I remember being frustrated


This shit was like the stampede level in The Lion King game from level 1


Brutal. You know how hard it is to break a Sega controller in half? I do


Oh yea, Ecco..


good ole dolphin souls. damn this one was hard.


I eventually beat it, and I don't know, was thinking there would be a chorus of angels or something. Instead I had a sore thumb and a feeling like I had wasted a week.




Wow, just reminded me of the final level in Aladdin. I remember my (or all?) Sega had no save function so would have to get through them all in one sitting. Took pretty much all day for kid me…


Dear God—that carpet ride through the cave…



Bro the waterfall level tho


Stop I'm getting PTSD remembering so many SEGA games kicked my ass. Now I'm thinking of running out of air bubbles as Sonic


That goddamn music cranking up my anxiety while sonic was underwater 😵‍💫😵


The chemical plant. I introduced Sonic 2 to a nephew recently he love/hates it.


Kickass music in that Chemical Zone


DUNDUN DUNDUN *nunnun nunnun* DUNDUN DUNDUN *nunnun nunnun* DUNDUN *nunnun* DUNDUN *nunnun* DUNnun DUNnun DUNDUNnunnunDUNDUNnunnunDUDUDUDUDUDUDUDUDUU *has heart attack*




Only Alien: Isolation has found the button that can induce that level of stress since.


I have that game. I have wanted it sense it came out. I can’t bring myself to play it because life is stressful enough right now.


Micromachines racing...


Now you're just throwing out good games - there was nothing frustrating about micro machines racing! That game was solid front to back!


Yeah bro I read an article where the big change with Dreamcast was instead of dumping all their budget into cheesy marketing, they moved it over to QA and it showed. A much better console with better first party games... ... ... That no one bought : (


Bro I remember beating Vectorman 2 as a kid somehow. Nowadays the first few levels destroy me.


Dude I couldn't beat the first boss in the sequel. The medusa jellyfish thing.


Good god the tree swinging section and then the stampede…ive tried revisiting this rom and its still really dam hard


That is the exact earliest place/time that I can remember feeling so frustrated. That Lion King SEGA game (and Jurassic Park -same same) gave me my anxiety disorder /s


And it just gets way harder the more you go. Once you get on the alien ship the screen scrolls in parts and not only is it hard getting around, you get crushed like in a Mario level except it's also a labyrinth.


The real problem with that stage (Welcome to the Machine, the *last level of the game*) is that it is a 5-minute autoscroller with absolutely no checkpoints. Not even *reaching the final boss* is a checkpoint and dying to it sends you back to the autoscroller. What's even worse, at least on the Sega CD version (not sure about OG Genesis), is that there's a password to go to the final boss that you don't get until after beating it, and even that password won't checkpoint you.


The furthest i got was when you go back in time, i think Atlantis? Or you go to Atlantis to find the time machine… i dont remember. But i eventually gave up and used the codes to get to the final boss. That fight was insanely tough.


Pretty sure i got just a little bit further than that, only reason i saw the rest was my trusty (except when it killed my Sonic 3) Game Genie.


Wtf. Alien ship??? I couldnt get past the dang jellyfish. Fffffff


I'm bewildered by all this lol I barely played the first level. I never heard of the time travel, alien ship, or fighting dinosaurs lol


How does a dolphin fight dinos?


Could never figure out where to go


Turn on game- ok….Im a dolphin. I can jump out the water (AND DO FLIPS!!) and go fast and echo locate…now what….? -Turn off game


That is 100% accurate as to what happened with me.


I legit could not figure out how to get past one of the crystals back then. Returned this game to Hollywood Video as soon as I was able.


I did this with the Superman N64 game.


I thought the first level was the whole game. Didnt find out for years.


More like "Oh cool I can jump and do flips! I wonder how high I can ju-OH JESUS!!!".


I've never played it. What makes you go "OH JESUS?"


The beginning of the game is all peaceful. Just swimming with your fellow dolphins and such. But if you jump a certain height it advances the plot where everything in the ocean gets sucked up into the sky in some crazy alien vortex. You get spared because you were not in the ocean when it happened due to the high enough jump. ​ So a kid just playing the game not knowing what will happen will prob scar them for life.


And the sound it made was a horrible ear splitting maelstrom of metallic wailing sounds that only the Sega Genesis could make!


What the fuck? For real?


Not who you're replying to, but yes, for real. And, if I remember, the music after the entirety of your pod gets sucked away is sad and creepy, and then the game is so hard that you quit in a fury.


Yeah and the final boss is a giant alien head. Ecco prob has the most misleading game cover ever. You would think it is just a dolphin simulator or something and not a quest to destroy evil aliens who sucked up the ocean. There are several longplays of it on youtube, check it out if interested. The game can be beat in under 2 hours if you know what you're doing, but for most kids, we could never figure it out so just swam around for hours.


To add to what the other guy said, it’s basically a jump scare.


So you never maid it to fighting the alien?


There’s an antagonist?!?


Yup, basically there was a war between atlantis and aliens, Atlantis was sunk and the aliens lost the ability to grow food on their own world. The aliens harvest Earths oceans for food, in their most recent attack they grab your family. You spend most of the game basically chasing old stories until you meet the oldest being on Earth. Time travel happens. You become an ocean deity, regenerating health, no need to surface, your echo is destructive... You travel to the time the aliens kidnapped your family and get sucked up, fight the aliens and escape with your family. In the second game the aliens follow you back to Earth and kill the oldest being, which causes you to lose your powers. A descendant of yours turns up and brings you to the future. Telekinetic flying dolphins are apparently a thing we have to look forward to. The future oldest being explains that the war with the aliens has gone temporal, you need to fight the aliens in an alternate future Earth to get magic thingamajigs to resurrect the oldest being. Which you do. You regain your powers. That scene with all the sea life fighting the atlanteans from aquaman happens. The alien queen gets sent way the fuck back in time, becoming one of the first lifeforms on Earth from which basically all life is descended.


Or in my case you can't get passed a really pissy octopus and get killed.


Bro most of us never knew there was any kind of game there. We would literally just swim for a few minutes. And jump out a couple times.


I could never figure this game out. Granted, I was under 10 years old when I first played it, but I remember a lot of frustration.


I played it when I was a kid and made it a good chunk of the way through. If you play it with a walk through it does actually make a lot of sense, but the open world nature of it makes it really hard to find shit without one.


Yeah I was like 6 or so and it was super crazy hard. I used to just play around on the first level and it was a lot of fun.


Haha came to say I remember it being hard af






I played it at a friends house when he rented it for the weekend. It was a difficult game. I was always a Nintendo person as it was rare for someone's parents to buy both consoles.




Subnautica's grand parent


This. I tried to play it again recently, as it’s on the Genesis emulator for Switch. I was thinking oh man, this was a great game back in the day and the story really goes places. I played for like 10 minutes with the god awful controls and sound and called it quits. Some things just don’t stand the test of time.


But what about the tides of time?


How do I go about getting an emulator?


If you mean an emulator on Switch, it's a part of the subscription expansion for Nintendo Online. The expansion adds N64 and Genesis games.


Hoist your sails and embark on a journey to the seven seas. For the most part, Genesis emulators will run on anything that is capable of powering up.


I remember being so confused by what you were supposed to do and giving up on it after a few minutes of swimming around.


That was like 3/4 of the people i tried to show the game to back in the day. "No man look! You can talk to whales and shit! And go to Atlantis! All kinds of shit!" "Dude whatever, put in Mortal Kombat 2."


*spams Mileenas teleport kick all day*


Nothing personal, kid


"Dude whatever, put in Street Fighter 2"


spams hadouken all day.


I don’t know if it was a remake but I have the game on dreamcast. I remember being blown away by the graphics and how cool it was. Just as obscure, but I beat that version


Dreamcast was sooooo far ahead of its time it's not even funny. That was the first console I remember 'camping' out for (even though it was the same morning). EB Games or whatever had a demo of Ready to Rumble and I was sitting there in awe. Then I saw Madden (I think - it was a football game) and again, was completely awe-struck. Those graphics were a massive jump from Super Nintendo and Sega.


I swear to god Nfl2k1 on dreamcast still feels like a better game than modern Maddens.


It was slightly ahead of it's time. It was easily the most advanced console on the market when it launched but the PS2 would come a year later and their marketing convinced the public that it would be superior. Sega wasn't concerned because the hardware cost was so high that it would need to launch at a $600 price point. Sony then did the unthinkable and launched the console at a loss (which is now common practice.) Dreamcast only had about 6 months of being the hottest console on the market before gamers decided to wait for the PS2.


Oh don’t get me wrong. It was by no means the most popular. It had a slightly better run than say the Atari Jaguar, but that leap in graphics and smoothness compared to the prior-gen I felt was way beyond any other jump in consoles from one gen to the next. Solely an opinion, and while I haven’t fired it up in a while I could totally be mis-remembering the smoothness of the games, but those crisp graphics. Damn!


"Then you fight an alien right out of HR Giger nightmares that sucked up your family into a spaceship." "Salty Pancakes, are you on The Drugs?"


I went back to Lunar, Shining Force or Phantasy Star IV lol


MK2 was THE MK tho.


This game really didn't hold your hand. You had to jump super high above water for all your buddies to get abducted to actually start anything, i've known people with this game that never got past this little introduction part, thinking it was just a virtual aquarium or something.


For real, I'll bet so many people never got past the first area. When my sister made him jump super high and everything gets pulled in with that horrifying sound we actually thought we'd broken the game


Yeah, like stated before it didn't really hold your hand, but it DID give you ways to figure it out. For instance, I recall figuring it out because I "sonared" another dolphin and he asked how high I could jump. So, I just went and jumped high figuring there would be something up there I'd have to get. Instead, I started the game lol.


No joke? That’s how you “start” the game? I literally never knew that. I always wondered why it got a sequel lol


I am one of those people. Swam around for 10 minutes and the only thing I figured out was how to jump out of the water.


*"Did i really just waste my weekend rental on this game???"*


Or be me and figure out the high jump, that starts the game, the morning it’s due back.


Back then video game companies made games so hard to prevent people from beating the game by renting it


This, except I owned it and me and my siblings swam around for hours. No one ever jumped super high I guess?


On the other hand, if you never get abducted for find Atlantis, it is a perfectly excellent dolphin life simulator


I mean, all the dolphins in your pod mention some variation of jumping or the stars in the sky...


Same, so was it a bad game or were we just dumb? I need to see how this thread plays out.


I played the opening level for hours and hours, see I was used to the aquarium screen saver for entertainment and that fish game at school which where really small scale, I was having fun until one dolfin challenged me to jump as high as I could. I was like, "ok" until THE FREAKING SEA GOT SUCKED INTO THE FREAKING SKY, THEN THIS ORACA WAS LIKE "YOU MUST SAVE OUR PEOPLE" AND THIS ALIEN WAS LIKE "WE RETURN COUSIN HOWS IT HANGING UNDER THE SEA?


Lower their expectations, then blow their mind.


haha same exact way it happened to me.


The OG Frog Fractions


For me, I was just dumb.


Dude, i just played it with the emulating game on Steam. It's just too confusing ..


bit of both imo, I beat it without a walkthrough and my god did it not guide you at all. The open-world nature of the game effectively meant it was easy to miss many important clues that tell you where you need to go. I spent atleast 4 hours per level and most of that time was trying to figure out where the hell I was supposed to go.


Lmao i thought that WAS the game for so long, still enjoyed it. Then one day, I got to the part where an Alien ship, I think, comes down and takes a bunch of fish up. Never played it again, but i heard the story is super convoluted




The first 12 seconds of the game gave me hours of entertainment


I didn’t know you could jump over that first land mass, so I stayed in the tiny starting zone and thought it was a game about being a dolphin and swimming around. My mind was blown the first time I saw someone jump and continue the game. Didn’t play it much, but I’m ashamed to say I rented it more than once. IT JUST LOOKED SO COOL


Im even dumber, owned and played it on an off for years, never figured it out.


Same. I still have it, too...


You are not alone. This was exactly what I did, and watching this gif is the first time I realized, oh, so there's more to the game, that makes sense.


My dad let me call the game helpline for this one, because he was frustrated, too. I loved this game.


Game helplines.... in the manuals. Takes me back so much!!! ❤


Just think, they had to employ people on the other end of that hotline who could answer all these questions about different games.


That sounds like an awesome job.


I think there was an ama back in the day from someone who used to do it as a job. He said it was indeed a sweet job and personally quite rewarding. Obviously more of a part time job at college than a career but still. He also explained that it wasn't like he was some all knowing expert, he had a giant manual or something for every game. But many games, especially the new ones had such common caller rates that he learned the secrets and tips off by heart and was barely on book by the end, so sort of did become an all knowing gaming God. I think it's been like 8 years since I was in that ama so don't quote me on any of this.


Thank you for sharing that. Pretty cool as I imagined!


The inspiration for this game is fascinating. Some guy who was really into drugs and had a lot of money became convinced that dolphin human communication was possible so he set up a series of experiments. The guy really went off the deep end into some wild conspiracy theories before loosing his money and funding for the project. Here's a quote for you: "There exists a cosmic coincidence control center (CCCC) with a galactic substation called galactic coincidence control (GCC). Within GCC is the solar system control unit (SSCU), within which is the earth coincidence control office (ECCO)." -John C Lilly Yup, that's where the name ecco comes from. It's also why the game is about aliens abducting your fellow sentient dolphin pod members. edit: watch [this video](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UziFw-jQSks) if you want to know more.


That's the coolest shit ever


> John C Lilly And even this is underselling him. His work was the inspiration for the movie *Altered States*. He hung out with Timothy Leary.


2nd grade girl me was very confused because everything ELSE dolphin was made for me. Why couldn't I play the dolphin game??




Only thing I think of when I see this game.


Came here to say this. Hope YSG is thriving.


Such a legend. For those few hours he provided us with the best entertainment GDQ ever had to offer he deserves nothing but the best.


Very true. I still watch one of my favorite YSG moments regularly. [These 30 sec](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EkYMibrGtEw&t=5005s) will always make me laugh.


I miss old AGDQ, that room theyre in is tiny and looks like a comfy time with friends. Much better than how it is now like in a hall and what not plus the people in it are.. *different* compared to back then.


Yeah, I remember starting the game, swimming around for 5 minutes and turning the game off because I had no idea what to do. I never played the game again.




Wow, this just crushed me to learn I never made it to even the start of the game before giving up from frustration.




This game gave me nightmares as a kid


I thought I was the only one…


Seriously, I'm reading these comments looking for who else was scarred and depressed by this game. How are we the only ones?


first game that scared me to the core. it looked *so* realistic for the time, and just felt deep and dark and cavernous. worst part for me was big blue. all of a sudden at the bottom of the arctic WAS A HUMONGOUS TERRIFYING UNEXPECTED WHALE. Been scared of giant fishmammals ever since. sweet game as long as you knew the cheat codes and didn't have to actually beat its BS.


I never played the genesis ones, but I loved it on Dreamcast. I remember at the time being blown away by how good it looked.


I could jump out of water and try to do double backflips for houuuuuurs as a kid


This game was fun WHEN you could figure out what you're supposed to be doing, otherwise, it was just a random dolphin sim.


[the crazy history of Ecco the dolphin](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oB1oCxcmipA). spoiler alert: it's fucked up.


The Dollop did an episode on it too, which is how I came to learn about it. Ep. 8 - "The Dolphin"


Probably the best game with a dolphin protagonist that's ever been made. Definitely top 5 anyway.


Does anyone remember the story?


Aliens abduct your family. You are a dolphin. You can shoot death beams later, because that's what dolphins do, and fight aliens. Mostly it's a story about a dolphin getting really lost, suffocating in a cave, and having a hard time jumping over rocks.


You missed the entire time travel to the future-past, the past-future, and dinosaur times, and poking some DNA-based being that is actually a time machine captured by aliens.


That's the second game, isn't it? Tides of time? And then the aliens get changed into bugs in the past and that's why there are insects.




The ice zone music captured that arctic desolation and beauty. Also my favorite.


Ohh listening to your Ice Zone link now, ya that def hits some lonely vibes nicely for sure,thanks for sharing!


Man the hollow feeling I got when I defeated the Vortex Queen on console, and the ending played and was like “Ecco is lost forever in the tides of time”. I can still remember the loop of music playing when you use that stupid time machine… EDIT: So I watched the ending for nostalgia, and it seems like the intent might have been "spends forever time travelling and having a general nice time" and not "lost in the void for eternity", which was what I thought it was saying. I feel like this wasn't super clear to ten-year-old me...


Also the story is inspired by the work of a dolphin specialist that was known to have sexual intercourse with his tests subjects


To be more precise, it is partially inspired from David Brin's genius work, the Uplift saga (in particular the second book), who took its own inspiration in the experiments you talk about


Mostly suffocating in a cave.


I'm glad I wasn't the only one to struggle with those jumps XD


its something like every so many years, there's a planet that lines up with earth, and the planet is able to feed off of earth. ecco lives through this event and is searching for a way to get back to his pod, he finds an alien from that planet (or the essence of one), and uses a time machine to help the alien recover a lost piece of himself. the alien grants him with his death sonar and no longer needs to breathe air. ecco time travels back to when the storm first hit, travels to the alien planet, and kicks the shit out of the aliens to save his pod.


Yooooo wtf, I played this game at my friends house as a kid and never made it over the first piece of land you were supposed to jump over. Aliens and time travel?! I am gonna have to emulate this shit


You can also get it on Steam in the Sega Classics bundle.


Cool username


The only thing I remember is that it was written by SF author David Brin who is known for his “Uplift”. The book series has dolphins that humanity uplifted to be more intelligent.




Oh, you mean Sonic the Hedgehog 3's Carnival Zone? Where a young me couldn't get past the damn barrel you had to not jump up and down on, but press up and down on the D-pad instead to get it to move? ​ You know how many hours I spent JUMPING on that damn barrel only to give up and play the game as Knuckles instead?


I was the same lol. Except I managed to get past it doing that a couple times. I was subconsciously using the dpad as well as jumping. Thank God that game let you save and level select after the final boss.


It is surprisingly validating to see someone who shared that particular struggle.


Trying to play all the games on the NES and SNES apps on the Switch and this is exactly my experience Some games just have the craziest or stupidest hidden and confusing parts that are basically impossible without a game guide. Good thing is, when you find a good guide it makes the game super fun


I remember playing this when I was like six and being terrified of most of it. Then I played it last year for nostalgia and getting frustrated about how hard it was. I guess I was just used to games being harder.


That what I remember too. It just scared the shit out of me. I still hate open water and the fear of a bottomless ocean is real.


No but this made me want to play some dolphin olympics


I didn't play the first one, I rented the second one Tides of Time. I think I made it to the second boss but man was it hard.


Yes it was most relaxed way to get stressed out by a game till this day. 5 year old me could handle that shit. It was glorious.


As a kid I’ve seen the commercials but never played it. It took me until my mid 30’s to play the game on my ps3 in a sega game pack. I did not realize how hard this game is. I did manage to beat it and man did it make me work for it. Overall I really enjoyed the gameplay, story, and aesthetics (this game has aged very well).


Also known as "Oops! All Water Levels!"


And the evil hell monster xeno creature at the end? Yeah, the trauma is deep-seated at this point.


I remember the knock off Xenomorph at the end


First time I played the game -- in the opening when all of a sudden the entire biomass of your home gets sucked up, I freaked the fuck out, turned it off, and didn't touch it again for a while.


I was terrified of the Vortex. I played Tides of Time and watching it destroy the Asterite traumatized me. Also, Tube of Medusa has a rocking music track. Listen to it.


One of the best soundtracks!


This game was far more terrifying than it should have been


YES! I played the shit out of this game! The rocks he jumps over in about 4 seconds in I found a bug. If you swim from the bottom, and scrape the right side of those rocks going straight up and then just before you breach you hit up and left on the D-pad, he does insane flips and goes up out of the screen, it's awesome.


Publisher: “we played that vertical slice for your cute game about the dolphin. We loved it!” Dev: “did you get to where he finds Atlantis then fights an alien queen?” P: “…wut…” D: “in the sequel he’s a time traveler!” Edit: spacing


You mean Fever Dream: The Video Game? Yeah, I remember it.


I forgot it on porpoise.


Somecallmejohnny sure does.


Never forgot it. Also, code for the last level was (still is?) NNNNNNNNNN. Still couldn’t beat the damn game.


I remember! This was the first video game I ever beat/completed.


That moment when I randomly jumped out of the water snd did my echolocation sound straight up for no reason and suddenly a pterodactyl swooped down and picked me up. Blew my 11 year old mind.


Ecco was one of the few games I enjoyed despite not knowing what to do for most of the time. Also, the Game Gear version was nearly as good as the Genesis/ Mega Drive Version, which was a pretty strong argument for me back in the day.


I first played that on the xbox 360 5 years ago ish and last week i played it on switch


Sega CD Ecco 1 and 2 were great.


If I’m not mistaken, the soundtrack was lit.


Fuck those jellyfish.


Welcome to the Machine! Great game and great casual Pink Floyd ripoff! Highly recommended.




I remember when I was little playing this and the music has some crazy vibes I know it scared the crap out of me trying to play at night time


This game used to piss me off and freak me out at the same time. But of course I downloaded it again when I found a Genesis emulator


soundtrack was awesome, also this reminds of that evo game where you could evolve as a fish and other animals


I remember mistaking it for E.V.O.: Search for Eden, and being disappointed when it wasn't the game I was looking for.


EVO was fucking lit, way better than Ecco!


Fuck that game. Fuck it out of existence. Fuck it out of time and space. Fuck everyone who worked on it, from the monster whose idea it was all the way to the man who delivered it to the store and the one who allowed it to be sold. Having beat that game in a world without cheat codes and save point do overs I can honestly say fuck literally everything about the evil that is Ecco. From hell's heart I stab at thee; for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee. Fuck Ecco the Dolphin in his rotted blowhole. There are only two things I save the word "hate" for, and that game is one of them.


The last boss having that one move sending you back to the hell maze is not the best game design


The first and only time I ever broke a controller in my life was when the camera itself jukes you into the dead end trap. The game wasn't just hard, it was malicious.


After that beautiful expression, I gotta know what the second thing is.


John Smedley's handling of SWG's NGE. Granted, it was the Kobayashi Maru of game development... yet it was still made worse by the choices made. It would be like Kirk hearing the distress call and instantly setting the auto destruct sequence with all hands on deck and setting a collision course with the doomed ship. Just the worst possible solution to an unwinnable scenario with everyone on board every ship involved screaming "NO" the entire time.


Probably the game's sequel?


Never played it, but damn does the camera control look disorienting