Rick Dangerous

by Terry Lloyd
Firebird Software Ltd
Crash Issue 66, Jul 1989   page(s) 40,41

Firebird/Core Software

Rick Dangerous is a similar sort of guy to Indiana Jones. You know the type - designer stubble, funny hat and all the girls swarming around him (and no, Skip, not like you). Surprisingly Rick's adventures began as his plane crashed over the Amazon jungle while he was looking for the lost Goolu tribe.

He found them too. Unfortunately they were wild, and armed with only a gun, some dynamite and a stick, he dived into the unknown depths at a cavernous temple (the plot thickens!).

This is where his troubles begin. The Goolus are not a friendly lot and to collect the treasure hidden about the temple Rick has to pop a few of them with his trusty pistol. But a tribe of crazy people aren't enough to stop this hero.

Escaping from the temple, Rick returns to London, and is soon off again, this time for the pyramids of Egypt to recover the priceless jewel of Ankhel.

These are just two of the four levels of this brilliant little game. Each one is full of enemies and traps of various kinds, from blowdarts and mummies to flames and guard dogs. Rick Dangerous is just like stepping into a cartoon. All the characters you come across are comical, cute and lots of other words beginning with C.

The sound suits the graphics with squeaks and blips when Rick uses different things. Each screen (there are 85) is as colourful and lull of puzzles as the last, and your first few goes won't see you going very far. Perhaps, once you've worked out how to do things, the levels will lose some of their appeal however. Rick Dangerous is an essential purchase for any arcade platforms and ladders freak (like me). Go out and buy this one NOW!


I'm not a great fan of platform games, but then there's always exceptions! Okay, the graphics are small, and the animation could have come from the days of Manic Miner, but who cares? It's colourful, challenging and playable. All the elements of a good game are here: in fact, there's only one problem with it - Nick can play it better than I can! Very enjoyable, maybe a touch pricey, but still well worth a shot (or a jump or a poke).


Presentation: 81%
Graphics: 85%
Sound: 68%
Playability: 82%
Addictivity: 83%
Overall: 81%

Summary: Indiana Jones movie clone makes for amusing play and some addictive action.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Crash Issue 98, Apr 1992   page(s) 79

£3.99 cassette

Ever wanted to be Indiana Jones? All those courageous missions in mystical lands, dealing with priceless treasures thought only to exist in legend. No? (Got it in one -Prod Ed.) Well what about all those tasty women he gets his hands on? Yes, I thought so (sexist pig - Ed)...

Coincidentally, Rick Dangerous, star of this Kixx corker, fits the Indy mold exactly and you can slip into his shoes for a taste of the action. Taking time on from his devotion to stamp collecting (well, nobody's perfect), he cruises above the Amazon jungle in his trendy go-fast plane then realises he's forgotten to fill up at the fuel station. What a plonker!

Forced to crash land, he finds himself in a vast and hostile land, armed with only a handful of weapons (don't you just hate it when that happens? - Ed). It's the kingdom of the Goolu, the vicious guardians of an ancient Aztec tomb crawling with foes and booby traps. But there's treasure in that there tomb, which Rick's got to get his greedy hands on.

You guide the unfortunate bloke through this multi-screened platform affair using just a gun, a trusty stick and some dynamite. Not a lot, considering the vicious traps awaiting you.

There's the good old rolling boulder for starters, poisoned darts, walls of flame and oodles of Goolus, who ain't too happy about you half-inching their nest egg from the temple.

It's a big old game - 85 screens, each with some new problem to baffle your brain cells. The traps are well thought out, requiring quick thinking to conquer, often involving ingenious use of your weapons.

Rick Dangerous is great fun to play, if a little on the tricky side, with a rainbow of colours and atmospheric bleeps to get you into the swing of things. With a cheapo price tag, those who fancy a bit of dangerous living could be in for more than they bargained for!

Presentation: 77%
Graphics: 79%
Sound: 70%
Playability: 71%
Addictivity: 75%
Overall: 76%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Your Sinclair Issue 43, Jul 1989   page(s) 61

£9.99 cass/£14.99 disk
Reviewer: Jackie Ryan

Ever fancied yourself as the brave explorer type? Scything your way through a steaming hot jungle, wading through rivers infested with leeches, fending off the local natives and generally behaving like a hero? Right then. Get all your mum's potted plants, don your khaki shorts and pith helmet, get the cat to prowl around in a tigerish fashion and load up Rick Dangerous, the latest release from Firebird.

Rick Dangerous is the latest four level, flip screen arcade adventure from the newly taken over Firebird. Rick himself is an intrepid explorer, on his latest hazardous set of expeditions. His first takes him in search of the Goolu tribe, a blood thirsty race that lives deep in the Amazonian jungle. But unfortunately for Rick, all his well laid plans go to pot when the plane carrying his explorer gear crashes. Down he comes, bang in the middle of marauding bunch of green Goolus. So grabbing a gun, a large stick and some dynamite (all handy explorer type items) off he sprints, escaping into the unknown depths of a cavernous temple.

Taking control of Rick, it's your task, in Level One, to help him escape the gruesome Goolus by guiding him through the maze of tunnels and past the various hazards that face him, using the relatively simple letf/right/up/down/jump/crouch control system. You can pick up various Aztec style masks along the way and use the six bullets and six sticks of dynamite (which you have with you in each of the four levels) to kill off your adversaries. You can also use the stick which you have with you to paralyse the fiendish foe for a few seconds and make a speedy escape. Or even activate the hidden traps which soon make themselves apparent. At certain points in the game you'll come across little crates of bullets too, so you can replenish some of the bullets you might have used up earlier in the game.

In Level One, there are rolling roots to outrun, concealed blowdarts to dodge, treacherous passages to avoid and of course those ever present Goolus to evade. Levels Two, Three and Four follow Rick on his escapades through spooky Egyptian tombs to creepy castles. And he finally ends up in a well guarded missile silo, which he must blow up.

In essence the game is very simple but actually very tricky to complete. Sneaking along, climbing up and down ladders and avoiding the ever-present patrolling enemies, requires split second timing. And even when you've worked out how to get past one particular hazard and reckon you could do it in your sleep, when you get sent back a little way and have to do it again, you can still make a hash out of it.

Some elements are a little annoying, like when you get sent back a couple of screens, and have to repeat all your moves before getting to the bit where you last got bumped off. Still at least you don't get sent right back to the beginning of the level. And though sound and graphics are pretty basic, with over 80 screens to work your way through and the added shoot 'em up element, Rick Dangerous should provide you with a good few hours of adventuring. So go and slap on that insect repellant!

Life Expectancy: 83%
Instant Appeal: 76%
Graphics: 74%
Addictiveness: 80%
Overall: 78%

Summary: A trekkin' good arcade adventure. Simple but tricky, with that vital just-one-more-go element.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Your Sinclair Issue 76, Apr 1992   page(s) 60

£3.99 cassette
021 625 3388
Reviewer: Rich Pelley

Rick Dangerous? Isn't that a pool game featuring technically impressive fast solid 3D shaded graphics played against various computer opponents or a chum coupled with an option to practice trick shots as well?

Nope, that's 3D Pool, reviewed above. Rick Dangerous is a totally different kettle of fish altogether. In fact, no it's not. it's an arcade adventure. And as we all know, no arcade adventure would be complete without four levels, plenty of platforms to walk along and ladders to climb down, lots of baddies to kill and lots of puzzles to solve.

Thankfully, Rick Dangerous includes all these, and even manages to do it in a vaguely entertaining, original and phew-if-you-like-this-sort-of-thing-you-won't-get-much-better-a-re-release-than-this-oh-apart-from-Auf-Wiedersehen-Monty-perhaps sort of way.

Call me Mr Critical, but just before I get out of the bath (which incidentally is where I'm scribbling down this review), here is some criticism. Firstly you get sent back too far when you die. Secondly, you often have to die in order to work out how to beat a particular hazard, such as spikes you'd never have known were there until you land on them. Thirdly, the puzzle element is a little low. And fourthly, it isn't half as good as Rick Dangerous 2. But if you want something to keep you occupied whilst waiting for that to be re-released, then why not have a shot at this? Oh go on. You know you want to really.

Overall: 70%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 88, Jul 1989   page(s) 60

Label: Firebird
Author: In-house
Price: £9.99
Memory: 48K/128K
Joystick: various
Reviewer: Alison Skeat

Well this it a first! Al, the office girlie, it about to embark on a journey through her very first games review. I'm absolutely crap at games playing, I get all excited one minute and muck it all up or I get angry when my man gets shot or blown up.

But fear not, this time I've managed to leave the games den in one piece after playing Firebird's latest release, Rick Dangerous. I first saw this game on the Atari ST and it looked great. And you can smack my legs if the Speccy version isn't just at good. Rick Dangerous looks ruddy marvellous.

So what's it all about then? Rick looks like a midget version of Indiana Jones and level one starts just after Rick has crashed his plane in the Amazon Jungle. Spotted by a bunch of raving mad tribesmen Rick ducks into a nearby temple to escape them, but the wiley wildmen are close on his tail.

Armed with a stick, a gun and some dynamite, Rick runs around the corridors of the temple fighting off the baddies. To shoot his gun you have to hold the fire button down and push the joystick up, no problem. But when it comes to using your stick (pushing joystick down and moving left or right) you have to poke the baddie at least twenty times before he falls over, a bit tedious though it serves at a useful lesson not to waste your ammo.

The graphics are clear and considering the amount of colour used there is virtually no attribute clash. The scrolling is very smooth and produced hardly any flicker.

You want to avoid are the pinky spikes sticking out of the ground and the masses of green lumpy stuff on the floor, which tend to merge in with the background, so be careful.

Watch out for the men blowing darts from the sides, you'll have to do a bit of ducking there. Lastly, remember if you lay some dynamite by pulling the joystick down you'd better run away from it pretty quick or it'll blast you right off the screen.

There are four levels to get through, in all and they take Rick to Egypt to help recover the priceless Jewel of Ankhel; to a PoW camp to rescue some allied soldiers, and lastly Rick takes on a bunch of soldiers preparing a missile attack on London - what a boy!

It was great fun. The graphics are really clear and the colour was put to good use. This game consists of 85 screens so it took me ages to get through the lot.

Rick may not be as hunkey as Harrison Ford but he's certainly go me hooked - ol Rick come here and give us a snog.

Graphics: 80%
Sound: 60%
Playability: 85%
Lastability: 83%
Overall: 85%

Summary: Great 'Indie' style adventure a definite SU fave.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 120, Feb 1992   page(s) 41

Label: Hit Squad
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £3.99 Tape
Reviewer: Garth Sumpter

That tricky Ricky Dangerous, leaping, sproinging scaled down version of a pistol totin' hero is back.

But not in a new adventure this time, but finally he's a his way onto budget label. Over two years old now, Rick Dangerous is a multi-level, platform game that has Rick slowly making his way through a series of underground catacombs, collecting points and ammo for his six shooter, and most importantly, avoiding an the traps and pitfalls that the previous owners of this des res labyrinth have left for him.

Play isn't easy but does follow a pattern so that with perseverance you can finish the game and with colourful graphics, great deal of humour (just look at the patrolling nasties haircuts), Rick Dangerous is a good budget buy for anyone that likes an action game that requires a little bit of thought.

I was nicely surprised when I found I had to think about several situations before I tried to tackle them. An excellent arcade brain teaser.

Overall: 79%

Summary: Quite a hit when it came out, Rick still deserves a look at even now. Colourful graphics coupled with easy gameplay and brain testing situations make Rick a sure fire budget hero.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 123, May 1992   page(s) 60

Label: Kixx
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £3.99 Tape
Reviewer: Paul Rand

Forget that archaeologist geezer. He's a bit of an old woman compared to Rick Dangerous - and he even wears the same hat! Copy cat.

Mr Dangerous is half-way through a relaxing flight when his plane decides to run out of fuel a nose-dive into the jungle - just next to a lost Aztec temple full of marauding tribesmen! Would you believe it? So begins the first adventure of the most intrepid explorer since Jones. Programmed by Core Design who're better known these days for creating cracking 16-bit games such as Heimdall and Thunderhawk.

Rick enters the temple armed with a big stick, some dynamite and a pistol The last two items are in limited supply a so must be used sparingly. Don't be too down-hearted though, as there are further supplies scattered throughout the temple. Not only must these weapons be used to do away with the natives, they also come in useful in disarming the many traps which the tribesmen have built to get rid of unwanted visitors to their abode.

Rick Dangerous a fairly bog-standard arcade adventure, but this time the hackneyed platform collect 'em up is spiced up with good graphics and addictive gameplay. Some of the traps are extremely puzzling, calling for a fair wodge of forward planning, and it's vitally important that those bullets and sticks of TNT are used sparingly - you'll find that they're most needed just when you have none left!

A big Spectrum hit at full-price, Rick Dangerous should just as well this time around.

I've always found Rikky good fun and challenging to play. It's a fairly standard platform but good detection and plenty of action make it a budget hit.

Graphics: 84%
Sound: 70%
Playability: 86%
Lastability: 85%
Overall: 84%

Summary: Definitely one of the better examples of arcade adventuring on the Speccy. Rick Dangerous looks smart and plays brilliantly, with more than enough game in there to last you until the next Indy film is released.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

C&VG (Computer & Video Games) Issue 93, Jul 1989   page(s) 80,81

Spectrum, C64, Amiga, ST
Spectrum/C64 £9.99, Amiga/ST £24.99

He's hard. He's mean. He laughs in the face of death, spits in the eye of danger and plays dice with chance. He's Richard Dangerous - a hero's hero who's always in a scrape ... And today, just like any other day, he's in trouble with a capital T!

The problem is that Dick has crash landed his aeroplane in the middle of the Amazon jungle. That would be bad enough, but to make things worse, he's arrived just in time to completely disrupt the sacrificial rituals of the ancient and highly deadly Goolu tribe. They've been totally cheesed off by this, and are now out for his blood. His only means of escape is to travel through their temple, a large maze-like complex filled with a veritable goodie bag of hazards and dangers. And its here where the player comes into the fray.

Richard Dangerous is a platform game in the traditional style, with the player jumping and leaping around the screen, dodging baddies and avoiding hazards.

The action begins with Dick being chased by a large rolling boulder, Indiana Jones-style. After that's been avoided, it's time to run the gauntlet of hordes of Goolus, traps and hazards.

Contact with a tribal person, or falling foul of a trap results in the loss of one of Richard's eight lives, Eight might sound a lot, but the devious nature of the traps and hazards means that lives are lost very quickly.

Fortunately Dick isn't totally defenceless, and has a six-shot revolver and a few sticks of dynamite with which to deal with the enemy. Extra shots and dynamite are found around the temple - but supply is short. There are also bonus icons which are picked up for extra points.

If Dick manages to escape from the Goolu temple, his next adventure takes place in a pyramid, where a group of fanatics are holding the priceless Jewel of Ankhel to ransom. Here, there are marauding Egpytian-types and a very nasty selection of traps to dodge.

On level three, Richard infiltrates the dreaded Schwarzendumpf Castle to gain intelligence information. The hero is up against it here, with guards and security systems a-gogo.

Finally, having learned that the enemy are preparing to launch a missile attack on London, Dick takes on an entire garrison in an attempt to save the day.

Whether he does or not is up to you...

Richard Dangerous is a simply brilliant game, and combines humorous graphics and some of the most devious, low-down gameplay I've seen in years. There are some seriously horrible shocks and surprises - when you think the coast is clear, a poisoned dart whines out of a hole in the wall, or spikes pop up from the floor. There are also moving blocks, traps to puzzle out and, of course, loads of baddies to dodge.

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Graphics: 87%
Sound: 76%
Value: 81%
Playability: 85%
Overall: 87%

Summary: An excellent platform game which is both incredibly enjoyable and highly addictive. An absolute must for fans of the genre.

Award: C+VG Hit

Transcript by Chris Bourne

The Games Machine Issue 20, Jul 1989   page(s) 44

Spectrum 48/128 Cassette: £9.99, Diskette: £14.99
Amstrad CPC Cassette: £9.99, Diskette: £14.99
Commodore 64/128 Cassette: £9.99, Diskette: £14.99


All the best gung-ho swash-buckling adventurers were around in the roaring mid-Forties. Complete with numerous women throwing themselves at their feet, irremovable hat and sharp line in witty dialogue, they knew how to handle themselves in a crisis. Though rather more jovial than the average Nazi-beating hunk, Rick Dangerous is one such hero.

1945. With a taste for exploration, Rick went in search of the lost South American Goolu tribe. Unfortunately, while piloting his plane he got over-involved in carving his name in a block of wood with his teeth and so crash-landed near the Amazon. Surviving the crash (without a scratch, obviously), he was enamoured to find the Goolu tribe were somewhat less than pleased to see him.

Thoughtfully grabbing a large stick on the way, Rick ran for the safety of a huge cavernous temple. This is where you take up the fortunes of Mr Dangerous.

It was, of course, the Goolus' temple, but the spear-wielding weirdos are only part of the problem. The temple is armed to the teeth (if large stone religious buildings can be so described) with all manner of mean and sneaky traps, beginning with a man-sized boulder chasing Ricky (sound familiar?) and preventing him from going back the way he came.

Spikes, hidden spears, pits and disintegrating floors are just a few of the nasty obstacles abundant amongst the platforms and ladders of the flick-screen temple caverns. To help him, Ricky has a gun, with a limited supply of bullets which thankfully can be replenished, sticks of dynamite (also limited in number) to blow away blocking rocks, and the aforementioned stick to probe for traps.

After the Goolu temple has been conquered, there are three other levels to tackle, the next set in a pyramid where a stolen priceless jewel must be found.

Rick Dangerous is a platform game in the style of the Super Mario Bros underground world, with a short hero sprite bounding around a fun cartoon setting. Though it's not as playable as the classic Nintendo game, it's amusing and fairly addictive. Play is made more sophisticated by the positioning of traps, rocks and features such as moving platforms, composing puzzles on some of the 85 screens.

Rick Dangerous is a hark back to the old days of gaming - by no means a bad thing in this case - and will provide lots of entertainment for your money.

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Overall: 78%

Summary: Part of the screen's nicely segregated to enable a spread of colours - two for the corridors and chambers, a different two for the rocks 'n' blocks forming them, with a colour substituted within certain character squares. Clash occurs on differently coloured ladders, but clever programming avoids this on certain graphical features. Definition is close to the C64 (though obviously with less colour); a shame that more detail wasn't packed in. Audio is, a nice surprise: good music and jingles and apt effects.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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