|Platform(s)||Arcade, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, Family Computer, Game Boy, MSX, NES, SG-1000, ZX Spectrum. Switch, PlayStation 4, Mobile,|
|Arcade system||Taito SJ System|
Elevator Action[a] is a platform-shooter game released in arcades by Taito in 1983. The player assumes the role of Agent 17, a spy infiltrating a 30 story building filled with elevators and enemy agents who emerge from closed doors. The goal is to collect secret documents from specially marked rooms, then escape the building. It runs on the Taito SJ System arcade system.
The game was a critical and commercial success for Taito, exceeding sales expectations at the time it released. It has been ported to a variety of home systems, has had multiple sequels, and appeared on Taito compilations.
Elevator Action is an action platform arcade game. The player assumes the role of Agent 17, codename: "Otto", a secret agent. Otto enters a 30-story building at roof level and must work his way down to the basement, collecting secret documents whose locations are marked by red doors. Along the way, he must use the building's elevator and escalator systems to move from floor to floor and avoid or kill the enemy agents trying to stop him. After picking up all the documents, Otto can escape to the basement and drive away in a waiting car to end the level. Otto can move left and right, jump, duck, and fire up to three shots at a time from his pistol. While Otto is in an elevator, the player can push up or down to send him to a higher or lower floor. He can run or jump across an empty shaft as long as the elevator is above him, and can ride on its roof but not control its motion or cross to the other side. The player can also push up or down to make Otto ride an escalator.
If Otto tries to leave the building without collecting all the documents, he will be transported to the highest floor that still has an unopened red door and must work his way back down. In addition, if he takes too long to clear a level, an alarm will sound; the enemy agents then become more aggressive, and the elevators will be slower to respond to the player's joystick movements.
Each building contains a section in which the lights are out, making it harder to see approaching enemies. On other floors, Otto can temporarily disable the lights by shooting one of the overhead fixtures. Otto can kill enemy agents by shooting them, jump-kicking them at close range, dropping a light fixture on their heads, or crushing them with an elevator. If he is shot or crushed, or if he falls down an open shaft, the player loses one life.
During the game's test phase in North America, Mike Von Kennel, marketing manager of Taito America, called the game a "top test piece" and held high expectations. It was released by in Japan around June 1983, and in North America around October of that same year. In North America, while also sold as a dedicated cabinet, it was Taito's first game to be sold as a conversion kit in that territory.
Elevator Action was first ported to the Family Computer by Micronics, and this version was published by Taito in Japan on June 28, 1985. The Famicom version was later released in North America on the Nintendo Entertainment System around 1987. Taito later made and published their own port of the game for the MSX around 1985. Around that same time, under license from Taito, Sega made and published a version of the game for the SG-1000. It was later ported to the ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, and Commodore 64. A port was in development for the Atari 2600, but was cancelled.
The Famicom/NES version of Elevator Action was re-released for the Wii Virtual Console in Japan on April 3, 2007, and in North America on March 5 later that year. It was later re-released exclusively in Japan for the Wii U Virtual Console on February 19, 2014, and for the 3DS Virtual Console on March 12 of that same year. The arcade version was later re-released on the PlayStation 4 on October 26, 2017, and later on the Nintendo Switch on March 14, 2019 by Hamster Corporation as part of their Arcade Archives series. Elevator Action is included in the compilations Taito Legends, Taito Memories Gekan, Taito Memories Pocket, and Taito Legends Power Up.
|Nintendo Life||6/10 (NES)|
Elevator Action quickly became a commercial success for Taito. In Japan, Game Machine listed Elevator Action in their August 1983 issues as the most-successful new table arcade unit of the month. It then topped the Game Machine table arcade cabinet charts for much of late 1983, from September to November, and persisted on their charts up until the April 1, 1984 issue. In the first month of the North American release, the game was said to have "surpassed all expectations" in terms of popularity and sales by Keith Egging, the vice president of product development at Taito America. The game was reportedly popular with patrons at the 1983 Amusement Expo. Conversion kits for the game were also popular, and the number of kits sold set an "enviable record" for the company.
In a 1984 issues of Video Games, Steve Harris wrote, "it was a good action game which allows for a great deal of player input", and while he feared that it might have been overshadowed by the laserdisc games of the time, thought the game was as competent as those. It received a Certificate of Merit as part of the 1985 Arkie Awards.
Eurogamer wrote that it was "astonishing just how playable it remains". In The Video Games Guide: 1,000+ Arcade, Console and Computer Games, Matt Fox wrote that the game was an "enjoyable arcade game", giving it three out of five stars according to the book's own rating system.
In 1991, a version of Elevator Action was made for the Game Boy, developed and published by Taito. While it retains the gameplay of the original arcade version otherwise, it includes new gameplay elements like power-ups and new weapons. A port of the game for EZweb mobile phones was released in April 15, 2004. This mobile version was later published in North America by Sony Pictures Digital around 2006.
A sequel, Elevator Action Returns, was released in arcades in 1994. Elevator Action EX is an updated version of the game released for the Game Boy Color in 2000. Elevator Action Old & New is a further update for the Game Boy Advance, published in 2002. Revealed at AOU 2009, Elevator Action: Death Parade is a lightgun shooter that uses elevator doors when changing scenarios. A later remake of the game, titled Elevator Action Deluxe, was released on PlayStation Network on August 31, 2011. The game contains single player and multiplayer modes, as well as the original arcade game.
- "Elevator Action Advertisement". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 46–49 10 October 1983.
- Fox, Matt (2012). The Video Games Guide: 1,000+ Arcade, Console, and Computer Games, 1962–2012 (2nd ed.). McFarland & Company. p. 96. ISBN 978-1-4766-0067-3.
- Harris, Steve (May 1984). "Arcade Games: Playing Tips and Strategies". Video Games. Pumpkin Press. 2nd (8): 47–48.
- Kalata, Kurt (2016). Hardcore Gaming 101 Digest Vol. 2: Taito Arcade Classics. CreateSpace. pp. 30–33. ISBN 978-1522827245.
- Singletary, Charles; Jr (19 March 2019). "Arcade Archives Elevator Action out now on Nintendo Switch". Shacknews. Archived from the original on 11 August 2020. Retrieved 3 November 2020.
- McFerran, Damien (2007-10-25). "Elevator Action". Eurogamer. Archived from the original on 2 October 2019. Retrieved 2020-11-03.
- "Around The Route". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 31 13 August 1983.
- Akagi, Masumi (2006). アーケードTVゲームリスト 国内•海外編 (1971-2005) (in Japanese) (1st ed.). Amusement News Agency. pp. 42, 136. ISBN 978-4990251215.
- "On The Cover". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 3 18 February 1984.
- "エレベーターアクション - FC". Famitsu (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 7 May 2019. Retrieved 3 November 2020.
- "Elevator Action - Game". Nintendo World Report. Archived from the original on 24 September 2020. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
- Hawken, Kieren (2018). The A-Z of NES Games. 1st (3rd ed.). Luton, Bedfordshire: Andrews UK. ISBN 978-1-78538-679-4. OCLC 1076243383.
- "Taito America Announces Entry Into Home Software Market". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 44 11 July 1987.
- Hawken, Kieren (2019). The A-Z of MSX Games. 2nd. Luton, Bedfordshire: Andrews UK. ISBN 978-1-78982-160-4. OCLC 1152240422.
- Miller, Skyler. "Elevator Action (2600) Overview". Allgame. All Media Network. Archived from the original on 14 November 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
- "Elevator Action | Wii U". Nintendo.jp (in Japanese). Nintendo. Archived from the original on 11 May 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
- "Elevator Action | 3DS". Nintendo.jp (in Japanese). Nintendo. Archived from the original on 11 May 2019. Retrieved 6 November 2020.
- "Taito's Arcade Classic Elevator Action Returns With A Vengeance On PlayStation 4". Comicbook.com. 26 October 2017. Archived from the original on 3 November 2020. Retrieved 3 November 2020.
- "Elevator Action (Arcade) - Review". Allgame. All Media Network. Archived from the original on November 14, 2014. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- "Elevator Action (NES) - Review". Allgame. All Media Network. Archived from the original on November 14, 2014. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- "Elevator Action (C64) - Overview". Allgame. All Media Network. Archived from the original on November 14, 2014. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- Marriott, Scott. "Elevator Action (Mobile) - Overview". Allgame. All Media Network. Archived from the original on 14 November 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2020.
- "Elevator Action Review". IGN. Archived from the original on December 29, 2020. Retrieved December 29, 2020.
- "Elevator Action Review". GameSpot. Archived from the original on July 14, 2019. Retrieved December 29, 2020.
- "Elevator Action Review (NES)". Nintendo Life. Archived from the original on January 3, 2012. Retrieved December 29, 2020.
- "Game Machine's Best Hit Games 25 - テーブル型新製品 (New Videos-Table Type)". Game Machine. Amusement News Agency: 29. 1 August 1983.
- "Best Hit Games 25" (PDF). Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 218. Amusement Press, Inc. 15 August 1983. p. 27.
- "Best Hit Games 25" (PDF). Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 219. Amusement Press, Inc. 1 September 1983. p. 29.
- "Best Hit Games 25" (PDF). Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 223. Amusement Press, Inc. 1 November 1983. p. 33.
- "Game Machine's Best Hit Games 25 - テーブル型新製品 (New Videos-Table Type)". Game Machine. Amusement News Agency: 27. 1 April 1984.
- "Around The Route". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 32 15 October 1983.
- "AMOA Expo Photo Highlights". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 34 12 November 1983.
- "Jerry Monday: Optimistic Distributor Expects "Rebound" In '84". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 35 14 January 1984.
- "Around The Route". Cash Box. Cash Box Pub. Co.: 31 21 January 1984.
- "1985 Arkie Awards". Electronic Games. Reese Communications. 3 (1): 28. January 1985.
- Hawken, Kieren (2017). The A-Z of Nintendo Game Boy Games. 1st. Luton, Bedfordshire: Andrews UK. ISBN 978-1-78538-779-1. OCLC 1100895785.
- "「エレベーターアクション」がBREW携帯で復活". ITmedia (in Japanese). 18 April 2004. Archived from the original on 26 April 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2020.
- McWhertor, Michael (2 March 2009). "Elevator Action Arcade Shooter Has Great name, Even Better Gimmick". Kotaku. Archived from the original on 14 December 2018.
- Ryan, Paul (31 August 2011). "Square Enix shocks world with Elevator Action reboot on PSN". GamesRadar. Archived from the original on 14 October 2012. Retrieved 15 September 2013.