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  • Writer's pictureChris McHugh

How Data East Created the Karnov Nintendo Video Game

Updated: May 1, 2022

The Nintendo Entertainment System game Karnov centers around a fire-breathing, Russian ex-circus strongman. I played this game after school at a friends house, and I always remember being impressed by the graphics that Karnov would scroll through on the NES.

I won’t mince words here, Karnov is a weirdo. And the more time that went by, the weirder I thought he was when his freakish face would pop into my mind.

Karnov was created by Data East. You remember them from games like Burger Time and Robocop, but why Data East decided to make this guy their company mascot I’ll never know.

Throughout the years, Karnov has been coming back for more. He’s made guest appearances in multiple Data East games and he was a leading man on the Neo Geo’s Karnov’s Revenge.

So whatever happened to Mr. Jinborov Karnovski? When Data East went bankrupt in 2003, former employees formed their own company and bought the rights to him. Maybe they’ll slather up ol’ Karnov in hot oil for an all new adventure. I mean, he’s so loveable.

And in case you didn’t know, somebody made a Karnov movie. Check it out by clicking the video in this post (Please note, the movie has been edited down by me from the Galaxy 454 trailer on YouTube. Sound effects and music have also been added).


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