Cannon Fodder. Sensible Software. (1993). PC

Cannon_fodder_box_art

This game is HARD…

I was bored on my lunch break, and remember I bought this on GOG a few years ago, so I quickly installed it and had a play through.

Basically, I wanted to see how far I could get with Jools still alive (not very). This game will find ways to kill you, be that hidden land mines, enemies shooting boxes near you, grenades, or bloody rocket launchers. Everything is a one kill, but explosions, with their splash damage, they’ll fuck you up good.

Seriously, don’t get attached to Jools, he won’t last long. You can cheat, or you can leave him in safety, and send the rest. But really, you’re just Cannon Fodder.

This game was amazing when it came out, I remember getting it on the Megadrive (Genesis to the Americans) and spending about a year solid being shit at it. I never completed, I couldn’t get passed the “jeep jump level“, if you played this game, you’ll know the jump level. My best ever performance, I got Jools there!!! Then he died… ON THAT SODDING JUMP.

The Gameplay

The gameplay is simple, you left click to move, you right click to shoot, and if you hold right click and left click (if you have them) you’ll throw a grenade. Pretty simple. Although… The nature of the left/right clicking means in a panic you will left click, while shooting. This means you will periodically wipe out with a miss placed grenade… (SERIOUSLY, DON’T GET ATTACHED TO JOOLS). As you would expect with any game, as you get further into it, the game will get harder with more vareity, lush green forests, icy tundra, dry arid deserts, military complexes, and so on.

The pre-mission screen, shows you a rather macabre scoreboard of kills/deaths, men eagerly queuing up for the next place in your squad, and the GRAVEYARD. Yes, you can mourn your dead soldiers, and watch eager new recruits line up next to the fallen soldiers graves..

Cannon Fodder GraveyardThis is my graveyard after mission for the game i played in the video. The better your guy performs the bigger and more elaborate his gravestone, with an almost endless supply of men, and an instant reload time you will be back straight away to try and navigate a difficult section. Just without POOR JOOLS

Overall

Cannon Fodder looks good. The cartoony graphics, are OK to look at today (if you play it at a sensible resolution), and the action is fast paced and pretty nerve shredding. A quick look at Wikipedia and the rating it got in 1993 (average 94%) shows how well thought of it was at the time.

The only real issues come from an insane difficulty spike, and the game is probably too long. There are 24 missions, and 72 levels in total. Considering Mission 9 is insanly hard completing this game is only for the pros.

Pros: Jools, fun to play, quick reload, bright and refreshing graphics, Graveyard/scoreboard/men queuing up to die.

Cons: When Jools dies, very difficult at (most) times. Mission 8.4.

81%

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7 thoughts on “Cannon Fodder. Sensible Software. (1993). PC

  1. I completely agree; Cannon Fodder is a great game, and fun even today. Used to play it quite a bit on the Amiga when it came out. Using a mouse is a must for Cannon Fodder in my opinion. 😉 What are your thoughts on Cannon Fodder 2?

  2. Pingback: MERCS. Capcom/Sega (1991) Sega Genesis | Videogames Revisited

  3. I had this game on the Amiga back in the day and I always liked it, but I agree the difficulty curve takes a sharp turn at a point and the you enter “Frak Cakes!” computer-out-the-window territory. I revisited it recently on the emulator and I got up to a level where you have to run out and take control of a cannon and my patience just went kaputnik. I still think it is a cool game and everyone should at least try it, but I only wish the difficulty would stay manageable for a while longer.

    • I think I know the level you mean, best I can do without cheating is get to level 10 after A LOT of frustration.

      I did the skip level cheat just to see how far I had got, and that was less than half way…

      I am considering redoing this review with a much lower score, because it is too hard, and it does stop being fun after a while.

  4. I love Cannon Fodder. I have a nostalgia-themed post scheduled for Friday that heavily features it.

    Whenever I think of this game now I’m instantly taken back to being that kid who nearly smashed the Amiga keyboard in frustration…

    … Good times!

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