Licensed games, as we’ve established pretty well by this point, can go either way. Sometimes they can be excellent games, bolstered by the “brand recognition” of what they’re based on. And sometimes they can be absolute pap that comes across as little more than a cheap cash-in.
Yogi’s Big Cleanup for Atari ST sits squarely in the middle. It’s not terrible — in fact its overall structure and design is quite likeable. But some unfortunately atrocious controls and collision detection make it a lot harder to enjoy than it perhaps could have been, which is a real shame.
Yogi Bear is, it is said, smarter than the average bear. He was certainly smart enough to find himself in several licensed games for a variety of home computer platforms in the early ’90s.
Here’s the Atari 8-bit version of Yogi’s Great Escape, a platform game that we’ve previously seen on the Atari ST A to Z series already. While technically inferior, the 8-bit version actually plays quite a bit better, with tight controls and clear mechanics that make it surprisingly enjoyable to play.
Licensed games have been around for a long time… and they’ve gotten quite a bit better over the years. For the most part!
Back in the 16-bit home computer era, publisher Hi-Tec had the license to produce video games based on Hanna Barbera cartoons, including properties such as Hong Kong Phooey and Yogi Bear.
Today’s game is one of several Yogi Bear games that Hi-Tec put out at a budget price point. It’s a competent, if fairly unremarkable platformer — which, not coincidentally, is a descriptor that can be applied to 90% of licensed games on the Atari ST!