 90; //--> </script> <script type="text/javascript" src="http://pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/show_ads.js"> </script> </td> </tr> </table> </td> </tr> </table>

<<< Prior Page

Next Page >>>

Page 1:
Hammerin' Harry
Hammerin' Harry: Ghost Breeding Company
Kizuchida Quiz da Gen-ssan Da!
Daiku no Gen-san 2

Page 2:
Ganbare! Daiku no Gen-san
Daiku no Gen-san: Robot Teikoku no Yabou
Daiku no Gen-san: Kachikachi no Tonkachi ga Kachi
Hammerin' Hero

Back to the Index


by Kurt Kalata - March 16th, 2009

Ah, the days of mascot platformers. Hammerin' Harry - known in its Japanese homeland as Daiku no Gen-san, or Gen the Carpenter - begin as an arcade game by Irem that soon spun off into several different incarnations. The real star of the game, of course, is the hero's gigantic hammer, which, in addition to pounding enemies into submission, also has a number of various uses, which different from game to game.

In many ways, Hammerin' Harry is sort of like a modern day version of Mystical Ninja / Goemon - both involve slightly absurd renditions of Japanese society, although Harry has a bit less mysticism. It's no wonder that the series rarely saw light in the USA, perhaps coming off as "too foreign". Although the first games in the series keep to fairly realistic settings, later games go all crazy and have Harry fighting ghosts or sending him into outer space. After retiring from the world of video games, he began starring in a number of pachinko games, which in turn led to his resurgence as the star of a 2008 PSP game.


Hammerin' Harry / Daiku no Gen-san (大工の源さん) / Daiku no Gen-san: Beranmechou Soudouki (大工の源さん 〜べらんめ町騒動記〜) - Arcade, NES (1990)

European NES Cover

Japanese Arcade Flyer

American Arcade Flyer

Japanese Famicom Cover

Hammerin' Harry begins with the Rusty Nail Construction Company demolishing Harry's home. (Why, exactly? Well... hmmm.) He sets off to exact retribution with his sole remaining possession - a gigantic hammer. In addition to whacking things, you can use the hammer as a shield by ducking, or smash the ground with it, causing a minor earthquake which can stun most enemies on the screen. Each stage is usually littered with objects - boxes, bricks, etc - which can be whacked and sent flying across the screen, damaging enemies in the process. There's one part where you can hit a mountain of pipes, which then roll across the screen, fall in the water, and act as platforms to continue. None of this is scripted either - it's a very cool early implementation of physics.

Like many arcade games of old, Harry can only take a single hit before dying, sending him back to the most recent checkpoint. Thankfully, unlike, say, R-Type, the checkpoints are reasonably close together, so you're rarely sent back more than a few screens. You'll occasionally find power-ups, like helmets, which can absorb a single hit; chili peppers, which allow you yo swing your hammer in a circle; and POW icons, which grant you an extra big ass hammer. The game's only six stages long, and while there are plenty of cheap hits, it manages to be challenging without being extraordinary frustrating. The final boss is against a greedy little business who flies around in a hovering wheelchair and attacks by throwing deadly dollar bills. There's some kind of message about the evils of greed in here somewhere, but damned if anyone can figure it out.

Hammerin' Harry (Arcade)

The graphics are vintage Irem, with excellent spritework, large, expressive characters, and detailed environments. The theme song is catchy, if not particularly classic. It features a number of voice samples which are simultaneously hilarious and annoying. At the beginning of each new life, a disembodied voice yells "IKUZE!" in Japanese, or "LET'S GET BUSY!" in English. Harry yells "Teyandei!" whenever he gets hit, or, more simply, "OUCH!" in English. There's even a "Hammer Time!" voice sample of suspicious legality. This goofy little yells have since become a trademark of the series. Each stage also have silly names, like "Needless Markup Maul", and some of the cinema text is equally as goofy.

Hammerin' Harry was also released for the Famicom, and for the NES in Europe. On the surface, it's a pretty good translation - the action is fast, the controls are right, the graphics are decent, and it even manages to keep the voice samples. You can also take three hits before getting killed, making it significantly easier. However, apparently the old 8-bit system couldn't handle the simple physics of the arcade game - there are still a few boxes lying around, which hold power-ups, but you can't fling them across the screen anymore. As a result, the stages seem a little bit barren in comparison. Many of the levels have been changed around too, as have most of the boss fights. You can still hit enemy projectiles back at the bosses, at least. There are also whack-a-mole style bonus games after each level.

Hammerin' Harry (NES)

There are only five levels rather than six, and many segments from the arcade game have been cut out, replaced or rearranged. The second construction site stage and underground stage (forth and fifth in the arcade) have been entirely removed, but there's a brand new level at the end that takes place in a mansion, and an additional segment where you're on a boat out at sea. There's also a cool segment added where you're about to confront the final boss, and the seemingly innocuous secretary jumps into the room, transforms herself into some kind of 80s music video star, and proceeds to karate kick your sorry butt.

Quick Info:

Developer:

Irem

Publisher:

Irem

Genre:

Action: Side-Scrolling

Themes:

Player: Blue Collar


Hammerin' Harry (Arcade)

Hammerin' Harry (Arcade)

Hammerin' Harry (Arcade)

Hammerin' Harry (NES)

Hammerin' Harry (NES)


View all "Hammerin' Harry" items on eBay


Additional Arcade Screenshots

Comparison Screenshots - Arcade vs. NES

Comparison Screenshots - Famicom vs. NES


Hammerin' Harry: Ghost Breeding Company / Daiku no Gen-san: Ghost Breeding Company (大工の源さん ゴーストビルディングカンパニー) - Game Boy (1992)

Japanese Game Boy Cover

It's Hammerin' Harry versus the undead! The first of many portable sequels, this Game Boy game implements a life meter just like its NES cousin, but that doesn't mean it's easy. Its pacing is a bit slower to compensate for the immensely blurry screen of the Game Boy, but surprisingly, it actually works pretty well. The levels are well designed and more interesting than Daiku no Gen-san 2, and are still very difficult, taking you through haunted houses, airships, jungles and caverns, all while fighting ghosts, skeletons and other creatures of the night. There are a few side-scrolling shooter segments, as well as one boss battle where the camera "zooms out", so Harry is just a tiny little sprite fighting against something huge. This one was released in both Japan and Europe.

Quick Info:

Developer:

Tamtex

Publisher:

Irem

Genre:

Action: Side-Scrolling

Themes:

Player: Blue Collar


Hammerin' Harry: Ghost Breeding Company (GB)


Additional Screenshots


Kizuchida Quiz da Gen-san Da! (木づちだ クイズだ 源さんだ!) - Game Boy (1992)

Japanese Game Boy Cover

This is fairly simplistic puzzle game. As Gen moves forward across the board, he needs to answer questions within a brief time limit, or risk losing HP. As you progress, you can play quick mini-games to gain extra money, and use that cash for items, which can allow you to recharge health, stop time, or pass a question you don't know. It's obviously all in Japanese, but since the game is meant for kids, the questions themselves are pretty easy, providing you can read it.

Quick Info:

Developer:

Tamtex

Publisher:

Irem

Genre:

Mini Game Collection

Themes:

Player: Blue Collar


Kizuchida Quiz da Gen-san Da! (GB)

Kizuchida Quiz da Gen-san Da! (GB)



Daiku no Gen-san 2: Akage no Dan no Gyakushuu (大工の源さん2 赤毛のダンの逆襲) - Famicom (1993)

Japanese Famicom Cover

The Famicom-only sequel, whose subtitle translates to "Red-Headed Dan's Counterattack", doesn't really add much to the mix - it's essentially just like the first game with new levels, except the scrolling is actually choppier. You fight through the usual construction scenery, before adventuring to an underwater fortress and eventually through a jungle. The last few levels consist of a few fairly boring side scrolling shooter segments, with Gen riding in a flying hammer (?!). Nearly all of the boss battles are against one particular rival - this red haired fellow named Dan mentioned in the subtitle - who rides on different vehicles and usually attacks with dynamite. One of the only other notable fights is when you're paired off against a rather demented looking robot, and need to use your ground smash to knock him back into the press, which pounds him into the ground. Otherwise, it's a fairly simplistic and rather mediocre game.

Quick Info:

Developer:

Irem

Publisher:

Irem

Genre:

Action: Side-Scrolling

Themes:

Player: Blue Collar


Daiku no Gen-san 2: Akage no Dan no Gyakushuu (FC)


Additional Screenshots


<<< Prior Page

Next Page >>>

Page 1:
Hammerin' Harry
Hammerin' Harry: Ghost Breeding Company
Kizuchida Quiz da Gen-ssan Da!
Daiku no Gen-san 2

Page 2:
Ganbare! Daiku no Gen-san
Daiku no Gen-san: Robot Teikoku no Yabou
Daiku no Gen-san: Kachikachi no Tonkachi ga Kachi
Hammerin' Hero

Back to the Index