Top 100 Retro Games: Chip N Dale Rescue Rangers

Chip N Dale Rescue Rangers
Nintendo Entertainment System

Like so many others in my generation, I watched a lot of Chip N Dale Rescue Rangers. Locally, it was on WPIX following Duck Tales. The show was okay; Honestly, I do not remember a lot about it in general. I was watching those Disney afternoon blocks primarily for Duck Tales.

We rented Chip N Dale Rescue Rangers a few times. I am pretty certain that in each case, it was a fallback game because whatever I wanted was not available. I think I beat it back then, but I remember the game being “good, not great,” in general and really did not think about it much until the Disney Afternoon Collection was announced. Of course, the primary draw in that collection is Duck Tales. We have an episode in our archives about that game. I was curious about how Chip N Dale would play these days, and I found it to be a really solid platformer.

Like Duck Tales, there is a huge influence from Mega Man II on this game. The game play and play control feels very much like it, although occasionally a little “heavy,” if you know what I mean. No surprise that people from the Mega Man series worked on this game as well.

During this replay, I was also reminded of Super Mario World as well. I like how enemies in this game rush at you and also can kick things. Getting the timing down to deal with that is important to game play and saves a lot of time, and lives, if you get it right.

Random aside: I wonder how much unreleased stuff there is, soundtrack wise, from Capcom games. Maybe there isn’t though because you would think Digital Eclipse would have gotten it for the Legacy Collection? Via game roms unused tracks have been found in NES games, but how cool would it be if there was a collection of outtakes?

The Mega Man influence also shows in level design as well. A lot of the level set-ups look straight out of Mega Man II. Interestingly, the same is also a bit non-linear. You can pick between a few level choices at various points with an eventual cumulative goal in mind ala another Capcom game Bionic Commando or other NES games like Clash At Demonhead. It is obviously a bit more simplistic, but still pretty neat to have that sort of agency over how you engage with a game’s narrative.

In general, I think Chip n Dale Rescue Rangers is worth checking out if you have not before or have not played it in many years. The Disney Afternoon Collection is an essential purchase for Duck Tales alone, but this game is also quite worthy.

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