Rocket Ranger (NES)

From Video Game Music Preservation Foundation Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Rocket Ranger
Rocket Ranger - NES.jpg
Platform: NES
Year: 1990
Developer: Beam Software
Buy: Amazon

Rocket Ranger was a computer game that was based off of the Rocketeer comics. The developer Beam Software had a contract with Cinemaware to produce NES versions of their computer games. The other Cinemaware NES titles Beam worked on include Defender of the Crown and The Three Stooges. In this game, you play as the Rocket Ranger who must save Professor Barnstroff and his daughter Jane from aliens known as the Leutonians. You must go to different countries to collect pieces of a rocket. After you've done so, you can then go to outer space and kill the aliens. After that, you've saved the professor and the girl...right? Wrong! You have to fight a big scary alien for a final battle, which just happens to be one of the easiest final boss battles in video game history. Just shoot the eyes and he's done.

The game was originally developed as Nazis winning World War II and the Rocket Ranger has to wipe them out, but due to Nintendo's censorship policy, they were forced to change the storyline.

The NES version of Rocket Ranger had a very small production staff; programming by Nigel Spencer, graphics by Russel Comte, directed by Patrick Cook, morale by Don Kurtz, discipline by Gregg Barnett and music/sound effects by Tania Smith.


Rocket Ranger - NES - Title Screen.png

The title screen.

Rocket Ranger - NES - Final Boss.png

That thing is gonna give me nightmares! Especially the sound it makes!

Rocket Ranger - NES - Ending.png

Don't wink at me like that!

Issue - Screenshots.svg

This page needs more screenshots.



The music in Rocket Ranger features an 8-bit conversion of the computer versions' soundtrack composed by Bob Lindstrom. The NES version's music was arranged by Beam Software composer Tania Smith. She did an amazing job since Bob used Sonix for the Amiga and Tania had to program the music using Beam Software's audio driver. Most of the notes form a chord of some sort, making the notes come together well. The game's instruments use the hardware decay settings that were in the APU of the NES chip. The music in the game does not loop. If you've heard the music to Hillsfar (NES), you can tell the beginning of the ending theme in Rocket Ranger sounds like the beginning of the title theme in Hillsfar. This is just a coincidence, since Hillsfar wasn't developed by Beam Software.

There is a part at 0:16 at the title theme where the note is supposed to be a natural C but instead is a C#, something that the original composer was embarrassed by.

Since we have obtained some, but not all of the source code to this game, some of the songs have their original song names listed.

Tania did not wish to comment on the soundtrack.


# TitleInternal Name ComposerArrangerProgrammer Length Listen Download
01 Ticket to NowhereMAINTHM Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 1:09
02 Main MenuFORTDIX Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:24
03 Dogfight in the Clouds / Mission ImpossibleDOGFIGHT Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:43
04 Heart of the JungleJUNGLE Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:51
05 Night Approach- Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 1:04
06 The Rocket LabFIST Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:32
07 The Zeppelin- Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:43
08 Game Over- Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:22
09 Mission Complete- Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:38
10 Ending- Bob LindstromTania SmithNeil Brennan 0:34



The game lists four people who worked on the game. All but Tania use their full names while Tania's first name is only displayed. It is unknown why her full name isn't shown, especially since they could have fit it in the credits screen. Unlike the original game where waiting at the title screen brings you the credits, you have to cheat in the NES version in order to access them. To do this, you must transfer all of your guards to Lutonia and then hold start and select. This cheat will also let you play the final part of the game.

Tania converted some of the digitized sound effects from the Amiga version to the NES version, including the battle cry and death sound of the final boss, the latter of which is only used in the Amiga version when the Rocket Ranger dies from falling out of the sky.

This was the first NES game by Beam Software to have credits. Prior to that, the developer Beam Software had a no-credits policy to prevent staff poaching.

Game Rip






Ripping NES music is a very arduous process that is beyond the scope of this site.


  USA.svg   USA
Rocket Ranger - NES.jpg
Title: Rocket Ranger
Platform: NES
Released: 1990-06-??
Publisher: Kemco▲Seika