Facts about Nintendo NES game Duck Hunt

Facts about Nintendo NES game Duck Hunt

Wii Play Has Several References To Duck Hunt

Duck Hunt is one of the few Nintendo franchises to never have a sequel. While the characters have cameoed in other games & media, Nintendo has never been moved to create a new game in the series. The most obvious time to do it would have been when the Wii was the hottest gaming console in the world. The Wiimote was tailor made for arcade style shooting games. For whatever reason, Nintendo let the chance slip by. We will likely never see another full Duck Hunt game again. The only thing that might change this is the positive reaction to the Duck Hunt Duo’s appearance in Smash Bros.

One game on the Wii did have some references to Duck Hunt. Wii Play was a spiritual sequel to Wii Sports. It featured lots of new minigames that used motion controls. One of the games in Wii Play was a target practice mode. This featured a level that looked very similar to the stage from Duck Hunt. You even got to shoot clay pigeons as one of the targets.

Duck Hunt was somehow a remake of another shooting game.

Duck Hunt and its iconic zapper pistol are part of the NES legend, but the NES version was based on a different game from 1973 called the Laser Clay Shooting System. Not quite as catchy as “Duck Hunt,” but probably just as addictive.

The Dog Appeared In Barker Bill’s Target Shooting

The Duck Hunt Dog is a highly recognisable character. This is odd, as he only appeared in two games (Duck Hunt and Vs! Duck Hunt). Despite this, he was chosen for the movie Pixels over numerous other Nintendo characters. He also appeared in the latest Smash Bros. games and was chosen over characters like Simon Belmont, Bomberman, Dixie Kong, or Waluigi. All of whom have starred in more games than him.

One of the few cameo appearances the Duck Hunt Dog made was in a game called Barker Bill’s Trick Shooting. This was another NES light gun game that was based around a circus. The dog appears in the intro and even does his trademark laugh. He will show up in some of the levels and fulfil the same role that he performs in Duck Hunt. If you miss, he will laugh at you.

Unlike the original Duck Hunt, Barker Bill’s Trick Shooting allows you to shoot the dog in the face!

A Horrifying 3D Version Of The Dog Appeared In A Commercial

Australia can take anything and make it terrifying. The spiders there won’t just scare you in the shower, they will kill you and use your abdomen as a holiday home. The Magpie is the stuff of whimsy and rhymes in Great Britain. The Australian Magpie is known for swooping down and attacking humans.

This increased terror has spread to the world of video game commercials. When an advertisement was being made for the NES in Australia, it was decided that the children should be scared into buying the system. Nothing entices children quite like the dead-eyed stare of a 3D NES sprite.

In the commercial, a horrifying graphic of a white collar office worker challenges the viewer to try and beat the Nintendo Entertainment System. We are told in turn that “You cannot beat us!”. This line is spoken by terrifying 3D interpretations of Bowser, Lakitu, Smick (from Gyromite) and the Duck Hunt Dog. The dog speaks the line as if he is an evil spirit who has been contacted through an Ouija Board.

Tony Randall Was Trapped Inside Duck Hunt In A Commercial

During the early days of Nintendo, the company weren’t shy about using their characters to shill products. Mario and Link sold cereal and lunchboxes on the same shelf as the TMNT. They even starred in their own shoddy (but fondly remembered) cartoons. Since then, Nintendo has become more protective of their properties. This might have something to do with the Super Mario Bros. movie being absolutely terrible and Nintendo wanting to avoid birthing a similar abomination into the world, that carries the face of one of their characters.

Duck Hunt was not covered by this protection, as it featured prominently in a commercial for Eagle Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chips. The original Odd Couple (Tony Randall and Jack Klugman) cross over with Duck Hunt in an event that matches the significance of when Spider-Man appeared in Civil War. Jack Klugman loves playing Duck Hunt with one hand while shovelling chips into his mouth with the other. He gets so pissed off by being interrupted by Tony Randall that he banishes him to the realm of Duck Hunt with the aid of his Zapper. The commercial ends with Randall trapped within Duck Hunt… presumably for all eternity.

You Can Shoot The Dog! (In The Arcade Version Of the Game)

The one thing that all players of the original Duck Hunt tried to do was shoot the dog. As soon as he started laughing at your failure, the player would inevitably start firing the NES Zapper right at him. This actually became the inspiration for his Smash attack in Smash Bros, as the dog tries to dodge the bullets shot at him by the player. It was one of gaming’s oldest urban legends that you could somehow shut the dog up… with a bullet.

In 1984, Nintendo released a set of arcade games based upon their NES home console titles. One of these games was an arcade port of Duck Hunt, that was called Vs. Duck Hunt. One of the additions to Vs. Duck Hunt was a bonus round where you had to shoot as many ducks as possible within the time limit. During this round, the dog will start jumping out of the grass, giving you the opportunity to shoot him. He will appear at the end of the round on a pair of crutches, with his leg in a cast and his face all blackened up. The dog will then chastise you for shooting him. It’s hard to feel guilty about this after he has just laughed at all of your failures. It stings even more when experienced in the arcades, as you had to pay for the privilege.

How Did the Duck Hunt Gun Work?

When you point at a duck and pull the trigger, the computer in the NES blacks out the screen and the Zapper diode begins reception. Then, the computer flashes a solid white block around the targets you’re supposed to be shooting at. The photodiode in the Zapper detects the change in light intensity and tells the computer that it’s pointed at a lit target block — in others words, you should get a point because you hit a target. In the event of multiple targets, a white block is drawn around each potential target one at a time. The diode’s reception of light combined with the sequence of the drawing of the targets lets the computer know that you hit a target and which one it was. Of course, when you’re playing the game, you don’t notice the blackout and the targets flashing because it all happens in a fraction of a second.

This target flashing method helped Nintendo overcome a weakness of older light gun games: cheaters racking up high scores by pointing the gun at a steady light source, like a lamp, and hitting the first target right out of the gate.