Disney’s renaissance period began with “The Little Mermaid” and extended into a series of high-quality children television shows that are still remembered fondly. One of the most popular of these was “Chip ‘N Dale Rescue Rangers,” a show that followed the two chipmunks and their adventures solving crimes caused by Fat Cat.
In 1990, Capcom developed a well-remembered NES game that was praised for its exciting and family-friendly game play. Does it still hold up after all of these years? With our in-depth review, you can get a good feel for whether or not this game is something you need to pick up when you see it.
Capcom didn’t break the rule books with this game: they stuck to their tried-and-true side-scrolling platforming action. Players control either Chip or Dale: neither control any differently, so the choice depends on which character you liked the most. The first player was always Chip in the two-player game, while the second was Dale.
Players run through a variety of levels and try to avoid getting attacked by enemies. The worlds are scaled appropriately to the characters, making this a fun game to explore as you pretend to be a crime-solving chipmunk.
The only attack available is picking up small boxes and other items and throwing them at the enemies. Players can also hide in boxes to avoid taking damage. After three hits, the player is dead and the level restarts.
So it’s safe to say that anybody who has played an NES game won’t have a hard time just jumping right into this one. They’ll feel comfortable playing side-by-side with a friend, which is where the fun truly lies with this game. Below we’ll discuss why this was such a fun two-player game.
Playing With A Friend
Anybody who remembers this game likely remembers firing it up with a friend for some fun cooperative game play. Unlike many other games of the era, you both play at the same time.
This makes sense considering the nature of the show it was based on and it is a blast to run through stages with a friend. The chipmunks control well, are responsive, and move quickly.
One of the most fun parts about this game was solving the puzzles in two-player mode. While there aren’t a lot of really difficult moments in this game, you could get around a few difficult areas by picking up your co-player and throwing them to a new area.
In some games, this could devolve into a madness of trying to throw friends into enemies for a cheap laugh. However, skilled and well-coordinated two-player games are always exciting and fun. Clearing screens of enemies was simple with two-players, but perhaps too simple.
Probably due to the fact that it was based on a kids show, this game was pretty easy. This wasn’t helped out by bosses that were mostly static and easy to defeat. The final showdown with Fat Cat is particularly a let down.
So Does It Hold Up?
Presentation wise, “Chip ‘N Dale” is a big hit. The graphics are colorful and detailed without being too excessively cutesy. Chip and Dale look awesome and their enemies are a diverse lot.
The soundtrack is the typical Capcom awesomeness: though not well-known for being catchy, it always fits the situations and the levels quite well.
Where this game truly shines, though, is doing speed runs with a friend. Blazing through this game with a stopwatch running still offers a fun challenge with friends. This is particularly true if you plan on enforcing a “no-hit” rule aka taking no damage during the entire game!
So while it’s fair to say we’re not likely to see a high-definition update of this game the way we did with the truly superlative “Ducktales” NES game, “Chip ‘N Dale” more than holds its own and offers a fun experience that is perfect for those retro gaming nights.