Aug 12 2009
Moon Patrol was the first ‘hit’ game from the developer who would go on to make such classics as 10 Yard Fight, Kung Fu Master, Mr Heli and the superlative shooter - R-Type.
A quirky game, Moon Patrol had you piloting a moon buggy across the pitted surface of the moon, jumping boulders, shooting flying enemies and generally trying to get through to the next stage.
The buggy’s guns pointed forward and up, and pressing fire caused both guns to fire at the same time. The trick was to keep both flying enemies and the obstacles in front of you in mind, speeding up and slowing down to avoid dropped bombs. At first the bombs only damage you but as the game progresses these bombs deform the landscape, leaving new craters for you to leap.
When you reach stage 2, as well as the regular obstacles, you’ll also face rolling boulders, pursuit ships and mines. The trick with the game though is memory. Both stages are identical and once you pass stage 2, it repeats the layout.
Stages are timed, rewarding faster times with more points and the buggy can leap further when accelerating. Of course, the trade off is that you can’t see what’s coming as effectively.