Bonk's Adventure

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Bonk's Adventure

Bonk's Adventure - TG16 - USA.jpg

TurboGrafx-16 - USA - 1st edition.

Developer Red Company, Atlus
Publisher Hudson Soft
Published 1989-12-15
Platforms Amiga, NES, TurboGrafx-16
Genres Platformer
Themes Cartoon, Prehistoric
Series Bonk
Distribution Commercial

Bonk's Adventure is a platformer video game developed by Red Company and Atlus and published by Hudson Soft for the TurboGrafx-16 on 1989-12-15, and later ported to the Amiga and NES. It's the first game in the Bonk series. You play the role of Bonk, a young caveman who uses his comically large head to smash apart enemies. In the story, Za, the Princess of Moonland, and her four subjects, have been corrupted by King Drool and banished to the land of Bonk where they are creating havoc. Bonk must free them from King Drool's spell and then travel to Moonland to defeat King Drool.

Bonk's Adventure was ported to the Amiga, and NES, and then emulated on modern consoles. A Game Boy port was also made, but it is an amalgam of the original and its sequel Bonk's Revenge.


Won?Yes. TurboGrafx-16 version.

I first played Bonk's Adventure at my brother's rich friend's house in the early 1990s, but I remember very little about playing it other than I did. Shortly after I found out about NES emulation, I found out that it was ported to the NES, but I never made an attempt to beat it. Ages later, when trying to get a better feel for TG16 games, I decided to try and beat the game.


Video Game Review Icon - Enjoyment.png Video Game Review Icon - Control.png Video Game Review Icon - Appearance.png Video Game Review Icon - Sound.png Video Game Review Icon - Replayability.png
5 5 6 4 5

Best Version: TurboGrafx-16

— This section contains spoilers! —


  • Overall, for each port, the game play is fun and the graphics and animation are enjoyable to look at.
  • The animation of Bonk is fantastic and quite hilarious. He has his normal vacant smile which changes to an animal when he climbs walls with his teeth. When he's injured, his eyes bug-out and he foams at the mouth, when he eats spicy meat, his head erupts like a volcano, and when he reaches full power, he becomes a zombie.
  • The very large sprite graphics were quite impressive for 1989.
  • There is enough variation among the monsters and hazards to keep the game fresh through to the end.
  • There are a fair amount of hidden sections which keep the game interesting.


  • Large portions of the game can be sailed over using the default controller's built-in turbo buttons.
  • I don't like that the meat power-ups wear off over time.
  • Action platformers do well to add item collection for bonuses, and Bonk's Adventure does this as well, but it's poorly executed. In Super Mario Bros. collecting 100 coins yields a free guy, but in this game, collecting vegetables, fruit, or smiley faces yields only points, and the smiley faces don't even give points until the end of the stage. You earn a free guy every 20,000 points, so the collectible kind of work toward that goal, it's just far more indirect, and doesn't feel as rewarding to get them.
  • You're given unlimited continues, but when you use one, you lose any additional hearts you may have found. So, if you get a game over at the final boss section, and you can't beat the bosses with only three hearts, you'll have to restart the game from the beginning. This kind of makes the continues pointless unless you're an expert player, but, if you're an expert, you won't need the continues.
  • The music is pretty dull across all ports.


  • Nothing really.


Box Art




Longplay, TurboGrafx-16.
Longplay, Amiga.
Longplay, NES.

Play Online

Famicom, NES (USA), TurboGrafx-16


Strong female character?FailThe only woman is a damsel in distress and reward.
Bechdel test?FailThere is only one woman.
Strong person of color character?FailBonk is the only human, and he's white.
Queer character?FailThere are no queer characters.


Language Native Transliteration Translation
English (Europe) B.C. Kid
English (North America) Bonk's Adventure
Japanese (Famicom) FC原人 FC Genjin FC Caveman
Japanese (PC Engine) PC原人 PC Genjin PC Caveman


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