ControversyNight Trap along with Mortal Kombat (both uncut games on SEGA systems) were two of the mainstream games that brought about a lot of controversy in North America during the mid 90's. Because of this and a push by people like Sen. Joseph Lieberman, the supreme court got involved. A law was passed in 1994 to make a game rating system for all video games in the market. The system became the ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board).
Ironically, Night Trap's controversy, that led to its part in the creation of the ESRB, was due to misinformation. The news reported that the object of the game was to kill the girls. This is incorrect. The object is to protect the girls and assist the soldiers who enter later. If you lose a girl or soldier, you lose a life.
Despite the hearings, the case also showed the industry that controversy sells. The SEGA CD version was lifted from poor sales to more than 50,000 copies per week in the US. Despite that, SEGA stopped the distribution of the game by January 1994 because of what it did for its public image. During the hearings retail chains such as Toys R US and Kay-Bee Toys had already stopped stocking the title. Distribution of Mortal Kombat was never discontinued.
Dana PlatoNight Trap actually made a name (sort of) for actress Dana Plato (remember her from Diff'rent Strokes?). To this day, everyone still remembers her from this game.
DevelopmentThis game, along with Sewer Shark, were originally made for Isix's ill-fated Control-Vision console (the console was to use VHS tapes for the games), but after Isix's console project (code-named NEMO) got the axe, this game and Sewer Shark (both made by Digital Pictures) were 'saved' by being ported over to the Sega CD.
- Computer Gaming World
- November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) – #6 Worst Game of All Time