California Games, the world’s most terrible DOS game… and Smith Westerns

Did anyone ever play California Games when they were growing up? It was an incredibly low-budget PC game made by Epyx in 1987 that featured a handful of “Californian” sports: surfing, jet-skiing, hang-gliding, skateboarding, snowboarding, and roller-skating. I cannot understate how obsessed I was with this game. I spent hours smashing my skateboarder into a bloody pulp on the half-pipe and driving in circles on a jet-ski with no discernible change in location. I suspect this game was the reason for my perpetual fascination with California.

If you're lucky, Navajo-Jesus will watch as your dismembered torso hurtles off a cliff.

So much fun that I forgot to have fun!

Each subsequent minute of viewing of the following video clip will depreciate your self-worth by 0.001%

So how does this all connect to Smith Westerns? Well, not very much, considering they’re from Chicago, Illinois. However, they have a legitimate Californian sound to them, unlike California Games. I’m also sure that California Games predates the birth of several members of Smith Westerns by several years.

One predominant theme that I noticed in California Games was that if you don’t win the level, you directly cause the untimely demise of an athlete. In California, it’s succeed… or die.

Snowboarding: Broken neck
Skateboarding: Crumpled body in a puddle of blood
Hang-gliding: Drown

As far as I can tell, the only reason that you don’t die from jet-skiing is because that level is already hell on earth.

So here’s a little song called All Die Young.

MP3: All Die YoungSmith Westerns

Valuable Life Lessons Learned From California Games:

1. When you die, the bastard child of Dr. Zoidberg and Courtney Love will shave his hair into a mohawk and cry at your funeral.

More like DIE TO RIDE, amirite?? lololol

2. Hollywood and San Francisco are on opposite sides of an enormous mountain.

Nevermind the t-rex. He's just here for the surf-n-turf.

3. Skateboarding will wipe all of your pesky human facial features away.

I've got Vertical Hunger just looking at him.

So yeah, Smith Westerns reminded me to look up California Games. I’ll make real posts again after I’m settled in at MapleMusic Recordings! I’d tell you more about my job there, but it starts on Wednesday and I’m not too sure about what all of my job details are. Very exciting, though! So exciting that I might just download California Games. Or I could just hit myself in the face.

2 thoughts on “California Games, the world’s most terrible DOS game… and Smith Westerns

  1. This is a hilarious post Katie. I loved California Games as a kid. My favourite was if you hit a crack while skateboarding you would bite the sidewalk.

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