Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and Friends, The
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  • THQ
  • THQ
  • Action - General, Other
  • 12/1/1992
  • 1
  • ?
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  • $5.00
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1  |  Well, it's Bull-something, anyway...
JAnderson , 4/25/2005 10:40:47 PM
Many bad game companies of the 80s failed to survive until today. LJN, Jaleco, they died pretty much forgotten. Yet, a few other bad companies managed to survive solely because they grabbed the right licenses. Acclaim was one. A long string of bad games, saved by purchasing a failing Valiant Comics, giving them many new licenses and the beginning of their only good games. T*HQ seems about the same. their recent Evil Dead: A Fistful Of Boomstick was a great game, But name one great game they had prior.

I think that the cartoons Jay Ward Studios made were some of the best ever. Disney was an innovator and Warner Brothers pushed themselves on the public. Ward had nothing to prove, nothing to gain. Yeah, the cartoons were animated in Mexico, with low budgets and a simplistic art style, but they were the greatest shows I ever watched. I grew up in the 80s, where every new cartoon existed to push a toy line. Bullwinkle, Tennesse Tuxedo, and Dudley Do-Right had no merchandise to hawk off on anyone.

So it disappoints me when a crappy game company gets such a good license then ruins it. Sure, maybe T*HQ tried, but this game is crap. They should line Jay Ward's casket with electrical wire, he's gotta be spinning fast enough to output some serious wattage given the absue his properties have suffered.

The story is passable-  Bullwinkle, learning he is the Lost Earl of moosechester, must make his way to Abominable Manor in England to claim his inheritance. Boris and Natasha are, of course, out to stop him. The "And Friends" of the title is misleading, since neither Dudley or any of the others seem to ever show their faces, shy of being plastered on the box. That's where it really ends. Graphics are fairly bad. Even considering the simple nature of the cartoon's look, these graphics look unreasonably horrendous. Cruddy backgrounds, boring levels, and rather plain character sprites. The music... well, take a 6-second clip of the cartoon theme and keep repeating it. Yeah, it's annoying, lazy, and downright bad.

Play controls are semi-responsive. Jumping over enemies seems next to impossible. The classic method of "invincible and ghost-like" when hitting an enemy doesn't apply- you will simply bounce back and hit the enemy again. Your bomb weapons are fairly useless. Bullwinkle's charcge attack is the only reliable attack and he drains health using it. Rocky's flying ability is pointless and will no doubt land you in the very first pit that requires being flown over. And if not, flying drains your health, too. Health is regained by grabbing soda cups but it restores a superficial amount. Keys needed to get through level sections are in the open and on the way, making them pointless to find or even include. Extra bombs can be picked up, but they're useless weapons anyway.

Boris and Natasha routinely arrive to throw bombs at you and avoid your attacks. Boris also likes to drop bombs from overhead on occasion, and bombs loaded with "Goof Gas" will reverse your controls. Your five lives will be quickly spent.

It's a game that offers no incentive to play. It looks bad, sounds bad, and plays bad. It's almost amusing when unlicensed game companies make bad games. It's disgusting when licensed companies do, and makes those idiotic seals of approval that Nintendo hands out look worthless- it was, after all, a stamp saying that said company had paid licensing fees, nothing more. It was no guarantee of the game being any good. The box even proclaims "Maximum Fun For Ages 4-10!". A 4-year-old might be in awe, but anyone over the age of 7 will no doubt have thrown the game down to go back to Super Mario 3. Come on, kids have more sense than the box indicates. I suspect the 4-10 was a secret message of how many days it took to make the game.

In fact, I doubt anyone will be too inspired to play for long.

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