151. Paperboy

Paperboy (1988, NES) by Mindscape

Current Non-Perfect Delivery Leaderboard (speedrun.com)

A classic title that felt like everyone had in their collection at one point or another, I was one of the few that did not.  I didn’t play a lot of Paperboy on the NES back in the day.  But when I did play it, I enjoyed it.  The Nerd mentions that he was in the minority of folks that did not enjoy this game, and I can see why: this is an awkward game for first-time players.  An abstract, 2.5-dimensional view with a diagonally-scrolling game, this is a very unique game in the NES’s library for sure!

In Paperboy, you control the titular character as he delivers papers to the subscribers on his street.  Along the way, EVERYTHING wants to kill you!  You need to collect more papers (also used as ammo) as you go, and avoid all the obstacles.  The character controls awkwardly for sure, and the game can be very unfair.

The speedrun comes in two flavors: perfect delivery, and non-perfect.  Perfect sounds like the better speedrun, or at least the harder, and while it is indeed harder, it’s much more unfair.  Non-Perfect means you can’t have a single perfect delivery all week, and yet, you can’t game over either, and it’s arguably just as challenging.  For myself, I preferred this method, as it felt more like how you’d play the game as a kid.  That being said, this is a relatively bland speedrun, not much more different than casually playing the game in general.  I recommend it to any hardcore NES fans or fans of the original game only.



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