Hercules Games is a major landmark in the JonTron Show series. It is the first episode of Season 2, and brings about many alterations to the series format going forward.
Games In Episode
- Hercules (Commodore 64)
- Hercules: Slayer of the Damned (Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum version also shown)
- Glory of Heracles (Famicom)
- Herc's Adventures (PlayStation)
- Disney's Hercules (PlayStation)
- Disney's Hercules (GameBoy)
- Disney's Hercules "Hercules 2" (Sega Genesis bootleg)
- Hercules: The Legendary Journey (Nintendo 64)
- Hercules: The Legendary Journey (GameBoy)
Jon plays Tarzan on the N64, stating that it's a Hercules game. Jacques then enters the room stating that he's returned from the war in Vietnam. Jon shows Jacques Tarzan and then begins to sing, which causes Jacques to explode. Jon then states that he wishes to become immortal like Hercules to spend his life playing games and Jacques berates him. Jon then begins the episode. Jon starts of mentioning how much he's always enjoyed Greek legends. What starts as an uplifting look into his personal psyche devolves into a somewhat depressing revelation when Jon refers to the human perception of Gods as a type of hubris. He abruptly breaks the seriousness and hilariously brings in the first game into focus: Hercules for the Commodore 64.
Jon notes that the name of the game is unoriginal and lazy. Blaming it on the 80's time frame, claiming that there was a lack of need for effort back then, with the worst of anyone's worries being Ronald Reagan talking about Gorbachev. Upon starting the game, Jon immediately pokes fun at the music by snapping his fingers to a confusing beat. He then sarcastically compliments the accuracy of the title screen to the original mythos, able to identify a horse, a sheep, a lion and a barn, but cannot identify a messy character on the screen, likely intended to be the Hydra. Upon starting the game, he's greeted with a splash screen describing Hercules' first trial, to which he legitimately compliments the game. Upon starting the first stage, a platform becomes fire and kills Jon before he even has a chance to react to what's around him, before immediately skipping him ahead to the splash screen for Trial 2. After a moment of recuperating, Jon begins a negative tirade towards the game and all of its unnecessary difficulty, noting that most kids around the time period have barely mastered games like Galaga and thus the populace is not yet ready for such a heavily expectant title. He compares it to I Wanna Be The Guy, a modern rage title. He then makes a bizarre reference to Salvador Dali by mentioning the painting, "The Big Sleep". He continues to fail at the game until nearly reaching the end of a level, before a platform turns into fire and kills him, prompting him to put the game down in frustration. Using the Commodore as a pivoting point, he brings up another game on the system, Hercules: Slayer of the Damned.
Hercules: Slayer of the Damned
Once more, JonTron criticises the game's generic title, noting the 80's mythos as such while also making a slight jab at 80's computer graphics ("what, with the hot pink."). After removing the game from the case he notes that it appears to be on a cassette tape. He jokingly puts it in a cassette player and turns it on, resulting in a shrill noise that visibly shocks Jon. Jon then properly pops the game into the system and it starts with a Greek man weilding a club walking onto the screen, presumably Hercules, to which Jon greets him cheerfully. Soon, however, Jon is met by a skeleton monster, to which he laughs. He then proceeds to engage the skeleton while commemting on the endless nature of the game. He notes the snake and other shapes around the screen while also bringing up other versions of the game on the ZX Spectrum and MSX. He triumphantly defeats the skeleton which falls apart and dissipates, only for another to walk in. Jon decides not to proceed and moves on after insulting the walk cycle. He then holds up a Famicom cartridge and in a slurred voice takes note of the cart's code (DFC-HE), the presence of a damsel on the cover art, and the game's title, which he states he can't read, Glory of Heracles.
Glory of Heracles
Jon notes immediately that it is a Famicom RPG (notably similar to the likes of Mother and Dragon Quest), but he cannot tell what is happening in it due to the unusual design of the game's enemies and likely due to the game being in Japanese. He notes that the game series is still alive on the Nintendo DS under the same name. With nothing else to say, Jon then segways into Herc's Adventures for the PS1.
Jon lampshades the fact that he has so many Hercules-themes games, stating that he doesn't even know where he's getting them. He, in an admittedly confusing state of preference, notes that the Hercules in the game is the actual Hercules of legend (the confusion could stem from the fact that the previous two games were either loosely related or unrelated to the mythos). When prompted to select a character, Jon at first seems ecstatic at the idea, before doing a 180 and criticising the option to play as anyone other that Herc, stating Atlanta (Atalanta) to be a city in Georgia, and Jason to be a regular name. Jon selects Hercules and notes that he sounds quite a bit like Dan Castellaneta (the voice of Homer Simpson, who did in fact voice Hercules in this game). He compliments the game's visual style and animation, comparing it favourably to Diablo. He's suddenly visited by Zeus in-game, making him briefly fearful for his life. Zeus states that Hercules is doing a good Job, and implores him to seek out the help of his fellow gods. After briefly poking fun at the game's script, Jon is greeted to a scene of Hades gloating in a very somber and quiet voice. After Jon imitates him, he attempts to continue complimenting the game only to be abruptly halted once more by an NPC who states that Gyros restore health. Jon finally developes the confidence to go out into the city and buy himself a gyro, all the while singing a ballad about it. Unfortunately, his stomach proves intolerant of such a meal and he's seen wallowing in pain after having only partially eaten the sandwich. The cameraman asks Jon if he's alright and Jon rudely tells him to shut up. The episode smash-cuts to Jon feeling better and talking about the Disney Hercules games.
Disney's Hercules (PS1)
Jon notes that he's finally found a sense of familiarity amongst the strange games he's looked through so far, citing Hercules as one of his favourite movies as a kid. After humourously lampshading the presence of his games once more, Jon starts the game and is instantly in love with it. Citing the great music, the responsive controls and Danny DeVito's presence in the game's voice cast. He notes the game uses a 2.5D perspective, and recognises it as the high point of the episode, questioning the audience if they thought the episode was over because of that, to which he points out that the GameBoy version is a piece of shit.
Disney's Hercules (GB)
He plugs the gameboy cart into his Super GameBoy cartridge for the SNES, sarcastically commenting that the journey would be an enriching one. He starts up the game and enters the first stage, only for a hint to pop up immediately. Jon, refusing to resort to full-on cynicism, notes that at the very least, the game gave him a "millisecond preview" before presenting him with a hint. He then notes the cryptic nature of Phil's hints, comparing "Look for bonuses in the trees." to "Remember the scent of mother." believeing that the game is forcing philosophy down his throat, despite literally starting moments ago. He then berates the game for its slow, somewhat cinematic gameplay that is difficult to grasp, as well as its droaning, generic soundtrack and the design of Hercules which, due to the green palette, resembles Luke Skywalker. He also notes the lack of continues in the game, meaning death returns the player to the start of the game. He does compliment the swordplay, which he notes as feeling weighty and requiring actual skill to use. He then states that under normal circumstances, those would be the only Disney games he'd look at, he then reveals a game called Hercules 2.
Disney's Hercules (Genesis Bootleg)
Jon is dumbfounded by the existence of this game, noting it as a pirated version of the PS1 game on SEGA Genesis, as well as its name, Hercules 2, being odd. He plays a bit of the game, noting the bit-crushed sounds as well as the slower pacing. After speeding up footage of him tediously breaking the practice dummies, he refuses to go any further and ends his experience with the title. Immediately afterwards, he brings up the penultimate game, Hercules: The Legendary Journey.
Hercules: The Legendary Journey (N64)
Jon recounts that the game is based on the live-action television series of the same name, however he failed to recall the name of the actor that played the titular hero, Kevin Sorbo. Upon starting the game, he notes the music sounds like that which comes from an educational game, only to become invested in that idea and hoping that is what will happen. He's soon greeted by a man who summarises the plot up to the point the game starts, only for Jon to skip through him out of boredom. He starts the actual gameplay and is greeted by a centaur who advises Hercules to follow him so that they can begin their training. Jon states that, as a demigod, he didn't feel as though he was being treated appropriately. He then notes that the game bore a large amount of similarities to The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. He compliments the game for being as expansive and fun as it is despite being based on such a mundane IP. He then humourously states the the best thing about the game is the sound that plays upon pausing. This brings him to the final game of the episode, which is a GameBoy version of the same game.
Hercules: The Legendary Journey (GB)
Jon ridicules the almost wimpy-looking boxart, stating the character doesn't resemble Kevin Sorbo in the slightest. He starts the game only to be greeted by the infamous TITAS Software logo, as well as some painfully high-pitched music. So painful that Jacques violently combusts. After dissing the soundtrack, Jon starts and notices that there was a poor conversion effort, with Hercules' sprite looking overweight and his walk cycle resembling Eric Cartmen from South Park. He then begins criticising the game's handeling of dialogue, with the simple act of talking to someone being met with an annoying chime, as well as most characters stating the same things, making one wonder why they're there in the first place. He notes an NPC states she's busy. Jon makes the argument that her husband, who is inside wearing a sleeping cap and gown, laying in bed, patting his belly, is truly busy, implying his perpetual belly patting to be masturbation. This confusion culminates to a whole as Jon attempts to go inside in order to get some form of help, only for the first NPC he talks to to order him to leave.
Jon laughs at the absurdity and decides to give up on his attempts at being immortal. He begins swallowing a large amount of Advil tablets and downing them with Vodka before dying on the couch. All the while monologuing about how being immortal would be undesireable. The final shot of the episode shows a dead Jon on the couch as the word "POOP" appears on-screen.
The transcript for this episode can be found here.
- As the first episode of season two, this episode has several updates to it that would go on to be used in many later episodes. They include:
- A new version of the intro redone in pixel art and with better quality images displayed over within Jon and Jacques's outlines.
- The video showcased a slightly more unhinged and dangerous version of the Jon Tron character with a gnarlier sense of humour than what was featured previously.
- It would be both the first and last videos to use the new avatar and old avatar respectively in the thumbnail.
- In the Star Wars-esque backstory, "transfer" is misspelled as "tranfer".
- Similarly, when Jon censors himself earlier with "The Military Industrial Complex" the text misspells it as "Compelx".
- After 3 days, the thumbnail for this video was updated to fit JonTron's modern design.
- The five characters that Jon identifies on the title screen of Hercules on the Commodore 64 are, in order of mention: The Man-Eating Mares of Diomedes (Horse), Geryon's Cattle (misidentified as Sheep), The Nemean Lion (Lion), The Augian Stables (Barn), and the Lerninn Hydra (Jon is unable to identify it, stating that it fits in regardless).