Ice Climber


“Perhaps some can find it a great challenge for top-score runs, or maybe it is good in short bursts for stress relief or mindless diversion. Otherwise, this is just not a stand-out title.”
– from the full review, which you can read here.

Ah, the NES launch titles. So hit-or-miss for me.

Yeah, I like Wrecking Crew better than Ice Climber. I think the core concept is more innovative, the use of hammers is more cerebral, and the overall challenge level of the game is predicated more on a combination of mental quickness and movement agility, rather than Ice Climber’s more haphazard approach of broken mechanics and conveyor belts and flying platforms and arbitrary condor paths.

I do not blame anyone for liking Ice Climber (I know many really like it!), but it was never quite my cup of tea.

That being said, I cannot altogether bash it, either. Little wrinkles like co-op and stage select were features that most later NES games would even lack, and the overall premise is not terrible. The ice-and-igloo theme, though? Not sure if that is exciting or just random. Gets a “meh,” from me — and I really like winter stuff.

With Ice Climber, you get a vertically oriented arcade-style platformer that is similar to Donkey Kong. If that is your thing, cool. I think it is pretty darn average.

Then again, given the crappiness of much of the NES library, sometimes even an average game can feel pretty darn good.

You will have to go check out the full review for additional gameplay screenshots, but I did make a silly GIF of how one life began, then ended:


Read The Full Review For: Everyone seems to think that the jumping in Ice Climber is a big problem, but my review explains what the real issue behind Ice Climber’s gameplay is. Also, check out the full review for additional screenshots.

NES Gameplay Tips for Ice Climber: Honestly, you just have to practice until you get used to the wonky mechanics, and block out all your memories of other platforming games. Otherwise, you can also often get a peek at oncoming enemies through “windows” in the ice, so use that to your advantage. Furthermore, if you are going for score: Unless you are a top player, I would recommend just advancing through the bonus stages as quickly as possible, to ensure you can reach the condor. Spending time making sure to grab every single vegetable can often be your downfall.



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