Cliffhanger (video game)
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Cover art of NES version
|Publisher(s)||Sony Imagesoft, Psygnosis|
A plane filled with terrorists attempting to steal money from a treasury plane while airborne is shot down by an FBI plane. The terrorists survive and send out a distress signal, which the main character, Gabe, responds to. However, Gabe does not know that the mayday signal is coming from a group of terrorists, and after reaching them, the terrorists capture Gabe's partner, Hal, and hold him hostage. Gabe must then set out and retrieve the money in order to save Hal.
The game begins with Gabe responding to the call, before Hal being captured. In order to progress through the game, the player must watch out for enemies and either avoid them by jumping or defeat them by attacking with various weapons, such as a knife or a gun. There are also bosses after every few levels, the final boss being Qualen, the leader of the terrorist group. The player can also collect money bags scattered throughout the levels to increase their game score, up to the possible maximum of 958845.
While the NES version specifically was criticized for its graphics (given the time period of release) by some, it was praised for having close relativity to the movie it was based on.
There are major gameplay differences between the 16-bit and 8-bit versions of the game. The Mega Drive/Genesis, SNES and Mega-CD/Sega CD versions are almost identical and feature gameplay similar to street brawlers like Double Dragon and Final Fight. The Mega-CD/Sega CD version contains a 3D snowboarding sequence where the player has to escape from an avalanche. Otherwise the gameplay on the 16-Bit systems is the same across the board. The NES, Game Boy and Game Gear versions however contain lower resolution graphics and a simpler side scrolling gameplay.
Mark Cooksey (famous for his earlier work on the NES) wrote this game's music. It has since been praised for how close it is to the movie, and was retained for the other hand-held 8-bit platforms it was released on.
- Mega review, issue 20, page 44, May 1994
- Electronic Gaming Monthly's Buyer's Guide. 1995.