Montezuma's Return!

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Montezuma's Return!
Montezuma's Return.JPG
CD Box Art
Developer(s) Utopia Technologies
Tarantula Studios (GB, GBC)
Publisher(s) WizardWorks
Take-Two Interactive (GB, GBC)
Designer(s) Rob Jaeger[1]
Composer(s) Aaron Humphries
Dominic Messinger
Platform(s) Windows
Release Windows
  • NA: September 30, 1998
  • EU: 1998
Game Boy
  • EU: 1998
Game Boy Color
  • NA: December 1998
  • EU: 1998
Genre(s) Action-adventure game
Mode(s) Single-player

Montezuma's Return! is a 1998 action/adventure video game and the sequel to the original Parker Brothers game Montezuma's Revenge.[2] While the original game was a 2D platform game, such as Jumpman, Lode Runner and Mario, the sequel was a 3D first-person puzzle platformer.[1] According to Steve Bergenholtz, the Utopia Technologies spokesperson, the musical score was written by a TV and film veteran.[3]


Max Montezuma is a soldier descended from an ancient Aztec emperor. Max stumbles across a deserted, uncharted island, and accidentally crashes his plane on it. Prior to Max's arrival, the island is undiscovered. Max only has a flashlight, canteen, and an entire lost Aztec civilization before him. He must restore the desecrated tomb of his ancestors, discover the link between the ancient Aztecs and a race of saucer-flying aliens, and more, in his adventure.


The main objective is to guide Max to the ending destination of the level. There are eight levels (nine in newer versions). In every level the player collects treasures and defeats enemies while maneuvering across moving platforms, trampolines, and climbing ropes, or through water, until reaching the boss room. The boss must be defeated to access the level exit. Not every boss can be defeated directly and may require a specific action to affect it (e.g. Using the Lava Lord's own exploding lava rocks against him). If the player has collected 100% treasures, the player can play the bonus level.

Max may be harmed by traps or by enemies. Traps may include deep pits, spikes, or enemies that cannot be harmed (like skulls). Max can attack enemies by punching and kicking, and can kill them by pushing them into water.

There are other collectable items as well as treasures. Max can collect bananas or watermelon chunks to heal damage and key artifacts to unlock barriers.


The game engine and tools were programmed in C by Atman Binstock,[4] Rich Geldreich,[5] and Rob Jaeger[6] from 1995 to 1998.


The game features high-resolution 16-bit color depth graphics. The object modeling takes into account physics such as gravity, reflection, and wind. The game is true 3D with movement in six degrees of freedom. Optional Fast Phong- and Gouraud shading, perspective mapping, light-sourcing, real-time shadows, bump mapping, z-buffering, MIP mapping combine with multiple movable-point and spotlight light sources, view ports, and cameras to make the graphics an outstanding visual treat. Weather effects and underwater sequences add to the effects.


Additionally to an Windows version, there are also versions for the Game Boy and Game Boy Color, with the Game Boy Color version being the most common. These Metroidvania-style games play more like the original Montezuma's Revenge and were developed by Tarantula Studios.[7]


In 2014 the game's community reached out successfully to Rich Geldreich for an open source release of the currently unmaintained and unavailable game.[8]


PC Gamer described the game as "Adventuring spirit of Tomb Raider with platform jumping puzzles of Mario 64".[9]


  1. ^ a b Giovetti, Al (1997). "Montezuma's Return". The Computer Show. Retrieved 2009-09-09. 
  2. ^ Fielder, Lauren (Feb 18, 1998). "Montezuma's Return Preview". GameSpot. Retrieved 2009-09-09. 
  3. ^ Giovetti, Al (1997). "Montezuma's Return Interview". The Computer Show. Retrieved 2009-09-09. 
  4. ^ Binstock, Atman. "Electric Sheep Games". 
  5. ^ Geldreich, Rich. "Montezuma's Return". Rich Geldreich's website. 
  6. ^ Hardie, John. "DP Interviews Robert Jaeger". 
  7. ^ interview with Robert Jaeger by John Hardie on
  8. ^ Montezuma's Return! might go FLOSS! on (09 February 2014)
  9. ^ "Computer Gaming World Issue 171" (PDF) (171). October 1998: 76. Retrieved October 13, 2015. 

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