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Duck Tales for the NES is an awsome classic game

Updated on August 3, 2015

The scan of my NES cartridge

My youtube review of Ducktales (note this one does have audio problems)

Note all pictures and videos captured in this hub were captured by me using various capture devices, the game belongs to Disney and Capcom.

When it comes to talking about Duck Tales for the NES I am not going to bore you with details on how it changed by childhood, best license game of the time etc. I didn’t play it until around 2008 when I was a child of 26 years of age. Still it surprise me just how good this game was. It didn’t feel like it had a lot of the old NES tropes that often times keep me from enjoying the 8 bit games of my youth. It was breezy, the platforming was fun, and there was just a lot to discover. And boy is it charming too. Let’s take a look at Duck Tales for the NES.

Story

There isn’t really a story narrative to Duck Tales for the NES. Basically Scrooge is out on a bunch of treasure quests in order to become the richest duck in the world. Each stage has plenty of diamonds and treasures to find, and bosses also have some loot if you beat them. There are 3 endings to the game, the regular one which you can get if you don’t go out of your way to find loot, the best one which you have to restart each stage and pretty much find every secret twice to get a high enough score (talking to Launchpad makes this possible), and the bad ending which requires you to go through the game and not pick up a single diamond (this would be similar to not picking up a single coin in Super Mario Bros, with the exception of the one in stage 8-4). But there is really no narrative in the stages or outside them, once you finish all the stages all the treasures just fly off so you can battle Dracula Duck and beat the game to get them back.

Scrooge talking to Launchpad

Talking to Launchpad can take you out of a stage so you can go back and find all the treasure in stage over again
Talking to Launchpad can take you out of a stage so you can go back and find all the treasure in stage over again

Graphics

For an 8-bit game Duck Tales is pretty good looking, it obviously uses some of the same graphical approaches used in Capcom’s Mega Man games. The sprite work for the game although simple still looks really good now. Over all for an 8 bit game at the time the game looks pretty good. Scrooge of course is wearing his classic red coat from the original comics rather than his blue one from the cartoon. I can only surmise that this was done because of the limitations on the NES. Blue sky color background next to blue character doesn’t always look good on the NES.

The games look still looks good
The games look still looks good

Sound

The music in Duck Tales for the NES can be summed up in one word classic. The music is just plain freaking awesome. Everything from the jungle stage, to Transylvania we have some of the most memorable 8-bit sound tracks ever. And then of course the freaking moon theme which is probably one of the best background theme in an NES game ever (well maybe not has good has the original SMB theme but close). The sound effects are also top notch, and heck even the remake of the Duck Tales theme song done in 8-bit rendition sound awesome. The music is just great in this game.

Gameplay

The game starts off with a Mega Man approach you choose which stage to start in and collect the treasure from. It’s missing the pick up a new ability from the boss that Mega Man has but the ability to pick a stage is still novel. Once in a stage your only goal really is to find the boss room and beat him. However there is a lot of stage to explore if you want too and secrets uncover. There are things that will boost your health but mostly there are things worth a lot of money (you know if you want that great ending). The stage design is suburb and there are a lot of courses through each stage that said the stages never really feel too confusing like you’re going to get lost in them either. There just fun stages to treasure hunt in.

Scrooge Mcducks main way of transportation comes from his pogo sticking cane. He can pogo stick by pressing down and B and use it to hop on spikey territory, or to hop on enemies. It’s great fun and takes a little practice to get use too. The cane mechanic makes this game unique and a lot of fun to play.

Pogo sticking is a way to get around

And past spiked objects
And past spiked objects

Overall Duck Tales is a light and breezy game and it only takes about an hour or so to complete with some speed runners clocking in around 10 minutes. While might be short Duck Tales is also a game that you can’t help but want to experience again and again multiple times it just hast hat 8 bit charm that games like Super Mario Bros is famous for.

5 stars for Duck Tales for the NES

Final Recommendation

Duck Tales for the NES is a really great platformer, it’s fun, easy to learn, but not too difficult to beat (unless you crank it all the way up), and has lots of secrets and multiple routes through each stages. I can’t recommend this game enough if you’re a collector of 8-bit games.

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