Boulder Dash, MSX

The MSX version of Boulder Dash was developed by Orpheus and published by Comptiq in 1985. It is another excellent 8-bit conversion, with feather light controls (TM) and authentic gameplay.

It’s a cartridge release and one thing I noticed was that the game starts in monochrome, when run on most MSX machines. At least in an emulator. I had to run it on a Brazilian machine to get the game to play in colour. This happened on all the ROMs I tried and I’m not sure why.

MSX Boulder Dash features all the authentic, classic levels and has tight gameplay that is arguably better than most other versions. The reason for that is mostly down to the controls and the timings when moving. Pushing boulders and moving around is usually proceeded by a slight pause when adding input, but the MSX version doesn’t have this and Rockford moves around with hardly any movement lag, which I prefer to be honest. Compared to the BBC Micro version, which has overly-responsive controls, and the Amstrad version, which seems to have the most movement lag (it’s not input lag, just the timing between pushing the controls and Rockford moving), the MSX version is the perfect middle ground.

The graphics in the MSX version aren’t great, to be honest, but it does have the best controls out of all the 8-bit home computer versions. Overall it’s an excellent port that is well worth play today. Just remember that it might need a particular MSX machine selecting to play it in colour.

See also: Boulder Dash Special

More: Boulder Dash on Wikipedia

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