When people ask me what the first video game I ever played was, I say Warcraft 2 on the PC when I first moved to the U.S.. Recently it dawned on me that this isn’t exactly true. In fact, the first video game I remember playing was The Lion King. These were the days when we just got a VHS player. It was all the rage in our area at the time. The first movie we got was Anaconda, but my favorite movie in the world at the time - The Lion King - followed soon after. There was this toy, game and video shop in our neighborhood. I remember they had three or four computers set up, where they would charge kids to play The Lion King for about 15 minutes or so. There was always a group of kids waiting to play. I remember sitting in the chair and roaring at the porcupines, fighting the hyenas, jumping from rock to rock and tree to tree. I also remember the second level, which I think I actually passed only once in the time that was allocated - the level where you had to jump from animal to animal to the “I just can’t wait to be king” theme music.
The game brought back such great memories that I decided to download it. I got it from Best Old Games, along with DOSBox, and fired her up. And holy crap, I’m in love all over again. You have no idea how excited I got to play this game again. Sure, it’s a bit frustrating with the whole “You can only ‘continue’ once after you lose all your lives and then you have to restart the whole game” thing, but it is so worth it. I know what I’ll be doing my best to pass. It’ll be great to get to the end of the game like I never could in Ukraine.
The Lion King has always been one of the most inspiring movies ever to me. I used to watch it every single day as a kid. For months. And when Lion King 2 came out I would watch that every single day for months, too. It’s only years later that I found out the movie had Christian connotations and themes to it, but I never saw that when I was younger so I don’t really see the movie in that way now.
The song in the first scene always sends chills down my spine. That’s how great it is.