Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Where are they now? - Body Blows

Open the door, get on the floor. Everybody walk the dinosaur!

In the early 1990s, Street Fighter II was all the rage at the arcades, so it was only a matter of time before PCs wanted to get in on some of that action with their own clones of Street Fighter II. Enter Body Blows, a fighting game developed by a company usually associated with the Worms franchise, Team 17. The game was critically acclaimed on the Amiga although I'm not so sure if the DOS version had glowing reviews. Regardless, beggars can't be choosers right? And besides, I totally had a ball with the game when it came out; the frantic gameplay coupled with amusing sound samples uttered whenever your character won a match was sublime. Also, who couldn't forget that 90s dance track reminiscent of Techno Syndrome that they used for the menu theme? Fantastic. In fact, people still remix the thing to this day:



I've tried having a go at Ultimate Body Blows, which is supposedly a bigger and better version of the original, as that's what's available on GOG nowadays but it was nowhere near the game I remember, probably because I totally suck at fighting games nowadays (well, to be honest I never was any good at them to begin with) and because somehow the game keeps moving the cursor around without any intervention (something weird going on). Also the keyboard layout isn't the most intuitive.

Anyway, you're here to know what happened to some key personnel that were involved on the project right? Well two of the key people behind the game immortalised themselves by lending their names to two of the game's characters: Dan and Junior. Dan is named after Danny Burke and Junior is named after Cedric McMillan Jr.

Unfortunately, there's very little information on Danny Burke. He apparently worked on a few games for Team 17 in terms of graphics and design although after the 2001 release of Stunt GP, the trail goes cold and we don't know what happened to Mr. Burke after this time.

McMillan Jr. continued to work in the games development industry although he tended to develop web-based games after his stint at Team 17 in the early 90s. For the past few years he's been working as a Web Development Manager for a company that sells "After the Event" insurance (although I'm not entirely sure what that means - it's all Legalese to me).

The composer for the game was none other than Allister Brimble. I talked quite a bit about him in one of my previous "Where are they now?" articles and as far as I know, not much has changed; he's still developing audio for games and other media on behalf of his company, Orchestral Media Development.

Happened to be part of the original Body Blows development team? Let us know, we'd love to hear your stories and anecdotes! :)

LINKS
[ Choicest Games: Where are they now? - Allister Brimble ]
[ MobyGames: Danny Burke ]
[ MobyGames: Cedric McMillan Jr. ]
[ MobyGames: Body Blows ]
[ Wikipedia: Body Blows ]

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