Raid on Bungeling Bay (NES)

Raid on Bungeling Bay Box Art

Raid on Bungeling Bay

System: NES

Release Date: September 1987

Developer: Will Wright/Hudson Soft

Publisher: Brøderbund

Genre: Puzzle

Anyone who knows me knows that I love Will Wright. I do not love Raid on Bungeling Bay, however. The Bungeling Empire that we were introduced to in Lode Runner is back as the bad guys here. They are trying to conquer Earth and it’s up to you to destroy their war factories that they presumably fund with their exorbitant fast food taxes, before they finish their War Machine.

Dropping bombs on an enemy factory.

You pilot a helicopter that uses an aircraft carrier as a base. Controls are simple. The A button shoots your guns. The B button drops bombs, which is how you destroy the factories. Pressing up increases your speed forward. Pressing down reduces your speed and moves you backward. Turning is handled by pressing left and right.

About to crash as my carrier is under attack.

You have a map that’s 10 screens by 10 screens in size to navigate. You find islands with buildings and roads in your search for the factories. You also run into plenty of enemies that are tasked with shooting you out of the sky. The factories build these enemies, but it totally felt like more enemies would appear as I destroyed more factories, so that was odd.

An unsuspecting tank is about to explode.

Gun turrets try to shoot you down and gain heat seeking missiles after round one. Tanks patrol the area around factories dealing small damage. Radars alert fighters to the player’s position. Bombers try to sink your aircraft carrier base. Fighters are jets that try to blow you out of the sky. Boats patrol the seas much like tanks on land. Take too long and the Battleship will be built and make its way to your carrier to sink it.

The enemy battleship is on its way to sink my carrier.

When you take too much damage the maneuvering of the helicopter begins to fail. You can make it back to the carrier to heal up, but if your damage goes over 100, you’ll be nose diving to the ground. If you can destroy all the factories before you lose your lives or your carrier, you move on to the next, harder level. If they beat you, it’s game over and goodbye Earth!

Graphics: 1.0

The graphics are serviceable. They probably could have used some upgrades from their days on old computers.

Sound: 1.0

Sound is pretty bare, and the alert sounds are very grating.

Gameplay: 1.5

The helicopter has tank controls, which I guess works fine. Aiming at circling jets is challenging.

Difficulty: 2.0

It’s a hard game because you can only hold so many bombs and then once heat seeking missiles are introduced, good luck.

Fun Factor: 1.0

I didn’t really enjoy this game, but am happy that it inspired Will Wright to make SimCity.

Overall Grade: 1.3

Raid on Bungeling Bay earns a D+. This game is a historical curio and nothing more.

Raid on Bungeling Bay Video Review on YouTube