Journey Escape and Music Games

journey.jpgOne more item from my collection. This one's neither rare nor particularly unfamiliar to many (although this copy is still factory sealed, perversely), but it makes for an interesting provocation.

In 1982 Data Age created Journey Escape, based on the then hugely popular band Journey's album Escape. In the game, you have to help the band reach their "scarab escape vehicle" (from the album cover) after a concert, while avoiding "hordes of Love-Crazed Groupies, Sneaky Photographers, and Shifty-Eyed Promoters. For some reason the band manager looks like the Kool-Aid Man. A less successful Journey arcade game followed in 1983, from Bally Midway.

What's interesting to me about this game is that it is one of very few attempts to licence and adapt bands or music to videogames.Sure, we have Guitar Hero and Rock Band, but those are music performance games. There was Michael Jackson Moonwalker, a 1990 Sega arcade game. And a strange KISS-inspired Dreamcast game. And Peter Gabriel's EVE, which is more like an interacive CD-ROM than a game. And a Chemical Brothers Flash game for the single Galvanize, which now seems to be offline. And one of my former students, Rob Fitzpatrick, made a game adaptation of a single from the band The Most.

But really, music adaptation is a fairly unexplored avenue in videogames. Interesting, no?

Journey Escape for the Atari 2600 [Journey Tribute]


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