DuckTales is considered one of Capcom’s best platformers and the finest of their Disney-licensed titles. So why does Scrooge McDuck’s first NES appearance feel so empty?
This non-linear platformer takes place in a variety of exotic locales, like Transylvania, African Mines (oh dear), and even The Moon. Scrooge hits enemies by bouncing on them with his cane, which is an awesome idea, but doesn’t come through in practice. Aside from the unwieldy hit detection that naturally occurs when you bounce on things with a cane, you have to press ‘down’ and ‘B’ to execute the move. This button combination is uncomfortable and tiring to use after a couple levels. Scrooge can also use his cane like a golf club to make hidden treasure appear and to kill the occasional tethered enemy, but that’s it.
True to Capcom form, the graphics are colorful and cutesy and the soundtrack is superb. The platforming itself isn’t terrible, just overrated. There’s a nagging sense that the levels should have more to them or feel more fulfilling once completed.
Then again, the overwhelming consensus from retro gamers is that DuckTales is an NES classic and you’re insane if you think otherwise. DuckTales is decent, not great. Off to the loony bin!
PUBLISHER/DEVELOPER: Capcom GENRE: Platformer
RELEASE DATE: 09/1989 – (US), 01/26/90 – (JP), 12/14/90 – (EU)
ALSO AVAILABLE ON: GB