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Just as Sonic CD is a beefed-up version of Sonic the Hedgehog, Bonk III CD is a beefed-up version of the NEC PC Engine / Turbografx-16 game Bonk's Big Adventure. Playable on the Turbo Duo unit or a Turnografx-16 Super CD-ROM set, this enhanced version of the third Bonk title was released shortly after its HuCard cousin in 1993 and features two major enhancements. The rest of the game - plot, graphics, control - are identical to BBA.

The first major change is the addition of a versus mode. In the original game 2 players could work together to beat the game, each taking control of their own Bonk and cooperating to bash the baddies and complete levels. The new versus mode allows players to compete against each other in special mini-games, such as racing up waterfalls, headbutt volleyball, and other such challenges that have no impact on the main gain. In the event that a second player is unavailable, gamers can compete against the CPU in these mini-games.

The music in the main game gets pumped up with the CD-ROM capabilities, adding sounds intermixed with the main theme to add an element of realism to the game. Jungle levels feature the sound of birds chirping and cawing in the background, for example, and during the final showdown with King Drool one can hear the evil reptile roaring at our hero. The music itself has been remixed with added instruments and effects.

The game itself is extremely rare and was highly sought after even when it was new. The TG-16 was in full decline in the USA when this game was released (in fact, this is the last Super CD game to be released in the USA), making finding a copy of this game a real quest. Your best bet for tracking down a copy is online auctions, but be prepared to pay a pretty penny. Gamers wanting to play the game itself who don't care about the Super CD enhacements would be better off with the standard HuCard version of Bonk's Big Adventure.


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