Not an American user?


You are Rockford, and you have to dig through monster infested caves in search of diamonds. In each level you must collect a certain number of these diamonds, in order to open a portal to the next stage. Enemies can be squashed by falling boulders, which are released when the ground below them is removed or they are pushed onto empty ground, but be careful because these can also squash you. In later levels, difficulty is increased by many puzzle elements and shorter time limits.

There are 16 levels to be completed and five different skill levels available, which affect the number of jewels which must be collected and the time limit.


Boulder Dash Atari 8-bit Crush these butterflies to turn them into diamonds
Boulder Dash PC Booter Starting the first level (PCjr)
Boulder Dash Epoch Super Cassette Vision Pick up the diamonds
Boulder Dash NES Collect diamonds!

Promo Images

There are no promo images for this game

Alternate Titles

  • "Boulder Dash Vol. 1" -- iPhone title
  • "Boulder Dash - Starring: Rockford" -- Prism Leisure distributed title
  • "バルダーダッシュ" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

This was and still is a fun little game to play. NES David Lafferty (16)
The best game ever !! It has everything we want: action, strategic thinking, puzzles, and a construction kit to create our own levels. Commodore 64 Arno Weber (3)

Critic Reviews

Big K ZX Spectrum Feb, 1985 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 100
ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment) Game Boy Jan, 1991 908 out of 1000 91
The Video Game Critic NES Mar 10, 2000 A- 91
Consoles Plus Game Boy Sep, 1991 90 out of 100 90
Joystick (French) NES Dec, 1991 90 out of 100 90
Total! (Germany) NES Mar, 1997 1.75 out of 6 85 (UK) Commodore 64 Oct 26, 2007 8 out of 10 80
Video Games Game Boy Oct, 1992 80 out of 100 80
Video Games NES Dec, 1991 76 out of 100 76
Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) NES Aug, 1990 24 out of 40 60


Topic # Posts Last Post
Boulder dash clones 1 Peter Vrenken
Jan 07, 2014


1001 Video Games

Boulder Dash appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


A real Amiga version of Boulder Dash was never released. But Emerald Mine, a close variant for the Amiga, became very popular.

Arcade version

Boulder Dash was so popular on the home computer that it was ported to an arcade version. Usually, it is the other way around; in that a popular arcade game gets ported to the home system.

Atari 2600 port

In 2012 a port to the Atari 2600 was released as homebrew software with support from First Star Software. The programmers Andrew Davie and Thomas Jentzsch worked for almost a decade to port the game completely on the VCS.


  • Commodore Format
    • January 1991 (Issue 4) - Listed in the 'A to Z of Classic Games' article (Great)
  • Retro Gamer
    • October 2004 (Issue #9) – #31 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)
  • Zzap!
    • May 1985 (Issue 1) - #1 'It's the Zzap! 64 Top 64!'
    • January 1990 (Issue 57) – 'The Best Games of the 80's Decade' (Stuart Wynne / Robin Hogg)
Information also contributed by LepricahnsGold
Contributed to by Rola (8309), Trixter (9128), Dee96 (118), Jo ST (24110), William Moeller (9), Sciere (505957), Kabushi (202540), gamewarrior (5111), Pseudo_Intellectual (59603), Terok Nor (26382), Servo (57413), wanax (345) and koffiepad (10541)