Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
Krusty the Crown leads a far from charmed life. He always wanted to work in light entertainment but his religious father forbid him such frivolity. Krusty went against his wishes and became a clown anyway. Disowned by his father, Krusty dedicated himself to his job and became the Number One children’s entertainer he is today.
Now he’s got another little problem. Lots of them, actually: rats. His Fun House is overrun with the vile vermin, from top to bottom. Krusty’s not an animal lover and will go to any lengths to get rid of them.
To speed up the process, he’s enlisted the aid of his favourite family, The Simpsons. On each of the levels, a different member of the family stands at the controls of an elaborate machine, designed to crush, fry or dice rats.
Now, rats aren’t the smartest of creatures, but they’re not downright dumb, either, and won’t wander straight into the machines. It’s down to you, as Krusty, to herd them in.
Each level has a number of rooms, which can be tackled in any order. However, it’s best to work from left to right; that way, difficulty gradually increases as you rid rooms of rats.
A basic rat-herding principle is that the little devils can only climb a single block at a time. If they’re trapped in a ditch, find a block and drop it where they can use it as a step. Similarly, take blocks away so they stay put.
The rats’ trail becomes more elaborate as rooms are cleared and involve more and more blocks, tubes, springs and air fans. You can also pick up balls and pies to throw at the giant snakes, birds, flying pigs and aliens who drain your energy.
Balls also eliminate certain blocks, often revealed not-so secret rooms and passages. Magic blocks reveal secret doors and timed bonus sections.
Just because it’s a Simpsons game doesn’t mean Krusty’s Fun House is all wacky platform action and gaudy graphics — you have to use your noddle, too!
They said it shouldn’t be done! Er... couldn’t be done! But Acclaim’s Flying Edge label have done it anyway — MS Krusty’s so close to the original you’d swear it was on a 16-bit machine! It’s taken nearly a year in the conversion process but it was worth the wait.
The same stylish presentation leads you to the game... then a rainbow of colours hits you! The number of shades and hues which adorn the graphics is amazing, from subtle pastels to dazzling primaries! I never knew the MS had such colour-handling capabilities.
Backgrounds and particularly sprites are superb. Krusty, rats and The Simpsons are perfect renditions of Matt Groening’s illustrations and their animation is equally smooth and cartoon-like.
Gameplay isn’t lacking, either. Platform-hoppin’ and creature-shoot in’ are the basics, but complete a few rooms and puzzle elements come to the fore. Tracking the rats and how blocks, tubes, fans and so on affect their progress toward a machine is the major concern and causes much head-scratching. The sense of achievement when the rats are destroyed, one by one, makes It all worthwhile!
There’s a minor fault (there had to be one): the music. On Mega Drive, the endlessly repeating circus melody eventually became irritating, and the same’s true here. Occasional snippets of speech are decent quality, though.
I thoroughly recommend Krusty’s Fun House to all Master System owners. It’s the only puzzle game I know that’s both addictive and a treat to the eyes. Put down that beat-’em-up, forget about that shoot-’em-up, buy Krusty’s and send those rats packing!
At long last Acclaim have converted Krusty’s Fun House for the MS. The MD game was an excellent platform challenge and now the 8-bit systems get a look-In! Play Krusty’s for a few minutes and you realise it’s virtually identical to the MD version. In fact the graphics are so similar you’d be forgiven for thinking this was the original! All the levels are laid-out the same and Krusty’s mission is still to rid his house of pesky rodents.
Gameplay is great. Krusty the Clown responds well to joypad movements and decent collision detection means you won’t die when you’re a million miles away from a nasty (unlike some games I could mention!).
The sound is also remarkably good for the MS. The (in)famous Krusty theme tune bounces along in the background and spot effects are cartoony and clear. Sampled speech is thrown in to great effect!
Overall, this is an extremely enjoyable platform game that gives your mind a workout and your fingers a few blisters! Krusty’s Fun House is a hit on every system it appears on and the MS version’s no exception!
Brilliant combination of platform and puzzle action. Play it twice and you’re hooked.