Skip to main content
  1. Tech
  2. Games
  3. Consoles

Commander Keen: Invasion of the Vorticons Episode 1: Marooned on Mars review

See also

Commander Keen: Invasion of the Vorticons Episode 1: Marooned on Mars

Rating:
Star5
Star
Star
Star
Star

Commander Keen: Marooned on Mars is the first of three episodes in the ‘Invasion of the Vorticons’ trilogy. The game was published by Apogee Software and developed by Id software, and released for DOS on December 17th, 1990. The plot follows Billy Blaze (aka Commander Keen) as he explores Mars (for who knows what reason), but returns to find his ship sabotaged, and the parts stolen. Keen has to retrieve the parts back from the Vorticons (why the Vorticons are on Mars is unclear). But is the game worth playing, or should the game be marooned on Mars?

More Photos

Graphics-On the plus side, the graphics look decent. The characters look fine, Commander Keen himself looks good (although he does look like a cookie cutout), and the levels look okay. The negative side is that you’re going to be seeing the same backgrounds (with slightly different layouts) at each level, making for some repetitive designs.

Sound-The sound is absent, due to sound produced by internal speakers.

Gameplay-Simplicity best explains the gameplay. The game is easy to pick up and play, and doesn’t take long to master. The combat mechanic is more strategic than in later episodes, as ray guns are far and few. You get an extra life after every 20,000 points, and the pogo stick makes reaching higher places easier.

Logic-There seems to be a few problems with logic in this game. For starters, how is Commander Keen surviving on Mars? A football helmet wouldn’t be enough to help him out, as the atmosphere on Mars would kill Commander Keen in under a minute. Another problem is how can Commander Keen jump at a normal height if there’s less gravity on Mars? If that’s the case, why need a pogo stick?

Overall-With some logic problems, but great gameplay, Commander Keen: Marooned on Mars is a good start to the series to come.

Score: 5/5

You can get Commander Keen from the following sites:

3drealms: Click here.

Steam: Click here.

If you enjoyed reading the articles, check out the slideshow at the top of the page to see some screenshots from the game.

If you enjoyed reading the articles, receive email alerts when new articles are published by clicking the ‘subscribe’ button at the top of the page.

Feel free to leave comments at the bottom of the page for this and all articles. Remember, keep it professional, and keep it clean.

Advertisement

Don't Miss

  • The Crew
    'The Crew' exclusive: New details on racing types, open-world, seamlessness and more
    Games Exclusive
  • Dirty hands
    Find out how to clean the gross gadgets you carry with you all the time
    Video
    Tech Buzz
  • Civ
    Need to catch up on 'Sid Meier's Civilization'? Here is everything you need to know
    Camera
    Games Feature
  • Contact lenses
    Google applies for patent for what could be the Google Glass successor
    Tech News
  • Upcoming
    These are 2014's biggest PS4, Xbox One and Wii U games
    Camera
    Games Feature
  • Microscope
    A brilliant doctor invents a microscope that can be created for less than 50 cents
    Video
    Headlines

User login

Log in
Sign in with your email and password. Or reset your password.
Write for us
Interested in becoming an Examiner and sharing your experience and passion? We're always looking for quality writers. Find out more about Examiner.com and apply today!