Game developers all hope to create the next big thing. Of course, not all development teams are capable of coming up with their own original ideas. For some companies it's just as easy to
steal "borrow" ideas that have proven themselves successful in the marketplace. Here is an example of that line of thinking.
Lost Levels has a look at the unreleased Squashed from Jaleco, a Nintendo Entertainment System platformer game that directly incorporates gameplay concepts and character clones from better games such as Super Mario Bros. 3, Mega Man 3, Ducktales, Ninja Gaiden, Mickey Mouse: Castle of Illusion, and Strider, among others.
Squashed seems to take further liberties from Super Mario Bros. 3 with Maru's ability to duck and enter some pipes on the ground, and to jump and enter pipes in the ceiling. Also, enemies emerge from pipes in many of Squashed's worlds. Furthermore, there's an auto-scrolling pirate-ship level in this game, which could only have come from one place. Finally, the six different kings being kidnapped and thanking Maru at the end of every stage is all too familiar.
I know that gamers tend to rag developers for being unoriginal these days, but Squashed deserves a prize for not having an original bone in its body. I have no clue how Jaleco thought they could slip this game by the lawyers at Nintendo, Capcom, etc.