Circus Charlie was among one of my first experiences in arcade gaming. The game was developed and published by Konami in 1984 for the arcade and was ported to the MSX in the same year. 2 years later, the game was also ported to the Nintendo Famicom, followed by the Commodore 64 in 1987. Furthermore, the game was also re-released alongside other famous titles of the time as part of the Konami Classics Series: Arcade Hits collection for the Nintendo DS.
The premise of the game was quite simple: the player controls a circus clown named Charlie and has to go through several stages and surpass all the obstacles contained in each one of them while collecting the most amount of points possible in order to set a high score. There are six stages in total, after which the game repeats from the beginning with a faster pace and increased difficulty. In this sense, the game becomes a match of endurance where only the most skilled can reach the higher difficulties and set the best scores in the arcade.
On each stage, Charlie will have to perform many tasks, most of which are dangerous and may consist of dodging obstacles, jumping through flaming hoops, walking on tightropes, and avoiding animals, to name a few. Each match is also a race against time, as the player is awarded additional points for rapid completion of each stage, which is a quintessential mechanic for those who want to get the highest possible scores.
In this article, we’ll go over each one of the stages and provide tips on how to complete them while maximizing your score in the process. Granted, with these type of games, practice will always make perfect. However, knowing is half the battle and, in that sense, you’ll likely perform better if you know what to expect.