The serenity of your prehistoric homeland has been disturbed by an evil monster. He has stolen the princess of your lands and begun to pervert the once friendly inhabitants into ferocious -albeit cute- killers. Flinstonian phone in hand, who do you call? An amphetamine abusing hedgehog? No, he's in a 90 day program in Boca. A plumber with a penchant for Groucho Marx facial hair? No, he's on strike while the union renegotiates his overtime rate. Maybe... Of course! The year is 10,000 B.C. and child labor laws are literally non-existent. Better call Bonk, the kid with the adamantium head!
"Bonk's Adventure" features the first appearance of the TG-16 mascot, battling his way through five 2d stages of anthropomorphic dinosaurs. Huge bosses and hidden levels abound in this instant classic. While using his head, in the most primitive fashion, Bonk must rescue Princss Za from the evil tyrannosaurus/dragon hybrid known as King Drool II. Bonk is my favorite console statesman, and was a personal hero of mine when I was just a young cave man myself. Bonk just never stops smiling! The cute tongue-in-cheek fun of this game has remained undiminished for me as I had an absolute blast playing this game on Console Classix.
Bonk's health is displayed in a vitality gauge at the upper left corner of the screen. Bonk's healthy capacity can be increased by collecting empty blue hearts and then filling them up. Bonk begins his adventure with three lives, more lives can be earned for each additional 10,000 points that Bonk earns. Points are earned by collecting smiley faces, dispatching enemies, and consuming food items. Food items can be procured by jumping on certain types of flowers. Points can also be earned by continuously head butting and enemy while in the air.
Bonk attacks his enemies with head butts and flying head drops. Most enemies are merely thrown back by the first "bonk", but a second hit will typically dispatch them. Bonk also has a jumping head spin attack that when utilized renders him invincible for the duration of the spin. The spin jump is an absolute necessity when dispatching bosses. The bosses at the end of each level are actually Bonk's friends that have been hypnotized by the nefarious King Drool, and will attack Bonk as an enemy. Luckily the cure for hypnosis is pure blunt force and after being defeated Kind Drool's spell will be lifted from Bonk's one time companions.
Bonk's environment is interactive including sinking patches of ground and plants that can be jumped on to launch Bonk high into the stratosphere. Some level backgrounds are actually huge dinosaurs that Bonk must interact with if he wants to proceed. For example, head dropping a dinosaur's mouth to compel it to stick out its tongue, which can then be used as a bridge. Bonk must also swim his way through underwater levels to liberate princess Za. Some of the plant life is mobile and can be directed at Bonk's discretion using his head butt attack. The plants can often be utilized to access secret levels that pose specific challenges for Bonk (such as head butting lava rock etc.). To access hidden levels a rock typically needs to be destroyed, revealing a doorway. Bonk can also use his caveman teeth to scale sheer rock walls.
Bonk is a certified carnivore and becomes more powerful after consuming chunks of meat. By eating a small piece of meat Bonk can double the power of his head-butt and jumping head-butt attacks, as well as be granted the ability to freeze all visible enemies by head-dropping into the ground. Upon eating two small pieces of meat, or one large piece, Bonk will become invincible and can defeat his enemies by literally running through them. The power-ups achieved by eating meat only last a short amount of time and if Bonk is injured while powered up his power will be reduced. Bonk's color will change as his power fluctuates.
|Up||Used to enter elevators, bonus stages, and swim up|
|I||Jump, hold to super jump, spam to climb|
|II||Head-butt, spinning head-butt (in air)|
|Run||Pause, and used to activate extra lives|