TurboGrafx / PC Engine Games

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As far as I can trace, the Bomberman series originated on the TG16. It has grown and changed over the years, but the concept remains the same. Looking back at the original reminds us of how far we have come.
- Above all, remember Bomberman is Bomberman, not Super Bomberman. Each stage has one power-up and one exit. This means that even a single flame-extender is worth digging for if you have any time left in a level.
- The fact that you only get one power-up per stage means death is doubly bad. While simple power-ups like bombs and flames are kept when you die, you stand to lose the better ones like remote-bomb, so play more cautiously than you might in the newer games.
- Remote bombs are your friend. 'Nuff said.

Bonk's Adventure

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Bonk definitely came from the TG16. A lesser-known character than some, Bonk has appeared on NES, SNES and Gameboy, but any Bonk concept put into play on any other system originated, often in superior form, on the TG16.
- The controls in Bonk 1 are a little sloppier than in the later games. Bonk's accelleration is different, and he seems to take a split-second longer to recover from jumps. Most notably, however, if you miss a grand-bonk (flip and land head-first) and hit the ground, you take at least twice as long to recover as you do in most other Bonk games.
- Use the grand-bonk often. It's risky to get close to an enemy and simply headbutt them, and it does less damage than hitting them from above.
- Hit enemies from below. If you bonk an enemy hard enough to send them into the air, you can juggle them on your head by jumping at them from underneath, racking up bonus points and ensuring they die when they land. If a foe is above you on a platform, hitting it from below keeps you safer than trying to climb to its level and then attack.
- Oddly colored enemies always drop something good, usually a heart or piece of meat. Other enemies occasionally drop such things as well, but more often (about 25-30% of the time) drop smileys.
- Boss strategy is pretty much the same for all bosses in this game. Simply stay off the ground such that you can jump the boss' attacks (use the platforms at the sides of the boss rooms) and grand-bonk the uppermost point on the boss. Most bosses give some easy visual cue to how much damage you've dealt.

Bonk's Revenge

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Decidedly superior to Bonk's Adventure, Bonk's Revenge is Bonk as the world best knows him. As well as having a complete visual facelift, controls have been tightened and enemy attack methods and patterns have been made much more interesting.
- Use the grand-bonk. Without Bonk's Adventure's recovery delay, there are virtually no circumstances under which a regular bonk headbutt is superior to slamming the enemy from above.
- General bonus rule: any type of fruit you find in the first stage recovers a little health. Stationary items found across various stages, including fruit you don't encounter in stage 1, is worth 50 points. Bobbing or horizontally-moving items are worth 100 points. Falling items and I believe fish are worth 500 points.
- Use simple headbutts on non-yellow flowers when possible. They may change colors. With the exception of a couple in the later stages, the change will always be good. Jump on the flower when it's the color you want. Flower guide: Yellow- spring (not necessarily bad, but won't change again when bonked). Pink: minor healing (fruit, or sometimes heart). Orange- meat (large or small, may also contain floating bud). Blue: major healing (big heart or 1-up). Green- life extend (rare, contains blue bonus heart cells).
- Regardless of color, any flower which doesn't 'breathe' is a Venus Bonktrap. Hitting such flowers in any way will release a bouncing enemy.
- 2nd-meat bonk moves twice as fast as normal bonk. Rather than using his 4x attack strength, it can sometimes be more effective to use his speed to get through a difficult area.
- Collect 50 smileys in a single stage to skip the next stage. Keep in mind that below 50, 49 is as good as 30 for getting end-of-stage bonuses.
- In the ice-jumping bonus stage, or any icy level, do a single full flip (bonk twice) in the middle of each jump. This gives you better control and frequently allows you to land with no momentum and not slide on the ice. Jumping and changing direction in midair is frequently faster than trying to decelerate on the ground. NEVER land head-first on ice. You'll slide for upwards of two screens at a stretch before regaining control. To save yourself from falling, triangle-jump (bonk against a wall in midair). You can't grab ice, but you can get a strong rebound. I've used triangle-jumps to recover in the ice bonus stage more than a few times, going on to get perfects.
- When midair-flipping, especially in the falling bonus stage, keep in mind that while flipping slows your fall, it also hinders your horizontal control. Sometimes it's better to flip less and steer more.
- I may not remember all the bosses, but I remember a good few. Here's what I've found to be the best strategies:
Turtle: Stand on the side platforms and avoid the fireballs. As he comes up, note which way his toes point and move to that side. Jump, grand-bonk his head and flip again for consecutive grand-bonks immediately after each rebound. If you've maintained 2-meat Bonk to this point, the battle can be over less than 2 seconds from when the boss shows his head.
Rhino: No great strategy. When it stopps, prepare to avoid its freeze attack, when it moves, grand-bonk repeatedly.
Princess Lizzy: Keep moving, carefully. There is some method to her attacks. Grand-bonk her as many times as you can when she's not spinning to slow her down and occasionally keep her from leaving the screen.
Captain: Bonk the torpedoes and dodge the shrapnel. Grand-bonk his head whenever you can, using grand-bonks off the torpedoes to get up there if you need to.
Robot: Bonk his fists to slow them down if you need to, grand-bonk his head whenever he's low enough or you're high enough.
Palace Drool: Dodge the various projectiles. By now you should recognize all of them. Grand-bonk Drool's crown when he shows his head.

Gate of Thunder

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Ooga Bonk. Dabba Dooba. OOGA-BOOGA! The phrase anyone who has played this Super CD-ROM will rememeber. Gate of Thunder its self is one of the best elder console shooters I know. If you do manage to finish the full game in one sitting, and that's a big if, there are higher difficulty settings which make even the first stage insane. Definitely reccommended.
- Get all the weapon power-ups, but unless you have the Hyper Cocoon or a decent need for heavy or spread fire, keep to the laser/lightning cannon. This way if you die, you'll only lose your wingmen and one weapon level rather than two if you have Earthquake or Sonic Boom. Additionally, any further red or green power-ups you collect will clear the screen.
- It's not obvious without the manual- tap [fire] twice to switch the direction of your wingmen.
- When using Laser or Lightning, concentrate firepower on a single target by moving left and right to pull in your wingmen.
- Use your wingmen to quickly and constantly damage larger enemies or knock out shots and small enemies.
- The Gate of Thunder CD, as well as containing both prior Bonk games, has a hidden Bomberman 1. More on this when I can verify the access code.

Keith Courage

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You've heard of crazy Japanese B-movies. This is a crazy Japanese B-video-game. A rather nice one at that. It at least tries at a combination of swird-ninja action and giant-mech action. Graphics are impressive and the few musical themes are catchy.
- To launch a Bolt Bomb press ^+[attack] when in the Nova Suit. This very useful fact is barely even mentioned in the manual.
- In the overworld, use enemy spawning points to your advantage. Enemies appear quickly, and can be killed quickly for obscene amounts of cash.
- While higher-number bolt bombs are more powerful, they deduct their number in bolt bombs from your stock. Sometimes it's better to stick with lower-power bombs to avoid running out.