I was looking through the list of valuable and sought after Nes games a few days back and got to wondering. How Many of these games are worth the high prices? With so many heavy hitters on the console, whats the odds some of these games are just junk. I decided to start with a game I have owned in the past but sold years back when i thought it had already hit max value back in the mid 2000s. Boy was I wrong.
Is Bonks Adventure worth buying at such a high price?
Bonks Adventure is a platforming game with a few twists. You play as the caveman bonk and the gimmick is that Bonks head is the weapon. Bonk can hit enemies with a headbutt, jump and do a plunging head drop attack, or even get below his foes and just jump to attack from behind.
Bonk can also collect meat, which I believe either makes him angry or hot, It is hard to tell by the animation. There are multiple stages of this from large and small meat powerups. The do not provide any health increase/restoration (that is done via carrots and hearts) but add 2 benefits. The first is that the ground will start to shake during the head drop attack and damages all enemies on screen. The second is a temporary invincibility like collecting the star in Super Mario Bros.
There are 2 other special items (besides little Bonk dolls that serve as 1ups and smiley faces that seem to be the equivalent of a collection item) both of which either look like a bone/key with a flower on top or upside down heart on bottom. The flower takes you to a bonus stage where you can win smiley faces or 1ups. The upside down heart takes you to a room with healing items.
The game is not incredibly long and features a decent challenge. It is sort of easy compared to your standard difficult Nes game when it comes to the levels, but the boss fights can be challenging. That unfortunately is all there really is to say about the gameplay besides the fact it can be a little awkward controlling Bonk at times trying to bounce on enemies and such.
Why the Rarity and High Prices for Bonk’s Adventure?
Basically Bonks Adventure is expensive because it is rare. I have personally only ever seen one copy “in the wild”. It suffers from late release syndrome like many other expensive Nes games, releasing after the Super Nintendo has been out for years.
There is another interesting tidbit however. Bonks Adventure was released on the Nes by Hudson Soft. Hudson Soft was also partnered with NEC who created the Turbografx 16 which was designed as an Nes competitor. Bonk became the mascot for the Turbografx and had multiple sequels and spinoffs on the console. This is the only instance I know of where a competitors mascot has appeared in the game for an opposing console. That would have been like having a Sonic the Hedgehog game on the Super Nintendo, blasphemy.
Is Bonks Adventure worth the exorbitant amount of money it goes for?
That all depends. For a collector, of course it is. If you want to “catch ’em all” then its just one you will have to pony up the cash for at some point. It is going to hurt your wallet however as prices seem to be going from the $400-$600 dollar range on eBay. There are also a lot of bootleg or “reproduction” copies out there so you will definitely have to do your due diligence if you decide to get a copy of this game.
If your not a die hard collector however, Bonk’s Adventure is a game that could be skipped. It is a decent enough platformer but doesn’t really have a “special sauce” if you will. Not to say if you find a copy at a garage sale that you should leave it obviously. You could amass quite a large Nes collection for the price of this one decent game.
Or there is another option…
I am sure plenty of people are going to assume Im about to say to go the emulation route, which isn’t a horrible idea. That’s not what I am getting at though. What I will suggest is if you really want to play Bonks Adventure then just pick up a Turbografx 16. For less than half the going rate of the Nes game you can get the console with an assortment of games, Bonks Adventure included. Even if you buy it separate it only costs around $25 on the Turbo. ==> See Turbografx 16 lots on eBay.
If you really have to have that Nes Cart however you can find some here ==> See Bonks Adventure Nes on eBay.
Make sure to check out or Nes Buyer’s Guide also for any Nes needs or questions.