Category Archives: First Star

Boulder Dash Special

Boulder Dash is a very special game. It is a simple idea, with cute graphics and devious gameplay that combine to make an addictive combination of arcade-style action, survival and puzzle-solving.

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Boulder Dash EX, Game Boy Advance

Boulder Dash EX is an updated version of the classic Boulder Dash, developed by Vision Works and published by KEMCO in 2002. And it’s not bad at all.

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Boulder Dash II, ZX Spectrum

It’s not clear who converted the ZX Spectrum version of Boulder Dash II, but the game was published by Prism Leisure in 1985.

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Boulder Dash II, MSX

The MSX version of Boulder Dash II is subtitled “Rockford’s Riot“, which is different to the Commodore 64 version (which is subtitled “Rockford’s Revenge“). It was ported by Orpheus and published by Databyte in 1985.

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Boulder Dash II, Commodore 64

Subtitled “Rockford’s Revenge“, Boulder Dash II was again designed and programmed by Peter Liepa and published in North America by Electronic Arts in 1985 as “Super Boulder Dash” (alongside a re-release of the first game). Boulder Dash II was published in Europe as a stand-alone game, though, by Beyond Software.

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Boulder Dash II, Atari 8-bit

Boulder Dash co-creator Peter Liepa created Boulder Dash II on Atari 8-bit machines first, before converting it to the Commodore 64. He’s said openly in interviews that he prefers Atari‘s machine when it comes to programming games, so it should come as no surprise to find arguably the best version of Boulder Dash II on the Atari 8-bit.

As far as I know, though, it was only released in North America as part of the “Super Boulder Dash” package from Electronic Arts (alongside a re-release of the first Boulder Dash). The Atari 8-bit version was never released as a stand-alone game. At least not by First Star Software.

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Boulder Dash, Atari 2600

This Atari 2600 homebrew port of Boulder Dash was first revealed in 2011 and there was talk of releasing it as a cartridge, but I’m not 100% sure if that actually happened or not (I think it did, from what I can see online).

The only ROMs available online are a two-level demo made by the developers to show off the game, and that is what these screenshots are from.

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Boulder Dash, NES/Famicom

The NES/Famicom version of the classic Boulder Dash was developed by Data East and published by JVC in North America and Data East in Japan in 1990.

It is distinguished from other Boulder Dash conversions by having completely different graphics and sound from the original.

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Boulder Dash, Game Boy

The Game Boy version of Boulder Dash was programmed by Beam Software and is somewhat similar to the NES version (not exactly the same since it was developed by a completely different company). It is a jolly re-imagining with different graphics, but the same devious level designs as the original. And it is of course monochrome, rather than colour.

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Boulder Dash, BBC Micro

The BBC Micro conversion of Peter Liepa and Chris Gray‘s classic Boulder Dash was programmed by Andrew Bennett and published by Tynesoft in 1988. And I don’t know what it is about this port, but there is something wholly unsatisfactory about it.

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