Duck Hunt

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North American box art.

Duck Hunt, known in Japan as ダックハント [Dakku Hanto], is a light-gun game by Nintendo originally released on the NES in 1984 and then ported to the PlayChoice-10 and the Vs. System. Strangely, in 2004, a company ported it to the long since obsolete MSX. The dog and duck later showed up in Super Smash Bros. 4

I first played this game when my brother and I bought the NES Action Set around 1988 which came with a Super Mario Bros. / Duck Hunt multicart and a Zapper. One day, just to see how far I could get with cheating, I played the game with the gun directly in front of the TV and played long enough that the game stopped becoming more difficult. When I learned that there was no end to it, I became bored with it.

One interesting thing I found while playing with a debugger is the programmers actually trapped the game to give a game over if you reach level 100 rather than having infinite play or a kill screen.


I own the game in the Super Mario Bros. / Duck Hunt multi-cart. I can play indefinitely by getting extremely close to the television, but I'm not going to sit around until I reach level 100.


  • Overall: 2/10
  • Best Version: Vs. System


  • For the first few minutes play the game, you'll probably enjoy yourself.
  • The cartoon graphics are kind of nice, and there is a noticeable difference in tone between the silly duck shooting and the more serious clay pigeons.
  • The game has some nice memorable jingles.
  • The Vs. System adds an additional type of game play and allows you to shoot the stupid giggling dog!


  • Although the game ends at round 100, the difficultly stops increasing after only a handful of rounds and then caps out and repeats itself where it becomes dull.


  • All of the game is dully similar. Although there are three modes, you're essentially doing the exact same thing in each. There just isn't much content.


Box Art