I mentioned an arcade game on this week’s podcast, and described it as a “deep sea diving arcade shooter” where you and a buddy would explore the ocean and fight a giant boss at the end of each level. I was kind of miffed though because I couldn’t remember the name of the game, until something in the back of my mind clicked today. I somehow remembered that it was a SEGA game, so a little rooting around the internet proved to me fruitful. The game is called The Ocean Hunter, and it was released in 1998 – exactly the year that I was playing it in the Kahunaville arcade.
According to the Wiki page on it, you fight seven famous great sea monsters in different oceans on each level. The first level is the Kraken. The rest are the Leviathan, Charybdis, Ahuizotl, Karkinos Midgardsorm and Rahab. I only ever killed the Kraken since my friend and I would always run out of money for the game, or run out of time. Or sometimes both. I was hoping that I’d be able to find this game somewhere ported, or at least a machine lurking around somewhere but this pretty much killed any hope I had:
“According to KLOV.com, The Ocean Hunter is classified as extremely rare. No known collectors or warehouses own or have this game. There have also been only a few listings for this game on the popular bidding website eBay; however, this game is available in almost every single video arcade in Singapore and other ones in Mexico. There is one located in Knott’s Berry Farm in an arcade, and one in the Wunderland Avalon, located in South East Portland, Oregon. There is also one in Wisconsin’s “America’s Action Territory”  as well as a Main Event in Texas and an arcade at Six Flags Magic Mountain and at Oasis Lane and Amusement in El Paso, TX. It can also be found at Gatti’s Pizza in Abilene, TX . The arcade aboard the Disney Magic has one as well. So does Ace’s Break Away and Play, an arcade inside the Beaver Valley Mall in Monaca, PA. One is also located in Papa’s pizzeria in Eugene, OR and one in Modesto, CA at the Funworks on Claratina dr. and COffee rd. There is also one in Cinemark Theater in Victoria, TX.The game is also in an arcade on the boardwalk in Ocean City, NJ. A machine is also in Playland at the Ocean City MD. boardwalk Another one can be found in the Surfside Arcade on the boardwalk in Rehoboth Beach, DE. The game can also be found at the Sports Center, also known as the Rinks, in Shelton, CT. There is also one at Game Works at Arizona Mills mall in Tempe, AZ (Phoenix metro area); the screen is very fuzzy, but the game plays well. One is located in San antonio in one of the Peter Piper Pizza’s. Both the game and screen work well. American Fun Center in Flint, MI, has a machine in very poor condition.”
Depending on how old and accurate this information is, I might be taking a trip to Ocean City, NJ before the summer is out. If you were one of the lucky people who got to play the game…good job. If you weren’t fortunate enough to play it, I do feel a bit bad for you. This was really a great game. An appropriate replacement to the title (though you can’t replace fond memories of a game you loved) would be Monster Hunter Tri.