An insanely great 2 player simultaneous horizontal shooter released by Data East around 1989. It has also been spotted under the name "Boogie Wings." In this masterpiece you and your partner each controlled a bi-plane with a large metal hook dangling from it on a chain. You began the game with a large bomb hanging from the hook. It was a two button configuration, with the first button firing, and the second button releasing the bomb. Sounds pretty simple, right?

Well, the true genius of this game was twofold, and not immediately apparent. Firstly, after dropping the bomb you could then use the hook to scoop up almost any object in the game (enemies, crates, cars, cats, your partner), and fling them around the screen with wild abandon. Secondly, if your plane had the misfortune of being destroyed, your pilot would jump to safety and run along the bottom of the screen, firing a pistol at the multitudes of enemies. At this point, either your partner with an intact plane could scoop you up and lift you to safety, or you could commandeer an enemy's vehicle! These included cars, horses, tanks, and mechanized flame-throwing frog-hoppers. The ammount of crazy crap you could steal and drive in this game was incredible. Often-times I would intentionally wreck my plane just so I could jump on whatever bizzare conveyance I saw on the ground below.

Sadly, this game has not been sighted in recent years, and remains un-emulated. With each new release of MAME I anxiously scan the list of supported games hoping to see it, but so far it remains absent. I hope that one day I will again hear the slightly hysterical voice that would bellow "THE GREAT RAGTIME SHOW" at you every time you deposited a quarter.

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