Battletoads is back after 26 years

Battletoads is back after 26 years
You didn't need a whole new video game to get grown adults to watch cartoons.


DLaLa Studios picks up where Rare left off almost thirty years later

Developed exclusively for Xbox One and Windows PC, Battletoads is just as much a passion project as it is an up-to-date successor to a once ancient IP. According to DLaLa Studios game director AJ Grand-Scrutton, “At its heart, it’s a Battletoads game made by a big Battletoads fan. I wanted to try and recapture the feeling I felt as a kid for a new generation of people.”

Lead designer Grant Allen described the original game’s design as “unapologetic.” Entirely out of the mold for the time, Battletoads garnered attention thanks to its unique visuals and presentation.

Also, the original game’s infamous difficulty earned it a decent amount of notoriety, becoming “this rite of passage, and I think that’s a real big deal,” said Rare head of licensing Adam Park. “Battletoads was kind of this thing that kind of existed within the gaming consciousness as the most difficult game ever.”

The developers at DLaLa have recreated what fans fell in love with decades ago, reminiscent to some as a return to “those really cool, old-school 90’s cartoon moments.” To do this, Scrutton directed the art-style as a “cartoon genre mash-up” that includes dramatic, expressive, hand-drawn animation with Saturday morning comedy.

Battletoads, for me,” said Scrutton, “was this amazing game which was, y’know, even back then in the 8-bit days it was like a cartoon you could play.” DLaLa capitalized on this through the work of first-time-game writers, all with backgrounds in television and/or animation – their new narrative exploring themes like the illusion of fame and the harsh realities that come with it.

DLaLa also develops character’s further by exploring character flaws and weaknesses, effectively reducing them down to nobodies. “It’s not going to be fun,” said lead writer Tom Kauffman, “just to have them be very cool and punch people for the duration of the game.”

The developers behind Battletoads are well aware of their game’s inherent silly nature and are unafraid to admit that Battletoads isn’t a ten-hour epic story. So as much as Battletoads is a game in its own right, it’s “thirty minutes of incredible cartoons, written and animated by incredible people.”

Battletoads launches exclusively for Xbox One and Windows PC on August 20.

More on this topic:


Jose is a left-handed techno-mancer with an affinity for IPAs, big dogs, and black-and-white movies. Rebels are scum, Empire for life.
Gamer Since: 2004
Favorite Genre: RTS
Currently Playing: Wargame: Red Dragon, Battlefield V
Top 3 Favorite Games:Wargame: Red Dragon, Metro: Last Light, Battlefield 4