Zero Wing (Genesis) is the Retro Game of the Day for 20 May, 2016

Yep.  Zero Wing.

Sure, let’s admit it: it’s not a really great game.  At best, it’s an above average horizontally scrolling shooter with one fairly neat little gimmick of capturing small enemy ships to use as a shield/one-use projectile.  Beyond that, the game itself is good enough, but not very memorable.

Except for All Your Base Are Belong To Us. 

In the year 2000, emulation had gotten to the point where it was easy to emulate the Sega Genesis (aka the Mega Drive) and go through its catalog of lesser-known games.  And Zero Wing was definitely a lesser-known game, being a Europe-only release of an already lesser-known, mediocre game with a poor translation of its intro sequence.  But a remix of its intro music was made with voice synthesis lines of the hilariously bad translation, and that was coupled with a Flash video made of part of the game’s title sequence followed by a sequence of Photoshopped images with “All Your Base Are Belong To Us” (and/or some of the other intro lines) inserted in one way or the other.  This became a huge viral hit in the early 2000s, giving the game a sort of resurgence.

So what you have is a game that should have been mostly forgotten (and rightfully so) made “popular” by an inane non-game sequence that went viral and caused the game to become more popular.  Sadly, this is how many modern games work.  Thanks, Zero Wing.