teamed up once again in 1994 to create the Super NES
side-scrolling board game
platformer The Flintstones: Treasure of the Sierra Madrock
. The game finds Fred Flintstone
and his pal Barney Rubble
in a race against the other members of the Loyal Order of Water Buffalos
to find a secret treasure, a treasure which grants the one who finds it the rank of Grand Poobah
. Either as a team in 1-player mode or as competitors in 2-player mode, the guys must search five levels each with a series of stages (including Bedrock
, the fire world, the ice world, the jungle world, and the cave world). Players must roll a die between levels in order to move spaces on the map screen. Upon landing on a space the player is sent to a platformer stage. The weapon of choice is the club
and both our heros can perform the float-jump made popular later by Yoshi
in Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island
. Players can also perform a double jump
at the cost of one clam. Clams are earned by clubbing enemies and smashing open barrels. Most of the game takes place in these side-scrolling levels. A life meter at the top of the screen keeps track of available health and when it runs out your chosen character is returned to the last space on the map he cleared. Completing a level marks it "complete" and its space on the map can be crossed freely from then on. Hazards in the levels include angry dinosaur
s, bats, spikes, and lava pits (which kill in one hit).
In order to pass to the next level our heroes must locate one of their lodge buddies who has an item that is needed to progress. If you catch up to him he will challenge your character to a race (on foot, in a cart, or on ice skates). The game shifts to a Mode 7 race in the vein of Super Mario Kart and your character must run several laps and win in order to earn the item. Earning the item opens access to the next level, although you will have to move Fred or Barney across the map to the exit point. It is not necessary to complete all the stages in a level. The main goal is to move on to the next level. Passwords are awarded between levels.
In addition to stage spaces on the map screen you will find a series of games and hazards. Wilma and Betty, the wives, are roaming the map looking for their husbands. If you are caught by one of them your character will be moved to a random spot on the map. Game spaces cost clams to play with prizes including 1-ups and more clams. Playing a game is optional.
Taito managed to capture the world of The Flintstones pretty well in this title. Their classic theme song is played several times in several variations and the graphics are drawn in the style of the cartoon. There's nothing exceptional about the look and sound of the game, but I believe you will find that it is what you expect, nothing more or less.
The Flintstones: Treasure of the Sierra Madrock is not a game that you should expect to complete in a single sitting. While the platformer stages are short there are a number of them in each level and the die rolls are usually only a one or a two. Rarely will you roll a three. I also imagine that the game would be more fun with a second player, as that would add some good natured competition to the mix. If you're looking for this title check around in the usual used game shops and online auctions. It's a fun diversion from the usual platformer games and chances are that you'll have a yabba dabba doo of a good time.