Bad Dudes

Bad Dudes

Retro Coin Op Synopsis

“I’m bad!”

Inspired by the worldwide success of Double Dragon a year earlier, Data East introduced its own side-scrolling, street-brawling, ninja-fighting game in 1988, Bad Dudes vs. Dragon Ninja. Worried parents could rest assured, however, that these “Bad Dudes” had only good intentions.

In a refreshing break from the usual kidnapped girlfriends, princesses and other damsels in distress, Bad Dudes had its title stars on the case of the missing President. U.S. President Ronnie (a not-at-all veiled reference to Ronald Reagan) had been taken hostage by the evil Dragon Ninja, and rather than call in the FBI, CIA or the U.S. Military, somebody decided the Bad Dudes were the right dudes for the job.

Moving from city streets to a train to a helicopter and more, your Bad Dude (or, for an extra quarter, Dudes) fought through an army of baddies with kicks, punches and special moves (all delivered with the same button). Blue ninjas were the most frequent opponents, but the game also threw in a smattering of grey ninjas, female ninjas and attack dogs. Like Double Dragon, a boss awaited at the end of each stage, starting with strongman Karnov (star of his own 1987 Data East game) and ending with the Dragon Ninja himself.

Also like Double Dragon, Bad Dudes allowed for two-player simultaneous action, doubling your ninja-kicking power. Despite the two dudes’ physical similarities, you could always tell them apart by their white or green pants. It was up to you and your fellow Bad Dude to decide how to split up the various goodies you could pick up along your trek—special weapons, extra time (the clock was always ticking) and extra energy (often delivered in the form of refreshing soft drinks).

It was a dangerous world, and only the baddest survived. But if you managed to fight your way to the Dragon Ninja’s copter and defeat the bossman himself, a grateful President Ronnie would reward you with the kind of friendly banter that earned him the nickname “The Great Communicator”:

"Hey Dudes thanks,
For rescuing me.
Let's go for
A burger…
Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!"

Arcade Machine Release History

1988 - Bad Dudes

Arcade Game Sub Categories


Machine Manufacturer

Data East

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