Thursday, September 4, 2014


A robot assassin purchased from a vending machine!

Gangsters! Robots! Dinosaur zombies! And lotta gratuitous violence!

VGR: Scud: The Disposable Assassin 
From Syrox Developments/SegaSoft/Sega
Played on Sega Saturn
Also available on /

Type Sidescrolling action game/run & gun/rail shooter/FPS
Year 1997

Here's a title I'm sure only a few people have tried. But it's well worth a look, specially if you're a big Sega Saturn fan like me.

Produced by SegaSoft, the same guys behind other fun obscure titles such as Bug Too! and Three Dirty Dwarves, Scud: The Disposable Assassin is a very strange and unique action game.

I want to call it a sidescrolling shooter, but that wouldn't make it proper justice.

It is based on the underground indie comic of the same name. With creator Rob Schrab himself overseeing the whole thing.

Scud was just a simple Heart Breaker Series 1373 model, a robot assassin anyone can purchase off a vending machine.

One day some employee from a big company had to hire a Scud. There was a monster, named Jeff, rampaging through the Marvin's Manikan factory.

Scud jumped over there and started blasting his way all over the place.. when suddenly - Scud apparently finally reached consciousness! Scud decided he wanted to continue living actually! Usually Scuds take themselves out once their target is eliminated. Scud simply wounded the monster and put it into life support.

He found a loop whole around his contract, and could now live for himself! Only problem is... Scud now needs money to pay the hospital bills to keep Jeff alive. He would now become a mercenary, taking all kinds of freelance jobs.

Along the way he found a friend and partner in Drywall, a short cartoony creature with a strange body that can hold unlimited storage space.

But there also was this other bounty hunter, Sussudio. after him. In fact, we follow her point of view through the in-game CGi cutscenes. (and there are a lot of story punctuating the game here and there).

The story is actually directly lifted from the original comic book series - what was already published at the time.

The game has a pretty original concept behind its gameplay.

In that can it be either played with a game controller, Sega's lightgun (the "Virtua Stunner"). Or a combination of both. In fact, there's also a 2-player co-op mode where the other player controls Drywall (on the controller only). And you can even go for the double-lifghtgun combo, the best way to play it wielding two guns, like Scud himself.

The game is pretty similar to an Earthworm Jim game, minus the gimmick levels.

With a controller, it's a fairly basic "run & gun". Played from a sidescroller point of view. There's also a few shooting scenes on rails, here and there.

With the lightgun, the game plays akin to a first person shooter.

The game is not particularly long, there's about 5-6 levels, with a few bosses here and there. It's not particularly difficult either, but at 2 it should come off pretty easy.

Scud is really fun.

The cutscenes are great, it really shows this came from a couple of funny pages originally.

The title was never released in Europe, Sega probably fearing this indie comic-based title would probably never get any kind of attention. But don't worry, it's actually one of the few games on the Saturn to be region free!

It received really mixed reception at the time, but I don't think it's really that bad.

Scud is a solid arcade-style shooter. Fun. Fast-paced and you would really want to go through it in a different configuration on a second playthrough.

The music comes from the underground rock scene, just like the comic. Most tracks are from "DJR/IB3 LTD" (Darryl J. Reavis & Illuminado Berrios III, who even got a bunch of ads all over the manual) and Fidget-X, and Unbelievable Jolly Machine.

Overall, it's a really fun and captivating obscure title. With great rockin' atmosphere. A surreal experience, well worth a look!

One of those rare examples of a game based on an indie comic book title (if you don't count Ubisoft's Scott Pilgrim on Xbox live/PSN, since there was movie afterall).

A little underrated gem, even missed by most Saturn fans.

The graphics look great actually, the game uses pre-rendered sprites (think Donkey Kong Country). Giving this strange world a very edgy look. There's a great emphasis put on sound effects and the music, the game has one badass soundtrack for the time!

It's perhaps a bit on the short and easy side. But it's definitively well worth a look, and a well Recommended addition to any Saturn collection.

This game is not to be confused with another Scud game by SegaSoft, "Scud: Industrial Evolution" which was released exclusively for PC. That one is a more bland, more traditional top-view shooter with none of the badass aspects of this one.

I give it:
2.5 / 3 Asterixes!

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