Promotional flyer for the game.
|Release date||JP 1981|
NA 1983 (Atari 2600)
Sky Skipper is an arcade game released by Nintendo in 1981. It was never released outside of Japan, but was ported for the Atari 2600 for the American market. Being released the same year as Donkey Kong, Sky Skipper was overshadowed, and hasn't been referenced often since its release.
The Wonder-Kingdom has been conquered by a bunch of gorillas, and the king and his family has been captured. A lone pilot takes on the task to save them. Arming his plane with bombs he has a simple plan; knock out the gorillas and use their down-time to pick up the royal family with the plane. It's not an easy task though. The gorillas are armed with bombs on their own, and a shortage of fuel in the kingdom forces him to work quickly.
- Mr. You!: The hero. He sets out to save the royal family.
- The King's family: Made up of the king, the queen, the joker and four of each suit of playing cards, in the shape of animals. They have been taken captive by the gorillas.
- Gorillas: The enemies. Have conquered the Wonder-Kingdom and taken the royal family captive.
In Sky Skipper the player must navigate a plane through the Wonder-Kingdom to save the royal family. This is done by dropping bombs on the gorillas, which will stun them and release a number of prisoners. These will jump up and down, and by flying into them they are saved. Each prisoner is connected to one or more specific gorillas, so one must find the correct one to bomb. Gorillas eventually get up again, and the prisoners are thus locked back up if they have yet to be saved.
There are several dangers to consider when flying. Crashing into a wall or a gorilla costs a life. Some gorillas even jump, trying to hit the plane. There are also a number of clouds, which when passed through makes the plane lose altitude quickly. The same effect is caused if the plane is hit by a bomb thrown by a gorilla, or the smoke that is left behind. Finally, the plane also has a limited amount of fuel, and if it runs out the plane crashes. Fuel is also lost when hit by a gorilla's bomb. Luckily the player can refuel the plane by flying into a flag at the starting point. This can only be done once though.
The game supports alternative play for two players.
- Bombing a gorilla: 10 points
- Saving the king: 500 points
- Saving the queen: 400 points
- Saving the joker: 300 points
- Saving any animal: 80 points
Each time an animal is saved additional points can be received if the last four ones saved follow these conditions:
- Same suit: 400 points
- Same color: 150 points
- All four suits: 100 points
Upon completing a stage bonus points can be received for the following:
- Fuel save: Up to 3000 points, depending on the amount of fuel left
- Flag: 2000 points, received for not having refueled at the flag
Upon reaching 15000 points, the player is awarded with an extra life.
With Donkey Kong's release overshadowing Sky Skipper, it failed to gain any larger popularity. Because of this, it hasn't been seen much after its release. Nonetheless, Parker Brothers saw enough potential in the game to release it for the Atari 2600 in 1983. This took the game outside of Japan, but the port was very basic, leaving out many of the game's features.
In 1998 Sky Skipper would make its only cameo in the Game Boy Camera. In the application, artwork from Sky Skipper appeared in the Link menu. This included the king, queen and a frog. Interestingly, the king was rotated to make it seem like he was flying.