Adventure Island

Adventure Island NES
Adventure Island NES

Adventure Island NES Cover

Adventure Island NES Credits

  • Published by: Hudson Soft
  • Developed by: Hudson Soft Company
  • Programer: Toshinori Oyama
  • Released: 1988
  • Genre: Action, Arcade, Platform

Adventure Island The Game

Adventure Island is a version of Wonderboy ported for the Nintendo Entertainment System, and certain other systems. It is based on the arcade game Wonderboy, and gameplay is essentially the same. For trademark reasons, Hudson Soft renamed the game, and revamped the main character, in the English language version naming him Master Higgins.

Wonderboy, Adventure Island, and Revenge of Drancon (the latter title was used on the American release of the Sega Game Gear version, because a Wonderboy sequel had already been released on the system) are essentially the same game. Sega had been involved in the original arcade release of Wonderboy, so ports for certain systems were renamed.

The standard story of Adventure Island talks of the young Master Higgins as he goes on a quest to save his girlfriend. The game itself is pretty much your run-of-the-mill side-scroller. Regardless of its lack in originality, Adventure Island became quite popular and inspired several sequels across various systems.

Adventure Island NES Skateboard

On The Skateboard

Power-ups are found inside eggs, and include, but are not limited to, shooting power, skateboard, superior shooting power, and angels. Hitting an enemy, a rolling boulder, or a fire results in death. Stumbling over a small rock results in a small loss of vitality. It is necessary to collect food items, by jumping in the air, to keep vitality up, or else Master Higgins will die. An angel provides protection against enemies, boulders, and fire for a set period of time, but Higgins is always vulnerable to falling into pits and water.

Adventure Island is divided into worlds/levels, followed by bosses, like other games of this genre. Unlike Super Mario Bros., the segments of each level are marked to show where one will have to go back to, when starting over after the character dies.

There are hidden Easter eggs (literal eggs, in this case), in the NES/Famicom version, such as a Hudson Soft Honey Bee logo that allows unlimited continues.
In the 1980’s, Adventure Island was also ported to MSX. It bears the Japanese title of Adventure Island, and features Master Higgins.

Sequels for 8-bit Nintendo Systems included Adventure Island 2-4, which, not unlike the Super Mario Bros. sequels, saw the introduction of a map and dinosaurs. Sequels were also made for TurboGrafx Nintendo Game Boy,and Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The Adventure Island sequels bear no relation to the Wonderboy sequels, which went in a very different direction.

A port of the NES version has been released for Game Boy Advance in Japan, as part of the Famicom Mini series.

Adventure Island Story

The games story is simple and is one that has been used thousands of time.  The Evil Witch Doctor has kidnapped Princess Leilani from Master Higgins and taken her to Adventure Island in the South Pacific. It is your mission to help Master Higgins and save Princess Leilani, but it’s not going to be easy. On the island, there are forests, mountains, caves, many enemy characters, and traps waiting for you. Can Master Higgins save Princess Leilani from the Evil Witch Doctor?

Is Adventure Island  Naff?

Personally I always liked the arcade version of Wonderboy and have to say that Adventure Island on the NES is a great game.  It is fairly difficult but at the same time very addictive.  The graphics and colors are good, the sounds are good and the gameplay is good.  If you are a fan of platform games and have never played Adventure Island on the NES, I would highly recommend you give it a go.  If you don’t like platformers or are easily frustrated give this one a miss.


7 / 10

Adventure Island Gameplay

Adventure Island NES Cheats

Unlimited Continues

  • Right before the G sign at the end of the 1st stage
  • Jump up at the edge of the cliff and look for an egg
  • The egg should contain a Hudson Bee, giving unlimited continues
  • When you have lost all of your lives
  • Press any direction on the D-pad then press START to continue


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