Socks the Cat Rocks the Hill
|Socks the Cat Rocks the Hill|
North American SNES box art
Socks the Cat Rocks the Hill is an unreleased platform video game developed by Kaneko for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and Sega Genesis. The game stars Socks, the real-life pet cat of former U.S. President Bill Clinton.
The game follows Socks as he makes his way past spies, politicians, and news media to warn the White House of a stolen nuclear missile. The game's bosses are caricatures of former Republican leaders such as Richard Nixon and George H. W. Bush. Nintendo's own censorship policies during the late 1980s and early 1990s condemned games that had "subliminal political messages" or "overt political statements".
Socks the Cat was originally scheduled for a release in the fall of 1993, but was delayed until the following year. Development was eventually finished and the game was ready to be shipped to retailers, but it was canceled following the closing of publisher Kaneko's U.S. branch in July 1994. Review copies were still distributed, and multiple publications wrote reviews including Nintendo Power, GamePro, and Electronic Gaming Monthly.
A prototype cartridge of Socks the Cat found its way into the hands of private collectors. In 2011, a video was uploaded to YouTube showing gameplay from the cartridge. The game ROM remains unreleased to the public.
The game was reviewed in the June 1994 issue (Volume 61) of Nintendo Power, which claimed the boss characters were caricatures of former political figures (including previous U.S. Presidents). It was also reviewed in the July 1994 issue of GamePro, where it was given scores of 3.0 for graphics, 2.5 for sound, 3.5 for controls, and 3.5 for fun factor (out of five possible points). Their criticisms were that the game was too easy and the graphics were flat. They did, however, like the political satire. Electronic Gaming Monthly gave it a 5.8 out of 10, calling it "a cute run-and-jump, claw the enemies game."