Paperboy (NES) Retro Review

Paperboy is a 1985 game for the NES developed and published by Atari Games. In the game you play as a Paperboy with the goal of delivering as many papers as possible and while keeping as many subscribers as possible and dodging loads of obstacles.


Paperboy (U) [!]-0

The title screen was rather interesting as they made it look like an actual paper, a bit disappointing that there’s no music but the fact it goes to the next screen almost instantly suggests the game is rushing you along. There are 7 levels all named after a day in the week.


Paperboy (U) [!]-2
How to lose subscribers.

At first the graphics seem sort of ok but its only until you actually try playing that you find out they’re actually annoying. Aiming the papers is really awkward because of the angle and almost seems impossible (even though I somehow got it in a letter box on my first throw…).

What people may not notice (unless they read the guide) is that while smashing a subscribers windows causes you to lose them doing it to a non-subscriber essentially blackmails them into becoming one which I found amusing.

There’s also tonnes of things in the way and its hard to dodge them since your character is stuck on such a tiny portion of the screen. On top of that the game was annoying enough to simulate real curbs so going off them will get you suck into an even tinier portion of the screen until you get to a ramp.


Paperboy (U) [!]-1


The game also has a lot of weird things as well though, not only are some of the obstacles really random but the houses are color coded depending on whether they are subscribers or not.

If you are lucky or skilled enough to get past everything (you only need to keep 1 subscriber) you end up in a small bike course. I don’t know if it was the emulator i was using but the colors were terrible and the bad controls seemed 1000 times worse. People that are good at the game might like this since it lets them get a higher score but I don’t.

Overall I don’t really know why this game got so much praise, its not really bad but I personally don’t like it that much and just don’t see anything special about it. Breaking peoples windows getting boring quickly when nothing really happens.

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