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Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers

by James Dawson - August 10, 2011, 4:01 pm PDT
Total comments: 20

Rescue Rangers, away!

In the late 90’s the NES had already been made obsolete by both the Super NES and the Nintendo 64, yet it was around that time that I first acquired the system. My aunt ended up giving me my older cousins’ NES top loader and all of their games. I must have been around five years old at the time and the NES was really my first real venture into the world of gaming. I had a whole library to play as a kid, but the game that really caught my eye didn’t come with my cousins’ collection. That game was Chip 'n’ Dale Rescue Rangers, one of the many games that Capcom had developed for Disney.

I ended up coming across the game at a used game shop while on vacation, and being the fan that I was of the animated series, I begged my parents to purchase it for me. However, I wasn’t much of a gamer at five years old, never making it past the first level. Although, I do remember enjoying the game’s co-op play with my parents and friends, but I never made much progress in the actual game. That changed recently when I decided to go back to it after thirteen years of neglect.

The game begins by giving you the choice of either Chip or Dale to play as. There really isn’t any difference in how the two act; you’re just picking by which skin you prefer. The game also gives you the option to play with a friend, which I certainly recommend, but I was unable to do so this time around.  Though I can say from memory that the co-op is a lot of fun, but in my experience a bit hard to coordinate when the only thing your friend wants to do is pick up your character and throw them off the stage.



The game’s story starts out with the Rescue Rangers being called to find a lost kitten, only to find out that it was just a plot by the series’ villain, Fat Cat. Apparently the one female on the team, Gadget, is then kidnapped and I’m sure you know the rest. To be honest, just like most other NES platformers, there really isn’t much to the story.

As for the gameplay, it plays somewhat similarly to Super Mario Bros. 2, in that instead of hopping on the enemy to kill them, you must instead pick up an item and throw it at them, though that is about as far as the comparison goes. In Chip 'n Dale the items that you use to kill the enemies range from large apples that cause your character to move slowly, to small boxes that literally litter the stages. The items can either be thrown horizontally or vertically, and once thrown gravity be damned, as regardless of the direction it’s thrown, the items will continue flying until off the screen.  When the player picks up the boxes to throw at the enemy, there will often be an item there as well. These range from flowers that act in much the same way as coins do in Mario games, to acorns that replenish one of the three hearts if damaged. Also present in the game is a special box that disappears as soon as you walk through it. This box grants random items, of which the most useful is Zipper the fly, who acts just like the star in the Mario series.



After the game’s first level, you will be brought to an overworld where you will be able to choose which level you wish to play. Some of the levels are optional and can easily be skipped. Each level has its own set of enemies to overcome. There are a variety of enemies from mechanical dogs, to mobster lizards that work under Fat Cat. Each level, barring a few, also has a boss waiting for you at the end. The bosses range from a pole with arms that shoot projectiles, to Fat Cat himself. Each boss is brought down in the same manner, by throwing a red ball at their weak point. They’re really not that complicated or that difficult, but they do add something to look forward to at the end of each level.



Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers was obviously designed with kids in mind, with its easy difficulty and cartoon subject matter, but I was able to come away satisfied with the game. And now I can finally say that I beat the game after all of these years.

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Talkback

LJKKJLCM9August 10, 2011

My brothers and I used to love playing this game back in the day.  We always made sure to play through every stage too.  Definitely one of my favorite games from my childhood!  I could probably fly through it still having not played it in so long.


THE JACKEL

UltimatePartyBearAugust 10, 2011

I lusted after this game when I saw it in the pages of Nintendo Power, but I've never played it.  It's mostly notable to me for a flash video called Chip 'N' Dale MMORPG, which introduced me to OC Remix via the credits.

GKAugust 10, 2011

I used to think this game was hard as Hell until I stopped playing co-op with my brother. Could breeze through it solo.

Ian SaneAugust 11, 2011

When I was a kid, a friend of mine considered this to be his favourite Nintendo game.  I remember thinking that was very weird.  He seriously liked this better than Mario or Mega Man?  I myself have never played it.  As a kid I thought the Rescue Rangers were a bunch of wimpy do-gooders.  The "let's work together to make a difference" type I found insufferable.  So I was not interested in the game.

What's funny is watched like every episode even though I thought the show was lame.  Funny how that works as a kid.  I'm home after school so I have to watch the Disney afternoon.  There is no real choice in the matter.  Cartoons were on, so you watched them.  This isn't like now where there are whole channels that show cartoons all day.  I loved Duck Tales and Tail Spin and this was in between and I'm sure as hell not going to do something else in the half hour in between!

Chozo GhostAugust 11, 2011

Sorry, double post.

Chozo GhostAugust 11, 2011

Unfortunately, due to licensing issues this is one of those games that are very unlikely to ever appear on the VC or similar.

Quote from: Ian

As a kid I thought the Rescue Rangers were a bunch of wimpy do-gooders.  The "let's work together to make a difference" type I found insufferable.

You must have REALLY hated the Captain Planet cartoon then, right?

StogiAugust 11, 2011

Chi-chi-chi-chip and Dale! Rescue Rangers!
Chi-chi-chi-chip and Dale! When there's Danger!

Quote from: Ian

When I was a kid, a friend of mine considered this to be his favourite Nintendo game.  I remember thinking that was very weird.  He seriously liked this better than Mario or Mega Man?

He may have liked it more because it has a fairly low difficultly level. Mario's not that hard, but Mega Man is brutal, at least until X came out.

Quote from: Ian

What's funny is watched like every episode even though I thought the show was lame.  Funny how that works as a kid.  I'm home after school so I have to watch the Disney afternoon.  There is no real choice in the matter.  Cartoons were on, so you watched them.  This isn't like now where there are whole channels that show cartoons all day.  I loved Duck Tales and Tail Spin and this was in between and I'm sure as hell not going to do something else in the half hour in between!

I was the exact opposite. I loved Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers and Duck Tales, but watched Tail Spin for much the same reason you watched Rescue Rangers.

StogiAugust 11, 2011

Duck Tales and Tail Spin were far better cartoons. The best though was Dark Wing Duck.

UltimatePartyBearAugust 11, 2011

I liked all of them.  All the ones that I ever saw, anyway.  Rescue Rangers was a particular favorite, but they all had appeal.  DuckTales had globetrotting high adventure, of course.  TaleSpin had frickin' air pirates.  Darkwing Duck was DuckTales + Batman.  Rescue Rangers had the adventure, too, but mixed with shades of The Borrowers, The Littles, or just that miniature scavenger culture in general that I've always liked.

broodwarsAugust 11, 2011

Quote from: The

Duck Tales and Tail Spin were far better cartoons. The best though was Dark Wing Duck.

I get the feeling you haven't seen these shows in a while, because I rewatched TailSpin when it was released on DVD and I just couldn't get into it.  The same with Rescue Rangers.  Darkwing Duck holds up pretty well, but the show that's aged the best by far is Duck Tales.  That show is still awesome and well-made.

As for the NES Rescue Rangers game, man I played so much of that game back in the day.  I never got a chance to play it in Co-op because my sister hates gaming, but the game was very well-made.  It's a pity that licensing issues will likely keep it from ever being re-released on a digital download service, along with so many of the other Disney Capcom games.

Ian SaneAugust 11, 2011

Quote from: Chozo

You must have REALLY hated the Captain Planet cartoon then, right?

Oh yeah! :)

My brothers and I found that on do-gooder cartoons the characters reminded us of our teachers and parents.  We knew that if a cartoon lacked violence it was because of the complaints of stick-in-the-mud prudes.  When you're a kid everything that is fun is bad.  Candy will rot your teeth.  It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye.  TV and videogames will rot your brain.  Anything thrilling is dangerous so you better wear a helmet or, better yet, we'll just not let you do it at all!  If we found something fun it was only a matter of time before grown-ups stomped it out.  The Rescue Rangers and Captain Planet weren't fun.  They were preachy and strict and acted like the sort of people grown-ups were always trying to mold us into.  My brothers and I loved G.I. Joe and Ninja Turtles and a big reason for that was that the adults we knew HATED them.  They had guns and karate!  Two things little boys think are incredibly cool and strict grown-ups hate because they're violent.

A good cartoon provides wish fulfilment for the viewer.  Scrooge McDuck was rich and went on adventures all the time.  He was free to do whatever he wanted.  Baloo was a pilot and constantly butted heads with his boss.  We wasn't truly free but wanted to be.  As a kid I can relate to that.  Now Batman is more like Rescue Rangers in that he does what's right and heroic all the time so why did we think he was cool?  Because he kicked ass!  Little boys love the idea of walking around beating up bad guys.  It's like if you could beat up every bully at school!  And Batman occasionally is at odds with the police so he's not The Man.  He's on the side of good, not the side of the law and even as a kid I knew the subtle difference.

broodwarsAugust 11, 2011

The thing I actually really like about Duck Tales is how Scrooge is characterized.  Sure, he's a tightwad, but he's a guy that within the fiction worked his tailfeathers off from absolutely nothing to being the head of a very successful corporation.  He did it through hard work and careful saving, and he encourages his nephews and Webby to do the same.  Despite his name and his obsession with money, he's actually a good role model.  If that show were made these days, Scrooge would be filed down to a broad greedy stereotype and the kids shown to be the ones with all the answers.

Luigi DudeAugust 11, 2011
Chozo GhostAugust 11, 2011

Quote from: Ian

And Batman occasionally is at odds with the police so he's not The Man.  He's on the side of good, not the side of the law and even as a kid I knew the subtle difference.

One thing I've noticed about Batman though is he goes out of his way and often puts himself at a disadvantage because he wants to apprehend the bad guys alive. Of course the bad guys are trying to kill him and aren't bound by such a restriction. There are some super heroes such as the Punisher who are out to actively kill the bad guys. They aren't concerned about taking them alive, and even if they surrendered the Punisher probably wouldn't accept it anyway. Yet these super heroes are still considered "good" because they are only targeting bad guys. They just don't have any qualms about killing them is all. ;)

But having seen the movie Punisher, I would say that sort of super hero is probably not a good role model for kids due to the killing and gore and stuff. But he is "good" though, and he certainly isn't "the man".

TJ SpykeAugust 11, 2011

Not sure I would classify The Punisher as a good guy. Sometimes he is, but sometimes he isn't. He often commits violet acts, and even tortures and kills people and has no problem breaking the law as long as he thinks he is justified.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterAugust 11, 2011

Quote from: broodwars

The thing I actually really like about Duck Tales is how Scrooge is characterized.  Sure, he's a tightwad, but he's a guy that within the fiction worked his tailfeathers off from absolutely nothing to being the head of a very successful corporation.  He did it through hard work and careful saving, and he encourages his nephews and Webby to do the same.  Despite his name and his obsession with money, he's actually a good role model.  If that show were made these days, Scrooge would be filed down to a broad greedy stereotype and the kids shown to be the ones with all the answers.

I definitely agree with you on this. Scrooge McDuck may seem materialistic and a money grubber, but people seem to forget that he actually EARNED all of his fortune. He came to Duckburg as a peniless immigrant struggling to make it big, and it took him nearly a lifetime but he did it. He may seem like he doesn't want to spend money because he loves it too much, but I think it is him being wise. Too many people often throw their money away on silly stuff that provides a minute or two of enjoyment, then throw it away. They also invest in silly commercial ideas. Scrooge isn't like that. He worked for everything he has so he is not about to throw it all away.

But he doesn't forget that the best things in life, such as family, friends, love and enjoyment of life are far more important, hence why he manages to be extremely rich and yet still be very likable and respected by everyone around him. It destroyed the stereotype of the evil/greedy rich guy and created a compelling character in the first place.

As for Rescue Rangers, I still loved the show as a kid. The funny thing is that even if I agree that it tried to plant the "let's work together and do things the right away!" message it was subtle about it. It did have a presence, but for me all I saw were these little rodents playing detective who were able to solve crimes and mysteries better than far more intelligent and capable human beings.

You had mad scientists, evil cats, genies, con artists, animal liberators, criminal masterminds and more. All of them were defeated by these little guys who lacked in height and presence but made up with ingenuity, cleverness and dedication.

Plus, the characters were awesome. Monterey Jack I loved. Not only was he voiced by Jim Cummings, I just love his cheese obsession and tough but friendly attitude. Gadget is also a great character. I was discussing with friends that the appeal of her character lies in that she is this really inventive girl who can fix anything and create something out of nothing, and yet she is quirky, humble and fun.

She also has a bit of an inferiority complex which was highlighted in a couple of episodes. One of them was where she befriends a couple of laboratory mice who want her to stay at the lab forever, and the other was the infamous soda cult commercial.

That's another thing, these characters weren't 100% perfect. Ian stated how he felt the show was created by adults who wanted kids to behave. I disagree with that because the characters did have flaws. What I mean by this is that in cartoons intended to teach and educate, the characters are squeaky clean, always happy and smiling and always willing to give a feel good speech at the drop of a hat. Not the Rescue Rangers. Yes they talked a lot about teamwork, but that was the thing that helped them be successful. Alone they are sure to fail, but together they go far. Plus, the characters had their flaws that made them very relateable.

And yes, it has NOTHING on the cheesiness of Captain Planet.

Chozo GhostAugust 12, 2011

Quote from: TJ

Not sure I would classify The Punisher as a good guy. Sometimes he is, but sometimes he isn't. He often commits violet acts, and even tortures and kills people and has no problem breaking the law as long as he thinks he is justified.

Yeah but that's my point. He kills and tortures people, but they are bad people who deserve it. He isn't a wimpy do-gooder like Superman or Batman who is going to try to apprehend them alive and put them in jail. No, he wants to make them pay. Hence his name the "Punisher".

Quote from: NWR_pap64

Quote from: broodwars

The thing I actually really like about Duck Tales is how Scrooge is characterized.  Sure, he's a tightwad, but he's a guy that within the fiction worked his tailfeathers off from absolutely nothing to being the head of a very successful corporation.  He did it through hard work and careful saving, and he encourages his nephews and Webby to do the same.  Despite his name and his obsession with money, he's actually a good role model.  If that show were made these days, Scrooge would be filed down to a broad greedy stereotype and the kids shown to be the ones with all the answers.

I definitely agree with you on this. Scrooge McDuck may seem materialistic and a money grubber, but people seem to forget that he actually EARNED all of his fortune. He came to Duckburg as a peniless immigrant struggling to make it big, and it took him nearly a lifetime but he did it. He may seem like he doesn't want to spend money because he loves it too much, but I think it is him being wise. Too many people often throw their money away on silly stuff that provides a minute or two of enjoyment, then throw it away. They also invest in silly commercial ideas. Scrooge isn't like that. He worked for everything he has so he is not about to throw it all away.

Now that you mention that, I bet his character is probably influenced by the real life Andrew Carnegie. Like Scrooge McDuck, Andrew Carnegie was a poor immigrant when he came to America but he earned his fortune. Also, Scrooge McDuck has a Scottish accent and Carnegie was from Scotland so that makes sense. I never really thought about it before.

TJ SpykeAugust 12, 2011

True, but under his logic he can do something like cripple you for life for robbing an elderly person. He may punish bad people, but goes way overboard if he thinks it's justified. I don't know, I never really was interested in the character anyways.

JasonMaiviaAugust 16, 2011

To have this remade in 2.5D  with updated sound and music would be sweeeeeeeeet.

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