Rick Dangerous (Gameboy Colour)

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Year/Company: 2000 Thalamus Interactive
Format: Gameboy Colour

With the amount of sequels emerging today after many years of the original being in the wilderness, its a wonder why no one has touched this classic Core title from the days long before the money spinning Lara Croft came onto the scene.

With its humorous and tricky Indiana Jones style traps and puzzles, the game was an early hit for Core, and even spawned a popular sequel a year later.

One company did however see the potential in Rick Dangerous, and attempted to bring him out of retirement and give him a new lease of life on the buzzing Colour Gameboy platform None other than Thalamus Interactive, the guys behind the also doomed Putty and Sanxion conversions.

However, even though named Rick Dangerous, the game was essentially the sequel. It seems that Thalamus favoured the improved sequel with its UFO landings and multilevel scenarios. It would have been odd to release the game as Rick Dangerous 2 on the CGB when the first one would never see the light of day. Maybe both games could have been combined on a compilation, but the thought never passed Thalamus minds.

Thalamus Interactive programmer Jon Wells was assigned to produce a working demo of the game, and set to work porting a good deal of the graphics down from the Amiga version.

The end result of several weeks work was a half playable demo, with an excellent Rick that ran, jumped, ducked and climbed his way around a small limited part of Level 1.

Although robots move around in the game, Rick cannot shoot or drop bombs in the demo, as it merely demonstrates that the game would have worked. To fit the large screens onto the small Colour Gameboy screen, the demo used slight scrolling (like Super Mario Bros did on the Colour Gameboy) to view all of a particular screen. Essentially it was still a flip screen effort.

So with a strong pitch effort, Thalamus Interactive approached Eidos/Core with the view of producing a conversion, and were quietly confident for a successful licence deal. Unfortunately there was to be no interest from the company, and Thalamus Interactive received no reply from the games giant at all.

As a result, the game was put on hold until they heard more but they never did, and as Thalamus died out again, so did any chances of Rick making his comeback. All that was ever to exist was a very brief technical demo, and that was it.

It is easy to see that the game would have worked well on the CGB. Possibly the game would lack a bit of depth compared to other games on the machine, but its very likely new features would have been added to take advantage of the technology.

No doubt Rick will make an appearance back on the Mobile platform one day, but we wont sadly be seeing him on the Gameboy it seems. A classic game missed out on by a new generation of gamers (for now) A huge shame

This review was originally published in Retro Survival. Copies are still available to buy from http://www.retrosurvival.co.uk/ for only £5.

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