I’ve always loved a good multi-sport athletics game, right back to the good old days of Epyx’s “Games” series on 8- and 16-bit platforms.
With the 2020 Olympics being cancelled (sorry, “postponed”) due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there I was thinking there wasn’t an official video game out there. But there was! It came out in 2019 and is a Japan-only release, but has full English support. You can read more about it here.
Or you can watch me show off all 18 events to varying degrees of success in the video below, of course. Don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more.
With a few exceptions, officially licensed video game adaptations of the Olympics tend to be little more than footnotes in video gaming history.
Often regarded by critics as collections of minigames rather than anything of real substance, they tend to enjoy a brief period of popularity around the time of the real-life Games they find themselves based on, then afterwards fall into complete obscurity, never to be seen again. Which puts Sega’s Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 – The Official Video Game (Tokyo 2020 hereafter) in a rather interesting position.
First releasing in Japan in July of 2019, a full year before the actual Tokyo 2020 games were set to begin, it now finds itself in the peculiar position of being an official adaptation of an event that never happened — and that, at the time of writing, we’re not 100% sure will happen as the global COVID-19 pandemic continues. Which makes it an interesting historical curiosity at the very least — but thankfully it’s also an entertaining game, too. Let’s take a closer look.
Continue reading Olympic Games Tokyo 2020: The Game of the Games That Never Were