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RELEASE DATE (NA): November 1990 GENRE: Platformer
// review by Lydia

Birds of a feather do stocks together.

I cannot lie. Ducktales is a game that I grew up playing. I've racked many hours as a child playing this game. Now that I am an older and wiser adult lass (with better reflexes), I can fly through DuckTales like a greased hawk. That doesn't make it any less fun though! I regard DuckTales as one of the best games of my youth and am privileged to have the opportunity to share my thoughts about it.

Scrooge McDuck has decided to travel to remote places around the world in search of precious artifacts. The only reason given for his impulsive globetrotting is that someone else is in the running for being the "richest duck in the world". Who else would that other duck be but his arch nemesis Flintheart Glomgold! However, we really only see Flintheart at the end of the game where he attempts to steal all of the treasures that Scrooge has worked so hard to obtain. Therefore, with cane in hand...wing...Scrooge takes on the world (and beyond) and all its creepy crawling creatures. He's not alone, though! He is accompanied by his faithful pilot, Launchpad; his nephews, Huey, Dewey, and Louie; their female friend, Webby; and the ever generous Mrs. Beakley. You'll catch up to them occasionally on your travels where they will offer you information, rides over treacherous pits, and ice cream and cake for your health. Sure, there's health items hiding around, but none of them are made with love from a grandmotherly duck! Gizmoduck makes a brief appearance in one of the levels, but prefers to be the strong, silent, robotic type. He lets his guns speak for him as he blasts away some blocks that are in Scrooge's way on the Moon. Thanks, buddy. I could use that firepower for some of these bosses you know...

Scrooge McDuck gets good use of his passport because he travels to five completely random places—the Amazon, a Transylvanian haunted house, some African mines, the Himalayas, and some kind of spaceship on the Moon. (Do you need a passport to get to the Moon? Are there astronaut licenses you can get?) None of these obviously dangerous places bother Scrooge in the least. He doesn't even bother to put on duck shoes or pack an extra pair of pants—oh, wait, that's right...he doesn't wear pants. Well, if he wants to freeze his tail feathers off, he's off to a great start. He fights the Abominable Snowman for a strange mask relic in the Himalayas... I would've thought that the Abominable Snowman would be a more expensive prize. Unless the mask belonged to the big, bad-haired Monkey Man himself, but that's unlikely. Snowmen need masks like cacti need sand. But I guess an Abominable Snowman that can be defeated by an elderly duck with a cane is not much of a prize now that I think about it. Do you even lift, Bigfoot?

Watch out, or the enemies will nip at your duck tails.

Anyway, the levels are actually really enjoyable! I had fun exploring down every rope and in all of the treasure chests. They have their own atmosphere, their own little secrets, and their own enemies. The Amazon has pythons, the Moon has floating squids, and the Himalayas have... goats and snow bunnies. You have to watch out for those bunnies though. They'll rip your throat out before you can say "Run away!" The only downside is if you happen to go the wrong way down a certain path. If you're not aware, you just might hurl yourself into a pit thinking you can make it to that platform. No, you can't. You will die. Have fun going back to the beginning of the level. That's the other downside—there are no definite checkpoints in these levels. If you die, you very well might end up in the beginning or you might end up spawning in the previous screen. Who's to know? Since there are several ways to go about getting to the end of these levels, there is no way to solidify where exactly a halfway point would be. If you go most of the way through the level and then go back to the beginning of the level to get something and die, will you revive at the halfway point or at the beginning again? Since this is a good game, I'll let you play and find out for yourself. Ha!

The pièce de résistance of DuckTales (and everyone who has played the game knows) is the music! And I'm not just talking about the theme song—A-woo-oo! The music composer definitely deserved a raise for these catchy tunes. Probably the most recognizable song in the entire game is the Moon theme music. I can honestly say that that song is one of my favorite songs from any video game. It has a very space-y sound to it, and the melody is fantastic! The other levels' themes are great, too (with the exception of Transylvania's brain-splitting high notes), but they don't seem as atmospheric. I could gush about the DuckTales music like Niagara Falls, but it's best to experience it for yourself—hint, hint.

DuckTales is an enjoyable game from beginning to end. It has simple controls, which makes it easier to bounce right in on your pogo-cane and join the adventure! Sure, it's not perfect or even astounding, but it's definitely a game that has many of my childhood memories attached to it. I can remember sitting in our living room trying to get to the end of the game without having to start all over again. I remember beating the game and feeling a sense of accomplishment (even though it really isn't that difficult of a game). You can bet your sweet fanny that if I ever have kids, they will be introduced to DuckTales and its sequel. Even though I have to look at this game through a "reviewer's" eyes, this game is a 10/10 in my heart.

I need nine more words.

There, 1000 words even.

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